What's law and information and communications technology in my blog, hmmmm... googling jobs and the question of the applicability of extraterritoriality in that situation? hehe
Friday, September 30, 2011
What's law and information and communications technology in my blog, hmmmm... googling jobs and the question of the applicability of extraterritoriality in that situation? hehe
Thursday, September 29, 2011
Not a week goes by that I don't hear about, see something related to, read a post about Angry Birds.
Angry Birds is a game originally developed for Apple products in 2009 by a Finnish game developer. Over the months and years, it practically became viral, becoming available to more and more devices and different operating systems. As of this year, it has been downloaded roughly 350 million times - it is a craze that rivals (or maybe even surpasses) the Plants vs. Zombies disease that swept the entire globe a year or so ago.
You hear college-age students talking about it, see children as young as 5 playing it and see middle-aged office workers posting photos of it over their FB. It has transcended and bridged age gaps and made a lot of people very, very wealthy.
In fact, Angry Birds merchandise is everywhere. The most common Angry Birds merch is the balloon sold by the ambulant peddler for about 10-15 pesos, give or take a few. The shirts are also very popular as the wide Angry Birds baller bands which I've seen National Bookstore sell. A few days ago, however, we were at Divisoria for supplies for a certain project of ours. What we saw astounded us. There were mugs, stickers, fans, figurines, shirts, caps, keychains, cellphone accessories and casings, bikes, towels, dresses, even underwear!
The Chinese, apparently, are very fond of catapulting birds at pigs because they had the bright idea of selling totally unrelated items with the Angry Birds image. But boy, were they clever! The merchandise were selling like pancakes. Millions of dollars must have been earned illegally just by the use of the Angry Birds image. That's how popular they are.
They are so popular that they've spawned an entire faniverse with fan fiction and fiction games. People have theorized on the origin time and again and attempted to reconcile or compare and contrast with other similar games.
Today, I saw an image that gave me a start. I don't really know who the original creator of this image is, but it is hosted in a multitude of webpages and even shared several times on Facebook. If this is the real origin of Angry Birds, I am ready to believe it.
Image taken from http://imgur.com/gallery/s7xb9
Now go buy yourself anything not angry or you might want to hit yourself. Your childhood memories down the drain.
Given the scarcity of these energy resources, many countries are now exploring how ICT can be used to make energy use more efficient. An example of a possible technological solution many countries are looking into is the smart grid. It operates like an energy internet, where people can monitor their energy consumption and choose where to source it from.
The European Union’s “Vision and Strategy for Europe’s Electricity Networks of the Future,” for instance, emphasizes the use of smart grids to modernize Europe’s electricity network, support open access and open up the electricity market, especially to renewable energy. China, Japan, Korea, and other countries in the region are also now investing in smart grid technologies.
There are current efforts to develop a smart grid in the Philippines. The potential of this technology to address our energy problems is tremendous. It can help facilitate net metering and maximize the potential of an open access regime, two key measures for stimulating the growth of renewable energy industries and deregulating our power sector.
This, coupled with efforts to maximize the Renewable Energy Law's Net-Metering, Feed In Tariffs and Green Option provisions, as well as to establish an open access regime under the EPIRA, would hopefully work to bring the prices of electricity down, and secure energy for the future.
-- Ixara Maroto, 15th post
One of my friends commented, though, that this development was pretty scary because it confirms that Facebook archives all the content that you’ve uploaded (your Timeline goes as far back as your first post on Facebook). But it didn’t bother me all that much. For one thing, the beauty of the timeline, and the enjoyment I’m drawing from it, must be blinding me. More importantly, however, I always have the thought, at the back of my mind, that I have less expectation of privacy at the time that I chose publication over seclusion. Which is why, everytime I post something, I filter it carefully. So it doesn’t turn out to be information diarrhea which I’m posting, possibly eternally, on the web. Thus, I actually appreciate, rather than fear, that they archive all the things I thought were worth sharing. After all, I’ve only decided to post things after much consideration, thinking that I liked them enough to represent a bit of myself.
But, even then, I am a bit scared about the power that all this knowledge brings. It may be true that they’re only using it for better targeted advertising now. But you’ll never know what other extreme applications these may be used for. At least, I won’t have to worry about that right now. For now, the beauty of Facebook Timeline far outweighs the perceived repercussions.
Aldous Benjamin Camiso, Blog Entry #15.Image Source: https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10150393449619458&l=49d519f90e
Have you ever tried googling your name in the internet? Not because you suffer from some delusional fantasy of having hoards of internet-based fan sites devoting their life to blogging about you on the net, but simply to appease your own sense of curiosity. Come on, admit it. I’m sure you must have done at some point in your life. Haven’t you been the least bit curious as to what the internet world has written about you? I have, and I was surprised and unbelievably frightened by the wealth of information I have discovered about myself just by typing my name in the google search box.
Not only did the internet reveal my profession, it also went on to recount my academic career from high school straight to law school. As I post this entry, google will automatically update the search results and reveal this blog entry as the latest link to the search of Diane Cecilia Yu.
Scary, huh? If information such as these is easy to obtain just by googling a person’s name, imagine the sort of sensitive information hackers could get if they really put their hearts into it! We cannot rely on the law to protect us should we ever find ourselves victimized of identity theft or internet fraud. Thus, protective measures must be undertaken to put our minds at ease.
Henceforth, for everyone’s peace of mind, I have taken the liberty of reposting Jim Sheng’s tips on protecting your net-related privacy. After all, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.
1. Keep anonymous online
Do not reveal personal information inadvertently
Most of the computer programs, like email handlers and browsers, have options that you can set to specify personal details, and many forums or websites ask personal information when you sign up. Leave them blank or if the system insists, then give a reasonable looking but fictitious name and a fake birth date as a precaution.
Don't log on to surf a site if you don't have to; If you are really eager to express your view, log in anonymously or use a nick name. Never use your real name as the display name.
While surfing the Internet you leave data traces that can reveal their surfing habits. This information can be gathered by the provider or by secretly observing third parties. You can avoid leaving some Internet traces such as your IP address by access through a proxy server or using an anonymous surfing software to hide your computer identity.
If for certain reasons (e.g. job hunting, conducting business) you don't want be completely invisible online, only publish information that is relevant to your purpose and keep sensitive data from the websites.
2. Use more than one email address so that one is reserved solely for your personal communication
Provide email addresses that do not identify you personally on Web sites that you don’t know or trust.
I always think that a person should have at least three email addresses: one for work-related correspondences, one for family and friends, and one for receiving junk mails and giving out when requested on the Internet. Use email address email@example.com' instead of 'firstname.lastname@example.org' as your junk mail receiver.
3. Use anti-virus, anti-spyware and firewall software
and make sure it’s up-to-date.
4. Prevent web sites from tracking your activities
Configure your browser or operating system to manage pop-ups, cookies or block specific Web sites to prevent web sites from tracking your activities. Clean up your browser history, Temporary Internet files, cookies on a regular basis.
Use ClearAllHistory you can delete browser history, stored passwords, clear AutoComplete forms and address bar history, delete Temporary Internet Files (cache), delete cookies, empty Windows Temporary Folders (Temporary files directory), clear Clipboard, Recycle Bin content and Recent Documents list.
5. Change passwords on a regular basis
If you have to write down all your account names and passwords somewhere to help you memorize, write on a physical notebook instead of in a file on your computer.
6. Do not reveal personal information to strangers or just-met "friends" in chat rooms, message boards or newsgroups
7. Don't give out credit card numbers in a non-secure environment
If you're making a purchase through a web site, read the company's security policy before you buy. A secure web page will usually have a URL that begins "https" instead of "http", and most browsers will alert you to the fact that you are going to a secured (or unsecured) page. A secure server will show on your browser with a closed lock icon at the bottom in Windows, or at the top on Mac.
Avoid accessing personal or private information (e.g. your online banking account) from a computer that is shared at work, library, or webcafe because there is no guarantee that this information is not tracked.
8. If your child belongs to a social networking site
(MySpace, Facebook, Tagged), look closely at what information they have posted in their member profiles and blogs, including photos and videos. Predators, bullies, profanity and threats often occur in these types of sites.
A good example that everyone must have already experienced is a web-based e-mail service like Yahoo and Gmail. Instead of running a program on your computer, you log in to a web e-mail account remotely. The software and storage for your account exist on the service's computer cloud. Cloud computing addresses increasing demands in the use of information technology. It is a way to increase capacity or add capabilities on the fly without investing in new infrastructure, training new personnel, or licensing new software.
ABS-CBN news just featured in its Global Filipino section a guy named Winston Damarillo, a 41 yr old Flipino whose cloud computing software is recognized as a leader in his field. He is the Chief Executive Officer of g2ix. He is also the same guy who founded Gluecode which he sold to IBM in 2005.
For more on Mr. Damarillo, you can check: http://www.abs-cbnnews.com/global-filipino/09/28/11/pinoy-makes-mark-cloud-computing
James Anthony Mina #15
A few meetings back, VoIP was discussed in class. VoIP or Voice over Internet Protocol is a technology that allows one to communicate via voice, fax, or text using an Internet connection instead of a regular telephone network. One of the many benefits of this type of service is that it can be used for free or for a minimal charge only.
VoIP services have been around for quite some time now. A popular example would be Skype, which is a peer-to-peer VoIP system which allows users within it to call each other free of charge. Though it has been previously availed of through the use of computers, recent developments have made internet telephony available in mobile phones as well. iPhone, Android, Symbian and Windows Mobile are all VoIP capable already. It's about time for Blackberry to join in.
Yesterday, a friend told me to check out this new Blackberry application called TringMe. Touted as "the world's first true VoIP application for Blackberry", TringMe was designed by an Indian based communications company to enable peer-to-peer voice calls over Wi-Fi or 3G networks using a Blackberry phone. Calls to other TringMe users made through Wi-Fi are free no matter where you're at. This means you can make international calls using your Blackberry without worrying about having to deal with ridiculous rates. Cool eh? Reminds me of FaceTime minus the video.
This TringMe really did ring me. It sounds too good to be true! An application with such potential is surely worth a try. Now I'm downloading it and keeping my fingers crossed that it will work just as expected.
The Filipino time, as we all know, is a matter of relativity. Work starts 8-ish and ends at sometimes 5. When we say the forum starts at 10, expect the welcome remarks at around 10:15. Having studied in UP for a long time, it’s very decent to come in at 9:15 for a 9 am class (well, Malcolm is a big exception). And that’s keeping with the tight schedule already, relatively.
The Filipino time is flexible indeed. It has a good grasp of the inner workings of our society. It understands the predicament of a stalled MRT, the fickle weather, EDSA per se, the sluggish ways of the citizens seemingly ingrained in the Filipino consciousness. The Filipino time is so flexible it makes everything else bendy at the cost of efficiency.
Blame it on history. The books tell us our former colonizers are to be blamed for embedding in our consciousness a skewed concept of time. Blame it on the public infrastructures, the generosity (read: laxity) of our people, and the rustic appeal of a slow-paced life. But the core problem was never identified as the unsynchronized clocks in our country. Until recently.
A simple synchronized clock can spell an enormous difference in an archipelagic country. Summing it up, in an ideal setup: no more delayed flights/trains, no extended lunch breaks in government offices (yey!), no late students/professors, overall general efficiency the corollary of which would be a more robust economy and a better country.
What most of us don’t know is that generations of government have been pushing for one Juan time. Since 1949, the weather bureau (as mandated by Batas Pambansa Blg. 8) had set up a Time Service Division (TSD) for this purpose. Its master clock then was a U. Nardin Marine Chronometer, which uses a pendulum regulator. Today, TSD’s successor, the Time Service Unit, uses a Rubidium/Global Positioning System Common View (Rb/GPSCV) Time Transfer System. The system automatically calculates its time difference with every satellite within its antenna’s field of view using a computer of course.
Yes, time can be very technical. This is why the DOST is pairing up with the technical expertise of PAG-ASA to implement the ‘Juan Time’ campaign. Even in this digital age when firms already have their own GPS time system, a Philippine Standard Time (PST) must be set by the Government. The firms turn off their GPS whenever they are not needed. If we rely on private efforts to keep our time for us, then might as well give the funding to them. But since an entire government division is being funded by the taxpayer’s money, the DOST and PAG-ASA is actually making good use of the public money (yey another!).
Simple projects like these are what a good policy makes. It is a good interplay of law and ICT. A synchronized time is more than a mere administrative matter. It is a reflection of professionalism, efficiency and a commendable effort towards better governance.
PS: Technical terms came from here. Also, the launch of the campaign is set on September 30. So come October 1, we finally have something which the other tiger economies and good governments in the pacific region have. Trumpets are in order.
ENTRY # 15. Regine Tenorio
Wednesday, September 28, 2011
Citizen science is the ‘democratization’ of science, where ordinary citizens (or more aptly, netizens) contribute to scientific endeavors. This emerging trend is unique in that the individuals do not have to be experts at what they do: participants can be ordinary citizens who aim to contribute something to the field of scientific research. Various projects can be found at the web, ranging from measuring the quality of freshwater, monitoring wildlife, season changes and earthquakes, or even unlocking the cure for AIDS (see related post on Foldit).
Citizen science merges two powerful tools: machines (in this case, computers and the internet) and the human brain. One steps in where the other cannot. For instance, the project called GalaxyZoo allows people to classify whether galaxies are elliptical or spiral, a task which the human brain better accomplishes than a computer processor. It also changes the way of going through the scientific method, as well as ushering a way for a new kind of research, one where people collaborate though not in a personal and physical manner. The best part of citizen science is that it is based on a volunteer basis—“researchers” do not expect to be paid. The pursuit for scientific advancement is virtually obtained at less or no cost at all.
This brand of science does not only allow for public participation in an otherwise elite field, it is also an alternative source for scientific education because of faster and “citizen-friendly” exchange of information and ideas. It expands the opportunities for scientific research, in that they need not be confined to those which are funded and supported by the government. It helps in the development of policies, be they scientific or otherwise. Citizen science research for climate change monitoring, for example, can be utilized to influence and determine environmental policies. Another example is the UN project AfricaMap, in which volunteers are given satellite images of Africa where they can mark roads, villages, etc which will then be helpful in the delivery of aid for affected areas.
Undeniably, the internet has played a significant and critical role in this new form of research. People across the globe are cooperating through the use of online tools to help scientist conduct their studies. The interconnectivity provided by the internet allows people to share ideas as well as information more easily. It has opened a space where public participation has no place before. Citizens are not merely consumers, beneficiaries and audience of scientific advances. They have become creators and sources of knowledge, active participants in development.
Krystel Jehan M. Bautista, entry no. 15
|Image Source: http://www.anigamers.com|
Authors of literary and artistic works protected by this Convention shall enjoy the exclusive right of making and of authorizing the translation of their works throughout the term of protection of their rights in the original works. (Article 8, Right of Translation)
Entry no. 15
Many sectors of our society are pushing for the Freedom of Information Bill. The FOI Bill basically aims to either give information to the people (active) or allow information access to citizens (passive). One of the basic driving forces behind it is that it is a right given by the Constitution. Information must be given to citizens because we are in a democracy. The theory behind this is that the people should be in the know in order to be empowered and to act accordingly.
Of course we may have the law but without actual effective way of giving the people the actual information, then it will be useless, as if we don’t have the law. We need to ensure that the avenues are open to actually have the information available.
Much of the discussion with regard to the FOI Bill will in no doubt involve the terms of information technology. As we are nearing the absolute paperless days, we start to realize that there is no other way but to use and utilize information technology properly.
If the FOI Bill is finally passed, the use of information technology will be indispensable. Before, we used to regard news in the newspaper as the latest available after radio broadcasting. Next thing we know is that we now use the internet to access the latest stories. Internet is fast becoming a necessary medium to communicate ideas. With it, we can inform the people real time. What I see here is that the FOI Bill coupled with advance technology will no doubt give the Philippine citizenry the information that we so ever want and need.
John Joseph S. Parco
Monday, September 26, 2011
It has been said that technological advancements have been at the center of biblical reformation. The invention of papyrus, paper, printing press, newspapers, magazines, radio, television…All these have been used to carry God’s words.
Now, we have internet, blogs, and even Facebook/Twitter/Google+. If we can spare time to blog about stuff as mundane as licking the best ice cream flavour ever concocted or going to a concert and going ga-ga over rock stars…why can’t we blog about going to church and being inspired by God’s message? If we have 140 characters to tweet that we like/love someone…why don’t we tweet how much we love God and being in His presence?
Some say that cyberspace provides such a limited space to spell out God’s goodness. Interesting to note however that the early church managed to squeeze in God’s message in 5 characters – ICTUS – which was reduced further into a single symbol – the ictus symbol. There’s so much good that can be said.
How many facebook friends and twitter followers do we have? How many can we reach out to by just a few mouse clicks?
Bottomline is: Technological advancement can be used to advance the Kingdom of God.
Crisela Bernardino, entry#15
Sunday, September 25, 2011
"Because you have shown a willingness to share, we are promoting you back to full membership."
Those were the words a friend of mine had been waiting to hear from the moderators of a site that runs a private BitTorrent tracker. Her label as a "leecher" had been removed and full download privileges restored. We were curious, and she explained that she had registered to become a member of an invitation-only private tracker, but was later denied access to the tracker because she hadn't been seeding enough.
The 2007 demise of OiNK, reportedly the biggest private music tracker on the web, is said to have spawned the rise of many other trackers that adopted the popular site's ratio guideline, which basically required members to upload as much as they downloaded, lest they be kicked off the site or labeled leechers, which was what happened to my friend.
Their world is not so much a secret as it is elite, with all the information that's practically out there, not excluding actual listings. But without having to go into piracy and copyright issues, it appears to be a pretty impressive setup that weeds out those wretched leechers and trolls. While it can be difficult to maintain ratios precisely because they're closed communities, I think that's a fair sacrifice for higher speeds and safe, high-quality downloads, both of which are tougher to come by - I've heard - when using public trackers.
#14 - Somayyah Abdullah
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Friday, September 23, 2011
As I was researching for a topic to write about, I came across an article about the state of Albany being sued for using a GPS traking device to monitor the movements of its employee. The said employee was later fired for not being at work at the time he should be at work. A GPS device which was on 24/7, seven days a week was attached to the personal vehicle of Michael Cunnigham, a former state Department of Labor training manager. In the end Cunningham was fired from his job for filing imporper time sheets. This was proved when those written in his timesheets did not tally with the GPS device data. The NY Civil Liberties Union is now suing the state for invasion of privacy.
I was just thingking and these are personal thoughts. Shouldn't Philippine public officials be tracked, to find out whether they are working the hours they are actually paid. I've had an experience with public employees that is both shocking and sad. I went to this agency, and at around 3 or 4 pm the employees were no longer at their desks doing what they were supopose to do but playing badminton inside the same building where they work. This did not happen once but everytime I came to that office. It seems they have taken upon themselves to reserve this hour for their badminton tournaments. I've been dealing with a lot of government agencies and this is not an isolated case. Absent the question of invasion of privacy since they will be tracked during office time (while they were paid). Shouldn't there be a device attached to these officers to determine whether they are working during work hours and are actually in the office during office hours?
And so, we did it again.
The Philippines has created history by being the first country that proposed legislation specifically against planking. For those who are not familiar with it, "Planking" (or the "Lying Down Game") is an activity consisting of lying face down in an unusual or incongruous location. The hands must touch the sides of the body and having a photograph of the participant taken and posted on the internet is an integral part of the game. Players compete to find the most unusual and original location in which to play. The term planking refers to mimicking a wooden plank.
The Anti-Planking Act of 2011 was filed early this week in Congress by Quezon City Rep. Winston “Winnie” Castelo. This issue was actually trending worldwide on Twitter and has created a buzz all over the internet. The first time I saw the tweets from my friends, I thought that they were just making it up. Well I mean, seriously? A law against planking? To my horror, no one was joking after all.
Here’s a copy of the Anti-Planking Act of 2011:
"AN ACT PRESCRIBING A UNIVERSAL CODE OF STUDENT CONDUCT WHEREBY PLANKING BY A STUDENT OR GROUP OF STUDENTS DURING STREET RALLIES OR SIMILAR PROTEST ACTIONS AS A FORM OF REDRESS OF GRIEVANCE BE STRICTLY PROHIBITED AND APPLYING APPROPRIATE SANCTIONS THEREOF
September 20th, 2011
Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the Philippines in Congress assembled:
SECTION 1. This Act shall be known as the “Anti-Planking Act of 2011”.
SEC. 2. A universal Code of Student Conduct is hereby prescribed where planking as a form of redress of grievance be strictly prohibited and appropriate sanctions be applied for violations thereof.
SEC. 3. Under this Act, planking is when a student or group of students lies face down in unusual locations especially in streets or other public places, keeping the hands along the body and the feet outstretched and especially where such act is meant as a form of redress of grievance against government.
SEC. 4 Every bonafide student from any school, college or university shall conduct himself with high degree of discipline and propriety.
SEC. 5. The Department of Education in the case of elementary and high school students and the Commission on Higher Education in the case of college students shall draft a universal Code of Student Conduct to carry out the provisions of this Act.
Further, DepEd and CHED, respectively shall issue appropriate rules and regulations to effectively carry out intent and purpose of this Act.
SEC. 6. This Act shall take effect ninety (90) days after its publication in the Official Gazette and in at least three (3) newspapers of general circulation."
Apparently, the bill was a reaction to the "planking sessions" staged by the League of Filipino students (LFS) during the transport strike last Monday along Espana road in Sampaloc, Manila, to show support for the protest against oil price hikes.
According to Rep. Winnie Castelo,
“Parents and teachers have reason to be alarmed if these similar protest actions will have as a scheme and scene otherwise warm and living bodies laid down across street highways as though they were offerings to the gods,”
“The parent in me tells me that this precedent in the case of the this massive transport strike where militant street protesters who are students of various schools have to lie down or serve as ‘planks’ across the road to disrupt what should be normal traffic could just be very dangerous in the future. Life and limb are pretty much at risks here were unbelieving bus drivers or law enforcement authorities might just ram through these warm and living bodies rolled out on highways” Castelo added.
First, I personally think that planking is pointless. Might as well do a real plank (the exercise). But I can't say for certain that I won't be trying it out soon. However, I see no harm in people doing it, so long as they do not affect other people, destroy the property of others, or harm anyone in the process, then plank all you want. Plank on your own risk.
Second, it is just plain absurd for our government to focus on such things, when there are so much more pressings issues that need attention. Like the reason why they are protesting in the first place? Why don't they focus on the budget cuts on education, rising oil prices, or fighting poverty? Plainly, this is a waste of time for Congress and a waste of taxpayer's money.
Third, if you read the contents of the law, what it says is that planking endangers the lives of people who do it during rallies and protest. I mean, seriously? What if they only protested without planking and instead lied down on the street. Isn't that equally dangerous? So now they can make an Anti-lying-down-on-the-road-while-protesting Act of 2011. I just don't get it why the issue is in the manner of protest, and why planking must be singled out.
Fourth, planking is a form of self-expression. The bill will therefore curtail the protesters right to freedom of expression safeguarded by no less that the Constitution. If protesters want to plank in order to air their grievances against the government, then let them. Not to mention that it also violates equal protection by singling out students. So if you are not a student, nothing precludes you from planking?
Thank you for giving another incentive for students to graduate.