[personal profile] yendi
Today's a touch hectic, but it seems that just about every deal from yesterday's post that wasn't a Deal of the Day is active, so yay!

Only three deals I had time to highlight, but they're all pretty solid:

The major Deal of the Day will nab you either the Extended Edition Lord of the Rings Trilogy on Blu-Ray for $26.49 (78% off) or the Extended Edition of The Hobbit Trilogy for $38.99 (61% off). As some of you know, I'm decidedly NOT a Tolkien (on paper or screen), but some of y'all are, so enjoy!

I am a James Bond fan, though, and the Ultimate James Bond Collection on Blu-Ray/Digital for $99.99 (33% off) is a hell of a nice deal (note that Spectre is now included in the set).

And in the "luxury beauty" section of Amazon, you can spend $50 and get a $25 credit for more from the same section.

Known Issues Update 12/2

Dec. 2nd, 2016 10:21 am
karzilla: a green fist above the word SMASH! (Default)
[staff profile] karzilla posting in [site community profile] dw_maintenance
  • The site may occasionally be slow to respond or have trouble connecting as we tune servers and databases, or you may receive Gateway Timeout errors.

  • Comment notification emails may be delayed due to database load.

  • Inbound email (post-by-email and comment-by-email) may be delayed for a bit while your outgoing mail server catches up with the switch.

  • Email sent to your username@dreamwidth.org address may be more likely to be marked as spam, due to our mail server changing its IP address.

  • The site search database may be missing entries and comments and will catch up over the next few days, as database load allows. Entries and comments posted since the site came back up will be added to the index as they're posted.

  • Logging into other sites using your Dreamwidth OpenID is working again! Yay!

  • Loading embedded content over secure connections should be fixed!

  • There is a known problem with trying to rearrange elements on the Beta Update page because a script element isn't loading properly. We'll try to get that fixed today.


Let us know if you see anything else odd with the site that isn't listed here!

Answering the Phone

Dec. 2nd, 2016 01:30 pm
[syndicated profile] sumana_feed
In one of my earliest internships, I volunteered in the local district office of my state Senator (that is, the guy who represented my area in the upper chamber of California's state legislature). I reordered and rearranged informational brochures for our waiting area, I filed, I took phone messages, I think eventually I graduated to writing drafts of replies to constituents for the staffers to revise and send. I volunteered there for a summer, which means that my time there overlapped with the Senate's recess, so I remember a lot more constituent service calls than policy calls -- and the district offices probably got fewer of those calls than the Sacramento office did, anyway.

One day, someone called and said something like, "I'm calling about the Senator's ethics violation." I had never heard anything about this and said "I'm sorry, which ethics violation is that?" to which the caller said "You mean there's more than one?!" I sputtered and put them on hold and took a message or transferred them to a staffer, which I clearly should have done as soon as I heard the tone of their voice and their general topic of inquiry, but hey, inexperience.

Within a few days, there was a letter to the editor in the local newspaper that mentioned this call and named me (I'm pretty sure misspelling my name) while excoriating the Senator and our office. My boss and colleagues sympathized and told me these things happen, and basically reassured me that this was not a black mark on my Permanent Record.

Decades later, I'm calling my local city councilmember, my Senators and my Representative who represent me in Congress, and related offices, spurred by emails from NGOs, aggregators like "We're His Problem Now" or Wall of Us, and local meetings. And sometimes I stumble over my words, not sure whether they want my name first or my message. But when the intern on the other end of the line says "I don't know what her position is on that; could you call back in 15 minutes? All the staffers who would know are in a meeting right now," I can smile and say "Yes, I can, and I know how it is, I've been on the other end of this call, it's fine." And at least I know I'm not utterly blindsidingly frustrating to deal with. I know, empirically, that I am not as bad as it gets.

Ubuntu still isn't free software

Dec. 2nd, 2016 01:12 am
[personal profile] mjg59
Mark Shuttleworth just blogged about their stance against unofficial Ubuntu images. The assertion is that a cloud hoster is providing unofficial and modified Ubuntu images, and that these images are meaningfully different from upstream Ubuntu in terms of their functionality and security. Users are attempting to make use of these images, are finding that they don't work properly and are assuming that Ubuntu is a shoddy product. This is an entirely legitimate concern, and if Canonical are acting to reduce user confusion then they should be commended for that.

The appropriate means to handle this kind of issue is trademark law. If someone claims that something is Ubuntu when it isn't, that's probably an infringement of the trademark and it's entirely reasonable for the trademark owner to take action to protect the value associated with their trademark. But Canonical's IP policy goes much further than that - it can be interpreted as meaning[1] that you can't distribute works based on Ubuntu without paying Canonical for the privilege, even if you call it something other than Ubuntu.

This remains incompatible with the principles of free software. The freedom to take someone else's work and redistribute it is a vital part of the four freedoms. It's legitimate for Canonical to insist that you not pass it off as their work when doing so, but their IP policy continues to insist that you remove all references to Canonical's trademarks even if their use would not infringe trademark law.

If you ask a copyright holder if you can give a copy of their work to someone else (assuming it doesn't infringe trademark law), and they say no or insist you need an additional contract, it's not free software. If they insist that you recompile source code before you can give copies to someone else, it's not free software. Asking that you remove trademarks that would otherwise infringe trademark law is fine, but if you can't use their trademarks in non-infringing ways, that's still not free software.

Canonical's IP policy continues to impose restrictions on all of these things, and therefore Ubuntu is not free software.

[1] And by "interpreted as meaning" I mean that's what it says and Canonical refuse to say otherwise

The Light in the Darkness

Dec. 2nd, 2016 08:28 am
[syndicated profile] kirkus_kidlit_feed
I read a moderately-sized stack of brand-new, holiday-themed children’s books this week but want to write today about one that stood out. If, like me, you want something different this year, look no further than Otto and the Secret Light of Christmas, written by Nora Surojegin and illustrated by Pirkko-Liisa Surojegin. If you don’t recognize the names of the author and illustrator, that’s because this is an import from Finland, translated by Jill G. Timbers. It was originally published in 2010 as Untu ja sydäntalven salaisuus.

Just Testing Again, Please Ignore

Dec. 1st, 2016 09:49 pm
[personal profile] jazzyjj
Everybody all right over yonder? Good! Then I can shut down for the
night and go to bed.

(no subject)

Dec. 1st, 2016 12:14 pm
denise: Image: Me, facing away from camera, on top of the Castel Sant'Angelo in Rome (Default)
[staff profile] denise posting in [site community profile] dw_maintenance
We have now cut over to our new hardware! If you can see this, the site should be working for you.

Things you don't need to tell us about:

* The site may look a little weird or naked for a while as your computer/network/ISP/etc catches up with the switch.
* Comment notification emails should be going out properly, but inbound email (post-by-email and comment-by-email) may be delayed for a bit while your outgoing mail server catches up with the switch.
* The site search database is a few days out of date (missing entries from the past two days) and will catch up over the next few days. Entries and comments posted since the site came back up will be added to the index when they're posted.

Known issues:

* Accessing the site will be slow for a while as the caches warm back up, and you may receive Gateway Timeout errors.
* Due to the occasional database connection problem due to high load and site slowness earlier, some comments did not generate emailed notifications and those notifications can't be re-sent. New comments made since we resolved the DB problems are generating email notifications, but slowly (due to the general database slowness).
* Logging in to other sites using your Dreamwidth OpenID is broken (& we'll fix it as soon as we can!)

Let us know if you see anything else weird!
[syndicated profile] kirkus_kidlit_feed
As I write this, it’s November 9, the morning after election night. I, like many Americans, am in shock over the results. Stunned and saddened that Donald J. Trump is President-elect of the United States, that racism and bigotry and blatant misogyny and xenophobia and many more hate-filled ideologies won the day. I normally write here about children’s literature and submit my words to an editor at Kirkus. (Ahem, now is when I should note the all-important disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of Kirkus Reviews.) But I find myself unable today to fully and accurately communicate anything other than a kind of monosyllabic despair over the state of our country. Or at least it feels that way, even if I’m managing to string some words together here. As a woman and the mother of daughters, today is especially hard (though I can’t even fathom how much harder today must be for minorities). So, here I am, stuttering and stumbling about.

Tinyville's Architect

Dec. 1st, 2016 05:23 pm
[syndicated profile] kirkus_kidlit_feed
Big. Bright. Friendly. A crowd pleaser. These are just some of the words the Kirkus review uses to describe Brian Biggs’ Tinyville Town Gets to Work!, the picture book launch of his new Tinyville Town series. Fans of his Everything Goes series know what’s in store when Biggs is behind books for preschool-aged children – engaging text and art that informs and entertains and never once talks down to readers.

Love Without Borders

Dec. 1st, 2016 04:58 pm
[syndicated profile] kirkus_ya_feed
Daniel is a first-generation Korean-American. He’s the younger of two, and until his brother’s recent fall from grace, hadn’t had to deal so much with parental pressure to succeed. Now that’s all changed, and despite his utter lack of interest in the sciences—and his ambivalence about going to college, period—he’s expected to get into Yale, to go to med school, to become a doctor.

Coming of Age in Palestine

Dec. 1st, 2016 04:58 pm
[syndicated profile] kirkus_ya_feed
As my stitches healed she called me hassan saby, tomboy, and kept saying, “This is the result of doing what you were told not to do.” I looked away and said to myself: This is the result of not having the right-size bicycle.

WTF, Crown?

Dec. 1st, 2016 04:58 pm
[syndicated profile] kirkus_ya_feed
One of the hazards of pre-publication reviewing is that the books we are evaluating are still works in progress. They're mostly finished, but many are still going through copy editing and proofreading. We check quoted language with the publisher to make sure it hasn't changed and learn sometimes that it has. Other times we will simply describe something that has been changed, and the publisher will let us know.

WTF, Crown?

Dec. 1st, 2016 04:50 pm
[syndicated profile] vicky_smith_kirkus_feed
One of the hazards of pre-publication reviewing is that the books we are evaluating are still works in progress. They're mostly finished, but many are still going through copy editing and proofreading. We check quoted language with the publisher to make sure it hasn't changed and learn sometimes that it has. Other times we will simply describe something that has been changed, and the publisher will let us know.

Words About Words

Dec. 1st, 2016 04:50 pm
[syndicated profile] vicky_smith_kirkus_feed
Books about words are not for everybody, but for many readers—and I am one of them—they are sheer joy. If you are a lover of words as well as a lover of books, this harvest season has a bumper crop of delights for you.
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