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TN Continues to Make Dumb Laws

Michael Silence notes that Sen. Jim Tracy is trying to pass legislation that would make it illegal to read or send text messages while driving. These nanny state laws treat symptoms and not problems. My comment on No Silence Here:

We don’t need a nanny state! We need better education. IF we would teach people how to use T-9 then they could text without looking at the phone! er, I mean if we taught people the importance of not texting behind the wheel. You know..give a man a fish..well if he were eating fish while driving that would probably be bad too. Maybe we need a law to ban eating fish behind the wheel. Yes! Definitely. And fishing licenses. When the police pull cars over they should check for fishing licenses because he might be planning on catching a fish to eat while driving and we need to make sure that doesn’t happen. That’s important. Important enough that we need to set up road blocks and check everyone’s fishing licenses!! But then people might send text messages warning about the road blocks. No, we outlawed text messaging behind the wheel so that would never happen of course neither would the eating fish behind the wheel because we outlawed that too so why do we need the road blocks? You know, the radio stations will pick up on these quickly. We should outlaw radios in the cars. Wait a minute, wasn’t there a time when legislatures feared car radios would cause too many accidents and deaths. What happened to outlawing radios? Wait another minute. At least 2 people died in his district while text messaging behind the wheel. I wonder how many died tuning their radio?

Things we need to outlaw to keep people alive:
spiders, aids, diving, earthquakes, buildings, sports, suicide (wait, that’s already illegal), alcohol, lightning, steps, cold, heat, cancer, tall places, bees, surgery, and sharks.
http://i28.tinypic.com/5v0v1d.jpg

The problem with these types of laws is that it does nothing to prevent the happening but only punishes if and when it is caught. To educate people to pull over, have a passenger do the texting, or just plain ignore the phone is a better use to time and tax dollars than more laws:

Republican Sen. Mae Beavers of Mt. Juliet opposed the bill because of provisions in the current law.
"I really don’t see the need for the bill," she said. "I’ve said time after time, I don’t think we can legislate against stupidity."

Furthermore, driving is a skill and not everyone has the same abilities. That is not a statement to justify one person texting behind the wheel while another doesn’t but to point out the people who are crossing the center line while texting may just as well be doing the same thing while reading a billboard, talking to a passenger, tuning the radio, or daydreaming. We have all done stupid things while driving. I bet everyone at one point has turned the wrong way down a one way street. I did in Memphis as a teenager. It scared me silly to see 3 lanes of lunch hour traffic barreling down on me. A law preventing me from going the wrong way on a one way street would have done nothing to prevent me from making that silly mistake..wait a minute..it is against the law to drive the wrong way on a one way street….oh.

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AT&T – I offer you some free consulting

First, let’s begin with emailing from your phones. It’s a simple process and should never see an error like:

Your MSG could not be DELIVERED because InvalidPduContent

Soon we will discuss daylight savings time, servers and time stamping. And radiowave propagation.

Update: So far, it would appear that any SMS message over 160 characters causes this problem. Now, the thing is, the phone (a Motorola RAZR v3xx) is supposed to be able to send email as well as SMS. I believe it uses the same interface. So 160 characters doesn’t fly. Plus, the interface is supposed to take anything over 160 characters and automatically break it into multiple messages. Hmm. I wonder if that’s it. Perhaps it sends the first 160 characters successfully but fails to put the correct header on the next message so the later part of the email doesn’t get sent successfully.

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Twitter going down in flames

So is Twitter going down in flames or just hitting heavy turbulence? Personally, I think it is just having a rough patch. Shoot, even Jon Stewart mentioned Twitter last night! (although the way he conveyed it and the look on his face was more of "my writers are insisting I reference this but what the hell is it?") That’s practically main stream!

The API is being limited. Twhirl, which has been great since it catches the @ replies that Twitter isn’t showing right now, is useless today due to Twitter pulling back on the API. So with Twitter handicapped (or not responding at all), and Twhirl useless, I feel disconnected from the world. I am having a little trouble remembering just what it was I did before I had my Twitter aha moment (because no one gets Twitter when they first start using it).

Have you given up on Twitter? Not I. Are you using another service permanently or in the meantime? I’m thinking of toying around with Pownce. Just not in love with anything else at the moment and don’t really have time to experiment. I’d say that Twitter is dealing with its growth and after it gets over this spurt things will be much better.

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Why Twitter? Because San Francisco CA is shaking

With Twitter, I know that San Francisco just had an earthquake. A big one. Obviously that may not be of importance to someone in Knoxville…unless you had relatives there. Just one example.

Update: more. Truemors. wise crack. 5.6 hits South Bay. Dave Winer is ok but was scared. Biggest native apenny has ever felt. scared the stink out of a skunk. Twitter has coverage but not local tv. USGS page on the quake is here. another acknowledgement. on google maps. missed Scoble but got his house. could have been a tech bubble burst. still no news coverage. some missed it.

Update: Reddit comments. Building at 2699 California collapses. John Anthony Tenta aka Earthquake.

Update: Finally some news about the earthquake..wait, no, that’s just news reporting that Twitter reported the earthquake.