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Below are 20 journal entries, after skipping by the 20 most recent ones recorded in GreenReaper's LiveJournal:

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Friday, April 12th, 2013
4:39 am
I Am a Camera!
Since my well-used K10D DSLR was stolen at FC, I've been considering my options. My needs are the same as five and a half years ago - a rugged tool for photography at a reasonable price.

I still have most of the Pentax lenses - unfortunately, my DA 40mm f/2.8 Limited was on it at the time - so I was strongly biased towards Pentax. Fortunately, they have a good deal - the K-5. Yes, it's 2010's model, but I'd rather take the $300 savings for a used model over the K-5 II, which is at best an incremental upgrade. I used 2/3 of that to acquire a replacement for the 40mm - the 35mm f/2.4. Not quite as compact, and it's a plastic body, but from what everyone says, the output looks great.

As a plus, I might be able to capture video with the new model. It won't be fancy, but better than not having the option at all.

Current Mood: complacent
Tuesday, April 9th, 2013
6:26 am
Anthrocon 2013 flights booked - next up, room!
I was almost resigned to paying American $440 to get to AC this year, then up pops my Kayak alert - DFW-PIT return via Delta, for just $301! . . . sure, it's via Minneapolis, but that just means more miles, right? :-)

I actually have enough miles to book the flight with them (legacy of flying out of Detroit for six years), but at this price (deep-discount V-fare on all segments) it doesn't make much sense. Better to save them for a later - hopefully more direct - flight. Departs at 7AM, but it wouldn't be the first time; it gets me there before registration opens on Thursday, and I'll have plenty of time to say goodbye on Monday with a 5:25PM return.

Fun fact: Spirit have just started flying to Pennsylvania from DFW; unfortunately, their flights land at an airport over an hour's drive from Pittsburgh. Add in a taxi and a train ride (if you can fit the schedule) and it's just not worth it. Was an interesting option to investigate, though.

Next up: Hotel room. Anyone got a slot free? (Thursday night-Monday morning, obviously. Not that picky about location.)
Friday, March 22nd, 2013
1:55 am
WikiFur, Flayrah and Inkbunny nominated for 2012 Ursa Major Award
It's that time again! Inkbunny, WikiFur, and its affiliated news service, Flayrah, have been nominated for the 2012 Ursa Major Awards.Read more...Collapse )

Current Mood: energetic
Monday, March 11th, 2013
1:20 am
Tuesday, December 25th, 2012
1:30 pm
Heading to FC - any room?
It's that time of year again - Further Confusion! I'm flying out early on Friday morning, and would need a room for Friday night to Tuesday morning. Anyone got a slot? I can pay my way, don't have much in the way of luggage, and I don't drink or smoke. Any of the three hotels are fine. Would prefer a bed space if possible, fine with sharing.
Sunday, September 9th, 2012
3:03 am
Two good things!
So the tests are in . . . and the results are good! My c-reactive protein is down from 64 mg/L last month to 5, which is technically just inside normal. My sedimentation rate is 29 mm/hr; still high, but about half what it was (and it goes down more slowly anyway). The upshot: methotrexate is working. I have a slightly increased prescription, and we'll see how that goes.

Secondly, my Series 7 Slate shipped; I should get it next week, and the gift card a little later. I'm hopeful that it's the new one with the keyboard dock, since they just started releasing hands-on reviews, and it's officially shipping with Windows 8. Looks to be the ultimate art machine, too - a real computer powerful enough to do everything you need while also letting you draw on it at 1080p resolution like a tablet (because it is one). Maybe I should try dusting off my tablet software . . .

Update: Of course, they shipped it to the wrong address. Let's hope they can fix that before it gets here! Also, looks like it's the old one, but hey, still, free PC. :-D

Current Mood: cheerful
Saturday, August 18th, 2012
7:36 pm
On the plus side!
The Wednesday that I got my prescription, I went to a Windows 8 Hackathon, where I spent about eight hours mocking up an app based around displaying recent/popular submissions to Inkbunny. Yes, I played the furry card, explaining the potential of 100,000 users to the voting audience . . . and I won!

Specifically, I won a Samsung Series 7 tablet, or something close to it, and a $500 gift card (probably to the Microsoft Store). I've not received it yet, so I don't know exactly what I can do with it, but it looks to be a useful "second screen" to have around. And hey, if I can finish that app, all the better. No point in having a comprehensive API if it's not used . . .

(And a moment of irony - I used a Google Engage for Agencies promotional mouse to help test the pinch movement, since my tablet's side-slider didn't count as a wheel-roll.)

Current Mood: pleased
2:59 pm
My only regret . . .
It started with a stiffness walking into the office from the parking lot each morning. At first I put this down to my move to Texas, and spring weather - I'd had a cold the first few winters in Michigan. My kneecap came out of alignment, but was fixed after a few days of wrapping. My hands hurt, but I type a lot, so I figured it was just a bit of RSI.

A few months later it became hard to get out of my car; then, out of bed. I tried a memory-foam bed topper, which helped, but not enough. By July, I was in pain just trying to raise my arms over my head to get a shirt off in the mornings, or to get to sleep at night; rolling into the shower had become a fifteen-minute ordeal.

Yes; like that guy, I have BoneitisCollapse )

Current Mood: pensive
Thursday, July 19th, 2012
1:56 am
RP in RL: the CrayolaPad
When roleplaying online, one of my regular props is the CrayolaPad, which I typically describe as looking much like a souped-up Etch-a-Sketch, complete with rounded knobs, brightly-coloured plastic exterior, and a fun sound whenever you shake it on or off. It's the perfect PDA for a norn, suitable for reading, drawing and taking and showing photos while being spill-resistant and Grendel-proof.

Well, it looks like my idea was ahead of its time, because Crayola actually made a CrayolaPad Light - presumably sans electronics and shakiness. Useful for those who want to make fun drawings on the go! (Thanks to ceralor for the photo.)

Current Mood: amused
Sunday, July 15th, 2012
9:28 pm
The Yarf Chronology is now the Flayrah Chronology!
Whew. Just got done publishing Fred Patten's revised (and now illustrated) Chronology of Furry Fandom, 1966–1996 on Flayrah.

This is the same document that was published all those years ago in Yarf!, but with many updates and additions from Fred - and, of course, lots and lots of images, both linked and embedded.

LiveJournal's RSS feed processor is down right now, so it's not showing up on flayrah yet - you guys are the first on LJ to hear! Go read and learn something new about the fandom's early years. :-)

Current Mood: accomplished
Thursday, June 7th, 2012
3:48 am
Ursa Major aftermath
IMGP5105Flayrah won an Ursa Major after all. WikiFur lost to Equestria Daily - the bronies had a good year - but hey, we beat Fur Affinity for second place.

I think I heard mention of the ceremony being held at Anthrocon next year, which might be . . . interesting if we win again. Either way, I'm headed there in a week, so see some of you there!

Current Mood: pleased
Sunday, May 20th, 2012
2:01 am
The inevitable conclusion
In retrospect, it's obvious - as books become increasingly less relevant to daily life, they are relegated to being design accessories.

Still, I'm not quite sure which is more horrifying; that you can buy books by the foot, or that they had to put green on sale.

Current Mood: horrified
Thursday, May 17th, 2012
12:00 am
Furry comics raising six digits on Kickstarter
Twokinds recently aimed to raise $25,000 in 30 days to print two graphic novels. They just passed $100,000, with over three weeks left to go.

Sure, Twokinds is something of an outlier - an Ursa Major winner which has run for almost nine years now. Still, I think this is pretty big news, and hopefully an inspiration to other aspiring comic artists out there.

. . . that said, I really wouldn't want to be the guy packing over 1,000 shipping envelopes with books. Hope Tom gets media mail rates!

Current Mood: impressed
Thursday, May 10th, 2012
8:08 pm
American Express's Serve needs some work
Serve is (roughly speaking) American Express's response to services like PayPal and Dwolla. I became a member through RevolutionMoney, which they bought out. Here's my recent (poor) experienceCollapse )

Don't get me wrong - this was initially my mistake. However, the end result was not a good support or product experience. It compares poorly with competitors and I am more inclined to use and recommend them as a result.

I do not really blame the support representatives for this, more the system that they are interacting with, which does not appear to empower them to do their jobs, any more than it empowered me to avoid a support request in the first place (by, say, letting me retarget a pending transaction, or telling me the address wasn't linked with a Serve account).

Oh, and the kicker? The third-party support response survey I was sent about the phone call timed out (who lets sessions recycle after thirty minutes?!). When I tried to return, I was told I couldn't submit "another" survey, even though I hadn't finished. So I'm posting it here, for all to see.

Update (11 May): Serve's social media group apparently has greater access than the front-line support; my issue was escalated and resolved earlier this afternoon. I hope the underlying issues can also be resolved eventually.

Current Mood: aggravated
Sunday, April 29th, 2012
2:06 am
Headed to Califur?
I'm planning a trip to Califur at the start of June; I've never been, and it's now relatively close. It's also the site for this year's Ursa Major Award ceremonies, and as there's a chance the sites I work on might win, I'd like to be there in person.

I know how I'm getting there, and when - Friday evening to Sunday afternoon - but I don't yet have a place to stay. So: if you happen to have a room for Fri/Sat night, and need to fill some space in it, let me know!

(I'll also be at Anthrocon, Thursday night until Monday afternoon, but I've got accommodation for that.)

Current Mood: organized
Sunday, April 22nd, 2012
8:45 pm
Want to try advertising your projects on Google for free?
As a member of the Google Engage for Agencies program (yes, I'm apparently an ad agency . . .), I have a bunch of coupons for $100 worth of Google advertising.

If you've not got an AdWords account yet, but are interested in trying it out, see this post.

Current Mood: productive
Monday, March 26th, 2012
6:25 pm
A tasty problem
I was wondering why my ice-cream felt all tacky. Next time I'll move it further away from the element.
Thursday, March 22nd, 2012
5:15 pm
MediaWiki 1.17.3: $bytes != $buffer
Heh. Patched to MediaWiki 1.17.3 on WikiFur - I start testing and getting a strange notice whenever I try to login. Fortunately I know where to go . . . #mediawiki!

After talking with the developer concerned, it seems I ran into a bug in the new mcrypt code. Good that we found it, but bad in that it'll need another patch of MediaWiki - and because they're about to make another release, there are three versions that need patching (1.17, 1.18, and the 1.19 beta, plus the trunk).

Edit: Found another! Broke email confirmation on 1.17, probably just the display of the expiry time on later versions.

Current Mood: geeky
Monday, March 19th, 2012
3:29 am
2011 Ursa Major Award nominations up - time to vote!
The nominations for this year's Ursa Major Awards are up, and three projects which I am involved with - WikiFur, Flayrah, and Inkbunny - have made it onto the ballot.

If you've not already voted, please drop by and see what's on offer. There's some good stuff, and judging by the two MLP-based nominations, we'll need all the help we can get defending against the brony menace. ;-)

Current Mood: hopeful
Friday, March 9th, 2012
12:22 pm
Measuring a good risk - key factors affecting credit scoring
I recently read over the August 2007 Report to the Congress on Credit Scoring and Its Effects on the Availability and Affordability of Credit. It's an interesting document - well, interesting if you're me, anyway.

The main purpose of the study was to learn how well credit scoring worked and whether it was discriminating against certain groups (perhaps because key factors were strongly related to sex or race). The cool part from a statistics viewpoint is that they made up their own credit scoring model in order to evaluate those offered by companies for bias. Of 312 credit-related factors, they got down to nineteen that appear to make a noticeable difference to predictions - and for most people, only half of those really matter.

So what was found?Collapse )

Perhaps more interestingly, what factors predict success? What's likely to get you a good credit score?Collapse )

Current Mood: geeky
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