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merik, would you know if it'd be possible to produce an effervescent drink using helium rather than carbon dioxide? What actually determines the size of the bubbles? (Some places dispense Guinness using nitrogen rather than carbon dioxide, for the sake of the smaller bubbles, making for a smoother drink. Still doesn't compare to Wye Valley's Dorothy Goodbody's Wholesome Stout, though, brought into existence by a former chief brewer at Guinness, with the - accomplished! - intention of producing a brew much as its famous cousin did in its heyday)

I rather liked this android shot from within Necronom VI. I really must get around to exploring someday, when I've plenty of time to spare.. And then there's the disco Cylon. =:D

survey bannermarko_the_rat mentioned Klisoura's furry demographics survey, and I thought it'd be worth passing it on here. ^_^ (The results are also available; currently, of those answering, 36% are het, 24% gay, 35% bi, and 3% other. On religion, 27% Christian, 10% Hindu, 7% pagan, 1% Jewish, 2% Buddhist, 0.4% Muslim, 23% agnostic, 23% atheist, and 15% other)

Quite a cute idea: the iControlPad. Fits on top of an iPhone (iPod Touch version coming next), giving PSP style controls.

You might have noticed LL recently tweaked the viewer such that when an av can't be rendered correctly, rather than being Ruthed, you'll now appear as a cloud. ^_^ (Not something I've experienced often - maybe twice, I think - but the first time definitely caught me by surprise =:) Who is that with me - patch_bunny?

Need some bunny in your life? Try Big Buck Bunny - as noticed by ysengrin - an open source project from the Blender folks. I'll admit, I'm not hugely keen on the character designs, more Ice Age than Over the Hedge, but it's a very polished production indeed, with everything freely available, from the Blender files, to the final short, up to 1080p size. (If the server fails, the 480p version, at 240MB, can be found here, whilst the 30s trailer is on YouTube here)

I do seem to wind up with some of the coolest coworkers. The other day, he gave me a mug painting kit - blank white mug, and four suitable paints. (He'd bought two a while back for his boys, and one wasn't that interested in it, so he thought it'd suit me =:) Naturally, it's destined to have some kind of lapine design, suitably stylised to keep it feasible for the medium, and hopefully recognisable. ^_^

If you'd like to download BBC iPlayer video, the cryptically titled iPlayer Downloader (OS X only) will apparently perform just that task, leaving you with an unencumbered QuickTime file to enjoy at your leisure, online or offline.

While at the supermarket last Saturday, I picked up a few more unusual chocolate bars, to the furtherance of my gastronomic journeying:

Rococo milk cinnamonPrestat milkBovetti dark with cocoa nibs

I'm hopeless at culinary or musical criticism, but essentially: the Rococo bar I'm quite keen on, with a moderate balance offered in an appropriately cocoa-rich (37%) milk chocolate. The Prestat is good, though I'd probably choose Ghirardelli above it. The Bovetti is a fine example of dark chocolate indeed, with something that sets it above Lindt's Excellence offerings, or even Green & Black's. Interestingly, a quick Googling suggests Rococo's premises are worth visiting, when in London, though the temptation factor could be dangerous. (As for the packaging, Rococo's displays some of the 19th Century molds offered by Letang Fils at the time, and indeed, now used by Rococo in forming their bars. Prestat's, meanwhile, goes with a delightful piece of 1960s styling, even down to the copywriting, with the back noting, "Intensely smooth milk chocolate made with our finest organic couverture, as enjoyed by royalty and nobility, stars of the screen and stage, and, even, by cardinals, bishops, abbots and nuns for over 100 years" =:) Oh, the aroma that Rococo bar affords when you open up its wrapper..

I spotted the word "rice" in my list of active BOINC projects the other night, and had to find out what it was doing there. Lo, it's one of the World Community Grid projects: Nutritious Rice for the World. (BOINC grew out of SETI@Home, providing a more general-purpose platform that other highly computationally intensive projects can use. If you're turning off your computer at night, consider letting it chew on one or more BOINC projects in that time instead)

Dinner: a random creation, formed from the idea of wanting something with rice, as I haven't had any (though there is some, white and brown, in the kitchen) for a couple months now. So, of course, as soon as I opened the door to look at the grains in stock, I remembered the bulgur wheat and lentils, which seemed much more inviting. So, I mixed some together, leaning towards the wheat, and added a bit of some left over sauce from the other day, oxtail-based. For the mainstay of the dish, I went with some sliced steak, baby corn, red pepper, and snow peas (red, yellow, and green =:) in a sort of ersatz Thai sauce - a New England vegetable chowder soup mix, plus tamarind paste, garlic, basil, and two bird's eye peppers chopped up, with it all left to simmer away for a few minutes, leaving the meat succulent and the vegetables mildly crisp and crunchy.
I think I'd actually prefer the results were kept covered until some "release" date, to avoid any possible contamination by people wanting to skew results. Then again, that's something to be reckoned with regardless. (In politics especially - imagine people voted purely as they wanted to, without access to a stream of data telling them who the "electable" candidate was)

I just went with atheistic, as that probably serves me best. I'm happy to acknowledge there could be forms of life vastly more complex than we can fathom, but at that level, I'm fine with letting that remain outside the scope of my world - an ant can't pray to a human, and I don't see any signs a human can contact anything above us, short of a 2001-style transformation.

(Mind you, even if something we could recognise as a deity did appear, I'd first want to be quite certain they had no truck with this whole "worship me" fixation that seems to plague so many of them. A wretched attribute in humans, and no more admirable in any other being)

I suppose the bulk of furrydom came in around the same time as LJ, overall - look at LJ's age distribution, and that's a spookily accurate Gaussian curve, with the peak at 20. The net's made for such a huge improvement in people of all interests being able to connect, however obscure (and sometimes socially awkward) the hobby or lifestyle - part of what I love about the networked world, even if we still can't quite be physically with other people with that same convenience.

It's quite nummy stuff. ^_^ I can easily see myself trying more of Rococo's offerings in particular, as well as seeing what single estate chocolates can be like, gaining some idea of the differences between regions. Producers that seek to help the region are worth supporting, too, like Malagasy, who actually produce the final bars in Madagascar, rather than just buying the beans to whisk out of the country of origin, leaving the producers not much better off than before. Damn good chocolate, too. =:D

Yeah, I agree, it might've been better to not see too much of the data released yet. Ah well - given that it's just a convenience sample, anyway, it's probably no difference.

Mmm, be sure to post about it if/when you try more chocolate, be it from Rococo or other manufacturers. ^^ I'd love to hear about it - at least I can passively enjoy it that way.