ratcreature: Tech-Voodoo: RatCreature waves a dead chicken over a computer. (voodoo)
So I've imported my LJ to DW in 2009 and consistently crossposted from DW since, so if I rerun it now, and only import comments, will that work out like you'd want it to? I.e. I get a backup of all the newer comments on the LJ entries added to my DW entries, but older comments won't be duplicated?
ratcreature: RatCreature at the drawing board. (drawing)
[personal profile] st_aurafina is a hosting friending meme, and if you found my journal through that: welcome!

I've recently stopped crossposting to IJ (I doubt anybody noticed), because I haven't actively used that site in ages, and I have decided to disable comments on my LJ crossposts. I'm sorry if you prefer LJ for interacting, but DW has been my main journal for a long time now and I don't have my full range of icons on LJ, which I really miss when commenting there, and I'm not likely to ever pay them for icon slots again, so the recent developments gave me the push to limit commenting in one place.

It's not so much that LJ moved their servers as such, as that they don't even care enough anymore to do any announcements for their users about the move or the glitches so many experienced in either the English or the Russian LJ news. It seems a bad idea to add non-duplicated content in an infrastructure that the owners care about so little.

Finally, as always with the beginning of a year, I have good intentions to draw things, and I've noticed that it has been about three years (!) since I last offered any drawbles, so I thought it would be fun to do the drawble meme again.

The original format is as follows:

1. Comment and I'll pick one or two of your DW interests and draw you a picture.
2. You have no say as to what I draw for you or as to how much it will suck.
3. Copy this and the pic that is drawn for you into your journal. (Optional)

You can also prompt me, for example if you don't list interests, but prompts tempt people to ask for fanart they'd really like to see (their favorite rare pairing or character or such), and that ends with disappointment for everybody. Them, because they get a doodle totally mangling their cherished idea, and me because I feel inadequate at fulfilling a real wish.

The reason I like these drawbles in the first place is because they allow me to do absurd little doodles that aren't demanding, so I don't experience that vicious-cycle that I get with "proper fanart": feeling I suck because (of course) drawing attempts never look like what you imagine with your idea, and then never draw anything and thus never get any better.

Anyway, you can offer prompts to me instead going with your interests, but keep in mind that these are quick doodles, so for a prompt that is a description of some epic scene you've always wanted to see realized in fanart the results aren't going to very satisfying for you (or much fun for me). Also, I don't draw porn, and I'm not good at portrait likeness.

If you want to see the quality (or lack thereof, especially considering how very rusty I am) you can expect, look at the drawble tag or my drawble series on AO3 that collects them.

I don't make any promises for results or a timely delivery, but in the past I've usually managed to draw something for everyone who prompted me for these non-demanding, open drawble offers.
ratcreature: RL? What RL? RatCreature is a net addict.  (what rl?)
What are you all doing for image hosting these days? The recent news about developments with LJ brought home again the fact that there's a life cycle to websites and LJ hasn't been on an upswing for quite some time now. I haven't given LJ money for a while, reserving that for DW, but its Scrapbook is still what I use most to embed images.

(I haven't found a proper news announcement about their server move, but comment threads in the last DW maintenance post and on fail-fandomanon said that they've just moved their servers fully to Russia, and that they've been suspending/deleting LJs for political reasons? When looking for more info I've found mostly posts by Russian language LJs, some by former employees, like Anton Nossik, that I could only half-decipher via Google translate.)

Relatedly, does anybody know an easier way to back up your LJ Scrapbook than through the obnoxious interface? I've found some scripts from a few years ago, but they've changed Scrapbook since.
ratcreature: FAIL! (fail!)
I don't see the lock icon anymore in my style or the older default site scheme I use to display entries (I'm still sticking to XColibur there iirc), though I do see them in some other journal styles and the style I see when I use a mobile device. Is this a new way to hassle users to switch to their new site and f-list styles? Is anyone else having this problem?
ratcreature: RatCreature with an ear-trumpet: What? (what?)
It seems there are even more fundamental changes on the horizon for LJ than this "improved" friends page. In this thread of the LJ release post a user links to a thread from the ru_news announcement in which apparently someone from LJ says that for spring next year they are planning to discontinue paid accounts.

If that is true it makes sense how they keep leveling the differences between free and paid accounts, like with the Scrapbook now being available for everyone, and the customization options (that were more flexible with paid accounts) being abandoned.
ratcreature: Thank you! (thanks)
I totally forgot to post a thank you note for the anon DW fairy who gave me some points a couple of days ago. I only now renewed my account and realized that I hadn't posted a thank you. Well, better late than never. So thank you.

(The latest news of LJs upcoming "improvement" projects make me happier than ever that DW exists as alternative. Infinite scroll and site style for all flists, seriously LJ?)
ratcreature: RatCreature is scared: Meeep! (meeep!)
I wanted to take a quick shower before bed, because it was actually quite hot today and I feel sticky, but unfortunately my shower was already occupied by two spiders of different types. One of the kind that had young a while back in my toilet (most of whom seem to have shed their skin and then died or vanished, at least one day I found some husks in the net) and which seemed to retreat from another spider, which is about the same largish (for here) size, but sturdier with thicker legs and actually looks kind of scary, because it has fairly large mouthparts and is striped and stuff. I took a photo to share, and hope the spider will have used the time it takes to post this to move from the floor of my shower, because otherwise I will have to bother to catch it and throw it out somewhere to not drown the thing.

a spider )

Also, is anyone else having a problem with LJ's Scrapbook? The upload link is just not working for me right now, even though I still have space and have javascript enabled and everything. I had to upload the spider photo to my own webspace.

ETA: I had to catch and evict it to the outside after all. It didn't seem to be able to climb smooth surfaces to get out of the shower tub, at least when I caught it, it kept sliding down the side when it tried to flee. So it was quite unsuited to life in a bathroom anyway.
ratcreature: Like a spork between the eyes. (spork)
So, LJ migrated my Scrapbook, which is a good thing, because apparently the old system had already corrupted ten of my pictures so they couldn't migrate them now, when I myself had only noticed two that had been messed up while I happened to look at old posts. However I would have liked the migration report a little more informative when listing the damaged ones, because if you haven't titled your pictures, the report doesn't even give you the folder. Or, you know, if LJ's Scrapbook hadn't corrupted my pictures in the first place, but I've learned not to set my expectations too high when it comes to LJ.

The thing is, when the old Scrapbook was still around and destroyed one of my pictures, I could usually still see the preview picture that had been created, and of course the folder and the position the picture was in. I asked support whether they might be able to give me that information at least about the pictures they corrupted, but the reply, while prompt, wasn't helpful. They could just tell me that they passed this on to the migration team as suggestion, so that maybe the log could become more informative for others who aren't migrated yet.

Thanks to the DW search function I have at least found posts for about half of the images when they were embedded or linked, and could reconstruct what they had been, and restore those. But I'm still at a loss what some of the other pictures were. Well, hopefully the new system won't eat any more of my stuff from now on.
ratcreature: WTF!? (WTF!?)
I think I just got spammed through a poll on LJ? I mean, an openID account that links to some tattoo-related domain replied to one of my polls. I didn't click on the URL, but the poll was very old and asked which icon to draw next, and I have already drawn almost all of them, including the one the responder just picked. So as a genuine poll response it makes no sense. Does this come up as spam vector for others? And can you delete or report it?
ratcreature: RL? What RL? RatCreature is a net addict.  (what rl?)
Verschlimmbesserung, i.e. a portmanteau of Verbesserung (improvement) and Verschlimmerung (deterioration/worsening), to describe intended improvements or upgrades that end up making everything worse. Also used as a verb ("verschlimmbessern"), cousin to the equally useful "kaputtreparieren" (repair/tinker with a thing to the point that it becomes broken). Not entirely unrelated to this language observation, I'm still trying to decide whether I should opt to display everything on LJ in my style (which I find confusing, because I'm used to comms and journals all having their layout), or deal with the new comment pages on comms that have not disabled them, which unfortunately includes a number of fest comms I'd been browsing.
ratcreature: Like a spork between the eyes. (spork)
Like almost everyone else I loathe LJ's new comment pages. I've always disliked the customized comment pages and preferred the site style, but I now had to turn the customization on in self-defense, because those are slightly less awful. For many years now I had used "Smooth Sailing" as layout but the custom comment pages there are worse than the "Minimalist" style ones, so I switched my layout and then spend almost two hours trying to get my basic requirements customized again. It should not be this hard to get the icons to display on the left of an entry. I'm still trying to figure out how to make that serif font go away that goes with that layout in some places.

Anyway, in wake of this mess I decided to turn on these crossposting footers linking to DW, to encourage people who so far follow me on LJ to comment elsewhere. I used to find them vaguely obnoxious, because I figured people who wanted to follow and comment on DW would just read there in the first place, but that was before LJ's continuous attempts to make their site unusable had reached quite this level. I'm still considering whether I should just turn comments there off entirely.
ratcreature: grumpy (grumpy)
It's rather annoying that LJ is under DDOS attack just when I wanted to check out the [livejournal.com profile] xmenbigbang.
ratcreature: RL? What RL? RatCreature is a net addict.  (what rl?)
Is it just me or does LJ have trouble right now? Earlier this morning it loaded fine, but now it gets stuck or gives 503 errors, even though their status page claims everything is fine. *pokes*
ratcreature: grumpy (grumpy)
Is anyone else having trouble to load LJ correctly? Since yesterday most of the time style sheets and icons don't load for me. I've tried clearing my cache and reloading the pages, but the problem persists. Sometimes the whole page loads, but most of the time some or all style is missing, and icons even more often.
ratcreature: grumpy (grumpy)
Purely by chance I noticed that one of my pictures that I had stored on the LJ Scrapbook just vanished, i.e. my title and tags were still there put the picture was just a broken image link.

So I contacted support about this, and they tell me they are sorry but "Unfortunately, after investigation, it appears as though this image has been irretrievably lost from Scrapbook." Okay, that doesn't fill me with confidence in their data storage, but I have a backup of that one (it wasn't one of the unfortunate images that I lost with my previous laptop and which I only copies of in the LJ gallery). So then I ask whether there is a way I could reupload in the same place somehow through the image editing, so my links aren't all broken, but that isn't possible either.

This is really inconvenient. First they randomly vanish my picture into some void, and then I can't even restore it, but have to start over and edit all links manually.

ETA: And as I reuploaded, I noticed they vanished another one, only for that one the preview still works, just not the full size, so I didn't notice right away. WTF, LJ?
ratcreature: RatCreature's toon avatar (Default)
I'd been looking for a way to download my LJ Scrapbook, because when my last laptop died I lost some of my local image files. Additionally if the Scrapbook was gone, I'd have a hard time to restore my posts properly even with the pictures I do still have locally, because with the cryptic Scrapbook file names I don't know which picture it is I linked in a post. Of course I can deduce that something was a for example a rat photo or a comic page scan, but which rat photo is not always obvious from my entry text or the image alt text. So it would be good to have the photos backed up with those file names somewhere.

But when I asked LJ Support whether there was a way to do a backup other than manually (and I have several hundred pictures), they were no help. However looking around I found this post how to download the stuff from Scrapbook with wget. It's still less than ideal, because this method duplicates the byzantine file structure with a folder for every image, but that's still better than downloading from my browser. If anyone knows of a better method, please tell me?

To counteract the quiet on my flist/dwircle I thought maybe I ought to just expand my reading list, so I wondered whether there are any XMFC friending memes around, preferably on DW, but I'd take LJ too. Or maybe there is an fanartist friending meme somewhere? I've seen one for writers during the three weeks for DW thing earlier this year, but one for artists would be fun.

Unrelated, I feel really apprehensive about the antibiotics dosage I'd gotten for Noah to start him on once the course of Baytril is finished this weekend (Noah unfortunately has declined in health recently and has something in his lung, which is not myco, but from the way the lung looks on x-ray they took today either a localized infection or a tumor, so as the tumor couldn't be helped, he gets antibiotics). Due to their schedule he was treated by a different vet from his usual one this morning, and the dosage they gave me seemed high, but I wasn't sure I had seen this antibiotic before. But then I checked at home in my records (well the pile of paper recording previous vet visits, but I keep good track of which rat gets what, because after death breeders usually want a feedback on the illnesses to see problems with their breeding lines down the road), and I had been given the same antibiotic for another rat before by another vet at the same practice and then it was 0.2ml twice a day while Noah now is supposed to take 1ml three times a day. So with that huge a difference (0.4ml vs 3ml daily) I feared some sort of decimal point error, so I called back obviously, and mentioned my fear and also that the previous dose was so much lower. So the assistant told me the doctor would check, and when she called back the vet said she checked the dosages and redid the calculation, and that the amount was right, though she has no idea why the other vet (who wasn't in just then) prescribed so much less that last time. This makes me really uneasy. :/
ratcreature: sorry! (sorry!)
I've decided to disable comments from non-registered users on LJ, because I've had to delete spam comments all the time, even though I had screening and since January also captcha enabled for anon comments. It's no use. On both DW and IJ anonymous commenting is still possible, because spam there isn't as bad.
ratcreature: grumpy (grumpy)
There has been a sharp increase in spam comments in my LJ and an also some on DW. I screen anon comments, but having to delete amd report bunches of them is getting rather tedious. Okay, it's a couple every day, so not a flood, precisely, but still. I don't like the idea of turning off anon comments entirely, but if this keeps up, I'm not sure what else to do. Has anyone else noticed more spam than usual recently, or is it just me?
ratcreature: RatCreature is confused: huh? (huh?)
Is it just me or is in the LJ site scheme for comments suddenly the blue background bit shorter, so that the icon appears to be hanging over and everything looks more cramped?

ETA: I just looked at the LJ help page, and they list "Comment pages in some site schemes are displaying incorrectly. LiveJournal staff are investigating." in the Known Issues section. So it seems this isn't intentional at least, and might get fixed. Though how they managed to mess up their default layout for half their schemes (it doesn't show for me in the Horizon scheme, but when I'm logged in and use the old XColibur scheme I cling to, it does, ditto for the light style) without intending to, I don't want to know.
ratcreature: oh no! (oh no!)
I've always found the LJ notes feature really useful. Like for example if someone changes usernames I can add a note with the old one. And of course you can make a note if you have less than pleasant run-ins with someone and many other things.

Only just now I'm seeing one of those note stars behind a name for whom I have not added any notes, and yet when I hover I see a note. I don't see the star behind the name in all places as I would if I had added the note, but I do see it in one community post where the user name is linked. I had met the fan online before (the post I noticed it in was notice in [livejournal.com profile] kirkspock that [livejournal.com profile] easilymused1956 died and the note is behind that name, maybe you see the note star too?), so I double checked, but I really do not have any such note visible on my note management page (also it doesn't make much sense to me). So now I wonder what happened there that made the note, that I assume someone has for this person, visible to me, when it is not mine.

Also I worry whether something could make my own notes visible, or whether I could do something inadvertently that shares my notes. Do you know what happened there?

ETA: It seems to have been due to something the poster did when inserting the name rather than the worst case scenario of LJ randomly displaying notes, and the poster has fixed it now, but I'll certainly make sure to take extra care how I'll insert LJ username codes in the future.
ratcreature: RL? What RL? RatCreature is a net addict.  (what rl?)
Is anyone else getting their LJ comment notifications with much delay? Okay it could be worse, currently mine seem to lag behind between six hours and a day, but still. Unhand my comment notifications LJ!

Also, why on earth has the goat picture on the new LJ site pages (status page, page not found, no access and so on) eyes with round pupils? It took me a while to realize why the goat looked so creepy and wrong, and then I noticed that it did not have goat eyes with horizontally slit pupils, but eyes that don't match the animal. It's like a Franken!Goat that stole its eyes from someone else.
ratcreature: RatCreature is confused: huh? (huh?)
For some reason LJ set the number of entries displayed on my f-list to ten, which wasn't what I had it set at, and I haven't been fiddling with any settings there so, I can't accidentally have changed it. I corrected this again in the style settings, and now it displays more entries again, but I wonder why LJ did that. Has anyone else had this happen to them?
ratcreature: RatCreature is confused: huh? (huh?)
I just posted an LJ comment, and even got the email copy of said comment sent to me (and the poster seems to have gotten a notification too), but the comment is nowhere to be seen in the post itself, even though I can also see it on my recent comments management page. What happened to that comment? Did it fall into some void between the email notification and the site post? Has this happened to others? Will the comment turn up eventually? This is very odd.

ETA: It eventually showed up and became visible. I still wonder whether this is some known issue.
ratcreature: grumpy (grumpy)
I know they have server trouble, but this is annoying. I'm in the middle of reading a multichapter story there, but it takes always five attempts or so to get the thing to respond, and just now it doesn't at all for me. *grumble*

In other news, AO3 has a post asking what features you would like to see in your ideal fanart archive, as they plan to expand from just fiction eventually. There are many ideas already in comments, but if you are a fanartist or like looking at fanart, you should chime in too.
ratcreature: WTF!? (WTF!?)
It is really confusing to get update notifications from September 2008 delivered now. Also this is kind of bait and switch, as I mostly track for story updates, so I click on the "such and such updated their journal" all excited that there is a new part, then get a puzzling "wait, I think I've seen that already?" moment, and only then notice the date. But seriously, 2008??
ratcreature: RL? What RL? RatCreature is a net addict.  (what rl?)
If I'm not responding to something, that is likely because notifications are apparently currently broken on LJ, though earlier I was still getting some at least for comments albeit with much delay (I haven't gotten any tracking notifications recently, but of course now I don't know whether that is because the journals/tags don't have new posts or because they vanished into some virtual bermuda triangle). This follows their Scrapbook and userpic problems earlier. Not to mention that the site is timing out on me more than usual still, though that has gotten better today.

On the brighter side of their technical difficulties, their glitch of making the snowflake v-gifts free (apparently that wasn't an intentional holiday spirit thing and they also managed to fix *that* of all their glitches) led to snowflake flurries across my f-list, and I also got some (thanks anon and [livejournal.com profile] devildoll!). Those are nice.
ratcreature: What? Who? When? Yes, I have been living under a rock... (under a rock)
Admittedly I haven't even bothered to vote this year because that advisory board was such a farce the last time around, but wasn't there supposed to be some kind of result by now? I looked at the the election community but don't see any result announcement? Are they now not showing anything even before the term starts? I didn't think the visibility and user communications of the thing could possibly get any worse than last year, but as usual LJ is full of surprises.

ETA: Not long after I wondered about this, they finally made an announcement in the news comm.
ratcreature: RL? What RL? RatCreature is a net addict.  (what rl?)
My Open ID got picked in their invite code lottery, so now I have a proper Dreamwidth account.

I'm going to crosspost everything just like I have been doing to LJ and IJ (and my occasional fanart also to my art blog and dA), and you can follow my stuff and comment wherever you like and won't miss anything that's not a result of site options differing for me (e.g. as I have a paid account on LJ, I can post polls here but not on IJ, so I can only link in these cases, also icons may differ). As of yet I'm still undecided whether I'll pay for a premium paid account on Dreamwidth after it really opens to keep the extras (not so much because of the money as the money transfer logistics).

Because the DW layout options are still so limited in their closed beta (the easy ones anyway, I've seen arcane tutorials, but haven't tried those yet), I currently much prefer reading my f-list on LJ, and also to comment on LJ, because I can't actually follow the threading in the styles easily on DW either.

The importer however worked fine for me, so my past content is now mirrored on DW. Though I have no idea why the number of entries on the profile differs from the ones in LJ. I just spent ages manually cross-checking my archives, trying to figure out which entries had been skipped, but they seem to be all there.
ratcreature: RL? What RL? RatCreature is a net addict.  (what rl?)
Is there a new spambot tactic where some account friends you, you check out the LJ, as you tend to do, and then see some stupid ad in an f-locked entry as the sole LJ content? Do you report these accounts somewhere, or doesn't it count because they spam you in their own locked entries you've been just tricked to look at?
ratcreature: RatCreature is dejected: sigh (sigh)
I've had to bring my rat Krümel to the vet today. He has some sort of very wet sounding sneezing, and for a few days now weird episodes during which he makes sounds as if to spit something out, or maybe it's like the rat version of coughing (though I don't think rats really cough) or choking, it's hard to describe and not quite like any of the sounds of respiratory trouble I've heard before. When I tried to tell the vet he looked at me dubiously, so I'm not sure useful my description was, but it doesn't sound good, though the scary episodes only happen once or twice every day as far as I can tell, so of course the vet didn't witness one of those. (Why don't pets ever demonstrate their symptoms in a vet office?)

Anyway, he listened to Krümel's lungs, and told me that those sound clear, which is at least something, so it's likely an upper respiratory thing. I got some oral antibiotic to give him, and hope that it'll work against the infection. Krümel is still eating okay, and he's lively, so he can't feel too bad, but with a year and nine months he's not young anymore, and I worry.

Also, on our way back Krümel was admired by a horde of children who were on some sort of class trip. Thankfully he's not really scared by loud noises as long as he knows they are outside of wherever he is (in this case his safe transport box), so he didn't really mind all the staring and the shouting that much as thirty or so elementary school age children were crowding around me while I was waiting for the train, all asking questions about rats as pets. He didn't even hide beneath his towel. Anyway, I tried to impress on them that rats need large cages, need to be kept in groups, and that they may need considerable vet care (as I was on my way back from there that came up, and it's not like I don't still remember the expensive eye operation he needed last winter), and so on, and thus to do my bit for the promotion of responsible pet ownership.

Unrelated to my rats, I've been getting the impression that I still get friended in periods when I barely post, but more readers unsubscribe when I'm updating more regularly. I guess it makes sense in that readers notice more easily that interests have diverged or that my LJ is boring or whatever when I actually post, whereas it doesn't matter whether or not they have subscribed while I'm quiet, but still. This kind of pattern is not encouraging... *frets neurotically*

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