...i believe that the people who must be treated with the most public, forthright, and open methods of censure are those who offend us the most. i do not believe that trickery is ever as effective as open methods because trickery is, at its core, dishonest to both the person being tricked and the online community you have secretly enacted policy for.Link (via Oblomovka)
i believe that secret punishments inevitably lead to abuse and combativeness, that they lead to an arms race against people of equal intelligence and unlimited free time.
Thanks to everyone who wrote in asking if everything was all right. The server threw a shoe, we moved it to a new host, all is well.
Thanks to Carl Steadman, for his years of hosting the box, and thanks to Ken Snider, who has taken over hostly duties. All hail the sysadmins.
I suppose you could say my second writing career dates to about 1998. I took stock of myself and found (a) one unfinished novel (I was 12 months in to it), (b) one finished, unsold novel with structural problems (bits of it have since re-surfaced in the form of "The Atrocity Archives"), (c) one short story sale in 1998 -- and that was a reprint of something I wrote in 1991. I was in my early thirties and I realised that either I should give up, or I should get serious about writing. I started by setting myself a goal of writing *and selling* four stories a year, and a second goal of getting into the magazines that get name recognition -- Asimov's, Analog, F&SF. Somewhere in the preceeding decade I'd cross-fertilized a chunk of ideas between the biological and computer science, and I'd also learned a little bit more about human nature -- enough to handle characterisation better than during my late teens or early twenties. (Parenthetically: this is one of the reasons why we often see new authors erupt on the scene aged thirty-something -- they've finally learned enough about human nature to have something interesting to say about it.) So in 1998 and early 1999 I finished and sold "Antibodies" and "A Colder War" (which got me into the Year's Best SF anthologies), wrote "Lobsters" (which got me into Asimov's and onto the Hugo and Nebula ballots), completed the novel now know as "Singularity Sky", and got serious.Link
If you want to reach a live voice at Gateway, hit zero twice, but be prepared to wait on Hold for a little while.Link
For Hewlett-Packard say "agent" when you're first prompted to speak.
We found no magic bullet to bypass Dell, Apple, or IBM's automated voice menus.
"This new legislation will now mean that a vital part of the nation's published heritage will be safe," said MP Chris Mole, who supported the move.Link
The archive will comprise selective "harvesting" from the 2.9 million sites that have "co.uk" suffixes.
The new rule that takes effect Nov. 24 allowing users to change wireless (news - web sites) companies without losing their phone numbers is expected to motivate as many as 30 million people to switch within the first year.Link
Those who do will need to buy new phones. That's because even carriers that use the same network technologies employ different encryption.
Read this Scientific American piece. Short version; the universe is actually a two-dimensional plane packed with information, and the three-dimensions universe we perceive is nothing but an expression of that information. Matter and energy and life are, in fact, holograms. It leaves something very very interesting open for the future. If the universe is a vast two-dimensional plane of information -- then it can be hacked.Link