“As in, unraw bread?”

“If you like.”

“Okay. Why are you talking about toast?”

“Because in the entire history of everything, I couldn’t think of anything to start off this article with apart from the word ‘Toast’. It’s my new unseeded random word.”


“Who, me?”

“You. So, what’s happening on Planet Aquarion?”

“Well, I’m getting close to being able to mention what I’m working on, if not why it’s cool. It may or may not contain kittens.”

“Heisenburg Kittens?”

“Nah, then you’d know where they were, or how fast they’re going. It’s the other one, the one who played the piano and was chased by Lucy.”


“That’s the bunny. Not really him either, mind, but he’s the one with the possibility of dead cats.”

“Not Hindenburg kittens either?”

“Nope. Inflating kittens with hydrogen and allowing them to be set light to? Bad idea. Cat-astrophe, in fact.”

“So, how was the Yahoo! Hack Day?”

“No idea. Didn’t go. Was too busy working. staples back of wrist to forehead. Though I do have a beta key for Fire-Eagle, which I shall shortly find something incredibly cool to do with that will wow the entire universe. Probably.”

“Fire Eagle?”

“Where? Is it dangerous? I for one welcome our firey eagalitarian overlords.”


“Did you hear that the Hack Day got struck by lightning?”

“I told you that grouping that many meta-geeks in one place would anger the gods. I’m suprised Austin is still standing after SXSW”.

“I suspect the other festivals mitigate it. Plus: Steve Jackson Games is there, and they have capital-P Protection.”

“Anything else?”

“Not really. Currently playing a lot of City of Heroes (…must get Spiraling Shape high enough to get into the Crash site before they change it…) and looking forward to Bioshock (We wants it, precious).”

“So, Standards then?”

“Yeah. There’ve been a lot of monologues on the subject of slow-tracked standards – like CSS. The problem is Second System Syndrome kicks in, in the same way as it did with XHTML 2, CSS 3 and even the WAI guidelines, they don’t just want to create a system to do the job, they want a framework to do all jobs like this in the future, and then an implementation of the framework that happens to solve the original problem. We can only fortunate that they aren’t also creating a system in which you design frameworks which will have modules to solve the problem, and then a new paradiam to design systems to create frameworks that have modules that solve problems. The bigger the toolchain you have to write in order to solve the problem, the longer it’s going to take, the more people will want to tell you what colour to paint your particular nuclear power plant.”

“So, what is the solution?”

“I’m not sure. I’m fairly sure that saying ‘Okay, you can’t have that standard anymore, we’re going to do it instead’ isn’t as productive as people seem to think it is. It’s not as if it cleared the water last time