Your Lying Eyes

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21 December 2006

Odds and Sods

U.S. news is boring, so I thought I'd check out some Brit news to see what they're talking about.

I, Whiner: The BBC reports on some predictions for the next 50 years, in particular that robots will demand "rights."
The research suggests that at some point in the next 20 to 50 years robots could be granted rights. If this happened, the report says, the robots would have certain responsibilities such as voting, the obligation to pay taxes, and perhaps serving compulsory military service.

Conversely, society would also have a duty of care to their new digital citizens, the report says.
Hardly sounds like robots are going to work out any better for us than have any of our other attempts to secure endless supplies of cheap labor.

Darker Shade of Black: The Telegraph reports on a ruling granting former Procol Harum keyboardist Matthew Fisher partial royalties to "Whiter Shade of Pale." Originally-credited-composer Gary Brooker denounced the decisions' far-reaching implications: "It is effectively open season on the songwriter. It will mean that any musician who has ever played on any recording in the last 40 years may now have a potential claim to joint authorship."

Song writing credits though are not necessarily as straight forward as they seem. Many an artist has insisted on song-writing credits on their hit songs (think Elvis) as well as managers (e.g. Norman Petty) and producers (Phil Spector). On the flip side, musicians have been known to grumble about their contributions being ignored (Mick Taylor comes prominently to mind). It's probably best for courts to stay out of it unless there's an obvious injustice or a clear case of theft or "borrowing," as songwriting credits appear to be as much a business arrangement as recognition of creative input.

Pedophile/Bigamist/Con-man Arrested: Police in Oxford arrested a man who used the old "I work for the CIA" line on some unsuspecting British women, who apparently were unaware of the hoary scam.
But not satisified with having relationships with two women Jordan also slept with his real wife's nanny, having two children with her. And in May 2005 he then struck up a relationship with yet another woman, Denise King, who was then based in Blackpool. "All this would not have been uncovered if it were not for his relationship with Ms King," said prosecutor Sophie Eloquin. Jordan had set up a recruitment firm, registered in his bigamous wife's name, and he used this to lure Ms King south to Kent with the promise of a better job. At the same time, he began a relationship with her and obtained her credit card details.
Not sure where the pedophile charges come in, but I'm guessing he tried the "wrong door scam" at one point in his illustriously duplicitous life. At any rate, I find the amount of energy and determination that would be required to pull off such fraud to be positively unfathomable. I'm sure he'll be quite the little enterprising con in prison.

Conflicting Global Warming Signals: The Independent reports that bears have stopped hibernating in northern Spain, while the Times reports on the sudden emergence of human hibernation in Japan. So how is the lay person supposed to make sense of this whole climate change stuff with all this noise in the data?



Anonymous Anonymous said...

Oh come off it. Whatever else liberals may be deluded about, global warming is happening. Why isn't it snowing here in the Northeast in December?

December 24, 2006 4:24 PM  
Blogger ziel said...

I was being facetious - if not outright mocking skeptics.

December 29, 2006 12:38 AM  

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