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Explaining the joke 

A family member just asked if we have any vice grips. I asked what size. He said "small".

Without thinking, I responded "Yeah. There's a pair hanging off my desk with a tag on them that says 'Perl'".

Sorry I haven't had any new posts. I've been meaning to start adding in some retro-hobby posts in addition to continuing the music ones, but, over the last couple of days, I've been getting carried away trying to clean up a proof-of-concept hobby project to the point where I can post it.

(An experimental Tesseract OCR frontend intended to make it as comfortable and efficient as possible to OCR speech ballons and text boxes in manga and doujinshi and feed them to Google Translate.)

I just got introduced to this great song satirizing the state of online discourse.

I almost forgot today's other top favourite:

Pushin' the Speed of Light by Julia Ecklar and Anne Prather.

The best way I can sum this story up is "The plight of the young working man, watching everyone else age into oblivion as he lives life aboard a relativistic starship." Very poignant.

I like to contrast it with '39 by Queen, which has a similar theme, but with the main characters being seen as heroes rather than everymen.

An interesting bit of related trivia:

If you have any Star Trek books on your bookshelf written by "L.A. Graf", that's a pseudonym for "Julia Ecklar, Karen Rose Cercone, and (once) Melissa Crandall".

Apparently it's a tongue-in-cheek abbreviation of "Let's All Get rich and famous".

I think I'll also share some of my favourite (sci-fi/fantasy geek folk) because it deserves more attention.

Let's start with The Horse Tamer's Daughter, written by Leslie Fish. This ballad, is set in the world of Marion Zimmer Bradley's Darkover and this recording by Julia Ecklar is from an out-of-print album that apparently went for CA$400 at a FilKONtario auction.

...with this and Big Iron by Marty Robbins, I learned that I want more ballads.

OK, now for the first of my "summary of tweets that are still relevant" posts... :

First, "The Nameless Murderess" by The Once. A swing-y murder ballad with some *amazing* vocals. (See also:

Second, "Jabberwocky". Kate "Erutan" Covington's comeback song after struggling to recover her singing voice:

Third, "Long Lost Century" by The Woodlands:

More music roundups to come.

...and I just noticed that I didn't properly collapse the descriptions of figures 171 and 172. Since it's been 40 minutes, I'm just going to leave that mistake up.

No need to annoy people deleting and re-drafting after that long.

I wanted to start off my tweets recap with the link I found for IBM's CUA keybindings reference, but, sadly, it's now dead.

If anyone wants to try to track it down, this was the URL for the relevant section in one of the versions of IBM's reference:

Failing that, I've since picked up a used copy of so maybe I'll try to find time to transcribe the reference tables listed as Figures 171 and 172 (Keyboard Functions, p. 315-322), (Keys to Functions, p. 319-322), Figures 175-185 (Mnemonic Assignments for ..., p. 345-349), and Figure 200 (Shortcut Key Assignments, p. 451-452).

(That said, if you can find a copy of the book, pick it up. While it's primarily intended for OS/2, it's got a *lot* of nifty stuff useful for DOS TUIs, including "Appendix E. Translated Terms"... charts translating various English menu/button labels like "Redo" into 16 different languages.)

While the world is justifiably focused on #COVID19 remember that our (US) leadership has yet another plan to effectively outlaw encryption called "EARN IT".

People who can't use email are ipso facto not competent to draft such legislation.

I just recently ran across this blog post on the core flaw in the Go programming language's focus on simplicity that I felt like sharing.

TL;DR: They seem determined to force a veneer of simplicity, even when things are fundamentally complicated, and that makes things painful when the abstraction leaks.

It occurs to me that I'm going to have to get used to this whole idea of having timelines that are slow-moving enough to follow everything that happens among strangers.

It looks like it's leading me toward impulsive faving/boosting behaviour when the better choice would be to make a note and then wait to see if I can fave or boost someone else's more balance/rational/calm-headed toot on the same article.

I just want to make this perfectly clear: I will never use (known to be) backdoored crypto. I will not purchase "compliant" devices. If it comes down to it, I will stockpile grandfathered legacy devices.

Don't let the coronavirus hype distract you. They're pushing this shit through **right now**.

If you don't yet know about the government's latest attempt to legislate encryption backdoors, look here

When I joined Twitter in 2009, I was just mirroring my, where I'd coined for fanfiction micro-reviews with machine-friendly structure.

The reference I wrote is still up:

It wouldn't make sense to summarize those, and I stopped updating when I stopped the micro-reviews, so I'll just point at it for now.

Maybe later I'll use Mastodon's higher limit to revisit them for a "top 5" run-down.

I'm still not completely satisfied with sending people to look at my Twitter, so I decided to go back through it and write some themed highlights round-ups of tweets that are still relevant.

In order to gather the data for them, I've written a little Python script to chew through the tweets in my Twitter data dump, which I've put up on GitHub Gist in case anyone else wants to play with it.

Oh, since I don't yet know whether the Mastodon APIs allow me to write an importer which would insert stuff earlier than existing content, here's a link to my old content:

Hello, everyone.

For those who aren't the one or two people following me over from Twitter, I won't post very often but, when I do, it'll usually either be an especially good YouTube video or technical stuff, like announcing that I added some content to one of the lists on my blog or sharing something interesting I discovered while puttering around in old files.

I do have a bunch of programming projects, but, if you want to judge me based on my GitHub, bear in mind that I'm still trying to pick up the pieces after a long interval when I didn't have time to work on anything.

Once in a blue moon, maybe you'll see me post about my retro-hobby programming project to write an installer builder for DOS.

Qoto Mastodon

QOTO: Question Others to Teach Ourselves. A STEM-oriented instance.

No hate, No censorship. Be kind, be respectful

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