Congratulations to the Giants on their World Series win, especially coming not too many years after their Super Bowl triumph.
"And now the saddest moment of Halloween: blowing out the pumpkin candles, and admitting defeat. November wins. As ever" --http://twitter.com/lileksAnd I finally gave up the sandals. Sigh. Just too cold on the toes on the bike in the morning.
Voting is so weird. Your individual action is needed but it only matters in aggregate.
http://whatthefuckhasobamadonesofar.com/ -- it's a good reminder vs the "Obama's done nothing" drumbeat, if you try to ignore politics...
--Space Quest was an old adventure game series-- sometimes the game stored the art in "Vector" format, with parts drawn in what might well be the artist's original sequence (minus any "Undo"s of course>) Neat to see, and informative for people who are still into making pixel art.
http://catalogchoice.org/ - Amber saved 3 trees, 316 gallons of water, 890 lbs of greenhouse gas by using this site to not get catalogs...
"The art of living is more like wrestling than dancing." --Marcus Aurelius (turns out classic Stoicism is like happier Buddhism!)http://www.collegehumor.com/video:1938433 - the power of braces
"What it is, what it was, what it might become." --Dr. Teeth (of Muppet "Electric Mayhem" fame), right?Product idea: Doc Jimminy Joe's Old Timey De-Stinkifyin' Sweat-Blockin' Armpit Rub
The last Patriots game I watched bits of was the loss to the Jets. At least this one was to my semi-beloved Cleveland.
"You can't have a light without a dark to stick it in." --Arlo GuthrieJust got a Macbook Air (for iOS coding). Annoying being a newbie again, it's been a while. (I don't think OSX is as good as Win7 frankly)
We normally characterize an optimist as someone who sees his glass as being half full rather than half empty. For a Stoic, though, this degree of optimism would only be a starting point. After expressing his appreciation that his glass is half full rather than being completely empty, he will go on to express his delight in even having a glass: It could, after all, have been broken or stolen. And if he is atop his Stoic game, he might go on to comment about what an astonishing thing glass vessels are: They are cheap and fairly durable, impart no taste to what we put in them, and-- miracle of miracles!-- allow us to see what they contain. This might sound a bit silly, but to someone who has not lost his capacity for joy, the world is a wonderful place. To such a person, glasses are amazing; to everyone else, a glass is just a glass, and it is half empty to boot.
--William B. Irvine, "A Guide to the Good Life: The Ancient Art of Stoic Joy".
Bill the Splut linked to the first of
3 Essays on BoingBoing by Irvine (listed in reverse order, there) and mentioned he thought he might be a natural stoic.
The first order of business is to realize that the English word "Stoic", in terms of being emotionless, is pretty far afield from the ancient Greek school and practice. It does have elements of seeking tranquility via detachment similar to Buddhism, but without Buddhism's insistence on detaching from positive and joyous feelings as well.
I'd say many parts of Irvine's modernization of Classical Stoicism (a supremacy of rationality, seeking of tranquility, strong appreciation for simple pleasures while not being utterly dismissive of the possibilities of finer ones, seeking to triage parts of the world into things we have total control over, partial control over, and no control over and only attending to the first two categories) hit home for me, but I disliked a bit of arrogance in it (it seems to insist on supreme confidence in ones own opinions, something I find impossible given my temperament in this postmodern world) and says nothing about the need for compassion or empathy.
Ever rediscover a half-remembered book from your childhood and realize that it was probably wildly influential on you? Such was the case with David L. Heller and John F. Johnson's "Dr. C. Wacko Presents: Atari BASIC & The Whiz-Bang Miracle Machine". I recently found a good PDF copy at
Atari Mania's Page of Atari 8-bit Books
The book was a beginner-level but thorough guide to BASIC programming - I suspect I knew most of it by the time I got my hands on a copy, but it was still very cool. The style can perhaps best be described as "Early Doctor Demento" -- hardly a paragraph goes by without a gag of some kind, but still it seems like it would do a good job of explaining fundamental concepts.
I can even see the book's influence in my own guide to Atari (2600) Programming,
Atari 2600 101. (No cartoons, more's the pity.)
I was reminded of this book when I ordered some Eggs Benedict, and I thought about this chart in it:
280 Calories each
340 Calories a look
90 Calories per slurp
70 Calories a dip
470 Calories per bun
Quicko TV Dinner:
400 Calories a tray
Pizza a la Hollandaise Sauce:
900 Calories a sniff
I think that for years that was my main image of Hollandaise, some kind of insane calorie vortex. (I guess I forgot how the other foods needed only a glance...)
Atari Mania also finally let me read the book's -- prequel? It was much more advanced, but came first-- companion, "Dr. C. Wacko's Miracle Guide to Designing and Programming Atari Computer Arcade Games". I'd like to think if I had had this book at the appropriate time, I finally would have gotten those damn "player/missile" graphics and in general made some better games.
A few weeks ago Amber and I went to the deCordova sculpture museum and garden, a first for both of us.
If I had a hammer...
Amber might be smiling because I had stepped backwards to frame the photo, tripped on a stair, landed neatly on my butt, and still got the shot. Then an attendant came over to tell us we're not supposed to take photos in the place.
Outside-- this shot is taken through a peephole in a sculpture called "Little Red Riding Hood and Other Stories".
So while most of the sculptures where of fairly traditional material (stone, metal, etc) there was at least one that was just trees constrained into a squared off fence pattern... so I got to keep using my line "Is this art or landscaping? Look for a plaque!"
At the end of the month it was Kate's birthday. How old? Old... Miller made up an idea Kate had previously thought of, a "strawberry quiche". It was pretty decent (much to Miller's surprise considering the disaster it made of his kitchen), kind of like a custard.
Kate's partner has a dog Ben, notoriously camera shy, leaving the place when a camera is even pulled out. My new camera has a great zoom lens though so I was able to get a shot.
I think I made an iPhone shot of the turkey around Alewife, but it still weirds me out.
There have been some nice sunsets this Autumn... this is over Brigham Circle
For my Uncle's birthday we went to The Palm, here he is with MELAS in front of the BPL.
Yet another shot of The Hancock, though from ten stories up. I'm always tempted to start a photoblog just of people taking photos of it. Can't blame them though, it the daytime it's so gorgeous.
It dwarfs the Trinty Church across the street. I don't think people realize what a big church it is, but if you look closely you can see a workman there.
Those windows are at least twice as big as your eye tends to assume.
Leonard was visiting, up from NYC, and we decided to take an impromptu field trip to Funspot, home of the American Classic Arcade Museum,
what the Boston Globe calls "the Louvre of the '8-bit' world."
My favorite new (to me) old game was probably the first controversial game, Death Race -- you and a buddy compete in running down "gremlins" (probably changed to placate moralists) who give a thoroughly unpleasant squeal and they transform into a tombstone that then blocks the progress of your death-on-wheels car.
I liked it quite a lot.
Leonard was more staid.
Leonard playing a comically undersized game he remembered from his dentist's office, "Leprechaun".
I got the high score in Gyruss!
And Pengo. Though it looks like I was the first person to play that day. Still, still I got through many levels, honed from years of experience in the Atari 2600 version years prior... Leonard didn't know there was a "kick the wall to stun enemies" trick. Though as I cruched Sno-Bee egg after egg (to stop new Sbo-Bees from form to replace their squished-by-sliding-ice-block comarades I wondered if this game would have been as popular if it had been called "The Sno-Bee Holocaust".
"I don't mind going nowhere as long as it's an interesting path." --Ronald MabbittAnd with the closure of the bank acct of my old life, my Todo due/overdue list is empty, first time in months! Next stop: Inbox Zero.... only 3 or 4 starred items there but 2 are moderately sized projects.
"I have learned To spell hors d'oeuvres Which still grates on Some people's n'oeuvres. —Warren Knox" --http://twitter.com/siwisdom At Jordan's IMAX ("Buttkickas. That's right, Buttkickas") waiting for Harry Potter they need to get over Cherry Poppin' Daddies.
In October 1995, Wired maazine had an interesting special issue: "Wired Scenarios 1.01: the Future of the the Future." Besides the nightmarish semi-apocalyptic scenario "The Plague Years: 1996-2020" (with its (at times badly) photoshopped yet evocative images of a 747 being torched at Signapore airport (to try to contain the "Mao Flu"), corpses floating in a bay ala Katrina, and United Colors of Benetton ad sporting a rainbow of gas-mask/hazmat ensembles) and the real ads for Windows 95, the part that really stuck in my mind was "A Day in the Life", four two-page spreads with first person perspectives of people looking at October 19, 2020's news on their distinctly iPad-like tablet devices.
The article says "Industrial Design and Alias work by Lunar Design" and attributes photos to James Porto. I can't find too much information on this article, or in fact, the entire issue --it seems like the thing was made when Wired was still uneven about getting its material online. (and Amber's library resources came up blank as well.) The design work is pretty cool though -- with the exception of the "Porsche Cortex" they're not quite as grindingly minimalistic as the iPad. The Swatch one seems to be designed for bicycling, and the "SonyShack" device has a custom button for the wagering/betting that all the models support.
Very simple doodle program, made to celebrate me noticing that Processing finally added support for some of the newer Java syntax features. A bit Action painting-ish if I do say so myself, especially if you let it run for a while.
Oddly chipper. Wanna be motivational speaker to the world. The trick is getting off the treadmill of wanting more- appreciate what's there!
Oh man, how long has processing supported the new Java foreach and typed collections? I've been doing it the old way for WAY too long.
Yeesh. Despite working there for 7 months it took Amber to point out that the street # of my work address is the first 3 of my phone #.
Wow. Not only has Apple annoyed a big % of iPad owners by making the physical screen lock button to "mute"- the mute doesn't work! #ipadfail
SpindlyQ, founder of Glorious Trainwrecks
recently tweeted a great find:
The MAD Computer Program, circa 1985, now lovingly scanned in and OCR'd. That link includes a video of the original program (Apple II flavor) running on an emulator, as well as scans of the original pages and BASIC and Java versions.
I took the Java version and enhanced it a bit - my version has fun with the inherent scaling of the way the thing was made, as well as recreating the "watch it being drawn" effect. Mouse over or press 1-9 to change the scaling, click starts over.
I am so lonely
And have a lot of problems
Be my Valentine?
A message to snails
Evolution has failed you
Your shells are a joke
Asked the universe
To please stop sending me signs
Has not responded
A pack of Wet Ones
Inadequately sealed shut
Is pack of Dry Ones
He has those two eyes
So very much like I do
One in five experts
Agrees that the other four
May well have a point
Wearing fur's okay
If the animal was illed
In, like, self-defense
When old people fall
It rips my heart to pieces
Yet still they do it
There once was a girl
And she lived in Nantucket
And that's all I know.
--"the immortal haiku of laura silverman" (sister of Sarah) from Tufts magazine. (Though it seems she's more "School of the Museum of Fine Arts" which is affiliated with Tufts.) Also she was the receptionist on "Dr. Katz" which ks kind of awesome.
Bleh, just watched Woody Allen's "Match Point". Rich people to be envious of, then repulsed by, all for an operatic theme of no justice and a visual metaphor.
But thanks to Amber's persistence in having us put up a ceiling mount for the projector, we got to watch the movie on a 114" diagonal screen.