March 07, 2021

Whut

I honestly don't know what Boston Dynamics is going for with regards to customer perceptions of the firm or product messaging. But they may wish to reassess their customer relationship management. 


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From Mojave to Big Sur




...is a heck of a road trip but, to my astonishment not a great deal of trouble with regard to Mac operating systems.

I've judiciously avoided MAC updates after the Catalina fiasco last year, but now, as I try to get my Twitch channel up and running and do video editing,  I find I need the latest OS to run the associated software. 

Despite my trepidation, the update went quite smoothly. I purchased my iMac in August of 2019 and went from Mojave to the new Big Sur with no real problem. 

In stark contrast to the Catalina fiasco, almost everything works. 

There is an intermittent bug with the Apple Mail application not wanting to autoload occasionally. This affects me not at all, as I hardly use that app ever, linking directly into my mail accounts. On the rare occasions that it doesn't load it can be manually started. 

Some older applications no longer work. I'll need to get updates for them no doubt.

The most relevant issue for me is that video files of most types no longer display thumbnails when browsing through finder. VLC works fine, but .WEBMs don't. 

That's it. That's the extent of the bugs so far. 

Internet works fine. 

The new OS is not turning my spreadsheets into pixel salads, or locking my computer up and slowing everything down a crawl. 

The interface changes seem to be an actual improvement as well. 

I'm not seeing any real problems aside from the most minor issues.  The Big Sur upgrade seems to be a throwback those halcyon days of yesteryear when Apple was a hardware company that produced rock solid software for its products rather than a malware company that diffidently produces some widgets. 

It's been a whole week, and I'm honestly still waiting for the hammer to fall. 



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TFW

One makes a overlong comment on another blog, realizes it could be expanded into an actual post. Then does so but forgets to hit "publish".

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March 06, 2021

FALSE FLAG!!

In an apparent attempt to frame the competition, 2 South African one American and a Dutch V-Tuber have disguised themselves as Hololive and are now terrorizing the necromatically impaired...and themselves...and everybody else. 



Those are some really good skins. 

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March 05, 2021

A Trend I've Noticed

Scott Lowther links to a particularly silly hit piece on Elon Musk over at the Atlantic

It ends with this line: 

To laugh at Sagan’s words is to miss the point entirely: There really is only one true home for us—and we’re already here.

Lowther does a good job dismembering Shannon Stirone's twaddle,  finally  using this for an epic finishing move...

There was only one true home for us… the Olduvai Gorge. Until it wasn’t.

Yep. That's a 'fatality', and that should put to bed this particular nonsense. 

Alas. 

This seems to be a big "thing" in academia right now, and has been percolating since Musk began looking like he might actually pull it off. The arguments I've seen have ranged from environmental concern trolling like this. Safety concern trolling like this and others (to my surprise including Kim Stanley Robinson) and the idea put out by Daniel Deudney and Phil Torres that allowing people off earth is itself an existential threat as people living off planet will develop with different priorities, become different cultures and there will therefore be no alternative to war. (I wish I was being silly, but that is their argument).

I'm not a big fan of terraforming for other reasons (I'm in the Gerard O'Neal/Dandridge Cole camp) but Musk and Zubrin make a good case that the benefits of the tenuous atmosphere and myriad other resources make Mars a very attractive place to do one's crawling, standing and baby steps as humanity gets out of its cradle.

I'm pretty sure that is why there is now such a visceral reaction to this amongst upper class academe and those who the idea of the cosmos being sullied by the great unwashed plebians. 

Providence has provided those who would micromanage our lives, via vacuum and hard radiation, a natural barrier to prevent people escaping their attentions that's far more effective than the Berlin Wall.  They do not want an alternative or counterexample to the homogenized, post-discontent society they envision. The U.S. Australia, Canada, and a few others provided such safety valves in times past. To have a similar escape route unexpectedly open, just as these can taste their triumph over the human spirit must be rather disheartening.

So, while I think the more rational course is to move on from Mars to space habitats like the Stanford Torus, or O'Neil's Cylinders I do find myself willing to consider an exception to my skepticism against terraforming in the particular case of Mars. It's technically doable. (Hell, people have worked out the math on terraforming the MOON) It would be quite the scenic vacation spot and would represent a middle finger to the culture of the Handicapper General by the Culture of Excellence and Striving for Greatness and Arete. Baring the existence on Sol4 of something more advanced than a Volvox, it would harm nothing of consequence while creating vast benefits and stand as a profound testimony to the potential of Humanity and a meaningful inspiration to the children of future generations.

I'll take the future of Olaf Stapeldon over that of H.G. Wells any day of the week. Those of the opposite opinion need neither suffer nor trouble themselves about us. They can sit in repose, lords of their cradle, smugly secure in the knowledge that we deplorable fools could not possibly have survived our folly. 

And perhaps many of those who go won't. It is quite true that this is an objectively wild-eyed and potentially tragic endeavor. Space is cold, (when it's not evaporatingly hot), dark, radioactive and has, to be frank, rather poor toilet facilities and ventilation. It is not for the faint of heart or the stupid or the incompetent. It's gonna be a frontier where you have to make you own fricking air. It will take years to make it safe and generations to make it comfortable and pleasant. But it will be something of real, lasting value, and that is worth risking a lot for. 
It is, as they say,  the truly great ones who plant trees for their descendants that they will never walk in the shade of. 

There is nothing WRONG with not wanting to go into deprivation for a noble dream. In fact it's sensible. However, while I don't begrudge anyone who doesn't want to go, I'm alarmed at the surprising putch of articles demanding that this endeavor NOT BE ALLOWED. 

I really fear that these people in academe and positions of societal power will do everything they can to stop this from happening, using every tool in their legislative and cultural quivers. This is a real issue and needs to be addressed.

Don't block the safety exit. 


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On This Day in 1953

The world became a slightly better place. 




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Amelia Watson...

...broadcasting at the intersection of sedition and insurrection.


Such brazen and premeditated effrontery cannot be allowed to stand.


I'm sure YouTube will get right on that. 

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March 04, 2021

Another of Musk's Rockets is Tested

Space-X SN-10 was tested yesterday, the third in a series of launch tests that have been generally successful in breaking new ground, but that have also provided the public with more visceral entertainment. 

Well, this time they aced the launch again.
They negotiated the tricky aerobatics again as well.
But this time they nailed the landing too!
Awesome!


"What'cha suppose happened to Musk's rocket 5 minutes AFTER they landed it?
 JUST GUESS!"


In addition to asking that vital question, Mr. Manley provides us with a good overview of this inspiring and entertaining test from many different angles. 

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March 01, 2021

Wonderduck In Hospital

Wonderduck has been admitted to the hospital with what has been diagnosed as a...blood clot. Many of you know he's had cardiac issues, so this is even more troubling than it normally would be.However, word is that the prognosis is good. 


Please go send him some good cheer in his comments. 

Thanks to Ben for the heads up. 



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February 27, 2021

Robots on Mars



A very detailed and informative press conference doing an almost frame-by-frame analysis of the landing of the Perseverance Rover on Mars. For those that just want to watch the landing, the raw footage of the landing begins at 1:47:44. 

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Caution




Side effects may include anxiety, despair, suicidal thoughts, weltschmerz, existential dread, paranoia, uncontrollable urges to quote Dostoevsky, Orwell, or Huxley, general unease, and crippling cynicism. 


more...

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February 26, 2021

Questions for my Readers: Uncategorized

Isn't LOG HORIZON supposed to be out this season? Did it not get picked up by an English Language streaming service? 


What's y'alls recommendation for a VPN?

Any good shows running now that don't involve giving money to Disney?

Ordinarily, when thinking of concealed carry, I assume .380 ACP (9mm Cort). However, unforeseen circumstances have caused me to become very interested in .32 ACP. Are there any reliable defensive loads in that caliber? 

Is it safe yet to upgrade to Big Sur? Also, given that I skipped Catalina because of the horror stories,  can I upgrade straight from Mojave?

When you eat taoyaki, do you truly appreciate the effort that went into preparing it?


Art by Akai Sashimi. Support them on Booth and Fanbox!

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February 25, 2021

Here's a Ponderable


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February 24, 2021

A Critique of the First Few Episodes

...of 2021.


After the Gatling gut punch and cliffhanger that was the prequel, I was expecting some respite for the characters and  none has been forthcoming. There really needs to be SOMETHING to break the tension, a tender moment, perhaps some comedy relief.


A beach episode would be nice.

However, the writers seem to be a bunch of  disaffected boughie boys who think that the unrelenting misery and depravity of iron age comics is the hight of literary accomplishment. 

The writers are also hacks because this show is not a medical procedural, the last cour was not entertaining, and this particular emerging plotline is derivative, unoriginal, unappealing and has been done to death.

Art by Otoufu: Support him on Fanbox!

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February 23, 2021

I Hope None of My Audience Speak Swedish



'cause this is probably lewd or something. 

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Condition: UNOPENED-STILL IN BOX

Hahahaha!


Victory is mine!



Most other Cara Dune figures were either sold out, cancelled after I ordered them, or were already going for more that a hundred dollars. I still hold out a very slim hope for the FuncoPops. 

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Reflections

... upon the direction of our current discourse lurk below "the fold". 


Picture is, I do sincerely hope, unrelated. 



Art by あすてろid (Asteroid?) Support him on FANBOX and Pixiv Sketch!
more...

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February 22, 2021

Do You Have Too Many Brain Cells?

In these trying times, do you need to free up cranial space for some other purpose like like a concealed weapon, toolkit, or emergency food supply?


Well, Luna the MagiKarp can help you with that problem!

You see, she's a pretty good V-Tuber....buuuut... on Saturdays she's been doing a dramatic readings of what may be the most [ ADJECTIVES GO HERE  ] RWBY / High School DxD / Sonic the Hedgehog / Harem / Gary Stu / Hentai Fanfic in the history of ever. 

The pain begins at minute 28 with an overview of what has gone before and a brief explanation of the "stylistic quirks" that she has to cope with during her reading. The actual reading begins 41.5 minutes in and if you play it in the background will provide your day with 5 hours of pure, distilled, concentrated, and unadulterated cringe guaranteed to make you dumber.  I caught the last two hours and  when I got in from work today I burned my sausage biscuit in the microwave because I'm that stupid now. 


This is epically abominable. 


 
Luna is not responsible for writing this travesty, and her voice box suffered greatly from it. 


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February 21, 2021

There is a Helicopter ON MARS!



One of our Crack Team of Science Babe's has some commentary on the matter. 

"Uuuuu Laaaaa!" 



UPDATE: 
Oh.

Oops. 

Apologies to everyone who viewed the post in the first two hours that it was up.

I was surprised when I saw the "live feed", but figured that it was a test flight ,and, being quite busy today just linked the previous embed as part of a particularly perfunctory post and ran out to run errands. A few minutes ago I came back and checked for any more info and realized that there was none and then a comment by "David" which confirmed my unease. 

Thanks David.

I replaced the "live feed" with a recent video on Ingenuity.
The different embed retroactively makes the post technically correct...(the best kind of correct). 

It's rather interesting that You-Tube, the company that claims to care greatly about fact checking and  yeeted with prejudice anyone who mentioned the Hunter Biden story have let this chlickwhore stay up for (checks Youtube) WOW this has been up for THREE DAYS and it is still up. 

The previous embed is impressive and does look for all the world like an actual live stream with black and white video supplemented by color corrected video with an additional time delay. The vistas looked very much like Mars indeed, but it's completely fake. If you are very curious about the video that was previously embedded  it is here. I'd rather not give the people-shaped-colostomy-bag who posted it any clicks though. 

Again, I'm sorry. I'll strive to do better in the future. 

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February 19, 2021

Well This is Completely Unhelpful

Gallows humor is important for getting through dark times, but sometimes...just don't. 


Snerk.
 



Bad ad. 
Bad taste.
Poor form. 
Don't give them any more excuses.

Also: POG!

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