daibhidc: (Animated crest)
Okay, I'm currently in the process of moving to Dreamwidth for The Reasons. I'm daibhidc there, and my annual Things I Learnt At The Science Festival post is already up.
daibhidc: (Default)
Because starting with one of my LJ traditions seems like a good way to settle into the new surroundings.

1. A robot with a simplified version of a realistic human face is helping autistic kids understand facial expressions, even though it's at the bottom of the uncanny valley for adults. (And I can assure you, not just NT adults, either!)

2. It's basically impossible to transmit or record smells digitally, because unlike light and sound, the "receiver" needs to release the actual molecules. This hasn't stopped numerous attempts, including a device loaded with the chemicals of "primary smells" that failed because there's actually no such thing.

3. Some people working on computer creativity reckon they'll have succeeded when they say "This isn't what I asked for" and the computer says "No, it's better."

4. Meerkats teach their younger siblings to hunt, and it looks like they're carefully basing their training on what the baby meerkat is ready for, but it's actually just an instinctive response to how a baby meerkat's voice changes.

5. Paul Dirac believed that a sufficiently powerful supercomputer could take basic physical laws and calculate everything, but it's since been worked out that it would take thousands of universe lifetimes and probably wouldn't help you understand anything anyway. (The lecturer quoted Douglas Adams: If you want a supercomputer to help you get the answer, you need to start by actually knowing the question.)

6. A "Star Wars" era project to shoot down incoming missiles with high-powered lasers has been repurposed into an anti-malaria tool that zaps mosquitoes with salvaged Blu-Ray lasers.

7. I don't know if it's because I'm getting older, or if it's something to do with the new layout, but the Museum of Scotland seems smaller than it used to be.
daibhidc: (birdbath)
Happy birthday, [livejournal.com profile] ssirienna!
daibhidc: (Animated crest)
As ever, I apologise for how ridiculous my musical tastes are. (But seriously, if you're Discworld fans, try to listen to Steeleye's Wintersmith! It's good!)Read more... )
daibhidc: (Animated crest)
Signal boost for the lyrics quiz. Although I suspect the reason there's only three entries is not because people haven't seen it, but for the usual reason that my musical tastes are ridiculous.
daibhidc: (Animated crest)
Parliament was sat one night,
With rebels on the left and right,
The sky was dark, the hour was late,
And still the Commons did debate.

The arguments went round and round,
There was no sign of common ground.
The MPs all shook their heads,
As Theresa stood up and said:
Read more... )
daibhidc: (Animated crest)
One iPod containing a downright obtuse music collection.
Thirty first lines.
No googling.

(And I will be exceedingly generous regarding the name of the artist, since you'd have to be psychic to figure out when the track I have isn't the original...)
Read more... )
daibhidc: (Rincewind)
(Yes, apparently that's what I'm officially calling these.)Read more... )
daibhidc: (birdbath)
Happy birthday, [livejournal.com profile] agoodwinsmith!
daibhidc: (birdbath)
Happy birthday, [livejournal.com profile] artela!
daibhidc: (Animated crest)
1) New job! After far too much kerfuffle and confusion, I started as an Admin Apprentice at the DWP today. It was mostly getting the lay of the land today, but honestly, I'm happy to be having dinner at a normal time again.

Because I had to quit the cleaning job. I was considering that it might be just possible to do both, but everyone who I mentioned this plan to (Mum, my former Jobcentre advisor, both employers) told me I was mad. I was a bit anxious about this (I've never actually left a job for reasons other than my contract ending before), but they were cool. For my last day we had chocolate cake at break, and they gave me a card. So that was nice.

2. Request for fic advice. The Wikipedia entry on speaking tubes says "Voicepipes have no switching mechanism and so, to provide multiple destinations, separate voicepipes with dedicated transit pipes have to be provided between all pairs of desired endpoints." Okay, but is there any reason why not, or is it just that nobody ever did? I have an idea for a busy Discworld office building having a central "switchboard" where all the pipes come out, and an operator connects the pipelines together, but I've a nagging feeling that if that worked, someone would have done it.
daibhidc: (birdbath)
Happy birthday, [livejournal.com profile] peeeeeeet!
daibhidc: (Animated crest)
Oh my goodness!
spoilers )
daibhidc: (Animated crest)
Yep, we’re doing this again. Here we go. (All reviews contain MASSIVE SPOILERS.)


Doctor Who: The Return of Dr Mysterio
Read more... )

The Last Dragonslayer
Read more... )

Jonathan Creek: Daemon’s Roost
Read more... )

Sherlock: The Six Thatchers
Read more... )
daibhidc: (Sci Fi)
Yep, it's that time again...
(EDIT: Now with links!)
Read more... )
daibhidc: (birdbath)
Happy birthday, [livejournal.com profile] rhiannon_s!
daibhidc: (Sci Fi)
Just seen this on Netflix and on balance, I think I liked it.
Spoilers )
daibhidc: (Animated crest)
Oh, if anyone missed it at the time, or wants to see it again for some reason, I'm posting my 12 Drabbles of Christmas one a day in reverse order on AO3, here. Currently on Ten Lords a-Leaping.

I've also put up my Scots translation of s[livejournal.com profile] silly_swordsman's AdvenTale "Moa and the Lost Sun", here.
daibhidc: (birdbath)
Happy birthday, [livejournal.com profile] mrslant and [livejournal.com profile] scarfman!

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