So the big question for me after reading Chris Anderson's excellent article, The Long Tail is... Will there always be producers and consumers of music and other content, or does the amateur revolution really take off and completely blur the consumer and the producer of content? Will amateur and nearly free Creative Commons style content become the primary content that people consume? Will most consumers create content as well? In other words, will the long tail wag? I've heard many theories about this and it is probably different for text, audio, photos and video, but I think this is an important question.
And in case you haven't noticed, it's clearly now a discovery problem, not a delivery problem.
It turns out that the typhoon has downsized to a category 2 instead of the predicted category 4 typhoon by the time Ma-On hit Japan. The Japanese evacuated a few thousand people. Many people were standing around outside. Similar category 4 hurricanes in Florida can cause will be cause for the US government to evacuate hundreds of thousands of people. So why so few evacuations in Japan? Less floods because of the mountainous Japanese terrain? Better buildings? Or should the Japanese government have evacuated more people and we are just got lucky that it wasn't a category 4 in the end? I drove to dinner after the two notch downgraded typhoon and saw trees blown across the streets, and minor but visible damage. If it had been a category 4 storm, I can image many of the buildings that I saw around having been blown away. I just wonder how prepared the Japanese were and if we were just REALLY luck that the storm shrank just as it approached the islands...
UPDATE: Tropical Storm Risk (TSR) just downgraded it from a category 5 (maximum) to a category 4. Peak winds at 115 kts or 130 mph. It is projected to still be a category 4 when it hits Tokyo. We just closed our storm doors and gathered our candles.
UPDATE2: TSR is showing a rather different path than the Japan Meteorological Agency. Odd. JMA shows a direct hit, whereas TSR shows it veering a bit north...
16:51 JST: 1331 homes have been evacuated in my prefecture, Chiba. Several hundred homes have been evacuated in Sakura, the next town over.
16:58 JST: Typhoon just turned South and is headed directly for us now. House has started to leak water and it's not even here yet...
17:20 JST: 108,000 locations have lost power in Shizuoka.
17:43 JST: Lost power for a minute but it's back up again. My PHS wireless network card shows no network.
1,387 homes evacuated in Chiba, my prefecture. I'm on higher ground so probably no risk of flooding...
16:32 JST: Feels like it's over. That wasn't bad. I guess it's really the flooding that's causing damage. I guess we were lucky. Sorry to worry anyone.
18:50 JST: Chiba is warned that there may be some fukikaeshi or "blow back" still.
I took a video of the trees dancing in front of our house in "super night mode". (800K QT MOV)
I was just watching the debates and Kerry was making a comment about tax cuts for "Small Business Owners". Kerry mentioned that Bush's ownership in a timber company would qualify him as a small business owner under the Republican definition. Bush said, he didn't own a timber company and made a joke about it. It looked for a moment like Kerry had gotten factchecked by Bush. The FactCheck.org page seems to be down, but from the Goggle cache:
Nice try President.FactCheck.orgPresident Bush himself would have qualified as a "small business owner" under the Republican definition, based on his 2001 federal income tax returns. He reported $84 of business income from his part ownership of a timber-growing enterprise. However, 99.99% of Bush's total income came from other sources that year. (Bush also qualified as a "small business owner" in 2000 based on $314 of "business income," but not in 2002 and 2003 when he reported his timber income as "royalties" on a different tax schedule.)
Thanks to Jess' for the link
UPDATE: ABC just picked up this story from FactCheck.org too. ;-)