There's something really odd going on with America I think.... This rant is oddly enough, brought to you from a short snippet from a commercial for Bill Maher's show. He basically said 'Why are we all so concerned about privacy and the government, people are practically detailing their entire lives blabing on their cell phones on the subway'. So I got to thinking... and i was actually kinda baffled at what there really is out there in the realm of "privacy". If we ever found out the NSA was given a listing of all our phone numbers and addresses, people would go bananas. The thing is... all the information is pretty much public records. You can just go to google to find numberous websites that will just give you some of this information for free and for a small fee, they'll give you more information then you might even have remembered. Then of course you have the internet and "agreements". If anyone actually sits down and reads a lot of these terms and agreement statements adn privacy policies... the more rational people probably wouldn't agree with it, let alone the privacy extremists. Too bad people don't actually read this stuff. If someone walked up to you and asked if they could log and then sell every single thing you did on your computer... you'd laugh at them right? Well I assume not since people seem to agree to it on a daily basis thanks to their impatience. Corporation wants to log your entire life online... meh. Government wants to know what annonymous search queries were made during 1 week, world blows up. Now of course, we should discuss the greatest virus to ever perpetuate the human race; livejournal/myspace/blogs. I mean what can I say to make this more obvious? People of ALL ages are putting their entire lives and day to day activities on the web for 6 billion people to see. Privacy? What's that? It's actually making me wonder what we actually mean when we don't want "invasion of privacy". Does it mean we don't want people to know what we do in our lives? Or does it mean we want to know when such information is given away? I can see huge contradictions in both thought processes as it pertains to the common man so i'm not sure yet. On another note, Google has even been toying around with the idea that they can serve as the main C: drive for everyone! That's right, instead of your hard drive, you just do a network logon into Google's network and you can use your computer anywhere. Wow, what a convenience, let's just put our entire computer on some server in California accessable to anyone anywhere. Insane. I was also surprised to hear about a little trend that's growing that i actually figured would happen a year ago. People are logging onto unprotected wireless internets. I believe the article i read quoted tomshardware.com's experiment where they logged over 2000 networks open over this one city with 80% being completely unsecure. Now, that isn't exactly the problem here because ignorance isn't really something that you can be angry at someone over. The problem I saw from that article is that theres a large number of people who say it is OK to hop onto peoples unsecure networks to use their internet. They use the same logic as mp3 downloaders use; "It's there, they want to share, why shouldn't I?". That's why our network is secured tight, 128bit WAP TKA pre-shared keys, MAC filters, blah blah blah etc etc. I don't care about some government van pointing a audio/video/whatever device at me, i care about that little 20 year old computer science major that if i do plug my computer into a router, i'm giving permission for him to just roam wild into my computer. Yes, I did add that hacking bit because my experiences on computer forums is that people, possibly from some mass dilusion, believe that if a person's computer can be hacked into, it deserves to be. No i'm not joking. I have heard that rationale multiple times. I'm not trying to change anyones ideas or make any really serious criticisms towards anyones beliefs.... i'm just amazed at how much trust people put in other people and how critically we react when the government does anything. This isn't a defense of the government, it's a criticism of the trust we seem to give to society and corporations (especailly in a society full of such anti-corporate feelings). I find it odd that someone could destroy your life over the internet and other modern day networks and then very well hide from prosecution due to the restrictions the government has put on itself in the name of privacy. I dunno, stop broadcasting your life, turn off your cell phone, log off of myspace, secure your network, exterminate the criminals, do something!