Page Summary

Expand Cut Tags

No cut tags

"Never Laid Open" is now complete!

Jul. 30th, 2015 05:02 pm
ysabetwordsmith: Damask smiling over their shoulder (polychrome)
[personal profile] ysabetwordsmith
Thanks to an anonymous donation, "Never Laid Open" is now complete.  Watch Shiv flounder his way through new coping skills.

Dad's coming after Christmas

Jul. 30th, 2015 01:10 pm
freyjaw: (Christmas)
[personal profile] freyjaw
My stepdad's coming out this way to visit his brother Dave and he'll visit us too. I looked at hotel prices in the area and gagged. When we lived in Oakland he could get something decent on the cheap. In SF, not a chance. So, I pointed out the sofa is comfy but his grandcats may visit overnight. He's fine with that. After all, we've had a family cat for years and years. He's used to being catted at any hour. So, Dad will be here in January. This will be nice. Very nice. Now to get us to Milwaukee... I'm homesick. I should probably wait until I get my gallbladder yanked as I hate traveling not knowing when I'll have a vomiting episode.

Now to get my father here. It's nice that he's retiring for real. It's not nice that it's because the recovery from the 2-vessel CABG & mitral valve replacement is slower than he was told by his docs (but on target for the Marine medic who had one before him). Daddy has to see me and his son-in-law and his grandcats. It will be fun to play tourist with him. I don't think I want him pushing the wheelchair except in ideal conditions. No off-roading like my stepdad & I did at Safari West (actually, a younger man saw him struggle with a hill and volunteered to push me around a bit) in 2009. Still, Daddy's 70. He gets to retire sometime. We should pet a redwood together in Muir Woods and do other fun stuff.

Blah

Jul. 30th, 2015 11:12 am
filkerdave: (Default)
[personal profile] filkerdave

I have a bad case of the donwannas today.

It's not even that bad a day at work and today's to-do list is entirely manageable.

I just have no motivation to do it (it's not stopping me, but my heart is definitely NOT in it today)

AKB and gender

Jul. 30th, 2015 12:56 am
fayanora: Steph laugh by ponyboy (Steph laugh)
[personal profile] fayanora
I just had a funny thought: An Ah'Koi Bahnis, new to Earth, doesn't really understand the concept of gender, keeps using the wrong pronouns. Gets frustrated at one frustrated human and goes "Well how do you expect me to know which you are? One guidebook says males have a grahbihn and females have a duen, but it is rude to ask. Another guidebook says it is more complicated than that, and some females have a grahbihn but no duen, and some men have a duen but no grahbihn. Fuck this, I'm just going to use 'djai' and 'djair' and you can all just get used to it."
ysabetwordsmith: Victor Frankenstein in his fancy clothes (Frankenstein)
[personal profile] ysabetwordsmith
Thanks to a donation from Anthony & Shirley Barrette, there are 12 new verses in "These Tiny Little Steps." Victor struggles with surrender; Kálmán tries to help.

Good News

Jul. 29th, 2015 11:17 pm
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
[personal profile] ysabetwordsmith
Good news includes all the things which make us happy or otherwise feel good.  It can be personal or public.  We never know when something wonderful will happen, and when it does, most people want to share it with someone.  It's disappointing when nobody is there to appreciate it. Happily, blogging allows us to share our joys and pat each other on the back.

What good news have you had recently?

Hot and muggy

Jul. 29th, 2015 10:49 pm
archangelbeth: An anthropomorphic feline face, with feathered wing ears, and glasses, in shades of gray. (Default)
[personal profile] archangelbeth
I have paid my logo designer for her work. *eyes the layout person thoughtfully* *will have to build up a little more in the bank*

MOM, IF I SEND YOU A CODE FOR THE DRAGONLINGS, WILL YOU ACTUALLY USE IT????

Havva Quote
Arcangel says "It's the difference between 59 cents and 30 or 35 cents, which is nothing to sneeze at. Unless you're Percy. For Percy, everything is to sneeze at."
Maya laughs. "The Kitten Pimpernel."
Arcangel giggles. "The Tabby Kittenel!"
Maya | They seek him here, they seek him there / Those Frenchies seek him everywhere! (a sneeze comes from behind the scenery, and the French guards on stage attempt to pretend they have not noticed)
Arcangel laughs! "Not to mention the constant snrkling."
Arcangel says "SNOORK, SNRUGL, SNNNNRRRRK."
Maya | "If only," Chauvelin said wistfully, "the Pimpernel had some convenient habit by which he could be identified."
Maya | Percy sneezed.
--From the MUSH, slightly condensed


INwatch+Bookwatch )


Dragons under fold )

The Hidden Character: Time

Jul. 29th, 2015 05:15 pm
dialecticdreamer: My work (Default)
[personal profile] dialecticdreamer
I have been thinking about time as a character in films and television.

Not a plot element, but an actual, metaphorical character.

In almost every movie, time either passes only vaguely (a happens, then b, et cetera, but very little is done to clarify how MUCH time has passed in between scene shifts). Even the “Highlander” franchise, which had a mix of immortal and average humans, barely touched upon the differences in attitude, all the while keeping 'modern' events only vaguely tied to a calendar. Flashbacks were both vague and generic, though the novels went to greater efforts for both variety and accuracy.

In some creations, like the movie “in Time” or the series “24,” time is a deadline, an element of plot where every second matters. It isn't the usual storytelling to have the passing of time integral to the story, as in “Same Time Next Year.”
Read more... )

Wage Gaps, Reconsidered

Jul. 29th, 2015 03:56 pm
elf: Pie chart with question mark (Pie Chart of Fail)
[personal profile] elf
One of the comments in The Thread (and that's how I'll be thinking of it for a while) mentioned the possibility of rethinking the wage gap: "how different they would look if the lowest paid workers (Latinas in this case) were $1.00 and everyone else was marked as overpaid."

Source: The Wage Gap, by Gender and Race
Find median annual earnings of black men and women, Hispanic* men and women, and white women as a percentage of white men's median annual earnings
Year: 2013
White men: 1.00
Black men: 0.751
Hispanic men: 0.672
White women: 0.78
Black women: 0.64
Hispanic women: 0.54

*Their word, not mine.

Rephrase:
Median annual earnings of white men and women, black men and women, and Hispanic men as a percentage of Hispanic women's median annual earnings:
Hispanic women: 1.00
Black women: 1.185
White women: 1.444
Hispanic men: 1.244
Black men: 1.391
White men: 1.852

The proper phrasing isn't "Latina women make just over half what white men make." It's "White men get paid almost double what Latina women get paid." Followed by, "What are they doing for your company that's worth 185% of the money you'd pay a Latina woman for the same job? Are your shareholders aware that you're paying white men more than you pay other demographics of employees--are they happy that you're wasting money like this? Especially considering that they're over-represented in the high-income tiers?"
solarbird: (korra-wha)
[personal profile] solarbird

I had already queued this post for today, back on Monday. Intel’s announcement on Tuesday – see previous post – made it even more appropriate.

♪ What do you do with a broken hard drive? ♪
♪ What do you do with a broken hard drive? ♪
♪ What do you do with a broken hard drive, ♪
♪ once it eats your data? ♪

Well, thanks to Boris L. on Facebook, I know know that you can turn it into a microphone. I don’t even know what to think about that. XD

Mirrored from Crime and the Blog of Evil. Come check out our music at:
Bandcamp (full album streaming) | Videos | iTunes | Amazon | CD Baby

solarbird: (korra-fruck-out)
[personal profile] solarbird

Intel have announced inventing a new type of memory technology, the first in decades. They claim it has 10 times the density of existing SSD memory; they are starting fabrication at 128Gb per dye. Intel’s press release says it is three orders of magnitude more durable as well, and three orders of magnitude faster.

This is a huge deal. With this, terabytes are the new K (or new M, if you prefer). But let’s leave that aside for the moment.

That speed means that this new RAM is faster than current system RAM, by about an order of magnitude. Which means there will no longer be an important difference between system RAM and long-term storage. The whole idea of long-term (disc: large, but slow) vs. short-term (RAM: fast, but small) storage becomes completely artificial. It’s all large, it’s all non-volatile (meaning stays when powered off), it’s all fast.

This changes everything about software development. If – and it is a huge if, like, this huge:

IF

…what they’re announcing is true, there hasn’t been a breakthrough like this in the field in decades. This isn’t “better USB drives.” This is a new universe.

I mean, what do you compare this to? The hard drive, maybe? It kind of undoes the hard drive as a separate device, but I don’t think that goes far enough. It resets so many basic ideas about software and hardware development that you may in fact have to go all the way to the very concept of interactive computing to get something bigger. (Interactive, as opposed to batch, where you submitted code and waited for printed output to see what happened.)


No, Really, It Actually Was Like This

And this is just the first generation. At 10 times current storage density, that’s a big skip ahead in Moore’s Law (doubling every two years? Nah, let’s double three times next year alone, instead), and is getting close to “all the storage you want forever.”

You’re also seeing a massive elimination of fragility. That has tremendous value in and of itself. People think of the internet as forever, but that’s not true – that’s only for things that enough people care about to store individually that the resulting redundancy makes up for the intrinsic fragility of previous computer storage systems. 1000 times more durable than existing SSD puts it far, far past the lifespans of magnetic media – it gets you into paper range.

I have archive drives. They are about to be utterly obsolete. The whole concept of ‘delete’ is now pointless, except organisationally.

This changes the way file systems are written. This changes the way processors are made. They’ve got a bus that can handle the RAM bandwidth internally, so presumably – hopefully! – that extends out to a motherboard system bus. Think about that. The first products are going to be PCIe storage expansion, but that’s just because PCIe is the fastest interface out there now. It’s far behind what this new memory type can deliver.

I mean, once you’re designing for this kind of storage, do CPU caches have a point anymore? I don’t even know. (And as an aside: VMs become hilarious. SURE HAVE SOME WHY NOT) If the RAM bus that will go with this is moving at the speed of the RAM – which is, again, faster than anything we have now – then the only savings in the end is raw distance and speed of electron travel. That’s certainly not zero, so may make it worthwhile. I don’t know.

In my head I’m seeing processors basically treating all of storage as on-chip cache, and doing it with as many processors as you want. Hell, do new types of processors optimised for this storage paradigm even need registers anymore? I imagine so, but it’s a question worth asking.

So, yeah. If they deliver, you can short Seagate, short Western Digital, short Hitachi – or, as Fishy said, “short Thailand.” In this environment, what even is magnetic media lol other than “It’s been fun, guys; you are now niche players.”

Test quantities this year to developers. Product next year. PREPARE FOR REBOOT!

Mirrored from Crime and the Blog of Evil. Come check out our music at:
Bandcamp (full album streaming) | Videos | iTunes | Amazon | CD Baby

Get a little closer, let fold.

Jul. 29th, 2015 06:30 am
naamah_darling: The right-side canines of a wolf's skull; the upper canine is made of gold. (Default)
[personal profile] naamah_darling
 Saw the doctor yesterday, had my foot X-rayed, they haven't gotten back to me yet (?!?) but it's irrelevant at this point.  I'm walking on it again, if not comfortably for long distances.  I also got a good look at the X-rays after they were taken, courtesy of the two kind techs who let me behind the barricade to see my lovely little foot-bones!  I saw nothing amiss in the slightest, although a hairline fracture might not have been apparent.

And, more importantly, we discussed my worsening -- or at least, not improving -- depression, and she raised my dose of Lamictal.

We talked a little.  I told her that I have been dealing with this for years, and that I'm good at it, and that I'm not feeling the urge to hurt myself, so for me to ask for help really is unusual, and she agreed.  She basically said "Yeah, that's really worrisome, since you're usually so on top of it.  You were absolutely right to come to me, I'm really glad you did.  Good call." 

Which made me feel like a strong person in a rough place, rather than a weak person.  And made me feel . . . I don't know.  Respected.  Valued on a personal level.  I really like her.  I like her so much.

It was exhausting, though.  Running around to get signed in to the hospital proper and get to the lab and get X-rayed and back to the parking lot in the thousand-degree heat.  Much much much thanks to Sargon who came along and helped me out.  I really appreciate it.

I felt a mess later and only realized belatedly that, despite being EXTREMELY excited to have radiation shot through my extremities, the environment had nevertheless jabbed me in a really nasty spot and I had to fight off a few stray gross feelings yesterday and today.  But I'm fine.  I am.

Took the first raised dose of Lamictal this morning.  Really hoping it works.  Really hoping it does as well this time as it did last time.  I felt so much better.  I hope it's the same this time.

Thank you guys.  For everything.  Please keep your fingers crossed for me, that this might make a difference and let me get back on top of everything.

Lyria speaks

Jul. 29th, 2015 01:40 am
fayanora: black (black)
[personal profile] fayanora
I was thinking about Voldemort earlier today, and about his ethics or lack thereof, because this one fanfic I'm reading has a version of him that is far more ethical than the canon one, and at one point I got to wondering what my character Lyria Spellspinner thought of Voldemort, and she popped up and answered me. This is her answer (I am giving her the reigns to type it now):

Voldemort is a fool. While I don't approve of killing children, and thus find it amusing that his attempt to kill an infant turned him into a powerless wraith, he made a fatal mistake in the fourth book, one which I believe might have been out of character for him, given other things we know about him. His mistake was letting Harry have his wand. Why did he not simply kill Harry while Harry was still tied up? Yes, he was supposedly repairing his reputation among his inner circle, but frankly, that was unnecessary. Someone whose name still inspires fear 13 years after his downfall and disappearance does not need to bolster his reputation.

Voldemort strikes me, in all the rest of the series, as being someone who does not hesitate to blast obstacles out of his way. He already knew he could not convert Harry, so why did he not kill Harry when the boy was helpless? Voldemort is arrogant to such a degree that he is unlikely to have been cautious with Harry before the wands connected during that scene.

It would be interesting to read a fan fiction AU where Voldemort did not hesitate to kill the prone Harry. Or hesitated just long enough to show his Death Eaters the act in person. Obviously, it would have caused him to pass out when he killed the horcrux inside Harry, but what beyond that? I suppose Dumbledore's plans might change, once he realized Harry was no longer a horcrux; Harry would no longer need to die, because it would have happened already. He would no longer have the connection into Voldemort's mind. Voldemort would still be wary of Harry, would still be obsessed. It would be interesting, to say the least.

Dream two of two

Jul. 29th, 2015 12:44 am
fayanora: Djyahlah (Djyahlah)
[personal profile] fayanora
The second dream I had last night was beautiful and haunting, and I wrote a poem about it:

“If Only”
By = Tempest Alexandria Arts

Last night, as I lay sleeping,
A dream came over me.
I, a man, dead,
From Heaven watched my wife,
As she lay dying.
Nothing I could do to help.

In one last feat of strength,
She stood, walked out into a massive field of grass,
In the dark of night, just the faintest glow from the moon,
As a simple yet haunting violin tune played,
She went for one last midnight stroll.
Across the vast and grassy ocean,
Up a hill grown steeper and steeper,
Climbing with unusual strength,
Grabbing roots and stones and weeds to pull herself up,
And came at last to a red wooden fence.

She climbed the fence, and looked beyond.
Her eyes fell upon the mansion on the hilltop,
Wonder in her eyes. Longing. Pain.
As though she'd seen Heaven itself.
Her goal achieved at last, she clutched her heart with grass-stained hands,
And fell backwards into the grass, to her death.

And as the mournful violin played,
Her eyes up towards the sky,
It felt like none of this would have happened,
Like both of us would be alive and well,
If the last house she saw had been ours.

~

I even remember the tune that the violin was playing, and recorded it on my phone.

Dream one of two

Jul. 29th, 2015 12:12 am
fayanora: Djao'Kain (Djao'Kain)
[personal profile] fayanora
Had a dream last night where this woman was hitting her transgender little girl, no older than 5. I stepped in and protected the crying child, grabbing the woman's arm. She began to cry, and it came to light that she thought being transgender was a choice, that she had to hit the girl to change her mind before it was “too late.” So I told her the truth: it's not a choice. That it was a feeling, from deep within your very soul, that the identity you'd been assigned was wrong, that she'd fought with those feelings for years, unable to understand them or articulate them until recently, and even now didn't have the words to articulate her feelings as clearly as I was articulating them now. I sensed the girl stop crying and nod, agreeing with my words.

And I thought that was just so powerful and true, I had to share it.

That MeFi Thing - Emotional Labor

Jul. 28th, 2015 10:09 pm
elf: Rainbow sparkly fairy (Rainbow Fairy)
[personal profile] elf
I am reading Where's My Cut: On Unpaid Emotional Labor on metafilter. I read the article at The Toast ("Housework is not work. Sex work is not work. Emotional work is not work. Why? Because they don’t take effort? No, because women are supposed to provide them uncompensated, out of the goodness of our hearts.") that inspired the thread, which is also good, but is a single article... the MeFi thread is over 250k words long, and it's AMAZING. Life-changing stuff in there.

I wish [livejournal.com profile] ozarque were around to see it. I think she would be overjoyed to read that discussion, to see the terminology women have come up with for the burdens they are expected to bear, to read their sharing of experiences and support of each others' pains.

I'm debating how to best throw the link at my husband... do I say "Read this; your future happiness depends on understanding this conversation?" (Mine does not depend on him reading it. But my willingness to do both the wage-earning and social management just dropped from "low" to "abysmal.") Do I say, "Read this; I'd like to talk with you about emotional labor... set aside time for that; you know my schedule?" Do I say, "found this awesome article about feminism and relationships and I'd like you to read it?" Do I throw in warnings--"please, don't bother regaling me with examples of the Awful Dudes You Are Not Like; I know you are not them; note how many of them I married?"

The conversation includes: inside because I cannot stop finding the awesome )
archangelbeth: Bleary-eyed young woman peers up, pillow obscuring the lower half of her face. Text reads: SO not a morning person. (So Not A Morning Person)
[personal profile] archangelbeth
In this case, the BANG as a hood got slammed down so they could get the backhoe out of the driveway. (The battery died, see...)

And then the phone rang for some reason or other. And, y'know. Stuff. -_-

Let me see if I can be useful after I finish this post.

...MOM, I SENT YOU THE CODES. CHECK YOUR EMAIL. I WILL HAVE TO SEND NEW CODES IF YOU DON'T GRAB THOSE EGGS BEFORE THEY HATCH!

Havva Quote Music
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6iMU1KQO-48

INwatch+Bookwatch )


Dragons under fold )

Posting quick

Jul. 28th, 2015 10:49 pm
catsittingstill: (Default)
[personal profile] catsittingstill
You know, I haven't posted in just about forever. And at some point I'll get back to what I was doing but for now I just want to observe that I am cutting and sanding wood strips (white pine) for a new project. I used a bandsaw to do the cutting, which worked...okay and now I'm using a conical sanding wheel (very shallow cone, but this lets you sand the edge of a board, or the side of a strip 1) smooth and flat and 2) to a desired width) to sand them all.

And let me tell you, there is an astonishing amount of sawdust involved. I'm only about half done and I have completely filled a shopvac vacuum bag. When I quit work today I was sawdust to the elbows; I had safety glasses over my glasses and my glasses were still hazed with sawdust. I had sawdust dusted on my hair and caked in the sweat on my neck. I vacuumed myself off and then went outside and brushed myself off with the little brush for the dust pan and I still made Kip cough when I walked through the kitchen.

Hopefully I can finish up the sanding by Thursday.
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
[personal profile] ysabetwordsmith
Thanks to a donation from Anthony & Shirley Barrette, "The Injury That Provokes It" is now complete.  Find out some of the natural consequences  that come from Andy being a dick.
fayanora: Elle Fanning by LJ user bitemeee (Elle Fanning)
[personal profile] fayanora
Had a dream last night I found $41 cash on the ground, bunch of lost jewelry, an expensive wrist watch, & foreign currency.

Native American Superheroes

Jul. 28th, 2015 05:33 pm
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
[personal profile] ysabetwordsmith
Marvel is picking up Red Wolf again.  It's representation, but far from ideal.  I've listed my Native American superheroes here.

What Happens Next: Living Lasers?

Jul. 28th, 2015 03:12 pm
dialecticdreamer: My work (Default)
[personal profile] dialecticdreamer
When I think about the next twenty years of technology, I have learned the hard way to look not at big changes like space exploration, new power sources, or seismological shifts in work force. Instead, the most obvious changes happen both on the smallest elements of society, and at the fringes of it.

Instead of thinking about an entirely new computer architecture slowly overturning the existing systems, shoving them into a great landfill of relentless obsolescence, think about the smallest, portable memory devices in various formats, some of which contain both more storage and much faster access than the system the portable is plugged into.
Read more... )
thnidu: my familiar. "Beanie Baby" -type dragon, red with white wings (Default)
[personal profile] thnidu
from arstechnica.com

Filmmakers fighting “Happy Birthday” copyright find their “smoking gun”
A 1927 kids' songbook proves "conclusively the song is in the public domain."

It's been two years since filmmakers making a documentary about the song "Happy Birthday" filed a lawsuit claiming that the song shouldn't be under copyright. Now, they have filed (PDF) what they say is "proverbial smoking-gun evidence" that should cause the judge to rule in their favor.

The "smoking gun" is a 1927 version of the "Happy Birthday" lyrics, predating Warner/Chappell's 1935 copyright by eight years. That 1927 songbook, along with other versions located through the plaintiffs' investigations, "conclusively prove that any copyright that may have existed for the song itself... expired decades ago."

If the filmmakers' lawyers are right, it could mean a quick route to victory in a lawsuit that's been both slow-moving and closely watched by copyright reform advocates. Warner/Chappell has built a licensing empire based on "Happy Birthday," which in 1996 was pulling in more than $2 million per year.

Plaintiff Jennifer Nelson's movie is actually called Happy Birthday, and it's about the song. She had to pay Warner/Chappell $1,500 to use the song in her movie, and that didn't sit well with the documentarian. She's seeking to get that money back and also represent a class of plaintiffs who have paid similar licensing fees to Warner/Chappell on a copyright she and her lawyers say is illegitimate.

The 1927 songbook referenced above was found in a batch of 500 documents provided by Warner/Chappell earlier this month. That cache included "approximately 200 pages of documents [Warner/Chappell] claim were 'mistakenly' not produced during discovery, which ended on July 11, 2014, more than one year earlier," Nelson's lawyers write.

The new filing comes as US District Judge George King was just two days away from holding a hearing about whether or not songwriter Patty Hill abandoned her rights to the lyrics. The plaintiffs say that the newly discovered songbook evidence is so strong that the copyright abandonment issue is moot.
 
click headline for full story




Tech Level 8

Jul. 28th, 2015 11:53 am
gridlore: The Imperial Sunburst from the Traveller role-playing game (Gaming - Sunburst)
[personal profile] gridlore

I now own an iPhone 5. Gifted to me by Kirsten​'s coworkers, who cobbled together two phones to make this one. I've been playing with it.

Yes, I'm a generation behind the current standard. I don't care. I am not a power user. I do not need to the latest and greatest. But I am impressed.

Video quality is excellent. The camera has features that mean I'm going to need to charge it at Burning Man, like panoramic photos. Tons of memory. I have Siri, and she doesn't do pod bay doors. (First thing I asked.) All my apps work again, and I'm able to add more as needed.

My main needs are being able to contact people when I'm out, mapping/driver help, social media, and some games. One of the big things is using Swarm to mark where I've been. There is a non-zero chance that I could suffer another stroke or other event, and leaving a trail of breadcrumbs is extremely important. If we somehow get the money for a new truck, I'm getting a F-150 with Fleet Management so Kiri can track me as I drive. 

But as I look at the App Store I'm seeing there is very little my phone can't do. Really, it rivals my old desktop in many ways. I could dictate a story, edit it, post it to friends for commentary, convert it to .pdf, submit it, and manage the incoming payment. Then ask Siri to find me the nearest burrito place to celebrate. All from my phone. Pretty amazing.

Which brings me to Traveller and the dangers of predicting technology. One of the items available in the original edition of the game (1977) was the HandComp. A device with the power of a basic starship computer but portable (good thing, since starship computers weighed several tons and could run two or three programs at a time. Vacuum tubes and card readers?) In early illustrations the HandComp was shown as being this bulky thing strapped to a forearm.

Now I have more computing power in a device that can literally fit in my wallet.

Predicting the future is tricky. Although Douglas Adams nailed Wikipedia in The Hitchhikers' Guide to the Galaxy

introduction to the business meeting

Jul. 28th, 2015 10:37 am
solarbird: (Lecturing)
[personal profile] solarbird

For all those who are considering going to the World Science Fiction Society Business Meeting (as I suggested might be necessary regarding the Hugo awards), Kevin Standlee has produced this ten minute video on business meeting procedures. It is dry, as such things tend to be, but please do give it your time. This is how the meeting is run, full stop, and you need to know.

There is far more sitting than I am comfortable with doing. Such is life. I didn’t know about that, so really, if you’re going to the meeting, watch the video.

Mirrored from Crime and the Blog of Evil. Come check out our music at:
Bandcamp (full album streaming) | Videos | iTunes | Amazon | CD Baby

a history of recording through 1950

Jul. 28th, 2015 09:30 am
solarbird: (korra-on-the-air)
[personal profile] solarbird

Courtesy the AHRC Research Centre for the History and Analysis of Recorded Music, enjoy a lovely history of recording through 1950. Lots of sample recordings you can listen to, including essentially-hifi recordings made live on 78s towards the end of that technology cycle. (Did you know a 78rpm live-recording shellac disc could record 14khz tones? Neither did I. That’s about where FM radio tops out, for comparison purposes. SURPRISE)

There are a couple of illustrative mp3s showing the difference between purely-mechanical recording and “electronic” recording – the move from acoustic horns to microphones, basically. Still no tape or ability to edit; throughout this entire era it’s still horns-or-live-mics-to-etched-master-disc. But the appearance of electric microphones in 1924 changed everything, and to be able to hear it on from-the-era recordings is just amazing.

(And if you’re seeing this on Livejournal or Dreamwidth, the Korra icon I’m using with this post is basically one of the kinds of microphones they’d’ve been using in the early electric recordings, preserved here. Cool. huh?)

Mirrored from Crime and the Blog of Evil. Come check out our music at:
Bandcamp (full album streaming) | Videos | iTunes | Amazon | CD Baby

yakkity max

Jul. 28th, 2015 08:30 am
solarbird: (korra-excited)
[personal profile] solarbird

This is genius. No, really, this is genius. Hit play.

Courtesy Kathryn T. on Facebook. :D

Mirrored from Crime and the Blog of Evil. Come check out our music at:
Bandcamp (full album streaming) | Videos | iTunes | Amazon | CD Baby

Online music, paying for same

Jul. 28th, 2015 10:08 am
filkerdave: (Default)
[personal profile] filkerdave

In lieu of real content.

There's been a bit of discussion about new models of music and paying and how are the artists supposed to make a living and I've spoken a bit about how I do it. Noting that I'm pretty fortunate in that I have a reasonably well-paying job and disposable income and noting further that I know a fair number of musicians.

The first thing to know about me and music is that I have pretty wide-ranging tastes that seem to have expanded as I've gotten older. The only three genres of music are music I like, music I don't like, and music I haven't heard yet. These are pretty fluid genres and it's possible for things to move between the first two categories (for example, I've never been a big fan of rap or hip-hop in the past, but last week saw me listening to an awful lot of Die Antwoord, Run-D.M.C., and Beastie Boys.

Another thing to know about me is that I'm always on the lookout for music that I might not otherwise know about (why, yes, this IS an invitation to tell me about music I might not know about). The majority of my day-to-day listening is indie/alternative (which is a silly name for a genre, since it's pretty mainstream the past 20 years).

The usual channels for finding music that I don't know are either by recommendation (that's how I ended up listening to both The Airborne Toxic Event and The Naked and Famous within the past year), Katzenjammer a year or two before that. Radio, which used to be a big part of my listening, has gotten smaller. That's mainly because the New York metro area radio market is so dire; the rock stations are playing roughly the same things they were when I was a student and there's really only so many times you can hear the same 3 Led Zeppelin songs. One exception was on a drive down from upstate New York -- snowboarding at Hunter and a visit to my cousin -- when I was listening and heard Courtney Barnett's Pedestrian at Best. Great song, great album. Otherwise, here's how it goes:


  1. Listen to Indie Pop Rocks! on SomaFM. I'll hear a lot of bands and songs that I don't know and I'll probably like a lot of them. I note the ones I really like in a spreadsheet to check out further. I'm a regular donor to SomaFM because I want to keep them on the air.

  2. Check out the songs/bands from my spreadsheet on Spotify to see what I think of their work. I have a Spotify Premium account so I have unlimited commercial-free listening. There's also a "related artists" feature, which

  3. Anything I like well enough for repeated listening gets bought. This is probably the most important bit, because I think that's where the artists get the most money (and if you can buy directly from the artist, do so!)


Basically, I'm paying for any song I like 3 times, but it's worth it to me because I want to support both the infrastructure and the artists. It's to my benefit to make sure that both the music and distribution channels are available.

And there you go, my philosophy of paying for music.

Poem: "Hearing What Isn't Said"

Jul. 28th, 2015 12:13 am
ysabetwordsmith: Damask smiling over their shoulder (polychrome)
[personal profile] ysabetwordsmith
This poem came out of the July 21, 2015 Poetry Fishbowl. It was inspired by prompts from [personal profile] natasiakith, [personal profile] zeeth_kyrah, and Shirley Barrette. It also fills the "make new friends" square of my 5-20-15 card for the Wellness Toolbox Bingo fest. This poem has been sponsored by Anthony & Shirley Barrette. It belongs to the Polychrome Heroics series, and is a sequel to "Coloring In."

Warning: This poem contains some touchy material. Highlight to read the detailed warnings, some of which are spoilers. It mentions uncontrolled use of a superpower, physical stress deriving from superpower overstrain, having to depend on a total stranger for help, nonsexual intimacy during a minor crisis, aftereffects of past head trauma, graphic description of disability coping skills, a close look at how superpowers can screw up your life, teen angst, and other sensitive material. But mostly it's a very positive look at Ansel being awesome again. If these are concerns for you, please consider your headspace before reading onward.

Read more... )

Today, headache.

Jul. 28th, 2015 12:45 am
archangelbeth: Bleach's Captain Byakuya, three-quarters view. Captioned: sigh (Sigh)
[personal profile] archangelbeth
Tomorrow, productivity? I can hope.

Kid is doing a photography camp thing. Hopefully it will not be too brutally hot...

When it cooled off and we went walking up to the playground, a bunch of parents, kids, and dogs were there. While chatting was nice, I am an introvert, so my spoons were pretty well burned from it. -_-

Still hate Vaadwaur, but I spent a talent point... er, specialization point? Ahem. Anyway, I spent a couple points in doing more damage when I'm behind another ship. This has meant that I have developed a tactic of sticking like glue behind an enemy ship and blowing its butt off. Interestingly, I think that the teleport-mines-all-around-you schtick that the Vaadwaur do may have a minimum range of a few km, because when I was sticking like glue, I wasn't actually getting the mines. Just the occasional Tricobalt Device hitting my nose before I can do anything about it, but hey, that's why I have two Engineers on duty, right?

Some Vaadwaur seem to drop normal mines, which sucks.

PS: Unattended racetracks in a mostly-abandoned system are a trap. A very obvious trap. It is, indeed, a trap. The Hierarchy is full of idiots who, collectively, have an IQ only barely above the average temperature of space in Kelvins.

Still planning to assimilate the Dark Side and Force-choke a lot of idiots. Already dress mostly in black anyway and have extensive cyborging. Borg Queen of the Sith has a nice ring to it.

Havva Quote
Mysterious notes like these are on the floor of every room. Evidently it's some kind of mystic communication between contractor and sheetrock crew.
--http://www.enslin.com/rae/house/sheetrock.html



INwatch+Bookwatch )


Dragons under fold )

Molly is worthy?

Jul. 27th, 2015 08:32 pm
fayanora: disguised as an adult (disguised as an adult)
[personal profile] fayanora
So Brooke and I are watching Thor, and Thor's hammer has crashed to the desert and is immovable even by trucks. Brooke sees this and comments, giving us this lovely image: Molly Elizabeth, in her own body and thus looking like an actual 7 year old blonde girl, coming up to all these people trying to pick up the thing, cheerfully asking "Whatcha doin?"
"Trying to pick up this hammer."
"Oh, you mean like this?" she says, picking it up like it's nothing.

The looks on their faces would be priceless. :-D
annathepiper: (A Star Shines)
[personal profile] annathepiper

So I’ve started re-reading The Lord of the Rings. I’m not going to do a multi-lingual read of it, not quite yet–mostly because I’m still doing Harry Potter and I’m not going to do two multi-lingual rereads at once. But I think I will document thoughts as I have them. Mostly because I always did love the LoTR reread posts on Tor.com, and because as y’all know, I am a massive Tolkien geek. And my thoughts on Tolkien, they are plentiful!

And I’ve got quite a few thoughts right out of the gate, already. For purposes of this read, I’m using a single-volume ebook edition–basically, the ebook release of the single-volume print edition I have. Because that thing is a great big honking brick of a book, far too large for me to comfortably carry on my regular work commutes. It’s therefore much more amenable to me to do this read-through in electronic form.

Also notably, for anyone who might be considering grabbing digital versions of the trilogy: buying the single-volume ebook edition is significantly cheaper than buying the three individual ebooks. On Kobo’s site, that amounted to paying sixteen bucks for the single omnibus edition, vs. paying twelve each for Fellowship, Two Towers, and Return of the King. I normally don’t care for omnibus ebooks, and would in fact prefer to have the individual books as separate files. But in this case, the price difference was significant enough that it actually mattered.

And now, into the prologue itself. Right out of the gate, my first thought is: wow, modern authors would have this prologue totally shot down by their editors. I say this as an author who in fact had the original prologue for what later became Valor of the Healer shot down (and which interested parties can read here)–a prologue which in fact was a pretty decent amount of action, as opposed to what Tolkien gives us here. I.e., a ginormous infodump of the history of the hobbits, and a recap of how Bilbo got the Ring.

If you’re the sort of reader who expects instant action in the very first paragraph, you won’t like this prologue. But for me, as a lifelong Tolkien geek, it starts setting the stage by introducing us to the hobbits and stressing the importance of the Ring.

Modern writers would, I feel, be encouraged to work this data into the actual flow of the action, seamlessly. There’s a strong argument to be made for that, since certainly, modern tastes slant away from hitting your readers in the face with an infodump first thing. Which is in fact the important point here. There’s a difference between hitting your readers in the face with your infodump, and presenting it to them in such a way that it feels like a natural way to set the stage. For me, Tolkien pulls this off. It’d take a writer in solid command of his or her craft to do something similar in today’s publishing environment, and achieving that level of mastery is not easy. So I can’t exactly fault modern editors from encouraging their writers to not do this.

All that said, there’s such a wealth of detail here that as long as you know what to expect, it’s still delightful. I’d forgotten the description of the original three strains of Hobbits, and how they migrated into what eventually became the Shire. I’d also forgotten that they were in fact the inventors of smoking pipeweed, and that Merry’s on record as documenting a lot of that.

But what really just made me LOL as I re-read this prologue is this description of the discrepancy between the original release of The Hobbit, and later editions that Tolkien retconned to tie in better to The Lord of the Rings:

Now it is a curious fact that this is not the story as Bilbo first told it to his companions. […] This account Bilbo set down in his memoirs, and he seems never to have altered it himself, not even after the Council of Elrond. Evidently it still appeared in the original Red Book, as it did in several of the copies and abstracts. But many copies contain the true account (as an alternative), derived no doubt from notes by Frodo or Samwise, both of whom learned the truth, though they seem to have been unwilling to delete anything actually written by the old hobbit himself.

That, right there, is Tolkien himself handing Peter Jackson, on a silver platter, an in-universe excuse for why the Hobbit movies tell so much more than what the actual book does. Dara and I had decided ages ago that the book was very clearly Bilbo’s version of the story, and that the movies were aiming more for “what actually happened”. But I’d honestly forgotten that Tolkien himself laid this down in his own words.

It’s also highly interesting to me that this prologue calls out how Gandalf was having none of Bilbo’s bullshit in this regard:

Gandalf, however, disbelieved Bilbo’s first story, as soon as he heard it, and he continued to be very curious about the ring. Eventually he got the true tale out of Bilbo after much questioning, which for a while strained their friendship; but the wizard seemed to think the truth important.

Speaking as someone who has just re-watched the end of The Battle of the Five Armies, I think it’s very clear that we see Gandalf not buying Bilbo’s bullshit right there on camera.

If I were to change anything at all about this Prologue, it would be to move the final section, “Note on the Shire Records”, somewhere earlier. The final sentence of the “Of the Finding of the Ring” section is this: “At this point this History begins.”

Which would have been an awesome segue right into Chapter 1. And I think I’ll let that be the segue to my next post!

Mirrored from angelahighland.com.

Slave Ships in Action

Jul. 27th, 2015 02:26 pm
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
[personal profile] ysabetwordsmith
See an animated map of the slave trade.  If you pause the animation, you can click on any ship for details.

Around 2 million Africans died on the slave ships alone, and more before and after that.  Never forget.
solarbird: (molly-braceforimpact)
[personal profile] solarbird

Almost every Android phone can be p0wned by sending it a text. Many of them can be p0wned completely silently, and in most cases, you don’t have to interact with it – as soon as you look at the text, your phone is theirs.

This goes back to Android 2.2, inclusive. It’s a whole set of disastrous security holes, all in one platform. That whole Windows thing I posted about earlier is nothing compared to this. Nothing. This is an unmitigated disaster.

I mean, I’m looking at this from a security environment and just… how do you even fix this? Aside from the fact – fact – that Android phone manufacturers are absolutely infamous for never rolling out OS updates, much less security updates, the sheer number of pending p0wned devices – around one billion – kind of boggles the mind.

The only good thing about it is that battery lives and screen breakage will retire most of these devices sometime over the next three years. That’s how long this will echo around, because we can reasonably well assume the patch rate will be negligible.

Mirrored from Crime and the Blog of Evil. Come check out our music at:
Bandcamp (full album streaming) | Videos | iTunes | Amazon | CD Baby

solarbird: (sulu_oh_my)
[personal profile] solarbird

VICE has an article up about the long-missing Roger Corman-produced Fantastic Four film from 1992, including the actual film. It’s ripped from a bootleg VHS copy which may be the only one left, as the negative – reportedly – was burned. Get to it before a DMCA notice is served.

I have to tell you, particularly for a film so legendarily bad, it’s not really that bad. At least, not the first 20 minutes or so I’ve watched. Don’t get me wrong, it’s not a good movie – seriously, it’s not – but I’ve seen way worse, and I’ve seen way worse in theatres. Also, the effects are fairly terrible, but it was produced for about a nickel, so what do you expect with that budget in 1994?

Mirrored from Crime and the Blog of Evil. Come check out our music at:
Bandcamp (full album streaming) | Videos | iTunes | Amazon | CD Baby

dialecticdreamer: My work (Default)
[personal profile] dialecticdreamer
::Pay Special Attention- This conversation compares Xavier's behavior to the dynamics in abusive relationships and specific grooming behaviors for sexual predators in a general discussion.::



”I'm afraid, like you, my reading speed has reached the point where I can't turn the pages fast enough, Beast. I prefer to sit here and read the minds of favorite writers as they type. You'd be surprised at how many good ideas never make it to the printed page.”

Today, we tackle the second sentence in the above quote. To wit: Charles Xavier pokes around, psychically spying on “favorite” writers and then simply eavesdrops on their writing, and justifies said behavior because turning pages is problematic.

I think my BS meter just started to cry.
Read more... )

oh for the love of

Jul. 27th, 2015 08:30 am
solarbird: (shego-rule?-you?)
[personal profile] solarbird

So, yeah, Windows 10, looking pretty decent, has some issues, but Cortana looks pretty fun and I’ll want to try that, and there’s games testing about to happen that will be relevant, but whatever.

And then I see this.

What the hell, Microsoft? What the hell. Even if – okay, I’m sure this is true – corporate machines can or will have this turned off by default by administrators, this is still a mind-bogglingly bad decision. Even laying aside the whole ‘people don’t want to automatically share their home network passwords to EVERYONE THEY’VE EVER MET EVER’ thing, people use personal machines at work.

I’d add commentary about people using phones at work too, but then I remembered it’s Windows Phone, so nevermind. But the laptop thing? Oh yeah.

Mirrored from Crime and the Blog of Evil. Come check out our music at:
Bandcamp (full album streaming) | Videos | iTunes | Amazon | CD Baby

New Fairy Trick

Jul. 27th, 2015 04:48 am
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
[personal profile] ysabetwordsmith
Today I was making spaghetti sauce and it needed molasses.  I took the molasses out of the cabinet, went to the crockpot -- and found myself holding a jar of ginger paste.

The little fuckers had taken the molasses OUT OF MY HAND and REPLACED IT with something else.  What the actual fuck.
Two minutes of me threatening dire retribution later, they put the molasses back ... on the kitchen bar.  Uh huh.  Yeah thanks. My life was somehow not weird enough already.

Poem: "Coloring In"

Jul. 27th, 2015 01:44 am
ysabetwordsmith: Damask smiling over their shoulder (polychrome)
[personal profile] ysabetwordsmith
This poem is from the July 21, 2015 Poetry Fishbowl. It was inspired by a prompt from Shirley Barrette. It also fills the "primary colors" square in my 6-10-15 card for the [community profile] genprompt_bingo fest, and it fills the "Asked to give public safety lecture -- right after incident" square in my Superhero Bingo Card. This poem has been sponsored by Anthony & Shirley Barrette. It belongs to the series Polychrome Heroics.

WARNING: This poem touches on some sensitive topics. Highlight to read the detailed warnings, some of which are spoilers. It features bullying, vile language, discrimination against assorted groups, willing and unwilling changes in hair color, nonsexual intimacies, navigation through shifting identity, boundary issues, violation of body autonomy, canon-typical violence, emotional stress, and other challenges. On the whole, though, there's more fluff than angst, and it ends on a high note. If this is touchy territory for you, consider your headspace before clicking through.

Read more... )
annathepiper: (Good Book)
[personal profile] annathepiper
The Children of Hurin

The Children of Hurin

Picked up from Kobo recently:

  • Please Do Not Taunt the Octopus, by Mira Grant. Because, well, duh, Mira Grant. This is the latest novella in the Newsflesh universe, and as I have in fact already plowed through it, I can attest that it was delightful. It clues us in on the fate of two particular notable characters following the conclusion of the main trilogy, and it does not disappoint. And there is in fact an octopus.
  • The Lord of the Rings, The Children of Húrin, Unfinished Tales of Númenor and Middle-Earth, and The Silmarillion, all of course by J.R.R. Tolkien. Picking all these up in ebook form on the general grounds that I’ve just finally finished re-watching The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies, and it’s kindled in me a MIGHTY NEED to re-read LoTR. And since my print copy of the trilogy is a single-volume huge honking brick of a book, it’s a bit much to carry to work and back with me. So onto the ereaders it goes! And while I’m at it, I snarfed up the others since UNDER NO CIRCUMSTANCES am I taking my beautiful hardback of Children of Hurin out of the house, and my paperback of The Silmarillion is pretty ragged! And I need to re-read Unfinished Tales, too!

This puts me at 45 for the year.

Mirrored from angelahighland.com.

archangelbeth: Liberated Borg Romulan (Ten of Thirty)
[personal profile] archangelbeth
Ground through Kobali and was rewarded with a purple Duty Officer who, when "equipped," allows more damage to be done to Vaadwaur in ground combat. To which I say, GOOD. Because I hate Vaadwaur with an unholy PASSION. My little Borglet is full of hatred and wrath towards most of the Delta Quadrant. Hatred leads to the Dark Side? She will ****ing ASSIMILATE the Dark Side!

(Yes, I love that quote. It symbolizes how much she is a burning ball of detestation for the place.)

...Okay, the Collective of Liberated Borg, she does not hate, though poking them with a stick is sometimes required. She kind of likes them.

And she is faintly nonplussed and amused by space hobbits. Er, Talaxians. And does not approve of people gunning them down just to make other people angry. If the idiot had listened, she could've informed him that, why, YES, she DOES know what it's like to have your people nearly exterminated. Like, gee, lost two planets -- a kind of academic matter to her -- and had her colony wiped out. HELLO, YOU ARE NOT THE ONLY PERSON TO SUFFER AND HATE, MR. GAUL. But noooooo, he wants to make a statement.

Fine. She's no Vulcan. Gunning down rabid dogs is a greater good for the galaxy no matter whether you do it with or without hate.

Besides, they keep throwing mines all around her in combat and she is sick and tired of having to deal with that crap. The sooner that species is exterminated -- or brought to heel -- the better. @_-

(Some of the cinematics are amusing -- including the one at the very end of the Kobali planet chain -- and my ears are just frickin' ADORABLE.)


Havva Quote
4. According to A Scandal in Bohemia, Irene Adler was a coloratura soprano, and none of these are coloratura roles. Someone - Conan Doyle, Dr Watson, Sherlock Holmes, Colonel Moran, Professor Moriarty, me - is mistaken, or fibbing.
--http://www.bbc.co.uk/cult/sherlock/shamblesinbelgravia1.shtml


INwatch+Bookwatch )


Dragons under fold )

Fucking piss.

Jul. 26th, 2015 10:37 pm
naamah_darling: The right-side canines of a wolf's skull; the upper canine is made of gold. (Default)
[personal profile] naamah_darling
I twisted my foot and I think it's sprained.

FUCK THIS SHIT.

It's not that bad pain-wise but I still can't put weight on it.

I SEE THE DOCTOR TOMORROW THOUGH.  Like, I got teared-up with relief a few minutes ago.  She won't be able to magically fix it, but still.

I've got a compression thing on it and am elevating and icing and all that.

Just.

Can this fucking year just . . . stop?  This isn't even that bad, I'm just so done with all this shit.
ysabetwordsmith: Damask smiling over their shoulder (polychrome)
[personal profile] ysabetwordsmith
This poem is spillover from the July 21, 2015 Poetry Fishbowl. It was inspired by prompts from LJ user Ng_moonmoth, [personal profile] ellenmillion, and [community profile] origfic_bingo fest. This poem has been sponsored by Ng_moonmoth. It belongs to the series Polychrome Heroics.

Warning: This poem contains canon-typical violence, hostile language, boundary violations, and other minor mayhem. No supervillains or would-be heroes were seriously injured in the making of this poem.

Read more... )
dialecticdreamer: My work (Default)
[personal profile] dialecticdreamer
First, I feel I have to say that there are SO many characterizations of Professor X, that it's probably easy to make any argument for motivation and behavior using that one character as an example. Many things remain consistent, but the devil is, as they say, in the details.

The quote from the movie about completely changing Wolverine's body image of himself, including his gender identity and age, has come up more than once over the last year. (Mostly, because I find the behavior utterly deplorable, and will never quit saying that.)

But there's a significantly WORSE example, which makes me wonder how Professor X could be any kind of role model, especially for schoolchildren. That they live in a boarding school makes the situation even more disturbing.

In the “Ultimate X-Men,” issue number one, Hank McCoy is a young man at loose ends, implied to be homeless. Storm was rescued from jail after she stole a car, with no control of her powers. Together, they are “rescued,” and shown into Charles' library in the mansion, revealing a room which has not a single book in it.

Charles is in an average wheelchair, with no visible special modifications, sitting near the blazing fireplace. When Hank asks if it can still be called a library if there are no books in it, Charles replies:

I'm afraid, like you, my reading speed has reached the point where I can't turn the pages fast enough, Beast. I prefer to sit here and read the minds of favorite writers as they type. You'd be surprised at how many good ideas never make it to the printed page.

Say WHAT?
Read more... )

Oliver Sacks's periodic table

Jul. 26th, 2015 10:24 pm
thnidu: ankh (ankh)
[personal profile] thnidu
Sent to me by my friend John D. From the New York Times

Oliver Sacks: My Periodic Table

By OLIVER SACKS JULY 24, 2015
 
I LOOK forward eagerly, almost greedily, to the weekly arrival of journals like Nature and Science, and turn at once to articles on the physical sciences — not, as perhaps I should, to articles on biology and medicine. It was the physical sciences that provided my first enchantment as a boy.
 
In a recent issue of Nature, there was a thrilling article by the Nobel Prize-winning physicist Frank Wilczek on a new way of calculating the slightly different masses of neutrons and protons. The new calculation confirms that neutrons are very slightly heavier than protons — the ratio of their masses being 939.56563 to 938.27231 — a trivial difference, one might think, but if it were otherwise the universe as we know it could never have developed. The ability to calculate this, Dr. Wilczek wrote, “encourages us to predict a future in which nuclear physics reaches the level of precision and versatility that atomic physics has already achieved” — a revolution that, alas, I will never see.
 
Francis Crick was convinced that “the hard problem” — understanding how the brain gives rise to consciousness — would be solved by 2030. “You will see it,” he often said to my neuroscientist friend Ralph, “and you may, too, Oliver, if you live to my age.” Crick lived to his late 80s, working and thinking about consciousness till the last. Ralph died prematurely, at age 52, and now I am terminally ill, at the age of 82. I have to say that I am not too exercised by “the hard problem” of consciousness — indeed, I do not see it as a problem at all; but I am sad that I will not see the new nuclear physics that Dr. Wilczek envisages, nor a thousand other breakthroughs in the physical and biological sciences.
 
A few weeks ago, in the country, far from the lights of the city, I saw the entire sky “powdered with stars” (in Milton’s words); such a sky, I imagined, could be seen only on high, dry plateaus like that of Atacama in Chile (where some of the world’s most powerful telescopes are). It was this celestial splendor that suddenly made me realize how little time, how little life, I had left. My sense of the heavens’ beauty, of eternity, was inseparably mixed for me with a sense of transience — and death.
 
 
Read more... )

Poem: "Habitat Foreclosure"

Jul. 26th, 2015 09:29 pm
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
[personal profile] ysabetwordsmith
This poem is from the July 7, 2015 Poetry Fishbowl. It was inspired by a prompt from [personal profile] thnidu. It has been sponsored by LJ user Ng_moonmoth.


"Habitat Foreclosure"
-- a vembletroon


Nincompoops in power cannot do the math of water shortages:
It's farms and factories at fault, not homes.
Take this to the bank: habitat foreclosure is at hand, aquifers running dry, glaciers absent without leave, and doom gathering in every empty lake.
Fracked! Cracked! Thanks to this, the water that remains is no longer potable.
Idiots.


* * *

Notes:

"Habitat foreclosure" is a phrase I coined some years ago to describe situations where environmental changes make an area unsuited for human residence. This is happening in parts of China, Russia, Africa, etc. where settlements are being abandoned due to drought, dust storms, and other problems which have exceeded feasible coping strategies.

Read about the vembletroon form.

The West Coast drought is behind the water shortages, but the highest demand is not from individual use but from industrial and agricultural uses.  Therefore the problem cannot be solved by individuals or cutting municipal supplies.  

Most Popular Tags

Style Credit

Page generated Jul. 31st, 2015 01:01 am
Powered by Dreamwidth Studios