Do Illusionist’s Bracers actually allow you to cast two minor illusions?

The description of the Illusionist’s Bracers (GGR p. 178) states:

flavour:

A powerful illusionist of House Dimir originally developed these bracers, which enabled her to create multiple minor illusions at once. The bracers’ power, though, extends far beyond illusions.

effect:

While wearing the bracers, whenever you cast a cantrip, you can use a bonus action on the same turn to cast that cantrip a second time.

However to me it would seem that the effect provided would not actually allow one to cast multiple minor illusions at once because the description of the spell minor illusion states:

The illusion also ends if you dismiss it as an action or cast this spell again.

Am I missing something or does this magic item not actually allow one to do what its flavour text suggests?

Are node.js, express, socket.io, localhost on http, and alike ACTUALLY secure? [closed]

I use localhost for learning more coding, and I keep wondering the same question over and over again when I use Node.js:

Is it really safe?

Many, many people might have asked this. I would naturally want to put SSL HTTPS encryption on it, but there isn’t really anywhere you can get it, even if it may be a bit overkill.

It feels like there should and could be some "protection" or "encryption" type package for npm or something.

I haven’t used Node.js or localhost it for sensitive information, but should I be worrying about this?

How is VPN tunneling actually implemented?

I am new to VPNs, have used them a few times, have read about "how they work" (which is all very high level), and am now confused about how this is actually implemented (so I can come full circle and understand what kind of security they are providing me).

It sounds like a VPN is something you install on your computer. You then perform your actions in the VPN UI (whether it’s a terminal or a GUI). These "local" actions are then encrypted (what is the encryption method/protocol?) locally. Then, say I am at my house using WIFI or at the coffee shop. It uses my newly allocated public IP address (the one I’ve been assigned for only the past few hours), to send this encrypted data across the public internet, in the public WIFI at the coffee shop. So people can tell I am sending something over the internet, just not sure what (because it’s encrypted). The way these articles sound, they make it sound like magic and that you get a static IP address locally which no one can see. That’s not the case right? It is doing exactly what I’m saying. I ask this question to clarify and make sure I’m understanding correctly.

So then the encrypted traffic (going across the public internet, using my publicly known IP address), is sent to some remote server. That server then performs the real actions I was typing at my VPN terminal/GUI. It makes whatever internet requests and whatnot, or SSH’s into some computer I’m targeting, and pipes the info back, encrypted, over the public internet, to decrypt it locally on my computer. Hopefully I’m still on the right track. Then that remote computer I sent my encrypted traffic to, what does it do to obscure my message or secure my message from its standpoint? Does it dynamically change its IP address? Is it situated in some remote wilderness guarded by gates so no one can intercept the traffic? How does it stay secure in sending messages to the actual target location? Or is it just the fact that the requests are no longer coming from my computer, so no one can know its me, all the security its accomplishing?

Basically, I’m wondering if this is sort of how it’s implemented.

Is there a standard for “virtual receipts”, and is it actually used anywhere?

I just got another e-mail from my food store after I had placed an order. It has no plaintext version, only a HTML one. Only with extreme amounts of efforts from me could I parse out the products and their individual prices and quantities… until they change their e-mails the next time.

I currently "only" parse out the delivery date/time, the total price for the order and the order id. Which is insanity.

Is there really no "digital receipt" standard? They seem to have no hidden JSON/CSV blob anywhere in their e-mail, or even manually downloadable from their website when logged in. How is one supposed to actually make a local database of what they buy and the prices and stuff? Even just figuring out how to parse their e-mails for the total price was quite a bit of work, and I’m certain that almost nobody out there does this.

How come this was apparently overlooked, in spite of being such an important and basic thing for "e-commerce"? Am I really expected to manually input all of this data or spend countless hours figuring out their broken HTML blob and keep updating it whenever they change their e-mails, and do this for every single store I ever buy anything from?

I strongly suspect that there is some standard, probably released as an RFC in 1997 or something, but nobody wants to implement it because it means "giving away control" in their eyes?

What does the spell Compelled Duel actually do?

After reading through the description of the spell compelled duel, it seems as though the spell does not actually say what it does with respect to restricting the movement of the target creature.

Let’s review the description bit by bit:

You attempt to compel a creature into a duel. One creature that you can see within range must make a Wisdom saving throw. On a failed save, the creature is drawn to you, compelled by your divine demand.

"Compel a creature into a duel" is the flavorful description of what this spell does. The mechanical nature of this is supposed to be defined when the spell describes what happens on a failure. What follows after "on a failed save" is the spell’s definition of "compelled into a duel".

So what happens on a failed save? "The creature is drawn to you, compelled by your divine demand". This definitely reads like more flavor text. I can see two interpretations of this phrase. The first, we can understand "drawn to you" to mean "the creature cannot willingly move away from you". But we can be certain that this is not the case, as the next part of the spell tells us what happens if the creature does attempt to move a certain distance away from you. The only other reasonable interpretation I can see is that this phrase is, once again, more flavor text, and the spell is going to tell us what it does later on in the description.

The next bit is perfectly clear,

For the duration, it has disadvantage on attack rolls against creatures other than you,

Moving on.

This where it gets weird. The spell now gives a condition which triggers a saving throw, and defines what happens on the success of that saving throw:

[The target] must make a Wisdom saving throw each time it attempts to move to a space that is more than 30 feet away from you.

Okay, this seems to heavily imply that the target is able to attempt to move to a square more than 30 feet away from you. This is what invalidates the first interpretation of "drawn to you" mentioned previously.

Now the spell describes what happens on a success on the saving throw:

if it succeeds on this saving throw, this spell doesn’t restrict the target’s movement for that turn.

As written, it seems the spell already does not restrict the target’s movement because the spell never says anything to that effect. It does not describe what happens on a failed saving throw. It never tells us how it restricts the movement of the target.

But it gets worse. Because the spell never tells us what happens on a failed save, there is no reason given in the description that would stop the target creature from attempting the saving throw until there is a success.

What does compelled duel actually do?

This question seems related, but is muddied by the fact that the asker employed an outdated or incorrect printing of the spell description.

Are called shots actually as powerful as designers believedd them to be?

I have been searching for interesting rules systems to make Pathfinder Combat more interesting in an E6 campaign, more cinematic, and to make classes relying on mundane attacks a bit more powerful. Called Shots seemed like exactly what I needed. Indeed, the effects they can inflict are sometimes actually crippling.

However, I was shocked by the investments required to make use of this mechanic.

  1. Like many mundane mechanics in Pathfinder, it requires two feats to function properly: Improved Called Shots and Greater Called Shots. Yes, Called Shots offer a greater array of available effects than, say, combat maneuvers do, but two feats is still a huge investment. Even for an E6 campaign.
  2. Those feats require Combat Expertise as a feat tax, so Called Shots actually cost three feats to work properly.
  3. Those feats require Int 13, which is not always the best choice for a martial character and doesn’t really make a lot of sense for an aiming feat (Dex 13 would make a lot more sense).
  4. There is a big opportunity cost in making a Called Shot even if you have both related feats. When you decide to make a Called Shot, you accept a huge penalty to your attack roll if you want to achieve anything significant (“Challenging” shots), quite likely just missing your target and achieving nothing at all.
  5. “Easy” shots, on the other hand, don’t threaten your opponent too much.
  6. However, speaking about crits, they are unreliable. Even when you build your character around crits.
  7. Debilitating blows’ effects are mostly amazing, but I plan to use those rules in E6.
  8. Most significant effects achieved by Called Shots allow for a saving throw to partially or fully negate them, to make the feat even more unreliable. At this level, 40 points of damage from a single attack are likely to guarantee this creature dropped within a turn or two, even without any additional debuffs.
  9. Apparently, the designers wanted those rules to be unreliable, because the standard rules make True Strike turn your Called Shot into a normal attack.
  10. If you target touch AC, you lose this benefit when using Called Shots, so Gunslingers and magic users stop being as accurate as they usually are.

In my games, I want to buff Called Shots significantly because they seem to be useless, those feats being trap options. The only possible way to use them now is to take Improved Called Shots, take an Easy Called Shot every time you make a full attack, and just hope for the best (the penalty from the shot will be offset by the bonus from a feat). However, I am not an expert in Pathfinder, so I am asking:

Am I misunderstanding something and underestimating the potential of Called Shots, or are they indeed yet another feat-intensive, trap option present in Pathfinder?

What would verbal components actually sound like?

Something I’ve always wondered is what does a verbal component actually sounds like in-universe. Is it random sounds, gibberish, or do you anime it and chant something in actual words. Given that the deafened status applies a penalty it’s safe to assume you have to be very accurate when doing your verbal components so I’d like to think it’s not too hard to say. As far as I can find there’s nothing that says what language, length, format etc. Other components are very clear on what you are actually doing and how you are doing it. The answer doesn’t have to be stated directly in the rulebook but it must be from Paizo approved material.

Its also safe to assume spellcraft’s identify function uses other things since spellcraft says “Identifying a spell as it is being cast requires no action, but you must be able to clearly see the spell as it is being cast, and this incurs the same penalties as a Perception skill check due to distance, poor conditions, and other factors.” thus whatever allows you to identify the spell is visual not audible. As far as I know, there’s no description as to what the inside of a spellbook looks like for all we know it could just be a bunch of magic circles. If it actually had words and used the owners language I’d argue you’d have to know the language it’s written in. If it’s in a universal language then I guess that would work but again I don’t know what a spellbook looks like.

What does a verbal component actually sound like in practice?

[ Politics ] Open Question : Experts in Epidemiology on Covid19, say Deaths have been under counted by 20,000 and 100,000 have actually died. Is Trump Under-Counting?

ACtually over 100k have died according to them. In every pandemic to date they were undercounted deaths, this one no different. Some because they died at home and were never tested. But could there be some political reason Trump is not reporting the actual numbers? Either that or America suddenly has had a huge jump in mortality rate.  Dr Rafael Irizarry, chair of the Department of Data Science at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute and a, statistician,  professor of applied statistics at Harvard University.  They compared death rates during Spring 2020 with the rates of previous springs. Because many who die do not get an autopsy, let a lone a coronavirus deaths, they looked at ‘excess deaths’. Excess deaths are defined as over and above the number of people who would have died anyway – the typical mortality rate of a population. Results showed that by 4/ 25, 70,000 more Americans died than what is considered normal for those weeks. At the time, the official figure for coronavirus deaths sat at 52,422, which means fatalities were undercounted by nearly 20,000.