don't abuse jms email

 Posted on 12/18/1999 by to

Those of you know know the drill can ignore this. The rest....

I've said it here again and again: If you have a technical question, post it to

Also, series on the air or not, DO NOT SEND ME STORY IDEAS, or send me a note
with a question you're asking for a fanfic thing you're writing and then
proceed to tell me the story as it's "not a story idea, it's the story I'm
writing for my fanfic publication." Only an idiot cannot perceive that these
two are the same thing.

Yet, despite this request, I continue to get constant email broaching those two
requests, really the only ones I've put in, and I don't think they're asking
too much. And now they're starting to come in email to the

I'm appending just one of the endless such notes I get these days as an example
of something that could be just as well posted publicly, and has a zillion
questions, which if I answered every one, for every email I get, I would do
nothing else, ever, at any time.

Folks, and you know who you are, either you play by the few small rules I've
asked you to honor, or I'm going to have to start closing off my email address
to only people I know...because I use those addresses for business and I have
to wade through ten thousand "what's the defense grid EMP output?" type
messages to find the mail I have to answer.

I don't want to have to do that, but if I continue to get essentially spammed
with this sort of thing, I will.

So do NOT send me the following sort of note. Please honor the request
detailed above (and sending me a note that says, "I know you said not to send
you this kind of note, but this is just a one-time question" doesn't work
because there are FIFTEEN MILLION of you with "one-time questions".)

I've always tried to maintain an open email policy, but it really is starting
to get abused beyond the point where I can handle it efficiently.

Thank you.


What Not To Send Me. I have removed the person's name to avoid subjecting him
to ridicule. Call me a softy. (And don't you love how it says "A question"
when it's 8 questions?)

Subj: A question about tech, the novels, etc.
Date: 12/16/1999 9:39:39 AM Pacific Standard Time

I already sent you an email to your addy, so I will not make
this one tremendously long, because you'll have my other questions to answer
if you can get to them :)

1.) White Stars - did the Minbari actually have the ability to build more?
I know that Delenn mentions around season 3 that the "First Wave" of White
Stars have been built, yet around Season five, Sheridan's comments about
"running out" eventually make it sound like they cannot build them anymore.
Is this a case?

2.) Some discussion amongst some friends and I have centered around a
definition for a "Defense grid." Did you or anyone involved in B5 actually
define what a defense grid is? (I know that, at least for EF, its
interceptors and possibly ECM - is there more than just stealth or
interceptors to a defense grid? Some speculation has included "EM Fields"
or "grav-fields" like some pseudo-shield technology, but I am wondering what
you have to say on this.)

3.) Does ANY race on bablyon 5 use anti-matter based weaponry, or a type of
reactor system? I recall a quote from SEason five from Franklin dealing
with the nature of weapons, and "disrupting" is mentioned, which is why i
asked. Also, do Minbari employ some sort of "Forcefield" in their weaponry?
I noticed that in In the Beginning, their tractor beams emitted from the
weapons emittors it would seem, so I ask because of this.

4.) Vorlons and Shadows: another discussion between me and some other
people considered whether or not the shadows employed nanotechnology in
their ships, rather than a more "biological" or "Cellular" approach for the
Vorlons. Further, I was wondering if Vorlon and Shadow technology each
reflected their beliefs (The Vorlons favor a more "Evolutionary" approach -
they keep most of the same tech over a long period but refine it to great
degrees, making it more powerful, while the Shadows seem to appear to favor
many new and different approachs.. more revolutionary.)

5.) Once in a comment you made reference to "gravimetric drives" on the
White Star being based on magnetic and gravitic principles - is this
something that you received from your tech advisors (JPL I think?)

6.) I've noticed that with the demise of Crusade, a large influx of novels
seems to have started again... is the B5 universe moving to a print media?
Or have you considered this? (By the way, have the Technomage books you
mentioned Jeanne Cavelos, sorry If I misspelled her name, come out to your
knowledge? I really enjoyed book 7, and have been wondering.)

7.) Just two verification notes, if you could. In "Final Reckoning", we
learn Lyta apparently is dead. Did she die during the telepath war, and if
so, was Bester involved? (And do we learn in any way how she dies?)

Secondly, I ran across a note that you had made a interview in a magazine
called "Dreamwatch" that talked about technomage technology, and had
mentioned that the Shadows had "loaned" technology to the technomages, and
if so, was ALL their technology shadow based, or did they have more beyond
that (IE other technology from other races, or their own tech) and you had
also mentioned that the reason the technomages left was to avoid repaying
the debt. I missed the issue, so I am just wondering if you had mentioned
those things, and if there is anything you are allowed to add, or any
summary that i might have neglected mentioning or got wrong.


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