If We Watch Everybody All the Time…

Monday, Nov. 29 —

Welcome to the FBI’s latest “Geek Profile” — as documented by Slashdot‘s Jon Katz. This profile is a grab-bag of traits designed to catch high-school kids (usually boys) who may be dangerous. Above-average intelligence is one such trait.

“The FBI’s checklist is as revealing for what it doesn’t say as for what it does,” Katz notes. “Bullies and predators who prey on kids who are different or “non-normal” aren’t considered dangerous, nor are teachers and educators who preside over uncreative, hostile and, to many kids, suffocating classroom environments.”

Read this and scream.

My Airplane Reading

Monday, Nov. 29 —

Well, I’m back in California. The ride from Hong Kong was much smoother than the outbound trip.

My favorite part of air travel is the time it gives me for uninterrupted reading. I finished reading one book, a paperback thriller I’ve already forgotten, and got well into another. I can highly recommend the latter if you like a certain genre of novel.

“Resurrection Day” (Penguin Putnam Books), by Brendan DuBois, is a what-if alternative history. It’s set in 1972, ten years after the Cuban missile crisis turned into a nuclear war that destroyed part of the United States and virtually all of the Soviet Union. The plot is a detective story (except that the detective is a newspaper reporter).

If you’ve read Robert Harris’ “Fatherland,” where the detective in post-World War II Nazi Germany (Hitler didn’t lose in this book) is a policeman, you’ll probably want to read “Resurrection Day,” too.


Manila, part of the brand-new Frontier 6.1 from UserLand Software, is the software we’re using to run this site. The idea behind Manila is that we should be able to write and edit on the Web, for the Web.

This is a big change, and a trend that’s barely in its infancy. The writing tools are crude, but the concept is powerful.

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