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Month: August 2016

Good news, bad news, inside upside downside dizzy

Well, the great good news is that we made goal on the blog-foundation fundraiser! Even better news, there’s still at least a little more on the way. You’ve already ensured that the blog keeps going for at least two years and that new beyond-the-blog features will be added. I’ll keep the donation button and thermometer graphic up until the end of this month. You can still contribute if you want to. (Far be it from me to deny you the pleasure of giving. 😉 ) And remember, anybody who gives $20 or more is eligible for membership when the membership…


A funny thing happened on the way to RFID chips

Updated 8/8 to clarify a point about the nature of chips in credit cards. A funny thing happened on the way to RFID chips, long about 2009. All of a sudden, everybody stopped writing about them. Tech journals slowed their coverage. The mainstream media dropped the whole subject. And out here on the fringes, people quit writing new works predicting the disasters spychips would bring upon us. Now, that’s not to say that either RFID chips or the subject went away completely. On the contrary, there were articles and discussions on other topics that heavily involved RFID tech. For instance,…


Proudly preaching to the choir since 1996

“Of the 30-50 sites I HAVE to check out each day, yours is one of maybe 2 or 3 that feel like home instead of like work. — Thomas Knapp Rational Review News Thank you, Tom. Starting off like that sounds self-promotional. But that’s not where I’m going. I was honored by what Tom wrote, but more, he got me thinking about my place in this strange, dangerous, “interesting” world. It all began 20 years ago My book 101 Things to Do ‘Til the Revolution was published in 1996. Yep, 20 years ago this year. It came out very late…


Midweek links

  • Aaaaaaand, the dead-gorilla vote advances in national presidential polls.
  • But if you’re not inclined to v*te for the dead gorilla, Never Yet Melted has the best-ever depiction of the mainstream candidates.
  • Privacy. Comcast thinks it’s a luxury item you should pay extra for. (H/T jc2k in comments)
  • Now here’s an idea: Name various TSA facilities after the jerks who inflicted them on us. Post prominent signs so people in those three-hour lines could contemplate whom to thank. 28 Comments
  • How YOU benefit if the blog fundraiser makes goal

    Fundraising total to date: $4,415. Goal: $5,500. UPDATE 8/31/16: We have more than made goal, thanks to you! You can still benefit by donating (see below), but I couldn’t be happier. Right now. Getting there, guys. Getting there, thanks to you. So let me tell you what happens when (I’m going for when, rather than if) this fundraiser reaches its goal. It’s good news. For you, as well as me. Right now, you see a blog. There’s a half-finished home page, too. Not much on it yet, but it’s pretty. I have in mind for it to serve as a…


    Summertime and the gear bag is heavy

    Went to a summer festival this weekend with my friend G. There were were, among the strolling, carefree crowd, lugging these big saddlebags of gear.

    G. and I are very different people. She’s a short, beautiful, church-going, civic-minded, family-oriented workaholic professional. I’m a tall, plain*, skeptical, Outlaw layabout who gave up family as a bad job 20-some years ago. She’s a staunch Republican conservative who worries about deteriorating morality and sports a “Hillary for Jail” bumper sticker on her vehicle. I’m an anarchist libertine** who’s v*ting for Sweet Meteor O’ Death.

    But we are alike in that both of us, everywhere we go, haul these hefty bags of gear. In a pinch, if we needed to, between the two of us we could feed the multitudes keep ourselves fed and watered for a day, perform minor first aid, cut off a seatbelt, find magnetic north, call for help with a spare device, see in the dark, and have a good chance of preventing a bad situation from turning worse. Thanks to my new compact binoculars, I could even spot a rose-breasted grosbeak if some grosbeak-related emergency arose.