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@  Telly : (21 October 2019 - 05:17 PM)

nevermind

@  Shrug : (21 October 2019 - 04:59 PM)

I've barely used them over the years, so I'm sure they won't miss me, but I'm done too. Thankfully Pulse put up the Seacons today.

@  Telly : (21 October 2019 - 04:58 PM)

i didnt complete it, which is why this is confusing and pi$$ing me off. theres no record of it in my order history. i emailed them about it, so we will see what happens. either way, i think im done using them after this

@  Shrug : (21 October 2019 - 04:55 PM)

Either we're both unlucky or they're trying to force payment now for these takaratomy mall exclusives.

@  Shrug : (21 October 2019 - 04:55 PM)

I asked them to kindly undo that and I got a sternly worded email about how I should use their website right.

@  Shrug : (21 October 2019 - 04:55 PM)

Yeah, if you completed the order, they charged you the money now. Mine said stack before I finished checking out. I only noticed I was charged because of Paypal.

@  Telly : (21 October 2019 - 04:53 PM)

i wasnt even wanting to pay now. i was going to add them to my stack but i didnt get the chance after i was done setting up paypal

@  Shrug : (21 October 2019 - 04:53 PM)

If you haven't officially placed the order, I don't think so? Although, I had to request a cancellation with them last week because their system changed details about my order after I placed it, so I don't exactly trust them.

@  Telly : (21 October 2019 - 04:51 PM)

so im not actually being charged then?

@  Shrug : (21 October 2019 - 04:48 PM)

So, if you were one click away from purchasing, then they probably did the pre-authorization already. The next click will charge you the money now.

@  Shrug : (21 October 2019 - 04:47 PM)

TFsource charges upfront for regular pre-orders.

@  Telly : (21 October 2019 - 04:45 PM)

i was considering buying the upcoming seacons from tfsource. i had them in my cart and was on the checkout page. i set up a credit card through paypal, and before i even hit the "place order" button, i got a text saying that a charge or hold was placed on my card! is this normal? is it just checking to see if i have the money? why did it do it before i even placed the order??

@  Maximus Ambus : (21 October 2019 - 01:23 PM)

It's a torture device.

@  Benbot : (21 October 2019 - 09:42 AM)

what's this about Hot Rod?

@  SHIELD Agent 47 : (20 October 2019 - 10:36 PM)

Ex-Bundeswehr personnel, eh? Fascinating.

@  Pinkcolliebot : (20 October 2019 - 09:43 PM)

TF Roll Out Hot Rod's Presentation is coming real soon!!

@  Nevermore : (19 October 2019 - 01:05 PM)

So whenever he addresses his troops, he keeps cracking jokes. Sometimes these jokes are about the blunders he himself had made in his speech the previous day.

@  Nevermore : (19 October 2019 - 01:01 PM)

At the moment, I'm blessed with a pretty nice superior. He's got a military background, but he takes an oddly entertaining approach to it. Imagine a stand-up comedian who accidentally enlisted as a drill sergeant.

@  Nevermore : (19 October 2019 - 12:54 PM)

Another type of everyday absurdity: Imagine you're leaving your workplace for your lunchbreak. Upon your return, you discover that your workplace has been cordened and/or gated off during your break, with "construction site" warning signs everywhere. You go to your superior and tell him: "I can no longer access my workplace! Why is there suddenly a construction site?" Your superior takes a surpised look and says: "I don't know, first time I see this." You figure: "Must be a Tuesday, then."

@  Nevermore : (19 October 2019 - 12:51 PM)

It's kind of surreal, really.

@  Nevermore : (19 October 2019 - 12:50 PM)

They agree that things are less than ideal, but they acknowledge that their scope of making decisions is limited. Oddly, I keep getting that regardless of how high up the chain of command I bother people.

@  Nevermore : (19 October 2019 - 12:49 PM)

"I hear you, but you know how it is, there's nothing I can do about it." That's it, basically.

@  TheMightyMol... : (19 October 2019 - 06:40 AM)

What's it like to have management that's willing to listen to things they don't want to hear? I've never seen that.

@  Nevermore : (19 October 2019 - 04:41 AM)

I manage to argue within the company's own internal logic and point out the flaws, shortcomings and discrepancies between "official company policy" and "everyday company reality".

@  Nevermore : (19 October 2019 - 04:40 AM)

Many of my coworkers are scared to even talk to managers. I often discuss company matters with them I disagree with, and it isn't a rare occurrence that they say "yeah, you're right..."

@  Nevermore : (19 October 2019 - 04:38 AM)

I know how to watch my tone, and I prefer to keep things straightforward and factual, never to attack the person, always the problem itself.

@  Nevermore : (19 October 2019 - 04:37 AM)

The good thing for me is ever since a minor hiccup many years ago when I was still non-permanent, I've always managed to along just fine with my various superiors (I've been through over a dozen already). And that's despite my outspokenness, my blunt honesty and my oftentimes harsh criticism.

@  Sabrblade : (18 October 2019 - 11:04 PM)

With visuals presented by the Cybernet Space Cube

@  Dekafox : (18 October 2019 - 04:51 PM)

And don't forget to sign up for a cybersecurity seminar while you're there

@  Dekafox : (18 October 2019 - 04:47 PM)

Well you can always strap on some cyberlimbs and go into cyberspace for a cyberpunk experience

@  NotVeryKnightly : (18 October 2019 - 04:28 PM)

You know that "cyber" doesn't mean "cyborg", right?

@  Maximus Ambus : (18 October 2019 - 04:16 PM)

So where's the Cyborgs on CYBERtron?

@  The Doctor Who : (18 October 2019 - 03:47 PM)

Click here and we can send you notifications about your desire to discontinue notifications!

@  Benbot : (18 October 2019 - 10:40 AM)

Why does every damn website want to send me notifications? NO, no one wants your popups! Quit asking!

@  Echowarrior : (18 October 2019 - 09:19 AM)

Amazon in the US has pretty good benefits, though, and even the temp workers had forty hours a week to start with. Even with minimum wage, that's pretty good pay.

@  Nevermore : (18 October 2019 - 01:20 AM)

Oh, the turnover rates are high here as well.

@  TM2-Megatron : (17 October 2019 - 09:45 PM)

Amazon.com and .ca, on the other hand, can be pretty terrible. I know from your squawkbox posts that you guys have your issues with Amazon over there, although you're lucky to have stronger government regulations and a union there. I gather the warehouse workers in the USA and Canada have it pretty crappy, with very high turnover, close to minimum wage pay, and no unions

@  TM2-Megatron : (17 October 2019 - 09:38 PM)

Amazon.de doesn't really have the same issue. I've ordered from them (and UK, FR, IT and JP) several times, and their packaging is much better

@  Nevermore : (17 October 2019 - 05:22 PM)

I'm not sure how it works on the customer's end. As packers, we sometimes have items that are flagged as "overwrap", which means we absolutely have to put them into a box even if they're already in pretty sturdy manufacturer packaging.

@  TM2-Megatron : (17 October 2019 - 03:05 PM)

Yeah, I really do wish amazon had an option to upgrade packaging for an extra buck or something. I hate their bubble mailers

@  Benbot : (17 October 2019 - 07:17 AM)

That's how it works. I just hope my order from Amazon doesn't arrive crushed because they idiotically stuffed it in an envelope.

@  Telly : (16 October 2019 - 10:48 PM)

my walmart is acting true to form. as soon as mirage arrives from amazon, my walmart gets his entire wave in after months of having wave 1 clogging the pegs....

@  Nevermore : (16 October 2019 - 05:18 PM)

I stirred up some trouble at work, complained about the blatant neglect of employee safety. Was asked to take photos and write down the locations so the matter could be properly escalated. Made me feel a little better.

@  wonko the sane? : (15 October 2019 - 02:55 PM)

I got stabbed in the eyelid by a mudwasp, pulled down a tree, and then got ice cream. You know, all told: not a bad day.

@  Maximus Ambus : (15 October 2019 - 09:17 AM)

Burrunjor

@  Paladin : (15 October 2019 - 08:04 AM)

your mom.

@  Benbot : (15 October 2019 - 08:02 AM)

What's your favorite Paleolithic megafauna?

@  TM2-Megatron : (14 October 2019 - 10:06 PM)

Together with the Rhino G1 sets, probably the most expensive DVDs I ever bought

@  TM2-Megatron : (14 October 2019 - 10:01 PM)

I've still got the age-old Rhino sets

@  Telly : (14 October 2019 - 09:09 PM)

i didnt find that at any of the ones around here, so i had to settle for seasons 1 and 2 of duckman for $3


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* * * * * 4 votes

Another Squirrely Sidequest

Ask Thread AMA Copper Bezel

6661 replies to this topic

#6641 Copper Bezel

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Posted 31 August 2019 - 01:58 PM

So I saw Altered Carbon on Netflix. I'm going to try to avoid any serious spoilers....

 

The story and characters don't move too much beyond gritty action movie types played reasonably well, but the sci-fi is all pretty decent. Like, there are a few rules of the universe you just accept going in - like no matter what the time scale, we're going to ignore the idea of technological progress and assume the society presented has always been pretty much as it is, and some of the core bits of tech just work the way they say they do so just go with it etc. It's also refreshingly not a didactic dystopia with a lot of one-sided philosophical arguments or one of those dumb dystopia movies that expect to topple the evil empire / exploitative global scheme / secret oligarchic cabal / homicidal super-AI by the end of the runtime. Altered Carbon is a little too big in scope by the end to call a personal story, but it sets up a murder mystery (or rather two) as the hook and that's exactly what it delivers on by the end. 

 

The last post-cyberpunk series I'd seen was Dollhouse (good sci-fi and characters, effing terrible plot) and I still have a bad taste in my mouth a decade after Battlestar Galactica's nonsensical handling of AI, synthetic bodies, and backup minds. Compared to either, AC has a lot more trappings of Blade Runner, Johnny Mnemonic, and, thanks to a couple of katana fights, possibly Shadowrun. It's dripping with noir, centered on a character who could be described as a private detective with a second lease on life and his interactions with his wealthy patron and the police force, with an awful lot of gangs and often-murdered sex workers in between. 

 

But mostly I'm just surprised by what entirely decent sci-fi it is. All of its central devices are simplified and follow precise video game rules, but are analogous to roughly realish things that could exist. Equally importantly, no one ever invents something offhand in an afternoon that breaks all the rules. The social implications of those technologies are explored from a variety of perspectives through characters for whom they mean different things. When characters have philosophical opinions, they're largely derived from the backgrounds and contexts those characters come from, not ours in the present, and technologies aren't all good or all evil but have complicated social impacts that don't hinge on any one person's good or bad intentions for them. It's very ... just mature in its approach to technology and science speculation in a way that I don't see in sci-fi on TV ever.  (There is some contrived BS with how VR is handled in a technical sense, which results in it not quite adding up that it's used the way we see it used knowing what we know about it and seeming a little Power of Heart, but even then, I have to give them some credit - the part that's broken is at least consistent every time it comes up and not a big reveal.)

 

I really enjoyed this series. It's suspenseful, the characters are engaging enough, and it doesn't blow up in a contrived mess of make-something-up at the end. The action is good, the tech is handled well, the various layers of who's playing who for what reason and with what leverage from where all feel mostly coherent and in-character most of the time, and somehow manage not to feel insultingly telegraphed or hard to follow. I had a lot of fun. 

 

I did have some nags about how some incidental things were shot or presented that felt less smart than the rest of the show. There's a bloodsport fight scene at one stage that's shot to make it look both dopey and brutal so long as we're supposed to be aghast that the characters are being forced to fight, which is ... a little hard to take seriously in a series that's up to 15% or more brutal fight scenes played for power fantasy. There's also some needless sexualization of one of the female leads early on that feels like HBO nipple quotas in action. That would be meaninglessly annoying anywhere else, but in this series, sexy and very often female bodies, and sometimes the people inside them, are a literal actual commodity that people pay lots of exploitative moneys for in this society, so 1) I'm pretty sure that any and all hypothetical quotas were duly met within twenty minutes in any given episode, and 2) slickly presented and soullessly objectifying sexualization has, like, these very specific meanings in this show, precisely in connection with the highest and lowest tiers of society, tied to sex as currency as well as bodies for hire or designer-made, so having our middle-class, all-natural heroine shot in exactly the same way in a private moment was just ... yeah, lacking in self-awareness. 

 

One spoiler comment for anyone who has on the off chance already seen it, which is a small thing about the ending that itches me about the presentation rather than the characters or plot, but I can't comment on without ruining everything.

Spoiler


Edited by Copper Bezel, 31 August 2019 - 02:32 PM.

Shouldn't gravity be doing something?
 
Of course there's a figure of Rodimus as some kind of animal girl. Why would I be surprised by this?

 


#6642 Sharkshadow

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Posted 04 September 2019 - 06:23 PM

https://www.pbs.org/..._VQiHo01C3B_djU



#6643 Fnu Aw

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Posted 04 September 2019 - 08:41 PM

I could have told them that. They really do just assume animals are barely conscious flesh robots until shown otherwise, don't they?

 

 

It’s still not clear how squirrels learn to tune in to avian chitchat.

 

Why don't you just ask one? There is no need to overcomplicate this. If you really want to understand how their network works, just join their network.


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#6644 Patch

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Posted 05 September 2019 - 05:19 AM

Some of us never took any levels in Beastmaster, alright?



#6645 Logicron

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Posted 05 September 2019 - 05:42 AM

Fnu isn't just a beastmaster, he's an outright beastman.


Great, and here I was hoping to have just one month where I don't have to face down the embodiment of entropy and terror. 

 


#6646 TheMightyMollusk

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Posted 05 September 2019 - 10:29 AM

Worse, he's a Florida Man.

#6647 Copper Bezel

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Posted 05 September 2019 - 10:46 AM

After I'd read the article, I eventually found the little pop-out dialog at the very top asking me if my location was right that removed the dark screen. Lovely site design there. X ]

 

It isn't too surprising that squirrels would have responses in relation to environmental noise but it is really cool. Like, just because something would be obvious to a human doesn't always mean it's obvious to other animals and it's unwise to anthropomorphize, but it's also easy to short-sell the intelligence of non-human animals and overlook signals they'd definitely be able to distinguish and that they'd have obvious advantage in paying attention to.


Shouldn't gravity be doing something?
 
Of course there's a figure of Rodimus as some kind of animal girl. Why would I be surprised by this?

 


#6648 Fnu Aw

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Posted 05 September 2019 - 01:51 PM

I don't think the 'don't anthropomorphize' advice is as good as it sounds. It sounds more scientific, but it's not until we can define what 'anthropomorphic' means and what's the cutoff. It can't just be taken for granted that some capability of ours belongs to some special exclusive domain until there's some actual reason to think it does.


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#6649 Copper Bezel

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Posted 05 September 2019 - 02:33 PM

Fnu, of course you don't think that "be sensible" is good advice. Do you not think I'm cringing whenever you show up to discuss your animal observations? If I wasn't avoiding responding to you more directly the first time, I would have just done so. = / Maybe in this case you're getting lost in your own reasoning and there's some genuine misunderstanding there that isn't just spraying chaff, but on the whole I expect you to interpret any information you encounter as evidence for whatever you think is the most interesting story. In Pony, in politics, in life.

 

I still don't really want to explain what you just said, though. I don't mind explaining the concepts, but that's different to engaging with a defense grid of deepities and special pleading excuses around the perimeter of someone's dearly held preconceptions, and I know well enough that's what I'd be getting myself into. Not a lot of fun for either of us.


Edited by Copper Bezel, 05 September 2019 - 02:34 PM.

Shouldn't gravity be doing something?
 
Of course there's a figure of Rodimus as some kind of animal girl. Why would I be surprised by this?

 


#6650 TheMightyMollusk

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Posted 05 September 2019 - 02:34 PM

I think a lot of people see "doesn't process information as a human would" and stop at "doesn't process information."

#6651 Copper Bezel

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Posted 05 September 2019 - 02:48 PM

That's probably likely. But we're all also pretty prone to assign meanings to things animals do based on what they would mean to us. I mean that's just a natural consequence of the way human brains are wired to interpret other human brains first and foremost, and tend to see them in damn near everything. So for another intelligent mammal with an inner world that's going to be in many respects just as complex as ours, but isn't ours? I'm honestly not sure which instinct is more wrong.


Shouldn't gravity be doing something?
 
Of course there's a figure of Rodimus as some kind of animal girl. Why would I be surprised by this?

 


#6652 TheMightyMollusk

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Posted 05 September 2019 - 04:32 PM

I'm reminded of a conversation in Mass Effect 2, where Legion can call Shepard out. "No two species are identical. All must be judged by their own merits. Treating every species like one's own is racist. Even benign anthropomorphism."

 

For reference, Legion is a geth platform. The geth are an AI hive mind; each individual runtime is about as smart as a graphing calculator, they gain intelligence and sapience by networking together. The average geth trooper enemy has around 250 runtimes, while Legion contains 1,183.



#6653 Fnu Aw

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Posted 05 September 2019 - 06:37 PM

I think a lot of people see "doesn't process information as a human would" and stop at "doesn't process information."

 
I have encountered this. People like that are real.
 

That's probably likely. But we're all also pretty prone to assign meanings to things animals do based on what they would mean to us. I mean that's just a natural consequence of the way human brains are wired to interpret other human brains first and foremost, and tend to see them in damn near everything.

 

And we should not do that and I don't aim to do that, but that's sort of a different thing, isn't it? "Don't anthropomorphize" can and should mean "Don't assign human meanings to things animals do". I'm wary about it being used to mean "Don't assign human capabilities to animals" which takes for granted that something strictly is a human capability, when it might not be and needs to actually be shown that it is.

It's not a moot issue. I have argued with somebody who said with no qualifiers whatsoever "Dogs don't think." Frigging dogs of all things. People do go that far with what they'll assume is a strictly human thing. Thinking at all.
 

So for another intelligent mammal with an inner world that's going to be in many respects just as complex as ours, but isn't ours? I'm honestly not sure which instinct is more wrong.

 

It's a good question, because this really is a sliding scale with two wrong ends. I think enough animals have enough overlap with us that the "All animals are as dumb as coral" end of the spectrum is more egregiously wrong.

 

edit: Actually this sliding scale is more of a triangle. The third corner would be occupied by the "All animals are basically dogs" people that end up getting kicked by horses because they fail to read a very un-doglike cue.


Edited by Fnu Aw, 05 September 2019 - 06:41 PM.

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#6654 Copper Bezel

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Posted 05 September 2019 - 08:19 PM

It's already making a triangle with the line from dirt to humans, because the actual animal is somewhere else out in 3D space not on that line.

You're phrasing it in a way that implies that you're being cautious, but you're literally saying "assume everything is like people until demonstrated otherwise", which is not cautious.
Shouldn't gravity be doing something?
 
Of course there's a figure of Rodimus as some kind of animal girl. Why would I be surprised by this?

 


#6655 Fnu Aw

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Posted 06 September 2019 - 12:31 AM

I'd put it more that I default to assuming things our brains do are just things brains do until I see a reason to think they're special. Obviously we have one hell of an expansion pack but it's mostly building on a basic set of tools. Pattern recognition and association skills go a very long way, and even fish can manage that.

 

And, life is kinda formulaic. Eat, hug, try not to get eaten. There's definitely some overlap in life experiences across species. I expect that to produce some overlap in psychologies. Like, there's only so many ways to solve the same problems.


Edited by Fnu Aw, 06 September 2019 - 12:39 AM.

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#6656 Copper Bezel

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Posted 06 September 2019 - 11:46 AM

Well, as far as that goes, I think we tend to assume way too much about human intelligence as a tabula rasa general intelligence with a generalized pattern-matching, problem solving scheme. Those are abilities we can emulate and learn, but we're just trained monkeys seeing the world from a monkey's eye view, straining the limits of our (admittedly uniquely developed) capacity for metaphor to do math with subsystems that still think they're solving problems about fruit and dominance hierarchies. I mean technically we understand nearly everything by that same crutch of anthropomorphizing at even the most fundamental level, which is why we say that nature abhors a vacuum or electrons "want" to drop to a lower energy shell. So I don't see a stack of abstract capacities that you just have or don't.
 
However, Doom shared this on Discord and it's cute anyway.
 
birb1.jpg
 
birb2.jpg

Shouldn't gravity be doing something?
 
Of course there's a figure of Rodimus as some kind of animal girl. Why would I be surprised by this?

 


#6657 Fnu Aw

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Posted 06 September 2019 - 03:39 PM

I think I agree with all of those words.

 

Cute bird, and nice claws on that hand.


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#6658 Fnu Aw

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Posted 16 September 2019 - 04:13 PM

So, that most recent PONY.

 

It's a BEST FRIENDS episode and doesn't really need any context before watching it.

 

We all want to give Starlight a hug now.


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#6659 Copper Bezel

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Posted 16 September 2019 - 04:42 PM

I legit had it in my head that the series had had its finale and was over. I don't know why or how I thought this was the case.

But 9.20, "A Horse Shoe In" goes on the list of episodes to go see at some point then. I mean, I could also just wait for the season to end and then Ctrl+F the Wikipedia synopses list for "Starlight", but X]
Shouldn't gravity be doing something?
 
Of course there's a figure of Rodimus as some kind of animal girl. Why would I be surprised by this?

 


#6660 Sharkshadow

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Posted 19 September 2019 - 11:08 AM

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