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Apr. 18th, 2014 03:06 pm
nestra: Jim with his hand on Blair's chest (pic#535440)
[personal profile] nestra
The technical writer's lament goes something like this:

"Huh, that's a bullet in a weird place. No, you can't use quotation marks for any reason that strikes your fancy. Pooh Capitalization is not an Acceptable Method of Emphasis. Why are things in styles when you do not know how to use styles? You put things in styles and then messed with the styles, didn't you? "Stop" putting "things" in quotation marks! Eighteen spaces in a row are not the same as an indent! What the hell is that sentence even supposed to mean? Semi-colons are not something you randomly throw in a sentence for SPICE! What the hell did you do to your margins! Stop bolding and underlining and italicizing every other word! What the FUCK is your tab stop doing halfway across the page? You have to define acronyms! YOU SHOULD HAVE A LICENSE TO USE WORD. NO MORE .DOCX FOR YOU."
marahmarie: Don't worry, I'm from tech support (tech-no-mite!)
[personal profile] marahmarie

I wouldn't believe it if I hadn't seen it with my own eyes. When I installed AVG yesterday - after installing Webroot SecureAnywhere 2014 (hereafter known as "WSA") - first WSA tried to stop every connection AVG tried to make to the Internet, showing that the program has no common-sense, reality-based whitelist, it just inanely blocks everything, which caused me to have to whitelist AVG's connections not just once but numerous times to get my AVG install to complete.

Then WSA made me whitelist AVG's outbound connections a few more times just to download AVG's virus definitions. Shortly thereafter I had to restart my computer to finish installing Windows updates, and after restarting AVG was still there - it was still in Program files, Program Data, etc. - but it would not start nor run even when I went into Program Files and clicked on the gui.exe directly. Suddenly there was also no Uninstall entry for it in Windows Add and Remove Programs - nor in CCleaner's and jv16PowerTools Uninstaller lists, either. Freaky, huh?

WebRoot SecureAnywhere 2014 basically did the automated software version of bashing in AVG's kneecaps with a baseball bat to keep it from running on restart, which pissed me off so much I removed it immediately and did a clean reinstall of AVG. Don't play hardball with me, Webroot; I don't respond well to any so-called security experts playing dirty pool with their customers. You guys have absolutely no class.

[syndicated profile] best_american_poetry_feed

Posted by The Best American Poetry

Something’s cooking in the bathtub Made for England’s Basil Rathbub Let us tipple Bols or Boodles With vermouth or lukshen noodles And with Plymouth or with Bombay Cherries jubilee a flambé Let us throw in rind of citrus To that v-shaped stemmed shell vitreous Spurn to flight all schmendriks And then relax with Hendrick’s St. Thomas, Sonny Rollins With a Beefeater Tom Collins With olives and some Noilly Prat On Rubschlagers, an oily sprat For the timid a Negroni With which you can have plain baloney Be it Seagram’s, be it Gordon’s Tank’ray Ten (with cordons) Be it Brooklyn, be...

Friday free-for-all

Apr. 18th, 2014 05:06 pm
synecdochic: torso of a man wearing jeans, hands bound with belt (Default)
[personal profile] synecdochic posting in [community profile] smellsgood
Looks like I missed last week's already. Oops :D

This post is a free-for-all for people to:

a) post links to perfume-related content they posted elsewhere (on or off DW)
b) talk about anything they want to talk about that isn't big enough for a full post
c) socialize and hang out without worrying about "off topic"
d) or anything else that comes to mind!

[Meme] AO3 hit counts

Apr. 18th, 2014 04:42 pm
edenfalling: stylized black-and-white line art of a sunset over the ocean (Default)
[personal profile] edenfalling
Oh right, it's that time of year again. :-) Here are the results from 2013 and 2012, for comparison purposes.

I currently have 142 stories posted on AO3, which is a bit more than twice as many as last year, and not quite four times as many as in 2012. Also, I have gotten further on posting some of my back-catalog, as it were, so while the collection is still wildly overweighted in favor of my recent Homestuck fics, it's a bit less utterly misleading than it used to be. On the other hand, I have been backdating all those old stories, so their count of hits, kudos, and comments remains relatively low. (In some cases, the stories in question would have had low response levels no matter when I posted them. In other cases, well, let's just say some of my works are popular on other sites and leave it at that. *wry*)

With that said, here are my top ten stories on AO3, by hit count:

1. What Isn't Broken (Can Still Be Fixed) - 8,099 [Naruto, remix]
2. Trollstuck - 4,089 [Homestuck, chaptered, WIP]
3. I Must Increase My Bust - 3,028 [Homestuck]
4. Weregild - 2,566 [Inception/Anita Blake, chaptered, WIP]
5. A History of Handcrafts (Because a Sweater Equals Love) - 2,407 [Star Trek: AOS, remix]
6. Four by Four - 2,241 [Homestuck, chaptered, WIP]
7. Sparkly Rainbow Blood - 2,224 [Homestuck]
8. An Intricate Courtship Process - 2,212 [Homestuck]
9. Ass O'Clock in Dusseldorf - 2,121 [Homestuck]
10. Dreamers of the Day - 2,004 [Inception]

This is exactly the same 10 fics as last year. They have simply rearranged themselves a bit -- "Four by Four" and "A History of Handcrafts" have moved up while "Sparkly Rainbow Blood," "An Intricate Courtship Process," and "Ass O'Clock in Dusseldorf" have moved down. The top four and "Dreamers of the Day" have stayed put.

It never ceases to fascinate me that "What Isn't Broken" is so disproportionately popular compared to the rest of my work on AO3. It has nearly twice as many hits as the next-most-read story, and also twice as many bookmarks (99) as my next-most-bookmarked story. (That would be Giant Robot Mayhem Doesn't Happen in a Day, at 50, but that fic has only been posted for a month so things may change by next year.) And while "What Isn't Broken" is not quite winning the kudos race, I'm sure that's only because the kudos button wasn't implemented until after Remix Redux 2010.

On that note, here are the top ten by number of kudos )

I'm not going to do lists by number of bookmarks or comment threads, but I will say for the record that the bookmark list would be pretty similar to the two lists I did write out in full. The comment list, on the other hand, would pull up some very different stories. That is entirely because of what I call the Yuletide effect -- Yuletide being a fest with a culture of active commenting instead of (or in addition to) merely leaving kudos, perhaps as a holdover from its pre-kudos-button years, or perhaps because tiny fandoms of the heart inspire greater enthusiasm and a wish to communicate with others who also love your particular tiny and obscure sources of joy.

The Effects of Bullying Are Lifelong

Apr. 18th, 2014 07:55 pm
[syndicated profile] alas_a_blog_feed

Posted by Ampersand

From PolicyMic:

For decades, a research team at King’s College London has been tracking a group of 7,771 people from England, Scotland and Wales who were all born in the same week in 1958. At age 7 and 11, their parents were asked to provide information on whether the children had been bullied. More than one in four had occasionally been bullied, while 15% were bullied frequently. Then later in life, the participants were asked to check in periodically and provide feedback on their health.

What the researchers found was shocking: At age 50, those who had been frequently bullied as a child were much more likely to have depression, anxiety, suicidal thoughts and poor physical health than those who were not. In addition, they were less likely to have higher education degrees, high-paying jobs, romantic partners or social support. Even when childhood intelligence levels were taken into account, these adults also scored lower on cognitive IQ tests. In general, they reported lower quality of life and satisfaction.

"The impact of bullying is persistent and pervasive, with health, social and economic consequences lasting well into adulthood," said Ryu Takizawa, the lead author of the paper.

Carmina 2, Catullus

Apr. 18th, 2014 01:45 pm
lnhammer: animation of the kanji for four seasonal birds fading into each other in endless cycle (birds)
[personal profile] lnhammer posting in [community profile] poetry
Catullus 2

Sparrow, my lady's pet,
with whom she often plays whilst she holds you in her lap,
or gives you her finger-tip to peck and
provokes you to bite sharply,
whenever she, the bright-shining lady of my love,
has a mind for some sweet pretty play,
in hope, as I think, that when the sharper smart of love abates,
she may find some small relief from her pain--
ah, might I but play with you as she does,
and lighten the gloomy cares of my heart!
This is as welcome to me as (they say)
to the swift maiden was the golden apple,
which loosed her girdle too long tied.

tr. by H.J. Walker

original text )


Apr. 18th, 2014 03:43 pm
yhlee: icosahedron (d20) (d20 (credit: bag_fu on LJ))
[personal profile] yhlee
Random links? I'm trapped at Joe's work. Foxes especially appreciated. Here's my linkcontribution: Vegetarian fox is just babysitting [Cheezburger.com].

Alternately, let's play shag, marry, toss off a cliff! Anyone?

every dance friday is a good friday

Apr. 18th, 2014 04:26 pm
glass_icarus: (hp: mwpp up to no good)
[personal profile] glass_icarus
Happy things:

1. Dancing tonight!!

2. I finished Heyer's Cotillion and it was fantastic, and I don't think it is a spoiler to say that I think Freddy is the greatest, heh. :D

3. Reorganizing the closet, I stumbled upon a pile of BPAL things from a few years ago that I never really got round to trying! I tried one that seems to have aged well (Crow Moon) and which smells interesting enough on me that I may keep it, but knowing my usage habits, there's little point in me attempting thirteen more smell tests at this late date... I can put up a list, if anyone is interested?

4. Are All the Break-Ups in Your Poems Real?

If by real you mean as real as a shark tooth stuck
in your heel, the wetness of a finished lollipop stick,
the surprise of a thumbtack in your purse—
then Yes, every last page is true, every nuance,
bit, and bite. Wait. I have made them up—all of them—
and when I say I am married, it means I married
all of them, a whole neighborhood of past loves.
Can you imagine the number of bouquets, how many
slices of cake? Even now, my husbands plan a great meal
for us—one chops up some parsley, one stirs a bubbling pot
on the stove. One changes the baby, and one sleeps
in a fat chair. One flips through the newspaper, another
whistles while he shaves in the shower, and every single
one of them wonders what time I am coming home.

-- Aimee Nezhukumatathil
[syndicated profile] arstechnica_science_feed

Posted by John Timmer

With the last support being pulled away, LADEE departs for the Moon.

LADEE, NASA's mission to study the thin lunar atmosphere, came to a close on the far side of the Moon last night (US time), as its controllers had it smash into the lunar surface. NASA's policy is to treat the locations of the Moon landings as historical sites, and it takes pains to preserve them from possible damage. LADEE didn't have the fuel to control its orbit indefinitely. As a result, the controllers had been preparing to terminate the probe for several weeks.

The preparations included having it complete several orbits at an altitude below one mile, (1.6km), giving its scientific instruments a rare, close-up view of the Moon. In addition to its scientific missions, LADEE was used to test a new, laser-based communication system that set space bandwidth records: 622 megabits-per-second down from lunar orbit, with a 20mbps upload rate.

The exact moment of impact isn't clear, since the precise terrain it hit couldn't be determined in advance. (If it hit a ridge, it would have happened earlier than if LADEE plowed across a plain. What is clear is that the impact destroyed the probe.

Read 2 remaining paragraphs | Comments

[syndicated profile] best_american_poetry_feed

Posted by The Best American Poetry

Here is David Lehman's response to Peter Brooks' review of The Strange Case of Paul de Man which ran on April 3, 2014. Lehman's letter appears in the May 8, 2014 issue of the NYRB. To the Editors: Evelyn Barish’s biography of Paul de Man has its faults, but she deserves a better—and more nearly disinterested—review than the despicable treatment she suffers at the hands of de Man’s old crony Peter Brooks [“The Strange Case of Paul de Man,” NYR, April 3]. Brooks insinuates that Barish’s book found its inspiration in Patricia Highsmith’s The Talented Mr. Ripley, a novel (later...

oursin: Brush the wandering hedgehog dancing in his new coat (Brush the wandering hedgehog dancing)
[personal profile] oursin

Let's stroll )

Like we're Walking' the Dog )

Or even Walking in the Rain )

(Though in that case, we might start looking for a Bus stop )

For the mad variety we might Walk Like an Egyptian )

Before we Walk Right Back )

for a nice sit-down.
[syndicated profile] arstechnica_science_feed

Posted by David Kravets

A climate scientist widely known for the "hockey stick" graph of recent temperatures has won the right to keep his e-mail private amid unsubstantiated allegations he might have rigged research data.

Virginia's top court ruled Thursday that Michael Mann's electronic communications, generated while he was a professor at the University of Virginia, are a shielded, "proprietary" [PDF] work product.

The Energy Environmental Institute, formerly the American Tradition Institute, and a local lawmaker sought the e-mail under the state's Freedom of Information Act. The institute objects to claims that global warming is caused by greenhouse gas emissions.

Read 4 remaining paragraphs | Comments

Friday linkspam

Apr. 18th, 2014 01:01 pm
jae: (internetgecko)
[personal profile] jae
English links:

US National Public Radio has a story on a non-expert who's curiously good at predicting world events, to the point where she's better than the real experts.

From the Literary Review of Canada, a wonderful description of "the two Albertas" and how the Alberta divide has been misread in the rest of the country. Read this if you have an interest in Canada, Albertan or no.

More on Canadian politics, this time in much more of an "inside baseball" vein: Alice Funke from the Pundits' Guide does a riding-by-riding analysis of why the law that added new ridings might not in fact have helped the Conservatives maintain their majority.

Remember my bogglement over noticing that Oliver North had a writing credit in an upcoming episode of The Americans? Here's the story of how that happened (from the New York Times).

When I was doing language research for one of my fan stories, I stumbled upon a particularly interesting Russian language and culture blog. That story is long since written, but I've kept reading because the blogger's thoughts on language learning are so similar to mine. Here's one of her latest, about how to really learn a language, you have to get rid of the notion that it's important to start with the easy parts and only then move to the harder parts.

And speaking of language and writing, here's a piece about how the Mad Men writing team manages to avoid linguistic anachronisms most of the time.

Critic Andy Greenwald from Grantland on the new season of Orphan Black (I am just loving everything this guy writes lately).

The Dissolve on the difference between film criticism and TV criticism.

I have been watching Scandal again and rolling my eyes a lot. This sums it up, pretty much. I'll give it the rest of the season, but if it gets any acting Emmy nominations, I won't be responsible for my actions.

Remember the video of Frozen's "Let It Go" in 25 different languages, line by line? Here's a version with all of the original singers instead of the clip from the film. <3

Emma Donoghue's bestseller Room is being made into a film. Boy, does that ever have the potential to be awful (though I will reserve judgment!).

This video of today's kids' reactions to being presented with an old Walkman from the 80s is sooooo hilarious. (And wow, are we ever old. :)

Segregation Forever

Apr. 18th, 2014 06:00 pm
[syndicated profile] tanehisicoates_feed

Posted by Ta-Nehisi Coates

A few weeks ago I wrote skeptically of the jaunty uplifting narrative that sees white supremacy's inevitable defeat. One reason I was so skeptical was because I'd been reading the reporting of Nikole Hannah-Jones. If you haven't read her coverage on housing segregation you should. And then you should read her piece from this month's magazine on the return of segregation in America's schools:

Schools in the South, once the most segregated in the country, had by the 1970s become the most integrated, typically as a result of federal court orders. But since 2000, judges have released hundreds of school districts, from Mississippi to Virginia, from court-enforced integration, and many of these districts have followed the same path as Tuscaloosa’s—back toward segregation. Black children across the South now attend majority-black schools at levels not seen in four decades. Nationally, the achievement gap between black and white students, which greatly narrowed during the era in which schools grew more integrated, widened as they became less so.

In recent years, a new term, apartheid schools—meaning schools whose white population is 1 percent or less, schools like Central—has entered the scholarly lexicon. While most of these schools are in the Northeast and Midwest, some 12 percent of black students in the South now attend such schools—a figure likely to rise as court oversight continues to wane. In 1972, due to strong federal enforcement, only about 25 percent of black students in the South attended schools in which at least nine out of 10 students were racial minorities. In districts released from desegregation orders between 1990 and 2011, 53 percent of black students now attend such schools, according to an analysis by ProPublica.

Hannah-Jones profiles the schools in Tuscaloosa where business leaders are alarmed to see their school system becoming more and more black, as white parents choose to send their kids to private (nearly) all-white academies or heavily-white schools outside the city. It's worth noting that the school at the center of Hannah-Jones' reporting--Central High School--was not a bad a school. On the contrary it was renowned for its football team as well its debate team.

But this did very little to slow the flight of white parents out of the district. (This is beyond the scope of Nikole's story, but I'd be very interested to hear more about the history of housing policy in the town.) Faced with the prospect of losing all, or most of their white families, Tuscaloosa effectively resegregated its schools. 

There doesn't seem to be much of a political solution here. It's fairly clear that integration simply isn't much of a priority to white people, and sometimes not even to black people. And Tuscaloosa is not alone. I suspect if you polled most white people in these towns they would honestly say that racism is awful, and many (if not most) would be sincere. At the same time they would generally be lukewarm to the idea of having to "do something" in order to end white supremacy.

Ending white supremacy isn't really in the American vocabulary. That is because ending white supremacy does not merely require a passive sense that racism is awful, but an active commitment to undoing its generational effects. Ending white supremacy requires the ability to do math--350 years of murderous plunder are not undone by 50 years of uneasy cease-fire. 

An latent commitment to anti-racism just isn't enough. But that's what we have right now. With that in mind, there is no reason to believe that a total vanquishing of white supremacy is necessarily in the American future. 

"History," said President Barack Obama recently. "Travels not only forwards, history can travel backwards...Our rights, our freedoms -- they are not given. They must be won. They must be nurtured through struggle and discipline and persistence and faith."

Indeed. But for right now, the struggle for integration is largely over.

Daily Check-in: Day 18

Apr. 18th, 2014 01:26 pm
annotated_em: close shot of a purple crocus (Default)
[personal profile] annotated_em posting in [community profile] writethisfanfic
Hey, all! Hope Friday is treating you well!

Open to: All, detailed results viewable to: All, participants: 3

What have you been working on today?

View Answers

0 (0.0%)

1 (33.3%)

1 (33.3%)

Sending stuff to beta
0 (0.0%)

0 (0.0%)

0 (0.0%)

Replying to feedback
0 (0.0%)

1 (33.3%)

On a scale from Argh to Whee, how are you feeling today?

View Answers
Mean: 4.00 Median: 4 Std. Dev 0.82
Argh 10 (0.0%)
20 (0.0%)
31 (33.3%)
41 (33.3%)
51 (33.3%)
60 (0.0%)
70 (0.0%)
80 (0.0%)
90 (0.0%)
Whee! 100 (0.0%)

Looking back on the week, how have you done on fulfilling your writing plans? Are things going well, badly, or somewhere in between?
[syndicated profile] best_american_poetry_feed

Posted by The Best American Poetry

Daniel Nester Interviews Me You write sestinas. Why the sestina? What attracts you to the sestina? How many sestinas have you written? Are you a sestina nut? Do you remember the first sestina you ever read? What’s your favorite sestina? You’ve written how many sestinas in how many years? Undergraduate sestinas? Graduate school sestinas? Thesis composed entirely of sestinas? How many sestinas do you write a year? Do you do a sestina a month? A sestina a week? A sestina a day? The sestina is a strenuous form. Do your sestinas succeed? Do your sestinas surprise? Are your sestinas quick...

writing: statistics

Apr. 18th, 2014 12:49 pm
yhlee: (SKU: Anthy/Utena (credit: sher))
[personal profile] yhlee
42 stories published at some point by my count.

Male main characters/protags: 14
Female main characters/protags: 28
Unspecified sex/gender/whatever: 2
Also, "characters" is meaningless applied to "A Vector Alphabet of Interstellar Travel," which is doing the Olaf Stapledonian thing with civilizations, sorry.
Of those characters, one (Loi Ruharn from "Wine") is FtM; everyone else is defaulted to cis.

Het main characters/protags: 6
Lesbian main characters/protags: 2
Bi main characters/protags: 1
Everyone else defaults to unspecified. (Well. Shuos Jedao is bi in Ninefox Gambit but there is zero evidence for this in "The Battle of Candle Arc," so I have him listed as unspecified. I really doubt he had any time to think about sex at Candle Arc.)
Um. I have one gay male pair in "Echoes Down an Endless Hall," whom I managed to kill off, although I also killed off the entire rest of that squadron except the one dude who...escapes only to be brainwashed and cyborged by his own side.

Yeeeeeeeeeah this needs work, although I am super super super reluctant to write trans* characters not because trans* characters are evil but because I'm trans* and I really don't feel like bleeding onto the page for other people's freaking entertainment reading, thankyouverymuch.

cut for raw data )


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