I read an interesting piece of the problems Skype recently encountered. I previously posted about the problems I had signing in, and how it appeared that Microsoft’s release of patches that required PCs to restart was a major cause of the connectivity outages. Anyway, now that a little time has passed, John Naughton, writing for the Guardian Unlimited site, has had the time to write a short, but interesting analysis on the issues, and has summarized the situation, and reactions quite well, IMHO. Check here for the article. One point that other journalists appear to have missed, or at least mis-comprehended is the fact that any system that is not centrally resourced, that is to say relies on Peer To Peer protocols, will always have a weakness, if those peers (that is you, me and our computers) have technical difficulties at the same time. It was refreshing to read the work of someone who appears to know a fair amount, and research his stories properly. Given that this is the Guardian (or at least it’s online presence), it was also good to not see any obvious spelling mistakes littering the page 🙂
Jul 25 2007
As you may remember from my recent post that had two opposing sides presenting their opinions on a contentious matter, one incident can be reported from differing angles, leading to different conclusions being drawn.
Well, it looks like hacks are now interpreting a media boss’ apology in different ways. Following on from the ‘Queen – Last Post Hopefully‘, ‘Queen Bites Back Post Correction‘ and ‘Queen Bites Back‘ posts, Stephen Lambert, RDF Media’s chief creative officer apologised. Now the Telegraph has presented this as a standard sort of executive style responsibility taking – he is in charge, so he accepts the blame. However the Guardian has headlined their article with an apparent admission that Mr Lambert PERSONALLY made the doctored the tapes himself.
That said, the Telegraph does not go ‘easy’ on RDF, listing accusations of some pretty scummy behaviour in two of their previous series – Masters & Servants as well as Wife Swap. Where adults sign up to be on TV, and are pushed towards one direction by the series production team, I normally see no problem. However, when children are involved, I can’t help but wonder how RDF staff managed to justify this behaviour to themselves… is wanting to gaffer tape a young persons mouth shut, and parade them in public something you would be comfortable explaining to your family?
Well Mr Lambert has quit his position, I’m just wondering if this is enough to make the news journalists (and bloggers 😉 ) look elsewhere for their next targets, or whether any disciplinary action will be taken?
Jul 19 2007
No, not as in the British news paper famous for it spelling errors, but the film with Kevin Costner. Irina and I have just finished watching it. The film was better than I had expected it to be – I have found anything with Mr Costner in, from the last ten years or so to be unsatisfactory normally. That said, the plot was really quite formulaic. The ending should have been where the same imagery and monologue from the beginning was used, but I am guessing that American test audiences preferred a nice, neat boy-gets-girl ending, so they could all leave the cinema in a positive frame of mind, but there you go, if I just pretend the last few minutes didn’t exist, I would not call it an evening wasted…
Jul 17 2007
I recently came across the Guardian’s article on ‘Why Google is the service of choice for sploggers’. It is good to see this issue getting some attention in the press, though I doubt whether it will seriously influence the way Google operate their Blogger blogging service.
Although some people would try and include MFA (Made For Adsense) sites in the same scene as sploggers, at the very least, many MFA sites do use articles that are often helpful to those internet users who arrive on a page from a search engine result. Many sploggers simply scrape content from other sites, often WITHOUT attribution.
My niche article sites (see the categories on the left for links to some of them within posts) contain some original content – a mixture of my own work, and in some cases forum posts that I have re-written, and used with the original author’s permission, and usually with a link to a site of their choice.
Jun 02 2007
The Guardian blog has an entry regarding the ongoing saga of the BBC Panorama’s report on the dangers of WiFi radio signals, especially in children, whose brains are still developing. They centred their investigations on schools, where WiFi is becoming more popular, bypassing the need to retro-fit CAT5/6 cables everywhere.
Anyway the businessman/scientist who was used as Panorama’s expert has rebutted claims by some that his methods were profit-based, and not fair comparisons with mobile phone masts for example. It was good to see the comments on this blog entry being well thought out responses.
Apr 11 2007
The opposition to President Bakiyev is growing more and more vocal it would seem.
He originally came to power after the previous president was effectively thrown out following similar protests a couple of years ago. However, since that time, people have been complaining that little has changed in some important areas of life in Kyrgyzstan. Corruption appears to have continued unabated, and the democratic reforms promised have been slow in coming to fruition, and in some cases even reversed.
Why am I posting this news on a blog nominally about my life in Kazakhstan? Because leaders of the countries in this region have often cited political instability as the reason for the need of a strong pair of hands at the realm.
 Corrected spelling, I originally invented a new President – Nakiyev ;>