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Skeptic Tank!

ISSUE2ISSUE2ISSUE2ISSUE2ISSUE2ISSUE2ISSUE2ISSUE2ISSUE2ISSUE2ISSUE2ISSUE2ISSUE2 ISSUE2ISSUE2\\\\\\\\\\E2ISSUE2\\\\\\\\\\E2ISSUE2ISS\\\\\\\E2ISSUE2ISSUE2ISSUE2 ISSUE2ISSUE2ISSUE\\SSUE2ISSUE2I\\UE2ISS\\2ISSUE2ISS\\2ISS\\2ISSUE2ISSUE2ISSUE2 ISSUE2ISSUE2ISSUE2\\SUE2ISSUE2IS\\E2ISSUE2ISSUE2ISSU\\ISSUE2ISSUE2ISSUE2ISSUE2 ISSUE2ISSUE2ISSUE2I\\UE2ISSUE2ISS\\2ISSUE2ISSUE2ISSUE\\\\\\2ISSUE2ISSUE2ISSUE2 ISSUE2ISSUE2ISSUE2IS\\E2ISSUE2ISSU\\ISSUE2ISSUE2ISSUE2ISSU\\ISSUE2ISSUE2ISSUE2 ISSUE2ISSUE2ISSUE2ISS\\2ISSUE2ISSUE\\SSUE2I\\UE2ISSUE\\SSUE\\SSUE2ISSUE2ISSUE2 ISSUE2ISSUE2ISSUE2\\\\\\\\\\E2ISSUE2\\\\\\\\\\E2ISSUE2\\\\\\\SSUE2ISSUE2ISSUE2 ISSUE2ISSUE2ISSUE2ISSUE2ISSUE2ISSUE2ISSUE2ISSUE2ISSUE2ISSUE2ISSUE2ISSUE2ISSUE2 Information Communication Supply 03/01/93 Vol.1:Issue.2 Email To: ORG_ZINE@WSC.COLORADO.EDU E D I T O R S: Local Alias: Email: ICS Positions: Daniel Frederick -Ram/Rom STU445666405 Corrections, Role Playing Russell Hutchison -BurnouT STU524636420 Subscriptions, Editor Benjamin Price -Dreamweaver STU406889075 Submissions, Final Opinion, Letters Section Luke Miller -Aminohead/DUB STU521532642 Subscriptions, Role Playing Donald Sanders -Zorro ORG_ZINE Critical Editor, Story Section Editor George Sibley -MACFAC FAC_SIBLEY Faculty Supervisor Matthew Thyer -Mr. Touch STU523086351 Chief Editor Deva Winblood -Metal Master ADP_DEVA Technical Director, WorldNet Tour Guide, Tales of The Unknown _____________________________________________________________________________ / \ | ICS is an Electrozine distributed by students of Western State | | College in Gunnison, Colorado. We are here to gather information about | | topics that are important to us all as human beings. If you would like | | to send in a submission please type it into an ASCII format and mail it | | to us. We operate on the assumption that if you mail us something you | | want it to be published. We will do our best to make sure it is | | distributed and will always inform you when or if it is used. | | See the end of this issue for submission information. | \_____________________________________________________________________________/ REDISTRIBUTION: If any part of this issue is copied or used elsewhere you must give credit to the author it and indicate that the information came from ICS Electrozine ORG_ZINE@WSC.COLORADO.EDU. DISCLAIMER: The views represented herein do not necessarily represent the views of the editors of ICS. contributors to ICS assume all responsibilities for ensuring that articles/submissions are not violating copyright laws and protections. |\__________________________________________________/| | \ / | | \ T A B L E O F C O N T E N T S / | | / \ | | /________________________________________________\ | |/ \| | Included in the table of contents you will see some| | generic symbols to help you in making your | | decisions on whether an article is something that | | may use ideas, and/or language that could be | | offensive to some. S = Sexual Content | | AL = Adult Language V = Violence O = Opinions | |____________________________________________________| I. FIRST OPINION: By Matthew Thyer, ICS Chief Editor. The Higher Education Quagmire. II. A NANOTECHNOLOGY PRIMER: By Kenneth Beal. A look into a promising future technology that may one day have importance to everyone. EMAIL: KBEAL@AMBER.SSD.CSD.HARRIS.COM III. QUERY on MIND < - > COMPUTER CONNECTION: By Paul Robinson. Brief comments and research into Computer Direct connection. EMAIL: 0005066432@MCIMAIL.COM IV. WORLDNET TOUR GUIDE: F.T.P. : By Deva Winblood, ICS Technical Director. This is a brief instruction/help guide to aid ICS readers in learning to use Internet File Transfer Protocol. V. SETTING SUN AND FADING MEMORIES: By Russell Hutchison, ICS Staff Member. Short Story: Sometimes life just doesn't go the way you thought it would. VI. MARTIAN SAFARI: By H.G. Emert. Short Story: Strange worlds often birth strange customs. EMAIL: BERT@ESU.EDU VII. BAPTISM OF FIRE: By Ted Sanders, ICS Submissions Editor. Short Story: In Germany and on the edge of discovery. Sometimes other people have more to say about your life than you do. VIII. TWO POEMS: By Heather Elliot. Computers, terminology, and other things. EMAIL: HELLIOT@CLEMSON.CLEMSON.EDU IX. ROLE PLAYING GAMES: UNDERSTANDING WHAT THEY ARE. By Daniel Frederick, ICS Corrections, and Role Playing Editor. Just another witch hunt in the modern times. This article was written to hopefully clarify some things for our readers. X. SHADOWRUNS AND CYBERPUNKS: By Luke Miller, ICS Subscriptions, and Role Playing Editor. A scene from a ShadowRun session, and a commentary on the allure of CyberPunk genre Role Playing Games. XI. TALES OF THE UNKNOWN: By Deva Winblood, ICS Technical Director. The second tale entitled "The Pile of Hair." XII. LETTERS TO I.C.S. Edited by Benjamin Price. These were some of the many responses we received from our readers with editor's responses at the end of each. XIII. FINAL OPINION: By Benjamin Price, ICS Final Opinion Editor. ************************* First Opinion ************************* The Higher Education Quagmire by Matthew Thyer Ecstasy overwhelmed my soul as I finished my 1992 income tax return. A miracle occurred for me. Over the past year I maintained one-hundred percent continual support of myself which, considering my status as a student, is quite a miraculous feat. No loans -- all scholarship, but looking forward into time I see difficult situations creeping up to ambush me, and others, as we trudge our way through the mire of higher education's financial swamp. This seems to be the mean for my comrades and peers. Every year less reinforcement for the student is coming from both private and public sponsors of education. As a friend put it, "You have to be a blind, female, Afro-American, Eskimo in a wheel chair with strait A's," to qualify for most financial aid. Moreover, a person must be willing to subject themselves to that kind of bureaucratic torture and scrutiny to get a check. I am not implying, by any stretch of the imagination, that financial aid capital of any kind be accessible to "everyone" -- the money should be ready for those who require it to improve both themselves and their society -- if that were the case education would be free, without competition (a notion with many redeeming qualities). What I am suggesting is that more value be put into the education of the world's younger, learning members. Like many others, I have learned to deal with little or no back-up in my life and education. However, I know that this sense of single-mindedness has made me selfish in many respects. Most of the first world's students are the same way, and are only in this race of rats to help themselves. If the companies of the future want to develop a loyal employee for the future they could start by nurturing those prospectives rather than alienating them. ________________________________ / \ | A Nanotechnology Primer | |/\__ By Kenneth Beal __/\| V \______________________/ V Introduction Would you like to live for thousands of years? Would you like to rid yourself of the common cold? Would you like to not work for a living, but rather do what interests you? What about being able to create anything you can think of? All of this and more is possible with nanotechnology. Nanotechnology is still in its infancy. However, visionaries can already see where this technology may take the human race. It is a future worth striving for, although there are bound to be problems along the way. This article will introduce the reader to nanotechnology as well as discuss its benefits and potential dangers. Definition of the word "machine" The word "machine" will be used throughout this document, and may seem confusing. A machine to most people means something fairly large, metal, and operated by humans. Examples are cars, bicycles, hair dryers, and sewing machines. However, in a nanotechnological sense, a machine is any collection of atoms which performs a task. Thus, bacteria and virii are machines, as are the cells in your body. The smallest machines we create will have less than one hundred atoms, which is quite small. What is nanotechnology? Nanotechnology works with matter at the molecular level. Current, or bulk technology, deals with many millions of atoms at once. In bulk technology, the atoms themselves are not particularly important because there are so many of them. Nanotechnology, on the other hand, accounts for each and every atom. A nanomachine will be built as small as possible, because atoms are the building blocks of nature. Nanotechnology has already been proven in nature. Within each of your cells is a description of how to make a human. You are a result of your cells carrying out that code. Pioneers in nanotechnology stress that if nature can create nanomachines by random chance, then we will have much better luck creating nanomachines on purpose. Scientists can manipulate single atoms with the scanning tunneling microscope, but only one at a time and quite slowly. Building nanomachines is a more complex prospect. To create working nanomachines, we must first build protein machines. Proteins are easy to work with, as they exist in nature and can be synthesized in the lab. Protein machines can then, in turn, build the nanomachines we design. An analogy to this downward-building methodology would be that we need to build precise machinery before we can manufacture computers or cars. We cannot do it with our hands. Likewise, nothing we have built to date is able to manipulate atoms to the degree necessary for the creation of nanomachines. Applications Nanotechnology has applications in practically every industry. Some of the most obvious are the health, energy, automotive, and computer industries. Nanomachinery can swim through your blood vessels, destroying fat deposits and making sure that all of your cells match a certain pattern. Thus, any cancer-causing agents will be trapped and eliminated in a matter of days, or even hours. This is similar to current anti-virus software for computers, except that it will work for humans. It will be possible to make ourselves more resistant to extremes, such as temperature, vacuum, or shock. We would not need environment suits to operate in space or underwater, since we could modify our bodies to exist under such conditions. With nanotechnology, it will be possible to capture close to 100% of the sun's energy. Current solar cells in production capture about 17%, and the most recently developed solar cells capture about 33%. This will make solar energy a much better alternative to coal, oil, gas and nuclear methods of power generation. It will also help repair the damage we have done to the environment through industry. Additionally, nanomachines could fly through the upper atmosphere, rebuilding the ozone layer. Nanotechnology will completely change transportation as well. Energy will be much less expensive as a result of increased solar cell efficiency. This means a solar car would be competitive with today's gas-powered automobiles. At night, batteries would power the vehicle. These batteries would hold many times the energy that current batteries hold, due to superior design. The most exciting industry, however, is that of computers. We could build a nanocomputer which takes up only one cubic inch, but is one million times more powerful than the human brain. (This leads to risks, which will be discussed in the next section.) The possible uses for such a computer are practically endless: we could increase the computing power of the human brain, develop new technologies quicker through better simulations, and connect every household to a global computer network. A lot of work remains to be done in artificial intelligence; even so, this future may be only ten years away. Dangers Nanotechnology may also be harmful. Just as we now have virii in our computers, nanomachines can be designed for destructive purposes far more dangerous than a mere computer virus. A computer virus can only destroy what is on the computer. A nanovirus will function much as current virii do, but it will be possible to tailor a virus to kill a certain race, or even an individual. This is similar to genetic engineering; however, once we have achieved nanotechnology, completing the current Human Genome Project (mapping the hundred thousand human genes) will be a much quicker and easier process. In fact, most everything we are now striving for will be easier to accomplish once we are able to build nanomachines. Preventing attempts at creating killer nanomachines will be difficult. We cannot police every laboratory developing nanomachines, nor can we prevent their research. Killer nanomachines will probably be prevented, though, by the amount of good that will come from nanomachines. Since they will provide benefits in everything from cosmetics to agriculture to space flight, people will live much happier lives. While it is still conceivable that one of the first few applications will be a nanovirus to wipe out the leaders of another country, it is not probable and hopefully can be prevented. Another possible future is the one seen in the Terminator movies. In these movies, the future was a wasteland in which the machines had destroyed civilization because they had determined that humans were inefficient. Since nanocomputers will be vastly more powerful than our own brains, they may possibly decide to eliminate us. How can we avoid destruction at the hands of our creations? There are several ideas; the first is to ban nanotechnology. This would only work if every nation chose that, and enforced it rigorously. That would be a sad decision, blocking us from a future that has been compared to Utopia. A better idea involves enclosing the developing nanomachines in specially-designed shells. If the shell detected something trying to get through (from the inside or the outside), it would explode, destroying the nanomachines inside. This would provide some measure of safety. There would be electronic links inside the shell so we could examine and communicate with the nanomachines that we are developing. Once the nanomachines have been properly developed and are working correctly, they can be removed from the shell and put to use. Morals and ethics must guide us in our technology. Just as fission can generate power more cheaply than oil, coal or gas, it can also destroy cities. Nanotechnology, like most other technologies, has dangers associated with it. However, through careful planning, widespread debates, and logical development, we should be able to avoid most of the dangers. For more information There are many scientific articles about nanotechnology being published monthly. These should be available in your campus library. Additionally, the book Engines of Creation, by K. Eric Drexler, is a fascinating, in-depth introduction to nanotechnology and other future developments. For more information on papers and other publications, contact The Foresight Institute, Box 61058, Palo Alto, CA 94306. This is a non-profit organization dedicated to distributing information about nanotechnology. A few extra things Some new information I have recently learned: you can build a scanning tunneling microscope (mentioned above) for about $500 for parts plus a computer (which could be anywhere from $800 or so to a few thousand; free if you already own one! :-) ). Follow the sci.nanotech newsgroup for more info on homebrew STMs; from what I've read there, it seems several people are taking research into their own hands. Hopefully, their efforts will help to bring about the "society of abundance" that nanotechnology offers. Also, there are a _ton_ of other ideas in Dr. Drexler's second book, _Unbounding the Future_. (I think I had only read _Engines of Creation_ when I wrote this.) I'd like to write a paper on that as well; perhaps for inclusion in a future issue? The third book I have by him is _Nanosystems_, which is much more technical than the first two. This book springs from his thesis; I have yet to start reading it (too many priorities!), but hope to someday soon. __________________________________________________________________ | Query on Mind < - > Computer Connection, Inter-Mind Connection | | By Paul Robinson | \________________________________________________________________/ One of the recent developments in the Science Fiction genre is the concept of attaching one's mind by inserting a device into it or connecting it to a computer. The "Device Connection" concept is used in Larry Niven's "Ringworld" and "The Ringworld Engineers" with the concept of a "wirehead". The concept of a device connection is done with the "moddy" and "daddy" personality modifier and memory enhancement chips from G. Effinger's "When Gravity Fails." The Connection to a computer is used in the movies "Brainstorm", "Total Recall," and "The Lawnmower Man." Lawnmower was the first to allow multiple people to share the same experience (if you've seen the "people spiraling like water down a drain" sequence, often used for previews of the movie, you know what I mean.) Someone mentioned "Robocop" as another movie - I'd forgotten that one. I'd like to hear from other people of specific books or movies that they've seen. Even if you can't remember the title, what they did would help. This is part of some information I'm collecting and I need it within a short period of time, two weeks or so. Responses may be made directly to this 'Zine or to my Internet address, TDARCOS@MCIMAIL.COM . Thank you for any information. Paul Robinson -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- _________________________________________________ / W o r l d N e t \ \____________ Tour Guide #1 ____________/ \_______________________/ | File Transfer | | Protocol | \___________________/ WorldNet Tour Guide is intended to be appear in each issue. It is to contain articles to help in using the WorldNet to the fullest potential. The articles here will generally be anything from tutorials on aspects of WorldNet to reviews of places of the WorldNet. If you feel that you are qualified to write a document to appear in this section, please do so. Send your final copy to ORG_ZINE@WSC.COLORADO.EDU ------- Though it may be common practice to many of the readers of ICS, File Transfer Protocol (known as FTP) is not known to all of our readers. Also, since FTP is such an important feature to users with Internet access it probably is something that needs to be explained to all ICS readers before continuing with further WorldNet Tour Guide articles. File Transfer Protocol is a standard adopted for transmission of data between machines on the Internet. It is used to copy files from one place to another. Through use of FTP you can obtain information, shareware, public domain software, pictures, songs, etc. FTP also enables you to put such files in places for other people to gather and use. FTP can usually be accessed by typing FTP

at a command line prompt. For example: $ FTP WUARCHIVE.WUSTL.EDU. This would cause my local process to attempt a connection with WUARCHIVE.WUSTL.EDU. There are several things that can happen at this stage. #1) No Route To Host: This means your local machine does not know how to reach the specified address. #2) CONNECTION REFUSED: This generally means that the address you chose does not accept FTP connections. #3) CONNECTION TIMED OUT: This can mean many things. It usually means that part of the net between your computer and the address you requested is down. It can also mean that the computer at the address you are attempting to contact is powered down at the moment. Try it again some other time. #4) You're in! They have an FTP server and you will generally see some information scroll by. READ IT. Also, you should eventually get to a prompt. The prompt will generally be the name of the host you have connected to, or sometimes FTP>. Now you have established contact with the computer, but you are NOT LOGGED IN yet. This means you still have to LOGIN with some USERNAME and PASSWORD. To do this you type LOGIN . The password will not show on the screen. There are many internet sites that allow login as 'anonymous' and the password is generally your EMAIL address. For example: LOGIN anonymous ORG_ZINE@WSC.COLORADO.EDU My email address would not show up as I typed it. Once you are logged in you can proceed to the next stage. FTP generally uses UNIX type commands. Here is a brief list of the ones I will cover in this WorldNet Tour Guide. GET - This will enable you to copy a file from the FTP site into your own account. PUT - This will enable you to copy a file from your local account into the FTP site. DIR - Will show a directory listing for the directory of the FTP site you are in. LS - Another directory command. TYPE - This will enable you to change file types. I.E. change from ASCII to BINARY or vice-versa. CD - Change Directories CDUP - Go back to parent directory. EXIT - This will disconnect you from FTP and return you to your local host. One thing that quickly confuses people unfamiliar with UNIX is the case sensitivity of FTP sites. In other words, filenames and directory names must be typed exactly as they appear in the directory. For example, if it is 'WorldNet.example' in the directory, then calling it 'worldnet.example' will not work. The reason is found in comparing WorldNet and worldnet. One has upper case letters and the other does not have those upper case letters. UNIX recognizes the difference. So, you MUST type it exactly as it appears. Each command is described in more detail as follows. GET This enables you to grab the file and it will prompt you for a local file name. At the local file name prompt type in the name you wish to give the file once it is copied into your own account. If everything has been done correctly it should begin transferring the file. PUT This is exactly like GET, but instead of copying from the site to your account it copies from your account to the site. DIR & LS These commands reveal directories and files. You can tell whether it is a file or a directory by looking at the left most letter on the line with the file/directory you are viewing. It will either be 'd', 'l', or '-'. The 'd' means that it is a directory. The 'l' means that it is a list. A list is usually a guide that tells you how to find what you are looking for by looking at the name given to the file. The '-' means that it is something other than a list or directory. This must mean that it is a file. TYPE This command enables you to switch between BINARY and ASCII transmission. It is important to do this. If you get a binary file and it seems corrupt then there is a possibility that you forgot to change to BINARY mode before using the GET or PUT command. To change to binary you can type TYPE BINARY or TYPE I. To change to ascii you can type TYPE ASCII. CD This command enables you to move into a sub-directory off of your current directory. PLEASE REFER to DIR & LS above. CDUP This command moves you backwards out of one sub-directory. For example: say you were in directory 'pub' and then you typed CD misc. Now you would be in 'pub/misc.' If from this point you type CDUP, you will be back at 'pub.' EXIT This takes you out of FTP mode and puts you back in your own account at your own site. NOTICE: The FTP described here can only be used from an internet connected site. Some time in the future WorldNet Tour Guide will hopefully cover FTPMAIL. FTPMAIL can be used by most other Network users that do not have internet access. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- _________________________________ / \ | Setting Sun And Fading Memories | | | | By Russell Hutchison | | | \_________________________________/ He was on his hands and knees for at least two seconds before this fact seeped through the alcoholic haze clouding his thoughts. He tried to command his body to stand and after a few seconds his limbs began to move slowly...stubbornly. But his muscles betrayed him and dumped him face first into the rocky ground. 'Ouch, my left knee hurts,' he thought. "So what?" John said to himself. 'So you're supposed to bitch about things when they hurt,' his thoughts told him evenly. "Ouch!" He bellowed. "There are you happy?" His knee began to throb in time with his breathing. HUAAA HAAAH, HUAAA HAAAH. The steady rhythm would have been relaxing if John wasn't so winded. "I need to stop smoking," he mumbled into the ground in front of his face. Some dirt got kicked up into his nose and mouth from his talking, and his head lifted to sneeze, then was shoved back into the pebble filled soil by the force. John lay there and watched the white mist of his condensing breath obscure the ground every time he exhaled. After a few more labored breaths John said, "I need to get up before I passout." The sloping ground was already starting to get warm and comfortable. He crushed some sage brush as he rolled onto his back, but it didn't bother him. The smell of sage is stronger when it gets broken and he liked the smell. Besides, the sage propped him up enough so he could look out across the valley. "I must be three miles into the mountains already," he said aloud, as if it would help him think clearer by talking to himself. 'I never walked this much in my life,' John thought. He gazed out at the valley through the white vapor created by his breath as the twilight slowly began to fill the lowest areas with darkness. To him the terrain looked like Afghanistan in Rambo III. He imagined that on the ridge across the way he could see Rambo running along with Russkie tanks chasing him. The pain in his knee began to die down. Low scrub brush filled his field of vision as far as John could see. 'God this place is ugly,' he thought. "Dull, drab, humdee humdee, boring, grayish-green land that fades into a darker blah black-and-grey color as the sun slowly sets. Say that ten times fast." John challenged the wind. A metallic glitter caught his eye a couple of feet to his right. He picked the object out of the dirt and cleaned it off with some spit. It was a spent shell from a 30.06 bullet. "Cool." John said in a tone of voice that he usually reserved for church prayers. He put the cold casing up to his lips and blew across the top like it was a glass bottle. A deep whistle came from the shell. After he blew across it a few times and knew how to hold it so that it would carry a constant tune, he began to play the theme song for Rambo. John added in parts of the drums with a "Bah thump bah bah thump" whenever it seemed appropriate. It was during one of the drum solos that he noticed the wind was whipping the white mist from his mouth. "Shit, I'd better get to some trees to get away from this wind or I'm S.O.L." He slipped the shell into one of the pockets of his old army fatigues, the kind of clothes any self-respecting seventeen year old has in his wardrobe. Costing only $25.00 at B.J.'s Army Surplus store. Patting one of his army jacket pockets, John made sure that the silver survival blanket was still there. It was one of those strange blankets that came in a package as big as a folded wallet until you unfolded it. Then if you tried to fold it up again you would need a huge ziplock plastic bag to store it in. John had brought it along because he knew it would be getting cold this night. The sound of glass bumping into rock reminded him of the bottle of brandy, still half-full, that was in one of his thigh pockets. His Mom was going to be pissed that he had taken the bottle. But that didn't bother him. John felt that he deserved this bottle though. He felt he needed it. John carefully got to his feet and dusted himself off with only a little swaying. As he bent over a zippo lighter fell out of his pocket and tumbled to the ground. "I'm always dropping that thing!" John said loudly. Stooping, he grabbed the zippo off the ground on his third try. He looked at the polished surface to see if it had been scratched again, but no new blemishes had appeared on the lighter. The inscription still gave him a happy feeling when he read it. Even if it was from Lisa. 'The bitch' John thought. While they had gone steady he had asked her what lengths she would go to for him. She had said to hell and back if she had to. Then on his sixteenth birthday she had given him the lighter with the inscription 'Hellfire, for John' on the side. John reached into a breast pocket of his jacket and gently pulled out a package of cigarettes, CAMEL filters hardpack, the cigarette of choice, and pulled a cigarette out. Placing the cigarette between his lips and staring intently at his lighter, John tried to get the flame to catch. But the wind was too strong despite his attempts to shield the flame. "Frustrating piece of..." John mumbled around his CAMEL. Replacing the lighter and cigarette in the pockets they came from, he pulled out the brandy and took several long swallows. Refreshed, John brushed the brownish hair that had gotten into his eyes back behind his head and retied his ponytail. Glancing up the slope John saw the stand of pine trees that had originally caught his eye and were the reason he started the trek up this slope. 'The trees will be perfect to stop the wind. Then I can be warm.' John thought. Swaying and staggering only slightly, John slowly began to head up the slope. The frozen ground crunched like it was covered in snow but there was none in sight. His hiking boots found good purchase on the cold soil as he wove his way up the brush covered slope. For the amount of money that Lisa had spent on them, they had better do a good job. Only eight months old, the boots had been a gift on his seventeenth birthday. Looking at his boots reminded John too much of Lisa, and his eyes began to develop some moisture. "God damn her!" he yelled. "Two years of my life wasted!" John waited for an echo to return, but the wind stole away any chance of it happening. He stopped momentarily to wipe away tears from his eyes then continued his slow ascent. John's mind raced over the events of the past week. The talks between him and his woman, the arguments too. "Why does she have to be so smart!" he wailed. "Why can't she go to college when everyone else does? ... When I do." Her words popped unbidden into his mind. "I've got to take this opportunity." she had said. "But why do we have to break up for you to take this 'Great Opportunity'?" John asked. "I'm going to be 2,000 miles away, John. It's just not going to be worth it to stay together." John noticed some thick bark-covered roots poking up from the ground and jerked to a halt. Taking his eyes off the laces of his boots, John noticed that he had reached the bottom of the tree stand. Another step or two and he would have been kissing one of the trees. 'That would have hurt.' he thought. 'Then I'd have yet another thing to bitch at.' John took the last couple of steps to the tree trunk and rested against it while he caught his breath. His knee hurt again. His thoughts about Lisa had kept his mind preoccupied enough that the last 100 yards to the trees had seemed less then ten, yet the light had faded so much that he knew he only had twenty minutes, at most, before he would be stumbling around in the dark gloom. "Two years and it 'wouldn't be worth it'." John mumbled, contempt thick in his voice. He turned to face the trees and walked into the deepening shadows of the stand. He only watched his shoes occasionally because he needed to pay attention to the low branches that sporadically stuck down into his path. The wind had been reduced to a tolerable level by the trees, so John produced the lighter and cigarette from the pockets he had stashed them in and lit up the smoke. When he had a cherry glow on the end of his cigarette he continued his walk dodging trees and deer shit that was scattered about. For a while, John followed the foot prints of some other people. It was hard to guess how long ago the prints had been made because of the light, but John guessed maybe two days ago, at the most. He was good at tracking and took pride in this skill. 'Awfully cold for a hike.' John thought. His cigarette was burned to a stub so he ground it out on a tree and began to look for a sheltered nook to sleep in. He spotted an area where several trees had fallen down and made a low wall that would work well for this night's refuge. John ran and tried to hop over the low trees, but his feet caught on the branches of the top tree. In his tumble to the ground, he saw his lighter sail off into the murky light. A muffled curse escaped his lips as he crashed with a dull thud to the pine-needle covered earth...needles pricking his cheek. His knee throbbed with heat and pain. Slowly, John got to his feet and raised his head. Nausea filled his stomach and threatened to drop him back to his knees. Doubling over at the waist and placing his hands on his knees, John remained still until the world didn't spin when his eyes opened. John checked his pocket to make sure that his lighter had indeed fallen out before he started to search for it. Still bending over, he began to walk in small circles looking for his lighter. 'This is like looking for your candy on the floor of a half-dark movie theater.' John thought. After almost a full minute of looking for the lighter he spotted it on a bed of pine-needles. As he reached out to pick it up John felt sharp pain in his stomach and sides, and his breath was torn from his lungs. His vision went black for a second and then he felt numerous pricks of pain on the right side of his face. A thunder-like roar came to his ears then faded. His eyes opened and John realized that he was on the ground over a half dozen feet from where his lighter was, his face against the pine-needle carpet again. John could also see the gaping exit wound of a bullet in his belly just bellow the ribs on his right side. In the post-evening light, he saw dark liquid flowing out of the wound on to the ground. Trying to scream, John only managed to make weak gasping noises. None of his muscles would respond to his commands. Many moments later he heard the voices of people approaching. "I saw him drop over there by those trees." came a scratchy voice. "It was a good shot." "Yup, I like my new rifle. A 200 yard shot and I hit. I didn't even need my sight." "Here we go, right on this side of the trees. It was getting so dark that I didn't think that we were going to get any deer. Great how our luck changed...holy shit...dear God. It's a man, Ed!" "No Way! I know what I was shooting at. There ain't no way it was a man!" A blurry form knelt next to John. "Say something guy! Say something!" But John had no energy left to bitch anymore. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- __________________ / \ | Martian Safari | | By H.G. Emert | \__________________/ From the conservation of water to the way he must dress, everything is very different here. Musing over the difference between his present location and his personal stretch of North Carolina beach front on Earth, Major Graham Wilson kicks at the crusty, red soil of this foreign world, stirring up dust that quickly falls back to the surface. Graham's mandatory environmental suit has a way of distorting his body into an almost unrecognizable, squat form with tubular appendages for arms and legs. Graham is uncertain he would recognize his own picture; of course the title "Boss-man" painted on his helmet by his crew does make him stand out among the generic vanilla suits. Major Wilson is the commanding officer for the geological survey team assigned to map and sample this portion of Mars for the largest mining conglomerate on Earth. After offering to finish packing up the remaining equipment for his men, Graham Stands alone on the surface enjoying a few precious moments of solitude. His crew is probably spending the extra time on the communications link before the transmission window to Earth closes. The video messages sent to their families will take several minutes to arrive at their destination; Graham imagines the messages as bottled slices of time thrown into space and destined for a distant shore. "Major Wilson?" The voice of the dispatcher over the speaker in his helmet interrupts Graham's daydreams of ancient sailing vessels. Graham replies once the microphone in his helmet is open to transmit. "Yes, Trevor, I'm here; what's the problem?" "Sir, we are looking at fifty-nine minutes until night phase, and you have a long drive back. It's going to get cold out there. Last night it got down to minus one hundred and fifty-three celsius; the temperature could get dip even lower tonight. Some of the equipment you are hauling can't take the cold as well as your environmental suit. Control encouraged me to..." "Control," Graham states breaking into Trevor's dialogue, "wants you to talk me into hurrying back to the Base before their equipment freezes solid. It figures that they are worried more about the condition of the equipment; nobody down there gives a darn about the people that drag this stuff around thousands of square miles of charred sulfur and silt traps." "Yes sir, but you know they don't like it when you, I mean, anyone stays out on the surface alone." "Fine, I'll finish up here and be on my way soon. Trevor, please don't forget to tell Control not to worry about me; I'll be fine, Wilson out." "Trevor, I mean, Base M-32 out." In slow, jerky motions which he never feels accustomed to, Graham packs up the remaining measuring devices, meters and equipment. Graham's body mass requires the same amount of effort to move about as it does on Earth, even though he currently weighs only forty percent of his earth-weight, which can lead to some very awkward moments. Graham brushes off the dust after climbing into the large, open, four-wheel drive transport that is very similar to his own dune-buggy. Reminded of the beaches at home, Graham wonders how the martian sand would feel between his toes. That, however, is impossible. This hauntingly elegant landscape does not allow for the type of indulgences Graham enjoys. In the daylight, the surface is an impressionistic finger painting in vibrant shades of red, black, orange and brown; mammoth shield volcanos envelope the horizon; the view is breathtaking. Lacking much of an atmosphere the temperature plummets after sunset from a balmy minus ten to overnight lows in the negative one hundred and sixty degree range. With deep shadows to hide large boulders or ravines, Mars is left a cold, dark, dangerous, nightmare of a world. Starting up his vehicle, Major Wilson heads for Base as the sun begins to set. Like a large luminescent coin disappearing into a child's piggy bank, the sun falls slowly behind the mountains, lacking the multi-colored spectacle of an Earth sunset. Even with the starkness of the scenery, it irritates Graham that this planet is considered no more than a rock that will be raped of every mineral of value. Graham releases a deep sigh; "This has to stop," He said talking to himself; "I'm really getting depressed. What I need is a vacation or, at the very least, a diversion from all of this." The switch quickly opens Graham's microphone once again. "M-32, are you on line?" Graham called, "Trevor, are you still there?" "Yes sir," Trevor responds. "I need some traveling music, and this blasted buggy doesn't have a decent stereo." "But sir," Trevor protested, "it's against regulations, and we got into deep trouble the last time I did that for you." "Control deprived me of my few precious moments of solitude. the least they can do is allow me some tunes to tool on home by. So come on, Trevor," Graham said sternly; "You know what I want, and I live much closer to you than those number crunchers down at Control, so please, just do it." As the shadows cast by the cart lengthen into distorted, dark shapes that sweep over the ground, Graham's head begins to bob up and down inside his fish-bowl helmet with the first sweet notes of his favorite tune. With the "pedal to the metal," Graham drives into the sunset with the music soothing the realities of today by reviving memories of yesterday. "Let's go surfin' now, everybody's learning how, come on and safari with me..." -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- An interesting thing happened to me last Friday. I was working on a paper, (okay I was MUD-ing!) at a VAX terminal, when all of a sudden I got a message from an account in Eardeiger, Germany. All attempts to trace the user failed, but when I read the message, or account of this man, I was truly sparked with curiosity. The notions of time travel have been examined from the time of H.G. Wells up to Steven Boschco's, "Quantum Leap." Never has time travel been because of need! ________________________________ / \ | "BAPTISM OF FIRE" | | | | BY | | | | TED SANDERS | \________________________________/ My name and place of birth are irrelevant. All you need know of me is that I am a scientist. My accounts are neither false, fictitious, or hallucination. The epilogue of my horrific tale begins in Eardeiger, a small village 10 kilometers from Braunschweig. I do not know what achievement I hope to attain by publishing my personal journal, except to stop the screaming of the children. My escape from WWII Germany was granted by powers, (or science) not yet discovered in this wonderful decade of ours. "God save the children!" June 27, 1943- Eardeiger, Germany "Today's experiment with Sodium reactive agents was a relative failure. After the final result of an uncontrollable exothermic reaction, my legs burst into flames due to the alcohol stabilizing compound. I was temporarily disabled, but thanks to some unexplainable factor, I found myself in a nearby stream of cool water. My only assumption is that I blanked out or forgot running to the stream due to shock. This assessment does not agree with me, yet for now, it must do." June 29, 1943- Eardeiger, Germany "Rumor has it that Hitler is making an elite force of scientists from the countryside. I know it's only a matter of time until they ask me. I've heard of the scientific atrocities at Auschwitz, of the mutilated children, and electrolysis patients gone mad. These men are not scientists, they are butchers! With God as my witness, I will have no part of this!" July 1,1943- Branschweig, Germany (Nazi experimental laboratory) "The SS have found me. To storm troopers came to my laboratory and seized all of my files. I'm now in the scientific center in Branschweig. I've refused to assist in this so called scientific experimentation, so therefore they put me among the, 'variables,' or experimental subjects. My home, a padded room, my neighbors, a pregnant woman, and a victim of electrolysis. The scientists are quite interested in my mishap with the sodium experiment. They have me scheduled for an experiment tomorrow. I believe one of my worst fears has came true, I am now the guinea pig." July 2, 1943- Branschweig, Germany (Left wing) "The fates have either blessed me, or condemned me. The experiment design was not well thought out, yet it got results. I was placed in an airtight chamber of glass, with many probes and cameras staring me on. The only articles that I had were my trousers, and my personal diary that sat in my pocket. I feared of death by asphyxiation, yet my torture would be even worse. As I stood in my glass tomb, a steady flow of water poured into the chamber. My instructions were to visualize being outside of the chamber, standing on a piece of carpet marked with a red 'X.' Instead, just to spite the bastards, I visualized being in the operating room next to my cell. Many prayers came from my mouth, to many Gods, and with eminent doom waiting for me, I assumed these were in vain. Just as I began to breathe in the water, I found myself in the operating room! After a time of hacking, choking, and giving thanks to God, I looked up to see two doctors staring at me, the doctors were busy performing experiments upon a young, pregnant, female. The standard tools were being used, forceps, scalpel, and a syringe of synthesized musculine. They were trying to abort the child! The only item not being used was a fountain pen, which I stuck into one of the butchers arms. This was a vain attempt because two security guards grabbed me and took me to my cell." July 20,1943- Branschweig, Germany (cell) "I am tired, and guilty. Over the past two weeks, I've been submitted to many horrific tests, which would sicken even the toughest of souls! Many tests of brain activity, biochemical analysis on my blood, and the zinger of them all, rectal probes. After all tests have been performed, they have found nothing! After the anatomical tests were performed, a series of attempts have been performed upon my life. I have been burned, gassed, and almost mutilated. These experiments are not by volunteer status, they hold the victims of similar experiments in front of me, and threaten their lives. I have no choice! In 'repayment' for the living hell I've been put through, I am granted access to the scientific library, and extra rations. My gift is termed, 'mental-active transportation.' This is the ability to move through space without aid of mechanical devices. As all of my research has been studied, the Nazis now have derived a hypothesis. Any human being with the mental concentration that I have attained, can perform mental-active transportation. I have heard the other victims at night. Mostly, they are young men and children. When I sleep, which is rarely, they hold trials for me. They say it's my fault for their horrid burns and mutilation. One child sympathizes with me, his name is 'Peter.' He has acid burns all over his face and neck. He tells me it is okay, yet I still wake in dread horror of what I have done. Peter told me that there's a way out for me. Peter explained to me that time, and space, are relatively similar. I cannot transport out of Germany, because I fear Hitler will soon rule the world, and I am his number one guinea pig. He will find me! The past is no escape for me, for eventually Hitler will show up. My only escape is the future. I dream, at times, of a place where science is not adulterated, where children can laugh and play in peace, and not be guinea pigs! Tomorrow, I attempt my own experiment!" July 21,1945- Braunschweig, Germany " My life is no longer in my hands. I have tied my shoe laces to the top of my cubicle and with delicate precision constructed a hangman's noose. My destination, the future, my possessions my good suit and both my scientific and personal journals. If I do not travel, then I die! My only fear now is, will the children go forward with me? Their tiny faces haunt me at night. All, except for Peter, still blame me. They say if it wasn't for my 'baptism of fire,' then they'd still live. If the alcohol would not have burnt my legs...if!" --------------------------- / T W O P O E M S \ | By Heather Elliot | \___________________________/ ----------------------------------------+--------------------------------------- |SPACE BAR 761-TIME |* * |sittin at the bar Hello you have reached... |with the reals * |scoping missles To commemorate the |in walked an hourglass idiosyncrasies of |time warped TIME |men were moving at light speed It is currently 11:01pm.. |converging on a black hole * |us reals inched along like sloths Thank you for calling First National |realized we weren't chicks |just flew the coop ----------------------------------------+--------------------------------------- _____________________________________________________ / \ | Role Playing Games : Understanding What They Are. | | By Daniel Frederick - Ram/Rom | \_____________________________________________________/ For many years I have been playing Role Playing Games. I, like most of my friends, gather 'ritually' to partake in a game for the mind. One that requires imagination and mental skills. However, I hear things from people that sound like "Wow, I heard about you people on Geraldo! You're an evil worshipper of the Devil, right?" NO! Role Playing is not a Cult or Demonic being. We don't gather and practice spells out of our rule books. I never had to do any strange ritual to get a character up a level. No, all I had to do was play good and be deductive enough to figure out what had to be done to win the mission. Role Playing is a fictional world where imagination takes over. It can portray violence, compassion, friendship, and be an exotic realm where both the idea of magic and great technologies can co-exist. It's all up the GM (Game Master). The GM is the person who controls the weather, non-player characters (like bystanders, bad guys, etcetera) and he tells the story. Characters serve as an imaginary playing piece. You use the character to tell what you're doing. Death is also involved in role playing, but it is only in a virtual sense. If your character decides he wants to try to attack those six bad guys over there to save the lady in distress, and he gets hurt and killed instead then you're "dead" and you need a new character to play. But, if you're smart and you/your character calls over to the cop not too far away and then he arrests the bad guys, you live. Hopefully though when you play a game you will have more than one character trying to save that lady. If you and three friends are playing and then you get hired to protect that lady, combined you should be able to handle the situation....try out smarting them first then, if you must, attack. The whole idea of Role Playing is to imitate life or bend it by playing in a time period or universe that is not real, or is in the past or future. Your character may have certain quirks about him, say he is a young fellow in some medieval time period, an Elf lets say, living close to a city of humans that hate any one who is not HUMAN. Then you are going to have to play realistically and not bother those humans unless you are looking for trouble. If you need some supplies you will have to disguise yourself first or find a sympathetic human to help you. Playing in character is important so it will be mentally challenging. Often, you might play a character that knows how to use magic or psionics. I am sure you have heard of magic, it is a force of nature that can be harnesed by a single individual. The idea of Psionics is that a person can preform things like magic but by drawing on their inner strength where you feed on your own mental powers not those of nature. Remember he or she will have these powers as a character only. In real life (RL) you aren't magically empowered with these powers your character has. There is a real definate line between RL and Virtual Life (VL). When playing in a game, you act as your character would, in life you act like you. The books gamers use to play are only outlines to form a story from. They are not meant to be used as Spell Books or a way of life. They are only rules, ideas, and a basic foundation to build upon. When you hear about some person killing himself because his character died, then you are hearing about a sick person who is/was in need of serious help! As in every thing in life, Role Playing can be taken and turned into something wrong. But it is a minority that do so. And those people are in need of help if they think some spell in a book for gaming is going to really work....let 'em try they will only be wasting their own time. Not to mention making themselves look funny. Because there are a lot of people in my community that enjoy Role Playing as a pastime, occasionally we formed something close to a Cult. It is NOT a Cult! Where some people may think it is, really it isn't! In fact it is only a club of sorts. Below I have put part of the news letter we use to get people interested in joining us in some fun. Would you rather go out and get drunk, be bored, rob a bank, or get together with some friends and play a game of mental skill? This is only an example of our Guild/Club. The Role Playing Guild was created to bring role players in the Gunnison area together with a little organization. It is also designed to help in assisting the longevity of campaigns and plans. The basic goals of the R.P.G. are to help give inspiration/incentive to DM/GMs to keep campaigns going even though it is time consuming, help to inspire the players themselves to Role Play at higher proficiency, and to codify news and campaign announcements into a news letter that will come out at least once a month with high quality. So, as I hoped to show you, Role Playing is not a EVIL thing, really it is just the same as any other sport, club, or activity. Daniel Frederick - Ram/Rom : ------------------------------------------------------------ ____________________________________ \ / \ Shadowruns and Cyberpunks / \ By Luke Miller / \ / \/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/ You crouch in a dark alley, sweat drips off your forehead. Your shoulder aches from holding your pistol trained on the doorway across the street. Suddenly the door flies open and a half dozen men swarm out. Each one of them is heavily augmented with cyberware and heavy weaponry. You fire twice...*BLAM* *BLAM*...two of the razorguys fall clutching their bellies. There are shots from the rooftop and three more fall. The last one is off and running down the street. Two of your partners leap from hiding to take up pursuit. One falls, blood spurting from the back of his neck as the razorguy spins on wired reflexes and opens fire. The other dives behind the burned out shell of an old car. Bullets rip into the side of the car stitching lines across the door. You roll into a prone firing position behind a pile of boxes. Your palms are slippery with sweat as you attach your scope to the top of the gun. You've gotta work quick or the razorguy will get away. Tightening the scope on, you train the laser sight on the dumpster behind which the enemy hides. Within ten seconds, he pops up to take another shot at your partner behind the car. One quick shot is all it takes. Why is the allure of cyberpunk role-playing games so strong? I've been trying to answer that question for myself for a long time. Since I began my first Shadowrun campaign several months ago, I have almost totally dropped out of all other genres of role playing. I think it's the dark side in us. To live in a world where the only goal is to survive in the concrete jungle. To live by one's wits and skills. But why is this any different than other games? I believe it's the mood, the cyberpunk attitude is akin to that of industrial music and the digital age of information and technology. To live life on the edge, where just being alive is proof that you're good enough. >>>>[Watch your back, shoot straight, conserve ammo, and never, ever cut a deal with a dragon]<<<<< --Famous street proverb from Shadowrun ___________________________ / \ / \ / T a l e s \ /____________________o_f__________\ | | |____ T h e ___ | The Pile of Hair | | |_| | |. | U n k n o w n #2 | By | | | Deva Winblood ____________|___|_____________________________|____________________________ ___ (_ _) (_)he Tales of The Unknown is going to be a regular section in the Information, Communication, Supply Electrozine. It consists of stories that are supposedly based on actual happenings. If you have such a tale to add to this section just write it up and send it to ORG_ZINE@WSC.COLORADO.EDU. ---------- ___ (_ _) (_)he tale for this issue begins on a heavily forested mountain gulch in the spring. The pack of men involved are all on horseback. The men duck under the green aspen trees and past the thick pines. The smell of nature is floating densely through the air. This particular gulch is well known to these men. The group of men ride on up the gulch, they enjoy the beautiful forest scenery. Rays of sunlight beam through the forest canopy, leaving light areas on the forest floor. The forest floor is covered with green vegetation and the occasional pile of old leaves that have not been pushed aside by growing spring plants. As the men ride on, one of them stops and points at a large pile of reddish brown fibers. The men quickly note it looks like hair of some sort, but is far thicker than that of any animal they know of. They quickly eliminate bear, dear, and elk, as they have all lived in the area for a long time and have hunted these animals. The men examine the hair and all are clueless. They remount their horses and prepare to leave. Suddenly, a sound like some animal they have never heard before resounds through the woods. The men all get frightened and look around. They leave in fear of the unknown. At the time of the telling one of these men mentioned seeing some moving reddish brown form in the trees. These men now feel that it was some unknown animal. Their belief is that they encountered a Wendigo, Sasquatch, Big Foot, Swamp Devil, or whatever you prefer to call it. These men have gone up this gulch and many other areas in the region for many years and many different seasons, but have failed to locate the animal that had them so afraid on that spring encounter. ----------------------------------------------------------------------------- /\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\ | | | L E T T E R S T O I.C.S. | | | \/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/ Here we include some of the letters sent to Information, Communication, Supply. The editors will also give feedback to the authors of these letters at the end of the letters section. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Date: Sat, 20 Feb 93 17:26:53 +0200 From: Yiannis Ventikos Message-Id: <> Subject: Neon Chrome Hi, I'll put my little bit of experience in this. When a mad dog attacked me and a friend some time ago, it moved right towards him, ignoring me completely. Somehow it could sense his fear (attacked by dog as a kid, child trauma issues...) and went for it. Actually the dog ran to him from a 50 meter distance with a strong wind blowing from its direction (so I am pretty sure that no "smell of fear" could have done the trick) A karate sensei who was trained in Japan told us the story (this is his version though) that the masters in the Chinese island of Okinawa would drive the wildcats away by presence only. The zine, I liked. ---------- ****************************************************************************** * Yiannis Ventikos * DISCLAIMER * * Viscous Flows Group, * Any and all opinions that * * Dept. of Naval Arch. & Marine Eng., * I have expressed so far * * National Technical University of Athens, * reflect thoughts of mine * * P.O. Box 64070, GR-15710, Zografos, GREECE * and mine alone and have * * Voice: (301) 7700405 * nothing to do with the * * Fax: (301) 7774478 * policy of the Department * * e-mail: * I currently belong to. * ****************************************************************************** God does not play dice with the Universe. HE just sets its Lyapunov Spectrum. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Date: Sat, 20 Feb 93 11:19:28 UCR From: "Daniel Chavarria M." Subject: Great mag Message-id: <01GUXWB3W11E004SVX@VAXF.COLORADO.EDU> I just read the first edition of your magazine, and I think it's really something different from the other standard (mainly technical) topics discussed on the Internet and Bitnet; keep on sending the next editions, I really liked the first one. Regards, Daniel Chavarria Computer Science Student University of Costa Rica {That is exactly what we hoped to accomplish. Thank you! -Editor} ------------------------------------------------------------------------------ From: Date: Fri, 19 Feb 93 09:26 EST Subject: Re: Information, Communication, Supply Electrozine Document Congratulations on your first issue of the ICS 'Zine. I especially liked the story on MUD addiction. My only criticism is that the articles are rather long for an E-mail message. I found that I had to save the message and either read it out-of-hours (i.e. - not at work) or print a hard copy and take it home to read. I just couldn't see myself sitting at my terminal at work staring at the display for 1/2 hour or more. I like the idea of abstracts for each article. It saves time if the contents doesn't appeal to me. Keep up the good work. I look forward to the next issue. Tom Romalewski AT&T Bell Laboratories Holmdel, NJ {It becomes hard to shrink what we use beyond a certain point, but we will keep your comment in mind. -Editor} -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Date: Sun, 21 Feb 93 18:25:48 -0500 From: "William Dean Norris II" Message-Id: <> Subject: Information, Communication, Supply Electrozine Document Hmmm, I hope this reaches you, you didn't specify an email address. I liked your stories/articles. The Mud and Chi articles were well done. I was wondering if Russell was a woman? If not, then he can portray that POV very well. It was a good story, a little predictable but overall a good story. dean. {Russel is indeed a male. -Editor} ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Date: Sat, 20 Feb 93 13:54:05 cdt From: "Lowell (Vaughn,Lowell G)" Subject: your ICS Article Since joing the internet about a year ago, my school has had a problem with MUD players. In your article you called it an addiction. I agree with your assesment of the situation. Do you have any medical evidence of this? Also, do you know of any one who had treated people for this addiction. I am on a committee here that deals with academic computing issues. MUDing had been a recent issue, and I was wondering if you knew of any medical attention payed to it. Thanks in advance Lowell Vaughn VAUGHNL@AC.GRIN.EDU Snail: Box 14-78 VAUGHNL@GRIN1.BITNET Grinnell College VAUGHNL@MATH.GRIN.EDU Grinnell Iowa, 50112 {The article on MUD addiction was based on the author's own observation, combined with conversation with MUD players and personal experience. If there is any concrete medical study on the topic out there, either supporting or refuting, we would certainly be interested in it, though. -Editor} ------------------------------------------------------------------------------ _____________________________________ / F i n a l O p i n i o n \ | By Benjamin Price | \_____________________________________/ I sit here in front of this terminal screen almost religiously. I sometimes spend eight hours a day at it; often the stretch is far less, but the extreme is still there. I'm not a MUDhead, although I will admit that I enjoy them from time to time. I spend a fair amount of time simply talking to people around the country, and around the globe, on talk lines, or 'Havens' as the few I use are titled. When I tell my friends that I have to check my mail, I don't go to the post office... I go to the VAX lab and read email. Although I have been exposed to Internet for maybe six months, the computer lab has become one of the hubs around which my life revolves. It is my strongest link to the rest of the world; living on campus, when the television is on, it is on MTV, and newspapers are for the majority a window to the sports world only. So for me, Internet is much of my culture, conversation, and focus. But because of my seeming attachment to a computer screen, I often wonder if I am leading a healthy lifestyle; the same question many others who know me have had. The games have a bad reputation, and that carries over to the net in general often times. There are quite a few good points, though, that I think the uninitiated often fail to see. A computer screen and a connection to the world are the greatest equalizing forces I have ever encountered. Once you sit down and enter Cyberspace, there are no longer any judgements. There is no race, no creed, no gender... you are defined simply by how much you know and how you choose to use that knowledge. States and nations become points of interest, instead of defining factors. It is not at all uncommon for people who would never be able to interact in real life due to the boundaries of conventional society to hold genuine, accepting conversations because they never have a chance to form prejudice over the net. Anyone can be anything. Because knowledge is both power and prestige in Cyberspace, it motivates its residents to learn in a far more effective way than I have experienced during other aspects of scholarly life. It seems to me that the most common attitude in high school, then college, and perhaps beyond college is that the important thing is not learning, but rather the piece of paper or size of the bank account that says you went through the motions. Not so in the world behind a terminal. I would like to think that perhaps someday the perspective we who use the net have can be shared. It has been an awakening for me. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- ICS would like to hear from you. We accept flames, comments, submissions, editorials, corrections, and just about anything else you wish to send us. For your safety use these guidelines when sending us anything. We will use things sent to us when we think the would be appropriate for the goal of the issue coming out. So, if you send us something that you DO NOT want us to use in the electrozine, then put the words NOT FOR PUBLICATION in the subject of the mail you send us. You can protect your material by sending a copy to yourself through the mail and leaving the envelope unopened. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- ICSICSICSICSICSICSICS/\ICSICSICSICSICSICSICSICSICSICSICSICSICSICSICSICSICSICSICS CSICSICSICSICSICSICS/ \CSICSICSICSICSICSICSICSICSICSICSICSICSICSICSICSICSICSICS ICSICSICSICSICSICSI/ \ICSICSICSICSICSICSICSICSICSICSICSICSICSICSICSICSICSICSI CSICSICSICSICSICSI/ \CSICSICSICSICSICSICSICSICSICSICSICSICSICSICSICSICSICSI ICSICSICSICSICSIC/ I C S \ICSICSICSICSICSICSICSICSICSICSICSICSICSICSICSICSICSIC CSICSICSICSICSIC/ \CSICSICSICSICSICSICSICSICSICSICSICSICSICSICSICSICSIC ICSICSICSICSICS/ Electro- \ICSICSICSICSICSICSICSICSICSICSICSICSICSICSICSICSICS CSICSICSICSICS/ Zine \CSICSICSICSICSICSICSICSICSICSICSICSICSICSICSICSICS \ / \ #2 / \ / \ / An Electronic Magazine from \ / Western State College \ / Gunnison, Colorado. \ / ORG_ZINE@WSC.COLORADO.EDU \/ '*' -------------------------------------------------------------------------------


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