Photo: Flickr user lifeontheedge

Friday, February 22, 2008

The act known as Eskimo kissing in modern western culture is loosely based on a traditional Inuit greeting called a kunik.

A kunik is a form of expressing affection, usually between family members and loved ones, that involves pressing the nose and upper lip against the skin (commonly the cheeks or forehead) and breathing in, causing the loved one's skin or hair to be suctioned against the nose and upper lip.

Thursday, February 21, 2008

About Wikileaks. This article indicates that Julius Baer bank is now kind of fucked, and reveals a funny detail: the court ordered that its ruling be emailed to Wikileaks -- but since it had just abolished the wikileaks domain name, no email could have gotten through.

The New York Times has a good article on this Wikileaks business (and editorial) ; the Register has some interesting technical details.

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Monday, February 18, 2008

Wikileaks is a site that allows whistleblowers to anonymously release government and corporate documents. It's broken several important stories and survived censorship attempts by the Chinese and Thai govs.

But now if you try to visit, you'll get an error message.

That's because Wikileaks had posted documents from a former vice president of the Swiss bank Julius Baer alleging that the company engaged in "stalking, corruption and coercion...according to Elmer he and his family are subject to observation by private investigators working for Julius Baer, to an extent that his 6 year old daughter needs psychological treatment and his life is overall suffering from it."

Since the site posted that information, a fire occurred in their datacenter and Julius Baer successfully convinced a California judge to pull the entire domain name off the net! Obviously, any Swiss court cases aren't under California's jurisdiction, so this is a blatant abuse of the legal system.

Thankfully, you can still access the site at its ip address:

More good coverage at the BBC (though their technical language isn't quite right) at Kos, and at Wikileaks itself (one, two, three)

Reminder: The Wikipedia subreddit is like the wikisnips section of this blog except that you can vote on entries.

Also, I'm trying out YayBoo, which is silly 2.0 site that lets you construct and add to lists: here's the "states of matter" list. (Note that the ridiculous interface requires you to press the yay/boo buttons and then the vote button at the very bottom.)