Friday, May 6, 2011

Home, home on the move

I am sitting in my new (temporary) home, in a completely new city, with new roommates (people I know), on furniture I just bought after the move. Everything is unfamiliar and I have only a few select items with me, rather than surrounding myself with all my stuffs. However, oddly enough, I feel quite 'at home' anyways. The reason for this, I think, is that now that I have internet connected, I can plug myself into the world, from only a slightly different vantage point. I can also plug myself into my MMO of choice. It's like bringing a lot of friends with me, wherever I go. This one thing provides a lot of familiarity and so I am quite comfortable, even newly transplanted.

Thank you, internets.

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Wake up, Canada

Canadians everywhere are staying home on voting day because none of the choices are appealing. And why bother when the sole drive of our candidates is to earn votes and gain/stay in power?

This is why: to tell the monsters in our government that we do NOT approve. We don't? What don't we approve of? You mean you don't know? Of course you don't. Well, learning is fun:

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Raid Etiquette

Raiding is a feat of coordination. You and eleven (or sometimes 23) other people are getting together to complete monumental tasks that take a lot of working together and relying on one another to accomplish. It can be difficult to get this many people together and coordinated, but it's exhilarating when it works. It's like a sport, where all the members have their thing to do and do that for the team to the best of their ability. With a little effort from each teammate, everything can work very smoothly. However, when people aren't putting in any effort to make things work, then things fall apart and we end up wasting 11 (or 23) other people's time.

Sign up. It is much easier to get a raid together when we get enough people signed up. It wastes a whole lot less of our precious time together if we don't have to be searching for people in order to be able to go.

Show up. A little early, please. When you sign up, you are saying, “I will go if you will have me.” When your raid leader confirms you, then it's like shaking hands and saying we have a deal. For raid leaders: confirm people a couple days in advance if you have that option. Sometimes this is simply not possible due to low sign-ups, but confirming people lets them know what they're doing so they can plan ahead.

Be ready.
  • Familiarize yourself with the encounter. If you've never been to an instance before, then read up on it. Ask your fellows questions beforehand. Ask the leader questions. The raid leader will explain the strategy for the evening, but these instructions will make a lot more sense if you've familiarized yourself with the upcoming raid.
  • Have your equipment in good order. Make sure everything is repaired and that you are bringing the right weapons with the right damage type(s). Make sure you are traited properly.
  • Bring plenty of consumables. This includes, but is not limited to, hope tokens, scrolls, pots (morale, poison, and status remedies), stat food, restorative food, and resistance soups.
  • Over the long term, optimize your character. This means raising your virtues, earning all your class traits, finding that super cool gear you always wanted. It means figuring out what your role is in raids (often quite different from solo or small fellowship, and even more fine-tuned than full fellowship instances), and optimizing your ability to do that. If you're not a dps class, then don't spec for dps. Figure out what you are most needed for, and be able to deliver.

Be available. Don't be doing something else beforehand that has any chance of running over time. When your raid leader is starting to coordinate everyone, be amenable.

Be present and attentive. Don't be chatting in other channels, don't be in other windows or watching television or chatting on the phone. Do be in the raid channel and voice program (if specified). Do have your 'say' chat visible also, because that's where you get to see what actions the bad guys are announcing that they are doing. Do listen to the strat talk and don't be afraid to be involved. It's best that everyone be on the same page about what's going on.

Don't be distracting to others. Music is nice, but not when raid instructions are being delivered. Jokes and banter are fun, but too much of that stuff interferes with communication. Off-topic conversations signal that you enjoy your company, which is absolutely terrific, but it also signals to the raid leader that you are not taking this seriously, which can be dismaying for those involved in coordinating the event you are disrupting.

Try to keep your AFKing to the designated break times. Everyone needs a break from time to time. If everyone takes a break at a different time, this becomes counter-productive. For example, in a 12-man raid, if each person takes one 5-minute break, that's an hour of down time. However, if we are a little bit coordinated about our break time and all take our breaks at the same time, then that's only 5 minutes of down time – a savings of 55 minutes! Let your leader signal when a break time will occur.

Don't hog the air waves. Speak up when it's critical and shush otherwise. Keep your broadcasts short and to the point – especially during boss fights. Sometimes several critical things are happening simultaneously that your teammates need to know about, so make sure you are letting others be heard. Use push-to-talk so that your background noise doesn't trigger at the wrong time. If you're using a mic in sync with speakers, then turn your game sounds down or off so that they don't drown you out when you are telling us important stuff. Plus, many people turn their player voice volume way up so that they can hear everything. Hearing your battle-sounds through your mic at a max-cranked volume can be painful.

Sunday, August 8, 2010

My computer killed me

Okay, so it didn't really kill 'me', but it is responsible for the first and only death of my warden character on LotRO. I had taken her (level 36 at the time) to do an epic escort quest to save Dori from being held captive in an enemy stronghold. In the middle of this, my computer locked up, but the game kept playing from the server's side and my character, I think (I couldn't see anything happening) stood there and did absolutely nothing while the bad guys surrounding her sliced, hacked and stabbed her to death with their almost trivially weak little axes.

The interesting thing about this is that when I restored my computer to function and logged back into that character, I saw this:

1. Character selection screen (posted location: Nan Amlug West)
2. Loading screen
3. My warden, standing in the stronghold by herself. Time elapsed: maybe one second
4. Another loading screen
5. My warden, standing in a rez circle (posted location: Kingsfell)

The interesting thing is, the game spew said that Dori had been defeated, and that I had succumbed to my wounds, but it didn't say I had been defeated. It also did not give me the standard 'defeat tooltip' that every character sees upon their first death.

So perhaps my character did NOT die. I am conflicted about whether I can still say I have never killed my character, since I technically didn't, and the game may also not think so either, given the weird behaviour exhibited. It's really tough to say. I did wake up in a rez circle. I did not see my warden die. I did 'succumb to my wounds'. I did not get incapacitated.

Monday, July 12, 2010

Apostrophes don't make you look smarter

Remember in grade school how you learned about making things plural? It was mostly pretty easy - you just had to tack a letter 's' to the end of your noun and voila: plural! Sure, there were the occasional words that required you to add 'es' instead of just 's', but that was no big deal, right? Life was pretty good back then. Grammar was easy stuff and you were its master.

Oh, but then there was that epically dark day when you learned about possession and your world just sort of imploded. Why would they use your precious letter 's' for an entirely different function than plurals? Who thought up this mess? The only way to differentiate between plurals and possessives were these pesky little tick marks hovering oh so innocuously, mocking the previously perfect system. That day shall forever haunt you as the day apostrophes ruined everything. Possessives got tricky when you had to remember different rules for who was owning what and how many things were owned. That's when the two 's' worlds really collided: when plural things were possessed, possibly by plural owners.

As an aside, that's also when the whole there/their/they're fiasco erupted.

From that day onward, the letter 's' has been subjected to all kinds of misery, and the once-functional apostrophe started being strewn about. People just sort of forgot that you don't need an apostrophe to pluralize a word, even if the word is really weird. If a particular word is sort of new or unfamiliar to you, or colloquial, or spelled funny, these are not reasons to add an apostrophe. If you're talking about a decade, it's the '80s, not the 80's (the reason there is an apostrophe at the beginning of '80s is because it is short for 1980s, and the apostrophe takes the place of the chopped off 19).

Even though you learned about apostrophes after you learned about plurals, thereby making apostrophes the more advanced of the two concepts, and even though apostrophes are the more tricky to use, you absolutely do not look smarter when you use them where none are necessary. Trust me on this.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Gotta love these ads

<--- This is one of many ads I saw today. What caught my eye was the minus sign. I was thinking it might be fun to take them up on their offer and have them pay me $4.95 as well as the 1000G, and I don't even play WoW. But, five bucks is five bucks, right? I could have a lot of fun and sign up for a million gold. that would be $4,950.00 to me, then. A pretty decent living, but why stop there? I could order a billion gold, or a trillion, and really make a fine living. Of course, then there'd be the problem of what the heck would I do with game money in a game I don't even play?

*disclaimer: I don't cheat or advocate cheating. This post is purely to make fun of a typo, and while I don't usually stoop to pointing and laughing, these companies pretty much deserve it, because this kind of cheatery is despicable.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009


So, I googled my name this morning, for kicks. It's amazing the stuff that comes up. For instance, I learned today that there is only one person with my name in all of Canada.

About Me

My photo
Anacredenza is a screen name I made up back when I first joined a debate forum. At that time, I was just about finished figuring out what my beliefs are, and the name, which means 'renewed belief' reflects that. I cannot claim to know everything (not even remotely close!), but I'm now comfortable with what I believe, which I discovered were my deep, though covered-up, thoughts all along, and have therefore been renewed. I may be right, or I may be wrong, but at least now I'm being true to myself. After figuring this out, I went back and talked with people who hold beliefs that I used to share, to test my new (and old) thoughts on the matter. After several years of that, I am much more comfortable with what I believe. I don't care very much about what other people believe any more, as long as they don't use their beliefs to justify harming other people. That said, I care a great deal about how people come to their conclusions - thorough, critical thinking skills are important, and if more people just knew how to think, the whole world could be a much less hostile place.