WHAT A WEEK it has been. A hurricane thrashed New York City and New Jersey on the US east coast last weekend, killing over 100 people with fierce winds and storm flooding, demolishing entire seaside communities and cutting power to millions of homes and businesses. The region had only started to recover before it got hit by another storm. Tens of thousands of people are still without power and heat, and are miserable and starving due to transit disruption and petrol shortages.
Meanwhile, the US also held a national election this past week. You might have heard something about it, if you follow international news. One party lost badly and is wailing, gnashing its teeth and beginning to work through the five stages of grief. I will ignore all that here.
Meanwhile, in the world of information technology, both Apple and Microsoft are still trying to game the US patents system to their advantage, Microsoft has released Windows 8 and Windows Phone 8, Megaupload is pursuing its defence and seeing some success, a US military Wikileaks defendant apparently is in the midst of negotiating a plea deal and the Anonymous hacktivist movement has celebrated another spirited 5th of November.
Call me lazy if you wish, but right now I'm bored with Microsoft's failing software releases and Apple's childish tantrums and strategic shortsightedness in its patents litigation. Or perhaps it's just that the recent hurricane damage and election in the US have distracted me. In any case, I'm going to give the floor here over to Steve Wozniak, speaking in a recent interview.
Woz, as he is known, was a co-founder of Apple along with the late Steve Jobs. Unlike Steve Jobs, Wozniak is still alive and has remained engaged with and occasionally willing to discuss public policy issues relevant to computing and the internet.
Here he is interviewed by Abbey Martin of the RT television network in the following video clip. In it, he discusses some of the current events that I have mentioned above, touching on Megaupload, Wikileaks and Anonymous.
(You can skip the advert after five seconds.)
I agree with everything Steve Wozniak said in the above interview.
Did you notice that at the end of that interview Wozniak expressed his preference for non-adversarial problem solving, or in other words, the scientific method? That approach might be of some use in the US Congress for the next four years, it occurs to me, if people can ever get the politicians to try it.
I guess that's a comment on the recent US election after all. I promised not to comment, but I lied. µ
Sign up for INQbot – a weekly roundup of the best from the INQ