athelind: (Default)
Because really, what could I possibly add?



athelind: (canned hate)
Why do people pretend that summer isn't just a little taste of hell?

Let's leave out the fact that the waking hours and the working hours and the bleeping COMMUTING hours are a stifling, uncomfortable sweatbath. I HATE having to sleep with my door open to avoid baking. I HATE watching my computer get slower and slower as it gets hotter and hotter. I HATE not being able to wear my big black pea coat or anything else with a modicum of style and flair.

I like longer days, but that's IT. You know what? I can turn on a damned LIGHT.

And there we go: the one thing I LIKE about summer -- Daylight Saving Time -- is what everyone else WHINES about.

I swear, the next time I hear the radio blurt something inane about 90-plus temperatures being "nice weather", I am going to turn my car around, drive to the station, and PUNCH someone. It's only "nice" if you can get OUT of it; if you don't have AC, it's just heatstroke.

Don't think I don't know about "real weather" because I live in California, either. That's by CHOICE, and not a choice made in a vacuum. I've traveled a LOT. I've spent summers in Texas and Arkansas and any number of places that get HUMIDITY.

Yes, they're even worse. The weather in every place east of Interstate 5 is more loathesome than where I live. I know that from experience.

Don't tell me not to bitch, though. Ebola is worse than the bubonic plague, but that doesn't mean that blackened, swelling lymph nodes are PLEASANT.

Especially when it happens three to five months out of every single year.

So yeah. Bleep this. Bleep this in the censored with an expletive deleted wrapped in barbed wire and bathed in the blank of blankitty blank bleep.


athelind: (cue howard)
To all the newscasters and DJs who report on temperatures in the high 80s into the 90s by saying "we're finally getting some nice weather":

You insouciant prats go right from your air-conditioned homes to your air-conditioned cars to your air-conditioned offices, then back again at the end of the day, don't you?

No tossing and turning trying to find the cool spot on the mattress. No desperate calculations of just when or whether it will be less uncomfortable to open the windows to the outside world or keep everything sealed up to try to keep the heat out.

There was a long, long drought in California back in the '70s. Three or four years of little-or-no rain, Santa Ana winds alternating with the marine layer, and every day, the news would talk about how devastating it was for the state's economy, how miserable it was for the state's populace. Of course, as soon as we got a day or two of scattered showers, they'd complain about the "awful weather" and how it would be "nice" again at the end of the week.

That's bad enough in Southern California. The local broadcasters need to understand that, if any of us here thought hot weather was "nice", we wouldn't have moved to San Francisco Bay.

[livejournal.com profile] kohai_tiger, I might be running a little late. I need to stop by the KFOX studios and punch Greg Kihn.


athelind: (DRAGON!)
Thanks to everyone who's linked me to today's shirt.woot.



Evidently, everyone's immediate reaction to the design is ATHELIND!!

Yes, I've already ordered one.


athelind: (Default)
FC is almost here!

Your Obedient Serpent is happy and excited and looking forward to seeing everyone—but Your Obedient Serpent has had one hellacious, traumatic year, so I might be a little more bitey than expected.

In which bitey dragon is bitey. RAR! )

Be Seeing You!
athelind: (copywrong)
Someone posted a friends-locked poll about the sharing of copyrighted materials, and asked for comments; I wanted to share my response publicly.

The biggest problem with "illegal copying" is copyright law, not the copying itself. The entire body of copyright law needs massive, wholesale revision to preserve the rights of the end-user and the actual creators; at the moment, all the power and authority lie with the corporate middlemen, at the expense of everyone else, and that cart's just careening down the slippery slope to Syrinx.

Personally? I don't indulge in illicit file sharing myself, for two reasons:

One: the media industry are such raging assholes about it, have the lawmakers under their thumb, and are more than willing to retroactively enforce new, more restrictive laws on whatever they might find lurking on your hard drive, even if it predates those laws.

Two: if someone, be it an individual artist or an international megacorporation, refuses to make their product available through any of the convenient, inexpensive distribution channels that I can access easily -- say, Cable On Demand, or Hulu, or whatever -- you know what? I don't need their product badly enough to break the law to get it.

I cannot emphasize that point strongly enough:

Illegal copying is not an act of rebellion. It's an act of submission. It's telling the big companies that their product is of such vital importance to you that you're willing to risk fines, net access, and jail time to get it.

Me? I'm not even willing to deal with minor irritations. Sure, I enjoy watching The Venture Brothers, but if it's a choice between staying up past midnight when I have to get up early on a Monday morning, or putting up with the stuttery, spazzy, chapter-skipping Adult Swim site, I'll just opt out entirely.


athelind: (Eye: RCA Magic Eye)
I seem to be the last person to know this, but Bob Basset, the Russian leatherworker who does those magnificent dragon bags and masks and those equally-impressive cyberpunk/steampunk/forcepunk gasmask-helmet-things, has a LiveJournal feed, so you can see the cool stuff he's cranking out a couple of times a week.

Be advised: Basset also does the occasional BDSM-related gear—he's a leatherworker, after all*—so you might want to filter the feed if you read LJ at work.

For those not familiar with his work:

This is a messenger bag.



*Egregious Stereotype.
athelind: (fascism)

White House Caves on Miranda Rights



We don't need to read terrorist suspects their Miranda rights! This is a Public Safety Matter, based on realistic case scenarios from the best U.S. policy thinktanks!

Don't worry! Nobody could ever get falsely accused of terrorism!

... why would you even think that such a thing could apply to you, hmmmm? Maybe we should keep an eye on you ....

Like I said a few days ago, I'll celebrate my country's independence when it happens.

As I was typing this, the radio just blabbed an ad for a local TV news series inciting panic because the restrictions governing where sex offenders can live can't be applied to homeless people, because they don't have an address. ONOES! Homeless people are out to rape your children!

I am so fucking tired of fearmongering.

athelind: (kill everybody)
[Error: unknown template qotd]

What do you think the lower age limit should be for LiveJournal and other social networks, and why?

Thirty to thirty-five.

Git offa my damn lawn.


athelind: (AAAAAA)
Came home bitey. Not work-related, Universe-related. Cynicism turned up to 11.

In a word, RAAR.

This requires a song.






It's not a game--it's just a rout! )

I already feel better.
Listening to Mr. Aday belt out existential rage
is like primal scream therapy.

athelind: (weird science)
Why is it so hard to find a portable radio or, hell, even an entertainment center-style stereo that has a nice row of programmable radio buttons, so you don't have to twiddle up and down the dial every time some hockey game clutters up your classic rock station?


Comments from people who don't listen to the radio because of technology X, Y, or Z will be deleted. Do not open Pandora's Box.
athelind: (Default)
Why is it so hard to find a portable radio or, hell, even an entertainment center-style stereo that has a nice row of programmable radio buttons, so you don't have to twiddle up and down the dial every time some hockey game clutters up your classic rock station?


Comments from people who don't listen to the radio because of technology X, Y, or Z will be deleted. Do not open Pandora's Box.
athelind: (lizard fetish)
Most of the news outlets are nattering on and on about Apple's new tablet as today's top story.

NPR, however, knows what's really important.


athelind: (Default)
Most of the news outlets are nattering on and on about Apple's new tablet as today's top story.

NPR, however, knows what's really important.


athelind: (outrage)
A lot of people keep defending President Obama's mediocre track record on progressive causes,* citing the close margin he has, and occasionally even acknowledging that he can't even rely on his own party members in Congress.

[livejournal.com profile] bradhicks points out that Roosevelt, Johnson, and every other President who managed to accomplish anything of lasting significance faced the same kind of opposition, but knew how to use the power, prestige, and clout of the Chief Executive of the United States to get shit done.

The ones who didn't?

They didn't accomplish jack shit, for any cause, progressive or otherwise.

This is not the change I voted for.


*Most of his defenders also ignore his reprehensible track record in sustaining and expanding frankly regressive causes, including some of the worst stances of the Bush Junta on privacy, security, and copyright law, just to name a few.
athelind: (Default)
A lot of people keep defending President Obama's mediocre track record on progressive causes,* citing the close margin he has, and occasionally even acknowledging that he can't even rely on his own party members in Congress.

[livejournal.com profile] bradhicks points out that Roosevelt, Johnson, and every other President who managed to accomplish anything of lasting significance faced the same kind of opposition, but knew how to use the power, prestige, and clout of the Chief Executive of the United States to get shit done.

The ones who didn't?

They didn't accomplish jack shit, for any cause, progressive or otherwise.

This is not the change I voted for.


*Most of his defenders also ignore his reprehensible track record in sustaining and expanding frankly regressive causes, including some of the worst stances of the Bush Junta on privacy, security, and copyright law, just to name a few.
athelind: (hoard potato)

Multiple Choice Dragon Game


(Found by [livejournal.com profile] normanrafferty)

This was too much fun -- as in, "I'll check this out, but I really can't spend much time on it this morning. Well, maybe a few more pages. Oh, hell, I'm done!"

But all told, it only took about 20-30 minutes, and some of that was getting up for coffee. Some mornings, torching a few knights and conquering a kingdom or two are just what you need to wake up and face the day.

It's a Multiple-Choice Text Game, in the tradition of those venerable Choose Your Own Adventure books. Clever addition: your actions and choices directly influence your attributes, and those, apparently, have further impact on your successes in your later endeavours.

The core Attributes are arranged in opposed pairs: as one of a pair goes up, the other goes down. They're delightfully Draconic:

Brutality vs. Finesse
Cunning vs. Honor
Disdain vs. Vigilance


As the game progresses, you also accumulate Infamy, Wealth, and Wounds -- well, some of you might accumulate the last; Your Obedient Serpent went unscathed until the grand finale, and still took only a single Wound as he dispatched his adversary.

This was a pleasant diversion, perfectly suited to the grauphy mood I found myself in upon awakening -- and quite probably the only time you'll ever see a computer game review in this blog.

athelind: (Default)

Multiple Choice Dragon Game


(Found by [livejournal.com profile] normanrafferty)

This was too much fun -- as in, "I'll check this out, but I really can't spend much time on it this morning. Well, maybe a few more pages. Oh, hell, I'm done!"

But all told, it only took about 20-30 minutes, and some of that was getting up for coffee. Some mornings, torching a few knights and conquering a kingdom or two are just what you need to wake up and face the day.

It's a Multiple-Choice Text Game, in the tradition of those venerable Choose Your Own Adventure books. Clever addition: your actions and choices directly influence your attributes, and those, apparently, have further impact on your successes in your later endeavours.

The core Attributes are arranged in opposed pairs: as one of a pair goes up, the other goes down. They're delightfully Draconic:

Brutality vs. Finesse
Cunning vs. Honor
Disdain vs. Vigilance


As the game progresses, you also accumulate Infamy, Wealth, and Wounds -- well, some of you might accumulate the last; Your Obedient Serpent went unscathed until the grand finale, and still took only a single Wound as he dispatched his adversary.

This was a pleasant diversion, perfectly suited to the grauphy mood I found myself in upon awakening -- and quite probably the only time you'll ever see a computer game review in this blog.

Skreee?

Nov. 2nd, 2009 12:11 pm
athelind: (lizard fetish)

Skreee?

Nov. 2nd, 2009 12:11 pm
athelind: (Default)
athelind: (AAAAAA)
Desired Title.

My "Desired Title" is "Lord Chief Justice, Chancellor of the Exchequer, Master of the Buckhounds, Lord High Auditor, Coroner, Archbishop of Titipu, Groom of the Back Stairs, and Lord High Everything Else", but I'll settle for "Lead Cartographer: Mars Terraforming Fleet".

I mean, what the frak? Who cares what they're called? Is someone looking for a "Hydrographic Technician" going to blow off my posted resume because I have "GIS Specilaist" listed?

One of these sites basically hijacked my resume submission to somewhere else, and then demanded that I fill in their extra blanks before I could change the (really obnoxiously obvious) password they sent me; I'm tempted to put some sarcastic title there just to blow off steam.


(They also have a "delete resume" button, which I'm tempted to hit. Am I gonna get anything but spam from http://hotresumes.com?)
Update: I hit it.
athelind: (Default)
Desired Title.

My "Desired Title" is "Lord Chief Justice, Chancellor of the Exchequer, Master of the Buckhounds, Lord High Auditor, Coroner, Archbishop of Titipu, Groom of the Back Stairs, and Lord High Everything Else", but I'll settle for "Lead Cartographer: Mars Terraforming Fleet".

I mean, what the frak? Who cares what they're called? Is someone looking for a "Hydrographic Technician" going to blow off my posted resume because I have "GIS Specilaist" listed?

One of these sites basically hijacked my resume submission to somewhere else, and then demanded that I fill in their extra blanks before I could change the (really obnoxiously obvious) password they sent me; I'm tempted to put some sarcastic title there just to blow off steam.


(They also have a "delete resume" button, which I'm tempted to hit. Am I gonna get anything but spam from http://hotresumes.com?)
Update: I hit it.
athelind: (AAAAAA)

RAAAAAAAAR.




This has been a test of the Emergency Dragon System. Had this been an actual dragon, you would have been devoured, and fiery carnage would have rained from the skies.
athelind: (Default)

RAAAAAAAAR.




This has been a test of the Emergency Dragon System. Had this been an actual dragon, you would have been devoured, and fiery carnage would have rained from the skies.
athelind: (eco-rant)
I announced today, to my FurryMUCK clique, that I didn't want to see any more trailers for Monster Hunter 3. The game doesn't just annoy me: it actively pisses me off, and worse, it makes me think badly not only of gamers in general but of Japanese culture, in wide, bigoted swaths.

The game is beautifully animated, and the eponymous monsters of the title are magnificently designed. Every trailer looks like a wonderful Discovery Channel nature documentary of a world that never was, full of dinosaurs and dragons and even more exotic creatures -- right up until you get to the gameplay, which involves killing things and dismembering them for their body parts to make cheesy, tawdry consumer goods kewl weapons and armor and magic items.

It's jarring.

The generation that grew up on Cute And Fuzzy Cockfighting Seizure Monsters has graduated to Heroic Head-Bashing Harp Seal Hunters. Look at these marvelous creatures! The loving detail that went into their creation! The magnificent, balletic fluidity of their motion! LET'S HIT THEM WITH CLUBS!

This is a game that comes from one of the last whaling nations on Earth. I'm sorry -- this is that "wide, bigoted swath" I mentioned -- but I can't help but see a connection.

This doesn't piss me off as a guy who pretends to be a dragon online. This pisses me off as an Environmental Scientist, and a human being raised with some semblance of decency and empathy toward the natural world.

I don't put much credence into combat games as "murder simulators", but I do think the prevalent attitude these games have that animals serve no purpose other than to exploit, enslave or slaughter provides a bad example.

I wish I could believe that this was meant ironically, or as a commentary on the exploitation of the natural world. The unambitious modeling and jerky animation of the player avatars certainly suggests that; they're raw, brutish intrusions on the elegantly savage ballet of the "monsters". A decade of Happy Cartoony Cockfighting Games For Little Children makes that hard, though.


And after all that self-righteous ranting to my homies about how terrible it is to brainwash kiddies into seeing the slaughter and exploitation of magnificent animals as something fun and exciting, I announced that I was gonna go grab a burger before work.
And then, at work, I was chatting with two of my regular customers, and one of them said, "you really need to get a PSP. Do you have any consoles at all? There's this game..."
"Funny thing, that", said I...

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