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The past 24 hours of questions at Ask MetaFilter

Published: Sun, 19 Feb 2017 16:34:33 GMT

Last Build Date: Sun, 19 Feb 2017 16:34:33 GMT


Apple Magic Keyboard only somewhat magically resistant to coffee

Sun, 19 Feb 2017 16:34:33 GMT

I spilled coffee over the Magic Keyboard from my 2015 iMac. I immediately rinsed it out with tap water and left it to dry and to my surprise it seemed to work. I then had to go away for a couple of days and I've come back to find that although all the keys work the keyboard itself stops working every few minutes. Is it fixable?

The symptoms are rather odd - the keyboard will suddenly stop working, in the sense that keystrokes no longer register. Unlike a low-battery situation, the computer doesn't flag up that it's disconnected from the keyboard. Disconnecting and reconnecting via Bluetooth seems to briefly fix the problem, but it comes back anywhere between ten seconds and ten minutes later.

I'm mostly resigned to getting a new keyboard (I'm back to using the full-travel keyboard from my old Mac Pro, which now feels very clunky!) but is there anything else I can try?

Online academic resources

Sun, 19 Feb 2017 15:19:47 GMT

I need to do some research on linguistic topics, but don't have access to university databases (yet.) Where else can I find articles etc.?

I am re-entering grad school in April for my second semester in an Applied LInguistics The first was in 2013, and while I had some ideas for a thesis then, I am of course terribly behind on everything and need to get myself up-to-date. Unfortunately, since I am not enrolled yet, I cannot access any databases that usually grant access to students through their university network (or VPN), and the local library is a bit far.

I know that we used to use other databases like Google Scholar as well, but it's been almost four years and I am embarrassed to say that I don't remember most of them.

Can anyone please point me to good sources for recent linguistic journals, articles etc.? My focus will probably be somewhere in the vast topic of pronunciation and/or motivation, but any applied linguistics topic would be great.

Thank you in advance!

Bulk Tailoring - Possible? Advisable?

Sun, 19 Feb 2017 15:04:46 GMT

I am a petite, early-30s, hourglass-figured woman who has finally decided to get a bunch of (mostly) business casual items tailored, but need advice about the best plan of attack - because they are numerous, and varied. I would like to get the 20 items in the "to get tailored" area of my closet comprising tops, wrap dresses, and pants hemmed, have tab-button sleeves or necklines tacked closed, and/or waists taken in (pants). Will a tailor want to do these in multiple batches? I have questions about etiquette, expectations, ballpark timelines, and tailoring interactions in general...

I've already donated what I would not wear, and so do plan to wear all of these items, in the name of "shopping my closet" rather than purchasing new items to add variety to my wardrobe. Most of these alterations are due to buying clothing that fits "well enough" on first try-on in store or when received at home from an online order, but on reflection are determined to no longer fit, but the return window has closed; I am trying to be even more discriminating on purchases going forward. I purchased a sewing machine with aspirations of learning to do some of these fixes myself, but am a complete novice and pressed for time, and at this point am willing to pay someone else to get the job done. I have never used a tailor, but it seems it's time to develop a relationship with one.

When contacting tailors, I plan to ask about all of these, as I assume answers could vary. But to get a general sense of the scope of what I'd like to do, my questions are:
(1) Is it pretty standard to call ahead to make an appointment? I assume I can't walk in somewhere with 20 items.
(2) About how long does it take during a tailoring appointment for them to measure/mark (?) X items? (e.g., I took a dress, a shirt, and pants to a tailor and it took them about 30 minutes to determine what to do and where to do it, total; I took 5 tops to a tailor and they marked them up in 15 minutes flat).
(3) Is there a limit/general range to how many items they will take at one time? None of these are time-sensitive needs, I am happy to prioritize into multiple groups.
(4) What range of time have you experienced for alterations to be completed? (e.g., I had 5 shirts taken in and it took my tailor a week, I had 2 pairs of jeans hemmed and it took my tailor a month).
(5) I am in the northeast US/metro NYC-ish area. Can I get this all done for under $500? I am looking for quality over price, and am willing to wait on the lower-priority items with this in mind.
(6) This is less about finding a tailor than logistics of getting many things addressed, but young professional MeFi women, anything you love/hate about your tailor that would be good to know? Good questions to ask when screening potential tailors?

For reference, the items and alterations in question are:
6 sheer/lightweight woven (not knit) tunic/tops needing hems taken up and/or tab-button sleeves tacked down
2 sleeveless shells to be taken up at the shoulders to reduce V-neck exposure
1 sleeveless shell needing to be taken in at the sides
2 pairs stretch jeans needing to be taken in at the waist and hemmed
1 pair stretch jeans needing hemmed
1 pencil skirt needing to be taken in at the sides and hemmed
2 wrap dresses needing to be tacked closed somehow at the hem and neck
1 faux wrap dress needing to be tacked closed at the neck and short sleeves made into cap sleeves
1 semiformal knee length dress needing hemmed (2 layers)
2 jersey maxi dresses hemmed
1 formal floor-length georgette/poly blend dress needing hemmed (2 layers).

Order of operations: phone and plan when plan is paid for by employer

Sun, 19 Feb 2017 12:42:12 GMT

My employer will be paying for my phone plan but not for my phone. I'm currently out of contract with Verizon and an iPhone 5S. I'll be joining my employer's Verizon plan and also want to get an iPhone 7 plus. I am trying to figure out how to do this in a way that minimizes cost since Verizon seems to be doing things differently than they used to. My existing account also includes my husband's phone, so it will continue to exist. It is also time for him to get a new phone.

Looking for a good Password Manager that works with Chrome OS.

Sun, 19 Feb 2017 10:48:36 GMT

I bought an ASUS Chrome box and am moving my old win10 stuff over to it. I need a safe Password Manager that is compatible with the Chrome OS operating system.

In search of positive online influences

Sun, 19 Feb 2017 10:23:27 GMT

I need to re-make myself, grow up, and take responsibility for my life. The fact that I zone out reading Reddit or tech blogs a lot is not helping. I want to replace this habit with better influences, communities, role models, ideally feminist-aligned.

Bloggers? Tubmlrs? Online communities? Authors? I'm open to anything. Reddit is not a good influence because it's full of sexism (a major issue for me) and it's also mostly distraction. Hacker News feeds my competitive and workaholic streaks. I want to cultivate adult behaviors of respect; taking responsibility for my life; emotional warmth; giving and helping others. Anything that will point me in a better direction would be helpful. I am particularly interested in feminist-aligned sources and women authors. Thanks.

Blob of pipe compound in gas line?

Sun, 19 Feb 2017 05:02:24 GMT

Trying to figure out if there is a reason there is a glob of pipe compound in the gas line to my dryer.

I'm moving my gas dryer and needed to disconnect the gas line. When I got the line uncoupled from the unit, I found that the pipe into the dryer itself (the short pipe sticking out of the back) was blocked across about 50% of its diameter by a grey compound that I think is pipe compound to seal connections. It is like a grey putty. The blob extended about a quarter inch into the pipe - i.e., it was a fair sized blob, not just a little excess. My question is - is this a mistake or do you think it had a purpose like regulating/reducing the gas pressure? Installers from Home Depot did the connection a few weeks ago - I'm moving the dryer now. The dryer seemed to be working fine with the blockage in the line, so maybe it was intentional?

Looking for a two member experimental band from the UK. Going slightly m

Sat, 18 Feb 2017 23:03:40 GMT

Looking for a two member experimental band from the UK. Going slightly mad. Details inside.

Here is what I remember:

- Two members, both men
- Manchester? Scottish?
- Found them via Mark Fell?
- One word name - I might be wrong about this
- Soundscapes. High concept albums, tracks often 20 minutes long
- No vocals. Melodic, highly experimental, atmospheric sounds
- The Quietus, somehow? Perhaps the Quietus wrote about them?
- The OST of "Arrival" (2016) strongly reminded me of this band
- Rarely release albums, rarely perform live
- Somewhat obscure, highly regarded

Why can't I do anything?

Sat, 18 Feb 2017 22:48:15 GMT

I don't think I'm depressed because I've felt depressed before but this feels different. I never want to get out of bed. I don't really want to eat and I don't have an appetite. I literally could zone out in bed for hours thinking about nothing. I feel bad about not wanting to do anything. I've always been like this but lately it's been worse.

I do have ADHD and I've been taking vyvanse, but it stopped working. I've taken adderall and that makes me even more spacey and agitated after the effect is finished. I have one semester left of school and I need to get it together to graduate. My GPA is terrible, I don't really have any friends, and I've spent most of my life on my bed doing nothing. If I spend too much time in my bedroom, I have a hard time leaving. I have high anxiety and I'm very easily overwhelmed.
I have posted a question like this before but I'm struggling to understand why the smallest task feels impossible.
I want to move out but I'm terrified I won't be able to handle it because I'm incapable of doing anything. My whole family is pressuring me to stay and to live at home until I get married to someone they find acceptable. If I don't and I move out I'm not sure what their reaction will be like. I grew up in a very conservative, religious, and traditional household. I have very liberal and non religious views and I do not see myself following the path that my parents have set up for me. During college I was restricted from doing a lot, however I did get some freedoms like leaving for Spring Break for a volunteer project. Because of all the restrictions I never got to grow up as a person. I feel like there is a lot of emotional blackmail and guilt tripping.
I'm just exhausted from thinking about it all the time. I just don't want to deal with any of it anymore and I feel like I'm completely powerless. I've even had thoughts that maybe I should just accept whatever my family wants for me because it's obvious I'm not capable of living life by my own terms.

I'm tired of being me. I just want to be capable and have my life together but it seems like I'm always falling behind. I don't know where to even start because every single time I try to make my life better, I feel like something always sets me back.

What online classes would you recommend?

Sat, 18 Feb 2017 22:40:21 GMT

Through my public library system, I have free(!) unlimited access to Seeking course recommendations to improve my creative, technical and/or business skills.

Some background on me: 30 year old woman, undergrad degree in Cultural Anthropology and MLIS in Archives and Preservation. Have interned with a major national archive/library and still currently volunteer (mostly as a grant writer) with a small local archive but have yet to break into a library or archives job. Spent the last decade working as a pre-litigation personal injury claim negotiator for an insurance company. No supervisory experience.

What I'm hoping to get out of I often wish I'd focused my MLIS on digital libraries instead of Archives/Preservation. I think I'm more interested in designing and programming beautifully curated, digital audiovisual libraries where the public can stream a library's AV content. I was really into building websites as a young teen (meaning I used to know HTML, basic javascript and CSS) but that was like fifteen years ago and now I have no idea what you need to know to build websites or, better yet, build and maintain a digital library.

I'm also very interested in developing skills that would enable me to work in jobs involving research and data analysis. And I do like grant writing quite a bit - it seems to dovetail with my love of research, as well as my desire to feel like I'm directly involved in achieving an organization or project's vision.

And, in some ways, I just want to make myself more "generally marketable." I'm not sure where I read about it - perhaps it was a link on the blue? - but apparently CEO and management positions at many companies these days want you to be a jack of all trades. As a person with [well-controlled] ADHD who is also a scanner personality, I feel like I have the capacity and desire to develop a bouquet of skills that would make me marketable across the board. I'm very research obsessed and can be quite detail oriented, but am ultimately sort of a 'big picture' or 'visionary' type. It's a weird paradox that I inhabit. (And because I think it's important to note: I'm detail-oriented when it comes to qualitative data and information, not so much quantitative data - my math skills were never strong and while I'm willing to improve them, it doesn't come easily to me thanks to the ADHD. Ideas and concepts and planning and words are where I find my groove, whereas numbers are a bit more of a struggle.)

Anyway, enough snowflakes - but hopefully this gives some insight into what type of classes may be most useful to me on

Please tell me about any classes you think I'd like, especially if you can vouch for it and tell me what you most liked/got out of the class. Also, if you just want to share a class you took on and loved, but don't necessarily think it relates to what I'm looking for, please feel free to tell me about it anyway!

Writing by machine

Sat, 18 Feb 2017 22:38:28 GMT

In an interview with a writer, he mentioned old writing machines, that mechanically constructed sentences, maybe longer texts.

Think spinning a wheel and getting a word. I've tried googling to find examples of such machines , but I find only online generators and occasionally the Mechanical Turk (which neither wrote sentences or really mechanical). I'm sure I've seen something like this in a book somewhere, but I'm lost for how to find such a machine. Any suggestions for how/where to search, or leads to actual machines?

Broken DSC-RX100 II: Repair or Upgrade?

Sat, 18 Feb 2017 22:36:07 GMT

I like this camera a lot, but the screen broke. Should I repair it somewhere or replace it?

I bought a Sony Cyber-shot DSC-RX100 II a few years ago (so it is probably out of warranty). It has been a great camera: I like the big sensor for taking high quality photos. (The videos also seem good, though many of my phone videos seem as good for that purpose.) Recently, the camera fell on the floor, breaking its rear screen!

Two questions:

  1. Should I try to get it fixed somewhere? Is it likely other parts of the camera are broken now as well as the screen (e.g., lens)?

  2. If I do not get it fixed, what is the current state of high quality "pro-amateur" (or whatever category) cameras? The RX100 line seems to have 3 or 4 variants now, which makes things confusing, and there seems to be more competition for large sensor, compact point and shoots than there was a few years ago. (I probably need a zoom rather than something fun like a fixed wide angle lens though because I am taking mostly kid photos.)

How to get home repair/maintenance done when husband can't make decisio?

Sat, 18 Feb 2017 22:12:44 GMT

Any strategies to work with a husband (aspbergers) that can't deal with taking care of the house?

My husband is on the spectrum and is in therapy just as an FYI.

So we bought a house about six years ago and then... nothing. No maintenance, repairs, yard work has ever been done (minus a couple times our parents cleared out the yard). Gutters have never been cleaned, the yard has overgrown, etc.

There is a lot that needs attention inside and out. It's at the point professional help is needed to clear out everything (think hoarders type thing).

What little furniture we have is broken and we just make do. The garage is filled with boxes of things never unpacked from when we moved in. Stuff comes in, nothing goes out. Looking at how we live you would think we are struggling financially since everything is broken (stained ripped couch, mattress with no frame right on the floor, two broken dressers with drawers directly on the floor and piles of clothes filling it that haven't been worn in years).

I'm happy to get rid of anything and pay someone to get the yard in shape, do the required maintenance.

The hurdle: my husband cannot deal with the thought of any of that. He is paralyzed by making any decision and when I try to hire someone or make plans to get this stuff done, he won't agree and will instead say he needs to "look into it." That means absolutely nothing happens.

I understand this comes from his struggles with the idea of change and making the wrong choices but it's become intolerable to live in our house which isn't usable. Certainly I can't have company over and I'm embarrassed by the outside of our home.

He's been going to therapy for a few years. I don't know what else I can do. I made a list of everything that needs attention in the house and said if we could tackle one minor project (clear out old clothes etc) in a month and one major project (new roof, get the yard done etc) by the end of summer it would make me feel very good.

There's been no progress toward any of it but always excuses (work, being sick, too busy). I'm fully willing to take on these tasks myself but that's not acceptable to him.

Help me brainstorm ideas for how to tackle this. I need to get my house in shape soon!

What's this flowering plant called?

Sat, 18 Feb 2017 21:51:59 GMT

What's this flowering plant called? It's short, has thin grass-like leaves, and seems to pop up every spring in the middle of Alabama (Zone 8a).

Cardio workout videos

Sat, 18 Feb 2017 21:06:36 GMT

I need to start exercising more. My go-to is to walk my dog on the hills in my neighborhood, which gets my heart rate up (and my dog loves it too!). Unfortunately, it's been mega-rainy recently, so I need some alternatives that won't aggravate my chronic neck injury.

I can't do a lot of the aerobic/dance videos that I would normally do (I used to love Zumba, sigh). Can you point me towards some good videos that don't involve a lot of arm movement? Or other workouts that would get my heart rate up but not aggravate my neck?

Should I trust my nutritionist's advice- more carbs?

Sat, 18 Feb 2017 20:03:14 GMT

I saw a nutritionist (registered dietician) yesterday. I have prediabetes (5.7) and she told me to add cereal to my morning yogurt and eat carbs at dinner. This is along with a balanced diet with fruit, veggies and proteins. Should I trust her advice? It seems that I should be limiting my carbs not adding them if I'm trying to keep my blood sugar steady and lose weight.

How long to connect flights at Logan International?

Sat, 18 Feb 2017 19:45:43 GMT

On the return leg of our American incursion, we'll be flying in from Florida and connect to our international flight with Delta. Currently JetBlue arriving 3 1/2 hours before our international flight departs is looking like the best option. Is that enough time to get our luggage in Jetblue (Terminal C) and then get through to Delta (Terminal A) check in and clear security?

To Do List With Subtasks/ Tree View For Windows + Android

Sat, 18 Feb 2017 19:26:41 GMT

My primary/ deal-breaker requirement for a To Do list is that I am able to create sub/ child tasks on the primary/ parent task, and view them in a tree view. In Windows I currently use My Life Organized for this and it is awesome, but to sync with an Android phone costs horrible $$$'s, and I don't care much for the app either. What are other To Do lists with subtasks/ tree views which either sync across Windows & Android (preferably), or are web based? Thanks!

Introducing a new cat to a small apartment

Sat, 18 Feb 2017 18:45:10 GMT

My girlfriend wants to introduce our cats. Please help me plan how to do this.

So, I live in a 1br/1ba. My cat, Thea, is about 9 years old. For the past four years we've lived here together. Before that I was in a number of room-share situations. Thea has successfully cohabitated with other cats twice -- once a 2br/2ba with three other cats and a dog, and once a 2br/2ba with two cats. That was 1) six years ago, and 2) both situations where she was introduced as the new cat, into the other cats' territory.

The first attempt involved not too much thinking and just bringing the other cat in in a carrier, because my cat has previously been pretty chill. We set up a second litterbox and left the carrier in the livingroom. My cat was not pleased, and hid under the bed. We decided to try letting her cat out. Her cat wandered around a bit, but as soon as he came into the bedroom, Thea started hissing and screeching, so we immediately stuffed him into his carrier and aborted the whole operation.

I understand conventional wisdom is to introduce the new cat in a crate, give the established cat time to sniff and smell and get accustomed to, and then probably keep the cats in different rooms for a day or two so they can calm down, smell each other under the door, etc. However, I also understand that it's disruptive to change around my cat's territory, which I am now 100% sure she thinks of as "hers."

The way my apartment is set up, I have the litterbox in the far corner of the livingroom, and the food/water in a corner of the kitchen. Thea's got the run of the place. She really does NOT like closed doors between her and her human -- when she was a kitten I tried to keep her out of my bedroom after she jumped on my face a couple of times, and she ended up tearing up the carpet under the door in her desperation to get in. Even today, she headbutts the bathroom door open to come in if it's not tightly closed, and whines outside otherwise.

So I think I have to put Thea in the bedroom, because she'll raise hell if I try to lock her in the living room. But then I have to move her litter/food/water in there too temporarily, which totally counts as ceeding some of her territory to the new guy.

The other cat will just visit for a day or two at a time, for now, but the idea was to get them familiar with eachother to see if cohabbing will work in the future. Is it kinder to the cats to try and come up with an introduction protocol now, or do the "stick the cats in separate bedrooms" thing when we move in together? Given Thea's reaction last night I'm now .. really concerned that she just may be too set in her ways to adapt to another cat in her space. Then again she was fine before so maybe both cats moving into a new space at the same time (where nobody has established territory), and following the "let them sniff eachother under the door" protocol would go more smoothly?

If you were in this position, what would you do to make the cats as comfortable as possible?

Coping with a long-term illness

Sat, 18 Feb 2017 18:00:40 GMT

My husband will be in the hospital for a long time. I have a small baby. I'm having trouble coping with how to build a life around this.

My husband went into the hospital two weeks ago with what we thought was a minor glitch in a chronic illness he has already. It's not. It's cancer, and they can't even begin to assesss it yet because he developed some complications during the initial time in the hospital. I was told that even in a best-case scenario, we are looking at a months-long recovery.

I am on maternity leave with our four-month-old baby, so at least I don't have a job to worry about preserving. But I'm finding it hard to juggle all this mentally. Some competing thoughts that have particularly been an issue for me:

- I'm surprised by how much time is being taken up dealing with updating other people. Numerous friends and relatives call me, every day. My sister-in-law has anxiety and is convinced her parents don't tell her everything. So she calls me instead and is never quite satisfied with the answers. People want to know 'the odds' but the doctors don't talk that way, in those terms. They aren't satisfied with hearing that everything is the same as it was yesterday. They want news. Sometimes there isn't news. Or there is, and it's bad.

- The way people treat me is sometimes hard. I appreciate hearing that I'm family and people are here for me no matter what, especially when those sentiments come from his family and not mine. What I don't like is the big, weepy embrace followed by a tearful 'I just feel so SORRY for you and for the baby!' Yes, I feel sorry too. It's a sucky curveball from the universe, no doubt about it. But I don't like feeling like I'm this pity object for everyone to sit there and look at, and I feel like there needs to be a balance between respectful grieving and having space to enjoy the baby's first year a little.

- I've had to do some things my husband doesn't enjoy, and I feel a little guilt about that. For example, I've been spending some time with relatives he doesn't care for. I've also let my mother pay for some things when we were out together and he was always really sensitive about that. If he were mentally aware of what's going on, I hope he would understand that I'm in a delicate situation here. That if he does not survive, I'll need these people...

- I have some anxiety about the practical aspects. Due to some earlier life experience, I have some issues around having no money and being poor. My father-in-law was able to get a power of attorney so I can access my husband's paycheque. But with that said, life will change for baby and I dramatically if my husband does not survive because he made a lot more money than I did. I'm afraid of being poor again. And asking people to help me with this feels like a step back in life. I'll do it for the baby but it feels like a step back.

- I wasn't ready to leave the baby with strangers yet. And I didn't want to go back to work full time right away. And now I'm leaving him with a babysitter to do the hospital visits and work won't be an option. Mommy guilt...

I have a therapist but it's one more thing to leave the baby with someone for. I'm looking for some been there, done that advice...