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Barrett Manor

Julie Barrett is a freelance writer and photographer based in Plano, TX.

Monday Mumblings

Fresh (almost) daily from Julie Barrett


Monday cometh, and it's time for the weekly catch-all topic.

Yesterday we sent Chris off to Scout camp. Gone for a week! Paul and I did take the bike up go McKinney to The Londoner. The rest of the day was spent just doing stuff. No plan. We watched a movie, caught up on a little paperwork, drank coffee, cooked dinner together. Nice.

One other thing we did was spend a little time playing with the printer, an HP 8250. This is one of those models with a card reader and a display. So far the performance has met expectations, though I haven't tried pumping out many pages of text yet. I'm not going to do it just for the sake of doing it.

When we picked up the printer, there was an HP rep at the store. Of course, he gave us the song and dance about paper, but with a twist. An Epson rep was there as well, and he was nodding his head in agreement that Epson paper really didn't work well in HP printers. The thing that surprised me was that they both were in agreement over the quality of Ilford pearl paper. The stuff does look stunning. Of course, they both warned me about using those crappy, cheap third-party paper. Both of you who read this on a regular basis know that their comments were taken as an invitation to try one of those crappy third-party papers.

Last fall I bought a batch of 100 4x6 glossy sheets for $10. I wasn't looking for top-quality results because I was printing out a text-only flyer to pimp some of my work at a convention. I wanted a professional look, but for cheap, and in a hurry. The cards looked great, but how would the stock hold up to a high-quality picture?

Darned if it didn't outdo the HP paper in terms of contrast and detail. And yes, to be perfectly fair I printed the test picture using the same software and settings. The printer even does a good job printing pictures on plain paper.

So far I'm happy, but once I start to put the thing through its paces I'll probably find something I don't like. That's to be expected.

On to other topics.

Karen has been posting about her efforts to attempt to keep a couple of Wikipedia articles neutral. The drama involved with both is not a direct result of her efforts, but she has been pulled into the fray. My own opinion is that it could have been a lot worse, had it not been for the efforts of her and others to try and find some common acceptable ground.

The articles she discusses have become flame magnets for various reasons. One is about literary agent Barbara Bauer, and the other is on the practice of disemvowling. The first one has been contentious as Bauer herself has gone in and "fluffified" (my word) her own article. Wikipedia is big on attribution and neutrality. Therefore, the subject of an article shouldn't be making substantial edits to his or her own biography. In fact, it would probably look better if they simply left a note on the talk page associated with the article. Both articles are contentious because a flame war has developed over what constitutes a neutral point of view.

Lots of drama. Everyone is "right" to some degree, but the real problem lies in getting people with dispirate ideas of NPOV to come to an agreement.

I wish Karen luck. I know how difficult it is to try and stay neutral in an dispute, especially if I'm involved somehow. Is it possible to be involved and be neutral? I think so. At the very least, it's possible to be open to listening to the POV of both sides, and to make comments in a factual, non-emotional manner.

It's human nature to look upon the bearer of the peace pipe with distrust. We wonder about the bearer's true motivations. Hopefully the parties in this mediation will realize that her motives are pure. And if you try sometimes, as that great philospher Jagger said, "you get what you need."

Okay, the morning has dragged on and I must start on work and laundry. Oh, and there is a picture to come before the day is out.

One other quick note: Searching the journal or tags brought up an ugly error message. It's fixed. I hope.

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Filed under: Life   Technology   Wikipedia       
6/19/2006 12:43:01 PM
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