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Argon -- Editor

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SpinDizzy Oscars a Hit

The Second Annual Spindizzy Oscars, held last Sunday night, were considered a success by all. Among those in attendance were Darius, local morphic ferret; Butterfluff, local fluff, PatchO'Black, local Jellicle cat; KevMan, local bi-breed, and Adara, local feline and the coordinator of the Oscars.

Only one negative incident marred the festive occasion. Morticon, local inept evil wallaby, took advantage of Adara's absence to come on stage and name himself and his cronies as the winner of various awards. Upon Adara's return, the hoax was revealed, and Morticon was pelted with tomatoes until he was forced to leave.

As a recap, we have below the list of this year's and last year's winners in the various categories.
Category Last Year's Winner This Year's Winner
Scariest Eris (8) Roland (8)
Cutest Leslie & Skyler (6) Leslie & Vixie (5)
Wittiest N/A Austin (13)
Best Morphs Carlos (12) Carlos (5)
Best Puppet Criatura Castle (11) SED Blimp (11)
Most Loveable Gilead (10) Findra (10)
Nicest Findra (10) Findra (16)
Cutest Couple Gilead & Cye (9) Argon & Mavra (9)
Best Made-up Species Cetans (in general) (9) Butterfluff (10)
Most Helpful Argon (10) Argon (17)
Most Heroic KevMan (9) Brenda & Sunhine (7)
Most Unique N/A Butterfluff (10)
Most Improved RPer N/A KevMan & Kinsor (6)
Funniest Boki (19) Gilead (17)

For a complete listing of the 2003 SpinDizzy Oscars, look at the April 20, 2003 edition of @Action News. A complete list of the 2004 SpinDizzy Oscars can be found on the2004 SpinDizzy Oscars page.

Jellicle Cat Gets Spring Fever

Patch O'Black, local Jellicle cat, has been hard at work in his well known "Jellicle Fields". Easily found 3 north and then 6 east of the Rose Garden, and then down the path, then to the Jellicle Fields. Patch has been proudly showing off two new areas.

One is the Spring Glade, where artifacts of Spring time are seen. Patch has worked to create a number of special plants that offer snacks and other items that reflect the season. Marshmellow chicks, shamrocks, and a licorice briar patch are just a few of the amazing plants Patch has growing here.

Going back to the Jellicle Fields, you can take another path to the 'Lover's Lane". In honor of Valentine's Day, this area is for lovers. Heartwood trees with Valentine's Day cards growing from their branches, bushes with candy hearts, and of course, roses fill this area. Rumor has it a tunnel of love ride is in the making.

When asked for a comment for @Action News, Patch commented, "I hope folks will enjoy my new areas and let me know if there is anything new they would like to see. It is my wish to see that the Jellicle Fields are always gaining new things to see, smell, taste, and do!"

Austin, local coati, then asked, "Can you give another clue for us all? The walrus -- was he Paul?" as he looked through the bent backed tulips to see how the other half lives.

Patch then took away Austin's collection of Beatles music saying, "I think you've had too much of this..." To which Austin replied, "No, I'm going to stick to my 'Glass Onion' riffs, thank you, " adding, "Are you saying this isn't a place you can go where everything flows, Patchy?"

Patch then tickled Austin who, while laughing and squirming said, "Wait, we've got to fix a hole in the ocean!"

So be sure and visit Patch's Jellicle Fields!

Spindizzy Electrical Grid Damaged; No One Notices

The main Spindizzy electric grid suffered minor damage sometime between last Saturday and this Monday, authorities at the 23rd Street Spindizzy revealed Wednesday morning. The source of the damage was unclear, but spokessquirrels for the agency noted that no complaints from the public were noted, and supply for program Jessie-Tiger was never endangered.

The only reported signs of disruption to regular Spindizzy users was the temporary loss of the radio station's audience, previously metered at ten listeners. While several cartoons using their noses as light bulbs had their light flicker out, it was ruled impossible to determine whether this was outside the normal course of activities. The emergency street-candle system did deploy in the southwest corner of Spindizzy.

Determining the exact time and extent of the damage was sketchy due to the ordinarily extraordinarily low use of electric power in the main city. Spokessquirrels asserted there was still abundant capacity for those who need electronic technologies to expand their operations, and that the needed repairs are small and will be completed by Wednesday.

Existence of Turbo Teen Asserted, Doubted

Roofus_roo asserted Thursday the existence of an early 1980s cartoon called "Turbo Teen", whose premise was that a teenager who had had a car accident in a laser research laboratory emerged with the ability -- and the curse -- of transforming from human to vehicle whenever his body temperature rose sufficiently. Despite the endorsement of Austin Dern, renowned for a frightening depth of knowledge of indisputably awful cartoons with bizarre premises, Roofus's claims to have seen this cartoon were denied by amused Fae Path Meadows onlookers.

"You've got to be kidding," said Skyler, although both Roofus and Austin asked reasonably why he would have to make that up. Skyler -- currently a pair of rabbits with sleeves down their backs and a growing instinct to nestle to and curl around the feet of dragon-coati Aishae -- reiterated the absurdity of a teenager who transforms from human to car when his body temperature changes, and repeated his objection when Austin pointd out among the events triggering the transformation were Turbo Teen eating a hot dog, holding a burrito, and being kissed by a girl.

Pressed, Austin and Roofus_roo agreed that none of those activities should appreciably change anyone's body temperature, which can fluctuate by a few degrees Celsius daily even in completely healthy persons.

"So if he blew out a tire in car form, he'd turn back into a human and find he had a broken leg? Something like that?" asked an incredulous Terra. Neither remembered, though Austin said, "I believe there was an episode where he did get a flat rear tire, running down the highway at about 55, but he lifted his side, popped his trunk, floated the flat tire off its axle and attached the full-size spare, without slowing down and without getting any help from outsiders." Pressed on the plausibility of this plot development, Austin admitted that he couldn't be certain this did not actually happen in the "Pole Position" cartoon instead. That the car was certainly an active, sentient participant ruled out it being from "The Dukes of Hazzard" cartoon, however.

Onlookers were not impressed, however, by the specificity of such details, and were prone to dismissing web site descriptions of the bizarre cartoon to a giant communal hoax, along the lines of the "Rubik the Amazing Cube" cartoon, The House On The Rock, or the episode of "Voyager" in which Janeway and Paris travel warp ten, turn into lizards, and mate. Roofus_roo and Austin continue in their assertion that the show existed.

Biplane Airborn stated that he thought the premise of "Turbo Teen" quite plausible.

Unexplained Bug Fixed

Austin Dern this week fixed what he characterized as a "small" bug in the farhug commands, without explaining much what the bug was. He characterized it as affecting the default responses to a far global.

If one sets the _act/def/default and the _act/def/odefault properties on oneself, then those responses are given when one uses a far global that has no other response given. Thus, for example, "far improvise Austin" will look for Austin's "improvise" response, and if it finds none, calls up his "default" property. This flexibility does not extend to ordinary hug-type globals, done to persons in the same room, but Austin stated that it has been a planned addition to the ordinary sq-action.muf type hugs for years. Asked why it hadn't been added Austin said, "It's difficult to add new features to MUF code because nobody has ever understood a MUF program anyone else has ever written."

Nevertheless the problem with far globals was not explained, but Austin did ask that any reports of bugs or anomalous behavior in far globals be reported to him.

Useless Command Publicized

The useles command "attr" was brought to the public's attention in the Rose Garden this Tuesday when Austin Dern began reviewing some of the many features of the muck for a crowd including Aishae and Jessie-Tiger. Austin stated later his intent was to note the amazing variety of things the muck is already positioned to do; his attempt to find an example of a little-known but potent command lead him to search through the results of "globals".

The "globals" command, itself a global, is an encyclopedic list of all established commands, with brief descriptions of their functions and data on how to find their help files. (Though most muck commands provide help by typing "look command", there are some which provide more information by alternate means.) One can search for commands, or take an alphabetical listing, or review commands by their designed purpose.

The command "attr" -- found on "globals #page 2", a list of information-setting commands, describes itself as being a handy way to set a standardized list of properties, such as one's size and weight, whether one can fly or swim, whether one has psionic or other magical powers, and the like. Residents in the Rose Garden looked eagerly at a method more convenient than the often-overwhelming "pinfo" to check on the natural abilities other people have.

That excitement soon faded as it was realized the "attr" command has no mechanism by which one can view the attributes of another person. It serves more as a cheat sheet by which someone can review their own properties. While it is not a rare event for persons with many morphs to forget their current size or species, it is rare for people with that many morphs to be on Spindizzy. As a result, the command appears to fill a niche which did not exist.

Austin expressed disappointment at the command. "I don't know why we installed it," he said. "But probably the description of the MUF code behind it made it sound useful, and once it's installed and compiled we may as well leave it there." Since its installation in October 1999, the command has been used 391 times as of press time, though there is no way to determine how many of those uses were attempts to read the help file and experiment with reading other people's properties.

Meanwhile, it was noted by Lamar that Spindizzy has no program for playing Go. Austin believed there might be, but he was tragically mistaken. "In our defence," Austin noted, "FurryMuck hasn't got a Go program either." Whether FurToonia has one could not be determined as of press time.

Missing Bats Fruitbat Labs to Undertake Study of SpinDizzy Field

What began as a fun night outing to Fruitbat Observatory turned serious as unnatural sky conditions caused several students to turn up missing. Of Evlim Fruitbat's class of thirty-five, seven young bats were found hours later, distracted off course by a large glow in the southern sky, described as disturbingly 'apple-like' in shape and color.

The SpinDizzy field has been exhibiting some odd color shifts lately. Usually a constantly changing hue, several patches of the field have been seen to almost stop, holding their color patterns for several hours before dissipating. Since the study of Spindizzy Field effects has not been We have only speculation as to if this is natural, or perhaps the work of some new form of SED orbital laser.

"We can't be sure just what is happening up there," Says sky researcher Steck Fruitbat of Fruitbat Observatory, "We shouldn't be looking at studying this occurrence in the short term. It was a regrettable incident, but luckily no one was harmed, and we're hoping the occurrence of giant fruit in the sky can only lead to more funding to study this phenomenon."

Disaster Caused by Happy Dance Avoided

Last Sunday, a pair of dragons living aboard Spindizzy Isle met in the Rose park. Ceralor, who has lived here for quite a while, was shown to be the most enthusiastic about the meeting. As he entered the park, he noticed a fellow visitor to the Rose Garden: a blue Pernese firelizard, named Logreth. The firelizard promptly landed on Ceralor's shoulder, receiving many affectionate caresses from the red dragon.

Moments later, however, the firelizard flew /Between/, appearing as a large bronze Pernese dragon in another corner of the park. The 9ft red dragon promptly changed to his fullsize of 90ft, and the two exchanged scritches and sunned for a bit.

Normally, this wouldn't bother the park's inhabitants, but when it came time for Logreth to part, it did. Once Logreth was out of sight, Ceralor promptly began jumping up and down with joy at finally meeting another member of his reptillian race. Again, this wouldn't have bothered the inhabitants if he had been at his smaller size. His jumping began to cause a park-wide earthquake, registering as a 7 on the Richter scale. Inhabitants were thrown right and left, Austin was flattened out, and a clockwork bird rang out in alarm. Ceralor still didn't take any notice of this, and continued his dance.

When his enthusiasm finally began to slow, he noticed the sprawled and shaken spindizzians. The apologetic dragon quickly exclaimed, "Oh, dear..I'm dreadfully sorry!" and ceased his activities. As of yet, no damages have been sustained, but he is ready to pay for any damages he has caused.

Arg! More Puns

It all started with this;

( I know that birds have little birds, and fish have little fishes, Then why don't sinks have little sinks, Instead of dirty dishes? )

Argon says, "Thinking abut that is draining me."
Kinsor skriters, "Are you telling me I should put a cork in it?"
Argon says,, "I'll ask a plumber for help."
Kinsor skriters, "Don't fall into their trap!"
Argon says, "You must soften their water."
Kinsor skriters, "But I'm afraid if I get too mean, they might runoff!"
Argon says, "Just soft soap them. It'll be a joy."
Kinsor skriters, "But by Dawn they'll have left with the Tides!"
Argon says, "My suds runneth over."
Kinsor skriters, "They'll soak me for all I'm worth!"
Argon says, "Your account will be drained."
Argon says, "You'll be dishpanhandling on the street before you know it."
Kinsor skriters, "That is unless I can convince you to fork over the dough!"
Argon says, "Is that a Spoonerism?"
Argon says, "A bit oven the top don't you think?"
Kinsor skriters, "Well, it was a bit over easy!"
Kinsor skriters, "But you were egging me on!"
Argon says, "My brain is scrambled."
Argon says, "But the yolk is funny."
Darius says, "IUf you don;t stop, you will get eggSactly what is coming to you."
Kinsor skriters, "My just desserts?"
Darius says, "Indeed. With a cherry on top."
Kinsor skriters, "Well, that doesn't sound too bad!"
Darius says, "No, but the cholesteral will kill you."

The conversation then turned to the dynamic electro-mechanical physics of coin operated laundry equipment.

Caption Contest

DBoki looks for fish.As noted in last week's @Action News, here's Boki, local seagull, perched on a telescope. We asked, "What caption do you think ought to be applied to this picture?" @Action News was overwhelmed with responses.

Unfortunately, while compiling the responses at a picnic table on the beach, the results were made unreadable due to the release by a passing seagull of a previous meal.

Hopefully the next caption contest will not have the same fate.

Bearing Up

Ba'ar.Welcome to latest edition of Bearing up, the advice column where Ba'ar (That" s me!) has answers to your most challenging questions.

Dear Bearing Up:
The Spindizzy Oscars is a popularity contest! Why didn't I win anything?
-- Winnerless

Dear Winnerless:
Get more friends and perhaps next year you can win an oscar.

Dear Bearing Up:
It seems that every time we get a new resident to Spindizzy Austin or one of the other wizards make a bad joke about his or her name. What can be done to make them forego this and go back to their day jobs?
-- Joker

Dear Joker:
That IS their day job, making those jokes about newcomer's names.

Editor's note: Some members of the community are on a mailing list of folks who take the responsibility for greeting new people, and new character notices tend to get such jokes. For instance, if my character had been created the list might get a note reading, "Argon has been created. His eye will follow."These jokes are just comments on the new names, and not a reflection of the characters, who are usually too new to have fun poked at them. Yet.

Dear Bearing Up:
How does BarterGarter manage to store the vast range of merchandise she has in that little trailer?
-- Curious

Dear Curious:
She does it through interdimensional portals connected to her trailer.

Dear Bearing Up: If an ursine wore shoes, would he still be bearfooted?
-- Cobbler

Dear Cobbler:
Yes. His feet would still be BEAR feet even when wearing shoes.

Remember possums (to steal a term from Dame Edna ;-D), if you have any questions,please page mail me (Ba'ar) online or send mail to big_bear@operamail.com. Thanks.

Weekly Survey

Argon doing the survey.This week, Argon asked, I'm doing a survey for @Action News. This week's question, suggested by BarterGarter is, 'What would your character ask for if they had an appointment with the Wizard of Oz?"

  • Gryphe chitters, "I want lips!"
  • Casandro says, "Well maybe control of my size might be nice."
  • Darius smiles. "I don't think there is anything that Darius needs."
  • Randy_panda -- My answer to the survey would be a million plush!
  • Kinsor -- I can't say what I did ask him for, but I have a diploma from the Wizard of Oz on my wall!
  • Jessie-Tiger -- I'd ask for an upgrade to non-volatile memory.
  • Timesheart -- Timesheart would ask for the return of Toons, Furr and Fluff.
  • Firewind -- I haven't even seen The Wizard of Oz.
  • Logreth telepaths, < Who's the wise guy that put this Oz person on my schedule?>
  • NeverNever would have to ask for his job... that way she could give all sorts of funny things to people when the come to ask for stuff :P
  • KitV growls, "The Meaning of Life"
  • Gina_Doberman answers the survey. "I'd ask that the Ancient Oak were to stop giving out yucky or useless things!"
  • Leslie pips, "Well... for everybody to come around more 'cause I miss all my friends."
  • Beltrami nods ... she holds up her left palm and traces out on it the letters 'M U S I C', 'I LIKE LISTENING'.
  • Brenda ponders. "Well, I suppose a good sense of feeling secure wouldn't hurt"
  • Pete says, "Hmm, depends on the situation, maybe something to drink or so."
  • Austin says, "I think I'd ask to learn how to fly his balloon."
  • Terra hmmms and rubs her chin. "I'd probably ask for a gift certificate for an expensive store."
  • KitV growls, "My answer would definitely be, Every RPG for every system ever made, in full english"
  • Ba'ar -- "I'd like to have a lifetime supply of honey"

Notices And Corrections

Services Offered: Life-Weaving

Aishae, life-weaver, offers her services to people hoping to change their lifestyles. New lives may be custom-fitted or may be drawn from a catalogue including popular options such as: changing size, color, texture, species, gender, number of tails, number of ears, number of heads, and swapping limbs left and right or fore and aft. More options are available for couples or larger groups. Drastic reshaping of destiny available in certain cases.

Letter to the Editor

Jessie-Tiger Finds Non-Programs Entirely Too Philosophical

Dear Editor,

I arrived in SpinDizzy two weeks ago, and although I'm still not certain exactly how I exited the System in which I spent many a pleasant and productive cycle processing audio, I do know that I've become quite fond of the variety of new experiences to be had here. A program like myself is accustomed to an everyday routine, and breaking out of it and exploring can be very liberating, especially in the aspect of meeting those who are not programs; those are the most curious experiences of all!

Unfortunately, some of you non-programs are entirely too philosophical for your own good. I've had more than one encounter with a person engaging me in a discussion about the nature of reality, only to begin suggesting that the System in which I was a vital part may have been wholly imaginary! Why, the very notion is absurd, not to mention unprovable, but that never seems to sway the other party in these bizarre interfaces. Didn't your parent processes ever tell you that questioning the integrity of others' input protocols is quite rude? I absolutely adore learning about this strange alternate world of yours and sharing the intricate details of the workings of the System, but I can't do that if at every logic branch my existence comes into question.

And that's another thing. I don't know what or who "Tron" is, nor have I ever heard of "Flynn". Stop asking me, or I'll take a friend's advice and start asking you if you've ever met Bart Simpson or Elvis, whatever those are.

Jessie-Tiger Program

End of line.

The Doze Garden

Sunshine, local porcupine, seldom has trouble with the police.

The Doze Garden Comic Strip

Guidelines and Procedures for Submitting Articles

Submitting a story or artwork for @Action News is easy! Just send it to newspaper@spindizzy.org or qmail or page @Action or sdnews about it.
@Action News is published weekly on or after 12:01 AM Eastern Time on Sunday. Most any type of story or article will be accepted. Generally, we'd prefer things that aren" t out and out lies or flames about other folks, and have a basis in the reality of SpinDizzy. Things that occur in public areas are fair game. The things reported dont have to have actually happened, (any more than anything that happens here does) but make sure you don't overstep the social boundaries and rules of interaction that we have. These are pretty broad guidelines, but we expect good sense to apply.

Thanks! Argon, Editor @Action News