Wednesday’s Whiskey Sour

Your morning tech news sir...What’s the news across the nation? We have got the information, in a way we hope will amuuuuuuse you. La da di da. Ladies and Gents, Laugh-in brings you the news.
The Golden Gate Bridge opened on this day in 1937. The H-Bomb patent was filed in 1946. A frisbee was kept aloft for nearly half an hour in 1984. Michael Jackson and Lisa-Marie Presley celebrate their 10th wedding anniversary today. Oh, wait. Never mind.

  1. The RIAA is at it again. 493 more users have been sued. As before the lawsuits are filed by IP address only – the RIAA requires the help of the court to get actual names and addresses. Of the nearly 3,000 people sued by the recording industry so far, 486 have settled. None of the cases have gone to court, yet, but you have to love stories like this.

  2. Meanwhile the US Senate is moving forward on the Pirate Act. The bill would put the Department of Justice in the position of the RIAA, letting Federal officials file civil suits against copyright violators with potential fines of hundreds of thousands of dollars. Naturally the RIAA is foursquare behind the proposal. Senator Orrin Hatch says only the US government has the resources and moral authority to go after file swappers. Forget the war on drugs, we’ve got the war on Kazaa. And I’m sure it will be just as effective.
  3. California state legislator, Liz Figueroa, has toned down her anti-Gmail bill. Instead of requiring informed consent from people sending mail to Gmail customers – a provision impossible to implement – the law would require stronger privacy protections of the service.
  4. Another proposed California law would require companies to notify employees when they monitor email and online use. State Senator Debra Bowen has proposed this law three times before but it has been vetoed each time. The State Senate passed the bill 23-11 and sent it to the Assembly.
  5. We now know why there was a delay in shipping Service Pack 2 for Windows XP. Security code in the update breaks 64-bit processors. Microsoft says it has licked the problem and expects to ship Release Candidate 2 this week with release to manufacture in late July. That should get it out to users by September. Sp-2 adds much needed security to XP and will be a must have download once it ships.
  6. Microsoft cares. They’ve extended the support life cycle for most of their products from 7 to ten years. That means Windows 98 and Me will continue to be supported until 2008 and beyond. Oh joy.
  7. Comcast has agreed to put Microsoft TV in five million set-top boxes. The software enables Tivo-like functionality and interactivity, but your set-top box has to have sufficient processing power to use it. Most don’t.
  8. Linux inventor Linus Torvalds is responding to the accusations made by SCO by requiring all future contributions to the operating system by signed by the developer who must also vouch for its origin. Bill Claybrook, writing in Linuxworld, says this would have been required anyway by corporations trusting their critical operations to the open-source OS.
  9. Are video games becoming too complex? Nintendo’s president thinks so. Satoru Iwata says the industry is risking alienating customers by making consoles too powerful. He says unless things change, people will “get tired of games.”
  10. Not this game. A new Xbox title under development called Yourself!Fitness puts a personal trainer in your living room who guides you through a personalized diet and workout program. Look for it this fall, followed by a PS2 version. Next year, an Xbox Live version will allow you to talk with other dieters while “playing.” I’m sticking with Dance Dance Revolution.
  11. It didn’t work. A patch to Mac OS X pushed through Software Update by Apple last Friday did not fix a vulnerability that would allow a malicious web page access to your system. Unsanity is offering a program called Paranoid Android that fixes the problem. Read their white paper to understand why it’s so difficult to solve.
  12. Pick me! Pick me! According to The New Yorker, an agent at ICM is scanning blogs looking for new book authors. And there are at least a dozen books by bloggers in the works. Uh oh.

29 Replies to “Wednesday’s Whiskey Sour”

  1. Leo — It is “… Laugh-In LOOKS at the news.” ( Not that this is of any great importance!)
    Keep up the good work

  2. That way, Mr. Hatch can have the authority to go after pirates who illegally download software to build his Senate website … oh wait, never mind.

  3. I sure do miss you at 6pm on Call For Help. I used to watch when you were Dev Null on The Site with Soledad O’Brien.

  4. The DMCA, and now the Piracy Act…..Humm…I can only wonder what computing will be like in the future.

  5. I think the New Yorker is thinking along the lines of bloggers like Wonkette, Leo, nice try though.

  6. Laugh in? Nice to see you are sipping Whiskey Sours and watching TRIO TV at 7 AM PDT. Lots of us have told you to relax…. Sock it to me!

  7. Hah I found the line “microsoft cares” to be endlessly funny for some reason.

  8. The members should slip into comas and never wake up. This is inconceivably stupid!!!

  9. It is my hope that Microsoft releases Service Pack 2 for Windows XP for download sooner than September, hopefully by early August, because if they don’t, there will be a whole bunch of computer teachers like me who won’t install it for some time. I won’t risk installing it in the lab and throughout the school without thorough testing with all our educational apps and doing other necessary upgrades. August is when we have time for that– we don’t have time to do the upgrades and troubleshoot in September.
    In addition, the first computer I installed Service Pack 1 on a few years ago when it first came out froze mid-install, and the hard drive was fried. Not the hardware, but it required a re-format, and my client did not have a current backup he assured me he had before I started the upgrade. I hope MS’s QC is better this time.

  10. The firewall upgrade should be made indivigually because they would be able to release it earlier and people could get the only really good thing besides security updates you already downloaded (Right? 🙂

  11. >>He says unless things change, people will “get tired of games.”<<
    Awwww…shucks! And just when there was supposed to be a TV channel about that lifestyle.
    Maybe when it happens, the folks that own that channel might look into covering something with a longer and more diverse interest group…the computer lifestyle?

  12. I installed the service release of SP2. By new defaults and minor improvements it will help the casual or new user. The most important thing it will do hopefully, is to slow down worm and virus infections. Uninformed home users on broadband and neglected servers are the root of these problems. Don’t get me started on mismanaged corporate mail servers.

  13. LOL @ Wayne
    Microsoft TV in set-top boxes…I can see it now: you’re watching the Super Bowl, you pause the game to pull some adult beverages out of the fridge, and up pops a BSOD. No thanks.
    I wonder if Wil Wheaton is partially responsible for this “books by bloggers” trend? And does the future of this trend ride on his sales?

  14. Oh momma. You mean the massive, thesis-sized entries I’ve written in my blog may finally pay off for me? I could actually get a book deal for my pretentious ramblings? Maybe there is a God after all…

  15. Pirate Act: you can only wonder ‘what’s in it for the DOJ?’ if they act in place of the RIAA by filing enormous numbers of civil lawsuits against small file swappers. This is the role of private industry, not Big Brother, folks. That is, if you think the RIAA is right. Did I mention that Orrin Hatch (R-Utah) is toxic to American values?

  16. On the OS X vunerability… the folks at Macintouch have a demonstration of it that you can access yourself. It is quite disconcerting to see it mount an Applescript on the desktop and then run it without your consent. I definitely recommend getting Paranoid Android installed as soon as possible!
    Brian Sakowicz

  17. hi leo,
    i met you in seattle and enjoyed you/will miss you on techtv. i know that this next track in your journey is meant to be but i hope that our paths will cross again somehow/somewhere… maybe you’ll become the host of your own primetime show : )
    hey..what’s the next best newbie’s tech assistance tv show in the absence of cfh? i’m still trying to find a decent replacement for the money machine show that was cancelled.
    all my best,

  18. Put me in the “tired of the complexity of games” category. I really don’t give a hoot about these fancy 3D games that try too hard to mirror reality (I play games to *escape* reality, thank you very much); I’d much rather have a fun Donkey Kong or Mario game that I can lose myself in. Then again, my favorite game is still Tetris, so what do I know.

  19. hi leo,
    i met you in seattle and enjoyed you/will miss you on techtv. i know that this next track in your journey is meant to be but i hope that our paths will cross again somehow/somewhere… maybe you’ll become the host of your own primetime show : )
    hey..what’s the next best newbie’s tech assistance tv show in the absence of cfh? i’m still trying to find a decent replacement for the money machine show that was cancelled.
    also, when are they re-running your last show. i missed it : (
    all my best,

  20. Leo,
    Read It’s by John Gruber and has a good argument for not using Paranoid Android. He explains why it is a bad idea to run any haxies and offers a better solution.

  21. “Let’s DDR…”
    Playing DDR/StepMania/etc. on a computer though isn’t that great. The official version is so bloated that there are little freezes mid-dance (even with all the extra animation turned off) and the timing is off by about a quarter of a second, which in DDR makes a huge difference. With StepMania, there’s no freezes, but the timing is still off. I’ve decided that it has to do with either the pad itself or the joystick controller..

  22. I think I would love to read a book by a blogger. Wil Wheaton, Chris Pirillo, Leo Laporte (granted Leo’s are news related, while Wil’s are more personal) Christoper J. Priest are all folks I’d enjoy reading ‘offline’.

  23. Leo-Without getting scmaltzy-in 1999 I began watching you and Kate, and my world opened up, as I caught the enthusiasm you two shared for learning about computing. I went from not knowing how to turn a computer on to getting a degree in the field. Thank you for being a great teacher, and I wish you (and Kate in New York) all the best for the future.

  24. Senator Hatch is our own form of entertainment here in Utah. He’s the same twit who wanted to be able to press a button and fry the computer of anyone who was pirating music.
    It makes me wonder what other silly ideas he has rattling around in that empty head of his.

  25. What’s in it for the Justice Department in the Piracy Act? An increased budget and more people as well as a higher profile. Like any business, they are looking for new sources of revenue. Like any government department, it doesn’t matter if they will be able to show a return for the investment.

  26. Whilst looking through I serendipitously came across your listing. You might want to submit a head shot and add contact info. It got me thinking of all the beautiful women you’ve worked with. Not bad for a non-leading man type. 😉

  27. Leo – re #1 RIAA. Thanks for picking up on the MN woman being sued on behalf of her 15 yr. old. Getting huge press here too. The Atty General and Governor’s office are very active in helping sort fact from fiction on behalf of our residents. What a stress trip though.
    In this market, G4techtv is airing different shows in the CFH time slots, not necessarily CFH repeats and mostly gaming related. That amounts to false advertising.

  28. Hi Leo:
    My wife and I have been watching you since you were a computer puppet on “The Site.” We have a lot of affection for you and your work and wish you the best in whatever you do.
    I have been particularly charmed by your interest in exposing young people to science as well as technology. I am a NASA scientist myself and have found your intelligent and informative approach to space exploration very welcome. I hope, in this money-driven society, that others will follow your example and pause from time to time, away from the flash and luster of technology, to examine the reasons for exploration and technology development beyond mere profit. Kids today need to understand that there is in motion a grand quest to understand who we are from the context of a vast and increasing weird universe. In my view, there is nothing more important for this generation; we need people like you to drawn our young people outside of themselves to consider the infinite possiblities of the universe.
    Henry Harris

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