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James O'Rance
Works at Commonwealth Bank of Australia
Attended Australian Catholic University
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James O'Rance

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New HELLAS Kickstarter - I've supported all the previous ones, so I'm in for this too.
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James O'Rance

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Interesting post, expressed succinctly:
Robin Laws originally shared:
 
Sexist abuse, hate addiction, and the revenge of the emotionally marginalized:
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James O'Rance

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Yesterday I finished reading R Scott Bakker's The White Luck Warrior (book 2 of his Aspect-Emperor trilogy). If anybody has ever described Bakker's fantasy fiction to you as "Tolkienesque", here's at least one way in which the term is justified: his characters spend an awful long time walking through ancient wildernesses and wastelands.

Like the previous "Prince of Nothing" trilogy, these books are intensely introspective. You read a lot more about what Bakker's characters think than what they actually say. In "The Prince of Nothing" I think that you come to see how powerfully people are influenced by their narratives - that all of their beliefs, ideas, love itself, can be used to control them. This new novel adds addictions (emotional and physical) into the equation.

Anasûrimbor Kellhus is a more distant figure in the Aspect-Emperor books, but he has several half-Dunyain children now. Each of them is a differing example of the monstrousness of the Dunyain mind compared to the comparitively bestial nature of Men, as each of them expresses their half-breed imperfections differently. I cannot help but suspect that Anasûrimbor Kellhus' mind has been kept secret from the reader for an additional reason, though. Every action he takes is directed towards some subtle purpose, often the opposite of what it appears to be, so I expect to be surprised and shocked when the reality of his great crusade against the Second Apocalypse is discovered. :)
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James O'Rance

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I don't play WoW, but I know that a lot of you folks do.
Bruce Baugh originally shared:
 
World of Warcraft, not insider-baseball edition.

This year's Blizzcon has come and gone, and Blizzard took the opportunity to give us a vivid display of ugly stupid homophobia along with renewed enthusiasm for players engaging in mutual bashing because of faction choices. I will outsource the round-up of basic information; see the link. In the days since that LJ post, the president of Blizzard has posted a more relevant apology, but not addressed anything in the line of "How the hell did junk like that end up on center stage at the big show in the first place?" Because, after all, things don't just sort of show up and get used. A bunch of people had to work together to make it happen, and either nobody involved thought it was a terribly stupid vile thing to have a profane arrogant jerk mock the sexuality of his fellow players and spew the language favored by those who'd like some of their neighbors to go kill themselves (and to have a high-ranking Blizzard designer hold this up as a model of creative fun), or nobody in a position to listen to any hypothetical complaint bothered to pay attention.

It's not the first time that Blizzard management has shown themselves utterly oblivious to the concerns of their queer and queer-friendly customers. It's been long enough that they've had chances to get a clue that they clearly declined. Saying "oh, okay, yeah, that was bad, sorry" is nice, but doesn't really make up for the fact that they had every opportunity to know better b now in the first place.

And it's so dumb. OK, granted, I don't get the mindset that puts a lot of real-life passion into something like Horde vs. Alliance in the first place. But I acknowledge that some folks do, and I have no problem with that. Where's any sign of a matching recognition coming the other way? And where's the intelligence or humor? They could have, for instance, commissioned something by Wowcrendor ( http://www.youtube.com/user/wowcrendor ), he of the "go go go" fame thanks to "How to Win at PUGs ( http://www.youtube.com/user/wowcrendor#p/u/1/bgnMpOU1LNQ ), and gotten a piece that poked humorously in all directions and was literate and classy to boot. Blizzard committed itself to a decision that was as bankrupt aesthetically as it was morally.

This has been a tipping point of a fair number of folks in circles I hang out it. Marginalized folks get used to being ignored. It's an improvement over being targeted, after all. Putting a particularly loud vile specimen of the targeting front and center, as Blizzard did, is a vivid reminder that people with the decision-making power don't regard their queer costumers, or any other customers who take GLBT people's well-being seriously, as worth considering. I don't think that many of Blizzard's bosses are likely as overtly homophobic as the guy they gave screen time to, but sometimes that doesn't really matter. They gave him priority over every other possibility, and don't show any signs of being sorry enough for any harm dished out to make any real changes to the processes that made that happen. Which is to say, apologetic, but not repentant.

On top of a whole mess of design decisions I'm not wild about (and will try to write up in non-insider-baseball fashion sometime soon), pfeah.
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Yeah, I saw that today. Much better apology than their initial attempt.
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James O'Rance

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I kinda see the arrival of people trying to market and sell on G+ to be a healthy thing. If people weren't trying to monetise the network somehow, what would that say about it's lack of success?

And really, it's a heck of a lot easier for me to tune out marketers on G+ than in other areas of the web. Right now if I get added by a name I don't recognise, without any kind of intro message or reply to my own posts, I simply ignore it. G+ doesn't require any kind of add-back so why worry?
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I agree that the lack of a forced symmetrical connection is one of the advantages of G+.
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Have him in circles
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James O'Rance

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I posted this in the "FB "GW Australian & New Zealand Prices Petition" group. Essentially, a member of that group met with Games Workshop to express concerns over the enormous price disparity between the UK and Australia when it comes to identical products - up to an exceeding 100% of the UK price. For some time Australian customers who were price conscious would simply buy directly from independent retailers from the UK, but when Games Workshop put an end to that by legally restricting the countries that retailers could sell to, it caused a storm of negative publicity over the price issue.

(It didn't help that GW also scheduled an across-the-borad price increase at the same time.)

James Sutherland on Facebook reports his meeting with Games Workshop: "Ultimately, the prices here in Australia (an elsewhere) are based on the cost of doing business here (and elsewhere). This is based on wages and the cost of running their stores for the most part. To give you an idea of this the yearly income of a full-time GW worker here in Australia is $38000 and in the UK is £14000 which works out to be $21300 AUD.

...

Mark indicated it is just impossible for them to run a business here and have price parity with the UK or US or even to have a major reduction in prices. But they are doing what they can within the limits of their current business model"

There may well be some kind of explanation for why prices are higher in Aus, and higher again in NZ. Certainly our minimum wages are higher, and taxes may be different. I'm willing to entertain the idea that this is a factor.

As a customer..., this is not my problem. The problem is GW's problem - that they claim to be unable to distribute and market their products in Australia at a reasonable price. To that I say: I'm sorry that it's harder for you here, but the global marketplace is here to stay. If your business model can't offer me value for money in Australia, then you need a new business model.

Because no matter how punitive your embargo has been, I'm not going back to GW AUD retail prices. I'll buy from independent retailers that do offer a substantial discount, I'll go on eBay and buy directly from the Brits in a way that you can't curtail, or I'll buy alternative models from cheaper companies.

We don't actually need a retail arm of GW here. Online commerce has seen to that. GW wants a retail chain here, but can't seem to make it workable whilst maintaining price parity. Well, I'm not willing to subsidise these GW-branded retailers because they don't add more value to me than independent retailers and the web already do.

If your business model can't offer price parity with other parts of the world, it's going to fail and I'm not going to prop it up.
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Add to this the fact that there are plenty of GW figures that we just don't see here in Australia. As an example, my wife Leah wanted to get into dwarves, especially after hearing of a "near-mythical" female dwarf-lord. We spent quite some time trying to track this figure down only to be told that it was a specialist figure that would never be imported into Australia.
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James O'Rance

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The Vulcan salutation "Live long and prosper" is essentially the same as the New Kingdom Egyptian "Life, prosperity, health!"
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Right now I am viewing my cluttered desk as less of an expression of creativity and non-linear thinking, and more as a natural hiding habitat for my scissors.
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James O'Rance

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Hey Sydney gamer-folks! Does anyody have a direct contact for the folks running Macquaricon ths year?

I've tried contacing the committee via their web contact page (twice) but haven't heard back from anyone.

Cheers!
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James O'Rance

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Just about finished painting a Dark Eldar Razorwing Jetfighter this weekend. The colour scheme I have for my DE vehicles feels a bit cheatery (they're mostly black) but because I don't enjoy painting vehicles as much as infantry models, it's hard to motivate myself enough to finish them. Using a quick-and-easy paint scheme means that I can get back to the fun models faster.

And it's basically worked; my Dark Eldar collection features a painted Raider, three Venoms, and a Razorwing; whereas my Ultramarines have one painted Rhino and drop pod, plus semi-painted drop pods (x2), rhinos (x2), Predator, and Land Raider.
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Michael Wenman's profile photoJames O'Rance's profile photoDavid Pidgeon's profile photo
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No hurry, I can wait. Just curious.
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Have him in circles
132 people
DC Sydney's profile photo
Veronica Ball's profile photo
Robin Laws's profile photo
Hilary Callaghan's profile photo
Lani Kevill's profile photo
Benjamin Davis's profile photo
Cameron Malcher's profile photo
Education
  • Australian Catholic University
Work
Occupation
Concierge
Employment
  • Commonwealth Bank of Australia
    Liverpool & Castlereagh Sts, 2007 - present
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