Deirdre Saoirse Moen

Sounds Like Weird

BayCon, Saturday

30 May 2005

Around about Saturday of BayCon, I started recovering. While a lot of staff jobs leave one more and more tired as the convention continues, the head of programming is an exception: the position is front-loaded, meaning that one starts the con tired and gradually recovers.

Unfortunately, this front-loading and being tired thing means that one can make mistakes. I counted four preventable mistakes that made it to the final program, quite in addition to the usual more minor stuff.

I managed to clear enough of my schedule to read and critique all the entries for the writer’s workshop section I participated in. If I were doing it over again, I’d put my writer’s workshop section on Sunday to have that one extra day — I prefer to read the entries when I first get them, read them once more, then make my actual critique comments within 24 hours of giving the actual critique. Unfortunately, with Friday being as crazy as it was, I kept having to defer that time and wasn’t able to get uninterrupted time to write my critiques. I’m not saying that this was anyone else’s fault. I certainly could have gone some place and hidden.

Which reminds me…. All weekend, random people were waving at me. Most I recognized, but some I didn’t. When I didn’t recognize the person, it seemed a bit disconcerting, as though someone was starting some sort of “Wave at Deirdre” campaign.

Saturday night, I finally got to see Patricia MacEwen’s famous “Alien Sex” panel, featuring reproductive strategies of various terran species.

After that, Adrienne Gormley and I winged it on the “Writer’s Workshops” panel, which I had to admit that we were unprepared for. That we were unprepared was one of the aforementioned mistakes: I didn’t realize until some time Saturday afternoon that I’d scheduled (and put in the program book and on the program grid) a writer’s workshop panel — but not scheduled anyone for it. Oops. So, I pressed my friend and I into service, though I was unable to find any other fellow victims on such short notice, especially given that it was counter-masquerade programming.

Despite this, we had a full room and had a great deal of interest in the topic, so that was all good. After the panel, I finally managed to get a spot of dinner, hanging out with Adrienne, Margaret Bonham, and, of course, Rick.

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BayCon, Friday

30 May 2005

BayCon’s Meet the Guests reception was overrun by the Fellowship of the Blinking Purple Fez, which consisted of the guests of Honor: Frank Wu, Jay Lake, Chris Garcia, Andy Trembley, and Kevin Roche. It was a lot of fun, though it didn’t quite top last year’s hula performed by Esther Friesner, nor Mark Ryan’s comment about the green sparkly dress he’d worn at Carnegie Hall. Still, all in all, quite a stunning fashion statement.

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Alias season closer

25 May 2005

This season, Alias seemed like it had jumped the shark — or, if not actually jumped, had practiced a few leaps.

The season closer, though, shows that the form is back — the pacing was more J. J. Adams than it has been all year. Of course, he’s been rather busy with another household favorite, Lost.

The kicker was the final scene, with Sydney and Vaughn. As Rick said (and he’s not especially an Alias fan), “That was worth staying up for.”

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Gmail outages

24 May 2005

I’ve been getting gmail “oops” alerts constantly tonight — like 90% of the time I’m trying to do something. Naturally, my BayCon email box is on gmail, which only means that mission-critical stuff that I need to do isn’t getting done.

I knew there was a reason I ran my own mail server.


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Feed's broken

24 May 2005

Berry reported same. Will fix after BayCon. Apparently, this is yet another thing that broke in the upgrade. ::sigh::

At least I figured out what broke validation in my three-minute time slice.

Now, back to java — I have 142 emails to send tonight and a bug I need to fix before that happens….

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That Music Baton

21 May 2005

Several bloggers have posted about the music meme, so I’m doing the same. Since no one explicitly passed the meme onto me, I’m not passing it on to anyone else. Of those who listed their favorites, Jeffrey Zeldman’s came closest to my personal preferences.

Total Music: 14.6 gb. I haven’t even put everything on yet — I’m too low on disk space.

The Last Album I Bought Was: Weezer by Weezer.

Five Songs I listen to a Lot:

  1. “Ancient Walls of Flowers” by Marcy Playground. I just love the acoustic sounds on this. It really needs headphones.
  2. “Hey Bulldog” by the Beatles. I like a lot of Beatles stuff, but this has been my favorite since Fanny did a cover of it ages ago.
  3. “Short Skirt, Long Jacket” by Cake. I love Cake, but this song’s my current favorite.
  4. “Chicken and Rice” by Jack “Mr. Bongo” Costanzo. I like a lot of latin jazz and a lot of Jack’s music. This is one of my favorites, though I also listen to his version of “Pata Pata” a lot.
  5. “We Used to be Friends” by the Dandy Warhols, aka the theme song for Veronica Mars, currently the household favorite. I need to pick up more of their stuff.

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Books in their Natural Environment

21 May 2005

I was in Borders last night (because Kepler’s didn’t have a copy) looking for a better FileMaker book than what I had. I looked it up on their kiosk, then wandered over to the computer section. A hyper-helpful sales dude came over to show me the exact shelf. Excellent!

He mentioned that he maintained the science fiction section before wandering off to help someone else. So I trundled over there, only to find a copy of Turn the Other Chick in its natural environment: on a bookshelf. So, naturally, I had to show him, which meant waiting for him after he helped someone else. He agreed that it was really cool that they had a copy of a book with one of my stories in it. ::beams::

Speaking of books, today’s mail brought two XSLT books, Programming Ruby, and Art of Java Web Development, which I was hoping would give an overview of similarities and differences between various Java web technologies.

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Ruby on Rails: First Glance

16 May 2005

A lot of Pythonistas dislike ruby because it’s too perl-like. I can see what they’re saying. However, the ruby code I’ve read is all organized very cleanly. I don’t know if it’s possible to be as ugly in ruby as it is in perl, but I haven’t seen any evidence yet.

In concept, Ruby on Rails does kick ass. The ten-minute demo took me about an hour to run, in part because some of the rails syntax has changed since the video was shot. Since some of the people writing the wiki have killed questions related to some of those differences, which only made it harder. Add to that the fact that script/generate doesn’t have the cool documentation that its predecessors did, and, well, it took an hour instead of ten minutes.

However, it is very, very cool.

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16 May 2005

I’d gotten a bit rusty on Photoshop, so I spent an evening playing around, manipulating images and so on. I changed around my blog stylesheet (and have an even cooler one in progress), but it’ll be after BayCon before that’s all done.

I also need to make a real site Colophon.

I’ve been considering ways of migrating my existing site into one single blog, but that’ll take even longer. There’s a lot more pieces than you might think:

~/Sites deirdre$ ls -lR | wc -l

Yeah, that’ll take a day or two.

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