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Jonathan Coulton's coming back to Madison! I hope I get groupies, for helping bring it about. And so should everyone else who clicked the link. Hey, I bet if I started that rumour, more people would click it. Hmmm...
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Behold, the Watchmen as Manga girls. It's probably a good thing that I don't know Japanese...
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But this fan video is still pretty damned cool:

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Went to an alcohol free party with [ profile] naughtyaelf which was surprisingly fun. Taught some strangers how to play Munchkin, shot people with Nerf weapons, then went home and watched Robot Chicken together. Now, got to go to work. Boo, work!
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Ganked from [ profile] gridlore.

The top fifty SF books. Bold the ones you've read, strike the ones you hated, italicize the ones you couldn't get through. Asterisks for the ones you loved - more asterisks, more love. Plus signs for the ones you own.

1. The Lord of the Rings, J.R.R. Tolkien
2. The Foundation Trilogy**+, Isaac Asimov
3. Dune, Frank Herbert
4. Stranger in a Strange Land*+, Robert A. Heinlein
5. A Wizard of Earthsea, Ursula K. Leguin
6. Neuromancer*+, William Gibson
7. Childhood's End*, Arthur C. Clarke
8. Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?***+, Philip K. Dick
9. The Mists of Avalon, Marion Zimmer Bradley
10. Fahrenheit 451*, Ray Bradbury
11. The Book of the New Sun, Gene Wolfe
12. A Canticle for Leibowitz*, Walter M. Miller, Jr.
13. The Caves of Steel**+, Isaac Asimov
14. Children of the Atom, Wilmar Shiras
15. Cities in Flight, James Blish
16. The Colour of Magic*+, Terry Pratchett
17. Dangerous Visions, edited by Harlan Ellison
18. Deathbird Stories, Harlan Ellison
19. The Demolished Man, Alfred Bester
20. Dhalgren, Samuel R. Delany
21. Dragonflight, Anne McCaffrey
22. Ender's Game***+, Orson Scott Card
23. The First Chronicles of Thomas Covenant the Unbeliever, Stephen R. Donaldson (Please note that if there were an html code for multiple strike-throughs, shredding, incineration, and stabbing of the author of this piece of trash, I'd use that. Till then, a simple single line strike-through will have to do.)
24. The Forever War**+, Joe Haldeman
25. Gateway, Frederik Pohl
26. Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone++, J.K. Rowling
27. The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, Douglas Adams
28. I Am Legend, Richard Matheson
29. Interview with the Vampire, Anne Rice
30. The Left Hand of Darkness, Ursula K. Le Guin
31. Little, Big, John Crowley
32. Lord of Light, Roger Zelazny
33. The Man in the High Castle***+, Philip K. Dick
34. Mission of Gravity, Hal Clement
35. More Than Human, Theodore Sturgeon
36. The Rediscovery of Man, Cordwainer Smith
37. On the Beach, Nevil Shute
38. Rendezvous with Rama+, Arthur C. Clarke
39. Ringworld+, Larry Niven
40. Rogue Moon, Algis Budrys
41. The Silmarillion+, J.R.R. Tolkien
42. Slaughterhouse-5, Kurt Vonnegut
43. Snow Crash**+, Neal Stephenson
44. Stand on Zanzibar, John Brunner
45. The Stars My Destination, Alfred Bester
46. Starship Troopers***+, Robert A. Heinlein
47. Stormbringer*+, Michael Moorcock
48. The Sword of Shannara, Terry Brooks
49. Timescape, Gregory Benford
50. To Your Scattered Bodies Go***+, Philip Jose Farmer.
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If I were, I'd write a filk song titled "88 lines about 44 Presidents", and release it for the inauguration. Subtle hint to any filkers on my friends list...

And speaking of filkery, it's very sad that there aren't any upcoming Jonathan Coulton shows in Madison. Which is why everyone should click on the following link and request such:

View all Madison events at Eventful

Woo hoo!

Nov. 21st, 2008 05:52 pm
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So, I think I actually did pretty well on yesterday's chemistry test. While I might not have aced it, I'm confident I at least made up slightly for bombing the last one. I guess all those pennies I sacrificed to the Black Hole God worked.

... "What is the Black Hole God?" you say? So glad you asked! See, there is a coin funnel in the Physics building on campus, and the Black Hole God is a minor deity that resides therein. Now, I've never actually SEEN said deity, but I know in my heart, spleen, and appendix that It is there, for how else would I have gotten passing grades on math heavy subjects? You see, that is the only area that the Black Hole God is capable of granting prayers in. You drop in pennies, the Black Hole God eats them, if It is satisfied with your offerings you get inspiration on the test, and you can divine the omens relating to your grades from the collisions that may or may not result when you drop several pennies in at once.

Now, some may demand "proof" of all this. Well, I have a photograph right here:
photo behind cut )
Showing where It lives! You might foolishly demand further evidence, like a picture of the Black Hole God Itself, but I say the mere idea is Hubris. Even assuming that It is visible in Its native form, it would surely be an act of arrogance to shine a light into the funnel and attempt to catch a glimpse of Its diminutive glory. While Its smiting ability is probably only commensurate to Its prayer-answering power, _I_ sure don't want to be struck with hangnails for such a blasphemous act.
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Why are leather kilts more expensive than leather pants? They use less material, after all. Do they really take $200-300 more worth of labor to produce, or is it simply a matter of economy of scale, and if more people bought them, the price would go down?

Edit: OK, I will defer to the experts who say it does in fact take more material, and a lot more labor. Still, the discrepancy shouldn't be that severe in an "ideal" situation where both were manufactured in the same numbers with the same degree of mechanization and overhead. I wonder if there's any way to estimate what the cost would be if that were the case? Any Economists here?
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"Rural New England: H.P. Lovecraft had to get his inspiration from somewhere."
"Upstate New York: As Seen on COPS!"
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Behold, the utter awesomeness of the Lego Vault. I have to go mastur... I mean, weep tears of jealousy now. Also, read about the The 6 Most Badass Stunts Ever Pulled in the Name of Science, and check out the most accurate review of DnD 4E on the net.
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The new "Agents" sets seem reasonably cool, but in my own mental Legoland, I will continue to fold them into the older "Alpha Team" theme. It's good that, for a change, the bad guys seem to outnumber the good. However, there's still an appalling gender imbalance, with only one female character to nine males, and in one of the only two sets she appears in, it's as the "Agent in distress". Legoland Still Needs Women! And it's cool that 4 of the bad guys are cyborgs, but how come none of the good guys are? Obviously, this is still more evidence of our culture's pervasive anti-transhuman prejudice.
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Saw the new Indiana Jones movie today. It was OK; Better than "Temple of Doom", not as good as "Raiders of the Lost Ark" or "The Last Crusade". Random thought: CGI gophers? And warehouses? Boy, those commies sure have lousy muzzle discipline, someone should explain to them that circular firing squads are a bad idea. The prop department made the Crystal Skull too light, it was obvious from the way that the actors were handling it that it wasn't real rock. Why the hell would a tracking device _blink_? And when making wishes, you should _never_ use words like "All" and "Every", that's just asking for trouble.

Edit: Other random thoughts: Boy, it sure sucks to be a Brown Person in a Pulp movie, they didn't even get any lines this time. And that Ancient Astronaut meme is just INSULTING to humanity as a whole.
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Iron Man, the movie, contains 100% of your recommended daily intake of PURE WIN!!! Stuff I found particularly cool: Pepper Potts not being a standard Hollywood Bimbo. Rhody not being the standard Hollywood Big Black Badass. The Swarthy Foreign Terrorists having some ethnic variety, i.e., not all being Swarthy. The Terrorist Spokesman speaking 'Arabiyya Fusha while addressing Stark formally, and using some degenerate Lahja when conversing with the other terrorists. The movie's generally accurate portrayal of military folks, which I will grudgingly concede, just this once, that Zoomies Airmen count as. The idiotic-yet-venerable "Iron Man is my body guard, no, really!" secret identity idea being treated with exactly the respect it deserved.

Stuff I didn't like: the gaping hole in Starks chest not inhibiting his daily activities. Yeah, the scene where his valued assistant rummages around in his innards was funny, but it broke my suspension of disbelief. The suit didn't of course, because it was made of PURE WIN. Not explaining how Stark can possibly survive the acceleration and various impacts he experienced without being pulped, or at least passing out when he routinely faced several Gs while effectively _standing_up_. Yeah, gravity/inertia manipulating "repulser" technology is the obvious answer, but it should have been mentioned, to let the nitpickers in the audience know that the scriptwriters were thinking ahead.

Stuff that was annoying, but perfectly in character: The newly "responsible" Stark taking his suit on a test flight above an inhabited area. Inventing an apparently clean power source that can fit in a pocket and outproduce several nuclear reactors, and not immediately marketing it and saving us all from global warming. Also not marketing the various technologies required for the armor to the cripples of the world. Yeah, these are perfectly in character, but I seriously hope one of the _other_ characters calls him out for them in the next movie. Which had better be just as awesome as this one...
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Should go see the Jonathan Coulton show tomorrow. And so should any Madisonians reading this...
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...On how to talk to girls. Of especial noteworthiness is the "Persistence = Obnoxious stalker-dom" bit, or as I would put it "Everything Hollywood 'Romantic comedies' ever taught you was WRONG!!!!"

I wonder if She Who Will Not Be Reasoned With makes an appearance, to point out how the poster is really an Evil Sexist Pig too? Not that I would point her at them, I'm not _that_ mean.


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February 2013



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