Dark Voices Radio, Episode 8
Death Is a Temporary Inconvenience
It's all good.
Except maybe for the usual suspects. That would include...
Well, never mind. May God bless them all. Or at the very least, may He stay out of the way.
The Dark Wraith should get back down to business.
And don't forget:
Dark Voices Radio Program Note
Yes, that was 45 solid minutes of dead air for listeners.
What a fiasco! I heard every word, so I had no idea something was wrong other than that I kept seeing listeners coming online and then leaving after a little bit. I also got only a few callers on the line, but when I tried to hook them in, I heard nothing. I thought it was just a problem with the call-in line, not realizing that the problem was far worse. Grr.
Lord! but I do so dislike new technology. Life was easier in the old days. Yelling across the field to your neighbors was less complicated than trying to run an Internet talk radio show. Back in the old days, we didn't have computers. If I wanted to do a PowerPoint lecture, I made the slides on stone tablets and had a grad assistant hold them up for students to see. We didn't have all these fancy numbers, either: binaries worked just fine. Zeroes and ones. No one complained. And economics was easier to teach, too. These days, I have to include the Federal Reserve as an intermediate step in the lecture on how the nobility loots the kingdom.
What did I start this post about? Oh, yes: talk radio.
Here's the deal. Regular episodes are running every Thursday night at 10:30 p.m. EDT. By tomorrow, I will have figured out why I had dead air, and I will make sure it never happens again. To make up for the fiasco of Episode 2, I am going to air a Special Edition of Dark Voices Radio this Saturday night at 10:30 p.m. EDT.
To repeat: Dark Voices Radio, Special Edition, Saturday, March 21, 2009, at 10:30 p.m. Click on the graphic below to see the program page and sign up for a reminder.
The Dark Wraith will figure out how to do this Internet talk radio show properly.
Dark Voices Radio, Episode 1
Thursday, March 12, 2009, at 11:30 p.m. EDT, your host will deliver the first episode of Dark Voices Radio, a half-hour call-in talk show. The embedded BlogTalkRadio flash player above will go live when the show opens. (I think.)
Yes, this is the reason I've been so quiet lately.
If Dark Voices Radio garners a decent audience for Episode 1, I will try to find a more-or-less stable time slot and make it a weekly show with call-ins, guests, and regular features. Depending upon how busy the show gets, I might expand the run time from 30 minutes to 45 minutes or an hour.
Despite all the fussing and preparations I've done, rest assured that the maiden voyage of this new enterprise will be rough; however, I have put off setting the air date long enough. It's time to launch this ill-conceived rocket so everyone can applaud wildly as it crashes, craters, burns, and finally smolders long enough to send smoke signals to every aspiring media hound about what not to do when ambition outstrips talent.
Mark it on your calendars: Thursday, March 12, 2009, at 11:30 p.m. EDT. I will give the call-in number on the air. (And no, it won't be one of those toll-free numbers, unfortunately; it will be long distance to Staten Island.)
This post, by the way, will give readers a venue for commenting during the show. How strange is that? an Internet radio talk show and live blogging about the Internet radio talk show.
Now, if only I could be sure there won't be any last-minute technical glitches that will force me to change the air date. I shall update this post should that happen.
Only time will tell if I can find one last decent excuse for postponing this endeavor.
We shall see.
The Dark Wraith feels the freight train of inevitable and disastrous consequences bearing down on his hare-brained scheme.
Impending, Temporary Service Interruption
The outage may last through the night, but we expect The Dark Wraith Forums, Big Brass Blog, The UnCapitalist Journal, Dark Wraith Publishing Online Store, and the blogScream News Wire service to be back online by daybreak on Sunday, February 17.
In the meantime, regulars should consider this an open thread, so write something in the comments. It doesn't have to be particularly insightful, although deep pessimism and unmitigated cynicism are always welcome. Cheerfulness will be tolerated, too, of course, but that's just because your host is fundamentally a very upbeat person.
Okay, that last sentence, while by no means a real knee-slapper, was mildly risible.
The Dark Wraith thanks you for your support.
December 13, 2004
The Dark Wraith encourages all to celebrate the occasion of this anniversary.
An Upcoming Republication
Although I have exhausted all means of which I know to locate this article in published form on the server or even in cache on the Internet, I shall not declare with absolute certainty that the article has been purposely and maliciously deleted; however, that appears very likely to be the case, and if so, it is the second instance of which I am aware of an article of mine having been removed when this Weblog was being hosted by Blogger. In the other instance, I quickly caught the deletion, which was executed simultaneously at both The Dark Wraith Forums and at Big Brass Blog, both of which were, at the time, published under Blogger. (The later article was published as an exclusive at The Dark Wraith Forums.) As a general rule, and especially after the first incident, the one I immediately caught, I keep a text-based copy of every article I write.
Of course, now that none of the Websites of Dark Wraith Publishing are in any way associated with any division of Google, I can publish without concern for potential problems arising from mysteriously disappearing articles.
Tonight, I am endeavoring to re-insert the original article somewhere close to its chronological place of original publication. Whether or not I am successful in that regard remains to be seen since the legacy archives of this Website are now, for all intents and purposes, static HTML pages that are difficult to alter without causing major disruption to their original appearance, which I have tried to retain. Whether or not I succeed in republishing the original piece, on Thursday, May 31, 2007, I shall publish an updated version of the original post, doing so to create, to the extent possible, a continuity in the chain of argument I began last year and continued in the article "Remembering Shelby."
For those who have been readers of my articles for some time, the next article I publish will look somewhat familiar, although I will have updated it somewhat. As fair warning, it was a rather strident piece, with sharply critical references not just to the United States, but also to one of our closest allies, a nation whose actions have made it not merely a worldwide symbol of repression, but also a frightful signpost pointing the way to our own future.
Were the Dark Wraith a conspiracy theorist, he would strongly suspect that the original of the upcoming article was deleted because of its brutally harsh references to that other country; but the Dark Wraith is certainly notand never has been nor ever will bea conspiracy theorist.
Special Blog Poll: The Right Domain Name
As regular readers here know, I have been publishing video lectures, mostly through YouTube, and more recently through Revver, the latter service offering at least the minimal chance to earn some revenue, although lectures on economics, finance, and other academic subjects are not well-suited to video services that are primarily geared to chronicling pop culture.
A strange thing has happened, though: if you look at my "ProfessorWraith" and "ProfessorWraith2" stats on YouTube, you'll notice that there have been about ten thousand hits on my videos. Ten thousand. And that doesn't include the hits on Revver, numbering so far a modest hundred or so because only a relatively small crowd (compared to that on YouTube) even knows about Revver yet. But the real kicker is that the Windows Media versions of the lectures are being accessed from my server at a growing rate, too, which seems to indicate that those versions are being passed around via e-mail since the source locations aren't the articles where the links were originally posted here.
All told, over a span of a few months, a cluster of about ten economics lectures has garnered a total of maybe fourteen thousand views.
Now, I'm getting e-mail messages from students at schools all over the country. It seems these lectures have picked up an audience, and some of these lectures are even being played in classes. For example, a young man from Mississippi State University wrote to tell me that he finally talked his professor into playing one of the lectures (I think it was the one where I mentioned "ass bread") on the last day of class.
It is time for a commercialized spin-off. Unfortunately, the two academic textbook publishers that had voiced some degree of interest are wholly unsuitedand not really all that interested anywayin swiftly embracing cyberspace modalities, despite their representatives constantly coming around and trying to show professors just how incredibly useful their "online resources" are. Sadly, these efforts at integrating the Web into a matrix of education materials are generally of only limited use, principally because the interfaces are terribly cumbersome, requiring that I undergo training (as if I'm some kind of damned dog that needs obedience school), or lashed to an abomination like WebCT, Blackboard, or some ungodly, proprietary format. My initial excitement about the prospect of getting involved with a big publishing firm has now vanished, and that's okay. I can do this on my own... I think. And even if this project fizzles, which most things do so spectacularly for me, I know how to flash my videos, and I know how to deploy a really nice Website where people can go to watch them. Finding commercial sponsors, especially the kind that aren't going to insist on those offensively intrusive ads, is going to be difficult for me; I've never been good at that end of the business, but I'll just have to learn, now.
All is good, or at least I can make it so, except for one thing, and that's where you come in.
On the Web, I am the Dark Wraith; the legal, "fictitious name" of my cyberspace enterprise is Dark Wraith Publishing. Those watching my video lectures on YouTube and Revver now know me as "Professor Wraith." My flagship domain, under which I host The Dark Wraith Forums and all of the other blogs as add-on domains, is dark-wraith.com. This domain and its hosting server are already at their limit, bearing the weight of what I have already constructed, which includes The Dark Wraith Forums, Big Brass Blog, The UnCapitalist Journal (now coming back to life), blogScream News Wire, and assorted other projects. A video Website or blog would just about instantly bring down everything I already have online, so I have to start this new thing from scratch: new domain, new Webhost, new wardrobe, new hairstyle... oh, wait a minute: I'm going overboard. Strike those last two; I'll deal with the personal matters once I get that day spa pass I ordered on eBay from that Republican guy in Washington DC who was dumping his stash of tickets to Jennifer Paltry's All-Body Lounge and Baptist Reading Circle. But enough about that.
Here's the deal. I've got the new Webhost ready to go, but I need a domain name. It has to be related to my continuing presence as the Dark Wraith, and it has to dovetail into the persona of Professor Wraith and the entire concept of academics on the Web in visual/audio format.
I have come up with a set of available domain names that might work, but I can't get happy with any of them, not because they're no good, but because I just cannot see what an end user would see in a particular name. Below, I'm offering a poll of available domain names I'm considering, and I am herewith asking you to vote for the one you think would be best. If there's a domain name not on the list that you think would be better (making sure it's available, of course), please use the comments to suggest it. Note that there is some conventional wisdom that should be heeded about domain names: the shorter, the better; the more descriptive, the better; the less like a similar, popular Web name, the better (if for no other reason than to avoid a legal skirmish); underscores are passé; dot-coms are always best; silly is good, but not for me; sexy sells, but I'm not sexy; alliterative, poetic, mystical, or otherwise striking is cool; numbers generally aren't a good idea unless they work as word or word bridges; and words that begin with "e-" or "i-" or "my" are just plain overused and ready for the obsolete cyber-lexicon trash heap of obsolescence.
I will have to move quickly because I could end up losing all of my possibilities listed below if some cybersquatter stumbles on this post and grabs them up to shake me down for a fee to get the name I want. The poll will end tomorrow, May 15, 2007, at 11:59 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time.
In advance, the Dark Wraith thanks you for offering sensibilities he does not possess in this matter.
The Dark Wraith Forums 2.0
Again, a sincere expression of thanks is extended to all those who have commented or sent e-mail messages to me about how good it looks or what the problems are.
And always remember: it's Bill Gates's universe; I'm just a lousy hacker in it.
Welcome. You are now seeing the new version of The Dark Wraith Forums.
The transition to Nucleus CMS from Blogger was a lot like work. The principal difficulty was making this site look and function as much like the old version as possible. I have accomplished at least that much, although I have yet to work out how to operationalize a few features of the old site, which I developed over a considerable length of time. Only to a limited extent were the methods and tricks I used there portable. Features from the old site like toggling comments won't be here for at least a while, but the commenting system you'll find here is pretty nice, anyway. So, too, is the speed with which this site loads.
You will also notice that, as on the old site, you have your choice of color themes here. In fact, there are two alternatives to the default classic (and Dark Wraith trademark) Midnight Embers: Autumn AshFire is almost the same color scheme alternative that was available at the old site, and I've added Icy Cinders, too, this one having been inspired by a suggestion from Liz Smith of BlondeSense. It was, in part, these alternate style sheets and making the switcher work here that took so long. (That and getting three columns to fit together without having a knock-down, drag-out fight.) Readers should note, by the way, that this is a Website best viewed at monitor resolutions of 1024x768 or higher.
As far as the old blog is concerned, although it has now been decommissioned, the articles and associated comments from the launch of The Dark Wraith Forums until today are still available as legacy archives. Readers can find the links to old content by major article or by month, from December 2004 to March 2007, along the left sidebar. Those archive pages will display in the old template. Essentially, before cutting off Blogger access to the domain dark-wraith.com, I captured as static pages everything I had written and moved it all to safety in a sub-directory. Commenting on the old articles is, of course, no longer possible because the Blogger platform through which articles and comments were published is now cut off from my server.
There will be a few residual glitches with which I shall deal as time goes on; some of those problems I will know about only as users put this place to the test. I shall be most grateful if readers let me know about technical problems with this site. (I do, however, reserve the right to say, "Grr," or even "GRRRR.") I suspect, for example, that the color theme selector does not have persistence: in other words, if you select a non-default color theme, the theme will probably revert to Midnight Embers when you come back. I do not know that for sure, though. I'm also concerned about the columns fitting together properly. I think they do, and I've tested this site on a number of computers; but I know that what I am seeing with my lying eyes is what I want to see at the end of a long coding journey.
I am very excited about the prospect of the after-life being sort of like that.
Anyway, this is The Dark Wraith Forums 2.0, a fully independent site free of third-party publishing services. I have kicked Blogger out of my domains and will never again let its nonsense vex me or my work product. Google, the disreputable parent of Blogger, will be the subject of my wrathful writing at some point in the near future.
For now, though, I am too giddy ("punchy" might be a better term) about having this site up and running to have anything but good thoughts, which will probably dissipate as visitors come here and tell me all the things that are going wrong with the site.
For a moment, though, I shall bask in the joy of having built quite a castle, one that will endure for a long time to come. Once I am through that moment of refreshing pleasure, I'll get down to work on fixing the technical problems and publishing new content. A whole lot is going on in the world, and I have more than few words to say.
Consider this an open thread for the new Website. Post a comment or two. Let me know you're here. It's really creepy when I know people are lurking about but not saying anything: it makes me wonder if the visitors are the live sorts of folks or those ghosts and apparitions I've read about.
Come to think of it, though, if you are a ghost or an apparition, it's probably best if you don't say anything: I think I'd rather leave abject terror to my imagination.
The Dark Wraith is now officially babbling.