November 30, 2006

blog was getting cluttered... i tidied up a bit - new format, same content. my thanks to those whose code i may have borrowed.

November 27, 2006

mobile net neutrality update

ok, so maybe it's not a breakthrough, but every little bit counts.

there's little attention paid in the popular dialogue (such that there is) to the mobile side of the net neutrality debate. i've touched on it multiple times in the past, highlighting that in the current regulatory and market environment u.s. consumers are limited to a measly choice of handsets (from hundreds that are actually available in the market) and an equally-limited (and perhaps not terribly competitively-priced) selection of services, applications and content.

looks like we may have seen a chink in the armor last week... an interesting ruling came out of the copyright office (via, of all things, the librarian of congress) related to the digital millennium copyright act exempting "...certain classes of works from the prohibition against circumvention of technological measures that control access to copyrighted works." specifically of interest on the mobile front, the fifth of six announced exemptions: "computer programs in the form of firmware that enable wireless telephone handsets to connect to a wireless telephone communication network, when circumvention is accomplished for the sole purpose of lawfully connecting to a wireless telephone communication network."

huh? well, in other words, there seems to be a recognition - however narrow - that in the current environment consumers aren't able to recognize the full benefit of their handsets due to locks on same and, as such, going forward, tinkering with software or firmware locks in order to liberate a handset for use on alternative networks is no longer a no no - at least for the next three years.

a chink in the armor indeed, but way arcane and for the moment probably of little benefit to the average consumer. nevertheless, it's a start. and i'll certainly stay tuned to see how this may also evolve to apply in terms of operator barriers related to mobile services, applications, content, etc.

November 15, 2006

mid-term vote & net neutrality...'s that for two topics with seemingly (and i suppose actually) little in common?

in terms of the midterm elections, there was (thankfully) not as much dust-settling as i'd expected - bottom line: the democrats are firmly driving the house and marginally in control of the senate. sadly, i'll not be holding my breath waiting for any renewed bi-partisanship. indeed, beyond the early posturing around force reduction in iraq and the not-unexpected rhetoric about "first 100 hours" agenda items (count my vote in favor of hiking the minimum wage), expect the dems to exercise a lot of "oversight" (think "investigation"... better yet, think investigation of halliburton-iraq, for just one example). and, of course, expect the republicans to cry foul and/or gridlock ad nauseum between now and the 2008 election (which, incidentally, has already started). fun.

on the network neutrality front (recall multiple previous posts), the congressional swing may well mean that consumer interests will be better heard (even met?) in ter,s of the ability to access the services and content we actually want. for those asking "what exactly might that mean?", check out my 3/26/06 post. further to that post, for whatever it may be worth, maybe the real solution is for the market to compel access providers to divest themselves of or otherwise separate their "access" businesses from their (existing or planned) services businesses. the former - effectively a utility - then offers non-discriminatory access to the latter, as well as other traditional (including internet-based) or alternative service providers. or not...

(from helsinki. headin' home tomorrow and looking way forward to a couple days off next week. later...)

November 07, 2006

symella & more for s60 3e...

...the wait is over - and add a nifty bit-torrent app to the mix. sweet.
Department of Automation and Applied Informatics - Symella

November 05, 2006

happy 18th morgan...

posted a day late, from the mobile, from the airport (sigh, again - this is gettin' a bit tired).

i know you didn't want me to, but i had to post a pic.

November 03, 2006

fall (deja vu)...

...dolan and leaves (from the mobile)