Nostalgic Rumblings
The Ramblings of an Old Man

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May 2010
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What (or rather who) killed 24

Filed under: Television — Charlie Summers @ 6:33 pm
The death of Jack Bauer
Unfortunately, in this case I have no one to blame but myself…here Jack is killed attempting to fight off a helicopter filled with bad guys from 24: The Game.

As many of my friends know, I was a great fan of the television series 24, even putting up with much of the nonsense dished out by the writers over the years. But this year, I have to admit, I am rather glad 24 has ended. So let me give a very brief obituary and lay some considerable blame for the death of a once-proud and now embarrassing television program.

I distinctly remember watching the first episode many years ago…I had heard about the “real-time” conceit, and remember thinking that the show would either be very good, or very stupid. I watched the first episode in real-time (something I haven’t always done), and at the 1:00 am stroke realized I was, quite literally, sitting on the edge of my chair. No other television program has, before or since, done that to me. I looked at my wife, and said something intelligent, like, “Wow.”

That first season kept me spell-bound, even while allowing me to realize how the writers worked. This has been consistent over every season, good or bad…come up with an idea to kick-start the season about six episodes long, then flounder along for the next twelve episodes putting up straw men to knock over until finally coming up with the endgame, which would run four or five episodes. I have complained in this space before that it would have made a lot more sense to actually come up with the plot for the entire season before writing the first word, but that seems to have been consistently too much for the writing staff. (Before you say “It’s impossible to come up with an entire day before writing,” let me briefly mention the series of books available at your local bookstore which do exactly that. I’ve only read one, and that was…an ok read while not spectacular, but these books show it actually is possible for even journeyman writers to devise a plot that unfolds within the course of a twenty-four hour day. So why can’t the ridiculously-paid writing staff of 24?)

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Sites caught sharing secret data with advertisers, report says

Filed under: News — Charlie Summers @ 7:57 am

From Ars Technica via CNN: Sites caught sharing secret data with advertisers, report says

From the article: “A report in the Wall Street Journal indicates that Facebook, along with MySpace, Digg and a handful of other social-networking sites, have been sharing users’ personal data with advertisers without users’ knowledge or consent.”

Actually, a more in-depth article on the Ars Technica website explains that, other than Facebook, this isn’t as big a problem as the WSJ suggests. Still, it’s part-and-parcel of the issues we face on the Net…and the way we are giving up our privacy to advertisers.

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