Spoiler alert! I’ve you’ve not seen the series finale of the most recent Doctor Who series then be prepared for spoilers if you continue reading. You are, of course, welcome to continue reading but it will spoil an integral part of the ‘plot’.
“[He] has a secret that he’ll take to the grave, it is discovered”. According to that episode the thing that’s discovered is the grave, not the secret. Now I’m no expert on grammar, but I’m pretty sure the subject of that sentence is the secret hence the ‘misconception’ of the characters, and indeed the audience, that it was the secret was discovered. Here’s the process I’m going though to figure this out:
So a subject can be found by looking for subject-verb pairs, the first one I naturally go to is “secret” and “discovered”, but take is a verb so there’s a pair there: “secret” and “take”. The second subject-verb pair is “it” and “discovered”, but what does “it” refer to in this sentence?
The sentence is actually a compound sentence, so needs a semicolon:
“[He] has a secret that he’ll take to the grave; it is discovered”. We can see that the two clauses are entirely independent, “[He] has a secret that he’ll take to the grave. It is discovered”, so the problem is definitely the use of the word “it”, which just refers to a “thing” that’s been previously stated; in this case it’s either the secret or the grave, so I don’t see an unambiguous way of looking at this quote.
The Doctor has a go at ol’ what’s-her-face for “not listening” as if it’s obvious what that sentence means, when it clearly isn’t. The sentence is inherently ambiguous; this isn’t the Doctor or River outsmarting the problem with a heightened understanding of English, it’s just them making slightly different assumptions. I’d argue that they make the ‘correct’ assumption because they have the full context for the sentence.
The reason for this post? It kind of annoys me when writers use “characters don’t understand language” as a plot point, because for the most part it’s not actually bad grammar that causes the problem. That sentence is grammatically correct, but ambiguous, and written to be so. The problem was lack of context, and the Doctor seems to view this as his companion’s fault. (The fact I can’t remember her name speaks about how strong a character she is)
It’s the only phone that has swayed me from buying a Nexus 4 when I get the money. I’m pretty committed to buying a new phone when I get the chance, my Galaxy S 2 is annoying me now due to lack of developer support. That’s not something I expect to change with the HTC One, but the latest version of Sense looks like something I might actually be able to use, and the combination of that camera and that screen make it very compelling. I’d still prefer phones to be a little smaller, 4.7” is still pushing the envelope for me, but it’s better than the 5” monsters that everyone else is making.
That said, I’ll review what phones are around when I actually get ‘round to buying one
So I’ve spent the weekend editing the footage from my streamed playthrough of Perspective. I didn’t think it’d be that much of a challenge so I took the opportunity to test out kdenlive, a free, open source, video editor for Linux.
Oh boy was I wrong, to do some of the stuff I want to I’m really putting kdenlive through its paces, so a lot of the time I spend editing at the moment is just working out how to do things. It’s good fun though, perhaps I should keep it simple though, or I won’t get all the episodes up in time…
I took part in my first ever outdoor Frisbee tournament a few weekends ago now. With only 8 players for Saturday and 7 for Sunday it was a hard weekend. You need 7 for a team, so there were no subs on Sunday. No rest for the wicked I guess… (or should that be no rest for the AWESOME?!)
Our team (in the words of Phil, our captain):
Matthew ‘the very welcome outsider’: that guy from Keele without whom our games on Saturday might not have been that close & the one that helped us with finding out about our deep game!
Sam ‘blamephil.com’: liked blaiming the captain but put his university career, body and especially ankle on the line for everyone
Jack ‘I don’t want the disc’: the one running around as if the flying plastic was contaminated, also got nearly K.O. by a backhand slap & Sam’s biggest blame supporter
Sylvester ‘high tower’: without him there would have been no one to take care of those high discs that resulted in some awesome scores and brilliant D’s
Quentin ‘what is that?’: the one not knowing what was going on half the time but still being in the right spots and the right times
Aaron ‘sir run-a-lot’: speedy gonazlez who couldn’t be stopped until his eyes and heads went from over-committement - all the best for a quick recovery
Robert ‘She’s scary’: the one to be haunted by the dragon lady still taking her on with courage & when he found his forehand flick it resulted in deep bombs
Philipp ‘I didn’t mean to hit her’: prefered ending up on the ground & the lazy one just banging the disc deep
If anyone wants to give the the money for that blamphil domain then… Y’know, donations welcome ;-) Lol. Outdoor Ultimate is so much more fun that indoor, and as painful as ironmanning part of the tournament was, I’m sure I’d do it again
My next advantage video project is a representation of the path to space flight. I don’t want to go into too much detail, but part of that representation is a rocket fuelled by match-heads.
Anyone who knows me knows I’m a bit of a pyromaniac, and when I was younger I realised that the slow-burn chemicals at the tip of a matchstick were pretty damn similar to rocket fuel, so I chopped a few up and worked out how to make a little rocket out of tinfoil and match-heads.
Wrap tinfoil around 4 or so match-heads, seal up one end, leave a small hole in the other then heat up the end with match-heads up until it all ignites and the rocket shoots off:
Say you streamed a playthrough of a game on Twitch, then decided to download the .flv videos of said stream so you could edit them together and put them on YouTube. Say you’re also too cheap to pay for XSplit and what you’ll notice is that the audio codec is speex.
Not a big deal for Twitch, but even VLC can’t handle the audio playback when done locally. The trick is to re-encode the audio to something more useful (aac), and you’ll want to do this without re-encoding the video because every time you re-encode you lose quality; you’ll already end up re-encoding it all when you export the final version to YouTube (which will re-encode again) so we want to keep this to a minimum. Avconv (or ffmpeg) to the rescue! These programs do work on Windows (so I’m told) but the script I’m about to show you won’t. avconv can take the video input and look at the 2 streams separately, so we tell it to copy the video stream and convert the audio stream to aac then put them both in an mp4 file. Here’s the command for that:
Rehash: twitch archive videos are in an flv container, with the h264 video codec and the speex audio codec. We use avconv to copy the video stream as it is (without re-encoding), convert the audio stream to aac then put the results into an mp4 container, so we’re left with an mp4 container with h264 video and aac audio. Perfect!
Twitch chops the video up into 30 minute sections, so my 2 and a bit hour archive of Perspective is in 5 files, and I don’t want to run the same commands 5 times, so I wrote a script to do it for me:
One of my modules at Uni is an introduction to film editing, and this is our second project: just a minute
I decided to make mine about building a computer, it’s something I enjoy doing and hey, anything to take apart a friend’s pride an joy right?
For those interested, here’s what happening in each shot:
Overview of all the components
CPU and it’s cooling system
Monster of a GPU
Putting the DVD drive in
Putting the HDD in
Putting the SSD in
A pan over remaining components (PSU, USB ports, RAM, motherboard, GPU)
Putting the PSU in
Putting the motherboard in
Screwing the motherboard down
Putting the RAM in
Putting the GPU in
Plugging all the wires in. I cut out me plugging the wires into the PSU, you couldn’t really see anything. The shot includes: power to the GPU, power to some area of the motherboard, main power to the motherboard, USB ports then audio. Everything else (SATA cables and the like) we did off camera because only Steve knows where they go
Motherboard powering up (just checking the thing still had POST)
Top fan powering up
A look at the completed tower
Putting the side of the case on
Power to the PC
Plugging the screen in
Plugging the mouse in
Plugging the speakers in
Powering the PC up
Me playing Portal 2
Pro tip: when you speed up footage, make sure you check “frame blending”. It looks so much better.
It was a fun afternoon spent taking apart and rebuilding Steve’s PC
So, some “fun” stats:
I spent about 2 hours planning the video, 2 hours filming it, 1 hour getting a rough cut and another 2 hours nitpicking over getting each cut on the beat. Some of the cuts were a whole 3 frames too late, and it bugged me.
Huge thanks to Ronald Jenkees for the music, he kindly let me use Throwing Fire in this video. Check out his stuff here: http://www.ronaldjenkees.com/