September 05, 2016

Meet the Candidates!

This commentary on the US election is awesome. (And if you go up a level, there are a bunch of other picture groups about it, too.)

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September 02, 2016

Potassium Chloride

I've had a problem with my potassium level being low. This is quite common for Americans. When it gets like that, I start getting leg cramps, which I think isn't quite as common. All of a sudden one or the other of my calf muscles will clench hard, and it really hurts. (It's known as a "Charley Horse".)

I've been putting up with them most of my life, and then I read somewhere that it was caused by low potassium, and the solution was "eat bananas". And it works, too, except that I really hate bananas. I always have; I don't like how they taste. So when I have cramps I will buy bananas, eat a couple of them, and the rest rot on top of my refrigerator. And maybe the cramps go away and maybe they don't.

There has to be a better way. I wondered if there was a pill I could take, a potassium supplement, and indeed they sell such a thing. But what they contain is Potassium Gluconate, and it's only 17% potassium. The rest is essentially sugar.

Apparently the recommended daily intake of potassium is 4700 mg. One of those Gluconate pills contains 99 mg of potassium, which makes it pretty much useless, not to mention ridiculously expensive: 100 pills costs like $6.

My mind doesn't work very fast these days, and about a week ago I remembered that when I was a kid they used to sell something called "salt substitute", for people who back then tried to follow medical advice to drastically reduce their sodium intake. (Which was SCIENCE! back then but is kind of out of favor now.) Salt Substitute was potassium chloride, where table salt was sodium chloride.

I wondered whether they still sell it, so when I put in my most recent order for groceries from Safeway, I checked. And they do; Morton (the salt people) also sell this. So I bought a package.

Just now I had a TV dinner for my evening meal. This was meat loaf, and I always add butter and salt to the veggies and the potatoes. Otherwise they don't taste like anything. This time I added butter and salt substitute, and I was a bit apprehensive about how it might taste. But it was good. The interesting thing is that it does taste almost the same as salt. I shook a bit onto my palm and licked it, and it was nearly the same. If anything it seems to be a slightly stronger flavor.

I hope it makes my leg cramps go away.

Posted by: Steven Den Beste in Daily Life at 06:45 PM | Comments (9) | Add Comment
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Chooser version 71

Added 179 from Netoge and 33 from Wagamama High Spec. Total now is 7898.

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September 01, 2016

Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children

"Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children" is the title of the latest film directed by Tim Burton. And if that doesn't make you squee then you have no soul.

Burton is, by this point, legendary for his films and for his unwillingness to cleave to any kind of genre. They may be spectacular or they may simply be weird, but they won't be remotely formula.

Just from the title and the brief description, it sounds like it was sold to the studio as being attractive to fans of Larry Potter -- and it probably will be. But it won't be a Potter-me-too because Burton doesn't do me-toos.

It's supposed to hit the theaters on Sep. 30, and it's almost enough to tempt me to go see a movie in a theater for the first time since "The Matrix". I probably won't, but I'm really looking forward to how people react to it.

Unless Burton really lets us down, it's going to be an event.

UPDATE: If the trailer is anything to judge by, Burton is on his game.

Posted by: Steven Den Beste in General Entertainment at 03:47 PM | Comments (1) | Add Comment
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August 31, 2016

Netoge -- plundered

Ako is really creepy, you know that? In the third episode she actually goes yandere briefly. Her mother is, if anything, even more creepy. "My daughter is up in her bedroom. Here's the key to her door!"

Well, anyway, 191 candidates out of 10 episodes. I'm not going to bother with the first two because the President and the Flat-chested Blonde are using male avatars in the game. (I think that changes in the middle of ep 2 somewhere, but I don't feel like doing anything more.)



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August 30, 2016

Win 10 complaints

My biggest complaint so far isn't with Microsoft, it's with ASUS. I cannot disable the damned touchpad, and it's a real hassle.

As to Microsoft, the problem is automatic shutdown after idle time. In the power control setup frame I have everything set to "never shut down", but if I leave my computer alone for 15? minutes? and come back to it, it has auto-hibernated anyway. Oddly enough, it wasn't like that when I first switched to Win 10. I wonder if one of the auto-patches was responsible?

Under Win 7 we had "Gizmos" I think they were called. Microsoft decided eventually that they were a security problem and WIn 10 doesn't have that feature.

I used to have two of them on my desktop. One was a clock, and that was nice but not critical. The other was a couple of dials, one of which showed memory usage and one of which showed CPU loading. Memory usage is kind of a non-issue for me; this computer has 12G of RAM and I don't do anything very memory intensive. But the CPU loading dial was very useful because it was a convenient way to notice that a job had hung and gone 100% CPU intensive.

This computer is quad-core and each core is hyperthreaded, so to the OS it looks like 8 processors. If that dial stuck at 12%, it meant a job had run away.

I want that one back.

UPDATE: I went into the power control and set all the timeouts to 25 minutes and then restarted, and then changed them all back to "never" and restarted again. Just now I left the computer on while I took a nap, and it was still on when I woke up.

I think that's fixed.

Posted by: Steven Den Beste in Computers at 03:43 PM | Comments (4) | Add Comment
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August 29, 2016

Netoge -- the plundering

It occurred to me that Netoge was probably a prime source of fan service. I only watched an episode or two and wasn't interested in the slightest, but it should be good fodder for the top rotation.

So I downloaded the 1080p Horriblesubs version and found out it was hardsubbed, making it useless to me. Deleted that and downloaded all the AT-X raws from Ohys and started going through them.

As usual when I'm plundering a show I don't want to become interested in, I'm doing it backwards. I've done episodes 12-10 so far and I have 57 candidates, so it should be pretty good.


I had thought that Ako was going to be the primary fan service object, given her position in the story and her character design (ahem).

But it turned out to be this chick:


She's the student body president and the leader of the RPG team that is the center of this story. And the reason she leads in fan service is that her character in the game runs around topless. (And she has a lot of top to uncover!)


Those two straps flop free, except that they seem to be glued to her nipples. Aside from that, there isn't anything that prevents free movement (ahem).

All the other members of the team (except for Our Hero) are cute girls, so there's plenty of fodder. Only problem is that too many of the shots are ruined by having Our Hero in them, so I'm kind of bending the "No guys" rule a bit. (It's my site; I make the rules; and I can change them. So there.)

I'm kind of burned out right now so I'll pick it up in the morning and see how far I can get.

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August 24, 2016

A death in the family

Naruto finally came to an end, and now Bleach has, too. 686 manga chapters and out. Where will the weaboos go now?

Well, Fairy Tail is still running, so there's that. I never got into Naruto or Bleach, but I've been hooked on Fairy Tail for a long time. The current story arc looks to finally be the resolution of Zeref and Mavis. There's also going to be a quest to find the new Aquarius key.

And then we'll defeat Acnologia. All told that's probably 200 more manga chapters, I would expect.

Posted by: Steven Den Beste in General Anime at 10:49 AM | Comments (4) | Add Comment
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August 23, 2016

GATE Manga

All the parts of the GATE canon are, I assume, based on the original published books. Those are not the origin of the story, of course, but they're the complete manifestation of it.

Anyway, there's a GATE manga, and it's a bit frustrating to follow it because chapters are 30-40 pages long and they only come out once a month.

Raws first show up here. These guys have been doing translations. And they can be read much more conveniently here.

What's interesting is that the story being told in the manga isn't the same as the anime. Not so much that its telling an entirely different story, as that it's telling different parts of the story than the anime did.

There have been two plot arcs in the manga that didn't show up in the anime. The first one was a dungeon crawl, which was interesting. Part of the basic conceit of the entire canon is "modern soldiers armed with modern weapons in a S&S world" and that's how this one goes. It's set during the period when Itami plus Yao, Tuka, Rory, and Lelei are scouting for resources.

They pull into a town and when the girls get out of the truck the people in the town all react with fear. Itami forces some of them to talk to him, and it turns out that there's a plague which only affects young women. Itami isn't a woman, Tuka and Yao are too old, and Rory cannot die (and is even older anyway) so they're all safe, but Lelei gets it. The disease turns its victims into zombies, and in a rare moment of lucidity during her high fevers Lelei tells them she needs to eat a certain kind of pear to get well.

Those pears are rare but there's a place nearby that supposedly has them. They leave Tuka with Lelei to care for her, and Rory/Yao/Itami go to the place.

Which turns out to be a labyrinth and it's full of zombie women who have already succumbed to the disease, who (it turns out) can be taken out with grenades. And rather than screw with the labyrinth, Itami starts using primer cord to blow holes in walls.

Well, it doesn't go quite so easily for them, and

Part of what made that important was that Yao came to terms with the fact that Itami doesn't believe in slavery. Yao considers herself to be Itami's slave and he doesn't want it. Coming out of this arc, it looks like that's been straightened out. She still tells people that she's his slave but he doesn't treat her that way and she now understands why and doesn't push it any more.

The other arc just started a couple of chapters ago: They're visiting the main temple of Hardy at Belnargo. And we've met Hardy, the goddess of the underworld. At the end of the most recent raw chapter,

Hardy is the one who says she wants to marry Rory. She sent Giselle (Hardy's current apostle) after Rory; we met Giselle at the mountain during the fight with the dragons. Rory wants nothing to do with Hardy, and the purpose of this visit is to allow Rory to say so.

Rory has told us that the gods can take any form they want, and look like anything. So I suppose it wasn't any surprise that Hardy appeared to us as a stunningly lovely woman. But Rory also said that they lose all normal feelings and urges and, strongly implied, they cannot enjoy sex any longer. That's probably part of why Rory has been making a serious attempt to get a long-term sexual relationship with Itami: Rory is due to ascend in about 40 years (which is probably Itami's life expectancy barring violent mishap), and I think she wants to get in one last good one before that happens.

So it looks like this arc is going to be interesting -- if you're patient, that is.

I have intermittently searched for information about the books, like summaries of them, and haven't been able to find any. The last book is titled "The Gate Closes" and obviously I'm curious about how it ends. I am pretty sure I know:

That's my bet as to how it ends, but the only way to find out for sure would be to check the books and I CAN'T DO IT because I don't read Japanese. In the whole internet isn't there ANYONE who has posted spoilers about the series?

Posted by: Steven Den Beste in General Anime at 10:28 AM | Comments (9) | Add Comment
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August 22, 2016

Revenge of the Catgirls

We tend to kill a lot of catgirls around here. (I ought to change my "Engineer's Disease" category into "Dead Catgirls" maybe.)

Anyway, the catgirls have finally noticed and decided to do something about it.





Posted by: Steven Den Beste in Cheesecake at 04:02 PM | Comments (7) | Add Comment
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