paai writes: If you haven't read his books, you may not be interested, but in Holland he was one of the most popular SF writers. His death was announced on the official Jack Vance site http://www.jackvance.com/
paai writes: The dutch police departments north of the great rivers, which covers somewhat more than half of the country have been struggling for weeks with really serious network problems. The cause has been found in a malfunction during the installation of a Microsoft service pack. The police says that it will be weeks before the network will be functioning again. See http://webwereld.nl/nieuws/65040/politie--netwerkstoring-duurt-nog-weken.html (dutch) This is bad enough in itself, as it effectively cuts out half of the connections, so that officers will have to do their administration on their home computers, or even by hand. It also means that statistical processing of incidents is impossible. What worries me even more is that police data typically contain sensitive information that you would not want to fall in wrong hands and we all know the track record of Microsoft when it comes to security.
paai writes: "A few years ago, I had the opportunity to work with the scholarly community of
Cultural Heritage, as opposed to the Artificial Intelligence crowd that I
normally associate with. But whereas conferences on AI as a matter of fact
accept papers in LaTeX or PDF, the conferences on cultural heritage seem to be
Microsoft only, and I really get problems when I submit my papers in
PDF, ODT or even in the DOC format that is generated by Openoffice.
As a matter of fact it seems that if I do not use Word, I often cannot publish my
papers. I cannot even blame the organizers of the conferences, because they
have to comply with the guidelines of the publishers, and they just do not
accept papers that are not written in Word.
Walk away from such conferences really is no option, because in academia you
live or die with the number of publications and I just cannot afford to ignore
My question to the slashdot community is NOT whether I should publish or
perish. What I should like to know is if there is a central forum or
organization that is attended by the organizers of conferences in general and
where I can draw attention to this problem.