Middle Eastern food?

Jul. 20th, 2017 05:51 pm
cos: (Default)
[personal profile] cos posting in [community profile] davis_square
We were in Davis Square a couple of evenings ago when someone said they wanted Middle Eastern food. Other than Amsterdam Falafel, I couldn't think of anywhere right there. I know Sabur in Teele Sq, which is kind of Middle Eastern (and pretty fancy). Googling around didn't turn up anything else in Davis Square, though I found a Lebanese place on Mass Ave nearby which I don't remember trying. Anyone know of any Middle Eastern food in Davis Square, or others a short walk away that you like?
siderea: (Default)
[personal profile] siderea
Can somebody update me on the present legal status in the US of graphical user interfaces as intellectual property? Am I correct in believing they can't be patented (though the code can be copyrighted)?

What I really want to know: Can I rip off GVoice's old/retired web interface legally? Or more accurately, can I pay somebody else to do it for me with reasonable ability to assure them they won't go to jail or get sued into oblivion for doing it?

To be clear, there are some nifty functional subtleties I'd want to make off with, which I wouldn't even want to bother pretending I came up with on my own. For instance, there's some interesting algorithm for how texts are batched into threads which I haven't entirely reversed engineered, but make a huge difference in readability.
aldersprig: an egyptian sandcat looking out of a terra-cotta pipe (Default)
[personal profile] aldersprig
Chapter 32: Cynara
by Lyn Thorne-Alder


Sunday, December 10, 2000

“I need to go to the library for a couple hours.  I’ll be home by bedtime.”  Cynara held up her bookbag by way of illustration.  “Homework.”

“All right.”  Dysmas had the lazy, sated look he had after he’d fed.  “Be careful.”

“I always am.”  

She slipped out the door before he could give her any more orders that pulled and tugged at her mind like imperfect stitches, leaving little rows of discomfort she’d re-position herself to avoid.  She left before she had to look at Leo, or at Eriko, and remember to hide everything she was feeling.  

read on...
aldersprig: (Side Quest)
[personal profile] aldersprig
Eight: A Kiss

Raizel took breakfast in the inn’s bar the next morning, feeling well-rested, content, and ready to face the rest of her journey.  Perhaps she’d even hire a coach.

The barmaid leaned over the table while she was refilling Raizel’s mug.  “There are opportunities around here, you know, for someone as clever as Esterzon Gorenz says you might be.  And if you really destroyed that Black Missive he’s been going on about for years-”

Something about the barmaid, or maybe something about the pixie dust still brushed across Raizel’s eyelashes, was a little strange.  She looked closer - closer at the clever decolletage, that looked lower-cut and more dangerous than it was - and realized she could see a spark of divinity hiding in the woman’s chest.

Until then, she hadn’t know she could see such things.  Perhaps it was just the dust.

“I destroyed the Missive and the, ah, the multi-hued falcon, ma’am.”

read on…
desireearmfeldt: (Default)
[personal profile] desireearmfeldt posting in [community profile] davis_square
Anyone else getting constant flyovers most days and (more annoying) 2-4 large, low, LOUD flyovers between 10:45 pm and midnight every night?

City of Somerville advises you to call Massport and also 311 to report your complaint: http://www.somervillema.gov/departments/programs/reporting-airplane-noise

Massport politely took my complaint and promised me a written report.  311 said "people should totally call us about issues, no one ever calls us!", politely took my complaint, and said that various elected officials (including Rosetti, Capuano and some third person I'm forgetting, possibly the mayor) have been trying to get this mitigated, but not necessarily to much effect.

Desmond's Climb - Collar Rapport?

Jul. 18th, 2017 10:47 am
aldersprig: (lock and key)
[personal profile] aldersprig
First: Slaves, School
Previous: Portals


Kayay appeared as they were leaving Portals and heading for their next class. There was a tall, broad, rad-uniformed student on either side of Kayay, making Kayay look very small and very pitiful indeed.
Desmond knew anything he said would be taken wrong, but Jefshan and Wesley handled it, stepping forward and making fussing noises over Kayay, completely ignoring the goons of Physical Team that were clearly there to escort Kayay.

Once they were gone, possibly believing that the rest of Kayay’s dorm-mates would stop any future escape attempts, Kayay’s voice dropped to a whisper. “I found something.”

Desmond looked at Kayay and from there to the rest of their group. It was Jefshan that asked, carefully, “So… ‘something’? Like, an exit, a dragon, and room full of collars?”

“I found another stairway,” Kayay hissed. “LIke the first one. It was…”
Read more... )

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[tech, domesticity] Oy, Verizon

Jul. 17th, 2017 06:28 pm
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[personal profile] siderea
The one logistical thing that has not gone swimmingly with D's move to assisted living has been moving her landline.

The extent to which Verizon has screwed this up has been epic. [personal profile] tn3270 referred to it as a Russian novel.

Penultimately, I had a conversation with billing that went approximately thus:
Billing: Hello, Verizon Billing, this is [NAME]. How can I help you today?

Me: You can waive this month's bill because Verizon has screwed up two move orders so far, and the 90 year old account holder hasn't had access to her phone line for five days and counting. It's still not on at her new place, but I understand there's an expedited technician order for today. But who knows? You're the seventh Verizon employee I've talked to so far, and I've been told a variety of wrong and contradictory things every step of the way. This has been the worst corporate fiasco I've been involved with in years.

Billing: ...yes, we will totally credit the account for the month.

I had originally thought that we might have trouble because Verizon had security and stuff, and I wasn't the account holder (D) and I wasn't the contact on the account ([personal profile] tn3270). But no. I text chatted with Verizon in advance of putting in the order (CSR #1), and they told me what authentication tokens I needed to authorize the move order, I got them, and they worked fine when I put the order in.

No, everything went to hell apparently due to galloping incompetence on Verizon's (staff's) part(s).

Initially, I was told we didn't need a technician to come out for the line move, unless we wanted help plugging the phone into the wall; they could do it on their end. For the record, this is a good ol' fashioned POTS line, and moving within the same town. Fine. Once we'd nailed down the move date and booked movers – June 30th, to be precise – I got back in touch – btw, I was using the Verizon website realtime customer service chat, because I couldn't find a damn customer service phone number. It's 1800VERIZON, btw. So I fired up the chat thingy, and talked to a customer serv rep (CSR#2), who said they'd be happy to do the move order for me. Somewhere in the middle of the process, he apologized to me and said that the system was saying that a technician is required for that address; that there were no available technicians on the move in date, but could do the day after (7/13) between 1pm and 5pm, and it wouldn't cost anything to have the technician. I said to make it so, so he put the move order in. I asked him to confirm the service and he quotes me a price that I later find out is almost twice D's usual bill. I ask him whether he needs the account contact there to meet the technician, and he doesn't know, so he transfers me to another cust serv rep (CSR#3), who says, no, any adult who can let the tech in is fine, and who confirms the order is all complete, and (he specifically said this) the previous CSR did everything necessary.

Subsequently, [personal profile] tn3270 got a phone call from Verizon confirming the incipient move.

On Thursday, 7/13, 6pm no Verizon tech, and D's landline still has no dial tone at the new place, and is still working at her old place.

I am working until 9pm, so when I get home around 10pm, I get back on the text chat, and ask what happened. I'm informed they can find no move order on the account. The cust serv rep (CSR#4) asks if I have an ID number for the move order, and I don't have one. But they're happy to submit a new move order. Grrrrr. I say, yes, do it. After a long pause, the cust serv rep apologizes and says they can't do the move. Because it's a landline. The text-chat customer serv reps can't do landline moves. For that you have to call in. 8:00 AM and 9:00 PM EST Monday through Friday or 9:00AM to 5:00PM on Saturday. Also, he tells me, I might need to present paperwork in person at a local Verizon office.

It's after 10pm on Thursday, so I have to wait until the phone is staffed again. Why they can have 24/7 text chat CSRs but not 24/7 phone CSRs, I don't know.

Other stuff comes up, that has priority Friday, so I don't get to call Verizon until Saturday, 7/15. The rep I speak to (CSR#5) tells me she sees no record of the move order for Thursday, but she can totally put in a move order for right now immediately. I say the guy I talked to on Thursday said I needed a technician and special documentation; she said she had no idea what he was on about, no technician was needed, and no, they didn't need any special documentation. She said it would be done by "5 today, though maybe really more like by midnight". I make her give me the order number for this move order.

Sunday, 7/16, still no dialtone at her new place, dialtone at the old place. Verizon is closed for phone calls.

Today, Monday, 7/17, I call Verizon and ask WTELF. The CSR (CSR#6) calls up the account and says, "Oh, I see you had a move order for last Thursday." "WAIT. WUT. You can see that order? I was told you guys had no record of that order!" I make him read me the order number; so now I have the order numbers for both move orders that failed to happen. He then apologizes on Verizon's behalf and tells me they over-booked technicians, and that is why no technician came out. "BUT, BUT, WAIT. NOBODY EVER CALLED OR EMAILED. I WAS TOLD THERE WAS NO ORDER. THE LAST PERSON TOLD ME WE DIDN'T NEED A TECHNICIAN AT ALL." The CSR apologized again, and said he'd put the order in, and expedite it, and a technician would be by today.

Then I explained that I wanted the bill credited, and he referred me to billing (CSR#7), who both credited the bill ([personal profile] tn3270 has already got the confirmation email) and confirmed her service level and price, contra CSR#2.

Miraculously, a Verizon technician actually showed up at the assisted living facility today. He did a bunch of stuff, including something in the network closet and sticking some sort of probe in her wall socket, and assured us everything in the building is all set.

She still doesn't have dialtone, though; the technician confidently told [personal profile] tn3270 that the problem was on the pole outside. They'll have a lineman deal with that tomorrow (Tuesday, 7/18).

Next up, contacting the Mass DTC to see about filing an official complaint.
aldersprig: (AylaWorried)
[personal profile] aldersprig
Chapter 31: Abednego
by Lyn Thorne-Alder


Friday, December 8, 2000

“I keep saying that wasn’t me, it wasn’t him!  It’s not how these things work!” Rafe had been arguing with Joff on and off since the - the thing.  The demon, Abednego called it in his mind, even though he’d been through enough history classes here to know that demon was usually another word for faerie.  Close enough, in his estimation.

“Look, it might not have been you, but - things have to change, Rafe.  What are you doing to the kid?”

No, not this again.  The last time they’d had this argument, the demon had come.  

read on...
aldersprig: (wine)
[personal profile] aldersprig
This weekend was busy! In the fun way, albeit not the productive way

Friday night, I had dinner with [personal profile] kelkyag and [personal profile] sauergeek, who happened to be “passing through” (within an hour of me), at one of my favorite Finger Lakes restaurants, Stone Cat. We plotted and talked fiction and families and many other things, and then, oops, it was 10, so we departed.

Saturday, T. and I went to the Canandaigua Craft festival, where T> bought me an amber necklace and earrings and I bought me two more pairs of earrings from my new favorite local craft show earring vendor.

Then we took longer than planned to finish the drive, which ended at Capriox’s & Talkian’s house for a baby! shower! Baby shower! That was the chillest, most comfy pool-party/picnic/baby shower I have ever been to, and I have dozens of geeky baby onesie ideas in case another one of my geek friends has a baby.

(My contribution, along with some knitted burp cloths ‘cause nothing else got finished, was a John Deere onesie and slipper-socks.)
Read more... )
...wow.

How was YOUR weekend?
aldersprig: (AylaWorried)
[personal profile] aldersprig
Chapter 30: Arnbjörg
by Lyn Thorne-Alder


Saturday, December 2, 2000

Arnbjörg stumbled out of Jaya’s room sleepily Saturday morning to find the whole crew-plus sitting around the TV.  She checked herself compulsively: yes, she was wearing pajamas, yes, they covered everything, yes her hair was tolerable.

“Late night?” Sheba asked.  “Jaya said you were out at the dance forever.”

Arnbjörg looked away.  “Jaya wasn’t having fun.”  She noticed Jaya wasn’t saying anything.  “But I was having a good time with the cy’Luca boys.”

read on...

Enlightenment apostasy

Jul. 15th, 2017 12:09 pm
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[personal profile] dpolicar
(A friend recently posted about feeling depressed at the extent to which people seem perfectly content to embrace beliefs about the world that fly in the face of our observations of it. This started out as a comment and got out of hand.)

Yeah, I hear that.

That said: I find it really helps me, when I'm disoriented in the way you describe, to remember that the Enlightenment is fairly recent, historically speaking.

The idea that we can arrive at accurate beliefs about the world by observing it, studying it, experimenting with it, taking careful records, making predictions and checking to see whether our predictions are accurate... that idea is just a few centuries old.

The idea that we can converge on beliefs about the world through that process...
That the same experiment can be expected to get the same result whether performed by Christians or Jews or Pagans or atheists, by conservatives or liberals, by materialists or spiritualists...
That the observable world itself can be the source of a set of shared self-reinforcing beliefs...
That reliance on that process can form the cornerstone of a community just as reliance on a set of stories about God that we inherited from our ancestors does...

...these are really new ideas, historically speaking. Our culture has not fully assimilated them, not even close. Most of us weren't raised in the community of believers in the process of observing our surroundings and reasoning about them rigorously and communicating about them reliably. We don't really have social practices that reinforce that process.

So, sure, we often reject it. We often stray from that path and return to the older practice of performing culturally endorsed beliefs about reality in order to reinforce group boundaries and affirm group loyalty without reference to a shared observational practice.

That's unsurprising. Humans have been doing that before we have records; probably since before we were recognizably human.

And the alternative is genuinely hard! And honestly, as community-centering practices go, it lacks a lot: it de-centers individuals, it doesn't directly address moral issues, it doesn't distinguish between emotionally satisfying and emotionally alienating claims, it doesn't speak to our fears about nonexistence and loneliness, etc.

The one thing it has going for it is a promise to converge on shared truths if followed assiduously.

And for a lot of us that just isn't enough, or isn't always enough. We may embrace the tangible benefits of the practice, the tools and medicines and crop yields and cherry-picked theories that reinforce our culturally endorsed beliefs, but we tend to reject the practice itself. Heck, even the thing we call "science" is riddled with those practices, like any other human institution. Those habits run deep.

So, sure, of course we continue to practice the old ways, choosing the practice of performing cultural beliefs despite contradictory observations over the practice of centering and converging on observable patterns in reality.

We will continue to do that for a long, long time. It's a natural consequence of being the sort of systems we are.

So anyway, as I say, remembering that helps me approach Enlightenment apostasy with compassion during periods where I start to fear it as the end of the world. And I find that helps.

A New World, a beginning of a story

Jul. 14th, 2017 02:31 pm
aldersprig: (kai-sky)
[personal profile] aldersprig
Kael drifted off in a haze of fumes.

It hadn’t been exactly what she’d intended to do, but the Blessed Mugwort and the Watery Cress together ought to create a long and dreamless, ageless and still sleep, even if she’d been aiming for more of a quiet watching throughout the ages. Something must have gotten in the mix - probably that last batch of adventurers.

Kael dreamed of a time when such idiots didn’t come traipsing through, just because her tower was black, or just because they’d heard that she was generous with the potions that they needed.

She closed her eyes. This hadn’t been meant to put her to sleep. It really ought to bother her, she thought.

But it was such a nice dreamy sleep. And she couldn’t hear the stupid adventurers anymore.



Read more... )

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[personal profile] mem_winterhill posting in [community profile] davis_square
I'm sensing a new civic engagement period underway--which I hope will persist. But it may be instructive to hear about previous periods of this as well.

Via Mike Connolly on twitter: https://twitter.com/MikeConnollyMA/status/885681479883395072

http://www.cambridgeday.com/2017/07/13/radical-gathers-activists-from-60s-today-to-look-at-the-history-and-future-of-protest/

TL,DR + Event details: Historians, 60s activists, current activists will speak to activism in our area and in their eras. "There’s one more treat in store: In addition to panel discussions, there will be a free custom ice cream flavor from Toscanini’s made in honor of the 1960s." I have no idea what 60s ice cream is.

July 29
11:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.
lecture hall of the Cambridge Main Library
449 Broadway, Mid-Cambridge

Continuing Space Opera

Jul. 14th, 2017 10:58 pm
rix_scaedu: (cat wearing fez)
[personal profile] rix_scaedu
Clancy and Pae'kura have updated over on Patreon for my patrons! I have fallen behind my desired posting schedule and I'm trying to catch up. :)

I hope those of you who are reading it, enjoy it.

The Hidden Mall part IX

Jul. 14th, 2017 08:40 am
aldersprig: drawing of the author (LynLyn)
[personal profile] aldersprig
Part I
Part II
Part III
Part IV
Part V
Part VI
Part VII
Part VIII

🏬🛍️
The door opened into sunshine.

That was at the same time the best and worst thing Abigail could think of. She dragged Liv into the sunshine, refusing to let go of her arm.

They were in an atrium, one a lot like the center of their mall - the mall they’d started out in. Sunlight poured in from the windows above. Trees grew up and over the center garden, and fountains bubbles and burbled through the trees.
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aldersprig: (Side Quest)
[personal profile] aldersprig
Seven: Moving On

The black-and-blue light danced upwards like a geyser and then seemed to be sucked downwards, towards the books.

​”No!” Trinner Traln shouted.  Raizel glanced at him just in time to see him jerk away from Esterzon Gorenz and dart towards the idol.

The blue-black light seemed to suck him in.  No, sucked in a portion of him, a light like that from the idol.  It pulled out a Trinner-Traln-shaped shadow of strange mystical light and the whole thing was sucked into one of the tomes.

The specter was there in front of Raizel again.  “Finally,” it croaked.  It settled atop Trinner Traln - and was gone.

Among the tools in the chest was a flint and steel.  Raizel lit a small fire and burnt all of the tomes, watching as the flames danced black and blue, stinking of evil.

read on…

Change of Pace - more Beauty-Beast

Jul. 13th, 2017 01:25 pm
aldersprig: (lock and key)
[personal profile] aldersprig
First: M/m Keeper/Kept
Previous: Good Kitten


As if understanding how overwhelmed Ctirad was feeling, Timaios gave him simple, direct orders for breakfast. “Sit here by me on the bed, we’ll eat off the lap tables, and eat as much as you want to eat but no more.” Ctirad, freshly scrubbed but still feeling like his brain was foggy and strange, managed a quiet “yes, sir” and nothing more.

Timaios left him sitting like that on the bed while he dressed and cleaned up for the day. Ctirad had fallen into a pleasant trance of time-to-my-self-in-comfort by the time he felt his master’s hand on his chin.

“You would tell me if something was wrong, correct?”

Not normally. This was not normal. Ctirad reviewed the day and found himself blushing. “Sir, I. That was wonderful. I liked it. I wanted it. I just… you’re so uh. I.” He couldn’t look away but he focused on Timaois’ lips and not his eyes.

“May I guess?”
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Funeral: Shower Negotiations

Jul. 13th, 2017 01:03 pm
aldersprig: (Ciara)
[personal profile] aldersprig
First: Funeral
Previous: Funeral: Kitchen Negotiations


“They’ll be at it all night,” she whispered as she led him upstairs. “Or at least a few hours. They always are. It’s how they handle… being them. All right, here’s the shower. You’re not body-shy, are you?”

“What?” He stared at her, and then at the bathroom - so suburban, with its pastel decorations clashing with the Human Anatomy shower curtain Chitter had insisted on.

“Your body? Can I see it naked?”

“…you Own me. You were there for that part, right? The part where you agreed to own me as your Bound Servant?”

“I was there.” If she was the sort of owner he thought she was, she might slap him for that tone, but she was pretty sure that wasn’t where she wanted to go with this and even more sure that it wouldn’t change his behavior in any helpful way. “And I’m asking. Can I see you naked?”

“…You really are young,” he muttered again, not quite looking at her.
Read more... )

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[personal profile] ron_newman posting in [community profile] davis_square
Because of threatened rain tomorrow night, the Friday night part of ArtBeat, in Seven Hills Park, will instead take place Saturday night, after the regularly scheduled Saturday daytime ArtBeat events.

Full information here: http://somervilleartscouncil.org/artbeat/2017

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