Bell Sympatico pop/smtp

If all of a sudden (in my case after 10 years of service) you’re having trouble with Bell Sympatico email service, if you find that your credentials are not recognized – even immediately after resetting your password – I’m here to tell you that Bell has turned off pop email access by default. Yes, crazy, I know, but they’re almost …

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Modern typesetting

I first used Microsoft Word in 1984, about three decades (a generation) ago, on a Hewlett-Packard 110 laptop computer, one of the very first. I wish I could tell you which version of Word – definitely, one-point-something. (I’m ok with not resurrecting the computer itself. It had lead-acid batteries; its mass was 4 kg, fairly heavy for a lap. It ran MS-DOS 2.11. …

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Linotype Syntax (Next, SC/Small Caps, etc.)

I have written, illustrated, laid-out, and typeset three books. (I have not typeset books written by anyone else.) In 1996, when I was polishing up my first book for publication, I invested several hundred dollars in a typeface (colloquially, font): Syntax, from Linotype. By 2003, as I was polishing up my second book, I really really wanted one or two additional weights. …

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Rogers 404; Bell as NSA

Access www.rogers.com with cookies disabled and get 404 – PAGE NOT FOUND. I’m serious. This is supposed to be a technology company? And Bell: A business plan that includes (or perhaps is centered on) selling our TV show watching history, telephone call details, and web browsing history – including search terms? They’re kidding, right? No, I’m afraid not. Let’s …

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Consumer NTSC RF modulators

I would be very very interested to hear from anyone in possession of archaic technical details about channel 3/channel 4 RF NTSC modulators of the sort found in consumer VCRs. Specifically: Have you any idea what the RF carrier levels and/or tolerances might be? On an NTSC broadcast transmitter, ‑286 mV (i.e., ‑40 IRE) would produce …

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Flaky conferences

There are now lots of junk/fake conferences (“spamferences”) and lots of junk scientific publications. Beware. Your first hint that a conference is flaky is the announcement (or call for participation) arrives from an email addresses at a domain such as 163.com (NetEase, Inc. 网易; 網易) or 126.com (ChinaUnicom, a reasonably respectable company), instead of a decent, relevant, …

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