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Nonsense about interracial marriage
Peace science
Laptop will not charge its battery
Employers have no legal right to your passwords
Why you should have a professional do your taxes
Repair of Kvarts DRSB-01 Geiger counter
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A political rant

I consider myself some kind of conservative, but increasingly unsympathetic to much of what nowadays calls itself conservative politics.

Being conservative means you have something you want to conserve. It means respecting what has already been accomplished. It means that before proposing a change, you find out how things came to be the way they are now, and what other ideas have been tried, and how well they worked out. To slightly paraphrase G. K. Chesterton, conservatism is how we allow our predecessors to vote.

Being conservative does not mean letting yourself be ignorant of the things our government is doing successfully. To take a random example, if you don't know why and how insurance companies are presently regulated, you have no business calling for them to be deregulated. You're shouting in the dark.

Being conservative does not mean living in a Wild West fantasy where you imagine that guns and gold are all you need, and that nothing bad can happen to you, and if anything bad happens to anybody else, they deserve it. That is not the attitude of a civilized person.

As the health care debate revs up again, I hear some people who actually seem to believe that their neighbors should just be left to die if they don't have money or insurance, even if the lack of insurance wasn't their choice. Some people apparently are ready to gloat when parents are plunged into poverty by giving birth to a child with serious birth defects. And some people's Wild West view of "independence" means that they are constantly threatening to burden their neighbors by becoming a charity case at a hospital.

Then there are those who knowingly circulate falsehoods. An example that came my way yesterday was a fake video of Nancy Pelosi saying "quit your job, we'll provide you health care." Well, not even fake. It was an announcer saying Ms. Pelosi had said that, followed by video of her actually saying something entirely different (that people should be able to change jobs without losing their insurance).

If you knowingly circulate something that is deceptive to that degree, what are your standards of right and wrong, and why should anybody trust you for anything at all?

[Addendum:] A friend points out another example: A picture, origin unknown, of President Obama holding a book called The Post-American World. This is supposed to be proof of his treasonous intent to "bring down America." Well, the book really exists, but it's not anti-American. It's mainly about the economic rise of third-world nations. It's actually a fairly important new book, and if President Obama is reading it, good for him; studying international relations is part of his job.

The point is, you're told to pass the message along without checking any facts, not even what the book is actually about. And people do.

It's easy to get a willing, gullible audience for any foolishness whatsoever. You just say, "This is something the mainstream news media don't want you to know — forward it to all your friends immediately!" And even if you said the earth is made of green cheese inside an enormous turtle, they'll pass it along, immediately.


Repair of Russian Kvarts DRSB-01 Geiger counter (radiation detector)

Some of you know about my amazingly cheap Russian Geiger counter for which I've already posted an English-language instruction sheet (the only thing I've ever translated from Russian, a language I do not know well, but I can slog through it the way the average high school student slogs through Latin).

Today I repaired it. The symptom was that although it worked some of the time, it would frequently get weak for several seconds at a time — showing reduced sensitivity and giving feeble clicks — or stop working altogether.

Online at this site I found a circuit diagram which I'm sharing with you here; neither the author of the first site nor I knows who actually drew the diagram, but we thank them, whoever they are!

Here's what mine looked like inside:

Note the near-short-circuit between a resistor (R2, mounted on posts) and a capacitor; I moved them farther apart. Note also that the wires from the transformer are in a mess, and in my case, one of the wires from one of the double-wound pairs was left unconnected.

After poking at things, I put batteries in, and the instrument worked, at least most of the time. I measured 330 V DC across the SBM-20 tube, not as high as the 400 to 450 volts that other people have measured, but decided not to address that problem (if it is one). (That's with some loading from the digital multimeter; the open-circuit voltage was probably 360.)

Shaking the instrument slightly made it stop, with exactly the old familiar symptoms, and then start up again. When the power supply oscillator quits, there is some reserve power across the high voltage capacitors, which will keep the tube working for a few seconds or more. I concluded that there was a loose connection.

The loose connection turned out to be the on-off switch! There is no real switch in the DRSB-01; instead, there is a plastic slider that can bend a metal bar down onto the circuit board, as shown below. It wasn't working.

I just soldered across it and added a label on the front, "Remove batteries to power off." That should be enough for now. It works.

I also have an inoperative DRGB-90 that needs a new tube. The tube is leaky, making it act as if it's picking up very strong radiation all the time. It's apparently the same SBM-20 tube, available on eBay, so one day I'll fix it.



Nothing for today except a lot of updates to recent entries. Scroll down and see if you can figure out what I changed.


Why you should have a professional do your taxes

[Revised again.]

For 30 years I've been having a professional, Harold Williams, do my income taxes, and I recommend the same for everyone else whose taxes are non-trivial.

If you are a wage earner without itemized deductions or any other special situations, then by all means do your own. But if you have other income, or substantial deductions, or anything that takes more than about four pages of (federal) forms, call in the pros. And I don't mean buy software — I mean hire a human being. If you need only a little help, go to H & R Block or a similar service; if you have a small business or any deductions that are out of the ordinary, you need a CPA (and March 26 is a bit late to be looking for one!).

The reason? Accounting is not arithmetic; it is interpretation. What you need is someone who can make human judgments about how to interpret things, based on current knowledge of tax laws and your particular situation. Software can't do this.

Everybody also needs some basic knowledge of how income tax works. For starters, this IRS booklet is actually pretty good. So is this. And this. The IRS does a decent job of cutting through the complexity imposed on it by Congress. Also, every year I study my professionally prepared return and make some notes so that I'll know what information went into it.

Serious misconceptions about income tax are common. Here are a few things you might not know.

  • Deductions only save you money if they come from expenses you would have had anyway. When you spend money on something deductible, it reduces your taxes by less than the amount you spent. Typically, a $1000 deductible expense saves you $300 on taxes.

    So don't go looking for deductible things to spend money on. Do look for deductions relating to money you've already spent or are sure to spend anyway.

    In particular, you do not "need a mortgage so you can get the tax deduction." Because of the deduction, mortgage interest costs you less than full price, but it still costs.
  • Income tax brackets don't work the way a lot of people imagine. There is a never a situation where earning more money reduces your take-home pay. Mathematically, the tax function is piecewise linear, not a step function.

    Suppose we had a high tax bracket for incomes over $100,000. If you got a pay raise from $100,000 to $100,001, would your take-home pay go down due to the extra taxes? No. That is not how American income tax works. Your last dollar — the dollar above $100,000 — would be taxed at a higher rate, but your dollars below $100,000 would be taxed the same as before. So if you got that raise, your take-home pay would go up less than $1, but it would still go up.
  • The mortgage interest deduction, medical expense deduction, etc., only apply if you itemize deductions on Schedule A. Even then, the standard deduction (which you can take as an alternative) may be better; always calculate it both ways.
  • Even then, medical expenses are only deductible if they are a substantial fraction of your income (which you'll never know until the end of the year, because something big could happen late in the year — so always keep records). If you want to pay medical expenses with pretax dollars, which is a very good idea, get a flexible spending account (at UGA, a Payflex account).

Using a CPA: Naturally, I don't ask the accountant to add up columns of figures. I gather my own records and fill out a worksheet he gives me, explaining in my own words anything that doesn't fit his questions. Then I leave the interpretation to him.

My situation is fairly complicated; besides working for UGA, I have a consulting business, and Melody's writing-and-graphics business is still operating on a small scale. Since we own both businesses outright, and they share numerous resources, the accountant has some discretion as to how to allocate expenses between them. He uses his software to try various combinations and find the optimum.

I also rely on him to remember things I might not have thought of, like the tax consequences of sending a child to college. My real concern is the "unknown unknowns," the things that would have escaped my notice entirely.

I'm annoyed that we have such a complicated tax code. Given that we do, I used to also be annoyed that the government didn't figure our taxes for us. But then I realized: When there are questions of interpretation, I want the decisions to be made by someone who is working for me, not someone who is working for the tax collector. It's just like having a lawyer when you go to court. My accountant is duty-bound to follow the law, of course, but he might very well know the law better (as applied to my situation) than a random IRS agent would. He certainly has plenty of experience dealing with other small businesses; try as I might, if I did it myself I would never know about any other than my own, so I would have nothing to compare it to.


Employers have no legal right to your Facebook password

It has suddenly become fashionable for prospective employers to demand an applicant's Facebook password in order to look around and judge the applicant's behavior. The same thing is happening to people already employed. And there are big problems with that.

This article points out part of what's wrong. Your private Facebook account probably contains personal information, such as your religion, which prospective employers are prohibited from asking you about by anti-discrimination laws.

But there's more. An employer who asks for your password is potentially requiring you to commit an illegal act (unauthorized computer password disclosure) under the laws of Georgia and other places, as well as breaching your contract with Facebook. Your password is not yours to give away. You have agreed, as part of the terms of service, to keep it secret. (And while you're looking at the Georgia law, look at computer invasion of privacy, too.)

[Addendum:] One more thing. If you would give away your Facebook password, would you also give away your work password? To the next prospective employer, maybe, or to anyone who asks for it with a plausible reason? I wouldn't want to hire anyone who would give away passwords. It would be like hiring a known thief.

It is, of course, perfectly reasonable for an employer to go on the Web, including Facebook, and look at material you have posted publicly. In fact, I assume that everything I've ever put on the Web is potentially public, even if not initially so. But disclose my passwords to people who just want to look at my private files and correspondence? No way!


Dell Inspiron 1520 laptop will not charge its battery

Symptom: Laptop computer runs fine with AC adapter plugged in, but does not charge its battery. A new battery shows "62% full, not charging" even with the AC adapter plugged in.

Cure: Replacing the AC adapter fixed it. Apparently, the old one had gone out of spec in some way (we didn't make measurements) and would still power the computer but was not being recognized properly.

[Update:] A correspondent tells me the center pin in the Dell power plug is an I2C data bus through which the power supply tells the computer its characteristics. (Power is on the inner and outer cylindrical conductors.) The innermost wire is thin and breaks easily. When it does, you have a power supply that can power the computer but will not be utilized to charge the battery.

Why my politics drives people crazy

Many people respond to any political discourse this way:

(1) Classify it as left-wing or right-wing.

(2) If it's on the same wing as yourself, approve of it; otherwise disapprove of it.

Note that no thinking about the actual content is required. And that's where I drive people batty. I do my best to keep people from performing step (1).

To put it another way: I don't automatically believe "conservative" positions and reject "liberal" ones, nor the other way around.

I'm interested in logic and facts. And I don't want "conservative facts" or "liberal facts" — I want fact facts.


The science of preventing war

Few people realize that nowadays, a large amount of scientific research is done on the subject of how to prevent or reduce war. I'm involved in it myself, somewhat peripherally, at the data-analysis level.

Most people feel that the way to promote peace is to ask for it. While that's worth doing, I think that battle has already been won (pardon the metaphor). Today, even army generals are peaceniks by the standards of 200 years ago. They agree that war is only justifiable for self-defense or defense of the innocent. There is often doubt whether a particular war is really undertaken for that purpose, but at least people feel compelled to claim it. Nobody can be taken seriously today who makes the claim, common in 1850, that it's OK to go to war to enlarge your territory or glorify your nation.

There's still plenty of war in the world, and the focus needs to shift to the specific conditions under which war breaks out. I remarked a while back that today, most wars are "non-Westphalian," by which I mean they are typically not between two nations. Instead, one of the sides is something like al-Qaeda or the Viet Cong, something that falls short of nationhood. That is just one way the scene has changed since the 1800s.

There's plenty more to be discovered. Why does a political or economic conflict suddenly go violent? How can we keep it from reaching that tipping point? Can relatively small moves defuse a violent situation?

That's the focus of a new science called peace science, generally thought of as a branch of political science, or maybe sociology. One of several scientific journals here; scholarly organization here; classic book here. Click through and have a look.

And that's where I come in. I work on software that detects emerging conflicts by reading news reports and blogs. My name is on this U.S. government news release.

It may surprise you that so much peace research is funded by our Department of Defense. But the best wars are the ones that are never fought. Peace research is not politically left-wing or right-wing — it's concerned with facts (often very dull facts), statistical analysis, and practicality. The goal is to make a mathematical science of the things that our best diplomats and strategists have long known intuitively, and, at the same time, to take into account far more information than a human being can. It's a bit like weather forecasting. With a computer and a large data set, you can do a lot more than just look up and sniff the air for rain.

So when I tell you I'm doing defense-related research, I'm not developing new ways to kill people. Quite the opposite!

Finally, remember that when a war is prevented, you never hear about it. That's why peace researchers will never be hailed as heroes.



I'm behind with e-mail, reading, and everything else. Please don't expect me to handle non-urgent matters right away.

And I no longer answer the telephone unless the caller ID shows something better than TOLL FREE CALLER.


Follies and frustrations of the telephone
And a negative review of Hi-Tech Health Care

Important note: I have been notified that in July 2012, Hi-Tech Health Care is changing billing companies. This should solve the problems I've had with their billing system. I have had very good service from them at the local level; the billing system is the only thing I've had trouble with.

[Revised, shortened.]

I'm glad the mid-20th-century way of using the telephone is rapidly dying out. Back then, it was taken for granted that an incoming telephone call is the most important thing that can happen to you — you must drop everything and answer it — which means that anybody in the world has the right to interrupt you, no matter what you're doing.

We used to laugh at a story about a farmer who sometimes declined to answer his telephone because "I had that thing put in for my convenience, not for somebody else's."

In 2012, that farmer doesn't seem particularly funny or rustic — he's just doing what sane people do when they turn off their cell phones.

This past week, the telephone drove me batty. Among several important calls, and seemingly dozens of unimportant but legitimate ones (dauntingly numerous), there three that were particularly unwelcome.

One, from RS Medical, was a recording (first thing in the morning!) that started out "You have an unpaid balance" and was apparently just informing me that an order had been placed. Of course I have an unpaid balance. When they send the bill, I will pay it. Until then, what good does the phone call do?

The second was similar, but with a twist. It came from Hi-Tech Healthcare, which had made similar robocalls to me in November and had promised to stop.

I called their billing department and was told that, in fact, I don't have an unpaid balance. So what was the purpose of the call? Just to upset me?

That was weird enough that I decided to call their home office. After all, telling people they owe money when they don't isn't just rude, it's against the law (as a form of fraudulent debt collection).

I spoke to the company president, and what he told me was astonishing. Due to an operational problem, they've been late getting data to the company that makes the calls. As a result, for about ten days after you pay your bill, the callers think it still hasn't been paid. And this has been going on for at least three months (in fact it probably accounts for the call I got back in November).

Why they are spending money to make these meaningless, useless, annoying phone calls is beyond me. They'll drive away all their customers. They've successfully driven me away.

Anyhow, two days later (Saturday), Hi-Tech Health Care suddenly disappeared from the World Wide Web and hasn't come back. Did I catch them in the process of going out of business? [No, they came back. I was relieved.] [See the important note above.]

The third nuisance call was from a human being claiming to represent Charles Stanley's InTouch Ministries, but quite possibly an impostor. They asked for me by name, presenting it as a business-related call, but finally admitted they were calling to ask for donations. When Melody asked them not to call any more, they started arguing that they have a legal right to do so any time they want. I have no idea whether the caller was actually working for the ministry or just "phishing" for credit card numbers.

[Follow-up:] InTouch Ministries tells me the caller was not an impostor, the ministry was indeed using a commercial telemarketing service, and the telemarketer was supposed to be offering us a free magazine, not asking for donations. Make of this what you will.

But getting back to the telephone itself: If we didn't need it for emergencies and DSL, I'd get rid of our land line. The younger generation has gotten it right, with cell phones that they turn off when they don't want to take calls. It is no longer expected that all decent people will drop everything to answer the telephone the moment a bell rings.

In fact, today, my computer-industry colleagues tend to view the telephone as a conferencing tool whose use needs to be scheduled. For instance, I have an appointment to call someone on Tuesday. For short-term communication we use e-mail. We do not presume that everybody has the right to interrupt anybody at anything, any time.



Have I really not taken an astrophoto for three months? Anyhow, here's Mars. 8-inch telescope, stack of the best 75% of about 5400 video frames with a DFK camera at f/30, 30 fps, processed with RegiStax and Photoshop.

South is up, as is traditional in astronomy. The North Polar Cap is at the bottom and Mare Cimmerium at the top. At the left edge you see the Martian atmosphere sunlit, and on the right edge not sunlit, because the sun is not shining on Mars from exactly the direction of our gaze. There is a bright cloud high in the atmosphere on the left.

Mars is twice as far away from us as during its 2003 close approach, but this still isn't bad.


The interracial marriage issue — and some nonsense

We're hearing political buzz that some voters in Alabama and Missippi want to bring back old laws to ban "interracial marriage."

Although there are lots of reasons interracial marriage might be difficult or unwise in particular circumstances — just like marriage across any other kind of societal divide — the proposed law does not make sense.

The reason is simple. The human species is not sharply divided into "races." If you think it is, you're believing folklore, not science.

I saw this illustrated dramatically in a textbook, once, showing a map of Europe, Asia, and Africa (all together) with pictures of each nation's UN ambassador. As you go from north to south, people get darker — gradually — not suddenly. Similarly, as you go from northwest to east, they look more Asian — gradually.

The notion that people are "red or yellow, black or white" is a folk belief with no real basis in fact.

Many Americans my age were brought up to believe that there are three or four "basic" races; the only uncertainty was whether to put the American Indians with the Asians.

But wait a minute. Where do you get these "basic" or "original" races?

Do you imagine humankind originated separately three or four times?

And do you further imagine that the people who don't fit the "basic" types — such as the medium-brown people of North India — were produced by "mixing" after those separate origins?

Some people do seem to believe this, although there is nothing to support it in science or in any religion that I know of. (Bible readers will sometimes tell you a legend about the sons of Noah. But it is a legend. The Bible itself does not express it.)

So that is the problem with the proposed law. How do you tell whether people are of different "races"? Maybe you're sure a Norwegian and a native Ugandan are different races. What about South Europeans, who are a little darker than the Norwegians? People in the very north of Africa, such as Egypt? People from different parts of India, some differing dramatically in skin color? You see where this leads.

The biggest reason I am not a racist is that I don't think there is such a thing as race, except as a fairly temporary combination of attributes. To take race seriously, I would have to believe humanity had multiple separate origins, and I can't see any reason for thinking any such thing.

[Addendum:] The reason Southerners tend to think in terms of a few distinct races is that people came to the South from just two places — northwestern Europe and a region of Africa — with very different skin colors. When I was young, everybody you saw in the South was one or the other. In places like New York, people were much more accustomed to seeing people with a variety of ethnic characteristics from all over the world.

[Addendum #2:] I am not denying the existence of "races" as groups of people with shared ethnic characteristics. All I'm saying is that there are no sharp boundaries between them, and there are no sharply distinct "pure" races in our past.


Nook report, and other hasty notes

First experience with the Barnes & Noble Nook Color: It's good, but not perfect. When Wi-Fi is turned on, the battery life is greatly impaired. And although I've had no trouble reading PDFs, one e-book (from Cambridge U. Press) has been known to hang the reading app or make it jump around haphazardly. I suspect the file is malformed. There may have been a download problem. Also, I'm still waiting for the firmware update that Barnes & Noble is going to push out via Internet; I'm running 1.4.0 and they are up to 1.4.2, so that may fix it. [It did, more or less, although the software is still slow when handling large files.]

Curious discovery: Some free Wi-Fi networks are web only — they can do HTTP and HTTPS but apparently have the ports blocked for e-mail. I can see how this is a defense against spammers; I just wasn't expecting it. Some failures of the Nook e-mail application are attributable to this.

From a book called Abelard to Apple, which I haven't read all of yet, some good advice to educational institutions: "Don't romanticize your weaknesses." All too often, institutions' weaknesses become sacred traditions. And I think this is even more true of high schools than of colleges. Some of the worst aspects of high school (e.g., sports mania) have become sacrosanct.

Speaking of which, I think that the critical difference between good public schools and bad ones is not the curriculum or the teaching; it is whether the students feel safe and respected. A good school is free of physical squalor, bullying by one's fellow students, and bullying by authority figures who don't view the students as fellow citizens and don't try to earn their respect. (Isn't "zero tolerance" — that is, automatic punishment without determination of intent — contrary to the American way?)

It's time to re-invent substantial parts our educational system, and I hope to say more about that soon.

I'm back from the Georgetown University Round Table on Languages and Linguistics, and I learned something important about teaching: The language used in spoken lectures is very different from the language in books, and there are people who have a much easier time with it. That is why there is so much demand for videos and recordings of lectures. I am not one of the people making that demand. I'd much rather have a book because I can read about 3 times as fast as anyone can talk, and I can look back and reread. But now I know...

Speaking of Georgetown (a place I always enjoy visiting), it didn't dawn on me until this trip that Georgetown predates Washington and the District of Columbia. It was the river port town of Georgetown, Maryland. That's why it has streets that aren't in the District of Columbia naming system, such as Prospect Street, between M Street and N Street.

That is also why Georgetown University originally called itself Collegium Georgiopolitanum ad ripas Potomaci in Marylandia. To my neo-Latin taste, not all parts of this name are equally elegant. Georgiopolitanum follows the standard Church Latin practice of using Greek compound names (Latin does not form compound words as readily). I can't complain about Potomaci; the name Potomac is Native American and no translation of it would be recognizable. But when they said Marylandia they wimped out. Terra Mariae is much better Latin and is a historic name for the same place.

That, I suppose, is one of the few times in history the Jesuits have ever wimped out at anything!


Nook, nook!

My menagerie of computing devices now includes a Barnes & Noble Nook Color. I bought the latest model, with lots of storage, not realizing I could have gotten an earlier model secondhand from Barnes & Noble themselves for half the price. But I don't think it's money wasted. It's going to be a handy gadget.

I bought it for reading PDF files. I spend an inordinate amount of time reading PDF files; all scholarly journals are now delivered to us in that form. And the University of Georgia Libraries give us free PDF copies of all books published by Springer, which means that with the Nook, I can avoid several hundred dollars of book expenses in short order.

And even when I'm working in the library with a laptop, I can use the Nook like a second screen, so that I can have documentation open (on the Nook) while I'm programming something (on the laptop).

Likes and dislikes:

  • The screen is about 4 by 7 inches, which means that, turned sideways, it is as wide as a page in a book. I can easily view PDF files in actual printed size.
  • Much of the storage is reserved for Barnes & Noble e-books. Only a gigabyte will accept your own files, unless you add a micro SD card.

    But Barnes & Noble gives away some e-books free, and an 8-GB micro SD card cost me only $10.
  • The e-mail application is a bit limited — apparently displaying only the latest 25 messages.

    But it is very easy to set up, and it supports IMAP with folders.

    At least it was easy to set up at home; at work I had a lot of trouble, probably due to a bad Wi-Fi connection.
  • The web browser works very well.

    But it's unpredictable whether sites will give me their regular web page or their "mobile" one.

    And a few pages, such as radioreference.com, simply confuse it.
  • And did I mention there's a music player? Who needs an iPod?
  • But there aren't many non-trivial apps. I'm probably going to drop 99 cents and get the scientific calculator.

This is definitely a special-purpose computer. I'm not sure it will suffice as the only computer to take on a trip — when there's a lot of e-mail to sort (I get it through 5 accounts on 3 providers), nothing but Thunderbird will do, and for that, I need the Asus Eee with Linux. But the Nook will be extremely handy to carry around.

Yes, I meant to date this March 5-11. I'm about to be busy and will take a hiatus from Notebook writing. Back next week!


Short notes for March

I'm still extremely busy. There are many developments that I can't mention yet... the next year or two should be exciting. And busy!

And in the meantime I'm too busy to put in all the hyperlinks, so you'll have to do your own Googling. But here's some news...

Kodak is discontinuing Ektachrome 100 film (all three varieties), which means there will be no more Kodak color slides. (Fuji is still going strong.) I thought Ektachrome 100 was their best-performing film product, so I'm startled to see it go — although, realistically, I had completely stopped using it.

(Note: When I reported the demise of Ektachrome in January, I thought, perhaps incorrectly, that only Elite Chrome, the "amateur" version, was getting the axe, and that at least one variety of Ektachrome Professional would stay in production. Now the word is that they're all going away.)

I have two cameras loaded with Ektachrome 100 at the moment. What should I photograph?

I predict the last surviving Kodak film products will be Tri-X Pan and some 400- or 800-speed color negative film (they change the specifications and names frequently).

I thought the film division of Kodak was the part most likely to survive because it had already downsized and survived it. Now I'm not so sure.

The BBC tells us that until about 1700, most people slept each night in two four-hour installments, "first sleep" and "second sleep," with a wakeful period between them. By 1900 this had been quietly forgotten, even though there are lots of references to it in literature. The reason we gave it up is that evening lighting became more abundant (candles, then gas, then electricity). In the really old days, people would light one or two candles to do things in the middle of the night, but they wouldn't attempt anything like full daytime activity. But it must have been good for safety to have some percentage of the population up at any given hour, no matter how late.

Latest paranoia: "Don't let people know your phone number! It's personal information!"

Correct interpretation: Don't use your phone number as a computer password.

Can the younger generation not remember telephone books?

Happy Exelaunei Day!

If what you are looking for is not here, please look at previous months.