News this week (12w15)

Oxford University and the Vatican are to digitize 1.5 million pages of ancient texts and make them freely available online. This has been made possible by a donation of £2 million by the Polonksy Foundation. This seems exceptional value. For all I may complain about the church, more freely available knowledge can only be a good thing and for that they have a little bit of my repsect. Though it will be interesting to see just how this is made available. This is still huge news though.

An 8.6 Magnitude earthquake struck near Indonesia on 11th April 2012. Thankfully it appears not to have cause a massive tsunami. The earthquake was a strike-slip earthquake so not too much water was displaced. I will be interested to see how the aftermath of this plays out and I hope things recover to normal as quickly as possible for those affected.

Woop! Looks like ACTA might not pass, it appears that the European Parliament will reject the legislation. This looks increasinlgy likely as the person in charge of taking the legislation through parliament is recommending that the bill be voted against. You can sign an Avaaz petition. Though depressingly it appears the powers that be are working on a replacement.

Anders Breivik, who set off a bomb in Norway and went on a shooting spree that killed 77 people, has been declared sane by a second psychiatric evaluation. This would mean he could stand trial for his crimes and face a jailterm. Though its still up for an actual court to find him legally sane or not. Though if insane he will be sent to a ward instead of a cell, either way the guy is facing life.

Yeah, more religious news, Kuwait are provisionally passing an amendment to their penal code which would allow the death penalty for cursing god. I mean, seriously! Come on! Surely if Allah is all-powerful he can look after himself? Unless this is the usual politicians using religion to pass laws useful for their own needs.

Liam Stacey was jailed for some of his tweets. Miss Coren wrote a superb piece on the matter. It really is something that we in the U.K. need to discuss. The Mayor of London recently stopped a gay therapy advert from being run on some London buses. What is allowed and what isn't? I personally feel people should be allowed to say what they want. As long as they aren't directly insulting someone in an overly aggressive manner or harassing people. What offends me may not offend someone else. We have to be careful as to what our law censors.