ysengrin: Yep, that's me. (Default)
Got through a trilogy of books yesterday that I'd been reading for a while. That they were technically well written and reasonably entertaining kept me going. That they involved vampires with none of the usual limitations aside from a faint need for occasional blood (from any source) and bad tempers almost had me putting them down. 700-year old vampires wandering around in broad daylight reminiscing about Marlowe and Shakespeare just didn't work for me. That the main character treads a very thin path around being a Mary Sue in the first two books didn't help, either. Still, decent world building and storytelling, with some nice character arcs through the three books. Squarely in the realm of paranormal romance.

A Discovery of Witches, Shadow of Night, and The Book of Life by Debroah Harkness. If you can overlook the very overpowered vampires and scientific hand-waving - and enjoy Elizabethen London references - the trilogy is a pretty good read.
ysengrin: Yep, that's me. (Default)
Outward and inward facing wikis synched up. Something odd happened with tracking recent changes, though, on two of them; pages were missing from the list. The restorerecentchanges (a mouthful) maintenance script repaired one wiki, but not the other. Possibly failed because the pages had been touched again, so they didn't show as earlier edits.

Just FYI, none are public wikis. I maintain one as a shop notebook, for instance.
ysengrin: Yep, that's me. (Default)
New Potw is up.

05 Jun 2017

Werewolf Washing

Werewolf hanging up to dry after a good soak in a tub. Here we show both the drowned rat and mostly dry stages. After many hours of hard play and rolling around in the outdoors across Memorial Day weekend, the bath was much needed.

Someone asked if hanging the suit wet like this stretches it out. It doesn't, because there's a network of supporting strapping under the fur to prevent just that. It's there because earlier suits would stretch and sag due to the weight of sweat saturating the suit during long hours in a hot haunted house, but the strapping works just as well with the suit soaked in just water. The suit is also hanging on a wide wet suit hanger, which spreads the weight across the shoulders and opens up the chest cavity so air can circulate inside.

Location: Out back of the workshop

ysengrin: Yep, that's me. (Default)
Well, finally got Syntax Highlight to work on my local wikis - turned out to be a execution permission issue that is finally described on the extension's page under installation.

I'm going to have to talk with my exterior web provider to see if I can do the same on there. EDIT: Done! Also upgraded the exterior wikis to 1.27.3 while I was at it.

Now I just need to write a Pygments lexer for Processing & ToxicLibs ... the old one I wrote isn't compatable.

Of course, I may be able to just do all this under a Jupyter notebook instead. On that front, Avast's last update fixed the issue with it eating parts of the Jupyter install :)

EDIT: Nope, Avast still eats part of the install, just farther along in actually running the notebook.
ysengrin: Yep, that's me. (Default)
New PotW is up

29 May 2017

Cast Clay Paws

The latex of the old master wolf paws (over twenty years old) had shrunken unevenly, making them unsuitable for remolding. Ysengrin made a quick mold with plaster bandages and cast a shell of Monster Clay in them, filling the core with plaster. The clay casts will be corrected and retextured before making new molds for the wolf feet.

Location: The Workshop

Casting molten Monster Clay in the molds is a handy shortcut, though I'd want to have a less porous surface to be casting against for less cleanup. The monster clay "sets" so quickly that major gaps in the mold halves - an eighth-inch or more - sealed with very little leakage.

Should have the wolf feet for sale again soon!


30 May 2017 11:13 am
ysengrin: Yep, that's me. (Default)
New Potw is up.

22 May 2017

Pittsburgh Air Show

Photos taken at the soft opening of the 2017 Wings Over Pittsburgh air show.

Top photo is a F-22 Raptor coming to a stop; it's part of the Air Combat Command F-22 Demonstration Team. Behind it is a B-52 Stratofortress.

Bottom photo is a KC-135 Stratotanker - full image also has a taxiing C-17 Globemaster, cropped out of the thumbnail.

Location: 40° 29' 33" N, 80° 12' 45" W


18 May 2017 07:19 pm
ysengrin: Yep, that's me. (Default)
New PotW is up.

15 May 2017

Bringing out detail

Experimenting with different painting techniques to bring out the sculpted detail. Also, putting rejected pulls to good use!

Location: The Workshop

08 May 2017

Flamboyant Visitor

This mature peacock wandered into the workshop through an open door to check out what was going on. None of our neighbors have peacocks, though one neighbor apparently saw the same peacock earlier about a mile away heading down the road from the highway. There's no I.D. band on the peacock.

Peacocks are not native to the area (or the continent).

That was a few days ago, and the peacock has apparently made us a regular stop. He's been seen at least once every day, looking in through the workshop door.

Update: the peacock hasn't been seen since the 16th.

Location: The Workshop

OK, so it's a two-fer this time. Getting back into the swing of things after a colonoscopy. No polyps, no cancer, though I do have some irregularities.
ysengrin: Yep, that's me. (Default)
All the old PotW pages are now mobile friendly, going back to 2003. They we pretty hard to read on a phone before now.

I'll fill in some gaps as I have time to. There were a couple of periods when things were just too hectic to keep them updated properly.

I know they're not high traffic pages, but they do serve as a record of what we've done and do get browsed by new (and prospective) customers.
ysengrin: Yep, that's me. (Default)
New Picture of the Week is up. I'm getting back in the habit of posting these regularly.

24 Apr 2017

Early Spring Morning

The trees are greening up nicely now, as shown in this shot of the Clarion River taken off the back deck early in the morning.

All is not as quiet as it seems. Loggers are at work on a parcel about a half-mile away and the sound of power saws fill the morning air.

Location: Clarion, PA

Workshop is open, though I have good days and bad days. The Lyme disease fairy graced me with a tick back on April fourth, and I'm currently on a heavy dosage of Doxycycline to try and nip it in the bud. Unfortunately there was a long delay before I could see a doctor; symptoms had already begun. Just a downside of living out in the country.

I managed to protect three pepper plants indoors over the winter - two ghost peppers and one scorpion. They're outside now, and putting out new leaves. Hopefully they'll produce nicely this year. I want to get some tomatoes going this year, too.

Slowly going back through the PotW pages and making them mobile-friendly; 2007 through to the present are done. Once I'm finished with that, I'll go through and fill in gaps appropriately.
ysengrin: Yep, that's me. (Default)
Got the feeds that I followed on LJ set up here (finally - my laziness, not a DW issue). For the curious, those feeds were:

I also added a few:

I didn't bring over a few feeds that have died or that I've lost interest in.
ysengrin: Yep, that's me. (Default)
Woo! Finally got the Jeep to pass inspection - I got four wheels again!

LJ update

11 Apr 2017 12:18 pm
ysengrin: Yep, that's me. (Default)
The LJ-SEC mass delete *does* take a long time.
ysengrin: Yep, that's me. (Default)
Slowly getting the website updated. The Picture of the Week for this year and last year are now mobile friendly, though I'm not completely satisfied with them. Still have some graphical changes coming.

Those pages were still using a clunky template I made back around 1998 or so and really needed the rewrite. CSS wasn't really available back then. Using it is *so* much easier, and will make the needed tweaks I want to do straightforward.

I'll get the older PotW pages updated as time allows, and will back-fill last year's page for the missing weeks.
ysengrin: Yep, that's me. (Default)
From here on, I'll be posting here rather than on Livejournal. Hopefully the few folks who read me there will think about moving here as well :)
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