Postcards from the Bleeding Edge
Wednesday, February 27, 2008

  google's CAPCHA broken, global cooling kicks in, and copyright gets taxed

Lots of good stuff from slashdot today. A few years back I mused aloud while rapping to cybernation, that we were trying to make the spambots more intelligent, intelligent enough to read CAPTCHA, for example... Apparently, they are now.

I didn't think CAPTCHA would work for as long as it did (and it will be a good while longer before it's routinely broken, I hope). I have spent a bit of time looking into openid, but I trust SSL certs farther, perhaps some progress there will be made soon.

A few weeks back Nick Mainsbridge and I were talking about how google had become the libc or the Linux kernel of the Internet, a monoculture just as bad as Windows, ripe for being exploited by malicious users. I've been getting off of google - partially for this reason - for nearly a year....

I worry, that if we were to adopt strong authentication like RSA certs for blog software, that the bots would start working on that problem too. The race for taking over the planet will be between skynet (google), and the botnets. My money would be on the botnets, if I thought money would have any value after the dust settles from that.

One of my biggest planetary worries, however, is greatly lessened today. It's only a single data point, but it's a big one. Global cooling seems to have kicked in! It is not too late to move to the tropics!

Also on slashdot, the latimes makes an extremely compelling argument for taking intellectual property to the next level, where it can be taxed.

Although treating IP as actual property is a logical extension of current trends, I'd vastly prefer we'd return to pre-1911 copyright law. But I can just see governments drooling over the idea....

Lastly, the planetary society announced the winner of the Apophis competition for an asteroid mission. The cost of the mission is looking to be very, very, cheap. The winning design gets 50 thousand dollars.

I wish google was offering a 30m dollar Xprize to do asteroid missions, not to protect the earth, but to get the hell off it. Call it a backup plan for when the bots win.

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David Täht writes about politics, space, copyright, the internet, audio software, operating systems and surfing.


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