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Submission + - Gmail may hand over IP addresses of journalists ( 2

An anonymous reader writes: A California court has issued a subpoena demanding Google reveal the IP addresses of journalists writing for a corruption busting journal from the Caribbean.

The August 28 subpoena, issued by the Superior Court, County of Santa Clara, as part of a "libel tourism" action taken by non-US property developers, demands detailed information about the operators of "". The account is the main email address of the TCI Journal, the most influential journal covering the Turks & Caicos Islands. The Islands are a tourist mecca and tax haven in the Caribbean sea, and until August 14 were an independent British protectorate.


Submission + - Huge Lunar Clock to be Built Powered by Tides

Hugh Pickens writes: "BBC reports that scientists and artists plan to build Aluna, a 40m-wide lunar clock powered by the tides from the Thames, creating a new London landmark close to the proposed Olympic stadium as a monument to a more natural way of marking time. A video of Aluna on the group's web site shows a structure larger than Stonehedge made up of three concentric translucent recycled glass rings. By looking at how each of Aluna's three giant rings is illuminated, you can tell the phase and position of the Moon, and the height of the tides. 'Alunatime' flows slowly and continuously around the structure in a clockwise direction. "Light shines through from the glass in time with the Moon's cycles so the largest ring shows the lunar phase" says artist Laura Williams. "The second ring is like the big hand of the clock. It's a marker of light that tracks the Moon around the globe so that's the lunar day cycle. The third ring — the smallest — is the small hand that tracks the tide as it goes from high tide to low." Dusama Hasan, a Muslim astronomer, believes that in this age of iPods and atomic clocks, there is a greater need than ever for an older way of measuring time. "Aluna is a project which tries to connect us back to the cosmic cycle, with nature. I think that's very important especially in the very technological age we live in.""

Submission + - What is the best way to track stolen gadgets? 1

An anonymous reader writes: Now that gadgets can determine their location and phone home, many companies are creating tools for finding lost and stolen gadgets. It sounds like a simple process, but this NY Times article describes a number of wildly different approaches. Some report all of the information back to the owner while others deliberately keep the owner in the dark to avoid dangerous confrontations. Some start grabbing pictures from the web cameras and logging keystrokes. Others just record IP addresses. Some don't do anything but record serial numbers to make it easier for the police to do their job. Are sophisticated systems dangerous because the tracking mechanisms could be misused to violate the privacy of the owner? Are the stakes different when a company purchases the software and gives the IT manager the ability to track everyone in the company? What's are the best practices that are emerging? What should I recommend if my boss reads this article and wants to track our laptops and Blackberries?

"Necessity is the mother of invention" is a silly proverb. "Necessity is the mother of futile dodges" is much nearer the truth. -- Alfred North Whitehead