Wiretapping, Open Source in Brazil, and Attenuation

by Daniel H. Steinberg

Jack Herrington talks to the Electronic Frontier Foundation's Brad Templeton about wiretapping, Brazilian technologist Bruno Souza explains why software freedom is important in his country, O'Reilly CTO Rael Dornfest wants to turn down the volume on all the noise in his various in-boxes, and Derrick Story and Chuck Toporek report from Macworld. (DTF 01-27-2006: 28 minutes 53 seconds)

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Distributing the Future January 27, 2006: "Wiretapping, Open Source in Brazil, and Attenuation"

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1:30 Wiretapping

Wiretapping doesn't require someone lurking in the bushes with a directional antenna and headphones, or a pair of alligator clips and a tape recorder, or someone sneaking into your room while you're out to place a transmitter on your phone. In the U.S., if it's the government doing the wiretapping, it's technically simple. At the O'Reilly Emerging Telephony Conference, Jack Herrington, author of Podcasting Hacks, interviewed Electronic Frontier Foundation chairman of the board Brad Templeton about the technical, social, and political aspects of wiretapping. Here's a link to Matt Blaze's papers mentioned at the end of the segment. (8:00)

9:30 Freedom for Software

Bruno Souza is passionate about the importance of open source software to his home country of Brazil. In this segment, he talks about the importance of the freedom to use and redistribute code both to Brazilian developers and to end users. Portuguese speakers may want to follow the links to Forum Internacional Software Livre and to the SouJava Brazilian Java user group. (6:00)

15:30 Attenuation

O'Reilly CTO Rael Dornfest has been thinking about the mass of information that he has to sift through each day. In the invitation to this year's O'Reilly Emerging Technology conference, he writes that this year's conference "explores the applications and services, interface overhauls and algorithmic underpinnings, technological hacks and etiquette tweaks of what we call the Attention Economy." This excerpt from his EuroOSCON talk helps set the stage. (7:50)

23:20 MacWorld

Steve Jobs had barely stepped off stage from his Macworld 2006 keynote address before senior O'Reilly book editor Chuck Toporek started thinking ahead to what Intel-based hardware offerings might be in store for the rest of the year. Meanwhile, MacDevCenter editor Derrick Story was most impressed by the new features in iPhoto 6.(5:40)

Total running time: 28:53

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Production Notes

The initial montage is from Tim O'Reilly, recorded at OSCON '04 and in a phone interview with Doug Kaye of ITConversations, and is used with permission. "The future is here, it's just not evenly distributed yet" is a quote from author William Gibson that Tim used with attribution.

The credits, including special thanks to David Battino for composing and performing the theme music. David can be found at and also edits O'Reilly's Digital Audio site. David provided a lot of help and feedback getting this program launched. We used Soundtrack Pro, Skype, Bias PEEK, and Audio Hijack Pro to put it together.

Daniel H. Steinberg is the editor for the new series of Mac Developer titles for the Pragmatic Programmers. He writes feature articles for Apple's ADC web site and is a regular contributor to Mac Devcenter. He has presented at Apple's Worldwide Developer Conference, MacWorld, MacHack and other Mac developer conferences.

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