Thursday, September 11, 2003


Stardate 57091.1 (9-11-2003)

The RIAA has sued 126 people this week for downloading and sharing copyrighted music. Downloading the music is stealing, and wrong, but I tend to think this is the wrong approach. The problem is that the industry failed to take new technology into account, and the failed to deliver on promises. I believe that the philosophy of an eye for an eye leaves a bunch of blind people, but I will admit to some satisfaction the music giants are having so much trouble over this. I am old enough to remember when CD’s were new. I saw a number of sales people purposely scratch the top of a CD, and then demonstrate that it still played perfectly. Now I have older CD’s that have bad skips in them, even though I cannot see any damage. The recording industry made promises of cheap $1 to $4 discs. I have not seen anything less that $8. I can’t count how many times I have wished to get a single song, and was stuck with buying the whole CD. The industry failed to keep up and take advantage,  and now everyone pays. The software industry has struggled with this for more than a decade, and the solution is still elusive.

On Wednesday, I looked out the window to see white on the tops of the mountains. It’s been a long time since I have seen snow at this time of the year. It occurred to me during the big influx of people into Utah during the early nineties that the biggest problem areas were going to be power and water. If I were a Ferengi, I would have found some way to profit off of this.

I decided to try reviewing the season three episodes of Enterprise. I removed the Soapbox item, since it has been there for months, and I have yet to do what I intended to do with it. I might move the reviews to the Ops site, but first I need to tear it down and rebuild the site. There is just too much maintenance involved it the LCARS interface, at least the  way I did it. I might come up with a new way to do it, but for now I think I will go with a simpler format. There are a number of things I’d like to do with the site, including a discussion forum, possibly a Wiki, and some games.

I received an email today from one of the web development people. He wanted to reboot the server, and noticed that I was on it. I told him no, I had some intense testing going on. He wrote back to complain that we were always blocking his efforts, and he had deadlines. He also pointed out that he had cc'ed the department manager. He wanted to know if these things were going to continue. I replied that in the past seven years I had happily shared one Windows server after another, only to get kicked off a few months later. I told him I had filled out the request to purchase this machine, waited nearly two years to get the machine he complained about. I also wrote that the people he was including had told me I had priority on the machine. I also included a few more managers. I really don't like it when someone tries to intimidate me. 

Usually I like to end these entries with some humor. But today is 9/11. Two years ago this morning things in the world changed. I am not happy with this change, and I doubt few Americans are. But the nation can deal with this, as it has with past crisis such as Dec 7, 1941. Things will not return to the way they were. I like to think that in time, I can write how this time strengthened our character, and made humanity better. In the meantime, pause a moment to think about the people who were in the WTC towers, in the Pentagon, on the planes that hit them, and on flight 93. Think for a moment of those in the Bali nightclub, and of all the other places where death has occurred at the hands of a single fanatic. Think a moment about the soldiers in Afghanistan, Iraq, and overseas bases who are separated from loved ones. Think for a moment of the children of Israel and Palestine, who live with fear of a suicide bomber daily. Now wish for the time when I write about all of that as a bad memory, never to occur again. Who knows, it may come true.

End of Entry

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