kingandy: (Scarf)
I have a very clear image of a video for this song in my head. It amuses me, so I thought I would share.

It opens on Davros, black stage, spots from behind, flanked by Daleks. Opening verse intercut with gentle clips from series. All very moody and serious.

When the beat kicks in, the front of Davros' chair snaps open, as does the front of the Dalek casings; from each Dalek steps a squiddies in spats. Opposing him, emerging from the shadows, are several different regenerations of the Doctor[1].

There follows a West Side Story style danceoff. Choreography by Stomp.


I didn't say it was funny, I just said it amused me.

[1] All parts to be played by lookalikes
kingandy: (The More You Know)
What is better than a Transformers biplane?

A TRANSFORMERS BIPLANE DECO'D AS THE RED BARON
kingandy: (sexy)
5 months of comics arrived at the weekend, so I am catching up on my Blackest Night (not to be confused with Final Night, from off of the 90's).

It is genuinely creepy and disturbing at points, and Geoff Johns' writing is pretty much above and beyond the very high standard I've come to expect from him - not just as a piece in itself but as a tapestry of interlocking sequential fiction. The core "EVENT" series seems to stand by itself, even though key events and developments appear to take place in the main Green Lantern (and the supporting tie-in spin-offs) - those events are summarised and expanded on at various points, the two series enriching and informing each other while not at any point becoming either dependent or redundant. There is, I will allow, the occasional moment where you think "Hmm, that sequence lifts right out" - for example, the issue of GL covering a fight scene which begins in BN and isn't resolved until the next BN - but even then the rich detail of the art and environs makes you glad you read it anyway. To continue the example above, during the fight the Bat-Signal is seen shining in the sky in the background; at the start of the following BN issue Hal crashes into said Signal. You don't need to see the fight (you're brought very quickly up to speed on who's involved and how badly it's going) but it interlocks so nicely that it's very satisfying.

I've always liked the way Johns takes disparate elements of history and weaves them together into a whole that seems not only plausible but natural - almost logically inescapable - and yet I'm still kind of wary of what he's doing with the Hawks (Hawkman and Hawkgirl, not Hawk and Hawk and Dove). I am pleased that I did see the secret of the Violet Power Battery coming, but I'm not sure if that means I'm getting better at spotting his curve balls or if he's just moving from "obvious in hindsight" to just plain "obvious". Maybe you just have to know that Johns has a massive hardon for the Hawks. Whatever the case, it's starting to feel like a slightly smaller universe when everything ties together.

The big disappointment, though, is the number of people who are dying. It's starting to be Johns' calling card at the moment - the massacre of second-string and/or obscure characters - and it is rather contradictory given his obvious love for the material. I know the series is supposed to be about death - it's about making death in comics serious again, and perhaps to some degree permament, though Lord knows the sheer number of dead characters that were already available to form a Black Lantern Corps puts the lie to the notion that death never sticks in comics. And yes, some of the murders - in contrast to the offhand backhand from Superboy Prime that saw to a few old favourites - are spectaculary executed (har) to the greatest emotional impact. It's a horror story, and as horror goes, the notion of watching helplessly as your dead hero uses science pillaged from your own mind to kill your one true love is pretty much up there. But still, I have always of the opinion that you shouldn't kill a character until they are more useful (narratively) dead than alive, and if your characters get to that point then you have failed. Alive is always more interesting. (And anyway, why did it have to be the girlfriend?)
kingandy: (Scarf)
After fighting it for some time, I have finally reached into my pocket and actually paid for some apps for my iPod Touch (instead of just scavving the free ones). I have bought an iLCARS and a PADD; the first is more interactive and pleasing, but the second provides actual information which may be potentially useful at some point. However, they both ensure my iPod is chock full of widdlywee at all times.

We are living in the future!
kingandy: (Hawkins)
New favourite UNIX command:

> du -sh *

pronounced "Douche".
kingandy: (Scarf)
Today I bought the Micro-Universe SS Madame de Pompadour from Tesco on the way home, because (a) it was half price and (b) it came with a 35mm-scale Madame de Pompadour miniature that's right a Madame de Pompadour you can use in miniatures combat. For some reason I continue to find this hilarious.

Not, however, as hilarious as the instructions that came for assembling the ship on its display stand.

SS Madame de Pompadour: Instructions


I know the range is aimed at kids, but I mean, really.
kingandy: (Default)
Some months back Ant successfully applied for a post with the disability department at the University. Somewhat disappointingly, it was on an "as needed" basis and until now they've not needed him. However they've apparently been in touch to see if he'd be interested in working with a student with Asperger's.

Naturally I've been reading all about it.
"Unlike those with autism, people with AS are not usually withdrawn around others; they approach others, even if awkwardly, for example by engaging in a one-sided, long-winded speech about a favorite topic while being oblivious to the listener's feelings or reactions, such as signs of boredom or haste to leave. ..... People with Asperger syndrome often display behavior, interests, and activities that are restricted and repetitive and are sometimes abnormally intense or focused."
Man, this shit describes half the people I know.

Chromery

Sep. 12th, 2008 01:21 pm
kingandy: (Default)
I am now heartily using Google Chrome at work. (Well, I'm using something like five browsers[1] regularly, by nature of the industry, but Chrome is my idle browsing tool of choice.)

Recently I took the bold step of switching off the bookmarks toolbar - something I never really used (and indeed used to disable) before Firefox, but I have rather got used to opening a favourite with a single click (or even in a new tab, with a middle-mouse-button click).

Happily, the cunning folks at Google have arranged the 'new tab' window such that if you have the Bookmarks switched off, your bookmarks show up at the top, under their principle of "When you open a new tab you're making a statement of intent - you want to go somewhere." It is also a neat way of training people to open new tabs and close old ones, preventing the risk of ongoing memory leaks. So it's all still available, without even toggling the bookmarks bar on and off, and as part of your new and improved natural browsing methodology.

Now I basically have to decide whether the extra window space is worth one extra click...

[1] For those interested: Firefox 3, IE 7, IE 6, Google Chrome and Lynx, though Lynx is just for convenience when I'm in a shell and isn't part of our normal cross-browser testing. Paul (lead developer) also uses Safari.
kingandy: (Default)
One underpublicised aspect of today's Large Hardon Collider activation is the mysterious disappearances that have plagued the project.

Special report due to be broadcast on Radio 4 today at 2:15pm.
kingandy: (Default)
Why you need Google Chrome in your life

EDITED TO ADD: I'm liking it so far, though this "each tab as a separate process" business does seem to make your hard disk a bit choppy when you're opening and closing a lot of them.
kingandy: (Scarf)
Hmm, I wonder if the chap who did that nice "Regenerations" mix, blending all the Doctor Who themes together, did a new one when the new theme came out.

Of course he did! He is a colossal nerd.

I am filled with nerd envy.
kingandy: (Default)
Geoff has reminded me that the Spellthief basic class also gives you a Sneak Attack, and though it gives you one or two fewer skill points per level, it is vastly more interesting. So, screw Rogue.

Geeeek

Jun. 19th, 2008 10:54 pm
kingandy: (Watchmen Babies)
Since my D&D3.5 character died horribly last Tuesday, I am statting up a new one.

(The one who died was a pet idea of mine - a locksmith - who didn't really pan out as I had hoped; as a rogue I felt the need to be useful and so dived into combat instead of pootling along behind. In retrospect it wasn't all that good of a concept.)

So I'm planning to address the lack of magic in the party and my own fondness for charisma-based characters by playing a sorceror, and am planning to work towards the Daggerspell Mage prestige class. Unfortunately, Daggerspell Mage sorcerors have no dump stat and I have an 8 to deal with. I'm torn between dropping it in Wisdom (losing the will save / skill bonuses) and Strength (losing the attack/damage bonus). I'll probably go with Wisdom. I can do "Powerful but easily led." It's fun.

I came across some comments on web forums that suggested a rogue's Sneak Attack would add damage to spells that have an attack bonus. I can't find anything in the PHB to support or counter it - it does mention they get criticals, which does suggest accuracy would be appropriate, but the SA description doesn't specifically mention an association with criticals (even though all the same restrictions seem to apply). Does anyone have insight? I'm tempted to take a level of Rogue straight off...
kingandy: (Default)
Everyone is all excited about this-or-that Age of Conans and Warhammer Beta Bla Di Bla games that are coming out and stuff.

Me, I'm more intrigued by this "On The Rain-Slick Precipice of Darkness" offering.

Four Gods wait on the windowsill,
Where eight Gods once did war and will,
And if the Gods themselves may die,
What does that say for you and I?


Bullet points while I'm here:

  • Saw Iron Man; it was good
  • Had a wisdom tooth extracted; am reasonably certain pliers were involved
  • [livejournal.com profile] batelf got older; there was much rejoicing
  • Read The Pearls That Were His Eyes; it was quite entertaining but hard to rate objectively, being as how I have some passing familiarity with the source materials.


More in-depth reviews may be forthcoming, or not.
kingandy: (Scarf)
I'm sure you've seen it before by now but Hooraaaaaaaaaay!

"My entire career has been a Secret Plan to get this job," said Steven Moffat. "I applied before but I got knocked back cos the BBC wanted someone else. Also I was seven. Anyway, I'm glad the BBC has finally seen the light, and it's a huge honour to be following Russell into the best - and the toughest - job in television. I say "toughest" cos Russell's at my window right now, pointing and laughing."


Naturally, being a great writer doesn't necessarily make a good Head Writer (or Script Editor, or whatever the term is these days), either on screen or behind the scenes. But Moffatt has proven capable of guiding an entire series of his own before, and he seems a nice enough chap that I'm confident he'll treat other writers' works with respect (and cheeky enough that he won't be unable to make changes where they're needed).

It did seem pretty inevitable, though, when the first question everyone asked about series 4 was "When's the Moffatt episode?"
kingandy: (Frowny)
Yesterday I tried to install my new motherboard.

Why do they tell you not to touch any part of the board, and then give you these little tiny screws that have to go right into the board next to sensitive components that your fat fingers can't help but brush against? And then you drop the screws and have to fumble around in the dark, whacking yet more sensitive components with the screwdriver in your other hand?

This is exactly why I knew I'd be better off buying a pre-built machine.

Pop quiz!

Feb. 13th, 2008 10:03 am
kingandy: (Dumb)
What's more important in a graphics card, memory size or clock speed?

EDITED TO ADD: General consensus seems to confirm what we all suspected, size is more important than speed. I will therefore place an order for card A (henceforth to be known as the Patrick Junior).
kingandy: (Hawkins)
For those LARPers who have yet to welcome [livejournal.com profile] diegoliger into their electro-bosom (ie, LJ "friend"-list), and are interested in a little bit of cyber- and/or steam-punkery, I direct thee hither.

Ooh. Shiny.

March 2012

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