Chat Log: September 5th, 2009

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[14:43] #knownspace> Lensman: Hello Niven fen!

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[14:55] #knownspace> Lensman: Hi Nedry

[14:56] #knownspace> nedry: hey lensman

[14:56] #knownspace> nedry: i have to run to Tescos. I'll be back in a few minutes

[14:57] #knownspace> nedry: I forgot to put the new chat thing up... sigh

[14:57] #knownspace> Lensman: L8r

[14:57] #knownspace> Lensman: I'm accessing via Chatzilla, so the new thing doesn't affect me.

[14:57] #knownspace> nedry: yeah, I don't use it either. I run trillian

[14:58] #knownspace> Lensman: I could not figure out how to access via Trillian. :D

[14:58] #knownspace> Lensman: I mean :(

[14:58] #knownspace> nedry: you have to add the irc plugin.

[14:58] #knownspace> nedry: it comes with it.

[14:59] #knownspace> Lensman: I don't think that was my problem.

[14:59] #knownspace> Lensman: Anyway, Chatzilla works fine for me.

[15:02] #knownspace> nedry: cool.

[15:02] #knownspace> nedry: i also haven't worked on that darn game. I promise I will get back to that.

[15:02] #knownspace> nedry: I seem to be having a problem with my lifestyle.

[15:02] #knownspace> Lensman: Am I speaking to Chief Strike Anywhere?

[15:04] #knownspace> Lensman: You've got more aliases than Frank Abagnale Jr.!

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[15:07] #knownspace> dmac44: Hi

[15:09] #knownspace> Lensman: Hi dmac

[15:09] #knownspace> dmac44: Is there a topic today?

[15:09] #knownspace> Lensman: Not yet. Do you have a suggestion?

[15:10] #knownspace> Lensman: Did you read the article on monopoles?

[15:11] #knownspace> dmac44: I did, not really monopoles but a molocule that acted like them I think

[15:11] #knownspace> Lensman: Seems rather strange to me. "We're sure the monopoles are there, but positive and negative monopoles are so close together that we can't detect them separately." Seems odd they can be "sure".

[15:12] #knownspace> Lensman: I don't think we're talking about the same thing.

[15:12] #knownspace> dmac44: Same research different interuptations

[15:13] #knownspace> dmac44: It's like those event horizons they're experimenting with using sounds waves, some of the same propertities as black holes but not really black holes

[15:14] #knownspace> Lensman: Oops, I hadn't seen Andy's response to my post on the list. Looks like you're right. Tanj!

[15:15] #knownspace> dmac44:

[15:16] #knownspace> dmac44: That's the SA article

[15:16] #knownspace> Lensman: Yah I could see that in the URL.

[15:17] #knownspace> dmac44: real monopoles would be an economic boon, especially for energy production

[15:17] #knownspace> Lensman: Maybe I should not have posted on the list that Larry said he's be late if he was here at all. Looks like fen are avoiding the chat today in droves!

[15:18] #knownspace> Lensman: What would monopoles be good for, practically speaking?

[15:18] #knownspace> dmac44: is Ed going to be here?

[15:18] #knownspace> Lensman: I guess, dunno. He usually is.

[15:19] #knownspace> dmac44: my recollection is that some theories say that they would break down protons releasing huge amounts of energy

[15:19] #knownspace> Lensman: Finagle, proton decay! AIEEE!

[15:21] #knownspace> dmac44: just wondering about Ed as he posted on his blog: Happy Labor Day weekend, all. As I'll be laboring -- too many plot threads coming together -- must continue into alien warfare and other assorted mayhem

[15:22] #knownspace> Lensman: He put out a post on his Ed Lerner discussion list recently, I think one of his recent books is now out in paperback. Haven't seen any real discussion on his list unfortunately. Not that I've read any of his solo books yet.

[15:23] #knownspace> Lensman: Some interesting discussion over on the Piper list recently. Have you read Piper's Paratime stories?

[15:24] #knownspace> dmac44: I haven't, are they interesting?

[15:25] #knownspace> Lensman: *I* think so. Piper is one of my favorite authors, and /Lord Kalvan of Otherwhen/ is one of my very favorite novels. That's in his Paratime series, altho more of a sub-series of its own.

[15:27] #knownspace> dmac44: I just started Ed's book Moonstruck and have Fool's Experiment (the paperback you referred to) in my reading pile.

[15:27] #knownspace> Lensman: The original novel is comprised of... IIRC three novlets. There is also an excellent sequel by Roland Green and John F. Carr, which I personally think is worthy of Piper. Carr continued the series alone... unfortunately I can't recommend those.

[15:27] #knownspace> dmac44: I'll take a look at the original. thanks

[15:28] #knownspace> Lensman: ./Fool's Experiment/ sounds interesting, from Ed's description. Is that part of a series, or a stand-alone?

[15:29] #knownspace> Lensman: Oh, the sequel to LKOO is /Great King's War/. Carr recently expanded that for a hardcover reprint, but I recommend the original paperback. Sometimes less is more.

[15:30] #knownspace> Lensman: dmac I take it you're either not on the Niven discussion list or don't read most of the posts?

[15:30] #knownspace> dmac44: Didn't know there was one

[15:30] #knownspace> Lensman: 'Cuz I recently posted an essay on Piper and his writings.

[15:31] #knownspace> Lensman: Here's the info page for the discussion list, larryniven-l:

[15:31] #knownspace> Lensman:

[15:32] #knownspace> dmac44: thanks

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[15:48] #knownspace> NickE: evenin'

[15:53] #knownspace> Lensman: Hi Nick

[15:54] #knownspace> NickE: Hi Lens

[15:55] #knownspace> NickE: quiet?

[15:56] #knownspace> Lensman: Yah pretty quiet in here today.

[16:12] #knownspace> NickE: mmm...Pimms

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[16:13] #knownspace> NickE: no Larry or Ed then?

[16:13] #knownspace> NickE: Hi Dan

[16:14] #knownspace> Dan: Didn't think I was going to wake up in time to be here.

[16:14] #knownspace> Dan: Still have to leave early and go to work tonight.

[16:14] #knownspace> NickE: bummer

[16:14] #knownspace> NickE: is v queit

[16:15] #knownspace> Dan: Not a problem. Quiet can be productive too.

[16:15] #knownspace> NickE: been boozin all afternoon with some ex work mates..pleasantly squiffy

[16:15] #knownspace> dmac44: Locus has an article about Larry this month. Has anyone read it?

[16:16] #knownspace> NickE: No, is it online?

[16:16] #knownspace> Dan: I keep worrying about my editorial in the next Aphelion- Should come online late tomorrow night, if my web guru doesn't slack off on doing the cover illo.

[16:16] #knownspace> dmac44: I don't think so, at least they send it out to their subscribers first

[16:16] #knownspace> NickE: ah

[16:20] #knownspace> Dan: I've got to take at leas one of my next days off and write more on my steampunk story. It's starting to nag at me that I've let it sit for a month without making time to work on it.

[16:24] #knownspace> UncleNasty: Dan: What's the outline on the story? Anything shareable?

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[16:27] #knownspace> dmac44: oops

[16:30] #knownspace> Dan: Steampunk re-telling of American history from War of 1812 'til after the Civil War, with pseudo-HG Wells Martians taking the place of villains in both those wars, + Industrial Revolution sparked off early- from smarter ancient Greeks & from scavenging tech from Invader machines, +airship pirates, steam-powered tanks, propane fueled cannon, etc.

[16:30] #knownspace> Dan: All told from inside a romance between an airship Captain who hunts pirates and a Pirate Queen.

[16:31] #knownspace> NickE: cool

[16:31] #knownspace> Dan: Simple stuff, really. LOL! I tend to world-build a lot for even simple stories.

[16:33] #knownspace> Dan: I should sit down one day and write up a real blurb for it so that I don't wind up leaving juicy bis out of explaining it to people.

[16:33] #knownspace> UncleNasty: cool

[16:35] #knownspace> Dan: I started writing the middle-to-end because the romance was heavier in that bit, + it allowed me to brainstorm the history and tech that I'll have to have for the beginning-to-middle.

[16:38] #knownspace> UncleNasty: i think part of the reason I enjoy WoW so much is the stempunky aspect of it

[16:38] #knownspace> Dan: I Balkanized the US into 6-8 different little Republics because of the Invaders. Everything from a People's Republic of Quebec to Joshua Norton's Empire of California. I even let Indians keep lots of their ancestral homes rather than being shoved off on reservations.

[16:40] #knownspace> Dan: I love world-building. I think I'm addicted to it more than David Webber is. :)

[16:40] #knownspace> UncleNasty: lol

[16:40] #knownspace> UncleNasty: have you read snowcrash?

[16:41] #knownspace> Dan: Doesn't sound familiar. Whose is it?

[16:41] #knownspace> UncleNasty: sec will find u a link

[16:41] #knownspace> UncleNasty: it sounds like you'd love the worldbuilding in that

[16:42] #knownspace> UncleNasty:

[16:42] #knownspace> Dan: Thanks.

[16:43] #knownspace> UncleNasty: it's very tongue-in-cheek and it predates the 'net

[16:43] #knownspace> UncleNasty: it's also one of the earlier uses of 'avatar' to refer to a person's online representation

[16:44] #knownspace> Dan: I see. I'll have to look for a copy. Have you read Stephanie Osborn's "Burnout" ?

[16:45] #knownspace> UncleNasty: doesn't sound familiar

[16:46] #knownspace> UncleNasty: ahh - new-ish release

[16:48] #knownspace> Dan: She's a retired NASA scientist, worked on the shuttle program for years, got degrees in 4 different sciences. New book, first SF novel she's done. Takes a shuttle crash similar to the two real shuttle disasters and turns it into a mystery/conspiracy theory/Roswell/Area 51/adventure with a NTSA crash investigator and an Austrailian Astronomer as heroes.

[16:48] #knownspace> dmac44: Snow Crash was written by Neal Stephenson who also wrote The Diamond Age (Snow Crash is in the same universe as I recall). Both good reads

[16:49] #knownspace> UncleNasty: stephenson also wrote "in the beginning was the command line" which is a must-read

[16:50] #knownspace> UncleNasty: it's an essay, not a novel, and freely available for download

[16:50] #knownspace> UncleNasty:

[16:50] #knownspace> Dan: I met her at the last convention I went to, back in July. Bought a copy from her after spending hours talking with her about everything under the sun. She was chewing me out for not working on my stories more than I do.

[16:50] #knownspace> Lensman: I need to e-mail Tim Kyger about the Niven article in Locus 'cuz he collects obscure Niviniana like that.

[16:51] #knownspace> Lensman: Dan: Have you read the Dark Horse graphic novel /Scarlet Traces/, a sequel to WotW? What you describe sounds somewhat similar, with the British Empire adopting Martian tech after the invasion.

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[16:53] #knownspace> NickE: cock

[16:53] #knownspace> Lensman: <Lensman duct tapes NickE to channel>

[16:53] #knownspace> NickE: ta

[16:53] #knownspace> Dan: Haven't read it, but there's lots of stories in that vein. Nick Pollotta has one that uses British Empire Martian tech against Cuthulu, for instance- and it's a comedy.

[16:54] #knownspace> Lensman: CTHULHU: Take my worshippers-- please!

[16:54] #knownspace> Dan: Nick got food poisoning last week and thought it was Swine Flu for a couple of days.

[16:56] #knownspace> Lensman: The Cthulhu Mythos isn't what I generally think of as fodder for comedy... altho there *was* the "Hello Cthulhu" online comic strip, in which Great Cthulhu found himself in his own personal hell-- the world of "Hello Kitty"!

[16:56] #knownspace> UncleNasty: go on youtube and check out "calls for cthulhu"

[16:57] #knownspace> Dan: Just got friended by Doc Travis Taylor on Facebook. He and John Ringo are writing a series developed from Ringo's "Looking Glas War" novel. Doc Travis is keeping Ringo straight on the physics for their dimention-hopping and starship drive. Their starship was built from a decomissioned US nuclear sub, LOL!

[16:58] #knownspace> Lensman:

[16:58] #knownspace> Dan: I'm afraid that most of the SF&F writers that I know personally are 90 miles away in Atlanta for DragonCon this weekend.

[16:59] #knownspace> Lensman: Starship from submarine, like the /Botany Bay/ in the Classic Star Trek ep. "Space Seed".

[16:59] #knownspace> Dan: I'm working nights, and can't spare the cash anyway, so I can't join them. :(

[16:59] #knownspace> NickE: eh? I wasn't ill

[16:59] #knownspace> NickE: oopps...not me :-0)

[16:59] #knownspace> Lensman: And in Piper's /The Cosmic Computer/ the /Harriet Barnes/ is described as resembling a submarine.

[17:00] #knownspace> Dan: Nick Pollotta, was sick. Sorry for the confusion.

[17:00] #knownspace> NickE: Sorry, not paying attention

[17:00] #knownspace> Lensman: Ah, if only RL was like soap operas, where there are never two people with the same first name...

[17:01] #knownspace> Lensman: There are invariably other "David"s on online forums, which is why I go by Lensman.

[17:02] #knownspace> Dan: Same reason I usually go by "Vila" - Dan isn't a rare name either.

[17:02] #knownspace> Lensman: Never read any John Ringo. Altho I hear good things about his stuff, so I should correct that.

[17:03] #knownspace> Dan: He can write really well, but in real life he can appear to be self-centered. Basically, he's shy and overcompensates at cons.

[17:04] #knownspace> Lensman: I don't require that authors be personable or sociable. In fact in my experience they're usually lacking in social skills.

[17:04] #knownspace> Lensman: I certainly enjoy hearing Niven talk, but he should never be allowed to read his own stories aloud. As a dramatic speaker... he's a good writer.

[17:05] #knownspace> Dan: Google "Oh no, John Ringo" for an essay on one of his more pulpish series that most people think is sort of sick. His hero in that one is like a wife-beating Remo Williams- without Chiun.

[17:06] #knownspace> Lensman: I once played "Mafia" with Vernor Vinge, at the Campbell Conference for SF writers. Vinge was absolutely terrible at "reading" other people. Even worse than me, and my social skills are *cough* limited.

[17:06] #knownspace> Dan: He says he writes that series as therapy, then writes SF when he gets rid of his "inner demons", LOL!

[17:08] #knownspace> Lensman: Interesting that Ringo needs someone to "ride herd" on his science. I take it, then, that Ringo does not write hard-SF?

[17:09] #knownspace> Dan: More into military SF than hard science. But that partnership is turning out some real gems.

[17:10] #knownspace> Lensman: Nedry: My apologies for not recognizing your handle. "Dennis Nedry" of course. I'm a bit slow today.

[17:10] #knownspace> UncleNasty: is anyone connected on the new flash client?

[17:10] #knownspace> UncleNasty:

[17:10] #knownspace> Lensman: I'm connected via Chatzilla. Why?

[17:10] #knownspace> UncleNasty: we put up a new online connector - to replace the java client

[17:11] #knownspace> UncleNasty: or to supplement the java one, sry

[17:11] #knownspace> UncleNasty: it looks a ton nicer

[17:11] #knownspace> Lensman: I hope that will end Larry's problems with connecting.

[17:11] #knownspace> Dan: Haven't tried it out yet, but I prefer mIRC in any case. Flash & java chats do odd things to my computer.

[17:12] #knownspace> UncleNasty: i use xchat & colloquy, but the flash chat should make life easier - flash tends to be a little simple for the end user than java

[17:12] #knownspace> UncleNasty: simpler*

[17:12] #knownspace> Lensman: My new(er) computer handles Flash and Java better, but still there are occasional problems and I'd just rather avoid Java chats if I can. There are *always* problems with Java chat rooms, and it's most definitely not just me. Lots of people have problems regularly.

[17:13] #knownspace> Lensman: I used mIRC with my old computer. Pretty reliable but pretty bare bones too. On Chatzilla I can adjust font size, which is nice.

[17:13] #knownspace> UncleNasty: just go to - it should 'just work'

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[17:14] #knownspace> FlashNasty: it's kinda slick ;)

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[17:17] #knownspace> FlashDan: OK, it looks good! If my bandwidth wasn't being pwned by other programs, I think it'd connect faster.

[17:17] #knownspace> UncleNasty: that first load is a doozy

[17:18] #knownspace> FlashDan: Works just fine, though.

[17:19] #knownspace> UncleNasty: i thought it was a lot easier on the eyes than the java chat

[17:20] #knownspace> FlashDan: Very slick, simple to connect, no set-up before you can use it... Ought to solve Larry's connection problems, right enough.

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[17:21] #knownspace> lemming: ah there it is

[17:21] #knownspace> lemming: couldb

[17:21] #knownspace> lemming: couldnt recall the bloody url before

[17:21] #knownspace> Lensman: Well Larry said he likely won't make it today, and if he does he'll be late. But then he would already be late if he showed up now.

[17:21] #knownspace> Dan: OK, time to de-clone myself.

[17:22] #knownspace> Lensman: Do you experience some sort of psychic pain when you kill off a clone of yourself?

[17:23] #knownspace> Dan: I took a wild guess and used the IRC command to exit the FlashChat.

[17:24] #knownspace> Dan: No, but I've been using IRC for so long I'm used to multiple-mes popping into and out of existance.

[17:24] #knownspace> dmac44: lens: probably psychosomatic :)

[17:24] #knownspace> Lensman: Like virtual particles? :)

[17:25] #knownspace> lemming: I actually like this interface better

[17:25] #knownspace> Dan: Once you get used to aving 3 IRC clients running in different networks and 4-6 channels open in each client, you can handle anything chat can throw at you. :)

[17:25] #knownspace> Lensman: Which one lemming?

[17:25] #knownspace> lemming: eris

[17:25] #knownspace> lemming: tried it out with NEil and Sea a while back

[17:26] #knownspace> lemming: (lemming = NickE)

[17:26] #knownspace> Lensman: Eris? Isn't it kind cold there out past the orbit of Neptune? <Lensman ducks>

[17:26] #knownspace> Lensman: Seriously, I never heard of "eris".

[17:26] #knownspace> lemming: <groan>

[17:27] #knownspace> lemming: well, it's what links to

[17:27] #knownspace> Lensman: Is it a normal Internet browser, like FireFox or Opera, then?

[17:27] #knownspace> UncleNasty: eris is the flash component

[17:28] #knownspace> Lensman: -k-

[17:28] #knownspace> UncleNasty: sean could tell you the author

[17:28] #knownspace> lemming: owrks fine in IE

[17:28] #knownspace> Dan: Eris= Goddess of Discord & chaos - Greek, I think.

[17:28] #knownspace> UncleNasty: it's in beta and we have permission to test :)

[17:28] #knownspace> lemming: even if my typing doesnt

[17:28] #knownspace> UncleNasty: speaking of chaos & discord it was my 15th wedding anniversary this week

[17:28] #knownspace> Dan: Congratulations!

[17:29] #knownspace> UncleNasty: s'ok

[17:29] #knownspace> Lensman: Speaking of out past the orbit of Neptune... What is the take on why the re-classification of Pluto has been so controversial? Why do people get passionate and emotionally involved in the issue?

[17:29] #knownspace> lemming: congrats!

[17:29] #knownspace> UncleNasty: if i'd committed murder, I'd be out by now...

[17:29] #knownspace> UncleNasty: ;)

[17:29] #knownspace> Dan: :)

[17:29] #knownspace> Lensman: Indeed, congratulations.

[17:29] #knownspace> lemming: its my 20th on Weds

[17:30] #knownspace> Dan: Lyn & I started our 4th year back in July.

[17:30] #knownspace> UncleNasty: ooh gratz nick

[17:30] #knownspace> lemming: ta

[17:30] #knownspace> Dan: Yes, congrats to Nick too.

[17:30] #knownspace> lemming: we bought crockery

[17:31] #knownspace> lemming: (China = 20)

[17:31] #knownspace> UncleNasty: LOL

[17:31] #knownspace> Lensman: Congrats to everyone who has managed to forge a long term relationship with a female-type person. :)

[17:31] #knownspace> Dan: I made it to 13 years with my last one, but she died on me. Wish I'd had Lyn all along, really. I could have passed up all the crap from the first two.

[17:31] #knownspace> UncleNasty: sorry if may responses are delayed - i'm running a deathknight in world of warcraft and dying lots

[17:32] #knownspace> Lensman: "It's the most important thing in the world!" ...of WarCraft.

[17:32] #knownspace> lemming: Anyone check out The Guild?

[17:33] #knownspace> lemming: Huge WoW refs

[17:33] #knownspace> Lensman: vas is das?

[17:33] #knownspace> lemming: (I imagine)

[17:33] #knownspace> UncleNasty: yeah - it's funny

[17:33] #knownspace> UncleNasty: check out "date my avatar" on youtube

[17:33] #knownspace> lemming:

[17:33] #knownspace> Lensman: The only thing I know about WoW is what I saw on that "South Park" episode. I'm sure that's all 100% accurate. Oh, wait...

[17:33] #knownspace> UncleNasty: The Guild is a serialized comedyish geekish show free on the web

[17:34] #knownspace> UncleNasty: it's not far wrong

[17:34] #knownspace> lemming: and is rather good

[17:35] #knownspace> Lensman: Speaking of watching things on the Intertubes, I need to visit and watch last week's "Defying Gravity" episode 'cuz I was out of town last weekend helping a friend move.

[17:35] #knownspace> lemming: ana 2 of my podcatsing colleagues are on a panel with Felicia Day at Dragon Con this weekend :-)

[17:35] #knownspace> Lensman: Dragon Con is this weekend? Ah that explains that cricket noise from national fandom...

[17:36] #knownspace> UncleNasty: meh hulu tells me to go away coz I'm in canadia

[17:36] #knownspace> lemming: yep. Planning on going next year

[17:36] #knownspace> Lensman: UN I know I read of a website that lets you "spoof" a U.S. ISP, but unfortunately I did not bookmark it.

[17:36] #knownspace> Dan: Yeah. I could drive to it in 90 minutes, but can't afford to go. Working night shift this weekend instead. :)

[17:37] #knownspace> Lensman: I wonder if it works for other countries? I had something a few weeks back that refused me 'cuz I'm not a Canadian.

[17:38] #knownspace> Lensman: But I couldn't find the website. :(

[17:38] #knownspace> Dan: Someone's been spoofing the votes in Aphelion's fhash fiction contests for the last few months. Pissing the writers off a lot, too.

[17:38] #knownspace> Lensman: "fhash" ?

[17:39] #knownspace> Dan: Typo, I meant "Flash Fiction"

[17:39] #knownspace> Lensman: Okay, what's "Flash Fiction" ?

[17:40] #knownspace> Lensman: Like slash fiction only with more F's?

[17:40] #knownspace> Lensman: :)

[17:40] #knownspace> Dan: 13 to 15 vites spread out between 5 or 6 flash stories is the norm. Last month 25 votes were cast for one story in the same hour, on top of the 15 spread out on the other stories.

[17:40] #knownspace> Dan: Flash is stories with a 1000 word limit.

[17:41] #knownspace> Lensman: -k-

[17:41] #knownspace> UncleNasty:

[17:43] #knownspace> Lensman: The Hugos have a rule that says they can disallow block voting. Seems reasonable to do so.

[17:43] #knownspace> Dan: Yeah, that sort of thing. One of our writers runs a contest each month in the zine's Forums BBoard as a writing exersize for folks. proposes a theme, a pair of required elements to make sure that it isn't just someone's old stories cut down to the word limit, then puts up a poll to vote for whichever story the readers like best.

[17:44] #knownspace> Dan: and mytime for today is up. Sorry folks, got to get ready for work. See you all in the mailing list!

[17:46] #knownspace> Lensman: I occasionally get e-mail pleas "Please vote for my entry/story! Go to this website..." Well sorry, but in the first place I don't appreciate getting spammed by my friends, and in the second place I don't vote for things or sign petitions which I haven't actually read and think deserve it.

[17:57] #knownspace> lemming: gotta hit sack

[18:01] #knownspace> dmac44: I've got to go,see you all next month.

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[19:43] #knownspace> SeanS: who showed up? been on the river all day.

[20:00] #knownspace> UncleNasty: it's been pretty quiet

[20:01] #knownspace> UncleNasty: dan, nick edwards

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