Professionalism. I Are It.

​L’esprit du bouton de publication.

Lit. “The spirit of the publish button”.

That feeling you get when you post up a lengthy item about the new Doctor being a woman and the ruckus it’s caused in Certain Quarters, and only afterwards do you realise you obviously should have titled the post The Oncoming Storm.

Bugger.

Sod it. If Cracked can change a title after the fact, I’m damn sure a nothing blog like this can do it.

See! Marvel at my professionalism!

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The Oncoming Storm (See? Much Better.)

Woot, yay and so forth. Doctor Who finally did it.

After years of speculation and several seasons of kind-of-on-the-nose-especially-recently telegraphing, the series has announced that the thirteenth (ish*) regeneration of the good Doctor will be played by a woman.

Change has come. And, it seems, not a moment too soon — as someone once said.

Jodie Whittaker was announced in the part in a short teaser following the Wimbledon men’s final yesterday afternoon, and the Internet — at least the British sci-fi watching sector of it — has done its raving na-na. In, as always in these divisive times, two fearsomely opposing directions.

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You Press This Pedal To Make It Go

I blame Elite: Dangerous.

I think that’s what started it off.

Driving that damnable SRV around on planetary surfaces, boinging hilariously off mountains and crunching through little valleys, and sneaking up on drones and doing involuntary pirouettes any time I tried to get any speed up on an icy world. It ended up being quite fun. And I think it was helped to be fun by the joystick setup I settled on, whereby I mapped the steering control to the twist function of the stick, rather than the roll function.

srvdark

In space, no-one can hear you misjudge an outcrop and bounce down a canyon

That’s to say, I now twist the stick around its vertical axis rather than leaning it from side to side. It’s designed as a rudder control for aeroplanes, but I’ve found it makes a much easier and more responsive steering method for ground vehicles too. I use it for my trucks in Euro Truck Simulator 2 and American Truck Simulator, and it turns out it does rather well for cars, too.

ets2sunset

Brrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr-rrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr-rrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr

I’ve never been a car-game sort of person before. Cars don’t interest me much. I’ve never much understood them beyond “you press this pedal to make it go”, and the inner workings of them have always seemed entirely arcane. My usual explanation to mechanics is that as far as I’m concerned the whole thing could be run by goblin magic, and my attitude is that if they’re going to cheat me with unnecessary work they might as well get on with it because I won’t ever know the difference.

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Laying Off The Politics. Mostly.

One of the main aims of this site – whatever it ends up being about – is to try to help me wean myself off writing and posting about politics and do some exploring of the other stuff that interests me in life. I know I probably come over a bit one-dimensional — especially if you’ve followed me on Twitter.

The trouble is, politics interests me. It also angers and infuriates me. I think it’s all rather important — especially at the moment. I make no excuses or apology for the political positions I hold.

I assume if any of my politics stances bother you you haven’t been following me on social media — but if you have, then this post is to explain that I’m going to try to focus less on politics for the time being.

If you do follow me because you agree with my political views, or I agree with yours (whichever you think’s more appropriate), know that those views haven’t changed and won’t change. Although whether you want to continue to follow or not is obviously up to you.

But for now, I want to try to focus myself and my writing time on other things; the things I’ve mentioned in my About Me page, and whatever else might crop up. Those things might prove to be tedious rubbish, or at least thoroughly inept writing, but I want to give them a bit of a dust off and see where they take me.

Really Impressive Ridges

Oof. Another bump, another crack of teeth against teeth, and another game attempt by my spine to smash its way out of my lower back.

That last ridge was a doozy. And this has been a whole planet covered in some really impressive ridges, peppered with some evil hidden dips that seem practised at hiding where even the shadows from the low evening sun don’t betray them.

How’s the hull? Hmm. The indicator’s giving me a cheery 43% structural integrity rating, which doesn’t give me a good feeling. I consider just turning around. But… There’s the money to think about. I can’t feed myself with a rover sitting in the hangar and not going anywhere.

Thump. Ow.

I mean, I suppose I could slow down… But time is the essence of at least part of the contract. If I don’t pick the material up soon, someone else will, and that’ll create all sorts of political problems for the ruling faction: a breakdown of negotiations, a resumption of cold conflict, possibly leading to strategic blockades, bringing food scarcity, public disorder, a security crackdown, increasing authoritarianism and eventual formation of a totalitarian dictatorship in the system.

Worse still, I won’t get paid.

Bang. Dammit.

A light on the dash is shining brightly. It’s not a good light. It’s telling me…

Crunch

…that my hull’s now stable and reliable to the tune of 36% of its original manufacture.

Well, nothing if not reckless. 36% is over a third. So I’m fine. I’m fine.