hirez: (Happy cycling)
Probably a moderately doomed experiment - generate post titles from an Oblique Strategies site/app and see what happens.

This is exactly the sort of retrofuture that I'd like to live in, (in which I would like to live? Up with which I will not put?) which should not even be a slight surprise since it contains old SAABs, an empty countryside and wandering robots of no obvious utility. Perhaps the cosily less-catastrophic version of Roadside Picnic/Stalker.
hirez: (Happy cycling)
The nebulous 'they' are attempting to build a bikeshed where Ma lives.

It has turned into bikeshedding.

Ma laughed like a drain when I explained.
hirez: (My name is legion)
Today I got around to properly inspecting the slide-rule I rescued when we were sorting through Pa's worldly goods.

As one might expect, the internet is not short of sites dedicated to slide-rule collection, so it didn't take that long to work out that it's quite old enough to have belonged to my grandfather. I believe that's a War Department stamp on the thing, too:

Far away )
Close up )

Which, I don't know. I don't even know what I think about that yet. I think I would perhaps like to work out how to drive the thing, just in case electricity stops unexpectedly and I am called upon to perform some hard sums.
hirez: (psyche-out (ii))
A stupid and annoying phrase that is surely destined for a Powerpoint presentation fell into my head the other week, and it went along the lines of 'Things like Github mean you have a whole pile of shit-hot hackers working for you for free'.

Assuming of course that your corporate interface to the thing like Github has enough clue to make use of the free things thus presented. Magpie and Cargo-cult are pretty much optimal anti-patterns there.

The other obvious thing is that leaving all your useful code there saves having to re-invent wheels should you have to up sticks and ply your trade elsewhere. I guess keeping that in mind also makes one aware of the need to avoid localisms.
hirez: (Default)
For $reasons, I've given libeljournal.com something of a shoeing. Since it's on Gradwell, which comes with a shell and, er, that's yer lot matey, and I make tea for people who have to support Wordpress (actually, I looked at some of the code. Oh. Dear.), and I used to have a Moveable Type install which got defaced because of some shoddy PHP (probably. It was a long time ago.) I crufted something up in Octopress and someone else's wonky theme.

The internals of that theme need a little more work.

Actually, given it's Ruby, that'll be reasons.blame_sf

Bloody javascript is still horrible, mind.
hirez: (dissent)
You ever get to that state where there are far too many half-formed thoughts steaming around in your head like bricks in a spin-dryer, and you're waiting for the first one to come leaping out the front in a hail of glass shards and builder's rubble?

Yeah, that.

I will try to illustrate some of them for the entertainment of the populace.

(i) I have half an idea that Cliffordism is... Oh. Right. So, Cliffordism: it's a state of mind first documented by Ye Severed Heads, which was in the sevs FAQ that has utterly vanished from the internet. Basically, if you dug the first album and thought all the rest were commercial shite or do-overs of the good stuff, you're a Clifford. Which kinds of generalises out to 'The first lump of music that hits you properly between the eyes when you're in your teens is going to be the stuff with the most emotional resonance and most other things will have you going 'Oh, yeah. That sounds like (blah)' unless you get lucky and happen upon something with no stylistic links to the stuff you've listened to previously.'

Anyway. I have half an idea that Cliffordism generalises out (is there a term for premature generalisation? There probably should be.) into the way you react to all sorts of things. For instance I found myself getting a bit of a monk on in re. feminism and trans issues a few months ago. This turned out to be a bit of a waste of effort on my part because the whole Janice Raymond business seems to be exactly as relevant as Erich von Daniken. (Modulo the radfem2012 thing, which, wrong gender to be sharing opinions) However it led me to wonder why I was reacting like that and, well, see previous para.
hirez: (Cooper-Clarke)
Why the seventies were a different planet: Mule Train.
hirez: (Object)
It would be wrong for me to have combined stargazing on a clear night and dancing down the middle of the street to Elvis, wouldn't it?

I mean, because it's a bit too late in the day for me to start doing anything right. Right?

(Air guitar to 'Kerosene' through the centre of Bristol's probably right out, too...)
hirez: (Pie!)
Snack? Um. Tosti kaas en ham. It always reminds me of the good bits of Euro hacker culture: "Hey, guys. Let's write some cool open-souce code, then drink beer and listen to Humppa. But first, tosti kaas!" There was a set of people from some domain registry or other giving them away at HAR2009. It wasn't the local equivalent of a kebab van, because that was the mob the other side of the nl.net guys boshing out chips and mayo.

Sarnie? Variable. This month it's the hot roast baguette from Thyme in Bath. Basically a hand-portable roast lunch, it's a complete bargain at three quid.

Starter? Lamb something-or-other from the station curry house in Whitby. That and a pint of lager means that I've survived the drive north w/o wanting to murder anyone, the bags and the car have been stashed out of the way and now I don't have to be in charge of much of anything for the next few days. It's all about slumping into the weekend.

Soup? Chicken noodle from a Jewish deli on Clarke St. in Chicago. It came in a tureen and was accompanied by about a third of a cow's worth of salt beef sarnie. I was sitting in a red vinyl booth and the vase of ice-water was refilled regularly. The experience was a compressed lump of real Americana. There were no 'Philips Petroleum' signs on the wall, and at no point did anyone express a wish that I had a nice day, which made it all the more real.

Meat? Dead cow. Singed, but not much more than that. God I am such a bloke.

Meal? Oh, right. There was this random balti place in Digbeth, more or less opposite where the Mercat used to be. We were early for either a Libitina or Rosetta gig. I'd found somewhere only slightly scary to park the Volvo, and it looked like it was going to be beer and crisps or something terrible from a burger van the far side of the market. Or the rough-looking curry house. Strangely, they were dead busy, even at six in the evening. However, they were good enough to squeeze us in, and then provide the single best curry that I have eaten in my entire life. You could taste everything. It was all the things that the colour supplements tell us a balti should be, all at once. Sublime. The car was where I left it after the gig, too.

Fast food? It's a toss-up between a large doner from the Roses Kebab House, Highgate, (nothing else has come close since) or a kebab pizza from the shop opposite the Elsinore. If you're going to go for w0rng, go big and go fast before your arteries have had a chance to react. It's the only way.

Pudding? Steamed apple as cooked by Ma. Which is probably a little too traditional. This would be my caring face.

Restaurant? I don't think I have a favourite one. Wait, there was a place in Glasgow, somewhere around where Sauchiehall Street slides into Kelvinside. I had spent the thick end of the last year failing to cope with panic attacks, and we'd beetled off to Glasgow for the weekend on one of those cheap rail travel deals they used to have when the railways were only a bit fucked, rather than utterly so. Anyway. I discovered I could remember how to unwind enough to enjoy food for food rather than a cardboard-tasting thing that stopped one from falling in a heap. Halfway through one meal or other there, I worked out that my best bet was to just walk away from the job I had, because the alternative was spontaneous combustion.

Cooking? I consider no-one expiring afterwards a success. If some of the precursor materials came from my own garden, so much the better.

Breakfast? A full english. There was a dodgy-looking caff opposite the Kentish Town Forum. Formica tables, cockney geezer in charge, usually filled with proper working people from the depot that took up the triangular space between the railway line and our post-warehouse Nathan Barley battery farm. Once a week, one table would be filled by a mob of self-conscious techies pretending they had proper jobs rather than fucking around with other people's money. Full English, Toast, Mug of Tea. Three quid. I will not find the like again.

Vice? Sometimes I eat all the raspberries.

Healthy? Mostly I eat all the raspberries. If I ever go back to a pick-your-own place, the staff are best advised to weigh me as I arrive and again as I leave, then charge me for the difference.

Drink? Extra Bastard Tea from Collona & Smalls of Bath.
hirez: (Default)
Some of the sloppiest, shoddiest, most biased, least reproducible, worst designed and most overinterpreted research in the history of science purports to provide biological explanations for differences between men and women.

[ From here]

Fuuu...

Mar. 10th, 2011 09:09 pm
hirez: (Cooper-Clarke)
http://www.pcgamer.com/2011/03/10/hawken-the-indie-mech-shooter-set-in-an-astonishing-sci-fi-megacity/

I'm not sure I do games, but I rather like the idea of a hard-boiled detective story shot by Luc Besson in that setting. That would rule.
hirez: (My name is legion)
http://www.novelr.com/2011/02/27/rich-indie-writer
http://amandahocking.blogspot.com/2010/12/how-everything-went-opposite-of-what-id.html
http://www.alanrinzler.com/blog/2011/02/19/book-bloggers-can-help-sell-your-book-tips-for-authors/

I mean, absolutely eleven out of ten and then some to the young woman for working out what she was going to be very early on and then doing it lots until it paid off.

Does this invalidate anything that one might have absorbed at, say, VP?

Nope.

Note that her advice includes editing like a demon and even then there will be bugs in it (Which will turn out to be shallow ones given the number of eyes on that source-code). Also that beetling off to speak nicely to the types who write weblogs about books is a good thing. That would likely fill me with fear and loathing, but since it's not actually relevant there's little point worrying about it.

(Money still flows toward the author, it's just no bloody use sitting there and expecting really hard. Or expectorating. Best move to the financial equivalent of Tewkesbury and buy galoshes. This is the only time I'm going to advocate moving there, mind.)
hirez: (muddy)
I was grovelling across the wykipeejah for something-or-other and found the entry for 'Espedair Street'. Reading the synopsis and looking at the list of Banks-books gave me a weird kind of combined adrenaline rush and ache because I remembered just how good it was to read it/them for the first time. A lot like the difference between a 128k mp3 through nasty sqeakers and a well-managed CD (or fresh vinyl) played on halfway-decent kit. Or the difference between a low-end digicam snap and medium-format film.

Some experiences take hold of a chap and are the sensory equivalent of wiggling your toes in the warm sand right on the tide-line. Others are... A lot like being told about something that someone else thinks you'll like, only that someone is tediously drunk and lacking in descriptive powers anyway.

Perhaps I am reading the wrong books. Perhaps I should confine myself to experiences akin to sliding into fresh bedlinen when righteously tired.
hirez: (dissent)
(Om)nom and related onomatopoeia (omnomatopoeia, presumably) - this has now appeared on the telly in the context of selling you things you don't need, therefore it is an ex-meme.

Re/action magazine - very fine indeed. Buy your own.
hirez: (Box Frenzy)
[Poll #1631145]
hirez: Humppa! (Humppa!)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pVidhrnLFf0

As far as I can work out, some jolly Clarkson-type in a hat (Jeremii Clörkksen, perhaps) pitches up at the Valmet museum and persuades the curator to warm up the V8 9000 they built, so he can take it out for a thrash. The curator is somewhat suspicious and accompanies our hat-botherer, so the thrashing is somewhat restrained.

It sounds lovely, mind.

Unlike the Seppo with the badly-mangled 900 in the 'other videos' section. W0rng.
hirez: (posing)
Dear angry and globular Citroen shed pilot. No, I will not show you my tits; yours are much larger. On the other hand, thank you for mistaking my gender. I was grinning all the way home from Oldland Common.
hirez: (Cooper-Clarke)
In much the same way that I was convinced there was a missing Hitchcock film with one of Cary Grant or James Mason, which later turned out to be a Heinlein story called 'The unpleasant profession of Jonathan Hoag', I have been quite sure that there was a Beiderbecke story concerning a secret organisation that helped people disappear. Each time I attempted to re-watch one or other of them on one of the cable channels that live in the trackless wastes between BBC4 and Eurosport, it would somehow end up being the wrong one.

Yes, I know that thirty seconds with Wikkipeejah would have solved the mystery. That site is the textual embodiment of the encyclopaedically tiresome sorts who'll wittingly spoil a good story by going 'I think you'll find...' in an annoying and strangulated manner.

I'd describe that voice as 'adenoidal' but I don't know what that sounds like. It's shorthand for a sort of person, and one just flywheels the description.

Anyway.

One of the extras in the Beiderbecke DVD set is the precursor series Get Lost! This is the missing story.

Alun Armstrong plays [livejournal.com profile] quercus with remarkable precision.

The odd thing about the not-Hitchcock is that I can see Grant (or Mason) standing in the sculpted grounds outside a modernist office building, discussing something or other with a professor-type and what I can only presume is the female lead. He is convinced he has not been there before, yet his companions are informing him of his work within.

Perhaps it is something horrible like The Fountainhead.
hirez: (safety chicken)
The Tom Gauld cartoon in the Guardian Review this week is a work of more than usual genius. Especially given the content of the last Review section. When I can find it on the interwebs, I shall link to same.

Elsewhere, the Obs. seems to have turned into a cunning PE parody of the Torygraph. Shame, that.
hirez: (Sweep alcohol)
Do you believe in Mahogany?

No. It's a made-up timber. I blame the lumber cartel.

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hirez: (Default)
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