Why I Will Not Return to Arisia

Ahem Ahem!, This Is Important, Thumbs Down

Content note: references to rape, trauma, sexism, gaslighting, harassment, intimidation, and stalking. Also note: an f-bomb or two.

TL;DR – I’ve been to Arisia before, and enjoyed it. In fact, it was my first U.S. con. I was looking forward going back after a break. However, due to failures in following and enforcing their own Code of Conduct, which had the practical effect of protecting a stalker, I will not return to Arisia in the future.

Getting into Austen Frame of Mind

Movies & TV, Thumbs Down

It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a lady about to face the opening night of a brand new Jane Austen film adaptation must be in want of even more things Austen.

I was getting in the mood for Love and Friendship by reading this Buzzfeed list of online dating ads for Austen’s characters when I found out that I won’t be able to go see it tomorrow. Because the opening is a limited one. And apparently the greater Boston area is provincial enough to not merit even one single location of L&F. Not one! Arrgh!

This calls for lots of tea, and probably a good book. What would Jane do?

Tea Library Rabbit Mug

It’s been a long wait already. A year ago when I first found out about L&F, filming had already ended. Then it was supposed to be released on April 27, but the date got pushed to May 13. Now we have to wait even longer for an indeterminate general opening date.

Fortunately, L&F sounds well worth the wait. Like I wrote on my geeky hobby blog, I haven’t had any real idea of what it’ll be like, as I’ve never even heard of the writer / director Whit Stillman before, but the movie looks absolutely hilarious on the basis of the trailer.

Now I just need to sit tight for only a few more weeks. We hope!

Note: I wasn’t paid or perked to mention this; just passing along a good thing.

Computer Troubles

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So, this happened:

Meaning, my laptop is dead. It won’t turn on.

Fortunately, it’s not my work computer. All of the shop, blog and customer data is safe.

Unfortunately, the manufacturer can’t help me at all, since they’ve discontinued my model, in all of its 3.5-year-old glory. (It’s not that old! Gah!)

I’m very frustrated – it’s the most expensive computer I’ve ever owned, and the processor, memory, graphics and hard discs would’ve served my needs for years to come.

It’s not all bad, though: I’ll take this opportunity to learn how to remove the hard discs, re-connect them as an external drive to another computer and back up my data myself, instead of paying someone else for it. I have a lot of edited photos on that laptop, so I’m hoping it’s not the hard discs that are busted. (I do have originals of the photos, but no copies of the edits I’ve made.) And who knows, someone out there might be able to repair it.

And because Sir Ian McKellen and Sir Patrick Stewart can make any day better, here’s a fantastic picture of the two gentlemen:

McKellen Stewart Bad Day

Via Nicola Foxfield.

Image found via Nicola Foxfield.

Curse Your Systems Glitch, B&N!

Bits in Spaaace!, Books & Mags, Thumbs Down, Thumbs Up

Earlier this month I pre-ordered a treat: the final book in Mary Robinette Kowal’s Glamourist series. It was released yesterday, but instead of a book in the mail now, I apparently can expect one in AUGUST:

BN Of Noble Family Preorder

Say what?!? That won’t do. One cancellation and re-order later, my book is shipping tomorrow. (Yay!) And thanks to a coupon code that I happened to get after placing my pre-order, I even saved $4 and change.

BN Of Noble Family Reorder

Today, I win the Internet. 😉

Your Error Message Was 404 Not Found

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There are times when I regret I didn’t go into user experience (UX). Even though I am a gamer, I’m not very well versed in the actual IT world. Systems, structures and logistics do, however, fascinate me. Then there are times when I think being in UX would probably suck. For instance, when seeing an error message like this:

Sign-in Error Apr 2014

Part of me is thinking: What in incredibly frustrating and non-helpful error message. If I cannot sign in with a specific account, what possible use could there be in asking me to sign in again with that same account? The other part is thinking: There must be a reason for that specific wording. Or is this a “placeholder” message for misc problems? How would you even design a scalable error message system specific enough to be useful for the good IT folks trying to troubleshoot and generic enough not to confuse your users?

Three days and counting. Thank goodness e-mail customer support is working behind the scenes. And the upshot is that I have time available to tackle tasks I’ve been putting off because they’re not very exciting. Ohwell. 🙂

Achievement Unlocked: 10 Followers

Behind the Scenes, Leveling Up, Thumbs Down

This blog already has 10 followers, to my surprise:

10 Followers on PGH

Exciting, right? Unfortunately, I seem to have been hit with “follower spam” already: most of these people are advertizing something. You could almost make their “pitches” into a pseudo-conversation:

“How to Make Money Blogging!”
“Join the Excitement by Following Our Fantabulous Reality TV Series That Has Absolutely Nothing to Do with Your Life or Interests!”
“Not Sure? Then Make Money Blogging about Our Fantabulous Reality TV Series!”
“No, Really, Join The Excitement Now. It’s really Exciting!”

It’s a little demoralizing – I am writing with an actual person in mind, not a sales drone who’s fishing for clicks or followers. We already have the Do Not Call list to block unsolicited sales calls and spam filters to block unsolicited marketing e-mails. I wonder when the blogging industry will catch up.

For the real people who follow: Thank you. I have no doubt you’ll get company in time.