Monthly Archives: November 2008

More great uses of tumblr: 1001 rules for my unborn son

Over at the is a great tumble log called 1001 rules for my unborn son. Go see. I like this one:

276. Surround yourself with smart people.

That’s why I have my blog: because I am surrounded by smart people.

After you read it, you might want to start a similar log of your own life lessons. Hey, the world needs your wisdom.

(Tip to Cup of Jo).

Google problems: free speech

There is so much that is great about Google that it is easy to overlook the problems that they have and the problems that they might cause. A very good exploration of that, with regards to free speech and censorship, can be found in this article: Google’s Gatekeepers.

The article explores how Google –the corporation and the people that work there — deal with the demands around the world to censor or block material provided by Google and YouTube. As for article shows, it is a very demanding job.

I think the article is fair in showing all the sides of the issue. If anything, it gives Google and it’s employees the benefit of the doubt. And that’s the part I have a problem with.

Things I would have liked to seen is an exploration of whether or not there should be an American law for free speech similar to the antiboycott laws in place since the 1970s. If it can be illegal for U.S. companies and citizen to particate in a boycott, a similar law could be put in place to uphold free speech.

Another thing that should be explored is whether or not the approach Google current has in untenable. I believe it is untenable for three reasons. First, I believe that their current piecemeal approach is eventually going to collapse or be unmaintainable as exceptions and contradictions are exposed. Second, I believe that Google as a corporation should not have that much control over what I can see and do.Third, Google as a corporation has a conflict of interest between supporting free speech and growing business is countries that want to restrict it.

Now Google is not the State. I still have freedom of association and the press. If I want to post videos or blog things or search for things, I don’t need to use Google. In fact, I don’t use Google for a number of those things. However, most people do. And that really is the root of the problem.

P.S. There is a semi-hagiographic quality to the article. I am not sure why. I think Google can stand for less of that, not more.

The world’s first digital camera

This, believe it or not, is the world’s first digital camera.

According to, it was invented by Steve Sasson from Kodak in 1975. And since it was 1975, the recording device for digital media was a cassette tape. What is surprising is that some of the technology used then is still used in digital cameras now (though thankfully not the tape). For more on this and other interesting firsts, see Oddee.

What is portable light?

In the wealthier parts of the world, we take light and illumination for granted. Imagine how much harder your life would be if you could not take it for granted. Light provides us safety and comfort, but it also allows people, especially people who work long hours, to read and educate themselves and improve their lives.

So I thought this project, Portable Light, was a great idea. Not only does it provide for low cost lighting for people who can least afford it and who most need it, but it does it in a very ingenious way. But rather than tell you, I’ll leave it at that and strongly encourage you to go to the site.

(Tip to for this).

Want to be part of a project that involves Web 2.0, mobile technology and microfinancing?

Then go over to the blog AfriGadget and check out this post:  Support AfriGadget’s Young Mobile Reporters.

As for me, everything I believe that is going to matter in the 21st century is tied up in this project, so how could I not contribute? You can too. It’s sounds like a worthwhile initiative.

BTW, this blog was rated one of the 50 best web sites of 2008. A very good addition to your bookmarks or RSS feeds.

Starbucks and (RED): every nickel counts

It looks like Starbucks is joining Apple, the Gap, and others,  on the (RED) campaign to help save lives in Africa. You can too. See Starbucks and (RED) – Do Something Good Everyday

Hey, you were going to buy that latte anyway, so do something more with your purchase. Click the link to see how.

In the market for headphones? You must go here

The web site HeadRoom has a wealth of information on anything regarding headphones. Ratings, prices, lots of photos, and very detailed reviews. I’m looking at these Grado 60s, for example: great value “cans” for under $100 (Canadian).