...what?

Oct. 23rd, 2017 06:48 am
marcicat: (rainbow giraffes)
Last night I was doing some reading about the Animal Kingdom Pandora ride "Flights of Passage." Other than the fact that most people really liked it, there seems to be an enormous amount of confusion about what actually physically happens on the ride.

From various reviews and discussion boards:

*Only side to side movement, everything else comes from the visual experience.

*No, there's side to side and up and down, with drops of up to 10 feet that correspond to on-screen "swooping."

*No, it's 10 inches.

*You are never more than four feet off the ground.

*No, the floor platform moves out from under you and you are suspended.

ANYWAY, the only thing I can guess is that the room is somewhat dark and people are thinking about things other than 'gosh, let me analyze this for my blog' when they're on the ride.

In a charming and adorable highlight, just about everyone has something nice to say about the fact that you can feel your banshee "breathing." This is actually what convinced me that maybe I'd be okay, because I had trouble watching 'Up' when they're clambering around on the dirigible, but no problem whatsoever watching the swoopy flight in 'How to Train Your Dragon 2,' because I was confident Toothless would catch him.
marcicat: (puffin)
Learned about Safecast from NPR.

Safecast is an international, volunteer-centered organization devoted to open citizen science for the environment.

(Basically a group of people got together after the 2011 earthquake and tsunami hit Japan, and started figuring out how to crowd-source radiation data. It's grown a lot since then!)

The whole site is pretty neat, and there is a map!
marcicat: (cat with heart)
A coworker introduced me to the Chrome extension Tabby Cat, and it has changed my work life for the better.

Each time you open a new tab in chrome, it opens with a picture of a cat, instead of the ‘most visited sites’ tiles. Best part is they have adorable names, like ‘Teeny Casper’ and ‘Peach Bebop.’ (Apparently you can do things with them? I have not figured out that aspect. Usually I’m chortling at the name and then getting on with whatever work I was supposed to be doing when I opened the new tab.)

Cats, man. So fluffy. Much cute.
marcicat: (loaf cat)

Naturally, after I watched the movie again, I had to go back and read what I’d written about it before. Many of my thoughts were the same the second time! But since I saw it in 2008, I did not know a Very Important Thing about the casting: Bruce Greenwood (the president of the US in NT2) was about to play Christopher Pike in the Star Trek reboot.

(The best part is that he plays the two roles virtually identically. If ever there was an obscure crossover time travel AU just asking to be written…)

Anyway, NT2 comes across as basically two separate movies. The first half is a humorous buddy heist comedy, while the second half morphs into an action adventure family drama, complete with heavy-handed (though at times incomprehensibly off the mark) messages about legacy. I enjoyed the first half very much, and can only assume that this was filmed as a two and a half hour movie, and the twenty minutes that got cut offered some sort of explanation of the bad guy’s motives and backstory that made his whole plot line make more sense in the second half.

In conclusion, the real message of National Treasure 2: being in life and death situations together is a poor substitute for open communication as the foundation of a long-term relationship. And can we please elect Christopher Pike to be president of something?

Mirrored from The Marci Rating System.

marcicat: (puffin)

I unexpectedly ended up with an extra cabbage this week from someone else’s CSA delivery. Winning!

Except I really didn’t know what I was going to do with an extra cabbage. This has literally never been an issue in my life before.

Anyway, so I was googling coleslaw, which as far as I can tell is currently a catch-all term for ‘healthy stuff cut up really small, mixed with less healthy stuff that tastes really good.’ And I thought ‘okay, that’s manageable.’

So I chopped up the cabbage until I got bored, and then a little more so it would fit into the dish I’d allotted for this particular endeavor, and I mixed it The Most Delicious Sauce (butter, onion, garlic, salt), and I put it in the fridge and hoped for the best.

Conclusion: I ate it on toast and it was good!

Mirrored from The Marci Rating System.

marcicat: (art heart)

I was charmed and intrigued by the google doodle for Oskar Fischinger this week.

Oskar Fischinger’s 117th Birthday

Very fun to play with, plus I always enjoy learning more about the backstory behind the doodles.

“I feel incredibly proud of my family and am delighted to be the daughter of Oskar and Elfriede Fischinger. It means so much to me to see this celebration of my father’s art.”
-Angie Fischinger

Mirrored from The Marci Rating System.

marcicat: drama llama (drama llama)

I am Not Great at crisis thinking. As in: Monday night, an electrical outlet in my apartment started making noise. It was that alarming crackling static sound that immediately makes you think ‘is that catching on fire?’

And there’s me, staring at it like that’s going to do anything (a watched outlet never ignites?) and wondering if you can use water on an electrical fire. (PS: not recommended)

It only lasted a short time — maybe ten seconds — and then the noise stopped and my post-crisis brain kicked in. Circuit breaker turned off, outlet not hot to the touch, googled ‘electrical outlet made weird noise,’ left message at apartment office about the problem.

Now I am waiting for my electrician appointment, and feeling grateful that the problem outlet is not on a circuit with anything too important.

Mirrored from The Marci Rating System.

marcicat: (tree with rainbow swirls)

Yesterday I was super excited to get my new sneakers, so you might imagine my dismay when I opened up the box to see that one of them still had the security tag on it.

Let me back up. Yes, I paid for them. Yes, I ordered them from a reputable company. Yes, I have a receipt.

Okay, back to the story. So I’m concerned. My biggest concern is that this may be an ink-containing tag which will cause some shenanigans if I try to wrangle with it.

So this morning I live chat the company, and I’m all ‘so, security tag.’ And the very nice person tells me “it’s likely you might damage the item if you attempt to remove it yourself.”

Which is golden, right? Because that’s retail-speak for “We’re not liable if you ruin the shoes being an idiot,” and not retail-speak for “The tags are tamper resistant, absolutely don’t touch them.”

So, I googled a bunch of “how to remove a magnetic security tag” info, and I have now liberated my sneakers from their security shackles. Winning!

Mirrored from The Marci Rating System.

marcicat: (aquarius dreamsheep)

The google doodle today is super cute, and includes a cat, a fox, and a frog! It’s all my weaknesses in one place!

Mirrored from The Marci Rating System.

marcicat: (badger stream)

Things I have googled while trying to decide what to post today:

1. long-term weather forecast

2. my daily horoscope

3. knife sharpening

4. toe length personality traits

5. does it use electricity if you have the light switch turned on, but the light turned off

So at this point, I’m just going to leave it there before it winds up being time to leave for work and I’m still rambling around the interwebs in my pajamas.

Mirrored from The Marci Rating System.

marcicat: (kashmir mountain goat)

I just checked my FICO score. (Trivia fact google has just taught me: FICO stands for “Fair Isaac Corporation.” Would not have guessed that in a billion years.)

This is not a thing I had on my to-do list for today, or even woke up and decided to do. But I have a credit card that sends me these emails every so often that say “Your credit score has changed,” and I feel like I should go look at it, just on the off chance that it reveals some kind of information I didn’t already know.

So I got one of those emails, and first I had to dig out my log in information, and then I looked at the score for a few minutes, and dutifully read the little explanations of “things impacting your score.” And I looked at the graph showing my score history, and then I decided I’d done my adulting duty for the day and left.

I’d say it must be time to go back to bed after that achievement, but I actually just got up. Maybe I should check my blood pressure next, just to really lock in my grown-up badge for the day.

Mirrored from The Marci Rating System.

marcicat: drama llama (drama llama)

Anyway, I was going to write about how it’s basically supposed to rain for the next five days here, which is still preferred over snow/ice, but then I wondered how much it will impact the drought, and what’s the status of that drought anyway, and so I turned to google.

Turns out there’s actually a really handy map for drought in the United States!

United States Drought Monitor

“The U.S. Drought Monitor is produced through a partnership between the National Drought Mitigation Center at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, the United States Department of Agriculture, and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.”

And you can click on regions and specific states to see what’s going on, and it’s updated weekly which is super helpful.

Today’s post brought to you by: SCIENCE

Mirrored from The Marci Rating System.

marcicat: (snowy cat)

I have a somewhat unfortunate tendency to take a guess at what internet abbreviations mean and then never follow up to verify. (see: my ftw fail)

Which is to say, I thought ‘smh’ stood for ‘so much hate.’ (Note: there *does* seem to be some support for this being the case, or at least having been the case at some point.) But when I saw someone using it that I couldn’t quite imagine saying that phrase, I thought ‘one of us is surely wrong about what that means.’

And it turns out that the most widely currently accepted meaning for ‘smh’ is ‘shaking my head,’ which is whatever. The important part of the story is that my brain keeps stalling out before remembering that — I remember there’s something other than ‘so much hate’ but not what it is. And so then I’m staring at the screen thinking ‘so much heckling? so many hipsters? slap my hand?’

It’s a work in progress.

Mirrored from The Marci Rating System.

marcicat: (kashmir mountain goat)

Fun fact from our day at Epcot: I got all the way into the Mission Space building without realizing it was *that* Mission Space — the scary puking ride I’d been warned about!

But, you know, we were already there. And so I cheerfully departed for the “Green Team” experience (*Andrea, being far braver than I, opted for the Orange Team). And it was fun! I would describe the Green Team experience as “less scary than flying” but I don’t like flying, so ymmv.

It wasn’t until today, more than a week later, that I happened upon a reference to the ride (reading about how Disney parks handle medical emergencies), and saw the word “centrifuge.”

WHAT.

“On May 19, 2006, Disney began offering a less intense version of Mission: Space (called Green Team, also known as Less Intense training or no spinning), where the centrifuge does not spin, thus eliminating the forces of lateral acceleration for riders who choose the more tame experience. The cabs themselves still pitch and pivot, providing some motion. The normal ride is still available and is called Orange Team (also known as More Intense training or spinning).”

*Andrea, I am SO MUCH MORE IMPRESSED now. Also SO HAPPY I was on the Green Team. (No wonder we didn’t get the same warnings!)

Mirrored from The Marci Rating System.

marcicat: (today I eat cake)

Let me first say, am I the only one who has a terrible time figuring out where the mac equivalent of the control panel is? Every. Time. On the other hand, it means I feel very accomplished after just locating it, and anything I manage on top of that makes me feel like a technological wizard, which is kind of fun.

Also, I was perfectly happy with Snow Leopard! Snow leopards are adorable and have floofy tails; it was a joy to have my operating system share their name. But once my phone pestered me into an update, it stopped talking to iphoto. And itunes. And that was sort of a problem.

Google stepped in and suggested updating itunes. Ah ha, except I had already thought of that — itunes claimed I had the most current version, 11.whatever. Not so, the internet forums replied; the most current version is 12.something-or-other.

Which led down the rabbit hole of updating Snow Leopard to El Capitan, which took a while, and then itunes let me get *that* update, and lo, the phone-computer schism was ended.
Also, my trackpad was reversed. Why, apple, why? I’ve had this computer for a long time; don’t go turning it into a stranger!

And so I carefully made my way to the control panel system preferences, and TURNED THAT TRACKPAD THING OFF. Everything is much better now. The end.

Mirrored from The Marci Rating System.

marcicat: (anteater)

When I realized that one song really *is* saying “cake by the ocean,” (‘Cake By The Ocean,’ DNCE) I thought I should check on a couple others.

1. The Mr. Mister song ‘Kyrie,’ is not a Star Wars inspired exhortation to carry a laser, as it turns out. According to google, the actual phrase is “kyrie elision,’ which is Greek. (Not Greek for “carry a laser,” sadly. While there are a variety of spellings out there, the common translation seems to be ‘Lord, have mercy.’)

2. It seemed unlikely that there was really a song out there with the lyrics “she’s gonna have kittens / it blows me away.” And yet. (Honestly, the actual lyric of “she’s got whatever it is” don’t make much more sense to me, but there it is.) Thanks, Zac Brown Band! The name of the song should have given it away (‘Whatever It Is’) but I heard this one on the radio many times before I knew the name, so it wasn’t as helpful as it could have been.

Mirrored from The Marci Rating System.

marcicat: nano mug (nano mug)

Since I don’t want to think about work right now, how about a list of things that are awesome today that have nothing to do with work:

1. fall leaves
2. caffeinated beverages
3. candles
4. indoor plants that have lived for 17 days!
5. 92.5 The River
6. the ‘hold my flower’ meme
7. cats
8. finding recipes on the internet
9. finding everything on the internet
10. not everything has to be an even number
11. sometimes primes are the way to go

Mirrored from The Marci Rating System.

marcicat: (iriomote_cat_warning)

It turns out most of my google searches fall into pretty regular categories:

*driving directions
*how worried should I be about [x]
*online window shopping
*tv/movie information

It’s usually at work that I end up searching for really random things like “hess truck jingle,” because there the internet is our main source of entertainment. (Also, if you ever have a song stuck in your head and need to get it out, the hess truck jingle is an option of last resort. It’ll work, but the cost is high. The jingle, once heard, cannot be unheard.)

Mirrored from The Marci Rating System.

marcicat: (duckling)

1. “can you roast artichoke hearts”

(Yes. I have not tried it yet. Instead, I had mashed potatoes with roasted eggplant and green peppers, the nightshade trifecta.)

2. “solar powered Christmas lights”

(Exist. The most popular ones seem to have a battery backup, making me suspicious that perhaps the battery part works better than the solar part. Also can’t find any info about how long they need sun each day to work.)

3. “cornell lab of ornithology coloring pages”

(Coloring is one of those things I always think I like more than I seem to while I’m doing it. Free coloring pages are always a win, though.)

Mirrored from The Marci Rating System.

marcicat: (freakout squirrel)

It’s Friday eve!

Very Important Workplace Advice Time:

My workplaces uses google chrome as their default browser, which is fine. And chrome oh-so-helpfully pops up those little windows of your eight most-visited sites. Which is also fine, very handy, except when, say, someone from a different department is sitting with you as part of a cross-departmental outreach project and you really don’t know them well enough to want tumblr and pinboard to be showing up quite so blatantly when you load up the internet.

It took me a long time (TOO LONG) to figure out you can just get rid of the ones you don’t want to show up. Hover over the picture and a little [x] will show up in the top right corner with the pop-up text “Don’t show on this page.”

PROBLEM SOLVED. Wow do I look productive at work now!

Mirrored from The Marci Rating System.

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