Rainforest quilt

Not here anymore

For much the same reasons as everybody else around a new set of terms and conditions that are in Russian (and where LiveJournal are explicitly saying that the English translation can't be relied on) and that are anti LGBT due to the legal situation in Russia, I don't want to use LiveJournal much anymore.

I have turned off cross posting from Dreamwidth now. I exist over there at karen2205. I can be found in various other places on the internet too, if you ask google.

I am not currently planning to delete this account, but that may change.
Rainforest quilt

LJ at last being unusable:-(

Joining the crowd and stopping cross posting to LJ after this post.

Not sure what I'm going to do about content that's on LJ - I probably want to (re)import comments, but I don't know how to do that and won't have time to look at this till the weekend. Probably not going to delete my LJ account but just won't use it. But not making a decision about that now.

I'm karen2205 on DW as well as LJ.

This entry was originally posted at Dreamwidth. Please either comment here, or go there to reply using OpenID. There are currently comment count unavailable comments at Dreamwidth.
Rainforest quilt

Hayfever and sunglasses and rucksacks

Hello world, first public post in ages.

Hayfever and sunglasses

I have suffered from hayfever for years, and have been aware that one of the recommendations to stop pollen getting to your eyes is to wear wrap around sunglasses. It's hard to get prescription lenses in wrap around sunglasses because of the shape of the lenses, so when you look in standard opticians you don't tend to see many wrap around frames. I am a full time glasses wearing person, so normal sunglasses aren't an option.

At the end of last year I finally worked my way round it (I think with help from commenters here) at a reasonable-ish price.

I ordered these frames then used that company's recommended reglazers, Ciliary Blue to have the lenses in the glasses replaced with tinted prescription lenses. I now have prescription sun glasses, in a wrap around frame for about £95, which while not being as cheap as some ways of getting prescription sunglasses, isn't IMO, bad, given that some places I'd been looking were advertising sunglasses at £300-£400.

Rucksacks

Somebody on LJ pointed me at Dakine as a brand of rucksacks that are hardwearing and are a bit more interesting than plain black but with patterns that aren't out of place in an office, rather than ones that are more obviously designed for walking or camping. I now have one that I'm liking a lot.

This entry was originally posted at Dreamwidth. Please either comment here, or go there to reply using OpenID. There are currently comment count unavailable comments at Dreamwidth.
Rainforest quilt

Banks, identity theft and social engineering

One of the things that keeps us safe from fraud/identity theft/other crimes of deception is the ability to think "wow there, something's not right here" and act on that feeling that something isn't right and at least needs further investigation.

Banks seem to be going out of their way to undermine people's ability to keep themselves safe, by behaving in ways that replicate the behaviour of those who are trying to take advantage of us. They phone us and ask us to confirm security information. When we phone them they ask us for security information before they even know what question it is we want to ask (it might be "what time does the branch in $foo close on a Saturday?" - they don't need to know who is asking that question!). They send us text messages from numbers that cannot be verified online - how am I supposed to trust that a text message apparently containing details of my transactions is genuine when there is nothing to link that mobile number to the bank in their contact details page of their website?

So no, banks:

1. You do not telephone me and ask me to confirm who I am. Ever. Bad practice. I won't do so, I will hang up and report the call to you, on a number I can verify as belonging to you, as a potential fraud.

2. I will avoid dealing with you by telephone whenever possible, because it is so fucking frustrating. I don't ask clients who phone me at work to prove they are who they say they are before I'll talk to them! You could make the process much less frustrating by employing staff who speak English to the standard of a native speaker and by not asking security questions until you know someone wants information about their own accounts.

3. Publish your contact information. All of it. If a text message claims to come from you, I should be able to verify it.

This entry was originally posted at Dreamwidth. Please either comment here, or go there to reply using OpenID. There are currently comment count unavailable comments at Dreamwidth.
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Election material

This year I have:

1 x leaflet from the Conservative party = 0 spelling errors.
1 x leaflet from the English Democrats = 0 spelling errors. I am an agnostic atheist who is British, not English and Christian and find this leaflet borderline offensive.
1 x leaflet from the Green Party = 0 spelling errors.
1 x leaflet from the Labour Party = 0 spelling errors, far too many annoying cliches in the first paragraph, focused on next year's general election rather than this year's European election.
4 x leaflets from the Liberal Democrats, two addressed to me, the other two not = 0 spelling errors, but dubious mix of fonts within both leaflets, which duplicated each other a lot, rather than one expanding on the other. The third document was set out in the form of a letter addressed to me - they could have done with printing something on the back. The forth paradies the UKIP/Conservative/Labour leaflets.
1 x leaflet from No2EU = 0 spelling errors, correct use of an apostrophe, content incorrect [I simply don't believe that public services are being privatised within the EU because of EU legislation]
2 x leaflet from UKIP = 0 spelling errors. Elides the difference between the EU and the ECHR in a naughty fashion. [One of my pet peeves - the ECHR was drafted by Brits (and others) shortly after the end of the second world war - the jurisprudence of the ECtHR grew up around what was the EEC and became the EU, but is separate from it]. Clever of them to include a window poster within their leaflet though.

Given the lack of spelling errors [normally a feature of local election leaflets], I suspect this material has been prepared centrally by the parties, rather than by local parties.

None of the material has altered by original plan to vote Liberal Democrat though.

This entry was originally posted at Dreamwidth. Please either comment here, or go there to reply using OpenID. There are currently comment count unavailable comments at Dreamwidth.
Rainforest quilt

Names and identity

I have been of the opinion, since I was around 11 or 12 or so that my name is my name and I will never change it. My name is a key part of my personal/individual identity [I get that this isn't the case for other people, who see names as things binding them to particular parts of their closer family]. I spent my childhood dealing with the disadvantages of a name others couldn't pronounce or spell (certainly primary school teachers of mine would spell it incorrectly and tell me I was wrong when I corrected them) or would make fun of. It was reasonably clear then that it was unusual/an identifying feature and as an adult and particularly with the creation/expansion of the internet, a name that isn't easily muddled for someone else is one hell of an advantage to have.

Other people have different views/experiences on this, which they're perfectly entitled to have, where names are perhaps a more fluid part of identity, connecting people with close parts of their family of origin or to a particular partner or to their family of choice and the bit of family they are most connected with changes over time. Other people use different names in different parts of their lives - a name for work and a name for home. I suspect there's considerable influence on some people's choices by institutionalised sexism, but you don't deal with that by removing or discouraging particular choices.

My main complaint here is not what people choose to call themselves in different times/different places, it's that systems/structures are not in place to reflect what people are choosing to do in terms of names. With some obvious exceptions, most of the time people who have altered their names want to be findable by both old and new name (or both home name and work name) or by a number of different names all at the same time and social media is not geared up for this. It expects people to have one name only. The same is true of things like passports (GB driving licences at least provide space on the paper counterpart for alternative signatures) - why can't passports and driving licences show someone's current preferred name and then give a list of previous names/also current names?

A lot of the problems that come with changing names (think serious professional ones, like publication records for academics and more mundane ones, like trying to cash a cheque addressed in the wrong name, the administration and paperwork involved in changing your name) primarily affect women, because it tends to be more women than men who alter their names could be avoided if we set up systems to explicitly recognise that Mrs Bloggs is also Miss Jones and that Miss Jones is still one of her names, even if she now prefers to be addressed as Mrs Bloggs, so colleagues, at the level of acquaintances she's not dealt with for some years can still find her on LinkedIn and she can cash cheques made payable to either name. Systems are easier to alter than human behaviour, so why not adapt systems that work better for current trends?

This entry was originally posted at Dreamwidth. Please either comment here, or go there to reply using OpenID. There are currently comment count unavailable comments at Dreamwidth.
Rainforest quilt

Disk partitioning

Google isn't being a very good friend at the moment.

Does anyone know how I can alter the size of partitions of a hard drive on a computer? There are two partitions at the moment, one is very small and contains Windows and other software stuff and I want to make it bigger as there's only 9% free space on it. The other contains lots of unused space.

This entry was originally posted at Dreamwidth. Please either comment here, or go there to reply using OpenID. There are currently comment count unavailable comments at Dreamwidth.
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Twitter - Android client

I've been using TweetCaster as an Android client for Twitter for ages and generally like it, but it's now taken to showing me retweets from people from whom I've unsubscribed from retweets. This is a minor annoyance, but one that is sufficiently annoying that I want to find an Android client that doesn't do this.

Does anyone have any suggestions?

This entry was originally posted at Dreamwidth. Please either comment here, or go there to reply using OpenID. There are currently comment count unavailable comments at Dreamwidth.
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Baroness Thatcher

I wrote about today back in 2005.

I've already unfollowed about four people on Facebook and one on Twitter for suggesting her death is something to be celebrated. I'll keep doing that. *shrugs*. I feel very strongly indeed that:

(a) death is not something to be celebrated, ever [sometimes it's a relief]
(b) there's no good reason to be insulting a newly dead person. The insults can wait for a couple of months.
(c) how we treat and talk about the dead is important.

I see *celebration* of her death and insults directed at her as an ethical failing; a lack of compassion and of respect. [Disagreeing with her politics is an entirely different matter.].

This entry was originally posted at Dreamwidth. Please either comment here, or go there to reply using OpenID. There are currently comment count unavailable comments at Dreamwidth.
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