August 8th, 2005

Texas

The battle moves to a new phase...

...and it's one I won't have to do much with besides watch.

The meeting last Saturday was long and contentious. There were a lot of people in the room, more than for any other meeting of the group than I can recall. The room seemed to be divided into three roughly equal groups: supporters of my side of the issues, supporters of the other side, and folks who'd heard about the controversy and wanted to put in their two cents worth, but not really affiliated with either faction.

The first real test was on the vote by mail bylaws amendment. There was a fair amount of debate, but in the end it failed, 144-79. Notice that that's nearly a 2-1 margin...which means that the unaffiliated folks largely went the way I'd been advocating.

The election results were even more one-sided. The Gang of Three had a bombshell to drop, and it wasn't the one I'd expected. km5r walked in with a stack of 86 signed, notarized proxy votes. Only one problem: the Society's bylaws specifically outlaw proxy voting. There was a lot of wrangling about how to deal with the situation, especially since they quoted a section of Texas law that appears to mandate accepting proxy voting for election of directors.

It didn't matter. When the votes were counted, the lowest number of votes for any of the slate of candidates I supported was 151. The highest number of votes for any candidate on the opposing slate (which happened to be km5r) was 61 - which meant that, even if the proxies were counted, they'd still have lost. One of that slate had the class to concede formally at the meeting; the rest, I'm told, walked out looking dazed.

The battles will now move to another arena, as one of their supporters has formed a competing frequency coordination group, and I'm sure they'll join forces with them. That situation will be murky for some time. I'll talk about that in my next entry, which I'll probably post while I'm waiting for my flight this afternoon.
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    satisfied satisfied
Dammit

Cellphone blues

My year-old Kyocera SE44 Slider has croaked. Specifically, there's no audio going out to the other end of the call.

I'm thinking of getting a Treo 650. I want something I can use to ssh into my system at home (even if that takes installing another program), do some rudimentary web browsing when I can't set up my laptop, and keep my information in the same place as I am. The only other contender I know of is the Blackberry, and I don't think it can do ssh - and its email function is useless to me, since I keep all of my mail on my server, and will not change that. (That's what I use ssh for: I ssh into the server and use mutt to read it there.) I neither need nor want a camera.

I need nationwide coverage, roaming included. I need to be able to make a call, no matter where in the US I am (specifically including Middle-of-Nowhere, Iowa/Minnesota/South Dakota/Wisconsin), and not worry about exorbitant roaming charges. I need at least 600 minutes a month. I need a second line to share the same minutes (for vakkotaur), although that can just be a basic phone. I don't care about mobile-to-mobile or free night and weekend minutes unless they're usable no matter where I am. I need to be able to transfer our existing numbers to the new service. I need home service to a billing address in Fairmont.

I need all of this within two weeks.

Who do I need to call? I know very little about T-Mobile. Sprint has the reputation of having good coverage in major cities and along the Interstate system, but not elsewhere (see comment about Middle-of-Nowhere above). Nextel is, supposedly, more expensive, and the push-to-talk feature is nearly useless to me. Cingular pissed me off once upon a time, but the merger with AT&T might have fixed the coverage problem I was having,

Suggestions?
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    aggravated aggravated