Archive for January, 2000

for: work

I have been beating my head against the wall for the last few weeks trying to figure out something to work on for Srini. I was not at all pleased with the work that I did last semester; it was not bad programming but it was not especially extensible and it was not anything particularly innovative. Honestly I felt like my work was of little use to anyone and being useful is one of the most important aspects of my work to me. So, I’ve been reading up some and learning a bit and this is a message explaining some of what I’ve read and where I plan on going.

I don’t get especially technical, but if I do just skip that part. =)

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sj: dvd

I wasn’t sure quite how to classify this while titling it. I’m not really wanting to write on the subject at this point simply let you all know that it is going on.

This has to do with a growing legal battle between a Swedish boy named Jon Johansen and the MPAA (Motion Picture Association of America.) I’m sure that everyone has heard of DVD’s (Digital Versatile Discs) which let you watch movies on CD’s that aren’t really CD’s. Well, the information on a DVD is encrypted for a couple of reasons. One is to prevent what happen to music with mp3’s from happening to movies. That is people copying their DVD’s and copying them to all of their friends. Another reason is that DVD’s have as a part of their encoding a “region code.” That is if you buy a DVD in France and try to bring it home and play it on your American DVD player many movies will not play. Apparently Europe gets releases of American films 6 months to a year later than the United States and this is to prevent Europeans from buying American DVD’s of the movies that they want to see before they are released in the theatres.

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for: irked

I was reading my morning news (slashdot.org) and ran across this article http://wildcat.arizona.edu/papers/93/81/01_4_m.html which irked me. It is an article about a bill in Arizona that would essentially throw the university social system back to the 50’s. The woman who is sponsoring the legislation wants among other things a ban on opposite sex dorm room visitors not of the immediate family and (this is why it made it onto slashdot which deals with technology news) a ban on all use of computers without a “specific educational purpose,” meaning a class assignment.

The newspaper which carried the article, the Wildcat Online News, (which is the school paper and it would be cool if Tech could run something like this, it looks good) has a discussion section and there aren’t any positive comments, but what do you expect from college kids?

I just wonder what goes on in the mind of the person who writes this bill. Does she not think that students are capable of making their own decisions? I am just curious about how the general public response to this bill will go.

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