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reaction to the spoilers for the next vorkosigan book we learned today )

in other news, outlander is back! and i have no idea what i felt about that last episode. except, gosh that took the porn to a whole new level. (i don't consider that a spoiler. it's outlander. there's a LOT of porn, all the time.)
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Okay, I was on a brief vacation-and-recovering-from-vacation hiatus, but now I'm back with an excess of Outlander feelings again. As previously, spoilers for the first three books, all aired episodes, previews for the next episode, episode titles, and casting news.

Also, please note that there's discussion of a scene form the show of fairly graphic flogging, as well as speculation on whether a scene from the book involving domestic violence might or might not make it into the show.

cut for spoilers )


Aug. 25th, 2014 09:27 pm
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Okay, here are some things I said on Twitter just now:

"i don't want to write outlander fic, but there's only so many times one can yell in email about how they need to make out. hmm." "i think maybe what i want is longform, free association, spoiler friendly episode-by-episode discussions?"

So this is an experiment in building it and seeing if they will come [back]! Let's say, hmm, anything aired, anything in preview on starz.com, any episode titles, and anything in books 1-3 is fair game.

some initial thoughts, likely to be added to in-between fighting a Raven Boys shipwar elsewhere )
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Okay, DW, here's the thing. There's been this project that's been bouncing around in my head for a while. See, as a user of Netflix and Goodreads, I LOVE the predictive recommendations that they have, and every now and again I find myself thinking it would be great if a similar thing existed for fanfictions.

The problem is, predictive recommendations are really really hard - there's a reason Netflix was willing to pay a million dollars to someone who could improve theirs. (And that's just getting the raw predictions - something workable for the end user would require a bunch of work that I know nothing about.)

But I can't get this project out of my head, so I thought I'd at least see if the raw data is at all workable. That means I need a bunch of raw data. Friends, that is where you come in. :D? :D?

Because things will work best if I'm able to get a bunch of responses for the same fics, I'm doing a pre-survey to figure out what large fandoms I should ask about (ie, what my audience - that's you - has read in). The link to the pre-survey is here - I'd really appreciate it if you could give me some feedback.

And feel free to pass this around as you like - I know all the cool kids are on Tumblr today, but I, uh, am not. Link will be live at least until next Friday - the next step is frankly going to be a pain in the ass so it'll take at least a weekend to work through.
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just finished:

Veronica Roth's Divergent trilogy. I wanted something light (easy, not necessarily cheerful) to read over the long weekend, and these were that. I liked the first one okay and thought they went downhill after that.

also i had some questions (spoilers for all three) )

in progress:

Breakfast with Lucien, a biography of the artist. Just started; confused about the face he seems not to be banging his assistant.

up next:

The Napoleon and Josephine book, maybe? Not really sure yet.
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I always enjoy reading these on my flist, so I decided I should maybe finally play along. It's plausible-Wednesday, right?

What I Just Finished Reading

1491 : new revelations of the Americas before Columbus / Charles C. Mann.

I read this over Christmas, only partially as insulation against certain of my more obnoxious relatives. Basically, Mann's point is that evidence accumulated over the last 40 years points to a picture of pre-Columbus American societies as more numerous, more complex, and more technoligically advanced than commonly believed, and this book is walks the reader through that evidence. I found it very readable and also very interesting.

Two favorite bits. First, he retells the Thanksgiving story from the other point of view - essentially, what the political situation was in NE at the time that caused the Wampanoag to choose to ally themselves with the Pilgrims. This is excerpted here, if you want to get a sense of the book. Second, he talks about the domestication of corn. For other the other major cereals, native to the Middle East, we can tell what the wild version was and how it was domesticated, but for corn, all we have is 'well, maybe' and 'no fucking clue', respectively. Which blows my mind.

What I'm Reading Now

Nothing - most of my reading time on the train is going toward trying to recover from the magazine backlog while I was out of town.

What I'm Reading Next

Checked out from the library right now:
  • Breakfast with Lucian : the astounding life and outrageous times of Britain's great modern painter / Geordie Greig.
  • Napoleon and Josephine : the improbable marriage / Evangeline Bruce.
  • The radicalism of the American Revolution / Gordon S. Wood.

Sooo, probably one of those.
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[personal profile] shihadchick asked: or, if you could order around a bunch of fancy stats people/observers to build a data set, is there anything you'd particularly like to investigate in particular?

(She actually asked two questions, but the other one has a longer answer and will come at a later date.)

I have ...several answers for this!

1. First, I'd like to see the on-going zone entry/exit stuff expanded - more teams! more years! centralized database! (i suspect a proper bit of crowd sourcing could make this happen - claim a game via tick box, upload the standard excel sheet when you're done, allow for multiple people to claim the same game and cross-validate their answers, and then run this whole thing into a queryable database a la extraskater.) as best i know, no one does this for the hawks currently. someone needs to kidnap shutdownline, basically.

2. tracking change of possession. it's related to zone entries in that frequently zone entries become a turn-over, but i'd be also interested in how often turnovers come from bad rebounds, hits, datsyukian takeaways, etc, etc. (unlike many people, i LOVE interrogating hits. i keep thinking that with enough data, people will notice they're* meaningless.)

*technically i think there are several kinds of hits, and only MOST of them are meaningless - so i'd love to be able to distinguish between a hit that takes you out of position vs one that forces a turnover.

3. better show data. more accurate, more granular, plus whatever whoever at SN is doing trying to meaningfully understand shot quality.

4. realtime tracking of every player on both teams at all times plus the location of the puck.

granted, that last one is probably less 'stats folks' and more 'GMs', but, seriously, think about it: we could QUANTIFY how often that backdoor PP play doesn't work.
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so, 2014.

2013 was a pretty good year for me - work went downhill in a couple of ways, but I'm doing better about detaching from it as well as looking for ways to make change, so honestly that's probably a neutral. I was way less crazy in 2013 than 2012, which is always a plus. also on the plus side, i had lots of good people in my life in 2013. and i wrote a 30K fic for the first time ever (tho maybe that doesn't count since it's still in editing.) anyway, good shit in 2013. so, here's hoping things keep trending upward in 2014.

also i introduced my mother to 'what does the fox say?' this week, so that was a win.

one of my resolutions is to be better about staying in touch, which is mostly about RL people but online too, so, in that spirit, how about that meme? you pick in day in january* and a topic you'd like me to post about, and i post.

*let's face it, really the post is going to come on a day approximately when you ask for. but i'll do my best.
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i saw thor 2! )

in other news, read the newest mckinley book, and am still trying to work out how i feel about it. (i mean, i liked it! but i'm trying to work out what it is i wanted more of.)
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I brought this up on twitter a while back, but I really felt it deserved more characters than 140, so I'm moving it to LJ.

which canadian hockey team do you think is the most ill-managed? )
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Hello, fellow Yuletider! I am so excited that you are writing for me.

As always, optional details are optional! I will be thrilled with whatever you give me. But if you are one of those authors who feel better with stalking your recipient details, read on.

requests: Toby Daye, Fast and Furious, Haywire, Seven Kingdoms, Doctrine of Labyrinths, Gentleman Bastards )
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flist, i have sitting next to me, a copy of scott lynch's republic of thieves. a copy i have finished reading, even. since i've been waiting for this since basically the day i finished red seas, this is a good day.

(also i am so glad to have this physical proof that lynch is doing better, because i worry.

(i worry that i pulled a total asshole move in getting my copy, though. i had asked my local mega-bookstore to hold a copy for me, knowing full well that they often get stuff in before the official release date, but they hadn't given me a call as of this morning. so i called them, got a nice woman who was like, 'oh, the system says it arrived this morning, it's in box in the stock room. hmm, it should be ready by the end of the day, but we'll give you a call."

reader, i did not wait for the call. instead, i presented myself on the way home from work and presented myself to pick up at the register. 'hmm, it doesn't seem to be on the shelf - how odd. but the computer says it's in, let me go check in back.' and lo, there it was.

i should point out that if at any point, someone had said, 'no, we don't have it and we can't get it for you today,' i would have given them a deep sigh and carried on and come back the next day. i'm not THAT much of an asshole.)

this isn't really so much of a review as a bunch of random flailing )
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I was a pretty heavy user of google reader, so I was pretty annoyed when Google decided to close it down. Luckily, my annoyance didn't last long, since The Old Reader was pretty much a perfect fit for what I was looking for.

Three months later, the folks at TOR have quite reasonably decided that keeping a system up for 420K users is way different than the 10K they signed up for and thus they will be scaling back, which, from the way they've described it is quite reasonable for their mental health but does mean that I'm looking for a new reader again.

what i've tried and what i'm looking for )
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I'm reading The Bone Palace, by Amanda Downum, which is the second of her novels about the necromancer Isyllt Iskaldur and i wish to tell you about a (minorly spoilerly) thing that pleased me. )
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Here's some ridic hockey chatfic I'm not going to finish that I'm posting for y'all to mock me endlessly for enjoy.

the title of the email thread this lived in was 'DON'T EVEN THINK ABOUT JUDGING ME' )