Pencil Drawings by Futaro Mitsuki (彌月風太朗)

Websites : Gallerykogure.com & Artpeoplegallery.com

Source: Pencil Drawings by Futaro Mitsuki (彌月風太朗)

Stunning fusion of traditional Japanese images and concepts with modern symbols. Just love it. Oops. For some reason no images came through. This is a screenshot only. Please click the link to see the other drawings:

japanese-pencil-drawings


#Tweetdeck – how to filter columns for conversations

TweetDeck is an app owned by Twitter that helps make sense of your Tweets by allowing you to filter and display them according to your own needs. For example, I’m currently having a really interesting conversation with @YorgosKC and @DavidGaughran about politics and the birth of democracy in the ancient city-state of Athens. Trouble is, I’m missing half the conversation because there is no way of tracking a conversation in Twitter.

Enter TweetDeck. It won’t let you track conversations either…but it does have the smarts to create a workaround.

To start using TweetDeck, simply go to:

https://tweetdeck.twitter.com/#

The TweetDeck banner screen displays a button to sign in to Twitter. Do it. Essentially, you are in Twitter, but you’re viewing it through a ‘shell’ that has some special functions, such as the ability to display different types of information, side-by-side, in columns.

What you can see in the screenshot below, is my TweetDeck screen after I removed the default columns and replaced them with 2 Mentions columns:

tweetdeck-filters

The reason for selecting the Mentions columns was so I could filter who mentioned whom. In the left hand column are tweets by David Gaughran in which he mentions Yorgos KC. [Users: By @DavidGaughran, mentioning @ YorgosKC]. As I am part of the conversation anyway, I don’t have to worry about him mentioning me.

In the right hand column, I’ve filtered the tweets so that I only see the tweets in which Yorgos KC mentions David Gaughran. [Users: By @YorgosKC, mentioning @DavidGaughran].

I admit that filtering the tweets this way is tedious, but at least I can see all the tweets of this three-way conversation in one place.

In case anyone wants to do the same thing, here’s a quick how-to:

tweetdeck-filters-4Clicking this small icon at the top right of your column will open a kind of settings menu. At the bottom of the settings menu is the option to ‘Remove’ the column. I removed all the existing columns so I could force TweetDeck to display my new columns side-by-side.

To display new columns of your choice, click the ‘+’ button on the narrow menu pane on the left of the screen. The following popup will display:

tweetdeck-filters-3

Each option is essentially a category of tweet. The ‘Mentions’ circled in red is for single Twitter accounts. If you have more than one account, select the ‘Mentions (all accounts)’ option.

Once you have your chosen column in place, click the settings button to display the menu options:

tweetdeck-users1

Click the arrow as shown to select the ‘Users’ option. With the Users sub-menu displayed, click inside the ‘By’ box to display further options:

tweetdeck-users2

The option we want is ‘specific user…’ Click. Now you can enter the Twitter handle of the person you’re interested in:

tweetdeck-users3

Type in the name preceded by the ‘@’ symbol and hit ENTER on your keyboard.

Next, do the same thing for the person mentioned by your first…mentionee?

tweetdeck-users5

Again, hit ENTER when you have finished typing in the name. Now the only tweets displayed in that column will be those in which person 1 mentions person 2.

Repeat the entire process to display the tweet in which person 2 mentions person 1.

As I said, it’s a workaround and not terribly elegant, but it’s better than giving a 3rd Party App access to your Twitter account. There are apps out there that will track conversations for you…but you have to give them access to your account and allow them to tweet in your name. As far as I’m concerned, that’s a no-no.

cheers

Meeks

 

 

 

 

 

 


Science fiction on parade!

meeks-books-small

I’ve never published a print book version of any of my books, but this wonderful graphic by Chris Graham is the next best thing. He just ‘whipped it up’ and sent it to me in an email. I have no idea how he put it together, but I love it. Thank you, Chris!

And while I’m at it, I’d like to thank everyone who left reviews on Amazon for Innerscape. You may not know this, but if you add up all the pages in all the episodes of Innerscape, they total about 1014 pages. I say ‘about’ because Amazon only displays page counts for episodes 2-5, so I had to guesstimate the page number for episode 1. Slight inaccuracies aside, that makes the story of Innerscape about 200 pages longer than George R.R. Martin’s ‘A Game of Thrones’ which comes in at 819 pages. So to all those brave souls who have read all the way through to the end…THANK YOU!

Now, I’m a polite girl, and polite girls don’t crow, but here are the reviews for Episode 1, including the 1 star by Austin Myers. 😀

David Prosser
Can Innerscape really live up to it’s reputation, can Miira live on without her bodily ills and find some happiness. Given an introduction is like watching world building at it’s best. You’re there and can see it but don’t have to cope with all the technical side.
Ms Flory has created characters real enough to evoke emotion in the reader. You’ll like, love and possibly hate too but you won’t want to stop reading.
I was given an advance copy by the author in exchange for an honest review.

Stephanie Briggs
Personal hopes and private fears leap from this writer’s imagination and grab the reader’s attention. Once she piques your interest, the conviction to know more will fuel your desire to read the next Episode. A. C. Flory does for science fiction what sunlight does for soil. She incubates an idea until it flourishes and feeds the deep hunger in us all.

Chris James
Anyone who’s read this author’s first book, Vokhtah, will know that she can deliver when it comes to entertainment. Innerscape part 1 doesn’t disappoint. The story tackles one of the most thought-provoking ideas in science fiction: what if, as your health failed and you approached death, you could effectively download your mind to a virtual reality and live on in the freedom of youth for as long as science could keep your decaying body alive?
We follow the dying Miira as she enters Innerscape and goes through her “orientation” into this virtual paradise. But right from the beginning, Innerscape shows one side to its Residents, while hiding real-world complications behind its pristine veneer of professionalism.
I finished this first part with my curiosity peeked and wanting to know what will happen next. It is a terrific introduction to what promises to be an outstanding series of books.

Candy
I thoroughly enjoyed Episode 1 of Innerscape and just downloaded Episode 2! The alternating perspectives, the vivid characters, and the intriguing vision of the future all work together to create a compelling narrative. Miira and Dr. Wu are sympathetic protagonists and the prospect of futuristic corporate villainy in the next couple of episodes seems likely. A.C. Flory has succeeded in creating a coherent, reasonable, and scary future, where the virtual and real exist side-by-side.

Candace Williams
This is the first episode of a smart, well written sci-fi series with a fascinating premise. I’m looking forward to finding out what’s really going on in both worlds, Kenneth’s real world and Miira’s utopian VR, Innerscape. There’s plenty to think about – a must in sci-fi, imo – within a storyline that captivates. An excellent read!

Dawn
Well. This was a delightful surprise. I’m quite traditional in my thinking- I always say to people I’m more of a crafter than an artist; and I think that shows in my reading. Much as I like to be fully absorbed in a novel, I find that most fantasy is just too fantastic for me to suspend disbelief. Same often goes for science fiction. For example – TV wise – I’m more of a Battlestar Galactica / Caprica girl than Farscape. My favourite authors writing for adults in this genre are Margaret Attwood and Iain Banks.
Having completed Episode One of Innerscape, however I think I might be adding AC Flory to my list.
Really convincing new technology and logic behind it; borderline dystopian; well realised characters; interesting premise throughout. Additionally it’s set in a future just sufficiently distant as to make all these things feel as though they may be about to occur, yet the lead character (a woman – hurrah) is incredibly relevant; especially reading this at the tail end of 2016. Oh – and unusually well written; no typos, no gaps or character name swaps, no odd leaps or discrepancies.
I bought this book, and am looking forward very much to buying all the remaining ones in the series.

EllaDee
A great start, introducing engaging characters who invite you to champion, fall in love with or hate them.

Austin Myers
There may have been a story of some sort but it was taking far too long to get to it.
Note to author: The first few pages / chapter has to grab the reader and pull them into the story. This book failed to do anything of the sort. This was disjointed and boring. I hope your next effort is better.

Penny I Howe
From page one, I could not put the book down. It was simply wonderful. Gripping & excitingly realistic. I’m getting ready to order the next episode (book ) right now. I would highly recommend this book. Excellent and entertaining. Exactly the way I like my Sci-fi!

And thank you to everyone who comes to my blog as well. You’ve made me a ‘very happy, Meeka’.

-hugs-

Meeks

 


#science – the best discoveries are often accidental

The modern world is built from materials our cavewoman ancestors could never have imagined – just think silicon and plastics. But now, thanks to 3D printing, and research into graphene, MIT scientists have discovered a powerful new geometry that will change our world yet again. You see, the geometry that can turn 2D graphene into a usable 3D form works just as well on other materials such as steel and concrete:

To me, however, the most fascinating part of this discovery is that it came about as the by-product of research into something else. Like Marie Curie, who discovered polonium and radium while researching uranium, the MIT scientists did not realise all the other uses for the geometry until after they had created it for graphene.

3D Graphene may or may not become the next you-beaut material, but the geometry used to create it will become the next ‘great thing’. Why? Because it will reduce the cost of manufacturing common materials while simultaneously increasing their strength. Imagine a single span of concrete ‘foam’ that’s capable of bridging an entire river, or cars that can protect their occupants from even the worst of crashes. Or, my personal favourite, how about a dome capable of covering an entire city?

Domes have been a favourite device of science fiction writers for a very long time. We’ve imagined them on distant planets, protecting human colonists from all sorts of dangers. Planet X has a toxic atmosphere? No problem. Just pop up a dome and away you go. Planet Y is an ocean world? Still no problem as domes can be built on the sea bed.

But why travel to distant star systems when domes could be used right here on Earth, to protect us from runaway pollution and climate change?

Unfortunately, the technology to actually build such huge, unsupported domes simply has not existed…until now [maybe].All that’s needed for this next ‘great leap forward’ is the development of manufacturing grade 3D printers capable of producing such materials in quantity.

Given how quickly 3D printers have gone from cutting-edge curiosities to mass produced, ‘domestic’ products, I don’t think we’ll have long to wait.

So excited!

Meeks


A phone I could get excited about

After years of rumors and false starts, both Samsung and LG are preparing to unveil portable devices with folding screens later this year, according to a report in the Korea Herald (via XDA). Samsung is likely to produce 100,000 of the smartphone-cum-tablets in the third quarter, the Herald claims, while LG may manufacture the same…

via Samsung and LG both reportedly launching foldable phones in second half of 2017 — VentureBeat

I currently have a Kindle Fire for ‘reading’ and an old, Samsung Galaxy SII for ‘communicating’. I have checked the internet on the phone – once or twice – but the screen is much too small for comfortable reading. As a result, I use it almost exclusively for calls, EmergencyAus alerts, and as a camera.

If Samsung can give me the convenient size of a phone with the screen realestate of a tablet, I might just jump ship from the Kindle.


More amazing art from Soul Draft

The Architecture Of Radical Simplicity The five best hotels in Hull for the City of Culture Lift-off: the must-see dance shows of 2017 CES 2017 Day Three of 3D printing, 3D Design and 3D prints in Las Vegas Japanese Artist Spends 3+ Years Drawing Massive, Incredibly Detailed Tsunami World’s largest LEGO exhibition Top […]

via Weekly Newsletter n°11 —

I love tech aggregators, such as New Atlas, but I also love the art brought together in one place by Soul Draft. Hope you enjoy it too. 🙂


Poignant

I’ve been uploading files to sync.com all weekend, and in the process, I’ve revisited some very old files and photos. This one is of my Dad and Missy, an old man and an old dog, keeping each other company in front of the fire, even though the day was not that cold.

dad-and-missy-in-front-of-the-fire_0681

I’m not quite sure why this particular photo fills me with such tenderness, but it does. It’s homey and familiar, as if years of every day scenes have been condensed into one, perfect image.

My thanks to Sallyanne Hartnell for capturing this moment and saving it for me.

cheers

Meeks


March Fly [or horse fly] bites – Warrandyte

I don’t normally take selfies but I thought I’d better take some photos of these bites:

march-or-horse-fly-bites-1

march-or-horse-fly-bites-2

I took these pics today but the March Fly [also known as horsefly] got me yesterday. Lucky for me, I’ve finally learned how not to have these bites turn into horrible, pus-filled welts:

  1. Do NOT scratch.
  2. Do take an antihistamine immediately

If you’re like me and get a mild[ish] allergic reaction to insect bites, these two rules are golden because, the more you itch, the more the inflammation or infection or whatever it is, spreads.

So not scratching contains the problems, but it doesn’t stop the itch. Unfortunately, that itch is like ten mosquito bites rolled into one, and it doesn’t just go away after an hour or two. Or at least, it doesn’t for me. Those selfies show the bites almost 24 hour after they happened. I haven’t scratched – thanks to the antihistamine – but the bites are still red and angry. And they still itch.

For me, the most effective antihistamine is Telfast 12 hour. I use it during the day because it doesn’t put me to sleep. At night I have to use an old-school, sleepy-time antihistamine called Polaramine. I also dab a topical cream called Solocite on the bites. Solosite is a hydrating, healing gel, but it also seems to reduce the itch.

And now a word about the March Fly [also known as horsefly]. This is the first time I’ve known what bit me because this is the first time I’ve actually seen what bit me. In the past, I’d get bitten – often through my clothing – without ever knowing what type of beast got me. All I knew was that it usually happened while I was weeding the lush Spring grasses. Thanks to the strange, almost monsoonal bouts of heavy rain we’ve had this Spring/Summer, this is my third bout of the itchies.

As I said though, this time I actually caught the mongrel in the act. I can’t have felt the first few nips [I have 5 bites] but I sure as hell felt the last one. It was quite sharp and when I looked down at my leg, I saw something that looked like a black house fly but quite a bit bigger, like a blowie [Bluebottle]. It also made a kind of low-pitched rumble rather than the normal irritating buzz. Also unlike the blowie, this thing left tiny droplets of blood on my legs.

After applying my version of first aid, I hopped onto Papa Google and discovered that the female March Fly [or horse fly] cuts a hole in your skin and injects saliva into the hole to stop your blood from coagulating too quickly. Then it feeds. You, on the other hand, react to some protein in the saliva and develop a terrible itch.

I suspect I have an unusually severe reaction to this pest, but on the off chance that others do too, I hope this post proves useful.

cheers from a not very happy

Meeks

 


Why we need speechbots to answer the phone — VentureBeat

GUEST: Industry and media attention have focused on chatbots for digital channels. However, speech bots that answer phone calls could have a greater impact on customer service. First, because phone remains one of the most popular customer service channels, and companies should be doing all they can to meet customers where they prefer to interact.…

via Why we need speechbots to answer the phone — VentureBeat

Interesting article but misses the point from the consumer’s point of view. Most consumers are now savvy enough to find out ‘simple’ information without help – i.e. by googling etc. If they do ring up a company, it’s because they have a question which is not simple, or which cannot be answered in a general way. Forcing them to interact with a speechbot – i.e. the computer generated morons that curently answer the phone – simply fuels frustration because consumers already know the bot won’t be able to help. As for improving all the areas in which current speechbots fail….I give it another 50 years or so. That means another 50 years of lousy customer service.


Um…remember that greenhouse?

I am so contrary.:(  As soon as I published that post about not being able to put the flat pack greenhouse together, something went click in my brain and suddenly, I couldn’t rest until I beat it.

There are some parts left over, and I don’t think it will last for long, but here it is, getting the once over from Golli:

 

 

Ooooooh......what is this thing?

Ooooooh……what is this thing?

...smells funny...

…smells funny…

Could it be a new litter box?

Could it be a new litter box?

Without resorting to four letter words again [I had a major tantrum just before dinner ] this has been the worse project I have ever attempted, and I swear I’ve learned my lesson. If I so much as  mention the word ‘flat pack’ in the future, you are all authorised to slap me until I come to my senses.

End rant and good night!

-hugs-

Meeks

 


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