No doorways, no windows, no walls
No shelter here on the ground
No standing and no safe place to fall
Just the promise of this distant sound
Bells are ringing all over the world

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Linkee-poo, slow down, you move to fast, you've gotta make the morning last

Sarah Waters ten rules for writing. "10. Talent trumps all…For the rest of us, however, rules remain important."

And ten ways for the ADD writer to keep… oooh, shiny." We seem to be on a 10 kick. About 3 of these rules boil down to "learn how to put your arse in the chair for long periods of time", but there's some other good ideas. Here's one of my own, know you'll be distracted. Plan for it. Plan for it to be short.

A sixteen-year old Bruce McAllister does research on symbolism by asking writers what they think of it. The article has scans of his original mimeographed survey snail mailed to authors with an excellent response from Ray Bradbury (and a kinda dickish response from Ayn Rand). (Grokked from

Some good advice for dealing with a bad (book) review.

Mary Robinette Kowal defines the difference between an angry and rabid weasel.

Medieval maps of Palestine (slightly non PC). (Grokked from Sarah Groslee)

So, you say you've always wanted to know what the Punk Rock music scene was all about, but didn't want to jump in the wrong end of the pool? How about 20 favorite punk albums from someone who was on the inside. (Pointed to by Dan)

"When I wrote Arctic Rising, 2050 for ice-free sounded science fictional. Now some scientists are saying it’s 2040…" Tobias Buckell on the progress of melting Arctic Ice.

Speaking of the Arctic Ice, the story of an early exploration mission. If that ain't a hell of a story bone (for several angles and story types and settings), I don't know what would be. (Grokked from Jay Lake)

"The most important finding is that family formation negatively affects women’s, but not men’s, academic careers. For men, having children is a career advantage; for women, it is a career killer." And that's in that bastion of liberal thinking, higher education. (Grokked from Sarah Groslee)

GOLD! Oh, Florida. I'll miss your beaches. Although I believe if the gold was found that close to the coast, the State of Florida (and the US) have a nominal claim. (Grokked from Jay Lake)

I get (flying) with a little help from my friends." Hexagonal turbo rotors which can find each other to create a stable flying platform. (Pointed to by Dan)

Bell Labs early computer animation, 1964 style Actually, the really sad part about this is the content focus reminds me of so many bad powerpoint presentations. It also reminds me very much of how we produced our first high-def animations back in school. The video output function didn't work, so we set up a camera in front of the monitor and waited for the frame to draw. Ah, the good ol' days. (Pointed to by John)

Employee rights if you're fired in an "at-will" environment. Most of the US, and most of our jobs are "at-will".

"… (T)here's one member of Congress, Rep. Mark Takano (D-CA)… Breaking out the teacher's most potent weapon, a red pen, he marked up Republican House members' letter to John Boehner… asking him to resist the immigration reform bill that has already passed America's slightly-less-insane upper chamber. Included in his comments are some words we haven't seen on a Congressional document in years, like 'evidence,' as well as an awesome invitation to 'come by my office' if 'you don't understand the bill.'" With photos. (Grokked from Jay Lake)

"A new national report indicates that undocumented immigrants in Oregon paid about $94 million in state and local taxes in 2010." Well, we've got to stop that. (Grokked from Jay Lake)

Eric speaks reason to hate in the Zimmerman case. Including some distasteful medicine at the end.

And here's a little of what I think about the case. I think the prosecution threw the case. I think if the prosecution had won, it would have caused an appeals trail that would lead all the way to a questioning of not only Stand Your Ground laws, but also of Concealed Carry. And I think the Florida Attorneys General really didn't want to go down that path. And so they put up some reasonable prosecution which pivoted on such things as trying to figure out just who may have been yelling on a poorly recorded phone call instead of working out intent, motive, and opportunity. The actual deed was not in question. All that remained was to show that if Zimmerman had followed the orders of the dispatcher, it wouldn't have happened and then explain to the jury why he didn't follow those directions.

The family budget calculator. Feed in your family type (funny, no option for two adults, no kids, it's not like we aren't a family), location, and it'll spit out a budget broken down into categories. A nice little thing to have for you're own or when pundits start talking about how all these people on social programs are just mooching off the public larges. "EPI’s Family Budget Calculator measures the income a family needs in order to attain a secure yet modest living standard by estimating community-specific costs of housing, food, child care, transportation, health care, other necessities, and taxes… In all cases, they show families need more than twice the amount of the federal poverty line to get by." Funny, that. Then for shits and giggles you can go to the US Census website and get statistics for income in your area, or look at general statistics. Why, look at where most of the income disparity is? Why, that would be a lot of Red State territory. Funny that.(Grokked from John Scalzi)

President Obama honors President G. W. Bush for creating the Thousand Points of Light. Wanna take bets on if any future Republican President honors President Obama, even the curtesy of staying in the White House for any trips to Washington DC? (Grokked from Jay Lake)

"U.S. military officials in Kabul, though, say no one checked out the story with them. Not only do they have a sheet surplus, there has been no such thing as a MASH unit – mobile Army surgical hospital – for more than seven years." But that didn't stop any of the conservative good doers from packing up sheets and hard candy and shipping them off. "But their destination may remain a mystery. Christley declined to name the friend’s husband who asked for sheets, his unit, or the medical facility where he experienced the shortage… 'It was an Afghanistan unit and I’m not saying who or where,' she said. 'It doesn’t matter who it went to, it matters that we were able to help.'" Uh, yeah, kinda actually does matter. (Grokked from the Slactivist)

Nurses explain Obamacare in 90 seconds. (Grokked from Jay Lake)

So, just how far does the GOP reply on older whites? Quite a lot actually. (Grokked from Vince)

Tweet of my heart: @Will___Ferrell Sometimes I'll think, "How sad for Canada that Bryan Adams is their Springsteen," but then I remember I don't have health insurance.

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