Sunday, July 5th, 2015 01:00 pm

Posted by Daniela

“As an increasing number of women enter the workforce in Latin America — more than 70 million in the last two decades — they are beginning to demand equal treatment in the street, as well, insisting that so-called compliments really aren’t flattering.”

“Although the gay pride parade has happened in peace for at least 13 years in Istanbul, on Sunday the parade was interrupted by police who fired pepper spray and rubber pellets at thousands when they arrived to march.”

The well-intentioned Twitter campaign #SelfiewithDaughter was criticized by women, the internet response is the usual sexist backlash.

“The supreme court legalized marriages of minors under 16, considering them adult ready for marriage.”

An Indian bureaucrat is suing one of the country’s leading news magazines after it described her as “eye candy”.

“Mozambique has decriminalised homosexuality in its new penal code, making it one of a few African countries where same-sex relationships are legal.”

“Iceland’s parliament has abolished its blasphemy laws, despite opposition from some of the country’s churches.” The bill was introduced by the Pirate Party, which campaigns for internet and data freedom.

“A Chinese firm reportedly plans to ask its staff to seek approval before they get pregnant, provoking scorn in the state-run press and on social media.” “The plan distributed by the firm suggested that only married female workers who had been with the company for more than a year would be allowed to conceive – and only within a specific period.”

“A leading Iranian actor has apologised after coming under pressure over a tweet he posted in support of a historic US supreme court ruling on gay marriage.”

Featured image: “I’m not your ‘sweety’, asshole”. Alberto Font/The Tico Times

Sunday, July 5th, 2015 10:10 am
Have some unsorted links before I get cracking on work for the day!

I haven't seen Inside Out (yet), so I haven't actually read past the first couple of paragraphs, but: "The Science of ‘Inside Out’". "As scientists who have studied emotion for decades, we were delighted to be asked. We ended up serving as scientific consultants for the movie, “Inside Out,” which was recently released. / Our conversations with Mr. Docter and his team were generally about the science related to questions at the heart of the film: How do emotions govern the stream of consciousness? How do emotions color our memories of the past? What is the emotional life of an 11-year-old girl like? (Studies find that the experience of positive emotions begins to drop precipitously in frequency and intensity at that age.)"

"27 Amazing Charts That Will Turn You Into A Baking Whiz". Oh, Buzzfeed titles. Never change. (Actually, no. PLEASE CHANGE.)

Lifehacker: "This Graphic Shows You the Many Ways to Make Real Ramen".

"Farewell to America: After 12 years in the US, Gary Younge is preparing to depart – as the country’s racial frictions seem certain to spark another summer of conflict". "Raising a black child in a racist society poses a very particular set of challenges. On the one hand, you want them to be proud and confident of who they are. On the other, you have to teach them that they are vulnerable precisely because of who they are, in the knowledge that awareness of that vulnerability just might save their life. We are trying to raise self-confident children for long lives, not hashtags for slaughter."

"3D Printed Rats Make For Cheaper and More Ethical Dissections".

"Sony's Robotic Dogs Are Dying A Slow And Heartbreaking Death". (I have a real soft spot for the Aibo; during [ profile] scruloose's and my time living in Toronto, [ profile] tamakun first dreamed of and then acquired his, which he named TK.)

Via Facebook:

--"6 Ways Nature Cleans Up Our Messes Better Than We Do". []

--"17 Reasons Your Cat Is Giving You An Attitude". (What's with the "an" in the title? Is that a regional thing? We'd just say "giving you attitude".)

--"Scientists Create Holograms that you can Touch".

--"I Read The New “Fifty Shades” Book, And It Is Absolutely Batshit. E. L. James’ new book is called Grey. We need to talk about how crazy this book is. NSFW language ahead – including the phrase “music to my dick”."

--"This 10-Story Factory Has Been Transformed Into An Incredible Adult Playground".

--"Here’s what your kitchen will look like in 2025, according to IKEA".

--"The Light Show in the Great Smokey [sic.] Mountains: Today, the rare Smoky Mountain fireflies are a tourist attraction. Twenty years ago, science didn’t believe they existed."

--"When America's Librarians Went To War".

--"How Do We Break Our Internet Habit and Read More Books?" (Posted for interest, not because the article holds THE ANSWER.)

--"How The Deepest, Darkest Secrets Of Moms Shape The Products In Aisle 6". "While working in advertising for 12 years, Wintsch witnessed the creation of campaigns depicting the most idealized version of moms based on outdated (and incorrect) notions of motherhood. 'It's really outdated. It's archaic,' she said. 'It really bothers me—it bothered me so much that I created a company to fix it.'"
Sunday, July 5th, 2015 08:56 am
I'm excited, except for the bit where it's already nearly here, ugh, where does the time go?

I don't have my Safety Committee schedule yet, so I can't make plans to see people, but if you're going and I don't already know, please tell me!

Friday July 10 - 2:00 PM - ENL - The Parental Undertones of Fannishness.
Toni Kelner, Kate Nepveu, Jennifer Pelland, Diane Weinstein (leader).
After the first Peter Capaldi episode of Doctor Who aired, Jet Cuthbertson (@Jet_Heather) tweeted, "Hard to sum up my feelings towards #DrWho- at once completely critical, but protective & adoring. Condemning, but desperate for another fix." This summarizes the conflicting urges that drive many fans to create fanfiction and fan art with the goal of improving a book or show that they find simultaneously appealing and insufficient. But it also sounds like a description of parenting: protective and loving, eager to see achievement that matches potential, critical of shortcomings, concerned about conflicts between the parent's goals for the child and the child's own ambitions. What leads fans to take on this parental role with the works they love? Is it appropriate and respectful, or literally paternalistic? How does it mesh with the parental feelings that creators often have for their own works? And what can fans learn from the struggles and successes of parents?

Friday July 10 - 7:00 PM - ENL - Recent Fiction Book Club: Persona.
Victoria Janssen, Kate Nepveu (leader), Fran Wilde.
In a world where diplomacy has become celebrity, a young ambassador survives an assassination attempt and must join with an undercover paparazzo in a race to save her life, spin the story, and secure the future of her young country in this near-future political thriller. For author Genevieve Valentine, restraint is a mode of composition, both in the beautifully understated sparsity of her prose and in her protagonists' taut, tense stillness. In Persona, where the degree to which one has or has not smiled reveals or conceals a wealth of information, restraint is crucial to a Face's survival. Persona brings up questions of identity and celebrity, managing to be a tense, carefully wrought thriller while still nodding and winking at the camera. You'll never look at a red carpet the same way again.

Saturday July 11 - 10:00 AM - F - Successfully Writing About Horrible Things.
Mike Allen, Catt Kingsgrave, Shira Lipkin, Kate Nepveu (leader), Patty Templeton.
If you're not writing horror but your plot calls for something horrific to happen to a character, how do you handle it? You might go overboard and be detailed to the point of undermining or derailing the narrative, or might be so vague that the horrific event has little effect on the reader or the story. A reader who's been through a similar experience might be offended or distressed by a description of awfulness that's lurid, gratuitous, clichéd, or bland. What strategies can writers use to help readers empathize with the characters' suffering and build stories that respectfully handle the consequences of terrible events, without falling into these traps?

Sunday July 12 - 12:00 PM - ENL - Fandom and Rebellion.
Gemma Files, Catt Kingsgrave, Kate Nepveu (leader), A. J. Odasso, Ann Tonsor Zeddies.
ifeelbetterer on Tumblr writes, "No one is more critical of art than fandom. No one is more capable of investigating the nuances of expression than fandom—because it's a vast multitude pooling resources and ideas. Fandom is about correcting the flaws and vices of the original. It's about protest and rebellion, essentially.... Fandom is not worshipping at the alter of canon. Fandom is re-building it because they can do better." Our panel of creators and fans will dig into the notion of when, why, how, and whether fan works and remixes are "better" than the original, especially when they come from a place of protest and challenge.

Sunday July 12 1:00 PM - CO - A Visit from the Context Fairy.
Kythryne Aisling, Stacey Friedberg, Gwynne Garfinkle, Kate Nepveu, Sonya Taaffe.
In a blog post at Book View Café, Sherwood Smith writes about the opposite of visits from the "Suck Fairy": going back to a book you disliked and finding that the "Win Fairy" (to coin a term) improved it when you weren't looking. Are the Suck Fairy and the Win Fairy really two faces of a unified Context Fairy? If context is so crucial to loving or hating a work, how does acknowledging that affect the way a reader approaches reading, or a writer approaches writing? How does one's hope for or dread of the Context Fairy influence decisions to reread, rewrite, revise or otherwise revisit a written work?

Thoughts on these? Comment, do, I always find it helpful and interesting!
Sunday, July 5th, 2015 01:51 pm
A few years ago, I got a NAS*. It came with a pair of 2TB hard drives, which ran as a mirror of each other, so I had 2TB of space to store stuff in.

When it ran out of space, I picked up a third 2TB drive, stuck it in, and told the system "Add this drive to the volume." - which meant that I now had 4TB of space, with check-data spread across the three of them. And because technology is awesome it managed all of that while still working perfectly, and without me having to use a command line.

When we arrived back from Christmas this year, the box was unhappy. One of the drives wasn't working in when I turned it back on, so I ordered a new drive from Amazon. I picked up a 3TB one, because they were almost as cheap as a 2TB one, and I knew that I might want to expand again in the future**. I opened up the NAS, noticed that the non-functional drive was slightly loose, and pushed it back into place at the same time as adding the new drive. This then gave me four drives - and 6TB of storage***.

_Yesterday_ the system told me that one of the 2TB drives was dying. And because we're off on holiday tomorrow to see Julie's parents (and their six-month Alsatian puppy) I wanted to get this fixed before something died. And thanks to the wonders of Amazon and DPD I was able to order a new 3TB drive**** and have it delivered this morning - for a fiver extra. Which, frankly, for a Sunday is pretty amazing.

I poped open the NAS, took out the broken drive, slid in the new drive, closed it back up, and turned it back on again. Two minutes later it started beeping, and logging into the web interface it said "Your disk volume is broked. Want to repair it using that shiny new disk you just popped in?" All I had to do was click "Indeedly", and it's added the new disk to the volume, and is now busy moving things around to ensure that it's backing up the existing drives. At the end of that I should have about 7TB of space available*****. And I'm not using anywhere near that much!

Basically, computers are awesome, and it's never been easier to have oodles of storage that you don't need all of in your home.

*Network Attached Storage - a small computer with some hard drives in it that acts as storage that anything in the flat can talk to. Including the music player in the kitchen, the tablets, and the Playstation, so I can stream music and video from it to the TV. Better than an actual PC because it's tiny, low-power, and much easier to manage.
**Due to the way redundant disk arrays work, when you have a single drive bigger than the others the extra chunk isn't available, because there's nowhere to store the check data for it.
***Well, 5.36TB, because the "2TB" drives were actually 1.82TB. Because of computer maths.
****£85 for 3TB! Young Andy is boggled.
***** If you care about how it manages to do this, then see here. It's quite neat.
Sunday, July 5th, 2015 01:18 pm
Yesterday we went to Fergus and Sonya's handfasting, which was held by the shores of St Margaret's Loch, which looked a bit like this:

Unfortunately, you're not allowed large groups up at the ruined chapel any more, but having the ceremony on the shores of the loch worked perfectly (and didn't require us to walk up the hill, which was a definite positive).

It was a lovely day, and great to see people there. Lots of relaxing conversation, and good to see Fergus and Sonya (literally) tie the knot We went on to the pub afterwards with them, and ate some lovely vegan food, before running away home. We ended up walking along the same route I take home from work - which has some of the nicest views of Edinburgh, so we got a couple of photos.

The dress code was decidedly non-formal (with a preference for "Just escaped from a circus" and a ban on ties), so Julie dressed colourfully, and I grabbed some smart-casual stuff left over from India.

Sadly, with the way the light at 7pm was the choices were either "Light directly behind us", "In the shadow of the photographer" or "We are standing in a rainbow". Such are the joys of phone cameras.

It was a bit easier on the way home:

To the far left you can see the Scottish Parliament, the sticky-up poles are from the Dynamic Earth centre, and directly beneath us is Carlton Studios, where I have spent many hours dancing. Behind us are Salisbury Crags, and behind that Arthur's Seat.
Sunday, July 5th, 2015 12:14 pm
* most of Hugo vote (unfinished: novellas, graphic novels)
* asstd tidying
* ordered bowls
* ordered clock mechanism
* tidied to-do list
* sent exam papers to dad
Sunday, July 5th, 2015 06:15 am
Remarkably enough, advertisers find adblocking immoral. Here's an article claiming that it's like speeding. Actually, it's like telling a pick-up-artist that he doesn't have a right to sex with you.

Thanx to Metafilter
Sunday, July 5th, 2015 06:03 am
Suppose we hadn't rebelled against Great Britain.

Thanx to Metafilter
Sunday, July 5th, 2015 11:03 am
Happy birthday, [personal profile] stillsostrange!
Sunday, July 5th, 2015 10:59 am

To my almost ecstatic delight I receive a letter from dear Mrs T-, dated from The Cape, which by the markings and stains has undergone many adventures on its way to me. Mrs T- is still quite extremely happy in her lot, though she confides that it is a pleasure to step onto dry land even if her legs still suppose her on deck. Mr T- remains the most excellent of husbands and much valu'd by the other members of the expedition, both for his scientifick capacities and his spiritual counsel (for being at sea during a high storm will give most to think about their latter end).

She finds the gentlemen of the expedition most friendly towards her, which she puts down to the great utility they find in her mathematickal abilities as well as the feminine arts of the needle - these have been of great service in mending and patching, and also in assisting Mr C-, the expedition surgeon. There is also a certain amount of play at cards to pass the time, but only for shell counters, and she and Mr T- are very cautious about seeming to win too often.

The gentlemen of the expedition, she goes on, although they will concede that certain women have prov'd most apt for intellectual endeavours, whether Mrs Carter that was a noted scholar of Antient Greek or Mrs Somerville, or, they are kind enough to say, you too, Mrs T-, debate whether such women are exceptional members of their sex, or whether, did girls have the same education and chances as boys, many more would show these abilities. Mr T- holds out strongly for the latter case, and says that many great dunces among men, that would be better put to some useful trade, are sent to the great universities and take no advantage, and he had rather see women that love learning in their places. But he is considered very radickal in these views, though I love him for them.

Oh, thinks I, if I only I could respond to dear Mrs T- and send her a copy of this book that Sandy so kindly gave me (which has quite replaced embroidery as the occupation of my idle moments). I am quite sure that both she and Mr T- would find it of the greatest interest and are surely better fitted to examine its arguments than myself, who have no great claim to intellectual abilities. It certainly makes a deal of sense.

Mrs T-'s letter continues with some account of observations made at the Cape. She writes most vividly and sure should write the book of her travels. I miss her exceedingly.

At this point Hector shows in Mrs O'C-, who appears in some agitation. I desire him to fetch us some strong coffee and urge her to sit down and disclose what the matter is.

O, my dear Madame C-, she says, already becoming lacrymose, Miss D- has made the most unjust accusation to me that I have been casting my eyes on Mr N-. I never thought of such a thing - all it is, is that he is so excruciating deliberate over deciding his play at cards that I try to use the power of my glance to urge him on, for it is very tedious of him and irks the entire table.

And anyway, she continues, I am in such a situation that I fear to encourage any that might become suitors for my favours (not that I would consider Mr N-), because of my wretched scoundrel wastrel of a husband. (O, I say, though I am already appriz'd of the fact, you are not a widow, Mrs O'C-?) I have refused to live with him these several years and he will go away and I think I have seen the last of him, but does he hear I have found a generous patron, he will not only come and take any money that I have put by (which I understand is his legal right, tho' I cannot think it just), he will pretend to be most injured and will threaten to bring a crim. con. action unless he is compensated. The worst of it is, gentlemen are very wont to suppose that there must be some confederacy between us, which is quite the reverse of the case.

She wipes her eyes and drinks her coffee. I said something of this to Miss D-, and she said to me, why did I not consider that there are men who have curious freaks of taste that do not involve fornication, such as, she understands, that nasty creature, Mr P-. She says she has never dealt with such herself but it is put about that there are those who make an excellent living in such manner, and that Madame C-, that is so well-informed on so many subjects, might advise me.

Well, I say, Mr P- may be a nasty creature, but he is one that is prepared to pay quite generously one that will indulge his peculiarity. I describe this to her and she blinks a little and says, why, I think I could manage that, and 'tis in no way adultery.

I outline to her some of the other freaks I have encountered, whether it is the pretending to be a dog and forced to eat from a bowl on the floor, or to be arrayed like a fine lady with the stays pulled very tight, or a passion for feet, as well as the very common desire to be whippt. She considers this all within her capabilities, and I say that I will put it about that Mrs O'C- is willing to provide certain special pleasures.

But my dear, I go on, why do you not try to obtain a separation? I did enquire at one time about that, she says, and unless there be violent cruelty I do not think it is possible: with all his numerous faults of character, he has never laid hands on me. Let me, I say, consult with advisers on this topic, for I daresay there may be some expedient.

At least, she says, my little boy is safe with my sister in Dublin, for the wretch will not dare to return there where he has many foes and a large number of debtors and would be immediately taken up. But I dare not have him with me because of that scoundrel, that always tells me what his rights as a husband are. She dabs at her eyes again.

While I see around me that there are men, like dear Mr F- and Mr T-, that are most excellent husbands (and Sir B- W- seems surprizingly admirable, though Lady W- has prudently kept her own fortune well-ty'd-up), it has always seemed to me that the law matrimonial gives undue rights that the worser kinds of men are happy to misuse. I console Mrs O'C-, make her a gift of some implements that I do not at present have use for, and determine to interrogate Mr MacD- on any possible legal recourse that might avail her.

Sunday, July 5th, 2015 05:57 am
I always thought I don't eat like a normal person. But maybe it's normal not to eat like a normal person.

Thanx to Metafilter
Sunday, July 5th, 2015 02:22 am
1. We grilled today. Yay, delicious meat!

2. As expected, it was pretty quiet at work today, so even though there were a lot of people who took the day off, I wasn't overwhelmed with stuff and running around all the time, and actually got a lot done!

3. I actually listened to music for a bit tonight and got some sorting done of recently downloaded stuff. Having the nice new computer makes me want to be a bit more organised.
Sunday, July 5th, 2015 05:24 pm
(Technically it's not because we used sausage instead of octopus -- but it came out pretty well!)

Sunday, July 5th, 2015 04:17 am
This video contains firework foolishness typical of what Chris' family gets up to in Schrodinger's Heroes.  Imagine that this is what Luke, Bo, and their friends are doing on the Fourth of July.  (Warning: dangerous shenanigans and minor injuries.)
Sunday, July 5th, 2015 10:00 am

"In the East End of London, revivalist preacher William Booth and his wife Catherine establish the Christian Mission, later known as the Salvation Army. Determined to wage war against the evils of poverty and religious indifference with military efficiency, Booth modeled his Methodist sect after the British army, labeling uniformed ministers as “officers” and new members as “recruits.”

The Christian Mission, in which women were given ranks equal with men, launched “campaigns” into London’s most forsaken neighborhoods. Soup kitchens were the first in a long line of various projects designed to provide physical and spiritual assistance to the destitute. In the early years, many in Britain were critical of the Christian Mission and its tactics, and the members were often subjected to fines and imprisonment as breakers of the peace.

In 1878, the organization was renamed the Salvation Army, and two years later the first U.S. branch opened in Pennsylvania. During the Great Depression, the Salvation Army provided food and lodging for those in need, and during both world wars it distinguished itself through its work with the armed forces. By then, it had come to be appreciated as an important international charity organization.

Today, the Salvation Army, still based in London, has branches in more than 75 countries. The Army operates evangelical centers, hospitals, emergency and disaster services, alcohol and drug rehabilitation programs, community centers, social work centers, secondhand stores, and recreation facilities. Voluntary contributions and profits from the sale of its publications fund the organization."
Sunday, July 5th, 2015 09:33 am
[personal profile] lilliburlero wrote a lovely remix of one of my fics that manages to fit rationing, class issues, f/f bonding, the NHS and the eternal problems of the post-war all into the compass of 1415 words...

Surfeiting the appetite (1415 words) by Lilliburlero
Chapters: 1/1
Fandom: Return to Night - Mary Renault, The Charioteer - Mary Renault
Rating: Not Rated
Warnings: Creator Chose Not To Use Archive Warnings
Characters: Clara (Return to Night), Annie (Return to Night), Mervyn (The Charioteer), Minor Characters, Hilary Mansell, Julian Fleming
Additional Tags: Auntliness, Dundee Cake, rationing, Food, Minor Canonical Character(s), POV Outsider, Class Differences, Post-World War II, 1940s, Post-Canon, Crossover, Remix

Hilary and Julian's lives aren't the only ones that have been irrevocably changed by the war.


Advisory: description of a child with a terminal illness.