What a field day for the heat
A thousand people in the street
Singing songs and carrying signs
Mostly saying, "hooray for our side"

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Linkee-poo's brain is full of spiders, it's got garlic in its soul

A little bit late, but Christopher Lee reads "A Nightmare Before Xmas" with some excellent animation.

Dr. Doyle with three character types to avoid. Or in other words, nobody is Charlie Brown and even James Bond has bad days.

Noah Chinn on being a taker-outer or a putter-inner. One of the first major "real writer lessons" I learned was I have to be a putter-inner. All the writing advice out there is to be a "taker-outer" (the infamous Second Draft = First Draft -10% rule). Now, I actually do a mix of this (editing out as well as adding in description), but for me it ends up being Second Draft = First Draft +15-20%. The Third draft also grows, but for that go around I'm often rewriting 20-30% with a deletion factor of about 10% (as in, "Things that are completely excised from the text" instead of rewritten).

Cat Rambo with four rules regarding dialog. Yes, this. Listen to how people actually talk, especially those who do it for a living, and then pass that through the filter of the writer's pen. While you don't want to transcribe conversations, which don't work well on paper. Seriously, if you want to know just how insane actual conversation is record some (with permission), or take some samples from talk shows on TV or the radio, and then transcribe it word for word if you don't believe me.

Also, Cat is offering a discount on some classes. But only until Jan 2.

The British Library releases more than 35,000 images from their collection of illuminated manuscripts. Their searchable if you're interested in something specific, and they have collections already started, like the bestiary collection. Wow, like I didn't already waste too much time on the internets.

A podcast on the dark side of creativity, rationalization and dishonest. 'Rut 'rho! Someone's got my number. Actually, I've heard a few interviews with Dan Ariely, professor of behavioral economics. He's got some interesting views on lying, and lying to ourselves. For those of you wondering how the Evil Overlord can honesty think they're doing right, you might want to take a listen. The road to hell maybe paved with good intentions, but all the sign posts are the little rationalizations we make.

Strange how when movies are well written and exciting they both win awards and are box office hits. (Grokked from Jay Lake)

"Assuming the research holds up, it suggests that the 2009 paper, far from overestimating warming in West Antarctica, had probably underestimated it, especially in summer." That temperature had already been climbing at a rate that was at the upper end of previous estimates. But, I'm sure there's nothing to worry about. You know, except for more heat waves and precipitation in the NE US. While the drought has gobbled up our attention for the past two years (and probably next year), too much rain also brings problems. (Grokked from Jay Lake)

So long, and thanks for all the fish. Wild dolphins giving gifts of food to humans in Australia at the Tangalooma Island Resort. Of course, the humans also are feeding the dolphins, which puts them in direct, regular contact with them. (Grokked from Matt Staggs)

Jim Wright is back with bang, bang crazy, part four. "The primary function of law isn't to prevent crime." A lot of people don't get that, mostly because conservatives have been using that argument (laws prevent crime) as a way of passing some pretty egregious laws all in the name of "preventing crime" which don't do much more than locking up brown people for minor offenses.

Using earthworms to create biocompatible quantum dots. Those quantum dots can then be used to target cancer cells, which can then be targeted easily by the fluorescence. Hmm, I may have to rethink going into nuclear medicine. (Grokked from Jay Lake)

Having been somewhat involved with getting someone into the Medicaid system (and with the aftermath as they come to grips with what that means), I can totally relate to this. There's a wife who's husband needs to be in a nursing home. However, they have too much money to qualify for Medicaid, but not enough to really afford the nursing home care. So stuck between a rock and a hard place, she's refusing to allow her husband to be discharged from the hospital he is in. This is what happens when you "reform" the security net (new rules meant to trim costs force people to be destitute before getting Medicaid, without regard to actual lives). In our case, the relative didn't have any complications of living spouses or dependents. But still, we needed to make him poor (not really a hard job, and not the whole story of what needed to be done) before Medicaid would cover the help he needed. (Grokked from Jay Lake)

Alligator Quotient: They're off for the holidays. Probably resting up for an interesting New Year.

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