My favorite quote from Frankenweenie, applied to software

Frankenweenie is a very cool movie by Tim Burton, get it, watch it. My favorite quote from it is when the science teacher, Mr. Rzykruski, refutes the scaremongering against science that is launched by the mayor, who was very angry since his boy fell down a roof in a very unwise science project he and his friend were doing.

Ladies, gentleman.
I think the confusion here is that you are all very ignorant.
Is that right word, ignorant? I mean stupid, primitive , unenlightened.
You do not understand science so you are afraid of it, like a dog is afraid of thunder or balloons.
To you science is magic and witchcraft because, because you have small minds.
I cannot make your heads bigger, but your children’s is. I can take them and crack them open.
This is what I try to do. To get at their brains!
Ah, thank you.

This quote always reminds me of how so many people treat computers (well, the software) as some kind of magical thunder or witchcraft balloons and then proceed to make all sorts of bad decisions.

These go from colleagues and bosses to politicians and statesmen (in a generic form, not trying to tie out these roles to anyone in particular, mind you) and often the unwise decisions stemming from this ignorance have very, very bad results like wasting money of bad software solutions just because they have “support” (often so bad that it’s much worse than non SLA bases community support we’re used to on healthy Free Software projects) or stupid, primitive, unenlightened law proposals, some of which haven’t been stopped in time, some of which return in attempt after attempt like zombies from a B movie.

How can we fix this? Sigh.

CISPA is dead! (again) (for now)

After months of activist agitation and a crushing disappointment from the cowards in the House of Representatives, the US senate has effectively killed CISPA, a sweeping Internet surveillance proposal. This is astoundingly great news! But CISPA died once before, and came back from the dead, and it will not likely stay dead this time around either. The price of liberty is eternal vigilance, etc etc etc:

Sen. Jay Rockefeller (D-WV), the chairman of the U.S. Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation, said in a statement on April 18 that CISPA's privacy protections are "insufficient."

A committee aide told ZDNet on Thursday that Rockefeller believes the Senate will not take up CISPA. The White House has also said the President won't sign the House bill.

Staff and senators are understood to be "drafting separate bills" that will maintain the cybersecurity information sharing while preserving civil liberties and privacy rights.

Rockefeller's comments are significant as he takes up the lead on the Commerce Committee, which will be the first branch of the Senate that will debate its own cybersecurity legislation.

Michelle Richardson, legislative council with the American Civil Liberties Union, told the publication she thinks CISPA is "dead for now," and said the Senate will "probably pick up where it left off last year."

CISPA 'dead' in Senate, privacy concerns cited [Zack Whittaker/ZDNet]

    


CISPA is dead! (again) (for now)

After months of activist agitation and a crushing disappointment from the cowards in the House of Representatives, the US senate has effectively killed CISPA, a sweeping Internet surveillance proposal. This is astoundingly great news! But CISPA died once before, and came back from the dead, and it will not likely stay dead this time around either. The price of liberty is eternal vigilance, etc etc etc:

Sen. Jay Rockefeller (D-WV), the chairman of the U.S. Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation, said in a statement on April 18 that CISPA's privacy protections are "insufficient."

A committee aide told ZDNet on Thursday that Rockefeller believes the Senate will not take up CISPA. The White House has also said the President won't sign the House bill.

Staff and senators are understood to be "drafting separate bills" that will maintain the cybersecurity information sharing while preserving civil liberties and privacy rights.

Rockefeller's comments are significant as he takes up the lead on the Commerce Committee, which will be the first branch of the Senate that will debate its own cybersecurity legislation.

Michelle Richardson, legislative council with the American Civil Liberties Union, told the publication she thinks CISPA is "dead for now," and said the Senate will "probably pick up where it left off last year."

CISPA 'dead' in Senate, privacy concerns cited [Zack Whittaker/ZDNet]

    


Snooper's Charter is dead! (for now)

Aw, yeah! The UK Communications Data Bill -- AKA the "Snooper's Charter," a sweeping, totalitarian universal Internet surveillance bill that the Conservative government had sworn to pass -- is dead! Yesterday, Nick Clegg, leader of the Liberal Democrats in Parliament, announced that his party would not support the bill, and effectively killed it. Though I've been bitterly disappointed with some of the terminal compromises the LibDems have made, this makes me grateful to have them in Parliament. The kind of universal surveillance proposed in the Snooper's Charter was broadly supported by the last Labour government, which radically expanded state surveillance powers, and by the Tories -- thank goodness for the LibDems mustering a scrap of backbone at last!

The only downside is that the Open Rights Group had a whole series of great "Professor Elemental" videos that used pointed, excellent humour to mock and undermine the bill and drum up opposition to it, and now that's all going to go to waste (I blogged episode one yesterday).

Aw, who'm I kidding? This kind of thing never stays dead.

The snooper's charter has reminded Nick Clegg, finally, he is a liberal

    


Snooper’s Charter is dead! (for now)

Aw, yeah! The UK Communications Data Bill -- AKA the "Snooper's Charter," a sweeping, totalitarian universal Internet surveillance bill that the Conservative government had sworn to pass -- is dead! Yesterday, Nick Clegg, leader of the Liberal Democrats in Parliament, announced that his party would not support the bill, and effectively killed it. Though I've been bitterly disappointed with some of the terminal compromises the LibDems have made, this makes me grateful to have them in Parliament. The kind of universal surveillance proposed in the Snooper's Charter was broadly supported by the last Labour government, which radically expanded state surveillance powers, and by the Tories -- thank goodness for the LibDems mustering a scrap of backbone at last!

The only downside is that the Open Rights Group had a whole series of great "Professor Elemental" videos that used pointed, excellent humour to mock and undermine the bill and drum up opposition to it, and now that's all going to go to waste (I blogged episode one yesterday).

Aw, who'm I kidding? This kind of thing never stays dead.

The snooper's charter has reminded Nick Clegg, finally, he is a liberal