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I’m about to power down and leave the Moscone Center for the last
time. It’s been fun. The dude who just sat down across from me in the
Internet area looks just like Warren Zevon, leather jacket, beard,
ponytail and all. More from the hotel later.

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It seems to be an ongoing joke with my wife that I am meeting as many
or more people as she is. A number of times she has gone to introduce
me to someone only to have us both say “Oh, we already met.” It just
works out that way. It’s the same dynamics as at a party, you stand in
circles and when a new person joins the cluster, they get
introduced. That’s how I meet them. That’s how I met the woman in
charge of handing out funds from the NSF, only to find out later she
was important and that everyone sucks up to her. You’d think after 12
years of marriage, my perternatural affability wouldn’t be a surprise,
but it is to her.

The odd thing is that as a younger man, I was unbearably shy. I found
making small talk impossibly difficult, and meeting new people quite
painful. Somewhere in my early 20’s that changed. Now I have no
problem walking into a party where I know nobody and hanging out. I do
that over and over at these SF conventions. I never made a conscious
effort to do this, it just happened. There were no “social anxiety”
excercises to do, and I took no Paxil to achieve this effect. I’m glad
it went this way, because the old way sucked.

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Since I’ve got a few minutes, here are a few of my miscellaneous
links:

From Mark Bourne on SFF.net

My plans to write a trashy bestselling paperback — a fundamentalist
Christian-paranoia techno-thriller that’s sort of a cross between Tom
Clancy and the Left Behind series, full of page-turning, over-the-top
Masonic-Illuminati-NewWorldOrder potboiler America-imperiling action
centered around a dark and secretive power cabal whose public face is
embodied in a campy Orwellian cartoonishly sinister logo — have been
suspended because somebody else got there first:
http://www.darpa.mil/iao/

From the Oregonian, an article on the Orycon I attended:

For someone who’d just been slashdotted, filksinger Arlene “Callie”
Hills looked pretty darned sanguine. Bubbly, even.

“This is so great,” she said Friday afternoon in the hospitality suite
of OryCon 24, “Our band, Echo’s Children, is on this CD.” She was waving
a copy of the CD bundled into each new copy of David Weber’s science
fiction novel “War of Honor ” and no, “filksinger” is not a misprint:
It’s what she and her partner, Cat Faber, are.

“When you get slashdotted for something nerdworthy,” explained her
friend, John Bartley, “it’s a real mark of honor at place like this.”

Here’s
a link to the whole article

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A note for my friends who might be reading this on the newsgroups
links, I am not seeing any of your replies (if any) and won’t until
Monday night or later. Feel free to interact, but I won’t be a part of
it for a while.

I did hook up with my friend Ray and will probably have dinner and/or
drinks with him tonight. I haven’t seen him in like 12 years or talked
to him in 6 years. He does special effects computer stuff and is
working on the Matrix sequels right now. I want to
hear about this crap, it sounds quite cool. I can’t wait to see him.

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Technology TopicOK, I’m up on the wifi at the Moscone again. It’s kind of
gratuitous, since I have internet access in the hotel room, but I like
it. Something strikes me as cool about listening to WREK via the
streaming at a nerdy science conference on a wireless link. One thing
I have noticed is that since I did this stuff at Orycon, I installed
ZoneAlarm. I’m getting alerts about every 30 seconds for various
things. A second ago I just got an HTTP request from some external
address. I think it is strongly possible that hackers know what range
these event things are and they scan the living shit out of those IP
addresses. I’m glad I have it on there.

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About this time tomorrow, I’ll be getting on a plane out of here. It’s
been fun, although slightly less than I thought it would be. When I
was thinking about this, I had been saying that I had no
responsibilities. That’s not quite right, since I had to meet up with
D every day at 4:30 PM. I couldn’t go quite as hog wild as I had been
thinking I would. Still fun, but not the crazed free for all I had in
mind with my running rampant throughout San Francisco. For example, I
haven’t been really much out of the downtown area. Eating at the
Stinking Rose in North Beach was the farthest north I’ve been, still a
mile from Fisherman’s Wharf and such. It’s a good sized city, so it
takes time to see everything. Last time we were here we went to
Alcatraz and spent a lot of time there and at Ghiradelli Square, etc.

Today will be shopping and such after the responsibilities of the AGU
meeting are met. I think I’ll tote my laptop there (against the advice
of my spouse) and play with the wifi while she attends talks and
poster sessions. I’ll probably fool around there for the afternoon to
kill time.