December 18th, 2004



- Can vinegar go bad? And if so, how can you tell?

- the Lyttle Lytton contest winners... and I see a P. Berman among the finalists, as well as a Berman prize. So... is this a P. Berman I know? Hmmm?

My favorite line, for obvious reasons, is:
I wanted to name the heroine Siobhan but didn't know how to pronounce it — screwy Celtic pronunciation — and now I do but it's too late.
D. Lackey

- I am glad that we've got Freedom of Speech/Expression explicitly written out somewhere. Poor guys with unwritten bills of rights... unless Australia, unlike the UK, decided to actually write down their Constitution. That's one of the most important things, I've noticed -- make sure rights are explicitly written down.

Time to decide the next thing to clean up.

Last referral-begging for the year:

#1) Lingo - an internet phone service. We =finally= got our number ported over, once Verizon got off its fat ass to switch us over. I've had a great time with Lingo, and they keep a pretty extensive record of calls, if you're curious about that sort of thing. The cheapest plan is about $10/month, and the one we're using is about $25/month (because we've got two phone numbers for right now... I will be getting rid of the second phone number soon, and will go back to $20/month). Unlimited calls to U.S., Canada, and certain Western European countries. I haven't had a need to call outside that region, so I don't know their other rates.

Anyway, I get a little credit if you sign up with the service, and indicate that I,, referred you.

#2) Dead Pool 2005. There's a referral contest going on there, too. In this case, I'm actually offering a service in exchange for entering the contest and using me as referral: I will do a probability analysis of your Dead Pool roster. As I will be away from the computer starting on Thursday, I likely won't be able to slice n dice people's rosters til next year. But if you're interested in that kind of thing, I will give you estimates on your score distribution probabilities, and the like, using standard actuarial tables. I have been developing more stuff related to the various bonuses in the contest.

Anyway, it's a diversion for the actuarial types. Generally, we predict death in the bulk, not for 15 particular people. I think my roster is pretty good, though probably low-scoring, as I picked a whole bunch of old people.