Links for December 8, 2017

‘Geri’s Game’ Turns 20: Director Jan Pinkava Reflects On The Game-Changing Pixar Short

By the way, once again, the look of the character I completely ripped off from Jiří Trnka. The way he’s proportioned, his nose, his chin, the way his head works, the way the eyes sit in the face, all that absolutely owes a debt to the stylizations of Trnka. All I did was say, ‘What would Trnka do?’ I did a bunch of physical maquettes of different versions of the design before settling on that one, which were just made in wet clay. Jerome took the time to fire that wet clay – solid lumps of wet clay, which would have crumbled to dust as soon as they dried out – very, very slowly in his kiln.

Signs That You Are a Gen-Xer Going Through Menopause

MTSS Unaired Pilot, Producer’s Cut

Links for December 6, 2017

Big Data, Small Effort

Datasette is an app that you run from the command line. You just point it to a SQLite database and run datasette mydb.db. And what it does is set up a simple, secure, publicly-available read-only web application for exploring that data. That’s basically it. It takes database files and makes them really easy to explore on the Web.

The San Francisco Indicator Project

The San Francisco Indicator Project is a neighborhood-level data system that measures how San Francisco performs in eight dimensions of a healthy, equitable community. The goal of this project is to support collaboration, planning, decision making, and advocacy for social and physical environments that meet the needs of all citizens.

Lillian Schwartz-The Artist and the Computer pt.1

lillian schwartz-the artist and the computer pt. 2

Links for December 4, 2017

Why Black Men Love Dragon Ball Z

“I’ve been thinking a lot about where I come from and who came before me in my family and circling back to Dragon Ball Z, it does resonate with me a lot,” DJ Kirkland, a comics artist working on the miniseries Black Mage, said over Twitter DMs. “Those of us that are black and born in the U.S., at least some of us to an extent don’t know where we’re from and I feel that is something that a lot of people of color can identify with.”

Motorola Razr V3

The RAZR was the first phone to recognize that cellphones, which had been mainstream for several years at this point, were on the tipping point to becoming fashion accessories, not just utilitarian products. The RAZR realized there was an opportunity to make a product that people would more emotionally bond with.

How Generative Music Works – interactive walkthrough of procedural music methods.

Links for November 24, 2017

Rediscovering History’s Lost First Female Video Game Designer

One day in August, Joseph came home and said, “They’re looking for someone to do a quiz on the Studio II. You want to do that?”

“Sounds boring,” Joyce replied.

“Get it on your résumé, and you’re getting paid for it,” he said.

That began a project called TV Schoolhouse I, programmed in early August 1976 and delivered to RCA on August 9 for a payment of $250, according to the invoice which Joyce kept.

Ephemera-Based Storytelling at Now Play This Games Exhibition in London

Ephemera-based storytelling is a delicate art. It requires a deep understanding of player behavior — as an example, people are usually eager to search the work for hidden puzzles, so if it doesn’t have any, you have to be careful to not suggest it might (or conversely, if you’re putting them in, to make sure they all function properly and make sense without detracting from the larger work). And it also requires trust, both of the player, to be clever enough to suss out the story, and of you as the creator of the work, to provide something that’s intriguing and satisfying, in varying measures.

Underground Roman temple reopens as immersive museum

A subterranean Roman temple where a mysterious cult worshipped has been restored within an immersive museum below Bloomberg’s headquarters in London by 9/11 memorial museum exhibition designers Local Projects.

Part of Bloomberg’s £1 billion Norman Foster-designed European headquarters was restoring the Temple of Mithras to its original location seven metres below modern street level.

Links for November 22, 2017

“Day of the Devs” observations about how people view/treat art games and their creators

My feeling about this event, and showing something that’s “what the hell is this, who would make this, lol acid”, is that maybe if the event can’t host them properly maybe they shouldn’t include games like this. I’m so sorry to say that. I am SO gratefully that the game was shown there, and I’m honored, but I’m saying this because the creators get a lot of crap for this and this isn’t an easy thing to endure. They are different, and will be met with hostility. It seems like they represent something too many people believe shouldn’t be in games. They just should not exist.

Exhibiting Difficult Games

Of course it’s not possible to try out all these different techniques at once, and in fact some of them are mutually exclusive. But they all boil down to: providing the right context for a game. For us, at its simplest this might just be a placard explaining what’s exciting about a game and how it relates to other work around it – even if people don’t read the placard, the fact that it’s there helps to establish that the games have been selected for a purpose, that we believe they repay effort and attention. But beyond that, the more time and developmental focus we’ve been able to give to the physical setup of a game, the more it’s been possible to help players to approach it in a way where they will have a good experience of the game and we can communicate what we want to about it.

Roxette - The Look ( Original Acapella & Instrumental Studio)

Links for November 20, 2017

Indiepocalypse Now. MaxMaxing Attention Economies In the Age of Cultural Overproduction.

Manufacturers of home computers competed with consoles by marketing them as more than videogame machines. Something you can do your homeworks or your accounting with. In doing so they conquered the studio, the bedroom, the desk. Worktime and playtime started to become more intertwined.

But it’s only with the popularity of the handheld devices, and smartphones later, that the possibility of playing literally anywhere and any time became real. You could play with the gameboy while traveling, instead of talking with your family. You could play in private even when you didn’t have access to a television.

You can play while on a romantic date and after sex.

“The Door Problem”

Game design is one of those nebulous terms to people outside the game industry that’s about as clear as the “astrophysicist” job title is to me. It’s also my job, so I find myself explaining what game design means to a lot of people from different backgrounds, some of whom don’t know anything about games. I like to describe my job in terms of “The Door Problem”.

Short Trip - Alexander Perrin

Links for October 27, 2017

‘Norman said the president wants a pyramid’: how starchitects built Astana

Walking the gaping boulevards of new Astana today, it is clear that Kurokawa’s plan was abandoned from the very beginning. The new city is an alienating place of six-lane roads punctuated by vast object buildings, conceived with a total absence of human scale, making the former Soviet centre across the river feel like a cosy village in comparison. It is a place obsessed with size: Nazarbayev even had the Ishim river widened, so it would have the majesty of other capitals’ rivers, like the Thames, Danube or Seine. If you look at the map, the watercourse shrinks back either side of Astana, only bulging out in the centre of the city, like a snake digesting its lunch.

Culture Track ‘17 Report

For today’s audiences, the definition of culture has democratized, nearly to the point of extinction. It’s no longer about high versus low or culture versus entertainment; it’s about relevance or irrelevance. Activities that have traditionally been considered culture and those that haven’t are now on a level playing field.

With the traditional notion of “culture” no longer being a distinguishing factor, it is up to cultural organizations to reassert culture’s purpose in an increasingly complex world, by powerfully articulating and delivering on their essential impact.

Dear Olive Garden, Never Change

Every time Olive Garden tries to freshen its image, to move away from its cultural role as a punchline for faux authenticity and mediocre mall food, everything collapses. Nobody wants to eat kale at Olive Garden. Nobody wants garlic hummus. We want soup and salad and unlimited breadsticks, we want never-ending bowls of pasta with a variety of sauces, we want giant glasses full of Coke and tiny wine glasses full of plonky reds and fruity whites.

Links for October 25, 2017


dCode is a toolkit website for decryption, ciphertexts, cheating at letter games, solve riddles, treasure hunts, etc. Opened in 2009, the site has grown steadily and improved, offering more and more tools and carried by its users, dCode has become a public site, free and open to all!

Crossword Creation Tool

This crossword tool was designed to reflect how I create puzzles using a pen and paper. It allows you to build a rotationally symmetrical crossword that you can then fill with clues and answers.

Links for October 23, 2017

One person’s history of Twitter, from beginning to end

Twitter was built at the tail end of that era. Their goal was giving everyone a voice. They were so obsessed with giving everyone a voice that they never stopped to wonder what would happen when everyone got one. And they never asked themselves what everyone meant. That’s Twitter’s original sin. Like Oppenheimer, Twitter was so obsessed with splitting the atom they never stopped to think what we’d do with it.

@AngryBlackLady/Fems of Color on Twitter

Jackie Chan - How to Do Action Comedy

Links for September 29, 2017

The Notorious Board Game That Takes 1,500 Hours To Complete

This is the resolve of The Campaign For North Africa’s cult. They’re drawn to the game not for its cleverness or flair, but for its absurd, maximalist nature. Board games tend to prioritize a friendly communion with their players, simply because it’s difficult to sell copies of a design that nobody understands. But North Africa never got that memo. It is ornery and intentionally difficult, its commercial release feels like a grave miscalculation or an ultimate dare issued by a hysterical publisher. But its audacity touched a special few. Finally, the chance to have your courage and resilience challenged by a pile of cardboard.

Winamp2-js — Whipping the llama’s ass, now in your browser.

Smooth Criminal M.Jackson à l’orgue de barbarie