Australia is required to enact harsh new “anti-circumvention” laws under the Australia-US Free Trade Agreement

Paul “Rusty” Russell, Australian Linux kernel hacker, visited Humbug on Saturday, gave a talk on the possible consequences of Australia’s obligations under the FTA. You can read the information, listen to his audio and view the slides.


On there’s an article What rights do I actually still have? explaining things in a way that may help the average person understand how this issue affects us.

Please sign the petition at and talk about these issues with friends family and business partners. Make your digital rights an issue for yourself and your government representative.

Angela Beesley Resignation and Wikimedia Australia

From Angela Beesleys Blog:

I have decided resign from the Board of Trustees of the Wikimedia Foundation.

There are many reasons behind my decision. Overall, it’s not because I’m unhappy being involved with Wikimedia, though I am concerned about certain events and tendencies that have arisen within the organisation since the start of this year. I would prefer to be involved in Wikimedia from a different angle rather than focusing my attention on Board matters. I’m certainly not leaving — just leaving the Board. I still intend to be involved with editing the projects, and with the formation of the Wikimedia Australia chapter, and, if the opportunities still arise, I hope to continue promoting the projects at conferences and other events.

It’s been a great two years and I’ve enjoyed the role, but the collaborative consensus-based nature Wikimedia had before the start of this year continues to deteriorate and it’s no longer an environment I can work effectively in.

My resignation will be effective upon the election of my successor. Elections will be held in September, and the planning for those should begin immediately. Discussions are currently underway about general restructuring of the Board, and it is possible more positions will be available by the time the election starts. I would like to encourage anyone who shares the Foundation’s goal of distributing free content to become more involved in the organisation and to consider standing in the upcoming elections.

There are a lot of changes planned to the structure of the Foundation but I’m confident Anthere and Jimmy will manage those well and in accordance with what is best for the projects and the communities behind them.

Intelligence Amplification Panel – Building the Metaverse

Download the MP3 from ITConversations given at the Accelerating Change 2005 conference.

Posted: June 17th, 2006, 3:00pm EST

The Metaverse: the social, media-rich, 3-dimensional Web. In this panel at Accelerating Change 2005, entitled “Building the Metaverse”, two examples of the emerging Metaverse are demonstrated. Philip Rosedale, CEO of Linden Lab, shows off Second Life and David Alan Smith, creator of “The Colony”, demonstrates the Croquet project. What emerges are two similarly powerful interactive systems that are allowing people to interact and be creative together in ways never before possible. As computation spreads ever deeper into our lives, we will all increasingly live in the Metaverse. When you can build the ideal world, what do you build?

Nicholas Negroponte – Participation Revolution

Download the MP3 of this talk.

Posted: June 10th, 2006, 3:00pm EST

Nicholas Negroponte wants to give every school child in the developing world a laptop computer. He has established a non-profit organization to design and produce $100 laptops for sale to governments in quantities of no less than 1 million machines on the condition that they are given to school children. In this talk, he describes his and his colleague Seymour Papert’s experience with educational computing in developing nations as well as the machine design.

Learn foreign languages with open source software

From Newsforge:

Learn foreign languages with open source software
Posted: June 14th, 2006, 3:00am EST by StoneLion

When you are learning a foreign language, you need all the help you can get. Besides applications like jVLT, jMemorize, and StarDict, there are other tools that are not designed specifically for language learning, but they can make the learning process more efficient and fun. All you have to do is to think creatively.

This is doubling up as a test of the blog this plugin for Gregarius. Basically Gregarius is a Web 2.0 feedreader. You can take a look at my demo. The other one I looked at was Tiny Tiny RSS, it looks like the difference is that tiny tiny rss is multi-user. Here’s a Newsforge article on Gregarius.

Defective by Design News

DRM Protest

The flashmobs are at it again, this time it was Apple. Check out Apple Events June 10th.
You can help thwart DRM. is a campaign of the Free Software Foundation Empowered by
Copyright 2006 Free Software Foundation, Inc., 51 Franklin Street, Fifth Floor, Boston, MA 02110-1301, USA. Verbatim copying and distribution of site content permitted worldwide, without royalty, in any medium, provided this notice, and the copyright notice, are preserved.

Blog Update


I updated my blog to WordPress 2.0.2 and decided to clean it up and make sure its valid XHTML 1.0 Transitional, you can test that its Valid XHTML . Pretty happy about that, originally I installed every plugin I could find and didn’t really think I’d get into blogging, there’s a lot of really useful plugins. Lately I’ve been looking at the plugins that use AJAX.

As you can see I changed the theme and made a few changes, recently I noticed that displaying comments might be a good idea, I also changed the setting that will allow users that have had an approved comment to post comments without moderation. I also added a poll. So please if you visit the blog add a comment and vote on the poll.

Podcast Generator 0.8 Released

podcast generator

Podcaster Generator 0.8 is out. I’ve been using and modifying this project. I made some minor changes to the code and here’s a screenshot of the changes I made to the administration menu. You also get a glimpse of the gnome desktop and firefox web browser in action.

Alberto Betella released 0.8 this morning so I’ll start using it. His code is much nicer than mine. Here’s the changes.

Continue reading Podcast Generator 0.8 Released

Eventful weekend

A bit of a late post, anyway I enjoyed the Buddha’s birthday festival, the food was good, the entertainment and events were excellent.

“At his birth, seven lotus flowers sprung up beneath his feet as he walked – pointing one hand to the sky and ground he said “in the heaven above and earth below, I vow to liberate all who suffer in these three realms”.

Continue reading Eventful weekend