Recent entries from Meme-Free Zone - the blog of MarcusRowland
NOTE: This blog has been rated FR15 by the author. Blog content is not moderated by TtH
...a 3G or 4G modem that plugs into a laptop's network socket, rather than a USB port, and pretends to be a network connection?
My experiences with USB adapters of this type have been dire - they don't support older Macs such as my iBook very well, and Linux support seems to be very poor indeed, requiring more OS tweaking than I'm happy with. But any computer that has a network socket is pretty much bound to have appropriate networking software as part of the OS, and knows how to make a basic connection. It'd also free a USB port!
I know that there are 3G to WiFi hubs, which is of course another way of doing this job, but they need a separate power supply etc. and would be more of a hassle. And there were 3G GSM cards for older laptops that had PC card sockets, which wouldn't be much use to me.
Is this something that used to be around but has gone the way of the dodo, or just never got invented because USB was around?
Following interviews today, it looks like one of the other technicians here has been appointed as my successor - no official announcement yet, but I've been told verbally, and it's one of two that could do the job. I'm now reasonably confident that things won't fall apart the second I leave, which is a big relief.
...got seriously weird this weekend, with a visit to Vlad the Impaler's castle (yes, they were contemporaries, Vlad died when Leonardo was 24). Not 100% sure if Vlad is nuts, really a vampire, some other sort of immortal / supernatural creature, or some or all of the above, except something happens which suggests he has some unusual powers.
As a prelude to the visit Leonardo sent someone shopping for magnesium, about 250 years too early, which lends more weight to the idea that there is something VERY timey-wimey going on. And we got a lot more nudity, lots of casual sex and violence, and more of Leonardo doing a Sherlock impersonation in his intuitive understanding of spatial relationships.
Bottom line, this is a very weird show and I'm enjoying it enormously. Thanks again to rozk
for bringing it to my attention.
Is there an equivalent of a Bacon number for Doctor Who? e.g, Actor X was never in any version of Doctor Who, but he was in a film with Actor Y, who was in a film with Actor Z who played a Companion, so X has a Doctor Who number of 2. You get the idea, I'm sure.
It occurs to me that with last night's episode most of Hollywood probably now has a Doctor Who number of 2 or 3, if not less... Sigeurney Weaver, for example, now has a Doctor Who number of 1.
Comments may be spoilery.
Gacked from jinxed_wood
Comments may well be somewhat spoilery.
Slightly startled to discover there are already 19 fanfics on Archive of Our Own, at least some of them NSFW. Lola is VERY popular...
Wrote my resignation / retirement letter tonight, I'll be handing it in tomorrow. They want to start interviewing, and it'll make things simpler if I've actually resigned, I think.
Huge relief to get it written, somehow.
Should I interpret my flist's silence on tonight's Doctor Who as stunned awe?
Or would it be more accurate to say that nobody is saying much because, despite Neil Gaiman's involvement, it wasn't an especially good episode, and nobody wants to be the first to say that?
In that case, let me relieve you of this burden. It was okay-ish. Just really nothing very special, and not a patch on e.g. The Doctor's Wife, so a little disappointing to those of us expecting the usual Gaiman magic.
Don't get me wrong, if you haven't already seen it, it's as worth seeing as any other average episode. But Gaiman has done much better, and so has Doctor Who.
There will probably be spoilers in any comments.
Whiskers, my sister's cat, died peacefully in his sleep today. He was mauled by a dog a couple of years ago, made a good recovery from that but was generally fairly poorly for the last few months and fairly obviously senile, so it didn't come as a huge surprise. His sister died in much the same way last year.--Cut-- Click here for more --Cut--
Dear fanfic author,
It's the British Army, not the Royal Army, and the British Armed Forces or Her Majesty's Armed Forces, not the Royal Armed Forces. Neither the British Prime Minister or the BBC would get this wrong, and it's in the second paragraph of the Wikipedia article on the Army if you'd bothered to check.
I've been idly thinking about fitting Dortmunder and his criminal friends (Donald E Westlake, The Hot Rock and sequels) into the Marvel cinematic universe - no sure why, except for the New York setting, but it feels like there might be comedic possibilities there.
The obvious way is to have them planning / committing a robbery during the Chitauri invasion, and either fighting the aliens or finding a way to carry on with the crime with total chaos erupting around them. But that's either a cliche or looting, and neither much appeals.
Another possibility is that they hear about a mansion loaded with antiques and decide to pay a visit - unfortunately they don't know that Tony Stark has remembered the old family home, is about to use it as Avengers HQ and has already installed JARVIS. But that probably ends up as a Home Alone situation and eventually with them in jail, not the most exciting plot. Lots of variants on this, of course - the one I think might be interesting has them stealing Dummy and ending up having to pay Tony to take him off their hands, a la Red Chief.
The really silly one isn't an Avengers plot - I just remembered that Dortmunder's girlfriend is named May. So what if she was Peter Parker's Aunt May, and she and Dortmunder ended up bringing up a really bright kid who would one day have superpowers? Does Peter follow in "Uncle John's" footsteps and become a moderately competent supervillain, or does he still become a crimefighter and end up webbing Dortmunder?
There are other possibilities - I'm very tempted to write this as a "five things" story or something, but already have too much on my plate. So if anyone wants to take one of these ideas and run with it please be my guest, but an acknowledgement would be nice.
's recommendation I've been taking a look at this series. Lots of interesting vibes including a hint of Sherlock - references to "my methodology" and weird deductions from things like the colour of a horseman's cloak, and a slight opium habit; weird science and mystical stuff that made me wonder if The Doctor was going to pop up somewhere, or Warehouse 13's medieval ancestor; lots of sex and casual nudity; and some sort of background Papal conspiracy straight out of The DaVinci Code, involving apparent precognition with what might be time travel. What it reminds me of is Martin Woodhouse's and Robert Ross's Medici Guns
series of novels, with added weird shit, plus a touch of Hudson Hawk
, and I'll be very interested to see how it develops.
Thought I'd check on the progress of the tunnelling machines that started out across the road last year. According to the Crossrail site they've made good progress, have gone from here to Paddington, then under Hyde park and into the West End, and are both just coming up to Regent Street.http://www.crossrail.co.uk/route/near-you#.UYYfoEaL7TM
then enter the station as Paddington.
This is pretty good going, hope they can keep up this pace and get the stations etc. built on time to meet the planned opening in 2018.
REALLY silly steampunk, and has Madame Vastra, Jenny, and Strax. The best since Easter, I think!
The Nook Simple Touch is currently on offer in the UK at £29. I'm not quite sure if I can download files on my PC and transfer them to the Nook (or to a micro SD), or have to use the Barnes and Noble interface. Anyone know?
Later: Apparently it's no problem - off to order one!
Monsters Versus Aliens just invoked quantum entanglement to explain something, and almost made sense!
More picspam, from a walk along the canal a couple of weeks ago - took the same walk today but forgot my camera, which was annoying because I saw a couple of very nice Mandarin ducks. Anyway, last time I got pictures of another odd duck - not sure of species - and a big black bird I couldn't get close enough to identify - I think it may be a heron of some sort but I'm not sure. Anyone know?--Cut-- Click here for more --Cut--
Just spotted one of the systems in Oolite (and the older Elite) galaxy seven:
In case that isn't clear it readsData on Beatle
Economy: Poor Industrial
Tech Level: 6
Population: 2.3 Billion (Human colonials)
Gross Productivity: 5888 megacredits
Average Radius: 3740 Km
Beatle is famous for its exotic fish meat but scourged by deadly civil war.
Sounds like an interesting place to visit but you wouldn't want to live there.
...which makes it VERY annoying that I can't find any Natasha Romanoff fanvids to the tune of Back in the USSR. Come on, folks, how hard can it be?
OK, probably hard enough that I don't want to try, but you'd think someone out there would want to. Please!
Just checked my retirement countdown - ninety days (sixty working days plus weekends, public holidays, and my remaining leave) to go.
Rather pleased about that...
I heard a while ago that there was a new Saint TV series being made with Eliza Dushku (Buffy, Dollhouse) as Patricia Holm. There's finally some footage on line:http://www.themarysue.com/saint-reboot-promo/
Looks a bit formulaic, with a plot against the Templar family to provide story arc, but might be OK.
is back, and more or less resolves the big cliffhanger from the end of the last episode. It does so reasonably fairly - it's a fix, but not a total one. BIG spoilers follow!
[Spoiler (click to open)
]The biggy is that Lena is apparently going to stay dead, unless someone else goes the metronome route, which is a shame because she was one of my favourite characters. The big plague problem is resolved, though opening up an exciting new can of worms which we don't know much about yet. James Marsters guest-stars as an antiquarian, and I suspect is going to become a recurring character, along with his nemesis. Deliberately keeping this vague since it really would spoil your fun if I said more.
's recommendation I also took a look at Defiance
which I can best describe as Alien Nation crossed with Firefly - it's set after an abortive alien "terraforming" and colonisation attempt has devastated the Earth, and humans and a bunch of aliens of various races are trying to maintain some sort of vestige of civilisation in St. Louis, now renamed Defiance. They're basically doing it as a western, the setup for the first feature-length episode has the hero (a Man With No Name type with an adopted alien daughter) arriving in town just as a big crisis develops, screwing the local brothel keeper while apparently being attracted to the mayor (Julie Benz, aka Darla and Rita Morgan) too, and eventually providing part of the solution to the problem and leading the climactic fight against the banditos somewhat less cooperative aliens. The plot is pretty basic but more fun than I expected it to be, I could wish for a few more strong characters - Firefly's great strength was the crew's interaction - but they mi...
This is a multiple crossover, beginning with NCIS and Dexter and eventually taking in several other fandoms. Some sections include passages with a first person viewpoint, reflecting the narrative style used in (for example) the Dexter TV show and books. I will always try to make the identity of the viewpoint characters clear. Crossovers this chapter NCIS, Dexter, Burn Notice, mention of CSI Miami.
Major spoilers for all seasons of Dexter to S4, then VERY AU. Warning, character death!
See earlier chapters for disclaimers etc.On Twisting the HellmouthOn Archive of our Own--Cut-- Click here for more --Cut--
Thursday was horribly cold and nasty, ditto Friday. Saturday still a bit cold but dry and sunny. Today moderately warm and sunny, I'm just back from a long walk. I'd be tempted to say spring may have arrived, except we'll probably have another blizzard tomorrow...
The British Library is going to be archiving ALL .uk web sites - there has been a pilot scheme for several years which includes forgottenfutures.co.uk, and I'd imagine this will work the same way, with the library archiving a snapshot of the site at regular intervals, a bit like Wayback Machine but focused on the UK. They are also gearing up to archive eBooks on a VERY big scale.
I don't see this as a problem - presumably this stuff is published to be read - but if you don't want researchers to see your embarrassing photos in the 25th century this may be a good time to revise your site contents.