Playpen

Welcome to the Playpen, our space for ferrety banter and whimsical snippets of things that aren't quite long enough for articles (although they might be) but that caught your eye anyway.

at 22:44 on 20-05-2012, Arthur B
Easiest Text Factor ever.
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at 22:39 on 20-05-2012, Adrienne
I would totally listen to you all read the phonebook, though. :) I'm pathetic, i know!
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at 22:38 on 20-05-2012, Adrienne
Shimmin -- I sort of thought that? But then thought it wasn't squeaky enough. Apparently, then, there is a PARTICULAR southern British accent that hits me like nails-on-chalkboards, and that wasn't it.
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at 09:06 on 20-05-2012, Shim
@Adrienne: ...um, I'm not sure how to tell you this, but Dan has a southern accent...
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at 08:06 on 20-05-2012, Adrienne
So it's REALLY HARD to listen to this Peacast about 50 shades of gray. See, i have the standard American thing where i think that British accents are incredibly sexy, and so it is REALLY jarring to listen to Kyra and Dan talk about a book entirely filled with bad sex and worse dialogue... my brain can't make up its mind between "Oh my GOD i cannot listen to another word about this AWFUL book" and "oh my GOD i want to listen to these two for like another million years."

Sorry, Kyra and Dan. Your voices are hot. :) I'm a silly American that way.

(Okay, i have an exception to the standard American thing. I don't think Southern British accents are sexy. At least not mostly. I think they're squeaky. But otherwise? Yeah.)
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at 17:53 on 18-05-2012, Sunnyskywalker
For Jamie and Dorian, since I don't have one of these Tumblr thingies: Felix Gaeta on the Battlestar Galactica reboot loses a leg, which the show implies makes him a bitter and irrational mutineer (never mind that he had some legitimate grievances and no way to know his partner-in-mutiny was a psychopath); John de Brun in Crystal Rain by Tobias Buckell is missing a hand (it doesn't seem to slow him down much, though); Pepper loses an arm and a leg in Sly Mongoose by Tobias Buckell (which really doesn't slow him down...); and Jenna in The Silver Ship and the Sea by Brenda Cooper is missing an eye and an arm (and now I'm really starting to wonder what is up with cyborgs and genetically enhanced people proving how badass they are by not having trouble with missing limbs). Oh, and Anakin and Luke Skywalker and their lopped-off arms, easily replaced with super-duper prosthetics. I think one of the characters in Soon I Will Be Invincible regularly threw up due to complications of her human/alien hybrid biology, if he's counting superhero stuff. Oh, and then there is Captain Pike in the original Star Trek, who ended up totally immobile with only the power to beep, and his reboot counterpart who seems to be partly mobile (he could sorta walk when they first rescued him, anyway) but still benefits from a wheelchair. A disability that only exists in sf... um, in Caprica Zoe and Tamara die and now only exist as virtual copies in V-World, which has advantages but makes interacting with the real world difficult.

If he wanders into fantasy at all, there's Phoenix in The Phoenix Dance, who has what is recognizably bipolar disorder, and Orrec in Gifts by Le Guin, who at first appears not to have the gift of "unmaking" the rest of the guys in his family have, and then appears to develop it so powerfully and uncontrollably that he wears a blindfold so he doesn't accidentally destroy everything around him.
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at 15:29 on 18-05-2012, Arthur B
My new hero on Twitter is Anti-Racism Dog. The account's currently suspended but check this out.
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at 00:16 on 18-05-2012, Michal
*breaks into silent Count Fosco-like laughter*
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at 00:08 on 18-05-2012, Wardog
Oh no, how could ruin Wilde for me like that!

"I'm going to paint your portrait now," growled Basil. "Hard."
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at 23:49 on 17-05-2012, Michal
Then Kyra can explore the fifty shades of Dorian Gray.
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at 22:56 on 17-05-2012, Wardog
You have a friend called Dorian.

That is awesome.

I hope he has a picture.
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at 22:03 on 17-05-2012, Jamie Johnston
Hi all! My friend Dorian would be very grateful for help assembling examples of two things: first, depictions of disability in science fiction (including things that aren't real-world disabilities but function as disabling in the fictional setting); secondly, science fiction stage-plays and musicals. More details at his tumblr.
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at 21:28 on 17-05-2012, Adrienne
Aha. Gotcha. :)
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at 20:57 on 17-05-2012, Andy G
Adrienne: I didn't guess a name, I just guessed it was the state that fulfilled that description.
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at 20:42 on 17-05-2012, Adrienne
Andy G: Just out of curiosity, what was the name of the state you guessed originally?
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at 20:40 on 17-05-2012, Andy G
I didn't guess the name of the state but I did correctly guess
that it was the state where Interview with the Vampire was set, on account of it being all French.
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at 20:27 on 17-05-2012, James D
Trivia question for anyone who cares to play: which state does NOT, and what's its legal system based on instead?

Huh, I guessed Hawaii, but was wrong. I won't spoil the question in case anyone else wants to guess, it's kind of interesting.
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at 20:21 on 17-05-2012, Adrienne
Arthur: Having read Paragraph 3.21 of the document in question, I confess to finding it funny/ironic that one of the people who made the legal case that the skilled person is a nerd is apparently named Laddie.
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at 20:19 on 17-05-2012, Adrienne
(The test seems to have originated in a UK case, in fact.)


Ah, that makes sense, since the US federal government and 49 of 50 states and base their legal systems on British common law. :)

(Trivia question for anyone who cares to play: which state does NOT, and what's its legal system based on instead?) :D
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at 13:39 on 17-05-2012, Arthur B
Yes, that's also the test here. (The test seems to have originated in a UK case, in fact.)

The nerd ruling is enshrined at paragraph 3.21 of the UKIPO's Manual of Patent Practice. Which means they have to take it into account whenever they consider applications.
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at 13:03 on 17-05-2012, Adrienne
But the best thing about the skilled person is that in UK case law they've been legally declared a nerd.


HAH! I want to know that story!

The test over here for trademark infringement is that you are (probably) infringing if a moron in a hurry could mistake you for the actual mark holder.
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at 22:42 on 16-05-2012, Arthur B
(As an aside, US trademark law gave rise to what has to be my favorite NAME for a legal test ever. Most legal tests in US law are named either something boring -- "strict scrutiny", "rational basis" -- or they're named after the case that propounded them -- "Lemon test". However, the legal test for trademark infringement is commonly referred to -- even by the legal profession! -- as the "moron in a hurry" test.)

I dunno how it is in the US but over here IP lawyers have three imaginary friends, depending on which area they're currently working in: in ascending order of competence there's the average consumer in trademark law, the informed user in design law, and the skilled person in patent law. Each of them is, in their own way, entirely unlike an actual human being.

But the best thing about the skilled person is that in UK case law they've been legally declared a nerd.
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at 19:52 on 16-05-2012, Adrienne
Michal -- apparently more than just a couple issues. Just found this roundup on a horror writers' BBS.
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at 19:52 on 16-05-2012, Adrienne
James and Arthur: speaking of us being a rogue state, it irritates me how much our broken mythology about copyright has permeated everyone's brain. "Feminazgul" CANNOT be a copyright infringement. You can't copyright a single word. And it's not a trademark infringement, even if Nazgul is trademarked (and i have no idea), because there's no reasonable way anyone could be confused about Feminazgul referring to the same brand/item/thing as Nazgul.

(As an aside, US trademark law gave rise to what has to be my favorite NAME for a legal test ever. Most legal tests in US law are named either something boring -- "strict scrutiny", "rational basis" -- or they're named after the case that propounded them -- "Lemon test". However, the legal test for trademark infringement is commonly referred to -- even by the legal profession! -- as the "moron in a hurry" test.)
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