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Readercon wrap-up

Over the weekend, I was at Readercon 18, where I watched some panels and talked to some people, including oracne (who is very funny and interesting), Sarah Beth Durst whose YA fantasy novel Into the Wild is very excellent (now I have two signed copies), mabfan who is an interesting guy and also a fan of Sarah, nihilistic_kid (whose books I've been meaning to get, and now I have them), and Skott Klebe who I met at Boskone.

I had a heck of a time getting the hotel's internet service to work. The first time I tried and it didn't work, I called tech support, and got a guy who knew exactly what to do, and I was online within 15 minutes. Unfortunately, the next day I found myself disconnected again, and had to call twice to get things straightened out. The calls went like this:

(On hold for five minutes.)
Them: "Hi, can I get the name of your hotel, and your name, and your room number?"
Me: (provides information)
Them: "Okay, what operating system are you using? For instance, is it Windows 2000, or Windows XP?"
Me: "Linux."
Them: "Uh... please hold."
(On hold for five minutes.)
Them: "Okay, please click the Start button--"
Me: "This isn't Windows. There is no Start button."
Them: "Please hold."
(On hold for ten minutes.)
Them: "Okay, please make sure your Windows firewall is disabled."
...

Anyway, I only spent about an hour total on the phone with tech support, and had internet access for most of my stay, and wasn't charged for it.

Burlington, MA seems like a good place to go if you feel like shopping or eating at a chain restaurant.

Also, I came home with yet another pile of books to read--not nearly as many as the ALA conference, but still a good-sized pile--and I am starting to despair of ever getting them all read.

Update: Duh, I also talked with mssrcrankypants a few times and bought a copy of the first issue of Dead Reckonings, his (and S.T. Joshi's) horror review journal. He's a friendly guy, and one of the reasons I've really gotten interested in the horror genre.

Comments

( 11 comments — Leave a comment )
mabfan
Jul. 10th, 2007 01:05 pm (UTC)
It was good to meet you!
rfreebern
Jul. 10th, 2007 01:12 pm (UTC)
Oh, dear. I think it's a rule that when you list people you met at a gathering, you've gotta forget someone.

I enjoyed meeting you, too!
mabfan
Jul. 10th, 2007 01:14 pm (UTC)
Please do remind me -- I seem to recall that at one point, you were asking whether or not you should attend Readercon, and I recommended you do so. Am I recalling correctly?
rfreebern
Jul. 10th, 2007 01:33 pm (UTC)
It's quite possible, but I'm having trouble finding textual evidence. At Boskone, Adam Golaski recommended Readercon to me, which was pretty much the first I'd heard of it, but I wasn't sure if I wanted to go. It's very likely that I expressed uncertainty at some point and you urged me to go.
mabfan
Jul. 10th, 2007 01:38 pm (UTC)
If it was you, it would be somewhere in your LJ.

Doesn't really matter. Now that we've got you coming to Boskone and Readercon, all that's left is Arisia. :-)
rfreebern
Jul. 10th, 2007 01:45 pm (UTC)
I need to start making writing sales to offset the cost of these cons!
katre50
Jul. 10th, 2007 01:22 pm (UTC)
When we were staying in Boston a few months ago, we also had trouble with the internet. After a few minutes of exactly what you describe, I finally gave up an played along. "You want me to click the Properties button on my Network Connection panel?" "Sure, it says I don't have an IP address." etc etc

Finally, of course, it turned out to be a faulty switch. And then it worked nicely, so yay.
rfreebern
Jul. 10th, 2007 01:35 pm (UTC)
The most annoying part is that I've been to an el cheapo Holiday Inn and an el cheapo Days Inn in the past few months, and both have had completely free, open wifi that Just Worked without any trouble whatsoever. Way to go, Marriott.
derspatchel
Jul. 10th, 2007 01:54 pm (UTC)
Reminds me of the time in 2000 when I moved and ordered broadband service. Two techs came over with the cable modem and offered to help me set it up. I said no thanks, just give me the DNS numbers, NNTP and POP servers, all that good stuff, and I'll take care of the rest.

They couldn't. They were just trained to plug the cable modem in, plug it into the back of the computer and let DHCP do the rest. They couldn't even tell me where to point my own DHCP client. It wasn't that they were ignernt or nothin, they just didn't have the information on hand since Windows and Macs did it all for them.

So one tech actually had to call his supervisor to not only get the info for me, but also to obtain permission to give it to me. After relaying the OS I was using (OpenBSD) the poor guy started to get defensive on the phone. "No! No! We haven't touched it. I know. I swear we haven't done a thing to it. This guy says he'll do it all himself."

I really felt bad for those guys.
truepixie
Jul. 11th, 2007 02:17 am (UTC)

Burlington, MA seems like a good place to go if you feel like shopping or eating at a chain restaurant.


Hah! Yes, that's about right. I go there sometimes. For the Mall.

ckd
Jul. 11th, 2007 02:48 am (UTC)
That's why I call it "Burblington".
( 11 comments — Leave a comment )

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