In Memorium: Douglas Noel Adams

As it’s the birthday of Douglas Adams, lots of folks are tweeting favorite parts of his writing to one another. I’ve been trying to tweet mine, but the thought is too big for 140 characters, so here’s the long(er) version: If I had to chose five books to read for …

Dealing In, Episode 11

Download Subscribe Welcome to the First of the Free Will/Next Ten Thousand Hours Feedback shows! This one is episode eleven of the Dealing In series of feedback shows, where I and several friends answer your emails and talk about whatever comes up. This time, I’m joined by Metamor City creator …

2014, Here We Come

Rather than a retrospective on the past year, I thought I’d kick off the new year in its wee hours with a look forward at the wider world. In The Princess Bride, Fezzik the Giant says to Inigo: “I hope we win.” It’s my favorite line from that movie. A …

Truth, Justice, Debate, and Democracy

I frequently preface and postscript posts where I talk about politics, ethics, religion, philosophy, or other touchy things with the categorical statement “I’m interested in the discussion/conversation. My opinion doesn’t matter.” The last couple weeks have reminded me of just how odd that sounds in our current cultural context, and …

The NSA, Snowden, and Why It Matters

This is a very long post containing technical information about how data security works, and how it interacts with a social contract. To read the whole thing, click under the cut. This post has been edited to include an explaination of what metadata is

Sufficiently Advanced? Thoughts on SETI

If you envision science-fictiony science projects as children that come in generations, then the generation that gave birth to SETI is a pretty impressive generation indeed. The minds behind it are contemporary with (and sometimes, identical to) the minds that came up with ways to find black holes, with nanotechnology, …

On Equine Excrement

This post contains language you might not want your boss to read over your shoulder. It’s a comparative taxonomy of two subspecies of four-letter excrement. You have been warned.

What A Week!

So, a little while ago I said that Free Will was on production hiatus while I resolved some personal emergencies. Those emergencies related to a sudden lack-of-house situation I found myself in. Well, just as there was suddenly no house, there is now once again suddenly a house. This means …

A Dragon Bigger than the Moon

In history classes, we pay a lot of attention to Columbus–in 1492, after all, he set out to discover a route to the Americas. Love his accomplishments or hate his humanitarian record (and I see no contradiction in doing both), he inaugurated the Age of Discovery (TM) which changed the …