Interesting Links 1.8.08

  • The ethics of “stealing” a WiFi connection – Amazingly, accessing an unsecured, wide-open WiFi network without permission is illegal in some places, and not just in the UK.
  • MacHeist » Bundle – 10 Mac apps for 1 “insanely” low price.
  • Twitter Stats -Being the automation weenie that I am, I eventually hacked together a perl script that did everything except paste the data into Numbers.
  • Twittertale -You kiss your momma with that mouth?
  • Pub Crawl | Three Sheets – Zane Lamprey is bar hopping… MOJO style and now you can trace his every step for an amazing all access pass to the best pubs in New York City.
  • – online web application that measures your typing speed and accuracy.

Pretty tame collection of links this time. First off, if you own a Mac (like perhaps one you just received for Christmas), then you will definitely want to check out the MacHeist. They offer some pretty nice applications at a heavily discounted price. I am going to NYC end of February, and I am really hoping to do a mini version of the Three Sheets NYC pub crawl linked above. I think we’re going to hit #2, 3, 4, 5, and 6 (look on the map when you follow the link).
The ethics of “stealing” wifi is of particular interest to me. They sum up the argument pretty well with this quote:

Using an open WiFi network is no more “stealing” than is listening to the radio or watching TV using the old rabbit ears. If the WiFi waves come to you and can be accessed without hacking, there should be no question that such access is legal and morally OK. If your neighbor runs his sprinkler and accidentally waters your yard, do you owe him money? Have you done something wrong? Have you ripped off the water company? Of course not. So why is it that when it comes to WiFi, people start talking about theft?

I feel that this is a fairly legitimate argument. Although this argument does not hold up when you consider that certain uses of an internet connection can result in degraded performance for other users trying to utilize the same connection. For example, bittorrent is notorious for over saturating a connection if you are downloading multiple files at the same time. In this instance not only are you using someone else’s wifi connection, but you are degrading the quality of their experience. In my opinion, this particular scenario would show that “stealing” a wifi connection can be consider ethically wrong (legality aside).