to the Editor
Trade magazines love to excite
controversy in their editorials,
possibly because the existence of a
new mounting package for a resistor
or perhaps a new angle for a screw
thread doesn't have the verve of a
sex scandal or the excitement of a
land speed record. If things
are slow, a gratuitous comment about
immigrant engineers or an
advertisement with a scantily clad
human female holding a voltmeter is
sure to draw out forces for good in
the community with the predictable
and polarized responses.
The editor of Design News is
a bit of a whiner. In a March
2006 issue she delivered a somewhat
intemperate diatribe about a misbegotten schnurg who had the
temerity to use his Blackberry while
attending a press conference.
Worse, he was sitting next to her.
Evil incarnate! I would have
ignored this editorial (as I do
most) but since this particular
issue of the magazine had a cover
article on hybrid vehicles, I
thought it would be nice to slip in
a notice for my web site.
Hence the letter below, published in
the 10 April 2006 issue.
IT'S THE RULES THAT ANNOY ME
just read your Blackberry editorial
and can only ask "Why the fuss?" The
"user" was operating a chair, not a
motor vehicle. He was pressing
buttons quietly, not bellowing into
a cell phone. He wasn't paying
attention at a press event,
presumably missing the vital
information that will propel you and
the other rule followers to the top
while he sinks into the muck.
Rather than find it "intensely
annoying" when people show contempt
for rules, I find it distressing
that so many rules are promulgated.
If a rule serves a useful purpose,
e.g., "turn off the cell phones,"
OK. If its effect is simply to be
meddlesome or officious, I prefer to
think of it as an opportunity for
speaking of entertainment, take a
look at www.PriUPS.com — it goes
perfectly with your lead article
about using hybrid vehicles for
Little Ferry, NJ