Stochastic Bookmark

abstruse unfinished commentary

about correspondence


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As far as I can tell, I was the first to use the phrase "persistent ephemera", in a comment to Scott McLemee's farewell QuickStudy blogpost (which is dated over a year after QS's "archive" ends, and which isn't his last post either, not by a long shot, he even took it back). These days the top hit is for a largely unviewed BelfordSyndrome vid, go figure. Meanwhile, "persistent ephemeral node" became a datastructure thang, go reconfigure.

The nature of the nets is that some things fade away, others remain, without rhyme nor reason, and especially without context, as with historical phenomena but quicker. There are still a score of my Usenet posts out there, and even then I knew enough to take some care with what I committed to posterity, however uncertainly. The other side of the coin was losing stuff I'd rather not have, such as when the NYTimes, so-called newspaper of record, wiped their literature forums clean. When spinozablue went white last year, not just sorry to see it go, I had to reconstruct and repost my Philosophy of Composition take-off atop my take on Shakespeare.

So, to exercise a bit more diligence, I'm scraping up some other net-droppings, odd bits that might otherwise evanesce, adding a bit of embroidery as seems fitting. First up, flashfic fished from the comments to a piece on (not that I think it's going anywhere, but the site's been inactive for years now) on the problem of signage with a half-lifetime guarantee to warn future civilizations not to dig up a transuranic radioactive waste dump:

Casually wielding the geigerdowser like a walkingstick, Amgen Horsson made his way through dense undergrowth, intermittently lit by shafts of sunlight penetrating the flowering canopy high above. Midwinter, while the foliage lapsed into dormancy, was the only window open for exploration in this region; as spring approached the vegetation would regenerate faster than it could be hacked away even with the most finely honed machete. Tales were rife about the Lost Expedition of a decade earlier, which tarried too long and was not located by rescue teams until the following year, when skeletal remains were found entwined 50 feet above the ground. But even this impediment would not have discouraged the truly intrepid energy prospectors, had not the area been designated holy ground, a cultural reserve marked off by large granite plinths bearing mysterious markings attributed to a long-lost civilisation that possessed, in addition to a vindictive cosmology evidenced by the anguished totems, a surprisingly advanced technology. It had been surmised that the array had functioned as a astronomical calendar, but recent excavations nearby had identified large energy discharges that pointed to another function for this central site, perhaps as a repository of concentrated decaying matter much more efficient than the naturally produced black substances that were previously thought to be the bulwark of this ancient society’s energy production. Given the increasing need for extended half-life sources, interest became intense in the possibilities afforded by the foresight of these anonymous forefathers. Fortunately, the enlightened Council of Convenance had lifted the taboo on exploratory development, over howls of protest from Ur-ologists claiming that a still untapped heritage was being forever pissed away.

So yeah transurinic waste, but recent developments suggest another waste disposal issue connected with another potentially hazardous substance ...


Blogger nnyhav said...

jstor update on the premise(s)

7/6/15 13:03  

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