sqbr: (up and down)
[personal profile] sqbr
For the Perth Gaming Festival this Saturday. I have a bunch of copanelists, so this is just points I want to hit, not a strict plan.

More people are playing and making games than ever before, and as the community has grown so too has the call for games that represent a wide range of human experience. This panel explores the importance of diversity in games, with discussion of ways developers can make more representative games, of how both players and game makers can be supportive of diverse voices, and will include examples of games featuring positive identity representations. Our panelists will speak from a wide range of perspectives, including disability, the LGBTIQ spectrum, and culturally diverse backgrounds.

My notes:
Read more... )

Charging for Emotional Labor

Thu, Nov. 26th, 2015 12:29 am
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
[personal profile] ysabetwordsmith

Here's an interesting post about emotional labor, sex work, money, and feminism.

Emotional labor is real work.  It takes time and effort.  If you do it, you should be getting something for it: enjoyment, favors, cash, whatever floats your boat.  Marriages generally run more on barter than cash, although the financial benefits are common too.  Sex work is more pay-as-you-play ... but yes, really,  men absolutely do turn to sex workers for attention, comfort, reassurance, fake love, emotional support, etc. in addition to orgasms.  Some guys just want to get off, but a lot of guys want to get off while talking about how their wife/girlfriend/woman-who-doesn't-know-they-exist doesn't appreciate them.

What I'm Doing Wednesday

Wed, Nov. 25th, 2015 10:48 pm
sage: image of orange haired figure holding large basket of apples under apple tree (food: apple harvest)
[personal profile] sage
A Short History of Nearly Everything by Bill Bryson. Fascinating how much of the science is totally obsolete in the 12 years since publication, esp re DNA and climate. Extremely irritating anglophilia and non-WASP-male erasure. Also, a far higher body count than I was expecting.

Manners & Mutiny by Gail Carriger. The finale to the finishing school series. Really strong plotting and maybe her best so far. Made me wish Carriger would write something besides YA fluff. (Possibly she does under another name?)

currently reading:
A Life in Secrets: Vera Atkins and the Missing Agents of WWII by Sarah Helm. Alas, the library ebook copy is in overdrive format, meaning my tts reader won't read it aloud, meaning I have to read with my eyes, which is very slow going.

I made myself a new slouchy black hat Sunday and I've made and frogged two brown hats after finally accepting the brown is just too tan+gold. It's terrible with my skin tone, even with a wide dark brown border.

I discovered Daiya fake cheese for people who are allergic to dairy, soy, and gluten, and I am not allergic to it! It's expensive as hell, but I am not allergic to it!

Also, dairy-free shrimp bisque is a thing I can do now! I was craving it all weekend despite never having actually HAD shrimp bisque. Then Sunday evening I looked up a dairy-free lobster bisque recipe, ignored most of it, and started throwing things in a pot. recipe/notes )

Happy Thanksgiving, y'all who celebrate, and safe travels. Remember, self-care first, last, and always.
unusualmusic: a shot of a woman from waist down, dressed in black pants and carrying a white drum (Default)
[personal profile] unusualmusic
with negligible character development is acceptable for action movies. and its not just them some directors are hella visual and yes movies and a visual medium but dude. pretty pictures are empty without a good story. because if the plot is tight and the people hold your heart the action grabs you more! its more meaningful. when it finally happens we are on the edge of our seats and ready for it. and we will come back to the theatres to watch the HELL outta that shit again and again?

writing is hard i know but if we are spending 100s of millions of dollars on a movie, surely we can invest in good screenwriters? i mean at the very least they are aware of fandom right? well pick a few of those good and give em the keys to the kingdom. let them come up with the stories and then hollywood can explode and cgi as much as they like.

i usually hate classical music

Wed, Nov. 25th, 2015 10:29 pm
unusualmusic: a shot of a woman from waist down, dressed in black pants and carrying a white drum (Default)
[personal profile] unusualmusic
but occasionally a snippet of trailer music will grab hold of my mind and REFUSE to let go.
unusualmusic: a shot of a woman from waist down, dressed in black pants and carrying a white drum (Default)
[personal profile] unusualmusic
he is so adorable in his fandom and his general bearing. smiling so hard right now.

Poetry Fishbowl on Tuesday, December 1

Wed, Nov. 25th, 2015 10:21 pm
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
[personal profile] ysabetwordsmith
This is an advance announcement for the Tuesday, December 1, 2015 Poetry Fishbowl. This time the theme will be "weather." I'll be soliciting ideas for weathermen, weathered heroes, desert crawlers, strangers blown in on a storm, rainmakers, sun princes, weather deities, Oyuki-san, empathic environment, preparing for bad weather, making predictions, controlling the weather, getting caught in a storm, praying for rain, weathering the storm, huddling against the cold, watching the world burn, rebuilding from the ashes, hostile terraforming, wastelands, any port in a storm, shipwrecks, snow caves, creepy buildings, sanctuaries, habitat foreclosurehostile weather, space weather, strange alien storms, bizarre seasons, personal raincloud, lightning revelation, demonic charcoal fog, redemption in the rain, first snow, the power of the sun, thunderbirds, and poetic forms in particular.

I have a linkback poem, "The Least of These" (11 verses, The Ocracies). 

If you're interested, mark the date on your calendar, and please hold actual prompts until the "Poetry Fishbowl Open" post next week.  (If you're not available that day, or you live in a time zone that makes it hard to reach me, you can leave advance prompts.  I am now.)  Meanwhile, if you want to help with promotion, please feel free to link back here or repost this on your blog. 

New to the fishbowl? Read all about it! )

Good News

Wed, Nov. 25th, 2015 09:31 pm
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
[personal profile] ysabetwordsmith
Good news includes all the things which make us happy or otherwise feel good. It can be personal or public. We never know when something wonderful will happen, and when it does, most people want to share it with someone. It's disappointing when nobody is there to appreciate it. Happily, blogging allows us to share our joys and pat each other on the back.

What good news have you had recently?
unusualmusic: a shot of a woman from waist down, dressed in black pants and carrying a white drum (Default)
[personal profile] unusualmusic
wont leave my head.

i am kinda cranky about the premise tho. captain america fighting to keep Bucky outta jail is some special treatment bullshit. stick that mofo on trial for his crimes. the whole sitch reminds me of the real life fact that we cannot get white western countries on trial for war crimes no matter what they do, but any brown or black country or the occasional eastern european country gets thrown up there to hypocritical meanderings about justice no problem.

jesus. see there are so many ways in which fanfic handled this situation with responsibility and sense of fair play and justice. but all hollywood is going for is a frame for cool tricks and cgi. and it makes me pissy as hell.

the trailer is fucking GOOD tho. it distracted me for a while.

but the problem is that if stories are equipment for living, as that screenwriter dude keeps saying.... lawdddddd the shoddy equipment we are being given!

On the Matter of Gifts

Wed, Nov. 25th, 2015 08:06 pm
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
[personal profile] ysabetwordsmith
One thing holidays do is divide between people who love gift cards and people who hate them.

The rule is simple: when giving a gift, think of the recipient. If the person loves gift cards, then give that. You can 'customize' it by picking a favorite store; there are cards for department stores, book stores, clothing stores, most stores these days. If the person dislikes gift cards, give something else instead.

The same applies to handmade gifts: some people love homemade goodies, while others hate them. Give what the recipient likes; avoid what they don't.

And while we're on the topic, not everyone says "I love you" the same way. Here's an introduction to five popular love languages: words, service, gifts, time, touch. If you and your family share the same language(s) then great. If not, the most loving thing you can do is learn how to express love the way other people receive it.  They will be happy, and also if they notice how much work you're putting into it, they'll probably be impressed.  This means that not all people focus on the gift-giving part of the holidays.  A word-oriented person might prefer a long chatty letter or conversation about your year, a service-oriented person might favor being pampered, a time-oriented person generally likes doing things together, and a touch-oriented person might love snuggling by a fire.  You get the drift.

Picking on people what they like is obnoxious. Don't be a dick. Especially, don't be a dick over the holidays.

Happy Chrismahanakwanzikah to you. I'm posting this note ahead of Thanksgiving because the shopping season has sprawled out this early so yes, really, this advice is already needed. Not to mention arguments over who pays for the turkey supplies and how. Ah well. Try not to kill each other.

Solved the Matrix problem.

Wed, Nov. 25th, 2015 06:11 pm
fayanora: SK avatar (Default)
[personal profile] fayanora
So there's long been people pointing out that the Machines in The Matrix using humans as batteries would be terribly inefficient, losing power rather than gaining it. Well, I may have a solution: maybe that's only what the humans freed from the Matrix thought they were being used for. According to a panel at OryCon, power satellites in space would be terribly inefficient in beaming power down to earth, or else dangerously good at it, so his suggestion was to make server satellites instead; a whole slew of tiny, paper thin satellites equipped with a recently created computer chip that is very resistant to radiation. This Server Sky, as he called it, would turn the power of the sun in space into a space based server that could connect people anywhere in the world to the Internet without cables that can be cut.

Then, in Echopraxia by Peter Watts, there's this thing called "Heaven," which is a thing where people who are suffering from Present Shock can go to live in a fantasy world they create. It's free because at the same time, their brains are being used as living computers, living servers, to process their version of the Internet through their subconscious mind.

Well, that got me thinking, what if the Machines were using humans in the same way, as living servers to subconsciously process data for them? It would be a lot more efficient than using them as batteries.

Just a thought, though. I still personally prefer my previous fan theory that the Matrix is like a nursing home the Machines keep their doddering old parent species in out odd compassion, and that it's nested, and nobody in that world had ever really been outside of the matrix, they just think they have because they saw through the first layer. But the two theories are not mutually exclusive.

Of Physics and Funerals

Wed, Nov. 25th, 2015 07:57 pm
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
[personal profile] ysabetwordsmith

This is a good start.  For secular folks it really works and is beautiful as it stands. 

I've even done one on star stuff -- as stars live, they are very far apart and everything is quite ephemeral. When they die, their bones are blasted out through space to coalesce into and around new stars.  This process begets planets, which are the heaven of stars; and the life upon them, that's us, we are the angels.  We are what stars become after they die.  Why wouldn't we look up and think of them as home?

For me, life after death isn't faith, and it's not just memory either.  It's observation.  It's looking around the universe and seeing that everything exists within systems, within cycles.  Nothing is lost; everything is retained; it simply changes form.  Some of those changes are really exciting.  Just because we can't see the whole of a given cycle from the point we're standing in doesn't prevent us from mapping the part of it we can see, and that part tells us by its shape that it is incomplete and so there must be more which will only come into view after we have moved ahead some distance.  You can't see out of a womb when you're in it, either.

Faith is believing what you've been told.  Extrapolation is using what you already know to predict the parts you can't get at yet.

And funerals, well, they're for the community to patch up the hole that's left behind, and to make sure that the departed energy has in fact departed and isn't going to stick around loose to cause problems.  Do whatever works for you in that regard.

Stacking Blocks

Wed, Nov. 25th, 2015 06:25 pm
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
[personal profile] ysabetwordsmith

I have been following with great interest the study of Tetris as a preventative treatment for PTSD and a way of reducing flashbacks.

So then I got to thinking, some people dislike video games or cannot play them.  But!  There are stacking-block games in real life too.  There are other pattern-matching games and puzzles.  I'm not into Tetris.  I love Bausack towers, and I also love tile sets that can be mixed around -- just handling the pieces and putting them into place is soothing.  I think that these would work for PTSD similar to Tetris because they use many of the same features.  You have to look at (or feel, if you're vision-impaired) the shape of the objects and the spaces to figure out what goes where.  As PTSD is fundamentally a sorting error in the brain, where you can't fit the file "EVENT.fck" into the "Past" folder, any kind of sorting activity should help facilitate that so it works better.  So having more options to explore for different ways to support that process should widen the pool of people who can be helped.

God dammit!

Wed, Nov. 25th, 2015 07:34 pm
soc_puppet: Deep sea fish wearing a monocle (Monocle Fish)
[personal profile] soc_puppet
I have never in my life wanted to blab more about a guest who's staying at the hotel where I work. And it's mostly because they're my mom's favorite [blank], and I happened to have made dinner reservations for our family on the same night they're staying there in honor of my mom's birthday and also mine. So there is a slight tiny chance that we might see them there when we go to dinner, AND I CAN'T HAVE ANYTHING PREPARED. IIRC, I'm contractually forbidden from asking for autographs myself (especially while working, though I won't be when I'm there for dinner), and really, I wouldn't want to bother a guest anyway (and would be reluctant to bother famous people outside of specific engagements in general), but MOM'S BIRTHDAY. MOM'S FAVORITE [blank]. ARGH.

I need to go cry tears of frustration into some toast or something now.

Edit: Okay, looking at new info, it is incredibly unlikely that we will see that person at the hotel. But still. *sob sob sob*


Wed, Nov. 25th, 2015 05:30 pm
fayanora: SK avatar (Default)
[personal profile] fayanora
Along with "fortnight" is a couple of archaic English words I learned the other day, that I want to find excuses to use: 1. Overmorrow, means "the day after tomorrow," and 2. Ereyesterday, means "the day before yesterday."

Black Annie

Wed, Nov. 25th, 2015 06:14 pm
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
[personal profile] ysabetwordsmith

So people are throwing a fit over this.

Me, I loved the remake, especially in terms of comparing it to the earlier movie with attention to what and how things had been updated.  I admired the "foster kid" remake including its song.  I adored the use of social media as the means of driving not just public opinion but several important plot points.  It was very astute.  And I think that choosing to tell this story with black protagonists spoke to multiple aspects of life that concern people of color -- being wanted, being unwanted, success, family of choice when birth families don't work out the way you want, etc.

People don't like it when somebody else gets a turn in the spotlight?  Wah wah, cry me a river.

Wednesday Reading Meme

Wed, Nov. 25th, 2015 06:45 pm
sineala: Detail of Harry Wilson Watrous, "Just a Couple of Girls" (reading)
[personal profile] sineala
Well, I don't know about you guys, but my Tumblr dash has been melting down in flames since the Civil War trailer dropped. Let's... talk about something else, okay?

What I Just Finished Reading


What I'm Reading Now

At least comics this week are fun and non-upsetting!

Moon Girl and Devil Dinosaur #1, The Unbeatable Squirrel Girl #2 )

What I'm Reading Next

Books, I guess?

A Clockwork Heart

Wed, Nov. 25th, 2015 04:56 pm
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
[personal profile] ysabetwordsmith

Here is an awesome new metaphor for being transgender.  It also works pretty well for being queer, transracial, species dysphoric, polyamorous, or other situations where your innate nature clashes with other people's major expectations so badly that it does damage.

Understanding Diversity

Wed, Nov. 25th, 2015 03:19 pm
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
[personal profile] ysabetwordsmith
Here's an intersting post about teaching diversity. It's good as far as it goes. But it's missing a piece, and that missing piece lies at the heart of what's wrong with diversity today.

Read more... )

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