Author Archives: gmcdavid

About gmcdavid

Retired IT professional with a wide range of interests. Married. Three sons, two with autistic-spectrum disorders and the third being transgender with Ehlers-Danlos syndrome. From Chicago but now living in the Twin Cities metro, Minnesota. Episcopalian. Carleton College (BA 1972, physics) and Stanford University (MS 1974, Applied Physics; MS 1976 Statistics).

Mining Our Biblical Matriarchs

A workshop on Friday, September 2, 2022 at Chicon 8, presented by Sally Wiener Grotta

The women of the Bible (Eve, Esther, Miriam, etc.) have been amongst the West’s most enduring female archetypes. As lush and varied as any mythology, their stories have been reinterpreted by every generation’s artists, clerics, and political leaders, according to how they expected women to be. However, these archetypes have been largely overlooked by modern spec fic authors. In this workshop, we’ll have fun challenging and toppling common preconceptions about various women of the Bible, as we mine this rich mother lode for SF&F story ideas.

The following are my notes and amplifications. I am solely responsible for their content and any mistakes.
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Rang Gaeilge, 27ú lá na mí Mheán Fómhair 2022

Duinnín agus Professor Moriarty (tuilleadh)

Dineen and Professor Moriarty (continued)
  • ‘Tá an leabhar a d’iarr tú ar an leabharlannaí gan oscailt fós agus tu ag réiteach chun imeachta. Tá dhá leathphéire stoca cniotdilte, bána ort. Ní hi an bhean chéanna a chniotáil an dá cheann mar ta na greamannaí sa stoca nua ar do chois chlé níos rialta ná na greamanna sa cheann eile atá lán greamanna iomraill. Ní chaithfeá stocaí corra murach tú a bheith corraithe. Déarfadh mo chara, an Dochtúir Bhatson, gur chaith tú stocaí corra i ngan fhios duit féin chun aird a dhíriú ar fhadhb atá ag déanamh imni duit. Siceolaíocht.”

    ‘The book you asked the librarian for is still unopened and you are preparing to leave. You are wearing two half-pairs of white, knitted socks. It is not the same woman who knitted both because the stitches in the new sock on your left foot are more regular than the stitches in the other which are full of missed stitches. You wouldn’t wear odd socks unless you were odd. My friend, Dr. Watson, would say that you have worn odd socks without knowing it to draw attention to a problem that is worrying you.’

    greim Grip, grasp, hold; stitch m pl greamanna
    iomrall Aberration, error m
    rialta regular
    corr odd
    corraigh Move, stir
    díriú Direction; aiming, guidance m
    síceolaíocht síceolaíocht f
  • Léigh tuilleadh

    Rang Gaeilge, 8ú lá na mí Mheán Fómhair 2022

    Duinnín agus Professor Moriarty

    Dineen and Professor Moriarty

    fuaduighim… I take by force, abduct; I carry off (as the fairies a child); put to flight, drive away, blow away; Is amhlaidh do fuaduigheadh í, hers was a case of abduction, al. she was carried off by the fairies.

    fuadaigh Take away by force; abduct, kidnap
    • Bhí ceathrar fear cruinnithe in uimhir 122b Sráid an Bhéicéara i Londain. Bhí an lá go breá amuigh, cuid éigin aeir agus gile sa chathair arís ón uair go raibh deireadh leis an ngeimhreadh agus laghdú ar líon na dtinte guail. Bhí coiscéim níos airde faoi na capaill agus ní raibh croíthe lucht díolta pósaetha chomh trom agus a bhíodh ar laethanta fliucha éadóchasacha.
      Istigh sna seomraí mar ar mhair[indirect relative clause] Searbhlach de Hoilm agus a chara an Dochtúir Bhatson, bhí an t-aer trom le deatach, ámh, deatach píopaí agus an deatach áirithe sin a éirionn ó bhaithisí na bhfear nuair a bhíonn cruacheist á plé agus gan réiteach acu uirthi.

      There were four men meeting at number 122b Baker Street in London. It was a fine day outside, some air and brightness in the city again since the end of winter and a decrease in the number of coal fires. There was a higher step about the horses and the hearts of posy sellers were not as heavy as they used to be on desperate wet days.

      Inside the rooms where Sherlock Holmes and his friend Dr. Watson lived the air was heavy with smoke, however, pipe smoke and that particular smoke that rises from the heads of men when they are discussing a difficult issue and have not settled it

      gile Whiteness, brightness f
      laghdú Decrease, diminution; reduction m
      tint tent f
      gual coal m
      coiscéim Footstep; pace f
      croí heart m pl croíthe
      lucht Content, charge; fill, capacity; cargo, load; (Class, category, of) people m
      pósae Posy, flower m pl pósaetha
      trom Weight; burden, oppression m
      éadéchasach Despairing, hopeless
      ámh Indeed, truly; However
      baithis Top, crown (of head) f
      cruacheist Difficult question; conundrum f
    • Léigh tuilleadh

    Chicon 8


    On Thursday, Sept. 1, Mia McDavid and I drove to Chicago for Chicon 8: The 80th World Science Fiction Convention at the Hyatt Regency Chicago . This was our 5th Chicon. Previously we had attended:

    Despite some glitches, we really enjoyed the Con, and visiting downtown Chicago again.

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    Installed ChromeOS Flex

    I have a Lenovo ThinkPad X130e laptop. It came with Windows 10 Home Edition, which does not work nearly as well for me as the Profession Edition I have on other systems. It hangs frequently. I have also installed Ubuntu Linux on it, which does better.

    These days Chromebooks are everywhere, so I have become curious about Google’s Chrome OS Flex, the installation of which can turn an ordinary old (but not too old) PC into a Chromebook. Continue reading

    Rang Gaeilge, 20ú lá Mí na Iúil 2022

    Duinnín agus an Bótun (tuilleadh)

    Dineen and the Mistake (continued)
    • ‘Fear an bhainne, ní foláir!’ ar sise. ‘Gabhaigí mo leithsceal, soicind.’ Rith sí as an seomra, an doras á dhúnadh aici ina diaidh.Leanfadh an tAthair Pádraig amach sa halla í ach bhagair
      Abraham air seasamh, ina theannta, sa bháfhuinneog.

      ‘Tá crann idir mé agus an doras. Ní maith liom crainn. Níl gá
      leo,’ arsa Tomkins go crosta.

      ‘Tom labhrais atá ann,’ arsa an tAthair Pádraig.

      ‘Sssss! Éist!’

      Nior chuala siad ach doras a oscailt agus a phlabadh arís

      ‘Duine ar bith!’ arsa Miss Sweetman nuair a d’fhill sí.

      ‘It must be the milkman!’ she said. ‘Excuse me, a second.’

      She ran out of the room, closing the door behind her.

      Father Patrick would have followed her out into the hall but Abraham beckoned him to stand,
      along with him, in the bay window.

      ‘There is a tree between me and the door. I do not like trees. No need for[??] them,’ Tompkins said crossly[?]

      ‘That is a laurel there,’ said Fr. Patrick.

      ‘Shhhh! Listen!’

      They only heard a door opening and slamming again immediately.

      ‘Nobody!’ said Miss Sweetman when she returned.

      ní foláir it is necessary
      bagair brandish, beckon, threaten, drive(animals)
      teannta Strait, difficulty, predicament m
      i dteannta along with, in addition to
      crosta Fractious; troublesome, difficult; (Of child) Mischievous, contrary
      labhras (Bay) laurel m
      plabadh plopping, banging m
      láithreach Present, immediate
    • Léigh tuilleadh

    A Windows Memory Leak Problem

    Recently there were a few times when I was using VS Code under Windows and the response time got worse and worse. A reboot would fix it temporarily, but the problem would come back. A look at task manager showed that the Shell Infrastructure Host, sihost.exe, was using a lot of CPU. I thought about killing the process, but the dire warnings about system instability deterred me the first time.

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