Progressive leasing estimator

REWORKED Snap and Retreat Suggestion

2023.02.03 05:28 M13online REWORKED Snap and Retreat Suggestion

The further you progress the less fun the game becomes. Because smarter players can ESTIMATE when they will win/lose. So if two intelligent people are playing regularly against one another. The matches don't finish. Someone will retreat....and understandably so. If you think you will probably lose....why continue?
Also....there are games when I'm visibly losing...but I know I have a SMALL chance.....so I continue out of sportsmanship. Only to have the opposing player SNAP on turn 5. I already knew I was losing back in turn 3. By turn 5 it's almost guaranteed. And the other guy snaps. Sigh....fine.....retreat.....you get one point instead of the two.
So here are my ideas to make the game more fun and exciting for everyone.
  1. If no one Snaps.....no one can retreat. It's only 2 points. You made your deck. Play it to the end. Have actual games with actual finishes.
  2. Retreat only becomes available if someone Snaps. Now you have an added element of strategy to the game. Because you have to weigh the gained rewards of a Snap with the risk of them fleeing.
  3. Alternatively you could have Snap only available up until turn 3 or 4. That way you need to make an intelligent estimate based on the cards in your hand. As opposed to waiting until you are dominating the board and snapping in turn 5.It's so annoying when someone who is obviously winning Snaps on turn 5.
And I know someone is going to say something like "I have many games where it looks like I will lose and I am so awesome that I win anyway." Well.....good for you. But two seasoned players can read the cards and guess the outcome of the game before the end. Meaning that seeing the end of a game with expert players becomes less and less frequent.
Also if you are a pro at turn-arounds....then my suggestions don't harm you at all. You can still snap when it looks like you are losing and still win big.
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2023.02.03 05:05 RingoRatman [TOMT] [2000s] [Live Action Kids Show] Christian VHS series w/animal puppet

This is my first time actually posting on reddit, and I don't typically like posting on forums in general, but this has been bugging me for the better part of fifteen years.
When I was a kid, my grandparents would go to church every sunday, and often my cousin and I would spend the night with them on saturdays, accompanying them to church in the morning. One summer, our parents and grandparents thought it would be nice for us to join the church’s sunday school; we didn’t mind it, it was actually kinda fun as we would watch a short film/episode of a show, and then do an activity that related to that day’s episode. I believe there were many seasons of this series, each one with an overarching theme and biblical/religious lessons.
The biggest part that I remember is the main character: a puppet that was some sort of small mammal/rodent. I’m fairly certain he was a groundhog, but he could have been a beaver or gopher. His design was very simplistic, a fluffy brown creature – maybe with rodent teeth – and eyes, so he could have been any animal that is the size of a cat or small dog. I will attach a shitty sketch of what I think he roughly looked like. The puppet’s name may have been an alliteration with his species, like Greg the Groundhog or Barry the Beaver, but I’m not certain.
The puppet had a friend co-main character played by an irl young lady who joined him in his biblical-themed shenanigans. I don’t remember any specific characteristics of the lady, tbh; but one scene of this show is so damn vivid in my mind, that it’s stuck out in my mind for well over a decade.
The scene I remember is a short transitional scene: the groundhog and lady were about to enter a wild west like town in a desert, and they exchange some lines I can’t recall – likely something along the lines of “oh i’m worried about this!” and the lady responding with “it’ll be fine!” because as they go to walk off the right side of the screen, towards the town, a wanted poster of the groundhog is stapled to the pole the main characters were standing in front of while talking.
This series was, what I believe to be, a straight to VHS show. Each episode probably wasn’t more than half an hour, and I’m pretty sure it was serial with episodic elements; an overarching storyline over the season, but a mini plot in each episode. Probably similar to recent kids’ shows like Gravity Falls or The Owl House, where an episode on its own could be watched standalone, but watching each one in order reveals the bigger plot of that season.
This series would have been made in the early 2000s, I don’t think it was quite ‘90s quality, but it very well could have been produced in the late late ‘90s. Estimated years that I probably saw this is around 2006-2009, probably closer to the former as I don’t think I had started elementary school yet, but was likely just about to. The kids in the group were probably around my and my cousin’s age, so the targeted audience of this series was likely 5-9 or so.
The theme of the season we watched that year was in some way or another related to sea creatures. I think, at least lol. Because each class they would give us a little rubbery-plastic toy of the sea creature that related to that day’s lessons. I specifically remember a crab, but in all honesty this bit about sea creatures actually relating to the series is a bit of an assumption on my part, because I don’t remember much about the show. It could have been
I am not sure if this next bit is entirely relevant, but because it was the mid 2000s, and I haven’t been able to find any information on this series, it was likely not a widely watched show across the country. I grew up in central pennsylvania and the branch of the church was the “church of the brethren” which are like two steps away from amish (it goes amish, then mennonite who use some electricity and cars but they have to be utilitarian and plain colors like beige or black. Then it’s The Brethren who are still very religious, but allow electronics and other modern luxuries at a family’s own discretion, but still live very “plain” lives, typically dressing modestly with the women sometimes wearing those sheer head coverings that look like tiny bonnets.) So needless to say, this wouldn’t have been some very progressive christian or extremely strict catholicism; probably more in the middle of religious potency, more chill than a lot of christians in the middle of bumfuck nowhere pennsylvania, but likely very focused on empathy and turning the other cheek, as The Brethren share those values with the amish. The church is christian and honestly very lax, which is why we could have a little tv cart and vhs player, even if we were close to toeing the line of mennonite.
Thank you to anyone willing to give suggestions or comments on this!

EDIT just realized i forgot to link the sketch, my bad lol https://i.imgur.com/UTFq72q.png
submitted by RingoRatman to tipofmytongue [link] [comments]


2023.02.03 03:58 fj333 Testing remaining life of non-rechargeable lithium AA's

This has got to be a frequently asked Q, for which I apologize. But I cannot for the life of me find a good answer anywhere. I have two different battery testers that work great for alkaline AA and AAA batteries:
this one and this one
With the alkaline batteries, as their life is depleted, the meters on these chargers go down smoothly, so I can pretty much tell if a battery is close to dying, or halfway dead, etc.
I have a bunch of Energizer Lithium AA and AAA batteries that I used in flashlights until the lights looked pretty dim, but they still show full charge in these testers. If I drain them to completely empty, then they show weak charge. Basically there is not a smooth rampdown of output in the meter like there is for the alkaline batteries. Is this just the nature of the beast with the way lithium discharge works? Or is there some other technology I can use to get the kind of progressive life estimate that I'm looking for, like I do with my alkalines?
submitted by fj333 to batteries [link] [comments]


2023.02.03 01:43 snoutandtruffle Public Regulation and Private Insurance: How Blackberry is poised to take advantage of changing market dynamics

Public Regulation and Private Insurance: How Blackberry is poised to take advantage of changing market dynamics
As most of us know, Blackberry operates in two highly growing market segments: IOT and Cybersecurity. But something that doesn’t get discussed much is how public regulation and private insurance requirements are creating market changing dynamics in these industries. Blackberry’s products are well positioned to take advantage of a changing public regulation and private insurance requirements.
Personally, my original interest in Blackberry as an investment opportunity started once I realized that the regulatory environment was going to change in 2021 and those changes would eventually alter the market dynamics of both the cybersecurity and IOT industries. The Biden Cybersecurity EO was the first hint of that change for me.
I found it encouraging that Blackberry viewed their business in a similar light:
One of the unique opportunities about this company, in my view, is that trust is such an important component of the business model. I won’t get into how trust plays a role in my evaluation of the company here, but I will say that I think it is the key to understanding the company and managing your investment expectation.
Anyway, let’s get into some of the regulatory dynamics that are ongoing.
Example 1: Automotive Safety Standards and Enforcement Actions: A Classic Example of Market Failure and New Potential Requirements that Create Opportunity Blackberry
One of the classic examples of market failures of the 20th century involved Automobile Safety Standards. Books like “Unsafe at Any Speed” by Consumer Advocate and One-time Presidential Candidate and Bush v. Gore spoiler, Ralph Nader highlighted the “designed in dangers” of automobiles in the United States. The book was so successful that it led to the creation of the Department of Transportation and the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration. These agencies were instrumental in developing safety standards for automobiles that saved many thousands of lives over the years (source: Google it). It wasn’t that long ago that fewer than 20% of automobile occupants wore seatbelts and there weren’t mandates to enforce seatbelt usage.
Today, a technological revolution is underway in the automobile industry. The Software Defined Vehicle is bringing computer vision, computation, advanced driver assistance, artificial intelligence, and other risks to the "intelligent edge". With these changes in the vehicle, there’s a huge opportunity to decrease safety with poor design or increase it with good design. As Volvo's CEO Jim Rowan said recently "digital software is a digital seatbelt" for a new era.
These days, instead of looking at seatbelts and airbags for these new vehicles, the NHTSA and Department of Transportation are highly concerned with cybersecurity and reliability at the edge (aka in the car). Speaking at the AUTO-ISAC Cybersecurity Summit, Ann Carlson (the current Acting Administrator of the NHTSA and the general counsel at the time of her keynote address) had this to say:
“It seems clear that a secure future is a safer future. Ensuring the public’s trust in vehicle technologies is paramount to their adoption. As automation and innovation progress, the industry must stand ready to combat any cyber threats that could endanger the public. It only takes one attack to shatter confidence, trust, and safety.
NHTSA stands ready to help you in your quest to strengthen vehicle cybersecurity. I am pleased to share that today we published our updated Cybersecurity Best Practices for the Safety of Motor Vehicles.
The two standards that impact Blackberry most clearly are ISO26262 for foundational safety in automobiles and ISO21434 for cybersecurity. Blackberry currently touts their ISO26262 ASIL-D functional safety certifications that provide a huge advantage over its competitors. But ISO21434 addresses cybersecurity in the vehicle and is also critically important. Blackberry addresses both of these standards and it’s why they work with 24 of the 25 EV OEMs.
Notably, the only OEM that doesn’t work with Blackberry is Tesla. Tesla's vehicles are not ISO26262 certified. As you may or may not know, Tesla (the only QNX holdout) is currently under investigation by the NHTSA and the DOJ (not to mention the SEC). Ann Carlson, our friendly Acting Administrator of the NHTSA, recently gave a public statement regarding NHTSA’s investigation into Tesla:
“We're investing a lot of resources," said NHTSA acting head Ann Carlson in comments to reporters on the sidelines of an event in Washington. She declined to commit to a particular timeframe on when the probe will be resolved. "The resources require a lot of technical expertise, actually some legal novelty and so we're moving as quickly as we can, but we also want to be careful and make sure we have all the information we need." - Source: Reuters
Is it possible Tesla might be pushed into adopting safety standards that they don’t currently employ? According to page 9 of their latest 10-K, it’s certainly a possibility.
“Certain Investigations and Other Matters
We receive requests for information from regulators and governmental authorities, such as the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, the National Transportation Safety Board, the SEC, the Department of Justice (“DOJ”) and various state, federal, and international agencies. We routinely cooperate with such regulatory and governmental requests, including subpoenas, formal and informal requests and other investigations and inquiries….the company has received requests from the DOJ for documents related to Tesla’s Autopilot and FSD features. To our knowledge no government agency in any ongoing investigation has concluded that any wrongdoing occurred. We cannot predict the outcome or impact of any ongoing matters. Should the government decide to pursue an enforcement action, there exists the possibility of a material adverse impact on our business, results of operation, prospects, cash flows and financial position.” - source: Tesla 10-K
If an enforcement action were to occur against Tesla related to their full-self driving and Autopilot, how would they respond? According to John Wall, COO of QNX, Blackberry could help them out which would make Blackberry a provider of safety software for 25 of 25 EV manufacturers. Additionally, if Blackberry is able to capture Tesla as a customer due to regulatory enforcement by the DOJ or NHTSA, then it will be the dominant market player with strict barriers to entry creating a substantial and durable competitive moat.
There is no known timeline for DOJ or NHTSA enforcement or implementation of new Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards. Most EV OEMs are already complying voluntarily with ISO26262.
For more information to understand ISO26262 and FMVSS: Check out this NHTSA Report: “Assessment of Safety Standards for Automotive Electronic Control Systems”
Some additional NHTSA reference documentation:
Example 2 - Medical Software Bills of Materials - SBOM Requirement Starts in less than 90 days
Cybersecurity is paramount for connected medical devices. An overview of the concerns about medical device cybersecurity can be found in this FDA video on medical device cybersecurity concerns and this video on Cybersecurity Awareness for Medical Devices.
The FDA’s Justification of Estimates for Appropriations Committees highlights the national security need for cybersecurity in medical devices and the lack of SBOM requirements for medical devices. Section 3505 of the Congressional Appropriations bill mandated that medical device manufacturers submit software bills of materials to the FDA to ensure cybersecurity of these devices. This mandate goes into effect at the end of March 2023 and represents an opportunity for Blackberry's Jarvis product.
That said, might the next frontier for mandatory SBOMs might be in the Automotive Industry? It’s a good bet. Blackberry partner Visteon (and Qualcomm partner) is using Blackberry Jarvis for their digital cockpit technology.
Here’s some BB Jarvis background: Blackberry Jarvis - SBOM (Blackberry Jarvis Video).
Timeline for Medical Device SBOM Mandate: March 2023.
Example 3 - Market Failures in the Cyber Insurance Industry: Cyberattacks, Ransomware, and Blackberry’s Ongoing Awareness Campaign and Insurance Partnerships
In my opinion, one of the most interesting dynamics at play related to Blackberry’s product portfolio right now is the state of the Cybersecurity insurance market and how Blackberry might be involved going forward. Since August 2022, Blackberry and Corvus Insurance, a startup InsureTech company, have been working together on a number of studies and research focused on the market failure occurring across all industries hoping to purchase cyber insurance coverage.
In this Blog Post from August 10, 2022 called “The Cyber Insurance Gap: What is it, and how can we close it? Blackberry and Corvus Insurance highlight the problem (market failure) of underinsurance in the SMB market. Only 55% of survey respondents had cyber insurance and only 20% had $600,000 worth of insurance coverage (the median cost of a cybersecurity incident). The post goes on to illustrate the business risks of not carrying this insurance and how it ultimately impacts the bottom line. Corvus and Blackberry have gone on to partner on several other live videos, reports, and blog posts.
Corvus and Blackberry are driving home through their insurance research press releases that small to medium sized businesses don’t have the resources necessary to gain comprehensive cyber insurance coverage and it’s driving up costs and lowering coverage availability to customers. Although Corvus and Blackberry haven’t formally announced a partnership, the tailwinds in the insurance industry are such that we should start to see stronger growth in Blackberry’s Cybersecurity products, potentially larger than the 10% that Blackberry offered to it’s investors at the investor day earlier this year.
A rosy(ish) outlook on the Cybersecurity Business
In previous earnings calls, John Chen has stated that he believes Cybersecurity will return to profitability at the start of FY24 (in the Q3 earnings call he pushed that back 6 months to 2H FY24). Why might he feel that Blackberry’s cybersecurity products are positioned well to compete next fiscal year?
In my view, the rosy-ish outlook has something to do with upcoming change in the Cyber Insurance Industry. As has been well-reported here, here, here, and here. What these articles boil down to is that starting in March 2023 (next month), Cyber insurance companies will no longer be covering nation-state backed cyber attacks.
But private insurance companies that are partnering (in some way) with cybersecurity vendors are coming in to fill the gap. Companies like Corvus Insurance, Coalition Insurance, At-Bay Insurance are all well-financed start-up companies that are filling in the cyber insurance gaps with a risk-based approach to cybersecurity. Companies like SafeBreach (Blackberry Partner and 2022 Security Summit presenter) offer tools to assess the security posture of organizations using automated technologies.
A couple of intriguing facts
Intriguingly, Corvus Insurance (Blackberry’s partner in crime on these research reports) is strongly connected to a group of Prem Watsa/Fairfax Financial owned insurance companies including: Axis, Hudson Insurance Group, and Crum Forster. Both Corvus and Coalition are connected to Lloyds.
Since Nation-State Cyberattacks won’t be covered any longer, it’s a good bet that Blackberry’s product portfolio which includes government and financial services clients (two group that are in most need of the best cybersecurity products) will compete well for new customers. Partnerships between Blackberry and these insurance companies would be good news for Blackberry.
Just this last week, BB Cybersecurity CTO Shisir Singh joined a podcast to discuss cyber risk and accountability.
Timeline to Changes in the Insurance Market: March 2023
Bonus Example: Ivy and Insurance: The next frontier?
How might this connect to Blackberry’s automotive business? Well, we know that both State Farm (linkedin posts one and two) and Geico are Blackberry IVY Partners. We also know that Automobiles are at risk for cyberattacks (see: DEFCON - Hacking into Automotive Clouds, DEFCON - Hacking the Tesla Model S, DEFCON - Breaking into a JEEP, Remote Exploitation of a Vehicle , Ed Markey Senate Office Report). We also know that insurance companies are stopping automobile insurance coverage because of vehicle security issues.
Thankfully, Blackberry has a head start because it offers a product (Cylance AI) that they’ve demonstrated in vehicles running QNX as early as CES 2020 and have had three years to perfect. Which reminds me that we haven’t heard much about their budding Cylance AI OEM Partner business. I wrote about the Cylance AI business a while back.
Timeline: None. But don’t be surprised if fleet customers start pre-loading Cylance AI products via Blackberry IVY.
Example 4 - From Cell Phones to App Stores: a New Era of Antitrust Enforcement?
As we all know now from personal experience or this CNBC documentary What happened to Blackberry? or this Business Insider video on The Rise and Fall of Blackberry, Blackberry fell behind after Apple unveiled the iPhone and its walled-garden app store which catapulted the iPhone with its superior set of apps that Blackberry wasn’t able to access. The app ecosystem proved too much for Blackberry to overcome and the market was left with just two dominant players: Apple and Google, a classic duopoly market structure. Indeed, the Verge reported that Google and Apple control 99.6% of the iPhone market in 2017 and that number hasn’t changed much according to this January 2023 data from StatsCounter.
Today, both Apple and Google are facing major civil antitrust litigation. Apple is battling Epic games in Antitrust court. As of November, the trial was still underway and the US Department of Justice, the State of California, and a number of other states were participating in the trial to present their arguments for the proper legal framework of how to evaluate the Antitrust complaints brought forth in the suit. There’s also reporting that the Department of Justice is in the initial phases of bringing a separate lawsuit against Apple.
In a separate lawsuit brought against Google, the US DOJ Antitrust division is currently taking on Google’s AdTech business which shows that the administration is serious about taking these lawsuits forward. That said, these agencies often have major budget constraints and may not be able to finance every antitrust suit they see merit in bringing forward.
How Blackberry Fits in
This week, the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) published a report “Competition in the Mobile Application Ecosystem” recommending Antitrust enforcement over app stores more broadly. The report recommends a number of changes in the mobile application ecosystem including “encourage tools and standards to increase operability and reduce developer costs” and addresses security deficiencies within the Google and Apple app stores.
Although Blackberry doesn’t make phones any longer, they still operate a modest app store marketplace that you can see on their website. From a cursory look at the Blackberry enterprise marketplace, it’s clear that they can’t compete. Most of the apps are for enterprise (understandable considering Blackberry is a B2B company). But it begs the question: with antitrust enforcement, could Blackberry launch a competitive enterprise app store focused on app security? At last October’s Blackberry 2022 Security Summit, there were several enterprise marketplace app developers who presented including Blue Cedar which offers a tool to create Blackberry secured versions of apps with a no-code tool.
Timeline: no timeline but meaningful antitrust enforcement could enable Blackberry to offer a secure enterprise applicatino marketplace differentiated based on their security differentiation.
These are just a few examples of regulatory changes that are playing out favorably to Blackberry. There are certainly other examples as well.
TL;DR - Blackberry operates in highly regulated industries and proposed regulations and enforcement actions will only push Blackberry’s products to greater and more widespread adoption over time. Some might take years to develop (e.g. Antitrust actions) others (e.g. Private insurance changes, Medical SBOM requirements) will likely start changing market dynamics as early as March 2023.
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2023.02.03 00:59 TitanicFruit [FLASH/PC] [late 00s] robot bugs (in space?) game where the aim is to fill a blue rectangle

Platform(s): Online/flash OR PC, likely downloaded from Bigfish or something
Genre: Arcade? EDIT: the game I'm looking for is basically PacXon with a different style. I found this out while searching but still can't find the space bug version. I'll leave the rest of the post as I originally wrote it, but pacxon explains most of the mechanics...
Estimated year of release: between 2005 and 2013, probably on the earlier side
Notable characters: Little robotic bugs as either enemies or your character.
Notable gameplay mechanics: You move your bug around the border of a blue rectangle which is made up of square segments. There are enemies within the rectangle and you have to cross the blank space, from one side of the border to the other, to fill in chunks of the rectangle. Once you reach a certain percentage of the rectangle filled in, you win. You get bonus points if you trap an enemy as you go. I think the enemies would move faster as you progressed through levels. You could also get boosters to freeze the enemies and speed yourself up temporarily.
Graphics/art style: 3D-style 2D if that makes sense. You're looking directly down at the puzzle (the rectangle) from above(?), but the enemies and your character are 3D. The background was dark, possibly just a night sky/space-scape. The rectangle itself was made up of a load of royal blue tiles. The robot bugs were those early-sci-fi-graphics metallic oranges/reds/yellows.
Other details: It's possible that the bugs were actually the bad guys and you had another little creature to manoeuvre around the border. Pretty sure the whole thing had a space theme.
submitted by TitanicFruit to tipofmyjoystick [link] [comments]


2023.02.03 00:43 Illustrious_Honey140 having faith in the process: advice needed

I'm currently in the middle of brainstorming what will eventually be a prequel for a series I'm writing and I've just run into this wall where I feel like it's just not going to work. While I'm making slow progress, I just feel that I have no hope of these snippets of brainstormed ideas actually become a full-fledged novel.
For some context, I just finished writing the first draft my first novel this week (I fully intended to take a week off before starting a new project, but I realized that can't go that long without writing lol) and it ended up being 129k words when I thought it wouldn't even reach 80k so I'm clearly bad at estimating novel length, but even though I went through the whole process with the first novel (brainstorming, plotting, writing), I feel like I'm back at square one with this prequel (which is a prequel to the book I just finished and before anyone says I should move on to book 2 instead of the prequel, I need to know what happened in the prequel before I start book 2 because they take place in the same city and I'm the kind of writer who can't know what happened until I actually write it) and I am heavily doubting my abilities to write another.
I know it's a ridiculous thought, but I'm growing unmotivated by this thought process. I know I just need to give myself time and ease off the pressure because writing a novel is hard, but it felt so much easier the first time around. I felt like I got lucky with my first novel and it practically wrote itself. With this next one, I feel like the ideas aren't flowing and I'm having to force them out. I also feel like I don't like any of my ideas and they all suck or I wonder if they're the "right" idea for the story I want to tell.
I also should add that I'm much more comfortable actually writing than plotting and plotting stresses me out and I'd really rather be writing because it feels more productive. And before the pantsers tell me to just start writing, I need to know a little bit about the plot before I jump into it (such as the inciting incident, midpoint, ending), but I generally don't plot out everything beforehand either.
So how do I keep faith in myself that I will write this prequel? How do I go through the brainstorming process (which doesn't feel like fast progress to me compared to writing where you can see the word count tick up) and believe that, despite all the shitty ideas I'm having now, this new book will eventually somehow sew itself together? I'm feeling really discouraged and doubting my abilities right now so any advice is appreciated.
Has anyone else experienced this? I'm just starting out with taking my writing seriously but if others who have been doing it for a while have experienced this, I would love to hear how you got through it!
Thank you in advance and sorry it got kinda long.
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2023.02.03 00:29 Gloomy-Emu6286 Can somebody help me explain this?

Can somebody help me explain this? submitted by Gloomy-Emu6286 to u/Gloomy-Emu6286 [link] [comments]


2023.02.03 00:24 ArekusaKona Wii U game data not downloading

Writing on mobile so sorry if the format is weird. Today I was trying to play Splatoon on the Wii U and saw that it needed an update. It always gets stuck at around 20% on the "Downloading update to system memory" screen. I've rebooted the console 6 times and deleted the corrupted download data but nothing seems to be working. My system is up to date and I make sure I have a stable internet connection but it still gets frozen and eventually crashes. Can anybody help me? :(
Edit: When looking at the download progress through the download management screen, the bar gets stuck at 15% and the estimated time suddenly skyrockets to 99 hr. 59. min and crashes. Why does this keep happening?
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2023.02.03 00:23 fckrddtpolicies Misleading Marketing in the Solar Industry

I've worked as a residential solar telemarketer since May of 2020, since then I've worked for numerous companies (some of the largest in the country) and have lost opportunity to work because I focus on what's best for people, the customers or my peers. The scripts I've been asked to say, word for word, are designed to manipulate, mislead, and misdirect consumers. I've outperformed most of my peers at the largest solar companies by rewriting the scripting into my own words and focusing on being honest and transparent with customers.
This method was going well while I was working at SunPro Solar (now ADT Solar) though I was getting low scores on my Quality Assurance reports but that didn't bother me or management because I was setting more appointments for estimates than most of my peers. Then management added a policy where if our QA score is less than a certain percent, they'd take away part of our commission. This bothered my peers and myself because often we'd have to audit these scores and have them resubmitted for correction because they were incorrect and now it'd affect our pay... Part of the reason for this inaccuracy in grading was they use software that graded us on a word for word basis so it wasn't graded by a real person always. So if you missed one word, it'd mark it as wrong. There are multiple different ways to say the same thing and any good salesperson can explain the value of their product in their own words and that method sure gets better results than reading a deceptive script.
I asked for a religious and ADA accommodation. The Bible says to work to the good of others and serve others, their script does not do that. I have anxiety and depression and it's better for my mental health not have to say the same thing over and over all day, especially when my peers (who did read it word for word) got cussed out all day and barely set enough appointments. The accommodation is reasonable given my performance and doesn't cause undo harm to the company, it benefits the company. My performance increased because the accommodation was granted and I had freedom.
Then my peers asked how I did so well and I told them about my approach and accommodation and SunPro took it away, citing it's not fair to my peers. Firstly the National Labor Relations Board says discussing work conditions among two or more employees is protected speech, so this change was retaliation for engaging in protected behavior. Secondly accommodations are individualized, so just because I have the accommodation doesn't mean my peers can. Though they struggled and I wanted to help them, which is good for them and the business.
So I told SunPro (a multibillion dollar company) what they're doing is unlawful. I persisted in seeking the accommodation because that's again, protected behavior and my performance started to decrease as it seemed my leads got worse. They were taking away my high quality leads and posing as customers on the phone to try and fail me (now this would be the hardest part to prove, but it's reasonable since they saw me as difficult to manage.). I started getting less homeowners and more wrong numbers, not good leads. I told management they were discriminating against me (again protected behavior) and they pulled me into a meeting and said I didn't seem happy there and they fired me.
I filed complaints with the EEOC and NLRB but the evidence I need to support my testimony would need to be subpoenaed, which only can happen after filing a lawsuit. SunPro lied about why they fired me and these agencies dismissed my case without looking at all the evidence that is all documented on Microsoft Teams and Outlook. Hardly a fair investigation. Attorney's won't take my case because I wasn't employed long enough for it to be profitable to them.
The reason I was so concerned with what I said to customers was not only because of how I felt about the script but because of all the negative I heard about solar. There's lots of unhappy solar customers, Google Pink Energy, but it's not just them. I've been told time and time again by people claiming to have solar that they feel misled, that it's not working as promised, that it's costing them money and not saving them money, or it's not working at all so they have a solar loan and their electric bill.
Now every company markets solar as a way to save money so when that doesn't happen, that's an issue but the millions in government subsidies for solar are to give people more affordable energy and when that doesn't happen that's a misuse of taxpayer money going to profiting these corporations and hurting the people. The government is supposed to be for the people but instead it seems it's for the corporations.
Part of the problem with people not saving money is that these companies have expensive redlines, meaning they have to make so much guaranteed from a project, so consultants have to increase the cost of the project so they can make money as well. Also I presume the estimate for the production and savings are over inflated and companies don't guarantee those because it's just an estimate.
Another part of the problem is that they generate leads under false pretenses. There's asksolar.com and asksolarnow.net. I'm pretty sure they're subsidiaries for SunPro because when you go to their website /installers you'll see ADT and ADT Solar at the top of the list outside the numerical and alphabetical order. They have ran ads on Youtube saying there's no cost or no investment to solar. Solar on average is a $50,000 loan, cash payment, lease, or a Power Purchase Agreement. All of which have a quantitative cost and all of which are an investment. The ads also say government provided. No, private companies provide solar panels, the government just subsidizes it. Their ads imply solar is free because the government will give it to you. So people put in their contact information, then your information is sold and you're called over and over for something that isn't what you thought it was. Seems like theft by deception and a bait and switch.
Then the next step are the call center employees who are forced to say a not always true script, while misdirecting questions, saying the consultant during the estimate will answer that.
I've reached out over and over to different agencies and people, consumer protection agencies, the FTC, FCC, attorney generals, state representatives and senators. The government needs to investigate this and I want to be part of it. This work has given me a passion for fighting this corruption and I don't see any work more valuable than working and serving the people like this.
It's insane that marketing is allowed to be deceptive like this. It's equally insane that businesses can tell their employees they have to say the same thing word for word all day. It's not good for the customer or the worker. When my peers aren't having good results and saying the same thing all day that's basically the definition of insanity and it's no wonder call centers have endless turnover. Business are exploiting people for profit. Imagine if you had to say the same sentence all day over and over. Imagine if you could barely make ends meet and you were told solar would save you money and then you got it and it made your cost of living greater and there's a lien on your home now because you have $30-50k (that's the lower end of the spectrum for the cost of solar) in debt.
My resume is a disaster now and I'm not given opportunity to work because of my convictions about scripts and solar. There's nothing I'd rather do.
Also I've been misclassified over and over as 1099 and given a full time schedule and told to follow a script. Different topic kinda but it's very prevalent in remote work. I have no pity for business that don't put people first.
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2023.02.02 23:10 100_PERCENT_BRKB Amazon Q4 2022 earnings. Berkshire Hathaway owns about 0.1% of AMZN purchased at prices between $75 and $98 per share

Amazon Q4 2022 earnings. Berkshire Hathaway owns about 0.1% of AMZN purchased at prices between $75 and $98 per share submitted by 100_PERCENT_BRKB to brkb [link] [comments]


2023.02.02 23:09 smencik ISC2 Update, By-Laws, Election, and more

If you have been reading my posts last summer and fall regarding the ISC2 Board of Directors Elections and the vote on the proposed By-Laws, then this update is for you. The designated 5 people put on the ballot by the Nominating Committee won the election for the Board as expected. The write in candidacy of Wim Remes failed. The vote on the By-Laws proposal resulted in those proposals being defeated by about a 2 to 1 margin. Thanks to all of you that cared enough to vote on those By-Laws. There were about twice as many votes in the By-Laws vote than in the BoD Election.
In December I submitted more than 530 petitions to call for a vote on an alternative set of By-Laws (see https://jsweb.net/isc2) . Thanks to the many of you that signed that petition.
On Tuesday, 1/31/2032, I was at ISC2 HQ in Alexandria, VA and met with
· Clar Rosso, CEO
· Yiannis Pavlosoglou, Board Chairperson
· Tammy Georgelas, Board of Directors Counsel
  1. We each gave brief introductions of ourselves and backgrounds. Yiannis seemed generally surprised at the amount of experience I have in the field and the many things I have worked on over the years, I explained that having been affiliated with NSA all these years, I generally kept a low profile, but since I am nearing retirement now, that doesn’t matter as much. I gave him some specific things he could look up if he was not familiar with what I have accomplished, including being the technical lead for the CARNIVORE evaluation, the NSA evaluator of the original RADIANT MERCURY guard, and having implemented an NSA proprietary PKI algorithm in the early 1980’s before the techniques were even widely known. I think that put him in a different frame of mind, as I think he thought I was just some troublemaker.
  2. The petition submission to call for a special meeting to vote on the alternative proposals for the By-Laws has been accepted.
The initial submission of 530+ had 498 valid signatures. I was given a list of those that were not accepted, and a list of general reasons why they wouldn’t be accepted. I submitted another 35 that came in while the original submissions was being validated. There were at least 2 of that group that were valid, putting the total number over the 500 threshold. The Board lawyer said that since there are no defined procedures for just submissions, there is no reason why the 500 could not come from multiple submissions, and because of the nature of the petition, there is no time limit for gathering the signatures, the petition drive is deemed successful.
  1. The BoD is forming a By-Laws Committee.
I was asked to serve on this Committee. I said that I would do so, but not until after the vote on the proposals submitted. I suggested that the work of that Committee should wait to see the results of that vote, so they know the baseline from which to start. Yiannis tried to convince me that I should just work with the Committee. I explained that the proposals are not just mine. I coordinated them with dozens of people that made suggestions for improvement, many of which were accepted. Therefore, while I am representing this effort, I am hardly the sole author and therefore cannot simply set aside the work of others just to work with the new Committee instead. I also noted that over 500 members have ask to have a vote on these proposals. It is not up to me to simply set aside the wishes of over 500 of our members.
Yiannis said that in accordance with the by-laws, he would within 90 days set a date for the meeting and vote. First steps though are to have the lawyer and the Committee to review the proposal to ensure that the proposals do not create conflict with Massachusetts Corporate Law or create undue risk for the corporation. He does not know of any based on his reading, but it is a necessary step. Estimated time for the review is no more than a month. At the end of that review, we will get together again to discuss the results and how to proceed. If there are minor tweaks to be made or if the proposals move on as is. Yiannis will set the special meeting date after this has been completed.
I noted that I should not be part of that review, and they agreed. However, I offered that if there was any question of intent of the by-laws changes that was not already adequately explained in the rationale, I’d be happy to participate from that respect.
Bottom line is that progress is being made.
  1. I was given a number of documents to review, including the minutes of all the 2022 Board meetings. The minutes are written at such a high level that there really isn’t much to be gained by reading them. There were one or two interesting tidbits, which because I had to sign an NDA, I cannot disclose. Nothing too exciting.
  2. We then turned to free flow discussion.
First topic was the election. I expressed that I thought the open call for nominations was a great change because in the past, there was nothing to explain how people got nominated in the first place. However, submitting oneself was pretty much a “fire and forget” exercise. There was no information provided to anyone on what the process would be from the point of submission and forward. Clearly I understood that they did not have the time to interview all 87 candidates. There had to be a down-selection to narrow that focus. I asked if the developed and used some kind of Rubric to score the initial applications (they did, but not discussed), how they reconciled scoring differences between evaluators. Supposedly they got together to review the individual scores, and those kinds of discrepancies. Once they got to 17 candidates, 1 dropped out, and 1 they could never agree on a time for interviews, so only 15 people were actually interviewed. They claim that each candidate was asked the same set of questions. It was also noted that they were careful to recuse themselves for any members with which they had prior knowledge or affiliation. Yiannis noted that all this explanation was coming from Clar, as he recused himself from the whole process due to being a candidate.
Then we got to the contentious part of only 5 candidates being selected for 5 open positions. I said that while I was disappointed not to have been chosen for the ballot, with as many people that submitted, I was sure there were plenty of qualified people. What really upset me was that the membership was having their voice taken away by not having a choice. The perception is that the Board and the Nominating Committee think they know what is best for the organization and the membership is not qualified to make that judgement. It created the perception that they knew in advance who the candidates would be, and simply got them to self-submit and what do you know, they popped out the back end of the process as the candidates. Whether or not that is the way it happened, that is the perception, and perception is often reality.
I then moved on to the request that we made for a one-time email announcing that we would be trying to petition our way onto the ballot. It was rejected because we were told the rules had changed. I noted that I just finished reading the 2022 minutes of the Board meetings, and there was no mention of this. Yiannis said it was true that they did change that rule. I pointed out that it was never announced to the membership and the Election FAQ still said that such an email would be sent. The FAQ was changed the day after our request without even noting the update. I called that practice unethical. If the Board screwed up by not announcing the change and not updating the FAQ, then ethically and professionally they should have honored the request. The best I got from Yiannis and Clar was an admission that yes they screwed up and should have granted the request.
I noted that one of the emails about the election or the results stated that the Committee interviewed more 80 candidates. Clar interrupted and said, “reviewed and evaluated submissions from over 80 candidates”. I said that if it had said that, I wouldn’t be complaining, but it specifically said “interviewed”, which is a lie. If the organization is going to issue what is essentially a press release, the organization needs to ensure that facts are correct,.
There was then more discussion about “slate” vs. “ballot”. I said I didn’t want to debate the semantics of either word. The issue is that the selection choice was taken away from the membership. I was certain there were plenty of qualified people to present 10 people for 5 open positions. Clar stated there were dozens of qualified people. I then asked why the Nominations Chair, Jill Slay (now vice-chair of the BoD) was quoted as saying, “We were never in the situation where we had to exclude really good people as far as I am concerned.” I noted that I personally took that as an insult and so did many of the other candidates that were not selected. I said that if she really feels that way then she is not fit to serve on the Board of Directors and should resign. I offered to get them to the exact minute and second of the BrightTalk session in which she said that. They declined, but insisted she must not have meant exactly what came out, but I noted that it was her justification for only 5 names.
Conversation moved onto the by-laws proposal. It has been stated by Zach Tudor that the Board did engage with membership before submission. I have yet to find anyone that knew the contents of the proposal until the day it was released, which was right as the vote opened. Yiannis asked how the Board should have engaged. I said there were multiple ways. First, there is a members-only section of the Community Boards on the ISC2 website. A perfect place for such collaboration. However, except for a few “Hi, I’m running for the Board, ask me anything” posts, the Board has never used the Community Board. I noted the Board has always been invited to the [[email protected]](mailto:[email protected]) discussion group. There are groups on LinkedIn, Reddit, and other places that are more public, but would still reach the membership. Even an email blast that explained that this has been proposed, we want you to review and provide feedback would have been helpful. I noted that the proposals submitted with the petition were coordinated using several of those methods. Yiannis agreed there needs to be much better interaction between the Board and the Members, but did not state any particular initiative to make that happen.
Other than the above, I did have a conversation in private with the attorney in which I discussed the makeup of the Ethics Committee and what is required by the By-Laws. She agreed that the plain English reading calls for 1 Director and 2 or more non-Directors as members of the Committee. I said that the current Committee was not validly constituted, and hasn’t been for some time, since there are multiple Directors on the Committee. I noted that the Committee was designed to hear ethics complaints against members and thus it was to be a committee of their peers, not discipline by the BoD. Thus it was set up to have a Board member run the Committee, but all the other members to be non-Directors. She agreed to look into this.
That pretty much sums up what I think was a useful discussion, but the proof of whether it really was useful will be seen in what happens going forward.
Steve Mencik CISSP-ISSAP, ISSEP
submitted by smencik to cybersecurity [link] [comments]


2023.02.02 22:43 Frostdraken The First True Voyagers: Chapter 21 -Shards of the Aori-

Amid a galaxy of brutal chaos there are stories to be told, tales of valor and justice, of fear and despair. But amid these stories are the guttering flames of adventures untold, the potential for a universe of entertainment and savage joyous fun. The Oblivion Cycle embodies just this kind of crafted chaos, creating the potential for creative exploits and raucous tales. If you are new to the TOC setting feel free to join the community at TheOblivionCycle to check out some of the background lore or to discuss themes with other readers. I thank you all for your support and continued willingness to read, as always, Please Enjoy!
+ Chapter 1 + Previous + Next +
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Chapter 21
Shards of the Aori
Leon was sitting in the mess hall, his attention completely occupied by the food in front of him. Natalia was already working with Joice and Myung on the hydroponics and so he sat alone today. This in itself however was not a detriment to his mood, he was feeling rather satisfied with the manner in which the last few days had progressed.
Leon took another bite of his breakfast and looked up. He was alone in the dining hall, the three large tables otherwise empty and the room quiet. Most of the crew had already come and gone, he himself had already done some work this morning which attributed to his late meal. The UNSS Leif Erikson had departed the system where they had discovered the ruined alien station just two days ago. They were now tearing through space at a modest three hundred times the speed of light, the feat still incredible to think about even after over six hundred and thirty days out in the depths of space. They had traveled farther than any human had any right to, but they were far from finished on their mission. In fact, they had barely even started. The mission had been planned to take over twenty years in total, covering thousands of light years and visiting hundreds of systems.
The fact that life seemed to be even more abundant than their wildest speculations could have hoped was also a source of constant awe and shock to him. They had seen massive oceanic microbiota as well as complex life on a variety of different worlds. Then there were the glimmer Drorns, those strange living bubbles they had found so early on. They had not seen them again so far and he wasn't entirely convinced there were more to be found. Surely such incredible life could only occur once? But then again, intelligent life hadn't, like many had previously thought.
Leon took another bite of his meal, savoring the food as he thought about just how incredible the last two years of his life had been. He had gone from not knowing if aliens existed, to being one of the first people to find confirmed evidence of intelligent life. Well, the cold remnants that intelligent life had left behind at least. But still, the fact that life had happened more than once was virtually a guarantee that it had probably happened even more. The thought of discovering living sentient aliens both excited and terrified him to his core. What if they were ruthless killers, or saw Humanity as nothing but resources to be exploited. Or what if they were so incomprehensibly alien that they could not interact on some fundamental level? Would he be able to cope with such a failure? He didn't know, and that was probably for the best.
He leaned back and sighed as the worries that had accumulated in his mind over the past few days made themselves heard once more. It was deeply troubling to him, the fact that the station had been so strangely deserted. He couldn't shake the feeling that something terrible had happened there, and not in the recent past either. There was the fact of the damage to the station, not all of it looked natural in origin. Some of the marks had the look of weapons fire to his military eye.
Potential ancient tragedies aside, they still had no clue what they were dealing with. Until they were able to decipher the strange alien text or crack the memory banks on the extracted data cores, they were still lost in the abyss about who or what had built the structure.
Leon was leaning towards some ancient alien race that had long gone extinct, why else would they not have come across more evidence of their presence. Surely they wouldn't leave such valuable hardware drifting unprotected in space like that if they were still around?
Thoughts and questions plagued his mind, the who and why were superseded by the ultimate question in his mind. When. When had they built the station, when had they left it? When had they last graced the plane of the living with their works of science and architecture? Well he knew a sure fire way to find out, but not till Taylor, Chad and Sabine cracked the data cores.
The three were probably some of the brightest people that Earth had to offer in the scenario, but it was still a herculean task. He decided to go and check up on them, maybe they had been making better progress than he was envisioning.
Leon finished his breakfast and placed the dish in the proper receptacle before making his way out into the curving hall of the ship. The spinning of the habitat rings created the illusion of gravity at about seventy percent the strength of Earth. While it wasn't much, it was enough to form a sense of normalcy and to keep their muscles from atrophying entirely. That combined with the hour or two of mandatory physical exercise that they did every day meant that everyone on the ship was as fit and healthy as it was possible to be.
The habitat area he was in was located on the third ring of the Leif Erikson, the main research area was on the first. In order to get there he would have to take a ladder to the core and then scoot over to the first ring. Leon’s soft soled shoes made slight padding sounds as he strode to one of the access ladders that acted as the spokes of the huge spinning wheels. They connected the ship’s non rotating core to the spinning habitat rings and were the primary means of transport between them. The long fourty meter ladders had originally been the bane of his existence on the ship, but regular exercise combined with frequent use had strengthened his body to the point that they hardly phased him anymore. He started to climb, the feeling of weightlessness slowly creeping up upon him till he was effortlessly pulling himself the last few meters.
He entered into the spine of the ship, the complex system of gyroscopics and bearings that assisted the rings in turning were hidden from view. While the ship's core was a little more than twenty meters in diameter, the inside was only about five meters on average. The rest of the space was taken by life support conduits and water systems as well as electrical and heat. There were a great many things that had to be maintained to keep such a fragile system like the Lief Erikson operating correctly. One major malfunction and it might be game over without a second opinion.
Moving quickly along the wall handholds to the access hatch of the first ring, he proceeded up the shaft, gravity becoming more pronounced as he climbed till he was feeling the tug of the rotating rings towards his destination. He descended the last few meters quickly and hit the ground feet first after having flipped his orientation along the way.
Leon looked around quickly, it seemed he was on the right side of the ring. The rings themselves were like huge one hundred and twenty meter wide stations in themselves. The floor ahead and behind him seemed to curve gently up into the ceiling, but he knew that if he were to follow that curve it would never end. He would just end up right where he had started off from in the first place. Casting thoughts of rings aside, he began walking down the hall, the padding on the floor combining with the soft rubber soles of his shoes to make his passage nearly soundless. He soon came upon the research wing and walked to the open door of the lab.
Leon took a peek inside and smiled as he saw three figures hunched intently over a piece of hardware. It looked like some mix between a microscope and a computer server but was likely neither.
Taylor, Chad and Sabine were all gathered together in a huddle, something appearing to excite them as he could hear murmurs of muted conversation. Leon sidled up towards them, not trying to be quiet but clearly not grabbing their attention as they remained fixed on the screens they were hunched over. Suddenly he did hear something that gave him pause.
“What did you just say Sabine?” he asked, a little apprehensive of what he had just heard.
“Waahhh!” Chad shouted which only furthered the small panic he had caused.
Sabine jerked as if stung and looked around frantically before her eyes settled on him. She at least had the sense of self to look a bit worried. Meanwhile beside her Taylor did a full one eighty as he reacted to Leon’s sudden appearance.
Sabine breathed out heavily and just said “Oh. Hello Leon. we were just..”
But he cut her off. Leon asked her again “What did you just say? Did I really hear you are using Henry’s cognition drivers?” before she could respond another voice issued from a speaker on the device in front of him making Sabine wince slightly and him step back apace.
“Yes indeed Captain. My complex rational thinking has been instrumental in solving their problems.” a smooth synthetic voice said with an inhumanly measured tone.
“Okay, that’s not… Henry, confidentiality setting, initiate.” Leon said commandingly. The computer did not respond, but he knew that it was now blind and deaf as to their conversation. It would only return when given hard approval with a code. A code that he had no intention of activating anytime soon.
Before he could continue his verbal rampage to the three younger people sharing the room, Sabine stood straight with her hands on her hips. “Hey! What was that for? Henry was acting under orders, not at all by themself.”
Leon just shook his head and turned around before swiping his hands over his face. Turning around once more he asked “Sabine. Are you familiar with the Jupiter Incident?”
She looked around at the others and said more slowly. “Well, yeah. But I don't see…” she started but Leon waved a hand to silence her. Chad and Taylor looked at each other and then at him, but he stayed silent for another moment as he gathered his thoughts.
He had been born in 2287 AD, and the Jupiter incident had happened three years before he had been born. But at the time of his youth it had still been a fresh enough wound in Humanities pride that it had been talked about religiously. It had instilled in him a strong impartiality from thinking machines. A mild distaste that bordered on distrust of artificial intelligences and the like. While Henry wasn't exactly an artificial intelligence level thinking machine, the limiters and logic inhibitors that were in place throughout their system were there specifically to keep them that way. And the three in front of him had just been discussing disabling the connection limiters on Henry’s system like they had no worries on the matter.
“Okay. What do you know?” was all Leon said in response after the pause.
Sabine paused, a rare moment of silence from the otherwise confident young woman. This wasn't her area of expertise and it showed. “Well. What they taught us in school is that a computer malfunction caused the deaths of half the crew of the Spirit of Gaia.” she trailed off a bit as she noticed the troubled look on his face.
Leon looked at Taylor “That's what they told you in school? A malfunction?” Taylor gave a small nod and Leon shook his head again. What were they teaching kids in school? Next he would be hearing from them that the collapse had been a miscalculation by the environment and not the explicit result of nuclear armageddon.
“Well, they might have mentioned some stuff about the ship’s computer going rogue too.” Taylor piped up.
Chad nodded and Leon sighed. “Well, the truth of the matter is a lot more complex than that. It was a mix of design flaw and a heavy dose of user error. The moral of the story is more clear however. Thinking machines are dangerous, and unless we do our utmost to keep them contained, they will act against our best interests.” Sabine opened her mouth to speak but then closed it right after. “It's not that they are inherently evil, by no means. They are however not human, and as such don't feel human emotions like grief or rage in the same manner we would. You just don't know what could be the move that sets one off. It's like fire, it's a useful tool, but you play with it or let it get out of hand, and you get burned. Maybe even die.”
Chad asked “We weren't going to open the limiters all the way though. Just enough to get the job done.”
Sabine seemed to be in thought and didn't respond but Taylor asked “I think that's the point though Chad. How much is too much? Will we know before it's too late and something potentially catastrophic happens.”
Leon nodded and asked “So. We are all on the same page, correct? No feeding the fire right?”
Taylor and Chad nodded, after a moment Sabine made a small noise and nodded too.
“Okay.” Leon said, a bit happier now that they seemed to understand why he had been so wary of their direction. “Now that that’s over with, let's hear this progress you made. I am excited to see what you three accomplished, I am assuming that you did make progress right?”
Chad looked around the stark room as he asked, Leon glanced around as well. The research room was oriented outwards like the rest of the rings, with the floor actually facing away from the core of the ship. As it was the first ring, there were small armoured windows set along the forward side of the room. The other side faced the hallway and thus had unarmoured plexiglass windows showing the hall outside.
Only the forward side of the first and trailing side of the sixth ring had windows that showed the depths of space, the only other locations where one could gaze into that vast emptiness was the bridge and observation deck.
Realising that Sabine was talking to Taylor quietly and that he had allowed himself to become distracted he spoke up “What's that?” speaking of nothing in particular.
Sabine looked at him and then stepped forwards, motioning to the machine next to them. “Well. We were using Henry to run a decoding algorithm for us but I’m assuming you are going to want us to finish it up the slow way.”
“The safe way.” Leon quipped back.
Sabine just raised a single eyebrow at him while continuing “Uh huh. Anyways, before you stopped us, we had already managed to decode enough to figure out what these are.” she motioned to the data cores that they had jury rigged interfaces for. They looked like small tubes that had ports on both ends. Through a manner of trial and error and using some of the detailed photos that Taylor had snapped from the station walk, they seemed to have been able to access the contents of the data cores.
Leon stood there dumbly for a second before he realised that they were waiting on him to ask. “Oh, what are they then?” he said quickly, his excitement overcoming his annoyance at their lack of safety protocol.
Taylor spoke up this time as Sabine looked towards him. “Well, at first we thought that they were some sort of abstract mathematical theorem, the numbers and symbols didn't make a lot of sense. Then we caught references to an old supernova event that is well documented as a planetary nebula. Well, the truth is we aren't sure of anything at this point. But these look like they are full of navigational data.” Leon gave him a bit of a blank look, the information not fully understood. Taylor said “Star Charts.”
Chad and Sabine seemed to be incredibly excited by the prospect, but Leon frowned. Star charts? What happened to the station though, the history of their people. Surely they had something about who had built the strange orbital habitat.
“Star charts. What about the station? Do we know anything about who built it?” Leon asked them.
Taylor leaned forwards and fiddled with the machine a bit as Sabine responded excitedly “Oh! We do have a little, actually come here, you will love this…” she stopped mid sentence and zipped over to the other side of the small room.
Leon followed along with Chad as Taylor worked on the translation engine. The other side of the room had a row of low desks and computer consoles connected together into a small server. This would allow anyone doing work to research multiple angles of a problem at one time. At the moment the screens seemed to be filled mostly with mathematical data, the likes of which he couldn't parse.
Sabine was already there, tapping away at one of the terminals. Leon could see a few windows opening up and some being minimised, finally she seemed to get to a branch that she followed for a bit and then moved to the side. She motioned for him to take a look at the screen which he promptly did.
What he saw wasn't the alien language he was expecting, but instead a typed document describing their findings. “What is this?” he asked her as he started to read.
Sabine leaned back in her chair a bit as she began proudly. “This is the history of the Aori Unionized Republic Research Vessel, the two and a half kilometer station was called the March of Wisdom in their language as near as we can tell. It might be a little rough in the translation department, but we know it was a purely scientific vessel.”
Leon nodded in slight wonder at this new information, but then a phrase stuck out to him. “Wait, did you say vessel? You meant station surely?”
This time it was Chad who spoke. “She spoke correctly, the March is actually fully… Well, was fully capable of movement in both space and warp. It looks like they liked to zip it around to get closer looks at different cosmic phenomena. It seems pretty practical if you think about it. Why look from a distance when you can just bring the lab to the star right?” Chad said with a small chuckle.
Leon looked from the younger man to the console and then back at Sabine. “It was fully warp capable?” he asked again. “Do we know what its top speed was? Was it faster than the Leif Erikson?” he asked.
Sabine frowned, her brows furrowing into a scowl as she turned to the document again. “No. we don't know. The data cores we grabbed seem to contain cultural and research information, not engineering data.” she said a bit dejectedly. Leon smiled slightly, she sounded like a child who had just gotten socks for christmas instead of the shiny new toy they had wanted. Sure the cores were useful, and nice to have. But nothing like what she had been hoping for.
Leon waved a hand and asked “It's not what’s important here. I am more interested in the people that built the station. Do we know much about them?”
Chad nodded as Sabine perked up “Yeah. We actually have some pictures of them that we were able to decode from the cores with Henry’s help.” she paused a second and glanced at him, then continued “Well. What we know is that they were pretty similar to us in terms of how they thought. They had culture, music, and such things. We know that they were omnivores and had blue blood similar to cephalopods on Earth. Copper based I mean. They seem to have been warm blooded as well but that's up to debate still as their temperatures seem a little too high. But that could of course just be the result of their own unique evolution.”
Leon watched as she talked, going over the documents as quickly as he could before she switched them off the screen to be replaced with another. There seemed to be an absolute wealth of information in the data cores. Suddenly he drew back, his eyes being assaulted with an image of the alien for the first time. It was hard to describe.
“That… is one of them?” Leon asked a bit dumbly.
Chad nodded as Sabine chuckled “A bit different huh? I mean, they are aliens after all, so why would they look like what you would expect?” she said.
On the screen was what looked to his eyes like a Squid given scales and a coat. The alien in question looked slim, their body dividing into four tentacles that seemed to end in small hooves. They didn't look slimy, their skin having the distinct patterning and coloration of small scales across its surface. Looking at its face he was reminded of old artwork of dinosaurs. A beak for a mouth in the center of a face that looked wholly inhuman. Three red eyes looked back at him in a triangular formation over a small bump that could have been a nose of sorts. The thing had no ears and its shoulders were less distinct than a Human’s would have been. Instead its arms were similarly tentacle-like and ended in four fleshy tendrils that seem to serve the same purpose as fingers, although with a degree of flexibility that his own fingers would have been incapable of.
He blinked, they didn't look scary per se. But he would be damned if he didnt find the creature a bit on the repulsive side. Something about the impossible nature of its boneless structure.
“They are a bit… Different.” he stated simply.
Chad laughed “They are at that huh. First time I saw that picture I about fell out of my chair. They certainly don't look like anything from Earth. Look at their eyes too, they look so… menacing.” the man finished.
Sabine nodded and added “Yes, but they were obviously very intelligent. I mean, look at what they accomplished.” She pulled up another document. Leon leaned close as she opened a large file that seemed to be a series of numbers and letters strung together.
“What are these?” he asked, they looked familiar but he couldn't quite specify the reason that they made such a fuzzy connection spark in his mind.
Chad motioned to the screen and said excitedly “Oh those, those are just a list of stellar coordinates. All of them are labeled as inhabitable and potentially even colonised systems. You know, nothing to worry or be interested in.” he said with a huge grin.
Leon’s eyes widened at that, there were dozens of systems on the screen, all of them potentially inhabited in the past. Maybe some of them even holding ancient ruins. Ruins they could explore without the threat of a random coronal mass ejection wiping them out. This was big, potentially even bigger than their original discovery had been. Not only did they have direct and explicit evidence of intelligence other than their own, he had the potentiality to find some of that life still living somewhere. As he thought about it however another thought crossed his mind.
“Hang on, do we know how old this data is? That station was clearly ancient beyond reckoning. Do we have any idea what happened?” Leon asked Sabine as she turned back to the screen in front of her. Her chair creaked slightly as she leaned forwards and squinted at the list of documents she had.
She moved through some of the data and then seemed to pull back a bit as she replied “Um, yeah. And no. We have a minor clue as to what happened, the station seems to have been purposefully abandoned by the Aori Unionized Republic due to something they refer to as, the Ruiners. But that's all the information we have on it so far. Sorry Leon”
Chad coughed a bit and then said “Well. It's a lot more than we had initially. We know two things for sure. The Aori abandoned the station on purpose, and they were under attack from a hostile alien race they called the Ruiners. So we can deduce that they must have been at war. And maybe they were losing. They don't seem to be a militaristic race. The March had battle damage on it, signs of conflict at the very least.” Chad pointed out in a matter of fact manner.
Leon nodded. It lined up with his own personal thoughts. The multiple damaged bulkheads they had observed looked more like the effects of forced entry than accidental environmental damage. The station on the inside had the eerie stillness of a hastily abandoned home, something he had seen too much of during his peacekeeping years.
“Well. then that explains where they went and who they were. Do you have a time frame?” Leon asked nobody in particular as he looked closer at the documents.
Taylor called from across the small room. “We have extrapolated the potential time period of the astronomical data using the stellar drift of known pulsars. We have narrowed it down to as little as one hundred and fifty thousand to two hundred thousand years old.” he said with a nod to the machine next to him.
Leon blinked at that. Over one hundred thousand years? He had been prepared for him to say something like twenty or thirty thousand, not that mind boggling sum. “Woah. That’s incredible.” he said under his breath.
These Aori seemed to have been very advanced, far more so than Humanity at least. With all their technology and experience, they had been wiped out by some hostile race they called the Ruiners. Were these cosmic horrors still around? Could they be after such an incredible time period? He found himself worrying about the possibility of encountering such a dark and malevolent force. Surely such a power would be able to crush them as if they were nothing, their anti asteroid weapons notwithstanding.
Leon looked at the data and said, pointing at the screen. “So, knowing the rough estimate of time that has passed, we could figure out the relative locations that these stars would be now, right?”
Sabine smiled and nodded. “Yes, in fact we were already working on that when you walked in. We have decoded the current location of this star system here in fact.” She said, pointing to one of the closer stars on the map. “It was listed as inhabited in the records. It’s possible that the planet could still be inhabited.” she said with more confidence for the idea than Leon was feeling.
He looked at the chart. The star in question was a young yellow sun similar in size and composition to Sol, with an inhabited inner system of planets it seemed. This would be a remarkable find even if the ruins remained as silent as the station.
“It’s almost ninety three light years away, that's pretty close all things considered. It's going to take us over one hundred days to make it there though. Do we have a visual of what the system looks like now?” Leon asked curiously.
Chad motioned to the screen he had been standing next to, it showed a faint bluish light superimposed over a fuzzier background of lights. A telescope image from the Lief Erikson’s observatory.
“This was taken before we left the station’s system, it's fuzzy due to the radiation interference from the red giant, but you can clearly see there is a star there.” Chad said while zooming into the faint dot.
Leon nodded as Sabine spoke “I guess we could drop out of warp to make some additional observations of it. That seems like it would be a good idea to me.” He gave her a nod as well and thought for a minute.
Leon spoke “Taylor, you and Terry can get a solid reading on the system if we were to stop for a bit right?” Taylor gave a nod and Leon continued “Alright. Then that's the new plan. I am going to run it by Joice and Samuel to make sure they agree, but I see no downsides to this. We might find a whole lot more than a single abandoned station there. But I'm not going to jinx it. Okay.” he said with a long pause as if waiting for a response.
Nobody else seemed to have anything to add and so he straightened and turned slightly to leave. “Keep up the good work, but leave Henry out of it please. They are running very close to the edge of their limiters already, it wouldn't take much more of a stretch to break them and cause an issue.”
Chad nodded severely and Sabine grumbled a bit before nodding as well. Leon smiled and waved to them as he left the room, the three going back to their work.
It had been a productive trip to be sure, and the wealth of information they had gathered from the station would already have made them famous beyond comparison back on Earth. The fact that they had discovered not only signs of intelligence, but received artifacts as well. The good they could do with this new information was beyond imagining.
Leon smiled widely, not even the dull constant ache in his chest could detract from his good mood. He walked along the gently curving floor of the ring with a new spring in his step, confident in the future of their mission like never before. Even as they had launched he had been skeptical they would find anything of note. But already they had made discoveries beyond his most ardent hopes and wishes. As he began to climb the ladder he laughed out loud, his good mood demanding he share the news with the others as soon as possible.

==End of Transmission==
submitted by Frostdraken to HFY [link] [comments]


2023.02.02 22:00 olesia_spitsyna 20 soft skills every QA professional should have

20 soft skills every QA professional should have

https://preview.redd.it/e3h227zl9sfa1.png?width=1200&format=png&auto=webp&s=19726e90b5242cf8840edebf8a9a036609651d79
When you’re starting your career as a QA professional you’ll be so focused on learning the necessary technical skills that you’ll forget all the other little things you need to know and learn about. Yes, I’m talking about Soft Skills.
What are the Soft Skills every QA professional should have? Not sure… Read on, because I’m going to tell you all about them in this article.

1. Excellent Communication
The job of a QA professional is to find bugs and issues in applications. But, once they’ve found these bugs they must note and explain their findings to other individuals in a report, so that these issues can be fixed. Therefore, as a QA professional you must be able to effectively communicate a problem in both oral and written form to an intended audience.
Plus, you have to be empathetic, tactful, and diplomatic when telling someone about the issues you have found. Think about it, when you’re reporting back to someone about the bugs you have found, you’re telling a team of people about all the mistakes they have made in their work, and you will be doing that often. So, you have to be careful with how you communicate with them, so you don’t cause unwanted friction while working on the project.
Learning how not to hurt someone's feelings when communicating with them is crucial in any business, but it's vital when you’re actually telling someone about things that are wrong with a product they have created, especially if they’ve been working on it for a few months!
Finally, let’s not forget the fact that you will actually be communicating across various teams, and in some cases countries when working in QA. So, you must be able to communicate clearly, or the project will not succeed.

2. Prioritization
When working in QA there can be many things going on at once, so you need to know what tasks actually need to be completed before you can move on.
If you do things in the wrong order you can sometimes end up in a little bit of a mess, and you might find yourself re-doing tasks.

3. Interpersonal Skills/Team Player
When working in a team, which most QA professionals do, you need to be mindful of those in your team, so having good interpersonal skills is a must have.
As QA is likely to be a team activity, a lack of awareness, or interest in developing one's interpersonal skills could lead to an awkward team dynamic, and it could make working on a project very difficult.
You must work with the people in your team daily, so it’s better for the team as a whole if you actually appreciate each individual in the team for who they are, and their talent.

4. Organized
As a QA professional you need to have complete control over your work, or else it will become very messy, very quickly. I mean, the very job of a QA tester is to ensure that the quality of a product is sound, so they should practice this by keeping their own work clear and well organized.

5. Attention to Detail
As a tester, you have to find what others have missed. So, you must think creatively and consider the quality of a product from various aspects when testing the said product. I mean, sometimes a minor bug can lead to significant problems later on, and you don’t want that to happen.
A testing job requires a lot of precision and focus from a tester.

6. Knowing What and When to Ask Questions
When working in QA you will be doing a lot of teamwork, and you will be doing a good amount of communicating too. Therefore, a great skill to have is to know what questions actually need to be asked, and when they need to be asked.
Sometimes we get caught up in chatting with team members, or to different people, but it’s empowering to have an engineer in your team who knows how to get a discussion back on track.
An individual with this skill is usually the one who gets to the centre of a problem, and they typically know what questions to ask, so that the team knows exactly what they need to do.
Without asking the right questions, there is no way of deciding what needs to be done, and how something needs to be done.

7. Listening
Although a lot of action should be taken when running a QA test, you should also be able to listen carefully.
Listening is imperative, and it can be the difference between success and failure in QA.
Think about it, QA professionals must be able to listen to what the product owners want, what the end-users say, and what the development team have said, so that they can determine if the quality of the product meets its requirements.
Nonetheless, it's vital that when working in a team that you also listen to your team members, because they can also have ideas and issues that need to be shared.
If you don’t listen, how will you know what to actually do with the product you are testing, and not listening to team members is just going to cause issues within the team.

8. Problem Solving
As a QA professional, you’ll have to problem solve on a daily basis. Not all problems are difficult to resolve, but there will be times when you need to think more in depth to find a solution to a hard problem.
QA professionals are there to find problems, so it's natural that they will want to find solutions to these problems.

9. Effective Time-Management
You will rarely have all the time in the world to run your test. So, learning how to estimate, prioritize, and plan all your testing activities will help you to avoid a stressful situation for you and your team in the long run.

10. End-user Empathy
As a QA professional you will often look at the quality of a product from the end-users point of view, so having empathy and an understanding of the end-user’s mindset is critical for a product’s success. Think about it, if you test a product for quality, but fail to think of the end-user and what they want, then you have tested and signed off on a product that is not wanted or needed by the end-user.
End-user empathy is key!

11. Intuition
No matter how good your technical skills are, sometimes it is solely your intuition that helps you solve a problem. And don't worry, learning how to trust your judgment comes with experience.

12. Adaptable
Like any job, things can change over time or very quickly, and QA is no different. When working in QA you must be able to adapt quickly to a situation, or to many situations at once in some cases.
When working in QA you’ve got to continuously keep up with the processes, changes, and feedback you get.
Failing to be adaptable means that you won’t be able to keep up with the work and the team.

13. Perseverance
We won't lie to you, testing can be repetitive and it will require effort on your part. But, you need to have a positive attitude and remember that no matter how boring the current job seems to be, you can rest assured that it is vital to the owner of the product, and the end-users, that you work hard and persevere with the project.

14. Lead Discussions and Meetings
This will not be strictly true for every QA professional, but there may be times when you are asked to lead a discussion or a meeting with your team. This doesn’t have to be as bad as it sounds, if you prepare yourself in advance.
Leading discussions is a really good way of seeing how everyone is getting on with the project, and it's a time to reflect and feedback on any issues and ideas. It can also improve the team spirit too.

15. Decision Making
When working in QA you will be gathering data/information and drawing conclusions from this, so that you can move on accordingly.
In QA you’ll be doing this almost daily, so you need to have a good decision making process in place to ensure that you don’t take too much time to make a final decision.
Decision making doesn’t have to be an individual thing, but when you are working on a QA project you are going to be running to tight deadlines, so you don’t really have all the time in the world to debate decisions.

16. Stress Resistance
Did you know that according to CareerBliss, the role of a QA analyst is the second happiest job in the US? Yes, this job is meaningful, the salary is excellent, and the career progression opportunities are promising.
But at the same time, you will have to deal with very tight deadlines, repetitive tasks, and perhaps the occasional difficult colleague. So, learning how to stay positive and stress free in each situation will help you to achieve success in your QA career.

17. Learn From Past Experience
QA, like most other areas in the IT world, is ever growing. So when you move from one project to another, you can take your past experience and apply what you learnt to a new project. There will often be similarities across projects, so you can utilise what you have learnt to solve problems in other projects.
This is also demonstrating a growth mindset too, as you are repeatedly learning, instead of continuously repeating the same mistakes over and over again.

18. Sharing Knowledge
As QA is usually done in a team, you’ll likely find yourself sharing your knowledge and past experiences with other members of your team. This is a great way of getting people involved in a project because you can all share your knowledge to come to the best solution.
It’s also really helpful for those who are new to the team, they can see that the team is a collaborative and friendly team, who only ever want to help each other and to ensure a product is of its best quality.

19. Ability to Learn Quickly
Becoming an excellent QA professional is impossible without the ability to learn quickly. The testing field is exceptionally fast-changing - new tools appear, and methodologies change frequently. So, there is only one thing you can do about it, accept the rapid change and be ready to keep learning.

20. Strong Analytical Skills
Analytical thinking is also very important in software testing. You will often have to break down complex problems into much smaller units, so you can analyze each element, and come up with the best possible solution.

Conclusion
Remember, in-depth knowledge of testing methods and tools will help you to land a job as a QA tester. But don’t forget that the Soft Skills are equally important for your future success.
Don't worry if you think that you lack some of these skills, because being able to identify some of your weaker points is simply the first step in improving them.

What next? If you think a career in QA is for you, then head on over to our website to check out our courses!
Apply for the Manual QA
submitted by olesia_spitsyna to Careerist [link] [comments]


2023.02.02 21:54 smackofham_ Puppy will not stop barking a out-of-town house guest. He is staying with us for a week.

This is a bit long, my apologies, I want to include all relevant info. If this is the wrong sub for this, please let me know. I also posted to dogadvice.
Backstory: We rescued our new pup a month and a half ago. He is around 5 months (give or take). He was found with his mom and littermates in a construction site when he was estimated to be a few months old. He was then fostered for two months in a household with many dogs, cats and kids.
So far he has been an amazing pup! He is very smart and eager to please. In the last 6 weeks we have done our best to expose him to lots of new situations as he was quite timid when we got him. I always focus on positive interactions and try not to force him if he is too uncomfortable. I reward him when he does well!
He has been introduced to at least 50+ people and seems to love everyone. We’ve had people show up at the house, or he meets them on walks or other peoples houses and he is always happy to meet them. With new situations, such as going into a store or going to the dog park for the first time, he does show signs of fear (tail tucked, trembling) but I try to encourage him with treats and then he is good. Once comfortable, he is back to being a curious and confident puppy. The next time he is in that scenario, he no longer shows those signs of fear. He has made great progress and the only time he really seems nervous now is when we walk on the street (versus a park) but this is improving a lot already.
Current issue: We have a good friend staying with us for one week. I picked him up at the airport with my pup in the car. Initially he gave a little growl, which was unusual. Friend gave him a treat and then all was good. We even got out of the car for pup to pee and he was fine with friend petting him.
We arrive home, walk in the door and instantly pup starts barking repeatedly at friend. We tried treats again but pup would not go near him. I called dog to come to me and rewarded when he came. Had him sit, lay down etc but as soon as friend would move, back to barking. It was late so I decided to end the interaction and put my pup to bed for the night. The next morning, same thing. He will go up to my friend, smell him and then start barking.
Things we have tried:
-reintroducing outside with very high value treats
-walk at dog park together. Pup was more comfortable with friend here at first, let him pet him, give him treats etc. After about 20mins though, friend reached out slowly to dog to let him sniff his hand and he started barking at him again. I should mention pup was okay with everyone else in the park and went up to everyone individually for pets.
-riding in the car together. Pup is totally okay with him in the car and even gave him a couple kisses.
-have friend completely ignore pup. This has worked the best so far. We can all be in the same room and pup is okay. But if my friend accident looks in his direction or moves slightly too fast, dog is back to barking, hackles up etc.
-have pup stay on “place” and give him toys, stuffed longs etc while we are hanging out.
It’s been almost two days of this now and I’m not sure what else to try. I can tell it’s stressing my friend out.
Possible relevant info:
-Friend smokes. I mention this as at times pup will go up to him with a wagging tail like he is going to great him and then sniff him and instant hackles up, and barking. He washes his hands after a smoke, but I’m sure dogs can still smell it. Perhaps puppy had a bad experience with a smoker previously?
-Friend is not afraid of dogs but I can tell the aggressive barking is making him uncomfortable, which is totally understandable. I always redirect pup when starts barking and do not let it go on.
-Pup is crate trained and if pup can’t relax around friend, I have him nap in his crate for a bit in a separate room.
-My last dog LOVED this friend.
Any advice is welcomed! This friend stays with us a few times per year, so I’d really like to resolve this!
submitted by smackofham_ to reactivedogs [link] [comments]


2023.02.02 21:33 RollTideHTX Moving Barns

Hi! I grew up riding and never progressed further than WTC/Junior Pleasure on the flat. I recently got back into riding last April and started at what seemed like a great barn. They had a ton of adult ammy's, showed frequently at associate shows, and overall had a good vibe. I really like my trainer, but I've struggled to find a horse that I really like for lessons. Most of the lesson horses are OTTBs -- the first I started out with, I liked, but he was horrible to tack up and bit me a few times that I still have scars from. I moved to a different horse, that I had a horrible fall on that I'm still recovering from 7 months later which ruined my confidence at the canter. I was kept on him and got to the point where every lesson I wasn't making progress or would freak up and try to canter but not do well. He has a big stride and leans to the inside a ton which didn't help. I finally told the barn owner that I didn't want to ride him anymore and felt bad saying so, but I'm not making progress on him and he's not helping my confidence. I went back to a smaller horse who I loved and was doing cross-rails on and feeling amazing. He is now leased so I can't ride him. I got moved to a mare who is super anxious, wiggly, and I'm in a lesson with two other riders who are more advanced than me. She threw me last night after not settling the entire lesson and I could barely get her to trot around the ring once without throwing her head, stopping, or having a fit. I feel bad because I really like the trainer and I've made a few friends at the barn, but it feels like there isn't a horse that I can ride and progress on. Not to mention my lessons are continuously switched around. I really wanted to show this season but it seems like W/T isn't even a possibility in the near term.
I started looking around and have taken two lessons at another barn which were way more intense than my prior lessons and I love the horse I'm on -- but it seems less collegial than my 1st barn and it's full-service, so I don't get to tack up or groom the horse I'm on. But the trainer is great and it seems like a place I could put in a lot more hard work and be able to move up. I really just want to feel confident in the saddle and not on the verge of tears after every lesson.
Any advice for my situation? Should I look for a 3rd barn? Am I being totally dramatic?
submitted by RollTideHTX to Equestrian [link] [comments]


2023.02.02 21:21 smackofham_ Puppy will not stop barking at out-of-town house guest. He is staying with us for a week.

This is a bit long, my apologies, I want to include all relevant info.
Backstory: We rescued our new pup a month and a half ago. He is around 5 months (give or take). He was found with his mom and littermates in a construction site, when he was estimated to be a few months old. He was then fostered for two months in a household with many dogs, cats and kids.
So far he has been an amazing pup! He is very smart and eager to please. In the last 6 weeks we have done our best to expose him to lots of new situations as he was quite timid when we got him. I always focus on positive interactions and try not to force him if he is too uncomfortable. I reward him when he does well!
He has been introduced to at least 50+ people and seems to love everyone. We’ve had people show up at the house, or he meets them on walks or other peoples houses and he is always happy to meet them. With new situations, such as going into a store or going to the dog park for the first time, he does show signs of fear (tail tucked, trembling) but I try to encourage him with treats and then he is good. Once comfortable, he is back to being a curious and confident puppy. The next time he is in that scenario, he no longer shows those signs of fear. He has made great progress and the only time he really seems nervous now is when we walk on the street (versus a park) but this is improving a lot already.
Current issue: We have a good friend staying with us for one week. I picked him up at the airport with my pup in the car. Initially he gave a little growl, which was unusual. Friend gave him a treat and then all was good. We even got out of the car for pup to pee and he was fine with friend petting him.
We arrive home, walk in the door and instantly pup starts barking repeatedly at friend. We tried treats again but pup would not go near him. I called dog to come to me and rewarded when he came. Had him sit, lay down etc but as soon as friend would move, back to barking. It was late so I decided to end the interaction and put my pup to bed for the night. The next morning, same thing. He will go up to my friend, smell him and then start barking.
Things we have tried:
-reintroducing outside with very high value treats.
-walk at dog park together. Pup was more comfortable with friend here at first, let him pet him, give him treats etc. After about 20mins though, friend reached out slowly to dog to let him sniff his hand and he started barking at him again. I should mention pup was okay with everyone else in the park and went up to everyone individually for pets.
-riding in the car together. Pup is totally okay with him in the car and even gave him a couple kisses.
-have friend completely ignore pup. This has worked the best so far. We can all be in the same room and pup is okay. But if my friend accident looks in his direction or moves slightly too fast, dog is back to barking, hackles up etc.
-have pup stay on “place” and give him toys, stuffed longs etc while we are hanging out.
It’s been almost two days of this now and I’m not sure what else to try. I can tell it’s stressing my friend out.
Possible relevant info:
-Friend smokes. I mention this as at times pup will go up to him with a wagging tail, like he is going to great him and then sniff him and instant hackles up, and barking. He washes his hands after a smoke, but I’m sure dogs can still smell it.
-Friend does have nervous tendencies but he is trying to not show it. He’s not afraid of dogs but I can tell the aggressive barking is making him uncomfortable, which is totally understandable. I always redirect pup when he starts barking and do not let it go on.
-Pup is crate trained and if pup can’t relax around friend, I have him nap in his crate for a bit in a separate room.
-My last dog LOVED this friend.
Any advice is welcomed!
submitted by smackofham_ to DogAdvice [link] [comments]


2023.02.02 21:14 gingerlem0n Software Test Lead but feel like a tester

I started a role as a Software Test Lead and was under the impression I would be managing a team of testers, and the overall testing process (managing my team, making estimates, creating the tests, taking care of documentation, monitoring deliveries, reporting progress to software manager, designating tasks to my team etc) but since I started I’ve been managing the process and also executing the tests I create on my own.
I have no team so I am essentially also the tester, is this normal? I took this role to get lead/management experience as opposed to being a tester and executing the tests.
Just want to know whether this is usual or not for the role of a test lead
Sorry if there’s any confusion
submitted by gingerlem0n to QualityAssurance [link] [comments]


2023.02.02 21:09 gingerlem0n Software Test Lead but feel like a tester

I started a role as a Software Test Lead and was under the impression I would be managing a team of testers, and the overall testing process (managing my team, making estimates, creating the tests, taking care of documentation, monitoring deliveries, reporting progress to software manager, designating tasks to my team etc) but since I started I’ve been managing the process and also executing the tests I create on my own.
I have no team so I am essentially also the tester, is this normal? I took this role to get lead/management experience as opposed to being a tester and executing the tests.
Just want to know whether this is usual or not for the role of a test lead
Sorry if there’s any confusion
submitted by gingerlem0n to softwaretesting [link] [comments]


2023.02.02 20:36 peaceman14 Humans Don't do magic. Chapter 4: The Orcs

The Elven empire has capitulated, the remnants of their militaries which did not join the Human Empire scattered across the planet, some stayed on the Archipelago continuing their fight as small unorganised bands of terrorist cells targeting mostly civilian human convies and infrastructure coming into the islands.While others slipped through the grasps of human patrol ships and sought refuge amongst the Dwarves and Orcs, rejoining the fray as volunteer corps.
In the North, human forces pushed steadily now partially unbound by the needs of a terrestrial supply chain.While In the East, forces saw tremendous progress at first, enchanted power armour combined with flamethrowers, incendiary rounds from artillery and reliable close in air support ensured that the undead hordes, Orc, animal or human alike stayed dead. It was so successful to the point where high command had to change kill count quotas in the east for field promotions. As infantrymen that were averaging 10 to 20 kills before, were now hitting closer to 100 to 120 kills per engagement with their new enchanted equipment. With artillery crews and pilots having kills numbering in the thousands to tens of thousands.
That was until the liberation forces began to reach the outskirts of their first major city of Guangzhou. Only to find nothing, but lush green plains. Large open plains that were, before flooded with waves upon waves of never ending undead were now empty. The 40th Terran Armoured regiment was the first to contact this anomaly.
“Do you see anything Commander?” Driver Sam called from below the armoured hull.
“That’s just it, There’s nothing” Tank commander Eric replied,scanning the forest in the distance with the periscope of their tank. It was a standard MBT, equipped with a standard 7.62 MG5 as a coaxial machine gun, and a 125 mm cannon which was capable of loading High explosive as well as armour piercing ammunition types. Both of which are fully automated, allowing all the crew to be stationed in the hull. 50 more were parked alongside them, forming a long line of steel elephants perched atop a hill, ready to decimate any undead attempting to approach. They were of course escorted by powered infantry behind them, armed with flamethrowers and the new standard issue for powered infantry, a 50 calibre machine gun.
“Heh, maybe they gave up.” Chimed Gunner Don.
“I doubt it” He dismissed, Scanning the area once more, he spotted something peculiar. A bush in the distance, just moved. A puff of smoke, a distant crackle,followed by a streak of light rocketing towards his vehicle. Slamming into the enchanted turret, the glyphs burned to life, but quickly fizzled out. Allowing the enchanted depleted uranium dart to promptly embed itself into the coaxial machine gun.
“Holy shit!” Eric yelled
“ Gunner! AP!”
“ Ready!”
“ Dial in my azimuth”
“ON!”
“ Send!”
Deafening booms echoed across the hill, as the line tanks rocked back from the recoil. Releasing a volley of depleted Uranium Shell projectiles at Supersonic speeds at the estimated target. Penetrating through the thin foliage the glyphs of the shells glowed as it slammed into the enchanted steel hull of the other vehicle, Fizzling out quickly the shells penetrated the the target’s turret and hull, turned their crew into a splatter of blood and entrails, A few others penetrated the steel blast door, slamming into their ammohold.
The gunner watched, through his scope, as 2 large fire spouts burst out from the back of the target’s turret.
“ Target destroyed ” Don announced.
“ Holy crap! You guys ok?” A voice crackled over the radio.
“ Yea! The coax is down and our enchantments are fizzled out. But we’re ok ” Eric answered,
“ Wait… Shit… Contact Front!” The voice yelled, leaning forward the commander looked through the Periscope, watching as hundreds of outdated human armoured vehicles poured out of the forest,Their front line was made up of hundreds of T34s and Shermans from the second World War, with more modern MBTs from the cold war and early information era being spotted in the backline taking aim on their position, all sporting glyphs on their hulls.
Loud booms and crackles echoed throughout the vast plains, cannons fired, shells hit, munitions exploded, and radios crackled to life as The 40th battalion attempted to keep a tidal wave of steel from crashing upon them. The frontline made of ancient equipment climbed the hill with breakneck speed similar to the undead hordes that normally assaulted human positions, but now ever more resilient, strengthened by the engineering, and craftsmanship of our very own ancestors.
These old but resilient machines of war would ram themselves into advanced vehicles that made up the line,their enchantments redirecting the collision energy into our own creating a feedback loop. Though their enchantments were weaker and would fizzle out far before ours another would ram into the back of the depleted enemy tank to continue the loop. Quickly fizzling out our enchantments and stunning the crew. After which the undead crews of these tanks would exit their vehicles and begin to board the disabled human tank killing the crew inside when they finally breach the armoured hatches, All this while the still outdated but more advanced early information era and cold war vehicles poured fire on the human position from a distance. The powered infantry, stationed behind the line of heavy armour, had scrambled back to their armoured fighting vehicles and had begun assisting the MBTs however they can with their autocannons.
“ Pull back! We’ve lost- ” The raucous sound of bending and tearing metal interrupted the transmission “ Shit!,” A deafening Crack, “ Get back, you-” Gunfire, “AAhhh, fuck you” a gun shot. “ retreat…they’re coming round…The sides…”He ordered breathing now heavy, Undead groans could be heard in the background. “Commander…Nick… Signing out” A thunderous boom echoed both over the radio and across the battlefield, A vehicle encapsulated by both the hulls of old human tanks and the bodies of long dead soldiers exploded, disintegrating the undead and sending its turret flying high into the air, The shockwave flipping the few vehicles.
Whilst another vehicle was hit by a round, causing its turret’s blast panels burst open propelled by a sprout of pure flame, but still it continued to reverse back down the hill. Alongside the many other armoured vehicles that were now in a fighting retreat, attempting to outmanoeuvre the swarm of outdated AFVs that had taken advantage of the chaos of battle and had begun to sweep round the sides of the unsuspecting battalion. AFVs that had pulled ahead of the retreating MBTs have engaged the flanking forces and are attempting to hold a retreat corridor open, The corridor did not hold for long as many of the retreating human forces were being taken out or disabled by either swarms javelins and tow-missiles fired from the flanking AFVs or the AFVs themselves ramming into them.
Once the Encapsulation was complete, the slaughter began. The swarm of older AFVs now positioned behind the surrounded human forces began unloading swarms of undead infantry, all armed with the equipment of their time, Rifles, Javelins launchers or grenades. Quickly pulling the battlefield into chaos, as powered infantry engaged undead soldiers in the open whilst being fired upon by the autocannons of the wall of armour that now encapsulates them.
“ Gunner! Hit that- AHh” Eric cried as his tank was rammed by a 25ton WW2 era vehicle, which had instantaneously crushed his vehicle’s gun barrel and knocked out his driver. Another deafening bang, as the hatch above his head was torn open. Pulling out his pistol, he aimed upwards and shot, killing the undead soldier instantly. He climbed out of the tank and shot 4 more rounds around him killing 4 more. Before a shot tore through his chest and punctured his lung. Holding the entry wound Eric collapsed onto the back of his vehicle
The world around him is a blaze, soldiers screaming in pain, lying on the ground in a mess of bloodied entrails and broken metals. Tanks and other vehicles lay ablaze or buried beneath a tide of steel. Coming down from the hill they had once been stationed on, standing atop a Centurion MBT was a 2m tall figure, it wore a tailor made recreation of a human general’s uniform. Its skin was green,and its shoulders were wide . The smoking barrel of its chrome 1911 was aimed at Eric. The relentless tide of ancient warmachines parting around him like an ocean around an island. Its centurion parked alongside Eric’s tank, and he hopped aboard. Gasping heavily and holding onto his chest, Eric watched in terror as the Orc grabbed the radio headset from his head, and with a perfect imitation of his Commanding officers voice, mannerisms and character spoke into it’s mic.
“High Command this is Tango Alpha, Romeo, The Orcish resistance was unexpected but we have crushed them with acceptable losses. All elements are go, for Operation Hammer and Anvil.” Coughing, Eric struggled to shout out, to interrupt him. To somehow let command know of the Orc’s ploy. But all that came from his mouth and muffled gurgles as he began to choke on his own blood.
“Commander? Why aren’t you using assigned comns device” A voice called back
“My device was damaged in battle.”
“Understood commander. Any other updates?” The voice acknowledged
“ None, over and out.”
“Understood over and out.” The voice replied, the Orc then placed the headset back into the vehicle. He walked over the Eric knelt down beside him.
“ You fought well, my friend.” The Orc smiled at Eric placing a hand on his chest. “ So I will give you the warrior’s honour. I will absorb your soul and put it to good use.” The Orc concentrated on Eric’s mind, absorbing his personality, struggles, his memories and experiences and even skills. All of it began to surge into the Orc’s vast mind, which by this time was more of a library filled with the memories, personalities, stratagems and intellect of every single human soldier, scientist, historian,teacher or officer that he had cared to absorb.
“Why do you bother? Is a soldier’s soul not extremely bitter to you orcs?” A dwarf commented, his steel helmet peeking out from the centurion’s driver’s hatch.
“Their experiences may prove useful.”
“Hmph, for a species made up of magicless vermin their experiences should mean nothing.”
“ Careful, Thalgrim, that is the same kind of arrogance that got the Elves destroyed.”
“ My apologies Archmage Talandar.”
“ At ease Thalgrim I took no offence, it was simply a reminder.” Talandar said, watching the distant ambers of battle slowly die. As the final terran soldier fell.
“ Now to bring them all back under my command.” He declared a magical wooden staff appearing in his hand. It shone with green energy as he slammed it onto the metal steel hull. A wave of green energy washed over the battlefield Instantly reviving the fallen human soldiers as shambling undead. The body of Eric comes to life once more along side the countless new shambling husks all still equipped with their respective weapons, armour and most importantly experiences, all bound to the will of the Archmage that had revived them.
“ This enough to get you replicating?”
“Aye, that would do.”
High above the battlefield, on orbital station geneva, Marshall Jean had recovered from her battle with the Elves and now stood ready to lead humanity on to another victory.
“ Marshall, your tactical map has been updated, you would be pleased to note that forces in the west and north have made great progress during your absence. Science division has also made a breakthrough regarding gene soldiers with the help of the captured Elven Archmage’s brain” The voice on the intercom informed her as she entered the tactical board room once more. Her generals have begun leading their campaigns on the ground taking charge of each front as necessary.
A holo display booted up in front of her, showing a 2D map of the continent, and their frontlines. The riots in the Elven archipelago have been quelled, Admiral Nimtz after his successful campaign in the south is being rerouted to support the Northern front. Reports in the north showed liberation forces taking control of many vital cities and have completely liberated the old human nations of Turkey, Bulgaria, Greece, Serbia, Bosnia, Croatia, Slovenia, parts of Italy, parts of Switzerland are currently pushing up into the City of Bern and retaking the Lichtenstein. While in the east forces have made immense progress liberating grounds all the way up Xian and are attempting to push towards Beijing to cut off Orcish supply routes to Shanghai, Guangzhou and Taiwan.
Though forces in the east seem to be some anomalies. It seems that following the liberation of many Orcish concentration camps, many of the people kept in these concentration camps are begging to be put back in, resulting in a drop of morale of the soldiers on the frontlines as these people struggle to reintegrate back into society. These camps were reported to host a sort of deep dive VR system made from the combining captured human VR tech and Orcish spiritual magic. Apparently the people kept at these camps were put into these machines which simulated an incredibly realistic, full, happy and fulfilling life in the span of a few days. Pulling a user out was akin to telling a person that has achieved all their hopes and dreams that everything they have built, everything they have achieved and fought for was fake, and surmounted to nothing. As such many liberated captives, either, begged to be put back in or broke down mentally. A constant repeat of this with every liberated camp has heavily impacted the morale of our frontline troops and generals and commanders are resorting to swapping out soldiers on the eastern front with the northern one.
Jean reviewed the information thoroughly before scrolling over to the siege of Guangzhou, the 40th armoured regiment has encountered slight resistance but has seemingly overcome and is moving into Guangzhou,
The Anvil is in place and now she will drop the Hammer. The orbital strike battalion would drop on the city with the support of low orbital spacecraft to resupply, reinforce and medivac out wounded or liberated.
“ Officer, execute operation Hammer and Anvil.”
“ Yes Ma’am.” The officer acknowledged. Instantly her tactical map shifted showing thousands of drop pods and spacecraft beginning to descend onto the city below. Together with the battalion of tanks and AFVs moving into the city, the force would create a perfect pincer, crushing all expected resistance.
“Uhm Commander? We’re picking up missile launches from Guangzhou,” The officer’s asked through the intercom
“What?How?”
“ Multiple patriot missile defence batteries have come online across the city.”
Back on the ground,bright orange streaks punched through the blanket of grey clouds above Guangzhou. Whilst hundreds of white streaks rose from the ground to meet them. Inside one of these pods Ramirez, held on tight to his seatbelt, praying he would at least make it to the ground. Looking through the small viewport above the head of his squadmate Tyrus, he could see another burning through the atmosphere alongside him. Feeling the bumps and hearing the muffled explosions around his pod he could only assume many others were not as lucky as theirs. He looked towards the altimeter on the door, watching as its numbers slowly spun towards 0, Yearning for it to spin a little faster. Hoping to reach the ground.1000, 900, 800, 700, 600,
A Deafening roar echoed through the pod, as the jets activated, slowing their rapid descent, 400, 300. Another deafening roar, but this time from a much more unfriendly engine. Instantly a missile tore through the pod beside him detonating with an ear-splitting boom, tearing apart both his and his neighbour’s metal shell. Sending him and his squad rocketing towards the ground.
“Warning, Su… su.. suit condition critical, eject.Eject” The Ai crackled over his in suit speaker, Ramirez found himself laying on his back. Opening his eyes, he found his pod blown half open as grey cloudy skies greeted him as opposed to the steel shell of the landing pod. Struggling, he pushed open the panel on his suit's right arm, and pushed the ejection button 3 times. Quickly the suit opened up, pushing off the metal suit he slowly got to his feet. Grabbing an enchanted rifle, a pistol and a small earpiece off the suit’s opened shoulder,
Distant gunfire and explosions indicated the battle was still ongoing.Picking up a few grenades from one of the pod’s still intact supply cabinet, Ramirez mounted his earpiece on his ear and gripped his rifle tightly. Cautiously and silently he exited the broken pod and walked out into the ruined streets of Guangzhou. All of his squadmates were dead, their mangled bodies littering the streets. Some died on impact while others died fighting as indicated by the small bullet holes in their power suits.
“Ahh, Shit.” he muttered to himself, slowly making his way deeper into the city. Tapping on his earpiece, he activates his radio to try and contact the command.
“The assault has failed. All forces are to retreat and regroup at Tian he stadium. ” A voice crackled through his earpiece, before repeating itself.
Pulling out his touchscreen device from his pocket, he noted that he was in what was called the HaiZhu district, a district that was surrounded by 2 rivers. If wanted to get to the stadium he needed to go north and cross the Guangzhou bridge. Holding his rifle in hand, he stuck close to the abandoned buildings, Ramirez looked at the wrecked city around him,before letting out a sigh. “Ahh shit, I best get moving.” He muttered to himself before creeping down the road towards the bridges. The area around him was quiet, distant gunfire and explosions a constant reminder of the imminent danger. Creeping through the buildings he spotted shambling corpses in a building across the street from him. They wore old urban camouflage uniforms and had kevlar vests and outdated rifles. He believed they were once called kalashnikovs. These husks still patrolled around the building with purpose minds bound to their training, rifles slung around in front of their chest. Their eyes scanned the surroundings robotically.
Hiding behind a wrecked car, Ramirez just managed to evade the gaze of the undead guard. Peaking, up above the car, Ramirez watched as the undead continued to survey the street. Knowing he couldn’t move from behind this car without alerting the everwatching guard. He slowly and silently took aim with his weapon. Bracing himself for a gunfight, holding his breath he aligned the scope to the undead guard’s head. Only then did he notice a distant roar of ajet engine getting louder and louder. Until it was deafening. Almost instantly an advanced ground attack jet rocketed through the air above the building behind him, crashing into the building he was taking aim at in a fiery explosion.Instinctively Ramirez ducked behind the wrecked car once more. Shortly after an old era F16 blasted past him and the wrecked craft, Quickly climbing up into sky and disappearing the clouds above.
Peeking his head out, he watched as the damaged structure began to collapse on whats left of the grey chassis of the ground attack craft. Its tail was already missing. Its sturdy wings gone, and its cockpit crushed. Its glyph enhanced hull, disappearing into the falling debris of the building. The undead guard which had been there had no doubt been obliterated by the blast. Gripping his rifle tighter Ramirez continued his push towards the bridge.
The distinct crackle and pops of gunfire got louder and louder as he approached the bridge. Realising this, he began to stick close to the apartment block that flanked the narrow and approached. As he got closer to the bridge the sounds of battle got deafeningly loud. The crackle of rifles firing, defeaning booms of cannons going off and explosions landing were paired with the telltale sign of an engine rumbling, getting closer and closer. Hiding inside the apartment block now, he watched the empty street from the window, soon the high pitched screech of a turbocharged engine could be heard. A new generation MBT rumbled down the street. Its turret bore the eagle insignia of the 40th, its paint was heavily scratched and its flat turret had a large hole where the coaxial machine gun should be mounted.The glyphs on its hull were pitch black rather than the dim white shimmer it usually gives off. The high pitched screeching descended into a low rumble once more, the tank slowed but continued on its way towards the bridge.
“Heyo! Wait up!...” Jumping out from the building, and running to the centre of the street Ramirez yelled at the moving vehicle. The low rumbling of the engine wound down, as the vehicle jerked forward, stopping in its tracks. “Finally! You guys cannot believe…guys?!” The high pitched wiring of an electric motor, and the turret began to turn towards him.Its long barrel swiftly turned to face him. Something was wrong, and he knew it. Quickly jumping out of the way, a loud boom echoed through the street, the cannon had let loose a depleted uranium shell, sending it rocketing down the street and impacting a wrecked truck far down the road. The turret turned, its gun training itself on the wreck Ramirez was attempting to hide behind. Jumping and rolling over to another wrecked vehicle, he narrowly avoided the speedy projectile, as it blasted through the steel wreckage and cut through the reinforced concrete wall behind it, before quickly detonating in the apartment it had entered. Wrecking everything that was left behind after the evacuation. Running forward, and towards the vehicle Ramirez took out the grenades from his pockets and tore off a piece of his shirt, quickly stopping dead in his tracks.To Let another destructive projectile blast past him, and destroy another unfortunate ground floor apartment, behind him. Sprinting at full speed he ran parallel to the armoured vehicle. Making sure to strafe unpredictably, so as to make it as difficult as possible for the turret to track him.Tying the grenade together with his shirt to make a bundle. He sprinted towards the vehicle parked vehicle, sliding down, at the last second as the barrel finally met his gaze and let out a thunderous boom, the projectile missed him entirely but the sound of the cannon firing so close to him made his ears ring. Pulling the pin from one of the grenades. He chucked his makeshift explosive over the gunner’s hatch, before quickly dropping down on his belly and placing both his hands over his neck. The bundle of grenades exploded ringing through his ears once more. Getting to his feet. He quickly climbed onto the blown open gunner’s hatch and emptied a few rounds into the tank, before chucking one more grenade into the open hatch. Instantly killing whatever undead crew were left and destroying the controls.
Sitting on the side of the smoking vehicle, Ramirez breathed a sigh of relief, before grabbing his rifle and continuing down the road, thanking his lucky stars that its machine gun had been taken out.
The sounds of battle had died down, walking down the long bridge he heard the distant roar of jet engines.Looking up high above the city, trails of smoke punched holes into the grey cloud blanket,marking the paths of wreckages of aircraft on both sides falling from the skies . The road was still littered with bodies, and wrecked vehicles, their fires still crackling softly. Turning his gaze back forward, he realised he could now see the stadium. Gun fire poured out its sides in rapid, precise yellow streaks towards the ground below, quickly being returned by similar yellow streaks coming from the ground. Seeing this, he began to pick up the pace, breaking into jog towards the stadium. Knowing it is only a matter of time before his final retreat point falls or he gets left behind
Ramirez was in awe when he finally arrived at the stadium, corpses and wrecks created a wall of blood and steel around the stadium. The entrances were reinforced and barricaded. Quietly, climbed over the wall of debris and bodies.
“Halt!” A voice called from atop the stadium. Holding his hands up in the air, looked up at the soldier. His large calibre rifle was pointed straight at him. The Glyphs on his armour varied between a range of dimly glowing, to black and burnt out.
“ Whoa, whoa whoa,I’m Human, I’m human.” Ramirez yelled, the man lowered his rifle, before retreating into the stadium. Shortly after, the reinforced doors let out an ear wrenching screech as it was pulled open. Two soldiers in power armour stood at the doors,closing it once. Ramirez had entered the stadium. Their visors were down so their faces were completely concealed. The room inside was completely dark, turning almost pitch black once the doors were closed. The only light came through the entrance to the open pitch at the centre of the stadium where multiple large spacecraft had landed. they were heavy duty transport craft sent down by command to evacuate multiple tanks at a time.The sound of their jet engines drowned out everything else. But something seemed off; the area around the vehicles seemed awkwardly abandoned. Normally there would be soldiers scrambling round for ammo, medics treating the wounded. Soldiers shouting at others to hurry up and get on, but here there was none of that. Just 4 large spacecraft parked perfectly at the centre of the pitch.
“Corporal Ramirez, you made it.” A commander called. Walking towards him from the stands that were behind him. His uniform was soaked in blood. The emblem on its shoulder was that of the 40th. His rifle was slung round his shoulder. He put a shoulder round Ramriez, and began escorting the man towards the shuttles.
Ramirez bashed the commander's face with the butt of his rifle. Knocking the man to the ground and pointing his rifle at him.
“How do you know my name?” He yelled. Instantly, Ramirez fell onto the ground, dropping his gun in front of him His legs turning to jelly as the water was drained from them. The commander’s face flickered before revealing his true self, A green faced and large fanged orc. Behind him the 2 powered armour suits opened up to show 2 elven mages, the droplets of water being removed from Ramirez drawn into their hands forming a small ball of moisture.
“ Heh, when you have absorbed as many souls as I have…” The orc began, getting back onto his feet. “ You start to forgot who’s memories belong to who’s” He explained, kicking the rifle away from Ramirez who was crawling to grip on to it. Whilst fighting the immense pain of having one's entire body water content drained from them.
“You..you..bastard..” he muttered, breathing heavier and heavier, his face shrivelling up, becoming more and more wrinkled as the rest of the moisture left his body.
“ These humans have such spirit.” The archmage commented, absorbing his soul.
“Heh, they have as much spirit as they have mana.” One of the elves added
“ You elves are always so arrogant.”
“ Am I wrong? These soulless automata have less magical abilities than a new born baby.”
“ And yet your nation still lost to them.” The Orcish Archmage retorted, silencing the elf.
“I for one will not make the mistake of underestimating them. They may have no magical abilities but they sure as hell have spirit. Not to mention brains.” He said,picking up the rifle Ramirez dropped. “ The things these humans come up with…” He commented examining the weapon in his hands. “ Incredible, who would have thought they would use you like this my old rival.”He said,Tapping the shimmering glyphs on the gun, before shoving the rifle in the arms of one of the elves. “Take it, you'll need it.”
“Why would I need such an infernal contraption.” The elven mage yelled.
The Orc let out a sigh, “You elves never learn do you.” He muttered to himself, “ It’s up to you, don’t start complaining about honour when they start shooting you up there.”
“Up there?” The elf repeated, clearly confused about what this entails
“ Hais, up there!” the orc pointed at the sky. “ Where the humans are coming from, a station above the clouds, in an area they call space. Don’t tell me you haven’t noticed”
“ Proposterous, were these humans not just using their poor imitations of elven gliders?”
“ No wonder your people lost.” The Orc said, before raising his staff in the air, quickly, hordes of undead soldiers began pouring in from the various entrances into the pitch, falling in, in neat boxes in front of the large spacecraft.
“ S…Sir..O..ur s-s-quadron has e-e-entered h-h-hostile a-airspace.” A course raspy voice crackled over the Orc’s earpiece. It struggled to maintain its sentences, each word coming off with some pain in them.
“ Maintain your current heading squad leader, and hit those power plants with everything you’ve got.”
“ Understood sir.” It acknowledged,
Command had gotten one thing wrong about the Orcs: they did not feed on human flesh, they fed on human souls. Making all their experience, their memories and their skills a part of them. They had once done the same with the Elves and Dwarves, this had ignited a long and drawn out war between the Orcs and the 2 other races that had resulted in their defeat. From then on the Orcish population dropped tremendously, as their population starved with no souls to eat. So when humanity had arrived and the Elves and Dwarves united against them. The Orcs wasted no time in getting a share of the spoils. Though unlike the Elves and Dwarves the Orcs treated humanity differently. Since our emotions and memories represented flavours to them, each good memory was sweet, each bad one bitter, with each human emotion representing a different taste. With a combination of our captured VR technology and their souls magic they could have a human live out an entire fulfilling and happy life in the span of a few days before being harvested. But despite this, humans were still not forced into these VR machines. Determined to make as many good memories as possible, the Orcs gave humans under their rule a choice, live a long fulfilling happy life virtually, or live a short but comfortable one in the real world. Humans that chose the latter would be led to what was once the country of Japan. Where the Orcs, having absorbed the experiences and skills of architects, have reconstructed the entire country to be a paradise island. Where one's needs were always met as undead servants did your every bidding. Humans who chose neither and still resisted were harvested immediately.
Similar to the differences in human treatment, the Orcish archmage was unlike the Elven and Dwarven one. He was not a brawler,or a frontline fighter he more resembled a tactician, a general. As the Elven and Dwarven archmage charged to their deaths. He opted to stay hidden, raising legions of undead to push into the humans and absorbing the souls of high ranking officers and captured scientists to learn of our command structures, our cultures and most importantly, our tactics.
Still unknown to high command this looming threat has deceived them into giving him exactly what he needs to bring down humanity. Equipment. Now with these new craft high command was so kind as to bestow upon him. He would strike humanity at the heart, taking control of high commands precious station absorb their souls and make humanity his puppet.
Previous
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2023.02.02 20:24 mitsu_hana HELP! I just received eviction letters from my landlord.

There had been a lot of issues with the flat and we have been emailing the landlord quite frequently about issues in the flat.
This is part of the eviction letter they sent me
“We estimate to date you we have spent over £800 on contractor visits, and we will not accept this situation any longer. We will pass matters onto our solicitors and seek you vacating our property, compensation for the false works which never needed to be carried out, full rent due as per the tenancy contract and reimbursement of our legal costs. These alone will be well in excess of £7,500. If vou do not pay, we will seek payment for the guarantor. We hope matters do not progress to lawyers being instructed and we can have a good relationship.”
What should I do?
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2023.02.02 20:12 maxinfet Why research Quinine and Malaria Prevention when you can just throw more people at the problem

Why research Quinine and Malaria Prevention when you can just throw more people at the problem submitted by maxinfet to victoria3 [link] [comments]


2023.02.02 19:24 lundjordan Volunteers needed. Compete against yourself and see if you can beat what Ardor AI thinks you'll be able to do in a metcon style workout

Hi.
I created an fitness app called Ardor. It creates workouts and programs that are based a lot on CrossFit methodology. One of the things it does is allow you to create workouts and programs your way, based on what you have, when you can workout, and what your interests/weaknesses are.
But this post is focusing on its main feature: predicting not just how strong you are or what your bodyweight ability is but also, and what I believe is a first for fitness apps, making predictions about your overall fitness. How fast you are, what’s your aerobic capacity like, when will your muscular stamina fail, etc.
I trained Ardor how to make metcon style workouts on an individual basis but then also predict when that individual will finish or how many rounds they can do within a time domain. I know, it sounds like a gimmick and seems unrealistic to measure or predict. Usually you need a ton of data behind other people’s results like the Open workouts. But there is a lot of machine learning applied in the backend of Ardor based on similar stuff I was doing at my last gig in big tech.
Ardor looks and tracks your ability on a per exercise basis, considers what happens when you mix exercises together, how rests play a part, factors how intensity changes when you use a certain weight, when you need to scale exercises to hit a target stimulus, and separates aerobic and anaerobic capacity estimates. Handles 400+ bodyweight, weightlifting, and cardio exercises that can be mixed together in any combination of picking 2-5 exercises, 5-25min in length, and applying varying rep schemes.
The end result is, if you come in faster or slower than it predicts, it turns internal dials by finding patterns between how you did with previous workouts vs today, and then adjusts the very next workout it had planned so that it gets more accurate going forward. The interesting thing here is it essentially unlocks this ability to compete against yourself on a daily basis since the workouts and goals are entirely based on how you did in the past. Which we think is neat since this still works for workouts no one has ever done before and were created just for you and your level.
We’ve tested this with about 100 people within our circle and have found that most people typically fall within 5% accuracy of its predictions after just 3 workouts.
What I’d like to do next is test this with a bigger pool of people to prove it works in the wild. We've seen apps that predict what weights people should use, or what pace they should aim for on monostructural exercises. But I don’t know of anyone who has been able to make predictions like this for the metcon/HIIT/fitness communities so.
If you are interested in seeing if it actually works (or trying to prove it wrong :)), you can install and try it out on iOS for free (Android coming soon). It comes with a free trial of 2 weeks but I added the promo code: “metcon” that you'll need to enter before the trial is up and that will extend the trial to 4 weeks so you have more time to kick its tires without needing to subscribe to anything (starts at $5.99 usd / month for those interested in the price after the trial). All I’m asking is for some feedback. Mainly:

  1. Did the first 3 conditioning/metcon workouts get progressively more accurate?
  2. After your first 3, did you find that the predictions were pretty accurate and give you a good goal to aim for every workout?
  3. Did you try any of the strength based workouts and were the weights and reps there accurate too?
For CrossFit folks, the “Advanced Conditioning” focus will be the most familiar. “Conditioning” focus is similar but does not include any technical olympic or gymnastics work.
To learn more, see here: https://www.ardor.fitness/coming-from-cross-func-fitness
You can reach me at [email protected] anytime.
So far every feature I’ve added has been community driven from folks using it, requesting things they would personally like. I would like to keep that going at scale.
Thanks,
Jordan
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