Yes, and the “Reading List” too (down below), but as Part of a Kind of Weekly Update
Someone I loved once gave me a box full of darkness. It took me years to understand that this too, was a gift. – Mary Oliver
There was a new voice which you slowly recognized as your own, that kept you company as you strode deeper and deeper into the world. – Mary Oliver
One Thing Leads to Another and Then to VR
A few months ago, I discovered the Communion After Dark podcast - it is a well produced weekly podcast featuring darkwave, techno, goth music hosted by DJs Paradise, Maus and Gold. I’ve discovered so much good music - a lot of which doesn’t show up in Apple Music but it’s easy enough to import the MP3s there from Bandcamp and other places. I highly recommend it.
Incidentally, CAD has been featuring Massive Ego’s music lately and I was super happy to see their new EP arrive in the mail this week. :)
That led to following CAD on YouTube - the podcast is posted there too and running it on the TV while I’m working makes it feel like I’m having friends over (and finding techniques to keep the sometimes lonely feeling of remote work is important.)
And that led to (I think an algorithm surfaced it at some point), discovering DJ Maus’ on Twitch. Never used Twitch much before, but in the last month I’ve managed to follow and subscribe to several darkwave and furry Twitch streams including CAD, DJ Maus, Vox Sinistra, Sasha Fluffy UWU and of course Om Nom the Nom.
And all that lead me into VR - there are many, many furry hangouts and darkwave clubs in VR. I got my Oculus Quest this past week and I’m racking up time in it (to the detriment of my final MSEE project) exploring VRChat which is popular among furries AND the online goth/darkwave scene.
I wouldn’t be a recovering Privacy Panda if I didn’t admit I’m a little leery of being in Zuckerberg’s playground, but the allure of furry and goth VR has overpowered that, at least for now.
And I’ve already installed Unity to start building my own fursona avatar - because of course I did. The Windows computer is turning out to be useful for more than just MSEE work.
Next week I’ll have an update on VR for sure, and I’ll have spent more time researching and working with minimum variance acoustic beam-forming (the MSEE project I am working on when I don’t have the VR headset on) - I’ll give an update on that too. One of the foundational papers (by Capon) is older than I am, and that’s pretty old. I plan on writing the project in Python and NumPy to make it more interesting (instead of MATLAB, which I think could limit the application and impact beyond academia). :P
This Week’s Reading List
Besides what I’ve dug into above, here are some of the things that have been shared with me or caught my attention in the last week or so.
Primordial #6 - The final issue in the series just came out. Can’t recommend this comic enough. Space race, space dogs, all the feels.
r/electricvehicles - I’m not good at making memes, but I wanted to explain the difference between Kwh and Kw - EV capacity, EV charge rate, EV discharge rate: the distinction is often messy honestly and people being imprecise with units is a bit of a pet peeve of mine.
Itchy sweaters: An ally’s guide to understanding late-in-life pronoun and gender changes “From my own experience, as a nonbinary person who changed their name and pronouns after age 40, my original name, gender identity, and pronouns never quite fit, but I didn’t consciously realize they were “itchy sweaters” until I spent some time trying on different ones.”
Why You Can’t Have Legs in Virtual Reality, Yet Meta Horizons is a little funny about this - your avatar doesn’t have visible legs unlike in VRChat. Will be interesting to see how this develops. I’ve been looking into hip and leg tracking hardware too as I go deeper down the rabbit hole. See also Meta Social VR Platform Horizon Hits 300,000 Users and also Facebook Metaverse Horizon Worlds Kids Safety - it is dangerous how many kids are running around in VR.
That One Time Furries Saved a Library A recap by Soatok, a favorite furry engineer, of how furries (including this one) recently pitched in to cover library funding threatened over LGBTQ books.
Night Club - Die in the Disco - Official Animated Video One of my favorite bands released an animated video for one of my favorite songs this past week. Dark disco visuals set to a stompy beat.
LiveWire S2 Del Mar Middleweight Electric to Debut in Q2 2022 I can’t wait to see what the second quarter brings to the LiveWire family. I love my LiveWire so very much.
Who Killed Alta? The Tragedy of the Best Electric Motorcycle An interesting look at the fate of a electric dirtbike by Alta.
See you next week with more!