Mary Beard recently gave a lecture on the long cultural history of silencing women’s voices, the text is online. Which juxtaposed well (in the sense that it’s similar cultural roots) with the programme we just watched on how Greek attitudes to luxury still affect our own. And juxtaposed in a timely fashion with the bigotry in SFWA thing that’s been rumbling on for the last year – the latest iteration of which blew up just recently and includes someone critiquing a woman’s appearance as a part of a rationale for dismissing her. Having read the lecture just before I read about the SFWA thing it was interesting to see how many times I saw it linked in comments.
Ben Goldacre on the NHS data sharing plan – he says with well thought out arguments and evidence things that match my gut feel on it. Having the data available to medicine would be extremely useful and is a Good Thing, it’s a shame they’re botching the explanation and the regulatory side of it :/
Reshaping Reality has a post up on how science works, the fundamental uncertainties at the roots of physics & thus the whole of science and why scientific literacy matters which includes a list of blogs and books about science.
James Nicoll’s micro reviews of the Science Fiction Book Club books of July 2000 – the one that caught my eye was SUBURBAN GODS (2-in-1 of HOW LIKE A GOD and DOORS OF DEATH AND LIFE) by Brenda W. Clough, that he recommends and I’ve never heard of.
Also from James Nicoll some potential reading list generators – list of women authors who debuted in the 1970s, and 1980s with recommendations from people about books of theirs to read. Mine are in comments on those posts. Lots of them I’ve not read anything by, gonna give the lists a little time to multiply then construct myself a list of books to look for.
Ever wondered what the cryptic spray paint marks are on UK pavements?
In the “OMG I’m old, how’d that happen?” department is this: Descent is 19 years old!! Not a game I ever really got the hang of, I remember J liking it a lot tho. While we were at uni. Which is clearly only yesterday.
Also off RPS (I’m a bit behind on reading it) is confirmation that Steam Tags really are as bad an idea as I thought they would be. They do seem to’ve added functionality so you can report tags but what rock have they been hiding under for the last decade or two to not realise that unmoderated open to all tagging on the internet was going to generate problems?
Chroma looks interesting, but a bit of an odd idea … could be good, could be terrible, have to wait & see. And Doom 4 looks like it’s going to be a thing … can’t work out if that’s exciting or not, I got more into Quake (3 and 4) than any of the Dooms.
Trying to read old Scottish documents? This might help – via my father, who managed to decipher the 17th Century marriage record that I completely failed to read 🙂
Cats taking selfies … because the internet is for cat pictures.
“The First Fifteen Lives of Harry August” by Claire North is a book I’d like to read – similar underlying premise as Kate Atkinson’s “Life After Life” (post) but goes in a different direction. Link via Lady Business.
Apps installed recently include Crowdsourced Weather which uses the sensors on your phone to detect local weather data. Doesn’t seem to have many people using it yet according to the map, but I now have on my phone something that tells me the barometric pressure, the magnetic field of the earth where I am, the temperature (using an algorithm to figure it out from battery temp, a little flaky) and how light it is. This may not be particularly useful but it makes me happy 🙂
Also using Muzei, which gives you a new backdrop every day or so, each one is a famous work of art. A little bit of art appreciation on my phone 🙂 There’s plenty of plugins for things like NASA’s APOD too.
And finally got round to installing Untappd, which lets you track which different beers you’ve tried. It also lets you spam facebook/twitter/foursquare with what you drink, but I’m not doing that 😉
The TV programmes I told the PVR to record this week are rather WW1 heavy:
- The Necessary War – one-off.
- The First World War – 10 part series.
- The Pity of War – one-off, sounds like it’s intended to complement The Necessary War.
- Captain Cook: The Man Behind the Legend – part of the Timewatch series from 08/09, being randomly shown again as a standalone programme.
- Mind the Gap: London vs. the Rest – 2 part series about economic factors in modern UK, unsure if I’ll keep it.
- Animals Through the Night: Zoo Sleepover – one-off, videoing and analysing the sleep patterns of animals at Bristol Zoo on a single night.