Ming the Mechanic
The NewsLog of Flemming Funch

Monday, January 27, 2003day link 

 Self Hosted Identity
picture James Snell talks about being in control of one's own identity and storing it on one's own site, like as part of one's weblog:
"A discussion on Sam's blog got me thinking about self-hosted identities. Ideally, I should be able to put together a file, discoverable through my weblog, and digitally signed with my private key that contains all of the personal information that I want to make public. When I go to any type of forum (like a weblog) or to a commercial site (like Amazon), if they want my information, they would do what Dave suggests and put a "You know me" button on their page. When I go to the site, I click on the button, the site asks me for the location of my identity file. They download the file and extract the necessary information."
And he follows up here and here. We need that, of course. I'm tired of having entered my information on dozens of different sites over the years, and it being mostly outdated and forgotten. Much better that it is on my computer.
[ | 2003-01-27 12:08 | 6 comments | PermaLink ]  More >

 Programmers' wish lists
Michael Wilson lists a long list of techie program functions he's like on his computer, starting:
  • A real-time ticker application that will be updated using RSS. (Not the current "refresh to update" silliness in aggregators of today)
  • Publishable schedule items (to the rest of the world or a specific subset at my option)
  • To subscribe to lists of events that are occurring around my area geographically, and virtually and have those events appear in a calendaring application.
  • To use a blog or blog-like publishing environment (I'm thinking Zope with CMF) for a personal desktop heads-up-display console from which I work at all times.
  • and going on for a while. I think about lists like that too, and I'd like a number of the things he lists. Being a programmer makes one believe one can make things so they're exactly to your liking. And one can, when we're talking about how your information is organized. Unfortunately there are still not good enough tools to get me what I want without some heavy duty programming. Personally I hadn't had time to do most of it, so I'm suffering in some areas. I can easily think of things I'd want to be done differently about my e-mail storage, and it is a mess, but I haven't given it enough priority to go and program it myself, even though I know I could.
    [ | 2003-01-27 12:08 | 2 comments | PermaLink ]  More >

     Europe and America: Some know more about war
    From Herald Tribune article:
    West Europeans, generally speaking, do not share America's ambitions of vast global reform or visions of history coming to an end. They had enough of that kind of thinking, and its consequences, with Marxism and Nazism.

    They are interested in a slow development of civilized and tolerant international relations, compromising on problems while avoiding catastrophes along the way. They have themselves only recently recovered from the catastrophes of the first and second world wars, when tens of millions of people were destroyed. They don't want more.

    American commentators like to think that the "Jacksonian" frontier spirit equips America to dominate, reform and democratize other civilizations. They do not appreciate that America's indefatigable confidence comes largely from never having had anything very bad happen to it.
    That's a good point. I come from a country that has existed for more than a thousand years and that has been in many wars, a country that was occupied by the Nazis while my mom was growing up, and people were being sent off to concentration camps. However terrible Vietnam was, it wasn't happening on American soil. However terrible 9-11 was, for most Americans it wasn't really something the country felt on its skin for long enough to grow wise from it. It was mainly something on TV that then got projected violently outwards. It could have been a transformative event that gave America a heart, and it was close, and it felt like it for a while, but it unfortunately ended up being taken in a different direction.
    [ | 2003-01-27 23:41 | 12 comments | PermaLink ]  More >

      Israel and the Palestinians
    The Economist has an excellent article giving a balanced overview of the Israeli/Palestinian conflict, titled "It should have been so simple". Rather rare to see a well-balanced piece like that in a U.S. magazine. [Oops, I later realize it is a primarily U.K. magazine, but still]. It suggests the obvious, that the parties need to sensibly sort out how to share the land they reside in. And various road maps have been suggested along the way.
    "But a map is not much good unless the Israelis and Palestinians can be prevailed upon to follow it. And this, gloomsters say, will not happen so long as the two old men, Mr Sharon and Mr Arafat, remain where they are. Mr Sharon is a disaster because he does not accept the central land-for-peace equation; Mr Arafat because he has lost control and drifts with the tide of events."

    [ | 2003-01-27 23:59 | 21 comments | PermaLink ]  More >

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