kaigou: this is what I do, darling (Default)
This is not entirely out of only curiosity, but in the wake of LJ dying its ongoing slow death, the rise of tumblr & instagram, the spammy desert of delicious, and the domination of pinterest, where does fandom mostly reside, now? Outside of behemoths like fanfiction.net and deviantart, there doesn't seem to be a central gathering place (application/site) for major active communities. Or is there, and I'm just not seeing/hearing about it?

Considering that once upon a time, one could post images, fic, vids, and whatnot to LJ, on one's own journal as well as on a community journal, is there any one place that handles all the fannish activity, now? Or is it all truly broken into pieces?
kaigou: I am zen. I am BUDDHA. I am totally chill, y'all. (2 totally chill)
Can anyone help me figure out the actual meaning & the likely kana (kanji not required unless it's really obvious)? I asked CP, but he's not sure he's getting all of it, so I was hoping someone else could tell me what's being said, and how it'd be written.


I do have the subber's version, but CP tells me it's not even general-idea by general-idea. I wasn't expecting word-for-word (duh) but I was wondering the general strokes, to make sure that snagging the part I want was the right part.

From the subtitles:

'At first, I intended only to draw you out, then leave you to your own devices, but maintaining the status quo is so terribly dull. I simply had to meddle a little.'

I want the part that amounts to '[but] maintaining...' etc.

translation #1, from CP:

ついお せっかいを。

At first it was just to get a rise out of you;
later I thought I’d extract a high price,
but with such an inadequate state,
I just had to interfere.

translation #2, from ramenkuri:

そのまま。。。と言うのもあんまりにも不倫なもので つい 

At the time, I just wanted to get information
about you (out of someone?), and then leave it alone,
but leaving it like that...that would have been far too immoral
so I couldn't help meddling

with note that, "I may be wrong in putting 不倫 in there, but I'm pretty sure that's what he's saying. The other possibility is ふびん - which depending on the story might be more appropriate."

find me

28 Sep 2014 10:06 am
kaigou: this is what I do, darling (Default)
Alright, I'm now on Ello as afishtrap. If you're there, come find me.


27 Sep 2014 10:17 am
kaigou: Kido says, shun the unbeliever! shunnnn! (2 shun the unbeliever)
Alright, I've heard enough about Ello that I figure, wth. Is there someone I can bribe with appropriately over-the-top flattery enough to get an invite, or do I just sit and wait on their waiting list, or what? Suggestions, thoughts, arguments that I should stick with twitter?
kaigou: Happy typing on mac. (1 Hyperbole and a half)
This summer I attended a writing retreat, and the critique I got back from the instructor made a number of corrections in capitalization. I was kinda like, hunh? because no one else has ever noted an issue with the same, until nagasvoice's comment in another post.

(I don't recall ever being taught the rules of punctuation/grammer/capitalizing in school -- fiction-writing wasn't ever a major focus, as I recall -- so I've mostly gone by what I read in books, and using that style. I guess you could say osmosis and a bit of logical guesswork taught me things like that punctuation goes inside the quotes (at least in US-based publications), etc.)

Normally, I'd write a sentence with dialogue like this.

"Hello," they said.

The entire sentence is hello-they-said. First word is 'hello', so it's capitalized. Since 'they' is not the first word and not a proper-name, it's not capitalized. Thus, it made sense to me that when the order is rearranged, the capitalizing is also rearranged:

They said, "hello."

I'm pretty sure this is a pattern I've read plenty, 'cause I had to have gotten the impression from somewhere that this is alright. It's also why/how I learned that when you've got a tag in the middle, capitalizing is still applied as an overall:

"Yesterday," she said, "it was sunny."

First, 'yesterday' is the first word. Second, the actual sentence -- 'yesterday it was sunny' is an entire sentence and the tag 'she said' is just inserted. Similar to the way if I had [ed: hi there] in the middle, it inserts, not halts the sentence and forces a new one. It's like a paren.

In my mind, if I've got a sentence like the following:

"Yesterday it was sunny," she said. "We napped."

...then the "we" gets capitalized because it's a new sentence; if it hadn't been, then it'd be a comma after 'said', not a period, and there'd need to be some kind of a tag -- ie, 'and', 'but', etc -- before 'we' to indicate there was more to the first sentence.

I'm not sure whether this is a house-style thing or just something I've completely misread/ignored all these years.

kaigou: I knew it! not in the sense of knowing it, but I knew there was something I didn't know. (3 knew it but didn't know it)
I thought I'd bookmarked the review, to buy the book later, but apparently not. I've been through my browsing history for the past two months and ugh, maybe I'm looking right past it. I am left with no choice but to throw myself on the intarweebs and hope one of you might recognize this.

I think either historical fiction, or historical fantasy -- at the very least, alt-history. For some reason, I'm thinking renaissance era, like Venice or Milan (because apparently Italy was the entirety of the renaissance, but whatevs). The only plot-point I remember was that in this alt-history (or maybe secondary world altogether?) families could promise their daughters to a higher-born daughter, in a kind of promise/wedding. Sort of like being given as a companion.

And I remember thinking, that's a pretty cool change on things, I want to read that. Except now I can't for the life of me remember the title, or anything else pertinent, to google for it. Does this ring a bell for anyone else?
kaigou: Edward, losing it. (1 Edward conniption)
Has anyone else missed and/or not gotten DW comment alerts in email? I realized I was getting msgs only sporadically, and then they stopped altogether somewhere around early November. I've gotten notifies of replies on other journals, though, but that only since early December. Since then, nothing, and I can tell I've gotten comments because I've seen them here. Just no emails. I checked my settings and whatnot, so I'm stumped. Anyone else having this issue, or is it just me (again)?

Figured it out. Somehow my settings were changed so I had to opt in on getting email. That's not the kind of thing I would've turned off, so I'm guessing there was an upgrade and that flag got switched. Who knows, but we'll see now if I suddenly start getting emails again.

If you have a minute and don't mind, drop a comment so I can test this theory. Thanks!

ETA2: ahahah shoot me it works now. yay! thanks for the help, everyone. (I figured out that while I'd changed the email... I hadn't confirmed it. Once I did that, now I am back to regularly scheduled emails. It's been that kind of a day, really.)
kaigou: Edward, losing it. (1 Edward conniption)
I need something to say to a coworker (who is otherwise a cool person) when for whatever reason he decides to play devil's advocate. Especially when what I'm arguing is something that he later admits is something he also believes in, or at least would like to recognize as valuable. It feels like he's either winding me up for his own amusement (though he doesn't seem amused at the time, so probably not) or just doesn't realize that I can't tell whether he's serious -- and the upshot is that I lose respect for him. It's like, oi, if you're that much of an asshole, then maybe I need to change my opinion about you. Or something.

Today there was talk about UX/user testing. G was somewhat dismissive of there being any value in this. I've done user studies for ten years (contextual analysis and ethnographic studies most especially, which means lots and lots of talking to users at length), I told him every single time I did a user test or interview, I learned something new.

It was almost always it was something that opened my eyes about my own privilege: that I'm abled, that my language skills are top-notch even for a native, that my eye-hand coordination is pretty damn good, that I don't have motor skill issues, that my hearing's good enough, that my sight is good enough despite needing glasses, that I don't have significant learning or cognitive issues that get in the way of my comprehension. Doing user studies, as CP later commented, reminds we designers and developers -- we makers -- that we are not The User. It reminds us to be thankful for the ways in which we're fortunate, and to be humbled about the ways in which we have it easy.

All those things I do when coding like larger click-areas and story-answers on alerts and proper color contrast -- just like all the things some architects do in corporate buildings like wider doorways and bar-handles instead of round handles and ramps at every entrance -- these are all invisible if you're abled, but they're crucial if you're not. And the onus does not, should not, lie on the person who is disabled to make do; the onus should lie on us, as the makers to make the web/world inclusive. Because we have the good fortune and the ability to do so.

But he was arguing against this, and I went along until the point where I said, the web should be inclusive, for everyone; the web exists for everyone. G replied, no, the web exists to make money. (Someone tell that to all we fans who runs sites at a loss out of pure love, but I didn't go there.) The whole 'make money' thing was so cynical, and enough opposite his usual attitude, that I just called it quits right there. We're going to end this conversation right here, I said, and that was that (whew).

I'm not sure whether to be pleased or roll my eyes that he told me afterwards that the reason he loves talking to me about stuff/work is that he always learns something new. Except he excused his responses -- though not in so many words -- as devil's advocate. I'm so freaking sick of oh, I'm just playing devil's advocate. It's going on my list as second-hated phrase, right behind, can't you take a joke?

Dear internets, please give me a good witty comeback for the next time G says he's playing devil's advocate. Not too nuclear, since I do have to keep working with him, but something that makes it clear he's playing a game that I don't respect and don't have time for. Anyone?
kaigou: life is a banquet, and some poor suckers are starving to death. (3 life is a banquet)
I'm pretty sure it was someone here who once mentioned the adage/law/maxim I'm trying to find. It was kind of a corollary to Hanlon's law ("never ascribe to malice what can be explained adequately by stupidity") -- it was along the lines of "before you decide to be offended, give someone the benefit of the doubt". I keep thinking cooperative principle, but that's Grice, and his maxims put the burden on the speaker (to be succinct, to be clear, to be coherent) and less on the listener.

Anyone have any ideas? Does this ring a bell for anyone?
kaigou: (1 mushu reads the news)
For some inexplicable reason (it's either the hair, or helping Zania with her female-Loki helmet for ComicCon, or Idris Elba, or let's be shallow & say it's the hair), I'm feeling curious about the Thor movies. Except doesn't he show up in like several other movies, too? If I just wanted to watch two or three without requiring too many braincells (of minimal level, true, since we are talking comic book origins here, but still), where should I start?

Hell, for that matter, I wonder if/how I do Netflix on my computer. Not having a TV nor cable and being too lazy to bother figuring out where I could rent a hardcopy, and just not up to the torrenting risks on a Sunday afternoon.
kaigou: Roy Mustang, pondering mid-read. (1 pondering)
...on behalf of someone else (who is not me, really! for total true this time), does anyone in the GW fandom (then or now) recall a rant about how butter is not meant for certain past times? As in, diary product + orifice = misery. Moffit's trying to track it down, and I recall it vaguely but not enough for the google fu. Anyone else remember that post?

(Also, Moffit thinks there might have also been mention of glitter, if that helps ring any bells.)
kaigou: this is what I do, darling (3 love the stars)
Currently writing a scene in which the pivotal/cultural religion of the story's world takes center stage. This is rather odd for me, and I'm wondering if it is for anyone else.

For the most part, I'm an apatheist. For me, I don't disbelieve a god, nor believe; I just don't care. I live my life according to ethics and principles (not morals), and try to do good in this lifetime with no hope nor care for any after-life rewards. If there are, fine; if not, fine. Which really amounts to: I don't like ritual, I don't like organized religion, I don't care much for massive displays of faith/belief, or the trappings of either. I kind of look at all of it... not with a jaundiced eye so much as a disinterested one. Some people require ritual, especially of a social nature. I'm not one of them.

No surprise then that the religion I've devised for my central culture is a relatively ritual-free religion. It has a lot in common with Shinto, in that very few elements are public (no weekly sunday get-together), most of it's not just personal but also private/solitary. But for the story, it's also crucial that this religion have an obligatory aspect, as well. Certain people are considered automatically priests, and it's not always within the person's say. It's somewhat like the old European tradition that the youngest son always entered religious orders -- there wasn't much choice to the role. It was pretty much set from birth, fated.

Which, seeing how I'm rather lukewarm about ritual, it wouldn't be a surprise that obligatory ritual gets my goat even faster. Yet here I am, doing a scene in which a culture explains and justifies its obligatory ritual. And for the story's purposes, it's not right for me to subtly imply via the narrative that this is a wrong thing; to be true to the story, this must be seen as a right [for that religion and its adherents] thing.

It'd be very easy to write a story in which religion (any religion) gets its comeuppance, or gets dissed or shown to be wrong in some way. I've seen that, too, when some religions -- usually ones written as seriously-close analogues to existing/real religions -- are portrayed by authors who don't believe in that religion. It feels like a failure of empathy on the author's part, because they'd rather demonize the non-Christian (or non-Pagan, or non-Western, or non-Eastern) religion than see it from the other side. (For the record, I hate those stories even more, oddly. I don't like any religion demonized, even if that sounds strange given my intro.)

It actually feels harder to write -- believably -- characters who really do cherish, and respect, and feel obligated to fulfill, a set of religious precepts. It's like I can't quite see ever being so deep-down in it that I couldn't understand how one could not be, or believe, such-and-such. Like people I knew in college who tried desperately to convert me (since apparently Episcopalian doesn't really 'count' as A True Believer) -- they were absolutely flabbergasted, even genuinely hurt -- that I couldn't seem to see how So Very Important the issue of "what you believe" really was. To them, yes, but to them, their belief was an all-encompassing thing and thus I, as someone whom they otherwise felt something in common with or whatever, must therefore also have the same something inside me that would call me to belief just as strongly as it called them. If that makes sense. (It did in my head.)

That's really hard for me to write. I can't write strong-faith characters believably. (I could say fanatic, but with the caveat that my personal attitude kind of skews the grading curve; I'm so far below "casual religion" that someone who does church once a week and sometimes on Wednesday night get-togethers is practically a fanatic in comparison.) I have an even harder time writing someone trying to justify their fanaticism, which on a good day might just be Very Strong Belief.

Anyone else deal with this in stories, or read a work where you get the idea the author's dealing with it? Or the opposite -- an author with Strong Beliefs struggling to write non-believer characters? Any tips, ideas, something to help me make sure I'm not dissing characters who in all other ways deserve to be non-demonized and treated respectfully?
kaigou: this is what I do, darling (Default)
I'm almost certain I've seen this somewhere, but now I can't recall and I can't seem to google it without getting a bazillion hits on stuff I don't want. I thought there was a study or white paper on women, tech, and performance bonuses -- something about how when companies set up a bonus system based on "value" (not just flat-breaks into percentages) it's minorities and women who always end penalized in some way. This makes sense; what isn't valued doesn't get marked as valuable enough to warrant an equal share of the bonus pie. But I can't find the study or white paper, or even a reference to it.

Does this ring a bell for anyone?
kaigou: sometimes it's better to light a flamethrower than curse the darkness. (2 flamethrowers)
Recently I read a post about writing a relationship between an ace (asexual) and a heterosexual. One of the points made was that asexuality wasn't really defined/specified as a way of being until relatively recently in history; previously an asexual woman would've been raised to a) not even think of sex because Good Girls Don't and b) to expect that at some point, she'd find The One and then it would all just happen like everyone says. So asexuality could easily have been buried under the social assumptions, especially for women.

I mention that because the topic has been bubbling in my head since the early plotting stage of my current story, and now I'm at the point where the character (to whom this all applies) is on the page. She's not POV for other reasons (and not because I don't want to get into her head, just to make that clear), but I've slowly solidified my certainty that she's definitely asexual. I'm less sure that she's aromantic, but that's mostly because my impression is that "aromantic" means "neutral/lukewarm about falling in love" though I'm not sure I have that right. She does have immense capability to love, and would very much like a loving relationship (what others might call an abiding, deep, platonic friendship), and is probably quite affectionate with close friends. She's not standoffish in that sense, and she's about as far from "socially inept" as you can get. She also very, very much wants to be a mother, and would probably be an amazing, nurturing, instructive mother for whom her children are the central point of her life.

A few more notes about the character, general outline. Am I on the right track, or am I unwittingly writing a stereotype? )

(also, screening comments since this is a public post. if you're okay with your reply being public, just let me know.)
kaigou: Roy Mustang, pondering mid-read. (1 pondering)
This evening I ended up reading a long essay (originally a speech) which is currently the center of a shitstorm in Britain, wherein a renowned female author appears to criticize the Duchess of... whatever Kate Middleton's the duchess of. Read the whole thing here: http://www.lrb.co.uk/v35/n04/hilary-mantel/royal-bodies

It's really a well-written and thought-provoking speech. A few parts jumped out at me:

ruminations on writing/understanding royalty when I haven't the faintest RL experience or much more than a vague clue. )
kaigou: It's dangerous to go alone, Alphonse says, and holds out a cat: here, take this. (2 dangerous to go alone)
I know there's some of you out there, so if you have any ideas:

I've got a character who was poisoned. Think a milder, survivable form of strychnine (I think that's the one I mean), where the poison freezes the muscles up. He got a small dose, but it was still close, and as a result his heart's going to take awhile to recover from getting stomped like that. The analogue I've been using is open heart surgery, which apparently does a fair bit of heart-stomping. So I've had the character gradually work his way back to some form of moving about, following the advice given post-surgery to heart patients: walk a bit, then rest, walk a bit more, rest, work your way up to walking up a flight of stairs, lots of rest, etc.

However, the story takes place in the equivalent of the 16th century, so well before any of our fancy modern medicines. Doesn't mean there's no medicine, just that the reasoning might be off (even if the end results work), like thinking aspirin works because of humours, or whatever.

Anyway, so I've got a bit where the character has exerted himself too much, and from what I could tell of the warnings to post-surgery patients, this is why patients often take blood-thinning medicine, to make it easier on the heart. Extrapolating from that, seems like the heart would tire out, can't pump but the body's demanding it, and suddenly you have lack of enough blood, ergo, passing out.

Here's where it might get tricky: the medical person's logic is that a drunk person bleeds twice as much as a sober person from the same-sized wound, so alcohol must make blood run faster and/or be thinner. If blood is normally thick, and the heart is weak, then thinner blood would be easier for the heart. Thus, alcohol is the make-do medicine for someone coming to after dizzy spell, whose heart continues to beat too fast.

In discussions with one of my beta-folks, the point was made that alcohol also raises blood pressure. I know it's a sedative (calm down the heart?), and I thought I found something that mentioned it's also a kind of blood-thinner, so would those positives outweigh the blood-pressure increase? Or would the addition of two shots' worth of alcohol make no substantive difference, or would it actually just kill the character outright?

Anyone? even wild guesses, if there aren't any doctors in the house. tia!
kaigou: this is what I do, darling (Default)
Does anyone here have Hostgator (or know someone who does)? What's your take on it? Worth recommending? or not?
kaigou: Internet! says the excited scribble (2 Internet!)
Came across this:

The parts that intrigue me:

12:01 -- the guy's lowering a sail, but the ropes go through holes in a wooden piece. Is that a euphroe? (There was a description of junks using these; I could never find pictures, but that sure looks like how they were described.)

12:30 -- one guy's pulling down, but it looks like two more are pulling on the same rope. Why not all three pulling on the same side of the pulley? Why does one guy pull down and the other two pull sideways? Uh, are they raising sails?

12:32 -- jackpot! guy using tiller.

I've seen descriptions of older (as in, Tang dynasty) chinese ships that it took four or more guys to move the tiller, until they figured out fenestrated tillers. But I've never seen any of the rigging around a tiller, not like this guy with the ropes. Are those just to make it easier to move the tiller back/forth?

Also, there's a shot midway through showing the pilot, where you can see the sails also shifting direction. I can't tell if that's just bad editing or if I'm supposed to get the impression that this change in the sail-angle is related to the change in the tiller. Is it? Or is it a matter of the tiller changing to match what the sailors are doing?

...shows like this are useful for a sense of size and info about the different (later-era) ship styles, but sheesh, I still wish someone had a clip -- with explanation! -- about how and what the pilot is doing when he's steering the ship. It looks like there's a lot more going on than just the hollywood-version where someone stands at the wheel and moves it back and forth.

36:44 -- the railing are OPEN, whut! I've seen on some later-era junks that there was a mid-ships opening in the railing used (from what I gather) to have an easier time loading stuff on/off. Then some kind of board was pulled up or across, to close off the opening as the ship pushed away from the dock. But why would you have an open railing that's just a railing and long stretches of open with netting between them? Is there some functional reason for this, or is this a case of just saving money in construction by not having solid sides along there?
kaigou: under this playful boyish exterior beats the heart of a ruthless sadistic maniac (2 charming maniac)
We've been having dinnertime discussions over the past few nights about whether certain advancements in society could only happen because of previous advancements -- specifically, a shift in perception or understanding of one's role in the world. Like, for instance, the development of unions. There were guilds in the western medieval world, but those were owned/operated by the master craftsman. The workers themselves -- apprentices, journeymen, not-quite-masters -- weren't the ones who had say-so. Seems like the guilds acted more like chambers of commerce, in some degree; they allowed the businesses to band together to set prices, to protect a monopoly, to lobby the local government for lower taxes or better treatment, and they might extend loans to their own. Still, not quite the same as a union -- and I would say one of the biggest things unions did was present the notion of a place where workers could air grievances, be heard, and get bad situations changed. Like, allowing for lunch breaks or not making children work (let alone for twelve-hour shifts) and so on.

CP's comment was that the union movement seems to have its sociological nucleus in the socialist/communal movements of the early 19th century. In other words, that you couldn't think of "the worker's rights" until you had some kind of framework for understanding what a "worker" was. As in, not an individual but as one of many other "workers" who formed a collective, and could/should claim rights as a collective.

This isn't actually a post about unions, or even about the development of universal sufferage; it's actually a post about a SF story's premise and the thinkyness the story's reviews gave me about economic power. )
kaigou: And now I, chaos butterfly, shall flap my wings and destroy the world! (2 chaos butterfly)
So I work with a local NFP every year for its one big festival. It's a one-day outdoors event that's got various contests for kids, plus food/retail vendors, and sponsors, and whatnot, and it's pretty much a local (and national) institution, now. Without going too much into RL nitty, I'm just going to summarize an idea I had a few months ago & finally talked the NFP into trying.

A little background... )

Anyway, so I got to thinking about the fact that if this festival were in, say, France, I might be able to get some of what's said on the intercom. But I'd also be like, "what? what did they say?" a lot, too, because it's hard to parse a language when you're not perfectly fluent and there's so much else going on and people are talking. Not to mention we have a major School for the Deaf in town, and they're being left out completely.

So I got this idea to incorporate twitter into the existing wp site, maybe as sidebars, that would repeat in written-format the main field announcements. Oh, and a second twitter stream for parking/shuttle announcements. Oh, and maybe we should do a third for crowd control (where vendor lines are shorter, lost children alerts, etc). And then I started thinking, if we're doing it in English, we should do it in Spanish. And Korean, and Cantonese, and Japanese, and Armenian, and Hindi, and Arabic... oh, my.

And then I realized that since I've got a database of the vendors, I could make it a mobile site that incorporates vendor information. Like the vendor menus, on the site, and include whether a vendor's vegetarian or gluten-free or has pork, etc. For the folks (especially parents) trying to figure out what's okay for dietary restrictions for themselves & their kids.

A few of the problems... )

Anyway, this weekend, I was thinking about what we're trying to do here, which got me onto thinking about the Ada initiative, and the fact that I live only like a mile (or less, as the crow flies) from the state HQ for the Girl Scouts. What if I invited girl scouts to be part of the design/dev for the mobile site (with review & testing, natch, not making anyone leap off a short pier) -- as one of the STEM badges that girl scouts can get now? And talk the mobile app firm into treating the girl scouts as interns, and mentoring them? (I have a strong sense based on convos so far that the little agency would be way amenable to this.)

I like the idea of using the project as a way to a) get girls into a major attention-getting project that's also b) got a huge emphasis on how the web (especially social media) can be used to make things more inclusive and c) has a nice added complexity for the ambitious programmers willing to learn WP's localization parts.

One/only roadblock: how to pay for it? )

So I'm tossing it out (with apologies for the generalizing in terms of RL details) for any of the wise brains on my flist/dwirlce, in case anyone has ideas or suggestions. Is there a specific grant, or a foundation, or even a for-profit company that's known for encouraging projects like this one, that we could turn to? Does anyone know if this might qualify for someone else's project/goal of sponsoring girl-led, girl-created, web/tech, or sponsoring accessible, inclusive, web/tech in general? Uh, anything?

I know all ya'll have tons of brains, whether or not you're tech/STEM yourself. I've been seeing the bottom line a little too long, I think, and feeling kind of downbeat over the seeping privilege of yet another potential partner acting like the multilingual element is really just too ambitious and nice idea but "how many people would really use it, anyway" blah blah blah. I'd like to find a way to treat this as a girl scout (or any STEM-focused "get the girls interested young" kind of group) project along the ideas of the Ada initiative, but still. Bills gotta be paid, which means finding sponsor. Any ideas? Anyone?


kaigou: this is what I do, darling (Default)
锴 angry fishtrap 狗

to remember

"When you make the finding yourself— even if you're the last person on Earth to see the light— you'll never forget it." —Carl Sagan

October 2016

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