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april 2011 microblog digest
minutiae Posted 2011-05-11 22:18:15 by Jim Crawford
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1 Apr

  • Hey, April Fools backlash backlash. You know what really needs defending? The status quo. Somehow it's always in imminent danger!
  • Stingray X-Ray:

2 Apr

  • Roommates made too many pancakes. Again! There's something about pancakes that makes people consistently overestimate how many they want.
  • What The Barber of Seville was missing was some dude playing rock beats on a trap kit:
  • Robot bird:

3 Apr

  • "Firm responsible for running the Deepwater Horizon has given its top executives bonuses for its 'best year' for safety."
  • Growing up ugly: -- "I didn't get the life I wanted. I got something way better."

4 Apr

  • -- The baby has laser eyes. I'd panic. I'd also put a colon between "about" and "babies."
  • How to meet the girl of your dreams, using only a falconer's glove:
  • How to [trivially] sharpen and reuse disposable razor blades:
  • Jonathan Blow talking about and demonstratively playing Braid and prototypes for an hour and a half:
  • I can't believe "copy con" still works under Vista. (I can't believe I sometimes still use it.)
  • Four NES Mario games, one controller: (Tool-assisted run.)
  • Remember the Project Dolphin distributed-narcissism project? No? Well, imagine this, but 10 years ago and now-defunct:
  • Project Dolphin's client couldn't see keystrokes going to a DOS window. That's why I switched to Emacs from QBasic's built-in text editor.
  • By far the best feature of an "encyclopedia anyone can edit" is that it can include everything that anyone cares about. Why not let it?

5 Apr

  • Reducing Bribery by Legalizing the Giving of Bribes:
  • Man, I remember Another World as this super-epic cinematic experience, but it's 15 minutes long if you don't die:
  • Final Form dudes give an interview about Jamestown over at Game Set Watch:

6 Apr

7 Apr

  • This Gamasutra article must've been written for, like, three people in the world:
  • @westquote If the other half turns out to also be plutonium, don't follow the assembly instructions.
  • When Harry Met Sally 2, starring Billy Crystal, Helen Mirren, and Mike Tyson:
  • "How To Steal Like An Artist (And 9 Other Things Nobody Told Me)" [about making art]

8 Apr

  • The Wason selection task: People suck at formal logic except "when the rule has to do with cheating and privilege."
  • Two-part interview with Paul Reiche III and Fred Ford about the creation of Star Control 2:
  • Finally set up a proper dentist appointment. I gotta say, I'm almost going to miss compulsively tonguing my fucked-up half-tooth.
  • -- "Our artist just quit. Instead of hiring a replacement, I bought this CD-ROM of royalty-free animated clip-art!"

9 Apr

  • The unexpected consequences of building your own Huey Hog:
  • BART service apparently suspended indefinitely due to "police action"? I gave myself like 45 minutes of margin to get to the airport.
  • I guess by "indefinitely" they meant for a minute and a half.
  • In San Diego until the 25th.

10 Apr

  • Never trust anyone over 32.

11 Apr

  • Today's can't-fail startup idea: dentist specializing in bling teeth made of LifeGems. "Got my whole family in here!"
  • If you don't give your Cofagrigus a nickname, the Pokemon naughty word filter won't let you take him online.
  • Similarly, Rock Band 2 wouldn't let me call my band "The Green Grapes." (But "The Green Grapists" was A-OK.)
  • Tomorrow's can't-fail startup idea of the day: middleware company that maintains a list of non-naughty words so you can *not* filter them.
  • New French law makes it a terrible idea to do business with a French web site, or to start a web business in France:

12 Apr

  • You've heard of MagiQuest, the PvE, high-fantasy re-skin of laser tag? You got your LARP in my local shopping mall!
  • MagiQuest is probably much less well-designed and/or written than, e.g. WoW, but much more appealing, because of the way it's structured:
  • It takes, like, one hour a month, stuffed with awesome, to be looked-forward-to. Instead of drowning you in a background noise of near-fun.
  • Moot point, though. You know how as an adult male, you can't go anywhere near children without being excoriated as a pedophile? Yeah, that.
  • New Humble Indie Bundle; this one is mostly Trine:
  • Watching Alex play Trine. Was just thinking I really ought to buy it, then remembered I already had.

15 Apr

  • "The Best of Sexual Harassment Stock Photography"
  • I wouldn't have thought it necessary to put my name and address on a wall safe in case it got lost, but what did I know?
  • For your consideration, a penguin being tickled:
  • Dueling La Jolla restaurant bands outside mom's window. Lounge singer in the nearby italian place; rock band in the bar across the street.

16 Apr

  • The potato ARG is neat, but mostly I'm twitching at the idea of hearing another pastry-related catchphrase repeated for the next two years.
  • (Also, not to rain on the parade further, but Skynet was supposed to become self-aware in 1997, not three days from now.)
  • On the other hand, clever variations on established memes are always welcome:
  • I would've sworn this gun range would sell me earplugs, but nooo.
  • Every dude in the San Diego metal scene -- or maybe just every dude at this concert, I guess -- has the same build, haircut, hat and gait.
  • Makes it hard to find the guy I know here who has that build, hat, haircut and gait.
  • Some of my best friends are metal fans! They just all look the same is all.
  • Joke's on me, he wasn't even wearing the hat today.

17 Apr

  • So we get Portal 2 a whole two hours early? Does the lack of results for all the potato-sack marathoning seem like bad PR to anyone else?
  • Not that I can play it anyway. If I had my desktop with me I'd probably be collecting potatoes, and be actually annoyed rather than bemused.
  • Just a little sleep deprivation adds up to serious cognitive impairment, and you don't notice from the inside:

18 Apr

  • "The two biggest videogame publishers have been unofficially-but-officially sabotaging traditional game industry press."

19 Apr

  • Rands' Summer Intern Field Guide:
  • Like genetic diversity, diversity of phonemes in a population's language decreases with distance from Africa:
  • Portal 2 co-op was awesome until they put spoilers for the single-player campaign in the credits!
  • So far single-player is pretty sweet too. Not perfect like Portal was, but a lot more ambitious. (Why can't we be satisfied with perfect?)

20 Apr

  • All three of Final Form Games discussing the design and development of Jamestown on a podcast:
  • I'm pretty sure April 19th, 2011 isn't an actual date. It just doesn't ring right.

21 Apr

22 Apr

  • "Appelsap is een non-alcoholische drank gemaakt van appels." I wonder if the Dutch Wikipedia page for water specifies it's non- alcoholic.

23 Apr

  • Can't decide whether the first or the last moment of Portal 2 is the best gaming moment of the year.

25 Apr

  • Girl on train saw my "going to try science" tee; told me about her 7-year-old daughter blowing up the bathroom with some chemical concoction

26 Apr

  • The story that bridges the gap between Portal and Portal 2:
  • All of Jordan Mechner's personal journal entries from 1985 to 1993, when he was making Prince of Persia:
  • Portal 2 spoilercast with writers Erik Wolpaw, Jay Pinkerton and Chet Faliszek:
  • "[For Tron Legacy], I was asked to record myself using a unix terminal doing technologically feasible things."
  • RT @mikelreparaz Just called bank to get PSN-linked debit card changed, and was told they'd been notified Friday it had been compromised. Did Sony know then?
  • Out jogging. Stopped to pet a cat. Hipster-looking girl asks me to hold her bike and compliments my shirt as she kneels to tie a bootlace.
  • Is this what the hu-mans call "flirting"? Should I start working on a line for the next time I hold someone's bike?
  • "When Microsoft upped the 360's RAM to 512 megs, Bethesda literally threw a party. It was the happiest I've seen some people here ever."

27 Apr

  • Commentary nodes are disappointingly sparse in Portal 2. Also, replaying feels like a chore in places. That never happened in the original.
  • Portal's puzzles exactly covered the possibility space of one elegant mechanic. Portal 2 adds a bunch of mechanics and a bunch of filler.
  • In other words, Portal 2 feels like a video game. That that's disappointing says a lot about the original.
  • @thealawson That sounds like flirting material to me. I should have tried quoting it back at her.
  • @mrasmus I tend to agree. Longer almost always means more filler, and less energy to make each individual moment perfect.
  • (Come to think of it, part of what makes the commentary playthrough feel like a chore is that they turned off saving and checkpointing.)
  • @mrasmus I sort of take issue with the very idea of long-form storytelling in games. I can't keep track of a story over 10 hours.
  • @mrasmus I love Max Payne 2's writing, played it a dozen times, but I can't tell you even the broad strokes. ...Maybe that's a bad example.
  • @thealawson I'm not, by my sense or your definition. Are there hipster forums I could go to for earnest advice about hipster flirting?
  • @thealawson As long as I'm allowed to frame them as coming from someone other than myself.
  • @thealawson I'm usually inclined to let cultures define themselves, but I'm honestly unsure if anyone self-identifies as a hipster.
  • @thealawson Yeah, I'm still not sure how that happened! And just a little bitter that it didn't happen while I was still in high school.
  • Squier strat guitar controller arrived suddenly. Maybe they sent me a "backordered" notice rather than a "now shipping" notice by mistake?
  • Still need to get the MIDI adapter; I expected more warning.

28 Apr

  • Computational double-entendre identification:
  • Ribbon Hero 2: "Very few gamification projects invest in the extensive prototyping necessary to identify their core loop"
  • I wonder whether I'd get a discount on coffee from the "pour excess coffee here" bucket.
  • Instead of just informing me I've plugged something into an audio jack, why not *play some audio*? Great feature of dumb audio jacks: audio.

29 Apr

  • John Mellencamp's "Hurts So Good" started playing on the radio just as they injected the anesthetic.
  • I'm guessing the perception of a root canal as the worst possible thing predates the invention of anesthetic. I mean, it wasn't *amazing*.

30 Apr

  • Tonguing my new proto-tooth feels like plasticine.
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