Solipsism Gradient

Rainer Brockerhoff’s blog

Browsing Posts published in December, 2002

Fascinating reading…

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Bruce Kushnick’s book, “The Unauthorized Bio of the Baby Bells”, can now be downloaded for free from TeleTruth.

Thanks to David Weinberger’s Joho the Blog for the link!

1984

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Charles Eicher (Disinfotainment) has just posted a great reminiscence about the 1984 Christmas sales battle between the Apple //c and the IBM PCJr. (Linked by MacSurfer.)

More stuff to read…

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Oops, forgot to post a link to Dave Sifry’s Alerts. Great reading. Dave, of course, is the man behind the up-and-coming TechnoRati blog indexing engine.

Dave pointed me at The 10 Cardinal Columnist Sins. Required reading for any columnist or blogger.

One of my favorite SF writers and techno-authors, Bruce Sterling, is posting great stuff at the schism matrix. His fellow columnists there – John Clute, David Langford, and Terry Bisson – are also worth reading.

Doc Searls pointed me at RageBoy. Warning: not easy reading, but worth it.

Dave Sifry wrote:

When you wrote, “they don’t necessarily conflate different URLs on the same site”, I’m not sure I understood your criticism. Technorati will list all of the people linking to URLs that are at or below the URL you provide. In other words, if you put in “http://www.sifry.com/”, it will show you everyone it its database who is linking to http://www.sifry.com/, http://www.sifry.com/alerts/, and http://www.sifry.com/alerts/foo.html.

Hello Dave. Thanks for dropping in. I didn’t mean it as a criticism, but thought it would be a limitation of having to allow for many blogs on the same site.

On second thought, it seems it was my mistake. Cory linked to my main page, and this link appears when I click http://www.technorati.com/cosmos/links.html?url=www.brockerhoff.net/index.html. I asked a friend to link to my main weblog page, and checked by clicking http://www.technorati.com/cosmos/links.html?url=www.brockerhoff.net/bb/viewtopic.php. At one point, it appeared I could see distinct search results, neither of which appeared when I searched on my general URL with http://www.technorati.com/cosmos/links.html?url=www.brockerhoff.net. I must have mistyped one of those URLs…

Your explanation makes sense, and it seems to be working fine now. Apologies.

And thanks for setting up TechnoRati!

Technorati comments

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Posted by Dave Sifry:
When you wrote, “they don’t necessarily conflate different URLs on the same site”, I’m not sure I understood your criticism. Technorati will list all of the people linking to URLs that are at or below the URL you provide. In other words, if you put in “http://www.sifry.com/”, it will show you everyone it its database who is linking to http://www.sifry.com/, http://www.sifry.com/alerts/, and http://www.sifry.com/alerts/foo.html.

The more specific the URL you put in, the more specific Technorati’s response will be. The major flaw is for sites that sometimes use the “www” prefix and sometimes do not – occasionally, Technorati sees that as two blogs. So it thinks that http://www.boingboing.net/ and http://boingboing.net are different, and you need to do two queries to get all the links. This is a tough problem, because there exist counterexamples of people who use different domain name prefixies to refer to different parts of their site, like http://alerts.sifry.com/, which simply redirect to http://www.sifry.com/alerts/

-Dave (david@sifry.com)

Boing Boing just posted a link to my disclaimer. Thanks, Cory!

Update: Manual::Override soon picked up the link – thanks Seek!

I was a little skeptical about TechnoRati, until I figured out that they don’t necessarily conflate different URLs on the same site. So I was typing in the wrong search string and getting nothing back.

Anyway, I’m now using them to check who’s linking to me. Let’s see how many other blogs pick this up, and what the effect on my site traffic will be. It’s been very stable for over a month.

Illuminati…?

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Yesterday, I was rereading some of Robert Anton Wilson‘s Illuminati books, including “Right Where You Are Sitting Now”.

This book was published in 1982. There are some great quotes, like:

By 1983, the computer industry will probably be the number one money-making industry in the world.

The major battle of the 1980s will be over the control of microprocessors. the techno-managerial elite, the ACLU and those scientists who are true to the spirit of science will unite to attempt to accelerate the flow of information with these marvelous great tools. All conspiracies, and scientists working for conspiracies, will attempt censorship, blockage, legal restrictions… how much freedom of electronic ‘speech’ we are allowed in the next ten years will determine whether conspiracy or the Bill of Rights is going to dominate our future.

RAW’s books are great fun and somewhat alarming if you take that sort of thing seriously, which I usually don’t. However, every now and then some sort of synchronicity happens; today, Cory Doctorow’s Boing Boing referred to the strange case of the scary vanishing logo of a certain government agency.

The eye-in-the-pyramid in that logo is, of course, the standard symbol used by RAW’s Illuminatis… one wonders who dreamed that one up; either a secret conspiracy buff, or someone completely naïve and uninformed about the implications. Either way, it’s scary.

Fiction alert

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Charles Stross and Cory Doctorow (of Boing boing fame) have a great new work of science fiction up: Jury Service, a “gonzo post-human novella”. Here’s the first chapter. Highly recommended!

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