That is how they get information. For true!

is the most fucking awesome post about the most recent "security measures" due to the latest "terrorist plot":
Intelligence about the Hair-Gel Bombers was extracted through torture in Pakistan, as in "Please stop electrocuting my testicles! What? Only if I reveal a -- OWWWWWW -- terrorist plot -- AAAAAAHH? All right -- SCREEEECH! -- the terrorists will be blowing up a plane with, with, oh man, I don't know, hair gel! Yes! Hair gel!"

Boing Boing is my most favourite place on the web and I'm totally gay for Cory Doctorow's brain.



Finally, a good option for anonymity on the intar wub

The Swedish Pirat Partiet announced the launch of a commercial high capacity darknet.
Up to now, I had been using tor for my IP obfuscation needs, but, let's face it: I'd like to hide my IP not only with surfing, but with all my connections, including the more bandwidth intensive ones (the tor guys kind of frown on using bittorrent over their net. Also, it doesn't work very well). So, naturally, the announcement that I could get a swedish IP including 128bit encryption to the internet tubes in Swedania had me very excited.
There are two reasons why I haven't signed up yet:
  • The website of the project looks a little shady since it has little information. Also, the information there is smells slightly of snake-oil: They say that their equipment has "no speed limit" and make it sound as though the only slowdown to expect comes from the fact that all connections are routed through Sweden. While I'm sure their equipment is impressive, should five million people sign up tomorrow I really doubt all those people would experience no slowdown.

  • The only available method of payment is credit card. Credit cards are not my friends. In fact, they are one more gigantic hole in my pockets; my pockets already have enough huge holes. Add a credit card and the bank would have to refill the red ink in their printers every time I get an account statement. I've already sent them an email asking them to add more payment options. More, I say!

If that service works half as well as they advertise, 5 bucks a month is really a steal for security from RIAA and fellow goons. Only thing I'm a little worried about are my gaming pings. Anyway I'll update you when I get to try this out.


I just love that new software smell

The best decision I made in the last two-or-so weeks was installing MoinMoin Desktop Edition, which is a small wiki engine. The package is just about 3MB and after unpacking runs a very small webserver that gives you access to your very own personal wiki on localhost.
The awesomeness of having a desktop wiki cannot be overstated: the mess of text files that used to be my braindump is now a tidy, searchable MoinMoin-style wiki. Linking and categorizing is really nice too.
I've been managing an installation of Mediawiki at work, getting ready to maybe use it as a corporate wiki. After playing around with MoinMoin, though, I'm rather sure that I will be scrapping that and putting a MoinMoin in its place.
  • MoinMoin markup seems a lot easier to me. Especially linking is more fun. You are encouraged to name pages in MoinMoin in CamelCase, and words like that are automatically converted into links. At first this is slightly strange, but after you get used to it, it's actually really sweet. If that ain't your thing you can link pages with "normal" markup, too, of course. Also, tables are easier to make.

  • MoinMoin has a wysiwyg editor built in, ajax style. One of the problems I would have had with introducing MediaWiki at work would have been the markup: my coworkers are not very technical, and it would have been hard to get them to swallow something as abstract as a markup language. The builtin wysiwyg thing in MoinMoin crosses that bridge for me.

  • It's Python! While that doesn't actually mean anything to most people, I'm a fool for anything written in Python.

  • Apparently, MoinMoin has full support for nicely grainy access control; I hadn't been able to get that kind of thing working under mediawiki, although maybe I didn't look hard enough (I looked reasonably hard).