“The Mouse that Ate the Public Domain”. Another fine article on the background to the US Supreme Court’s decision to have a look at the Sonny Bono Copyright Term Extension Act. Contains the interesting statistic that Disney gave $6.3 million in campaign contributions in 1997-98. Who says money can’t buy you friends?
Archive for March 7th, 2002
Interesting, accessible article by a law professor pointing out that the Democrats take far more money ($24.2 million) from the entertainment industry than do the Republicans ($13.3). Which prompts the thought: copyright is an issue where Republicans could, for once, champion the interests of consumers. Will they break the habits of a lifetime?
More wireless networking developments!
Sputnik “envisions a world where people enjoy high-speed wireless access to email, the Web, instant messaging and more — wherever they are. That’s why we created Sputnik Gateway Software and the Sputnik Network, Earth’s first planetary broadband wireless network. When you set up a Sputnik Gateway, you can share unused bandwidth with other Sputnik Subscribers. In turn, you can access bandwidth on the Sputnik Network whenever you are within range of a Sputnik Gateway.”
News.Com: Amazon, Barnes&Noble settle patent suit. Amazon.com said Wednesday that it has settled its long-running patent-infringement suit against Barnes&Noble.com over its 1-Click checkout system. The details of the settlement were not disclosed. The settlement filed Tuesday with the U.S. district court in Seattle ends the dispute… [Tomalak's Realm]
Nice Technology Review piece on the idea of wireless broadband as a community resource.
“This isn’t just some techno-utopian notion — it’s today’s reality. Of course, there’s not much incentive to set up towers and deliver free wireless broadband to homes that can’t get high-speed Net access through cable modems or digital subscriber lines. But many businesses and universities are doing their part right now by making wireless Internet service available without restriction in their buildings and nearby public areas.
The other day, for example, I was at the Boston University school of journalism to have lunch with a friend, but he wasn’t there. Realizing that I was half an hour early, I took out my laptop and discovered that I was getting an excellent signal from the school’s wireless network. But I didn’t just get a signal — the university’s network helpfully gave my laptop an address on the Internet. Within moments I was downloading my e-mail and surfing the Web. When I shut down my computer 30 minutes later, the address was automatically returned to the university. And since the J-school’s network wasn’t running at full capacity at the time, even my minor use of bandwidth had no impact on other users. Total cost to Boston University: zero. (The same thing happened a few weeks later when I was at Harvard’s John F. Kennedy School of Government.)”
At last — a real, working 3G network!
Guardian Online report.
Shhhh — don’t tell anyone, but the Isle of Man has the world’s first operational 3G mobile network. And according to this report, ” it is easy to see the attraction of 3G for laptop users: with 3G, suddenly you could have a mobile connection substantially faster than the one you have at home, as fast as the one in the office. But while Manx Telecom refuses to talk about pricing – all the trial users are on a free tariff for the first three months while their usage is monitored and analysed – it is likely that 3G will not be priced to rival fixed broadband services. Plug-in 3G PC cards for laptops are likely to be popular ways to use the technology, for travelling business people who need their corporate email or presentations from a central server, or online games players who need a quick deathmatch on the move. “
Just as I always thought: the main use for 3G is really as a fast modem.