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Showing posts from August, 2013

A history of computing - My perspective

Because I can publish shitty drawings, and even shittier text.And I have no obligation to be accurate.

Privacy does not imply secrecy

The debate around surveillance, government overreach, NSA, Prism, XKeyScore has been split in two categories. Well, three actually. The first will be the government, which feels that all this is justified, because "think of the children." They justify the stripping away of the civil liberties of not just their own citizens, but those all across the world for the purpose of supposedly protecting their own. Cluck cluck.The other two camps are the people who are subject to this surveillance. One camp argues that they have "nothing to hide." The other camp argues for increased encryption, and these are camps that will create PGP keys, hold keysigning parties, encrypt everything lest the government gets their data. I think both camps miss the point.Privacy is not the same as secrecy. I know what you do in the toilet, that does not mean that you will leave the doors open, or let the toilet walls be made with glass. Humans have evolved to respect privacy, the confidence o…

Don't "think of the children" me

Lately, I've seen a disturbing trend of increasing governmental control with a "think of the children" type justification. By "type", I mean any justification that appeals to irrational (though justified) that we may have, like fear for our children's safety.The British government is planning a nation-wide "porn firewall" that will restrict its citizens from accessing a number of websites, all in the noble cause of protecting children from the horrors of pornography. An admirable move, but think about the consequences. A number of companies selling porn filters will benefit via huge contracts, and citizens who are granted the right to freedom will have the right subtly snatched away from them.Now, you may think that I'm exaggerating when I say that citizens will lose freedom under such a censor-wall, after all, it's just pornography that they seek to block, right? No! If a government gets power to block websites, it can seek to suppress fr…