The Null Device


A Seattle University linguist has shown that arrested suspects soften their language into a more deferential form, avoiding direct commands and deliberately weakening their statements as not to be confrontational. This submissive form of speech, technically referred to as the "female register" (probably because it was found in (traditionally submissive) women's speaking patterns), uses conditional forms of verbs such as "might", "may" or "should", questions instead of assertions, and weakening phrases like "kind of". Not surprisingly, hard-nosed cops often ignore statements like "I better get a lawyer, hadn't I?", and suspects end up confessing without a lawyer present. (via Unknown News)


Don't plan your death-of-CPRM party just yet; the Orwellian hard disk copy control scheme may be dead, but, like the head of a Hydra, another system has taken its place.


You can now get Python for the PalmPilot. Awesome... Mind you, you need a newer Palm than my old Pilot (that's right; not even a PalmPilot; though it does have the 2.0 ROM and 1Mb of RAM).

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I'm Wayne Kerr, and if there's one thing I hate... it's people who go to band venues and talk loudly over the music, as if cognitively incapable of perceiving a distinction between a group of actual musicians playing for them and a radio tuned to FOX-FM*. I went to see Dandelion Wine tonight at SubTerrain; when the band started playing, a lot of the people kept talking loudly amongst themselves, oblivious to the music. One table, which seemed to be comprised of jocks and Barbie dolls, was the worst offender; Why can't people like that just go to a pub or something?

* FOX-FM is a commercial radio station in Melbourne which plays current and the past few years' Top 40 swill, and is typically heard in establishments frequented by people of no musical discernment. It is indistinguishable from MMM and TT-FM.

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