10/31/05 | by steveg [mail] | Categories: WiFi

From an email "joke" from pulmonary doctor and buddy since kindergarten, Nick.

>1930's 40's, 50's, 60's and 70's !!
>First, we survived being born to mothers who smoked and/or drank while they carried us.
>They took aspirin, ate blue cheese dressing, tuna from a can, and didn't get tested for diabetes.
>Then after that trauma, our baby cribs were covered with bright colored lead-based paints.
>We had no childproof lids on medicine bottles, doors or cabinets and when we rode our bikes, we had no helmets, not to mention, the risks we took hitchhiking.
>As children, we would ride in cars with no seat belts or air bags.
>Riding in the back of a pick up on a warm day was always a special treat.
>We drank water from the garden hose and NOT from a bottle.
>We shared one soft drink with four friends, from one bottle and NO ONE actually died from this.
>We ate cupcakes, white bread and real butter and drank soda pop with >sugar in it, but we weren't overweight because WE WERE ALWAYS OUTSIDE PLAYING!
>We would leave home in the morning and play all day, as long as we were back when the streetlights came on.
>No one was able to reach us all day. And we were O.K.
>We would spend hours building our go-carts out of scraps and then ride down the hill, only to find out we forgot the brakes. After running into the bushes a few times, we learned to solve the problem.
>We did not have Playstations, Nintendo's, X-boxes, no video games at all, no 99 channels on cable, no video tape movies, no surround sound, no cell phones, no personal computers, no Internet or Internet chat rooms..........WE HAD FRIENDS and we went outside and found them!
>We fell out of trees, got cut, broke bones and teeth and there were no lawsuits from these accidents.
>We ate worms and mud pies made from dirt, and the worms did not live in us forever.
>We were given BB guns for our 10th birthdays,
>made up games with sticks and tennis balls and although we were told it would happen, we did not put out very many eyes.
>We rode bikes or walked to a friend's house and knocked on the door or rang the bell, or just walked in and talked to them!
>Little League had tryouts and not everyone made the team. Those who didn't had to learn to deal with disappointment. Imagine that!!
>The idea of a parent bailing us out if we broke the law was unheard of. They actually sided with the law!
>This generation has produced some of the best risk-takers, problem solvers and inventors ever!
>The past 50 years have been an explosion of innovation and new ideas.
>We had freedom, failure, success and responsibility, and we learned HOW TO DEAL WITH IT ALL!
>And YOU are one of them! CONGRATULATIONS!
>You might want to share this with others who have had the luck to grow up as kids, before the lawyers and the government regulated our lives for our own good.
>and while you are at it, forward it to your kids so they will know how brave their parents were.
>Kind of makes you want to run through the house with scissors, doesn't it?!

This Fox is on Fire

10/30/05 | by steveg [mail] | Categories: WiFi

Okay, that was a little over the top and I'll probably get all those prono search hits now, but I finally relented and installed Firefox on both my old WIN98 desktop and the XP laptop.

I must say that though I'm a bit clunky with it still, I like the tab feature and discovering the intricacies of the live bookmark.

Before any of you comment and say "about time," I'll will concede the point that for a big talker about open source philosophy and open source application, I am very late to the game here. I suppose the next step is OpenOffice, but let me get used this new whatzit.

The Lit is Legit

10/29/05 | by steveg [mail] | Categories: WiFi

I was corrected by Andy in my assessment about the legacy of the Literary Cafe in my announcement of Poetry Night scheduled for 9:00pm this Thurs. November 3.

Apparently the Lit has always gathered all kinds of hooligans from the creative strata including poets as well as sketchpad toting, inkstain fingered artists.

The Literary Cafe has had numerous poetry readings over the years. Not so many lately but nonetheless a list of poets and readings that we've hosted would be quite long.
And now from memory:
Chris Kanuch
Amy Sparks
Mike DeCapite
Kristen Ban Tepper
Charlotte Pressler
Frank Green
Terry Durst
Andrew Klimek
Valerie Marek
Michael Sallinger
and many many more

Read my apologetic comment.

"No religion teaches people to kill"

10/28/05 | by steveg [mail] | Categories: WiFi

This little piece of unhappy news from Thailand via Sujatin, a Pureland Buddhist minister in the UK, that seemed to slip by our American myopic mainstream news.

About 20 suspected Muslim separatists stormed a monastery, hacked an elderly Buddhist monk to death and fatally shot two temple boys Sunday in southern Thailand, police said.

The quote in the title was from Waeuma Waedolloh, kamnan of tambon Tanyong Luloh in Pattani, Thailand, trying to keep calm and loosen the focus as a religious hate crime.

(A kamnan is the elected commune headperson of a tambon or group of neighbouring villages.)

So sad for the monks and attendent boys, the surrounding village, and for the perpetrators of the murders.

The Katrina Experiment

10/27/05 | by steveg [mail] | Categories: WiFi

Sascha Meinrath of CUWiN, listed a number lessons that going down to New Orleans taught the networking volunteers. It was a real experiment to show how grassroots effort versus the hierarchacal structure worked in real life. Here are a few:

  • Volunteers working on shoe-string budgets and donated equipment can, under the right circumstances (especially in chaotic situations), be far more effective than "official responders."
  • Top-down organizing is often far less efficient than distributed (flat) hierarchies for some facets of disaster response.
  • Ad-hoc (wireless) networks were often the first telecommunications infrastructure made available to evacuees, beating out the major providers by days (and often weeks).

Literary Cafe Lives Up to Its Name

10/26/05 | by steveg [mail] | Categories: WiFi

The Literary Cafe was kind enough (after verbal bludgeoning) to allow
me and Nick Traentner to hold a poetry open mike on Thurs. November 3rd at 9:00pm.

literary poetry

The Literary Cafe has been the local home watering hole for Tremont artists and musicians for over a decade. It is now ready to be true to its name and become a home for literary types including poets, novelists, and even jingle writers.

We have gotten commitments from a number of poets already, but if you wish to read,email me at steveATwhatsinthebag.us .

Realistic View on WiMax

10/25/05 | by steveg [mail] | Categories: WiFi

OneCleveland seems to be pushing the WiMax technology as an alternative to good ol' wifi, but I still say that economic and effectivity reasons, wifi is going to be around for a long time. Case in point is made by Sascha Meinrath.

What's important here isn't that the equipment isn't (yet) working -- but rather that there's still an amazing amount of work still to be done before WiMax is ready for prime time.

I agree with Sascha that WiMax isn't necessarily a replacement, but another nice tool in a networking grabbag. Cleveland has to get out of this "either-or" mindset, or we'll never get anywhere.

My Political Bones

10/24/05 | by steveg [mail] | Categories: WiFi

I've always tried not to get political on WITB. Looks like I'm failing miserably....again. So for full disclosure and to close the mouths of disbelief, I offer this:

I Am a Liberal Republican

liberal republican

When you tell people that you're Republican, they rarely believe you.

That's because you're socially liberal - likely pro-choice and pro-gay rights.

You're also not so afraid of big goverment, as long as it benefits people and not politicians.

You are the most likely of any Republican type to swing over to the Democrat side sometimes.

No Confidence Vote

10/23/05 | by steveg [mail] | Categories: WiFi

Friday night, Frank Jackson came into the Literary Cafe on the invitation of one the regular patrons, Tom Bell. I got there early to do some homework, ie read the position papers on his website (please note that I am NOT linking there. He can get his own traffic). I was also hoping that he may come in like Lynch did, abit early, so that we may have a good uninterrupted conversation.

Instead, his advance "man" (the kid seemed right out of college) came at around 9:30 and all he wanted to do is talk to me as I was trying to read the most inoccuous collection of buzzwords, glittering generalities, and load of insubstance I have ever seen. William Burrough's Naked Lunch seemed more tangible. Anyway, whatever I said this kid was agreeing with, even if it was the opposite of Jackson's official stance. I had to start ignoring him cause he knew nothing about the real issues and he was making it difficult to finish the reading.

When Frank finally showed up, he came with a gaggle of syncophants, all young twenty somethings of which more than a few had the air of arrogant yuppie, which of course played well in the working-class neighborhood's artists' watering hole. Anyway, the grand scheme of separatng Frank from his handlers and force him to the back of the bar, then not letting him go til he answered ALL our questions satisfactorily, did not come to fruition.

I did get some decent one-on-one time with him to explain the theory, model, and vision of TWifi. He seemed to not have a clue about where technology really plays in economic development besides some vague expressions of that it is important and the future of Cleveland blah, blah, blah. Nor, and more importantly, does he have an idea on how to implement it or how to get the population introduced to it.

On his behalf, he IS a very nice guy and he did say that he was learning a few things from me. Whether it sticks, who knows. He pulled a sneak-away after only an hour, of which I used up 15 minutes. No goodbyes, no nothing. I had the sense he was uncomfortable mixing with the riff-raff, which is strange considering he represents a ward is in economic distress.

It was a bad move, since many of us thought he did the voter/donator scan and felt that this wasn't worth the time. Very dumb, since he knew that at least three bloggers were present and we probably get around 50 hits a day each, so, effectively, he ignored 150 people. Just goes to show how he still doesn't get technology.

After Frank left, I got surrounded by his staff, getting peppered with questions about the TWifi model. I imagine he told them to pump me for information. One of them even wanted me to send him my plans and financial justifications. It was so obvious that they wanted to co-op everything, I refused. Even these youthful politicos seem to be clueless about wifi, the internet, and the vast possibilities it represents.

One guy, who was exuding distain for us, the great unwashed, stood with arms folded across his chest and kept asking how do I pay for it. He didn't seem to get that people who think something is good will simply help. That private donations, sweat equity, and working together is enough to make progress on projects. He was stuck in a box that just couldn't comprehend the ideal of altruism. Either that or he really was a douchebag. Probably a little of both.

Thanks to Dan, who sitting on the sidelines, turned to Gumbybrain and shouted, "People just help when they see that something is worthwhile!" (or somesuch thing).

Basically, my experience with Frank Jackson was not very comforting. I don't know what Ron Copfer saw, felt, or heard that made him a fan, but I missed it. Of course, Frank may have been more animated talking to a millionaire than to a semi-employed bean-pusher.

His whitepapers are basically used toilet paper with what he has written on them. He did nothing to bolster my opinion of him in our personal meet. Basically, I have no confidence in him, even as a NOT-JANE vote. I'm not one that chooses the lesser of two evils with my vote and I'm certainly not going to punch the Campbell hole on my ballot, so what's a citizen to do.

Well many may claim that I'm going to waste by vote, that it won't count, that there is no electability, viability, effectibility in doing this. But, I guess I have to write-in somebody. Considering I have written in candidates for all but one presidential election since I have been eligible (that was 1980, folks), this should not be a surprise.

I want to remind you that candidates become viable, electible, and effective when citizens do vote for them. We just have to not be afraid of losing an election. Reagan ran back in '72 against a sitting Republican president (Nixon) in a primary. Nobody really took him seriously then. Twelve years later, Bonzo goes to Washington.

My problem is to find someone who I have the confidence to do the job, whether they are running or not. Bonzo would be an improvement, but do you have any other suggestions?

Take Heart, Poets

10/19/05 | by steveg [mail] | Categories: WiFi

Last night I did my first public poetry reading in Tremont. I met a number of local neighborhood poets, none of which make any money doing the craft.

From an interview Allen Ginsberg did in 1983 with Steve Foehr at Naropa Institute:

I considered myself professionally rejected. I didn't get anything published until 1955 or so (he was 29), and then I didn't make any money on it. I still don't make enough to live on from my writing. That is hardly the consideration. I just got $300 from City Lights, my publisher, for the year 1983. This is December.

- out of the book, Spontaneous Mind, edited by David Carter

Ginsberg was 57 years old AND HE WAS ALLEN f-ing GINSBERG, internationally famous, a prolific poet, and still he couldn't earn a living from writing.

So what the hell are the rest of us expecting?

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