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[links] Link salad is one of sixteen vestal virgins headed for the coast - Lakeshore
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Jay Lake
Date: 2012-06-28 05:21
Subject: [links] Link salad is one of sixteen vestal virgins headed for the coast
Security: Public
Tags:christianists, funny, healthcare, language, links, personal, politics, process, publishing, religion, science, tech, travel, videos, weird, writing
MIND MELD: Has Space Opera Lost Its Luster? — In which I and many others comment.

Call for Submissions: ‘Suffered from the Night: Queering Stoker’s Dracula.’ — An interesting project from Lethe Press.

Orbitz Isn’t Showing Apple Users the Best Available Travel Rates — That pretty much guarantees I will never, ever use Orbitz for anything ever again in my life. They can spin all they want after the fact, the point is they've proven they cannot be trusted. (Via David Goldman.)

Searching for John SnowsWhat 19th-century disease can teach us about today's Open Data movements. (Snurched from @stevenbjohnson via @lilithsaintcrow.)

Biology's Master ProgrammersFor more than a decade, synthetic biologists have promised to revolutionize the way we produce fuels, chemicals, and pharmaceuticals. It turns out, however, that programming new life forms is not so easy. Now some of these same scientists are turning back to nature for inspiration.

Signing Up for Google's Glasses Is Like Signing Up for a Mental IllnessAre you prepared to manage the distractions inherent in a portal to the Internet that you literally can't avoid? Because like all new technologies, Google glasses are a sign of moral decay that will rot your brain. Also, get off my lawn!

Russian Missile Forces Have ‘Safe Busting’ Sledgehammer — As tipster David Goldman says, this is somewhat missing the point of having a safe.

DVD Player for Christians — Personally, I find this creepy and weird and more than a little sad, but I'd much rather have people censoring movies in their own home than in mine, or at the cinema. (Thanks to [info]willyumtx.)

A tempest in my soul: A son's secret brings a Southern Baptist minister to his knees — It's a lot harder to cling to your conservative fear and bigotry when the Other is your own family. (Snurched from Slacktivist Fred Clark.)

US Department of American Redundancy DepartmentLanguage Log is funny about political rhetoric.

Ideology vs. Principle — Paging conservative America, who lost their principles long ago in service of their ideology.

And further off the deep end...It really is worth emphasizing that this kind of thing did not happen on a regular basis when George W. Bush was president. The ideas were out there — fringe cranks on the left regularly trotted out bizarre theories about September 11 and shadowy Saudi influence, or whatever. But it stopped there, and it stopped there because responsible Democratic leaders refused to sanction it.

?otD: Might your eyes just as well be closed?




6/28/2012
Writing time yesterday: 1.5 hours (2,700 words of short story first draft to wrap at 5,000 words)
Body movement: 30 minute stationary bike ride
Hours slept: 6.5 (fitful)
Weight: 239.2
Currently reading: Shattering the Ley by Benjamin Tate

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Msconduct
User: msconduct
Date: 2012-06-28 12:45 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
As far as I can tell about the Orbitz story, it isn't as if they're showing the same hotel to Mac and PC users at different prices: they're just recommending higher-priced hotels to Mac users as their research shows Mac users are more likely to book 4 and 5 star hotels. If that's true, that doesn't seem unreasonable.
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Jay Lake
User: jaylake
Date: 2012-06-28 12:47 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
It's filtering the results according to the particular platform I'm using. (I use both Mac and PC.) I find that profoundly untrustworthy.
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Msconduct
User: msconduct
Date: 2012-06-29 00:10 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Hmm. It seems to me there's a spectrum from relative harmlessness (Google targeting your ads), through medium dodgy (the Book Depository giving you a delivery-included price but varying that price depending on where your IP address says you are) to pure evil (Amazon adjusting its pricing depending on what it thinks you're willing to pay). I'd put Orbitz down at the Google targeting end myself, since it's showing you the deals your platform suggests you will be more interested in. Unless you think there's something inherently evil about targeting, of course.
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cathshaffer
User: cathshaffer
Date: 2012-06-28 15:32 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
I use web sites like Kayak and Orbitz to see which carriers are offering the lowest rates, and then I go to those carriers direct web sites and always find even better rates. The lowest to highest ranking seems to be consistent, but there is some kind of shell game with the prices.
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Autopope
User: autopope
Date: 2012-06-28 17:51 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Apropos the Russian safe-busting hammer, it's worth noting that Soviet nuclear missile forces didn't rely on PALs (permissive action locks) to secure nuclear weapons from launch by a rogue missile commander ...

... Instead they relied on a platoon of KGB troops under independent command with orders to shoot to kill if the missile crews tried to launch without authorization.

Meanwhile, the USAF had PALs in its missile silos. Which for the first 10-15 years all had the same launch code: "00000000".

Which was a better safeguard against a nuclear launch by a rogue missile commander?
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