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Fighting Counterfeiters With Quantum Money

blair1q Paradox (149 comments)

If I can't measure it well enough to copy it, I can't measure it well enough to verify it, either. And if the verification is fuzzy, then I just need to copy it well enough to pass the verification. Which is always step 1 in the counterfeiting handbook.

more than 2 years ago
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Predicting Life 100 Years From Now

blair1q Re:California Secede? Unlikely (552 comments)

I think El Paso would go to Mexico or New Mexico, in case of a subdivision. No reason at all to keep it in Texas, and, other than the easy route through the mountains (it's called "el paso" for a reason), no reason to keep it in America. It's really East Juarez.

more than 2 years ago
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Intel Relying On Ice Cream Sandwich For Tablet Push

blair1q If that's what they think, they're wrong. (215 comments)

They do understand that if Apple wanted to, Apple could run iOS on Intel chips, right?

It sounds like Apple has told them they won't do that, and Intel is trying to change their minds by mounting a seemingly concerted competitive effort.

At the least, Intel's new chips, which have surprised even ARM's CEO with their speed and economy, are going to make Intel rich yet again.

The question is whether Apple wants to be in full-frontal competition with them, or do what it did with the PowerPC/x86 decision and go with the one that has taken the technological lead.

more than 2 years ago
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Ask Slashdot: What Can You Do About SOPA and PIPA?

blair1q Re:In a democratic country.... (1002 comments)

That doesn't take balls. It takes brains. Kinda the point.

more than 2 years ago
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Is E85 Dead Now?

blair1q Re:Solar Energy Storage (556 comments)

It probably takes as much energy to distill petroleum as it does to distill alcohol.

When you distill alcohol, you get a little alcohol in one tank and a lot of of water in another.

You can sell the alcohol for the price of gasoline, but you're dumping the water in most places.

But when you distill petroleum, you get gasoline in one tank and jet fuel in another tank and motor oil in another tank and axle grease in another tank and road tar in another tank and candle wax in another tank...

And you can sell all of those, some for more than the price of gasoline.

more than 2 years ago
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Is E85 Dead Now?

blair1q Re:10% Ethanol (556 comments)

Depends on the car and whether you run AC in the summer.

more than 2 years ago
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Predicting Life 100 Years From Now

blair1q Re:California Secede? Unlikely (552 comments)

Texas isn't going anywhere, either.

People who want to get elected in Texas use that to cadge votes, because it works, but once they find out you can't defend a nation with a posse carrying six-guns any more and the amount it will raise their taxes to become a real military power with a full Army, Air Force, Coast Guard (370 miles of coastline in the smugglingest water in America), and Border Patrol (1250 miles of border with Mexico, over 60% of the whole border; plus 1400 miles with New Mexico, Okalahoma, Arkansas, and Louisiana). Duplicating the rest of the functions of the federal government won't be a cakewalk, either, and don't pretend they'll just let that all fall flat. Economies of scale mean that being a part of the entire nation is cheaper than going it alone. And Texas' physical scale makes it more expensive to administer, not less. Throw in the added expense of commerce across borders, and no protections against tarriffs from the commerce clause, and businesses in the state doing any business out of state will be crippled.

And Texas is hardly monolithic. Split it off from the U.S. and the next thing that happens is that West Texas will insist on separating entirely from East Texas, and East Texas would be just fine with that. So there's only so far the political fixers in the state are willing to take the issue beyond claptrap at campaign rallies.

It's theater, nothing more.

more than 2 years ago
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Facebook To Share Private Data With Politico

blair1q Okay, but only if I get the same courtesy. (157 comments)

Let me see everything written by any Politico employee, published or private. You can anonymize them if you like.

more than 2 years ago
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Putting Medical Records Into Patients' Hands

blair1q Re:Worst idea ever (211 comments)

...and they said the "Anonymous Coward" option was the Worst Idea Ever.

more than 2 years ago
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Putting Medical Records Into Patients' Hands

blair1q Re:Quote (211 comments)

I don't think it was an insult. If she goes to the next doctor and doesn't ask a lot of questions, the doctor should suspect depression or neuropathy and start looking into it, if only to rule it out. That's his job.

more than 2 years ago
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Putting Medical Records Into Patients' Hands

blair1q Re:have these people ever seen a raw medical recor (211 comments)

Ever read your tab at a restaurant? Same deal, but you probably know more about food than you do about medicine, so it just seems less cryptic. Still, you know that you didn't order the clafoutie, so you can tell them to take that off the bill and bring you a fresh one.

more than 2 years ago
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Putting Medical Records Into Patients' Hands

blair1q Re:I hate the current procedure (211 comments)

An X-ray is a picture taken with photons in a certain range of energies.

It is a medical record when it is made to gain medical information.

Chiropractors are not doctors, and the services they sell are not medical, even though they gussy themselves up in white coats and hang diplomas and charts of body parts on the walls and hand out pills with dead-language-sounding names just like the people at your doctor's office do.

So an X-ray taking by a chiropractor is not, then, part of medical records. At least, not unless your actual doctor asks for them to help him fix what your chiropractor broke.

more than 2 years ago
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Putting Medical Records Into Patients' Hands

blair1q Re:Could go both ways (211 comments)

>use it to jump to the wrong conclusions, imagining all kinds of ailments that they just don't have.

Part of a doctor's job is to manage that, and it's simple to tell a patient that looking at parts of the information or looking at it wrong can lead to different diagnoses or diagnoses for things you just don't have. And a doctor that isn't checking for the unusual explanation while at least starting treatment for the common explanation is not actually doing his job either.

All of a patient's job is to second-guess the doctor until both doctor and patient are sure they have the right diagnosis and treatment.

If you're not doing that job, some doctors will take you around the horn on the testing tour, racking up fees all the way. Others will take your co-pay and hustle you out the door with a prescription for ibuprofen hoping your immune system will do their job for them.

more than 2 years ago
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Putting Medical Records Into Patients' Hands

blair1q Re:Read the title too literally (211 comments)

Don't know why that's funny.

It's the way it should be.

The doctor can do a hundred tests to know what's happened to me in the past, or, he can wave an RFID reader over my wrist and populate his database with my history since birth and the interpretations of his predecessors and data on what did and didn't work.

Anything that speeds up the doctoring process and reduces error in information retrieval is the goal.

more than 2 years ago
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Putting Medical Records Into Patients' Hands

blair1q Re:And do what with them? (211 comments)

Except that it might be a real condition. I'm pretty sure I had it. Addictive behavior related to certain fast-food menu items. To the point where, after I'd kicked it, I genuinely suspected there had been something deliberately addictive in there.

Later on I learned that certain combinations of fat and carbohydrates are themselves habituating to the point of addiction. Fast-food joints have that stoichiometry nailed. The composition of their most popular menu items make them about as nutritious as the same mass of ice cream.

But calling it that on a medical chart seems like a perfectly reasonable thing with not much other explanation necessary.

more than 2 years ago
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Putting Medical Records Into Patients' Hands

blair1q Re:And do what with them? (211 comments)

The idea of "taking them home" is a metaphor.

They should all be placed in a secure online repository for you to examine and add annotations as necessary.

Lots of people know enough to know that they didn't receive a breast-reduction when they went in for an artificial knee surgery, but will find those errors in their records only if they actually see their records. And lots of less egregious stuff.

You'll also be able to tell when your doctor mischaracterized what you told him. Future doctors working on you when you're out cold should have the correct information.

Some people will actually have the knowledge to do something more with the data in their documents. The information can come in handy in other ways. For instance, I had a minor invasive surgical procedure while awake, and they gave me a sedative along with the local anesthetic, to keep me from freaking out in the middle of it. But I can never remember what that sedative was, although I recall it worked without giving me the slightest side-effect. That'd be something handy to have written down, say, in my smartphone, if I'm in a place where they need to give me something but can't get to my online records.

I bet if I went through my entire record I could find lots of examples of things I don't remember or never knew that any future doctor would find helpful but wouldn't know to search for even if he had my records.

The simple fact is, the only reason for you as a patient not to have access to 100% of the knowledge of your care is if the doctor wants to hide it from your lawyer. And that reason should be illegal, now that the technology for making your records accessible is all but trivial.

more than 2 years ago
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Radioactive Concrete From Fukushima Found In New Construction

blair1q Re:More importantly, (237 comments)

A couple of the Fukushima workers were exposed to some pretty heavy dosages. Only a matter of time for them.

And the statistical nature of exposure and the way radiation does its thing means that it's unlikely but possible for anyone exposed to the initial releases of material, or to material that travelled long distances, can ultimately die from it. Japan's population density is much thicker than almost any other place, so this tiny likelihood becomes a statistically significant likelihood across the larger number.

So it's very likely someone will die from the radiation released by Fukushima, but unlikely anyone will ever be able to connect it conclusively.

more than 2 years ago
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Radioactive Concrete From Fukushima Found In New Construction

blair1q Re:More importantly, (237 comments)

Geckos, not guppies.

Godzilla is a lizard, not a fish.

At least you picked a vertebrate.

more than 2 years ago
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Radioactive Concrete From Fukushima Found In New Construction

blair1q Re:More importantly, (237 comments)

So the Japanese prison system is like the American economic system.

more than 2 years ago
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Radioactive Concrete From Fukushima Found In New Construction

blair1q Re:More importantly, (237 comments)

>some first world country who treats their citizens like third world crap and their prisoners like dogs and feel justified in doing so

Arizona. Or Texas.

more than 2 years ago

Submissions

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Slashdot Is Hiring Software Developers

blair1q blair1q writes  |  more than 2 years ago

blair1q (305137) writes "LinkedIn has a job listing from Slashdot. The position is "Principal Software Engineer", which is a level of experience and expectation above Software Engineer and Senior Software Engineer, but below the fusty Senior Principal Software Engineer and the mawkish Master Engineer. Bring your shiniest Perl skills to the interview. My favorite quote: "Slashdot is written in Perl and developed using the Agile methodology." I'll wait for you to wipe beverage off your monitor/keyboard/shirt. Yes, I too was surprised to find out that not only is /. "developed," but that this development is adding features on a rapid cyclic basis. Or maybe not, since one of the tenets of Agile development is that any feature not demonstrable at the end of the timebox gets cut from deployment for that cycle. Must be a lot of that selection getting checked off."
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Full-Tilt Poker Is A Real Ponzi Scheme

blair1q blair1q writes  |  more than 3 years ago

blair1q (305137) writes "Popular (and heavily advertised) poker website Full-Tilt Poker was sued today by the US Government, following an investigation that revealed it to be a massive Ponzi Scheme. The principals in the company set up a complicated system to direct funds from subscribers' poker accounts into their own bank accounts. This was in contravention of their own claim that users' money was untouched. Players' accounts amounted to $390 million, but the company only has $60 million in the bank, having over time distributed $440 million to its own directors and executives."
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Flowing-Slurry Battery Doubles Capacity

blair1q blair1q writes  |  more than 3 years ago

blair1q (305137) writes "MIT is announcing development of batteries based on flow of charged fluids along a membrane. The fluid is a dark, viscous substance dubbed "Cambridge Crude." The pumping, storage, and discharge mechanisms are smaller than the non-electrolyte components in a regular battery, giving the total system twice the capacity for the same gross volume (no info on mass). The developers envision rapid charges by replacing batteries or exchanging spent fluids for fresh, fully-charged fluids. They also claim that it would be cheaper than current designs for large-scale installations."
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White House Explains Transport-Energy Future

blair1q blair1q writes  |  more than 3 years ago

blair1q (305137) writes "Today on the White House Blog the President (ok, his staff) released an infographic showing various facts about transportation energy, and how current gas prices need not be so worrisome. Highlights include rapidly increasing domestic production and rapidly decreasing prices for electric-car batteries, requesting congress to shift tax breaks from oil producers to wind/solar/geothermal energy producers, and increasing domestic oil production (yes, there's a paradox there)."
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Nimby, Schmimby: Solar Panels Increase Home Value

blair1q blair1q writes  |  more than 3 years ago

blair1q (305137) writes "Venture Beat reports that a study by Berkeley National Labs has found that homes sold in California earned a premium for solar panels. The benefit ranged from $3900 to $6400 per KW of capacity. An earlier study found that proximity to solar or wind power may also raise home values. These results contradict the arguments based on degrading home values used by putative NIMBY (Not In My Back-Yard) opponents to installing or living near such energy-generating equipment."
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Google Loses Bedrock Suit, All Linux May Infringe

blair1q blair1q writes  |  more than 3 years ago

blair1q (305137) writes "cnet reports that Google has lost the lawsuit brought by Bedrock, is infringing on Patent 5,893,120 "Methods and apparatus for information storage and retrieval using a hashing technique with external chaining and on-the-fly removal of expired data," and has exposed the Linux kernel, in which the infringing code reportedly appears, to liability for patent-license fees. RedHat also participated in the suit, arguing that the patent was invalid, but the court decided otherwise."
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Firefox 5 In Aurora Channel

blair1q blair1q writes  |  more than 3 years ago

blair1q (305137) writes "Mozilla.org has added a new intermediate development state, Aurora, to its Firefox development chain. Coming between Nightly-Build and Beta, it adds a fourth sense to the meaning of "the current version of Firefox" (the Release version fills out the trope). And now they have populated the Aurora channel with what will eventually become Firefox 5. The intent is to reduce Release-version cycle times by allowing more live testing of new features before the integrated code gets into a Beta version. The inaugural Aurora drop includes "performance, security and stability improvements." Firefox 5 is scheduled to enter Beta on May 17, and Release on June 21. Downloads of all of the active channels are available from the Firefox channels webpage."
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Surgical Waldo Folds, Flies Tiny Paper Airplane

blair1q blair1q writes  |  more than 3 years ago

blair1q (305137) writes "Story with video. The plane doesn't fly so much as fall with style, but it's the size of an American penny, and it was folded with a surgical waldo (unfortunately called a robot by everyone involved). The intent is to invoke a little amazement and maybe to show that the system isn't much different from a surgeon working with ordinary surgical tools."
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KGB Wants Control of Email and VOIP

blair1q blair1q writes  |  more than 3 years ago

blair1q (305137) writes "The FSB (really just a rebadged KGB) is worried about the abilities that internet communications services such as Hotmail, Gmail, and Skype give to people they consider black-hats. In particular, they don't like the fact that these services allow encryption. (Does Gmail have native encryption?) They say they aren't going to seize or block them, yet, but are just 'studying' the situation, with an eye possibly to implementing controls like those in China. Their increased interest in the tools may be related to a DDoS attack on Russian President Dmitri Medvedev's own LiveJournal account, which he termed 'revolting and illegal'."
Link to Original Source
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KGB Wants Control of Email and VOIP

blair1q blair1q writes  |  more than 3 years ago

blair1q (305137) writes "The FSB (really just a rebadged KGB) is worried about the abilities that internet communications services such as Hotmail, Gmail, and Skype give to people they consider black-hats. In particular, they don't like the fact that these services allow encryption (does Gmail have native encryption?). They say they aren't going to seize or block them, yet, but are just "studying" the situation, possibly implementing controls like those in China. Their increased interest in the tools may be related to a response to a DDoS attack on Russian President Dmitri Medvedev's own LiveJournal account, which he termed "revolting and illegal"."
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Customer Harasser Arrested

blair1q blair1q writes  |  about 4 years ago

blair1q (305137) writes "The online retailer who specialized in mistreating his customers to generate volumes of bad reviews of his site to inflate Google PageRank results, which last week caused Google to revise the way it ranks pages (previous slashdot story: Google Algorithm Discriminates Against Bad Reviews) was arrested by federal agents on Monday, according to the NY Times. Victims had tried in vain to get police to act against him, but the Times' profile of his business method and its effects, published November 26th, has apparently caused law enforcement agencies, including the feds, unnamed "local authorities," and the NY state attorney general's office, to enter into "a competition to punish him.""
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Chinese Hackers Steal South Korean Secrets

blair1q blair1q writes  |  more than 4 years ago

blair1q (305137) writes "Newsfactor reports an instance of Chinese hackers using email-attachment exploits to filch secret documents from South Korean government computers. The sender information in the emails was spoofed to make the emails appear to be from a South Korean presidential official and a South Korean diplomat. The breach was revealed by the hackers to a South Korean lawmaker. The Newsfactor story seems to be a summary of a report from another news source, which it did not identify."
Link to Original Source
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ISPs Oversubscribe Bandwidth, Blame Users

blair1q blair1q writes  |  more than 4 years ago

blair1q (305137) writes "Belgian ISP Telenet recently offered a rare picture of the individual subscribers on its network who download the most data. The company offers several tiers of service, with bandwidth caps up to 100 Mbps, and monthly consumption caps on the lower tiers. But if an upper tier is deemed to be hogging the network, the ISP will throttle their multi-megabit service down to 512 Kbps. Which forces the question: If it's possible for someone to use up all the bandwidth and interfere with other users' service, why did you organize it that way, Telenet? Why not sign up only the number of subscribers you can support even if one or more are running their pipes at full rate? Or is it that you oversubscribe your bandwidth to make more money, and then blame the users for using the service they bought from you? And why punish them for the rest of the month, instead of apportioning bandwidth while multiple high-volume users are online? Is it their fault for paying you to get the bandwidth they need, or yours for charging them for bandwidth they will never get?"
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Spanair Crash may have been due to malware

blair1q blair1q writes  |  more than 4 years ago

blair1q (305137) writes "ElPais.com (in Spanish) is reporting that the central computer on Spanair flight JK 5022 may have been infected with a Virus. The Register (in English) calls it a "Trojan-ridden warning system". The malware may have blocked alerts that would have told the crew that their flaps and slats were not deployed on takeoff. The crew had aborted a takeoff already, and there were reports of problems with the plane the day before. The plane's mechanic and the airport's maintenance chief are facing possible manslaughter charges over the accident."
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Toshiba claims to quintuple density of HDD

blair1q blair1q writes  |  more than 4 years ago

blair1q (305137) writes "Today, at The Magnetic Recording Conference at UCSD, Toshiba is revealing bit-patterned media for hard drives that they claim raises the maximum bit density from 541 Gb/in^2 to 2.5 Tb/in^2. The technology reduces the number of magnetic grains needed to store a bit by prealigning the grains into stripes when manufacturing the platter, rather than leaving them in a random organization."
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Facebook reaches 500 million users.

blair1q blair1q writes  |  more than 4 years ago

blair1q (305137) writes "Facebook, the sleepy little school-oriented social-networking site that overtook MySpace as most-popular some time ago, has passed 500,000,000 users,
according to cnet news, the BBC, AFP, and Tech Crunch (love that picture, btw. really shows how much he cares, ya think?). Of course, none of them mention that many of these "users" are spam avatars or aliases created for various purposes, not least of which is the armies of aliases some users have created to improve their scores in facebook-application games."

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Handicapped? Geeky? The USAF Wants YOU.

blair1q blair1q writes  |  more than 3 years ago

blair1q (305137) writes "The United States Air Force needs civilian cybersecurity workers. 680 of them (job postings at http://www.usajobs.gov/ ). And to ramp up staffing the Office of Personnel Management has allowed the Air Force to bypass competitive bidding by preferring people with qualifying disabilities. What kind of jobs are these? "Cyberrisk and strategic analysis; incident handling and malware/vulnerability analysis; cyberincident response; cyberexercise facilitation and management; cybervulnerability detection and assessment; network and systems engineering; enterprise architecture; intelligence analysis; investigation; investigative analysis; and cyberrelated infrastructure interdependency analysis." If that doesn't light up your sonic screwdriver you're not fully materialized. But there's a catch: Schedule A is part of a streamlining process that front-loads hiring with qualifying individuals. If you read the pdf file (link in TFA) you can deduce that you may not get hired any quicker than normal, but the hiring office may fill its positions quicker because others are already in line for the jobs. Regardless, it's jobs for nerds. Stuff that matters."
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No Flying Car? Try A Night-Flying Solar Ultralight

blair1q blair1q writes  |  more than 4 years ago

blair1q (305137) writes "When the solar aircraft Solar Impulse lifts off from an airfield in Switzerland on a sunny day at the end of June, it will begin the first ever manned night flight on a plane propelled exclusively by power it collects from the sun. Former Swiss air-force pilot Andre Borschberg and round-the-world balloonist Bertrand Piccard developed the aircraft, and Borschberg will be the pilot for this mission. "The flight will require a lot of attention and concentration — the plane doesn't have an auto-pilot, it has to be flown for 24 hours straight." For him, the most exciting part of the venture is, "being on the plane during the day and seeing the amount of energy increasing instead of decreasing as on a normal aircraft."
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Gulf Gets Wave-Powered Desalination Plant

blair1q blair1q writes  |  more than 4 years ago

blair1q (305137) writes "The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has issued the first permit for a wave-powered desalination plant in American territory to a company called Independent Natural Resources (http://www.inri.us). Waves will operate "Seadog" pumps which will lift water into the plant and onto a water wheel connected to a generator which will create electricity to operate a reverse-osmosis desalination system. The permit runs for four years. Let's hope they don't harm the environment, permanently impact drilling operations, or give Rube Goldberg any crazy ideas..."
Link to Original Source

Journals

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October 17, Thursday(?)

blair1q blair1q writes  |  more than 12 years ago

Found the lost city. Am worried about disappearance of porters in middle of night. Almost too quiet.

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