February 9, 2003

linkage/artifacts

Posted by Arcane Gazebo at February 9, 2003 10:16 PM The deadline for cleaning my place has gone from indefinite to two weeks to six days since Thursday. On top of that I had to cancel my D&D session today to come in to lab due to our pre-March-Meeting rush. Expect sparse updates in the near future! I learned some lessons about planning this weekend but it's not much to meditate on, so instead I bring you... linkage.

A Plastic user has written up my nuclear reactor story from the other day as a full submission. Some nuclear engineers have promptly submitted their opinions on why it (a) won't work or (b) isn't a big deal. The latter I can believe, but it never ceases to baffle me when scientifically trained people attack ideas as unworkable without having any real information about them.

On a related note, I have noticed that a certain very intelligent physicist consistently pronounces the word "nukyuler". Does this mean I can't make fun of Bush for doing the same?

The New York Times has an article about Marin County soccer moms (presumably the same hot-tubbing liberals that George Bush (Sr.) was so upset about) who are feeling guilty about their SUV's. I'm not there yet myself, but I think mine gets closer to the normal car mileage. (I intend to check this at some point so I can know just how guilty I should feel.)

Another Times article, from the magazine, is a discussion of spam from James Gleick. Nothing really new here, but I've always found Gleick an entertaining writer. Personally I want to know who is actually buying all this crap; if nobody bought it we wouldn't get any spam, right? According to this article some spammers are coming up with clever techniques to bypass filters, which makes me wonder why they bother - aren't the people who are filtering for spam the least likely ones to buy anything? On the other hand, some ISPs filter all incoming messages for spam, so maybe this is the target.

I actually get very little spam, which is due in large part to the fact that not all that many people need to e-mail me so my address is not widely disseminated. The address I fill into web forms is a hotmail address (the one in my user info on this site) that is filtered with a whitelist; I get a fair amount of spam there but it all gets filtered. Of course, if somebody sends me one of those stupid e-greeting cards, or the physics department helpfully posts my address on their site, this opens the door for it to get harvested.

In video games, if you want to find an ancient tomb filled with artifacts, you go into town and talk to people until somebody mentions the location. Apparently, this works in real life, too. Tags:
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