Sunday, December 28, 2003

How did they lose time before computers?

Several days spent in computer purgatory, following the upgrade of some firewall software, finally solved and sorted. Several nights spent battling with the iPod, having mucked up some ID3 tags for several hundred Jack Benny radio shows, eventually fixed using a combination of the OTTER program's ID3 tag utility and the Ephpod program. What did we do for endless and disheartening time-sinks before computers? I never lost twenty hours trying to make a fridge work properly, or to make a chair I'd accidentally upgraded turn itself back into something you could sit on.

I notice that less and less actual e-mail seems to be getting to me since all the different services put up their own spam traps. Some I find out about, some I don't. I fondly remember the days before spam, when e-mail was all signal and no noise. Now we're in the position of getting so much junk mail that our post offices are throwing away the junk mail , and some real mail as well. (And I wonder how much mail from me is getting through.)

Let's see... lots of links I should put up, so I can close some windows...

Aahz sent this link -- -- telling the story of from the other side of the chair.

Jonathan Carroll sent me a link to this eBay auction: -- I thought it was hilarious.

If you spend your life sueing newspapers for libel on behalf of others for fun and profit, do not be surprised if, when your life is over, and you can no longer sue for libel, your newspaper obituary is less than glowing:,11614,1112139,00.html

There's an interesting article about literary and genre awards -- The BSFA award, incidentally, is a miniature version of the Black Wossname from 2001:A Space Odyssey

It's always a good thing to be reminded of how unreliable what you see and read is -- apparently the US Park Services is currently removing the footage of gay, feminist, and anti-Vietnam protesters from the video history shown at the Lincoln Memorial, and will be replacing them with "scenes of the Christian group Promise Keepers and pro-Gulf War demonstrators though these events did not take place at the Memorial".

While I thought the first part of this article was generally tosh, I enjoyed the second half --

Here the book-bloggers gather to discuss the year:

I'm reading Danny Wallace's excellent book JOIN ME, the history of his inadvertent rise to Leaderdom (as mentioned here at Very funny indeed. You can read about it -- and indeed, Join Him -- at