TechMan Texts: Ratzinger, Tweeter emeritus?

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Now that Pope Benedict is just plain Joseph Aloisius Ratzinger (Pope Emeritus), what happens to his Twitter account?

The Vatican has thought of that, too. Pope Benedict's account will not shut down: "During the period between today and the election of new pope, the account will be inactive," Secretary of the Pontifical Council for Social Communications Monsignor Paul Tighe announced.

The new pope will have the option of reviving the papal Twitter account, @pontifex. But for now the account now reads "Sede Vacante" ("seat vacant") and all of the tweets have been deleted.

In other Vatican news, as they like to say on TV, the PG's inveterate staffer in Italy, Ann Rodgers, reports that the Vatican has jammed Wi-Fi service in the building where the cardinals are meeting so that no information about choosing the new pope can escape electronically, either by mistake or as a leak. A side effect is that Wi-Fi service to the press room in the building also was jammed.

Vatican officials were kind enough to run ethernet cables to the press room.

Ms. Rodgers says when the conclave to actually elect a new pope begins today, the Wi-Fi jamming will be switched to the Sistine Chapel, where the conclave is held.

Secrecy at the Vatican is tough, tougher than the NSA maybe.

And who would have guessed that the Sistine Chapel would have Wi-Fi.

Geeks love zombies. But there is such a thing as too much undead.

The Atlantic Wire reports that Archie and the gang in Riverdale will have to deal with a zombie invasion in a future series in the comic. At least Jughead sounds like a good name for a zombie.

Among things that digital life has made more complicated is the time change.

Many clocks now change the time themselves. They are the smart clocks. The dumb clocks won't show the correct time until you change them. The morning after the time change can be a little confusing living in a house with both smart and dumb clocks.

Geek word of the week -- Warchalking, the drawing of symbols in public places to advertise an open Wi-Fi network, inspired by hobo symbols.

The etymology of the word goes back through wardriving, the practice of driving around an area in a car to detect open Wi-Fi nodes and back even farther through wardialing, the practice of dialing many phone numbers hoping to find a modem. Wardialing was the way teenager David Lightman accidentally contacted the Pentagon's WOPR computer in the 1983 movie "War Games." In fact, Wikipedia says the practice is named for the movie, but I can't verify that.

Last year the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers announced that it would greatly expand the number of domain names and that companies and other entities could apply for control of specific names.

Now two publishing industry groups, the Authors Guild and the Association of American Publishers, are objecting to Amazon's request for such names as ".book," ".author" and ".read."

They claim that granting Amazon control of such names would give it an unfair competitive advantage. Amazon, of course, says it won't.

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