Editorial & Letters
Planet Magazine: We move back and forth, while your eyes stay still!





Planet Digital Assistant

With this issue, Planet Magazine announces the unveiling of the debut of yet another restructuring plan to achieve our long-stated goal of "Profitability within our Lifetime (aided by the eventual synthesis of cherry-flavored personal-DNA-tailored longevity chewing-gum)". Our former business model of boosting revenue by simply giving away the magazine while refusing advertising has led to a sideways death-spiral in our finances from zero dollars in net income for fiscal 1994 to just-less-than-zero net income for F2002. So we rolled up our sleeves, sat back on the couch, and thought hard about how to make all of this work. And just before we dozed off to the Yu-Gi-Oh! cartoon theme song playing on TV, we had a brain-hurricane that we like even more than we like compound modifiers (or parenthetical asides):

As of our next issue, Planet will become a combination Science Fiction Zine/PDA/Phone. What this means is that readers will be able to not only read Planet but also, for example, schedule job interviews through monster.com while calling in late to work. However, unlike other combo SFZine/PDA/Phones, we are not merely a publication stored as text or images on, say, a Treo, Kyocera, or a Samsung, or even a PocketPC or Symbian phone -- what one might accurately call a mere PIM (personal information magazine). No, we aim to be as incredibly slick, complex, and difficult to configure as the finest home-networking hub available: Imagine, if you will, a ubiquitous, always-on, wi-fi broadband online magazine that is tightly integrated on software and hardware levels and offers such techno-slick features as an embedded voice-over-Internet-protocol function to make free International calls while reading Planet, or even a Java-based PalmOS emulator for the PalmOS; that way, you can concurrently run more than two of the thousands of Palm apps out there in split-screen mode (one of those screens being an issue of Planet, of course). And we also want to be scalable, big-time! We call our concept a "screenheld" zine-puter (trademark pending in 15 adjacent realities). In short, we will make the high-end Sony Clies look like blocks of balsa wood decorated by super-intelligent capuchin monkeys whose brain implants didn't take.

And you can bet your sweet lawsuit that we know a thing or three about cerebral augmentations that didn't "take"! "There was really nothing there to 'take' the implant," the surgeons said. What do they think I am, an idiot? "Our computer models all assume a normal, minimum mass of cranial matter," they simpered, shrugging as they peeled off their feckless gloves and headed out of the recovery room without bothering to close the drapes again. So that stupid kid and his unnecessary nose job in the next bed could lower his limited-edition "FamiCom" GameBoy Advance SP and smirk at me. Sounded like he was playing "Yu-Gi-Oh! Worldwide Edition". That's a pretty good one, but the PS2 "Duelists of the Rose" has a better story. Needless to say the graphics are better on my 37-inch TV! But none of that is important right now.

Ideally, the best way to carry around a screenheld zine-puter like Planet would be on our Planet-branded TabletPC device, which should only set you back $2,500 or more, if you don't already have one. (And who doesn't own a TabletPC these days? After all, this recently invented Microsoft platform has been around for about ten years, ever since other companies actually invented it first.) Or, using our hardware-emulation mode (via Internet-subscription ), you could buy a wireless Palm or PPC and call up our screenheld zine-puter on that, giving you the much-sought-after "handheld-within-a-handheld" experience (and potentially "handheld-within-a-handheld-within-a-handheld" in split-screen mode). Or, if you don't have the money, simply use the screenheld that is your current desktop computer at home or at work (although you still have to buy our $175/month Internet subscription).

As part of this Planetary change, and with the blessing of the Nine Cryptic Masters From Zheleltaira, we are reorganizing the Planet Magazine holding company as well. The "content" component of Planet will now be called PlanetMagazineOne, while the "process/production/hardware" side will be spun off as PlanetMagazineSource. The latter spinoff will in turn reacquire PMOne and spin that off. This sequence will be repeated for many iterations and in different combinations. In this way, we hope, no one will know who owns what, and we should be able to raise a lot of venture-capital funding and use that to fuel a lavish lifestyle of limos, Snapple diet peach iced tea, and Yu-Gi-Oh! cards before it all comes crashing down and we are forced to come up with a new marketing gambit.

Or My Name Ain't Pegasus,
Andrew G. McCann, Editor
September 2003

 

 

Letters to the Editor

Dear Editor: I have finally published "Happenings", ISBN 1-4116-0135-1, via Lulu Inc., a company in North Carolina. I have been able to keep the price low at $12.57 plus shipping. The collection contains 25 of my best science fiction tales published in assorted zines, among them ten stories about the Langford Joh series from Planet Magazine. To get a copy, go to www.lulu.com/happenings and click the title link next to the book cover. That will take you to Lulu's page where you can click the "order cart" to enter your card information and proceed to checkout.
Thanking you in advance for your interest,
William Alan Rieser

 

Dear Editor: My book "MotherShip" is No. 1 at this major e-book site. Look in their Top Ten and Bestsellers lists: www.fictionwise.com.
Tony Chandler
(Planet Magazine author)

 

Dear Editor: Just wanted to let you know you have an outdated link for Gak (Planet artist). He now resides at www.gakart.com. Like the site.
Entrpy

 

Dear Editor: I would like to submit my site for submission into your links section: SeanAlonzo.com is the official site of occult fiction author Sean-Alonzo, exploring symbolism, alternative history, philosophy, secret societies, and other areas of the esoteric tradition. Sean-Alonzo

 

 

Letters to Ultra-Rare Yu-Gi-Oh! Cards

Dear Daisy Beast (Level 1, 10 Attack Points, 10 Defense Points; price $0.10): I have a theory. I've not fleshed out my thoughts any more than that yet, but I wanted to take an early stand on this important issue -- whatever issue that might turn out to be.
Regards,
Mia Furst

 

Dear Bush (L0, 10,000 Atk, 0 Def; price $87 billion): I was wondering if I would be able to create the most boring blog ever -- but I soon found out that's been done many times over, and not always intentionally. And boredom is often in the eye of the beholder. I'd sure hate to fall short in an attempt to bore, although that might be kinda interesting. So then I decided to try to create the shortest -- and maybe, in a sense, the "worst" -- blog ever as part of my relentless campaign to gain attention, and eventually a profile in Wired magazine or The New York Times. To ensure a certain level of moronity, I have also decided to call it a "we", rather than a "blog", since both words come from the original term "weblog". So, Bloglcome to my We! And I look forward to the next update to my we, which I'll be uploading to the December issue of Planet as soon as I can figure out the password to the FTP server!!
Write On,
Jess Goaway

 

Dear The Golden Dragon the Misplaced Preposition Of (Level 20, 20,000 Atk, 20,000 Def; $20,000): Here's the plan: We outsource most US jobs to India and China, wait till the middle classes expand in those countries and start making big wage demands, and then we ship the jobs right back to the US, which by then will be an impoverished backwater among the civilized nations, ruled by a super-elite, of which I wll be a part, if not the leader. Once the US middle class starts up again, and assuming the governments of India and China are wise to us, we would then be faced with two scenarios, both of which would be equally satisfactory: Either move jobs to Antartica, where super-strong walruses will do all the physical labor and super-intelligent penguins will do all the intellectual labor, or move all jobs and production to the Moon, where an enormous workforce of Moon-Men is even now itching to get to work. Of course, once middle classes are established among the Walrii, the Penguine, and the Moonia nations, we'll have to raise the bar a notch and start considering virtual labor, other-dimensional labor, nano labor, and even demonic labor. Gotta stay competitive!
Onward!
Rich "Lee" N. Tyteld

 

Dear Nonexistent (L2.5a, 0 Atk, 0 Def; $Infinity): Get ready for "Gigli 2: Into Space!" In this sequel, starring Eric Christian Olsen as a handsome, "centered" homosexual who falls hard for Derek Richardson as a non-gay, low-rent mob enforcer (who is forced to kidnap the brilliant young alien son of a Space Diplomat and hold him till just about the closing credits), a sudden fluctuation in the quantum suds, which is caused by a power surge in the main engine's grid array as well as in its array grid, gives Derek's character the ability to wish himself out of the film and into this Letters column.
Regards,
Martin Breast

 

Dear Something Scribbled, Possibly in Chinese (Trap Card; $0.50 in supermarket vending machine): I just finished slogging through all 10,000 pages of the new "Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix", and I must say it wasn't a surprise to find that the character who dies is Boromir. I knew he was bad and never trusted him since he tried to take the Lightning scar from Harry. Even though he apologized profusely, it was fitting that he was soon slain by a group of Uruk Muggles out for a Sunday drive.
Ha-Ha,
E. Ville-Nemesess

 


Dear Metal-Toothed Rapper (Pimp Card; $0.50 in da club): Me Hulk. Me angry. Me angry about way represented in movie "Hulk". Me grow to giant size in movie but pants not rip and still stay on. Embarrassing. Other super-heroes laugh at me -- say I wear Lycra pants. Make me angry!! Me better write back when calm down. Hulk-Mama always say, Hulk, don't write letters to editor when angry. Sound too much like Bizarro Hulk, and can't smash things with words anyway. Only with your fists! Want to smash Director Lee's cameras. Will show him crouching tiger and hidden dragon! Me go before other super-heroes read this letter and laugh more at me, and say I Bizarro Hulk! Especially that Superman! Me hate him too. He wear pretty Lycra all day long, but no one say anything! Angry!!!
Hulk

 


Dear Hanging Chad (Level 100, 100,000 Atk, 100,000 Def; $[Soft Dollars Only]): I heard the Russian Space Agency is offering rides on the Soyuz for $20 million. Since journeying to space has been a life-long dream for me, I jumped right on it. The one hitch is that, although I'm wealthy, my assets are tied up and I am a bit short on cash right now. So to save some money, I signed up for the half-price, one-way special!
Be Seeing You,
Dennis Frito

 


Dear Finally Ran Out of Names for Creatures (Level 1, 0 Atk, 100 Def; $[Finally ran out of money too]): They say a fish rots from the head. In other words, a society becomes corrupt because its leaders become corrupt first. But what I get from that is, if you're going to eat a large number of people (perhaps a whole nation), eat members of the government first, then the people. Otherwise, if you're not quick about it, you might as well just go directly to the people and eat them. Because those in the government will taste bad. They rot quicker, it seems. This matters to me because I am a Saturn-sized space creature who is running dangerously low on the internal gases I expel to propel myself among the stars. Thus, I need to eat very soon. Why this matters to you is that I'm just outside Uranus and closing in fast. Thank you for your wonderful, colorful languages, which I have studied via my built-in, long-range mega-Bluetooth capability as I've homed in on your world (that Voyager satellite you sent out was most helpful with directions, by the way). I never metaphor I didn't like -- get it? And I've never met a type of creature I didn't eat!
See you soon,
Lucky Wander Demon

 


Dear Editor (Charm Card; $[Priceless]): I patented a girl I saw on the subway the other day. She was real cute, but more to the point, and legally speaking, I found her to be new and useful. And those are the required conditions for a successful patent, which I filed online as soon as I got home. Specifically, I patented her precise gene expression. That might not mean I can actually walk up to her and touch her, but I hope she appreciates the recognition and my thoughtfulness and will go out with me on a date. But she should be warned! If she spurns me and eventually marries another, she'll have to pay marketing rights to me if she decides to have kids. Sure, I know what I'm doing seems unfair and creepy -- but then, everyone else is doing it. Plus, I'm a creep.
Fondly,
A. Nieuw-Lowe

 

 

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Enough with the smilicons. :) , schm:) , we say!