November 10, 2011
Short Takes On The News: Some Tech, Some Scandal And Outrage, And Some Law
CNET has a positive review of a new reader for Google Books that is not from Google. Called GooReader, the product is described as “is a desktop application that allows you to read Google Books online and offline, add Bookmarks, create a local Library and save books to PDF.” The 3D look at the virtual bookshelf and display are pretty nice. Saving books to PDF, by the way, means an image of the page from the PNG file that Google represents as the page from a scan. The saving function does not make text searchable.
Speaking of Google Books, the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette has the story on outraged individuals demanding the removal of Jerry Sandusky’s ironically titled autobiographical book, Touched, from Amazon. Sandusky is accused of committing horrific crimes against under aged boys at the Penn State University sports facilities. The article notes that Google Books has a limited preview of Touched. The back cover displayed on Google Books has a number of blurbs, including this one from Sports Illustrated writer Jack McCallum: “Here’s the best thing you can say about Jerry Sandusky. He’s the main reason that Penn State is Linebacker U … and linebackers aren’t even his enduring legacy.” Linebackers will absolutely not be Sandusky’s enduring legacy. Yuck.
The News-Gazette has a few more comments on the Paul Pless scandal that rocked the University of Illinois College of Law. Some of the details in the article show that Pless was hired by the Illinois COL two months after receiving his J.D. from Illinois. He worked for six years without a formal review and at one point was given a $20,000 raise. If the article is accurate, no one wants to talk about Pless’ tenure at the school.
United States District Judge Liam O’Grady granted the Justice Department access to non-content Twitter records for three individuals associated with Wikileaks. The story on the case, which was vigorously contests by the EFF and the ACLU on behalf of the targets of the Stored Communications Act provision, 18 USC 2703(d), is available at Wired. There are links to the 60 page opinion on Scribd. The case is now likely on to the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals which is known for its conservative bent when it comes to law enforcement. [MG]