Facelift

Sotala-staticI owe a couple of travelogues. Russia and London. But given the whole down-to-the-wire thing on Echopraxia‘s release (officially tomorrow, just in case anyone’s counting), perhaps you can forgive me for putting those off for a week or so. More imminent items could spoil in the meantime.

First off, a reminder that I’m appearing on reddit for an AMA tomorrow at 7pm EDT. I think I’m supposed to sign in earlier and fire some kind of starting pistol though. Also there was a book giveaway. I’m sure I’ll be more clued in on the details after I’ve had a chance to go back over these 116 outstanding emails, and after a few more time zones have had a chance to diffuse out through my ears.

Even more imminently, the new site is up. Most of it, anyway; you won’t notice much difference here on the ‘crawl, or over in Blurbs or the Gallery (Blurbs may or may not be reno’ed later today). But Backlist, Author, and Kibble Fund pages are all sparkly and new.  More importantly, all the new Echopraxia-related content is live. Go click on that splash page none of you ever go to because it’s too confusing, and revel in the newness.  Follow the links. Tell me what’s broken; there hasn’t been a lot of time for cross-platform testing.

The rest of the renovations will roll out in the near future. (I’m especially looking forward to uploading a whole bunch of new material into the Gallery.) It’s been kind of a frantic slog even to get this much up and running in time for the 26th— both I and Łukasz Fedorowicz, my estimable web designer, ended up working on this thing in the wee hours and during our respective vacations, so you’re lucky to get this much.

That said, though— well, to these eyes, “this much” looks pretty damn spiffy.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This entry was written by Peter Watts , posted on Monday August 25 2014at 05:08 am , filed under ink on art, writing news . Bookmark the permalink . Post a comment below or leave a trackback: Trackback URL.

74 Responses to “Facelift”

  1. Peter,
    My complements to you and your web person. It’s beautiful.
    One error I found. On http://rifters.com/echopraxia/enemywithin.htm
    The following text from the caption about the Gyland is doubled.

    Orbital infrared imagery of the last known survivor of the Redeemer Gyland, March 28, 2093. The presence of scavengers in close proximity to the body suggest that this picture was taken very near time of death.

  2. Trey,

    Oooh, thanks. Missed that entirely.

  3. Old one, very last pic in Gallery, think description should be “Spring 2000” or circa.

    Am having div or layer issues with some floaties, but may be my non-compliant IE, though it’s Windows 8.0 (Version 10.0.9200.17054/Update Versions 10.0.19).

    For example, “FROM AN INTERNAL COMMUNIQUÉ” floats over “442 Eic.”

    Also, scrolling down on ROOT leaves bottom ©/credit div in place over text/pic/Extras button instead of moving with scroll or at very bottom. Yet it is fine on Military Zombies and other pages and lives at the bottom.

    Blindsight Vampire page still has unused{?} Big Ben, Rorschach, Necropsy links.

    Beautiful pages.

  4. I can’t believe a new book from you drops tomorrow, PLUS new books from Scalzi and Kadrey. It’s like you guys conspired to make sure I don’t leave my house over Labor Day weekend.

    New site is looking good. I especially like your new Author photo.

    Now back to counting the minutes until the release of these books and my available time sync up…

  5. ROOT link from the Crawl goes to old root.

    Also, is spacer of vertical white lines between BICAMERAL THREAT and AUTHOR intentional? Seems like it was somewhere else last night and was different width.

  6. whoever: ROOT link from the Crawl goes to old root.

    You sure? It’s working fine for me. Maybe it’s a cache issue left over from last night?

    whoever: Also, is spacer of vertical white lines between BICAMERAL THREAT and AUTHOR intentional? Seems like it was somewhere else last night and was different width.

    Good eye. Yeah, I’ve been playing with that a bit. But it’s where it belongs.

    Thanks for pointing out those other issues too. I noticed the floaties, the dead links in the old Blindsight wing have always been there (I lost my will to finish that page in the wake of, well, you may remember), and I’ll check out the others once I clear a few of these emails…

  7. Wow, I’m immortalized as a spaceship (and someone looking for it)? Thank you, I’m very flattered.

    I guess you’ve made “naming things after people in the Finnish fandom” into a tradition now?

  8. There are actually several ROOT links that take one to the old ROOT. EXTRAS page, for example, because they link to …/index.htm instead of just the domain name.

  9. Peter Watts: You sure?It’s working fine for me. Maybe it’s a cache issue left over from last night?

    Damn. Clearing cache.

  10. Yep. Cache issue. Simple refresh fixed it.

  11. Kaj Sotala:
    Wow, I’m immortalized as a spaceship (and someone looking for it)?

    Hey, I’ve stolen enough of your ideas. Least I could do.

  12. When I click on the splash page link I get the “But Not Without Shame” blog page. Is that right? I don’t see anything the others are talking about.

  13. A few larger tweaks to consider:

    Beyond the ROOT splash page, I’d love to see the main navigation links moved from the bottom of the page to the top; beneath the Echopraxia top banner. The nav links get lost at the bottom of the page and users feel better when the exits are clearly marked.

    Consider tweaking your responsive design to work better on a smartphone screen. Reducing the main navigation to a simple “MENU” button at these sizes is a good way to deal with navigation. Check out http://www.townandcountrymag.com/ and resize your browser to smartphone size. Watch how the navigation reduces to a single icon (foolishly called a “hamburger menu” in the industry).

    Overall, looking really good. Will you always keep the Echopraxia root page, or will you change that as time moves on and you’re in between novels? Might be a fun place to highight your latest project.

    PS. No, I don’t read Town and Country magazine. However, their website design is an excellent example of responsive design done properly.

  14. Terry: When I click on the splash page link I get the “But Not Without Shame” blog page.

    That is very weird. I don’t know how that happened. Fixed now, though.

  15. Oh, it’s brilliant! Loving it.

    I mentioned this in an email a bit ago, but thought to come here and ask…are you doing signings anywhere that we could call and order copies? I’ve picked up a couple of signed copies over the past year that way.

  16. OK, non-technical issue.

    A Gyland is some sort of seasteading artificial island or freedom ship (though why the hell they’d want in the North Pacific makes me question their sanity).

    But where does the term Gyland come from?

  17. Congratulations! I’m glad you’ve saved the old site in the catacombs. I’ll hand a bit to your kibble fund.

  18. http://www.rifters.com/echopraxia/theseusmission.htm

    First paragraph of the Mission Statement should say “Burns-Caulfield Kuiper”?

  19. Yes! Thank you.

  20. I just noticed http://www.rifters.com/echopraxia/ drops to a directory index…you may or may not want that. It kind of breaks up the feel of the rest of the new site (on the other hand, I can make sure I didn’t miss anything! *grin*)

  21. Huh. So do they all. Know how I can fix that? Some kind of permission reset?

  22. Needs an index.htm file I think. Forward to ROOT? Otherwise, a “You don’t have permission” error would be received IIRC.

  23. I can’t seem to find any mention of Echopraxia *the book*, anywhere on the site. There’s lots of terrific background material, but there are no links to Amazon or wherever fine books are sold. I mean, you DO want people to buy the book, and you want to make that purchase as effortless as possible.

    Perhaps said link(s) would best fit right on the Root page, beneath the “…hot time in the old town…” text. I guess you’ll have to decide if you want to include that as it does sorta break the 4th wall, but better to do that right away than let readers get too deep in the mythology of the story while exploring the deeper site.

    Finally, you might want to consider a Bibliography page. Again, this is your Author site and you want new readers to know what else you have written and how to buy copies of that too.

    Sorry to be the cold fish of capitalism here, but I want to make sure that Peter can continue making bank from his excellent writing and keep us entertained for years to come.

  24. Yeah, the easiest way is to just drop a blank (or otherwise, but that’s easiest) index.htm file in each directory. Maybe with a link back to the root page or something.

  25. Very excited to get our copies of the book tomorrow (yes, we bought one for each of us so we don’t have to argue about who gets to read it first. And you can never have too many Peter Watts books in your apartment).

    Quick broken link alert. The red Firefall hyperlink in the first paragraph of the Theseus Mission page just puts you back on the Theseus Mission page. The link on the bottom works and takes you to the Firefall page.

  26. Peter Watts:
    …the dead links in the old Blindsight wing have always been there

    If Necropsy involved graphic detail of a scrambler, may I suggest re-adding to backburner?

    Peter Watts:
    (I lost my will to finish that page in the wake of, well, you may remember)

    You know…I do.

  27. MP in DC: Quick broken link alert.

    Fixed, thanks.

    ken: I’d love to see the main navigation links moved from the bottom of the page to the top; beneath the Echopraxia top banner. The nav links get lost at the bottom of the page and users feel better when the exits are clearly marked.

    I agree. Back in the old days I used frames to ensure that the menu was always on-screen— I take it frames have fallen out of fashion or something. I’ll play around with that menu bar if I get a chance over the next day or two.

    Trey: But where does the term Gyland come from?

    “Island” (well, obviously) and “Gyre”, being a big honking basin-wide current, e.g., the North Pacific Gyre.

    Too subtle?

  28. The new site looks great!

    Minor typo: there’s a word missing from “di­verse un­der­grad­u­ate rang­ing” (“classes”?) on the “Author” page (http://www.rifters.com/real/author.htm).

  29. Peter Watts: I agree. Back in the old days I used frames to ensure that the menu was always on-screen— I take it frames have fallen out of fashion or something. I’ll play around with that menu bar if I get a chance over the next day or two.

    I’ve used bootstrap before to get always-on navbar links that are responsive to screen size. maybe have an always collapsed top navbar so that it is unobstrusive? On the other hand, don’t trust me, I’m a back-end web services kind of person and know fuck-all about design.

    ps. thank you for not having auto-playing sound anymore. that kind of stuff makes me stabby.

  30. question about art — for the 3d stuff, do you have STL files?

  31. Peter Watts,

    Nope, I’m too ignorant. Once I got gyre, it slotted into place.

  32. Broken link alert: on the credits page, the link to Universe Sandbox doesn’t work. You should probably add http:// to the href.

  33. Oge: Broken link alert: on the credits page

    Damn. It’s amazing how many of those slip past at 1am…

    Sheila: for the 3d stuff, do you have STL files?

    What is this Earth thing called STL? For that matter, what 3D stuff are you talking about?

  34. Teeny typo in your CV: “Nowa Fatastyka” on the last page should presumably be “Nowa Fantastyka”?

  35. Anybody else getting interspersed capital circumflex A’s on the Author page?

    “About the Au­thor”

    “…In ad­di­tion to a num­ber of ac­co­lades for sci­ence fic­tion…

  36. You gotta tell folks where the Kibble fund is hiding: down at the bottom of Backlist. How else can we Americans thank you for all the free books and assuage our guilt over that little border oopsie? Got frustrated and started over at Google to find it.

    You know what we’re like when we get frustrated. Don’t make us hurt you again.

  37. Peter Watts,

    STL files are 3D model files. I expect Sheila has, like me and no doubt others, thought of getting a service like shapeways.com to print out miniatures of your spaceships.
    I gather Crown of Thorns was built in Photoshop, so it would have to be done over from scratch as a 3D digital model. I’d guess that the image of Theseus being completed is a photoshop of the Theseus lamp so, again, no 3D model would exist.
    This does bring up the issue of what other Peter Watts merchandise it might be nice to have.

  38. There’s a bit of internal inconsistency. If vampires are so fucking smart, and if they figured out how to get around the crucifix glitch by sacrificing bits of their cortex, how come they’ve gone extinct? And everywhere around the world at once? Not to mention that as late as 12.000 BC there were relict, not as smart humans living all around the place.

    There is still a lot of places in the 3rd world where right angles are scarce. Not to mention a vampire would have no need to go to actual human settlements and look at right angles, snatching travellers or people going for a morning shit in the field* would be enough..

    Furthermore, with their awesome smarts, I figure vampires could say, make themselves slit goggles that’d allow them to see without allowing any cross-like shapes to fill out enough of the visual field to cause seizures.

    Also, the manipulation skills they evince strongly suggest that the vampires who’d domesticate humans and settle for being worshiped as a deities* would be massively rewarded. In fact, given a reasonably sized village a vampire could survive just on corpses or on captives/corpses of tribal enemies.. and any village with a creatures that smart would gain massive advantage in almost everything …

    *there are places in India where they haven’t even invented outhouses. They go and shit everywhere. Not kidding here.

  39. Was going to write a short comparing us with Neanderthals. Fell flat because I discovered that they were actually smarter, with larger brain pans. One problem might have been larger food requirements during an ice age. The other, some anthropologists claim, is we killed them off after having been enslaved by them, at least in one region where we co-existed.

    Interesting points, but there’s always possible reasons beyond being smarter.

    Speaking of Reddit–tonight at 7EST folks, was reading NDT’s third AMA last night. He said there were more bacteria in one centimeter of lower human tract than there have ever been humans, yet we think we rule the world.

    I was wondering why an underground vamp group didn’t replicate FizerPharm’s drug. But looking forward to reading the results of whatever they came up with.

  40. The site is looking awesome. If you want to deny directories you can do it with .htaccess sitewide with Options -Indexes here’s an in depth tute
    http://www.thesitewizard.com/apache/prevent-directory-listing-htaccess.shtml

    The ship designs are pretty neat, I might try my hand at modelling them if you don’t mind, I could post them on CC websites like blendswap and the like. I’m more of a organic model type but I’ve been meaning to stretch my wings a little.

    Oh, I read this article about a species of ant showing sympatric speciation, and I immediately thought of your vampires:

    http://smithsonianscience.org/2014/08/new-species-ant-offers-compelling-evidence-controversial-theory-species-formation/

    Aparently they are evolved from and parasitic to their host colony.

  41. Hello Peter! The evolved site looks incredible!

    Even better, my copy of Echopraxia arrived today!

    Gotta go and read, as an adjunct currently teaching high school seniors ancient world history, I am interested to see how my experience of the hormonally driven hive-mind compares with your extrapolations.

    [pray for Mojo]

  42. On the Military Zombie pitch:

    you’ll back in time to protect him during those formative years, and better equipped than ever.

    (shouldn’t it be “you’ll be back in time”?)

  43. whoever,

    One can say there are 150 million neanderthals out there..the more successful* part of humanity has neanderthal genes in such amounts that if you put them together ( metaphorically), you’d get 150 million of those guys.. Of course, only a bit of the genome was passed on, but obviously a critical bit, as populations that lack it are all quite severely disadvantaged (average IQ ~ 85)..

    * the part which invented things like say, writing, or the wheel..

  44. Frank Shearar:
    Teeny typo in your CV: “Nowa Fatastyka” on the last page should presumably be “Nowa Fantastyka”?

    Jesus, you actually read the c.v.?

    Good catch on the typo, though, compulsive-obsessive one. Thanks.

    David Light: You gotta tell folks where the Kibble fund is hiding: down at the bottom of Backlist.

    Also on the explanatory Kibble Fund page that you can get to through the Backlist. That one has cat pictures.

    You know what we’re like when we get frustrated. Don’t make us hurt you again.

    What more can you do to me? You’ve already broken my heart.

    ejp: I gather Crown of Thorns was built in Photoshop, so it would have to be done over from scratch as a 3D digital model. I’d guess that the image of Theseus being completed is a photoshop of the Theseus lamp so, again, no 3D model would exist.

    Yes. Right on both counts.

    Nestor: Stuff and links.

    Thanks for this. Will check them out.

    W: (shouldn’t it be “you’ll be back in time”?)

    Right. Got it. Thanks.

  45. About that spash page.

    First off, the URL, as seen in firefox-31.0-1 simply shows http://www.rifters.com/, but the title bar changes to Echopraxia. Some bookmarking confusion seems likely to ensue. Also, if one holds the control key while using the scroll wheel on a mouse, “Guess what I am.” bleeds all over the layout. That particular problem was not seen in google-chrome-stable-37.0.2062.94-1, but the title bar v URL window thing was still there. The blog zooms correctly in either browser.

    Also, I have to note that rifters.com does not do encryption, even if HttpsEverywhere is installed in Firefox, or a direct call to https://www.rifters.com is made. I have no desire to go into the various practical trade-offs that the operator of a Web site might have to think about, but there are important societal implications. Just saying. One of the (many) evils of Google Blogger is that it does not do encryption.

  46. ejp,

    we have some 3d printers at my hackerspace, and I was thinking maybe we could print a crown of thorns.

    Nestor,

    If either of you make some files, make them under a friendly license and share the links. github handles stl prettily. there is also thingiverse.

  47. @Sheila: See an interesting tutorial on getting your STLs as exports from Blender. Step one? Your mesh can’t have any holes. Topology fun for nerds everywhere!

    @rest of 3d fans: I still nominate Blender as the ideal common ground for 3d fanverse creation. If for no other reason, it’s a file format import-export fully equipped free-for-all. Or is there something much better that I missed? I might have to see if makehuman.org can be tweaked to produce a Wattsian Vampire without too much trouble. I bet it can.

    @whoever: About the Neandertals? I’ve heard a theory proposed about the dinosaurs comparable to the one I will posit could have done in our big-headed relatives. Theory to be read from between the lines: in the Mid-Atlantic there has been a near extinction among both red foxes and skunk in the areas that are urbanized to the point where the wildlife exists mostly in back yards, especially the damned deer. One putative cause of the extinction is not that they couldn’t adapt to backyards; they could and did, along with the coyote and to an extent of unsubstantiated rumors, felis concolor. So what is killing off the backyard foxes and skunk? The same mange which makes dogs miserable but rarely kills them will evidently infest foxes, and fail to control the parasite population through whatever are their usual means when infesting domestic canines. Pretty soon you have deaf and blind foxes with predictably short futures. Maybe something comparable happened to the Neandertal. As likely it was something like the common cold which might not bother h. sap. but invariably bloomed to pneumonia in our rival hominids. See also the varieties of herpes that are endemic and nearly harmless in monkeys but almost always kill any infected human.

  48. Mr Non-Entity:

    I still nominate Blender as the ideal common ground for 3d fanverse creation.

    I’ve always been partial to Lego for this purpose, and my Flickr contact feed apparently agrees with me. Damn, but these guys work fast: https://www.flickr.com/photos/cagerrin/14870869880/

  49. @s_holloway:

    Damn, but these guys work fast

    Heh. Maybe they’re Focused. (tip o’ the hat to Prof Vinge.) Or just hardcore fanbois/grrls.

    I have to admit. Blender has a harsh learning curve and this is coming from someone who has done both InterGraph and BRL-CAD. Then again, here’s a fairly comprehensive LEGO-blender tutorial set on Youtube.

    We should probably set up some alternative webspace to discuss animating the works of Peter Watts where newcomers to the Crawl won’t get all freaked out. 😀 Or have the publishers freak out. Or have Peter Watts get all freaked out, if that’s even possible. FIAWOL! heh

  50. Ok, Hive Minds now lacks a copyright footer altogether and Theseus Mission has an unrecognizable character represented by a square followed by “2014 Legal shenanigans and other curses” on the left. Extras and Credits also have the square instead of copyright symbol.

  51. @Y: Here, just for you. Cliched and very, very telegraphy but provides one answer.

    And I thought I’d get through it without a song reference, and it’s an anachronistic one at that.

    http://cknall.wordpress.com/2014/08/28/with-this-zephyr-so-sweet/

    I hope you’re happy. I will surely smoke an extra turd in hell for this… 😉

  52. Peter Watts,

    @Peter Watts Re: Theseus model

    If you have the time and the inclination, you could make a 3d model of Theseus using photogrammetry. There’s a bit of setup involved but its not hard to do. I suspect there are a number of people here who would happily do all the number crunching and modeling work if you provided the photos. In the end, you’d have a high quality model with photo surfaces that could be lit and rendered in whatever orientation you wanted. By the way, I have a bunch more shots of Theseus in RAW format if you’d like them.

  53. Two things:
    On the http://www.rifters.com/echopraxia/theseusmission.htm page, the text refers to Big Ben as OA-5932 (in two places), but one of the illustrations refer to it as OE-5932.
    A smaller thing, but the Military Zombies page refers to the spam-target’s child as Tomoki, and the signer of the mail on the Crown of Thorns page is also named Tomoki. Intentional?

  54. whoever:
    @Y: Here, just for you. Cliched and very, very telegraphy but provides one answer.

    And I thought I’d get through it without a song reference, and it’s an anachronistic one at that.

    http://cknall.wordpress.com/2014/08/28/with-this-zephyr-so-sweet/

    I hope you’re happy. I will surely smoke an extra turd in hell for this…

    Sorry, I don’t follow..

  55. Andrew Chase,

    I bet maybe people at https://hacklab.to/ would know how to do 3d scanning.

  56. Sheila,

    Excellent point, are there size limitations?

  57. Andrew Chase: By the way, I have a bunch more shots of Theseus in RAW format if you’d like them.

    Yes yes yes! Send me everything!

    People, this is Andrew Chase— I went on about him back in 2010, when he first built my Theseus reading lamp (which hangs prominently over my desk to this day, and always shall). The picture of Theseus under construction is basically his model with some extra plumbing photoshopped on. I can only hope Andrew gets a bit more business as a result of my hijacking his work (although I have my doubts— this is hardly the most trafficked site on the web at the best of times, and even in this neighborhood not many people seem to be visiting the Credits page). OTOH, given the quality of the man’s work I can’t imagine he needs my endorsement.

  58. gregm: About that spash page.

    Thanks for this. Will definitely follow it up (and other reminders about .htaccess, which I have used in the past and then completely forgot about, once I get the current backlog of 120 emails down to a manageable size. Also one my web guy gets back in the game (he recently suffered a dislocated shoulder).

    s_holloway: I’ve always been partial to Lego for this purpose, and my Flickr contact feed apparently agrees with me. Damn, but these guys work fast: https://www.flickr.com/photos/cagerrin/14870869880/

    Jesus, that’s amazing. Even if (as the artist points out) the spherical Hub isn’t quite ready for prime time, that model is head and shoulders above anything I’ve ever done in lame stupid Photoshop. Plus I assume its fully rotatable in 3D space.

    This is Blender, then? You guys have to buy ten copies of my books apiece then, and convince everyone you know to do the same. You must all make me so much money that I can take a year off and become proficient in this fucker. Because, wow.

    cd:
    Two things:
    On the http://www.rifters.com/echopraxia/theseusmission.htm page, the text refers to Big Ben as OA-5932 (in two places), but one of the illustrations refer to it as OE-5932.
    A smaller thing, but the Military Zombies page refers to the spam-target’s child as Tomoki, and the signer of the mail on the Crown of Thorns page is also named Tomoki. Intentional?

    Ooh, not intentional. Must fix both those things. Thank you.

  59. @Peter Watts:

    I think that one you were finding so nice is LEGO, but here’s some Blender. The original notion of Blender, if I understand rightly, was to be able to “blend” the products of a great many modeling systems into one renderable system.

    Some samples:

    Olivier “oenvoyage” Amrein presents his new demoreel.

    Blender Sci-Fi Vehicle Beauty Render from BlenderCookie, which is loaded with tutorials etc.

    However, more to the point of spaceships and cool stuff like that, see the 2012 “Tears of Steel” opensource movie short, mixing live action with CGI.

  60. Hello Dr Watts, recently finished Echopraxia, and I very much enjoyed it. I was quite interested by some of your comments in the novel on the validity of science, and whether we can really trust it if the laws of physics could change at any moment. This had me wondering as to whether you’re familiar with Hume’s Problem of Induction, and Karl Popper’s response to it in “The Logic of Scientific Discovery”. Thanks!

  61. Peter Watts: Jesus, that’s amazing. Even if (as the artist points out) the spherical Hub isn’t quite ready for prime time, that model is head and shoulders above anything I’ve ever done in lame stupid Photoshop. Plus I assume its fully rotatable in 3D space.

    This is Blender, then? You guys have to buy ten copies of my books apiece then, and convince everyone you know to do the same.You must all make me so much money that I can take a year off and become proficient in this fucker.Because, wow.

    Lego, actually, via a program called LDD. With a source file (and that particular builder often posts them with complete builds), you could assemble a physical model. It would be rather large, though. Just guessing by standard brick dimensions the entire model would be a meter end-to-end

  62. Andrew Chase,

    I don’t know the answer to that. I live in Chicago and have a membership at a hackerspace here and know that people have set up 3d scanning using various methods from time to time. I had a friend working on a 3d scanner. I’m sorry I cannot provide help.

  63. Just peeked at the new site… LOVE IT!!! 😀

  64. Do you plan on publishing the endnote references for _Echopraxia_ online? There were many interesting papers and resources that I’d like to follow up on, and it would be a big help if you already had them in an electronic format that you’d be willing to share with your readers.

  65. Joseph Knecht,

    It would be cool if he exported bibtex and made it available.

  66. Peter Watts,

    I’ve uploaded a bunch of Theseus shots to Dropbox, I just need your email so I can send you an invite to the folder.

  67. The new pages are very spiffy. I’m a bit sad to see all the Rifter material banished to the cellar. I hope this isn’t a step towards disowning it altogether. Starfish deserves better. I know Echopraxia is the spotlight material right now, but I always thought the Rifters stuff lent itself to a more distinctive and coherent visual theme. I’ll always think of Rifters.com in the hues of the abyss and rusted metal.

  68. HomicidalWombat: This had me wondering as to whether you’re familiar with Hume’s Problem of Induction, and Karl Popper’s response to it in “The Logic of Scientific Discovery”.

    More familiar with Popper (who’s kind of a staple of those philosophy-of-science courses you have to take in the first year of grad school) than with Hume (who I had to just look up now on Wikipedia). In hindsight, kind of odd that I could have known one without the other.

    I wish I’d been more informed on the Hume end of things when writing Echopraxia; Lianna could’ve invoked some much pithier arguments than she did.

    That’s right. I could have made Echopraxia even talkier.

    Joseph Knecht: Do you plan on publishing the endnote references for _Echopraxia_ online?

    I could definitely do that. It’s on the list.

    Don’t know what this bibtext thing is Sheila’s talking about. I just default to pdfs.

  69. ScottC.: I’m a bit sad to see all the Rifter material banished to the cellar.

    Me too. If I’d had my druthers, the whole damn site would have received a facelift. I wouldn’ve gone in and fixed that fragmented jigsaw of a rifters diagram, and do something about all the deprecated java bits, and even spruce up the overall visual context. But there’s a limit to how much one can do in the time one has, and the old rifters pages just weren’t getting that many hits.

    I certainly don’t plan on nuking those pages, though. They were my babies.

  70. Peter Watts: Me too. If I’d had my druthers, the whole damn site would have received a facelift. […]

    I certainly don’t plan on nuking those pages, though.They were my babies.

    Well, maybe we can visit them again someday…(nude, nudge, wink, wink).

    **spoilerish**

    There was a segment it Echopraxia where a couple characters found themselves in a submersible in the Pacific, and I was all, “OMG IT’S HAPPENING! HE”S GOING META!” I was certain we were going to get a Rifter cameo.

    I only cried for a little while when that didn’t happen, so I don’t want you to feel bad about that or anything.

  71. Peter Watts: Don’t know what this bibtext thing is Sheila’s talking about. I just default to pdfs.

    It’s a machine readable format that people use when handling references. It’s a common one, so a lot of people should have tools to work with it.

    If you have a zotero library for the book, you can select all of the relevant references and use export to save them to a machine readable format.

    Depending on motivation and time, I might make a Peter Watts zotero group and then add libraries for the books. Sometimes I relax by categorizing things. Here’s an example group https://www.zotero.org/groups/reproducible_research/items

    If you export references, I can import them. If you have any private metadata, be sure not to include it in an export.

    “pdfs are where information goes to die”

  72. Peter Watts,

    I once asked Greg Egan for the source code to his website because I thought it would be nice fan art to play with the applets. He didn’t want to release the source code, which is absolutely ok. it is just one of those things I got curious about.

  73. Joseph Knecht,

    I parsed for dois from the references section and made a library in zotero for you.

    https://www.zotero.org/smiguez/items/collectionKey/8T2A4ESZ

    if you want to do something similar, here is how I did it

    https://gist.github.com/codersquid/0b82a529e0f4f9d63ab5

    There are 140 references and this only grabbed 77 of them.

    Crossref labs has an app that can supposedly scrape PDFs for references, but I couldn’t get it to run. I’m pretty curious about it though. https://github.com/CrossRef/pdfextract

  74. Joseph Knecht,

    I hope you are still reading the comments here. I got the references and put them in a zotero library. Here’s a bookmark for you.

    http://bit.ly/echopraxia-citations