I’m going to try to do a chapter of Witch’s daughter later, but I need to go deal with the floor varnishing first, and probably lunch.
For those that watched the Prometheus award, I’m sorry my camera crapped out (zoom suddenly decided I didn’t want it, and it took me forever to find THAT setting.)

Crawling around on the floor looking for USB hookups (some are behind the computer) made me lose track of what I was saying.  Hopefully it wasn’t too bad.

Wiggles fingers.  See you later.
Anyone want to listen to a reading of work in progress later on? I can do a zoom meeting, though I don’t know how many people it will allow….

51 thoughts on “Later

  1. Oh, I totally sympathize. I’ve had several Zoom conversations where the new high-def camera produced an image, but Zoom could not be persuaded to hook up with its microphone, and I was afraid that this might be another of those. Fortunately, though, this time it worked fine. But I understand the frustration of trying to make recalcitrant A/V hardware do its damned job.

    But we got to see your face for a good fraction of the time, and hear what you had to say, so I’d say the problems didn’t ruin the occasion. I hope you enjoyed taking part!

      1. Yeah, well, I think I recall going a bit overboard (drooling) at the thought of perhaps working with one of the Apollo astronauts when I applied for an internship at Marshall Space Flight Center and expressing such thoughts on the application. (I had to get sealed references and everything.) So, yeah, didn’t get it (not that I had that much of a chance).

  2. I’ve worked around electronics too long not to expect Murphy to raise his head. Rehearsals are a must – and backups.

    1. Repetition of experiments is a crucial part of the scientific method.
      I know, I’m preaching to the choir.

    2. The horrible ones are those where it’s set up to prevent your doing something twice and so you can’t repeat the demo without fudging it.

  3. Sounds like fun, but I won’t do Zoom. After they sold my e-mail to spammers and I found out the other stuff that that malware does it is gone forever from my machines.

    1. Hmm. Sounds like a good reason to only use Zoom inside a VM, where it’s not allowed access to anything else, and to give it a throwaway email addy.

      [considers that sounds bogus, thus making it a good candidate for such addys, especially since I already own it… yes, I have a few domains whose sole purpose is to amuse me]

      1. There seem to be many who won’t use Zoom because of dirty tricks or just because they don’t trust they don’t trust China. I’m one of them. But I don’t know if Skype offers all the features you want.

  4. Zoom’s free plan allows hosting of up to 100 participants in a video meeting. 1-to-1 meetings have no time limit. A meeting with three or more total participants is limited to 40 minutes. See (hover your mouse over the circled-i symbols in the “Free” column for more details).

  5. I need to go deal with the floor varnishing first, and probably lunch.

    This important tip: Do NOT varnish your lunch. Shellac it, entomb it in an acrylic cube, but eschew varnish. Gilding is also inadvisable as it will not adequately preserve the tableau, having the tendency to suppress the contrasting colors of the setting.

    1. Plus, you can use ethanol to dissolve the shellac then flambe the lunch for a special treat. Warning: have a fire extinguisher handy just in case.

      1. I was wondering about the reported injuries until I saw the last picture. Dat’s a lot of carp!

      2. Ah, the Asian Silver Carp, also known as Suicide Carp. When disturbed, they can jump as much as 10 feet in the air. Sometimes they land right in the boat, saving fishermen much time and effort. Sometimes they land right on the fishermen. Since they can reach 4 feet long and weigh up to 60 pounds, that can be quite inconvenient. You’d consider a fish-induced concussion or broken nose inconvenient, right?

        As for taking them down with shotguns — well, rednecks. What can I say? Looks like fun!

  6. I’ve been wrestling with three programs, one old computer with Win10, and two new gizmos that do not want to cooperate with all of the above. It’s been . . . a week. As I told one of the classes, “This week has been Monday, Monday Part II, The Son of Monday, and Return of the Revenge of Monday.” I got a lot of laughs, thumbs-up, and eager nods.

  7. I usually use CISCO webex. Not too bad until you go over 16 and there isn’t enough screen space for all the small windows. Most of the time when we’re using it for corporate purposes we have 50 to 75 people on.

  8. I am probably going to see my therapist via Zoom at this point, and that does not make me happy.

    I also know that i need to be creative, finish Solist At Large, get the website up, and write a comic book script, get together about $9000 for a “number #1” comic book to pitch a “six issue” trade on IGG…

    But between the heat (and no AC repair until Wednesday), the fire and the smoke, the possible impending evacuation, formal separation from work (they aren’t expecting business to pick up until 2022 at the earliest), dealing with all the crazy going on…my motivation is mostly “staying cool and avoiding doing anything that gets me irritated.”

    Probably the only good thing about all this? Resume has been revised-again. I’ve found some real whoppers of bugs in Solist At Large and I’ve managed to tighten it up by about a page. Yay me!

    1. Sorry to hear about your job loss. How annoying and worrying for you. But I am looking forward to your new book.

      We all need to start pushing it out like Alma…..

      1. Particularly ME. I’m so mad at me for being a slacker. Don’t know if chapter will happen. Removing all the protective stuff (paper/tape) took forever, and varnishing ALMOST as long. I’m tired.

      2. Alma’s writing time has just collided with COVID-induced workload (as compared to COVID induced open schedule). Alma is less than pleased.

  9. Despite the camera issues, you did fine IMHO both with the award and with the panel. I watched primarily so that I would have a “face” and “voice” to put with your posts. This may sound odd, but my strong impression was that you speak more slowly than you write. 😉 I enjoyed your comments, although the Vimeo feed crapped out in the middle of your last turn, about 3 minutes before the official end of the panel.

    Re Zoom – I don’t trust it and would not install it. However, I would like to learn more about how to access it via a browser? Since my computer has neither camera nor microphone, my participation would be keyboard only, or just listening/watching.

    I hope the floor came out nice!!

  10. I was at work, and I will be, most of tomorrow. But what I’ve caught has mostly been good.

    I do have to say that a lot of the supposedly political songs at various filks were actually libertarian, because somehow they weren’t paying attention to what people “on their side” were actually advocating. And ludicrously, a lot of things that they thought were jabs at Orange Man were actually describing all their supposed leaders! (I dunno, there are some smart cookies, so it’s possible they were making coded pronouncements, but probably not.)

    1. I think it was here that I heard the phenomena described as “they think they’re Browncoats, but they’re with the Alliance.”

  11. Only seen this in one place, but reports that the reason that the Chinese embassy in Houston was shut down (and Trumps actions against TicToc an Huwei) was that PLA intelligence personell and Huwei experts were mining TicTok for people who could be “micro-targeted” to be organizers for and to take the streets for BLM.
    This may be dated info, as the dates cited in the article are August 4 and August 7, 2020.

  12. > USB hookups (some are behind the computer)

    I ordered a handful of short USB extension cables a while back, since my computer is awkward to get behind.

    There are (usually) USB two ports, or a USB and a PS/2 port, at one end of the I/O panel. Those are often USB 1 ports, very slow, and intended for use by a USB keyboard and mouse.

    There other ports are usually a mix of USB 2 and USB 3. USB 2 ports will work fine for printers and similar devices, but you want any external storage hooked to USB 3 ports, which are faster.

    Use a black or silver felt tip to mark each cable for the kind of port it’s plugged into.

    They make USB extension cables in various lengths; shortest is best for electrical reasons, but if it’s a stretch to the front ports on your computer, you can plug extension cables into them, too.

    As I understand it there’s some kind of licensing involved for USB 3, expensive enough it’s worthwhile cost saving to have all the extra electronics to support more than one kind of port, rather than simply making them all USB3. Even high-end gaming boards usually still have USB 1 ports for the keyboard and mouse…

    If your computer is old enough it doesn’t have any USB 3 ports, if it has any expansion card slots, you can get a USB card for $20-$30, last I looked. It’s a real time-saver when you have large files to move between the computer and external storage.

    1. It was on one of those travel/food shows. They explained that “Hawaiian bread” is called “sweet bread” on the islands, and it either came with or was invented by Portuguese people who came and settled in Hawaii. The basic reason why it is so soft is that they put in a bunch of sugar and eggs to help carry the gluten, and then sometimes people add mashed potatoes to put in even more starch. The outside is brushed with egg wash, of course.

      I imagine that the added sugar matrix also would help preserve the bread, and to fight the humidity somewhat.

      1. The Internet said it’s also called “Portuguese sweet bread” and “pao doce.”

        Oh, and there’s milk in it too, usually, and sometimes lemon peel or lemon zest. So Hawaiian bread really is a lot like hot cross buns, minus the raisins and stuff, and with a better colored, better tasting bread.

        1. Yes. And when I could eat carbs, I’d make “sandwich bread” by layering meat and cheese in the middle. Mom did this for a quick dinner on Saturday, while we were cleaning.
          It’s delicious, btw.

      2. So what they’re saying is those #@!$* Hawaiians culturally appropriated “sweet bread” from Portuguese colonists? I don’t know who has right-of-way in that intersection.

          1. Oh, and apparently some recipes include pineapple juice, which is one of the things people suspect is a secret ingredient in King’s Hawaiian Bread. Which was founded by a Japanese-Hawaiian guy named Taira, and eventually moved to California because the tourists loved it so much; and they’re still making Portuguese bread. Which is a vital ingredient to many American Thanksgiving dinners, these days.

  13. I kind of hate Zoom (and Meetings) in that there’s no easy way to tell if you’re clipping. And then they set the input so hot that you will do so with some frequency.
    (I’ve been tempted to install them on my computer, and chain the input through a DAW to see what I could do about that, but it would require making my basement lair presentable. I’ve got too many home improvement projects to do upstairs to justify prioritizing the effort.)
    Sarah, shoot me an email. (I’m presuming you can lift it from this comment form, but if not, let me know.)
    I might be able to help you with sound editing/production. (Depending on what you want, of course. I can do a fair bit, but I’m a hobbyist, not a professional.)
    Your efforts here and elsewhere have been a bright spot. I’d like to donate some time, and reflect a bit of that.

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