Wednesday’s Whittler

100 years of flightI‘m headed out in a few minutes to appear on the Ronn Owens Show on KGO 810 AM in San Francisco — I’ll be on from 10-11a Pacific — but before I go, here’s the news.
On this day, 100 years ago, the era of powered flight began when Orville and Wilbur Wright flew their plane at Kitty Hawk, NC. To commemorate the event, CBS will run a special 48 Hours on the collapse of a porch in Chicago.

It’s a good day for scientists, famed alchemist Paraclesus (1493), chemist Humphrey Davy (1778), electromagnetic pioneer Joseph Henry (1797), physicist John Kerr (1824), quantum pioneer Hans Kramer (1894), and inventor of the atomic clock, Frank Libby (1908), all celebrate today. A Christmas Carol was first published today in 1843.

  1. So much for the rumors that file sharing is legal in Canada. The CRIA is planning to take action against large-scale file sharers in Canada “sooner than later.” License fees on blank cassette tapes, CD-R media, and MP3 players do seem to protect people who download music online, but Brian Robertson of the CRIA says “uploading has never been an issue. It’s totally clear that it’s illegal.”
  2. Two Americans have paid $20 million each for the right to fly a Russian rocket to the International Space Station. The names of the space tourists are being withheld to protect them from mockery.
  3. Service Pack 2 – a major update to Windows XP – will go into beta this month aiming for a general release in mid-2004. Among other changes: a complete revamping of the Windows Firewall.
  4. Diebold may lose the lucrative California voting contract after State Secretary of State Kevin Shelley ruled that the company installed software that had not been approved by election officials. Diebold has already been accused of irregularities in Georgia’s gubernatorial election.
  5. Slashdot quotes two different sources who say Orville and Wilbur were not the first. Kiwi Richard Pearse beat them by more than a year in New Zealand. And Brazilians believe that Alberto Santos-Dumont deserves credit.
  6. Also on Slashdot: a Powerbook with over 55 different operating systems installed, including DOS, Windows, and OS/2.

4 Replies to “Wednesday’s Whittler”

  1. 55 OSs? WTF? That’s far too many. Either somebody bought a giant HD and partitioned it into 1 GB slots, or they’ve got one screwy drive setup.

  2. I saw that article on slashdot about the powerbook. WHY would you put windows on a powerbook? And WHY would you put so many versions of windows on a mac?
    Definately interesting to see that it still runs with that many…

  3. Reminds me of the time I installed 18 web browsers on my machine. This included several versions of Netscape (ranging from 0.9 to 3.0), IE (ranging from 1.0 to 3.0 or 4.0), an old verison of Opera, HotJava, Lynx, and probably one or two that nobody’s heard of.
    I tried launching all 18 at once to see what would happen, but I ran out of memory before I finished.
    To quote someone on IRC, “Nathan can’t crash his computer. Now what?”

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