• A Sudden Illness – How My Life Changed, by Laura Hillenbrand
    "For as long as two months at a time, I couldn’t get down the stairs. Bathing became nearly impossible. Once a week or so, I sat on the edge of the tub and rubbed a washcloth over myself. The smallest exertion plunged me into a ‘crash.’ First, my legs would weaken and I’d lose the strength to stand. Then I wouldn’t be able to sit up. My arms would go next, and I’d he unable to lift them. I couldn’t roll over. Soon, I would lose the strength to speak. Only my eyes were capable of movement. At the bottom of each breath, I would wonder if I’d be able to draw the next one."

    Brutal description of 15 years with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome.

  • Mark Essen’s video games
  • Forever / from a working library
    "By this measure, the printed book lasts forever, but the digital book?as yet?does not. A cast iron pan, properly cared-for, will last forever; a cheap aluminum pan may not. A well-crafted chair, loved by its owner, will last forever; an allen-wrench constructed Ikea chair will not. Forever, then, is defined by the presence of two unique but necessary components: the physical ability to survive one hundred years (give or take a few), and the presence of a caretaker."

    Of course she’s right. But, freed from it’s organic, decaying, pulpy prison, the *text* can and should last forever, regardless of what happens to the book. Or eBook. Ideally, immortality will come from ever wider (and less corporeal) dissemination and translation. We have enough simple and open source formats ("well-crafted" HTML will see us far into the future). What we need is some kind of open source standard for future-proofing *hardware*. The people who crack that one open deserve Gutenberg status.

  • The Age of Plastic.com (2001-2011) | MetaFilter
    Sad but ultimately necessary. The retirement of MAYORBOB (just blinded you with cred) and that time the site went down for–what?–a month? pretty much killed it a long time ago. Still, I spent some futile seconds there. Every second of 2001-2, for example.

    Also, yes: ha ha that there’s a thread on Metafilter announcing the death of Plastic. How many good years does Metafilter have left? 5? 10?

    Still and all, I would sacrifice Plastic.com in order to bring Suck.com or Feedmag back from the dead. Or–better yet–Word.com, which was worth a million Plastics.

January 25, 2011. Links