ETHOS COLUMN ARCHIVE 2003
YEAR OF THE FLAT
REVIEW OF 2003:The introduction of flat-rate internet access was one of the highlights of the year in Ireland.
28 DECEMBER 2003
NO COLUMN THIS WEEK
21 DECEMBER 2003
Electronic voting technology as it stands is a solution looking for a problem. Count me out.
14 DECEMBER 2003
RULING THE ROOT
Internet 'governance' based on the existing telecommunications model is a 20th century solution for a 21st century technology.
7 DECEMBER 2003
Computers are amazing but they are also the most temperamental, stubborn, deceitful and stand-offish devices ever to be taken out of a cardboard box.
30 NOVEMBER 2003
OF MICE AND MEN
Never ending copyright laws have made sure Mickey Mouse's 75th birthday last week was one he'll want to forget.
23 NOVEMBER 2003
The music industry may have won the battle but is losing the war with the internet. Unperturbed, the television corporations are chomping at the bits.
16 NOVEMBER 2003
9 NOVEMBER 2003
Two issues brought internet politics sharply into focus last week: a web patent dispute with far reaching consequences and an announcement that Google would be floated on the stock exchange.
2 NOVEMBER 2003
A BRIDGE TOO FAR
12-year-old John McLean was researching a school project on the internet. He got a lot more than he bargained for.
26 OCTOBER 2003
NEIL POSTMAN: A TRIBUTE
Just two days before Schwarzenegger's election as governor of California, Neil Postman died in New York aged 73. The world lost a great educator and thinker, who 20 years earlier predicted the triumph of 'cosmetic' politicians.
19 OCTOBER 2003
12 OCTOBER 2003
THOMAS' CROWN AFFAIR
Thomas and Patricia Ballock had problems with the sunroof of their new car. When Thomas put up a website about it the wheels came right off.
5 OCTOBER 2003
Moving from a rural to an urban society brought many changes, among them the concept of trust. A similar situation now confronts the internet.
28 SEPTEMBER 2003
HARK THE HARALD
"The net isn't at a single stage. It's too diverse for that." -- interview with Harald Alvestrand, chair of the Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF).
21 SEPTEMBER 2003
The fact that it's difficult to access from the toilet is not the only difference between the net and newspapers.
14 SEPTEMBER 2003
The internet provides a new and innovative way of modernising the concept of the public domain.
7 SEPTEMBER 2003
NO COLUMN THIS WEEK
31 AUGUST 2003
If school students need to be educated about software and piracy, should the Business Software Alliance be the people to do it?
24 AUGUST 2003
NINE OUT OF TEN CATS
Claims on the effects of some new technologies need to be independently researched and the results made public
17 AUGUST 2003
ACCESS ALL AREAS
Interview with Christian Cooke, the newly-elected chairman of IrelandOffline, which campaigns for decent internet access.
10 AUGUST 2003
NO GOING BACK
Broadband's real potential lies in bridging the gap between people's expectations of the internet and what it can really deliver.
3 AUGUST 2003
Stopping the future from happening should have a patron saint, and I'm backing King Canute. He has already done amazing work for telephone, entertainment and credit card companies.
27 JULY 2003
TALK IS CHEAP
Last week's feeding frenzy on Ireland's telephone company may have delighted the vultures, but what will be left behind when they're sated?
20 JULY 2003
13 JULY 2003
6 JULY 2003
HERTZ AND MINDS
The net has survived the explosion and implosion of its commercialisation. Is it moving toward an historic political compromise?
29 JUNE 2003
UPS AND DOWNS
The problems facing the internet right now are tiny compared to what lies in store if the baby is thrown out with the bath water.
22 JUNE 2003
The last mile of copper connecting telephones to the exchanges is a natural resource much like electricity, water and sewage. Nationalising it as soon as possible is the only way out of the current quagmire.
15 JUNE 2003
"1981: Bill Gates embarks on heroic and lifelong quest to piss off every person in America."
A very funny internet timeline.
8 JUNE 2003
ROOT AND BRANCH
Views on spam have become extremely polarised recently. Between those who think it's not a problem and those who say it will kill off email. There is a bigger picture.
1 JUNE 2003
Question: How many government ministers does it take to change a light bulb? Answer: None. That's what regulators are for.
25 MAY 2003
18 MAY 2003
FROM LITTLE ACORNS...
The Internet Society (ISOC) is one of the most important international groups involved in progressing the internet. It's slogan is 'The internet is for everyone' and an Irish branch will hopefully be formed this week.
11 MAY 2003
4 MAY 2003
FISH AND CHIPS
Computers could have an evolutionary impact on the human brain, allowing it to expand beyond its physical confines.
27 APRIL 2003
Online journalism in the form of home pages or blogs still contains some of the values, ethics and principles developed by traditional reporting.
20 APRIL 2003
SO LONG SUCKERS
Ireland's main telephone company doesn't seem to know which way to turn as competition slowly creeps in to what was once a very cosy and profitable business.
13 APRIL 2003
THESE FOOLISH THINGS
Considering the internet is supposed to facilitate all kinds of spoofing and hoaxes, the web was relatively quiet last Tuesday, April Fool's day.
6 APRIL 2003
The decision by the World Wide Web Consortium to recommend a royalty-free patent policy for web standards, has focused attention on the Internet Engineering Task Force in an attempt to achieve the same goal for internet standards.
30 MARCH 2003
Broadband over electricity wires is now beginning commercial trials in a number of countries. With the Irish Electricity Supply Board still in public hands, will the government seize a unique opportunity?
23 MARCH 2003
IT'LL NEVER CATCH ON
The real consequences of an invention were never fully realised until decades later. Why should the internet be any different?
16 MARCH 2003
DATELINE JUNE 2099: The emergence of Ireland as the e-hub of European commerce can finally be revealed.
9 MARCH 2003
2 MARCH 2003
Over the next five years, the personal computer revolution will take another giant step by hopping off the desktop and into the ubiquitous mobile phone.
23 FEBRUARY 2003
With traditional media concentrated in fewer and fewer hands, the internet - especially the web - will become vital for diversity.
16 FEBRUARY 2003
RETENTION OF PRIVACY
The Irish government is under pressure to implement the Convention on Cybercrime treaty. This allows for the retention of everyone's personal communications' data for years. Besides the unprecedented dilution of personal privacy, will such monitoring even work?
9 FEBRUARY 2003
2 FEBRUARY 2003
DON'T BLAME THE NET
The recent court cases in Ireland in relation to child pornography received saturation coverage in the media. Massive publicity can help highlight the horrors of child abuse, but it can also create a climate of fear where people are afraid to report sites or get involved.
26 JANUARY 2003
TIME FOR AN AD BREAK
Now more than ever before, television stations are hugely dependent on advertising as their main source of revenue. When technology threatened that in the past - remote controls and video recorders - the television stations did not flinch. Digital technology is about to change all that.
19 JANUARY 2003
THE STATE WE'RE IN
The Irish government seems more content to worry about how long peoples' communications records are kept, rather than how such data is gathered in the first place. If the Data Protection legislation needs to be updated, then workplace monitoring should be top of the agenda.
12 JANUARY 2003
FIREWALL TO ALL THAT...
THE YEAR AHEAD: It will be a crucial year for the net and the technology on which it depends. Social, political and economic agendas (globally and locally) will increasingly influence the future direction and, significantly, the capability of the internet.
5 JANUARY 2003