| < retrospect: 1 feb >


  ...of the moment  
january a second a day...


  ...of the moment  
"When people want to do things 'by the book,' they never choose a fun book, like 'Hop on Pop' or 'The Kama Sutra'"
"If shit is never hit fan you are not get enough shit done."
"Every of MVC web application can able be reduce to 150 line Perl script."
Wow, on OSX Terminal you can type "say X Y Z" and the speech synth kicks in. Easter egg or does everyone know about that?
Embroidered Dog Animation—Front and Back by Aubrey Longley-Cook:

(12) splish splash
From this kinda great Quota What's Your Favorite Parable page:
Imagine a puddle waking up one morning and thinking, 'This is an interesting world I find myself in, an interesting hole I find myself in, fits me rather neatly, doesn't it? In fact it fits me staggeringly well, must have been made to have me in it!' This is such a powerful idea that as the sun rises in the sky and the air heats up and as, gradually, the puddle gets smaller and smaller, it's still frantically hanging on to the notion that everything's going to be alright, because this world was meant to have him in it, was built to have him in it; so the moment he disappears catches him rather by surprise. I think this may be something we need to be on the watch out for.
--Douglas Adams

  ...of the moment the Flash vs HTML5 really got me thinking. At the very least I need to get offa Processing Applets...
--Calamities of Nature
RIP Wislawa Szymborska -- check out his brilliant Four in the Morning.
"Today's date is 1.2.12. Better known as International Microphone Testing Day."

(9) happy sad sredavni
So even though SREDAVNI didn't show my team's artist's at their most technical, it had some enjoyable art, some of which didn't get used in the final cut of the game.

Here was the original crew of aliens:
Later though, in lieu of a credit screen, we decided to retool the invaders so they lined up with members of the team:
(I'm the one with the glasses, natch.)

Right now they're marching in lockstep, but if you put the mouse over one group, they will be very happy, and the other group will be sad. (We didn't end up using the Happy/Sad states in the actual game.)

I think the invaders were mostly done by Kelly Atwood though Yue Li (who pitched the original idea) might have done work on them as well.

  ...of the moment  
"Everybody is trapped, more or less. The best you can hope for is to understand your trap and make terms with it, tooth by tooth."
--Robertson Davis - what's the right always kvetching about? "Activist judges"? Jeez.

Snow Biking is crazy fun. Accent on the crazy. And the fun. I enjoyed reading about and trying some games that think about their box.

(4) sprinkle

--The game my team and I made for the 2010 Global Game Jam - "Sprinkle". Here is the game page for the Northestern University College of Creative Industries site where my team of 5 toiled from Friday 5PM 'til Sunday 3PM.

The game might be a little more complex than we intended - we were trying to go for not needing text, but... on the Title Screen click to get started. For the first level, you are able to drag the leaf... that's the only hint I'm gonna give. (Unless someone asks.) There are 9 boards in all, including the title and win screen.

  ...of the moment  
"The time not to become a father is eighteen years before a war."
--E. B. White
Do I have any friends near SF who could help me with an art exhibit proposal?
"...but the length promises larger ideas than the film finally delivers."
--Janet Maslin (NY Times) on "Boogie Nights". Nice (midly) out of context quote, considering... Calvin and Hobbes creator after the fact
Whoa. Bite a granny smith apple while eating a Bit O' Honey. Instant Ersatz Caramel Apple! Yum. - did the Republicans really set up their own SotU rebuttal podium? US of GOP?

(18) memphis soul stew

--JZ is one of the few people who is really good at recommending songs I end up liking, this was one he mentioned recently-- or rather, same guy, same song, probably a different recording. (Actually I had heard the Simpsons' take on this, "Springfield Soul Stew" but never sought out the source material.

  ...of the moment  
My Game Jam team had an epiphany; rather than rotating the rocketship maze to make the aliens fall out, you rotate to SAVE 'em- much better
An artist here, already hecka cute, seemed irresistable when I saw she had an ordinary rubberband as a scrunchy. Utilitarian w/ artsy FTW!
richvreeland Einstein Riddle?

(11) grand central stoppage
Ooh, a few more moments of by 15-minutes of Warholian fame: Boingboing gadgets accepted my link submission on yesterday's anchor bands post. Best reader suggestion for a possible replacement: velcro.

Video of the Moment

--BRILLIANT! 200-odd folks descend on Grand Central Station and....freeze. That's it. Surreal, I'd love to see or be part of something like this... I wonder how they synchronized it all.

Article of the Moment
Slate on what political ads that acknowledged politics might be like.

Quote of the Moment
"Geologists are never at a loss for paperweights."
--Bill Bryson

(25) a city under siege: boston and the lite-brite invasion
So yesterday afternoon folks around Boston had a bit of a scare, with reports of police working to clear some suspicious, bomb-like packages on many of the major bridges and thoroughfares going into the city. Traffic was snarled and nerves were frayed.

As you've likely heard, the suspicious packages were actually some "guerrilla marketing" for a Cartoon Network show/movie "Aqua Teen Hunger Force". Here's a video (with great music!) showing these "bomblike devices" being deployed:

Seeing the video, I have to say, these things were pretty cool. I wish I had seen one. (I wonder how they're staying attached to the structures...)

Listening to Mayor "Mumbles" Manino on the local newstalk station, I started to get kind of angry, he's talking about suspending the parent company Turner's broadcast license (including CNN... awesome), huge fines, jailtime, and is generally on a moral highhorse about a mile tall. And constantly calling them "hoax devices", as if the whole thing was a deliberate bomb scare.

I'm angry too, but more at the over-reaction of the city. OK, the figure looks a little "angry" and was in suspicious, vulnerable locations. But the damn things are flat. How much explosive did they expect to be packed in these things, especially after the first one was "detonated"? And the blatant sense of whimsy... even if they didn't recognize the character, who the hell did they think was "attacking" us? The Joker or some other Batman villain bothering to make elaborate props? The comedy wing of Al Qaeda? The same guys from "Fight Club" who blew up a building with a Have A Nice Day face? Seriously.

At first I was concerned, even as I heard the packages (still not fully described in the media) were harmless, I thought it could be terrorists sizing up our response times and reactions, like some of the question marks around that LA Subway mercury spill. But now I'm more concerned for our nation's backbone, and lack of common sense. People: an attack is going to happen someday, somewhere, somehow. Hopefully it will be contained and localized, but people will die. Chances are it won't be you, or even someone you love. We need to have appropriate levels of concern and purposefully work to have responses commiserate with the scares we face in the meanwhile.

"Then the terrorists will have won" was the overused gagline from 5 years ago, but it still holds true. Taking our new grimmer reality in stride and learning to prosper and relax even in that (along with doing everything appropriate to prevent future attacks) will be the real victory in the War Against Terror. Turning some electronic graffiti into a citywide clampdown ("the war against liquids" to be joined by "the war against lite-brites") won't be.

(10) (or say a thousand billion)
Poetry of the Moment
When I behold the charm
of evening skies, their lulling endurance;
the patterns of stars with names
of bears and dogs, a swan, a virgin;
other planets that the Voyager showed
were like and so unlike our own,
with all their diverse moons,
bright discs, weird rings, and cratered faces;
comets with their streaming tails
bent by pressure from our sun;
the skyscape of our Milky Way
holding in its shimmering disc
an infinity of suns
(or say a thousand billion);
knowing there are holes of darkness
gulping mass and even light,
knowing that this galaxy of ours
is one of multitudes
in what we call the heavens,
it troubles me. It troubles me.
--Jimmy Carter, "Considering the Void". This site has a video of him as well. I think this poem is kind of interesting response to what was started when the Heliocentric model of the solar system began to take hold.

(12) all-temperature cheerleading
I accidentally fed some beer to my laptop last night over at Evil B's. Doggone it. It's all my fault, just a momentary clumsiness, but what's doubly irritating is that my laptop's presence there was a result of trying to be nice in 2 ways but very stupid in another 2: nice to go over to Evil B's because his wife was having a rough time at work and could use some Nintendo therapy, nice to be with laptop because Ksenia asked if we could message a bit to give her some help on a school assignment, stupid because I forgot Evil B's computers have no problem using AIM, or I figured it would be so much easier to hop on his wireless network with my own client, and stupid to put the laptop on the floor. Next to the beer.

The keyboard was going nuts right after the incident, though by the end of the night just had an "8" key that would get triggered too much. I didn't try it this morning.

And before I was just thinking about how much I like having that laptop. Nice form factor, great living room machine, decent mobile DVD player...

Link of the Moment
Pump Up The Movie...I admit that I was fooled by the "Trailer" there when we saw it in a cinema, and thought it was the real thing. The "Cheerleader Toss" clip is astounding, and the game the clip inspired has a nice macabre streak. Reminds me a bit of that old SNL skit.

Pickup Line and Retort of the Moment
"That's a nice shirt, it would go great with my floor."
"Those are nice eyes, my parrot would love them."
--The infamous Kibo writes retorts to 101 bad pickup lines.
(via the "R" pentomino.)

Logo of the Moment
The NFL's Arizona Cardinals got a redesigned logo. I think it is a definite improvement. My question is...why is "Cardinals" such a popular team name? My middle school team was the Monticello Cardinals. According to this page "Cardinals are very aggresive birds, and very territorial birds. They will not kill other birds, but thay will mess with them" so I guess that could explain it but still...relative to most of the other NFL bird mascots, Eagles, Falcons, Seahawks, Ravens (which have a cool Pe/macabre thing going to boot) they seem pretty wussy, kind of like lightweights.

(8) behold i have become shiva, remover of books
Rabbit Rabbit. And Go Pats! We'll see how it turns out...

Melancholy of the Moment
So, continuing my decluttering effort, I went through my book collection, and tried to separate the wheat from the chaff. This here is a picture of the chaff...any friends of mine in Boston, feel free to arrange a time to come over and browse and grab before they make their exit to...I dunno, a used bookstore or a thrift store of some kind. I always feel guilty winnowing out books, they really shouldn't be subjected to such Darwinian forces, but these just weren't paying their rent...these are the ones I can't justify packing, carrying, unpacking, and finding the right shelf for once again.

In other melancholy news, Mo and I made some final arrangements about the house. I'm going to buy her out for a fixed amount, with an eye towards selling it quickly. A little bit of risk on my part, but it would be very surprising if I get a poorer end of the deal. Hashing out the details in the dining room made me sad though, and turning around, this view out the window made me sadder. Just the wintery drabness of the scene, combined with it...being a yard, actually. A yard is one of the big things about having a house versus renting an apartment, and owning this house was one of those big things that was near the center of my life with Mo.

Tying those last two paragraphs together, two book I found were one of the few chances I might've had to "read between the lines" with Mo and realize there was trouble brewing. Last year, for Valentine's Day, or my birthday, or our Anniversary, or something, she gave me I Can't Fight This Feeling ("Timeless Poems for Lovers from the Pop Hits of the '70s and '80s") and more significantly The RoMANtic's Guide ("Hundreds of Creative Tips for a Lifetime of Love ") The latter...I dunno, it was so undeniably cheesy, so different from where any sane person would think Mo and I were coming from, that I took it as a bit of hint but it didn't make much of an impression. But isn't that the most pathos-laden thing in the world, to think that Mo might have been trying to send me a message, but an unfortunate choice in the specifics of the medium (i.e. this cringe-worthy book) meant that the message was lost?

Link of the Moment
Coolest. Coffetable. Ever. Drift over the British Landscape from the comfort of your own living room...

Quote of the Moment
"Life span is not the only virtue. If it were, we'd value turtles more than butterflies, oak trees more than children."
--Jon Carroll, via Bill

Update of the Moment

(19) backlog flush #19
Our nation morns the loss of the Columbia.

In my heart of hearts, though, this doesn't hit me the way the loss of the Challenger did. For one thing, something like this has happened before. Events lose some of their power when they're clearly not unique.

For another thing, post-WTC, the loss of 7 people--adventurers who knew they were taking a risk--doesn't carry the weight that the mass destruction we've seen does. And considering the mass destruction we're looking to wield ourselves in Iraq, and the dangers civillians of every nation face on an ongoing basis from violent radicals...I dunno. Maybe it's "disaster fatigue".

And of course, there's the Israeli issue, the Israeli astronaut on board. Last week NPR was reporting how excited Israel was about this, how it carried a great sense of "normal adventure". I guess that is, if you'll pardon the expression, blown to hell. (Personally, I think it's just structural failure of a very aging spacecraft, and that the way up would seem like a more likely target for terrorism than the way down. Hopefully they'll be able to investigate and reach a conclusion.)

It's like a huge field day to Islamic Propagandists, even if it is an "act of God", or Allah, or whatever. I can hear them say "See America? See what happens to your grand plans when you get in bed with Israel?"


Heh. Good luck to China with its manned space mission plans. We're gonna be out of the race for a while.

Backlog Flush of the Moment
I figure I've been rambling enough this week, and need to get to doing the loveblender anyway, so here's a bunch of short subjects...
  • "A scholar is just a library's way of making anther library"
    --Daniel Dennett, a play on Anne McLaren's "A chicken is just an egg's way of making another egg."
  • "I'm a child of the Cold War...I grew up believing I would never live to grow old. Now I see that I may just live to go lose all my get feeble in my old age...I'm really looking forward to that."
    --Bruce Sterling, from Gryphon's old .plan file
  • A muppet FAQ
  • One family has all the members' portraits taken every year since 1976.
  • Salon on the perils and potential of online romance. I really think online personals are the way of the future. Seriously.
  • [Reflecting upon the wording used on a formal invitation] 'October the Eighth, Nineteen Hundred and Ninety Eight, A.D.' A.D.! They're worried I might accidentally show up 2,000 years before the birth of Christ!
    --Sports Night...I got the boxed set of this for Christmas and watch it while on the stairmaster...
  • Seanbaby on Grodd, the talking gorilla villain from Superfriends:
    Seanbaby rocks, though he hasn't updated his site for a long while. Still, his page on the old Superfriends cartoon, is funny His NES and Hostess pages are worth the hours it takes to read 'em as well.

  • Cool double views of Seattle's Waterfront, 1907 and 2002.
  • Oneword is a brilliant creative idea tool: they'll show you a word, and give you 60 seconds to write on it, asking you don't think, just right. A new word each day.
  • I already mentioned how much I liked Ranjit's company's Lego Spybotics game... GameFAQs finally published the FAQ/walkthrough I made for it, though they inserted a bunch of extra returns...maybe I should fix that.

(5) pink

"Pink Office Park", my submission to the very cool Mirror Project. More info about the shot on the entry page. (I also thought 'submission' was a funny word for this kind of stuff. I use it all the time on the loveblender but it seems kind of funny.)

Movie Line of the Moment
"I like your nurse's uniform, guy."
"These are O.R. scrubs."
"O, R they?"
--Rushmore. John quoted that last line out of the blue the other day, and its been rattling around my head ever since, just how the kid who speaks first is kind of trying to cover for himself. Thanks a lot John.

(9) wrinkle
Midnight (or thereabouts) Ramble
Ahh, my free-floating neuroticism has found its latest idea to latch on to. Looking in the mirror, I thought I saw a wrinkle. Not much of one, a little crease on one side when I smile, above the cheek. If my cheeks weren't so full to begin with it probably wouldn't even be there. But they are, and it was, and it set me to thinking.

I've come to terms with mortality, I think. But when you think you see the effects of time it's tough to accept. I'm kind of perversely lucky in that I've never been in really good shape, so I'm more able to make actual improvements in my body over time, without the glory days to have fallen from.

I guess I shouldn't have too much trouble dealing with this, at least not for a long while. I can see that it's really a subset of my general mortality fears, or at least secondary to them. It is kind of funny that it's not just eternal life we crave, but eternal youth. (Isn't there a myth about the guy who asks for eternal life, but forgets to ask for the youth. and just gets older and older and more horrible and decrepit?) Understanding that I'm physically different as I approach my late 20s than I was in my early 20s, and that, aside from the efforts I'm making now (yey stairmaster) it will always be more or less downhill-- it's tough.

And I mentioned this to Mo, and she says she says "Aw crap, we're gonna get old someday" and I tell her that she'll be beautiful when she's old, and I believe that she will be even if she isn't, but still, it reminds me of the powerlessness we sometimes have to make the world a good enough place for the people we love. That's another really hard truth to accept.

Link of the Moment
Science Says Women Dig Fast Cars in Wired News
Hooray for Science!
Luckily Mo seems ok with my Honda Civic Hatchback. Though I have memories of at least one commencement-era romantic interest impressed that I was getting my life together enough to get a car, have a job.

KHftCEA 2000-01.2 January KHftCEA 2000-02.1 February

KHftCEA 2000-02.1 February

It's possible to be in love with three people at the same time, maybe four, but it does get to be time-consuming, and most of us don't require that much love.
--Mr. Blue
Sportsmans did a shade under $60K/day from August 1 'til now.
KHftCEA 2000-01.2 January

A moderately gifted person who would have been a community treasure a thousand years ago has to give up, has to go into some other line of work, since modern communications puts him or her into daily competition with nothing but the world's champions.
--Kurt Vonnegut, "Bluebeard"
"Your vigor for life appalls me."
--Robert Crumb Letters
Before you pluck even one of your precious asswhiskers, HBB, I want to implore you to reconsider. Don't alter your ass! Alter your attitude! Asswhiskers are beautiful, man! Why, my boyfriend's asscrack is the loveliest thing I've ever seen, and it looks for all the world (or just for me, actually) like there's a small, yappy dog tucked between his asscheeks. (Lord knows it sounds like there's a yappy dog in there sometimes.) And I love it! Hairy asscrack! Celebrate it, man!
--Dan Savage, "Savage Love"
"Remember, when someone annoys you, it takes 42 muscles in your face to frown. But it only takes 4 muscles to extend your arm and SMACK THAT ASSHOLE UPSIDE THE HEAD."
--thought for the day (Dan Savage on Gary Bauer's Staff)
 At the EventZero orientation.
-move to Watertown
-12% cap on 401K no matching
-is role gonna be middleroll

< retrospect: 1 feb >