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Friday Fun Thread for May 3, 2024

Be advised: this thread is not for serious in-depth discussion of weighty topics (we have a link for that), this thread is not for anything Culture War related. This thread is for Fun. You got jokes? Share 'em. You got silly questions? Ask 'em.

Jump in the discussion.

No email address required.

The best and most cost-efficient way to reduce recividism rates is to incentivize the playing of an RPG game and to make various rewards contingent upon its progression, even going so far as to pay the prisoner per progression

An RPG game is uniquely capable of changing the character and knowledge of a criminal because it contains elements of movies, novels, art, and social life, while requiring participation with leads to forced identification with the story. RPG gameplay can make criminals hate crime: stories involving the risks and stupidity of committing crime, stories involving guilt and shame at criminality, having a criminal villain character come in and “steal” the character’s progress, etc etc. RPGs are particularly good at memory formation because of their variety of locations and characters and cues. Real life skills can be mirrored in the game (eg applying to jobs, paying child support), as can emotional regulation strategies. Lastly, this solves the problem of criminals socializing with other criminals within a social hierarchy where the hardest criminal sits up top (literally the worst thought out punishment for criminals lmao). More of a criminal’s free time will go into the game, and prisons can also separate criminal cohorts by progression in the game.

Just imagine: you are Joe the prisoner, you are bored, you are told you can get paid to play a game. You start up the game and your character is Joe and looks just like you. The game traps your attention at first without any indication that it is about morality. But over time the storyline gets more and more moral. Suddenly you are playing as “Joe the reformed prisoner” who is starting a new life in some kind of Fable/Stardew/FF setting (but hyper-moral), all the while growing in wisdom and practical skillset, while every so often the game purposefully makes you afraid of committing crime.

Surprised nobody has mentioned the GDP increase!

Interesting, kind of reminds me of End Roll. As the game goes on, the protagonist has more guilt for his own actions. Or he doesn't and gets executed for his lack of remorse.

What consoles did everyone have growing up?
Showing my age here, but the N64 was the first and last I ever owned (and didn't buy many games after ocarina of time, not even goldeneye). My high school boyfriend had a gaystation 2, but in college the most common game was Mario Cart 64.
Some people also got a Wii senior year, but I had time to play it like twice.

(Edit: I had a PC, but never anything good enough to play modern games. My treasured CD was a pirate compilation of a whole bunch of 90s games, including homm2 and Raiden fighters.

Asking because a few friends were talking about video game nostalgia, and I was shocked at the number of different consoles they'd had access to.

My zoomerness will shine through this, but oh well. Wanted a gameboy or (OG) DS when I was a preteen but was stuck borrowing friends', until I finally got a DSi when I was around 13 or 14 I think. First home console was actually a PS3 acquired around the same time, but parents were super strict about ESRB ratings so it was mostly used for the LEGO games (which, to be fair, are excellent). Got a Wii a year or two later.

My life changed when I got a GTX 670 and a PSU that could run it once I was well into my teens, no more intel iGPUs and 20fps minecraft. It was installed in the family computer though, so still somewhat limited by ESRB and had to share it with siblings. I eventually killed it with crypto mining but its carcass is actually still mounted on the wall of my childhood bedroom as of the last time I visited my parents.

What consoles did everyone have growing up?

NES — the package deal with the light gun and the floor pad, to go with the cartridge with SMB, Duck Hunt, and Track & Field. Then SNES. Then, when I was in high school, the N64 — which let all three of us boys plus Dad play (mostly 4 player versus mode on Star Fox 64).

I wanted an Atari 2600 what I got was a Magnavox Odyssey 2.

Then later I had a NES.

My children now have a Switch and a xbox.

It is important to remember that sound is what determines what article is used, not the letter that a word begins with. The above should read 'an Xbox' since the letter X has a vowel sound

You didn't read the M from Microsoft in microsoft xbox because it was only in my head.

True, I did not take your full headcanon into account while being a grammar Nazi.

My family had a PlayStation 1, a GameCube, and a PlayStation 3.

We always had computers as far back as my very first memories. We had a NES in the very early 90s. Then I was mostly a PC gamer, until my brother got a Dreamcast. Finally I got me a Gamecube as a late teen. After that I was an adult so it doesn't really count.

But I've played emulators when that became possible, played console games at friends places, etc...

I didn't have any consoles growing up, my parents were very against them. I only had old PC games. My first console (eventually) was a PS2 my sophomore year of college.

Anyone playing manor lords and having any thoughts yay or nay? Or even just "wait a few months"?

I bought it the day the game released on early access and have been enjoying it tremendously. There are many features missing, but the game is mostly stable and there is enough to give you a couple of dozen hours of gameplay, even if it's to just learn the mechanics.

Should you buy it? That depends.

Were you chomping at the bits to play it after months of anticipation, gameplay videos, and pages upon pages of dev diaries? Buy it.

Otherwise, you're good to wait. An upside to waiting: the longer you hold out, the more features will be included by the time you eventually buy it.

Tried it briefly. It's promising but I'd wait for the final release.



I played, it's very much in "wait" territory imo. It has potential. I like the way you assign families to jobs, and how you can turn people's homes into artisan workshops. I also like the addition of combat to the city builder format. But I also think it's very much half baked even by early access standards. The map takes way too long to traverse, the AI has no chill, some techs seem to not work at all, and so on.

I think that if the dev can keep at it, Manor Lords is going to be great someday. But it's pretty meh at the moment.

I didn’t think I’d make it, but I submitted my entry for the ACX book review contest.

I’m a terrible procrastinator. I have been planning to write my entry since the contest was announced several months ago, and I’ve been intending to enter since the last contest ended, but beyond putting together an outline I didn’t actually start writing until this last Monday, a week before the due date. Still, better last minute than never!

Anybody else enter this year? I don’t have much hope of being a finalist, but I’d like to improve on my performance last year (54th out of 145).

Can you write about your process of reviewing a book?

Right now my process is to pick a book that I have already read that excites me in some way: a book I want to talk to people about. Almost always non-fiction, because then you have a lot of information from the book that you can summarize and interpret. It has to be a book I've already read and am very familiar with; the first time I tried entering the contest I picked a book I hadn't read yet that I was very interested in, and I ended up not finishing it by the time the deadline comes. No need to make it harder for yourself! Go with a known quantity.

Once I've picked the book I reread it, taking notes as I go. I put in bookmarks on places that have quotes I would like to put in the review, and as I go I have a document keeping track of all the ideas I get as I read: that it would be neat to talk about this, or about how this connects to that, etc. Just reading the book with the review in mind. I feel free to skim, it doesn't have to be a thorough reading. Just enough to get the juices going and find quotes. Once I have enough ideas written down to fill a report, I start writing.

First I outline, which is just taking the reading notes I made and then organizing them into a structure that makes sense. I always cut a lot of ideas out here, if they don't fit into the report very well. Ideally all the ideas should flow together and be cohesive, not random.

Then I write. That's the hard part for me, actually saying "this is the time I am going to write" and then doing that. But the writing itself isn't hard, I follow the outline and then either stick to it or diverge from it as the muse pulls me. I often find out halfway through writing it that it would be better to jettison sections of the outline, or add bits in that weren't planned. Just like re-reading the book gets the ideas flowing, writing the report also gets your mind making connections you didn't notice earlier.

Then ideally I would wait a couple days and then review and edit. This time I had to edit it the next day, which is not ideal: you want to forget what you wrote so when you read it you see what you actually wrote instead of what you remember writing. Ideally I'd do two or more editing passes like this. Then the deadline comes and you have to ship it.

Yeah. And sane as you, i submitted at the last minute. Probably could hace done better with more tine, but its hard to tell how much time i should sink into this pointless online mental masturbation.

Congratulations! Being in the top half of a competition like that was already pretty good, best of luck this year.

Thanks, though the sad thing is I know I could have done better last year if I had more time: and then I went ahead and did it at the last minute again! This year I’m going to try to write next years entry now, maybe then I’ll learn.

Book recommendation thread? I picked up and read The Eternal Front as recommended from last week's thread, and found it quite enjoyable - very often I find sci-fi loses me within its own scope, but Blaire's writing felt much more human in scale with far lower stakes than what I ordinarily read. I think sci-fi shines brightest when telling stories about the individuals navigating the cultures and battlefields forged through genetic, technological and/or cultural isolation - the actual bedrock upon which every setting rests. Anyway Eternal Front is a good rec and I'll just second @No_one's writeup for it.

Maybe my awareness of the often unnecessarily grandiose scope of sci-fi is the result of serendipity, as I also (finally) got around this week to reading Peter Watts' Echopraxia after having read and reread Blindsight several times over the years, and for as much as I love his writing he doesn't really do people very well. Maybe he just finds them awkward and somewhat unnecessary to the tale he's trying to tell (this may be a literary flourish of his, kind of the point, I've only just recently been introduced to the concept of "media literacy" please understand). Regardless, if you read/enjoyed Blindsight and haven't read the sequel yet, I'll stick a hearty recommendation onto it. If you haven't read Blindsight and you like hard sci-fi then I don't know what you're doing here. Go read it (it's available for free on Watts' website) and curse/thank me later. Pretty sure our actual future looks more like his vision than Gene Roddenberry's.

Continuing down the vein of galactic scale sci-fi that I like but feel a little lost in the sauce, I enjoyed Alastair Reynolds Inhibitor Trilogy, though when reading it I couldn't shake the feeling I was reading a grimdark Culture fanfic (albeit a thoughtfully and competently written one). A fun read if you have nothing else going on, some interesting semi-hard concepts get trotted out and played with, a few logical conclusions to the laws of physics (and breaking them) are portrayed in fairly comprehensible prose. The first entry, Revelation Space, is fun enough by itself to be worth a read; if you want more of that, then each subsequent book expands on those same themes and scenarios. A medium-strength recommend.

Speaking of Iain Banks Culture series, I suppose I'll register some disappointment with everyone who told me Consider Phlebas was a weaker entry in the series than Player of Games, could not really disagree more - PoG was an interesting look into alien anthropology and cultural hijacking but I found it to be bit of a slog. Phlebas, however, scratched that itch I have for a story about a person doing person things in a great big future. Both were good reads though, and I have a fresh copy of Use of Weapons now sitting on top of my stack.

Peter Watts' Echopraxia

It's not that he doesn't want to write people or can't. His first novels(the .. eventual tetralogy*) had thorough characterisation and imo pretty good one. Although I suspect in some ways he was pretty much drawing on past girlfriends and writing about things related to himself...

The entire book is deliberately written in a sort of minimalist style, sometimes verging into almost something like scripture. (especially the last chapters) I didn't really like the style though I sort of admire he pulled it off. Still liked the book.

*it's not bad reading though if you're squeamish, the third book does sometimes veer into what might be fairly described as torture porn. It's only a like a chapter or two though.

I've only just recently been introduced to the concept of "media literacy"

I'm very sorry, but rest assured that top minds are working on a cure for Media Literacy.

I only read PoG and not Phleb, and while it didn't feel like a slog I was deeply unsatisfied with it. The setup was interesting, but the only payoff was... Being lectured by annoying robot communists?

If you enjoyed the other one better I'll give it a try.

Phlebas is acknowledged as one of his weakest Culture work, I believe. Player of Games as one of the better ones. I didn't find any of the books too preachy though. And they aren't really 'communists' in any real sense. It's more of a thoroughly post-scarcity oligarchy with a number of unsolved questions..

Iain was a bolshie, true, but at least the books are good reading, and the preaching / lib-mindedness is at worst present, but not central.

Personally I don't mind long-winded books that are universally acknowledged to 'need an editor' if the writing is fun enough.

I really liked "The Algebraist". Not a culture book at all, and even though it's mildly political, you can hardly accuse the message of being communist. Any human except maybe the most reactionary/hierarchical types would concur, I believe.

Fearsum Endjinn is pretty decent. I liked 'Against a Dark Background' though it's a bit rougher.

He was a good to very good writer... 20 years of writing after work, followed by twenty more years being comfortably well off while writing for a quarter of a year, at most.

Well, pancreatic cancer is no joke. He was dead within three months of diagnosis.

I'll warn you, in terms of pacing Phlebas is all over the place compared to PoG. That said, I think Phlebas is just more entertaining - distinct setpieces, interesting characters, consequential action, clever strategems. It reads more like sci-fi-noir, the main character jumping from bad to worse and still scraping through, seething the whole time at the hedonistic and inhuman Culture as if someone had transplanted an early 21st century man into the setting.

That said, I think Phlebas is just more entertaining

That's wild to me, because imo the only thing less entertaining than Consider Phlebas is the classified section of a newspaper. It's by a large margin the most painfully boring fiction book I've ever read. Meanwhile Player of Games actually was really quite entertaining.

To each their own, I'll probably reread the whole Culture series once I've finished it and I might scare up a different opinion on a second read-through.

That sounds great, thanks for the rec. I've never been bothered by bad pacing or meandering plots as long as there's gems of payoff in there.

It's always bothered me more when an author carefully orchestrates a setup to a disappointing resolution. Like "hey there were some interesting ideas you cut short exploring so you could rush me to some shit I could care less about"

The little Bewick's Wren who made a nest on my front door shelf has had 4 chicks, and they must be the ugliest creatures in the entire world. Like naked bulgy-eyed dinosaur fetuses with giant gaping beaks like a barnacle.

She looks so proud of them though, it's adorable. She's putting in hours of work trying to glean enough insects to keep all the chicks fed, so does anyone know if it's possible to set up a worm feeder or something? She's pretty friendly with me, but not enough to feed her by hand.

If you can you could turn over a couple of spade's worth of garden soil each day, I imagine she'll find it fairly quickly if there's anything worthwhile in there and it's not much more work than filling up a feeder.

Carnivorous birds are hard to feed -- I've tried dried mealworms and grub-infused suet, the ones in my neighbourhood turn up their noses.

On the plus side they seem to mostly do alright on their own; lots of bugs out there I guess. You can get refrigerated/dormant mealworms at bait shops which supposedly you can put in a tray and the birds will go for them once they warm up and start wriggling around -- I haven't tried it, but it would be my next step if there were a bird around that seemed to be in trouble.

Any ideas for small electrical things that you use regularly that would make a good Project?

I've been running some students through designing a macropad variant, and someone in the tumblr rat-adj-adj sphere is building a small timer. But a lot of the field, including things I've run as student projects before, tend to be toys.

I like your basic two-wheel robot as much as the next person, but it's something that at best you make, put on the shelf, and never touch again. Same for infinity mirrors, and the best that can be said for epaper weather stations is that at least they'll change on the shelf. Or, alternatively, there's a ton of projects to build something that's really useful for somebody who wants to be an electrical engineer and needs something that'll work until they can buy a Real Tool.

Ideally, I'd have students long enough to see what they'd want, but I've gotten a lot of shrugs, or worse questions for stuff that seems deceptively easy (forget the ethics of DIY AppleTags, the TI MSP430 library for LoRA suuuuuuucks). And in more cases, I don't really have the timelines for it, as hilariously enough even if we're getting circuit boards done as students finish the CAD, I need to have the non-jellybean parts ordered months in advance or they'll get in slower than OSHPark or JLCPCB can turn something around.

The problem is that almost anything which would be widely useful can already be found for less than you would pay for the parts on aliexpress, and will likely offer better battery life and miniaturization. Especially the latter is a big deal for wearables -- while you can certainly use an ESP32, a EKG chip and some flash memory to build a two channel 24/7 Holter EKG, it will certainly not have the neat chest strap form factor but something much bulkier. Also, most of your students probably don't require an EKG in any case.

Home automation is one area where DIY can thrive, especially for cloud-skeptics like me who don't like to surrender control to Amazon or Google. Devices there can often be mains-powered and a bit larger. Commercial products often are not very great on generic interfaces and instead prefer for you to download the app and use their cloud.

All of the devices which I have build which ended up being useful are for very specific things in the lab. A tester to check if there are sixteen diodes connected to specific pins of a DSub25 connector is not exactly an item you require in every household.

I personally would not worry if student electronics projects end up in some drawer. It is the same with most smaller student software projects. Nobody would want to hang whatever pictures I was forced to draw in high school on their walls, and most student essays don't enter the canon either.

Regarding buying electronic components, I have found it really helpful to have the backing of a corporation or institution. Most of the electronics vendors like farnell, mouser, digikey, buerklin really don't like to do business with private individuals. This means that for plenty of chips there is not even a good way to buy them at all on your own. When purchasing through an institution, I can get the products from at least two of these vendors within a week or so. Of course, if you want really exotic sensors you might have to buy directly from the producer, but the palette they offer is rather large.

Maybe a computer mouse or something like an NES controller for playing retro games? Alternatively some kind of optical scanner that can read barcodes/QR codes for data retrieval.

Maybe a computer mouse or something like an NES controller for playing retro games?

Doable, though I'd need to step up on 3d printing for anything usable for the longer term. Retro gaming's a lot more hit or miss than I would have expected for a lot of the teenagers I get, though.

Alternatively some kind of optical scanner that can read barcodes/QR codes for data retrieval.

Barcodes is possible. QR codes are rough: either you're using a prebuilt module for the heavy lifting and just spits out a boring (usually UART) stream, putting a RaspPi in a box, or you're throwing camera focus and bulk memory management and illumination all in at once on a microcontroller project.

Displaying changing QR codes on ePaper or oled displays aren't too hard. Dunno if that's anything students would useful.

not answering your question, but... combined powerbank + keyboard + wrist exerciser + crank energy generator

The issue with lithium ion batteries is that they contain rather a lot of energy. I would always prefer to use a prebuilt charging circuit rather than relying on building my own, just like I try to avoid building anything complicated which directly interfaces with mains power.

did I write something suggesting implementing your own charging circuit? sounds like you do not want this in the first place. Oh if many wanted it, it'd be on market already.


Temperature monitoring on devices has saved me more heartache than any other project. The latest one was getting an alert my fridge-freezer was failing in time to shut it down and fix before the compressor exploded (fridge overheating, freezer over-cooling, stupid stupid active vent systems)

On the plus side now we know my freezer can get itself to -40F if it wants.

That’s a good one, especially since a lot of mainstream gear in that space depends on annoying IoT stuff.

Downside is it's not exactly sexy unless you have a Monitoring Things fetish, and the practical side doesn't show up until it alerts you to a problem.

Yeah, it'd not be the sort of thing you could just plug in and make magic happen, but I could see a good lesson plan talking about cycles of temperature or relative humidity.

She's a 10, there's absolutely nothing wrong with her, you managed to bring her home with you, and she's a little tipsy. But you just noticed that on your bookshelf behind her there's an exposed and visible hardcover copy of Ted Cruz's Unwoke. What do you do?

Desperately try to get back in a sexy mood by thinking of literally anything but Ted Cruz.

Tell her that Amazon screwed up, you were trying to order something by Ted Kaczynski...

This problem is avoidable by not having shitty books to begin with.

Mire how nice it looks on my bookshelf in between The Bell Curve and Race, Evolution, and Behavior before more drinks and having her play with something else exposed and visibly hard, such as the pair of bongos I brought back from the Caribbean.

Marry her

Do you like her?

Slip her some real red pills like I'm Bill Cosby.

Wait, I just noticed the book is yours, not hers, the joke hardly works

That's pretty great!

Does a Fullstack Engineer on here want to found a startup together with a larger vision of solving communication on the internet?
I'll have a demo for y'all in a month, but if you're keen to take a leap of faith and wanna know specifics, hit me up.

Internet strangers are reputed as neckbeards in their mom's basement, but some of us do well for ourselves. We are both well-compensated engineers but neither of us do web-work / full-stack work. For grounding, we're targetting YC W25 and have a well-defined product plan with sensible unit economics. For once, cynical quokkas might just be the right people for this kind of endeavor.

I'll be doing it anyway, but you know what they say : "2 is a company, 3 is a startup founding team."

I'm leaving my job in a month to focus on game dev and writing fiction, but if the idea was cool enough and the team was right I wouldn't be opposed to derailing that. I'm primarily a react/C# backend guy with ~10 years experience but I've worked with a dozen front end frameworks over the years. Feel free to shoot me a DM now, or reach out in July, I'll be done with work and back from vacations by then and fully settling back in to my new schedule.

Description is kinda vague, but I assume you're something like Naval's Airchat? A new modality/system of interaction to make large scale web interactions less inhuman?

What does "solving communication" mean?

: sob :

Why you crying my man ?

I must code

But I can't

How fast do you want someone on board? Do you care about the stack or do you just need someone great at a couple?

Not urgent. We want to find the right person.
With 2 founders moonlighting (I + friend) and 1 free full-stack intern, we are covered on the essentials.

We have 2 distinct dates - July or October.

  • October to join the W25 YC application and be paid a human wage from Day 1.
  • July if you want to start moonlighting with us.

On stacks:

Prefer stable+popular+easy (React, JS/TS, Python) if no strong opinions.
Very open to other frontend frameworks (Svelte?, this is your domain, you pick your poison)
Early on, simple is better, so pick what gets you off the ground fastest.
No premature backend optimization. So avoid C++/Java/Rust early. Special exceptions if you are uniquely productive in a specific language.

What we've used before: Containerized ( GPU -> Torch -> Python -> FastAPI ) -> TS -> React

Whered you find a free full stack intern?

I'm letting someone close to me crash for the summer between grad-school semesters. :)

You should watch Pantheon, a two season animated sci-fi series. It feels like LessWrong: The Show. There is even a quokka cameo.

On the subject, does anyone have any sci-fi TV/movie recommendations? I am not a big consumer and I haven't seen much. What I liked about Pantheon is that it's plausible and near term, and decent modeling of global and corporate politics.

Arrival is worth watching. Don't look anything up about it before watching, assuming that's one you haven't seen.

Given a choice between the story and the film, though, the story wins.

I think The Expanse and For All Mankind fit what you're looking for, and maybe Firefly and Battlestar Galactica as well.

Cute. Not sure if it's genuine though.

It was really kinda unfair showing them one that wasn't labelled in Urdu or Persian or a related script though..

Not mine; from a screenshot (of a Mastodon post, I think?) that was passed around Tumblr:

there once was a lamp that could turn anyone into a woman by merely standing in its light. people came from far and wide to see it, but to their dismay the lamp was rarely lit. for this lamp ran on a special fuel, and that fuel was heavily guarded. it had all been gathered up and stored in a fortress, and that fortress had only one way in or out, through a big iron gate. the only way to get the fuel was to get permission from the person in charge of the gate, the girl light gas keep gate boss.

It makes my brain hurt

I love it!

Am I missing some hidden message here? Is it just that the last words are "girlboss gaslight gatekeep" rearranged?

Yeah, it’s just word salad.

I’m a sucker for that kind of humor.


"Trans people are oppressed because girl bosses who gatekep what it means to be woman and then gaslight them by claiming to be allies?"

That's my best guess

It reads like a joke that someone forgot the punchline to and butchered the delivery. Would have been much better if they had figured out how to get it in the correct order.

Being out of order is what makes it funny. If the punchline was "the gas light gate keep girl boss" then it would be mildly funny, but rotating the word pairs so that they're exactly one off, and all in the same direction, makes it hilarious. Like "man door hand hook car door"

I still don't unserstand. Is this some sort of absurdist zoomer meme humor I'm just not going to get? What about the random word salad of buzz words being slightly off makes it funny? It reads to me like an AI attempting to riff off the "don't dead open inside" meme without understanding that it's a visual gag.

I think it’s mostly funny because it’s kind of what you expected, but not right. Subverted expectations is the foundation of a lot of humor. Like with the Hook Hand meme, if you’re familiar with the urban legend then you expect the ending (she opens the door and sees a hook hanging off the handle) and instead of getting that you get a jumble of nonsense that contains all the elements you expected but in an order that makes them semantically meaningless. That surprise is funny to me.

It's not random. It's a popular phrase being shifted.


Stumbled upon this unreasonably catchy parody of a Cheburashka (famous Soviet cartoon series) song on Youtube. Like most of the best Russian memes, apparently the lyrics themselves are way older than the rendition (70s? 80s?).

This made me think - I seem to know a disproportionate number of political songs, grassroots parodies (this one is about siphoning off ethanol rocket fuel to get wasted) and snowclones from Russia. Do other cultures make much of those? The only one I can think of off the top of my head is "Napalm Sticks to Kids".

I knew what it was going to be before I clicked the link. The lyrics are old enough that my dad taught them to me 30 years ago.

Johnny I hardly knew ya fits the bill. I have sent Blood on the risers to a dear friend before her bungee jump from which she was dearly afraid.

Military songs are a goldmine. They are cynical enough to be catchy and real.

The recording industry managed to spread the idea that non-professionals singing is lame and embarassing. So gathering around the campfire or a piano and singing as a group is pretty unusual for adults, at least in the US & CAN.

So there's not much of an opportunity for people to spread grassroots parodies.

You need to train your voice so it's not horrible. It used to be rather common, now is much less so.

Yes, many more people learnt to sing in school, and choirs were also more popular. With training most people’s voices can be made pleasant at singing, especially with conservative vocal range.

I remember a teacher from grade school who was very passionate about it, and dismayed by the ongoing process of 'less singing, more listening to music' and then, radios. She said it is a special sort of experience, that people should learn it. I hated singing then, only did it a little in the Scouts. Now I wish I'd tried giving it a go.

She was also extremely against street food and eating on the move, calling it uncultured. "If you're going to eat, you should sit down, take your time. It's a special occassion. Don't rush it, enjoy it." If only she knew...

With hindsight, I understand her attitudes and her exasperation much more. All she feared came to pass, and more. I think it's fortunate that people die, because were some of early 20th century guys around and hale, we'd probably have art/culture related terrorism.

Also hated most of rock music, calling it primitive and just bad. She was very fond of Queen and held them as an example of actually good popular music.

The recording industry managed to spread the idea that non-professionals singing is lame and embarrassing.

How did they accomplish this? What was the vehicle of delivery for this idea? Can you point me to specific sources?

English is much less conducive to good lyrics in the first place. Weird Al Yankovic is the only example that comes to mind (but he sometimes does a fantastic job):

It's probably true. In Czech, I believe someone wrote an entire play or at least a short story that's a 'tautogram'. Every word in every sentence starts with the same letter.

We also have political songs with actually good lyrics and non-cringe politics (Karel Kryl). Kryl was pretty pissed with Stalinism, but his later work seemed to be generally aimed against high modernism too.

You’re waiting at a bus station and there’s a big queue beside you at the next stop. Your bus pulls up and the big queue realises they’ve been waiting at the wrong stop the whole time and shuffle over.

In this situation are you in the right to take your place at the head of the new queue and reap the rewards for your good judgment or should you respect the misdirected queue and move to the back?

"Get behind me, Satan, I was here first" is the only thing these losers will hear from me.

The whole point of a queue is to facilitate quick embarking. Queuing on the wrong stop seems counter-productive in that regard.

Of course, betting that the queue is wrong about where the front door by a meter and starting a new queue on that spot is probably not very English. (Ideally, there would be marks on the floor where the queue ought to start.) But if there are two bus stops, it is reasonable to assume that the other queue wants to get on a different bus. In that case, starting a queue for your own bus stop seems ok.

Of course, we Germans don't queue for the bus. To get us to stand next to strangers, we would require greater rewards than simply slightly more efficiency when entering the bus.

This form of reasoning is alien to me. I don't think queues are Gods spoken word like the British but I don't entirely disrespect them either. For the most part, I respect the queue and don't cut in, ever.

I don't see any reason at all why one would give up their first place in this situatioin. You were right, they were all wrong. You stood in the real queue, they stood in the false one. Why does the abstract queue matter here???

The whole point of a queue is to serve in order of arrival, and you arrived first. If your logic is extended, then the first person to leave their house should get on first! The game theory of this doesn't work either. You WANT the system to reward good judgement and punish bad judgement!!!

This is just a pathological level of oversocialization, to have even had these thoughts occur in your mind... Jesus Christ. I wish I knew you, so I could take advantage of you.

This is just a pathological level of oversocialization, to have even had these thoughts occur in your mind... Jesus Christ. I wish I knew you, so I could take advantage of you.

This is unnecessary. I'm sure you're a shark among seals, but don't do this.


This is just a pathological level of oversocialization, to have even had these thoughts occur in your mind

I phrased it in the abstract but this was a real situation which led to an argument with an angry old woman!

The whole point of a queue is to serve in order of arrival, and you arrived first. . . You WANT the system to reward good judgement and punish bad judgement!!!

I agree my judgment was better and put me in the right. though technically I arrived at the correct stop first whereas everyone else was waiting in the rain before I showed up.

Jesus Christ. I wish I knew you, so I could take advantage of you.

What do you want me to say to this, what's your deadlift 1rm?

I would just get on the bus. But, also, there are almost never actually lines for busses in my region, so it wouldn't come up. Even when I was taking the CTA, everyone just spreads out, there isn't a queue.

After witnessing the events of 2020-2022, take my rightful place at the head of the queue.

The only person in life who will consistently look out for you, is you.

This is like the unscissor statement. Whether you're unvaccinated or still masking, you can agree on the above.

Aren't you like, standing right by the door in front of all the other people? Just step on the bus dude.

There's a few minutes between the bus pulling up and the doors opening, enough time to argue with an old woman is less abstract terms than I have phrased it above.

I haven't lived in England in over a decade now so any respect for bus stop queues has atrophied. I regularly "jump queue" just by standing closer to the kerbcurb than the other aspiring passengers, thus reaping the rewards for my lower risk aversion.

That's almost a prisoner's dilemma, but I suppose technically counts as Chicken. You're doing a (very slightly) negative sum interaction in order to siphon zero sum rewards away from other people. Nash equilibrium, everyone does this and ends up worse off than if they just respected the queue. (Although I suppose queues themselves are a bit of a prisoner's dilemma with respect to arrival time)

Are they worse off? Queues are certainly good in some situations but I'm not sure that holds true for bus stops.

Trick question, I would never be waiting at a bus station (and I did have breakfast this morning).

But really, I would go get my first-mover advantage if I could. I can see the case for lining up the same way, but people probably won't, and I'll be damned if I going to get the short end of the stick because of a coordination failure.

What's the distance here? To me, waiting at the next stop makes it sound like they're a block or two away. In that case I think that they're too far away to really have a good objection if you're at the front of the line. On the other hand if the bus pulled up a few feet away from the stop like @DradisPing suggested, then you don't get to jump to the front of the line because the people waiting were slightly off.

The other stop is 10 feet away (I’m bad with feet, more like 5 metres) but clearly a distinct stop. Think of a bunch of separate queues and a few empty stops in between, like an intercity bus station.

I've never seen such a thing, but it seems to me like you're saying those are stops for separate bus routes, and the other crowd was at the wrong one? I feel like in that case one doesn't owe to people to go to the back of the line.

You've never seen anything like this?

Where each of those signs is a departure point for a different bus route. I didn't realize it was unusual.

I didn't realize it was unusual.

It is! I live in Europe and I've never seen anything like the multiple bus stops in the picture.

Can't say I have. My experience with the bus begins and ends with taking it from one stop on the side of the street to another. I'm not saying they're necessarily unusual, just that I've never interacted with one.

Yep, it's a central bus station so all the stops are beside each other but they go to different towns and cities.

Bus stops are merciless. I've regularly lost my spot at the front of the queue because I was 30 inches to the left of where the bus actually stops and the next person decided to start a new queue.

Of course it's regional. England is legendary for strict queue etiquette. I have no helpful insights if you're in the UK.