It’s a choice whether you, or anyone else, wants to accept the falsehood that liberal values are somehow in contradiction with business success at a global scale. Indeed, it would seem that many who claim to be pro-business are trying to “save” us from exactly the inclusive, creative, tolerant values that have made America’s most successful company possible. I side with the makers, the creators, and the inventors, and it’s about time that the pack of clamoring would-be politicians be put on the defensive for attacking the values of those of us on this side.


Using Tor to get around (rumored) blocked sites inside the Capitol…

I have heard through various pipelines that at least one site –defendwisconsin.org – is now being blocked on the Capitol’s network.* If you are affected by this, here is a quick workaround specifically for that site. However, below is a brief tutorial on how to use Tor, should more sites begin to be censored.

For the uninitiated, proxies can be a little confusing. Even for me. So, I just want to get you using the thing (should this be necessary inside the Capitol building) first, and then I’ll explain a little bit about what is going on after.

  1. Download the Tor Browser Bundle for your operating system.
  2. Unpack and install the Tor Browser Bundle.
  3. Open the Tor Browser Bundle.
  4. You will see a window that shows your progress connecting to the Tor network. Once you are connected, a new Tor-enabled browser window should pop up. You will now be able to access any censored sites, provided you are viewing them through this new browser window.
  5. Done.

Now, what did you just do? Basically, Tor takes the information you are trying to send/receive over the Internet, encrypts it, and then bounces it through a bunch of other computers to get around any blocks on your current network. (The EFF has a nice visual illustration, and technical explanation, of how this works.) Also, be aware that because your information is taking the long way around, your browsing experience will slow down – sometimes quite dramatically. Robust multimedia sites may become more difficult to use, but you shouldn’t have too much of a problem with most Websites. If you are a little more tech savvy, or know anyone with a dedicated proxy server, tools like FoxyProxy might be more up your alley.

*UPDATE: I’ve also received word that it may not be that specific sites are being targeted, but that the entire building is experiencing a bit of a telecommunications meltdown due to heavy usage over the last five days. If anyone knows more about the situation on the ground, let me know.

[cross-posted on anthonyhoffmann.org]



Currently reading, and very much enjoying:

John Durham Peters. “Information: Notes Toward a Critical History” Journal of Communication Inquiry 12.2 (1988): 9-23.


Well, look at that. I am currently, at the moment, reading (and enjoying) this as well.

Reblogged from michaelzimmer

Spring semester started yesterday, and one of the things I needed to do was clean out the bags that I basically live my entire life out of from Sept-Dec/Jan-May of each year. The plan was to do that this morning and, inspired by the ladies over at the Hairpin, I decided to do one of those “HEY LOOK AT THIS STUFF IN MY BAG AREN’T A COOL AND UNIQUE AND INTERESTING PERSON” posts.

First: the bags. I regularly alternate between the Booq Taipan Shadow laptop messenger bag and a now-discontinued laptop backpack by the same company. Which bag I’m using depends solely on how many actual books I need to be carrying on a given day. I prefer the messenger bag when I can (lighter, more comfortable), but it just doesn’t cut it when, say, you’re carrying around A Theory of JusticePolitical LiberalismJustice as Fairness, and The Cambridge Companion to Rawls all at the same time (as I found myself doing an awful lot last semester).

Now, onto the items:

1. Stack of papers I’ve already accumulated/readings I already need to get through this week.

a. John Durham Peters “Information: Notes Towards a Critical History” (for an information-centric critical reading group I’m taking part in this semester)

b. A draft of an article that I’m not sure if I can cite/talk about yet (for the same reading group)

c. Syllabus for BSIST 120: Information Technology Ethics (the undergraduate course taught by Michael Zimmer that I am TA-ing)

d. The 2007 Pew Internet report on Teens, Privacy, & Online Social Networks by Amanda Lenhart and Mary Madden (reviewing/mining for a guest lecture I am giving via Skype tomorrow to a group of students in Austria).

2. Alterra travel coffee mug

3. Questions of Taste: The Philosophy of Wine, given to me over the weekend and hadn’t yet been removed from my bag(s).

4. 13” Macbook. I just recently finished the Milwaukee or Internet-centric sticker grid (the unfinished grid is featured in this photo from AoIR 11.0 in Sweden).

5. WTF? stamp. Infinitely useful.

6. The paper insert from a prescription albuterol inhaler. Sexy, I know.

7. 2 highlighters, 1 Sharpie, and 11 pens

8. Warranty for my super rad new Ray-Bans

9. iPad

10. Band-Aids

11. Mosco’s The Political Economy of Communication

12. 3 generic allergy pills, 1 Lactaid capsule. Again, sexy.

13. Receipt from a 20 yuan cab ride in Beijing.

14. Travel toothbrush

15. 4 USB thumb drives totalling 7 gigs of space

16. Facebook and Philosophy: What’s On Your Mind, edited by D.E. Wittkower. A super cool little book, we’re pulling a couple chapters from this for the undergrads in 120.

17. Coffee-stained first-draft outline to a paper I eventually wrote last semester.

18. Chewing gum

19. 2 key rings: one with campus keys, one with a bottle opener (so necessary)

20. Sticky flags - absolutely essential. There is no way I could make it through a semester without these.

21. Loose change (from left to right): 21 Swedish krona, 2 Chinese yuan, 57 American cents

22. Garbage

23. Tom Bihn “Snake Charmer” - easily one of the most useful purchases I’ve made in my grad school career, this thing keeps all my cords/tech ephemera together so I’m not constantly fishing around in the bag for the right one. Currently inside it:

a. Macbook charger

b. Noise-cancelling headphones

c. Wireless mouse

d. USB charger for my HTC Hero

24. Nature Valley granola bar. I have no idea where this came from.

25. MPLS postcard that I was going to send to Erin Joan as an apology because I forgot to send her a postcard from Norway. Apparently, I forgot to send this one, too. I am a terrible friend. (Sorry, Erin! Please forgive me!)

26. Milwaukee - Chicago Amtrak ticket stub

27. My UWM business cards. I really should get a case for those things.

28. Delta SkyMiles Silver Medallion member (w00t!) luggage tag

29. Chapstick

30. Emergency pack of Parliaments leftover from end-of-the-semester stress-out time. I haven’t touched them since. I swear.

::shamefully lowers head, shuffles feet::