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Is anyone interested in joining an order for a few of these rather amazing Toothless plush? They're being sold by Myer in Australia - with any luck, having them delivered together will save on postage costs. The catch? They only deliver within Australia. =:P marko_the_rat, drhoz - any chance you could be persuaded into helping make this happen? (Of course, if anyone can find them for sale in the UK, even better!)

Does anyone know of a tool (application or browser plugin, say) for consolidating LJ tags? I'm at the limit of 4000, and there are, inveitably, a lot of near-duplicates, especially singular and plurals of the same word. I've found LJ tags to be quite handy in locating old entries for some specific thing, beyond even the abilities of the big search engines, so hitting the cap is a bit of a crimp in that regard.

Here's a good synopsis of the kinds of tax dodges multinationals use in Luxembourg, leading to such companies depriving the countries in which they actually trade of billions of pounds and euros in tax revenue.

I brought my mother up to the city for a weekend, a few weeks back, and introduced her to sushi. ^_^ Which went remarkably uneventfully! I'd been concerned she might not go for raw fish, but she attacked it happily. ^_^ Dinner, meanwhile, was at a place I'd picked out as being quite close to the hotel, and which had a very tempting menu, with an Argentinian chef offering some cool twists on classics. The lamb was as unutterably delicious as I've ever had, and perfectly cooked, whilst the dessert - well, with the chef's background, I could hardly decline an opportunity to try real dulce de leche for the first time. <3 We didn't, unfortunately, get to Kew Gardens as we'd hoped - time was running short to begin with, with nasty traffic making her arrival late, but we then boarded the wrong tube replacement bus, which took us (slowly - traffic was bad enough it took about eight minutes just to go down the off-ramp) directly to the end of the closed section of track, rather than all the stops as I'd expected. =:P So, having finally arrived at the hotel's stop in Chiswick (for anyone outside the UK, the pronunciation is "Chizzick", rhyming with "physic"), I thought a spot of lunch wouldn't be a bad idea - and having just said earlier on I could really go for sushi, we passed a sushi joint. No toro available that day, but the offerings were as good as I've known in the Bay. =:9 A real delight. The housemate finished his lunch off at an ice cream parlor down the road, with all manner of sinfully delicious offerings. Great stuff. It's always so good to see places really pouring passion into their cooking, and being rewarded by being packed out.

So, a few random observations on OS X Yosemite and iOS 8:

- Handoff is just downright nifty. Start typing an email on the iPad, and it's available to continue on Hazel. Browse a page on one device, and it's available to pick up on any other. Finally, handoffs are as effortlessly seamless as they should always have been!
- AirDrop is finally compatible between OS X and iOS. That's going to be quite handy.
- iOS 8b1 will regularly drop all comms, about daily, requiring a restart. Odd kind of bug, really - seems like something lower level. Still, so it goes - first beta, etc.
- the two apps that were nobbled - OmniWeb 6 and Tweebot for iPad - were both updated within a few days, leaving them frolicksome once more. ^_^ (Quite impressed in the case of OW especially, given it's just a hobby for the Omni Group these days)
- Very nice to see DuckDuckGo added to the search engine options in both versions of Safari.
- I don't know if it's new in Yosemite, but I'm very happy to finally have an option to show the current scale in Maps. (Enable the option, and you're given a ruler at the lower left, which dynamically rescales as you zoom in or out) Never understood why that's absent in many mapping apps and sites.
- the latest release of LiveJournal's code breaks current WebKit and Yosemite's Safari, with fun highlights including no comments appearing in journals with "new" themes. This seems to be JavaScript-related, or possibly something cross-domain, as Firefox 29 shows the same behavior until scripting is permitted from livejournal.net.
- Mail remains flaky in its polling of new mail, significantly worse than with Mavericks. It's easy enough to work around, by either manually kicking off a polling, or restarting the application, but it really shouldn't be necessary.
- looks like photo importing isn't implemented yet. Inserting the SD Card/USB adapter and a card doesn't do anything - no error, no option to import.
- if past iOS betas are any gauge, updates may be posted about fortnightly; so, there could be a second beta arriving on Monday.

A free font: Intel's, which they call Clear Sans.

If you need more shininess in your life, how about this amazing offering? The patterning is indeed as wondrously multi-hued and shiny as in the photos, and feels as good as it looks. ^_^ (The only hitch? It's leather - and so, not terribly practical in the current warm weather..)

YouTube obscura of the day: the recording of the U.F.O. theme, takes 3-6. Everyone in one room, and that's the theme, done. =:D

One dish I'll have to try again! I was feeling in the mood for something a bit special, and went for some scallops. =:9 Tossed those in some Drambuie and pepper rub, along with a good handful or two of samphire. The bed for it all, meanwhile, was a cheap & cheerful salad mix with some rocket (arugula), a bit of mixed antipasti (grilled artichokes, sundried tomatoes, and olives), and a slice of Brunswick ham, sliced into short ribbons. The scallops and rocket went on top, and the cooking juices too. Really pretty good. ^_^ The samphire's not essential by any means - I'd just seen it in one of the local supermarkets, and having enjoyed it at one of my favorite pubs a few months back, wanted to try it again.

A couple months back, we had a project meeting - and, through serendipitous timing, Terry Gilliam was holding a chat about the then-just-opening Zero Theorem, over at the Regents Street Apple Store. I quickly reserved a place (given the Apple Store venues are fairly small, only seating some dozens of people), and turned up about half an hour early, thereby just managing to secure a seat. ^_^; Perhaps not surprisingly, he was as energetic and enthusiastic as he always seems. You can download the session off iTunes over here, free, as video or just the audio.



Here's quite a substantial list of free satellite resources of various kinds.

It's been a while since I saw anything from Woody Allen, and Friday a few weeks ago saw that spontaneously remedied, with Midnight in Paris. (Which, of course, led me to think of one fur in particular =:) There's.. so much to said for living in a metropolitan area. The expense isn't one of those attributes, but that's such a small fraction of the wonderment afforded. FSM knows, I loved living in San Francisco, even if only for a matter of months, beyond the longer periods down in Fremont and the nether reaches of San Jose. Sydney, Singapore, Kuala Lumpur, London.. just such vibrant places! Of course, there are compensations to being in the sticks, too, such as utter gems of country pubs, and fairly modest rents. But.. the rents in such locales tend to be high for some pretty good reasons. =:)
 
 
 
 
 
 
Those plushies are quite nice. Hope you'll be able to get one!

Interesting, I didn't even know that LJ had a limit on the number of tags you can use. I'm afraid I'm unaware of any tools that would help manage them, but if you find one — be sure to post about it, I'd be interested as well.

Thanks for the Clear Sans pointer. Speaking of fonts: do you know any that support, or intend to support, the full Unicode range? I've got a fairly large number of fonts installed to cover all sorts of scripts and codepoint ranges, but I still occasionally run into uncovered ones.
I do hope one of our Oz friends can help! I /adore/ big plush, but they're seldom more than funfair grade at that size, until you get to Steiff. ^_^; And Toothless is.. just so adorable. ^_^

Will do. I admit, I haven't really looked around much yet, but hopefully there's something around. I can't, after all, be the first to run into the limit. Or can I? =:)

I suppose the problem is the sheer scale of the task involved in supporting everything. My first guess would be the commercial vendors, who might have the impetus to offer everything, for some fonts.
Will do. I admit, I haven't really looked around much yet, but hopefully there's something around. I can't, after all, be the first to run into the limit. Or can I? =:)

Heh, I doubt it!

I don't know any heavy tag users off the top of my head, but perhaps you could ask in paidmembers or permmembers; someone there might know something.

I suppose the problem is the sheer scale of the task involved in supporting everything. My first guess would be the commercial vendors, who might have the impetus to offer everything, for some fonts.

Indeed, though there've been commendable efforts on the free (if not Free) front as well, e.g. Code2000 (with its associated Code2001 and Code2002 add-on fonts). Alas, that one's not updated anymore, but I'd be surprised if e.g. the FSF hasn't looked into creating a completely Free-as-in-Free-Software font bundle. (Indeed, a quick websearch leads to these, but they're not complete — and by design, with CJK being excluded on purpose, for instance.)
Ah, not a bad idea! I'll give it a shot. I'd love to be free to add tags again, and consolidating wouldn't be a bad thing anyway, concentrating multiple tag synonyms into single representations, leaving them much more searchable.

That's the trouble, of course - to be genuinely complete in all glyphs is a fairly mammoth undertaking, and leaving out even just simplified Chinese is to leave out quite a lot of people. I wonder if the UN's considered sponsoring some full sets?
Mmm, perhaps, though I'm not aware of it.

I think the ideal place for a set of basic fonts would be the Unicode Consortium themselves. They know precisely when Unicode updates, after all, and what the changes are, and could prepare updated versions of the fonts in advance. And they already got PDFs showing all the glyphs, anyway (e.g. this; I should warn that it's a fairly large file), so presumably they have at least one font in SOME format.
Well, there's always the manual approach - pick some tags you want to consolidate, open the journals using those tags, change all the tags to what you're consolidating them to, and repeat as needed.

- Very nice to see DuckDuckGo added to the search engine options in both versions of Safari.

Speaking of search engines, I've never really tried DuckDuckGo, but any thoughts/opinions on Ixquick/Startpage? (Same people, main difference is if you want "Google" results use Startpage, and if you want combined multi-search-engine results, go with Ixquick. (It'll even tell you which engine(s) found each result!))
But that would.. well, take half the remaining life of the universe to accomplish. =:D

I've not really used either engine much, though I've come across them before - indeed, the roomie uses Ixquick as his default, just as I use DDG. I'll give them another try - one thing I'd love to find in any engine now is the ability to be literal, rather than having it automatically substitute synonyms. Even aside from Google's terrible addition to data harvesting, and an abhorrent outlook to personal identity (wherein they get to dictate what you're called, rather than leaving that to being up to the individual), I grew really quite tired of their insistence on doing that.

Is it just me, or have search engines really stagnated in the past five years or so? It feels like things have just halted. We still don't, for example, have any simple means of specifying geographical locality, so as to be able to specify a town in a given country/state, rather than the many others which may share its name. Price comparison websites are everywhere in results, and trying to find reviews inevitably turns up many template sites and ones with the possibility of leaving a review, but none present yet.

I know it's a horrible thing to scale, but I still feel the original Yahoo was on to something, with curated indices of categories. (Well, maybe not curated as such, but at least, manually submitted and accepted)
I think for most search engines doesn't putting things in quotes tell it you want exact match?

As far as indexed categories, there's these at least:
http://dir.yahoo.com/
http://www.dmoz.org/
http://vlib.org/

Edited at 2014-06-17 10:25 pm (UTC)
For you? Of course. I should be able to get one in Myer?
Oh, finestkind! I'd be delighted. ^_^ (Even if I imagine postage will be swingeing.. don't suppose you're headed hereabouts sometime this year? =:)

Thank you so much. ^_^

(If you're up for any others, too, I know @ryannetta on Twitter would be really thrilled - he was the one who pointed them out to me, only to realise Myer don't offer any international delivery. He's in Florida, though, so it'd have to be a separate delivery)
Thanks for the Barry Gray link. Spotify has Stand By For Adverts, a collection of his jingles...
Ah! Maybe I'll get set up with Spotify specifically for that - seems like a collection like that might have considerable promise. Do you have a copy yourself, or are you familiar with it via Spotify?
Just from Spotify. It's an interesting listen, but unlike the theme tunes, it's not great. A couple would make useful samples.