Maybe it's Leap Year madness, maybe it's terminal election ennui, maybe it's the mind chilling effects of global warmening, but it sure seems like there's a spate of "what were they thinking" caliber cluelessness out there in the last week or so. Let me count the culprits:
The Associated Press sends its attorneys after a website that has highlighted their sad history of carrying 'fauxtography' - doctored images that amount to uncritical propaganda - often for terrorists. Yup, that'll make sure no one pays attention to the AP's issues.
The US Air Force tries to make sure our airmen can't see blogspot, or maybe even the blogosphere itself, 'cause something might happen. Never mind the blogosphere is a source of open source intelligence and a major IO theatre itself. La-la-la-la-la, I can't hear you! And these guys are supposed to be in charge of mounting the military's cyberdefense? I feel safer already.
Comcast, starring on this page for the nth time, can't just promise transparency on its broadband traffic policies, which seems to be all the FCC chairman really wants. No, they have to try to pack a public hearing at Harvard. Yeah, these guys look just like who I'd expect to see at a Cambridge Internet gathering. Heh. As far as I can tell, Comcast is where flaks and public affairs wonks end up when the USAF or AP finally fire them.
Publicity chasing AI professor Noel Sharkey says we're all in danger from kill-happy milbots with their virtual fingers on the trigger. (I don't usually link the Register, since much of their 'analysis' is unresearched snark, but ridicule is quite appropriate here.) While I've been following the military development thread in robotics for some time, it takes minimal research to find out that logistics and scouting are the designed uses and no-one's even close to having 'bots adjudicate rules of engagement. The history of academics forecasting commercial developments is a sad one, and it gets even worse when looking at military futures where their biases are engaged. Anyone else old enough to remember how we were told SDI was impossible by a bunch of CS profs? How'd that forecast work out?.