ratcreature: RatCreature as grey alien (alien)
I quite liked the previous Roswell series from now twenty years ago, and I'm wondering whether I'd enjoy this one. Has anyone watched this?

(Also, yikes, how has it been twenty years?!)
ratcreature: Tech-Voodoo: RatCreature waves a dead chicken over a computer. (voodoo)
...is there some tool that let's you download all the Tumblr posts you liked? I've been good about downloading fanfic as I go along, but fanart much less so. I don't reblog with my Tumblr, but my likes are visible.
ratcreature: headdesk (headdesk)
Recently I saw a webcomic on Tumblr (I don't think it originated there though), that was a couple of panels, all the same size iirc, where the protagonist wakes up having to do a "thing" today and goes through their day being reminded by others and reminding themselves to "Do the thing!" in increasingly dramatic fashion (one panel even had skywriting), with last panel showing them lying in bed at night realizing "I haven't done the thing."

I wanted to link someone to it, but now I can find it. Does anyone know the comic I'm talking about?
ratcreature: RatCreature is confused: huh? (huh?)
I've noticed several times references in fiction about people airing out their house once it got warmer that made it sound as if Americans don't open their windows in winter to let fresh air in. Like as if they don't air their house if it's freezing outside.

Is that true? Is it a central air conditioning thing where you don't really need windows to get fresh air, and shouldn't disrupt climate control or something like that? Because otherwise I can't imagine not to open my windows at least twice a day for a little while. Admittedly it's rarely extremely cold here, but this winter we had days when the daytime high was below -10°C and I still aired out my place briefly.

Here you are even required to do so in rental agreements because otherwise you get problems with moisture buildup and such.
ratcreature: grumpy (grumpy)
Is there a way to block the gross porn bots on Tumblr, that sometimes follow you, without having to visit their page? You can usually already tell from their icons when you're notified so I really don't need to see a full screen of their stuff. Except that is the only place I know how to get Tumblr to display the blocking option, especially in its mobile app but I think this applies also to the desktop version. That site's interface is such a burning trash fire...
ratcreature: RatCreature's toon avatar (Default)
For some reason I can't see my default icon fully any more, but just see a top stripe of it. At first I thought it was a cache problem of my browser but neither reloading nor even looking at it with another device fixes the problem. Is this just a weird glitch for me or is it mangled for everyone and I should bring it to support? Do you see my whole icon with this post?
ratcreature: headdesk (headdesk)
I am looking for that cartoon that illustrates the illusion of adulthood by showing a woman at several ages in the panels, but the aged front is a cardboard cutout prop that the girl holds up in front of her, while remaining the same inside. I think it might have been from Stone Soup? Or at least a style that was somewhat similar. Does anyone know which cartoon I mean? It's driving me crazy that I can't find it.
ratcreature: RatCreature enjoys food: yum! (food)
I bought myself an Instant Pot, because I've seen quite a lot of slowcooker recipes around, and many people who are enthusiastic about that method. And also I eat a lot of grains and pulses which thus far I've just cooked the old fashioned way, but figure this device ought to make more convenient.

Anyway, because for years I did not own such thing I of course failed to bookmark all the applicable recipes I've seen around. Do you have favorite recipes?
ratcreature: Tech-Voodoo: RatCreature waves a dead chicken over a computer. (voodoo)
Normally I download fanfic from AO3 into Calibre with that FanFicFare plugin, because that is very convenient and imports all the meta data.

However as of the most recent update (to 2.17.1) it won't download locked content anymore. I get an error that it can't log in, even though my password hasn't changed and I can log in via browser. It also still downloads non-locked fanfic form AO3 without problem. Does anyone else have this problem?

ETA: Googling found me some recent message board posts by the FanFicFare creator, explaining that AO3 has changed its login process to disallow automated tools to download locked stories. That is inconvenient.
ratcreature: Tech-Voodoo: RatCreature waves a dead chicken over a computer. (voodoo)
Recently I often fail to add fanfic I've read to my Pinboard bookmarks, but still manage to click the bookmark button on AO3.

I feel like there ought to be some (semi-)automated way to get my AO3 bookmarks into a format that Pinboard could import. Ideal would be if canonical tags became Pinboard tags but not the Tumblr-style tags and it could recognize duplicate bookmarks already in my Pinboard.

Does anyone know of an AO3 add-on script or such that would harvest and reformat your bookmarks there into a bookmark file that then could be used by Pinboard? I can't be the only fan who'd find that useful.
ratcreature: RatCreature is thinking: hmm...? (hmm...?)
I'm wondering what the English equivalent for the German "Aktionismus" is.

In German this is a usually pejorative term to describe activities somebody (often people in a position of power but accountable to the public, more rarely subordinates under pressure from above) undertakes to be visibly seen as "doing something" to address a problem, but the actions are not well thought out, unlikely to really solve or improve the situation, but are (at least from the perspective of the speaker making the charge of something being "Aktionismus") done wholly or partly to provide cover against the accusation of inactivity or indifference.

Like when you hastily implement "security theater" measures against a real security threat, because you can't think of any actual solution to improve security for real, but not doing anything and admitting to having no solution would be politically very costly. Opponents then might accuse you of "Aktionismus".

So "Aktionismus" is a general term for hasty, thoughtless responses of this type, used by opponents of the actions. It is often coupled with "blind" as in "blinder Aktionismus" to emphasize the lack of plan or vision to arrive at a real solution.

It is similar to the accusation that something is merely a "symbolic action" but that implies more a deliberate gesture lacking concrete results, whereas "Aktionismus" is more of a harmful flailing around.

"Aktionismus" has also some sort of specialized meaning for some performance art movement from Vienna, and apparently the word "actionism" exists in English in the translation for that Austrian art, but it doesn't seem to be used in the colloquial sense. But clearly this is a common phenomenon (and accusation) in politics, so there ought to be an English term.

recs?

Feb. 11th, 2017 20:19
ratcreature: RatCreature is thinking: hmm...? (hmm...?)
Recently I talked with my niece about Harry Potter, Star Wars, the MCU and fiction in general, and apparently she's dissatisfied with the genre convention that in the end the "good guys" always win.

Now I don't get that at all, because for me one of the main draws of fiction, and genre fiction in particular, is that it is escapist and less depressing than reality, so I pretty much only like genres that for the most part abide by the convention to deliver a happy ending, i.e. I like fanfic, romance, YA, mysteries, and the kind of SF&F where heroes win, and am much less into e.g. horror or "literary" fiction or other genres where that isn't the convention. Even when I read stuff like apocafic or such, I ultimately want it to end hopeful for at least the main characters.

So I don't really have any recs for media (books, movies or tv series) that end badly for the heroes overall, because even when I encounter the situation of just some of them not making it (like in HP) I'm on the look out for fix-it fic. But I wondered whether others might have recs that I could pass on to my niece to satisfy her odd (to me) preference for some variety and a more fraught fictional experience.

Though I'm not sure whether she wants depressing stuff or more things along the line of the fanfic type revisionist AUs with perspective shifts, because she mentioned that she was kind of rooting for Loki and Tom Riddle and such, i.e. where the story just takes the bad guys' side and for them it is okay, even though the world is then in the hands of a megalomaniac. I mostly dislike that type of fanfic as well. And I don't look for that kind of "twist" in original fiction either.

It would have to be stuff that is available in German and at least somewhat suitable for an eight year old.
ratcreature: RatCreature is thinking: hmm...? (hmm...?)
Okay, so this probably has happened to many of us, that you read a story, that intersects with your life or experiences in some way. When that happens to me and I start writing a comment, my own experience is then what's in my head as reaction, and basically I recount whatever episode or life experience resonated with that story. Only then at the end of this, I come to the realization that my comment on the story doesn't actually talk about the story as such at all, but just about me. Then I feel really awkward, and more often than not I don't post that comment, and just click the kudo button instead.

However, most authors seem to like comments better than kudos. Does this still hold true for comments that don't actually talk about your story as such but are more or less (over)sharing of personal experiences a story resonated with?

Like okay, say you wrote a roadtrip fic where your characters look at a giant ball of rubber bands or whatever, and then you get a comment that is along the line of "here's my roadtrip experience of looking at a giant rubber band ball". It's not totally unrelated to your story, but not about praising your great characterization, awesome writerly skill or perfect timing either. And of course often it's not about a rubber band ball but some more personal resonance.

What do you think about such comments? Awkward? Still better than kudos? Better not posted because you don't really want to hear random strangers' anecdotes?
ratcreature: RatCreature begs: Please? (please?)
I don't watch a lot of vids, and as a result I never even know how to effectively look for some in the instances when I want to watch some new ones.

I'm in the mood for visually fast paced vids, not necessarily action vids, though I do like those a lot, however generally I'm not that fond of vids meant for dancing or vids to dance music. Also, while I enjoy humor as much as anyone, the vids I love most are more on the drama or even angsty side of things, with a bit of pathos even. Just right now not slow pathos, but fast.

Compared to fic I really lack the analytic skill and vocabulary to describe what I'm looking for... :( But an example for the kind of vid I mean would be [livejournal.com profile] barkley's Numb3rs vid Reach For the Sky.

Have you watched any vids like that recently? (Or not so recently, I really watch very few.) The fandoms I'd most appreciate for this would be MCU, Star Wars, Star Trek, XMFC, Pacific Rim or even Check Please, since I recently learned from [personal profile] dine's rec of this cool, if short vid by helorific that fans vid in that fandom as well.
ratcreature: RatCreature enjoys food: yum! (food)
When I make thicker, fluffy pancakes, instead of the thin crepe-style ones, I rather like adding stuff to the batter. Some chopped nuts work well, as does mashed banana, but I always fail when I try adding blueberries. Either the blueberries burst open and the surrounding area gets soggy, or the pancakes brown unevenly due to either blueberry juice getting out and caramelizing faster than the rest of the batter or intact blueberries sticking out making for an uneven surface, but I never get nice texture with blueberries in a fluffy pancake that is evenly browned. The online recipes I've found seem to imply that adding blueberries to pancake batter ought to work like regular pancakes in a straightforward way, yet it doesn't for me.

This morning I considered trying for blueberry pancakes again, but ultimately shied away from it, because my previous attempts never worked, and I'm not sure what I can do differently to make them not fail. I mean, the banana-pecan pancakes I made this morning were tasty too, but it would be nice to be able to make blueberry ones, so I wondered whether anyone has mastered this and could give advice?
ratcreature: RatCreature is thinking: hmm...? (hmm...?)
In English with some verbs you can use their ing-form after go, i.e. sentences like "I go running often", "we are going shopping" etc., but with other verbs this is not allowed, i.e. you don't say "we are going eating"(*) but "we are going (out) to eat".

I think the rule is that the construction is only allowed with movement verbs, like go walking, swimming, dancing, etc. all work, but not with reading, knitting or painting. I'm actually unsure about playing, but I think not? OTOH working and hunting seem okay in the construction?

I tried finding the rule for this in grammar explanations but I'm not even sure whether the -ing is considered a gerund or a present participle here. So I was hoping that maybe the English language geeks on my f-list could point me.
ratcreature: RatCreature as dragon (dragon)
I've been looking at Amazon to pre-order, and it looks for this one there will be a paperback available at around the same time (publishing date June 16) as the expensive hardcover (June 14)? Does anyone know whether this is correct?

With the last couple of volumes I've ended up getting the hardcover because paperbacks were out much later, but having a hardcover is not worth paying more than twice as much for just two days earlier, especially since I've been not as into the series in the later volumes. And hardcover is harder to carry around.

But I've had Amazon advertising wrong dates before when there were multiple US/UK editions available for pre-order, and ended up pre-ordering an edition (based on picking the cheapest), that then didn't come out at that date after all. (Most recently that happened to me with Foxglove Summer, iirc.)
ratcreature: Tech-Voodoo: RatCreature waves a dead chicken over a computer. (voodoo)
Tumblr seems to freeze Firefox fairly often on my computer, e.g. I scroll down my dashboard and then suddenly the page (and all of Firefox actually, like I can't switch tabs) becomes unresponsive for a little while before scrolling resumes. At first I thought it might be some unfortunate side effect of XKit or an XKit extension, because the filtering that applies to my dashboard (like removing the sponsored stuff, and blocking some tags), and that used to slow things down on my old laptop sometimes, but this effect also happens sometimes when I have just a single Tumblr post open and scroll down that.

Do others have this problem? It is starting to really annoy me. It never happens on any other website besides Tumblr.
ratcreature: reading RatCreature (reading)
Currently I use a 7-inch Nexus tablet for e-book reading, and that suits me fairly well, i.e. I like that I can't just read books but also have a browser, can check email etc., the screen works well enough except in bright sunlight, and the features of the ebook apps are decent, but I run into issues with the battery life semi-frequently, and the tablet does not recharge very quickly either.

I don't think I have extreme battery demands, but say I recharge it fully overnight, then take the tablet with me, use it intermittently throughout the day, and it connected to wlans a couple of times, and then back home I want to read an e-book for several hours that same evening, that may not work without recharging, or at least without running the charge really low. And then recharging it from something as low as 10% battery to full again can take longer than seven hours, which is annoying.

So I am considering whether I shouldn't get a dedicated e-reader for those times when I want to read an e-book or fanfic for several hours. I would consider a newer tablet, but I'm not sure those are really significantly better when it comes to battery life, especially the ones priced in the mid-range. Also there don't seem to be many 7-inch ones around anymore, and I don't actually want a larger device. Mine easily fits not just in my purse, but also into the inside pockets of coats and parkas and such, which a 10-inch or even 8-inch one wouldn't, whereas e-readers, which tend to smaller sized would.

So now I'm wondering which e-readers are good. I do not want an Amazon Kindle, because most of the non-fanfic e-books I read come from my public library which uses epub (often with Adobe's DRM), and I don't want a device that doesn't support different formats natively. And all the fanfic I have already downloaded for reading on my tablet is in epub too. I know that I can convert things via Calibre, but I refuse to get a specialized e-book reading device that then can't even read different e-book formats. That is just ridiculous, IMO.

So does anyone have good experiences with current non-Kindle e-readers that would fit my criteria? (Not too big, good battery life, support for different e-book formats including library e-books, easy transfer of fanfic e-books to the device via Calibre, decent search and sorting options for finding books again on the device are sort of the essentials)

From looking at tests, comparisons and my library's e-reader info sheet, the ones I'm currently considering most is the Pocketbook Touch Lux 3 and the Bookeen Cybook Muse Frontlight. I also looked at the Kobo Glo HD, but I am not thrilled with this forced registration you apparently have to do to use your own device.
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: RL? What RL? RatCreature is a net addict.  (what rl?)
Tumblr has created a way to not show a Tumblr via the web URL but only on the dashboard to followers. But as I understand it, the behavior is that anyone can follow you if they know your name unless you explicitly block them. So content is not actually private as such, because if I for example came across one of these error pages following at a web URL, I could follow the name in the URL and then see the content on my dash, at least unless/until I got blocked.

Only I probably couldn't find any specific content because I'd have to scroll back through my dashboard to see it, since the URLs don't work anymore for anyone, logged in or not, including the owner even, based on the reblog comments?! So if you hide your Tumblr, how could you find or see your old posts if neither archive nor tag links work any longer?

And how does this behave with reblogging? The post says the social functions all work as before, including reblog, does that mean if your followers, who may not even realize you disabled URLs as there is no symbol on the posts like on LJ/DW, can still reblog and it would show on theirs with a proper URL (and be visible to all including search engines if they set their Tumblr for maximal exposure?) or only reblog through the dashboard feeds to their followers but not the public Tumblr?

This implementation of (faux-)privacy doesn't sound like a recipe for wanky misunderstandings and disaster at all... /sarcasm
ratcreature: reading RatCreature (reading)
I currently use Calibre to organize my ebooks, and I wonder if it would work out to use it to backup and keep track of the fanfic I downloaded on my tablet as well.

I do not want both mixed up, because the fanfic would totally drown out the books by an order of magnitude, and also the tags I want to use for both are very different. I've seen an option in Calibre to create virtual "libraries", but I wonder whether that is really good for keeping things separate. Has anyone experience with using Calibre for both? Or a better system?

I'm a bit wary to import hundreds of stories into my Calibre Library only to find out it would be a mess I'd have to clean up manually...
ratcreature: RatCreature is thinking: hmm...? (hmm...?)
In the AO3 bookmark system, if the story gets deleted, would comments in my bookmark stay? I'm considering whether I shouldn't start to copy title/author/fandom into the comment field, so I'd at least know what story vanished.

I get really annoyed at seeing deleted stories in my bookmarks (any bookmarks really, but especially my own) without even knowing what they were, and no way to reconstruct what's gone. Having to add a comment would be slightly inconvenient (in part I use the AO3 bookmarks because it's just one on site click when I can't be bothered to properly tag on my Pinboard) and it would look a bit redundant as long as the bookmark is intact, but it might be worth it to avoid potential future aggravation.
ratcreature: Like a spork between the eyes. (spork)
Is there a way to get rid of that annoying "answertime" thing that shows at the top of your dashboard now? I usually don't even know these people (presumably famous ones?) that are asked questions. I couldn't find an option or extension in xkit.
ratcreature: Flail! (flail)
I'm still not reliably back online, because the eye issues are still ongoing... but since I can do screen reading right now, and just came across another story with the trope "soulmates reveal their names to each other in body writing", I just have to ask: Are there any of these stories that actually have any explanation for how that is supposed to work?

I mean, I love soulmate tropes, and I can put aside the general, inherent practical problems of just two people being fated to match each other and be compatible, but -- It's one thing to handwave a premise of "humans recognize their soulmate when they see them by some magical or biological impulse" but in these particular universes how did the name thing even start? The stories never seem to say whether these name marks just started to show up (by some magical? means presumably) once a group already had developed writing (and if so, do not all humans have them, but only literate societies?), or whether humans in these universes developed writing based on the odd marks that showed on their skin (and if so, do all societies have the same writing?).

Also if the marks precede the writing, how did humans even find out these symbols referred to their soulmates' names? If every human was born (or developed) a mark rather than both soulmates showing the same symbol or something, you'd think the natural assumption would be that this was their own mark/symbol.

Are there any stories that offer any explanation for the mechanism?
ratcreature: RatCreature begs: Please? (please?)
I usually don't listen to audiobooks, because I prefer reading to listening and sometimes find it hard to follow them.

Unfortunately I may need to undergo another eye treatment, and usually these come with cruel reading/screen time restrictions and admonitions to avoid any eye strain afterwards. So to prepare, I'm looking to get some audiobooks to make the internet withdrawal less horrible.
ratcreature: RatCreatures as Magneto (magneto)
...is set in the late 60s and puts them in a Black Panthers like role and explores that?

I recently listened to a long interview with the director Stanley Nelson about the new documentary The Black Panthers: Vanguard of the Revolution, and that made me want a kind of XMFC universe version of such a history with mutants.

Like a slightly AU scenario where Magneto's Brotherhood are actually part of a movement, whose prominent leaders are imprisoned or assassinated, and they are targeted by COINTELPRO infiltration (granted, a bit trickier with mindreading telepaths around, but maybe they just don't expect other mutants to work for the FBI like that), and there are mutants that act as agents provocateurs (could explain more bizarre plans...) and are trying to sow dissent and split the organization, and all that stuff.
ratcreature: RatCreature is thinking: hmm...? (hmm...?)
So werewoves in fiction generally are good at regeneration, also they tend to grow canines when they shift. Do you think when an adult human gets bitten and transforms into a werewolf form for the first time they regrow any missing/crowned teeth?

I mean that has to be a common issue, because most adult humans have at least have a crown or two by their thirties, often earlier, yet I can't remember ever seeing a scene in werewolf fiction where the newly made werewolf has to spit out their now obsolete dental implants...
ratcreature: What? Who? When? Yes, I have been living under a rock... (under a rock)
I know that Bucky Bear appears in that Marvel A-Babies vs. X-Babies crack (though I haven't read the comic), but is that the first and only "canon" (well some variety of official source anyway) with Bucky Barnes teddybear merchandise and fandom just really ran with it, as fandom does, or does it appear anywhere else?
ratcreature: RL? What RL? RatCreature is a net addict.  (what rl?)
I used to do this with that Tumblr Savior script thing, but it must have gone glitchy at some point without me noticing, because right now when I add stuff to its filter list it doesn't hide the posts.

I'm trying to not be spoiled for the new X-Men movie until I watch it, and I have been just staying away from Tumblr the last few days, but apparently Tumblr has by now become a thing that I have a routine impulse to check. So having a working tag filter again would be helpful.

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