CNET: House panel passes Web-tax ban. “A U.S. House of Representatives panel voted Thursday to bar states from taxing Internet access and extend for five years a ban on other Internet-specific taxes, declining to approve legislation that would help states tax online commerce.”
Daddy Gravity: “…Good honest cynicism gives me a perverse kind of hope.”
SOHU.com: Hawking to get British accent with new “voice”.
Chicago Tribune: Files erased in Florida, damaging election review.
“As [Palm Beach County elections officials] prepared for the new election, they wiped out computer files showing how each ballot was punched in the presidential election… The data is especially important because Palm Beach was one of the key counties in the five-week recount process that ultimately sent President Bush to the White House… The punch card ballots themselves were not destroyed but cannot be accurately recounted because they have been extensively handled and possibly damaged since Election Day.”
Seems to me that there’s an awareness problem here. Most people are probably used to thinking of computer data as less tangible, and more temporary than data on hard-copy. Somehow this makes its preservation less important, but clearly in this case it’s more important, since the originals degrade with handling (a.k.a. data access). Museum curators have known for a long, long time that you don’t let your visitors handle delicate originals — you let them have a facsimile instead. Maybe the Palm Beach County elections folks understand a little better now, why you keep backup copies of important data.
SF Gate: Slap the PUC
It May Be the Last Chance to Protect Independent ISPs From Extinction. “… PacBell has proven unable to keep up with DSL demand. It would be difficult to come up with a more effective way to further accelerate the current downward economic spiral than putting the state’s remaining independent ISPs out of business.”
The Flangy News: “Whenever I see the term ‘work flow’ my eyes glaze over.”
Dictionary.com Word of the Day: machination.