Lose the cat

What do you get when you remove Garfield from "Garfield"? A better comic

That thing you do

A while ago I mentioned that I have bought an iPod touch. Few days ago I realized just how essential piece of equipment that thing is to me.

First of all, it's my addressbook. It contains all the contact-information of my friends. True, my phone has that as well, but since the iPod gets synced with my computer, it also contains their email-addresses and their regular address as well. And I can use their address to locate them with the Google Maps-client. Sweet.

Second of all, it has become an essential tool for emailing. Only rarely do I bother to check my email with my computer. And why should I, since the iPod is usually in my pocket? Only when I need to type longer emails I head to the computer.

Third, it's an excellent tool for web-browsing. Instead of reading a book in bed, I can read Wikipedia.

Fourth, it has my finances. It contains calculations and projections about my savings, loans and budget. I do use computer to make even more detailed plans with fancy graphs and everything, but most of the time, the iPod is more than enough.

Fifth, it's my navigator. I enter the address of the person I'm going to visit, and it provides me with turn by turn instructions on how to get there.

Sixth, it's my mobile mediaplayer. I use it to watch movies and listen to podcasts and music on the go.

The iPod does all that with no third-party applications. And in few weeks we should be getting more apps for the device. The possibilities are endless, and it's making me giddy as a schoolgirl.


The recent events have been so annoying, that it's time for something a bit more soothing. I took this picture last summer.

China, meet Finland, Finland, this is China

Finland is part of the exclusive club that is being chaired by China. That club is called "Countries that censor the Internet".

The thing I have been afraid of and have been warning of happened. A moral panic caused a piece of legislation to be rushed through the parliament and made in to a law. That law is is called "Law of preventive measures to stop the spread of child pornography". In a nutshell, the law gives the authorities the right to create blacklists of websites that are to be censored. Theory is that only foreign websites containing child-pornography will end up on the list. The list is limited to just foreign websites, because if the website was in Finland, it would naturally be shut down by authorities, since pedophilia is illegal in Finland.

Well, that's the theory. In reality large part of the censored websites do not contain child-pornography. Many contain normal gay-porn. Many contain 100% straight porn. Many of those website reside in EU or USA (where pedophilia is also illegal). If those websites have illegal material, why haven't those countries shut them down? It's either because

a) they do NOT contain illegal material

b) They do contain illegal material, but Finnish authorities who discovered it haven't notified their colleagues in those countries

In addition, many of the websites in the blacklist are not related to porn at all! Yet for some reason, they are still censored.

And, like I said, the blacklist should only cover foreign websites. But now the authorities have added a Finnish website which critiques the law and the blacklist in to the blacklist as well! Am I the only one who is starting to get a bit worried about this?

Then there's the fact that Finnish Constitution bans censorship. So this law is unconstitutional as well. So that's three ways this law is flawed so far:

1. The law itself is unconstitutional.

2. The law is supposed to only deal with child-pornography. But the blacklist contains lots of websites that have nothing to do with child-pornography!

3. The law is supposed to only deal with foreign websites. But now they are using that law to muzzle a dissenting voice inside Finland.

The moment I heard of this law, I was certain that once the groundwork is done, some people will insist on using it for other purposes as well. And sure enough: record-labels and the like have told that they would like to see the law extended so that it covers websites that distribute material that infringes on their copyright! What next? Censoring websites that critique the government?

The whole law looks and feels evil. The authorities compile the blacklist (which is officially secret) of banned websites, and internet service providers can then use that list to block access to those websites. And the lawmakers did say that "using that blacklist is voluntary".... And then they continued by saying "but if service providers do not voluntarily use the blacklist, we will make it mandatory".

I'm deeply ashamed and PISSED OFF!