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14th of October 2000

     How does your computer feel today? No, I'm not asking about its state of cybernetic health but about whether it's giving you any tactile feedback or manipulative capability through your fingers. Touch is the latest to be added to the list of human senses a computer can address. It's called haptics, from the Greek haptesthai, meaning to grasp or touch.

     Perhaps the best-known haptics tool is the Phantom from SensAble Technologies Inc. in Woburn, Mass. This device employs a moving arm that ends in a stylus for the user to hold or a thimble into which the user inserts a finger. These are used in conjunction with software called the FreeForm Modeling System. Adios mouse.


     You don't suck! On the contrary, you da bomb; you rule; you give new meaning to the term cruise missile. But there is the matter of that deadbeat husband of yours. Where's he get off thinking eighteen hour work days are enough in this economy? How long does he think he can get away with staying at home playing with client projects till all hours of the night and morning? Huh? Just kidding of course. Rest well Pat.

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13th of October 2000

     And y'all were nice to me, very nice indeed. But before I get to that, I must give my obligatory and insignificant link to Jeffrey Zeldman's essay about his mother. This is sure to be hyperlinked from here to the next eternity by everyone who ever saw the code <a href=>. I dare you to come back with a dry eye. Go now. Shoo.

     After that, this all seems so inconsequential, but I wish to offer my sincerest thanks to everyone who remembered my birthday. I got my very own KittyKitty from the divine mizKitty. How'd she do that? A new friend I'd never met sent me a handmade digital card that personified the passionate artist. Thank you Lorien. My prayers are with your people tonight.

     The beautiful and talented Jann sent along a cute and considerate card (don't tell Lynn there's just a little duck between us). My brother Dave passed on a nice reminder of fond memories. I wish I was there too Boogie.

     The linky-love came in droves from Joe, Susan (thanks for the cake ;-), Eric, and the head lemur. I'm sure I've missed someone, but my server logs have been acting up for the past eight hours. If I find you later, thanks for your thoughtfulness. I won't forget. Yes indeed. It's wonderful to have such kind and caring friends. I am truly honored and blessed.

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12th of October 2000

     In Charleston, West Virginia on this day in 1952, Libby Clark presented her husband Bob with their first child. They named him Jeffrey. Small, blue-eyed and blond, his natural cries for help foretold his destiny. Lucid, yet confused, he landed in this world with a vigor reserved only for the supremely ordinary. The rest, as they say, is history. Be nice to me today. It took me 48 long years to get this way.

link to this entry Lynn Clark

11th of October 2000

     Today is my honey's birthday. She tolerates a lot to abide my free-time passion. Sure, she complains occasionally, but she likes to see me happy. A fabulous artistic imagination, I wish I could interest her in computers. I know she could design some of the best looking web sites out there. Lynn is my motivation. Without her, I would probably never eat, sleep, or shave.

     Lynn is also my savior. More than anyone, she bore the brunt of this alcoholic, but was there with total strength and compassion during the recovery. I will never be able to fully amend the misery I caused in her life, but she has a forgiving heart that beats stronger with each day I remain sober. She understands as perhaps few can. Today I am a far better man because of her. Happy Birthday Lynn.


     There's a new article on the home page. Dave answers a few questions about layout and design for print. Don't forget, this business isn't only about the Web.

link to this entry Appalachian Snow

10th of October 2000

     Snow in the Appalachian Mountains in early October is a might unusual. The photo at right taken in northeastern Tennessee appears to imply otherwise. You say you can't see much of anything? Well, neither could I. Couple that with cold and a howling norwester wind; I felt like the calendar had skipped forward a couple months. A Rip Van Winkle moment?

     Speaking of calendars, today is one of those nice binary days? 10/10/00. It's the same whether you prefer the American or European date designation. This year has had some strange calendar numbering -- remember February 20th? Next New Year's Day will really be an oddball.

     Nice to see Joe get some media acclaim. Netmag found out what the independent web has known about Joe for a long time. They're darn tootin' Joe has "more idea what he's about than most." Maybe if I keep hanging around some of it will rub off.

     Finally, thanks to Mom and Dad for another enjoyable and relaxing weekend. It seems the opportunities have been rare since they moved away in 1986, but there's still nothing like Mom's cooking and Dad's advice. Add the chance to just forget most everything for a few days and I usually return renewed and refreshed. Who says things are out of whack? What's in whack?


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Two neighboring farmers cannot stop feuding. One, out hunting, shoots a duck which falls inside the other's field. Climbing over the fence, he is stopped by farmer #2 who claims the duck as his since it landed in his field. After much arguing farmer #2 states that he is prepared to settle the matter by the Viking method.

He explains that the method involves kicking each other in turn between the legs until one gives up, and the other is the winner. Farmer #1 agrees reluctantly. Farmer #2 states that since they are on his land, he goes first.

Farmer #1 stands with legs apart and hands on hips while Farmer #2 takes an almighty swing with his foot and sends farmer #1 into the air. After ten minutes writhing on the ground farmer #1 eventually gets to his feet and prepares to take his turn.

Farmer #2 turns and walks away saying "O.K. I give in! You keep the duck!"


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