From the Author:2023/...come May flowers

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Originally published on: 2023-05-14, 02:11
Updated: 2023-06-05, 23:17
Shortcut: FTA:20230514

Guess what our last edition was titled? (And guess what just passed our way at least three hours before this edition's inaugural printing was being sent out to press?) Anyway, finally moving on.

Well, at least we've already managed the basic setup of Caruvia on QGIS 3.18 (read: the discontinuous grid system) since May 10, coming after 4½ months of extensive rebuild work on Rogatia (in its small-scale form). By daylight on Mother's Day, we'll try our best to come back afresh (after weeks of burnout from all that mapping, wiki work, and babysitting). Starting with (in no particular order, off the top of my head):

  • Our next round of attractions in this 2023 Gamut, resuming from where we left off two months ago (Top Gun: Maverick). (Already bought a few boxes of popcorn in advance for our return to the Ophelia.)
  • Working on a large-scale system for Rogatia, starting with the eastern terminus of 3HY (i.e. the Yorkshire Causeway in Ossett, Wiphala)...
    • and finalising a brand-new version of the 1:1,000,000 wall map that surfaced three years ago at r/mapmaking and Steemit.
  • Not to mention dealing with overdue searchability support in the Category, File, and MediaWiki namespaces.
    • Along with pivoting to the new-and-improved Pivot in the next several days—and switching the default 2022 Vector back to 2010.
    • As well as adding more members of the MH Team as I find time.
  • While we're at it, we're moving back to Draftland on WP; a few pages need our attention before long.
  • Almost forgot: Unspooled's good as revisited in the remaining time we have left this half-year. That manuscript can't sit around unattended forever.
  • And to those on Reddit whom I owe art trades: I'll finally set aside some time and see what I can do.
    • Speaking of which: Yours truly paid $10.00 for an anthro adoptable! Details follow immediately below.

While looking through the recent search results for "free" at r/furry on the night of May 24, this design caught my eye. From RDT newcomer "_Baby_Paws_":

"The base is a p2u from @malibu.maws, and the design is by me! :)

"This sona does not have a gender, age, or name! That is all up to the buyer!! :)

"This is a usd bid with a starting price of $3, and an auto buy price of $10!! <3 If this babe is auto bought, they will also come with a set of clothes!! :) The bid will close after 48 hours, or if the auto buy is met! :)

"I MAY also accept art or characters, so feel free to comment/dm me your offers as well!! <3

"Good luck with the bids, and please be kind in the comments! If anybody is rude, you will be terminated from this bid and any future bids from me. Thank you."

Yours truly went straight ahead with the auto-buy offer before 11:30 p.m. on May 24 (via Baby Paws' Ko-Fi), and was awarded this character shortly after. In the Reddit chat, I added:

"By the way, I once adopted a couple of characters on G+ (remember that one?), but they both fell by the wayside in later years; the latter design has long since eluded my memory."

After the stroke of midnight, this conversation ensued:

B.P.: "I’m cool with this character being brought wherever you’d like! This character is fully in your rights now, since you bought them! :)"

Routhwick (12:08 AM): "Many thanks--and have a safe Memorial Day weekend!

"P.S. Greetings, newcomer!"

B.P. (12:13 AM): "You’re so very welcome!! :) Thank you so much! Have a safe weekend yourself!! <3

"And thank you for the greeting!! I really appreciate it!! :)"

This contributor has decided to make Scene Kitty biologically female, socially demigirl, and mid-30s—just so raccoon cousins Sam and Alfred can have more fun. (As if Marion the snow leopard wasn't enough...) Not to mention the hairdo—and claw job—indicate her support of the LGBTQ+ community; helps that this was uploaded days in advance of Pride Month.

To the anthros coming across this on various art platforms: Naming suggestions welcome!

As for Rogatia...

Even more importantly: A new Dominica passport remains at stake. (Trip back home's in a month and a half; tune in soon and find out whether I board passage.)

And yes, you heard right: We're starting to switch over to the new Galaxy Tab A I received on the afternoon of May 1. Here's how day one of the transition shaped up:

  • 1:18: Received on same-day delivery from Amazon (via the younger sister, once again). (Price tag including taxes: $236.46.)
  • Almost half an hour later: Unwrapped (1:40), unboxed (1:42), powered on (1:43).
  • 1:44: "Welcome!"
  • 1:45: "For your review" + "Permission for Samsung apps and services".
  • 1:46: "Choose a Wi-Fi network".
  • 1:48: "Copy apps and data".
  • 1:49: "Use your old device" with Smart Switch.
  • 1:50: "Select a service": Android; "Get connected": Wireless; "Disconnect Wi-Fi for faster transfer?" ✓
  • 2:05: Chrome Tab Backup in Favourites on old device.
  • Till 2:13: Cache clearance (GPlay services, 2:06; GDocs, 2:11; GSheets, 2:13).
  • 2:19-2:46: Installation of Smart Switch via GPlay on old device; took two attempts to do so.
  • 2:33-2:37: Space free-up via uninstallation/disablement of Vinylage/GDocs/GSheets/Swagbucks.
  • 2:48: Smart Switch setup.
  • 2:49: "Searching for nearby devices using high-frequency audio..."
  • 2:50-2:52: "Connect over Wi-Fi?" ✓ (Attempt #1.)
  • 3:27: Wi-Fi transfer, attempt #2.
  • 3:28: Transfer check.
  • 3:29: "Select data to transfer":
Everything (58.31 GB/2:10) OR
Custom (2.58 GB/0:05):
  • Google account
  • From internal storage:
    • Calls and contacts (2 MB)
    • Apps (1.40 GB)
    • Images (78 MB)
    • Audio (299 MB)
    • Data and files (827 MB)
"Data that can't be transferred":
  • Calendar (Events from synced accounts)
  • Avast
  • Default Galaxy themes/wallpapers
  • 3:40: Copying Google account + password-security check.
  • 3:41: Google account added.
  • 3:42: Google services confirmation
  • 3:43: "Protect your tablet": PIN.[6]
  • 3:44: Google Assistant prompt (without unlocking device).
  • 3:45: "Getting your device ready..."
  • 3:45: Rejection of Samsung prompt.
  • 3:46: "You're all set up!"
  • 3:50: "Transferring data (from your old|to your new) tablet..."
  • 3:56: "All done"/"Done transferring your data".
  • 3:57-4:01: "Organizing your transferred data..."
  • 3:58: Google home screen.
  • 4:00: OneDrive prompt.
  • 4:01: Data transfer results: 815 items / 2.58 GB
    • Apps (22) / 1.40 GB
    • Documents and files (449) / 827 MB
    • Audio (38) / 299 MB
    • Images (191) / 78 MB
    • Not copied: Avast
  • 4:04: Unused apps from GPlay:
    Spotify ×[8]
    YouTube Music ×[9]
  • 4:06: Settings check.
  • 4:18: File-catalogue check.
  • 4:27: Pairing with old device through Bluetooth.
  • 5:30–6:44: Bluetooth transfer of G+ Takeout (23/2/2019); earlier attempt at 4:28.
  • 8:58–10:05: Ibid. for 28/4/2019; earlier attempt at 8:24.

From here on, our replacement device all but took a rest while we saw about other matters. By Monday the 15th, after one more WOW! weekly archive...

  • 11:26 p.m., 15/5: Phaseout of SD from old device.
  • 11:42: SD transferred to new home—until I realized it didn't/couldn't recognise month after month of Shimajiro ephemera (and a smattering of other goods) (in folder Which led to...
  • 12:22–12:53 a.m., 16/5: A chunk-after-chunk transfer of Chrome-based downloads from said folder to a brand-new dedicated section in the root level of you-know-where...
  • 12:58: a move back to its new home...
  • 1:16–1:29: and the same three test tunes as last time: "The Boy in the Bubble" (Paul Simon), "Kira Kira Killer" (Sing) (Kyary Pamyu Pamyu), and "Papa, Please Don't Go" (The Lady of My Life) (Elsa). After that, the Takeout finally settles onto the laptop—thus setting the stage for our long-belated G+ best-of. (That and the hand vacuum are all we need to get ourselves ready for the Nature Island.)

Elswwhere at home...

  • 1/5, 3:37: Superior saw a deer at the back of the long white fence beyond our porch, the likes of which we never really see in these suburban parts. She took a picture—despite all the green foliage in the way, which is why I myself didn't. (Which reminds me: Deer do exist in the Shimajiro mythos, as well as the world of Piporete's Keiko and Jin [which I will leave responsible adults to seek out themselves—and you'll know why once you do]. So why not the Dixwell Saga anyway?)
  • Night + overnight of 6/5: Younger sister finally took care of the new Fire Stick before I did—thus saving me some money. Along with—wait for it—our first projector in quite some time (as the old one from Brandon's cord got lost ages ago). Test run began with an episode of Rugrats at around eight, and moved on with Thor: Love and Thunder (on Disney+), Spider-Man: No Way Home (Starz), and Jumanji: The Next Level (2:23 a.m.; Starz). At some point during the scene where Doc Ock confronts the web-slinger in New York traffic, I accidentally forgot the cords running across the hallway entrance—and my foot got caught up in them, snapping them off the hook. Sisters feared the brand-new system was broken; thankfully, nothing much happened except we had to fire up the Stick all over and resume from where we'd left off. Tried explaining my reflexes or some other didn't catch them in time—although I'd been transiting up and down from the kitchen the whole time. But at least it was a test...
Which reminds me: Once we move back to the Gamut, expect our attractions to number no more than 20 overall. Everything from months of Rogatian map duties, to the old Stick bailing out on us last month, to prospects for that trip back home, got in the way big time. Well, at least there's always 2024...
  • Early morning sleep, 18/5: Had a dream that, back home in Dominica, I actually got to meet none other than Tom Hanks close to the old Roseau Market (at the junction of Old Street and King George V)—with both of us hopping a bus ride to the Canefield set of his latest movie shoot! (Complete with laptop and Olympus camera.) Was informally hired as a fly-on-the-wall extra; met a dialect coach who happened to be female; first day of three-month shoot. (Recall that Hanks was among Hollywood's earliest COVID-19 affectees, so the likes of this one-in-ten-million opportunity happening couldn't have occurred any later that 2019.) Which brings us back to Sam and Uncle Matthew in Marie-Galante (in Unspooled #2); on the other hand, could this inspire a standalone side-story set during the 1930 shoot of film-within-a-story Ironstone? Tune in to this site and find out.
  • 23/5: While we were watching Cast Away on Hulu that evening,[10] the older sister brought up something ado about a Dominican native who went adrift till approaching South America with only ketchup and a few rations for sustenance. Thought it was a few years ago, but DNO proved me wrong after Googling "lost at sea, from Dominica". (Made international headlines back in mid-January; how in Neptune's name did that even pass me by?)

Moving on with this contributor's votes for Commons' Picture of the Year (POTY) 2022—complete with commentary. (First one was already picked days ago, but choosing the remaining two was really a hard task. Voting ends May 18.)

Along with a featured-picture bonus from May 23:

Less like hardened guava jelly...and more like crystals of vanadinate.

And a little something from WP's randomiser—which I'll bring up as pose-reference material to whomever I meet next on RDT's anthro circuit. (Sighted on May 6 while I was preparing the Bulwark's cinema list; eluded me for days even till Microsoft Edge history + Category:South African female models cleared up my memory on the overnight of May 26.)

This is your yearly reminder that WP co-founder Jimbo once specialised in "glamour photography". (Photo of South Africa's Jade Fairbrother [August 2012] by "Benigma71322".)

Sighted on Wiktionary's front page for May 15: Dílis, an Irish word with various meanings ranging from "dear"/"fond"/"loyal"/"faithful" to "secure"/"firm" to "special"—leading to the brand name of Rogatia's locally established security, insurance, and bookkeeping company (since 1947). Respective real-world analogues in the first two fields: Brinks/ADT and Lloyd's (developed world)/CG United (Commonwealth CARICOM).

As seen at WP:Featured article review/Caesar cipher lately, one of the most peculiar article titles officially recognised in JSTOR's database (via source suggestions by Z1720): "Vt hkskdkxt: Early Medieval Cryptography, Textual Errors, and Scribal Agency" (Benjamin A. Saltzman, Speculum, Vol. 93, No. 4 [October 2018], pp. 975-1009). (Solution, and original language, in our next edition.)

From the latest MSN wires (and the Edge tab overbuild):

"Republican lawmakers in Montana eagerly hustled to the wrong side of history this week and voted to silence the state’s first openly transgender representative. Her crime? Having the audacity to say something Republicans didn’t want to hear, and apparently having the gall to exist.

"Democratic Rep. Zooey Zephyr told her Republican colleagues last week that if they passed a bill banning gender-affirming health care for minors, they'd have blood on their hands. She was right. Transgender youth already have horrendously high suicide rates, and reputable medical organizations including the American Medical Association and the American Academy of Pediatrics have made clear that gender-affirming care is 'lifesaving' and dramatically reduces suicide rates.

"Take away that care and what do you think will happen? More transgender youth will die. That’s not being sensational. That’s not being alarmist. It’s looking at the data, listening to the medical experts and stating the facts.

"...[W]hen you’re on [that] wrong side...and you try to erase those who don’t line up with your narrow worldview, you don’t wind up proving your point.

"You wind up minting heroes."

Once again, Rogatia was way ahead of them all along.

"The breaking news came just moments after Jimmy Kimmel mentioned the termination of Fox News host Tucker Carlson and CNN’s Don Lemon. Mid-sentence, it cuts to Kimmel’s sidekick Guillermo Rodriguez, who delivers the news.

“We have some breaking news,” said Guillermo. “After 20 years on the air, ABC TV has decided to part ways with its host, Jimmy Kimmel.” Guillermo added, “On a personal note, I’d like to say to Jimmy, don’t let the door hit you in your a[...] on the way out.”

Obviously, it was just a hilarious joke that mimicked the real breaking news from earlier that day. Both Carlson and Lemon’s termination came as a surprise to both their colleagues and viewers. And while the networks claimed they were mutual decisions, Kimmel alluded to the fact that Carlson ended his last show on Friday with “We’ll be back on Monday,” being completely unaware that he would be terminated before then.

As an added bonus:

Meanwhile in the Bulwark, duty calls on the last day of school late next month to show DeSantis who's boss.

"Just having our public radio be fully funded with guaranteed public dollars would potentially go a long way toward allowing less mainstream views on air. Getting rid of the reliance on corporate funding would open up space for programming that is more experimental, less regimented, and unapologetically anti-corporate (just look at how the Works Progress Administration gave opportunities for more radical creators to make a living, leading to a flourishing in public art). And just as NPR underwent a major change in its culture and ethos in the late 1970s, it can do so again.

"NPR ought to prioritize hiring talented reporters, producers, and managers from outside of the middle-class, college educated milieu. If the network wants to expand its listenership, instead of cynically targeting rich audiences in its pursuit of corporate sponsorships, while also avoiding the pitfalls of condescension, NPR ought to be staffed by working-class reporters, ideally those who have not been socialized by establishment newsroom culture. (I’d prefer working-class leftist reporters, but let’s remember that class solidarity extends beyond mere political labels.)

"[Jack] Mitchell was skeptical of NPR’s ability to change. 'It’s become so big and so bureaucratic and so ingrown that I just don’t think it could change much,' he told me. 'You would need a new organization.'[13]

"We must ask ourselves: given that NPR, in its staff, sources of funding, and its audience, is overwhelmingly liberal, white, and college-educated, what ever happened to the public in National Public Radio? Our citizenry lacks a national outlet which we can truly call our own, a radio which serves our interests, not the interests of the powerful.

"My humble suggestion for a rebrand: TPR, The People’s Radio."

As of this final printing (May 26), a couple of Techdirt stories have caught this contributor's attention—but due to length constraints, they must wait until next time.

From the Mastodon "fediverse", May 12, John Bull[14] (this becomes important in our last section):

"Glass Cliff Theory holds that once the boys network have decided a CEO job is too hard or the company unsalvageable THEN they give it to a woman. And when she fails they blame it on her.

"So if/when Space McAfee boasts about appointing a female CEO to Twitter, remember that."

As always, ending this FTA with the tiger-cub mascot and friends. This time around, recent highlights from the official WOW! feed...

and a rerun in honour of Mother's Day. (As promised last year, relaying to r/furry on that very occasion.)[15]

Plus a recently discovered bonus take from Adventide 2015. (Yes, we social veterans get old typing this stuff out.)[16]

Both with "Stacy" overtones in the original commentary.

Along with a highly belated reminder: r/Shimajiro has been around since last September, albeit with only three posts from the opening days so far. I'll easily take over this spot at some point; they could sure use my long-in-waiting writeup on 1994's Learningland. (H/T Reddit Search Tool [back when that was working].)

P.S. Effective ~10:52, 24/5, our caching of unsubbed weeklies (and then some) has moved from the old Galaxy Tab A to the Dell Inspiron laptop (with transfer to the new Tab to follow sooner or later). Sorry if we didn't hit the official upload of Heroland in time (which would've been an in-flight/on-road highlight of my upcoming vacation), which led to this sly superscripted comment in my RDT commentary:[17]

If my own shot at a Dixwell adaptation goes through, I'll let my own official Miraheze upload stay up in perpetuity—no "vaulting" around. Since YouTube—messed-up priorities/draconian filter system/DMCA abuse and all—is definitely out of the question in my creative future...

Beats me how much longer our tweet relays will last—what with account purging starting to take effect—but let's hope CEO Elon's tentative successor turns things around for the better. (Cf. Marissa Meyer/Yahoo/Tumblr during the New Tens.)

On a related note: Shame on Imgur for pulling a Tumblr stunt...and worse. Literally has made me sick to my stomach, and I can feel the pain as I'm typing out this addendum this Sunday overnight. Why have online "businesses" never learned from GeoCities' fate?

The likes of those deserve to go out of business or get bought out by someone who upholds the virtues of data/digital rights and preservation as much as I'm trying to do, and deserve their place under the "Acceptable Targets" rogues' gallery in a forthcoming tale of mine. Someday soon...but not today.

Once again, Troadal wins the day in-universe. No censorship, no IPOs, no fees, no commercials,[18] no deletion from servers—nothing of the sort. (Especially NO DRM—but that's another issue in another field.)

And that wraps it up right here, folks; be there soon as I take care of the agenda and the maps, see about my side of an art trade, and try to get my PayPal credentials going—if only to cut as many ties with them as I can per my superior's insistence. Until next we meet, take care, stay safe/connected, keep exploring, tapal, see you in the bestsellers, we'll meet you back home...and watch your tails.

P.S. I'm finally getting my shots soon—a year late. See you after my mandatory rest.

Remembering Elizabeth II, Christine McVie, Kirstie Alley, Pele, Barbara Walters, Leiji Matsumoto, Burny Mattinson, Leo D. Sullivan (h/t Cartoon Brew), former Pope Benedict XVI, Jerry Springer, Harry Belafonte, and Tina Turner (h/t MSN/AP); in solidarity with those affected by Ian and Nicole.

To a better future for Florida, America, Britain, and Miraheze...

Routhwick (talk)


Characters (c) Benesse Corporation/Shimajiro; English version licensed by WildBrain.


  1. ^ They of Speed Racer and Superbook/Flying House fame.
  2. ^ In our 2022 edition of the Gamut, Mr. Bug was the last segment of a twice-played triple-bill featuring Disney/Pixar's A Bug's Life and DreamWorks' Antz.
  3. ^ Never thought the likes of this title would ever surface in our posts. Meanwhile, Loona the wolf has become a hot one not only for the U.S. side of the fandom, but also the Bulwark.
  4. ^ Thanks to WP, we now stand corrected.
  5. ^ In-house U.S. production Past Lives opens locally on June 9, one week after the U.S.
  6. ^ Same four digits as the laptop I've typed this on.
  7. ^ Whose recent password-sharing fiasco we'll discuss in our next edition—enough for Troadal to finally flip their lid and start discussing a Rogatia-only exclusivity deal, taking over from Starz in this regard. At this writing (May 26), the Reed Hastings service is finally on its way out in the Bulwark.
  8. ^ Which I have barely any need for anyway; see the catalogue of Autrison, soon to be renamed. Although it's on our new Fire Stick at home...
  9. ^ Just like Google+'s public closure, Google/Alphabet jumped the shark on this streaming-only successor to GPlay Music. Almost no wonder Troadal has won over the hearts of millions of Rogatians for its hybrid approach to media consumption (streaming + download)...
  10. ^ The same movie during whose shoot Robert Zemeckis took a break to make What Lies Beneath while Hanks grew a beard for his later scenes. Back in our Google+ years, our feed name "#WhatLiesAground" paid homage to the latter's title.
  11. ^ Via Wikipedia Signpost/2022-08-31/Featured content; 24/2. From This week's word is "Upheaval".
  12. ^ Also appeared as WP's "Picture of the Day" on June 4.
  13. ^ Cf. Chris Blackwell's later management struggles at Island Records during the twilight of the 1980s.
  14. ^ H/T Jayvee Enaguas/The Harvett Vault, one of the relatively few furry-art contributors to Wikimedia.
  15. ^ Not to mention we'll relay Marguerite's recently unveiled portrait through PostyBirb that same day.
  16. ^ Via "GAVADON_a"—via Google Image Search for the 2017 version.
  17. ^ Along with, in the coming days, Commons-based substitutes for the affected YT embeds. Didn't I say I'd try to archive my Aground posts on Hive back when I moved there? At least has taken care of this FTA edition—and will again after this update (24/5).
  18. ^ Except during live-action TV/streaming programming.
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Tags: AgendaGeofictionQGISCaruviaRogatiaRedditCatsLGBTQ+UnspooledDominicaGalaxy Tab AWikimedia CommonsRon DeSantisMontanaStreamingJimmy KimmelShimajiroTwitterImgur