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Saturday, April 3, 2010

Is Linking To Defamatory Statements The Same As Publishing Defamatory Statements?

The Supreme Court of Canada has agreed to hear the case of a former political campaign manager who claims that links to defamatory content on other sites is the same as publishing the content on your own site. The case was heard by a judge at the British Columbia Supreme Court and was struck down, but the Supreme Court of Canada has agreed to hear the appeal.

David Fewer, director of the Canadian Internet Policy and Public Interest Clinic at the University of Ottawa, said:

"To import liability in those circumstances is to impose just a tremendous burden of liability on all participants in the internet,".

"Not just hosts, not just websites, not just bulletin boards, not just ISPs, but also individual participants, commenters on blogs, commenters in newspapers, newspapers themselves, other publishers who allow anybody to speak on the internet.

"You can just imagine the chilling effect that would have."

This is scary stuff!

Source: CBC

Friday, April 2, 2010

And I Thought My Wi-Fi Detector T-shirt Was Cool!

Some time ago, I purchased this T-shirt from Think Geek and it was the hit of the company pot luck! I do believe however that I've been trumped... well done Chris Ball!


"How's it work?

There's a Python script ( to be run on any Bluetooth-enabled
device with Python installed (I use an Android phone, you could use a
laptop). The script simply downloads your Gmail RSS feed to see how
much unread e-mail you have, and sends that number over a serial port
every two seconds. I use /dev/rfcomm0, which is the serial device that
connects my phone to the Bluetooth dongle on my Lilypad.

There's also a C program (lilypad.pde) that runs on the Lilypad, reads
a number over the serial port, and renders that number on a set of LEDs
(I use seven LEDs). That's it."

Thursday, April 1, 2010

A Dual View Of The iPad

This morning I read David Pogue's NY Times review of the Apple iPad with great interest, amusement, and to be quite honest, joy! What a refreshing take on a product review! David looks at the device from two perspectives and highlights the features and detractors from both points of view. You see, to many consumers this is a wondrous device that is going to change computing forever, but to the hardcore techie it's not that at all. So rather than attempting to reach out to either camp and offend the other, David has written a review for each. This might be viewed by some as a cop out, but to me it makes perfect sense. The way that I might want to use such a device, or the opinion that I might form of it after having it for a time, is quite likely vastly different than say, my wife's view. We are after all on opposite ends of the techie scale.
You be the judge... refreshing or the Switzerland of tech reviews?

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

A Look At Robotics

The Globe and Mail | Technology section is running a 5 part piece on robots with excerpts from the book Sex, Bombs and Burgers, by technology journalist Peter Nowak. It's worth a peek if you are as smitten with robotics as I am. Part 2 published today, looking forward to the rest of the week!

New iPhone Rumoured For This Summer

According to this article in the Globe and Mail, the Wall Street Journal is citing unnamed sources as responsible for rumors surrounding an upcoming new iPhone from Apple and in particular a version designed specifically for the Verizon network. Currently AT&T is the only authorized carrier of the iPhone in the U.S.
Both Apple and Verizon are refusing to comment.

Monday, March 29, 2010

Court Ordered Publication Ban Broken By Social Media Users

Rules in place to protect victims of crimes and, in many cases, minors are being inadvertently undermined by bloggers and social media site users. The concept of publication bans by the courts has been around for years, at least here in Canada, and have kept journalists from publishing details of certain cases that the court deems necessary in order to protect some or all of the parties involved. While journalists are well aware of the consequences of reporting on these details, it appears as though the general public is ill informed, ignorant, or oblivious to the concept of publication bans. Case in point, a judge in the case of a man involved in a recent abduction case in Moncton New Brunswick has placed details of the incident under a publication ban. Yet the writings of a social media user clearly ties the victim of the case to the incident. It will be interesting to see how the court reacts to this regardless of whether or not the unfortunate remarks have since been removed.

Source: CBC