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OMG this is stunning, wonderful news!!

"French politicians have unexpected voted against a law that would have forced ISPs to disconnect any one accused of copyright infringement. No proof that would stand up in court would have been need. The final vote was 25 to 15 in the poorly attended National Assembly session."
French government nukes crazy Internet law in open revolt against Sarkozy - Boing Boing

Today is a GOOD day!
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From Neil Gaiman's blog on being asked if he'd got used to seeing people on TV etc reference his work:

"Actually I got very used to it a long time ago, when a young Joss Whedon was working on Roseanne, and made sure that Darlene (Sara Gilbert) and her boyfriend always had Sandman posters and teeshirts...
Watching the det(f)ectives


I remember this!!

It's when I first stopped and realised how cool Darlene was!!! and started watching Roseanne which I'd hated on first sight!!

Ah smallworld.......
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A happy story for Easter(con):

OK after waiting 17 years for home Internet (and the combined appalled looks of my weekend visitors at being told THERE WAS NONE) I caved in and went out to buy a mobilebroadbanddongle thingy. The best deal was Vodafone, whose PAYG dongles come with data that DOESN'T time-expire. But they were all sold out of them at local Curries (even tho their db, said, twice, that they had lots) and I couldn;t face driving to Meadowhall (to be told no doubt the db was wrong there too) so I bought next best deal, which was 02.

Which surprise surprise didn't work when I'd got it home:( Just no signal apparently.

So then I went, dispiritedly, to local PUB with YVonne WINOLJ to drink outside in beer garden, freeze ,and go back in to use the free wi fi:)Except the O2 monster-dongle had TAKEN OVER my laptop and somehow disabled normal Windows wi fi handling-stuff. And connectedly or not, I now couldn't seem to get ANY WI FI AT ALL.


Sigh. back to Curries to return it (and discover that STRICTLY they don't refund data AT ALL even though I'd NOT USED ANY. (But they did give me the ££ back as a "good will gesture").

Drove to work today and saw little tiny Asian mobilfone shop.

Voafone dongle therein - tho admittedly 15 quids dearer than in CurrieWankers.

But wth. It WORKS!!!!!


And now I can use cheap wi fi at LX too :)))
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Fro a mailing list I'm on:

"Some guy wrote to LJ asking them to opt out of Webwise [Phorm]. They did:

=== Quote ===

I have requested exclusion of and all of its
subdomains from Webwise indexing. Thank you for bringing this to our

-Tupshin Harper
-Director of Engineering and Operations
-LiveJournal, Inc."

Coincidentally I have just yet AGAIN rewritten the chapter on Phorm. Got to publish it cos things don't stop :(

What do you guys care tho, you're probably at eastwercon already! Anyone at the midland??

,,,,,,,mmmmmmmmmm have now prised the M key off cos it was sticking. How do I get it back on????


Apr. 8th, 2009 07:20 pm
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For the love of God Montressor, INTERNET!!

Have been working at home for 3 days in fit of chapter re-editing, v g for work efficiency , v bad for Internet as in, none. STILL.

In order, eliding story, I kil you deadly Sky, Virgin, Curries and O2:((((

Sky now promise installation 16th April. Please god...

Meanwhile no time to write up weekend. SIGH. maybe later. But it was good, v good and involved 80s champagne bar and starnge comedy club pub-bar with wi fi, chocolate orange mini eggs, an actual WALK round (or actually, up a hill near) a reservoir, luscious enormous pub (late)lunch at ladybower inn, even later dins at leopold Square (Strada), afternoon naps (rock n roll), more bars at Division St (yay Bungalow and Bears!), accessorising [ profile] hfnuala, cometitive yoga with [ profile] ophelia_complex, emabarrassing [ profile] guyinahat as sole male, a lot, and photos, which we must share:) Oh and Italian breekie at Nonnas which was probably the best meal of the weekend actually.

I am now fat, exhausted and very very busy!!!!!


Apr. 8th, 2009 05:52 pm
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In beer garden in uk for first time in 2009! Yay! On other hand actually bloody freezing.:)
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If I'd realised Sarkozy was in town, I'd have gone to London, thrown shoes at him three times and then banned him from the Internet...
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Should G20 have 2.5 times more protests than G8??
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Sheffield has an outbreak of mumps! I have never had mumps. Should I do anything/be worried/go in??
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Nihilist Flavorless Mints :

These are the mints I've been waiting for!
signed\A Mint-hater

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First there was Email Addict, a Gmail Labs experiment designed to force obsessive Gmail users to take a break after 15 minutes and to block access to instant messages.

Then there was Mail Goggles, which requires that Gmail users answer simple math problems before allowing them to send messages, in order to prevent e-mailing while intoxicated.

Gmail Labs also includes a Forgotten Attachment Detector, which will prevent messages that mention an attachment but don't actually include one from being sent.

And on Thursday, Google added Undo Send, a Gmail Labs experiment that prevents the transmission of an e-mail message for five seconds, to allow e-mail authors time to change their minds."

OMG! MY life is transformed!!

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Interesting quote from Time's list of 10 Ideas changing the world right now:

"Amortals live among us. In their teens and 20s, they may seem preternaturally experienced. In later life, they often look young and dress younger. They have kids early or late — sometimes very late — or not at all. Their emotional lives are as chaotic as their financial planning. The defining characteristic of amortality is to live in the same way, at the same pitch, doing and consuming much the same things, from late teens right up until death."

Sounds horribly familiar :) I'm not as sure i'm enthused with it as the writer of the article tho!

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I'm becoming mildly fascinated with the different ways I feel about LJ, FB and Twiter. LJ is the only one of these three where you can possibly have a multi comment debate about An Issue for sure (or even a sensible poll on what is your favourite discontinued sweetie line.)

But Twitter has it over LJ for me these days that it' is designed for the mobile life - it was set up intiially to be sent from and read via texts, and it's heading back that way now without pay barriers  (the tweetworld is awash today with excited people discovering that UK Vodafone has agreed to give Twitterers free texts). LJ is power3ed by the collective intelligence of people lonely at home or bored at work, but in both cases with acces to desktops or laptops. But there is a certain class of people nowadays - mainly academics and techies so far i think, maybe also journalists., entertainers, writers, international corporate workers - who spend much of their life as peripatetic loners , but who nonetheless congragate here and thither with others of the same type - at conferences, events, trade fairs, gigs, festivals  and so forth.  And who carry their mobile smartphone as lifeline EVERYWHERE.

For these people - and I am very much in that tribe right now - Twitter is Just Perfect. Write from your phone, read on the web, twitter behind speaker's backs feeling smug, pick what suits your wi fi or unlimited data packages as best forms of access /egress. The #thing really has become useful for me in last few weks - at #websci09, at #won09 and next I expect at #scripted and #eastercon,  the collective commentary on an event that somehow the LJ tag never is or has been - and the overall tone of Twitter (or at least my bit of it) is the ruminatively intelligent and sarcastic.

Yes you can mobile blog LJ and FB but it's just not the same. LJ is all about long text and bells and whistles which become useless on mobiles, and FB about pix and event planning which don't show well on mobile screens. The FB status update was the part I used on the move and Twitter is somehow so much better at that with its strangely intimate connections between its geeks, academics and demi hemi celebrities. People REPLY to you on twitter. FB doesn't even have threading, for heavens sake. And LJ does, but is increasingly this alienated place where there is so much to read no one bothers to reply. We've all used up our store of embarrassing stories ansd 80s recollections anyway.

Of course this is probably an early adapter thing and it'll all be lost in noise very quickly.And I SO DO NOT WANT to read the same thing tree times on FB, Twitter and LJ. If you have that little to say, use one platform!   But right now I think I love it :)

Ok you can all defriend me now :)
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watched finales of Dancing on Ice and Skins and know which i enjoyed more! Go Ray! If only there were tickets left for the tour! But i admit casting Superhans as Cook's dad WAS kinda cool.:)
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I guess it's that time..

"Fan creations, fair use, and creative commons"	
Sat	14:00	
"A discussion of the legalities of fan created and transformative
works, with real lawyers"
Peter Harrow (moderator)	
James Peart	
Lilian Edwards	
Simon Bradshaw	

Fan Funds Rock	
Sat	18:00	
The panelists discuss the purpose and advantages of fan funds and
explain why they are still relevant to fandom today.
Christina Lake (moderator)	
Chris O'Shea	
Lilian Edwards	
Tom Womack	
Steve Green	

Adapting comics for the big screen 	
Sat	21:00	
"What makes a good adaptation of a comic book - faithfulness to the
text, or willingness to change it for the screen? Can you film the
unfilmable? What makes The Dark Knight so good, and The League of

Extraordinary Gentlemen so bad?"John Coxon (moderator)Lilian EdwardsPersephone HazardAndrew Hogg	Martin McGrath	Saxon Bullock	

I'm still a little disappointed there seems to be no programming on fans and social networking sites (or at least none I'm on and I did suggest one).

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"One in three people use the same password for all their online accounts, a security company survey suggests. Sophos research found that only 19% of respondents never use the same password for multiple websites."


I won't do a a poll! but it might have been useful to ask how many people used *variants* on a singlke password across multiple sites..

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((WRote this yesterday at airport but wouldn't post! so here it is..)

Inspired by the Acroplis and the Agora Museum..

Wikipedia lists the oldest cities in the world that have been continuously inhabited..

The oldest of these I've been to is Jericho (3000BC) - well strictly I didn't go there but it WAS just on the right as we drove down the West Bank towards the Dead Sea .. the oldest I've been to proper is Jerusalem (2800BC though that contradicts its own Wiki entry by some 1200 years..) . And bar places in Israel and Athens itself (c 1400BC)the oldest European city I've been to is Liabon. How did *it* get to be so old? And indeed, how does somewhere in Bulgaria end up being as old in terms of continuous habitation as all these places in the Fertile Crescent/Middle East/ancient Med?

Is this list bollocks really? Swisstone? La marquise? What about Timbuktu? And Egypt? But I *am* interested to discover how relatively recent the great Mayan centres were. I had no idea.

But today is definitely my day for being boggled at how modern we were thousands of years before Christ. In the Agora museum , heart breaking miniature pots and toys and charioteers buried with deceased infants in Neolithic times - can anyone say these people were less civilised than us? I bought a book on Athenian litigation, something I should definitely know more about. Do you know the evidence of slaves was admissible only IF received under torture? Something to make us think in our post Guantanamo Bay days.. and something I did know, but had forgotten - how rival politicins used to organise to ostracise each other for 10 years at a time from Athens. Anyone who was too much of a demagogue and likely to inflame the populace could be exiled by popular vote as too likely to become a tyrant. Now that's how to do democracy! And possibly reality TV too.. (no I won't mention Jade here..)

Today was the day I really *liked* Athens. The fact that it didn't rain certainly helped..:) I walked and I shopped and by great good luck I wandered to the top of ana-Plaka (not Plokta), the least touristy part of tourist town. It was more like a Tyrolean village than trashy Monasteriki; I ate Greek salad and lovely slow cooked lamb amidst smoking locals and healthy backpackers and felt strangely virtuous. Missed the Jewish Museum entirely but wotthehell. The ancient Agora was mindboggling to see, to be in, really. I remeber how much I liked the Athenians now and 30 years ago: not killing machines like the Spartans, not organised bureaucrats like the Romans, but wiley chaotic clever-by-half squabbling wannabe lawyers, every one of them, just like me:)
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.. or, everything is near Monasteriki, except you can't get there or it's ALL SHUT!

Today was the day that demonstrated why they were so reluctant to give Athens back the modern Olympic Games..

Essentially this is the city where NOTHING works. Or at least, only very, very slowly. The taxis won't stop for you, even when they're empty (why? why? no one can seem to explain); the roads get closed randomly stopping taxis from moving anyway; the central Metro station (quaintly known as Ammonia, tho not spelt that way) we wanted closed today because of a rally in favour of Greek citizenship for all residents (ie, we think, mostly Palestinians?) When we saw the rally however, it wouldn't have closed a *street* in London , let alone most the city centre..

As a result of all this, [ profile] clarehooper, [ profile] fides and I did NOT repeat NOT get to the farfamed National Archaeological Museum. or at least we did, but at 4pm, when it should have still been open for an hour but had apparently closed at 3pm - pretending it was still on winter hours. "Everything in Athens happens 6 months late" someone told us. Including, apparently, changing over to summer tourist attraction hours...

However we DID have a very nice lunch next to the Greek Agora, we DID have very nice tea and cake at the cafe at the Arch'l Museum and we DID do a great deal of satisfactory tat (=jewellery plus food plus tourist shit) shopping - altho most the city centre shops (strangely reminiscent of East Kilbride town centre - M & S , Zara and H&M plus lots of 80s looking shop windows) again seemed to have decided to shut midway through saturday afternoon. Leading to the above nentioned Tamapx crisis... Eventually a nice man pointed us at a mini market that not only sold Tampax but also bottles of assorted spirits in the shape of satyrs with giant erect penises. Faith was pleased:) I bought one to auction off at Eastercon - be scared!!

So far every single recommendation we have had for nice`areas for dinner places has been dismissed by The Only Nice Taxi Driver in Athens as over priced rubbish for tourists - Gazi, Psiri, Plaka, you name it. the answer appears to be to go to Piraeus (miles away), or possibly London. Clare and Faith seem to have chosen bed. J and I will report further :) But right now, I'm drying out from the latest monsoon!!
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Played hookey and went up the Acropolis today, as tomorrow meant to Monsoon again and today blue skies. Oh.My.God. For this fangirl who did Greek and Latin at school it was like a Harry Potter fan visitinh Hogwarts. OMG. The strenth of it, the beauty, the harmony.. everyone there was sso happy. It was really what I needed after 3 days of sheer stress:)

S'pose I better go to the conference now!! Pix to follow..

ps people are already getting shots of them on Google Street View UK IN COMPROMISING POISTIONS taken down!!tee hee!


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May 2009

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