The myth of rural ignorance, set alight by small children.

So, Ogged links to a Guardian column that has an amusingly incisive commentary that reminds me of a line from The Stand which Stephen King quoted in his introduction to trade edition for Sandman: World’s End collection, “Country don’t mean dumb.”

At university I once came across the following true story in a textbook. A young teacher from Leeds had accepted a temporary job teaching a class of four-year-olds out in one of the most isolated, rural parts of north Wales. One of her first lessons involved teaching the letter S so she held up a big colour photo of a sheep and said: “Now, who can tell me what this is?” No answer. Twenty blank and wordless faces looked back at her. “Come on, who can tell me what this is?” she exclaimed, tapping the photo determinedly, unable to believe that the children were quite so ignorant. The 20 faces became apprehensive and even fearful as she continued to question them with mounting frustration.

Eventually, one brave soul put up a tiny, reluctant hand. “Yes!” she cried, waving the snap aloft. “Tell me what you think this is!” “Please, Miss,” said the boy warily. “Is it a three-year-old Border Leicester?”

Of course, I have to admit that I thought the payoff was going to be more, err, sexual in nature. But that’s just the sort of gutter mind I have.

Now this is what Free Software is all about

Earthlink has produced a customized firmware image for the Linksys WRT54G router that will allow you to get IPv6 addresses on their network. Many IPv6 addresses, apparently.

I don’t think it’s going to displace the Sveasoft firmware I’m using (though I might try to figure out how to get the IPv6 addresses using that), but it’s awfully cool that Earthlink 1) took the time and 2) was able to hack the firmware like this and make it available to their customers.

Oh, and the link where I got this information is a very nice overview of the interesting stuff that is available for the WRT54G family. Definitely worth reading, and, if you’ve got $60 laying around, definitely worth picking up one.

But if you’re going to do it, consider doing it quickly–the newest WRT54G V.5 is apparently castrated and unable to use these replacement firmwares (and, since it’s no longer Linux-based, is unlikely ever to).