What a field day for the heat
A thousand people in the street
Singing songs and carrying signs
Mostly saying, "hooray for our side"

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

You're the right kind of sinner

First two links and then to classes.

My friend, Porter Grand, is having a book signing for Little Women and Werewolves tomorrow, July 8th, 7pm at Joseph-Beth Booksellers in Legacy Village, Lyndhurst, Ohio. I'll be in class so I can't go, but that doesn't mean you shouldn't. Porter is a great person, and she's a former librarian (which I guess is redundant). She, if you're in the Cleveland area and ever wanted to meet someone who looks at a classic book and thinks, "You know, that would be so much better with monsters," now is your chance. Also, Porter has a great blog with reviews of just my kinds of books.

And in case you missed it (and because others are starting to point it out), and because the anniversary is in two days, I give you Starfish Prime. Not the only plan to detonate a hydrogen (or stronger) bomb in outer space, but I believe it was the only test to come to fruition. If you ever wondered where the idea of the EMP attack came from, here you have the genesis. Back when the idea was, "Heck, I wonder what would happen if we did this, let's give it a go," was still good. This is one of the reasons we no longer do that. People actually held parties to watch it.

Last night was the first quiz of the new class, I got a 31 out of 30 (2 extra credit questions). I knew I misspelled vertebrae (vertibrea). Damn these pencils not having spell check! And I also put peritoneal instead of peritoneum. Sigh. So I guess she gave me one of them (probably peritoneal). And see, that's part of my problem. Way back when I was but a wee child, school came easy to me. So I didn't study hard. The results are as you can see; my spelling is atrocious (although I've worked hard on that), and my grammar isn't always kosher. And now those crows are coming home to roost.

I did want to do a whole post on this, but I don't think I have the focus today. What I do want to talk about is how technology first killed me, but the right tech is now helping me. When spellcheck came out, it was god-sent. I love it, but it also enabled to cripple my ability. Same with "auto check" (which just corrected "cripple"). Great technology, but totally sucked in making me better.

However, the MacOS-X universal spell check is much nicer. Any "aware" application can use Apple's built-in tech which checks spelling as you type. This isn't exactly the killer part, after all Word has been able to annoy writers with its squiggly lines for almost a decade now. No, the big difference is that I can put the curser over the word and hit command-control-D and pull up a dictionary. A dictionary that offers alternative spellings.

Now, you could copy and paste the correct spelling from the dictionary ap. Instead I normally retype the word in the program I'm using and that helps me learn the correct spelling. That's a technology that actually helps. And I hope my long time readers (all one of you) have noticed the difference.

Technology doesn't save automatically. In fact it normally cripples us by giving us a crutch to lean on when we don't need it, but then find out legs won't support us anymore. The right technology, however, allows us to leapfrog. And I like the second kind.

1 comment:

Rick said...

Congratulations to your friend, Steve. Sounds like a cool book.