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tkdguy
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International Astronomical Union Center for protection of dark & quiet sky

 

Opens next month.  The large satellite constellations (which are entirely unregulated, BTW) that are going up seriously threaten the ability to do groundbased astronomy, and frankly stand to change the appearance of the night sky for a long time.

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1 hour ago, Cygnia said:

I hate light pollution from living in a city.  When the Great Blackout happened back in '03, I loved finally being able to see the stars for a while...

 

Ha, I hate the light pollution from the clock on the DVR box in my bedroom.  LEDs are an incredible invention, but man, sometimes...

 

As for cocooning the Earth in satellites, I'm torn.  I want astronomers to be able to observe without them getting in the way, but I also want places like China, Ukraine, and rural Montana to have unfiltered internet.

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16 hours ago, archer said:

There's a reason they call it "Hurts".

 

In addition to its namesake brand, Hertz operates the Dollar and Thrifty car rental services.

 

https://finance.yahoo.com/news/ve-rented-car-hertz-could-140608298.html

If you’ve rented a car from Hertz, there could be a warrant out for your arrest, good luck proving the warrant is bogus

 

Wow. Don't think I've ever used Hertz, but now I'm wondering. Ridiculous business practice. 

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Pretty sure the last couple car rentals have been Enterprise.  Good price, good service, no issues.  Those have been local...car in the shop, mostly, and one other where I can't remember why.  Only rented a car on travel a few times, and those were all ages ago...mid to late 90's.  Situation would've been massively different;  Hertz bought up Dollar and Thrifty only in 2012.  

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Most of the times I've rented cars I've been required to use a particular outfit (Alamo IIRC) because of state contracts.  Now, the most recent time for that was back in the mid-1990s.  I can think of four times I've had free choice because I was paying for it (one of which was not in the US, and the most recent of any was 2014) and I genuinely don't recall whom we used, but I'm pretty sure it wasn't Hertz.

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A passing thought here about how this Hertz debacle could be avoided....

 

I'm thinking that it's more likely to happen when you don't execute the check-in...for example, you return the car when the office is closed, or perhaps if the rental company advertises a "drop off the keys and go."  OK, yeah, sometimes the office will be closed, and especially traveling, maybe you're running closer on time than you'd like.  (VERY bad memories of one particular effort to return a car...allllllll my fault but hey, that just makes it worse.)  If you have a completed check-in form, then that ends it.  (It also says, keep that paperwork.)  If not?  There's some risk that the rental people will mess it up...or, you did something inadvertently wrong, and the check-in maybe doesn't happen.

 

That check-in form is the assurance that the rental's closed.  Until it's positively closed, there's ways to mess up.  You'd think it wouldn't happen, right?  Well, it's a little different, but a few months ago, I was checking out through a self-checking line at the local market.  As it turns out...the person before me failed to follow the checkout procedures...there's a last confirmation after the card's been read/phone's been used.  The person failed to do it, and bailed.  So......HIS transaction was still open.  I didn't note it...just scanned my stuff.  Didn't note it throughout the checkout.


HE got charged for what I picked up.

 

Note that I have no idea who it was, and the shopper was long gone by the time I got done, so reimbursement was simply not on the table.

 

As I say, a little different, but similar enough to feel something like this triggered the Hertz system in these cases.  That's an explanation, I might add...not an excuse.  It shouldn't have happened.

 

 

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32 minutes ago, unclevlad said:

A passing thought here about how this Hertz debacle could be avoided....

 

I'm thinking that it's more likely to happen when you don't execute the check-in...for example, you return the car when the office is closed, or perhaps if the rental company advertises a "drop off the keys and go."  OK, yeah, sometimes the office will be closed, and especially traveling, maybe you're running closer on time than you'd like.  (VERY bad memories of one particular effort to return a car...allllllll my fault but hey, that just makes it worse.)  If you have a completed check-in form, then that ends it.  (It also says, keep that paperwork.)  If not?  There's some risk that the rental people will mess it up...or, you did something inadvertently wrong, and the check-in maybe doesn't happen.

 

That check-in form is the assurance that the rental's closed.  Until it's positively closed, there's ways to mess up.  You'd think it wouldn't happen, right?  Well, it's a little different, but a few months ago, I was checking out through a self-checking line at the local market.  As it turns out...the person before me failed to follow the checkout procedures...there's a last confirmation after the card's been read/phone's been used.  The person failed to do it, and bailed.  So......HIS transaction was still open.  I didn't note it...just scanned my stuff.  Didn't note it throughout the checkout.


HE got charged for what I picked up.

 

Note that I have no idea who it was, and the shopper was long gone by the time I got done, so reimbursement was simply not on the table.

 

As I say, a little different, but similar enough to feel something like this triggered the Hertz system in these cases.  That's an explanation, I might add...not an excuse.  It shouldn't have happened.

 

 

 

Still stuff like the guy actually having a physical copy of his contract from Hertz and his credit card bill showing that Hertz had been paid for the rental getting a felony conviction for stealing the car from them because the company didn't have a copy of the rental in its files...

 

That's the kind of thing that should have been fixed without resorting to going before a judge, much less getting their customer convicted for something so ridiculous.

 

Hertz got their money for the entire rental and the car back: that's exactly what's supposed to happen after renting a car.

 

Why they felt the need to push for prosecution then testify against the guy in court and intentionally ruin his life is beyond me.

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1 hour ago, archer said:

 

Still stuff like the guy actually having a physical copy of his contract from Hertz and his credit card bill showing that Hertz had been paid for the rental getting a felony conviction for stealing the car from them because the company didn't have a copy of the rental in its files...

 

That's the kind of thing that should have been fixed without resorting to going before a judge, much less getting their customer convicted for something so ridiculous.

 

Hertz got their money for the entire rental and the car back: that's exactly what's supposed to happen after renting a car.

 

Why they felt the need to push for prosecution then testify against the guy in court and intentionally ruin his life is beyond me.

 

Yeah, but there's also a strong potential racism or corruption element there.  IMO the trial judge was completely off base.  The burden of proof was on Hertz;  their failure to produce the paperwork isn't proof.  The defendant's possession of signed records, and proof of payment, *has* to constitute reasonable doubt.  And as a secondary point, why did the DA file the case with that much conflicting evidence?  I'm NOT someone looking to play the racism card;  I rather intensely dislike doing so, as a rule.  That said, I can't see a third explanation:  corruption or racism.

 

I think Hertz is going to lose, and lose HARD.  The consequences they've triggered are inherently extremely damaging...a felony arrest on its own is a HUGE deal, even if it never goes to trial.  The fact that they refuse to adjust their data when the facts change, is a massive strike against them, IMO.  It will be interesting to see if even the bankruptcy filing saves them from liability;  I believe this is the type of behavior that doesn't get absolved with the bankruptcy.  We shall see about that;  that's getting into the weeds of bankruptcy law.  Might well need a bankruptcy specialist for something like this.  And the per-case damages seem like they might get *rather* substantial.  Loss of income.  Attorney fees.  Pain and suffering.  Punitive damages due to Hertz' reckless disregard?  Hope so.

 

 

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2022 Nebula Award Finalists (note MCU nominees and Martha Wells self-DQ)

 

Quote

 

March 8, 2022 – The Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America, Inc. (SFWA) is pleased to announce the finalists for the 57th Annual Nebula Awards®! Our congratulations go out to each and every finalist for the recognition of their excellent works of science fiction and fantasy published in 2021. 

The awards will be presented in a virtual ceremony on Saturday, May 21, 2022, that will stream live as part of the 2022 Nebula Conference Online. Winners in each category will be determined by the vote of Full, Active, and Senior members of SFWA.

Here is the complete list of finalists:

Nebula Award for Novel

The Unbroken, C.L. Clark (Orbit US; Orbit UK)
A Master of Djinn, P. Djèlí Clark (Tordotcom; Orbit UK)
Machinehood, S.B. Divya (Saga)
A Desolation Called Peace, Arkady Martine (Tor; Tor UK)
Plague Birds, Jason Sanford (Apex)

Nebula Award for Novella

A Psalm for the Wild-Built, Becky Chambers (Tordotcom)
Fireheart Tiger, Aliette de Bodard (Tordotcom)
And What Can We Offer You Tonight, Premee Mohamed (Neon Hemlock)
Sun-Daughters, Sea-Daughters, Aimee Ogden (Tordotcom)
Flowers for the Sea, Zin E. Rocklyn (Tordotcom)
The Necessity of Stars, E. Catherine Tobler (Neon Hemlock)
“The Giants of the Violet Sea”, Eugenia Triantafyllou (Uncanny 9–10/21)

Nebula Award for Novelette

“O2 Arena”, Oghenechovwe Donald Ekpeki (Galaxy’s Edge 11/21)
“Just Enough Rain”, PH Lee (Giganotosaurus 5/21)
“(emet)”, Lauren Ring (F&SF 7–8/21)
“That Story Isn’t the Story”, John Wiswell (Uncanny 11–12/21)
“Colors of the Immortal Palette”, Caroline M. Yoachim (Uncanny 3–4/21)

Nebula Award for Short Story

“Mr. Death”, Alix E. Harrow (Apex 2/21)
“Proof by Induction”, José Pablo Iriarte (Uncanny 5–6/21)
“Let All the Children Boogie”, Sam J. Miller (Tor.com 1/6/21)
“Laughter Among the Trees”, Suzan Palumbo (The Dark 2/21)
“Where Oaken Hearts Do Gather”, Sarah Pinsker (Uncanny 3–4/21)
“For Lack of a Bed”, John Wiswell (Diabolical Plots 4/21) 

Andre Norton Nebula Award for Middle Grade and Young Adult Fiction

Victories Greater Than Death, Charlie Jane Anders (Tor Teen; Titan)
Thornwood, Leah Cypess (Delacorte)
Redemptor, Jordan Ifueko (Amulet; Hot Key)
A Snake Falls to Earth, Darcie Little Badger (Levine Querido)
Root Magic, Eden Royce (Walden Pond)
Iron Widow, Xiran Jay Zhao (Penguin Teen; Rock the Boat)

Ray Bradbury Nebula Award for Outstanding Dramatic Presentation

Encanto, Charise Castro Smith, Jared Bush, Byron Howard, Jason Hand, Nancy Kruse, Lin-Manuel Miranda (Walt Disney Animation Studios, Walt Disney Pictures)
The Green Knight, David Lowery (Sailor Bear, BRON Studios, A24)
Loki: Season 1, Bisha K. Ali, Elissa Karasik, Eric Martin, Michael Waldron, Tom Kauffman, Jess Dweck (Marvel Studios)
Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings, Dave Callaham, Destin Daniel Cretton, Andrew Lanham (Walt Disney Pictures, Marvel Studios)
Space Sweepers, Jo Sung-hee 조성희 (Bidangil Pictures)
WandaVision: Season 1, Peter Cameron, Mackenzie Dohr, Laura Donney, Bobak Esfarjani, Megan McDonnell, Jac Schaeffer, Cameron Squires, Gretchen Enders, Chuck Hayward (Marvel Studios)
What We Do in the Shadows: Season 3, Jake Bender, Zach Dunn, Shana Gohd, Sam Johnson, Chris Marcil, William Meny, Sarah Naftalis, Stefani Robinson, Marika Sawyer, Paul Simms, Lauren Wells (FX Productions, Two Canoes Pictures, 343 Incorporated, FX Network)

Nebula Award for Game Writing

Coyote & Crow, Connor Alexander, William McKay, Weyodi Oldbear, Derek Pounds, Nico Albert, Riana Elliott, Diogo Nogueira, William Thompson (Coyote & Crow, LLC.)
Granma’s Hand, Balogun Ojetade (Balogun Ojetade, Roaring Lion Productions)
Thirsty Sword Lesbians, April Kit Walsh, Whitney Delagio, Dominique Dickey, Jonaya Kemper, Alexis Sara, Rae Nedjadi (Evil Hat Games)
Wanderhome, Jay Dragon (Possum Creek Games)
Wildermyth, Nate Austin, Anne Austin, Douglas Austin (Worldwalker Games, LLC)

 

Author Martha Wells graciously declined her nomination as a novella finalist this year for Fugitive Telemetry: Murderbot Diaries, Book 6, published by Tordotcom. Wells felt that the Murderbot Diaries series has already received incredible praise from her industry peers and wanted to open the floor to highlight other works within the community.

 

 

Anyone read any of these?

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2 hours ago, DShomshak said:

 And since reading has become physically painful, I doubt I'll be looking for any of them. 😢

 

 

That is the most horrible thing I can imagine.

 

My deepest condolences, Sir (I assume; forgive me if I am wrong).

 

 

 

 

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5 hours ago, DShomshak said:

And since reading has become physically painful, I doubt I'll be looking for any of them. 😢

 

2 hours ago, Logan.1179 said:

Sorry to hear that. I'm in the same boat. 

 

So, is reading physically painful because of your eyes, or because the things you read (e.g. internet comments and politician statements) are making you bang your head against the desk in frustration?

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18 hours ago, Logan.1179 said:

 

Sorry to hear that. I'm in the same boat. 

 

So...the more posts of yours we reply to the more pain is inflicted?

 

This information is useful.  Yes.  Very, very useful indeed....

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