(no subject)

Apr. 25th, 2017 10:42 am
nestra: (Default)
[personal profile] nestra
Why There Are No More Miracles
by Hal Sirowitz

God would perform miracles in the old days,
Father said, but nowadays if he set a bush
on fire, like he did for Moses, the fire department
would rush to put it out. The newspapers
would send our photographers. There’d be
an investigation. A reward would be given
to help find the arsonist. Some innocent person
would get blamed. God has enough people
believing in him. Why does He need
all that commotion for the sake of a few more?


"Why There Are No More Miracles" by Hal Sirowitz from Father Said. © Soft Skull Press, 2004.
gramarye1971: Mikoto Misaka from To Aru Kagaku no Railgun (Railgun: Biri-biri)
[personal profile] gramarye1971
Reblog if it's okay for your followers to leave you a comment telling you what the one thing is they remember you for as a writer. Is it a scene or a detail or a specific line? Is it something like style or characterization? Is it that one weird kink they never thought they’d be into, but oh my god wow self-discovery time?

I mean, unless my particular history obsessions also turn your crank, I doubt the last one applies, but who am I to kink-shame? *doubles down on the hot steamy neofunctionalist European Union fanfiction action for the people in the back*

(Anon comments are fine, if you don't want to fly your kink flag so publicly. ^_^)

Fandom Snowflake Day 11

Apr. 24th, 2017 09:16 pm
wendelah1: Fox Mulder reading (reading is fundamental)
[personal profile] wendelah1
In most of the fandoms where I've actively participated, my interests are a bit...off center. For example, I don't ship pairings except in rare cases. I don't very often enjoy reading or looking at explicit material but I'm not exactly a gen person. This means I have to look a little harder to find fanworks I enjoy (or create them myself...). But every now and again, I find creators who are my perfect match. It's almost as though they are seeing the world through my eyes: they view the characters just the way I do, their head canons are my head canons. I still remember vividly the excitement I felt the first time that it happened. It was magical.

Day 11
In your own space, talk about a creator. Show us why you think they are amazing. Leave a comment in this post saying you did it. Include a link to your post if you feel comfortable doing so.


I love many fanfic writers but upon careful refection, I don't see how I can choose anyone but Kel. Read more... )

Happy reading.
umadoshi: (kittens - Jinksy - looking up)
[personal profile] umadoshi
Tomorrow I head to the office and I'm already behind on emails and comment replies. o_o At least I got a decent chunk of work done today, and spent the latter half of the evening curled up with The Obelisk Gate and Jinksy.

In lieu of a real post, linkspam.

Fannish/Geeky Things

I've yet to read or see any of The Expanse, but for those who have, [dreamwidth.org profile] kayim just launched [dreamwidth.org profile] rocinante.

Fox is bringing us another round of The X-Files (ten episodes this time). I... I don't think I can do this again. I'll keep an ear out and see what those who do watch it think, and I'm willing to be pleasantly surprised, but after how appallingly awful last year's new eps. were, I doubt I'll be touching this without some strong recommendations.

From that link, I skimmed through "Fall TV pilots 2017: The full list". Let's see. I assume I'll give Inhumans a try (barring Iron Fist levels of nearly everyone recoiling in horror as soon as the advance reviews/reactions started); S.W.A.T. doesn't sound like my thing, but FYI for Criminal Minds fans, Shemar Moore's headlining it (and EW staff writer, your blurb is literally two sentences. How did no one notice that the first sentence begins with "Inspired by the film of the same name" and the second sentence, in its entirety, reads "Inspired by the film of the same name"?); Alan Cumming being the lead in Instinct could be enough to tempt me into giving that a shot, although it likewise doesn't really sound up my alley; Untitled Marvel Action-Adventure Series stars Amy Acker, so that's a no-brainer for me; and Reverie has Sarah Shahi and sounds potentially interesting (Sendhil Ramamurthy is in the cast too, if that's of interest).

"Mike Colter Describes Jessica Jones Season Two As “Dark And Heavy”".

Via the link above, "Kevin Feige Doesn’t Know If The MCU Will Get A Phase 4".


Photography

Via [dreamwidth.org profile] sovay, a website of photos of naked actors (mostly British) posing with fish. Here is Gillian Anderson wearing an eel.

"PHOTOS: Your Pics of California’s ‘Super Bloom’".

"Colourised Pics Of Russia’s Female Snipers Who Terrorised Nazis, Including “Lady Death” With 309 Kills".


Miscellaneous

"The Snarling Girl: Notes on—and against—ambition". [Elisa Albert on Hazlitt] Wow, I really liked this.

"EFF Releases Spying on Students Ed Tech Report: EFF Survey Reveals Gaps in Protecting the Privacy of K-12 Students Using School-Issued Devices and Cloud Apps". [Electronic Frontier Foundation] (Note: I haven't read the actual report, just the overview here.)

"Trans Singer Records Duet With Himself Pre And Post Transition".

"Londoners’ delight as world’s first crow café comes to capital".

"I ATE THREE EGGS EVERY SINGLE MORNING FOR A WEEK - HERE’S WHAT HAPPENED".

Via [dreamwidth.org profile] cofax7, "31 Vintage Posters That Demand You Pick Up a Book". [LitHub]

"How to Become a Deadly Misandrist Fairy Vampire" [Autostraddle]

"A dad took his 2-year-old's most memorable words and illustrated them beautifully".

FMK: Growing Up Weightless

Apr. 24th, 2017 06:30 pm
melannen: Commander Valentine of Alpha Squad Seven, a red-haired female Nick Fury in space, smoking contemplatively (Default)
[personal profile] melannen
I went to the March for Science yesterday! It didn't have as many people as the Women's March but then what would? It still took a solid two hours to get everyone funnelled down Constitution Avenue.

Also if you are ever at the Capitol end of Constitution with a few minutes to kill, go look at The Spirit of Haida Gwaii outside the Canadian Embassy; it's in a nice quiet corner and I found more to see in that one sculpture than in the entire National Gallery sculpture garden.


...also if you are ever on the Mall and need wifi, find an idling coach bus to loiter near.

I brought Growing Up Weightless by John M. Ford to read on the metro, and I don't have a huge amount to say because basically it was everything I wanted for a book about coming of age in the Moon colony )

(no subject)

Apr. 24th, 2017 04:50 pm
seekingferret: Photo of me with my 2012 Purim beard, with stripes shaven into it. (Default)
[personal profile] seekingferret
I've been thinking, as I wrote in my last D&D post, about how to do the more natural settings in my new campaign in a way that both explores the economic questions and maintains the sense of whimsy and adventure you want in a fantasy adventure and it struck me that the obvious approach is to use Fey. The very nature of Fey adventures is tied up in questions of contracts and obligations, it's inherently economic in nature. Players want to exploit a mine, but in order to gain access they need to make deals with the local fey, whose goals may be orthogonal to predictable economic aims, but whose practices are definitely economic in nature.

This creates a really interesting potential scenario: Beneficial contracts that players make with fey accrue immediate guild merits (XP) toward levelling, but if a deal with a fey is ever breached, players lose those guild merits and potentially can de-level. I really like this effect, it makes breaking fey contracts have real, meaningful teeth to the players on a metaphysical level.

Larger contracts between Auction Houses and fey kingdoms are also a wonderful source of adventure hooks, as such deals no doubt require periodic acts of maintenance. I'm imagining a scenario like where the Deal is that in order to ensure safe passage across a river in fey territory, all the Carter's Guild needs to present the local fey lord with a small, somewhat obscure but not valuable gem every year- the kind of payment where the players might wonder what the hell the faeries want with it. The players try to cross the river and the fey lord, wearing an outfit beautifully adorned with hundreds of identical gems showing that this Deal has been in force for centuries and revealing the intricate way that this ageless lord executes plans over long time scales, denies them passage until they present him this year's gem. And he doesn't deny them passage by force, but with a simple but immensely powerful teleport spell. Any time they try to cross the river, they end up back where they started. I can do so much with this kind of story element.


So I'm going to need to think up the details of the organization, such as it is, of the fey in the Mannheim Vale. I definitely want multiple kingdoms/courts of fey, but I probably also want individual loner fey creatures.

Ask me about fandoms meme

Apr. 24th, 2017 09:05 pm
schneefink: River walking among trees, from "Safe" (Default)
[personal profile] schneefink
Taken from [personal profile] nenya_kanadka:
Comment with one of my fandoms, and I'll tell you:

the character I least understand
interactions I enjoyed the most
the character who scares me the most
the character who is most like me
hottest looks character
one thing I dislike about my fave character
one thing I like about my hated character
a quote or scene that haunts me
a death that left me indifferent
a character I wish died but didn't
my ship that never sailed

Meme via everyone

Apr. 24th, 2017 07:15 pm
naraht: (Default)
[personal profile] naraht
Reblog if it’s okay for your followers to leave you an ask telling you what the one thing is they remember you for as a writer. Is it a scene or a detail or a specific line? Is it something like style or characterization? Is it that one weird kink they never thought they’d be into, but oh my god wow self-discovery time?

I broke up with Doctor Who in 2012

Apr. 24th, 2017 12:13 pm
sophia_sol: drawing of Combeferre, smiling and holding up a finger like he's about to explain something (Default)
[personal profile] sophia_sol
Yesterday I saw a happy gifset from an old season of New Who and had positive feelings. That's the first time I've been able to do that in YEARS.

I am not exaggerating when I say that for two years after I broke up with Doctor Who, I couldn't think about the show without crying. I eventually got over that (...mostly) and entered a stage of aggressive apathy that lasted for several more years. I guess I might be finally moving on from that into whatever might be the next stage in my... grieving process, or whatever this is.

I don't really talk much about my breakup with Doctor Who because it feels embarrassing. Spending two years crying at every mention of a tv show does not feel very mature or reasonable. Even now if I think about Doctor Who in certain ways I get teary-eyed; writing this post got me a bit misty around the edges.

And I don't even really understand why this breakup hurt me so deeply. I mean, I felt that the show had betrayed my trust in it, yes, but I've been let down by narratives before and since, and never had a reaction anywhere even close to this.

I dunno. I guess Doctor Who has always had a special place in my heart. I still miss it, or at least miss what I loved about it when I still loved it.

That gifset I saw yesterday, the one that made me smile to see, was nothing but Nine and Rose grinning infectiously at each other. Characters who loved each other and the whole weird brilliant universe was what I loved best about that show, and the expressions on their faces just captured that feeling of joy.

I don't think I'm yet at a place of being able to rewatch any of the episodes I used to love, without breaking down in tears. But for the first time I feel like maybe someday in the future I might.

(no subject)

Apr. 24th, 2017 10:14 am
nestra: (music)
[personal profile] nestra
String Theory
by Ronald Wallace


I have to believe a Beethoven
string quartet is not unlike
the elliptical music of gossip:
one violin excited
to pass its small story along
to the next violin and the next
until, finally, come full circle,
the whole conversation is changed.

And I have to believe such music
is at work at the deep heart of things,
that under the protons and electrons,
behind the bosons and quarks,
with their bonds and strange attractors,
these strings, these tiny vibrations,
abuzz with their big ideas,
are filling the universe with gossip,
the unsung art of small talk

that, not unlike busybody Beethoven,
keeps us forever together, even
when everything’s flying apart.


"String Theory" by Ronald Wallace from For Dear Life. © University of Pittsburgh Press, 2015.

(no subject)

Apr. 24th, 2017 09:20 am
quarter_to_five: (Default)
[personal profile] quarter_to_five
Wait, tha't it for Good Fight? Noooo!
siderea: (Default)
[personal profile] siderea
A set of videos, of particular interest to programmers, compliments of Metafilter. Delightful, recommended.

These are lectures/demos of brilliant stupid programmer tricks:

1) A DOS executable that only uses printable bytes. (SLYT, 25:40 (yes, long, but so worth it, and accessible to non-programmers), audio and visual both required)

2) On the Turing Completeness of PowerPoint (SLYT, 5:33, audio and visual both required)

This is a work of art with accompanying making-of:

3) A Mind is Born (article with embedded SLYT, 2:21, primarily audio plus cool but inessential visuals) - a 2+ minute music video that is, in its entirety, a 256 byte program for the Commodore 64. This is now my answer to "can a computer program, in itself, be a serious work of art?" I understand about one word in five of the article; someone on MF said of it, I read most of the how it was done link, and I've been a programmer for 20 years, and I still say the answer is "black magic".

Oh, and a bonus blast from the past – I just got done fixing my broken video links post migration from LJ – 4) Life in Life (SLYT, 1:31, primarily visual, with cool but inessential audio). h/t [personal profile] nancylebov. I originally posted here; I had tagged it "sci", but I dunno, what do we call programming with cellular automata?

fiber monday

Apr. 23rd, 2017 10:18 pm
thistleingrey: (Default)
[personal profile] thistleingrey
I want to knit myself a longish cardigan. Reason has asked very nicely whether she might take Cajsa after hearing that it's hard for me to style, to the minimal extent that I care about such things. Though its length is the right thing for my proportions, it looks silly with my shirts, all of which are too long, natch, and I can't tuck them because jeans and slacks never fit my middle (three ways). Because its sleeves aren't full length on me, for her they're wrist-ish, and the difference in shoulder breadth looks charmingly 1980s drop-shoulder on her. Ridiculous. I couldn't have made Cajsa longer due to a lack of yardage, but it's still ridiculous.

At least I know that that manner of knitting neckline-to-armpit fits me and befits me. ___Sand aside (whose CC2 yarn reached me only yesterday), and Little Wave aside (nearly at armpit from bottom up, thanks to a simple motif, though sleeves are next before a complex-sounding yoke join), a plan is taking shape to adapt a not-long cardigan pattern for fingering-weight yarn. I'll have at least five years before Reason could try to seize a longish cardigan from me, by which time I may want to part with one or more of them---who knows. It may be a lot of cardigans, but I haven't managed to keep anything yet (2.Naima, the vest that went to my mother, now Cajsa) and one of my two three-season jackets has begun to wear out visibly. Why not a lot of cardigans, to disrupt a storm-grey jacket and a mushroom-grey jacket and a few flannel shirts. I'd wear a blazer beyond formal talks if they ever fit

Apparently, there's enough remaindered yarn for two garments, despite a few skeins' inclusion in a blanket years ago. (The blanket I'd first set out to crochet, then undone, was a fisher/cabled thing; the blanket that exists is a striped ripple that stopped small because, ah, too heavy to make, the year after I turned 21 and joint woe started to interrupt my sleep sometimes.) I had no idea what thirty 50g skeins of aran-weight wool could be for, back then. It's lucky that it's still in good shape and that I've learned a bit since.

This and That

Apr. 23rd, 2017 02:33 pm
wendelah1: (Classic Scully Eyeroll)
[personal profile] wendelah1
From VOX: The X-Files’ biggest liability at this point is simple: creator Chris Carter | Carter is a TV genius, whose best script-writing days are behind him. Maybe it’s time to take a step back. Todd VanDerWerff is a smart guy. He might like Chris Carter's early works a little better than I do, but otherwise, he nails it.

By the way, my husband did not take me seriously when I informed him that I was not going to be watching season 11. "You mean to say you're not going to hate-watch it?" He looked skeptical. Very.

"No. I'm not. I really hated season 10."

"I know you did." He smiles.

"I had very low expectations," I began.

"I know you did." He started laughing at me!

"It was even worse than I expected! If it had been any show other than The X-Files, I would have quit watching half-way through 'My Struggle"!"

He stops laughing. "I know." Beat. "Are you sure you're not going to hate-watch it? 'Cause I think you will," he said.

I am not watching season 11.

~/~/~

The mod at [community profile] fancake forgot to post the last two themes: loyalty kink and interspecies pairings. Interspecies pairing is pretty self-explanatory: Spock/Anyone, etc. Right? But what the heck is a "loyalty kink"? I have never heard of this. Also, AMNESTY ROUND! You can post for any previous theme, too!

fancake banner for round 77d amnesty: thematic multifandom recs

~/~/~

I've updated [community profile] xfilesficrecs with more season one recs.

Sunday-night mishmash post

Apr. 24th, 2017 12:07 am
umadoshi: (dumpling (iconic_notions))
[personal profile] umadoshi
--Tori Amos has announced a new album and European-so-far tour for this fall! (In related not-really-news, I just made a Dreamwidth feed for the Undented news site at [dreamwidth.org profile] undented_feed.)

--Another link: for the YOI fans, [dreamwidth.org profile] yurionicefans is a shiny new community.

--[twitter.com profile] Becca_Smash, who's a longtime manga/comics editor and rewriter as well as one of the fine folks behind Sparkler Monthly/Chromatic Press, is currently looking for freelance comic copyediting work. If you have any interest, check out her thread of info here.

--Casual Job starts back up on Tuesday, and I haven't done any work at all to psych myself up for it; the odds of it being extremely (and for my wallet, painfully) short are very high, so I'm...sort of bracing myself for the financial shortfall this year (especially since we can't count on the fall session being very long) by telling myself "Well, the lack of income will obviously SUCK, but at least your routine won't get terribly disrupted."


--For lunch today, [dreamwidth.org profile] scruloose, Ginny, Kas, and I went back to Happy Veal, the hotpot place we tried last weekend, in order to try their only-available-at-lunchtime dumplings. Verdict: the dumplings are very tasty; I think our conclusion overall was that this place and the dumpling spot in the downtown core have different strengths in their dumplings. Happy Veal, though, is only the second place in town I've had green onion pancakes, and they are so good; also, at some times (maybe when the weather's warmer?) they have bubble tea, and I tell you, if the bubble tea is good, just going in for that and green onion pancake would seems like an excellent life choice to me.


--I'm in serious need (which I'm only reluctantly acknowledging) of pruning my manga collection, which should include trying to finally figure out something sensible to do with the Japanese editions of series that I've finished working on (and which don't, AFAIK, have sequels or anything for which I might want to keep them on hand for reference in case of any future licensing). I have some tankos that I want to keep entirely for my own sake--especially the full runs of Fruits Basket and X--but generally speaking, the Japanese volumes are of no use to me once the respective series are finished in English.

A couple of garden things!

I keep adding to my Pinterest board, and I keep rummaging around the Veseys site (which apparently doesn't have a wishlist feature! I made an account entirely because I was hoping for a wishlist!), and among the countless things I'm unsure of, I'm not entirely sure what to do in terms of planning. I'm going to try to avoid being overambitious this year, and I really don't want to get carried away and start ordering a ton of stuff online, so I think the best thing to do is probably to mostly wait and hit up Halifax Seed when they start having plants in for the season, and see what comes together from that. But since I don't have any sense of what they'll have, that drastically limits my planning options. :/ (Plus if there're perennials that don't bloom until their second year and I can't get them there this year, waiting until next year to get them sounds frustrating.)

Dreams of lilacs have made me want to check in with our neighbor on the side where we don't have a lilac and ask how they feel about lilacs. If they're neutral or positive, then we could go back to the board and ask about putting a second one in on that side of our little patch of ground. For lo, Veseys is tempting me with this Bloomerang (!) variety. The color is lovely, and the description brags that it "not only blooms in the spring - it 'blommerangs' with new flowers from mid-summer right up until frost." *grabby hands*

(Dear heaven, these people need a copyeditor for their site. Think I could trade my skills for plants?)

(no subject)

Apr. 23rd, 2017 08:44 pm
seekingferret: Photo of me with my 2012 Purim beard, with stripes shaven into it. (Default)
[personal profile] seekingferret
Just watched an IA episode of a police procedural. And I was wondering- has anyone ever made a morally satisfying internal affairs episode on such a show? IA episodes have to be my least favorite trope of police procedurals because all police procedurals are morally bankrupt, or at least morally driven by the dictates of closing plots in 40 minutes or less. Yet we are still supposed to regard the protagonists as the heroes, or the premise of the show doesn't work. So an IA episode involves, for one 40 minute or sometimes 80 minute period, looking back at past episodes of the show from an external, absolutist moral lens. It makes no sense within the internal morality of the show, and given that as soon as the IA episode is cleared, usually by a deus ex machina that bestows no meaningful consequences on our heroes and often affirms their cloudy moral horizons as righteous, morality returns to amoral normal, it does not serve to create a new moral status quo.


Maybe the Wire achieves a successful IA storyline? I've only seen the first season, so I'm not sure, but I guess I could believe the Wire could pull it off because the Wire doesn't require us to think of the police as the heroes of the show and it doesn't require us rooting for their success.

some things

Apr. 23rd, 2017 02:04 pm
thistleingrey: (Default)
[personal profile] thistleingrey
* Before the Ace Attorney team spun off Gyakuten Kenji (Ace Attorney Investigations) featuring Edgeworth, there was a plan to focus the game on Ema Skye instead. AAI was all right, but zomg, there could've been an Ema = Akane game. Nnngh, as Edgeworth says sometimes in the US localization.

* It's a bit wacky to find that several writers whose Ace Attorney fics I find tolerable have also written for Persona 4 and/or The World Ends with You. Read more... )

* Total change in topic! MRI result: Read more... )

* Still coughing.

Wayfarers 1+2, by Becky Chambers

Apr. 23rd, 2017 10:46 pm
schneefink: Babylon 5 (Bab5)
[personal profile] schneefink
I earn money now, so I can buy more books! Excellent.
After many recommendations, I finally read "The Long Way to a Small, Angry Planet," and then found out that there's already a sequel too, great. I enjoyed both books a lot :) They're smaller in scope than many SF/F books, especially the second one, but I didn't mind. It felt kind of comfortable, even. Both books had a very warm and positive atmosphere, which was very nice, and put a big emphasis on people making friends and growing closer, which I love.
I'd read reviews saying that The Long Way doesn't have a very strong plot, but it didn't bother me because just like shows like e.g. Leverage it's so character-focused that character development becomes all the plot I need. (Actually it kind of reminds me of fic.)
Also, I always love when I start shipping characters early and then they actually get together :) I really liked the amount of space/focus the romance(s) got, I thought it was just right.

A Closed and Common Orbit doesn't have more plot, I'd say, but a clearer direction. Tbh at first I was disappointed when I found out that the sequel didn't focus on the crew of the Wayfarer, but they were at a pretty good/narratively satisfying point at the end of book 1 (exception: Spoiler )) so it made sense. The new main characters' stories didn't grab me until page 160 or so (more accurately Spoiler )), but after that I became very invested in their stories. Spoilers )

I really love the worldbuilding in these books. I like the history/politics background, generally positive and optimistic with cooperation between many races, but with plenty of dark sides too, from historical events to marginalized groups etc. Most of all I loved the races: they were varied (to a degree – many share many similarities with humanoids), they were interesting, they were all unique, and I just loved all the details about their cultures. Especially the Aandrisk and Aeluons, which we learned the most about.

How to resuscitate dying electronics

Apr. 23rd, 2017 03:57 pm
sineala: Mac laptop whose Apple logo has no bite (Young Wizards reference); text reads "my other Mac is a manual" (my other Mac...)
[personal profile] sineala
So I have one of those Apple Time Capsules. Mine is clearly on the way out, as a couple months ago it stopped backing anything up no matter how much I reset it; it just kept insisting it wasn't on the network. I was getting more and more concerned about not having any working backups (well, other than my writing, which is on Dropbox) and getting tired of clicking past error messages saying "no backups for 45 days" and so on.

I therefore decided to buy an external hard drive because apparently you can get 1 TB for about $50 now and you don't even need to plug it into an outlet because it draws power over USB and also it is basically the size of my smartphone. None of these things were the case the last time I bought an external hard drive. I am impressed.

So I went to start backing up my hard drive just now and I discovered... that my Time Capsule's last backup was 5:40 am. This morning. The drive that hasn't been working for two months spontaneously decided to start working again because I showed up with a replacement.

Well, I guess that's one way to fix things.

(Don't worry, I'm still doing another backup anyway.)

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