spatz: darkfield photograph of a nematode, caption "Unleash the nematodes of war!" (nematodes of war)
I feel like March has lasted forever, I've been so busy -- and it's not even over yet. Here, have some random links as I clean up my inbox and my life:

The Indian sanitary pad revolution

A rural Indian man invented a cheap, simple machine to make sanitary pads, and the fallout has been awesome. I've heard of this man before, but it was a while ago -- when he won that contest for his invention, IIRC. Apparently in the years since, he's taken his invention, refused to commercialize, and instead started to spread them through impoverished areas: creating jobs, improving hygiene, and makes it easier for girls to stay in school after they hit puberty. And now he wants to go international. *hearteyes* There's a documentary about the full story available streaming here for $4. I'm documentary'd out after SXSW, but I'll have to check it out.

Researcher reveals how “Computer Geeks” replaced “Computer Girls”
Asked to picture a computer programmer, most of us describe the archetypal computer geek, a brilliant but socially-awkward male. [...] It may be surprising, then, to learn that the earliest computer programmers were women and that the programming field was once stereotyped as female.
5 Truths About Sexual Fetishes

Interesting and funny read, but man, Cracked.com is almost as dangerous as TvTropes once you get going.
spatz: frost covered red leaves on frozen grass (frost leaves)
Some links:

I needed this comic *last* week, when I had shitty self-esteem writer's block. Oh well. Better late than never.

Kickass former-PI mom helps take down revenge-porn website owner/epic dickbag: a lot of the stories from other victims in this article are horrifying, which makes the ending particularly sweet justice, and it's a very informative read.

*****
Some WIP recs:

Hail Mary by [archiveofourown.org profile] galaxysoup
Mary Winchester is resurrected by a bunch of angels, and ends up on a buddy-hunter roadtrip with recently-human Castiel. GENIUS. Firstly, I never knew I needed this in my life but now I cannot believe there aren't a million Mary-gets-resurrected stories. Secondly, the story so far is hilarious and touching and wonderful, and both Mary and Cas are spot-on. Thirdly, I am enjoying the fuck out of this despite not having watching SPN since S5, though admittedly I have been spoiled in every direction. I highly recommend it.

1796 Broadway by [archiveofourown.org profile] rainproof & [archiveofourown.org profile] teaberryblue
Epistolary Steve/Tony fic, which starts when Steve insists that "all complaints be addressed to him in writing. On paper, the nice old-fashioned way, because the computer screen hurts his eyes" because he's annoyed at Tony. I fucking love politely-bitchy Steve, so I was sold from the start, but the story so far is full of charm and wit and lots of NYC. [archiveofourown.org profile] rainproof writes Tony, [archiveofourown.org profile] teaberryblue writes Steve, and they trade letters back and forth with occasional multimedia bits. I know both of the authors and have been assured that they a) have a plan and b) have written over 100 chapters in advance at this point, so my normal qualms about reading WIPs have been soothed. :) Since the story is deliberately being written as a serial, with a new chapter posted every day, I do recommend reading it that way to avoid epistolary overload.

*****

A TV meme, in which it becomes embarrassingly clear that I have started a lot of shows that I never finished. )

yes, this

Nov. 15th, 2013 12:48 am
spatz: Steve holding his ribs below Chitauri blast wound (injured Cap)
Steve Rogers Isn't Just Any Hero
There’s nothing “revisionist” or “politically correct” about portraying Steve Rogers as an explicitly progressive superhero. Without that, he wouldn’t be Captain America.
Long, detailed historical/canonical rundown of why Steve is not the forties conservative jingoistically patriotic stereotype fandom sometimes thinks he is, complete with fucking footnotes. THANK YOU.

Ugh, people writing Steve as anything less than open-minded and progressive drives me crazy. We have plenty of canonical evidence in both comics and the movies that he is neither sexist nor racist (the Howling Commandoes, Peggy Carter, Natasha Romanoff, Sharon Carter, Sam Wilson, Nick Fury, etc, etc, etc), his best friend in the comics growing up was not Bucky but a gay kid named Arnie Roth, he's canonically crossdressed about a billion times in the comics, and also all the points in that article above.

Do I think Steve would be confused and/or awkward when confronted by things like transgenderism or modern sexual mores or Helicarrier electronics panels? Yes. Do I think he would then ask for an explanation in plain English, listen when someone explained, and also continue treating everyone like a human being (granted they are not trying to do something evil at the time)? FUCKING YES.

Steve is a stubborn, reckless, smartass, insubordinate control freak of a human being, and about 70 years behind culturally, but he is NOT CONSERVATIVE OR PREJUDICED. ARGH.
spatz: green bird perched on a hand (Default)
FINALLY did my Yuletide letter, embarrassingly belated. [personal profile] inmyriadbits and I have an old friend -- *very* old, we've known her since kindergarten -- staying with us temporarily, and her boyfriend and their adorable whippet. It's great seeing her, but it's sort of put a hamper on my fannish activities. I'm now three weeks behind on Person of Interest, for example - I miss you guys! - and my inbox is a little terrifying.

Some things I *have* read and enjoyed recently:

Study finds TV shows with ethnically diverse casts, writers have higher ratings
This is *fascinating*, and makes complete sense to me, but it's nice to get some hard data to support what was just a personal theory.

Fan is a Tool-Using Animal
Lovely recording of a conference presentation by the guy who runs Pinboard, talking about how the fannish migration post-Delicious completely turned his opinion of us around. He's a very sincere speaker and his retelling of the Epic GoogleDoc of Doom made me laugh, plus he has some interesting observations about fandom as a user population in general.

Something Fishy by [archiveofourown.org profile] LiguisticJubilee: I was delighted to find last night that there are not one, but TWO sequels for this. For the uninitiated, it's a Clint/Coulson story where they first meet while Coulson is thought MIA/KIA, but has actually been turned into an octopus by the bad guy. Cracky candy, for reals, but perfectly tuned and heavily leavened with Clint feels and silly comic book science.

User Since by [archiveofourown.org profile] rageprufrock: I expect most people have read this already, but if you haven't, DO SO IMMEDIATELY. Bring kleenex, and all your feelings about fandom and community. You will not regret it.

Rule Two by [archiveofourown.org profile] lady_ragnell: someone finally wrote fake-dating fic for Sleepy Hollow, and it is *perfect*. Totally gen, totally in-character, and totally adorable.
spatz: Steve bent over a notebook, sketching (Steve drawing)
Hey, I just noticed it's Friday the Thirteenth! (or was, when I started writing this post) Awesome, I love when that happens.

*****

I very much enjoyed this article about bro culture, which also features one of the clearest definitions of what that is that I have read. (just don't read the comments: I accidentally paged down once too far and the first five alone were simply appalling.)

*****

Big Bang 3 - Revenge of the Banged:

Word Count: 10,717 / 10,000 minimum (victory!)
Scenes to complete: 1!
Segues to write: 0!
Scenes to write in entirety: 1. And it's only the most important emotional scene in the story, no big deal, I should totally be writing that at the last moment. :\

And as bonus, some terrible puns from the editing process so far --

[livejournal.com profile] inmyriadbits: I think you need a period here.
ME: Okay. It is a period piece.

[livejournal.com profile] inmyriadbits: I'm not sure you need a horizontal rule after that scene.
ME: Sure. I'm not married to the idea.
[livejournal.com profile] inmyriadbits: *groans*
spatz: Joan Watson clutching her head in exasperation (Elementary Joan headache)
I just conked out for a nap in the middle of the afternoon, and now feel vaguely nauseated -- obviously I didn't drink enough water after work. Ugh. Anyway, have a few things that made me laugh:

Sarah Rees Brennan's recap of Pacific Rim, which containing this perfect summation of the Raleigh-Mako dynamic:
RALEIGH: I'll never copilot a giant robot again my heart is dead!
MAKO: Hi.
RALEIGH: I HAVE JUST MET YOU & I LOVE YOU.

An actual public service announcement (warnings for terrible earworm song and, idk, excessively cheerful cartoon violence?):



...Two things make a post, right? Right.

challenger

Sep. 4th, 2013 01:29 am
spatz: green bird perched on a hand (Default)
As deadlines loom, a fan's thoughts naturally turn to... getting distracted by other shiny challenge signups. So far I've resisted the siren call (except for Yuletide, but that's a given at this point), but if anyone else is interested:

[community profile] fan_byproducts - a Welcome to Night Vale gift exchange with a name that made me LOL, because I enjoy bad jokes. Signups are open until September 8th!

Idyll Challenge - okay, technically I'm still eyeing this one because it's open-ended like Canadian Shacks. Who doesn't like stories "in which the characters are stuck in a peaceful, comfortable, well-stocked place, usually with some kind of swimming available"? Good decision, fandom.

Small Fandom Big Bang - signups are open until October 31st. (hmmm. Actually. Linds, I think MI4 is eligible. Should we?)

I have definitely *not* resisted the siren call of [community profile] pofinterest_chat, which I think was a good life choice. More people should come play! *pokes everyone*

NYC

Apr. 3rd, 2013 07:25 pm
spatz: Finch peering into air duct (POI Finch peer)
Originally found this through Avengers fandom, but I figured POI people could use it too:
Manhattan does not have suburban-style malls or supermarkets

Relatedly, I've been having a lot of feelings lately about Harold Finch and New York City.

Read more... )
spatz: Dani Reese in profile against a sunlit wall (Life Dani sunlight)
Love and Marriage (POI) by [personal profile] astolat
In which Reese and Finch get married for financial reasons - except really not, as anyone might guess. I am deeply amused that they *never* actually talk about the whole 'oh hey, we're in love' thing, and yet it's super obvious. I love this show. Also, the scene in the Rose Garden *killed* me in the best way.

The Incident of the Fellow in the Fellow's Garden by azdak
Pitch-perfect crossover between the Lord Peter Wimsey novels and The Man From UNCLE in which Peter is invited to Cambridge in 1955 to investigate a suicide that might be murder, and Illya Kuryakin is the prime suspect. The author nails Peter's piffle and insight in equal measure.

Death Star was an inside job
Star Wars video parody of Loose Change, a 9/11 conspiracy video. *Hilarious*, and I'm irresistably reminded of Holmes' hobby on Elementary.

It Takes Planning, Caution to Avoid Being 'It'
A group of friends have been playing a game of tag for 23 years. And the WSJ wrote an article on it. Yessssss, delicious comedy. An illustrative scene:
Mr. Konesky tiptoed toward Mr. Dennehy's bedroom, burst through the door and flipped on the light. A bleary-eyed Mr. Dennehy looked up as his now-wife yelled "Run, Brian!" Mr. Konesky recalls. "There was nowhere for Brian to run."
spatz: Dani Reese in profile against a sunlit wall (Life Dani sunlight)
Anyone who wants a look at what [livejournal.com profile] inmyriadbits and I talk about after episodes should visit her post about 2x16, because it is pretty representative. Also, since she's talking about POI vs Batman, I thought I should link to this article: Why Person of Interest is a Superhero Show Done Right

now let's talk about Sarah Shahi being awesome )

Anyone who didn't come out of that episode with the urge to watch/rewatch Life: GO WATCH LIFE. I love Shahi's Dani Reese even more than John Reese, and you can watch Damian Lewis loom over her in a similar albeit far more ginger-and-Zen fashion. And there's a lot of parallel exploration of redemption/vengeance, and difficult slow-build partnership, and surviving trauma but having to live with the broken pieces, which POI fans should enjoy.

I always wish I was more fannish about Life, but the show gave me almost all that I wanted from its ending (best finale ever, still), and I got out the rest I needed with Precession. So now I just kinda sit back and think about it with a warm fuzzy feeling, and go, "yep, I'm good." It's fun, and somewhat unique in my fannish experience.
spatz: Reese smiling with camera (Reese happy lurker)
I've been bookmarking a lot of POI fic lately in hopes of doing some old-school recs, but the past few days have seen some awesome posts from the non-fic areas of the fandom, so you're getting that instead.

No Man's Woman by [personal profile] giandujakiss
This Reese/Finch vid is as adorable as its song choice is hilarious, and the editing is superbly funny and feels-inducing. ♥

Reese's Identity Crisis by [personal profile] esteefee
A nice piece of meta collecting moments from S1 where people ask John, "Who are you?", and how he answers. (I really want to do this with all the times John feeds people, now.)

The Man in The Suit by hellotailor
Hellotailor takes on the costume design for the show with her usual insight. Ahaha, another convert. I should have known the suits would get her.



And, two profiles of real life people who saved lives:

Fred Rogers: Can you say 'hero'?

Chiune Sugihara: The Hero Who Didn’t Walk Away
spatz: darkfield photograph of a nematode, caption "Unleash the nematodes of war!" (nematodes of war)
Some links for your entertainment:

Skeleton of Richard III found and identified

The White House responds to a petition for building a Death Star

PSA-style promos for The Middleman that I somehow never saw but are AMAZING

ETA: Protecting a Cell Phone From Hackers
(haven't finished reading this yet, but so far it's very relevant to POI fans)




In other news, I continue to be obsessed with Person of Interest (just when I thought nothing could distract me from Clint Barton! the power of fannish shiny at work), have acquired a tiny new laptop that isn't dying slowly, started working full-time as a massage therapist, and have begun to stalk the SXSW website. 2013 seems determined to keep me busy - but my lucky number *has* always been 13. :)
spatz: bare feet kicked up, beach in background (beach kicky feet)
An article:
Mitt Romney Is Dolores Umbridge: a 9-year-old watches the presidential debates

A rec:
Captain America is not a Republican
Because I am absolutely easy for stories in which Steve is a) devious, b) thoughtfully progressive, and c) politely kicks ass.

And a meme:
If you could remix one of my stories, which one would it be and how'd you do it?
spatz: Thor in silhouette inside whirlwind (Thor storm)
I'm happy that Avengers fandom has finally hit the point when it starts backlashing against its own fanon - at least, the this-characterization-is-completely-unrecognizable stuff. I've linked Things That Would Surprise Captain America before, and a tiny Coulson/paperwork rant (seriously, I have nothing against paperwork, but there are so many other things he can do).

Anyway: Why Thor is Not A Fucking Idiot (A Comprehensive Post)

Amazing, funny, and includes this hysterical and completely accurate digression about Steve Rogers:
Here’s what Steve probably remembers from the 1940’s: His desegregated military squad. His squad in the midst of an escape picking up Tesseract-charged weapons and being all LOL WHAT DOES THIS DO and IDK BRO TRY SHOOTING IT and OH WOW THAT WORKS I GUESS and not a single one of them standing around clutching at their pearls and crying OH MY LAWD, I DON’T RECOGNIZE THIS ADVANCED TECHNOLOGY.
IDK BRO TRY SHOOTING IT. *dies* I can never watch that scene again with a straight face.

But yes, can we all remember that Thor is a semi-competent dude and a grownup superhero, not a frat boy moron? Please and thank you. Just because Loki tricked him along with EVERYONE ELSE does not mean he thinks gullible is written on the ceiling.

(...actually, he probably would fall for that. But only once, and it would be hilarious.)
spatz: Tony manipulating Tesseract hologram (Tony cube hologram)
Work is incredibly slow today, so I just spent 6 um, 8 hours amassing a truly huge amount of research and links surrounding The Avengers.

1) Law and the Multiverse
This is a blog that discusses fictional legal issues that might exist in the universe of superheroes and comics: awesome. They put together a number of posts about the movie listed here in order of how interesting I found them: )

I have not yet read their article Death and Taxes and Zombies, but I am linking to it for [personal profile] celli. :D

2) Character Dialogue Analysis
Written by [personal profile] grey_bard, these are some neat, incisive breakdowns of how various Avengers speak in the movieverse, with relevant quotations:
Natasha Romanoff
Steve Rogers
Bruce Banner
ETA: Clint Barton

I found this *incredibly* helpful for Bruce, personally, but all of them are fantastic. I'm hoping she does everyone, but she's already explicitly said she's *not* doing Tony, so we'll see.

3) Things That Would Surprise Captain America
(link goes to roundup post)
Speaks to my personal pet peeve of OMG PEOPLE, Steve served in the Army and was best friends with Bucky, he is not going to blush when people talk about sex!, but there are tons of interesting historical details contributed in the comments.

Some thoughts from my own comment on the post )

4) Shiny Movie is Shiny

Avengers art design interview/article
I found all of this interesting, but the Stark Tower and Helicarrier sections are particularly relevant for fic purposes.

VFX Roundup
Okay, a lot of this is special effects technobabble, but there's also dozens of high-res images of various locations and technology (Helicarrier displays and Tony's HUD), plus a discussion of where the battle took place in New York. What we see in the movie takes place in a 4x10 block area around Stark Tower & Grand Central Station. I am also amused at how even the FX people think Joss was awesome.

Gorgeous hi-res images of the Helicarrier displays, Tony's holographics desk, and the Iron Man HUD
The HUD is particularly fascinating to me - the original Iron Man team put a huge amount of thought into how it worked because they are nerds like that, and did multiple versions of the display as Tony evolved the suit. This is a whole new level of detail, and it's a important character note for Tony that he sees and processes all of that information during a fight.

So help me, I think I'm going to do a followup post about Stark Tower's layout and the geography of the Battle of Manhattan because that's not even all of the stuff I have, I just have to close up the office now.
spatz: caption "Keep Calm and Call Coulson", with SHIELD logo (keep calm)
-Kathryn Joosten, aka Mrs. Landingham in my heart forever, passed away yesterday. Rest in peace, awesome lady.

-I keep waiting for someone on Tumblr to post an image of Bucky with the lyrics to the little soldier boy song from Tales of Ba Sing Se, and thereby utterly break me.

-I think one of my favorite (other favorite? ALL THE FAVORITE) things about A Funny Thing Happened On The Way To Thor's Hammer is that after Coulson takes out the robbers, he pulls the donuts out of his pockets. Like, he put them there in advance. He sees guys with guns, sighs, and makes sure to stow his snacks so he doesn't have to go back for them. Now *that's* efficiency. ♥

-There are three Chris Hemsworth movies out in theaters right now: Avengers, Cabin in the Woods, and Snow White & the Huntsman. I should go see those other ones. Or maybe Avengers again.

-Oh, Tim/Kon, my old dear love. Have they even met yet in the New 52 reboot, or is Kon still wandering around fresh from his cloning tube?

-ARGH I AM SO BORED. This list was going to have ten things, and then I got bored, that's how bored I am. *sigh*
spatz: green bird perched on a hand (Default)
I have been googling so many ridiculous things while plotting this post-movie fic, it's getting ridiculous. Anyway, it's going to be All Avengers All the Time around here for a while, fair warning. Have some links.

Shawarma + Edward Hopper = WIN
I don't even care that the perspective and dimensions are all wrong. *dies laughing*

fake analysis of financial damages to New York from the Chitauri
Make sure to check out the actual pdf report, which is hilariously tongue-in-cheek. They cite Godzilla as a reference, ok, I can't even.

GIF of a woman doing Black Widow's thigh flip takedown in RL
I just keep watching this lady climb the dude like he's a tree and snake her limbs around him. Totally hypnotizing. I love watching Natasha do this move but movie stunts often require a cut mid-motion, and this is a full-body shot.
spatz: Lex holding birthday cake and laughing maniacally, caption "Even Lex Luthor has birthdays" (Lex birthday crack)
PLEASE TELL SOMEONE IS ALREADY REQUESTING THIS FOR YULETIDE:
Secret Agent Calvin and Hobbes: Meet Dr. Robin

(ooh, bonus motorcycle chase!)

*****

Here, have some links to people being awesome in low-tech ways that they came up with because they loved something:

Tiny libraries around the world

Florida guy who runs coral reef nurseries

Giant rats trained to detect landmines...and tuberculosis

Nine-year-old boy builds a handmade arcade out of cardboard

*****

I'm going to go read ridiculous h/c now. If anyone has any recommendations, I'd be much obliged.

Pinboard

Mar. 19th, 2012 09:37 pm
spatz: Leito grinning smugly, arms spread to close doors (B13 Leito triumph)
I just signed up for Pinboard after a long internal debate, and thank god. Very clean and simple compared to the hideous filler-content mess that Delicious turned into. I also think there's been fiddling since the Epic Fandom Feedback GoogleDoc of Doom happened, because there are tons of features that I've been longing for:

1) First and foremost, the global bookmarks page (i.e., the "231 saves" link that gives you a page with everyone else's reviews and tags in chronological order). I didn't know the site had this because it's not available to the public, but it magically appeared in the settings page and I clicked that tickybox so hard it hurt.

2) tag autocomplete!

3) listing tags in the order I added them, not REVERSE order FUCK YOU DELICIOUS THAT WAS WHAT BROKE ME.

4) tag clouds that don't suck and nest cleanly!

4) I figured out a way to export my Firefox bookmarks and upload them in batches by fiddling with the exported HTML file, which works with how I bookmark and pairs very nicely with...

5) the Organize function, which comes with a preview frame. So I can upload my monthly batch of newly-reads with timestamps from Firefox, then select the 'untagged' filter, click 'Organize', and flick through while I reread/delete/add descriptions without having to alt-tab between the windows and fuck with the bookmark properties.

6) bulk editing with actual functionality

7) oooh, there's a history feature. I am weak for those.

8) the people person who runs it seems to have a sense of humor and is fandom-friendly. The popular+fandom filter they set up pleases me. Let's hope the honeymoon lasts.

Sheesh, why did I wait so long?

...Well, okay, tl;dr discussion of my bookmarking philosophy )

Anyway. I'm excited about Pinboard! Let me know if you're on the site, I want to explore the subscription and network features some more.

For those of you who made it through the babble, have some animation-related recs:

Up inspired floating house built by National Geographic. Look at the little mailbox!

Stunning artwork of Disney Princesses in accurate period costume. I have no idea how actually accurate these are, but gee, they're pretty. Check out the artist's website, too, where she has Tiana in an awesome flapper dress and some Doctor Who art and a BAMF Harley Quinn costume redesign.
spatz: woman's lower face with fan of golden hair laced with tiny math equations (Fringe Olivia math hair)
I should so very much be asleep, but I'm mourning the delay of Fringe so I just spent like 2 hours on Tumblr and watching the Novation promos over and over again. Have some links! (images spoilery for individual moments/scenes, but not plot arcs)

Olivia: researching, grinning, getting blown up, floating in an immersion tank, post-coital, grieving, angry and ethereal - and that's just the pilot!

Olivia's idea of dressing up

Their jobs are so weird

Walter ships Olivia/Peter

Remember that time they spoiled the Star Trek reboot 3 whole days before it was out in theaters and no one noticed? Good times.


And now for something completely different: pumpkin Appa! All he needs now is a little Aang figurine on his head and a little recording saying "yip yip!"

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