Wednesday, March 14, 2012

End of an Era

From FoxNews: After 244 years, Encyclopaedia Britannica ends sale of print edition.

I remember in the '70s when my dad was a salesman for Encyclopaedia Britannica. I still have a set he bought with "heirloom" binding in 1977. I also have a 1958 edition I picked up in the '80s. I recall as part of his sales pitch Dad would pick up a volume using one page to show how well made they were and how they would last.

I once had a library full of dictionaries, thesauruses, encyclopedias, and other reference works. Many are now gone and I haven't purchased any such in a long, long time. It's all on the web, you see... I may be alone, but I think our world is poorer for it.

Monday, March 12, 2012

Police Department Shut Down; 9-Year-Old Tasered

When is it appropriate to Taser a nine year old boy? Mt. Sterling, Ohio police decided the line was drawn when a nine year old boy wouldn't go to school.
The incident occurred when Michelle Perry called police because her nine-year-old son, Jared, would not go to school. Authorities responded, and when the child became unruly, an officer used a Taser gun on the boy. Neighbors have described the child as "large for his age," according to The Columbus Dispatch, though they have chosen to remain anonymous.

Police Chief Mike McCoy has been suspended for not reporting the incident to city officials. Council President Lowell Anderson told the local paper that an investigation is currently underway. The entire department has been closed, and Sheriff Jim Sabin has been given authority to patrol the town.

Words fail me.

Thursday, March 1, 2012

AT&T, You Suck

This Wired item is why my latest AT&T contract is my last (plus the fact that I had to spend ~14 hours on the phone with "tech help" to fix my warrantied phone). AT&T Adjusts Data-Throttling Policy in Response to Customer Complaints

Here’s how AT&T’s new policy works, according to the carrier’s updated support pages:

If you have a smartphone that works on our 3G or 4G network and still have an unlimited data plan,

  • You’ll receive a text message when your usage approaches 3GB in one billing cycle.
  • Each time you use 3GB or more in a billing cycle, your data speeds will be reduced for the rest of that billing cycle and then go back to normal.
  • The next time you exceed that usage level, your speeds will be reduced without another text message reminder.
  • If you have a 4G LTE smartphone and still have an unlimited data plan, the same process applies at 5GB of data usage, instead of 3GB.

You’ll still be able to use as much data as you want. That won’t change. Only your data throughput speed will change if you use 3GB or more in one billing cycle on a 3G or 4G smartphone or 5GB or more on a 4G LTE smartphone.

Wired reached out to AT&T to determine the degree to which user speeds will be reduced under the new throttling plan, but the carrier hasn’t yet responded.

GOP Slightly Ahead in Voting Enthusiasm - Gallup

I likely won't do much 2012 POTUS posts since I'm not very motivated by the remnants of the GOP lineup, but it seems even we Red Staters are more enthusiastic about Mittens and Company than the Democrats are by the train wreck that is Barack Obama. From Gallup: GOP Slightly Ahead in Voting Enthusiasm
By 53% to 45%, Republicans, including independents who lean Republican, are slightly more likely than Democrats and Democratic leaners to say they are "more enthusiastic than usual about voting" this year. Republicans have consistently led Democrats in voting enthusiasm since last fall, but to varying degrees.
Heh, guess it sucks to be Blue.

Andrew Breitbart Dead at 43

The Flame of the Right New Media and the Bane of the Left is gone.

Stacy McCain and IrishSpy have comments, Legal Insurrection has a detailed wrap-up. And, of course, Bretbart.TV.