Nokia go crazy
Nokia keep the faith and refuse to follow for the path of least
resistance and descend into the mire of indentikit silver clamshell handbag
phones. Russ has more info about the barking
Ok it's not a
phone, but the specification list is none too shabby:
[Thu, 25 Sep 2003 11:00
RDF and iCalendar
In interesting round-up of the state of play of
RDF and iCalendar
from Libby Miller, following on from Ray Ozzie's
XML, RSS and iCalendar.
very own calendar nutter Russ also runs through a
of the iCal situation.
I've lost track of the number of times Russ has got excited about
vCard, vCalendar, iCal, and xCal. There's something rather
interesting in all this stuff, so I've notched up on the mental todo list
for future investigation.
[Thu, 25 Sep 2003 09:26
Jabber grows and grows
Jabber Instant Messaging User Base Surpasses ICQ
- 4 million paying customers and 6 million open source users sounds
great. It'll certainly add some mass to the
World when Jabber transfer user identity from vCard
to Foaf, as Jabber documentation guru Peter Saint-André
The ghetto-isation of MSN and Yahoo! is only going to aid the
transition of people to the open IM world, and with IM clients like
joining the revolution, it can no longer be said that all Jabber
[Wed, 24 Sep 2003 13:41
Weekly blogroll week 39
Return of the infamous weekly blogroll, still manual I'm afraid as I've
not got around to automagically parsing my proxy logs yet.
Here are the people I read at least once a week:
Anil de Mello
Update: I suppose it serves me right for trying to
read French blogs, I've just had to update this post to make my feed
validate with all those exquisite little (but highly significant)
[Tue, 23 Sep 2003 15:00
For some reason (I haven't found out why yet), this blog was down earlier
today, an inadvertantly amusing exchange took place with
my hosting provider. Me:
Hi, I'm having problems running cgi scripts on feetup.org, has anything
been changed to the Apache setup because things were working fine
Example urls returning http error 500
Please do try executing the perl script via the shell. I found a
large number of errors with the perl script. ... etc. ...
I suppose that's quite a relief,
is a pretty crappy
script, it's quite useful
[Tue, 23 Sep 2003 14:00
One of the more interesting words the English language
has recently grabbed from German, definition from
Pleasure derived from the misfortunes of others.
Maybe it's because I'm a Southampton fan, or maybe
it's because I had a bet on who would be the first
Premiership manager to get the sack this season.
Anyway, I am currently experiencing and enjoying
large dollops of schadenfreude.
[Sun, 21 Sep 2003 21:15
Another small step
As part of my ongoing transition to pyblosxom (new release this week
incidentally), I've redirected traffic to my old blog (html and rss)
So if you were looking at my old blog wondering why I had
gone quiet, welcome!
The old content will be migrating over here, just as soon as I can
make it a little more xhtml sane and get the comments moved around, in the
mean time it's all still accessible from the Archive links on the right
[Fri, 19 Sep 2003 16:59
Verisign - Domain Hijackers extraordinaire
In a show of arrogance, ineptitude and complete cluelessness
wildcard DNS records for all the .com and .net domains directing
traffic to one of their sites.
The Register's coverage -
All your Web
typos are belong to us - is the least emotional I've seen so far,
personally I'm fuming about it. These people are not fit to be let near a
domain server, and I'm still angry about the protracted wrangling I had
with them to transfer Feetup.org to a
real domain registrar...
If anyone else wanted an unlimited supply of .com and .net dns
addresses for the purposes of selling advertising and domains they'd
quite rightly have to pay a King's ransom, why should VeriSign be any
The only positive thing is that they'll be receiving quite
significant amounts of spam. Fortunately patches for Bind 8 and 9
are now available, and it's probably worth black holing 188.8.131.52
Update: ICANN have for once shown some backbone and
forced VeriSign to remove Sitefinder -
Report from El
[Tue, 16 Sep 2003 15:53
Phone Mast Stupidity
There's been a number of scare stories about the risks of mobile phone
and the like in the media. Whilst there's no conclusive evidence of any
risk and some
simple maths and physics
shows that masts are probably less of a real risk than handheld phones,
there is still not much sense in phone networks installing antennae
virtually inside someone's house, what were they thinking?
for spotting this lunacy. There are far better ways of installing
for instance do some particularly cunning installations, and
have some masts that look like trees.
Can you spot the masts in these pictures?
Radiation exposure diminishes with distance on a square law
relationship, i.e. if you double the distance you quarter the exposure.
Hence a 1W mobile phone 10mm from your brain (10,000W/m2) exposes you to
10,000 times the rediation that a 100W mast
could generate at 10m (1W/m2)! I'm guessing a little at power outputs
whilst 1W is a typical value for a GSM phone, also I'd expect a base
station to output far less
than 100W, maybe as little as 5-10W.
This doesn't take into account duty cycles, where a base station would
almost continuously whilst a handset would transmit as little as possible,
but it still shows that a handset will expose you to higher radiation
levels than a base station ever could.
[Mon, 15 Sep 2003 14:27
FoafMobile some suggestions
One of the main themes with
is to use a Bluetooth equipped mobile phone to identify someone,
currently the thinking is for a simplistic model to get a prototype
into the field and working as soon as possible. Jim Ley has
spotted yet another
need for FoafMobile
There's currently a sticking point with how one should represent
a Bluetooth device in one's Foaf file from a perspective of both
privacy and spoof-a-bility. A Bluetooth device effectively has two
id's; one is a user-changeable text field typically "Jims Phone"
or more frequently a factory default like "Nokia 3650" and the
other id is a 12 digit hex identifier not dissimilar in concept to a
network card's MAC address.
Both of these are modifiable (although the hex id is rarely
changeable in a mobile phone) so spoofing is always a posibility. One
solution that would make spoofing harder would be if the Foaf file was
to contain a hash or checksum of both ids, this would be hard to replicate
unless one had seen both the ids, but this would make generating the
entry in the Foaf file entry more difficult.
Privacy is going to be tricky, although there's always ways of
Another thought - maybe it would be useful to put something
easily identifiable in the user modifiable field primarily as an
advert for FoafMobile, but maybe also to help FoafMobile apps know
that this Bluetooth ID really is worth looking up.
I'm proposing a user identifier something like "FoafMob Jims
Mobile" actually how about "FoaM"? Short, sweet, and
it should be easy to type with T9 text entry.
[Mon, 15 Sep 2003 13:07
Yet more Foaf updates
I did a little bit of tinkering with my
earlier, fixing a few errors and adding a few more hooligans,
and I somehow (through luck rather than planning) ended up
with the first Foaf file with
in the wild.
Thanks to the
in particular) for pointing me in the right directions.
Other notable points in the update, I've sorted out some
of the confusion with my
Foaf file by including my
rdfs:seeAlso for this file in my
rather than having a seperate foaf:Person
for that content; that makes sense when you think about it,
it's just more data about me, it's not about another person.
I had Mobitopia
sure it's a weblog I contribute to, but it's not just mine,
so I added a
foaf:Group which has
a weblog (Mobitopia) and a number of
and because of this I've also added most of the Mobitopia
to my Foaf.
A few useful pointers from this exercise, Jim's files of
helped me spot a few errors, and the W3C's
helped me fix the worst of my stupidity...
and the RDF
tools were useful for surfing the ever increasing Foaf World,
apparantly I'm less than 15 links removed from JFK somehow.
Note: If you're one of the handful of people
linking to my Foaf, please check your content, there's a few
people out there with the wrong details for various things!
There's a simple summary of stuff I'd like you to carry in
a comment at the top of my
[Fri, 12 Sep 2003 13:39
Foaf on the move
folks have been busy scheming in
Not content with Foaf's emerging World domination as the primary format
for relationship description, they are now looking at mobile Foaf.
has a holding page on the
together is a very smart move. Some of the concepts they're talking
about are covered here in very broad terms:
Coming to a Symbian phone near you soon!
[Wed, 10 Sep 2003 17:33
Don't Scream It's Over
So nearly 7 years after
split up I'm listening to their famous final gig at the Sydney
What a great band, I can't think of anyone who's consistantly produced
such a rich variety of quality music since then, although
has gone on to produce
some very interesting solo work.
One can only thank the internet for keeping archives of Crowded House's
live stuff available via resources such as the
ftp site. Very much in the spirit of the Greatful Dead's approach to
bootlegs, and the sort of the stuff that builds real loyalty to an
artist amongst their fans.
I assume other bands have similar fan run and unofficially supported
sites, I'll have to start looking for them!
[Mon, 08 Sep 2003 17:57