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Darkoshi

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Facebook notifications [Aug. 23rd, 2016 * 10:05 am]
Darkoshi
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Why does Facebook sometimes email me when a friend has posted a comment on a non-friend's post, but it sometimes/often doesn't email me when a friend has posted an entry on their own timeline? I don't think there is a way of turning off the one type of notifications without turning them all off; am I right? But I may as well turn them all off as they aren't reliable anyway, due to the latter.


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photos from last week's trip [Aug. 21st, 2016 * 11:26 pm]
Darkoshi
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photos from trip...Collapse )


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German words [Aug. 20th, 2016 * 02:07 pm]
Darkoshi
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Zweifel = doubt
bezweifelt = doubtful
verzweifelt = despairing, desperate, frantic

bedrückt = depressed (drucken = to press!)

schlummernd = slumbering
dösen = to doze (dösten = dozed)

Zwielicht = twilight
zwielichtig = shady (as in character)

innehalten (hielt inne) = to pause

gering = low, small, slight
geringer = less, lesser, smaller
geringerer = (komparativ. See: declensions)

schlicht = simple
schlichtweg = simply


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Internet Archive's Wayback Machine add-on [Aug. 13th, 2016 * 02:31 pm]
Darkoshi
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No More 404s! Resurrect dead web pages with new Firefox add-on

If you use NoScript or some other JavaScript blocker, you have to allow JavaScript for the archive.org website, for the above add-on to work.


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firefox add-on signing [Aug. 13th, 2016 * 12:04 pm]
Darkoshi
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Just FYI. As of Firefox 48.0, for security reasons, add-ons will no longer work unless they've been verified/signed by Mozilla. This is done automatically for ones hosted on the Mozilla site, but for ones hosted on other sites, must be done manually by the developer. This is actually not a new thing - it has been the case since Firefox 43.0. But until now, users could override it by setting the "xpinstall.signatures.required" preference to false on the about:config page. Now, that preference is no longer supported - to avoid malware from being able to change the preference without the user's knowledge.

From what I understand, a side effect of this is that any add-on which as part of its functionality, changes the contents of its own folders, won't work either.
For example, the Change Profile's Window Icons add-on allowed the user to select a custom icon for Firefox browser windows, and copied the selected icon file to a subfolder, which allowed it to override the default Firefox icon. This allowed you to use different icons for different browser profiles. Now this add-on no longer works, although it can still be installed from the Mozilla site. The problem with this add-on doesn't happen after selecting a new icon, as I expected it would... The buttons in the add-on's options window don't even work anymore (probably due to some other issue), so you can't even select any icons.

As the above add-on no longer works, I created these 2 add-ons with static replacement icons, for me to use instead:
BrowserIconsBlue
BrowserIconsPink


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omg, yum [Aug. 12th, 2016 * 07:48 pm]
Darkoshi
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Goody Good Stuff - they have vegan cola-flavored gummies! Yes!!! (The "Cola Breeze" ones). I found them in a Winn Dixie store.


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Destin, Florida [Aug. 12th, 2016 * 03:48 pm]
Darkoshi
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Well, who would have thought that I'd be cold in Florida? It's cloudy weather in the 80s, with frequent interruptions of dark clouds and rainshowers. And some people like to keep the A/C way low. I had a nice stroll slosh run along the beach yesterday.

I wasn't sure if the Gulf of Mexico would have as big waves as other shores. It does, at least in this weather.

There are frogs and other critters here, making sounds at night which I'm not used to hearing by the seashore.

Driving through Georgia, we crossed a stream called "Ichawaynochaway Creek". How cool is that name?!

I suppose I should go shopping or something. Not just sit here on the couch watching season 2 of The Katering Show. I'll probably go to the ocean later again. I suppose if I don't feel like getting all wet, and possibly cold, and possibly sucked under by the waves, I could just sit in my beach chair and watch the ocean. (oh man, it sounds so useless, so pointless)


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vegan frankfurters [Aug. 7th, 2016 * 06:31 pm]
Darkoshi
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These vegan Field Roast Frankfurters taste very good. They are very salty*, though. I think they'd work well cooked on a grill for a vegan cook-out, or sauteed, even though so far I've only had them microwaved.

The packaging is annoying. Each sausage is individually encased in a plastic film that you have to cut and peel off. So much work for a hot dog! I took the time to unpeel them all to begin with, and put them in a ziploc bag in the freezer, so that I could simply take them out whenever I wanted without all the work.

*If it weren't for that and the packaging, they'd be my new favorite. As it is, I suppose they're a tie with my other favorite, Yves hot dogs. For a while, I liked Tofurky Kielbasa the best, but over time I lost my taste for them, largely in part to them being so salty too. Which is odd, because in comparing them, the Kielbasa ones have the least percentage salt of the 3. My least favorite vegan dogs are the Lightlife ones; they seem bland to me.


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Firefox Heartbeat [Aug. 7th, 2016 * 12:47 pm]
Darkoshi
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I'm getting a banner across the top of all my Firefox pages today: "Want to try something new in Firefox?" with a "Get it now" button, a "Learn More" link, and an "x" to close the banner.

The Learn More link states:
Heartbeat is User Voice in Firefox.

Heartbeat provides real-time understanding of our existing Desktop user population, allowing us to pivot more quickly based on the needs and desires of our users. Heartbeat ties user perception to technical information so we can take your feedback and feed that into future Firefox releases.


The Goals of the project are listed as including:
Reduce user frustration by increasing our visibility into pre-release versions of Firefox so we catch and fix bugs earlier

Respect users time and effort by doing minimally intrusive questioning. Small samples, long rest periods, and simple interactions. We want to collect Just Enough data to be useful.


So I started thinking, Great! You mean they might ask my opinion on new features, and use my response to improve the product?

But then I scrolled down, and it appears that all it does is let you provide an overall rating of Firefox, from 0 to 5 stars. WTF? And once you enter a rating, you get a set of fairly useless links. WTF? How is that supposed to reduce user frustration? How is that supposed to catch and fix bugs? Where is the "questioning" mentioned in the goals?

I suppose if they are getting average ratings of 4 one day, and after releasing a new version of the browser, the rating goes down to 3, that may give them a general indication that users are displeased with something. But still, that seems rather useless. Does that mean that if I'm suddenly displeased with something new, that I should give them 0 stars that day, just to impress upon them that I'm displeased? Otherwise, unless they've passed the tipping point to where I'd actually prefer another browser over Firefox, my overall rating would still have to be high, as otherwise I'd actually be using a different browser.

I guess I'll click "Get it now" just to see if it really only includes what that page shows, or if maybe there's more to it.

..

Update: I found a page where you can leave positive or negative feedback on Firefox - this may be more useful (or may at least *feel* more satisfying) than giving a star rating:
https://input.mozilla.org/en-US/feedback

Update 2: Well, it looks like there's more to it than star ratings.
A Smarter Firefox
Firefox Guide Study 1


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Frogs, thunder and lightning [Aug. 7th, 2016 * 03:01 am]
Darkoshi
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Frog song in thunderstorm. A lightning strike 37 seconds in, repeated in slow motion at the end of video.



Video title: Frogs, thunder and lightning
Posted by: Darkoshi
URL: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=77r6Gzx332I



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sunshine [Jul. 29th, 2016 * 01:41 am]
Darkoshi
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Even in this 100+ degree weather, the dogs sometimes lay out in the sun as if it feels good.

Today Zorro did it again. At first I was going to tell her to go in the shade or come back inside with me. But then I thought, why not? and tried it myself for a few minutes. The sun was so bright, I had to shade my eyes with my arm. But it was very nice. Nice warm sun on my skin. Pretty green leaves rustling in the tree. Blue sky, white clouds.


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bless [Jul. 16th, 2016 * 08:18 pm]
Darkoshi
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I've been updating scripts for setting up a local debug/testing environment for work.

I worked late on it last night. If I don't take extra time in my off hours to get it done, I'll never finish it, even though it is something that will make the rest of my tasks easier to finish, as well as helping out co-workers.

This morning, after getting only 5 hours sleep because I woke up early, I just wanted to tweak a few things and test it out. I should be able to kick it off and let it run while I'm doing other things, then kick off a few more things, etc. It started out well. Except that Eclipse wasn't picking up the right default JRE, which for our environment isn't the same as the JDK version that we need to use for running Eclipse itself.

It was unclear how to configure Eclipse's prefs and configuration files so that it would use my dynamically inserted JDK path. That took what, 5 hours to get working? Because of fascinating details about how all that works, which I'm too tired to describe now but maybe later elsewhere.

Then I had to do more tweaking because some files need single backward slashes in the paths, and some files need double backward slashes... and good heavens it didn't like having a combination of forward and backward slashes either...

Then I had to tweak it more, because in changing all those slashes in the paths, I accidentally also changed slashes that weren't in the paths. So I had to add logic to swap those back. At this point, even though that may seem convoluted, it's the simplest way to do it.

REM ... undo the slash changes that weren't in the paths. Change the double slashes back to single slashes.
powershell -Command "(Get-Content '%EclipseDir%\org.eclipse.jdt.launching.prefs') -replace '<\\\\', '</' | Out-File -encoding ASCII '%EclipseDir%\org.eclipse.jdt.launching.prefs'

I already inserted a "Sheesh!" to the end of the comment, and was debating adding "Please Lord let it work right this time" or perhaps, "Please Lord, bless this code..."
because you know, even if I don't believe in a Lord, it would probably amuse the next person who looks at the file.

.

and also thunderstorm and yapping dog and vegan grilled cheese sandwiches - Follow Your Heart has a new Smoked Gouda cheese which combines/melts well together with the Tofutti American cheese slices.

and also being partly upset with myself for having wasted more than half my weekend on work work. and yet still wanting to continue on it.


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rhythmic soothing nighttime sound of katydids, maybe [Jul. 11th, 2016 * 01:54 am]
Darkoshi
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After comparing the sounds on my video to the sounds on the katydid video that I originally thought it sounded like, they no longer sound the same to me. And when I search on katydid sounds, the results come back with all kinds of different sounds. So now I'm not sure if the ones in my video are really katydids, or if they are something different. Can anyone confirm/deny?



https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ygKxG3MG3DU

The first 10 seconds of the video is the kind of sound that I find most relaxing/hypnotic... it's like 2 critters take turns calling, back and forth, back and forth, each with a slightly different pitch, higher, lower, higher, lower...


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nerdcamp 2K eleven - PSD (Piercing Siren of Death) [Jul. 10th, 2016 * 02:40 pm]
Darkoshi
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https://specialpassenger.bandcamp.com/track/psd-piercing-siren-of-death
from the album Cicada Summer


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cicada molting [Jul. 10th, 2016 * 12:51 pm]
Darkoshi
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When I went to bed last night after 3am, Serena was outside barking at something. I told her to hush, but she kept at it. I figured she'd stop soon. A few hours later I woke up, and she was still barking, or again barking. So I put on shoes and went outside to check.

She was chewing on something. Uh-oh. I fetched a flashlight. She was sniffing at a cicada shell on the ground. Maybe she ate a cicada? But wouldn't that be buzzy and unpalatable? She started barking at something else in the same area. On a thick blade/root of grass, were another 2 cicadas... or rather one cicada and one shell. I didn't want her to eat that one too, so I detached and carried the blade of grass to a safer place (on top of the trash bin) out of Serena's reach. The cicada was motionless the whole time.

I petted Serena to calm her down, and went back inside. Before I even got back to bed, she was barking again, in a different part of the yard. I opened the window and told her to hush. She ignored me. I turned the volume up on the sound machine, though her bark being a higher pitched noise, it didn't help much to cover it up, and went back to sleep. At least her bark is quieter than Zorro's and doesn't carry as far.

Later after getting up, I checked the top of the trash bin. The live cicada was gone; presumably it made a safe get-away.

I got to thinking - the live cicada had been much larger than the empty shell. Yet it must have just molted last night from that same shell. How does that work? I wondered why the one I moved hadn't simply flown away. Are insects in a stupor state after molting, making them easy prey?

Here is a Cicada Molting video. The part about 2 minutes in where the wings start to unfurl & extend is fascinating.

This animated gif shows the same process, though with much less detail.

Cicada Molting/Eclosing Process - this page describes each step of the process. It explains why a just-molted bug might not be as unpalatable as I had imagined.
"The Soft and Chewy Cicada Teneral Stage, Yumm!!"
The teneral stage is that stage in a Cicada's development where the Cicada has just finished carrying out it's molting process but it is still relatively soft. Like the consistancy of a newly molted soft-shelled crab. ... It's at this stage where the Cicada is most vulnerable.


A comment on the same page mentions that nymphs begin to emerge from the ground to molt, when the soil reaches a certain temperature. So maybe many nymphs emerge around the same time. I sure hope Serena didn't eat a whole bunch more. I like hearing the buzz of adult cicadas!

I still plan to post some cicada and katydid sounds that I recorded.

I often hear cicadas up in the trees in my yard, but not katydids. Katydids must prefer more wooded areas. I noticed several times while driving home from work at night, that I could hear katydids singing most of the way along the ride home, from the parking lot at work and along the main streets. But as I near my neighborhood, the katydid sounds decrease, until finally there are none at all to be heard. There are only the cricket and other night-time insect sounds. In spite of there being a good amount of trees around here.


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boom boom boom [Jul. 4th, 2016 * 11:58 pm]
Darkoshi
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Fireworks noise. At least one of my dogs has been acting like the world is coming to an end, and she doesn't know what to do. I had to put them both outside earlier because the small one's non-stop barking at the noise was starting to drive me batty, and I had to cook the vegetables. Otherwise I wouldn't have time to cook them til next weekend, and they'd go bad.

Interestingly, outside (probably in the garage), she stopped barking.

I went outside to check on them a little while ago, and to look at the fireworks which were getting louder. Going back inside, they forced their way in the door with me. Inside, the little one started barking again, in between running around. They both appear to have calmed down now.

.

I succeed at many things, but I feel like a failure too.
The table's a non-stop mess of stuff.
I recorded mediocre audio of the cicadas and katydids (that is what the night-time tree critters are) on Thursday/Friday, but didn't have time to edit/post it.
I put up curtain rods for my mom. I put up a shelf in the kitchen.
I wanted to finally switch to the new laptop. Like the last times, I only managed to finish the "backup my data" step. Now it's almost 1am and by the time I'll have time for it again, I'll have updated a bunch of files again, so I'll have to start back over at the "backup my data" step.
I cooked the dang vegetables and made a salad with most of the cucumbers.
We went to the Santee again on Saturday. Road trips almost always leave me with headaches, and this was no exception.

I took a shower. I made lunches. I vacuumed. I washed some clothes. I swapped some light-bulbs. Oh. The boxes. I need to decide what to do with all the old incandescent bulbs. It's not like I'm going to start using them. So I might as well give them away. But should I keep some maybe, and if so how many, and which ones?
I cleaned out the cooler and washed the dog food bin.

My internet has a sporadic speed and connection problem but I don't have time to deal with it. Is there a way to determine/prove that it's a provider problem versus a modem problem? I'm afraid if I call TWC about it, they'll say that since I'm using my own modem instead of leasing one of theirs, that it must be due to my modem.

I need to sign up with a doctor but I don't have time to deal with it.

I need to start going to bed early enough to get enough sleep. but i don't but i don't


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paid-for deception and manipulation [Jun. 30th, 2016 * 12:24 am]
Darkoshi
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mickeym found a Craigslist want-ad showing just how easy it is to pay people to produce misinformation these days. In this case, it is being done by a "news" site called "Conservative Daily Post".

.

Also, mickeym has a GoFundMe if anyone wants to help her out. (I feel I should post that, as it is the reason I came across her journal today, as it was linked to by someone else spreading the word).


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niceties, oddities [Jun. 29th, 2016 * 01:20 am]
Darkoshi
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The killdeer chicks must have hatched. I saw & heard the 2 adult birds along with at least 3 small ones cheeping about in the shade of a tree.

Worked late today. Left the office a bit before 11pm. The ..critters.. in the trees making their noises - I don't even know what they are (note to self: look up the critter sounds; do cicadas make 2 different kinds of sounds?), but the sound is so relaxing and peaceful for me. And the quality of the night - the temperature, amount of humidity, scents as well as sounds - reminded me of similar nights experienced when I was a child.

.

Outside the gate on my driveway, something odd. Reddish brown spots, like something bled along there. They don't look like rust spots, as they aren't directly under the gate. Maybe a dog was wandering around bleeding. Or maybe a dog caught some prey and carried it, bleeding, in its mouth.

Then I remembered something odd from yesterday. Driving home, I had passed a guy jogging along the side of the street. It's rare to see a jogger in that area. He had orange shorts on. The odd part was a black scarf over his mouth. It had white circles on it which somehow reminded me of those ghost/ghoul masks. It's summer and was probably at least 85 degrees outside. Why would someone jog with a scarf over their mouth in summer? It's not a dusty area. I wondered if it was some kind of gang initiation.

.

For the past month, my LJ has been getting spam comments on old posts, all of the same style but with different wording and URLs, and from different IP numbers. At least one every other day. All comments on my LJ are screened by default, so it's not doing anyone any good.

.

Last Friday, the day I found out about my sister moving... when I went outside for lunch and a walk, I got caught in a rainstorm and got soaked. The forecast had foretold a clear sunny day, so although it started to get stormy and sprinkle, I didn't pay it much attention, other than bringing my umbrella along. My mind was on other things. Then suddenly it was pouring down, really pouring down, and even standing under a tree with my umbrella didn't help much. After it finally let up, I walked to our nearby Fitness Center to dry myself off with paper towels. It sounded like I was the only person in the building. Besides the paper towels, there was a blow-dryer that I used to dry my shirt. That was an experience. But my pants and shoes were still quite wet, and I didn't want to wear wet socks and shoes the rest of the day. So I drove home and worked the rest of day from there.


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hybrid halogen CFL bulbs / bulb lifespans [Jun. 27th, 2016 * 11:01 pm]
Darkoshi
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One of my CFL light-bulbs has been acting odd. When I turn the light switch on, the bulb comes on. But after about 30 seconds, it goes dark. I tried swapping its position with a different bulb, and it did the same thing in the new position.

I found this stackexchange page: Why would a CFL bulb dim by itself after 60 seconds? which suggests the bulb may be a hybrid halogen/CFL.
These bulbs have a halogen bulb inside the CFL swirl. The theory is that the halogen is used when the light is first turned on, providing instant light. The waste heat from the halogen bulb helps to warm the CFL, allowing it to reach full brightness quicker. The halogen is turned off after the CFL has warmed up...
once the CFL fails, you'll have a bulb that lights for a minute, then turns out on its own.


I don't remember buying any hybrid halogen CFLs, and that is something I think I'd remember. But sure enough, when I turn the bulb on, it gets bright in the middle, and you can see the darker shadows of the CFL swirl around the center brightness. The 2nd of this set (I originally bought a pair) still works normally, and I can see its CFL swirl brighten whereas the broken one's doesn't.

This article on the bulbs includes a photo of the packaging: GE Lighting to promote halogen-CFL hybrid bulb with Target.
The packaging (the front side, at least) doesn't mention anything about the bulb being a hybrid or containing a halogen bulb in addition to the CFL. So at least I wasn't inobservant when I bought these. I remember being drawn to them due to their having a smooth glass capsule around the CFL, similar to incandescents.

.

This article mentions something interesting that I hadn't heard before: Burned Out on CFLs? We Address the Real Issues and Solutions
projected CFL lifespans are based on a three-hour run time per start. In other words, during CFL testing, bulbs are cycled on for three hours and off for 20 minutes until half the samples have failed. If you turn them on frequently for less than three hours at a time — as I do in my bathroom — you’re in for a surprise.

"Incandescents are somewhat immune to the number of times you switch them on and off," Leslie says, "but the electrodes inside a CFL are stressed with each burst of starting voltage, and will eventually degrade and fail. With a CFL, the number of starts is the primary factor for determining how long it will last; the number of burning hours is secondary. A CFL rated at 10,000 hours in the three-hour-on standard test might last only 4,000 hours if left on for only 15 minutes per start."


So that may explain why in my experience too, CFL bulbs seem to have a much shorter life span than advertised.

My hybrid bulb that stopped working can't be older than 5 years, as it wasn't even available until Spring 2011. It may have even burned out a year or more ago, as I remember seeing it going out before, but as it kept "working" again, I thought it was just a bad connection or something.

LED light bulbs are also advertised as having long lifespans. I wonder if frequently turning them on and off reduces their lifespans too.


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odds, ends [Jun. 26th, 2016 * 05:12 pm]
Darkoshi
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The house's side door has a motion-activated light fixture mounted by it. The lights always attracted moths and other flying insects. To prevent the bugs flying into the house, I always had to slip inside the door and shut it quickly, but sometimes moths still got in. Now I've replaced the two bulbs with LED bug light bulbs. It's amazing the difference that makes. Light! And yet absolutely no bugs flying around in the light! The light is yellow, but that's no problem. I should have done this years ago.

.

Qiao bought a set of lithium battery-powered yard tools. At first the hedge trimmer looked scary to me, with all the sharp teeth. But it is easy to use. So easy that I have to remind myself to be careful with it. It's so much easier than using clippers to cut individual stalks, especially for the jessamine bushes on the fence.

.

Cyber bank robberies... North Korea to blame?

North Korea Linked To $81 Million Bangladesh Bank Heist
Obama strikes back at North Korea

...or maybe not North Korea, exactly?
Vietnamese bank hit by cyber heist
North Korean Cyberhacking Redux: The Bank Heist Cases

.

The unstoppable march of the upward inflection?
High rising terminal
(aka "upspeak")

A lady was talking on TV a while back, and I wasn't interested in whatever she was talking about, but was fascinated by her manner of speech. Her sentences kept ending on a rising note, as if she was asking a question even though she wasn't. It was much more pronounced than the audio samples on the first link above. When I recently came across that page, I realized that maybe it wasn't a peculiarity to her, but a common way of speaking, where ever she was from.

Then I realized the similarity of that to another manner of speaking which at first struck me as odd. Some people insert phrases like "you know what I mean", "you get me", "you know what I'm saying?", "you know?" in the middle of each sentence and/or after each sentence. They don't necessarily pitch it as a question, nor even slow down waiting for feedback - it just seems to be how they are used to speaking.

The rising pitch is similar, in that the speaker sounds like they are asking the listener if they understand or agree with what is being said, except without adding any extra words in.

Then again, maybe that is just my biased impression of it, and not what is actually intended by the speakers.

Vocal fry register : Speaking in the lowest register of your voice, where it makes a creaky grating sound. I do that sometimes, and didn't realize there was a term for it.

Apparently there's been a lot of criticism of how young women speak these days.

From Upspeak To Vocal Fry: Are We 'Policing' Young Women's Voices?

From the audio samples given in that NPR broadcast and elsewhere, women using vocal fry in their speech sounds totally normal to me, and not bad. The upspeak can be a bit disconcerting to me, but not much so. That one lady I mentioned hearing speak on TV had a much more pronounced and unusual version of it, which is why it fascinated me so much. I wish I had written down who the speaker was.


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