gmonkey42: cartoon Sephiroth (Default)
There's this thread on Pharyngula: about CSI-type shows getting things hilariously wrong about "enhancing" images. PZ posted this video to kick it off:

(check out 0:37! Squeee!)

Someone in comments linked to this comic. Click the thumbnail to, ironically, see it bigger and clearer:


Aug. 26th, 2010 09:16 am
gmonkey42: cartoon Sephiroth (pcloadletter)
I want to install the software for my printer on my laptop so I started digging in my "computer stuff" drawer for the disk. I looked and looked and I was thinking "crap, where is it?" and then I looked at the printer and realized I'd taped the disk (in its envelope) to the printer so it would be easy to find.
gmonkey42: cartoon Sephiroth (Default)
How to disable Facebook Places, a new feature - that's automatically turned on, as usual - where you or any of your friends can post your location. Super.

If it's not obvious why that's a bad idea, see this post.

ETA: lol, click on my location link!
gmonkey42: Spock from Star Trek: the Animated Series (spock_wtf)
I've been using Google's Chrome browser some, to see if it's worth switching over from Firefox (the verdict: haven't decided yet). I have one problem with it: whenever I right-click a link to open it in a new tab, my hand automatically picks the second option because in Firefox that was Open Link In New Tab, which is what I want. Except in Chrome, the top one is Open In New Tab and the second one is Open In New Window. And the clicking is so automatic, I keep opening it in a new window without meaning to. Argh.
gmonkey42: cartoon Sephiroth (Judge Turpin)
I briefly put this as an edited-to-add in the first post but people already read and commented there so here's a new post.

PDF of the actual paper! WHAT? They ran an ANOVA on a discrete variable. FAIL. And they reported M-values, not p-values. What the crap is an M-value? At least the variance they found was pretty small, which justifies a small sample size but ANOVA is the wrong analysis to use when there are only seven possible values of the dependent variable! And how big can your variance get when there are only seven possible values?

The second part of the study is better, though it still has the problem of using discrete variables in an analysis that's intended for continuous variables.

Also it sounds like the students who participated in the study were involved with the psychology department somehow; they got course credit for it and psych students would be much more aware of this and more inclined to participate than students in other departments. So basically the conclusions can only be applied to undergrads who at least took a psych class, or possibly are psych majors. This is potentially a huge source of bias.

Anyway, their methods are a little screwey but I don't doubt that women who aren't inclined to be geeky would find geek stuff more off-putting than non-geeky men would, because of the widespread perception (spread by the MSM articles about this paper, for example) that geek stuff is only for boys. It's not just the MSM misinterpreting the paper, though: from the paper's discussion section on the first part of the study:

This study suggests that a student’s choice of classes or a major can be shaped by simply the appearance of classrooms, hallways, and offices—therefore, providing compelling evidence for the power of environments in signaling who belongs.
The authors of the study are claiming that it's the posters etc. themselves that are the problem. No, it's that these objects signal to people that it's more likely to be an anti-woman environment than the neutral one, due to stereotypes about geek culture - I mean, it's not as if a non-geeky workplace never discriminates against women. The underlying problem is the discrimination. It bothers me that this paper is going to be used as evidence that we can just put up some different posters and then when that doesn't result in equal representation, just blame it on our ladybrains or "opting out" or whatever other bullshit they come up with that allows the patriarchy to keep steamrolling along.

I think it's reasonable to expect some people will read the articles about this paper and institute a "no geek stuff" policy in schools and workplaces in an effort to make women feel more comfortable. That would be stupid. The only effects would be:

1. to make men resent women in the workplace more, because it would be seen as special treatment
2. to piss off the geeks
3. to really really piss off the geeks who are also female
4. to totally fail to address any of the real sexism that the geek stuff symbolizes to some women

What would be a much better solution is to educate everyone about how they might discriminate or create a hostile environment without realizing it, for example by commenting on people's appearance, giving a man credit for work a woman did, expecting women to clean up after everyone, and expecting women in technical jobs to take care of secretarial tasks. ALL of this has happened to me in molecular biology jobs in academia and industry. And it was not cool. And forbidding me from putting Star Trek crap on my desk wouldn't have changed any of it.
gmonkey42: cartoon Sephiroth (Default)

I have nagging doubts that some people might be able to write simple programs with LOLCODE but then not be able to transition to a real language but on the other hand, those people wouldn't be able to start with something like QBASIC and then make the switch to, say, C++ either. So it's all good.

CAN HAS stdio?
I-HAZ-A name
I-HAZ-A again
VISIBLE "\nHAI " N name N "!!\nAGAIN (Y/N)? "
GIMMEH again
IZ again LIEK "N"? GTFO

This is too much fun.
gmonkey42: cartoon Sephiroth (Default)
I finished my programming assignment except we're supposed to test it with a program our teacher wrote and I can't run it because I don't have all the #include files. I think the installation of the MSDN library screwed up on my computer. I'll try it on the computer at work. But that means I can't turn in my homework tonight as planned.

Could something cheerful please happen for me to post about? Nothing fancy, my cat doing something cute would be fine.
gmonkey42: cartoon Sephiroth (tavington)
I think I have figured out how to code my guestbook such that spambots can't post in it. It can handle ' but if you try to put "//" in the comments (which is what the spambots do, by putting in URLs) it just gives an error message and doesn't save the post.


I ought to take a PHP class or get a better book or something because as I was trying to find things on, I discovered that I'd coded some things in the past the long way when there's a built-in function that does it for you. Oh well.

That's the beauty of programming: even if you don't know all the keywords and stuff (and I always give my variables and functions names that are unlikely to be reserved keywords) you can still use the basic things like loops and conditionals to make your code do what you want it to. You just end up with much longer code.


Jun. 28th, 2005 09:36 pm
gmonkey42: cartoon Sephiroth (Default)
Why isn't this working? All I want to do is have an expanding menu and it's straightforward enough but it keeps saying "Object doesn't support this property or method" when I try to use getElementByID. But I have IE6 and I know it works with the DOM because the same thing works for me on other pages, just not mine.

I got just about the simplest example I could find and it still doesn't work. What's wrong with it?

<script language="JavaScript" type="text/javascript">
function ChangeTitle(){
var newtitle = document.form1.newtitle.value;
var changeme = document.getElementByID("head1");
changeme.firstChild.nodeValue = newtitle;
<h1 id="head1">Dynamic Heading<
<form name="form1">
<input type="text" name="newtitle">
<input type="button" value="Change!" onClick="ChangeTitle();">
gmonkey42: cartoon Sephiroth (Default)
I'm spreading the word: don't ever buy a computer from eMachines. They suck. We got it in mid-April and we've had to replace the hard drive and power supply once already. Now it's died again. I just called up about returning it and they don't do returns; they'll just send us more faulty hardware.

Let this be a leson to us all: don't ever buy an entire system for $600 from Costco.

gmonkey42: cartoon Sephiroth (Default)
D00d. I just spent maybe an hour trying to fix this mystery error message in my database and it turns out I had a simple little mistake in my error handler code (that I wrote). Dur.

I want lunch.
gmonkey42: cartoon Sephiroth (Default)
I just dropped out of my stupid class that I hate. I was talking to my mum on the phone for hours today, about how I'm spending so much on gas commuting up there three times a week, and how the teacher was being really picky grading my assignments - did I mention that? He took off 30% of the grade because he didn't like my user interface. It all worked but the UI was a little confusing so he gave me a 70%. Yeah. So I was telling my mum about it, and about how I can't take the stress of this and work and taking care of my kitty, and she's been telling me for months I should drop. Then later my dad called and he said I should drop. He's a programmer. My mum was one but she's not employed right now. So my dad told me about this article he read that said basically that C++ is by far the most in demand language for job openings. They weren't going to teach me that. The rest of the year was all going to be VB and SQL. I've used a little SQL at work and it's freaking easy. And they're teaching us VB 6 not VB .NET. I'm already having to teach myself VB.NET for work. So I finally dropped out. I already feel so much better. I'll have more time to do TKD. I won't have to leave work early to sit in traffic for an hour. I can spend more time with my kitty. Ahhh. And I can watch QAF. I'm doing that right now. Lovely.

Last night, I was watching TV with Snapey and Sweet November was on, which is mostly crap but I was like "Look, Snape, it's Jason Isaacs in drag!" And then a commercial for Love, Actually came on. But Snape was asleep by then (perhaps Keanu Reeves movies have that effect on cats - except The Matrix. Cats could identify with that. Because they're badass. And The Matrix is also badass. Not Bill and Ted, though. Monkeys like Bill and Ted but cats don't.) so she missed it.

Oh, I forgot to mention: I get my tuition money back for the classes I haven't taken (I had to pay for the whole year up front). That rules. That'll buy me a lot of kitty treats. I got her this neato scratching post with a compartment and a platform to sit on. And I got some rope at the hardware store and tied it on, so she can grab it. She likes it. She keeps mewing at me. I think she just wants me to pay attention to her. Because she does it when I- ow. She just tried to jump up on my bare knee. Anyway. She does it when I'm doing something other than paying attention to her. Dang, she scratched me good. She hasn't done that before. And she gets her claws a little stuck in things - I think I'll have to trim them but I'm still getting her used to sitting quietly and having her paws handled. She's going to the vet to get her first shots next week so I guess they can tell me more about that. Man, that might suck. I put her carrier in the middle of the living room, so she can get used to it. She isn't too skittish, so I think she'll be reasonably ok. I picked a vet that only treats cats. That seemed like a good idea.
gmonkey42: cartoon Sephiroth (ass)
I know how to use the MsgBox function! And how to use loops. Arrrgh. I wanna read some slash. But I guess I'd better not, on the school computer. I'm two labs ahead of schedule now. He hasn't even put up the shared folders to turn in these two labs. This last one was kind of neat - we had to have a list box of all the US states and the user types the name of a state into a text box (why not just put it all in a combo box? don't ask me) and as they type, it selects the state. Like, if you type "c" it selects California but if you continue typing "co" then it changes the selection to Colorado. That took me almost an hour, including the time it took having to give the appearance of paying attention to the lecture on what a loop is.

I asked him yesterday to tell me what the lab assignments would be for the next few days (they're all in the book, so I don't have to wait for him to write them like in the last class) and he asked me if I was planning on skipping class. I don't think he was even kidding. So I said no, I was done with the latest lab. I'd been done with it for about half the class, so I spent the other half messing around testing it. Not that it was necessary - it was a really simple program. At least I'm sure I followed all the directions on this one. I lost points on one for displaying currency values without a dollar sign. Ooh, he just put up the folder to turn in one of the two labs.

I drew a naughty picture of Snape and Lupin with my stylus. At home, of course. I'm not bringing it here. I don't know if I'll put it up. Not that I want to tease you all; it's just that it's not all that good. I made Snape's legs a little too long, I think. It's hard to tell - he should have longish legs.
gmonkey42: cartoon Sephiroth (Default)
I just spent most of today purging my computer of the "msblaster" worm. I'd downloaded Microshaft's security patch weeks ago but it turns out it was the wrong one or something because every time my network cable was plugged in for about five minutes or more, I'd acquire the worm again. But I’ve finally got it sorted out. And I downloaded some additional anti-hacker software. I’m seriously considering switching to Linux.
gmonkey42: cartoon Sephiroth (Default)
I'm at my crappy waste-of-time-I'd-be-better-off-teaching-myself programming class. Class hasn't started yet. So I got a soda from the vending macine and they don't have cans - all they have is bottles. And I can't open this $#@%#^! bottle. So, lest the boys in the class see me struggling to open it and offer to help, I went off to the women's bathroom, to see if running some hot water over the cap would help. It didn't. There was another woman in there, who's an administrator, and she offered to give it a try and I thought “yeah, right” because I'm pretty strong and if I couldn't do it- anyway, she tried and couldn't open it either, so she said (get ready for the irritating part) “we need a man.” No, we need a lever of some kind. Or something made of rubber, so we can get a better grip on the stupid, practically smooth little cap. So I said the whole reason I came to open it in the women’s room was so the guys wouldn’t see my trying and get all macho etc.

I didn't mention before: I'm one of only two women in the programming class and the teacher's pretty sexist. But the sexism manifests itself in these stupid, offhand little comments, so if I complain, I risk having him dismiss me as just another humorless feminist. Which I'm not. I'm a very humorous feminist. A humorous feminist with a blister on my thumb from trying to open that stupid bottle. And it's my pipettin' thumb too. At least I'm not working tomorrow. Screw it, I'll be able to open it when I get home.
gmonkey42: cartoon Sephiroth (Default)
So I'm taking this year-long computer programming course. When I signed up for it, I thought one of the languages I'd be learning was C. That was really the whole point of taking the course. So guess which set of classes they've canceled? They're replacing C with C#. What gets me is the reason they gave for it: not because they think the whole .NET thing will be really big, not because C# is any more useful than C, but because too many people were flunking out and they think C# will be easier. Pardon me while I scream. I paid a crapload of money for this and I was told all along that once I got into the programming classes, they'd be more challenging. But no, they have to teach at the level of the dumbest people. I'll still learn VB and SQL, which I do want to learn, but now I'll either have to plunk down about $400 to take C separately at Berkeley extension or something, or just teach myself out of a book. I was whining to my parents about it on the phone last night and my dad said I could move back home (I couldn't take a Berkeley extension course and still live in Davis - it's too far) for the ten weeks or however long the course is. And do WHAT with my apartment? Find someone to sublet for 10 weeks? No way, man.

January 2012

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