nanila: fulla starz (lolcat: science)
( Mar. 18th, 2014 09:59 pm)
I felt the urge to rewrite my introduction so I thought I’d use it as a starting point for a Subscription Meme, as I haven’t seen one going around for a while.

I’ve made a template, which I’ve filled out very wordily below. Please feel free to adapt it to your wishes, and please link this post wherever you like. (Please participate or share? I'm going to feel very sad if this entry sits here alone with 0 comments...)

Subscription Meme template:
<b>People in this journal</b>
<b>About my job</b>
<b>Some random facts</b>
<b>Things I like to do</b>
<b>Social media usage</b>
<b>>Subscriptions, access and commenting</b>
<b>What I’d like to get from my participation here</b>

My responses! )
Last night I couldn't sleep because of this nasty throat infection, so I went downstairs to complain to the bloke about it.

He had hooked a Raspberry Pi up to the television and was staring moodily at several open terminal windows.

"Sorry honey," he said. "Want to help me debug my Python code? It'll take your mind off it."
"....Okay," I said.

An hour and a half and some successfully sorted code later, we retired jubilantly to bed.

Where we spent an additional half-hour catching Pokémon and comparing Pokédexes.*

We totally win at romance. But the question is, which of these things is MOST romantic?

Poll #17584 Most romantic
Open to: Registered Users, detailed results viewable to: All, participants: 40

It is most romantic to XXX in bed, where XXX ==

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debug Python code
24 (60.0%)

compare Pokédexes
16 (40.0%)

* Both of us have Pokéstops at our workplaces. Mine is the bust of Huxley (Thomas Henry, not Aldous) in the lobby of my building, and his is a plaque out on the quad. London and Birmingham campuses seem to produce favourable conditions for orthogonal sets of Pokémon, so we had much Pokédex envy to express.
Today's Unscientific Poll is rather UK-centric, I'm afraid. OTOH, it makes it an easy choice for non-UK based participants!

Also includes ticky box for those who have no idea what I'm on about.

Poll #17572 Phone gaming pleasure
Open to: Registered Users, detailed results viewable to: All, participants: 45

Which is the most exciting development of the past 24 hours?

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Neko Atsume has an update (3 new cats! Lots of toys! New backgrounds!)
19 (42.2%)

UK release of Pokémon Go
9 (20.0%)

I don't know what you're on about but I'm glad you're having fun
18 (40.0%)

nanila: wrong side of the mirror (me: wrong side of the mirror)
( Jul. 14th, 2016 02:00 pm)
Corridor on my floor, reflecting the national mood

The 15-year anniversary of my LJ passed quietly by on Saturday, 11 July. I rarely post on Saturdays, being fully occupied with family at the weekends. Still, I see no reason why the celebrations can't continue, given that I started a month in advance. I'll finish off my projects, and after all, I still have to make a drunken post from the bath about SCIENCE. Don't want to miss out on that opportunity.

The photo above is the corridor outside my office at work, which is having its overhead lighting refurbished. It's also doing an excellent job of convincing us we're all trapped in a post-apocalyptic dystopian nightmare. Given the state of the nation, and particularly the omnishambles of the last few weeks in UK politics, I'm not certain the corridor has got it wrong.

[From L to R: Me, Peter, Sam, Agata, Geraint in our formal attire at the Comet Revealed stand before the Royal Society soiree last Wednesday night]

Last week, my London days were largely spent at the Royal Society Summer Science exhibition doing public outreach about the Rosetta mission's discoveries at Comet 67P. I did five four-hour shifts in 2.5 days, which is about the limit a person should do when talking pretty much non-stop. I completely lost my voice after my last shift.

It was great fun, though! I was one of the stand organisers (coordinated the rota & polo shirt printing). The glorious backdrop in the photo above is an image from the OSIRIS camera on board Rosetta. The little stand next to me contains a number of 3D-printed famously rubber-duck-shaped Comet 67P nuclei as well as some of our smell-o-vision postcards. More on those below the cut.

More photos from the stand; pls note that most of these were not taken by me )
If you're not up on UK politics, there has been a kerfuffle recently because one of the candidates for Conservative Party Leader (and thus Prime Minister) has declared heavily implied that having children confers upon a parent an additional level of empathy, long-sightedness and investment in the future. Hence the other candidate, who is childless, is not as well suited to wield power and lead the party (and thus the country). Both of the candidates are women.

Has the lack of correlation between parenthood and sagacity really been so insufficiently demonstrated by men in power who have children?

ETA: In the time it took me to write this post, Candidate #1 has withdrawn from the leadership race.
Poll #17561 Mosquitoes v Midges
Open to: Registered Users, detailed results viewable to: All, participants: 41

I struggle hardest to muster a kindly response to

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28 (68.3%)

13 (31.7%)

This post brought to you by warm, humid, stifling summertime conditions in the Northern Hemisphere.
Sorry to hit you with depressing posts about racism twice in a row, but I need to get this off my chest. I will do an Unscientific Poll later, I promise.

CN: Details of a threatening incident which occurred last Friday. )

I'm disabling comments on this entry because I can't deal with anyone else's feelings about this right now. I will, especially, have no patience with anyone telling me that everything's going to be fine in the next few months. It's absolutely not fine. None of this is fine. It's going to be awful. The agonisingly slow economic recovery we were experiencing before 23 June, which gave a glimmer of hope that austerity might be eased in the coming months, is completely gone. Austerity is at the root of much of the discontent that drove the referendum vote, and it is going to stay with us, and it will get worse. And so will the racism and the xenophobia.

My message to Virgin Trains Customer Relations:
I was on the [HH:MM] on Thursday, 7 July 2016, from London Euston to Birmingham New Street. I had booked Seat [XX] in Quiet Coach [Y]. Just above my seat on the Quiet Coach sign, someone had written "BNP". Someone else had tried unsuccessfully to scratch it out, but the graffiti, as shown in the attached photo, was still clearly visible.

As a mixed-race British citizen, I found this unsettling. I did not particularly enjoy sitting underneath a blatant piece of unimaginative racist propaganda for the entirety of my journey. Would it be possible for the sign in the coach of that train to be replaced? I presume there is a way of identifying which train was running that route at that time?
Thank you,
Poll #17548 Raw onions
Open to: Registered Users, detailed results viewable to: All, participants: 61

When presented with raw onions in a dish, I

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think, "Yum!" and eat them with pleasure.
20 (32.8%)

am indifferent.
18 (29.5%)

think, "Oh no!" and pick them out.
23 (37.7%)

This poll brought to you by the aggravating experience of being ambushed by a small pocket of raw onion hidden in a burger I was otherwise enjoying, right at the very end. Further opinions on raw onion. )
The Engineer Dress
I got this dress as a reward for backing the Kickstarter campaign Svaha STEAM Angels: Smart Dresses for Smart Women. It's terribly comfortable, and it has pocketses!

I was very pleased that it arrived in time to come with me on my trip to the Netherlands on Tuesday, and make its debut appearance at a European Space Agency meeting.