Uncle Hyena (unclehyena) wrote,
Uncle Hyena
unclehyena

Random Bits from Facebook

September 18:
Someone (I don't remember who, and don't care) is using a mangled remix of Queen's "Don't Stop Me Now" to sell something or other. This led us, as a matter of moral obligation, to listen to the original as soon as the program was over. Damn, that's a good song...

September 20:
I can deal with being an "it". I will never, ever be happy with being a "they" when I am alone. If we must abolish gendered pronouns (and the time for that is certainly coming, if it isn't already here), the path should be to de-stigmatize "it", not to corrupt "they" (and thereby eliminate not only gender but also number in pronouns). Singular "they" makes my teeth hurt.

I am it. You are it. We are, individually, it. Really.

(Update: The pushback on this was furious, passionate, and often kind of weird. I did not expect this to be a "minefield" topic, but it very much is one.)

September 20:
Three times in the last five weeks I have driven the fifty miles to Lake Geneva, intending to play in a scheduled Dungeons & Dragons game, and then turned around and come home without throwing a single die. I know I have occasional issues with threshold anxiety, but I can almost always power through them. Not this time, though. This afternoon (iteration three) I figured out what was going on.

Games have been going flat for me, lately. This is disturbing, but I have been mostly ascribing it to the general purpose anxiety and depression I have been dealing with lately. But this... I realized that I am significantly afraid that I will sit down to play an RPG and not be able to enjoy it. Given the significance of RPGs in my life, this is a piece of information I simply can not afford to have. The suspicion is not a good thing, but the reality would be devastating. So until things change, I am not going to try again. The stakes are too high, and the odds are too bad.

September 27:
Overheard from Dementia's current audio book:

"I love you, but when you lie to me, could you at least be believable? I always try to be believable when I lie to you." --Seanan McGuire in the character of Alexander Price, "Pocket Apocalypse"

September 28:
Life in my household:

Dementia: What are you doing?

Hyena: Building a support structure under my desk.

Dementia: I don't suppose you considered actually dealing with the stuff on top of the desk as an alternative?

Hyena: That's just crazy talk.

September 28:
Life in my household:

Watching "The Orville":

Seth (Capt. Ed Mercer) MacFarlane: You mean this thing (28 km diameter generation ship) has a sunroof?

Dementia: Can you say, "Screaming agoraphobia"?

September 29:
Extreme Geekery: I have been aware, pretty much from the time I knew what "Standard Distribution" was, that dice don't quite fit the curve. This is apparently because die rolls are so strongly quantized. I have long suspected that, as the number of dice rolled increases, the shape of the result curve gets squarer and squarer. Over the last week or two, in the spirit of "looking busy when I should really being doing something else", I have done some actual research.

To begin, I generated the result curves for sets of up to ten dice, which is pretty trivial with a spreadsheet (it takes about five minutes per set). Then I started trying to make sense of the data without doing too much actual work. Stuff I have found that seems to support the "increasingly square" hypothesis:

The greatest slope of the curve is a higher value (correcting for scaling) with each additional die.

The center N+1 vaules of the curve consume a greater percentage of the results with each additional die, ranging from 33% for the central 2 values of a single die to 69% for the central eleven values of the ten die set.

Being lazy, I am inclined to accept this as proof of the original hypothesis. (The shape of the result curve for N similar dice approaches a square wave shape as N increases.)

September 29:
So now we now how "Inhumans" is going deal with Medusa's hair on a television budget.
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