Is that a problem?

I don’t know much about the “likelihood of success on the merits” part, but I am impressed by the way another traditional element of the injunction question comes out–a little something we call “weighing of harms”:

In various countries, plaintiffs have sought court orders to halt the operation of the Large Hadron Collider at CERN near Geneva, Switzerland, with the most extraordinary of allegations: that the experiment may create a black hole that will devour the Earth.

Up until now, the various lawsuits filed against the LHC have faltered. But if the right kind of claim is filed in the proper court, a judge may soon have to face the question of whether an injunction might be needed to save the world.

That Eric Johnson knows how to get your attention.  Read the whole thing, while you still can!

Verizon agonistes

I have this new Verizon FIOS service at home. (I replaced our old proprietary — and incredibly costly — Internet filtering with free service from OpenDNS.)  After it was installed — well, after it was re-installed, the first installation having been done wrong — I have really enjoyed having that sort of broadband speed at home.

We’re not media downloading people, we Colemans, so it’s not that.  It’s just the browsing experience, and, for me, I can really experience true virtual commuting; using LogMeIn I can work at my office desktop from home with almost no perceptible lag.   I also really appreciate being able to upload big files fast, something I sometimes have to do when filing legal papers online by a deadline that is all of a sudden bearing down fast.  Not only this, but the pricing is great; with all that bandwidth I was able to completely drop my extra landline, which despite the best efforts at phone service discounting was so laden with taxes (“fees”) that it was an utterly unjustifiable luxury just for dedicated faxes to home.

If only Verizon didn’t so absolutely stink!

These guys are constantly, constantly pushing you to their incredibly powerful-looking customer-interfacing website for customer service.  Seeing as how you have to fence on the phone with a talking computer anyway, you give it a try.  And look at all the buttons to click!  It’s true one-stop shopping! Here’s the warning sign:  It only “really” works with Microsoft Internet Explorer.  Short of requiring you to get access to it via AOL, that’s about as grim a warning sign as you can get.

And so it goes.

Nothing — nothing — works on the Verizon site.  And when I say nothing, I mean of course pretty much nothing, or a majority of things you want to do once you get there.  THIS is not available “at this time.”  THAT is not available “at this time.”  THE OTHER just hangs up.  Please come back later.  Please try again another time.  Please call customer service.  Only not now, ok?  And so on.  And so on.  And so on.

I knew this already.  I knew it years ago.  I just kept hoping against hope that this offspring of the great Bell trust had really begun to understand how to serve customers, and that one of the main things you do to serve them is not make promises you can’t keep — including promises of things websites can do but which they really can’t.  And that one of the corollaries of that is not to push your customers to that resource when it is not even remotely up to the job.

Nope.

Verizon is fast, all right.  But it seems that once a monopoly, always a monopoly.

Verizon is still just the phone company.

Best of 2009: “Life imitates Steve Martin”

This was posted August 7, 2009.


Only worse. Steve Martin, from the old days:

How many people have cats? One, two, three, four…okay, ten. Now- let me ask you this…do ya trust ‘em? Because I’ve gotta get a pair of cat handcuffs and I gotta get ‘em right away. Just the little ones that go around the little front paws or maybe the manacles..four, to get all four paws. But what a drag; I found out my cat was embezzling from me. You think you know a cat for ten years, he pulls something like this. I found out that while I was away, he would go out to the mailbox, pick up the checks, take ‘em down to the bank and cash ‘em… disguised as me. He had the little kitty arrow through the head…and the little kitty bunny ears. And I wouldn’t have caught him, but I went out to his house where he sleeps…and there was about $3,000 worth of cat toys out there. Any you can’t return ‘em ’cause they have spit all over them! So now I’m stuck with $3000 worth of cat toys! Oh, sure…they’re fun. You got the little rubber mouse; has a bell inside of it- Haw haw haw! Boy, I hate it when it goes under the sofa! Whoa, gimme that! Gimme that! Hiss! hiss!

And now, this:

Keith Griffin was charged Wednesday with 10 counts of possession of child porn after over 1,000 illegal images were found on his computer, and he claims it’s all the work of his kitty.

The 48-year-old Jensen Beach, Fla., man told cops he would leave his computer on and the cat would jump on the keyboard and just like that, the images would appear.

Time was a crooked cat, while bad enough, only harmed his own soul.

Best of 2009: “No takers”

This was first posted on February 20, 2009.  It is clearly the most popular post I ever wrote here, but probably not for the reasons I might have wanted a post to be.  But, hey, traffic is traffic, right?

Popehat on the F-15‘s hoary origins:f15_15

Our air supremacy is built on the same tech level of the 8-track tape, and succeeds because no one will fly against it.

Not only won’t they fly against it — Saddam hid his MIG’s under the sand just at the thought of tangling with the F-15.

Worth remembering.

UPDATE:

Я не читаю, или я говорю на русском языке. Таким образом я удаляю все российские комментарии как спам. Это не является личным, но если Вы комментируете на русском языке, предположения, здесь – против Вас: Если Вы можете прочитать быстро через мой blog, Вы можете прокомментировать на английском языке!

Comments at the original post.

Silent night

Moon over Passaic Memorial Park
Wholly night:

For the second time in less than a week, BlackBerry users were plagued by Internet and e-mail outages across Canada and the United States.

Officials with Research In Motion, the Waterloo, Ont., company that makes the popular devices, offered no estimate last night when service to users in North and South America would be fully restored.

“Some BlackBerry customers in the Americas are experiencing delays in message delivery,” said company spokeswoman Rachel Colley last night. “Technical teams are actively working to resolve the issue for those impacted. RIM apologizes for any inconvenience experienced by customers.”

They’ve got to move this to “it’s a feature, not a bug” territory.  Because, really — what a pleasure.  Nighttime without mobile email.  In other words, nighttime.

There were no disruptions to the BlackBerry’s phone function.

Hey — baby steps!

Socializing with sociopaths

Yeah, it can be a little weird out there, too.

Just ask Ellen Brandt.  She’ll tell you a little story called, uh… I Don’t Like What You Wrote. You Should Be Poisoned, Garrotted, Stabbed With Stiletto Heels, Thrown Off A Tall Building, and Have Vultures Eat Your Liver.

In case you ever think, yeah, maybe unplugging isn’t such a bad idea.

Cross-posted on Dean’s World.

Attorney Ronald D. Coleman