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Ugh, stop twitching
november 2010 microblog digest
minutiae Posted 2010-12-04 19:39:38 by Jim Crawford
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Nov 1st

  • RT @Laroquod This is amazing. Andrew Plotkin's text adventure Kickstarter project reached its $8000 goal in ONE DAY: #intfic
  • What I built at TIGJam 3: A vision system for a stealth roguelike. -- Click to give it focus, then arrows to move.
  • The algorithm is basically CSG. Build a FOV out of triangles, then for each occluder, subtract the bits of triangle behind the occluder.
  • The grey streaks are a bug arising from antialiasing. (If you enjoy grey streaks, try increasing the quality in the context menu.)

Nov 2nd

  • In case you were wondering: yes, the bulldog puppy *did* eventually manage to stand up:
  • I'm not usually one to say you enjoy your hobby too much, but if your hobby causes rioting in the streets, please tone it the fuck down.
  • The nascent Futilitris art scene:
  • Somebody make me a shirt out of this:
  • Rock Band 3 Expert Pro Guitar run of Crazy Train:
  • Impressive, but what about the people who comment that you should be learning real guitar instead? What will they do with their lives now?
  • Details announced for Fender Squier RB3 MIDI controller: $279.99, March 2011. Cheaper than I expected, and a real bargain for a MIDI guitar.
  • @Laroquod Hm. Stepping out myself, looks only as weird as expected. I imagine it'd be hard to repro for a screenshot, the map being random?

Nov 4th

Nov 5th

  • How do I convey that I'm saying "Lamarckian evolution is real" in the same manner one might exclaim "MONSTERS ARE REAL"?
  • Use night vision goggles to see the infrared dots Kinect projects to point-sample you: (I bet a Wiimote would work too.)
  • -- "If one of the crabs wakes up, escapes and learns kung fu from a computer, we shouldn?t say we weren?t warned."
  • The new Xbox 360 dashboard has cut XBL Indie game sales in half:
  • id software in 1992:

Nov 6th

  • -- "For the ninja on the go, an effective grappling hook at a price that won't offend your sensei or your sensibility."
  • So they're rereleasing a rerelease, not even the originals? That's kind of gross, isn't it? Oh god is that the box? Sold.
  • "With a Deus Ex, you know who the fans are and how to please them, but designing for a broader audience, I feel like I'm playing on Expert."
  • @plushapo At TIGJam 3, Scott Anderson asked who was making "what you'd call a 'traditional platformer.'" Half the room raised their hands.
  • How do you continue living your life after enlightenment?
  • Right after this, they busted out an a capella rendition of "Mister Sandman":
  • (I would also have accepted Bobby McFerrin's "Mere Words."

Nov 7th

  • Is there a word, analogous to "fast," that means "accelerates quickly"? Some of you must listen to sports commentators sometimes, right?
  • @mrasmus That's a good one! Probably needs some context, but that's what writing is for.
  • -- McDonalds hamburgers don't grow mold because they dehydrate too quickly, not their mystical alchemical properties? Oh.
  • SNES soundtracks arranged for the Genesis sound chip:
  • -- This is not what a savant looks like. This is what a savant looks like:

Nov 8th

  • "Gaming and Reality in Modern Warfare." An Iraq war vet takes on the Call of Duty franchise:
  • "WWII guys trained on bull?s-eyes. We trained on moving targets, shaped like humans. There is no ratio-of-fire problem today."
  • How to build an electric telegraph in the wilderness, using nothing modern except information:
  • @jonbeilin No, was that a recent one?
  • -- "Microsoft furious at $2,000 bounty for open source Kinect drivers"
  • "Microsoft does not condone the modification of its products." Guess what, asshole: after the purchase, *it doesn't belong to you any more*.
  • After EMI's imminent bankruptcy, their master tapes -- decades of cultural history -- are in danger of being destroyed:
  • Over 2 years, a tumor took Tom Lubbock's speech and writing from him. His story, to the extent that it can even be told:
  • Time lapse of dandelion transmorphing into nature's bubble wrap:

Nov 9th

  • @PaperDino In that case, I don't condone it either. Sorry for calling you an asshole, faceless corporate drone!
  • I've put probably 20 hours into Rock Band 3 Pro Keys and it actually makes me a little sick how useless it is for learning real keyboards.
  • Playing keys comes in two schools: playing sheet music and improvising on chord progressions. Both involve knowing about scales and chords.
  • RB3 teaches neither, but the learning curve for its ridiculous note lanes is just as steep as if it did. It just markets better this way.
  • It is pretty fun, though! That's all that matters, right? *Gag*

Nov 10th

  • -- "You were on your way home when you died."
  • 22 photobombs by horses:
  • Microsoft Kinect and Autism: -- "Sometimes there's immense value in something that might seem ridiculous to many of us."
  • A round of D&D combat is six seconds, right? So, thematically speaking, a full game of Castle Ravenloft must take about a minute. Speed run!
  • Here's the trick: formally studying a creative field doesn't make it hard to come up with new ideas. It makes it easy to perceive old ones.
  • The other trick: you learn the rules not in order to blindly follow them, but to break them in interesting ways rather than stupid ones.

Nov 11th

  • MTV selling Harmonix:
  • Wonder if I could plug the keytar into my QY70 and actually hear what I'm playing in Rock Band. It'd be better feedback than the game audio.
  • @xobs Salted or unsalted?
  • Text CAPTCHA: "Of the numbers seventy six, 2, 50 or forty, which is the lowest?" WolframAlpha: "or"
  • Does anyone have a story of Steve Jobs striking a deal with someone and *not* fucking them over? It'd be a nice change.
  • Flash mob to riot: "Everything in that hypothetical story has already happened -- not at the same time, but it happened."

Nov 12th

  • Okay, so evidently that's what savants look like nowadays after all:
  • Wall-climbing goats:
  • Super Meat Boy PC has achievements rejected by Microsoft as too hard: -- 100%ing the game isn't hard enough, evidently!
  • @drinkycode They go straight in Gauntlet!
  • New TSA guidelines: After seeing an "enhanced pat down" travelers are "more willing to go through the full body scanner."
  • Lucky me, my New Vegas experience has had all of Obsidian's characteristic writing quality and none of Obsidian's characteristic crashiness.
  • -- "Scientists at McMaster University have discovered how to make human blood from adult human skin."
  • In San Diego for the next two weekends. Ping me if you want to make plans.

Nov 13th

  • @mrasmus Just arrived. Presuming this event is now in the past?

Nov 14th

Nov 15th

  • @mrasmus At that point I'd probably just automate the whole goddamn thing, but I suspect that would be exactly what crosses the line.
  • More shenanigans: -- TSA threatens to sue passenger who doesn't consent to enhanced patdowns.
  • While getting his ticket refunded, "he was told told that he could not leave the airport until he submitted to the invasive screening."
  • -- This makes me want to make an Alien vs. Predator mod for Spy vs. Spy.
  • "How can we make our airports more like Israel's, which deal with far greater terror threat with far less inconvenience?"
  • How to succeed on Kickstarter: "First, spend 15 years working hard on projects with no reward but community good-will."

Nov 16th

  • Matthew Wegner's photos of me at TIGJam: (This is way more photogenic than I remember being.)
  • @robertashley I get the sense that to really appreciate Girl Talk, you have to be able to listen to it without thinking "I could do that."
  • The new edition of Betrayal at House on the Hill fixes the Underground Lake glitch! Not sure how I feel about this.
  • Back when Bizarre joined Activision, it was signing with *EA* that was signing your own death certificate. The times they are a-changin'.
  • @PaperDino Why would you fix that! That is the very model of feature-not-bug.
  • The mechanical elegance of the pop-can stay tab:

Nov 17th

  • @robertashley That's understandable then, given that Girl Talk is nothing but recognizable samples. How do you feel about mix tapes?
  • @Johnicholas I'm using FlashDevelop and Flex, as described here:
  • RT @funnest TSA screening procedure is hereby renamed "gate rape". Pass it on.
  • New biometric security tech watches your eyes following a moving object:
  • The Designer's Notebook: -- "Joy is unmixed pleasure. Fun is more complicated. What kills joy? Almost anything, really."
  • EVE Online's upcoming character creator: -- Nobody gets away with a collection-of-sliders face editor after this.

Nov 18th

  • @jonbeilin It certainly beats the pants off of -- well, to be fair, I haven't looked at Poser's interface since the late 90s.
  • Why wreck a blank canvas?
  • @mrasmus Any gems you'd recommend? Normally I'd say I just need non-gaming podcasts, but my favorite gaming podcasts are mostly defunct now.
  • How is it that Fallout has serious performance issues on my netbook? We're talking about A: a game from 1997 and B: a 1.6 ghz processor.
  • Putting modern-day terrorism in perspective:
  • I hate meeting people who have the same hobbies as me and are better than I am at all of them. Maybe that's why I have the beard.
  • The chill-out music at Vertical Hold is driving me crazy. I feel like I should be getting a massage rather than climbing.
  • So tell me about this "mansplaining" thing. I just enjoy explaining things because I'm a big geek. Am I part of the problem?

Nov 19th

  • Cliff Temples of India:
  • Briggs-Rauscher oscillating chemical reaction:
  • Another chemical oscillator, looking like a color-cycled fractal:
  • TSA agents hate enhanced patdowns: [fixed broken link]
  • @westquote Fixed, thanks. Working link:
  • I can stop posting stories about the TSA now, because Bruce Schneier already posted all of them:
  • @relsqui There's an important distinction: in KoL, optimal play means playing once a day. In EB, it means coming back every hour.
  • @relsqui In the case of Echo Bazaar, the feature is that the players are thinking about your game all the time.
  • @relsqui I'm sure it was intended as a way to sell players turns, but I *like* when a game doesn't allow me to play it all day every day.
  • @relsqui You'd burn through all the content in a couple days. That, or realize it's just a grindfest and get sick of it.
  • @relsqui IIRC you can buy turns after you hit your daily limit.
  • @relsqui But they don't want you to get it over with! Games with ongoing revenue streams are optimized for profitability, not for enjoyment.
  • @relsqui I'd prefer that too. You should write to the Echo Bazaar guys. Back when I played at least, they were very responsive.
  • @relsqui After taking a week off of it, I realized that it was a terrible grindfest with actual content getting sparser and sparser.
  • @relsqui This happens to me a lot with RPGs. I can be super into one while playing and realize it's dumb as soon as I step away.
  • New Chrome extension adds the terrifying visage of Jimmy Wales to *every* web page:

Nov 20th

  • National Geographic's Photography Contest entrants:
  • "The greatest science-fiction story ever written":
  • Asperger's High: -- "I cheated on you with Alex, and I'm pregnant." "Okay. Should I be upset?" "I think so?" "Okay."
  • Chris sent me this foolproof business plan a little while ago: [pdf link] -- any angel investors want to hit us up?
  • Futilitris update: fixed a bug in which the piece in play stops moving if the player turns off the music:
  • Coming soon: Newcomer, the "ultimate RPG for the Commodore 64." -- "Twenty years in the making."

Nov 21st

  • "For social game developers out there - let me help. You know that bad feeling you have in your stomach? That's guilt."
  • You're thinking about it backwards: if you walk away from a bad game, *you* win. If you put in enough time to "beat" it, the game wins.
  • Fallout (1997) microreview: UI: unforgivable. Combat mechanics: forgivable. Writing: good. Story construction/setting: astounding.

Nov 22nd

  • Replace yourself with an inflatable doll and still come in 3rd place in Kinect Joy Ride:
  • -- "Enemy soldiers require your presence, or they would not exist. Hostages will be hostages until you rescue them."
  • @troygilbert Medical issues come to mind.
  • An appropriately fascinating and maddening interview with Christian Bale:
  • Celebrated vegan stops being vegan because being vegan turns out to be unhealthy; vegans threaten to murder her family:
  • Breaking down the movement mechanics of the 2D Zeldas:
  • @PaperDino I suppose that in that case, whatever you walked towards wins. Unless you're a jerk, in which case nobody wins.
  • @troygilbert Sorry! :) I'll let you know if I see another such analysis!
  • Captcha: "trotters $43,595" -- which is expensive, as trotters go, but she's worth it:
  • Remember, it's not pronounced Nyarlath-otep; it's Nyarlat-hotep. Like Imhotep or Rahotep. Best not to find this out the hard way.
  • Grandma's Superhero Therapy:
  • Back in the Bay Area. Bay Area plan-makers, start your engines!

Nov 23rd

  • Listening to a Sandy Petersen interview on Yog Sothoth radio. Man, somebody I know: put together a Call of Cthulhu group so I can join it.
  • "To skip all the clapping at the start: 1:05" Best YouTube comment ever. Until video posters learn how to edit, let the commenters do it.
  • Enslaved's platforming is like ... imagine playing Guitar Hero, except you have as long as you want to hit each note.
  • I don't ask challenge of games. I'm perfectly happy to accept "meaningful player interaction" instead. (Enslaved doesn't have that either.)

Nov 24th

  • My Xbox 360 has stopped registering achievements entirely. I... should really take this as a much-needed intervention.
  • -- "You've heard of Too Big to Fail -- the foreclosure crisis is Too Big for Fraud."
  • Podcast Excerpt: Sandy Petersen's top memorable moments GMing Call of Cthulhu: (From Yog Radio #7:
  • Cherish your new followers with locked twitstreams, folks. They're the only ones you can be sure aren't shilling for somebody.
  • The H.P. Lovecraft Literary Podcast just finished their two-part analysis of The Colour Out of Space:

Nov 25th

Nov 26th

  • What do you get if you put skiers and paragliders in a room together?
  • TSA time again, I guess? UC Davis molecular biologist on backscatter safety report: "Hide your kids, hide your wife."

Nov 27th

  • Amazon is a great venue for making fun of overpriced audio accessories:
  • Pretty stressed at the moment and need an excuse to get out of the house. Is anybody not busy tonight? Or in the next few days?
  • Hidden debug mode discovered in in all AMD CPUs since the Athlon XP. To activate, set EDI to 0x9C5A203A.
  • Robot uses science to make double pendulum stand up straight:

Nov 28th

  • Pidgin needs a way to mark chats as unread. Half the time when I wake up I've received half a page of links each from four different people.
  • I look at the first and think "I'll respond to the others and come back to this." Then I think it again three times, then forget everything.
  • Hours later, I'm like "I want to send a link to one or more of these people!" Then I remember I have backlogs to get through first.
  • @mrasmus Me and tabs have a weird relationship. I'll switch to a tab, wonder why I opened it, and switch away expecting to remember later.
  • @mrasmus (This goes on for days.)
  • @mrasmus Basically, the issue with using tabs to solve the problem is that I'll forget that who I'm supposed to react to re a given link.
  • Reconstructing a 3D scene using two Kinects:

Nov 29th

  • Stress update: significantly less stressed. Still, anybody free this evening?
  • Derek Yu talking about Spelunky: Shot by the Indie Game Movie folks at TIGJam. (I'm in there for about half a second.)

Nov 30th

  • RT @plushapo arcade game constraints of short (2.5 min optimally) death cycles were to help monetize - yet today that is festishized as "hardcore"
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