Iz box!

Mike was leaving the ship, hair still damp from washing pod goo out of his hair when he heard the argument across the docking bay.  Curious, he wandered over.

“I tell you I no be having them monstrosities in my ships”  Ev was yelling at a little man with a pallet of boxes.

“Iz Box, Iz just a box!”  The little man yelled back gesturing at the pallet.  “It iz fair and not the cheating you say.  Iz just a boxez.”

“I am ok with automation to a point.  Dat be what drones are for.  But not the blind automation of an entire ship.  Dat be juss plain wrong.”  Ev crossed his arms.

“It iz legal.  I haz papers here where they never ever say it iz not legal.”  The little man waved a comm padd.

“Juss not right.  Damn zombie ships are bad juju.”

“Ah,”  Mike said as he took the waved comm.  “This.  Yeah, it is not officially ilegal till a month from now.”

“What? No, they make mistake.  We iz doing nothing wrong.  Just flying our ships and hurting nobodiez.”  The little man looked frightened, now.

Mike smiled and handed back the comm.  You take unfair advantage and sweep the belts clean leaving the average miner with nothing.  Your type make a full team of bomber pilots look clumsy by comparison.  Slaved systems to a common command remove the skill to flying, the je ne sais quoi.  No, I am with Ev, here, and soon Concord will be as well.”

“You’ll zee!  You will loze zo much when we iz gone.  We iz the real backbone of New Eden whether you wantz to admit it or not.”  Red in the face, the little man blustered.

“Maybe, but I am willing to take that chance and so are the people in charge.  Now go away, preferably quietly.”  Mike turned his back, ending the conversation and went in search of coffee and a pastry.



ISBoxer is NOT being banned.  But one of its main functions IS.  Along with dowels and rubber bands, trained parrots and other ludicrous displays of multicasting.  Seriously I did not think that this would be a threadnaught and I request that you read the first post before commenting.

fly it like you won it




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Tantas Kitchen, tullderr

Fair warning, this is a summary of the third day of the CSM summer summit, you would be far better off reading the real minutes as this is in character and mainly written because I said I would.  But the summaries are accurate for as far as they go.


“Now the last day was almost anticlimactic”  Mike said as he chopped the onions.  “Most of the big news was null plans on the second day but that doesn’t mean we were done.  We started with a conversation about the CSM itself. The Whitepaper Review.”

“You spent an hour navel gazing?”  Ruis asked as he stirred the pot.

Dumping the onions into the pot Mike nodded.  “Pretty much.  We discussed our choice to not have officers . . . “

“I was wondering about that.  If you was to say who the officers were . . . just based on what they done so far. I wondered.”  Ruis grinned.

“Nope.  Not even gonna go there.  We worked well as people stepping up to the tasks set before us and we even have had people stepping back and down when they realized this was a bigger job than they expected.  That lead to talkin ’bout how we replace people who leave.  Then that lead to talking about elections and the fact that we better get things goin on that.  All this we want added it to the white paper, which is the document that describes what we are for and how we do things.”

Ruis tasted the stew and shook his head.  “More heat.”

“Next was the Industry Recap.”  Mike started chopping peppers of various luminous shades of red.

“Pshaw. y’all talkin bout workin and you doin none yerself.”  Tanta swept into the large kitchen like a queen arriving in her throne room, and entourage of ladies in waiting including Free and a few of Tantas dance students.

Mike laughed and swept out a plate already containing meats, cheeses and crackers.  “I was wonderin when you’d show.  Never let us cook in here wiffout some supper vising.”  He went back to chopping the peppers and flipping them towards the pot off the end of the blade.  “So we was talking about Crius and the changes it wrought.  Seems making things make sense encouraged a lot more folks to make things for themselves.  WE talked about how busy Jita is and ways that may change that.”

“Busy is good, you don’t shoe people out of the kitchen you just make sure they aren’t in the way.”  Tanta said, loading a cracker.  “Girls?  Eat, these two laggards will be at least another hour before they serve us real food.”

“Time is the one thing that cannot be rushed.  That and a decent meal.  Now where was I?  Ah, work and industry.  All in all there were things we could still ask for . . . and did but the movement all seemed in a positive direction.  Then came Starbases.”

“You mean like where Madam went to visit you?”  One of the students asked.

“No, that was a . . .well we do use the same word but context is everything, here.  There are starbases owned by the capsuleer organizations and then ones owned by mortal corporations.  In this case we talked about the capsuleer starbases, sometimes called POS’s.  Greyscale said it best

 . . . the goals were ‘starbases should primarily be a platform for doing other things from. they should give you a place to project yourself from. . . . We want progression with simpler functionality . . . – A strong sense of home. We want it to be super customizable for your needs ‘.”

“Home is good.  Roots is what make you appreciate travel.”  Tanta said.

“Oh he had a whole lot more to say on the subject.  I got the feeling this was one of his big goals in life.”  Mike was now setting up rice to cook, measuring the crowd in the kitchen and adding a few more scoops and more water to the pot.  “He wants them to be awesome and functional and all that and more so it mattered where you lived and what you did there.  We, of course agreed.  Better guns would be a good start.  You should always be able to protect your home.  And if you don’t there should be a way for others to decommission or even steal it, not just blow it up.”

“But blowing it up will still be an option, right?”  Ruis asked.

“Of course it will be.  Then we got to Veteran Player Retention which is a nice way to say we would rather the vets were less bitter and more active.  We talked a lot about what the elders wanted . . . new space, new missions, new things to do and to have done to them.  The common theme was ‘new’.  From that it was a simple segue-way into things that would be new. General Game Design.  This was where we talked about new innovations and tech.  I got to pitch the Tugboat and damn if they didn’t listen to me.”

“And why not?  I raised you ta speak well.”

“Tanta, it is kind of different talkin to folks who make the big decisions and yer juss a lil pilot.”

Her voice shifted, all her students unconsciously straightened their posture.  “Boy, there ain’t NOBODY greater or lesser than anybody else unless they let that be so.  I never raised you to be one o them who thought otherwise.”

Mike grinned.  “Yes Tanta.  So we also discussed payouts for incursions, Defender missiles and how new pilots were trained.  Off-grid boosting and flak bombs.  It was like a jam session with the powers that be and it was over far too soon.”  He sighed.  “Then we got down to specifics with Team Banana Stand”

“Who names them there groups, who?”  Ruis asked making a face.

“Beats me, I was just glad they didn’t called themselves banana hammock.”  Mike ducked the cuff aimed at the back of his head from Tanta without even looking.  “Then we talked missions and payouts as well as communications with the agents and standings.  I know it sounds really short but we went long on the details on that one.”

There was a knock on a door in the front of the house.  Tanta nodded to one of the students and she ran to answer it.  Mike continued.  “Then we talked sports. (Organized Play)  Combat sports with the folks who run the alliance tournament.  A lot of it was trying to find ways to make farm leagues and minor tourneys for less specialized pilots.  One of the men there, Gargant, said . . .

Gargant closes with a statement on his overall desire to build tournaments from the ground up, giving players the tools they need to make these things work, with automated tools and much more

And we mostly agreed with that.  Last we talked to the  Community Team who had been our hosts for the whole shebang.  We talked about the formatting of the minutes, and timeline for getting them done as well as allowing us access to some more internal communication channels with the powers that be. WE talked about the GM’s (thems the people who handle complaints) and how complaints are processed.  We . . .” He stopped as the student returned, she was very pale.

“Madam, there be a law man at the door.”

Free looked about and saw that the knife Mike had been using a moment before was now laying right by her hand.  She also noticed his jacket was now undone, allowing easy access to the holster she knew he wore.  “There ain’t much more ta tell.  Tanta, you want me to go chat with the gent?”

“My house, I greets company, myself.”  She flowed from the room and Ruis, Free, and Mike followed.  The students went elsewhere and the knife was no longer on the counter.



And that is the last day.

This was a fun thing to do but also a lot of work.  Winter will be four days of meetings.

I said I would do this and I have.  So there.

fly it like you won it


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BB#60 metrics

Welcome to the continuing monthly EVE Blog Banters and our 60th edition! For more details about what the blog banters are visit the Blog Banter page.

* * * * *

Jakob Anedalle of Jakob’s Eve Checklist blog asks:

With Phoebe about to land, CSM Minutes now out, and more of CCP Seagull’s vision from Eve Vegas it appears CCP has a bold roadmap, is making big changes, and is willing to take a hit in the short term to see it through. What do you see as the measurable signs that will tell us that they’ve succeeded? What outcome will we see as players? Is it concurrent player count or something else?

Get writing!


Now I just finished the last post and realized I wanted to write about this but I am going to do it OOC.  So if you are looking for the filthy RP’er stuff, move along move along.

I am in the semi enviable seat of having a better idea of what is coming than most.  One of the priveleges of sitting on the CSM.  You are probably expecting me to do a cheerleader job, here.  Go team and all that.


Measuring things is a funny business.  In teacher training I actually too a full course in just how to make tests and evaluate the results.  Oh, numbers are easy to count but are they measuring what you think they are.  Are they a true reflection of what is going on?  There are probably some folks at CCP who say ‘yes’ to that question as the bottom line IS the bottom line and folks have to get paid.  But I asked more than once, at the last summit ‘what are the goals’ and the answer was seldom ‘more subs’.

It is measurable and that is what the blog asks but I prefer some other metrics to consider. Activity, maps, where things are happening and how much.  Use your maps in dotlan and see if changes have an effect.  CCP released the data of cynos lit and Steve Ronuken made a fantastic gif out of it (btw to really piss off some people I alternate between three different pronunciations of gif, the third making the g silent).  Click the link and if you think of it, thanks Steve and CCP Manifest.


Pick what is important to YOU and decide if things are getting better because this is Eve and nobody should be able to tell you that some external measurement can decide if you are happy.  Looking for fights?  Count how many you had last month and do the name next month. Maybe attach a value from hotdropped to fair fight to we blobbed them and decide which is worth the most.

What CCP wants may or may not be what you want.  Maybe you are just killing time till [insert upcoming space title here] stops taking peoples money and actually ships a game.  Maybe your lifestyle is ruined because of changes made or upcoming.  In which case Eve failed . . . failed you.

But if 5 years from now there is still and Eve, if we are still playing and arguing that Eve is dying.  I’d say that is your empirical evidence that the seachange called Seagull and the bold shifts and roadmap worked.

Hope I am here to see it.

fly it like you won it


* * * * *
Sand, Cider and Spaceships – They’re CCP, They March On Fearlessly.
Eveoganda – On New Wings
Jakob’s Eve Checklist – What’s Op Success for CCP?
Mabrick’s Mumblings – Measuring Success – Only One Thing Matters
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Second Tullder

Mike hitched up his jacket to keep the holster accessible and leaned back on the park bench.  Tanta was knitting and Ruis was standing nearby splitting his attention between the kids playing and the two sitting.

“Tanta said yous talkin about all the high and mighty stuff you been doin, she said.  Y’all talk about where the real action be?  Ya talk bout dat?”

Mike smiled.  “Null or low?  If null then I would question the idea that that is where the real action takes place when even its residents complain about stagnation.  But yeah, that was how our second day started.  Day two began with us sitting down to General Low-Sec Discussion.  Sugar set the pace and it was a good one.  She was very organized and had a list of questions and suggestions, everything from Supers in low to FW standings and more mining opportunities for low miners.  Research into clouds was also brought up.”

Ruis looked up at the sky and back at Mike.  “What’s ta research?”

“Gas mining, you goof.  Iffen you gonna make boosters, drugs, then you need specific hard to get materials.”  Mike snorted and then noticed that Tanta had stopped knitting and was listening more closely.  “Problems?”

Tanta shook her head and smiled.  “Sounds like this Sugar be a formidable woman.”

“She is.  They discussed Faction Warfare . . . “

Ruis interrupted.  “So how come you never went to fly for our people, Mike?  How come?”

“Mainly the same reasons that were being discussed.  Faction rules are bad enough that it becomes a one ways street.  I likes my freedom.”  Mike shrugged.  “It was a dense session and a lot of things crossed the table. but that was nothing compared to when we got onto nullsec.

Nullsec was the big topic and you knew this going in because we actually allotted a double session to it.  I asked that they start with the goals and then tell us how they was gonna get there.”

Ruis leaned in a bit.  “So whats they want?  More Huge Battles like Assakye?  More o dem?”

“No, not really. Fozzie set the pace sayin ‘We want to create an environment where the act of living in null sec is a bit more involved in some way. Where warfare is less soul crushing and allow a larger variety of organizations in null sec. These are points we have discussed before where it allows both large groups and small groups to be able to operate in known space.’  He went on to explain that bottom up doesn’t mean the rich won’t get richer, it just means that it will be apparent that all the little wallets are feeding them, like in rentin.

The changes to power projection are the first step on a longer road.  We’s gonna be seeing new ways of defining and taking and holding sov but that will probably come out next year some time.  We want more granularity and the ability to say ‘this here asteroid belt is mine’.  Say it with smaller and destructible structures.”

“I prefer to say it wif flowers”  Ruis opined.

“That you steal”  Tanta said, not looking up.

Mike grinned, he had stolen flowers from her garden as well, it was the best way to make sure they were fresh.  “Well further down the road we know the way sov works is gonna be changing.  Whether it be tossed in the bin or so heavily modified its own mother wouldn’t recognize it is up for question. All I know is the powers that be are serious about downgrading stations and outposts the the point that enough ships could take them down.”

Ruis snorted.  “Who is going to feel safe, then?”

Mike shrugged.  “Nobody, to the point where everybody just stops worrying about it.  Maybe.  Figuring out how people and organizations will react is the hardest thing.  But it is what they have the CSM for.  Then there will be occupancy level claims and/or ways to stake your claim to an area.We spent a fair amount of time discussing the ramifications of this and I am looking forward to hearing what other folks think, now that it is ‘out there’”

“But,” Ruis said. “Most folks try to make the rules favour themselves more than the working overall, they just do.”

Another shrug.  “Yup, so you listen to what is said and WHO is talking and you try to see, are they talking for themselves or for everybody.  Hell, even in this discussion we were having some folks would talk from their specific power base.WE talked about all the alternatives to jump travel, whether it be gates for the big ships or the death express.”

“What is that?”

“It is when we die on purpose so we wakes up sooner in our clones.  If the battle is a long way from home it can save a fair amount of time. I know it sounds weird to yas but some do use it.”  He hurried to push on.  “If it works out right it won’t kill capitals and supers but make them more usable in the smaller numbers.  If there is less worry of someone dropping in from halfway across the galaxy then you might field the big ships in small numbers more often.  Same goes for bomber wings, we don’t want them to be the only choice but we also don’t want them to be a pure bad choice as well.  So we tossed back and forth the pros and cons of occupancy sov vs the granularity model.  The one question I asked that didn’t get answered was whether the powers that be had talked to line grunts as opposed to the leaders of coalitions”

“You always did think troop over officer.”  Tanta murmured.

“Always seems asking the opinion of the guy in charge is a sure way of getting status quo or a firmer entrenchment of his power.  It would be like asking bankers how money should be kept and used.”  He held up a hand.  “Yes, I know that is what is done, but it is a stupid way to do things.”

“Then came Team Five-O, they be the ones that we have the closest ties to, chat with them every other week in formal settings and damn near every workday by comms.  Because of that we knew a lot of projects going into the meeting but it was nice to see things like the mockup for new UI elements, visible bookmarks and all that.  We also discussed the basics of new paint jobs for the ships and some new missions of the Burner variety coming along.”

“Burner missions?”  Ruis asked.

“Very hard to solo, very deadly, this I know first hand.  And I am looking forward to a rematch.  Then we chatted with the Corporations & Alliances folks.  Like tax law the rules for those systems are so convoluted that nobody knows all of it.  They have actually hired an outside team to research the topics.  Then we talked about awoxing, that is where a person infiltrates a corp just to shoot the folks in it.  Some ancient loophole made that legal.  That is gonna change though the discussion on it went longer than you might expect.  We also talked about shares, being able to access corp roles from Crest,  Best one was being able to invite to a corp rather than the convoluted invite/accept/accept the acceptance.”

“Well tank heavens they fixed dat.”  Tanta rolled her eyes.

“Little things that start to make sense mean a lot to some folks, Tanta.  Not everybody hits them but they is a stone in the shoe for the folks that deal with them everyday.  After they left then we talked to another team . . . Team TriLambda, or as we like to call them, the Art department.  Most of what they showed us was things like the new Blackbird, Chimera, Dominix, Exequeror, Incursus and Maulus as well as some portraiture work.  We talked about clothes and hats and other such fripperies.”

“Some folks care ‘bout how they dress.”  Ruis straightened a thin leather tie.

“And other folks figure you is just waiting for that to be your noose.”  Mike grinned.  “Gotta admit, those art folks do draw some nice stuff. but that meeting lead right into one that was a more focused topic though still artistic. Alliance Logos was a hot topic because it is not as simple as it seems.”

“I don’t know why.  I seen your ship have logos on it, that stick and hoop one has more than a couple.”  Ruis frowned.

“It is a legal issue.  To permanently inscribe a logo demands that the rights to it are clear and in a huge galaxy with multiple legal systems that is not as cut and dried as you might think.  The last session of the day was Security.”

“Secret Police like to keep their own secrets.”  Tanta nodded.

“I was amazed at how much they actually told us.  We talked about ISBoxer, botting, cheating, RMT, ddos . . . .they held nothing back buuuuut.”

“Let me guess.” Ruis said.  “You can’t say much about what was said.”

“Not much at all.”  Mike admitted.  “Though what is in the minutes shows that we did talk about things the time stamps say it all.  Short minutes for a full hour.  It is what it is.  If you showed how you caught folks they would get more evasive.  If you draw specific lines then there will be some ass who dances right on it.”

“Speaking of dancing.”  Tanta said.  “It is time we headed back, I have a class to teach and YOU.” She jabbed a needle at Mike.  “Have the evening meal to cook.  Take Ruis into town and fetch fresh, make what you want but enough to feed 20,”

Mike and Ruis nodded and answered in unison “Yes, Tanta”



and that was day 2

The thing that struck me the most about this day was the fact that we disagreed, even between the council members themselves.  I am not saying this is bad but it lets you know who stood up the way YOU would have.  Who spoke for you.

Well it is important to see how things are decided and not just what.

I am going to take a small break and I will do day three.

as I said last time, if you don’t like who this is written the feel free to go read the full minutes yourself

fly it like you won it



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Minutes tullderr

“So, de high and mighty comes down ta visit the little folk.”  She swept the checkered cloth out and a wide motion and let it drift down across the grave.  “You set out de food, I gots the other stuff.”

Mike dutifully opened the large case he was carrying and started to unload enough containers to cater a small wedding.  “Tanta, why you always pack so much?”

She lined up a trio of bottles and sniffed primly.  “It be better to give folks more than enough, then they gets to choose what dey will take an what dey will leave.”

Mike nodded slowly.  “I get it, like what we do with the minutes.”

She opened the first bottle of clear liquid and filled three glasses, setting one on the grave she handed a second to Mike and kept the third raised.  “To da ones we love, who is always wit us.”

Mike answered “Ones we love.” and sighed.

“So, tell Tanta about dese minutes and start eatin.  I made you favourites.”

Mike filled a plate under her watchful eye and dug in as she poured the third drink out on the headstone and refilled the glass.   “Well, you know I was away at those meetins.  We keep notes and the ones that clear the security checks for not saying too much we release to the public so they few who care can read em.  Lets folks know who said what, among other things.  Even cut down, though, they come out to 144 pages and some folks complain . . . “

“Like you did about how much food there be.  I gets you.  So does someone make a takeaway?”

“A tl:dr?  I did but it was too much joke and not enough meat.  So it got cut.”

“So tell me, then.  Whatja all talk bout.  I sure ain’t gonna read 144 pages looking for mention of my boy here an there.”


So yeah, this is my run at a tldr of the summer summit in character.  If you don’t like this format, tough, read the whole thing yourself.


“Lessee,” Mike pulled out his comm and consulted it. “You know how I is for order and dates, I will check this to make sure I at least get some of it right.”

“First off was Third Party Development.  These the folks who get licensed to do the work for the government without working directly.  Contractors.  Mostly we talked about SSO which is single sign on protocols . . . how you log onto comms and your ship and the like. And about how the ship and the comms can talk back to you through the Crest protocols.  It was technical in a way but will impact everybody from market folks to HR officers in big corps and alliances”  He set some bones to a side dish and took another gulp of the liquid, coughing after.  “That ain’t as smooth as usual.”

“New supplier, the old one got caught”  Tanta replied.

“Then there was,” He glanced at his comm. “Content Tools, this be how databases of folks are kept AND how missions be chosen for us pilots to run.  Turns out a lot of missions have kinda gotten lost and become ‘hidden content’.  Guy named Affinity said ‘There is a lot of it that is just in an awful state right now and it is almost hard to prioritize
where to begin.'”

“Fool, if it all needs doing then you do something.  If there ain’t a low hanging fruit then you just start picking at it till it be done.”  Tanta snorted.  “Yer plate be getting empty, try some pie.”

“We talked to them about finding some new things for us to do, new missions and anomalies and the like.  We also spoke on standings and how they need to be modified to reflect what is going on and not be a barrier to work like they are right now.  We even chatted a bit about sleeper sites in wh space and incursion folk missions and timing.”

“Incursions, that be what you do for isk, right?”

Mike nodded and continued. “After that was Web Team, this be the first of a few folks who put the public faces up for the various governments.  How you see them when you go to common informational sites.”

“Most times all the gov’t want to tell me is how much more I should send them in taxes.”

“Ayup. Well, here we was talking about forums, Evegate and the like.  As Sugar Kyle said ‘EVE Gate should be a one stop shop for mail, events, news, dev blogs, information, events. A lot of it is buried under sections and subsections.’  We talked about adding stuff like crosslinks to kills and the like.”  He eyed the chicken and grinned as she shoved it closer.

“Tho the next fing,”  he said through a mouthful of meat, “was Ship & Module Balancing.  Dis always be a fun one because we gets to see what is being planned and why for new engineering of the tools we use.”

“If you had a brain, you’d know the comms was the tools you used the most.  Guns is the toys you plays wif in between”

“Yeah, well it was a look in the toy-box.  A bit was on new ships coming but we spent a lot more time talking about how the modules we fit on those ships are gonna change.  As Fozzie said We want to consolidate a lot. ‘We want to make all named modules useful and create a distinction between T1, named and T2 modules.’  So they will be starting on cargo scanners then cap flux coils and working up from there.”

“Boy, did I ever make you listen to me talking about dance moves and bore you wif terminology you didn’t understand?”

“Yes, Tanta”

“Oh . . . well then carries on”  She sniffed and filled her glass again.

“In the end they figure about 200 modules are gonna be ‘gone’ as they will no longer be needed or they will be replaced.  We covered changes to ‘ceptors that have been announced, since. as well as a bit of a chat about bombers.”

Mike checked his list. “Next came Player Experience which is what we call how pilots experience New Eden.  We talked about ‘notifications’ which are the information snippets that cross your screen all the damn day.  You know, ‘you just learned dis, or so-and-so just activated a ship’, that sort o ting.  We also discussed how new pilots are brought into the fold and ways to make that transition to immortal easier.”

He set board down and started slicing fresh bread as she filled two mugs with soup.  “Next one was the one we could say the least about. The Roadmap.  It was the long term look at changes in the wings and some of them are . . . well all of it is so secret that if I told you here, they might impound Onc from his casket.  To fill space we even put in a recipe for sauce.”  Mike showed it to Tanta who sniffed.

“Appropriate herbs?  The man knows nuttin bout writing recipes.”

“Tanta there still be people waitin for you to write any at all.”

“Come cook wif me and learn em for youself, I always say.  Probably applies to that roadmap as well.  Become a part of it or keep flying and learn it for youselves, eh?”

“Yes, Tanta.”  He continued. “Then came Economy Overview which is always a favourite for a few of us.  Mynnna sat up straighter as did I when this started.  We discussed inflation and compared models to describe it.  We talked about who was rich and what rich meant and the fact that even the supercomputers cannot track all of everybodies stuff at the same time.  We also discussed Plex as a gold standard and a separate entity from all de others.”

“So I actually made you listen to the nuances between Sa’idi Ste and a Ghawazi step?”

“Anchoring the foot, yes Tanta, each vocation has terminology that seems made specifically to obscure meanings or bore any outsider who has to listen to it.  I could stop?”

“Nah, you started it but have some more chips and pass the dip.”

He scooped a mouthful in and continued. “Next was Monetization”

She spit to the side and muttered something about taxes.

“Tanta, people does has to make a living.  As long as they don’t get too greedy about it . . . well we talked about things like our perma-outfits that arrive everywhere your clone does.  We talked a little about ships skins and even gender reassignment and name changes and neural remaps.  Some I liked, some I opposed, but that is the way of things.”

He looked around the picnic and burped softly.  “Much more and you will have to roll me back to the hotel.  Lessee, last was  Marketing & Sales.  We discussed recruiting new pilots into the fold.  How to advertise, how to make them aware that they too could be up there with us.  We covered media types and the message being presented.”

“You did cover a lot over those days, didn’t you?”

“Tanta.  That was the first day.  There were two more after that but I think you need a break and we need to pack up before the sun sets.  Iffen you want I’ll bore you with those another time.”

“This mean you gonna stay a day or two?”

“Yes, Tanta.”

“Good, then I ain’t rollin your fat self to no hotel, you comin home.”

“Yes Tanta”  Mike smiled as they packed and left saying goodbye to his Uncles final resting place and waving to the rest of the occupants and their visitors.



Go read them yourself

Yes, I am going to do day 2 and three

Yes I will do them as a conversation, live with it or heed the first advice and stop reading this and read the real thing for yourself.  If you are gonna be lazy you are gonna pay the price.

I have said it on a few Podcasts this week.  One of the main things you should watch for in the minutes is HOW and WHO.  How the CSM advocates for you and who said what.  This will come in handy when the next election rolls around.

fly it like you won it.



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Questions of media

“Now the first ting ya gots ta do is decide the question they is trying to answer.”  Tanta was sitting with Free as an old comm cycled through various news feeds.  “Each media type pretty much falls into a few basic categories.”


“Well aside from ‘who be payin for all this’.  Which is USUALLY the most important one.  If it ain’t then you have either something really bad or really good.”

“Why the extremes?”  Free asked.

“Once you are released from the worries of fiscal responsibility you either become very honest or you veer into the realm of self serving and a narcissistic spiral.”  Tanta sipped her tea and smiled at the shocked look on Frees face.  “Child, I may have a down home accent but I have been paying attention a long long time.  Do not confuse my abuse of pronunciation as an indicator of my intelligence or education.”

“Mike gets it from you, then?”  Free took a cookie from the plate and smiled.

“No, he be a bit of a reverse.  He prefers not to hide things and what you see is what he is.  Just folks are so unused to that attitude that he confounds them far more than he would if he were trying to trick them.  Never have figured out where I went wrong, raising a boy to be so honest.”  She hung her head in mock shame.  “But back to the media.  Some are there for an agenda, so their question is ‘How can I change tings?’  Others, they be all about one person, a cult of personality so their question is ‘How can I be more impotant?'”

“Why do I need to know their questions and how easy are they to spot?”

“I’m not done yet.  Third type is the tinkerers.  ‘How easy is this to do?’  Then come the lesser known ‘Can anybody hear me?  and ‘What the hell be goin on?’  Now how to tell?  Easy as pie,  Listen or watch for a few minutes, iffen you have heard the who or self reference more than what they are talking about then you are in the personality type.  I once ran a studio and it had my name on the marquee in huge letters followed by ‘dance company’ in ones much smaller.  I has no idea why anybody put up with me, then.”

Free nodded and looked to the comm channels.  “Why are they cycling capsuleer news feeds and not dance?”

“Émé musta rest it when he dropped by yesterday.  We had a picnic, he and I.  I’ll set it back, later.  But they has the same questions.”  She touched a control delicately and frowned.  “He has set a new couple into the feed and this looks like . . . well, what do YOU see here?”

Free read the feed for a moment and smiled.  “Tinkerers.  Had to go a layer in to even see who was running it.  A composite feed with no original content.  Maybe a bit of ‘what the hell is going on.’  She then skimmed the subheaders and nodded.  “Yes, I see what you mean.  Doesn’t really take that long to see the questions, does it?”

“No, and once you know what the question they are asking then you can become part of what they think is the answer. THAT is how we are going to get you closer to your target.  He puts his name on every installation on every project.  So you will answer it by being another light to illuminate his genius.  But . . . ”  Tanta paused.  “I hesitates to tell a lady how to act, seeing as I am seldom a good example.  Understand that conquests are left in the dust by this sort.  If you get too ‘close’ you will be dropped and forgotten.  Stay too distant and you will be ignored.  ‘Didn’t want her, anyways.'”

Free nodded and they moved to the targets works . . . and planned.



Before you ask?  This blog, like most, is a combination of ‘can anybody hear me’ along with ‘how can I be more important’  If it was ‘what the hell is going on’ I doubt it would be written in character so much.  I make no apologies, I am what I am.

If you didn’t click the one link (above) then do, It is worth it, imho.

Spell checking hates me when I start writing in accent.

I have had a rough couple of weeks but I am seriously trying to get back to playing.

fly it like you won it



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The Grind

He watched the man toiling away, weeding the small park garden by hand.  “They don’t pay you enough for this.”

“They don’t pay me at all.”  The man looked up.  “I do this or the weeds get the better of things and I like to see the garden looking its best.”  He stood and pointed to a complex across the square.  “I live across the way, alone now that Marie is gone.  So I can sit and wait to join her or I can find things to do.”

“But there is so much to do, why would you choose to do this job?  It is dirty, thankless work.”  Mike looked and could almost see new weeds ready to grow back.

“Well, it is something that needs doing and it is something that I can do.  If this was a job, sure, it would be a tough one.  It ain’t.  It is something I choose to do and that makes ALL the difference in the world.  Oh, there are days where it seems . . .whats that word you kids use?  A Grind.  But I get satisfaction when it is all right there or something blossoms that I have been working hard to keep going.  I am sure whatever you do for a living seems a grind, at times but if you are doing the right job you make it through, knowing that it will be worth it.”  He leaned back and stretched his arms out.  “I still am waiting to join her, but I might as well make myself useful in the meantime.”

Mike smiled and thought of Dee.  “I get that.”

The mans voice softened.  “I see that you do.”  He plucked a blossom from one of the trees without even looking back.  “Give this to her, or him, whoever it is you just thought of.  If they cannot take it for . . . reasons . . well you put it in some water and keep it for them.  When the grind begins to get you down, boy, you just remember you are filling the time till better comes along.”



This one I started writing without knowing where it was going.  Probably a story my wife told of my father last night had something to do with it.  He would show up and help folks in the neighbourhood, just pick up a shovel or a hammer and help.  Refused payment, just wanted to keep busy.

When I am playing, at times I mine.  It is not flashy, exotic, it is a grind.  But then I relax and enjoy the peace. I talk to folks as I slowly gather veldspar.  It becomes less of a grind and just something I do, waiting.

Dirty, thankless work.  We all have some.  I’d include CSM’ing but I do get very nice thanks for that from players who drop me notes.  Oh a few others tell me that I am useless or worse but not enough to worry me.  If you are in a corp or an alliance find out who has the worst job, the hardest worker, and make sure he or she is thanked.  But IF they have been at the job for a long time they probably have found their rhythm and it isn’t that much of a grind, for them.

Thank them anyways

fly it like you won it


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Easy come, Easy go

He closed the market comms and sighed.  The amount of things that passed through his hands made him wonder if he needed to be . . . different.  The wallet balance was back to its anemic levels but he had done what he said he would do . . . and that meant something.  To him.

He had collected the ransom for a former CSM member to the tune of 25 Billion.  When the time came he had passed it across without a moments hesitation.  It was not his isk, never had been, so he was losing nothing any more than a pipe loses the water that passes through it.

The ships, he had only promised one in a draw but he had decided to sweeten the pot as it had taken so long to get around to it.  So three Daredevils left his Jita hanger to the winners, Kirith, Tenar, and Alundil.  That hurt a BIT more as they had been his.

Then there he was, sitting in Jita.  How could he not do a bit of shopping?  A shade over 100mill later he realized he was being silly and closed the comms.  “I am gonna have to catch up with the fleet for a few more hours.”

That might balance things out . . . might.



‘pass the potatoes’ ‘pass the gravy’ last weekend was Canadian thanksgiving.  When you poass something across the table you don’t suddenly clutch it and crow ‘mwa ha haaaa, mine, mine mine’.    well, I don’t, anyways.

I am glad Silvas character went to Rixx and I hope the technicals clear up on that one.

Congrats to the winners.  Fly them in good health

Latest threadnaught I am in?  Stealth Bombers.  I dislike being told I know nothing of them but I survive.  I wenty and chatted with bombers bar right after the thread came out and if any other groups want me to come on comms and get an earful or just want to evemail me, feel free.  Kinda what I do, eh?

fly it like you won it


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OOC: Simple Machines

Among the subjects I have taught is science to 14 year olds.  Physics is pretty simple, at that age, for a while the curriculum included simple machines. Inclined plane, screw, lever, pulley, wheel/axle.  Now I used to tell the kids there were officially six of them but I took issue with the list and we would argue about it . . . a lot.  This is because arguing about it made them think more about the topic of discussion.

Oh, the sixth?  The wedge. That is the thing that came to mind over the past day as I have been reading the forums and following the threadnaughts.  From a school workpage . . .

A wedge is a pair of inclined planes
attached back-to-back. A wedge is used
to force things apart.
Have you ever seen someone chop wood
with an ax? The head of an ax is a wedge

Mike, you are probably saying, why are you telling us about a wedge?

Because you are experiencing one.  I tried explaining this in an Eve Radio chat today but I did not have my head in the right place to be clear.  That bothered me.  The wedge works by starting with a sharp edge then moving the paired inclined planes inwards with force, pushing things apart.

Get it yet?

Force projection change is the thin edge of a wedge but if you think that is the end of it you are probably good at deluding yourself.  There is more to come.  Now I have heard some folks ask why CCP did not just do ALL the changes at the same time.  I point to the wedge.  If you hit a piece of wood with a splitting wedge you want to make sure it has a good bite before you drive it in.  No major knots on the splitting line.  Then you drive it home with a hammer.  What you don’t do is hit it with the side of the axe, trying to just shatter the wood.  The simple machine focuses the effort and makes the work easier and more controlled.

Getting it?

So what are we splitting, here?

To quote Greyscale

Why this?/Why now?

  • Nullsec is stagnant and needs a change. This is the first of many steps in our plan.

  •  . . .

  • We expect the impact of these changes to be emergent, and as a consequence are unpredictable and will take a while to develop on TQ. This plays into our longer-term plans, as you’ll see in a second!

In my youth I split a lot of wood.  I doubt the wood enjoyed the process but it made it easier to light on fire.  Take from that what you will.  Just be glad I didn’t go with the screw as the first machine that I thought of when writing this.

fly it like you won it


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Never leave it on Vibrate

The comm was now skittering under the couch just out of reach.  It had not stopped activating and dancing since the recent announcement.  On top of the other communications Mike had been following this was close to the last straw.

First it had been the proposed pie-in-the-sky idea of Dojos.  Purist pilots had found this close to heresy that someone would be able to hide from thier guns for even five minutes.  Most did not bother to realize that this was a prototype, not a planned change, and was just scribbles on a drawing board.  They acted like sacrifice of their first-born was part of the requirements.  Only a few even tried to test it, the others reacting on rumour and what-ifs.

A lesser storm happened with the closing of official channels for cultures other than the galactic norms of languages.  This was done with almost no warning and was very hard for Mike to get in touch with the peopole responisble, though he was trying.

Then the big one hit.  Recent studies had shown there was a cumulative effect of Jump Drives on pilots and a new standard was coming.  The comm device had shaken off of his table and was bouncing around on the floor as he tried to carry on several conversations at once, internally and externally.

Finally he threw a cushion on top of it to muffles its angry buzz and sat back and tried to work things through in his own mind.  He knew he didn’t have all the answers and was not sure he even knew all the questions.  But that was why he asked questions.

1)  Jump drives were being shortened

2)  New limits would mean that there was an exponential build up of delays if a cap pilot chose to jump too often or too many times in a row.

3)  Gates would be modified to allow alternative choices of taking said gates INSTEAD of jumping, even for Titans

4)  The large blocs initially screamed and then said ‘oh, ok’ as they had time to sit down and talk about it.  Mike did not know if this was a good or bad sign.

5)  Being unable to sweep ships across null for a deployment MIGHT mean that less movement was done OR it MIGHT mean that said movement meant something when it was done.

6)  Black Ops pilots would have a lot harder time doing hit and run tactics, The days of Bombers bar Blops might fade.

7)  Jump freighters were going to be facing a very hard time (even though they did have special fittings to lessen the effect of the ‘fatigue’)  He was already asking for input from them.

That was what it came down to.  Like the Blocs, a lot of people were screaming before thinking.  He wanted more reasoned input, more thought before irrational yelling.  He also wanted Dee back and was just as likely to get one as the other.  The comm continued to buzz faintly, beneath the cushion and he went and poured a drink.



Go ahead, give it to me.  I ran for election and now I get to represent you.

Unless you plan on unsubbing in which case give me at least some of your stuff as I am so busy doing the politics side of this game I haven’t undocked in two weeks.  A war actually came and went and I didn’t even notice (though I lost my Customs Office)

My personal opinion?

Language changes-bad

Dojos and the prototype process- Good

Jump fatigue- Good but needs tweeking to be better

fly it like you won it




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