i glared at her, said learn to read

One of the people bidding for some work at the Lair called back and told me they had tried to email me some things, but it wasn’t working. Keep in mind I had hit the “contact by phone” box on their webform, and had most specifically not checked “contact by email.”

So I had them read the error to me. Which they dutifully did, including reading the email address I gave their form:


Even that didn’t register until I said it back to them. And this is why I don’t trust companies with real email addresses.

I see the Seattle People’s Front have struck again

Much better, Brian.

popular science: going to the moon may in fact be cheap.

Going to the moon could be 90% cheaper than previous estimates based on old systems. That would be really cool.

the new shtick: bring it all down?

There’s a rumour floating around that the Puppies have given up on hopes of getting any awards out of this Hugo slate awards capture trick they’ve pulled, and are just NO AWARDing every category en masse. Note that’s different to what I said to do, which was vote for non-Puppy candidates, then NO AWARD.

I mean, seriously, in a single-party election, if you managed to defeat the only party? You must be pretty good. That deserves votes.

I first heard about it from this tweet:

Regardless, here’s Adam Troy-Castro talking about the strategy, and what he thinks it means. (Related: “Why I’m Disliked: A Ten Point List,” by John Scalzi.)

However, it’s definitely not a united bloc on this strategy; the oberpuppyf├╝hrer has been writing against the FULL NO AWARD suite, specifically in response to proud Puppy slate candidate Michael Z. Williamson’s call to bring the whole thing down. Vox also claims they still have not brought their full weight to bear in this matter; we’ll see about that. (Yes, I will occasionally read Vox Day so you don’t have to.)

I think most of this is just the latest “claim victory no matter what happens” strategy. I also don’t think they have a lot of credibility left outside their own circles, so I’m pretty sure that doesn’t matter, unless Vox still has some 1930s-esque dreams of CONTROLLING THE FUTURE THROUGH SCIENCE FICTION FANDOM! Which he might do, given that’s pretty much when he’s from.

Either way, voting ends soon, and we will all know what happens then. See you in Spokane!

also this weekend

Some months ago, I discovered “Class T” amplifiers, and also discovered that they have pretty good reputations and can be had for astonishingly low prices direct from manufacturer. They’re mostly used in automotive audio, but I’ve had some thoughts on converting my passive main speakers to active main speakers, so I acquired one.

I finally built a test harness for one of these boards on Saturday night.

Damn right I know how to party

Result: it’s worth building a better harness, and, most particularly, use a more suitable power supply. I basically grabbed a 15v DC adaptor out of my I ♥ You Power Supplies box of random salvage, and really, that’s a pretty shitty test transformer.

But even with that, it worked, as in, it functioned and sound good enough to give it a proper go. I didn’t get the low end out of it I’d’ve liked to, but, again, radically underpowered supply voltage, and one of the places that shows up is in lack of low end oomph. I’m hoping that’s it, because if it is, I’d be able to upgrade a lot of old kit on the seriously cheap.

And that’s not a bad thing at all.

How was your weekend?

“lukey” now on youtube

I’ve got a couple of weekends off that I had planned out for work that fell through, so I finally made another one of those fake turntable videos. So now “Lukey” – from Bone Walker, of course – is on YouTube. Being played on a gramophone, apparently, for which we thank David T. Stone of Seattle! So, if you’re a big YouTube user, now you can play it there:

I could totally see this track being the one I’d put on an actual cylinder were I to do that craziness. It’s period! It could have been done then, and almost certainly was in some form. Ah, someday. Until then, we have this. Enjoy!


I can’t tell you – no that’s a lie, I won’t tell you – why all these people are busily installing a concrete facility under this major highway near the Lair. However, I can tell you that they think it’s a new stream culvert.


But construction is interesting, so have some site photos.

Also, there is an alpaca. How is this relevant? You may never know.

Larger copies of the pictures at Flickr.

for all the BritSF fans out there

Thunderbirds are in fact go. Supermarination lives again, the Kickstarter has met first goal, and Thunderbirds series 3 episode 1, “The Abominable Snowman,” will be produced. All original cast, all supermarionation.

Click through to Kickstarter project with details

They’re $25k away from Series 3 Episode 2, a prequel episode, “Introducing Thunderbirds.” If they make that, they’ll go for 3×03, “Lady Penelope Investigates: The Stately Home Robberies.”

While I’m more of a Captain Scarlet and the Mysterons fan myself, I’m all over this. And I’d love to see the Lady Penelope adventure. If that’s you, click through to Kickstarter to support it. They’re doing well so far and are definitely in range of at least 3×02, and 3×03 is not out of the question.

Norwescon is actively looking for you!

You likely know that over the last several years, I built a music festival at Norwescon, called nwcMUSIC. It’s a pan-geekmusic festival, with nerdcore and chiptunes and filk and elfmetal and seriously anything geek-friendly I could find. Here’s last year’s show report, and the year before (part one and part two), to give you a feel for it.

But it was built heavily on force of personality – specifically, mine – and I’m stepping down. So they need new people. Our sound crew is stepping down as well, so they need several new people. But there’s good news: it has momentum and all the tools are in place and everything. And it has that all-important social and political momentum; people want to keep it going.

There will be opportunities like Daytime Programming Lead, and I happen to know that Programming Head is looking for someone right now to take that slot. This kind of work is about making panels and workshops, and getting attending performers and pros onto those workshops. They’ve all been very hands-on/instructional in the past. One of the big advantages of this position is that all this work is usually done by January, so you can do this and go to the panels like usual. Sound like it’s for you? Mail programming@norwescon.org today.

They’ll also be needing Publicity and Communications Lead or whatever they end up calling it, promoting events and concerts. That’s work that will start in January and also is mostly done by convention time. There’ll like be a Special Events/Filkcircle Lead, which will have a mix of before-convention and at-con work. There will be a Concerts Lead, working tightly with the Daytime Programming Lead. This can also make you Concerts MC! That’s how I did it.

all this can be yours

There will be a Concerts Second (what I’ve called “Water Fairy,” ably managed by Anna in the past), who does stage management work at the shows, and fairly little beforehand. There will be a Concert Sound Engineer or two (replacing the most excellent Jen and John after six years), possibly a Videographer, and so on. For most of those, contact specialevents@norwescon.org – the sooner, the better.

I promise this: you will not be going in without help. I won’t be running things, and I won’t be on concom, but I will share everything I’ve done and learned because I want this to keep going. It’s built up into a nice community – one that I want to continue to be part of, as a musician. It’s a really good educational experience for the attendees, it promotes participation in your own culture, and it’s a heck of a venue for nerdy and geeky artists.

also, possibly some srsly bitchin’ gear

So someone – several someones – need to take my place and take these jobs. If no one does, it really will go away, and I don’t know anyone who wants that. So please – even if you aren’t the right person for any of these positions, cast that net wide, and pass along the news to everyone you know. Even if you’ve done it once already, do it again.

And contact Norwescon to get involved, as soon as possible. This is a big change for Norwescon, too. We’ve got a hell of a thing here. Step up. Keep nwcMUSIC going.

updated press page stuff a bit

I’ve updated the Press page with new about Dara and about Solarbird the Lightbringer links, replacing old ones I never liked. Basically, the difference is that one is supposed to be OOC (the secret identity) and the other is in character.

Like there’s really a difference, am I right?

Hopefully it’s less confusing this way, though. If you want to read those and give some feedback, I’d appreciate it.

I still need some proper, professional head shots. I’ll get that done soon and probably replace the pictures currently being used with these pages. Consider the ones there right now to be placeholders.

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