brainwagon "There is much pleasure in useless knowledge." — Bertrand Russell


Brainwagon Radio: SCOTUS on Grokster, Copyrights and itsyBSD

Where your host records another podcast on his way to work, and encounters a particularly gruesome bit of road kill along the way.

Still, I have time to give you updates on the Supreme Court's review of the Grokster case, the ongoing debate over copyrights on orphaned works, and a brief update on my success with itsyBSD.

Oh, and a Scrappy the Cat update.

I'm also willing to send out Yahoo! 360 invites. Drop me an email if you'd like to see what all the fuss is about. My initial impressions: it's more useful for creating small cliques than wide publication. If that's what you need, it's probably a good thing. And the price is right.


Science & Technology at Scientific Okay, We Give Up

I'll admit it: I love to argue about evolution and creationism. Actually, it's not so much an argument, as no real rational argument in favor of creationism can be made. It's really more of a desire to hitch creationism to the bumper of my car, and drag it through the mud. Call it a personal failing if you like.

This explains why I find Scientific American's April editorial amusing; perhaps more amusing than any of you will find it.

In retrospect, this mag-azine's coverage of so-called evolution has been hideously one-sided. For decades, we published articles in every issue that endorsed the ideas of Charles Darwin and his cronies. True, the theory of common descent through natural selection has been called the unifying concept for all of biology and one of the greatest scientific ideas of all time, but that was no excuse to be fanatics about it. Where were the answering articles presenting the powerful case for scientific creationism? Why were we so unwilling to suggest that dinosaurs lived 6,000 years ago or that a cataclysmic flood carved the Grand Canyon? Blame the scientists. They dazzled us with their fancy fossils, their radiocarbon dating and their tens of thousands of peer-reviewed journal articles. As editors, we had no business being persuaded by mountains of evidence.

Heh. Sarcasm. Have to love it.


Boing Boing: Media lawyer’s blog from Grokster hearings

Another major intellectual property issue which is unfolding is the Supreme Court's consideration of the Grokster case. With exchanges like the one below, I'm hopeful that the Supreme Court will rule against the media. I mean really...

Boing Boing: Media lawyer's blog from Grokster hearings


U.S. Copyright Office – Orphan Works Initial Comments

Over 700 comments were received during the inquiry period for comments by the Copyright Office on the topic of "orphaned works": works whose copyright holders are either impossible or very difficult to find.

Currently, orphaned works are held in limbo: their creators (even if determined) cannot be located, so their works are in limbo, perhaps for forever, given the willingness of Congress to extend copyright terms. There seems to be some consensus that this is undesireable, and some push to allow a mechanism which allows such orphaned works to enter the world of the publically exploitable works.

I've surveyed only a couple of these comments. They seem very good. Check 'em out.

U.S. Copyright Office - Orphan Works Initial Comments