Blacknell.net

Politics, technology, and society. And the seasonal incursion of pro cycling.

Month: April 2007 (Page 1 of 3)

Cryptome Shutting Down?

Via Slashdot, I see that Verio recently sent Cryptome.org a notice informing the owner that Verio will no longer provide hosting services as of this Friday. What is Cryptome, and why should you care? Cryptome is perhaps the most impressive individual effort at plugging the "memory hole" that has ever existed.* In Cryptome's own words:
Cryptome welcomes documents for publication that are prohibited by governments worldwide, in particular material on freedom of expression, privacy, cryptology, dual-use technologies, national security, intelligence, and secret governance -- open, secret and classified documents -- but not limited to those.
As you might imagine, this has annoyed not just the US government, but governments around the world. I'm near-fanatical when it comes to the idea that transparency is essential to good government, and I think James Young (who runs Cryptome) has done important work in advancing that idea. So getting this notice of shut down from Verio - with no explanation beyond a claim that Cryptome is violating its Acceptable Use Policy - is troubling. Verio, which has otherwise been an excellent host for Cryptome, appears to be unwilling to explain the reasons behind terminating this relationship. Mr. Young speculates:
It may be wondered if Verio was threatened by an undisclosable means, say by an National Security Letter or by a confidential legal document or by a novel attack not yet aired.
I should hope not. But that appears to be the most likely explanation.  I'd quite like to see more on what happened. *I'm not absolutely certain, but I think Cryptome may be the first online effort I've ever donated to.

I guess the VCR

got him.

Don’t ask, don’t tell

Too good not to share:

Updated: apparently most can't see what I tried to embed. Here it is. Sorry about that.

Tour de Georgia Meta


This daily coverage thing is a hell of a lot harder than I thought. I've a newfound respect for the people and systems that pull this off on a regular basis. Words to go with the pictures (and more pictures) as soon as I can.

Tour de Georgia: Stage 7

Well, here we are at the end of the Tour de Georgia. Barring a completely unexpected turn of events, Janez Brajkovic (Discovery) will finish on Sunday as the overall winner of the 2007 Tour de Georgia. As of Saturday night, the GC standings look like this:
  1. BRAJKOVIC Janez DSC 23.01'03"
  2. VANDE VELDE Christian CSC 23.01'15" 12"
  3. CANADA GRACIA David SDV 23.04'07" 3'04"
With numbers like that, Vande Velde can only hope that the Discovery riders give him room to breathe, and Canada Gracia can only hope for an alien abduction of the first two guys. And all Ryder Hesjedal needs to do to keep the KOM jersey is cross the finish line. So with the GC all but in the books, what's the real race tomorrow? The overall sprint jersey. Right now, the sprint points standings are:
  1. HAEDO Juan José CSC 26
  2. RODRIGUEZ Fred PRL 25
  3. CONTRINI Daniele TCS 23
  4. LEIPHEIMER Levi DSC 20
With only a single point separating Haedo and Rodrigeuz, you can be sure they'll be keeping an eye on each other. There are no sprint lines during Sunday's circuit, but the first ten finishers are awarded sprint points (15 for 1st, 12 for 2nd, 10 for 3rd, and then 7-1 for 4th-10th). Rodriguez is a two time winner of the TdG overall sprint jersey (2003 and 2006), but Haedo's made no secret of the fact that he'd like to earn a turn at it on Sunday.

TdG: Brasstown Bald

So you've already read the comprehensive Cycling News report on what happened at stage five of the Tour de Georgia. Anything new I can tell you? Well, here's what I hope you want to know: Levi Leipheimer Wins Stage Five Was Tom Danielson pissed? Well, at the press conference, in which Levi Leipheimer repeatedly made reference to "Tom lending me Brasstown Bald this year," Tom was very gracious. And he smiled. Perhaps a tinge too much. It's the first time I've seen either man in person, so take it for what it's worth, but Tom gave off the slightest hint of the vibe of a man who's just been had, and knows it. Were the riders a complete mess as they crossed the line at the top of Brasstown Bald? Absolutely. Even Levi, taking the stage, didn't smile. Some faces were stony masks, but their first faltering steps off the bike gave clue to just how much the day took out of them. Other riders had a hard time even taking a bottle. All that's left is the hurt Was it any easier to follow the race in person than online? Actually, no. In fact, I'm almost certain that most of you knew more about what was going on for the first 90% of the race than I did. Between the same video/cell problems that've been plaguing the tracker, having no cell coverage, and (ahem) leaving my laptop at the bottom of the mountain, I was only able to gather bits and pieces of updates from team radios (which, in my limited experience, seem to be regularly contradicting each other). See anything cool? Well, of course. I saw the finish of Brasstown Bald. But cool as in amusing? Yeah - Levi Leipheimer's mom came over to Tyler Hamilton to say hi and give him a hug. I'm sure Tyler will one day enjoy telling Levi to "Say hi to your mom" at some opportune moment. (Between making sure I get details right, formatting, etc., it's getting later than I'd like. More tomorrow.)

Please call your Rep: DC Vote

The DC Voting Rights Act will come up for a floor vote on Thursday, and it needs the support of your Representative:
The bill was pulled from the House Floor last month after three legislators tried to attach a provision that would strip DC of its strict gun laws. [ . . . ] The DC Voting Rights Act, sponsored by Representative Tom Davis (R-VA) and Delegate Eleanor Holmes Norton (D-DC), balances a vote for the traditionally Democratic District of Columbia with a vote for Republican-leaning Utah. It would raise the number of members in the House of Representatives from 435 to 437.
The bill received wide bipartisan support in committee, and represents a real chance at ending the shameful situation forced upon DC residents. This bill is real and and it's constitutional. Please don't let this fail.

Heading to the Tour de Georgia

It's been quiet here this week, for any number of reasons.   Work has been busy.  National politics have gotten so absurd that I've needed to take a short break, lest my head explode.  And there is nothing I want to say about what happened at Virginia Tech (other than that I wish 95% of the people on TV talking about it would follow my lead). I have been tracking the Tour de Georgia over at Podium Cafe, though, and having a good time doing it (Stage 1, Stage 2, Stage 3).  For those of you who don't know, the Tour de Georgia is a professional cycling stage race that takes place over 7 days.  Steephill.tv has an excellent one-stop site for information about the race, and you can actually watch the race live on the web here (it runs from 11a to 2p on Thursday, check Steephill for times Fri-Sun). Cycling isn't exactly the most popular sport in the US (it regularly gets shafted by TV in favor of bullriding or fishing coverage . . .), but the Tour de Georgia is a big deal for American pro cycling.  I'm heading down to Georgia on Thursday so I can watch the final three stages in person.   Friday brings a pretty exciting finish on top of Brasstown Bald, Saturday involves a fast run from Lake Lanier down to Stone Mountain, and Sunday finishes the Tour with a circuit race through much of downtown Atlanta.  I'll be posting about that here and at Podium Cafe, so if you're interested, check back nightly.

Five out of Nine Justices Agree: These Men Know What’s Best For Women

Signing of Partial Birth Abortion Ban More here, if you can stand it.

Tour de Georgia Starts Today

The Tour de Georgia, a seven stage pro-cycling race ably outlined by Clydesdale here, starts at 1pm EDT. No television coverage to speak of, but the Adobe Tour Tracker may be a decent substitute.  Find it here. (I hope this site holds up better than the race site, which seems to be overwhelmed at the moment). Today's 97 mile stage starts in Peachtree City* (just south of Atlanta) and heads south to Macon. It's an overall downhill run, and if I'm remembering the route correctly, it should be very fast. The press conference from Saturday was available on the TdG site, but, well, nothing's available at the moment. They do promise daily podcasts at this url. Might be worth checking out later on, after the tech mess is sorted. *A planned community that spends most of its time worrying about the licensing of golf carts. It's a tough life, there.

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