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|Thursday, March 6th, 2014|
I seemed to be logged in. I can post journals. I can read the articles on my friends page. I cannot however comment. There is a confusing array of menu items and logins, and none of any one else's comments are visible, let alone allowing me to comment. Something changed with Livejournal, and it isn't good. anyone else having problems? Anyone else have an explanation on how to fix this?
|Tuesday, February 11th, 2014|
|RIP Shirley Temple Black 1928 - 2014
A Local (Bay Area) UHF station (common in the days before cable) used to run Shirley Temple Movies on sunday mornings, when i was a kid, and while they didn't replace cartoons they did replace the bad ones in my watching (as Sundays were a desert of news chat, and religious programming back then)and I would occasionally watch. Now I have never been a fan of musicals, but the song and dance numbers in her films and the "strange but Catchy" music would catch my attention. she was always so cheerful and sunny, and the tap dancing was fascinating (especially with Bill "Bojangles" Robinson). But of all her songs, I think this one became my favorite, and i would hum it on rainy days, because I did like the rain.
Thanks for the entertainment.
|Tuesday, January 28th, 2014|
|Pete Seeger is dead...Yaaaaaay!
My parents listened to folk music. My parent's extensive collection of LPs contained a lot of Folk music from Joan Baez to the Kingston Trio, and my Dad who was a pipe smoking intellectual straight out of Camelot, was precisely that demographic that elevated hobo songs to elite cultural status.. Me? I Haaaaaated
folk music. I had an instinctual revulsion to the aesthetics of it, and still, to this day I dislike primarily vocal music with a small number of exceptions. But I also had a revulsion to the "sharing" aspect to it as well as the vague disrespect for status in it. In reading this morning on the death of Folk Singer Pete Seeger, who's early PBS singalongs were inflicted on me in my earliest school days in Seattle, I find out he was an unapologetic Communist. I also found out most of the "Working Class Balladeers" were also a bunch of Commies as well. That explains everything... I knew they were "darlings of the left" , but apologists for "Uncle Joe", and offering only weak tea, relativistic, apologies afterwards. The insincerity is obvious. I am glad the guy is dead.http://www.examiner.com/article/the-dark-side-of-pete-seeger
|Thursday, January 23rd, 2014|
|heading home tomorrow early
Bad circumstanced to gather, but it was very nice to spend time with the family up here in Santa Rosa.
Though because of events i will be heading to Kansas in the spring to help Mom work on the property there for a month. It will be about 20 years since I have been in Kansas.
|Tuesday, January 21st, 2014|
|R.I.P. William Lee Ruggels, May 15, 1934 - January 20th, 2014
William Lee Ruggels Died in Santa Rosa , CA, January 20th, 2014, at 79 years of age. He was born in Salina, Kansas, May 15, 1934, and was raised on a farm in Beverly, Kansas, by his parents, the late Albert Leroy Ruggels, and the late Rachel Ella (Bloomheart) Ruggels.
After graduating from Beverly High School, he earned a B.A. in Journalism and an M.A. in Agricultural Economics from Kansas State University. Having taken Air Force ROTC in college he then joined the U.S. Air Force. He served four years, mainly at Seymour Johnson AFB, as an Air Intelligence officer for the 4th Tactical Fighter wing, achieving the rank of Captain. He then earned a PhD. in Communications from Stanford University. He was married to Sigrid "Susie" von Keyserling at the Stanford Chapel in 1963.
Mr. Ruggels taught Journalism at the University of Washington for five years, then joined SRI International (formerly Stanford Research Institute) where he served as an international management consultant for 25 years. His particular area of expertise was Survey Research. He developed the Lifestyle Survey which he utilized in several contracts. Among his clients were governments, including Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Indonesia, Norway, as well as British Telecom, Japanese automotive companies, and the State of Hawaii. He also coached his kids' soccer teams, travelled, loved photography, and helped to guide those around him to achieve their goals.
Following his retirement in 1994, Mr. and Mrs. Ruggels purchased a Victorian home in Lindsborg, Kansas. They spent many hours restoring it to its original appearance, inside and out. The home was listed on the National Registry and Kansas State Roster of Historic Homes in 1999.
Survivors of Mr. Ruggels include: his wife of 50 years, his three children, Scott Ruggels of Los Angeles California, Michelle (Richard Hillis) Ruggels of San Francisco, California, and Craig (Calei) Ruggels of Santa Rosa California, six grandchildren, Ashlee, Olivia, Landon Ruggels, and Margaret, Liam, and Elliot Hillis. He also leaves behind his beloved sister Sandra Davis, many relatives and friends. (Memorial Service arrangements are pending by the family).
|Monday, January 20th, 2014|
Leaving for santa Rosa Right now. My father is in a bad way and it's not looking good. I willpost on what happes, but I don't expect to be back "shortly", Take care all.
|Sunday, January 5th, 2014|
|A Quick Update
In using the funds I earned to purchase a new computer, I neglected to pay the intenet bill. As such, i will be offline until sometime Thursday. But I should be back with a decent rig that wont choke running Photoshop, Maya, and a new browser at the same time. This will demote the old machine to a render farm of one. Using the skills I learned on that job I now have need of one. V_Ray produces damn pretty renders.
Christmas just passed was disorganized, and I failed to make it to Santa Rosa, and the Bay Area. I did spend it with! Aunt Vic, Cousin Cicely and her two boys. I played the cool uncle and got them out of the house to see a movie. I had thought we would see The Hobbit; The Desolation of Smaug, but the boys wanted to see Frozen.
...Lord, what a girly movie. Now being Disney, it was the finest piece of 3Dthe animation I have seen so far, but tooo much damn music. I really dislike musicals... ...a lot. I anwill also gettingliked extremely tired of thethe Glen Keene look,especially in 3D. Time forto a newlot house style, atleast for 3D, I think. But the boys liked it, even if the youngest was figety. I will try to catch The Hobbit this week.
I got my bicycle out of storage at Tom's suggestion, with the intent to bicycle the 2-3 miles to Television City, but the term of employment ended before Christmas. I did last long enough to go to a swank, Company Christmas party. It was with those earnings I got the new rig with. There is a chace that I may resume work after the middle of this month.
The bicycle really beats walking, and i am exploriing the neighborhood when not at my desk. One really doesnt foget how to ride, but one does lose a lot of endurance after a year or so at a desk, rarely leaving the apartment. I am probably going to be more active as I look around the area.
I hope all is well for you and yours in2014: Happy New Year!
Posted via m.livejournal.com.
|Tuesday, December 24th, 2013|
|45 years ago tonight
45 years ago, on this day the crew of Apollo 8, the first humans to orbit the moon, broadcast this Christmas Eve 1968. I was four years old when this happened and it was probably a night where Harry Belafonte's Christmas Record was heard on Dad's old KLM stereo through out the house in Seattle.
Merry Christmas to all who read this.
|Monday, December 23rd, 2013|
|Sunday, December 15th, 2013|
|RIP Peter O'Toole 1932-2013
He was a favorite actor, but not because of Lawrence of Arabia, but because of "The Stuntman". This was a film I watched with Julian Stone, and Dave Hogan, back soon after it came out as it was an early video tape rental, and many of the phrases of that movie because catch phrases. I also was mesmerized by him in "The Ruling Class" where he played an English Aristocrat who thinks he is Jesus. He also did an amazing job as the Food critic in Ratatouille. Of course he was good in Lawrence of Arabia, but then there were a lot of Good, young British Actors back then doing memorable films, (Michael Caine in "Zulu" is a favorite of mine). RIP Eli, but no one will ride your Killer crane Any more....
|Saturday, December 7th, 2013|
|On a Clear Sunday Morning, 72 years ago today.
In previous posts, I talked about Hawaii and the attack,( http://ruggels.livejournal.com/2003/12/07/
) but 70 years ago on this day, this was how the American Public heard about the attack. Over the radio, talking about places that only a few knew of more than a map or words on a page. In the 70 years since, people found out about such other events from the radio, but also Television. and telephones, then the internet, and Now twitter.
It seems strange now that There are no first hand participants of the first world war alive any more. People who fought in World War II are still around but their numbers are fading. The Kennedy assassination, most of Kennedy's Aides and contemporaries, of a similar age to the World War Two Generation are also fading. It's been 42 yeas since a 5 years old me watched the moon landings, in the living room of a mustard colored house at 3510 E. Schubert Pl. in Seattle Washington. I have no memory of the assassinations of Bobby Kennedy or Martin Luther king, just a year earlier. My earliest memories were when I was 3 at expo 67 in Montreal, and they are just disjointed images. of amusement rides, Cars cut in half and place on billboards, and enormous escalators taking us down into an even larger hall full of those segmented cars and objects on display.
But we share markers on our lives, that do cross generations if the experience is shared, such as the death of John Lennon, reported by Howard Cosell on Monday Night Football, The Challenger explosion, the 1989 Loma Prieta earthquake that I was in but other people knew as the earthquake that delayed the first Bay Bridge World Series. The fall of the Berlin wall and the collapse of Communism, when we could all breathe a little easier. Floods and weather events were calamitous, but local, but with the media they became shared experiences as well, and various hurricanes pounding Florida in the late 90's, Floods in the Midwest.
But the differences between that event 70 years ago, in an American Possession halfway between us and China, apparently considered a pretty but awfully boring port for a young sailor. and an attack with a similar casualty number just 10 short years ago..for me, seemd to change how people see the news an keep up to date. The details given 70 years ago, when they finally hit the airwaves had the basic facts correct, whereas in our day the information was near instant, but the accuracy didn't arrive until a similar time as 70 years ago occurred. But that maybe changing as well. I think we all remember seeing our first YouTube images of the appalling damage done by the earthquake in Northern Japan this year. That record will retain it's immediacy for a few years, but like the black and white photos of 70 years ago, those low fidelity, lo resolution images with the faded color and compression artifacts will be come as quaint to our descendents as those black and white newsreels do to us. ever since 9/11 mostof us have been swimming in a deep sea of current events and news. Even if we don't pay attention we get part of the story.
But the public record has been written, but not all of the private has. If you have vets in your family, get them to tell their stories, before it's too late, add those little details to what we assume is settled history so that those points of view, those memories arent' entirely lost. Talk to the Old guys, while we still can.
|Sunday, November 24th, 2013|
|This looks pretty cool.
I currently play War Thunder (badly), and enjoy it, but it looks like Star Citizen is ramping up.
I was aware of star Citizen because of their Kickstarter campaign, which ended up raising 13 million for a Science Fiction space MMO, on the P.C.. However we are getting the first tangible results of this with the first downloadable content appearing:
The Mighty Jingles Vlogger extraordinaire has given us a walk through of his recent opurchases on the game. As wellas providing another game that might make an Occulus Rift* necessary. Kind of looking forward to this.
* a $3-400.00 Virtual reality headset with positional markings, and HD display, that replaces your monitor.
|Wednesday, October 30th, 2013|
For some reason, Livejournal, has messed up my "Identify" colors for people on my Friends list. The colors are all jumbled but the basic theme is still the same. I wonder if it's an attempt to push me into the "New Layout" they keep admonishing me to do?
|Wednesday, October 2nd, 2013|
|Tom Clancy R.I.P
When Tom Clancy and Larry Bond wrote "The Hunt for Red October
", Tom, an insurance Salesman from Maryland, was basically putting to paper a glorified Campaign write up of a play session of one of Larry Bond's Harpoon Games. As a gamer I was proud to see a fellow gamer hit the big time. Tom had a talent for writing good characters and became one of my favorite authors, because his were one of the few works of fiction that portrayed the Military of the 80's in an unashamedly positive light, and also NONE of his characters were idiots. They made good decisions and were competent, with their shortcomings being only a lack of information on what their opponents were doing. A few of his books were made into pretty good thrillers in Hollywood, though the wrenching "Sum of All Fears
" was nerfed in Hollywood, and missed a chance to prick the ears fo the public about the threat of Islamic Terrorism in fiction, before it became unpleasant fact 12 years ago. (On that morning my thoughts went to Clancy's Colleague, Dale Brown, and his book "Storming Heaven
" which had a plot similar to 9/11.) I read his non fiction on the various branches of the Military, but avoided the "branded" books or the ones with the co-authors, because the lesser authors would occasionally put in willfully stupid, and egotistical characters, just like many other fiction writers, which is why a rarely read fiction any more.
Clancy had a new Solo Book, listed as coming out in December. I belive I will ask for it for Christmas, and savor his world of Competent Heroes and villains making intelligent moves engaging in a parry and thrust over the fate of the Western World one last time.Vodka Punits remeniscence of reading Tom Clancy
|Wednesday, September 11th, 2013|
|On a Clear Tuesday Morning 12 years ago
Tuesday Morning, I am barely awake, and drifting in and out of
consciousness. I woke at 6 to let the cat in and in am not very
successfully trying to get back to sleep, before the 8:00Am alarm. At
about 7:15-20 My Phone rings, and if it's ringing, it’s
solicitors, bill collectors, or my dad wanting me to move my car. It's
none of the above; it's my friend Francis, harbinger of bad news.
Usually he calls me at work, and tells me of some gun control
legislation that the state house has cooked up, or some smug
pronouncement by some ivory tower groups. This results in me having a
stomachache and some anger for the rest of the day. In person he's a
cheerful, and jovial sort, but he I guess likes to spread bad news. He
nearly yells, "Have you heard? The World Trade Center is gone! Two
planes crashed into it, and one crashed into the pentagon!"
My Response was almost "bullshit", as occasionally Francis will drop a
bad joke on me like that.
"I'm not shitting you. Turn on the TV.” he breathlessly commands.( So I turned on the T.V. ...Collapse )
...and that was my first day of the War.
|Friday, August 30th, 2013|
Currently, it's around 90 degrees, and uncharacteristically humid for Southern California. The humidity is like Salina, or Houston or Chicago, a cottony blanket stifling one with cloying heat. I feel like I have been dipped in Wesson oil, as my sweat is not evaporating, but soaking into my underwear and slicking my face uncomfortably. The apartment has no A/C, and the fan is inadequate,just pushing around hot air.. hot.. moist... air. Unlike Kansas, or Texas or Illinois, there is no promise of an afternoon thundershower to cool things off, as the thunderheads are forming over the San Gabriel Mountains and moving north and east slowly into the Antelope Valley. I can't sleep. I am cranky. I hope this east coast style heat wave ends and we can get the desert dryness of SoCal back shortly.
|Monday, August 26th, 2013|
|The Dissenting View of Table Top RPG's as "Shared Storytelling".
For me, it was the challenge of the "tactical puzzle" that was as important to me as the group of friends that got together with, on those Sunday mornings for the fantasy games. I loved roleplaying and occasionally I was even good at it, but while I enjoyed living in the character's head, and experiencing their triumphs and tragedies, but it was also the accomplishment for the Player, to have solved a tactical puzzle presented by the GM and have succeeded. The problem with storytelling games is that it doesn't have the same sense of uncertainty and doubt that dice rolling mechanics give a player. The name for a GM who catered to the Players wishes in contravention of the dice was a Monty Haul GM. Achievements from such GMs rang hollow to me. It was important for a GM to be fair and present a challenge appropriate to the group, but it was also "fair" for the players to pay for stupidity, or lack or preparation with the lives, or treasure of their characters. . I've always resisted the "Dramatist" flavors of games, and aimed for the "smiulationist" or situationist approach. I know Rob Heinsoo from the old APA days of the 80's and wish him and his company great success, though. it's good to see table Topping return from the obscurity that CCG's put them there in 1993.
A link to the Io9 article that inspired this commentary.http://io9.com/13th-age-rpg-is-an-incredible-fantasy-storytelling-expe-1201550758
|Sunday, August 25th, 2013|
|Sunday, August 18th, 2013|
A video of some of my aircraft in Second Life by Natascha Randt of second Life
|Monday, August 12th, 2013|
|Games are Not Literature, and probably should not be.
(a response to an article on the New statesman website, complaining that Video games are not Literature.)
I was in the game industry for about 17 of those 40 years. The problem is that Games aren't literature, and really shouldn't be,. Games are games. not narratives. With movies and literature, you have a beginning, a middle and an end, and a story told by one person, who's job is to entertain you by telling a single thread narrative.
That narrative can end in success or failure. In a game the goal is success, and the lack of it is motivation to continue until success is achieved, ro the controller is tossed across the room. Games only have one outcome, and tinkering with that outcome, such as failure in spite of all the noble effort and skill,is the reason that the end of Mass effect three felt like such a betrayal to the gamer culture out there. A movie, and literature is a passive narrative story. A game is the achievement of a goal by skill and persistence and occasionally luck. They can't be the same thing.
You can say that perhaps the pursuit of realistic graphics stunted it's development as a medium, but in the end, the purpose of gaming and of literature are divergent.