Thursday, April 24, 2008

Jyte Claims: Kingdon Did Not Travel to New Zealand

There is a way to create digg buttons on this page, but it's not built into the interface in an obvious way, and now I can't remember how to do it. I think I created some files on my hobo11 server a long time ago, and I think I might even still have them, but at this point even Thursday is not being maintained regularly, I guess I'd better spend some time on my infrastructure.

I can show you instead, the Jyte service which was introduced to me by Korean OpenID provider service. Here, I can claim that I am the person referred to by and also -- it might not mean anything, because most Jyte users don't know who "I" am, and safe bet that most Jyte users also don't speak Korean, so they wouldn't gain any information by visiting either URL.

These URLs are known as OpenID providers, and by entering them into a web page that knows how to authenticate against an OpenID account, I have just offloaded the job of keeping Kingdon's identities by using some servers in Korea. By posting them to this page, I might have "signed" it or "tagged" it. The mechanics of OpenID are much more complex, and beyond the scope of this article.

DNS is a layer that counts as the world's central "claims broker" on names, it really obsoletes Trademark for the Internet community, except as a means of arbitration. DNS is wholly undemocratic. If you think that you have a claim to a name, your choice is to either pay a fee to the person who already owns the name

(hopefully, the common pool, otherwise the fee will be inexhorbitant or "negotiated")

OR you can escalate the matter to the International Convention for Assigning Names and Numbers (ICANN) who will undoubtedly charge at least as much to provide an opinion. Which, could go either way.

The Domain Naming System is a cog, which could be a golden cog encrusted with diamonds, but instead it is a simple cog. The DNS infrastructure is an example of technological feudalism, where Jyte is an example of a social democracy for deciding truth and value of a "fact," such as ownership of a name.

Somebody has traveled to New Zealand.
Somebody named Jack has traveled to New Zealand.
Somebody named Kingdon has traveled to New Zealand.

All of these are statements, and I would bet that all of these statements are also true facts. With, you can make claims and tie them to an OpenID. Since I can have more than one OpenID, I can actually contradict myself using this service!

The value of such course of action is uncertain. One possible application is to reflect a changing opinion. At any rate, that two servers in Korea say a thing is true does not make truth, and does not necessarily mean that Korea says such a thing is true. That the fact is proven, and that the proof is satisfactory to someone knowledgeable, well, that also does not mean the thing is true.

North or South?
I have no idea. All I want is an IP address of my very own, that people will recognize as mine when they see it. Can you recognize your friend's phone number without Caller ID? Caller ID (and lets not worry too deeply about the reliability of the numbers returned by that system) is an expensive database to maintain. This is not a difficult claim to substantiate: first accept that all databases are expensive, add next that yours surely does not do everything you want it to do.

Of course, that a claim is popular and that a lot of people provide an opinion, does not mean that the truth of the fact is unprovable, or that the claim is really important. It could just be thought-provoking. Some of these popular claims are serving to discourage me from wanting to use the service!

There should be no space between a function name and the paren that starts the argument list.

This claim demonstrates an apathy towards political issues. What? Yes, if you have time to argue about whitespace, I posit that you do not care about politics. Should I add this fact to the database? This is getting tedious now.

Kingdon Did Not Travel to New Zealand.

Now, we have opened up a number of issues: it is possible for one person to have more than one identity, and it is possible for a person to make false claims. In Prolog language, you store a database of "facts" and you query asking, "is this fact true."

Back to the matter of the day: what is the effect of posing a claim in the negative? If I am taking a survey, and I am asking "did Kingdon travel to New Zealand" I am sure to generate a different response than if I ask, "is it true that Kingdon did not travel to New Zealand?" One of these may be a leading question. You could also ask, "Kingdon, how was your time in New Zealand?"

And if you do ask that, I'll do my best to keep from looking frustrated and discouraged. I'm sure that New Zealand appreciates your tourist dollars, and I don't want to discourage anybody from visiting that great island nation of New Zealand. And if I say "New Zealand was great," you can bet that it's still great as it was when I was actually in New Zealand. That was, never. I didn't go to New Zealand. For real, it's a made up story. I don't know where it came from.

Peace Out Folks

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