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Censorship

Iran May Shut Down Internet During Election 234

Posted by Zonk
from the can't-stop-the-signal-mal dept.
daveschroeder writes "'The Iranian government might block private access to the Internet for the general legislative election on March 14, two Iranian news outlets reported Monday. In 2006, the authorities banned download speeds on private computers faster than 128 kilobytes per second. The government also uses sophisticated filtering equipment to block hundreds of Web sites and blogs that it considers religiously or politically inappropriate. Many bloggers have been jailed in the past years, and dozens of Web sites have been shut down.' It would appear that Iran's own government is more a threat to the nation's internet connectivity than the fragility of the undersea cable network."
The Courts

RIAA Complaint Dismissed as "Boilerplate" 197

Posted by Zonk
from the boil-this dept.
NewYorkCountryLawyer writes "The decision many lawyers had been expecting — that the RIAA's 'boilerplate' complaint fails to state a claim for relief under the Copyright Act — has indeed come down, but from an unlikely source. While the legal community has been looking towards a Manhattan case (Elektra v. Barker) for guidance, the decision instead came from Senior District Court Judge Rudi M. Brewster of the US District Court for the Southern District of California. The decision handed down denied a default judgment (i.e. the defendant had not even appeared in the action). Judge Brewster not only denied the default judgment motion but dismissed the complaint for failure to state a claim. Echoing the words of Judge Karas at the oral argument in Barker , Judge Brewster held (pdf) that 'Plaintiff here must present at least some facts to show the plausibility of their allegations of copyright infringement against the Defendant. However, other than the bare conclusory statement that on "information and belief" Defendant has downloaded, distributed and/or made available for distribution to the public copyrighted works, Plaintiffs have presented no facts that would indicate that this allegation is anything more than speculation.'"
It's funny.  Laugh.

DOS 5 Upgrade Video 373

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the god-i-love-this dept.
Every now and then I stumble on something so ridiculous that I have to share it. This is a promotion video to upgrade to DOS 5 obviously made in a different era. Promoting features like mouse support, a graphical shell, and freeing up at LEAST 45k of memory, well, Gimme 5! Did I mention that it's all set to a hip beat? You'll love it. And by "Love" I mean "Stick forks in your eyes".
Science

Could Global Warming Make Life on Earth Better? 923

Posted by Zonk
from the makes-for-lots-of-swimming-opportunities dept.
mikee805 writes "A lengthy article in Spiegel explores the possibility that global warming might make life on Earth better, not just for humans, but all species. The article argues that 'worst-case scenarios' are often the result of inaccurate simulations made in the 1980s. While climate change is a reality, as far as the article is concerned, some planning and forethought may mean that more benefits than drawbacks will result from higher temperatures. From the article:'The medical benefits of higher average temperatures have also been ignored. According to Richard Tol, an environmental economist, "warming temperatures will mean that in 2050 there will be about 40,000 fewer deaths in Germany attributable to cold-related illnesses like the flu." Another widespread fear about global warming -- that it will cause super-storms that could devastate towns and villages with unprecedented fury -- also appears to be unfounded. Current long-term simulations, at any rate, do not suggest that such a trend will in fact materialize.'"

"Life, loathe it or ignore it, you can't like it." -- Marvin the paranoid android

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