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May 19, 2012
A Game of Throwns
For some reason I made this...
July 18, 2011
Atari VCS Programming in TextMate
An easier way to make Atari games on your Mac
Download the TextMate Atari VCS Support Installer (Mac OS X 10.5+, 60k)Several years ago I was really getting heavily into Atari VCS programming—for teaching, for art, and for research on Racing the Beam. VCS programming is notoriously hard at first, but like anything once you get the hang of it, ...
April 23, 2011
Mastering ATL
How to use Hartsfield-Jackson like a pro
As an expert user of Atlanta's Hartsfield-Jackson airport. I thought it might be fun to share the methods I've devised for making use of the airport with minimal impact. These tips assume that you're a frequent flyer and not just a lamer leisure traveler. They also assume you're flying Delta, ...
March 19, 2011
The Cleanup Quotient
On the pleasures and pains of home dining
When dining out, there are a number of criteria by which to judge one's meal. The quality of the food, of course, and its presentation, and the service, and the ambience for certain. Perhaps the value of the experience relative to expectations, and so forth. But the stakes are different ...
June 30, 2010
Plumbing the Depths
On the familiar and the unfamiliar in games. From my "Persuasive Games" column at Gamasutra.
June 16, 2010
You've just thrown away a lot of points, and a lot of peppers
This is amazing. ...
June 8, 2010
The Spring Handhelds
Apple and the Rhetoric of Change
Now that yet another Steve Jobs keynote is over, I find myself more interested in what Apple was saying about itself than what others are saying about its new gadgets. Despite my apparent pique pommaire, I like Apple stuff. I do my computing on a Mac and I have an ...
May 1, 2010
Hildegard ate most of the tacos!
Mereology and the Partitive Plural
Levi Bryant has written a drove of meaty new posts in the past couple days. There's one about his blue mug, one about entanglement, one that asks if eclipses are objects, and one about ideology. But it's his post about strange mereologies that I want to point you to today. ...
January 2, 2010
Please Stand Clear of the Closing Rights
How Disney and Zazzle conspire against me (and you)
I've reported twice on my experience selling things on Zazzle, the custom on-demand online print service for apparel and paper goods. First, just over a year ago, I mentioned the t-shirt designs I had made to riff on the Disney World monorail announcer notice, "Por favor manténgase alejado de las ...
December 10, 2009
Eight Bit Me
Promotional Materials for Think Inside the Box
Nick Montfort and I are giving a lecture tomorrow (Friday) at UC Irvine, as a part of the Center for Computer Games & Virtual Worlds lecture series. The talk, held at 4pm in Donald Bren Hall, covers aspects of Racing the Beam and platform studies. All of that's just context ...
December 9, 2009
Panic for Atari
Broken dreams and cool boxes
Panic Software, who makes Mac utilities like Transmit (an FTP client) and Unison (a USENET client), has created a set of hypothetical boxes and watercolor box art, as if their apps had been made for the Atari 2600. You can buy them online. They are insanely awesome. ...
October 12, 2009
Disney: We Own the Concept of the Castle
Fun with Infringement
Almost a year ago, I wrote about my modest success selling t-shirt designs on Zazzle.com that artfully depict the Disney World monorail announcer's characteristic Por favor manténgase alejado de las puertas. In that piece, I also drew attention to the ways products like this exert fandom by commercially exploiting holes ...
August 2, 2009
Tantrum Capitalism
Thoughts on Skype and Ebay
If you follow technology news—or even if you don't—you couldn't have missed this incredible story about Skype. Apparently when Ebay bought Skype for $2.6 billion back in 2005, they didn't acquire all of the latter's core product. Specifically, Skype's founders sheltered key peer to peer subsystems for the service in ...
July 11, 2009
Engineering the Closet
How personal manufacture fixed my wardrobe woes
Like many homes in what we locals call "in-town" Atlanta, mine is an older one, built over half a century ago. There are many charms and challenges that come with owning an older home, but it's the unexpected trials that prove the most onerous. One of the unusual features of ...
June 4, 2009
Guru Meditation Trivia Contest Answers
I'm sure you've been biting your nails in anticipation
A week ago or so, I mentioned a trivia contest I was running on the Touch Arcade forums, with correct answers winning Guru Meditation redemption codes or a signed copy of Racing the Beam. I've given away all the codes and the book, so now it's time to share the ...
May 18, 2009
Guru Meditation Released
Om for Atari and iPhone
After two years of off and on development, I've just released my relaxation game Guru Meditation, simultaneously for Atari VCS and iPhone. The game is a re-imagining of and homage to old Amiga lore, an exploration of what a game that legitimately deals with inactivity would feel like, and (through ...
May 4, 2009
Top Ten Reasons I Returned My Kindle
This week has witnessed much talk about Amazon's possible release of a new, larger Kindle eReader designed for newspapers and textbooks, culminating in an article in the New York Times that claims confirmation of such an impending announcement. That's on top of talk from magazine publisher Hearst's announcement that it ...
February 21, 2009
Boil Me Elmo
A product concept
Who wouldn't buy one, I ask you? Just imagine how the whistle would sound. ...
December 18, 2008
Por Favor Manténgase Alejado de las Puertas
Fandom and Detritus
One of my gripes with Henry Jenkins's book Convergence Culture was its tendency to privilege pop cultural fan activity to other sorts of attention. Appealing though they may be, I wondered if Harry Potter and Survivor really sat at the pinnacle of human creativity in the way that the ...
November 16, 2008
Carrying On Over Carry-Ons
A Review of the Tom Bihn Checkpoint Flyer
For years now, it has been necessary to remove laptops from carry-on bags for inspection at airport security here in the States. The TSA imposes this requirement to insure a clear view of the internal components of some electronics. Scanning a laptop separately allows security personnel to insure that a ...