Archive for April, 2005

New idea: use evidence to help make policy

Wednesday, April 27th, 2005

James Boyle writes a great column on the policy-making process and how it ignores the evidence of reality. Why does this happen?

To some the answer is obvious: corporate capture of the decision making process. This is a nicely cynical conclusion. But wait. There are economic interests on both sides. The film and music industries are tiny compared the consumer electronics industry. Yet copyright law dances to the tune played by the former, not the latter.

FT.com / Columnists – James Boyle: Deconstructing stupidity

File sharing may boost CD sales

Tuesday, April 26th, 2005

Yet another study that finds that file sharing doesn’t kill CD sales, and in fact may boost them. This one by HBS, which either makes it respectable or despicable, depending on your point of view.

Harvard Gazette: File sharing may boost CD sales

Institute for Backup Trauma

Monday, April 25th, 2005

A hilarious video featuring John Cleese, sort of an ad but mostly just funny. Definitely click the third button.

Institute for Backup Trauma

Presentations and Nail Clippers

Thursday, April 21st, 2005

Wow. I almost hope this guy comes to pitch to me, just so I can tell the story…

VentureBlog: Personal Hygiene and PowerPoint Don’t Mix

MetaBrainz launches

Thursday, April 21st, 2005

MetaBrainz is the parent of MusicBrainz, and has a pretty impressive board of directors. MusicBrainz is a much more highly featured replacement for GraceNote or FreeDB.

MetaBrainz Foundation

Stompbox – In-Car WiFi

Wednesday, April 20th, 2005

I want one of these, just because it’s cool…

EVDO StompBox Project

CellarTracker

Wednesday, April 13th, 2005

I discovered CellarTracker about a year ago, and halfheartedly entered a few bottles. But a recent Napa trip gave me the wine bug again, and I did some reorganizing in my wine “cellar”. This prompted me to revisit CellarTracker, and I now have entered much of my inventory. Nearly every wine I have, even some of the more obscure ones from Australia and South Africa, were already in the database, which is great. And the best feature in my opinion is the tasting notes from other users of the software. A perfect example of a collaborative web site where the value is built through the community. Hmm…wonder if they want to raise some venture capital… 🙂

CellarTracker!

54,846 Pages

Monday, April 4th, 2005

Did you know that the US Tax Code is 54,846 pages long? How can any human be expected to comprehend this, much less comply? This is probably why there are 32 million penalties assessed every year. Reminds me of Heinlein’s proposed constitutional amendment, something along the lines of “any law too complex for the average American to understand in a half hour or so should be unconstitutional.”

Cato News Release – April 14, 2003