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Below are 20 journal entries, after skipping by the 20 most recent ones recorded in Reverend Rafferty's LiveJournal:

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Monday, December 29th, 2014
5:34 am
Friday, December 26th, 2014
6:46 pm
Tuesday, December 23rd, 2014
5:07 pm
My jacket has a pocket specifically designed to hold a cell phone... but the pocket is too small for modern smart-phones, or even the huge feature-phones. It wants one of those one-piece Nokias.

My old laptop case had a special pocket for cell phones... but it was too large for the 1990s phones, those things would just fall out. It would've been perfectly sized for modern smart phones.

It's a weird world.
Monday, December 22nd, 2014
4:23 am
Quote for the day:
"Oh, yes. I can hardly bear to talk to him. He has the Chaplin disease. That particular combination of arrogance and timidity sets my teeth on edge."
-- Orson Welles, re: Woody Allen
Sunday, December 21st, 2014
4:43 pm

And for your listening pleasure: Nine Inch Noëls
Thursday, December 18th, 2014
7:11 pm
Holy crap, this future we live in....
This just came in on my phone.

Florence, KY AMBER Alert: LIC/[redacted by Rafferty] (KY) 2001 Blue Volkswagen Passat 4 door

Florence is about 30 minutes away. And what am I supposed to do if I see this car? Call in and report it? Attack the car with my handgun because I feel threatened? Are these alerts only for missing children, or do these alerts apply for other things? Do I need to know?

I don't get storm warnings on my phone, but I get this stuff. It's weird.
Monday, December 15th, 2014
1:26 pm
2:35 am
Friday, December 12th, 2014
3:39 am
( Immersion Broken: The Problem With Meme Reliance in MMOs )

I share this sentiment. The original material needs to be written at the minimum level of sincerity.
Wednesday, December 3rd, 2014
3:56 am
I've got some problems with Adobe Acrobat. (Surprise!) If a font isn't exactly perfect, the export either fails or has other craziness. Could use help either with Acrobat XI distiling or with fonts. Any advice? Thanks in advance.
Monday, December 1st, 2014
11:54 pm
Argot: "TSR writing"
TSR Writing: When different sections of your book read like they were written by different people, who wrote many different books that were then mashed together and presented as one.

Takes its name from the defunct TSR company, who often adopted the policy of assiging different writers to different sections of their games, then just compiling everything together, regardless of tonal shifts or inconsistencies. Led some strange results, such as Dungeons & Dragons (2nd edition) having text like "D&D is not a combat game" just after a section on "non-weapon proficiencies"... or a sci-fi game like Star Frontiers having flying baboon women and evil space worms in one chapter, then references to John Brunner and Stanislaw Lem in the next.

Compare Conway's Law.
Wednesday, November 26th, 2014
2:00 am
More argot: "fansplaining"
Fansplaining: defending an artistic decision by adding more context, in the belief that a critic will respond better if they have more context.  The more context, the better.

Some arguments have more fansplaining than others.  "You have to see the scene that comes next," is barely fansplaining.  "It makes sense if you see the other six episodes," is typical fansplaining.  "That's just one small thing in the larger canon," is very much fansplaining, as it doesn't even try to defend the original point -- just drown it with more context.

Fansplaining is not necessarily bad.  Some things do have greater aesthetic value in context. Fansplaining rises from the fallacy that, "If only they saw as much of this as I did, they would appreciate it the same way that I do," confusing quantity for quality. Fansplaining rejects the notion that something can still be good and flawed at the same time -- if part of it is good, then it's all good, and thus all of it must be defended.

Fansplaining is the ad nauseum versus de gustibus.
Saturday, November 22nd, 2014
10:20 pm
Understanding Rafferty's Argot: Mearlsing
Mearlsing: desiring to create a simple procedure that will please most people, but instead creating a complex procedure that pleases no one.
Friday, November 7th, 2014
11:05 pm
Selling a Korg! (signal boost)
Signal boost appreciated! Looking to sell my Korg TR-88 synthesizer. http://ebay.to/1shih6A
Sunday, October 19th, 2014
10:13 pm



I've done worse.
Sunday, July 13th, 2014
10:14 am
Quote for the day:
"Oh, I’m sorry. I wasn’t aware the game industry was so terrible that I should be giving special praise to a developer for doing its fucking job. Is that what we’ve become now? A group of players so thankful that a company isn’t trying to screw us over every second of the day, that we sing the praises of anyone capable of doing what they are supposed to be doing in the first place?"
Friday, June 27th, 2014
2:04 pm
Quote for the day:
"I, Timothy Ray Murray, am a human, born in Oklahoma, and obtained and continue to fully meet the requirements to serve as U.S. Representative when honored to so. I will never use a look alike to replace my (The Office’s) message to you or to anyone else, as both the other Republican Challengers have."
Thursday, June 26th, 2014
12:14 am
Ra(n)t: Retro-Gaming... or as they used to call it, Gaming
( Breaking the NES for Shovel Knight )

This article nails almost everything the Shovel Knight game gets wrong.

Shovel Knight is far, far too colorful. Every color palette choice is super-saturated, without any provisions for complements. You have bright colorful things on top of other bright colorful things. The NES only permitted three special colors per large block, with one universal background color. To get around the color limitation, many games used dithering, which on a blurry low-def screen, could give some amazing visuals.

Here are some of the NES games that really pushed the hardware limits:

Linus Spacehead

Crisis Force


The Shovel Knight developers not only missed the point of limited colors and graphics per frame, but they even missed one of the strengths of the NES -- its ability to dump huge amounts of RAM from bank switching. Notice how they confused simplicity of sprite design (fewer details in the pixels) with "simplifying" for retro.

Before there was retro, there were ports. Here's some examples of how NES game developers managed to get some amazing graphics despite the limitations of the machine.

Gradius 2 arcade version:

NES version:

Super Mario World SNES version

NES Bootleg:

A retro-game is supposed to embrace the aesthetics of the limitations of art form. For example, you don't shoot a movie in black-and-white the same way you would in color, only in high-def. You'd look to ways to use shadow and value as strengths, without the distractions of color. Likewise, when making a retro-game, the designers should be asking, "What is it that made these games fun to play, despite the limitations on sprite size, color choices, and control schemes?" And after that, they should be asking, "What is it about these limitations that makes it more fun in the first place?"

Shovel Knight gets so enamored of having multiple colors and large sprites that it becomes an ugly, pixelated mess, while only paying lip-service to the NES games that the developers claim it emulates.
Friday, June 20th, 2014
12:47 pm
Friday, June 6th, 2014
4:21 pm
In memoriam: Combine Personal Computer
We regret to announce the passing of COMBINE the Personal Computer. Born from humble beginnings of all-new parts, and assembled by nerds, Combine began life as the cornerstone of the Sanguine Games operation. They presided over the layout of such wonderful games as IRONCLAW, NOGGLE STONES, and MYRIAD SONG. Always willing to push an extra pixel, Combine bravely suffered through software from such dire straits as Adobe, Corel, and Microsoft. A staunch companion throughout the gaming years, Combine was there for Portal 2 when that just happened. They are survived by two feature phones and an Android tablet.

COMBINE (2009-2014)
"I never got to see Episode 3!"

Donations in Combine's memory can be sent to the Electronic Frontier Foundation.
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