reihanfeoru: Golden Nidorina (Default)

So... I finished my kink reference recently, and came to some...other decisions.

First and foremost, my sona. "Queen Star Seer" and "Reihanfeoru" will be separate characters not tied to my sona. In fact, they may end up separate characters entirely.

Instead, my sona--my representation of myself--will be me: the Legecian Alutrskia Emakrila (Ah-lut-rashk-ina Em-ahk-rei-lah) (Alutrskian Prism Dragon) and author, Teradyne Ezeri. The only "alternate personas" I'll have tied to myself are my Allomeran teacher's assistant and Arceko handler, Sekisunaki, and the "Squeak Shack House AI" persona I use on Second Life among friends, N1D0-32352 "Sekisunaki". Alternate forms will be fine, but... that's about it.

I made this decision to simplify myself, and I'm already feeling...relieved would be the best term I can think of.

There's more coming regarding my stories in the next part. I just need time to finalize a lot of it.

reihanfeoru: Golden Nidorina (Default)

So... I've been having issues with writing. I just can't write anything. I keep having anxiety attacks just looking at a blank document, much less trying to type any fiction.

Tonight, it dawned on me why I've had a lot of trouble...

I'm over-complicating myself, and my Delta Worlds multiverse.

I write organic stories, or at least I try to. I despise the forced nature of many storylines within books and TV shows, especially here in the US, and as such, I do my damnedest to keep my own style in the way I like my stories.

But I failed at that for a while.

When I created "Queen Star Seer" and the Butterfly Kingdom, I made a mistake: I used my own personal representation as that character. And I made them extremely complex. Their abilities, their motives, their very story... It all became forced, and I didn't realize it.

I'm going to start fixing that mistake. I'm going to make the storyline less forced, and in the process, refine "myself", so to speak. What that entails, I'll explain as I go along. For now, I need sleep.

reihanfeoru: Golden Nidorina (Default)

So, when I woke up this afternoon, I opened my laptop to find... a blue screen of death. One caused by the Discord app. I ended up losing about an hour's worth of work in Word for my troubles.

To be honest, I'm tired of Discord fucking up every system of mine that it touches. It's very clear the thing was intended to be a web app, and its use of Electron instead of native code shows that. Electron has the same problem as Chrome, though: poor memory management, which causes memory usage to accumulate almost endlessly. That leak's been there for a LONG time, and it shows through loud and clear with Discord.

Of course, that's not even counting the times Discord has taken priority for my sound and video, causing all sorts of problems while I'm...you know, GAMING!

Skype has never had this problem, nor have IRC, XMPP, Mumble, TeamSpeak... Note that THREE of those have voice chat (Jingle for XMPP), and all of them have both private and group chat capabilities. IRC, XMPP, and Mumble are also open source, and can be set up rather easily. There are also a craptonne of clients for IRC and XMPP to choose from, where there's only one Discord, Skype, and TeamSpeak client respectively.

Sadly, in the end. it all comes down to what other people use, and most people want the "easy" route. Discord is much more user-friendly (for most people), just as Skype was. For me, though... Discord is virtually unusable.

And for those who say "well, Skype is unusable for me!", my suggestion is to not silo yourself to one or two closed chat solutions. Not everyone can use Discord, just as not everyone can use Telegram. If you're going to silo yourself like that, please pick something more open, where everyone who wants to use it has a choice of what applications they can use. It makes things less painful on everyone trying to contact you.

reihanfeoru: Golden Nidorina (Default)

(Disclaimer: I'm not a fan of Wikipedia, nor will I ever be one. My opinion is that their policies allow for the production of garbage articles that get far too much attention in search queries. That said...)

Okay, so Burger King almost introduced a new advert made to trigger Google Home devices, but was thankfully stopped by both Google and Wikipedia in doing so due to just what they did. But... there's another side to this one that I'd like to bring up. One that only a few people have thought of.

Now, to give a short rundown of what happened: Burger King was going to deploy a new advert which included the following line: "Okay, Google. What is the Whopper burger?" They also edited the "first line" of the Whopper Wikipedia article to give a description of the product that sounded slightly like an ad copy. This would cause any Google Home device to read that first line from Wikipedia. However, Google blocked the search term from working on those devices, and Wikipedia reverted the edits.

Honestly, I think Google and Wikipedia did the right thing...even though it kinda comes at a cost.

See, there's something about this that kinda got me thinking about voice assistants like Google Home, Amazon Echo, Cortana, and Siri that use information from locations like Wikipedia. If you're asking what something is, and it's only giving you the first line or so from the article, wouldn't it be better for a description of the product or item to be in that first line? I mean, if you actually needed to search for something like this, which would be more informative from a voice assistant?

"The Whopper is a burger, consisting of a flame-grilled patty made with 100 percent beef with no preservatives or fillers, topped with sliced tomatoes, onions, lettuce, pickles, ketchup, and mayonnaise, served on a sesame-seed bun."

or

“The Whopper sandwich is the signature hamburger product sold by the international fast-food restaurant chain Burger King and its Australian franchise Hungry Jack's.”

In my opinion, the former (sans the advert crap that I struck out) would be far more helpful than the line that's currently in the beginning of the article. It's also very factual. I mean, I know Wikipedia cares only about whether something can be verified--factual or not--but it makes the service more useful outside of the usual "not really an encyclopedia, only plays one on TV" vibe that it normally gives off.

Someone else pointed this out (I can't link because the comment has been removed), but in some ways, it even slightly discredits Wikipedia, and does a disservice to its users. Editing the ad copy flair out would have been more than acceptable in any other circumstance, but instead, they reverted to the relatively useless information on principal.

I still commend them for not allowing Burger King to get free advertising through manipulation of their service, but at the same time, I think it could have been handled better. Just something to think about.

reihanfeoru: Golden Nidorina (Default)

I've noticed more and more people switching to Discord and Telegram. That's normal. People aren't happy with how haphazardly Microsoft is treating Skype, and need something they can rely on. Thing is...I'm having the opposite problem.

Discord chews through system resources, and ends up making things fairly unstable. I've had outright BSoDs caused by the desktop app (a glorified web app), and I can't play any games while it's up, or else I suffer from lower framerates and outright system lag. That's when it's not taking sound and video priority away from any other application I'm running, of course. Even running it in Chrome seems to cause the same issues.

It's just... I thought Skype was a mess, then I tried Discord. I at least have some good periods with Skype, but not with Discord. It's been a pain since I first started using it.

And I'm not the only one who has problems. My mate Sildrae's desktop chugs when Discord's open. He has to close it before playing a game. Even Team Fortress 2 gets visible frame drops if they're both running.

Skype hasn't given me nearly as many problems, and that's including having the entire application unusable for a while. At least it didn't cause BSoDs. It crashed gracefully. There's nothing graceful about Discord crashing.

 

Of course, Skype has issues on mobile devices, and the desktop app is a pain at times. There's also the OAuth issues that keep causing hijacked accounts to appear (not to mention the actual users who don't secure their systems or accounts, and blame the platform for their own mistakes). I'll whole-heartedly admit to those issues. But that's going to happen with Discord once it really takes off.

Like Windows, Skype is a very popular platform for both normal users and businesses. It's a massive target. Black hat hackers are going to target it like crazy. Discord's growing popularity will end up causing the exact same problem, though.

Admittedly, Skype really needs to get rid of the whole OAuth thing, or at least limit it extensively. Like with Twitter, it's nothing more than a huge security headache right now, since most users click through without making sure the application they're approving won't hijack their account. But that's not going to happen without a lot more complaints.

 

In the end, technology just sucks from a security perspective.

reihanfeoru: Golden Nidorina (Default)

I'm not going to directly call out who said this (it's my blog, get the fuck over it), but it's something that's been on my mind. This idea that (paraphrasing) "all works are political, whether or intentional or not"...

Why is this weighing on my mind? Because the thought that something simple that I write being taken in such extreme ways kinda kills the enjoyment I get out of writing. The idea that someone is going to take any potentially offensive word they find in my stories and use it against me...

I said it before, and I'll say it again: I've been on the bad side of online lynch mobs, and that sort of shit never leaves you. Even if you did nothing wrong, you start looking at things you post online as potential ammo for people in the politically correct side of the equation to use against you. It's TERRIFYING, but that's what many people have turned into. "Us or them", "get the word out that $x is $y", etc... People don't treat others as people anymore.

And for those who seem to shrug this, off, don't forget that I'm wanting to become a writer as a career. Even if I'm not doing commission work, a bad public image can outright kill any chance of that happening, especially since I don't have an established fanbase to counter any false claims that come down on me. It's something all independent artists and authors worry have to deal with when they're starting out.

I don't make political works. I want nothing to do with politics. So when I'm being told that my works will be regarded as political no matter what, that really doesn't encourage me at all. In fact, it outright discourages me from even attempting to write.

So yeah... Just needed to get that off my chest.

reihanfeoru: Golden Nidorina (Default)

So, some things happened on Twitter, and I freaked out. I won't go into what happened, as that's not important as far as this blog post. What is important about the incident is what followed: someone fucked up, and a mob formed.

"So what? It doesn't involve you, does it?" you may ask.

Well, yes and no.

See, I don't follow the person who fucked up. I haven't for a long time, thanks to politics being talked about on their timeline. However, that doesn't keep people from using three tools, two of which I saw in use during this shitstorm:

  1. Retweets, which can be muted ONLY when they are native retweets. (Wasn't used directly, but still relevant) 
  2. "Subtweets" and Public Replies (dot before the username), which can only be muted if you mute the user entirely.
  3. Replies between two or more people you follow, even if the rest of the conversation isn't visible. Can only be muted by muting the user.

Now, here's the problem: these two methods used during the shitstorm can't be muted without muting or unfollowing a user. Why is this bad? Because muting them mutes everything they do in your timeline. Unlike Facebook and Google+, where you can mute conversations and posts on their own, Twitter doesn't offer that feature. In fact, #3 was added recently to "encourage engagement among users", and just like Quote Retweets, there's no way to turn off the feature. I've even seen it crop up in Tweetdeck.

These are people I enjoy speaking with on occasion, and muting them keeps their DMs and Replies from even showing up in your notifications. If you mute someone, it's as if you unfollowed them, even though you still follow them. So that's not really a solution on Twitter. You, as the user, are backed into a corner, and will lose no matter what.


So...There's obviously an underlying reason why I'm explaining this, and here it is...

Some people are triggered by words bringing up bad memories or feelings. For me, it's seeing people ganged up on by an internet mob. I've gone through this mob hell in THREE SEPARATE INCIDENTS, two of which I can recant easily, and the last I've effectively blocked from my mind.

Back when I was a YouTuber, I was targeted by a channel that took videos and overlayed commentary from the hosts. In the case of this channel, it was mostly tasteless (but funny) humor, and I didn't mind too much. What I did mind was that their fans were trashing my channel with hateful comments, encouraging me to commit suicide, and so on. That wasn't too bad, but I couldn't clean it up since it was flowing in faster than I could stop it. Turning off comments on one video lead them to go to other videos, and back then, you couldn't mass-close videos.

Then, thanks to someone tearing down the videos that mocked me and ending up having the channel suspended, people went full-tilt on me with hate and threats. This included death threats. Of course, back then Google cared about such issues almost as much as they do now—so as to say they didn't give a shit, and still don't. It all went by without aid from Google, and in the end, I gave up on YouTube. I even got an Encyclopedia Dramatica page for my troubles...


The second incident involved my old blog from a LONG time ago. I'd just bought an HP desktop that refused to boot, I speculated as to why, but I didn't know what it was. I was pissed, and it seemed to be SecureBoot and UEFI at fault. I mention this, but I didn't know what it was, and left it at that.

Later on, I noticed that the views on my blog shot up. Found out that a Free Software fanatic on Identi.ca (a StatusNet/GNU Social instance) shared my blog entry, and it spread to HackerNews...then Reddit...then a SLEW of sites—many of them Russian and Spanish language sites, so I didn't know what was being said. It eventually ended with me being attacked on my own blog, said blog (on Wordpress.com at the time)  being DDoSed off the net, me being attacked on HackerNews and Reddit, people claiming that the sharer was me, and me getting doxed by someone on Reddit. A FUCKTON of shit happened, I had threats and hate thrown at me from every direction, and in most cases, I couldn't fight back without looking the aggressor!!!!!

It put me in a dark place back then, and I'm not afraid to admit that.


 Now, think what this does to someone who isn't really fond of crowds in general. It's a fucking mess, and it made me a mess. When I see it happening to others, it brings back those memories, and it makes me want to withdraw from the internet even more. Twitter is a place where one fuck-up can ruin you for life now—or, you know, making you the fucking President of the United States, but that's neither here or now.

The point is: I've been there. I've been at the bad end of mobs, and it's NOT fun. In fact, it's terrifying. Think about that when you think that holding someone accountable in the court of public opinion is the best option to deal with an asshole. You might not be thinking that if you find out they committed or attempted suicide because of the resulting mob backlash. And if you do...well, you have different morals than I do.

reihanfeoru: Golden Nidorina (Default)

I will not give an introduction yet, as I wish to speak about why I created a new blog/account.

I decided that I would begin bringing everything I do online under one name: Reihanfēoru/Reihanfeioru (ray-han-feh-oh-roo). This name is from my Arcegaō (Are-seh-ga-ooh) conlang, and roughly translates to "star-seer of the summer skies". I chose to use this name due to how unique it is, and the fact that it is a name I chose, not one that was given to me. It is not a rough transliteration of my true name, nor my current legal name.

It is also tied to the universe/multiverse that I have created, and in particular, the Arcekō (Are-seh-koh) culture that I have been creating. I am quite proud of it, even though I have little to show of it yet.

I had planned to start using this new name with the new lunar year, but due to other events, that was slightly delayed. However, I have now completed most of that transition, so to speak. I will soon have updated links to everything on my website, but for now, here's a list of places to find me:

https://twitter.com/reihanfeoru
https://www.furaffinity.net/user/reihanfeoru
https://reihanfeoru.sofurry.com/
https://inkbunny.net/reihanfeoru
https://www.weasyl.com/~reihanfeoru
https://reihanfeoru.tumblr.com/
https://beta.furrynetwork.com/reihanfeoru/
http://steamcommunity.com/id/star_seer


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