Eye in the Sky

A man named James Gentles has come up with a way to take pictures from a camera suspended from a flying kite. The DIY piece he has created includes scematics for a simple modification to make the Aiptek Pencam take pictures every five seconds. With the 80 picture capacity of the camera, that gives you nearly seven minutes of flying time.

Skinning for Fun and Prizes

The Hardware Geeks are running a first annual Skinning Contest (for creating skins for such popular programs as WinAmp3, WinMeda8, Mozilla 1.2 and others). Prizes include a Leadtek Nforce2 motherboard. Check out the site for a full list of skinable interfaces and prizes.

DMCA a Two-Edged Sword?

A couple weeks ago, Wal-Mart and several other retailers forced FatWallet to remove postings in their forums that listed upcoming sale prices, claiming copyright over the info, and using the DMCA as a club. But according to Ars Technica, Wal-Mart may have gone too far, in demanding the info on forum posters. FatWallet is fighting back, using the DMCA itself:

Today, FatWallet sent each retailer a letter contesting its frivolous copyright assertion and demanding payment, under Section 512(f) of the DMCA, for all damages, including costs and attorneys’ fees, incurred by FatWallet in addressing the knowing and material misrepresentations of copyright protection. According to Megan E. Gray, “As the retailers well know, simple sales prices are not protected by copyright. Copyright only covers the expression of ideas, not facts.” Deirdre K. Mulligan noted, “This is an example of corporations using allegations of copyright infringement to silence speech.”


Copyright Patient Zero

This article on Snopes, explainer of legends urban, traces the circuitous path of ownership of the song Happy Birthday, from it’s authoring by two kindergarten teachers who died childless and unmarried nearly a hundred years ago, to just another piece of AOL Time Warner IP.