Archive for October 8th, 2007

English Here and There

Many years ago, I spent some time working in a retail bookstore, something which, among other dubious benefits, produced a lot of highly entertaining anecdotes. One that I was reminded of today illustrates the sadly unavoidable fact that the English language is far from uniform throughout the many, many places it’s spoken, and some of those minute differences can lead to humorous misunderstandings when traveling (or communicating on the internet, for that matter.)

An Englishman, as he proved to be, walked up to the counter and presented himself before me. I made the obligatory polite inquiry as to how I could be of assistance, and he replied with but five words. I know; just five words, but they were quite unexpected, and in a combination of shock and confusion, I responded “I’m sorry?”. Apparently believing I had difficulty understanding his accent, he repeated himself, slowly and with perfect clarity:
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Published in: Geekiness, General | on October 8th, 2007 | Comments Off on English Here and There

Intelligence and Defense Information

There’s no fancy certificate to hang on the wall upon completion, but you’ll still receive the warm glow of accomplishment – and knowledge, of course, which is nothing to shake a stick at – after perusing a pair of Army correspondence courses only available online. In theory, you need to be enlisted in the military to “enroll” in either of these courses. Luckily for you and I, you needn’t be enrolled, or otherwise registered, to “view” the courses.

The first is Intellifence Fundamentals, a basic introduction, as the name suggests, to intelligence and counterintelligence matters. It’s basically one long webpage, and you can probably read it on your lunch. The other is Safeguarding Defense Information, a rather longer look at military classification, information security, and general security education. It’s significantly longer, accounting for a theoretical five credit hours, compared to two hours for Intelligence Fundamentals.

Published in: General, Security | on October 8th, 2007 | Comments Off on Intelligence and Defense Information