Jun. 26th, 2017 04:01 pm
bunn: (Bah)
I really hate the style of form captcha where one must demonstrate that one is a human being by choosing all the photos that contain cars, or all the photos that contain street signs, for example.

I don't know how people with vision impairments get past them at all.  You have nine poor quality fuzzy images, some of which show part of an item that might, or might not, be a car or a street sign.  And then there is the 'is this a car /  street sign?' question.  I just failed a captcha because an image showed me a thing that I would call a bus.  But apparently to a captcha, it's a car.   And if the 'street sign' shows a different language or indeed alphabet, sometimes you can't work out exactly what it is.  Or it shows you a photo with what are probably cars, but they are tiny and far away!

Aaaaaaaaaaa!   Come back, mental arithmetic captchas, all is forgiven! 
bunn: (canoeing)
Phonecall from NHS: will I come in for checkup?  Well, OK I say, and agree a date and time.

Read more... )
bunn: (canoeing)
Scrolling quickly through messages telling me which IP addresses have been autoblocked on various websites that I work on, because of dodgy-looking activity over the festive season, I notice that there is a sudden upswing in Russian and Ukrainian IP addresses.  (My sites are almost all hosted in the UK, because dealing with the data wrangles of hosting outside the EU is a headache I do not need).

Normally, attempts to get into my websites come largely from the USA and (inexplicably) France.   The orthodoxy, I believe,  is to assume that these US attacks are not really from the US, but are from US-based machines hijacked from Eastern Europe.  (I don't know about the French thing.  Nobody else seems to be specially targeted by the French, so I have seen no discussion on it).

I don't know what to make of the sudden prominence of Russian IPs.  Have the US authorities cracked down on the hijacked machines?  Are the new attacks reported as Russian and Ukrainian, actually now coming from hijackers physically located in the USA, in a kind of weird symmetry?  Is it entirely chance?

I'll probably never know.  I can only feel vaguely reassured that the software is doing its thing and nobody is complaining. 
bunn: (Leaping)
I have recently become particularly sensitive to cries of 'Noooooooo!' at climactic moments in movies.   I may even have gone so far as to say 'I don't think people actually say 'nooooooo!' in moments of crisis.'    

And then this evening, Ruggie tried to go trotting into the house, having fallen over in a thick muddy puddle, and being deeply encrusted with mud.  The noise I made as I leaped to grab him before he hit the carpet was pretty much exactly :  Nooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo!
bunn: (Logres)
I just randomly inflicted a video of April and June the Devon Ladies on [ profile] topum and then it occurred to me that possibly, the fame of April and June might not have spread to all corners of my LJ friends list, and therefore I should inflict them on the rest of you too.  So here they are.  Topum's idea of turning on the automatic captioning on this video made me laugh, although I'm impressed that the autocaption did at least guess the right language....

bunn: (dog knotwork)
I wrote a series of tiny stories about readers Not Leaving Kudos on ArchiveofOurOwn, prompted by a thread over on the [ profile] ushobwri community. Kept them in a file for a bit and added one when I thought of one, and eventually in a fit of randomness posted them on Ao3.

I woke up this morning to find that 600-word story suddenly has way more kudoses than anything else I'd uploaded there.  I find this hilarious.

It's here.
bunn: (Paddle of Rebuke)
Every time I see the label on an Ebay listing that says 'fast and free' my brain automatically fils in 'the last whose realm was.. fast and free.. between the mountains and the Sea'. no wait that's wrong.

EVERY time.   Sheds an intriguing light on Gilgalad's catering preferences, and indeed on Elven cuisine in general. 
bunn: (dog knotwork)
While walking the dogs, I met in passing a chap in our village.  He was outside a house having a smoke, and he greeted me with some observation about the weather, and patted Brythen.

Normally I would have chatted back in a more enthusiastically friendly manner, but I had a vague feeling that someone had told me something was suspect about this particular person, so while polite, I made rather more of an effort to move on quickly without engaging than I would do normally.

Only about five minutes later did it occur to me that my vague feelings of distrust and suspicion had their root in the fact that he bore a noticeable resemblance in appearance and clothing to Owen Harper, from Torchwood.   Whoops.

People who tell you to 'go with your gut instinct' presumably don't suffer from this kind of problem.   My instincts are constantly swayed by being bathed in a sea of suspicious and dubious characters and improbable scenarios from around the galaxy.  They rarely seem to have any validity.  
bunn: (dog knotwork)
Was in a medieval mood today, so we went to Cotehele house for an outing.  Here is my mum, demonstrating doorways designed for seriously short people only.  This would probably be more helpful if I could remember how tall my mother is. 5'1-ish ? Less?  Considerably Shorter Than Me, anyway.

This morning as I was returning with the hounds from a morning walk (thankfully, much cooler today than it has been: Oh! the humidity!)  I was accosted by a woman waving the implement whose name causes controversy.  Some call it a fish-slice, others, a spatula, and I think last time we debated this matter there were other suggestions too.  The thing you use to turn stuff in a frying-pan so it browns on both sides.  Anyway...

A tall, grey-haired lady, slim and jeans-clad,  with intelligent aquiline features,  approached me, waving this utensil.
"Is this yours?" she said.
Somewhat baffled and for some reason, feeling rather guilty, I examined the item, and was relieved to see that it was unfamiliar.  At least, whatever the dogs, cats, etc may do, the kitchen equipment is not out annoying the neighbours.
"No!" I said
"I found it in the garden.  We often find things in the garden.  Something brings them.  I think perhaps it was from a barbecue," and she looked at me hopefully.
I admitted that it did indeed look like the kind of thing that someone might use if barbecueing.

"The thing is... I've lost a shoe," she went on.  "You haven't seen a shoe..?  A trainer kind of shoe?"
I shook my head in bafflement.
"Sometimes it brings things, and sometimes it takes them away.  I'm hoping that if I can find where this came from, I might find my shoe."
I assured her that I would look out for her shoe, and if I found it, I would return it to her house pronto.
And she went off up the lane, fish slice in hand, looking for her shoe.

Honestly, this really happened.  I assume, possibly, a fox at work?  All the other explanations seem even less likely.
bunn: (Bah)
I have become very fed up of removing 21 tiny screws in order to open up the back of my laptop, which I needed to do in order to :
Read more... )

So last night I rebelled and after fixing the power jack again, I only replaced 15 screws. Because I'm going to have to take them all out again, aren't I...

Apparently one of those screws I didn't replace was the screw that was causing my Windows updates to fail?

Read more... )
Now I am installing update 12 of 37, and wondering whether this Toshiba would be a useable replacement.Read more... )And I am absolutely, definitely never buying a Vaio again.  Not only is this power jack socket cheap and horrid, (and bending it back into place so it works is starting to knacker the plastic around it) but I can't even find anyone in Europe who will sell me a replacement for it. *rage* 
bunn: (Hiver)
I was just reading about Edward Thorndike's puzzle boxes - an experiment where he put a cat or dog into a box that had some sort of release lever to let it out, and waited to see if the cat or dog would work out whether/how to press the lever.

I now desperately want to put, say, 100 human beings into puzzle boxes, and see how long it takes each of THEM to work out that pushing a lever in a darkened room opens the door. Perhaps my view of humanity is pessimistic, but based on many of the support phonecalls I get, not only are most human beings incapable of empirically working out the solution to a problem, but they are also a species absolutely beset with cargo cult beliefs about the things that appeared to work but in the real world cannot possibly have done so...

I'm fairly sure that the people on my LJ friendslist can indeed reason their way out of a paper bag, but to be honest, I'm not sure you lot are entirely representative.

Both Az and Brythen were expert puzzle-solvers of the canine variety. Az could open doors, turn keys,and undo tent-zips, and it's a delight to see Brythen realise that he's on the wrong side of a fence and work out at speed how to navigate through a series of gates and gaps to the right side of it (when he decides to do so, and OK, sometimes he decides not to :-D ) . He can open a dog-crate from the inside, too. But These are Not Typical Dogs.
bunn: (Skagos)
I've agreed to teach a photo preparation course for beginners, and I'm trying to decide what software to show them.

It needs to be freeware, or at least start out as freeware with reasonable functionality, I don't mind a paid upgrade path. I've looked at Sumopaint, Pixlr, PicMonkey and Befunky, and am probably keenest on Sumopaint. No, Pixlr. No, Sumopaint.

I'm planning to take a look also at, Photopos, and Photoplus, but all of those have to be installed locally, which may cause my beginners some agony, and are also windows-only, whereas the web-based tools are more cross-platformy.

They all have their downsides! Any recommendations, thoughts, ideas? What functions do you think would be most useful/entertaining/fun for a mixed bunch of people, most of them old enough to have had no computer skills training?
bunn: (George Smiley)
I heard a trailer for some event where John le Carré was speaking, in which he said that one of the odd things about Britain is that the majority of people, if they are asked by British Intelligence 'can we come in and use your upstairs, we can't tell you anything about it' will, if reassured the request is genuinely from British Intelligence, say 'yes'.

He felt this demonstrated a national temperamental bias towards the conspiratorial, and towards the patriotic.

[Poll #1934265][Poll #1934265]

Oh drat, I meant to ask if you thought it was odd to say 'yes'. 
bunn: (dog knotwork)
[ profile] philmophlegm and I have been working like blue-arsed flies lately: hence rather less posting than normal.    We decided that rather than move house, or end up with Pp having to take a job that he didn't really want that would pay not very much, we would try and make my business, which has been bumping along for a good few years now as a one-person business with occasional help from freelancers, into a two-person business.
Read more... )


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