Posts from August 6, 2003

Aid and comfort to the enemy

Aid and comfort to the enemy
: Former Intel engineer Maher “Mike” Hawash has pleaded guilty to aiding the Taliban and has agreed to rat on fellow terrorists; he’ll serve a minimum of seven years.

Hmmmm. I seem to remember lots and lots of sites defending him and decrying our bully government for taking him away in handcuffs.

So now he admits he’s guilty.

Hawash pleaded guilty to conspiring to provide services to the Taliban. Prosecutors agreed to drop charges of conspiring to levy war against the United States and conspiring to provide material support for terrorism.

“You and the others in the group were prepared to take up arms, and die as martyrs if necessary, to defend the Taliban. Is this true?” U.S. District Judge Robert E. Jones asked Hawash during the hearing.

“Yes, your honor,” Hawash replied.

Anybody have a spare “suspected terrorist” button for Mike?

Push, the monster that won’t die

Push, the monster that won’t die
: Push, created by that Dr. Frankenstein of the bubble, Pointcast, will not die.

AOL bought the successor to Pointcast and with its new Communicator email/IM client, it adds a push screensaver, complete with annoying, moving graphics that’ll give you a seizure.

I first saw Pointcast before it was released and I hated it immediately. First, it seemed ridiculous to me to deliver news and advertising via a screensaver, for your screensaver comes on when you’re not using your computer; this was the delivery channel aimed at an audience down the hall in the bathroom. Second, the application was a hog of computer power and bandwidth; it brought down corporate networks the world around. Third, it was simply overdone with annoying graphics and other wasted bits; it was a program with a big ego.

I left the demo and decided that I could deliver the value of Pointcast with nothing more than a browser page that refreshed every minute with the latest news. Thus, with some help, Newsflash was born. It still lives. Pointcast turned down $500 million from Rupert Murdoch and eventually died.

And the saga continues: Gary Wolf, who just wrote a history of Wired magazine, declares on his book-blog [via Scott Rosenberg] that the single dumbest story ever in the magazine was its cover cooing over push.

Push! (5.03) In March, 1997 Wired said goodbye to the Web browser. In an article so important it started on the cover, the Wired editors announced:

Out

Out
: Elizabeth Spiers declares that big media snarky jokes about bloggers are “out.”

Georgie porgie

Georgie porgie
: George Clooney put up a shrine to Joe Biden on his own web site (amazing that he could fit in in, what with all the pictures of George there):

Being one of the few men qualified to restore democracy to America following the demoralization of it’s [sic] people, destruction of the environment, destabilization of the economy, and dishonor in the world community, it is certainly our hope that he will do so.

Guvunuh Ahnuld

Guvunuh Ahnuld
: So he’s running. This is going to be entertaining.