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Submission + - Supreme Court To Rule on Second Amendment (dcguncase.com)

djmoore writes: "The Supreme Court has granted cert in District of Columbia v. Heller. This is the first case examining the Second Amendment to reach SCOTUS since the much-misunderstood Miller case in 1939. The SCOTUS asks the question,[PDF] "Whether the following provisions, D.C. Code 7-2502.02(a)(4), 22-4504(a), and 7-2507.02, violate the Second Amendment rights of individuals who are not affiliated with any state-regulated militia, but who wish to keep handguns and other firearms for private use in their homes?" Some links to background information on this case and the Second Amendment can be found here. Oral arguments will likely be heard in March or April.

Roughly speaking, the question is, does an enumerated "right of the people" have as much weight as, say, the unenumerated right to an abortion? Or does the 2nd Amendment, uniquely in the Constitution, use the phrase "the people" to grant coercive power to the state?

Mandatory Geek Link: Eric S. Raymond's "Ethics From the Barrel of a Gun"."

It's funny.  Laugh.

Submission + - The Way We Were (ricketyclick.com)

djmoore writes: "James Fallows at The Atlantic has abandoned his typewriter for an interesting new technology: computers suitable for home use and costing less than $5000. Fallows uses an already obsolete SOL-20, but Apple and Radio Shack's offerings are popular, and IBM recently introduced a more efficient model that works on sixteen "bits" at a time rather than the usual eight.

Best hardware advice: avoid slow, unreliable tape recorder storage. "I think you're cheating yourself if you get anything less than two double-density 5-1/4" drives, which together should be able to store 400K or more of data....The top of the line among storage systems is the hard disk...each one stores a prodigious amount of data, from two or three on up to several dozen megabytes."

Best software advice: "A DOS called CP/M (for Control Program for Microcomputers)...has become the industry standard....you should be wary of any machine or any program that won't run CP/M.""

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