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A journal of sorts to record Jonathan Sturm's (and others') thoughts and observations on things worth thinking about. Feedback welcome, but be aware that unless you prominently say you want your communication kept private, I may publish it.
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Monday 4 November 2002
The Git's parlous financial state started to bite over the weekend. He maintains a credit card account specifically for Internet purchases: payments to the company that hosts this website and his local ISP being the main ones. Even though The Git thinks far more is made of credit card (in)security when used via the Internet, he practices a basic precaution of keeping the card close to its limit. If anyone does decide to use up what's available, it's not going to be very much! Because the transaction numbers are limited, it's a trivial matter to ensure that sufficient funds are there for the following month's needs. Except this month, the ISP emailed The Git to say the transaction couldn't be processed.
According to The Git's calculations, there was $A12 more than needed before Mrs Git deposited $A50 towards the web hosting fee due late this month! Foolishly, The Git does not have Internet access to his account details, so that's another 24 hours away. He's hoping that when the bank opens for business, the problem can be sorted out via the telephone. If The Daily Diatribe isn't updated for a few days, you know the reason why.
Yesterday, we visited someone The Git hadn't met before. Dennis has a small property a quarter of an hour's drive away where he carves wood, gardens and collects things. The purpose of the visit was to borrow and purchase some books, but The Git was fascinated by the garden. He regrets not taking the camera, but then it's an excuse to return.
The garden consists of an eclectic mixture of (mainly) native Tasmanian plant: trees, shrubs and ferns. Tying it all together are rock walls and pools with an occasional piece of artist's pottery. It's altogether unique and difficult to describe in words. Certainly it has affected Mrs Git profoundly and The Git suspects we may be moving some large, moss and lichen covered stones from the southern end of the property closer to the house.
Thought for the day:
When I am grown to man's estate I shall be very proud and great.
And tell the other girls and boys Not to meddle with my toys.
Robert Louis Stevenson
The Beatles -- Revolver
Tuesday 5 November 2002
The Git's problem with his ISP was caused by him having used the wrong credit card when he subscribed. His ears are still red :-) While discussing the problem with the ISP, once more the issue of my logging on at 28.8 kbps came up. The Git explained that Telstra had installed evil pair-gain devices on the telephone lines "for future expansion" when we moved into The House of Steel. The Telstra technician had told me that if The Git wanted decent Internet access, he could get DSL. The ISP told The Git that this was untrue -- DSL won't work through a pair-gain device.
So, what was the purpose for Telstra installing pair-gain devices on the telephone lines? The technician said there were only limited copper pairs available, but we weren't new subscribers, so no new pairs were needed. The likelihood of two extra pairs being needed in our rural hamlet in the next ten years is about the same as John Howard inviting Osama bin Laden to Kirribilli House for cocktails!
Then it turns out Senator Kate Lundy has a campaign for pair-gain victims and there's a website called whirlpool seemingly devoted to taking Telstra to task for its shenanigans where I found the following:
A Middle Eastern sheikh, wanting to treat his eldest on his 21st birthday, asked what he would like.
"An Aeroplane!" replied the overjoyed son. And so he received a Concorde.
The next son, 17, was asked what he wanted for Christmas, to which he replied, "An Automobile". His father proudly presented a Rolls Royce antique Phantom to him.
The youngest son, 9, was finally asked what would make him happy. "A Mickey Mouse outfit" cried he gleefully. So his father bought him Telstra.
The Git is very much enjoying the first of Sunday's book purchases: The Century of Science: 1840 to 1940, but then he's not a Greenie. The writer, Sherwood Taylor extols the virtues of the changes in transport brought by the railway and then the motor vehicle. Flies that spread diseases that used to reproduce in the horse dung were dramatically reduced. By the time of writing, the Thames was no longer "a stinking ditch". The common working man was no longer confined to walking distance from his slum, but could travel into the countryside, even on a half-day off from work. Many left the slums to live on the city outskirts, though Taylor points out that the population increase was such that this didn't empty the slums.
The Git is unsure what gives him the greatest pleasure from reading such books -- the Greenies misperception of what they refer to fondly as a better time, or the hubris of the writers who assure the reader that scientific discovery has reached its zenith and the future holds little in the way of new scientific discovery. Of course, what appears grim to us, was for the poor of the time frequently an escape from an earlier, even grimmer reality. The technological tide raised all boats, not just those of the rich. And even "well-understood" areas of science continue to present surprises.
This post on The Climate Change Debate had me rolling on the floor with mirth:
I made a post in Oct of 2000 about a CNN story from Michael Schlesinger, Climate Professor at the U of Illinois, who expressed the point that a cooling phase could be masking part of the global warmup due to anthropogenic greenhouse gases.
That's right -- it might be getting warmer if it wasn't getting cooler :-))))))))
And while it's impossible for some serious papers about those surprises fail to be published because of Peer Review, if you write completely obscure bullshit, you can and get a PhD into the bargain! Story here on The Register.
Grichka and Igor Bogdanov succeeded in having Topological field theory of the initial singularity of spacetime published in the journal Classical and Quantum Gravity 18, Spacetime Metric and the KMS Condition at the Planck Scale in the Annals of Physics, and a Russian journal, and Igor - this time flying solo - persuaded the Czechoslovak Journal of Physics to publish the Topological origin of inertia.
But curiously, so arcane and abstract is the world of theoretical physics, that the work has yet to be repudiated.
Usenet posters describe the papers as "laughably incoherent". A fascinating thread on Usenet begun by John Baez brought the hoax to light, and persistent questioning by Arkadiusz Jadczyk on his website has done much to expose the pair.
One of the world's greatest fanatics for data backup, Robert Thompson wrote:
I trust tape for backing up when it's being refreshed frequently, but I don't trust tape for pulling an archive copy and sticking it on the shelf. In a year or two or three, when I really need it, the tape may not be readable. The CD-R or DVD-RAM disc will be readable.
... and that reminded me that the other day, while hunting for my FileMaker Pro 4 CD, I discovered some of my earliest CD-Rs had the lacquer near the hub peeling away. Needless to say, they were unreadable, so The Git is now duplicating any essential CD older than three years.
Thought for the day:
If I ran a school, I'd give the average grade to the ones who gave me all the right answers, for being good parrots. I'd give the top grades to those who made a lot of mistakes and told me about them, and then told me what they learned from them.
R. Buckminster Fuller
Crowded House -- The Best Of
Wednesday 6 November 2002
The Git finds writing about his ideas and discoveries of others' alternately frustrating and deeply rewarding. Some days, sometimes for days at a time, it's a struggle to find something worth writing. On other occasions, a host of ideas present themselves and there's a problem of selection among competing trains of thought. Today's blog was to be about beneficial "coincidence", but has been displaced by a correspondent sharing a link to one of The Git's all-time favourite writers -- Wendell Berry.
Just as The Git was about to post this, the Internet connection died. Attempting to reconnect produced mysterious, unintelligible sounds of a voice from the modem. After locating a standard telephone, The Git braved the pain in his back and crawled under the desk to plug in the telephone. The message was to call a number for an Important Message. Using the voice line, the message was that the bill had not been paid, and to do so at once!
When he was a tadpole, The Git had problems with losing his temper and it was many years and much self-discipline to bring it under some semblance of control. Either that, or his hormone levels decreased with age. But today gave the lie to the latter theory as blinding, red rage seized the Git's mind. If you have never experience such, count yourself lucky. Suffice to say, had there been an object of my anger present, I would have made every attempt to maim, or even kill! No, it's not rational. Yes, it goes against the grain and fibre of The Git's very being. Fortunately for The Git and any potential victim, there was nobody around, but The Git.
Back in December last year, regular readers who followed The Git's saga of building The House of Steel may remember that Telstra, the Australian telco had initially reneged on their agreement to connect the telephone service to our new home. After some argument and talking to the installation technician's boss, The Git succeeded in persuading him into honouring the agreement made thirteen months before, and we duly had our two telephone services moved from the cottage.
As mentioned in yesterday's blog, the service was downgraded by dint of the installation of a uselss, unnecessary, evil Pair Gain device with the effect of halving bandwidth on the Internet line. Then, a few weeks ago, Mrs Git noticed that Telstra had also at that time commenced charging our domestic telephone service the cost of the Internet line, so Telstra were being paid twice as much as they were entitled to. After several telephone calls to Telstra, The Git made an arrangement with one Jan Behake to have the money they had purloined credited back to our domestic telephone account due in some months time and he said he would waive the current bill as an apology for the error.
This morning's disconnect had occurred, explained the urbane Jan Behake, because The Git owes them for another month's rental that has become overdue. In other words, even though Telstra owes us for ten months' rental to which they were not entitled, they expect The Git to continue paying them! Despite billions of dollars in profit, this organisation of idiots still haven't replaced the scrap of wire they used to tie the cable to our pole with a proper cable clamp! The fury that all this bureaucratic nonsense engendered recalled a previous occasion when The Git fell foul of Telstra idiocy.
Back in the 1970s, Telstra wasn't called Telstra, it was called The Postmaster General's Department and The Git worked in Telephone Sales. While he was popular with his fellow workers, he fell foul of the boss for refusing to arrange for said boss's friend to have their telephone connected "immediately". In fact, explained The Git, we can't connect them for some months. There was at that time a sudden surge in demand for telephones in that part of Hobart's suburbs leading to shortages of available telephone numbers and telephone cable in the streets. The boss, an immigrant from some other government department where such technical issues don't count, imperious ordered the connection, "or else!" The Git said he would do it only on condition that the boss authorised the cancellation of someone else's telephone service to provide the requisite equipment.
The boss got his revenge some months later. In Telephone Sales, we worked in teams of two and The Git's supervisor took over a higher position while someone was on leave. The Git took over her position and mostly managed to get his own as well as his supervisor's job done. The term for this was "Acting Higher Duties". While everyone else was paid their extra wages for performing a job at a higher level, The Git received none despite continuing to do not only his supervisor's job, but his own. The union told The Git they weren't there for the benefit of individuals, just the good of the collective, so tough titty!
That in turn recalled The Git's ongoing problems with that other evil, thieving Bureaucracy of Bureaucracies, the Taxation Department. The year before commencing The House of Steel project, The Git received a tax demand for 90% of his current year's expected income. The Taxation Department estimates a self-employed person's income and the person is then expected to pay what's called Provisional Tax on that estimate. Of course, The Git earns nowhere near enough to pay such an outrageous percentage of his income and having paid all he could, he sadly looked at each month's Reminder of how much he "owed" the taxation Department plus the considerably higher than bank interest. Needless to say, at the end of the financial year when the Taxation Department refunded much of the money The Git had managed to pay, they kept the interest on what they had claimed The Git had owed them.
Yes, The Git hates bureaucrats. He also hates the so-called "private enterprise" parasites that have managed to avoid paying him what they owe because they are protected by another part of this system of iniquity. A decade ago, accounting for inflation, this had come to something of the order of a quarter of a million Australian dollars. Little wonder then that The Git has become singularly unimpressed by those political economists who support the idea that increasing bureaucracy is any sort of solution, or those who want to see bureaucracy decreased so they can steal more money from wage-slaves and others who cannot afford the legal costs of recovering the money they are owed.
Today's rant, as The Git wrote at the beginning, was to be about coincidence. And it returns to that topic with a twist. Despite the slings and arrows just mentioned, The Git has somehow managed to retain some semblance of sanity, humour and belief in the essential goodness of mankind. Of that and some of the strange, beneficial coincidences in his life later. Today, immediately following the blind rage, the venerable Mitsui CD burner gave up the ghost. When The Git plugged in the toaster to make breakfast, it exploded in a shower of sparks! The plan for the day, of taking the chainsaw to cut firewood suddenly seemed like a bad idea. The Git gingerly took to his bed for a nap, thanking himself for making The House of Steel strong enough that some overhead portion was not about to fall on him, or perhaps the floor to give way under his feet. Surely that would have happened had he allowed some idiot to build it for him.
Wendell Berry writes eloquently about matters that concern him, while living on his small Kentucky farm -- a hand-made life not so very different in intent, or purpose to that of The Git and Mrs Git. The Git admits that he has read but two of Wendell's books in their entirety: The Unsettling of America and The Gift of Good Land, both of which have been permanently borrowed, much to his great regret. He also must admit finding plenty to disagree with in Wendell's writing. But deep down, at the very core of Wendell Berry's writing, there's a lively individualist, thinking his own thoughts, completely disrespectful of The Currently Accepted Belief that the Modern American Way of Life is the best of all possible ways of life. From The Joy of Sales Resistance:
I am more and more impressed by the generality of the assumption that human lives are properly to be invented by an academic-corporate-governmental elite and then either sold to their passive and choiceless recipients or doled out to them in the manner of welfare payments. Any necessary thinking -- so the assumption goes -- will be done by certified smart people in offices, laboratories, boardrooms, and other high places and then will be handed down to supposedly unsmart people in low places -- who will also be expected to do whatever actual work cannot be done cheaper by machines.
I. Educated people are more valuable than other people because education is a value-adding industry.
II. Educated people are better than other people because education improves people and makes them good.
III. The purpose of education is to make people able to earn more and more money.
IV. The place where education is to be used is called "your career."
V. Anything that cannot be weighed, measured, or counted does not exist.
VI. The so-called humanities probably do not exist. But if they do, they are useless. But whether they exist or not or are useful or not, they can sometimes be made to support a career.
VII Literacy does not involve knowing the meanings of words, or learning grammar, or reading books.
VIII. The sign of exceptionally smart people is that they speak a language that is intelligible only to other people in their "field" or only to themselves. This is very impressive and is known as "professionalism."
IX. The smartest and most educated people are the scientists, for they have already found solutions to all our problems and will soon find solutions to all the problems resulting from their solutions to all the problems we used to have.
X. The mark of a good teacher is that he or she spends most of his or her time doing research and writes many books and articles.
XI. The mark of a good researcher is the same as that of a good teacher.
XII. A great university has many computers, a lot of government and corporation research contracts, a winning team, and more administrators than teachers.
XIII. Computers make people even better and smarter than they were made by previous thingamabobs Or if some people prove incorrigibly wicked or stupid or both, computers will at least speed them up.
XIV. The main thing is, don't let education get in the way of being nice to children. Children are our Future. Spend plenty of money on them but don't stay home with them and get in their way. Don't give them work to do; they are smart and can think up things to do on their own. Don't teach them any of that awful, stultifying, repressive, old-fashioned morality. Provide plenty of TV, microwave dinners, day care, computers, computer games, cars. For all this, they will love and respect us and be glad to grow up and pay our debts.
XV. A good school is a big school.
XVI. Disarm the children before you let them in.
Most delightful of all:
I am, I acknowledge, a white Protestant heterosexual man, and can only offer myself as such. I take no particular pride in my membership in this unfashionable group, nor do I consider myself in any way its spokesman. I do, however, ask you to note, dear reader, that this membership confers on me a certain usefulness in that it leaves me with no excuses and nobody to blame for my faults except myself. In fact, I am only grateful to my parents, my family, and my friends, who have done their best to make me better than I am. On my more charitable days, I am grateful even to my enemies, who have sharpened my mind and who have done me the service of being, as a rule, wronger than I am.
I am well aware that you cannot give your thoughts to someone who will not take them, and I am prepared for that. I would like to be agreed with, of course, but the rules of publication require me to be willing also to be disagreed with, to be ignored, and even to be disliked. Those who are moved by this book to disagreement or dislike will take discomfort, I hope, from hearing that some of my readers treat me kindly.
Kindness from readers is something that no essayist (and no writer of any other kind) has a right to expect. The kindness I have received from readers I count as the only profit from my work that is entirely net. I am always grateful for it and often am deeply moved by it.
But kindness is not -- is never -- the same as complete agreement. An essayist not only has no right to expect complete agreement but has a certain responsibility to ward it off. If you tell me, dear reader, that you agree with me completely, then I must suspect one or both of us of dishonesty. I must reserve the right, after all, to disagree with myself.
But however much I may change my mind, I will never agree with those saleswomen and salesmen who suggest that if I will only do as they say, all will be fine. All, dear reader, is not going to be fine. Even if we all agreed with all the saints and prophets, all would not be fine. For we would still be mortal, partial, suffering poor creatures, not very intelligent and never the authors of our best hope.
Where The Git differs most is in his attitude toward the computer. Where Wendell sees it as merely a competitor to pencil, paper and his typewriter, The Git of course views it as a communication device, removing the interference of elitist dead-tree publishers between himself and his readers. But it's even more than that. While The Git places every bit as much value in his local community and hand-made life as does Wendell Berry, he also values his Internet friends and acquaintances. As a member of a List The Git frequents said the other day:
Iím really beginning to love everyone on this list. I always thought I was kindív odd in that I seem to be able to care for and like almost everyone, which can be off putting to a lot of people, and can tug at me pretty hard sometimes, and somehow keeping my life in balance.
Iíve only met two people on this list Jon, many years ago at an ABUI and MEG came over to the house one night and we chatted for over an hour. No matter, you all helped me through my dadís death and now Dorianís birth.
Thanks to everyone for being who you are, your support, your yelling, your tears and laughter, and your input into all things wobíish.
Iíll keep you all posted re Dorian, Elaine and Annie are on their way into the hospital now.
to which someone replied:
Best wishes and dreams to Dorian!
This is one of the most unique lists that I've ever been a member of for such a long period. It has grown to much more than a tech discussion place. We discuss things that sometimes we don't even share with our own families, we joke, we laugh and even have heated spats. But we share and care, that seems to be what binds us. We have become a virtual family. You have to make it to a Con one of these days...
I read Rod's email the other evening and felt at one with it. We have a tremendous group here, probably one that may be unique as we are able to throw the usual crap at each other that brothers and sisters do so as children when they haven't any of the depths of civilisation to temper those outbursts. However, we are able to overcome those individual shortcomings and those who are mature and non judgemental survive and grow to become better people. Those who are unable to stand that maturing process fall by the wayside and are unable to contribute to a mature debate.
If this is part philosophical, for give me! I have just had 5 days off and plenty of spare time to think and reflect. For all of our great qualities, Australia is a hard country and hard countries breed hard people. We are a continent about the same size as the US, however we are 2/3 desert and of the remaining third about half that is marginal agricultural country. We are only starting to navel gaze as to what we are doing to our land and what we expect it to return to us. What is being reflected back to us is both painful and will be very expensive.
Denis and Dorothy
It's all very well when you are part of the ťlite with access to the printing press to extol the virtues of pencil, paper, and typewriter, but the Internet enables the ordinary person extraordinary access to people and writing as never before. No, it's not good merely because it's new, better, faster -- it's good because it can enrich people's lives. Indeed, without this computer, I most likely wouldn't have read Wendell's excellent essay and enjoyed once more his stimulating thoughts.
And The Git cannot resist pointing out that two of his friends have over recent years made the very same claims about the evil computer as has Wendell Berry. But that was before they spent an hour or two on the Internet :-)
Thought for the day:
I do have an interest in this book, which is for sale. (If you have bought it, dear reader, I thank you. If you have borrowed it, I honor your frugality. If you have stolen it, may it add to your confusion.) Most of the sale price pays the publisher for paper, ink, and other materials, for editorial advice, copyediting, design, advertising (I hope), and marketing. I get between 10 and 15 percent (depending on sales) for arranging the words on the pages. As I understand it, I am being paid only for my work in arranging the words; my property is that arrangement. The thoughts in this book, on the contrary, are not mine. They came freely to me, and I give them freely away. I have no "intellectual property," and I think that all claimants to such property are thieves.
Mike Oldfield -- Hergest Ridge
Thursday 7 November 2002
The temperature climbed to 30įC today, but rather than being pleasantly warm, was accompanied by yet another gale. The only advantage to such weather is that pulled weeds die very rapidly, rather than taking root again as they do when it's relatively still, damp and cool.
Now that we are down to one telephone line, the Intel hub/router/firewall is adjacent to the telephone outlet in The Great Hall. Ordinarily it would then be connected to the nearby Ethernet outlet, but that's one of the several installed that don't work. The installer was a "friend" who has refused to come and fix the problem and The Git has yet to get around to borrowing a Krone tool from the electrician. For close-work like that, it's time for one of those magnifier thingummy bobs that flip down in front of his spectacles.
The Git bored a hole in the wall between The Great Hall and the office, and ran a long flylead to his workstation. This was not as drastic as might be thought since there's a huge piece cut out of the plasterboard exposing the plumbing alongside the stove. The Git suspects the plumber is likely not going to turn up and rectify the plumbing, so it's time to call the Building Inspector and ask how long we are supposed to give him the opportunity to fix it.
Having set up the Internet connection, it was time to install a second NIC in the workstation, connect that to another hub, that hub to the server and to the wall outlet that does work, running to Thomas's bedroom. Thomas regularly runs multiple NICs and hubs at the LAN parties he organises, but he runs WinXP where The Git has stayed with Win2k Pro. In XP, you just right-click the second adapter in Network Properties and choose Bridge. In Win2k, I had to set up Internet Connection Sharing on it. That automatically turns the machine into a DHCP server, so I had to turn off DHCP in the Internet Station.
The system works and we haven't had the luxury of 24/7 Internet access for some time, so sharing the voice line is no great hardship. Thomas came up with the cash for a CD-writer from his savings, a $A99 BenQ (Acer's new OEM brand name) and that should arrive within a few days. The seeds from New Gippsland arrived and it's that time of year.
There's a trickle of subscriptions/donations coming in and that is most gratifying. Whatever you do, don't feel sorry for us. Compared to our income in the mid 1980s, we are quite well off. And back then we felt well off, though since we were growing our own meat, eggs and vegetables, and making our own bread, cheese and beer. In a few months time, we will have returned to that once more, albeit more slowly.
Thought for the day:
|Mahatma Ghandi's Seven Deadly Sins||Modern Anglo/American Cardinal Virtues|
|Wealth without work||Wealth without work|
|Knowledge without character||Knowledge without character|
|Pleasure without conscience||Pleasure without conscience|
|Business without morality||Business without morality|
|Science without humanity||Science without humanity|
|Worship without sacrifice||Worship without sacrifice|
|Politics without principle||Politics without principle|
Ravi Shankar -- The Sounds of India
Friday 8 November 2002
The gale-force wind has died, though promises to be back this afternoon. So it's a busy day shaping up. The Git is expecting a telephone call from his absent friend, Gay Yellowday, shortly. He was asleep when she called last night. So it's short shrift, I'm afraid.
A Libertarian Critique of Corporations by Jeff Wright
Many folks reading this may find it unsettling, but THERE IS something inherently evil about corporations. Mainly, that they are anti-human. Remember the corporation is a government creation. And since the Corporations Acts first started passing into law, little more than a century ago, corporations have more and more become the agents of control, regulation and taxation of the populace for the government.
One might confuse "corporation" with capitalism and the free market. There is no evil in capitalism and the free market. However, government has turned corporations into parodies of their own failings through regulation and legislative manipulation.
Thought for the day:
A friend who is far away is sometimes much nearer than one who is at hand. Is not the mountain far more awe-inspiring and more clearly visible to one passing through the valley than to those who inhabit the mountain?
Loudon Wainright III -- I'm Alright
Saturday 9 November 2002
While The Git has a rough idea of the breakdown of his readership from the domains browsed from, he has no idea how many are "local". For any readers that happen to be local, we are cleaning out the "spares" box. Best offers prior to 9am Friday when the remnants will be advertised in The Hobart Mercury.
It's traditional to say "hardly used", but this is certainly true of the drives. The printer, prior to The Git acquiring it, was used on a four year old Win95 box that had never needed a reinstall of the OS. The only reason the box was replaced was because it was glacially slow. It's also where the 2GB Seagate originates. The software consists of the CDs only and is not NFR, or OEM tied to a particular machine. It's because we have legitimate other copies that we have our own for resale. Having NFRs of the complete MS Back Office 4.0 and 4.5 with 50 CALs is kind of frustrating when you're broke :-(
The wind is blowing like a bastard again, so the chances of working outdoors for any length of time is minimal. Later today, the sound card in the entertainment machine will be returned to The Git's workstation. The sound circuitry built into the ASUS K7V is good enough for playback, but not recording. The entertainment box will get an ISA A-Open MP32 modem/soundcard combo, though we won't be installing the modem driver. It's worth bearing in mind that under Win9.x to accept the OS believing it to be a Crystal soundcard. If you tell it that it's an MP32, you will lose access to the CD-ROM drive. We tried using a variety of software to play music via the Hollywood Plus, but merely succeeded in destabilising the machine.
The Panasonic (Mitsumi) CD burner that died burned approximately 1,000 CDs over its three years of life and it cost $A395 adding around $A0.40 to each CD that was burned. CDRs cost $A2.60 each when it was purchased and have dropped somewhat below $A1 each bringing the cost per CD to a little less than $A2 each. Its replacement is to be a Sony CRX175A1, rather than the BenQ and cost $A85. Postage and packing came to more than a third on top of that! It will be interesting to see how the costing compares at the end of its life.
Thought for the day:
All the important human advances that we know of since historical times began have been due to individuals of whom the majority faced virulent public opposition.
Genesis -- Foxtrot
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