Linkblogging for 2/11/15

I was going to post a review of 2001 (yes, the Kubrick one. Yes, I have a reason) today, but my open tabs have reached a critical mass, so I’m going to dump them on you all and do the proper post tomorrow.

The “set point” hypothesis of weight has long been put forward by fat-positive people, but no-one’s ever had a mechanism to explain it. This study suggests one. (Warning — contains description of animal experiments)

The Northern Caves is a rather good short-novel-length serialised story by “Nostalgebraist”. It has its flaws, but some of the people who liked some of the stuff I did in Head of State with character might like it. It’s definitely Gray Tradition stuff…

People who talk about how “uploading” would be easy know nothing of the human brain, apparently. I was already convinced it’d be almost intractable based on my own experience of emulators and virtualisation, and I’m not surprised it’d be even more difficult from the other end.

Why not apply to be a member of the house of Lords?

Why Wellness isn’t the answer to overwork

Tim Farron accuses Government of cutting support to refugees

Creative Commons-licensed stock photos of women of colour in tech jobs

John C. Wright is a whey-faced coxcomb

Paul Magrs’ random Doctor Who story generator

What software is made of

And finally, here’s the greatest mash-up of all time:

Linkblogging For 11/10/15

OK, so I’ve had a week off after completing California Dreaming — the paper formatting will take another week or so, but the book itself is done and all backers should have an ebook copy at the moment — and so I’m planning to get back to blogging every (or at least most) day(s). Proper writing (and podcasting) will resume tomorrow, but for now, links:

Slate Star Codex on people wrongly applying economics to psychiatry ETA I normally warn about the comments on Slate Star Codex and forgot to this time, but I am reliably informed that the comments on this article are toxic even by the normal standards there. A friend on Twitter says “That SlateStarCodex was excellent… And then the second comment was raving antisemitism, the next combined MRA logic with stereotyping autistic men as undateable with a touch of transphobia mixed in. And then I gave up. Not blaming you for linking – you’ve warned about SSC’s comments before just boggling at the intensity of the bullshit.”
So if you’ve not seen my warnings before, DO NOT READ THE COMMENTS ON SLATE STAR CODEX if you are likely to take offence at… well, basically, at anything at all…

Don’t blame mass shootings on mental illness

Johnny Echols of Love is touring the UK next year, with Baby Lemonade (the band that backed Arthur Lee on his last few tours)

Congratulations to my friend Annie Wallace (who many Beach Boys fans will know well) for becoming the first out trans actor to play a trans character in a UK soap opera.

Tim Farron challenges Labour and SNP to back immigration bill amendment

Momentum and the future of political parties

Masculinity is an anxiety disorder: breaking down the nerd box

A very nice review of my Multiversity ebook

Read the comic adaptation of Illuminatus! online

The revolting left

On empathy, autism, and criticism

Proper post tomorrow

Linkblogging For 16/05/15

Posting will be intermittent here for a couple more weeks. I’ve been a little blocked for the last month or so (yes, I know, I wrote a ten thousand word ebook in three days last week — I expected to write that in one day, and would have done had I been at full writing ability). The election result has made that ten times worse.
I’m trying a new method of getting round writer’s block, which involves restricting the amount of time every day you write, so if it works there’ll be fewer posts at first but it should lead me to writing more in the longer term.
In the meantime, links (and I’ll try at least to post links every day):
I’m not the only one who’s been writing a lot on Mindless Ones at the moment — the posts on Mad Men are worth reading even if, like me, you don’t watch the show.
Millennium on the election and where we go next (NB there have been a LOT of posts from Lib Dems and fellow travellers on this, many very good, but most don’t need to be shared any further right now. There’s a real danger at the moment of searching for scapegoats — it seems that Nick Clegg has been nominated by many, and while I never had much time for him as a leader and think he bears a great deal of responsibility, I also think that spending the next five years pouring vitriol on 12.5% of our parliamentary party may not be the best way to rebuild — so I’m trying, as much as my naturally mouthy nature will let me, to be quiet).
Tom Ewing on Tintin and anti-semitism
Feminist Aspie says “Yes, you do mean me”
And Andrew Rilstone on Star Wars, Watsonism, and Doylism

Linkblogging For 25/3/15

No new blog post today — my CPAP machine leaked last night, and I was so unwell I had to come home from work at lunchtime and spend most of the afternoon in bed — so you get links.

Brian Wilson is touring the UK with fellow Beach Boys Al Jardine and Blondie Chaplin in September, in what may well be his last ever tour (sadly in arena venues with support, rather than his normal theatre venues with no support acts). Presale tickets are here (I’m going to Manchester, Liverpool, and Leeds).

If the Lib Dems are in government after the election, British embassies will be given the power to perform same-sex marriages abroad, even if one partner is not a British subject.
Great work there from Lynne Featherstone and Tim Farron, two of my favourite Lib Dem MPs.

Andrew Rilstone pays tribute to Leonard Nimoy

Sarah Brown’s way of dealing with annoying people on Twitter is fantastic

On Bede, Pagan Kings, Rival Churches, and the Great Anglo-British Miracle-Off

How porn and lust have changed since the 70s — an interview with the (female) former editor of several porn magazines. Not safe for work, obviously. (Link was through a Facebook friend who currently works for one, and says her experience of the men who write in is similar).

Jon Hunt on why the Archies matter

“I gave my child autism”

And a prosecutor who sent an innocent man to death row apologises and calls for an end to the death penalty

Linkblogging For 19/3/15

I’ll have a proper post tomorrow (Batpost), but I’ve spent the time I would normally have spent blogging today and yesterday sorting out a new theme for this blog (the old one was long-unsupported), tidying up some (though nowhere near all) of the tags, and other routine maintenance type stuff. So links.

The trailer for Brian Wilson’s live PBS special that airs in a couple of weeks. The songs from the new album sound rather better in a live setting with Brian’s band than they do in the studio recordings, but I’m still not hugely enthusiastic about them. Hoping the stuff I *haven’t* heard from the album is better. But this special should be good.

Jack Graham on anti-Stratfordianism

Alex Wilcock lists fifty things he loves about Britain. I agree with at least forty-five or so.

Rachel Reeves, the failure of imagination, and the future of work

I can text you a pile of poo, but I can’t write my name

Clitoral piercings are probably not illegal

Sarah Brown’s speech to Lib Dem Conference calling for an end to trans conversion “therapy”

Feminist Aspie explains why functioning labels are bad

Linkblogging For 6/8/14

I don’t normally do two linkblogs this close together, but all the time I would normally spend writing has been spent today dealing with reactions to last night’s post, which can best be summed up by this graph of hits to my blog:
Screenshot from 2014-08-06 23:54:00

Yeah, so I’ve been a bit busy tonight on Facebook, Tumblr, and Twitter, so you get links…

Brad Hicks needs feminism because the patriarchy is toxic to polyamory

A great site that collects mixes of imaginary albums — either things like “the album the Beatles would have made in 1974”, or albums that were planned but never released.

Sean Carroll on quantum sleeping beauty and the multiverse

Greg Egan on why that “quantum drive” people have been talking about is bollocks

And therebeltrouser adds a personal testimony to my post from yesterday.

Linkblogging For 26/2/13, and Life Update

For those who are wondering why I’m not writing more online at the moment, a brief update:
I’m currently working on the first/second draft of the novel I can’t talk about properly yet. I finished a very scrappy forty-thousand-word *thing* of it in mid-January, which was just enough for me to get the voices of the various narrators, figure out the plot problems I’d glossed over in the synopsis, and that sort of thing, but which isn’t something I would let anyone else read.

I’m currently taking a second pass over that. The book is forty chapters long, and I’m doing a chapter a day of rewriting and editing. I’m trying simultaneously to do two things in the rewrite — the first is to expand each chapter to between one-and-a-half and double the original length, so that I hit my target of sixty- to eighty-thousand words. The second is to make sure that I actually put the plot in, as sometimes I have a tendency just to fall in love with the voice of the narrators and have them waffle on about whatever’s in their heads.

Anyway, at a chapter a day of this I should be finished with the first ‘proper’ draft by the end of March, when I’ll be sending it off to the editor and several beta readers — who I expect to savage it, because it’s frankly an insanely ambitious thing to do as a first novel, so I’m expecting a *LOT* of notes and at least one or two more drafts before I can announce what the book is here.

Normally, that much writing — five hundred to a thousand words a day — would be nothing for me, but I’m also currently trying to reset my sleep schedule, because I start a new job next week on nine-to-five hours, rather than the flexitime I’m on at the moment, and for those who don’t know I have (I think) two separate sleep disorders (sleep apnea and delayed sleep phase disorder — which I’m finally getting round to getting tested for). That means that until I have forced my body to accept that yes, there actually is a seven in the morning, I am too tired and grumpy to write anything else coherent at all.

(This is also why I’ve been even worse at replying to emails than normal recently, so apologies in particular to Plok, Matt Rossi, Chris Browning, Tilt, Alex and Richard)

With luck, I’ll be able to get back to posting here and on Mindless Ones occasionally toward the back end of this week, but don’t expect much until April.

Anyway, links:

Millennium asks if Maria Hutchings refusing to appear at the hustings for the Eastleigh by-election shows Cameron’s strategy for the TV debates in 2015

Gavin Burrows pays tribute to Kevin Ayers. I’m only really familiar with Joy Of A Toy, but that was an absolutely wonderful album.

A really good idea for people who care about trans equality and get a lot of spam from recruiters (applies more to the US than here).

Jonathan Calder on Why MPs Should Not Job-Share

And Peter Watts on a plausible-ish way that zombies could make sense biologically.