For the holidays, you could say thank you to some of the people who write free software you use, especially software that isn't hugely popular.

Those of us who write little-known software may go for months without hearing from a user, and it can be a little de-motivating.

Hearing from someone who actually uses one's software gives an energising jolt that can carry one through several weeks of darkness and cold and wet.

We've been struggling for volunteers in recent months and we're likely to need to reduce our operations in 2019, so we're doing a survey to ask folk what they see of our content and what we should look at mothballing/reducing - boosts and all responses appreciated (whether or not you currently look at any of our stuff):

Whilst I'm a straight/cis/white guy, this nonetheless speaks to a lot of the reasons 40K never clicked with me as a setting:

Making the Imperium "the good guys" is done too often & wholly rips the soul out of 40K as a setting IMO. The Imperium are absolutely fascists - they should be a rotting, horror-show broken hulk of a culture that people only cling to for fear of something worse (which is where the T'au can get really interesting).

A Star Trek spinoff idea :StarfleetInsignia: Show more

this 1 is the lowland streaked tenrec and they're literally just a pokemon but real

I met a reindeeyore yesterday in Galway and it was good:

Thunderbird is now using Pretty Easy Privacy (PEP) for encrypted emails. I find the user experience quite seamless. It takes no additional effort to send an encrypted email than a non-encrypted one. I don't even have to check whether I'm encrypting or not. It automatically encrypts emails sent to recipients for which it has keys available.

#Thunderbird #Enigmail #PEP #encryption

live debates are a fucking awful way of mediating who has a better opinion in general. they suck.

here's a scenario: your opponent cites some obscure figure they've completely decontextualised/manipulated to fit their argument. you haven't heard of this statistic. i mean, why would you have? it's irrelevant! but how are you meant to respond to their citation if you have zero knowledge of its source? live debates don't just allow these tactics to be used, they actively incentivise them!

part of the reason I'm always on about open source and intellectual property rights is because I *want* people to build off my ideas/tools and use them as launching pads for their own original thoughts. so truly, I'm thrilled when people "copy" me. it means I've inspired someone! and that's all the impact I can hope for :)

The first of my Christmas card designs for this year - Catra's first tree 🌲😻
#SheRa #Catra

Importance of legal standard also being flexible re sections - docs with clauses, paragraphs, preambles, amendments, etc must all be catered for.

Entity references important, but also quantity references - sizes of fines, jail terms, etc need to be recognisable and searchable to allow users to compare and manipulate the texts. Conflicting legal interpretations can be added via system of implicit and explicit references between texts.

Taxonomy /ontology in legal documents specific to jurisdictions - lack of an interoperable system. Use of African xml legal system AKN (Akoma Ntoso) due to wide range of provisions available for specific legal structures. AKN increasingly widely used. Issue with some data in law being commercially gatekept by firms.

Key design principle involves separation of authoritative legally binding text and annotations/notes.

Intro to legal history and its challenges in digitisation - issue of documents, but also of encoding normative assumptions when dealing with those, and in expressing legal conflict - between interpretations and between entities.

Usual standards for a DH approach - xml markup, formal ontology, etc.

Third up, data modelling in legal history, by Andreas Wagner. We're running 15 mins late and my laptop may get unhappy, but hopefully we'll get through this one (you don't get live-toots for my own talk after it I'm afraid on account of the fact I'll be talking and I gesticulate far too much to toot and talk at the same time!)

Also, the data are available for you to hunt through if you want:

And here's a picture of part of the data in a big graph:

High powered/heavily connected nodes an interesting mixture of classic authors and charaters - Harry Potter, Saint Peter, and Stephen King all pretty close by on the graph! Suggestion that school-age readings form basic net of comparison points that cross over vast majority of readers and reviewers.

Interesting feature of this in importance of intertextuality and films for readers - Harry Potter reviews both included lots of references to Frodo Baggins, Luke Skywalker, etc. Suggestion that people understand texts via reference to other similar stories. Included in reviews of older books - e.g. "Interesting how emotive Doyle's Holmes is, compared to modern versions being more like Spock."

Result: dataset from which a network could be created between books, genres, and entities mentioned in reviews. Genre too arbitrary to be used much, fiction/nonfiction main marker used.

Dataset not complete thus not representative, but forms an interesting exploration of the data. Nonfiction books cluster in the graph purely based on their entity links.

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