May 18 2012

Mick O’Pedia

Category: Humour,InternetTeknovis @ 4:38 pm

I came across Mick O’Pedia today! It is like Wikipedia, but it is tailored for Irish people :)

Friday afternoon silliness ;)

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Jan 25 2012

Wikipedia Free on Orange

Category: Internet,TelecomsTeknovis @ 5:48 pm

Wikipedia is going to be free for Orange users, according to Wikipedia Wants to Be Free — for Mobile Users, in Africa.

Technically it is a really simple, but I love the idea of sharing knowledge freely with people who may not otherwise have access to Wikipedia. It also has great potential for generating good press coverage.

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Dec 17 2011

English Person Google Bomb

Category: Humour,InternetTeknovis @ 9:46 am

This week I heard of another fun Google Bomb – a search for “what defines an English person” takes you to the Wikipedia definition of Cunt!

Unsurprisingly, this may not be suitable for viewing in work!

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May 18 2010

New Wikipedia Layout

Category: InternetTeknovis @ 12:44 pm

I am still not familiar with the new Wikipedia layout! I still keep looking for the search textbox on the left!

Wikipedia Search

Wikipedia Search

For more information about these recent changes see New features. Actually, the story behind the puzzle globe is fascinating!

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Jul 13 2009

Default Windows XP Wallpaper

Category: WindowsTeknovis @ 11:02 pm

I came across the story behind the default Windows XP wallpaper, known as Bliss, on Wikipedia tonight. The article, Bliss, shows the original wallpaper, and a more recent photo! There is a huge difference!

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May 23 2009

Mobile Wikipedia

Category: Mobile ComputingTeknovis @ 5:14 pm

One of the web sites that I visit most often using my PDA is Wikipedia.However, I only realised this week that there is an excellent version of the web site that is designed for mobile devices! The address is mobile.wikipedia.org.

m.wikipedia.org also works, but it gives an information rich web page that is more similar to the desktop version of the Wikipedia home page.

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Mar 29 2009

Marchitecture

Category: HumourTeknovis @ 10:06 am

I heard a really good new word during the week – Marchitecture. According to Wikipedia, Marchitecture means:

The term is applied to any form of electronic architecture perceived to have been produced purely for marketing reasons.

This was the context in which I heard the word being used in a presentation that I attended. Indeed, it was the presenter, who is a marketer, who used the word :)

However, a more serious meaning for it is also provided:

A marketecture…is one page, typically informal depiction of the system’s structure and interactions. It shows the major components, their relationships and has a few well chosen labels and text boxes that portray the design philosophies embodied in the architecture. A marketecture is an excellent vehicle for facilitating discussion by stakeholders during design, build, review, and of course the sales process. It’s easy to understand and explain, and serves as a starting point for deeper analysis.

I can actually appreciate the use of this meaning :o

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Mar 25 2009

Irish Government Censorship

Category: InternetTeknovis @ 10:49 pm

A very interesting story about Government censorship has been unfolding in Ireland over the last two days. Indeed, if not for the Internet then the story would have been successfully squashed by now!

It all started with a practical joke in which paintings of the Irish Prime Minister, who was naked, were hung in two popular art galleries in Dublin. The national broadcaster RTE provided coverage of the story.

Here is a screenshot of one of the paintings in case the video gets removed:

Painting of Brian Cowen (From RTE News)

Painting of Brian Cowen (From RTE News)

Initially this was just an example of Irish humour, but it quickly took a sinister tone. First RTE was pressurised into removing the video from its web site, and it was subsequently forced to issue the following apology:

The Government then continued to flex its muscles today by sending the police into a radio station that covered the story. The police were demanding the name of the artist. More information about this can be read in Gardaí visit radio station in Cowen painting inquiry.

The police identified the artist in one of the fastest investigations ever undertaken, and they are currently preparing a prosecution. The police also seized five other similar paintings. More details of this are described in Teacher questioned over Cowen paintings.

My opinion on all of this is that it is outrageous that the Government is putting so many resources into trying to bury this story. I am also delighted with the responses of the online community, and I hope to play my part also :o

I am also really surprised that the Governemnt, or even the Prime Minister, did not seize the opportunity to turn it into good publicity.

For more coverage of this story from the Irish blogging community take a look at the recent posts by Maman Poulet, Damien Mulley, and Caricatures Ireland. This last web site has a very good caricature in The Taoiseach has no clothes and RTE has no balls: the Brian Cowen Nude Caricature.

Brian Cowen Caricature (Copyright Caricatures Ireland)

Brian Cowen Caricature (Copyright Caricatures Ireland)

The t-shirt version of it looks great in Get your b*ll*ck-naked T*oiseach t-sh*rt.

I also think that this is yet another example of how a small story becomes a huge story when somebody tries to censor it! A perfect example of this is all of the other caricatures that are now appearing on the Internet, such as the caricatures in Photoshop Cowen extravaganza. I think that some of these are very funny, while others are not. However, I think it is vital in a democracy that they are all available to the public!

I have been following this story, and the associated outrage, all day on Twitter. I must admit that I really liked the real-time nature of this, although it was a distraction :o

It is also very interesting to see how the global media is covering this story. The story is covered in the UK in Naked taoiseach paintings removed, Cowen artist ‘could be charged’, and Guerrilla artist hangs nude paintings of taoiseach Brian Cowen. France is reading about the story in A poil, par Robert Solé, and the US is reading about it in Ireland: Nude Premier Paintings Appear. Perhaps the most ironic, or even worrying, coverage is by the Chinese in Naked Irish PM portraits removed. I am sure that it is also being covered by many other news agencies of which I am not aware!

The story has also made it into Wikipedia, where it is known as Picturegate. Perhaps the Irish Government will try to remove this next!

I wonder how this story will continue in the following days!

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Mar 03 2009

Controversial Photos on Wikipedia

Category: InternetTeknovis @ 9:53 pm

I am a big fan of Wikipedia, and I use it very regularly. I hear people commenting regularly on the inaccuracy of its information. However, I have never noticed any inaccuracies in any of the articles with which I am familiar.

I recently came across some really surprising, and perhaps controversial, photos on Wikipedia. Note that these web pages could be considered not suitable for viewing in work :o

I do not think that any of these Wikipedia users actually created and uploaded these photos. All they did was add them to their albums!

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Dec 08 2008

Extreme Child Pornography Prevention Measures

Category: InternetTeknovis @ 2:23 pm

There are two articles in the news today regarding child pornography prevention measures that are being applied at national level. These articles caught my attention because I think that they are great example of how not to apply censorship!

The first article describes how six ISPs in the UK are blocking access to a Wikipedia web page that contains a photo of a naked girl in her early teens. Initially this sounds reasonable, but the block is being applied to the whole page rather than simply the photo. Furthermore, the photo is of a well known album from 1976 by a well known band. So clearly the intention of publishing this web page is not to promote child pornography.

The ISPs are implementing the block using a transparent proxy that is not forwarding the original client IP address to Wikipedia. Unfortunately, this means that Wikipedia cannot identify individual clients within these ISPs, so all users of these ISPs are now blocked from updating Wikipedia!

To add to the stupidity of this situation, the photo is widely available on the Internet already, and a simple search for “virgin killer” on Google Images finds it. Apparently many UK bloggers are now posting the image in protest.

For more details about this see Brit ISPs censor Wikipedia over ‘child porn’ album cover.

I am delighted to report that my ISP (Eircom) is not blocking access to this web page! I hope it stays this way. If you want to test your ISP then simply try viewing Virgin Killer.

The second article describes how an Australian judge recently found a man guilty of possessing child pornography. The child pornography was a fake Simpsons cartoon that depicted some of the characters have sex. For more details about this see Fake Simpsons cartoon ‘is porn’.

Again, this seems like excessive policing to me.

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