Yes, fear does seem to the a meme of writing this summer. Here's Chuck Wendig's entry. "Our words are just words. Our stories are just stories. Maybe they transcend their form. Maybe they don’t. It doesn’t matter."
James Alan Gardner on dialog attribution. And then even more from Jay Lake. Funny story, I once wrote one with a character named Jedidiah. I had to work extra hard to never say, "Jed said."
The GD Batman, God of the small pilot gaps. Or how not to gloss over transitions because people will note it. (Grokked from Tor.com)
Ever dreamed of being a Mech Pilot? Well, if you have $1.35m, you can be. Although for that amount, I was that sucker to walk and have turbo jump rockets. But it does come in your favorite color. "Does it come in black?" Why, yes it does. Actually what I fund more important is the interface. While the robot itself isn't much, the interface is what would get me jazzed. What would be cool is to see simulators as arcade games (yes, I know, they have those now, but I don't think their interface software was as advanced as this). (Pointed to by Dan)
On the rise of "phantom states" or the existence of state-like structures at a regional and pan-state size, including non-state actors, NGOs, tribal, black market, and other organizations. The study seems to suggest these are becoming more prominent. Also, since they're not within the recognized structures, they don't respond to international pressures the same way a legitimate sovereign state would. And then we also have the rise of religious identity and mixing religion with government. "Clinton, who has traveled more than any secretary of state, said she has witnessed how respect for religious freedom unlocks a path to economic and social growth – and how repressing religious freedom can stymie a country’s progress. 'I have seen firsthand how religious freedom is an element of personal freedom – and of social advancement.'" It's always easier to see the problem with someone else than to see your own problems.
Sunday, Sunday, Sunday! It's the battle of the generations. Will Wheaton and Will Shatner go head to head on who will narrate Curiosity's landing. (Grokked from Tor.com)
On ruining the NRA fundraising machine. Gun and ammo sales have gone through the roof since 2008, all on the fear of Obama "commin' fer me guns!" And yet, never was a campaign promise (that I remember) and never any legislation proposed by the White House or any that got any real traction. (Grokked from Jay Lake)
Alligator Quotient: They're making up for lost time today. They must have missed me. That's sweet.