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from Telmina's notes
This image is based on some images created by NMKD Stable Diffusion GUI.
#2023年 #2023年12月 #2023年12月7日 #ひとりごと #雑談 #体調不良 #仕事 #年末年始
from Intel + Graphy
Enabling ads in relaxing music mixes and visual video content is unacceptable. The presence of ads though-out a video destroys the purpose of delivering an experience that’s meant to be soothing and not be disruptive using loud sounds and fast-paced movements.
Either it’s YouTube that’s forcing ads into those videos, or creators deliberately enabled ads in their videos to reap the ad revenue. Either way, FUCK you both for doing this shit. And I will NEVER buy YouTube Music for an ad-free experience ever again. I should not be paying money for distraction free content (I'm looking at you Spotify and SoundCloud). It's criminal.
#rant #YouTube #Spotify #SoundCloud #socialmedia #music #lofi #video #streaming #psychology
from Craig Turp-Balazs
(Or, What Estonia gets right and Romania gets wrong)
The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) released its latest PISA scores this week. PISA 2022 tested nearly 700,000 15-year-old students in 81 OECD member countries and partner economies on mathematics, reading and science.
This edition, with a focus on maths, was also the first to collect data on student performance, well-being and equity before and after the Covid-19 pandemic.
There were few surprises. Estonia's education system remains Europe's best performer and fourth globally, behind only Japan, South Korea and Singapore.
“We can all be proud of the Estonian education system and its results,” said Estonian Minister of Education and Research Kristina Kallas.
As well she might.
At the other end of the table alas we find Romania and Bulgaria, which once again scored poorly, the two countries sharing the European Union's lowest results. Not that this prevented Romania’s own Education Minister, Ligia Deca, from trying to put a positive spin on the results.
Citing the fact that Romania’s scores had not fallen a great deal from the previous PISA tests taken in 2018 (most countries saw a more substantial fall in their scores, notably in Maths, as a result of the prolonged periods of online learning during the pandemic), Deca called the Romanian education system ‘resilient’.
‘Our results are stable,’ she added, ignoring the fact that if a country’s score is already at rock bottom, it’s difficult to fall any further.
The results have led to the usual, predictable soul searching and blame game that follows any kind of ranking in which Romania performs poorly. Uninterested politicians have been blamed, badly-trained teachers have been blamed, indulgent parents have been blamed, ill-disciplined students themselves have been blamed.
A more defensive element has pointed to the plethora of Romanian students who regularly win international maths and science competitions as a sign that PISA must somehow be wrong and/or a globalist conspiracy to make Romania look bad.
Far more useful would be to look at what Estonia does that Romania doesn’t. Leaving aside the obvious cultural differences (Estonia is an open, innovative, digital society that values education) there are two statistics which stand out—one macro, one micro.
Firstly, Estonia spends more than six per cent of its GDP on education (2020). Romania allocates just 2.7 per cent of its GDP to education (also 2020; well below the OECD average of 5.1 per cent).
Secondly, in Estonia, 94 per cent of students attend a school where principals have the main responsibility for hiring teachers (OECD average: 60 per cent).
Many high-performing school systems tend to entrust principals with these responsibilities.
In Romania—wait for it—just 11 per cent of students attend a school where principals have the main responsibility for hiring teachers, meaning that the overwhelming majority of teachers are foist upon schools by local councils or the education ministry, with little regard for the school’s profile, culture or needs.
It is possible to get a good education in Romania. My two children have both been educated at state schools in Bucharest. The eldest is now studying Maths and Statistics at Glasgow University, the youngest is in her second year of high school.
However, getting that good education relies on a number of things.
At primary school level it depends almost entirely on location—kids go to their nearest local school, making it something of a postcode lottery. There are ways to get around this system if your local school is not one of the best, but you need to know people who van help. (In the interests of full disclosure, we used the Romanian equivalent of the old school tie network—pile, cunoştinţe şi relaţii—to get both of our children into one of Bucharest’s best primary schools, which was certainly not our local school).
At high school level, besides the start in life offered by a decent primary school, what matters most is the financial ability of parents to pay for private lessons to ensure good results in the dreaded ‘National Evaluation’ taken at the end of class VIII (when most students are 13 or 14).
High school entry is based entirely on the results of the National Evaluation (in just two subjects, Romanian and Maths—woe betide a student who might be brilliant with words but not numbers, or vice-versa) with only the brightest (or best-prepared) students going to the best high schools.
Both our kids had private tuition, and both made into very good high schools.
Needless to say, it should not be so. A decent education should not be reliant on where a child lives, parental ability to beat the system or pay for private tuition, nor on one exam in two subjects at the age of 14.
Don’t expect change anytime soon, however. Romania’s current system serves too many people too well. Unfortunately, those who matter most—students—are less well served.
The rain is gently tapping on the bedroom window, and this is a sign that I should stay home today. What the Hell? I might as well just stay right here in bed.
from Multiverse News
The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) issued a warning of increased risk of spontaneous human combustion (SHC) during the holidays. The Centers for Disease Control define Spontaneous Human Combustion as a pseudo-scientific theory about the spontaneous combustion of a human body. The likelihood of someone contracting and suffering from SHC is extremely low, but the negative impact to a person's long-term health and overall well-being is extremely high. Most people suffering from SHC do not survive a spontaneous combustion event. SHC is not a well understood phenomenon in the scientific community, and yet there have been many strange cases of combustion without no simple explanation. The NFPA recommended avoiding smoking, maintaining a safe distance from burning candles, celebrating the holiday with a “dark tree” devoid of pretty lights and soul-lifting cheer, and avoiding vigorous holiday food induced workouts with powered exercise equipment. The Spontaneous Human Combustion Research Center of the National Institutes of Health, a Trump-era special research center, has spent five years and more than $45M to research the cause of SHC but have little credible data to show for it. One research paper issued by the center and embraced by conspiracy theorists in the US posited that secret Jewish space lasers were targeting white Americans as part of the Great Replacement process. The paper was quickly retracted by the NIH. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-Georgia) immediately called for Congressional hearings to investigate the “radically woke mob at the NIH silencing important research on space-based lasers”. CVS has partnered with the health research company Combustible & Me to provide a genetic test for SHC to measure a person's susceptibility to combustion.
Now I realise that these older men are imperfect by nature, because their hearts are not devoid of lust, greed, desire, hatred, aversion, ignorance and delusion.
Nevertheless, they did take the time to appear in a photo together with me, as below.
10th of February, 2023 Anno Domini. Politician – formerly vilified in state-controlled mass media – turned owner of a bistro or eatery.
1st of May, 2022 Anno Domini. Conductor of a band of 18-year-old musicians who played the instrument known as harmonica.
5th of December, 2013 Anno Domini. Developer of a web-page that listed information on music gigs in Taipei, Taiwan.
from An Open Letter
I’m just happy today. There are many things to be happy about and not many things for me to be sad about currently. I’m just going to try to enjoy this while it lasts. I talked with a friend about our cringe private Instagrams, and I mentioned that this blog would most likely be the next iteration of that – something I look back on later and cringe about. At least currently I don’t feel that way, partially because I think I at least write down some insights, and it’s not just me crying like my old Instagram used to be.
I’ve been getting a lot of kind messages from people on my YouTube channel regarding my AoC walkthroughs, and I’ve been very happy to hear I’ve been able to help out a lot of people! It’s a shame I haven’t been able to do that with any friends, but oh well. You can lead a horse to the water, give them a straw, and flavor it even but that bitch won’t drink it. I think that’s what the saying is.
Situation: I see a friend making a big mistake in life
Thoughts: This is something fully avoidable, and I would rather them think I’m overbearing rather than them regretting this much later.
Feelings: I feel upset at myself for having to be put in this position
Behavior: They don’t change anything, and I’m just overbearing
Thoughts: I really owe no obligation to other people, and so if they are making big mistakes that’s up to them. I can help people out when they want help, but otherwise I should let them do whatever.
Feelings: Feel sad that I see them make huge mistakes, and a big resentful because they aren’t putting in the same effort I had to. But also I feel a bit more free.
Behavior: Maybe they don’t regret their decisions, after all I always could be wrong on how things turn out.
Love you Suman ♥
In the realm of tarot readings, there's a certain allure to predicting the future—a fascination deeply rooted in our human psyche. It's about seeking guidance, finding reassurance, and grasping for a semblance of control when faced with life's uncertainties. Let me break down why so many of us turn to tarot for predictions:
Life's Uncertainties and My Anxieties: Life is this inherently uncertain journey, right? We often stumble into challenges, not knowing how things will play out. Tarot readings swoop in to offer a sneak peek into potential future events, bringing a bit of clarity and soothing my nerves about the unknown.
Yearning for a Path: As humans, we crave meaning and purpose. Tarot readings step in with their insights and predictions, giving me a sense of direction. Suddenly, decisions become a tad easier when I feel like I've got a handle on potential outcomes.
Symbolic Mysteries: Tarot cards are like a treasure trove of symbols, and their interpretation taps right into my subconscious. Humans are drawn to symbols and patterns, and deciphering these symbols helps me understand my current situation and what might lie ahead.
Comfort for My Psyche: Turning to a tarot reading isn't just about predictions; it's also a form of psychological comfort for me. It's a space for self-reflection, a chance to externalize my thoughts and concerns. Even if I don't take the predictions literally, the process itself feels therapeutic.
Weaving My Own Tale: Humans are born storytellers, and tarot readings often present a narrative I can relate to. Crafting a story around my life or situation is not just interesting; it offers a sense of coherence that I find compelling.
Coping with Life's Challenges: When life throws me a curveball, I'm all about finding ways to cope and regain a sense of control. Tarot readings give me a method—albeit perceived—to gain insights and feel a bit more in charge of my destiny, even if it's a bit illusory.
Now, it's crucial to understand that the effectiveness of tarot readings varies from person to person. Some, like me, find value in the symbolism and insights, while others see them as purely entertaining or symbolic, without much predictive power. Ultimately, the pull of seeking predictions in a tarot reading is intricately tied to our human need for understanding, guidance, and that comforting illusion of control in the face of life's uncertainties.
There are times when I feel like I am alone in the world. I am with Hal and The Stooges, but we seem to exist in our own little world. Most of this is my own fault because I chose the path of Kindness, which automatically separates me from so many other people. Hal and I have been together for twenty-four wonderful years, more than most of our “married” friends. Our focus is on each other and how we can make our life together better than it already is. Strangely enough, almost none of our efforts are focused on material possessions. Instead, we each are grateful for each other, and for the things we already have that you cannot put a price on, such as love and Kindness, compassion and caring for each other. We know couples who spend their every waking minute having material possessions, they put together a superficial image that things are great, but we’ve seen through the charade when we overheard them arguing about what else they thought they needed. We’ve seen others who pursue the approval of others to validate their own decisions. These people turn out miserable because they are striving to please others instead of themselves.
Test to Mastodon
Test to Mastodon
from Talk to Fa
I love you Because I love me so much And I see bits of myself in each one of you
When I woke up from my unconsciousness, nothing had changed in my situation. I was still lying in the same room, with the same white walls and the same lilac bush on the table. Only it looked like the lilac bush had moved a little closer to death. It wasn't a specific physical observation, but its whole appearance seemed a little flabbier, a little more transient, no longer as fresh and firm as one would expect given its days. My hand was still on the bed, in the same position as a few minutes ago. Or hours. Or days. I didn't know how long I'd been out. But the stabbing pain when I opened my eyes didn't last as long and the time it took to get used to the brightness was shorter. My senses became sharper. Apart from my sense of smell, I could perceive my surroundings clearly in the field of vision I had left. I heard footsteps in the corridor, saw the dying lilacs and felt the sharp wind on my face as it cut my cheeks through the open window. The footsteps in the corridor came closer and suddenly I was gripped by a longing for company, a longing to drain into someone else's world through their eyes. I wanted to scream, to draw attention to myself, but as soon as the impulse to scream, triggered by anxiety, was supposed to pass to my body, this power somehow leaked out of my body. I could no longer reach my muscles. They refused to obey. I could neither scream nor shout, let alone speak. I panicked whether I could still swallow when everything in my body was numb and immobile, whether I could still breathe. My heart was beating faster, I felt, imagined or not, a higher production of saliva in my mouth and my swallowing reflex could no longer keep up with the panic rising in me. I also started to hyperventilate. It felt like claustrophobia in my own skin. But there was no escape from it. I wanted to scream, but my mouth remained silent. The stifled scream dragged me back into nothingness.
from Roscoe's Story
Prayers, etc.: • 05:00 – Prayer to St. Michael the Archangel • 06:00 – the Angelus • 07:30 – The SORROWFUL MYSTERIES of the Rosary. • 11:00 – From today's Traditional Latin Mass – Collect: Stir up Thy power, we beseech Thee, O Lord, and come: that from the threatening dangers of our sins, we may deserve to be rescued by Thy protection, and be saved by Thy deliverance. • 18:00 -the Angelus • 19:45 – The Hour of Compline for tonight from The Traditional Roman Catholic Breviary in English, followed by Fr. Chad Rippberger's Prayer of Command to protect my family, my sons, my daughter and her family, my granddaughters and their families, my great grandchildren, and everyone for whom I have responsibility from any demonic activity. – And that followed by the Tuesday Prayers of the Association of the Auxilium Christianorum.
Health Metrics: • bw= 218.20 lbs. • bp= 148/86 (57)
Diet: • 06:30 – 1 banana, toast & butter • 07:30 – 1 pb&j sandwich • 12:00 – 1 grapefruit • 13:00 – pork roast, fried chicken, mashed potatoes • 14:30 – another muffin • 17:00 – ice cream
Chores, etc.: • 05:00 – listen to local news talk radio • 07:55 – Not So Fast, Scooter... – Scott Ott's Right Angle • 08:15 – The Absolute Truth with Emerald Robinson – December 4, 2023 • 09:30 – put on relaxing music as background while I move through morning chores • 11:00 – The Dana Show – Dana Loesch • 13:00 – watch old game shows and eat lunch at home with Sylvia • 15:00 – listen to relaxing music while filling out medical forms • 16:00 – follow news reports from various sources • 19:15 – listening to the Butler Bulldogs pregame show before their game vs the Buffalo Bulls. I'll turn away from the Butler game early to catch the IU / Michigan game that starts later
Chess: • 11:00 – moved in all pending CC games
posted Tuesday 05/Dec/2023 ~20:30 #DLDEC2023
Fuck the strangling vine of progress. Plant me a slow growing tree with thick bark, which drinks deeply, but slowly, letting the important aspects of the environment seep in and become incorporated into its very being. And let this wisdom unfurl in its leaves, not trapped within the trunk wood, where its beauty is only visible in its destruction, like so many revelations at a funeral. My mind was clearcut by technology and now hosts only the quickest growing and invasive weeds. I’ve long since stopped fertilizing it and am constantly amazed that anything grows at all, and then disappointed I cannot shelter in its cool redwood shade—though at its very edges, hidden a folded recess must wait a Wollami pine—otherwise I would already be extinct.