bookgazing: (Default)
[personal profile] bookgazing posting in [community profile] ladybusiness
How to tell your fake boyfriend you would like to become a robot:

1. Tell him, "I would like to be a robot." You can also say, "I am really a robot, not a female-bodied biological machine," because that is closer to the truth.

2. Do not tell him anything. If you do, you will also have to admit that you think about ways to hurt yourself so you have an excuse to replace body parts with machine parts.

3. Besides, insurance is unlikely to cover your transition into a robot.

A Merc. Rustard's "How to Become a Robot in 12 Easy Steps" reminded me strongly of last year's Hugo contender "If You Were a Dinosaur, My Love". Charming, quirky, artfully secretive, and with a similar melancholic emotional pull to Rachel Swirsky's story, "How to Become a Robot in 12 Easy Steps" is for everyone who enjoys literature, robots, and crying in inappropriate places.

Read more... )

"How to Become a Robot in 12 Easy Steps" is available for free at Sciegentasy magazine.

Sid sez hmmmm?

Jan. 30th, 2015 08:51 am
oursin: Sid the syphilis spirochaete from Giant Microbes (fluffy spirochaete)
[personal profile] oursin

Finished The Countess Conspiracy yestreen.

I can live with the sciency stuff being not what actually happened, because makes good story, raises awareness that there were women Doing Science at the period (and it was probably easier if you were Mary Anning, rather than in High Society), etc.

My big, this question has not been addressed, WHUT -

was I suppose I had better cut for spoiler for people who have not read it? )

Or is all this Just Me?

(no subject)

Jan. 30th, 2015 08:31 am
oursin: Brush the Wandering Hedgehog by the fire (Default)
[personal profile] oursin
Happy birthday, [personal profile] batwrangler and [personal profile] elij_0650!

Daily Happiness

Jan. 29th, 2015 10:42 pm
torachan: palmon smiling (palmon)
[personal profile] torachan
1. Got my scanlations posted for the month, and with a couple days to spare! :D

2. I had a nice day off today. I didn't actually do much, because my arm was hurting a lot, but we took a little walk and watched a bunch of old Simpsons episodes and just had a relaxing day.

3. I got new shoes today. My old ones were really falling apart and have been for a long time, but I'm always resistant to getting new ones. Carla's folks gave me money for Christmas to get new shoes, though, so I felt I should probably follow through and not just use the money for other things (it's taken me this long to get over to the shoe store, though).

4. Speaking of Christmas, I also finally used my See's gift certificate from my mom and got myself a box of candy. (It's right by the shoe store!)

Project Joy: Argh

Jan. 29th, 2015 07:50 pm
finch: hipster!Faramir wrote you a poem (poem)
[personal profile] finch
Is argh the opposite of joy?

Tried Muppets Most Wanted and Thor: Dark World. Both had skipping issues in the first ten minutes. Tried Rush Hour 2 and ended up turning it off maybe twenty minutes in because Chris Rock's ugly American was so ugly it was cringe-inducing.

Gave up and watched more Tabletop on Hulu.

Scanlations: Himegoto ch. 30 & 31

Jan. 29th, 2015 05:12 pm
torachan: yoshiki from himegoto (himegoto)
[personal profile] torachan
With Audrey on board as cleaner, we can hopefully start to catch up on this series. And I've already read up through volume seven, so I know how exciting those later chapters are and I want to get to them as soon as possible!

Title: Himegoto
Original Title: ヒメゴト~十九歳の制服~ (Himegoto~Juukyuu Sai no Seifuku~)
Author: Minenami Ryou
Publisher: Big Comics
Genre: Seinen
Status in Japan: 7 volumes, ongoing
Scanlator: Megchan's Scanlations feat. Audrey + Krim
Scanlation Status: Ongoing
More Info: Baka Updates

Summary: This is the story of three college freshmen with secrets: Yuki, aka Yoshiki, a boyish girl who gets off on wearing her old high school uniform skirt; Mikako, who acts innocent around her classmates, but at night pretends to be a 15-year-old and has sex for money; and finally there's Kaito, who's obsessed with Mikako to the point of dressing up like her.

Chapter Summary: Soaking wet from the sudden downpour, Mikako and Yoshiko rent a room in a love hotel to dry off...

Chapter 30: Love Hotel
Chapter 31: Separation

Used to do the pony...

Jan. 29th, 2015 07:45 pm
oursin: image of hedgehogs having sex (bonking hedgehogs)
[personal profile] oursin

And in my latest 'Wot abaht bestiality?' news
Man accused of having sex with a Shetland pony was found 'smelling strongly of horses'

Somehow this is just not as amusing as this report, exactly a year ago, about the man who was trying to get cows and sheep to cooperate with his desires adjacent to Tottenham Hotspur football ground.

Is it the context? the apparent achievement of his aims? the fact that he seems a fairly hardcore zoophile (bestiality porn on his phone).

I thought Shetland ponies were inclined to be vicious (possibly not the most compliant choice), but what do I know.

Five things make a post

Jan. 29th, 2015 11:30 am
nanila: wrong side of the mirror (me: wrong side of the mirror)
[personal profile] nanila
I received more requests for dragon postcards than I had postcards! Never fear, I have ordered another pack and will be able to fulfill all of them. I’m sending them out slowly in batches as I have a chance to write them.

Crossposting question
Is anyone else finding that, if they edit an entry that’s been cross-posted from DW to LJ, it re-posts to LJ instead of modifying the previous entry? I’m getting grumpy about it, as I usually have to edit entries 3-4 times after initially posting because I’ve forgotten a tag or spot a grammatical error.

Beautiful sky rock
[personal profile] kaberett, did you see the cover of this week’s Nature? It is gorgeous. From the Nature web site:

The Esquel pallasite — arguably the most beautiful meteorite ever discovered — consists of centimetre-scale gem-quality crystals of the silicate mineral olivine embedded in a metallic matrix of iron-nickel alloy. The pallasites are thought to originate from a ~200 km radius parent body that separated into a liquid metal core surrounded by a rocky silicate mantle shortly after the birth of the Solar System. High-resolution magnetic imaging of the iron–nickel matrix of two pallasites (Esquel and Imilac) by James Bryson et al. reveals a time-series record of magnetic activity on the pallasite parent body, encoded within nanoscale intergrowths of iron-rich and nickel-rich phases. This record captures the dying moments of the magnetic field generated as the liquid core solidified, providing evidence for a long-lasting magnetic dynamo driven by compositional convection. (Esquel image from Natural History Museum, London.)

I have a paper copy of the issue if you would like me to post it to you.

As mentioned in my post about the long-tailed tits (DW/LJ), I received a new lens for my dSLR for Christmas and have been keeping vigilant watch on the bird feeders so I can rush out with it when the light is good (not a common occurrence in January). I’ve been posting selected shots to [community profile] common_nature, but wanted to put a record of them on my personal journal for safekeeping as well.

Birds, birds and more birds )

Cat and boy

Telstar and Keiki napping together on a spare room bed. Telstar has decided he definitely prefers infants to toddlers. Especially toddlers who chase him around gleefully shouting, “No, Teldos!”
silveradept: A young child with a book in hand, wearing Chinese scholar's dress. He's happy. (Chiriko)
[personal profile] silveradept
This was different than many of the games played between blogs. Here's what the game says:
You know that meme that goes around sometimes where you post your five favorite kinks and then five favorite couples, and it's like a wish into the universe to see if anybody will write it for you? Let's make it a little more interactive.

Comment here if you want to play, and I will give you 3-6 couples that I associate with you, and you make an entry in your journal talking about those couples and fics that you wish the universe would write for you.
For reference, or as the alternate game to play, I think the first paragraph refers to something like this:
Give me up to 3 things you love to see written. Pairings, kinks, tropes, structure, pictures, lyrics, quotes or anything else. I will write you something, probably short, based off of the mini-wishlist.
So I stopped by [personal profile] thebonesofferalletters and collected some partnerships from them.

Kaylee/Serenity: The best pairing in Firefly ever, as Kaylee really loves the ship and keeping it running as her primary love, and the ship's crew zealously guards Kaylee's cheerfulness, including acts of violence, to make sure that the ship runs smoothly in all its aspects. Kaylee would totally be the Pilot for Serenity if the ship were a living ship like Moya in Farscape. All of her DRDs would be named, and everyone on board would have to address them politely and respectfully by their names for swift and effective work to happen. Mal has the hardest time remembering this, because of the way he treats all the women in his life. And Jayne often ends up on the wrong side of doors that "malfunction" in his presence.

Kaylee/Serenity works best in universes, in my opinion, where the two can fuse and share consciousness, so that Serenity can feel Kaylee's unconditional love and respond accordingly.

Identity/Mythology: In essence, I ship who we are with the stories we tell ourselves and you make me think of this so, so much.

I appreciate the compliment. Identity and Mythology are definitely intertwined with each other. I see them as linked through Zhuangzi's Butterfly Dream. I gave some discount Daoist advice a little while ago that seems relevant here: Those of us looking for our true selves are never entirely sure we've found them, because our dream selves are pretty convincing. Identity has Mythology to thank for that, as Mythology is all about finding the stories that fit to describe us, regardless of whether those stories ate the stories we want to have. Identity always says they're looking for the truth, but it's a truth that paints Identity in the best light. Mythology has no such compulsions about making anyone look good, so the relationship anyone has with them, but especially Identity, is one of a friend unafraid to give you the advice you need, but that prefers to tell it as a story and see if you can get what they mean. That could manifest as a mentor/supplicant relationship (for any value or formality of that relationship) or, just as likely, as an explicit and contracted D/s relationship. Because Mythology is in control of how others react to Identity, even Identity themselves.

The Major Arcana: Yes, I ship tarot. Go with it. Also, I ship facets of it with each other and just....I want Poly tarot representations, okay? This is the nonsense you make me think of.

Well, certain aspects of the Arcana lend themselves to being paired or grouped off more easily. Fool/Magician, Priest/Priestess/Hierophant, Star/Wheel of Fortune, Tower/Devil, and so forth, but putting the whole thing together seems more like a harem comedy, with the Fool taking the role of the focus of the harem.

Regrettably, the only experience I have so far with a harem comedy that scales up to this requirement is Negima! Which, if the serial numbers were filed off, the name changed, and the characters aged at least six years, could work out - there's magic, there are cards with powers and identities, and the setting is good enough to accommodate.

Something else that comes to mind is that perhaps the Persona series of games would work, too, with the Tarot thematics and the Social Link systems. I have no experience with those games, though.

The whole Major Arcana in one relationship would be a giant map to have to work out, though, so any story line that would probably have to start out with certain groupings and then have them link through various hinges or situations. It would probably be epic enough just to recount how they all get together and relate to each other, much less have a frame story to have to work with. I don't think I'm up to that kind of work, as I'd probably give in to the temptation to make all of them one-dimensional based on their Tarot aspect (basically committing the same mistake that Negima! did).

So, yeah, that's the sort of stuff that goes on in our head. Feel free to run screaming now.

Water transfer printing is magic

Jan. 28th, 2015 09:19 pm
sailorptah: Cat at a fishbowl (Default)
[personal profile] sailorptah

We've done it. We've invented the IRL version of the cartoon trope where you paint things in a checkerboard pattern by using a can of checkerboard-patterned paint.

Wednesday reading

Jan. 28th, 2015 06:20 pm
queen_ypolita: A stack of leather-covered books next to an hourglass (ClioBooks by magic_art)
[personal profile] queen_ypolita
Recently finished
The Corn King and the Spring Queen by Naomi Mitchison, which I enjoyed, but I reached the last page feeling I'd probably missed masses of interesting stuff going on somewhere, simply because of its length and layers.

Currently reading
Still on the go: Bad Medicine, The Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man and The Mask of Apollo. I've picked up Wild Geese, a selection of Mary Oliver's poems, as my current bedtime reading.

Reading next
I'm thinking about picking Carmen Dog by Carol Emshwiller as my next fiction read—it's one of the LibraryThing secret Santa picks, and I'd like to read those ones fairly soon.
oursin: Photograph of small impressionistic metal figurine seated reading a book (Reader)
[personal profile] oursin

What I read

Following various recs across my rlist, I succumbed to Courtney Milan's Trade Me (if people who loathe the billionaire trope nonetheless loved it...) and then went out and downloaded The Duchess War (which was actually a freebie), A Kiss for Midwinter, The Heiress Effect, all of which I galloped through and while I could pick historical nits (e.g. the term 'suffragette' several decades too early) they don't activate my usual resistance to romance genre, and in fact hit some sort of spot which is the current spot that responds to that.

Finished The Girl Who Soared Over Fairyland - not sure I enjoyed it quite as much as predecessors, or whether it was just the rather on-and-off way I was reading it in bits.

There was also Sekkrit Projekt reading, and, if not daylight at the end of the tunnel, the darkness seems a little less dense.

On the Go

The Countess Conspiracy - but Y she no writing to Darwin? (Darwin Letters Projects indicates that he had huge correspondence from people in her sort of position).

I also started Skylar White, In Dreams Begin but got diverted.

Also still picking up and putting down and going 'bless' at A Name to Conjure With.

Up Next

Allegedly The Just City is finally making its UK appearance this week but I'm not holding my breath. Also I note that Bookview Cafe has or is about to publish a new novel by Sara Stamey, who did some rather fun sf novels way back. Also I see there are at least 2 more novels and a prequel in this Courtney Milan sequence.


Was thinking whether I am generally more about the comfort reading/re-reading at this gloomy season of the year. I suppose I could look back at my reading posts over the years. However, there are so many other factors, such as having duty reading on hand that perhaps inclines towards self-indulgent reading in moments of relaxation. Or having academic commitments to writing that similarly. Or being in recovery from academic commitments.

Have just moved off my GoodReads 'Currently Reading' list several tomes which I haven't actually given up on but can't be considered as actively reading at the moment and are thus either on hiatus or the picking up and dipping in lists, plus marked one thing as given up.

Reading Wednesday

Jan. 28th, 2015 12:41 pm
liv: Bookshelf labelled: Caution. Hungry bookworm (bookies)
[personal profile] liv
I said when I was looking ahead to 2015 I might try a new way of talking about books here, so I'm going to have a go at reading Wednesday, which seems a really nice tradition anyway.

read more )

What a difference ten years makes

Jan. 28th, 2015 09:19 pm
starlady: "They don't play by the rules, why should we?" (dumbledore's army)
[personal profile] starlady
I suppose I'll have more to say about this after Festivids reveals, but I realized the other day that I've been making fan videos of one sort or another for a decade now. Ten years ago I spent a month in Greece and for that entire month obsessively planned the AMV that became Yuna's Vertigo, though I didn't start editing until I got back to the States in February and I didn't actually upload the video to until March.

For obvious reasons, I don't think gets half the credit it deserves in the fannish circles I tend to move in now, but it sure deserves a hell of a lot of credit. Aside from the great Evanescence debacle of--2007? ish?--they have never caved to Big Content companies in terms of take-downs, and the site is still entirely user-supported. As a consequence, every single one of the AMVs I've uploaded there, all 17 of them over five years, is still up and freely available.

You know what else was created in February 2005? A certain video-sharing service that you may have heard of called YouTube, which is now a Google platform that has successively strangled everything that once made the site fun and now has its sights set on the currently thriving indie-music scene. Cory Doctorow says it all with his headline, Google strong-arms indie musicians into accepting brutal, crowdfunding-killing deal for streaming service, but you should go read the whole article. If you're starting to suspect that this streaming service's grossly abusive terms are (among other things) a backdoor through which what's left of the major music labels are trying to choke the thriving indie music scene, take 10 points for Ravenclaw. The great indie cello musician Zoë Keating has posted a verbatim transcript of her conversation with her YouTube rep about the service's terms after Google's PR team called her a liar.

I fucking love Zoë Keating five million times more than I did now, and I loved her a lot before this, let me tell you.

As a result of this latest travesty I've come to the conclusion that I can no longer in good conscience continue to post my vids to YouTube--assuming they'd even let them be uploaded, given the content-matching algorithms that are now in place. Indie music matters a great deal to me, as do the principles of fair use and transformative works, and YouTube and Google are against all of them. I'm voting with my content and taking it somewhere that the owners aren't opposed to my creativity while attempting to profit off others' unfairly.

Unfortunately, it's a hard world out there for vidders who don't have their own hosting (I have this image of us like something out of Mad Max or Nippon no Apachezoku, roaming through an apocalyptic landscape on motorbikes in search of mirage-like refuges), and it shouldn't be the case that we need to have our own hosting to engage in an activity which is demonstrably protected within U.S. copyright law and which should be legally protected worldwide. After reading this discussion hosted by [personal profile] shati, I've come to the conclusion that Critical Commons is our best (last?) hope in terms of hosting for vids. From other people's remarks, it seems fairly easy to sign up for an advanced account, which allows video uploading.

I invite you all to join me.


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