khedron: (Default)
This looks like Freddie Mercury, and a slightly sparkly Darth Vader. Is this real?


Mar. 9th, 2011 01:54 pm
khedron: (Default)
Hawks outside my window, probably 40' away. The one on the left didn't stay long, but I have a ton of pictures of the one on the right preening. (Or, "looking pregnant", as [ profile] reesei put it.)

Not bad for a hand-held picture taken through a window, if I do say so myself!
khedron: (brilliant)
Ever since getting a bird feeder (and a yard), I've paid more attention to the nature columns in the local paper. Their bird watching column in the Sunday paper does a good job, by and large. Sure, I've heard conflicting versions of the story of why we're seeing robins in Columbus in the winter -- one version says that invasive bushes bring deceptively unnourishing berries which persuade the birds to winter over and then die, while another version says that our robins go down south, and the robins we're seeing right now are Canadian robins, who come down to enjoy our relatively benign climate. I'm hoping the latter explanation is true. But anyway, I haven't objected to anything I read in there.

Until today.

I like the article itself -- it helps explain why Dan Simmons chose to call his spiky future nemesis thing "the Shrike". But whoever captioned the picture of the bird didn't think through it very well.

Is there any carnivorous animal which *isn't* "deadly to its prey"?
khedron: (Default)
The joys of neighborhood networking: "I'm sorry, Khedron, my girls are busy tomorrow. But I think C. just returned home from being an au pair in Germany, maybe she's available?" And now we have babysitting for MLK day. My neighborhood rocks.

(There is a dark side, though -- the twins down the street left a note saying, "We missed you this weekend, but if you want to order Girl Scout cookies, here's our number...")
khedron: (gates of ny)

Clock of Damocles
Clock of Damocles
The Clock of Damocles (or the setting for a new "Persona" game), from an article about new uses for old barns.

khedron: (Malfoy)
All Kindle users should get the Magic Catalog, which makes downloading books from Project Gutenberg very, very easy!

(Found via this review of the Kindle 3 from ars technica.)
khedron: (dragon)
A co-worker forwarded this rant from Charlie Stross about steampunk. Forwarding along to everyone else (and to myself, really, for later reading).
khedron: (brilliant)
Hah! This is funny.
"I've never allowed my music to be used in a game before," but an Entertainment Weekly review of NBC's The Office changed his mind. Alluding to an episode in which characters mention a Rock Band featuring Billy Joel, "the critic wrote something like, 'God forbid that ever should happen.' So I called my people and said, 'Get me (on) that Rock Band game.' Then I wrote the critic, saying that every time I get a check, I'll give him a little nod."
khedron: (coffee)
Without giving too much away, here, have a poll!

[ETA] Everyone, my apologies. In case there was confusion, that's just a fragment of the sentence from the website, not the entire thing. So, no need to worry about capitalization, fragmentation, etc. I was just attempting to focus on the punctuation.

[Poll #1627727]
khedron: (Default)
I'm just trying to figure out if LJ is relatively quiet because people are moving over here.

(I kind of hope it's not because Facebook is absorbing people, but honestly that seems more likely.)
khedron: (brilliant)
Amazon has free two-day shipping on many baby products, and additionally gives you 15% off when you subscribe on a monthly/bimonthly/whatever cycle. But that's a "subscription" where you can quit any time with no penalty.

So free fast shipping, and 15% off an already low price.

How are they making money, again?


Aug. 18th, 2010 04:07 pm
khedron: (dragon)
Dear Mysterious Stranger Taking Pictures of the Back of the House: Sorry, wrong address! Good luck finding the right location where people just moved in. And it's not your fault that when you said you were from the insurance company and taking pictures for records, my first thought was, "Because, houses *burn*, you know..."

Dear Videocamera: Please forgive me for down-sampling your nice HD movies to 960x540. I didn't feel like plugging in the external drive, and this will be a fine size for conversion to even smaller web video anyway. But I promise, some day I'll figure out how to have my HD cake and eat it too.

Dear Computer: Please grow another pair of processors to deal with above video. Thanks.
khedron: (house)
"What we need now is some bleach, like your wife uses for washing clothes, right?" said the plumber to the man holding the baby (at home in the middle of a work day).

Extra points: Yes, we did have bleach, but only because I insisted on buying some.


Aug. 13th, 2010 02:45 am
khedron: (Mibu)
Observation of the day: Cats *jump* when they finally realize that a baby has a double-fisted lock on their fur.

It wasn't anywhere near as dramatic as the Cat Safety Propaganda video, but wow, was he startled.

dear LJ

Jul. 29th, 2010 12:13 pm
khedron: (Malfoy)
Dear LJ,

Please change yourself to allow an option to sort posts by date of last comment, instead of date of post. It would make it a lot easier to follow conversations -- to have conversations -- if that were an option sometimes!


Jul. 3rd, 2010 03:41 pm
khedron: (Malfoy)
The neighborhood little grey cat was sitting under the bird feeder, looking smug.

Now, the NLGC is a *very* friendly critter, so I usually like it when he comes around, even if he rolls around in the catnip we have planted by the basil. But, when he's sitting under the bird feeder eying our song birds, our cats go *crazy* with envy, and that's just not fair. So on those occasions, I shoo him away.

Our bird feeder is a simple thing, a post with a bunch of branches up top. The elegant bit is that halfway up the pole, there's a disc like a giant washer, and suspended from that is a tube with one open end, like a giant upside-down Pringles can. It's wide enough in diameter that nothing can climb the baffle, but instead they run up inside it, get stuck, and go home.

This time, after the cat and the birds had scattered, I heard a funny noise, and eventually figured out that the NLGC had treed a squirrel in the baffle, and he just didn't want to come out. As you can tell from the fact that I had time to make multiple trips back inside for camera, mirror, flashlight, and other tricks to try and take a picture of a critter in a pitch-black tube, he wasn't going anywhere.
What made it even funnier is that when I raised the baffle to try and expose him to the air, he'd immediately crawl straight up -- for continued shelter or because it was closer to food, I don't know. And then, he'd find a stable perch on the disc that the baffle hangs from! Several times, I left the baffle resting on the squirrel as I went back inside, just because I didn't want to force it down on him -- I could see claws and nose poking up through the hole around the post as it was.

I eventually rattled the baffle enough to convince him that he was better off elsewhere, and with a mighty horizontal leap to the dogwood tree, he was away. But you know, I think he came back half an hour later. "The cat's gone -- I'm sure it'll work this time!"
khedron: (Default)
From this month's game magazine, there's a story about odd game glitches that I want to believe:
"Way back in the day when Vicarious Visions was developing the PC game Terminus, we ran into some very strange bugs. In one case, every time you tried to fire a missile, your spaceship would spontaneously blow up. We had worked to model the game with incredible accuracy, and we could just not figure out why the ships were exploding. It took a long time to figure out the root cause -- it turned out that the diameter of the missile was slightly larger than the weapons bay port it was getting shot out from, so every time it hit the port, it exploded and took the player's ship with it.

Also in Terminus, we had a particular ship that would fly out of the space dock and immediately all the controls would go dead. The joystick wouldn't work, no keyboard input, etc. It turned out that we had modeled inefficient radiation shielding on the ship. So the moment the ship took off, the radiation from the ship's engine would kill the pilot."
khedron: (Default)
By [ profile] reesei's furrowed brow, I can tell she came to the same incorrect conclusion in reading this CNN headline:
"Sources: Bat used to kill Peru woman"

I'm glad it's not just me.
khedron: (Malfoy)
Last night, around 2 am, the cats were all over the place -- following us around, meowing in the kitchen (though they had food), jumping up on the furniture to paw at the door knob to the sun porch. What made it really striking was that they each jumped up onto the kitchen counter, for the first time since they were kittens! OK, they may go up there when they know we're not watching, but they know it's Not Allowed, and they're generally well-behaved little creatures.

What was this? Was it the remnants from the sausages that we grilled earlier? Or the s'mores that we did after the main grilling? Or the apple brandy, which we finally broke into 11 months after buying it at a small winery in Michigan when camping last summer? (Malfoy does like alcohol...)

Nope, none of that. It turns out that when we'd opened up all the mirrors in the bathroom to give Eleanor lots of things to look at, we'd closed off access to the litter box there. And the other litter box was on the sun porch, but that door was closed too. And it'd been hours and hours, and they were just really tired of being patient.

I've never seen them both use the litter box at once. Poor cats!
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