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Friday,  07/11/03  09:43 AM

Think there isn't a downside to affirmative action?  Aside from the impact on the "majority" students who are discriminated against, consider the affect on the "minority" students who are "helped"...  Stanford Law Professor Marcus Cole wrote a letter to Eugene Volokh about his experience:

"...there is nothing that any American of African descent can do that can separate himself or herself from the unspoken accusation that he or she is the beneficiary of more than they deserve.  I am willing to bet that I am the only member of this list who feels compelled to put his standardized test scores and National Merit award on his CV."

Marcus is black, and he was legitimately qualified, but he feels his qualifications come under question because of affirmative action.  Not good!

RFID is taking over the world.  CNN reports the tiny transmitters will someday replace UPC bar codes.  They are certainly getting traction for business applications.  Someday every product you buy will have one, and you will be watched...  as you walk through a mall all your clothing choices, your personal electronics, everything, will be recorded.

Ottmar Liebert likes his Line 6 amp.  The CEO of Line 6 is Mike Muench, my next-door neighbor.  What a small world!

The RIAA is such a target, and this hits dead center: Sue all the world.  A terrific animated skewer from Bob Cesca and Camp Chaos.  I wonder if the RIAA will ever get tired of being "wrong" and fix themselves?  Nah.

The market for illicit music CDs is now $4.6B annually, according to the BBC.  Seems like these are the real pirates, not consumers using file sharing networks.

Yippee - SETI has received a five-year NASA grant.  I can't think of a better use of my tax dollars, actually.

You know the phrase "older than dirt"?  (I like that phrase.)  Well here's some really old dirt: NASA announced the Hubble Space Telescope has found a planet 12.7B years old.  That's about three times older than Earth...

Want to know if there's WiFi around?  Then you need this device from Kensington.  Isn't is amazing how WiFi has just absolutely become ubiquitous, in just a couple of years?

Anyone try MyIE2?  Apparently this is a new web browser which uses the IE engine, but provides a better GUI, including pop-up blocking and tabbed windows.  I'll have to check it out...  [ via Robert McLaws ]

Another thing to try: Oddpost.  This combination email client / RSS aggregator requires no download, it runs right in your web browser.  Very cool.  Here's an interesting interview with Ethan Diamond, Oddpost's creator, about how the thing works...