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Kraggh's Works ♫♪



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Sexagesimal Revoluuuution!

Posted by Jean Valjean , in Nerd Sep 21 2018 · 42 views
sexagesimal, decimal, math
:kaukau: Sexagesimal, a.k.a. base 60 counting. Why convert to this number? What's wrong with the perfectly natural decimal numerical system? Simple: it isn't perfectly natural. When was the last time you were able to evenly divide 10 by 3 in decimal form? You couldn't. It looked ugly. How about 4? It comes out as a mixed number. Don't even get me started on 6. Literally, the only reason why we count in decimal is because we didn't want to have to make things any more complicated than counting with our hands. Otherwise, it's a factor of 2 and five. The first is natural enough, but how often does the number 5 come up in nature compared to, say, 3 and 4? Even 6 comes up more often than five, since you see that number all of the time in circles.

Now let's look at 60. It can be evenly divided by 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 10, 12, 15, 20, and 30. That's pretty useful! Imagine how much more easily you could divide a dollar!

The ancient Sumerians used this system, and they were on to something. The only thing that I would change would to simplify the written system so that numerals could be written on the fly. Otherwise, I encourage people to write to their local senators and representatives and urge them to introduce this legislation. America deserves better than this Decimal Dictatorship! Sexagesimaltarians of the world, unite!

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Farewell, Vontae Davis

Posted by Jean Valjean , in Events Sep 20 2018 · 27 views

Farewell, Vontae Davis :kaukau: I cant quite put my finger on it, but I find his mid-game retirement to be inspiring, and I wish him Godspeed.

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Wakey Wakey...

Posted by Jean Valjean , Sep 18 2018 · 38 views
Dont Hug Me, Im Scared, Youtube and 2 more...
:kaukau: A trailer hasn't made me this excited since the "Chewy, we're home" one came out in 2015. I saw this within minutes of it coming out and initially didn't think anything of it, until I saw the official channel name. And then I dropped EVERYTHING.


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[Perfectly Sane] Rich Asians

Posted by Jean Valjean , in Reviews, Movies Sep 10 2018 · 50 views
Crazy Rich Asians, movie, review and 2 more...
[Perfectly Sane] Rich Asians :kaukau: Before I watched Slenderman, I watched Crazy Rich Asians two or three weeks ago. I'd give a spoiler-free consumer review, but since you can tell from the trailer that this is basically My Big Fat Greek Wedding mixed with the plot of every single Hallmark Original Channel movie ever, there's really nothing to spoil. You know exactly what the plot of this movie is. They're rich. They're Asian. They're somewhat crazy, although in my opinions pretty calm and rational. But that last part is just my opinion. Just saying, everything that the mother stands for makes sense to me, and she seems exceptionally level-headed. As is most everyone in the movie, with the exception of a few friends.

Okay, so here are the basics on the quality and style of the movie:
  • Its main selling point is that the cast feels fresh and unique and charming. They are all well-acted and all of the characters are very likable. I can't think of a single character that I didn't enjoy. I could hang out with any one of these people.
  • While the characters are good, the story does have that much dramatic tension. You never feel that the stakes are exceptionally high and the central "will they make their relationship work out" question never gets particularly emotionally strenuous.
  • It does not have one of those moments that's almost obligatory in romantic comedies where there's a giant, long, painstaking miscommunication and/or lie that gets incredibly awkward and makes you feel embarrassed for the main character. This is a staple of romantic comedies, and it ducks the trend.
  • It does not dive exceptionally deep into Asian culture. Not just the street-level culture, but even the affluent culture. This isn't a case study in the same way that Pride and Prejudice is. It is primarily a comedy.
  • With that having been said, it still does offer some insight on how Asians differ from Americans, particularly when it comes to family values.
There are some talking points to be made with this movie. I watched it with a Christian friend and we actually had quite a bit to say. There are several people that I would recommend this to, particularly because of the talking point surrounding how much emphasis people put on family cohesiveness versus individualism, and what types of happiness are the most worth pursuing. There are also people like my grandmother who I would re-watch this movie with in a heartbeat, because she loves those Hallmark Channel original movies (for the record, this is produced, directed, written, and acted significantly better than a Hallmark Channel movie, so don't let that comparison turn you off).

While I said that the movie doesn't have much suspense or sense of stakes, I would attribute that to the lack of a contrived misunderstanding. You know, the one that makes you squirm in your seat and watch the movie through your fingers because it's just so embarrassing to watch. That does tend to increase suspense and stakes, but I'd rather have an easygoing movie without that trope. The other reason why suspense wasn't overly present was because, again in defiance of tropes, the guy's Asian family is actually pretty level-headed and reasonable. They have different values, but they're not completely oblivious and without appreciation of Westernization and Modernization. They aren't quite Tevye from Fiddler on the Roof. They are definitely aware that there's a lot that they can work out, just as you have to do with any marriage. I think that it was even played in the movie as "What if they absolutely hate me?" and then it turns out that they're only as suspicious of her as any other potential in-laws would be. The tension does go up a little in the third act, but at no point did I find the family unreasonable. Of course, that's my subjective experience.

On a side note (and I read TMD's blog about this, too), I found it really interesting to hear Chinese and actually recognize what was being said. I'd wager that TMD understood more than me, considering that I just know a few pages out of the phrasebook, but that was certainly an interesting experience and I definitely got personal enjoyment from the movie on those grounds.

Overall assessment: great movie for a date night, or even a casual outing with friends. Opens up some doors for interesting casual discussions, or serious, if you so desire. I do not consider the movie particularly challenging, in the sense that it isn't suspenseful, but I've already had Infinity War, Fallen Kingdom, Skyscraper, and The Incredibles 2, so this is a relaxing change of pace. I can only go on a roller coaster ride before I want to spend some time chilling on the lazy river, which as a little known fact is actually the best ride in the whole water park. That bit of advice was free. Unless you're crazy rich, then please cough up.


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Slenderspirit

Posted by Jean Valjean , in Movies, Reviews Sep 06 2018 · 48 views
Slenderman, movie, review
Slenderspirit :infected: In other news...the movie consisted of some jump scares. It didn't really advance the myth in any meaningful way and I was right that this is one of those things that doesn't easily translate to film. He works far better as a campfire story and as a figure from modern folklore. It's something of a lost art these days, but it's amazing when someone shares a good folk horror story by a fire, or while walking at night in the woods. I've had that experience a few times, and they all stand out to me, especially the time I was at the Omaha Tribe Reservation. Well, that's just me. I don't necessarily regret watching that movie, though. I mean, he is a pretty cool specimen and there's a reason why we're fascinated with him. Personally, I was hoping that he would infect someone to murder her loved ones, but that didn't happen. Turning into a tree, though, that was cool. I will give credit to the idea that he permanently cocoons children alive within trees some points I also liked that he could stalk people over the internet. So long as it gives some people ideas, people can all add their own favorite elements to the lore when they share their version at midnight. Therefore, I don't discourage seeing it, but not for the horror of the film itself. Namely, it should help you develop your own horror stories once you've left the theaters, horror stories that are even better.

Such as this one. I honestly think that I've perfected the myth with this right here. It just gives me the shivers.

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Hearts of Iron 4 Goals

Posted by Jean Valjean , in Life Sep 04 2018 · 32 views
video game, grand strategy, WWII and 2 more...
Hearts of Iron 4 Goals :kaukau: Man, I love grand strategy games. This is right down my ally...but I think that I'm going to wait another year before I get it. It would be way too addicting. However, I do have goals.

I want to recreate the geopolitical Oceania Superstate from 1984, starting as America, but without the Big Brother government. So I intend on starting as America, and fighting against both the Axis and the Allies. And to make things challenging, I want to:

1) Remain a healthy democracy the whole time. Too many people conquer the world as Fascist America, and that's just too simple.
2) Restrict my military to voluntary enlistment (no draft).
3) Only ever maintain light occupation policies.
4) Reach the Oceania Superstate borders before the development of the nuclear bomb.
5) Replace the South Africa portion of Oceania with Japan, Korea, and the Russian Far East.
6) All land won that is not part of my planned geopolitical superstate will be completely liberated, not turned to puppet or satellite states.
7) I'm strongly considering liberating Great Britain and Ireland as well.
8) Give my baby Liberia a large chunk of Africa.
9) Play with Historic Focus on.
10) Since I did say that I wanted to make things challenging, play on the hardest difficulty. Obviously.

As a purely miscellaneous "if I can but it isn't necessary" goal, I would also like to declare war on Francisco Franco. When it's all said and done, I would like to write up a few chapters of alternative history to describe the world after this particular war and how it affected things such as the Space Race, the Cold War, the War on Terror, and so forth. Obviously there would be no Korean War...and there might not be a Vietnam War if there was a sense that Communism was adequately contained enough that there wouldn't be a domino effect. There wouldn't be a Cuban Missile Crisis. I mean really, a lot would change. I have no idea what the final borders in this scenario would like like beyond my stated objective, so even more could be different. No Berlin Wall? No satellite states? Probably still a Space Race...but the Olympics would vastly favor America. The oil economy would be pretty different. English would gradually become the main language of Latin America. But not Quebec. America has a much, much larger portion of the world bread basket. She never gives up the Panama Canal Zone. Obviously, in this scenario everything favors America more, with the exception that the riots in the 60's are going to be a heck of a lot worse, even without a Vietnam War.



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Why Students Sympathize With Communism

Posted by Jean Valjean , in Humor Sep 03 2018 · 34 views

Why Students Sympathize With Communism :kaukau: Communist don't much like class, either.

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John Williams: Hymn to the Fallen

Posted by Jean Valjean , in Events Sep 02 2018 · 41 views
John McCain, death, America and 2 more...


:kaukau: As I have done several times on this blog, I choose to share another great work by the unparalleled John Williams.

In honor of John Sydney McCain III. Argumentative, resilient, stubborn...and a friend in spite of it all. And now he is among the Ancients.

This makes me very emotional, not just the fact that someone died, but seeing what good it has done. In my lifetime, I have not seen America so united since nearly seventeen years ago to the day. It makes me sad because I realize how rarely we all put our differences aside and feel the same joys and the same sorrows. I wish that America was like this more often, with malice toward none. I love my country far too much and regard my countrymen as true family. We send our senators from across the country to dwell with each other in one house and spend years getting to know each other -- cannot they regard each other as brothers and sisters, aunts and uncles, and dare I say it — friends?

Tomorrow, we will go our separate ways, for this is what we must do. We have our disagreements and cannot disobey the dictates of our consciences. I am reminded of the Christmas Armistice during World War I, when the two sides called a ceasefire without a spoken word, but with the word of song. People set down their weapons and mingled with one another, and for a day there were no sides, no war. Then they did what they had to, and returned to their posts to start up the terrible dispute once more. There was no hatred in their hearts for their enemies, only for what they had to do.

I hope that we come together more often, that it doesn't take the death of a public legend to do so. Wouldn't it be nice if we could unite on the holidays? And then when we part and fight once more, we do so as a healthy family, with malice towards none. Because America is family.

:usa:

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How to Improve French

Posted by Jean Valjean , in Humor Aug 29 2018 · 70 views

:kaukau: Take all of its most charming features and compound upon them!

The country is called Fraiçzzaeioux (pronounces "Froz"). The language is called Fraiçzzeieiolluoixs (pronounced "Fras-wa!").

Chinese can also be improved. I propose that the name of the Chinese language be pronounces as Han125. The superscript means that it is pronounced with the 125st tone out of 625 tones. The character will take 744 strokes to complete, and be dozens of shade-sensitive colors. The colors are morphemic. If you change a single color, the meaning of the whole character changes. If the black in the bottom corner is changed to navy blue, for example, it becomes Chong238, which means "A marching band staffed by dyslexic communist dragons."

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Quebecois

Posted by Jean Valjean , in Humor Aug 27 2018 · 65 views

:kaukau: Canadians are famous for being polite...except for when they're rude.

Sorry.

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Me

Username: Jean Valjean
Real name: People literally don't have names in my family
Age: 24
Gender: Male
Heritage: Half Dutch, Quarter Hungarian, Eighth Swedish, Sixteenth German and Irish
Physical description: Looks like the eleventh Doctor
Favorite food: Chicken, turkey, and beef.
Least favorite food: Vegetables of any kind
Favorite band: Queen
Favorite singer: Billy Joel
Favorite song: American Pie
Favorite movie: Schindler's List
Favorite TV show: Avatar: The Last Airbender
Favorite play: Les Miserables
Favorite color: Silver
Second favorite color: Brown
Favorite board game: Risk
Favorite athlete: Michael Phelps
Lucky Number: 53
Past-times: Writing, reading, drawing
Political Caucus: Iowa Republicans
Religion: Christian
Language: Iowegian

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