Solipsism Gradient

Rainer Brockerhoff’s blog

O horário de verão no Brasil foi alterado na última hora, como sempre acontece. Pegue o pacote de atualização aqui! Se você prefere fazer pelo Terminal, use esse arquivo fonte (instruções inclusas).

Confira com o site do Governo, por via das dúvidas…


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Everybody even faintly interested in Copyright and intellectual property issues – which nowadays should include every Internet user – should watch Lawrence Lessig’s Blog. He’s arguing the Eldred v. Ashcroft case before the US Supreme Court.

Eldred v. Ashcroft is important even if you don’t live in the US, as most countries these days seem inclined to copycat the US stance on many issues without questioning that stance in depth. If this goes on, many everyday activities such as listening to music, writing e-mail, linking to someone’s website or watching TV may cause you to violate some law or other in some place or way you’d never think about.

As a software author I’m definitely in favor of some sort of Copyright and of a way to live for a reasonable time on the proceeds of my work. On the other hand, I think that the recent tendency to patent and protect anything and everything for an indefinite time is deplorable and should be nipped in the bud.

In this connection, I’d like to recommend Janis Ian’s website. Not only does she write great songs – she also writes great articles! Internet Debacle and its follow-up is a must for anyone who ever bought a music CD. Read the other articles too – there isn’t a dull one in the bunch.

And, of course, you must also read Courtney Love Does The Math

For the record, I Am Not A Lawyer But My Wife Is icon_smile.gif. I’m also doing some occasional court work as an expert in intellectual property cases. It’s surprisingly interesting work.

Dori Smith’s and Tom Negrino’s Backup Brain. Dori and Tom were on the MacMania Geek Cruise, by the way.

Bill Bumgarner’s bbum’s rants, code & references.

Chris Pirillo.

More to follow… there’s lots of good stuff out there.

From Doc Searls’ weblog, a link to the Illegal Art Exhibit Contract.


If you like warning labels, don’t miss the Rinkworks Warning Labels Page.

“Warning: has been found to cause cancer in laboratory mice.” — On a box of rat poison.

Rinkworks, which can’t be praised enough IMHO, also contains the Absolutely Funniest Thing I’ve Ever Seen On The Internet. You have been warned. Do not click on this link while eating or drinking.

Let’s see… there’s Happy Fun Ball

Happy Fun Ball Contains a liquid core, which, if exposed due to rupture, should not be touched, inhaled, or looked at.

And, of course, they continue to disclaim everything.

…An explanation of Heisenberg’s Uncertainty Principle may be found at the bottom of this page. Then again, it may not.

They also pointed out to me Dave Barry’s Original sci.electronics FAQ, a classic in this genre.

PLUGGING IN THE DEVICE: The plug on this device represents the latest thinking of the electrical industry’s Plug Mutation Group, which, in a continuing effort to prevent consumers from causing hazardous electrical current to flow through their appliances, developed the Three-Pronged Plug, then the Plug Where One Prong is Bigger Than the Other. Your device is equiped with the revolutionary new Plug Whose Prongs Consist of Six Small Religious Figurines Made of Chocolate. DO NOT TRY TO PLUG IT IN! Lay it gently on the floor near an outlet, but out of direct sunlight, and clean it weekly with a damp handkerchief.

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I’m back home… down below I said:

…they’re throwing a party next Thursday. Even though it supposedly will be one of those badly-lit-with-loud-music affairs, it’ll be a chance to meet most of the gang in the flesh – and, of course, some of the cover models will be there…

Well, it was all I feared. Extremely badly lit and the music was extremely loud.

Even though I succeeded in meeting several people, none of the models came within sight… anyway, next time, (or so they promised me) the party will have a “seniors section”. icon_smile.gif

icon_confused.gif icon_mad.gif icon_rolleyes.gif

Shareware, part II

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Some days ago, as I noted below, Sanford Selznick published an excellent article for would-be shareware authors.

Well, the second part is now out. Enough said.

I’m at the Macmania office in São Paulo, here for a 3-day visit. The #100 issue of the magazine is just coming out, and they’re throwing a party next Thursday. Even though it supposedly will be one of those badly-lit-with-loud-music affairs, it’ll be a chance to meet most of the gang in the flesh – and, of course, some of the cover models will be there… 😛

Speaking of covers, #100 has two covers for the price of one! See them here and here.

I’m also here to finish my chapters of a book about Mac OS X. I wrote most of those months ago, but now, with Jaguar out, everything must be revised.

However, before diving into that I found a must-read link to Richard Thieme’s article Real Hacking Rules!. Simply marvelous. Here are some quotes:

…hacking [is] practice for transplanetary life in the 21st century.

In essence, hacking is a way of thinking about complex systems.

Hacking is knowing how to discern or retrieve information beyond that which is designed for official consumption.

This is off Chuq von Rospach’s site.

Chuq has worked for Apple for a long time, as list mom for several of their developer mailing lists, among other things. Chuq’s also starting a weblog which should be worth watching.


1. You just tried to enter your password on the microwave.

2. You have a list of 15 phone numbers to reach your family of three.

3. You call your son’s beeper to let him know it’s time to eat. He e-mails you back from his bedroom, “What’s for dinner?”

4. Your daughter sells Girl Scout Cookies via her web site.

5. You chat several times a day with a stranger from South Africa, but you haven’t spoken with your next door neighbor yet this year.

6. You check the ingredients on a can of chicken noodle soup to see if it contains Echinacea.

7. Your grandmother asks you to send her a JPEG file of your newborn so she can create a screen saver.

8. You pull up in your own driveway and use your cell phone to see if anyone is home.

9. Every commercial on television has a website address at the bottom of the screen.

10. You buy a computer and 6 months later it is out of date and now sells for half the price you paid.

11. Leaving the house without your cell phone, which you didn’t have the first 20 or 30 years of your life, is cause for panic and turning around to go get it.

12. Using real money, instead of credit or debit, to make a purchase would be a hassle and take planning.

13. Cleaning up the dining room means getting the fast food bags out of the back seat of your car.

14. Your reason for not staying in touch with family is that they do not have e-mail addresses.

15. You consider second-day air delivery painfully slow.

16. Your dining room table is now your flat filing cabinet.

17. Your idea of being organized is multiple-colored Post-it notes.

18. You hear most of your jokes via e-mail instead of in person.

19. You get an extra phone line so you can get phone calls.

20. You disconnect from the Internet and get this awful feeling, as if you just pulled the plug on a loved one.

21. You get up in the morning and go online before getting your coffee.

22. You wake up at 2 am to go to the bathroom and check your e-mail on your way back to bed.

23. You start tilting your head sideways to smile. : -)

24. You’re reading this.

25. Even worse; you’re going to forward it to someone else.

All I can say is: if I had a cellphone, which I thankfully don’t, this would be 90% accurate… icon_rolleyes.gif

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