Sunday, November 14, 2010

I'm so sorry that I couldn't play your songs for ever and ever

"My father told me never kill anything you're not going to eat. At the age of 9, I shot a porcupine. It was the toughest lesson I ever had."
~Ernest Hemingway
Indeed. That would be very nearly inedible.

When Kurt Vonnegut died, Fox News danced on his grave. Good gods. That's appalling, even for the soul-reaving bastards at Fox News.

In the meantime, Hatsune Miku is playing to sold-out concert crowds in Japan. There's even a DVD being sold of the entire thing. Which would be fine if she was just another idoru singer, but--she's not. Start to finish, she was created--her voice is generated using the Yamaha Vocaloid software--and she primarily still exists in virtual space alone.

How'ver, there are some interesting things about this particular idoru--in addition to possessing the ability to switch to programmed musical "moods" (which range from sweet to reflective to homicidal), she can--when given enough to work with--write her own songs.

So--action figure line, poster line, now a hologram, and already a limited AI--the future's here. Forget prefab music groups, this is an entirely prefab girl.

Also, I want to tip you off to a patient survey site. They host a lot of surveys for a lot of companies, and pretty much all they do at this point is plug in a topic, and collate answers for presentation later. This is what happens when they don't pay attention to their topic.

While the comic's mildly diverting, the main reason I want you to go here is to see the Engie-Tan skin at the bottom of the page. (For Minecraft, naturally.) Who is Engie-Tan? Well, this, I believe, is Engie-Tan's cutest manifestation, but Jo Pereira has drawn her a lot. She's something of a recurring character, in fact. Generally, she's just too cute for words.

The point is, now Engie-Tan can run free in Minecraft. Which...may be a good thing or a bad thing, depending.

Some of the gems if you don't feel like opening another link:
8. Family History. Do you have a family history of Death?

9. First Noticed. At what age did you first show symptoms of Death?

12. Effect on your life before treatment. What was the effect of Death on your life before treatment?
(with a 1-10 scale rating where 1 equals "No Effect" and 10 equals "Major Effect")

15. Satisfaction. Are you happy with your experiences of medical care for Death? Are you satisfied?

16. Misdiagnosis. Were you wrongly diagnosed as a result of having Death? Were you misdiagnosed?
Wild. Just wild.

My new definition of irony, courtesy of Sir Edward Pearse, still makes me giggle. But Adam Hills--the Australian comic who's performing in that clip--is bemoaning the diminishing of the English language. I sometimes wonder if this same sort of lingual "dumbing down" is occurring in other languages, because really, I'm only a native speaker of English. And I do notice it in English.

In a savage turn of events, an online magazine called Cooks Source--which I have decided I will never, ever support from this moment forward--has declared everything online "public domain"--which includes articles on cooking. Now, let me clear up a minor point--they're not saying specifically recipes are public domain, or protected--recipes, uniquely, cannot be copyrighted. That's not the issue.

The issue is that they lifted an article without permission or credit, published it, and then--when caught--claimed that if it's published online, then it's free for anyone who wants to use it.

This is the attitude that's killing copyright on the net, frankly.

Like Pokemon? Like pretty girls? Here. You're welcome.

In a similar picture vein, thinking of protesting something? May you look as good as this guy when doing so. Damn.

And keep in mind, especially as it looks like I'll actually finish the damned challenge this year, I'm still running a small donation drive for the Office of Letters and Light, the people behind NaNoWriMo, and--more importantly--the Young Writers' Program, which provides literacy training and encouragement to write, to youth who desperately need that encouragement. Help if you can.

And I do believe that's all for today. More later, when I finish the new skybox.

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