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Comment Re:And Up the Food Chain? (Score 3, Informative) 229

There is a journal article which discusses the acetaminophen toxicity in snakes and lizards. Apparently there are two theories - glutathione depletion leading to hepatic necrosis as you mentioned, or methemoglobinemia, which is apparently a condition where normal oxygen-carrying hemoglobin is replaced by methemoglobin, which does not carry oxygen and effectively causes death due to cellular oxgyen deprivation (I wonder if this would explain the findings of clear fluid in the lungs/trachea of the snakes/lizards they tested this on?). I'm not a doctor or a chemist, by the way, just found it interesting.

Comment Re:Wikileaks? (Score 1) 502


So that's why I did a google search before posting here, and came up with various non-official websites saying more-or-less the same thing, plus there was this little blurb posted on the Twitter WikiLeaks profile on the 17th:

Real change begins Monday in the WashPost. By the years end, a reformation. Lights on. Rats out. 1:57 PM Jul 17th via HTC Peep

I think it's a reasonable thing to wonder.:) Of course, Wikileaks could have simply had advance notice of the story and nothing to do with its content.


Good Database Design Books? 291

OneC0de writes "I am the Director of IT for a small/medium sized marketing company, where I personally write the code that runs our applications. We use a variety of technology at our office, the majority of which rely on MS-SQL and MySQL databases. I am familiar with tables, SQL queries, and have a general understanding of how the SQL databases work. What I'm looking for is a good book, particularly a newer book, to explain general database design techniques, and maybe explain some relational tables. We have some tables that have million of rows, and I'd like to know the best method of designing these tables."

Comment Re:What's this "color" thing... (Score 1) 495

Eh, heard all this before. Initially I'm pretty sure color and sound (and movies themselves) sold on the basis of gimmickry before they really took off as solid art forms in themselves. My point is that it's pretty premature to judge and most of this is the same sort of reactionary ranting that leads to guys like Murdock going on about how they prefer their news on dead trees and so on. 3D will come into its own, in time, that's all I'm saying. People need to stop freaking out that it isn't all Citizen Kane yet.

Comment What's this "color" thing... (Score 1) 495

...that you youngsters are trying to add to my moving pictures? You already had to go and add sound to it, so I can hear all the yapping instead of the music, and now you want to add color? Damn it, I like me some intertitles. What's next? You'll try to add smell, or make it all Three-Dimensional or something, won't you? Or replace it all with something drawn by a com-PEW-ter. Get the hell away from my moving pictures, damn it. And GET OFF MY LAWN!!

Comment Old... (Score 1) 175

I reviewed this guy and his lifestream idea back in 2004 ( and ultimately found myself pretty unimpressed. I mean, the core ideas are interesting but so patent-encumbered that it will be a decade before they are touchable, and the man himself holds some pretty irritating/intolerant views (cited a few in that post) that left a bad impression on the whole. Sad then, sad now.

Comment Re:Not less valuable; possibly more. (Score 1) 227

I was presuming that it would be untouched simply because that's why people value typewriters from authors. Take one of those typewriters the submitter mentions, sand off all the keys so that they're evenly worn, take it back to factory state, and I doubt anyone would care about it. Same for a stripped laptop. Could be wrong, but I don't think I am.

Comment Re:Not less valuable; possibly more. (Score 1) 227

I suppose you could do this if you never bothered to do any research. Personally, I find having the internet accessible while I am writing means I can easily look up technical details about something that I didn't anticipate needing to look up, and my writing is ultimately better for it. I suppose it depends on your personality and ability to concentrate, but I've never found it to be an issue.

Comment Re:Not less valuable; possibly more. (Score 1) 227

Sorry, I missed this last night.:)

Typically I write in and save to .odt and .rtf as well as doing a .pdf export at the end. I also tend to back everything up locally and on Gmail, which means I have easy access to an HTML conversion as well.

I was using Gmail drafts to keep ideas (so that I could access them from anywhere) backed up as well, but lately I've switched to Wave, which is incredibly useful for me since I can easily tweak them and move them into a proper writing program after they are somewhat more fleshed out.

Comment Not less valuable; possibly more. (Score 4, Informative) 227

I am a writer (or at least, I've written a couple of novels and a few hundred thousand spare words that are lying around waiting to be turned into novels, plus assorted other writing), and I have always written exclusively on a computer.

I should be clear that I'm not trying to compare myself with Stephenson or McCarthy; I'm fully in the amateur rank, but I would say that this is mostly a personal aesthetic thing. It's sort of related to the reverence people who hate "digital books" hold for paper copies; they'll give you loads of ultimately irrational excuses down to the smell of the paper as to why they prefer to read a "real book." I've been reading novels on a screen for years, and I've discovered that I quite like the ability to zoom in on small-font text or to hold thousands of books in the footprint of one on my desk (it's really a coffee table but shhh!).

Anyway, as for writing, it's like anything else on a computer. I don't think of it as "using a computer" - it's just a tool that lets me do what I want. Personally, I'd think that the ability to get a peek into how these guys organized their lives would be quite interesting (stumbling over their porn stashes, probably not so much, but undoubtedly revealing (hah!)). Think about all of the incidental stuff you could learn; art preferences (screensavers and so on), unfinished and aborted works, etc... I'd buy one from an author I liked, if I wasn't guaranteed to die poor by virtue of trying to be an artist myself. ;)

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Just go with the flow control, roll with the crunches, and, when you get a prompt, type like hell.