The Spring Solstice

Sep. 23rd, 2017 11:39 pm
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[personal profile] tcpip
In my preferred measuring of time, today marks the the three-quarter mark of the year and it has recently been eventful, rather than the reflective opportunity I take on such quarter calendar markers. The day started with a visit from [livejournal.com profile] hathhalla and [livejournal.com profile] ser_pounce for our irregular cheesequest session, which was followed with me running the third session of our Charlemagne D&D game, involving adapting The Veiled Soceity with the the historical revolt against his rule in in Friuli. Alas, the day ended with a very sad note with a message that [personal profile] caseopaya's mother has taken a turn for the worse and is now in a critical condition in hospital; a plane has been immediately booked to Perth and it is almost certain I will be embarking on the journey shortly afterwards. However, before I depart I have to attend VCAT on Tuesday to have power of financial attorney transferred to me for Rick B. and, with the universe displaying no sense of irony, the meeting of the Victorian Secular Lobby with Lesley Vick on the Dying with Dignity legislation.

On the scale of things there there is little else to report. I have been busy catching up on my PRACE supercomputing course when the opportunity presents itself, and even more so working on Papers & Paychecks at every available opportunity, especially working my way through the "sapient monsters" - cars, computers, photocopiers, fatbergs - that come to "life". There was a good game of Megatraveller on Wednesday evening with our regular group, and I have taken it upon myself to update and extend on existing javascript files for character generation to ship and world design. Finally, workwise things have been at their usual level of mad activity, with staff illnesses pushing our already tight deadlines for the GPGPU project into stormy territory. A lunch sponsored by SanDisk's Gary M., on Friday was thoroughly appreciated with a particularly high quality conversation. After that smashed my way through the somewhat tricky dependency chain for the SUMO traffic simulator. But, as mentioned, all seems to fall into insignificance at this point, even in my rational brain tells me that it is not.

[personal profile] archangelbeth on cats

Sep. 23rd, 2017 01:19 am
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[personal profile] conuly posting in [community profile] metaquotes
Cats can reproduce by budding. Make sure to dispose of all brushed fur properly.

Context needs to comb her cat more often.
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[personal profile] full_metal_ox posting in [community profile] metaquotes
[personal profile] sasha_honeypalm's musical tribute to Barbara G. Walker's (professionally published!) novel
Amazon:


Don't know much about history
Don't know much about theology
Don't know much 'bout how to write a book
Don't know how to cite the quotes I took
But I know all that I say must be true
And I know if you believed it, too
What a wonderful world this would be

Don't know much about geography
Don't know much sociology
Don't know how to understand folklore
Don't know what a reference book is for
But I do know that one god is bad
And if we'd kept the goddess we once had
What a wonderful world this would be

Now, I don't claim to be a goddess
But I'm tryin' to be
For maybe if I'm a goddess, people
You'll all worship me.

Don't know much about history
Don't know much about technology
Don't know much...


[personal profile] rosepsyche's paean to the Power of Story is also quoteworthy:

I have to call "bull" on Antiope's reasoning that art and music are inferior because they are "not alive" for another reason. No, such creations aren't living, breathing things. However (and I apologize if this gets a bit corny), the best of them can seem as if they are alive, get us invested in their characters, have us cheering about their triumphs and crying over their tragedies. They are just as valuable in their own way for their ability to entertain, to inspire, to teach, to help us grow and develop by seeing the world from a new point of view, and I don't think anyone involved in creating them would appreciate being told that their work can never compare to something that was squeezed out of a vagina.


Context sporks the world's worst Wonder Woman fanfic.

Gaming and Other Activities

Sep. 17th, 2017 10:01 pm
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[personal profile] tcpip
Have had a fairly busy week in my favourite pastime. Every day this week I've been working on finishing Papers & Paychecks as well as RPG Review 35-36, now a double issue of Antipodean gaming material. To have both out by the end of the month would be ideal, and I think that is certainly going to happen at current rates of work. Much of RPG Review has been helped by [personal profile] reverancepavane whose epic writing for RPGaDay has been nothing less than extraordinary. In actual play on Wednesday finished the classic introductory Stormbringer scenario The Tower of Yrkath Florn which includes nothing less than a Melnibonéan wheel (my calculations put the value at around $3m AUD). As I've wryly remarked this may very well be our Stormbringer; a theme which I don't think the game does well is the idea of tragedy from power. It was also a heavy Eclipse Phase weekend, with a game on Friday night which curiously was chasing down a antagonist whom the players in my Sunday game are close to encountering for the first time. Whilst a good scenario, once again I could not help but chuckle at the author's rather light idea of what a seedy "sex and drugs and gangs" red-light district would consist of - especially in a transhumanist environment.

On Friday finally managed to write up my review of The Residents concert from March last year. On Saturday attended Software Freedom Day and the LUV AGM, where I have found myself on the committee for yet another year. Afterwards went to [livejournal.com profile] usekh's memorial birthday at the Back Bar. Kudos are due to [personal profile] damien_wise for doing most of the organising of the event. Today visited St Michael's to hear Rev. Ric Holland's impressive service on forgiveness, also taking the opportunity to introduce Shupu, to the location. I hadn't been for several months and was never a regular attendee, so I was quite surprised to discover a few people remembered me. The Rev. offered to catch up for coffee some time and I certainly intend to take up that invitation. Afterwards made my way to university, and stumbled upon the a protest against racism and fascism which I attended; the media of course, concentrated on a very minor disruption, ignoring the important message that the Rohingyan refugee speaking was presenting at the same time.

[personal profile] pink_halen on eggs and cages

Sep. 12th, 2017 11:01 am
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[personal profile] conuly posting in [community profile] metaquotes
It seems that Starbucks is offering sandwiches with Cage Free Egg Whites. Personally, I never keep my egg whites in cages. Usually keeping them in their shells works just fine.

Context is free-range.

[personal profile] ivy is a stranger in a strange land

Sep. 10th, 2017 05:45 pm
rydra_wong: dreamsheep with spork and "SheepSpork" logo; no, it wouldn't make any more sense if you saw it  (dreamwidth -- sheepspork)
[personal profile] rydra_wong posting in [community profile] metaquotes
Everyone was nice to me, but I found it hard to participate in some of the conversations because everyone else there was fluent in Gearhead and I just don't care. It was all

One dude: "How do you like that model BLQ45Z?"
Other dude: "It's got pretty good flang, but the chimping bleederweep doesn't zerbert as well as I like in the corners."
First dude: "I heard that floppykush helps with the zerberting, tried that?"
Third dude: "My next squelch is gonna be a floppykush! Used to have a panpan bleederweep, but you know what they say about those oilsquirms!"
All dudes: [nod sagely and then argue]


Context is locked; QWP.
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[personal profile] tcpip
The five days of attending the NCI spring training course in Canberra over the past week was a pretty average to be honest. I really appreciate the effort put in by the trainers and their assistants, because I know how much work it is, but the course content and methodology could do with a critical and professional eye. The class sizes were too large and and the time was too long to successfully engage many present. The content was mostly good, but required more relevant hands-on activity and structured approach. Still, out of the five days I think I have enough material to put together a summary version of a single day course for researchers that need to transfer from our local HPC system to the peak national facility. Whilst my week largely consisted of "wake up, go to course, go to hotel, work, sleep; repeat", I did get the opportunity to catch up with [livejournal.com profile] taavi on the final day. Best part of the conversation was on the possibility of using input-output analysis on some of the economic records of The Palace of Nestor.

After returning late on Friday night, Saturday was spent in the company of Kerrie H., and Brendan E. Although in good spirits, Kerry has found herself in a situation where she has to sell her house and downsize, so we went to deepest suburbia where I could make use of my skills at moving heavy objects quickly. Afterwards we went back to Brendan's to have dinner at the local Indian restaurant and followed up with a few episodes of the second season of Black Jesus. I think a number of self-described Christians could learn a lot from this series, especially Australia's own Lyle Shelton whom I have cause to respond to this week. On a related matter, wrote (or rather co-wrote) Pansy Division: Notes on a Certain Petition based on events from the previous week which covers matter of the current marriage equality debate and how 'free speech' isn't an absolute right (and nor should it be). Further, have just released a newsletter for the Victorian Secular Lobby with an upcoming meeting with Lesley Vick from Dying with Dignity Victoria on the impending voluntary euthanasia legislation.

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