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Showing posts from 2017

The Small, Beautiful Earth

Text copied from The Decolonial Atlas

Seeing the Earth from space is one of the most humbling reminders of the smallness and fragility of our planet, and of the insignificance of humanity. In the words of Carl Sagan, “The Earth is a very small stage in a vast cosmic arena. Think of the rivers of blood spilled by all those generals and emperors so that, in glory and triumph, they could become the momentary masters of a fraction of a dot. Think of the endless cruelties visited by the inhabitants of one corner of this pixel on the scarcely distinguishable inhabitants of some other corner.”
The following images are not actual photographs from space, though many people on the internet have mistaken them for real photos from NASA. They were actually created by graphic artist Anton Balazh (Антон Балаж) from St. Petersburg, Russia. The images achieve their beautiful realism by compounding and altering real satellite images from NASA’s Visible Earth catalogs, and using GIS data to depict bathym…

Alternate History Designs & Photography

model is Genevieve, who was just at the Seattle Steamposium  (and I've just made a note on my calendar for next year, so i don't miss it again... grrrr )

Her FB page, Alternate History Designs & Photography

And I made a Mighty Protectors character, using this image, which is how I found out about her, and so now you know about:
My character;Mighty Protectors;Seattle SteamposiumGenevieve at Seattle SteamposiumAlternate History Designs & Photography

"I Am" - A Movie About Humanity

In his movie, I Am, Tom Shadyac calls out unbridled greed as a genuine mental illness, and takes us all to task for tolerating letting the mentally ill run and control the nation, and world.

Director Tom Shadyac speaks with intellectual and spiritual leaders about what's wrong with our world and how we can improve both it and the way we live in it.

It's a damn good movie.

A bit of wisdom that has brought me peace

The old saying says: 
We don't meet people by accident.  They are meant to cross our path for a reason.

Icarus' Calming Corollary: Maybe the reason they crossed my path  was because they needed to meet me,  rather than the other way around.

Female Heart Attacks - Okay, I'm Freaked Out

So, this is going around (again). I haven't vetted it, but it reads like good advice.  I had an aunt, who is a nurse, who had a heart attack, and she recognized the weird symptoms, pretty much only because she is a nurse.  She called the paramedics, and turned out fine.  But, freaks me out, you know?

Mike SuddabyFebruary 3, 2016 ·
An ER nurse says this is the best description of a woman having a heart attack that she has ever heard. Please read, pay attention, and SHARE..........


I was aware that female heart attacks are different, but this is the best description I've ever read.

Women rarely have the same dramatic symptoms that men have ... you know, the sudden stabbing pain in the chest, the cold sweat, grabbing the chest & dropping to the floor that we see in movies. Here is the story of one woman's experience with a heart attack.

I had a heart attack at about 10:30 PM with NO prior exertion, NO prior emotional trauma that one would suspect mig…

Sorting out fake news

It's actually pretty simple. The problem, of course, is that if "real" news contradicts long held beliefs it is immediately deemed "fake" in the mind of the simpleton - even if it is cross referenced and verified by multiple independent and long established news organizations. In other words, if it's not all over bitefart and FAUX its fake.
Here's a useful website. It rates factual accuracy as well as bias. - Media Bias/Fact Check - Search and Learn the Bias of News Media
For the really out there, there's RationalWiki.
Well we have to be vigilant, Sinclair is the conservative Media Group, they have declared war on PolitiFact and - and they're going to do their best to crush the fact-checking because if you can check the facts, conservative truth will be found to be lies


Linda Tewes
Deborah B
Icarus Anne Riley J Bone


Dungeon Cultist Coffee Mug

Dungeon Cultist Mug by Nate McD (Zazzle) or Nate McD (G+)
Because, you know, we make a fuss about advertising our lives on our coffee mugs - let's advertise we love dungeon crawling on the weekends, with friends.  I so need at least one of these in my house.

It would  make a good birthday gift for your gamer, too.  Or a Christmas party "white elephant" gift.  Hell, I just think it's adorable :-)
"Dungeon Cultist" - it could be like the "secret dress-up" used to identify your fellow cultists.  Only those "in the know," understand the meaning, and it's an advert to others of the club that you're a gamer, and ready to roll :-)

Physics behaves properly, journalists get excited thinking it doesn't

John Baez Wrote

Science journalists are acting like all hell has broken loose... because they're more interested in click bait than actual science:

Breaking the Rules: Heavy Chemical Elements Alter Theory of Quantum Mechanics

Extremely Rare Periodic Element Behaving Like It's from an 'Alternative Universe' (there's no such thing as a "periodic element")

A Rare Element From The Edge of The Periodic Table Is Breaking Quantum Mechanics

Nope, nope, nope. Chemists did some experiments with a very heavy element. And they discovered that everything works just like standard physics says it should!

Starting in 1928, Dirac and others figured out how to combine quantum mechanics and special relativity. When stuff moves really fast, special relativity becomes important. Electrons in light elements don't move very fast. But in heavy elements, they move close to the speed of light... so relativity makes a big difference.

This has been tested experimentally many times - …

Superheros on Live Stage - Soon I Will Be Invincible

"Soon I Will Be Invincible" - hadn't heard of it until Heinz Kreienbaummentioned it one day.  Apparently, it started life as a novel.  I so need to get a copy and read it.

Christina Hall as Fatale
And then someone did a live stage production of it.  That's pretty cool. I hope it smashed box office records, and all that.

My favorite pancakes

Dice up honeycrisp apples to really small chunks. Get pancake mix, put in 1/4 TSP sugar, 1/4 TSP ground cinnamon, a pinch of nutmeg, and a splash of vanilla extract. Use coconut oil cooking spray on the pan. Pour 1/4 cup batter into the pan (medium-low heat) and sprinkle six to eight pieces of diced apple into it. Use a knife to push the apple under the surface. Wait until the bubbles stop popping and flip it. Cook only one at a time, so it has the pan to itself and your full attention. Drizel with maple syrup and no-sugar-added applesauce (homemade lumpy with skins is best).


It helps of you have a sweet tooth, since Apple's and maple syrup are both loaded with sugar. If I'm hungry and think I want to hear more than two, I don't add the sugar to the mix, and I use even less maple syrup.

You have to play with the apple chunk size, too. I dice the pieces to less than 1/4", and it's a balancing act what kind of texture and how much apple flavor you want.

Promised Land: a modern fairytale of same-sex true love

When a young Prince and a farm boy meet in the forest, a growing friendship between them blossoms into love. However, when the Queen re-marries, her sinister new husband seeks control of the enchanted forest and the land the farm boy’s family are responsible for protecting.

In a Kingdom where all are considered equal regardless of what they look like or who they love, Promised Land is a brand new fairytale about friendship, responsibility, adventure and love.

Written by Adam Reynolds & Chaz Harris the book features 32 stunning illustrations by Christine Luiten & Bo Moore sure to delight kids young and old.

The 25 Most Inspiring Skeletor Quotes For Every Occasion

Remember He-Man?  Or She-Ra?  I think everyone of a certain age grew up with the cartoon, and the toys.  And then the movie.  Oy, what a underdone job that movie was.

The Collected Quotes
Skeletor had some great lines.  He was a bit of a whiner, but that was part of his villainous charm.  Sometimes he was a downright badass.  But, most of the time, he was a bit of a whiner (he was a children's cartoon character, after all, meant to sell toys.)

Giant Hogweed Plants can apparently fry your skin off

Giant Hogweed - some crazy big ugly plant

On the one hand, an awesome D&D trap.

On the other hand, I feel horrible for anyone who contacts it, and ends up scarred for life!

Snow Crash - fucking awesome book

On my mind? The cybernetic rat/dog thing from "Snow Crash" - they had built-in fusion reactors that let them run at hundreds of miles per hour, but needed massive cooling fins to avoid overheating.

"Badass: Between Hiro, Raven, Y.T., Uncle Enzo, and the cybernetic rat/dog thing, the book has more badassness than most books should be allowed to have."

Fantastic Heroes & Witchery - OSR

You ever flip through a book, and find that one thing that sells it to you?  Yeah, I so need a copy of Fantastic Heroes & Witchery, entirely based on this image.  Well, okay, this image and the fact that Mark Craddock uses it.  Mark manages a game store, so he is kind of a guru on all the new games, so if he considers it worth his time to mock up blog posts using a system, I'm immediately open to it.
Then this sample art found in the online sampler  (Ladies, you so know what I'm talking about, right?)  
(buy FHW from

Hey, for $7.50, if the authors have this kind of sense of humor, I'm totally willing to try it.  If it helps, the online reviews for it are favorable, too.  
Personally, I prefer hardcopy, because I like BOOKS - I like being able to handle a physical object, not have to squint, and not have to worry about battery life.

Size Matters: Wine Bottles

So, apparently, but some bottles aren't just kitchy good fun, but also help the wine inside age more slowly.  Huh.


Elven Tower

Derek Ruiz is the mad genius behind  He makes maps, and has a Patreon account.

Good maps are hard to find.  This is beautiful, easy to use, and totally looks like fun.

Metals you've never heard of

Reality is stranger than fiction. I was writing some short fiction and needed to know the relative melting points of metals.

Ever heard of "incoloy" or "hastelloy"?  Yeah, me neither. I swear those names were made up by Asimov or Tolkien, right?

Nope. Turns out those particular metals came out of a lab, and have industrial uses.

Although, I'm undecided if "Special Metals Corporation" was named by a very unimaginative paper pusher, or some genius with the same sense of ironic humor that came up with"Umbrella Corporation."

(image source - it's Gallium melting at body temp)

Alyson Tabbitha - Stunning Brilliant Cosplayer

Is it wrong that I'm turned on by Alyson's incredible skill level and passion for cosplay? I love cosplay. I've dabbled a bit, but I'm a rank amateur. Mostly, I'm a gamer by day, and dabble with a bit of convention cosplay in the evenings when it's dark, I've had a drink or two, and no one really cares, anyway. (And yah, I've still got a male friend not far away, because.)

Anyway, ran across Alyison Tabitha when looking for Final Fantasy cosplay, just because. Check out her incredible work at her gallery. And gender-bending! 

And she nails Jack Sparrow's body language! Freaky Wow!

MacOS - you need new keys to the kingdom

Something about MacOS Sierra and 2048-bit encryption on ssh and a work around until you generate new keys. Smart stuff and probably important of you use MacOS.
I don't know. As a nerd, it was interesting to learn, but I don't use a Mac (or ssh, that I know of).
If you've got a Mac, you might want to read this thread by Cindy Brown.

I can play with the Pinkest Pink, because I'm special

As a general rule, I'm a fan of intellectual property rights,  so that inventors and creators can be sure to get fair compensation for their works, but I'm not a fan of locking up the IP, making it impossible for people to use.

The idea that an artist got "an exclusive right" to "the blackest black" is just absurd.  I have to imagine it was as much publicity stunt by the creators of Vantablack as it was anything else.

I applaud Stuart Semple for thumbing his nose back the Vantablack people by saying "your pet artist can't have my pinkest pink."

The root IP lockup is very silly, so the resultant "IP war" is absolutely silly.

Plus, it's kind of a gorgeous shade of pink.  For a few bucks, I might buy myself some and see if I can finger paint with it :-)

Tangentially, here is a really good primer on Intellectual Property.
And finally, yeah, being allowed to play with the Pinkest Pink doesn't exactly make me special - it just make…