Get Bused, Get Omnibused

It’s that time again — time for some bigtime link aggregation. So strap in and enjoy the ride, y’all.

PA liquor laws are stupid, unpopular. Sky blue, Pope Catholic, Queen English.

I pride myself on being a bit of a geek, but getting the real Boba Fett to show up and object to your Star Wars/Labyrinth-themed wedding is just off the charts.

USA Today writers: tragically unhip, they pine for earlier days and shake their fists impotently at those “darn kids”.

Rope-less jumprope? Stupidest. Idea. EVER.

Christopher Hitchens has a brother and, wouldn’t you know it, they’re polar opposites. What a weird world we live in.

A former police chief and retired USMC captain restrain an unruly airline passenger to applause, excepting the chief’s wife who

barely looked up from “The Richest Man in Babylon,” the book she was reading.

“The woman sitting in front of us was very upset and asked me how I could just sit there reading,” Katie Hayden said. “Bob’s been shot at. He’s been stabbed. He’s taken knives away. He knows how to handle those situations. I figured he would go up there and step on somebody’s neck, and that would be the end of it. I knew how that situation would end. I didn’t know how the book would end.”

Wunderbar.

The Movable Type 4 beta has been released and MT4 will be licensed under an open source license. I’m downloading as we speak and will eval it ASAP.

The Camino browser hit 1.5 today. Excellent browser, much more Mac-ish than Firefox. Still no Firebug, though…

Those jihadi sons of motherless goats have introduced a new weapon in the Iraqi theater. Oh, the hubeer-manity!

I love liberal columnists. A philandering, faithless Chief Executives that lied under oath to a Federal grand jury, hey, no problem! An ex-VP and Presidential candidate takes to the Convention stage and lays a huge, creepy, tongue-filled kiss on his wife? More’s the better! But let a GOP Significant Other or two show off their natural assets and you’d think the whole country were headed straight into the toilet.

Screencast-o-Matic: nifty idea, “meh” implementation.

A Q & A with lots of A’s with two of the writer/producers of NBC’s Heroes. Well worth the time investment to read.

Plotr: quite a handy JavaScript-based graphing tool. Very cool.

Bill Gates and Steve Ballmer, serially uncool:

A history of video games:

I give it an “A” for concept, a “C” for actually including decent/ground-breaking games.

Fallout 3 is coming. Hooo boy!

New MacBook Pros are out, and man!, are they spiffy.

Innovative Business Model: Buy My Product Or I’ll Sue You!

Take off every Zig - for great digital justice!

Now this is a doozy. A company called “MRT” has decided to sue Microsoft, Apple, Adobe and Real Networks because

MRT claims that Vista, Adobe Flash Player, Real Player, iTunes and the iPod have been produced “without regard for the DMCA or the rights of American Intellectual Property owners.” The DMCA, signed into law in 1998, makes it illegal to manufacture products that are designed to circumvent copy protection. Accordingly, MRT has filed Cease and Desist letters against Apple, Microsoft, Adobe and Real to stop production or sale of products that infringe on the DMCA.

MRT’s X1 SeCure Recording Control has proven effective against stream ripping, the company said in a statement, and these companies have been “actively avoiding the use of MRT’s technologies.”

(Emphasis mine.)

Oh that’s rich. That’s real rich. As if there weren’t enough examples that the DMCA is a terrible law, here we have a company essentially claiming that any media company not using their product is, in effect, not doing enough and therefore in violation of the law. It couldn’t be that perhaps those companies took a look at MRT’s offering, found it to be crap and decided to press on with their own copy protection schemes — that would be too simple! Conspiracy! Skulduggery! RICO!

Now, it seems plain to me that MRT is misreading the law and thus should have their suit laughed out of court at the first available opportunity. In order to pass the DMCA’s “anti-circumvention” sniff test, a product must be “designed to circumvent copy protection” (as referenced above). I find it a ludicrous proposition that any reasonably intelligent judge could possibly believe that Real Player, Windows Media, iTunes, Flash and the iPod were in any way, shape, or form “designed” to circumvent copy protection.

But perhaps I speak too soon. Perhaps I could counsel a few traffic light camera vendors to begin suing all cities that “refuse” to place their cameras at all stoplights. I mean, that obviously means that they are not only not interested in enforcing traffic laws but are in fact inviting and enabling drivers to break the law. They’re complicit in the lawbreaking, right? Same argument, as far as I can see.

The only solution I can see to the problem is to round up all lawyers, fire them into space and then lose the whole lot somewhere in the New Mexican desert ala Scotty.

Ars Technica has more on the subject.

This’ll Help Convince The Feds To Adopt Linux

Via Slashdot, I saw a story about Richard Stallman convincing Cuba to adopt Linux. Linux companies and Linux advocates have been struggling against a reputation as mere software Communism – good thing Open Source Software’s strongest “advocate” (RMS) has gone and proved the case to be, well, true.

Gah.

Burnination, The Follow-Up

With apologies to Trogdor: Shortly after I posted my review of Toast, I stumbled across a comparison review of a few of the top Mac burning software packages. Toast makes an appearance, as do Burn and two others, as well as a 5th one that was suggested in the reviews’ comments (LiquidCD) which got me to thinking about other media-related downloads worth your time.

First up, Windows users looking to convert their media over to handheld-appropriate formats ought to look into Videora which handles the conversion tasks for the Microsoft-addled. Next up is Democracy, an incredible video aggregator with support for RSS “channels” and BitTorrent downloads. It’s available for Mac, Linux and Windows, so platform concerns should be nil. Mac users looking to correctly tag their iPod-ready videos so that they show up correctly in iTunes should look into Lostify, your one-stop-shop for all your video tagging needs.

Last of all, those of you looking to get caught up on TV shows you missed should check out ShareTV, a site that looks to centralize torrents for a lot of the top-flight shows currently on TV in one easily-accessible website. Be sure to give it a look.

Now THERE’S A Good Security “Fix”

Microsoft announced a rather serious flaw with their Word product today which apparently affects every version of Word from 2000 through the most recent releases, Macintosh versions and Word Viewer included. There is no known patch, nor is there a work-around and none of the big anti-virus companies have a fix or even a virus signature yet. Microsoft’s solution (and here I’m paraphrasing their bizspeak): don’t use Word until we fix it. My solution? Well, it’s rather simple – OpenOffice.

Bwahahahahah. Tell me again, how is a worldwide computing monoculture a good thing?