ModernityBlog

“Nearly all men can stand adversity, but if you want to test a man’s character, give him power.” Abraham Lincoln

Modems and Scraps.

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Just a few scraps that occurred to me, the Beeb has a good post on how older technology is helping Egyptians organise after the State clampdown:

“Fax machines, ham radio and dial-up modems are helping to avoid the net block imposed on Egypt.

On 27 January, Egypt fell off the internet as virtually all international connections were cut following an order from the government.

But older technologies proved their worth as net activists and protesters used them to get round the block.

Protesters are also circulating information about how to avoid communication controls inside Egypt.

Call charge

Dial-up modems are one of the most popular routes for Egyptians to get back online. Long lists of international numbers that connect to dial-up modems are circulating in Egypt thanks to net activists We Re-Build, Telecomix and others.

Dial-up numbers featured heavily in Twitter messages tagged with hashes related to the protests such as #egypt and #jan25.

ISPs in France, the US, Sweden, Spain and many other nations have set up pools of modems that will accept international calls to get information to and from protesters. Many have waived fees to make it easier for people to connect.

Few domestic lines in Egypt can call internationally to get at the modems, however. The Manalaa blog gave advice about how to use dial-up using a mobile, bluetooth and a laptop. It noted that the cost of international calls could be “pricey” but said it was good enough for “urgent communication”. The advice was posted to many blogs, copied and sent out by many others.

We Re-Build, which campaigns for unmonitored internet access around Europe, said it was also listening on some ham radio frequencies and would relay any messages it received either by voice or morse code. ”

Elsewhere, the ever useless Labour leader, Ed Miliband, is profiled:

“Labour leader Ed Miliband has revealed he was a “bit square” as a youth, eschewing drugs and under-age drinking.

In a GQ magazine interview with Piers Morgan, he said his greatest talent was being “good at the Rubik’s Cube”.

Asked if he had ever been in a fight, he said: “Well, I may have been hit a few times. I went to a tough school.”

Mr Miliband, 41, added that he would not bow to pressure to marry his partner, Justine Thornton, with whom he has two children.

He also refused to “boast about my sexual prowess” when questioned about his romantic history.”

Are you still using Internet Explorer? A very bad idea as the Beeb explains:

“Microsoft has issued a “critical” warning over a newly-discovered flaw in Windows.

In a security advisory, the company warned of a loophole that could be used by malicious hackers to steal private information or hijack computers.

The bug potentially affects every user of the Internet Explorer web browser – around 900 million people worldwide.

Microsoft has issued a software patch to defend against attacks, and said it was working to develop a long-term fix.

The security advisory, which was published on Friday, details how the vulnerability can be used to manipulate users and take over their machines.

Although the flaw is actually inside Windows itself, it only appears to affect the way that Internet Explorer handles some web pages and documents.”

Please, oh please, try Chrome or Firefox instead, better still go for Linux.

Update 1: Here’s the Egypt Resource Page at We Rebuild which is full of interesting stuff.

Written by modernityblog

01/02/2011 at 07:37

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