piranha: red origami crane (Default)
following one link to the next to the next had me ending up at this new york times article: 32 innovations that will change tomorrow. there are some interesting items on the list, and some i sincerely hope never happen, but this one stood out for its instant annoyance factor:

If you slump down when you’re typing on an ErgoSensor monitor by Philips, it’ll suggest that you sit up straighter. To help office workers avoid achy backs and tired eyes, the device’s built-in camera follows the position of your pupils to determine how you are sitting. Are you too close? Is your neck tilted too much? Algorithms crunch the raw data from the sensor and tell you how to adjust your body to achieve ergonomic correctness. The monitor can also inform you that it’s time to stand up and take a break

me, i'm waiting for the ergosensor that can adjust my desk and the monitor to be more ergonomically sound, instead of just pestering ME to change according to a one-size-fits-all template, i accept that us adapting to machines is necessary as a temporary measure until we've figured out machinery that adjusts to us, but some people seem to not even be aware that this is a worthwhile goal.

when it comes to computers and software in that regard, bret victor has some excellent ideas, and i hope i'll live to see them be implemented. this (long; set aside an hour) video was my introduction to some of his ideas.
piranha: red origami crane (Default)
the *poing* pointed me at this LJ entry about helping people, and i think more people might benefit from reading it.

i've always been a person who needed help in a very different way from everyone i grew up with, so part of this dawned on me very early. like the original poster, i need to be left alone to process, and anyone trying to "help" in other ways ends up adding to my stress. i decided back then that the much-vaunted "golden rule" was completely useless, and for a while i operated under the "reverse golden rule" -- don't do to others what you'd hate having done to yourself. that worked a lot better. but some years later i realized that it, too, didn't actually work well enough -- fortunately i am big on consent, and that meant i'd better ask somebody what kind of help they wanted instead of just leaving them alone when they didn't explicitly ask for help. so yeah, no rule whatsoever; individual consideration instead. it still doesn't work for people who require mind-reading to feel good about offered help, since i don't always succeed at that, but it's made a huge difference.

the original poster's last line is short and pithy, and for once pithy doesn't stand in the way, since it can be applied to either side: don't help me, help me.
piranha: red origami crane (Default)
the *poing* just sent me this in IM, an article by clay shirky written in 2003. why did i not see this before? it's quite brilliant.

some of us have seen those effects several times over.
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There comes a time in every science writer’s career when one must write about glass duck vaginas and explosive duck penises.

ooooo-kay. i knew that drakes (male ducks) are not gentle lovers, but that instead they generally rape their sex partners, which don't necessarily have to be female, ducks, or heck, even alive. what i didn't know is that apparently evolution has served female ducks with the ability to sidetrack the drake's ejaculation into a blind alley of the duck cloaca if she doesn't like him. and in turn drakes have developed explosive corkscrew penises.

read more about it (with high-speed duck penis video!)

thanks to [personal profile] redroanchronicles for today's sex ed.
piranha: red origami crane (Default)
while going through my circle for the first time in a long time, i see that i should have done this sooner. there are some fascinating new people who have subscribed to me, and i am enjoying all this new exposure.

not much more time tonight, but i gotta link to at least two:

[personal profile] bettina posted photos of wales that made me want to pack my bag and head on right over there. also, she found a shrine for torchwood's ianto in cardiff bay -- how totally cool is that? i love fen.

[personal profile] bitterlawngnome posts very interesting images for which i need to take much more time. but what touched me tonight was his calendar of men. go look through the pages -- i like them all, and am alas too tired to go into all the reasons why, but some are really moving.
piranha: red origami crane (Default)
dried, brown ivy leaves cascading down over old, wide, bluish-grey fence boards

spent all day organizing stuff.

that is, when i've not been following "Mark Reads Twilight (So You Don't Have To)", which is utterly delicious. start here: http://bit.ly/zbwj4 if you're interested.
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top of my little ginkgo tree, backlit, golden-green leaves in front of dark background

as usual now, click to see larger versions.

translation of subject: is it a living creature that has divided into identical selves? from the poem "ginkgo biloba" by goethe.

still have the crud, but i think the snot tide has turned.

if you have a little time, go see some utterly amazing landscapes from mars. for screen readers: they have descriptions, but unfortunately those are very dry. i wish there were an easy way to make 3D models of some; it'd be great if you guys could feel the textures, because they are awesome.
piranha: an aye-aye, a madagaskar lemur, with ears and hair standing out from its head (funny)
click image for the recipe.

via [personal profile] telophase.
piranha: red origami crane (Default)
russian artists komar & melamid together with composer david soldier conducted an experiment about most and least wanted music.

The most favored ensemble, determined from a rating by participants of their favorite instruments in combination, comprises a moderately sized group (three to ten instruments) consisting of guitar, piano, saxophone, bass, drums, violin, cello, synthesizer, with low male and female vocals singing in rock/r&b style. The favorite lyrics narrate a love story, and the favorite listening circumstance is at home. [...]

The most unwanted music is over 25 minutes long, veers wildly between loud and quiet sections, between fast and slow tempos, and features timbres of extremely high and low pitch, with each dichotomy presented in abrupt transition. The most unwanted orchestra was determined to be large, and features the accordion and bagpipe (which tie at 13% as the most unwanted instrument), banjo, flute, tuba, harp, organ, synthesizer (the only instrument that appears in both the most wanted and most unwanted ensembles). An operatic soprano raps and sings atonal music, advertising jingles, political slogans, and "elevator" music, and a children's choir sings jingles and holiday songs.[...]

i like accordion and bagpipe. :) also flute, harp, and organ.

via [livejournal.com profile] bruceb.
piranha: red origami crane (Default)
ok, so why didn't anyone tell me about cherie m. priest before? [livejournal.com profile] the_siobhan linked to this utterly hilarious piece of writing, my stomache hurt i laughed so hard. i looked around a little and found much more to like. and i'm gonna go out and buy this woman's books now. (chalk up one more for pixel-stained technopeasant LJs.)
piranha: red origami crane (Default)
from the ladies' home journal, december 1900.

that's actually very impressive. they completely didn't expect the computer and the airplane, and they didn't dare say anything about contraception, but a lot of their expectations did come about. much of it not quite in the way they anticipated, but still. i don't think that i could do as well today.

love the preoccupation with pneumatic tubes. pneumatic tubes! i wish for them! they make my steampunky heart happy.

(via [livejournal.com profile] james_nicoll and [livejournal.com profile] epi_lj.)
piranha: red origami crane (Default)
i've decided i should at least maintain some decorum, and not make every post about smexy things, ne?

the paramour is monopolizing drynwyn (our big mac), so i am back on smite (which still needs a real mythological name, but it pleases me to log on to it :). after 3 months solely on a mac, everything feels weird, and the hot keys don't work. i should definitely go back to switching a lot between machines, so this doesn't happen again. or, you know, invest the effort of reprogramming this keyboard, since it actually has extra keys where the mac has them. yeah, that's gonna happen.

it's not quite as freezing cold outside as it has been this last week, consistently in the minus 5-6°C range. we're going without firewood this year -- because i am a useless piece of protoplasm who can't pick up the phone to order some, and because we bought a new heater, one of those orange-glowy, totally silent ones (which undoubtedly has a proper technical name, but all the sex has apparently reduced my vocabulary), and when that's pointed right at us sitting companionably next to each other, it usually feels warm enough. in bed though it's hot water bottle time to counteract the clammy sheets. also, i like roughing it. not that living in a house with an actual working heater pointed at you is really roughing it, mind.

i am babbling.

so, have a little link spam.

especially for the paramour, but i know there are others reading who'll get a chuckle out of this: cup cakes of catan via [livejournal.com profile] snippy.

i plugged this back when they started the initiative, but it's grown a lot since, and more people must hear about this because it is awesome: MIT's open courseware. it's one of my sources for japanese lessons, but there is so much here to learn, and the quality is high.
piranha: red origami crane (Default)
the minneapolis pioneer press has an article about john m. ford's memorial service that, according to [livejournal.com profile] jenett, captures something of the feel of the service quite well.

pls to ignore the ugly headline.
piranha: red origami crane (Default)
wil wheaton reviews the ST:TNG episode where no one has gone before. very funny.

Trekkies who may have begun to dislike Kosinski immediately start a fan club for him when he stops mid-stream to ask "why is this child here?" in reference to Wesley Crusher, who is working on a school project and decked out in a really sweet burnt sienna sweater, straight out of famed Klingon designer K'Talh Ba'akQoth's fall collection.

via diane duane, who co-wrote the original script for that episode, and reminisces about that.
piranha: red origami crane (Default)
ooooh! flickr has a group pool for six word stories with accompanying pictures.
piranha: red origami crane (Default)
strange, funky, cool, and ... disturbing. i don't know yet what to say about it, but wanted to post the link here so as to remind myself to spend some more time at her site.

jessica joslin makes creatures from animal bone, antlers, velvet, antique hardware, music wire, beads, glass eyes, leather, brass, pewter, fur... she finds her materials in taxidermy supply stores, antique shops, fleamarkets and wherever oddments can be found.

if taxidermy and animal bones used for other things than their original purpose bother you, you don't want to click on that link.

via [livejournal.com profile] ursulav (yeah, who else :).
piranha: red origami crane (Default)
fascinating, thoughtprovoking article by howard rheingold in wired (from 1999, but i didn't see it before) about the amish and their selective use of technology -- "does it bring us together, or draw us apart".

via [livejournal.com profile] wordweaverlynn.
piranha: red origami crane (Default)
i just came across this: http://cuddleparty.com/ and thought it sounded like just the thing for you.


piranha: red origami crane (Default)
renaissance poisson

July 2015

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