archives

Consider This

WHERE (IF ANYWHERE) ARE THE BOUNDARIES OF THE OPEN SOURCE CONCEPT?

The open source software development concept can seem radical and revolutionary – until one compares it to familiar processes such as academic scholarship, legislation and the court system, each of which creates intellectual property, makes it available to all for free, and encourages reuse and further innovation. Its therefore not surprising that “open IPR” concepts are spreading to areas beyond software.

OBJECTIVITY AND MY SECRET LIFE AS SIMON HOGGARTS

On this New Years Day weekend, I am forced to reflect not only on the responsibilities of bloggers to be accurate in their reporting, but also on the timeless question posed in 1969 by the Firesign Theatre, “How can you be in two places at once, when you’re not anywhere at all?”

DO STANDARDS MATTER?

Of course they do. Here are three reasons why that you’ve probably never thought about before

CLAY TABLETS, IPODS AND EVO/DEVOLUTION

Your daughter’s new iPod Nano is insanely cool. It will also be useless sooner than she thinks, when the technology becomes obsolete — unlike that 4,000 year old cuneiform tablet in the museum, or the books in the library. How about your data files?

HOW DO YOU DEFINE A WILDERNESS?

Definitions may seem like simple tools. But when they are incorporated into statutes, they become powerful legal standards that can have profound impacts on our lives.

STANDARDS RELATIVITY AND THE RETURN OF THE SHUTTLE

Standards are useful because they’re supposed to provide fixed reference points. But often those points are based on fixed assumptions. So how do you use standards when the assumptions never apply to where you are?