Trust an Insurance Company's "Drive-Cam?"
Absolutely! The whole book is fascinating, and the part about drive-cams should be required reading for anyone commenting on this article ;-)
Health and Safety Police Ban Swimmers From Doing Lengths
I would have done this too, but never claimed "health and safety" as a reason. First, the wierd length has to throw off anyone training for a swimming event. Second, reorienting the lanes allows the contour of the bottom to be used most effectively - weaker swimmers have a large shallow area to use, rather than having a little shallow area in each of twelve lanes. Changing this will create another three or four lanes for swimming, too.
However, If I were managing that pool, I'd be concerned about seeing all corners of the pool from one location - refraction and reflections may make it hard to see into distant corners. No matter where the guard stands, one corner is at least 70 feet away. I can understand their concern about having to hire another guard.
What Would You Want In a Large-Scale Monitoring System?
You've touched on the real value of SCOM - the functionality in the management packs would take years to recreate from scratch. I find the SNMP monitoring to be pretty lacking, so we use Operation Manager for server, OS, and application-level monitoring, and WhatsUp Gold for monitoring important L2/L3 devices. I don't recall ever having a network outage in the datacenter, so I don't miss the ability to create dependencies between server and network.
EU Commissioner Wants Standard For Mobile Phone Connectors
Sure... it stifles innovation. What if a manufacturer wants to create a phone with new features or hardware expandability? Do they have to include USB atop the bus they've already created for their hardware? The connector on the bottom of the iPhone carries power and USB data, as well as audio and video out, Firewire and lines to identify the type of cradle it's in.
Someone considering a new phone really ought to factor in the cost of required accessories before making a purchasing decision.
Cox Communications and "Congestion Management"
How many of your neighbors have to create ~96kbps VoIP stream to innundate the local uplink? It's probably not even possible. How many people using BitTorrent would it take to do the same? Not very many. If you're pulling 7Mbps from a torrent, isn't it reasonable that the ISP makes sure others still have bandwidth available to them? From their description, their prioritization is pointedly vendor-neutral, ie they aren't preferring their own video application over Hulu, or some such competitor. How is this unfair to you?
Vint Cerf Preps Interplanetary Internet Protocol
How many IP addresses should they allocate to the rest of the universe??