You probably have a Facebook account--well over 400 million people do. You've probably noticed that the look and feel of your profile have recently changed (again).
And you've probably heard a lot recently about Facebook changing its privacy policies (again). Maybe you've even seen something about a rumor that Facebook employees say offhand that CEO Mark Zuckerberg "doesn't believe in" privacy--and how some people very high up in Washington are starting to take notice. Will government intervention in Facebook be saving you from unwanted snooping or just interfering in your Mafia Wars games? … Read more
Never mind that the outcry grew out of a consumer blogger's mostly mistaken analysis: Online protests were staged, a Washington, D.C., activist group threatened to complain to federal regulators, and founder Mark Zuckerberg offered a public mea culpa.
This time around, by announcing proposed changes dealing with location tagging and third party Web sites before they take effect, Facebook is hoping to avoid repeating what happened last year.
A reverse proxy server stands between your home network server and the Internet, controlling access and protecting your network. Fastream Technologies' IQ Proxy Server is a forward-reverse proxy server application for Windows. It acts as a secure front end for all incoming traffic, and it can also perform common tasks like load balancing, authentication, and caching. It boasts a robust, scalable server engine that can handle up to 20,000 hits at once and serve more than 10,000 requests per second in keep-alive mode. It supports all major Web protocols, features a strong firewall for both forward and reverse … Read more
PolicyMap is a collection of real estate, civil, and financial systems built into a mapping and charting engine. It can locate superfund sites; show you crime stats; tell you about mortgage originations (including things like subprime mortgages to various demographic groups), and age and educational background. The data is at a variety of resolutions (some is per ZIP code, some by census tract) and timeliness.
In many data sets you zoom into deep detail on your information. You can also build charts, for data sets with information over time, and generate preconfigured "community reports" for particular regions or … Read more
Editors' note: This is a guest column. See Larry Downes' bio below.
While much of the technology policy conversations at CES concerned positive developments such as the imminent National Broadband Plan, one dark cloud appeared at every turn.
Nearly every speaker invoked fears of a looming "spectrum crisis" in wireless communications. Simply put, the faster that U.S. consumers embrace new mobile devices and services, the faster we will run out of available frequencies that can handle the increased traffic.
She addressed the issue of alleged Chinese intrusion into Google servers to spy on human rights activists, as well as freedom of religion and economic issues.
Clinton also addressed issues of hate speech and terrorists who use the Internet for recruitment.
She raised concerns about "the issue of anonymous speech" and worries about terrorists and criminals who "divorce their online actions from their real world identities." However, some human rights activist rely on anonymity to … Read more
Among the budget cuts California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger has proposed to health care, prison, environment, and other parts of the state budget, there's one area that has a good chance of actually getting a budget increase: open source in IT.
According to a policy letter (PDF) issued last week by California CIO Teri Takai, "the use of Open Source Software (OSS) in California state government [has now been formally established] as an acceptable practice."
It's about time.
California faces a $20 billion budget deficit, a gaping void that open-source software, no matter how aggressively used by … Read more
U.S. President Barack Obama unveiled a $2.3 billion tax credit on Friday to boost jobs by promoting clean energy, as new data showed the country's unemployment rate remained stuck in the double digits.
Obama said the credit, from funds earmarked under a $787 billion stimulus package he signed last February, would create 17,000 U.S. jobs and be matched by an additional $5 billion in private capital.
"Building a robust clean-energy sector is how we will create the jobs of the future, jobs that pay well and can't be outsourced," Obama said.
"… Read more
Privacy advocates opposed to new privacy regulations at Facebook are attempting to get the attention of the U.S. Federal Trade Commission, according to a complaint filed Thursday on behalf of the Electronic Privacy Information Center and several allied groups.
"These changes violate user expectations, diminish user privacy, and contradict Facebook's own representations," the complaint says of Facebook's new regulations, which push more content public, and make even more data available to third-party applications and advertisers. EPIC's goal is to force Facebook to restore the old settings and add additional controls for members.
"We'… Read more