Archive for March 2011
New Fonts for the cover of “Inconstant Moon”
ZETAfonts has the most entertaining font license I’ve read so far, making the Caligula Dodgy font free “for whatever purpose you desire.” Just let them know when you use their fonts. My favorite bit is the description of ZETAfonts as:
“a tiny foundry located in Johannesburg, South Africa.
And no, we don’t have wild animals roaming the streets (sorry).”
Although I initially set out to replace fonts with their dopplegangers, I’ve changed my mind. While I do like this Caligula Dodgy, now the similarity to Perpetua Titling feels like a disadvantage.
If I’m making a change, I might as well make it obvious. The next blog post (tomorrow I think) will explain why I’ve been scrambling to redesign Inconstant Moon at the eleventh hour.
The Yellow Magician font was created by Érico Lebedenco for the Brasilian game developer MAGUS LUDENS in Rio de Janeiro. The font is released under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported (CC BY-SA 3.0) license.
Although I like the elegant styling, if I select this one, I think I’d have to remove “non commercial” from my Creative Commons license, so I”ll probably pass.
Both Biometric Joe [above], and Stereofidelic [below] were created as part of Japan based Typodermic Fonts‘ Larabie Fonts collection, and are free for commercial use. Obviously I’m impressed, both with Canadian Ray Larabie’s graphic style and his inclusion of the appropriate license info in the zip files he uploads to dafont.
I like the decay in the Biometric Joe typeface, which could stylistically underscore the novel’s themes of honesty and integrity. At the same time, I’m rather partial to Sterofidelic, while concerned it might be a bit too much fun for a serious novel. At the same time, it puts me in mind of the Saul Bass Hitchcock posters. So I’m torn.
After all that’s said and done, I am leaning strongly toward Jay Batchelor’s Rebel Caps font. Similar to my original choice, but with an edge that Perpetua lacks.
The included licence says:
“Use them as much as you like Commercial or Otherwise, no credit is necessary. I love to share my work.”
One of the most important obligations in the free culture world is proper attribution, so I attribute whether required or not.
Let me know what you think.
Now back to reformatting my manuscript with the new fonts so I can upload it to Create Space.
Today on Identi.ca I said:
When I was young, freedom wasn’t such a big issue.
Life experience has shown me how really important freedom is.
That is so true. Freedom is important to me on many levels: as a citizen, as a parent, and as a writer.
But the Internet is ultimately a series of tools: hardware and software strung together. The problem is,
of course, that tools can generally be used for good or ill. Which is why we must all strive to ensure it stays free. That means all of us, not just programmers but all of the users.
Reporters without Borders are very concerned with freedom. Naturally. It’s hard to do a good job of reporting without freedom, which is why Reporters without Borders is holding the 3rd annual:
World day against cyber-censorship
Visit the Reporters without Borders World day against cyber-censorship webpage. The site has been mirrored to allow netizens in blacked out countries to access this information at http://12march2011.org/en/
The site has goodies such as a map showing global geographic boundaries incidence of cyber censorship and the pièce de résistance the 2011 The Enemies of the Internet list.
I have to admit I was more than a little surprised to find the United States absent after all their efforts to take out WikiLeaks. The fact that the United States is not on the list is most likely due to the strong freedom advocacy offered by freedom fighting organizations like the EFF (Electronic Frontier Foundation), Public Knowledge (PK), and KEI (Knowledge Ecology International).
Twitter tightens its grip
Ironically, today readwriteweb brings word about Twitter’s decision to cut out 3rd party developers. Existing apps will be allowed to continue… on probabation. Last week my favorite writing live chat on Twitter didn’t work because none of the various third party apps people use to make live chat work could log in. Some of the regular participants gave it up because Twitter does not lend itself to live chat. In the light of this new announcement, the chat problem probably resulted from changes made to the Twitter api to discourage 3rd party apps.
My personal recommendation is that no step is to small to be the first step into freedom.
If you use Twitter, set up an account on Identi.ca.
Setting up on Identi.ca is very much like setting up on Twitter, and you can link Identica to Twitter to stay in contact easily enough. Identi.ca will automatically send your notices and local “@” replies to Twitter, as well as subscribe to your Twitter friends on Identica. [Hint: it is best if you can use the same @name on both services.]
At least for now.
Twitter can pull the plug on that at any time. That is one of the biggest problems with proprietary web platforms… some one else owns it, controlling your access, as well as having access to all of your information. Proprietors like Facebook (or Darth Vader) retain total control, and can alter the rules in a flash.
Unlike Twitter, Identica is a service that makes up the central part of a growing federated network of microbloggers using the open source Statusnet software. Because the number of individual hostings of StatusNet is growing all the time, Identica far freer than Twitter in much the same way that a federated network of mirrors allowed WikiLeaks to survive the onslaught. You can set up your own, or connect to Identi.ca on their site or download the free version to use on your own. I strongly recommend that anyone concerned with net freedom should set up their microblog home on Identica.
For some excellent ideas on how to protect yourself, I recommend reading Identi.ca netizen @jimmorgan’s blog about his foray into security: Tor, XMPP, GPG, Internet security
Copyright is another incredibly important issue, particularly as the copyright maximalists are pushing for laws that allow copyright to be used as a tool of censorship. For some insight in why this is a problem in the here and now, I highly recommend watching the important film RiP: A Remix Manifesto I have much more to say about copyright, but the main thing is that it is an issue that we need to rethink. Allowing corporations to impose laws about how we access our own culture is both disturbing and detrimental to the common good.
I have been compiling lists of free culture and Creative Commons options available in the sidebar as I come to them. If you find any such links that you’d like to share, please forward them to me. Allowing corporations to control our freedom may in fact be worse than allowing governments to do so. Big Brother may in fact be wearing mouse ears. We must stand up for our rights, and encourage others to do the same.
We all must do whatever we can to fight for our online rights.
[and now back to editing/proofing my novel]
But this is a pretty serious FaceBook privacy breach passed on my by friend Mary, and the sooner people know the sooner they can pull their numbers.
If you’ve ever given Facebook your phone number, it is now published.
ALL PHONE NUMBERS are now on Facebook! No joke …
- Go top right of your screen -
- click on ACCOUNT then
- click Edit Friends.
- Go to the left of the screen and
- click the phone book.
Everyone’s phone number has now been published.
Please share this with your friends so they can remove their numbers when changing their personal settings.
Of course, the phone book is only published to *your* Facebook Friends…
AND every app that you’ve allowed to access your friend list now has all of their phone numbers.
This one doesn’t hit me because I never gave Facebook my phone number because I follow:
Internet Privacy Rule #1
Never Give Out Unnecessary Personal Information online.
The ONLY time you need to give out your home address or phone number is if you want someone to call you or mail something or visit.
Just because some website insists on accessing your private information does not obligate you to give it to them. If they insist, you are perfectly within your rights to lie. Give them a phony address (not the address of anyone you know). Change your birthdate, lie about your age. Yesterday I advised one of my my brothers to set up a disposable email address before divulging his real email address to someone he thought may be up to no good. And for years I’ve been telling every one I know — including my child — to lie about everything online. (Even just a postal code narrows your location down right quick.)
Think about it. I don’t have to give my identification to walk into a Canadian Tire Store, so why is it necessary online?
My computer guy advises that the best policy for Facebook is to assume that EVERY bit of information you put there will be written on a billboard for every one to see. Facebook may have privacy settings but no real privacy. Facebook lays claim to everything you put there – it belongs to them. See the movie. And realize that the movie is the sanitized glammed up version.
Online Security is spelled https
FYI: While on Facebook, look at your URL address;
if you see http: instead of https:
then you don’t have a secure session and you can be hacked.
- Go to Account|Account Settings|Account Security and
- click Change.
- Check the first setting (secure browsing)
- Re-Post for your Friends
FB defaults to the non-secure setting.
Only https offers you a secure internet connection.
Which is still not encryption.
(If you don’t want Bell using DPI to read your mail or peek in your packets with DPI, you want to go further & use encryption… which I have yet to figure out myself. I’m looking into a thing called Truecrypt.)
[Thanks Mary and Paul!]