Chilling net access to fight terrorism?

Ok, so it’s unlikely that this is a purposeful move to disenfranchise Somalis who want to communicate their plight with the rest of the world. But this is still one of the scarier headlines I’ve seen lately: US shuts down Somalia internet, says the BBC: “Somalia’s only internet company and a key telecoms business have been forced to close because the United States suspects them of terrorist links.”

Biting the feeding hand

This is one of the braver statements [WSJ, subscription required] that I’ve seen from Steve Jobs recently: “We’re baffled that a settlement imposed against Microsoft for breaking the law should allow, even encourage, them to unfairly make inroads into education — one of the few markets left where they don’t have monopoly power.”

Closure on a class

My last Finance II case writeup was completed today. This is a fairly big deal. I was dealing with a pretty big Black Dog last spring when I first tried to take Finance II, and facing incredibly complicated cases with lots of computation, no road map, and no teammates was about to send me right into the frozen Charles. I dropped it and decided to take it again this fall. It’s just about bearable this time, in spite of the fact that I’ve fatally screwed up just about every case so far.

The irony of course is that I had to finish the last case on my own, and so completely missed the instructions that I had to value the company using the APV method rather than WACC.

Now playing

Currently playing song: “Rebecca Sylvester” by Gastr Del Sol on Upgrade & Afterlife. What a weird, wonderful song by a weird, wonderful band. I think the great thing for me about this band (unfortunately defunct) is the way David Grubbs’ lyrical melodies seem so comfortable with the weird sounds that Jim O’Rourke wraps around them. Besides, how can you dislike a song that ends, “Why did the sharks watch him drown?” … I owe Tyler a big debt of gratitude for introducing me to the band (even if he did freak me out when he told me, “Their songs sound like the noise inside my head when it’s quiet”).

Requiem for the CoffeeCam

I spoke too quickly about web cams yesterday. I just saw that the Coffee Pot Web Cam has gone permanently offline (since August, apparently). I’m so sad! Where else can I get free images of coffee over the Internet? How will I know when it’s time to hop a plane to Cambridge to make new coffee?

Seriously, I remember seeing the coffee pot in early 1994 and thinking, that’s seriously cool. It was the first time that I got a real clue about the power of the Web to allow people to share things across wide geographic distances–in a more meaningful way than files on an FTP server, words on Usenet newsgroups, or nodes on a Gopher directory. In some small way, the coffee pot image server is probably responsible for my publishing on the web. I think a small moment of silence is in order.