Interesting Links for 2014-03-06

I haven’t posted many links lately, but that’s because I’m learning Rails. Here are some great links I found over the last two or three weeks though.

Tell, Don’t Ask

I’m doing my best not to ask.

Highlighting the current line & column in VIM

This is super helpful.

tldr: Simpler man pages

Great idea and I hope it continues to improve.

James Iry’s history of programming languages

Loved the images.

2.5 Ways to Execute a Shell Command

I guess it’s %x{something} from here on out.

How to find a time format for Ruby’s strftime

Great cheatsheet for strftime. Is On My Side

I never knew about the #between? method.

Stupid Ruby Tricks

Random cool Ruby tips.

Sass Placeholder Selectors

Placeholder selectors now make sense and are better in some ways than regular mixins.

To close or not to close

All about closing HTML tags.

Writing Code is Hard or “I wrote a Ruby gem!”

So, I wrote a Ruby gem. It’s a little inventory app called “stocker” and I built it to fullfill a need I had to keep track of things I regularly use and buy like food items, toiletries and the like. I had two big issues with distributing the gem. First, I apparently didn’t add the dependencies to the gemfile. I didn’t notice because I had them installed on my machines. Secondly, I am using the pathname class instead of IO or File. pathname is a super useful class for manipulating files and whatnot, but while the Pathname#write method worked fine in 2.2, it threw an exception when someone tried running it under 2.0 (the version installed under OS X Mavericks). When I switched Pathname#write to Pathname#open('w') { |t| t << contents } the error went away. I’m not sure if it’s a 2.0 bug or if that method was added in Ruby 2.1, but seeing as I enjoy using Pathname#write, I’m a little worried.

But, changing the method seems to work. I don’t have any documentation written up for the web, but running stocker -h gets you a list of commands to use with the app.

Update (2014-02-20 10:30AM): Apparently, Pathname#write just doesn’t exist in Ruby 2.0. This is unfortunate.

Pretty Print Tables with Thor

When you’re outputting to a terminal in a Thor app, you’ve got two useful formatting methods. One is print_in_columns and the other is print_table. print_table is probably the more useful of the two. print_in_columns is slightly easier to use, because it takes a string instead of an array of arrays like table does, but if you’re going to be outputting more than a single line, table is what you should be using. The tricky thing is that you need to pass an array of arrays to print_table. If you want to further improve the look of your application, Thor comes with a set_color method that you can use to pretty up your text. It’s used like this: set_color(string, :color), where string is the string to be colorized and :color is the a symbol named either blue, red, yellow, cyan, green, magenta, black, or white. There are also :on_red and the like that you can pass into set_color as well for background colors. The catch with using colors in your table is that all elements in your table need to be colored or else the formatting will get thrown off. set_color and print_table make pretty printing very easy in Thor, just remember to color everything, which is why you might find yourself needing :white or :black.

Interesting Links for 2014-01-20


The “Considered” Task

Kourosh Dini writes about a useful habit to get into to help you stay sane when dealing with daily tasks.

OSCON 2013: “More Instantly Better Vim” with Damian Conway

A collection of awesome tips and ideas for improving your use of Vim.


SunCycle is a nifty Sublime Text plug-in that uses your GPS coordinates to automatically switch between light and dark themes. You can specify your own themes if you want.


Rethink the Airline Boarding Pass

A great set of ideas about how to improve the boarding pass.

Hover.css – A collection of CSS3 powered hover effects

A great collection of CSS3 transforms in both CSS and Sass.


Moment – Amazing Lenses For Mobile Photography

Another super fancy add-on lens for your iPhone — on Kickstarter.


A supposedly secure smartphone.

Interesting Links for 2014-01-13


Using TextExpander to Get Your Location

You might not need to pull up your GPS coordinates that often, but if you ever need to, this could be useful.


Jason Santa Maria – On Web Typography from Build on Vimeo

Great talk about typography.


The Math Behind Weight Loss


Moroccan Meatball and Egg Tagine

Looks delicious and doesn’t seem hard to make.


Scared Shitless

Surprised I hadn’t seen it earlier.

365 Things I Learned in 2013

I started a little project on January 1, 2013 to record one learned thing every day for a whole year. Sometimes that thing was genuinely educational, sometimes a little bit of a life lesson and occasionally, something dumb, but one thing every day. And I did it. I wrote a Ruby script to assist in this. It’s called Kioku and its on GitHub for anyone else to use. Here we go.


  1. Foreigners in Kobe had their own newspapers in the Meiji period.
  2. Betting on video games with friends is a recipe for arguments.
  3. Cheap coffee tastes cheap.
  4. Exercise is a great way to boost your spirits.
  5. Never discuss your buddy’s infidelity in front of his girlfriend.
  6. Every girl I date has a dysfunctional family.
  7. You can swim with Whale Sharks in Okinawa.
  8. Metal Gear Rising is a Metal Gear game in name only.
  9. Japanese kids have dirty minds.
  10. Eating a huge block of fudge may be satisfying in the moment, but you’ll regret it the moment (and maybe even the moment before) you finish.
  11. You should always air out a room after cleaning it.
  12. Always buy out the remaining bill on your iPhone from Softbank.
  13. Back to the Future still holds up in 2013.
  14. You can’t always expect your girlfriend’s going to come over to your place instead of you going to hers.
  15. Japanese people also thought Tom Cruise went off the deep end.
  16. There’s a Python called “Hyde” in response to Ruby’s “Jekyll”.
  17. When teaching kids, it’s always best to take things as slow as possible.
  18. Kids always know more than you give them credit for.
  19. You should never put your penis all the way into the bottle when you piss unless you want the air pressure to shoot it back up at you afterwards. (-Thanks, Tom)
  20. I should just stop eating oysters. I always pay a high physiological price.
  21. Backing up financial records should be a major priority.
  22. You should always keep cough drops or throat spray in your work bag.
  23. If you’ve got sick days accrued, use the fucking things.
  24. If you have the feeling that you should call in sick, you probably should.
  25. You can’t let your appointments go unremembered when you’re sick.
  26. You can’t blame others for things that are out of their control.
  27. Do not order Dominos!
  28. The Aeropress “reverse” method is pretty great.
  29. A pigeon’s toxicity would kill it before it was of a level that would be dangerous for consumption by a person.
  30. People who actually believe the moon landing never happened actually exist!
  31. People & things you’ve given up on have a funny way of coming back and surprising you.


  1. If you ever feel like you’ve drank enough and want to go home, just go home.
  2. Sugar on top of chocolate sounds good, but it’s really not.
  3. Pie is always a great idea, until you’ve eaten all of it.
  4. Scripting can be frustrating, but it can also be a pretty rewarding endeavor.
  5. If something isn’t easy to use, it doesn’t matter how powerful it may be. You’ll almost always wind up using the thing that’s easier to use.
  6. Women care more about the appearance of their Valentine’s Day chocolate than the taste.
  7. My best friend’s wife thinks I’m 80% gay.
  8. It’s sometimes better to just stop trying to perfect everything.
  9. You can never outrun your in-laws.
  10. You can wind up spending your whole life waiting for something that never comes.
  11. It’s important to look at things from all angles.
  12. You really shouldn’t eat your dessert before dinner.
  13. Launchd requires absolute paths.
  14. Romance doesn’t die with marriage necessarily, but often does.
  15. You get better treatment by Japanese health insurance companies if you’re married.
  16. The Spanish version of creme brûlée is better than the French version.
  17. Wolves are the only animal (other than humans) that seek revenge.
  18. Just cause a lady ignores you for a week doesn’t mean she isn’t interested.
  19. The weather has way too much influence on my mood.
  20. As a programmer/scripter, you’re really only limited by your imagination.
  21. Mississippi just ratified the 13th amendment on 2013-02-18.
  22. A secessionist candidate in Texas got 225,000 votes in the 2008 campaign.
  23. Old gaijin in a pub are worthless creatures.
  24. You have to be willing to pay extra for good coffee.
  25. Managing expectations is the hardest part of dealing with people.
  26. You can use UK Xbox Marketplace download links with a US account.
  27. In Japanese, if you eat rotten meat, you say you “hit it”. (当たった!)
  28. Kids are more likely to be respectful when they’re asking for permission to use the restroom.


  1. Getting angry with someone who wants to give you money is a dumb idea.
  2. Just cause you get sick once in winter, doesn’t mean it won’t bite you again in March.
  3. Being sick sucks. That is all.
  4. You will sometimes wish for bad health if it means getting out of work.
  5. Exercising when you’re sick: surprisingly not as bad as you’d think.
  6. Building systems is fun.
  7. There are plans for tractor beams on paper.
  8. Japanese doctors recommend laxatives as a weight loss solution.
  9. There’s really no point in throwing people’s own words back at them in a fight.
  10. Bitches ain’t worth the hassle.
  11. Command-line finance tracking is a bitch.
  12. Lee Adama is impossibly in a photo that existed in Sharon Valerri’s apartment.
  13. Indonesia went from having 11,000 people with HIV in 2001 to 300,000 in 2009.
  14. Domestic consumption accounts for 60% of Japan’s GDP (in 2013).
  15. It’s a wise move to repair your OS X volume more than once every two years.
  16. The original TV Spartacus died on September 11, 2011.
  17. While delicious, nabe always ends up in over-eating.
  18. Very little beats watching a ball game with your dad.
  19. Japanese people believe a stiff neck and shoulder is a Japanese disease.
  20. Goodfellas is still great.
  21. Too much free time can be a bad thing.
  22. Drinking too much has consequences.
  23. Dirty Harry is bad ass.
  24. If you can just pay for something straight away, it’s better to do that than to mess with loans.
  25. Crazy women are way more dangerous than crazy men.
  26. It’s best to have as little furniture as you can get away with.
  27. Hardware stores don’t deal in wimpy extension cables.
  28. Not everyone gets innuendo.
  29. Japan has its fair share of shitty mothers.
  30. Mt. Fuji is predicted to erupt sometime in the 2030′s.


  1. Japan has started to enjoy the idiocy of April Fool’s too.
  2. The cylindrical shape that the body turns food into pre-digestion is called a “bolus”.
  3. All good things must come to an end.
  4. Charge what you think your time is worth.
  5. Tissues should be included with all flowers sent.
  6. There’s a certain joy that comes with being faced with a problem and instantly knowing the solution.
  7. There’s a belief in Japan that if you have sex with a black person that even if you have kids with someone else, your children will have a darker skin color.
  8. Apple doesn’t like to eat its own dog food.
  9. It’s now illegal to serve raw liver in Japan.
  10. Always double check the color when you’re buying something.
  11. Too many protein shakes can be a bad thing for your physique.
  12. Narcissism in the U.S. increased along with obesity rates from the 1980’s till now.
  13. Even at 29, you’re still capable of being “talked into” stuff by your friends.
  14. You can have too many timers.
  15. The simplest journal is the best.
  16. In a homogenous society, people with a varied background are surprisingly excited to share that fact.
  17. Don’t freak out on delivery guys.
  18. PDFs that are “off spec” are finicky.
  19. It’s a good idea to change up the person cutting your hair every once in a while.
  20. Beware of mothers of divorced women.
  21. Japan’s strongest motorcycle lock weighs 44 kilograms.
  22. There are three types of diarrhea.
  23. Abe Lincoln had a son who died while he was in office.
  24. According to funny or die, Steve Jobs banged Bill Gates’ wife virtually.
  25. Nothing is exquisite as the weekday afternoon nap.
  26. George W. Bush’s library contains a section where he can remind you that he didn’t make any mistakes in Iraq.
  27. I only get sick on Sundays, it seems.
  28. Sometimes, if you pray for a PC to not crash, it sometimes doesn’t crash!
  29. The King Slayer’s not such a bad guy.
  30. Just because coffee is expensive doesn’t mean it’s good.


  1. It feels good to write again.
  2. Coronal mass ejections can shoot billions of particles into space at over a million kilometers per hour.
  3. There’s a special area in Myanmar where tourism is allowed called “Tourism Triangle”.
  4. You will burn more calories post-workout if you lift heavy weights at low repetition than you will from lifting lighter weights at higher repetitions.
  5. Trust is earned over time, and lost in an instant.
  6. Quebec has French language laws and fined an Italian restaurant for using the word “pasta” because it wasn’t French.
  7. Canadians love coming to America and joining the NRA.
  8. Sucking on your baby’s pacifier helps them build up their immune system.
  9. Japanese people are not impressed with central air and heating.
  10. Israeli news anchors are surprisingly restricted when it comes to free speech.
  11. ! can be encoded as %21 in URL schemes.
  12. There’s never a good excuse to tell a woman when you eat without her (even when she’s four hours late.)
  13. A man’s testosterone levels are highest around 3-4 AM.
  14. You should never end a phone call with “These international rates are costing me a lot…I better go.”
  15. Furbies are now motion-activated. This is creepy.
  16. Most of teaching is about pace and timing.
  17. Carbon fiber has a great “memory”.
  18. Women forget to tell you that they forgot to take their birth control pill as easily as they forgot to take the pill in the first place.
  19. A corn husk is a plant vagina (or so I was told).
  20. Birth control pills and the cycle of hormones is impossible to understand.
  21. Even after the Libyan revolution, alcohol is still prohibited.
  22. DDR3 is better with small packets of data than with larger packets of data.
  23. Japanese men’s paunches aim upwards with age.
  24. Avoid women who depress you.
  25. 40 and unmarried isn’t pretty.
  26. Moretti is a surprisingly smooth beer.
  27. Japan has its own “Blue Cave”.
  28. My boss is fucking me out of days off.
  29. Apparently Verified by VISA is a real thing even though it seems like a password harvesting scheme.
  30. “Tree Man” diseases are warts.
  31. The previous name for AIDS was GRIDS.


  1. Staying out till 7am ain’t so bad if you’re not drunk when you go home.
  2. Jelly on the outside of a donut is nowhere near as good as when it’s inside.
  3. People will push you as far as you let them.
  4. Canada can show boobies on regular TV.
  5. Coffee doesn’t hold well for six hours, even if your thermos can keep it hot that long.
  6. The New Jersey special election in October will cost nearly $24 million.
  7. Your face shows weight loss before the rest of your body does.
  8. Basil pancakes do exist.
  9. There is no greater lure than that of pizza.
  10. Teaching a foreign language is all about doling out small chunks of new information.
  11. Waiting is the toughest thing to do of all.
  12. Nothing beats a hard-wired connection.
  13. Automation can go pretty haywire at times.
  14. Japanese people are terrified of the Chinese taking over the same way my mother’s scared of Mexicans.
  15. Japanese 3rd graders are super perverted.
  16. Low-rep/high-weight beats high-rep/low-weight.
  17. grep is a motherfucker.
  18. New Age’s bullshit knows no international borders.
  19. You can pick up the basics of programming by challenging yourself with more advanced programming problems.
  20. Ruby can call declarations from parent classes.
  21. active_support can help you do some bad ass shit in Ruby.
    • the_time =
    • the_time.end_of_month.beginning_of_day
  22. It’s best to let jokes from friends slide off your back, even if you’re slightly offended.
  23. Yogurt tasting ice cream isn’t that good.
  24. You can use p instead of puts to output in Ruby.
  25. Canada has never had a banking crisis.
  26. This works in Ruby. (a > b ? a : b) That’s pretty cool.
  27. Ruby is all about gems.
  28. Cold showers help increase fat burning.
  29. Loud restaurants ruin the dining experience.
  30. Spanish food beats Italian food every time.


  1. Ruby’s gotta a powerful date parser.
  2. Early-gen games don’t hold up so well at the end of the generation.
  3. Patent trolls live in mansions.
  4. Studying programming is all about reviewing the code over and over.
  5. “+%s” in the UNIX date command will give you the time in seconds since the Epoch.
  6. The taller a building is, the more you need to fortify it from wind.
  7. Freaks and Geeks is a great show.
  8. Sometimes, code errors make no sense.
  9. Modular code is easier to update later on than procedural code.
  10. Not every workout has to involve weights.
  11. Listening trumps all in language lessons.
  12. Use w+ => Entire Match in BBEdit to sort all lines alphabetically, regardless of preceeding code characters.
  13. “Advanced” means “smaller and more expensive”.
  14. When they say “use your tongue when you kiss” it doesn’t mean you should lick her.
  15. Gina from Nip/Tuck has been in a ton of shows.
  16. Viktor Smirnov is the Russian ambassador to Bahrain.
  17. Permanent foreign residents in Japan have to renew their residence cards every seven years.
  18. I care more about teaching than I thought I did.
  19. In Japan, even dwarves (fantasy ones!) are supposed to be cute.
  20. Since Ruby 1.9, Ruby remembers the order of hashes.
  21. Sky Clubs are totally worth the money.
  22. Masters and Johnson were a couple.
  23. Even if you don’t crash hard (sleep) the day after a Trans-Pacific flight, you will crash eventually.
  24. Pant sizes are a mystery to us all.
  25. U.S. currency is 8″ in length.
  26. Casinos attract the worst kinds of human beings.
  27. Everything’s better with tomatoes.
  28. It’s never too late for a comeback.
  29. Aeropresses work best with “espresso” grinds.
  30. "‘s can’t handle an ! in an argument for osascript.
  31. Lack of sleep increases hunger.


  1. Ford stopped selling the Ranger in America, but continues to sell it overseas.
  2. Minor league baseball teams have minor league fireworks nights.
  3. xargs can look for null characters to parse items for processing.
  4. You can set an OmniFocus project with AppleScript on an existing task.
  5. Riverfront Stadium opened up in June 1970.
  6. A two bedroom in the center of Cork costs about $1600 a month.
  7. Dennis Eckersly had a no-hitter for the Boston Red Sox.
  8. Harold Reynolds was fired from ESPN over sexual harassment allegations.
  9. Matt Latos has pitched two games with 13 strikeouts as a Red.
  10. There were 26,000 cases of sexual assault in the military in the last year.
  11. U.S. Bank branches in supermarkets are open on Sundays.
  12. Not drinking alcohol on long flights is a good idea if you want to sleep.
  13. After a Transpacific flight, it’s best to just go to sleep afterwards.
  14. Napping while jet lagged is a recipe for disaster.
  15. Yojimbo 4′s sync has a monthly cost.
  16. Matz is a Mormon.
  17. Lavabit’s founder is in trouble with the Feds for shutting down his email service cause they wanted to loot the data on his servers.
  18. Toyotomi Hideyoshi’s wife’s name was O-ne.
  19. Osaka has a nerdy street called “Ota Road”. (オタロード)
  20. The Ninja Gaiden arcade game didn’t have a sword.
  21. The Atari Lynx came out in 1989.
  22. The side of the abdomen is a great tickle spot.
  23. Ben Affleck will be the next Batman.
  24. Japanese women rent their wedding dresses.
  25. A&W drive-ins still exist in Okinawa.
  26. Snorkeling increases the risk of frying just your back.
  27. Blue Seal has “sugar cane” flavored ice cream.
  28. “Cave” in Okinawan is “gama”.
  29. グルクンの本当の名前は「タカサゴ」です。
  30. Most of the western coast of Okinawa is only about five meters deep.
  31. The best beach in Okinawa is called “Oodomari Beach”.


  1. You can buy pepper-flavored cookies in Okinawa.
  2. The Toxic Avenger had a kids cartoon called The Toxic Crusaders.
  3. Robin Williams got his start through Paul Mooney.
  4. The rain can play havoc with train schedules. :(
  5. The US government will not transfer your foreign visas to your new passport from your old passport for you.
  6. Elvis took a gun to the White House.
  7. My grandpa always gives newborn babies in our family one dollar.
  8. You have to scrap the insides out of goya before you cook it.
  9. There’s a specific property in the OmniFocus dictionary for “number of tasks”.
  10. It takes just two hours to drive around the coast of Miyakojima.
  11. Even passed arguments that have been quoted require a space in between them.
  12. Bash variables with filenames containing spaces need to have the variable call wrapped in quotes.
  13. Shako is a difficult to eat relative of the shrimp.
  14. The word for “gangbang” in Portuguese is “gangi bangi”.
  15. The surface area of one large pizza is bigger than the surface area of two medium pizzas.
  16. Use #tr in Ruby to swap characters in a string.
  17. The guy who did the artwork for Crusin’ USA did the logo for Yoplait.
  18. The Pragmatic Programmer was originally published in 1999.
  19. Bash can’t use * as globs inside quotes.
  20. Apple Store employees in Japan still suck at setting up new phone contracts.
  21. The Coleccovision had a module to let you play Atari games.
  22. Nakatsugawa is famous for chestnuts.
  23. Dexter’s finale is the only thing worse than Mass Effect 3′s original ending.
  24. The “break” is the small wrinkle caused when the top of your shoe stops your trouser cuff from falling to its full length.
  25. TouchID on the iPhone 5s can be spoofed.
  26. A good suit or sports jacket should fall past the waist and drape over the top of the curve formed by the buttocks.
  27. 38.5% of Japanese women do not want to be homemakers.
  28. Shochu is typically 25% alcohol.
  29. “崇” has seven different readings. The most common is “たかし”.
  30. American Indians didn’t have pork until the Spanish showed up.


  1. Using strftime('%e') puts a blank space before single digit dates. In Ruby, use #strip to counteract this is the space causes a problem.
  2. Multiplying a number and a string in Ruby requires the string to come first in the equation.
  3. zsh lets you throw up extra stuff on the right side of the terminal.
  4. brew can install the latest version of Ruby. (Thought you needed RVM.)
  5. Game Center CX 1 and 2 were developed by different developers.
  6. Check file size with UNIX’s stat command using -f %z.
  7. Combining find and xargs can make for a powerful file deletion tool.
  8. Ruby can check all sorts of file stats using the method File#stat.
  9. The PS3 was originally planned to ship alongside the Xbox 360.
  10. Add #flatten to an array before each to work on nested arrays in Ruby.
  11. String#intern == String#to_sym.
  12. There’s an I-74 sign in the E3 demo of Last of Us.
  13. Tom Cruise owns a P-51 Mustang.
  14. You can have multiple wives in Gabon.
  15. 70% of Sicilian businesses pay protection money.
  16. Ruby gem watchr can watch folders and do things automatically for you.
  17. Batman had a brother.
  18. ニパチ has a digital menu reader.
  19. HD remasters of PS2 games on PS3 still look terrible.
  20. Japanese wasps grow up to about 6 cm in length.
  21. Rake always looks for a :default task if you don’t run a specific test.
  22. Gay marriage is now legal in New Jersey.
  23. Jim Gordon’s son James was crazy.
  24. Numbers no longer has an AppleScript dictionary.
  25. Automator gained a Display Notification action under Mavericks.
  26. Avoid Alex Fraioli whenever possible.
  27. You can find everything needed for life in Japan (excluding food) at a hundred yen shop.
  28. The Joker met Harley Quinn at Blackgate, not Arkham.
  29. Congress has a member who was first elected before the advent of the microchip.
  30. Microsoft Office now has a larger AppleScript library than iWork does.
  31. They make fruit flavored cigarettes.


  1. The lead singer of Filter is actor Robert Patrick’s brother.
  2. OS X is internally referred to by wine names.
  3. HyperCard cost 0 back in the day.
  4. Chef Yasuda of Sushi Yasuda is a karate master.
  5. An American-made t-shirt routinely costs 2-3 times more than a similar t-shirt made in a third world country.
  6. Artie Lang was hooked on heroine.
  7. Mike Tyson used to raise pigeons as a kid.
  8. Five hours of a wine buffet is too much.
  9. When you drink a lot of red wine and throw up, it comes back up all red.
  10. You can just use $ -> in CoffeeScript to set up jQuery’s document ready handler.
  11. CSS3 can do gradients.
  12. Sass had a previous whitespace significant syntax before scss.
  13. CSS was first released in 1996.
  14. CSS3 added border-radius for the first time.
  15. There’s a difference between email ‘forward’ and ‘redirect’.
  16. The Fifth Element is ridonkulous.
  17. David Lynch wouldn’t put his own name on Dune.
  18. The word for nursery school teacher in Japanese is literally protective mother.
  19. Mashed potatoes in a vaccuum sealed bag do exist!
  20. Vim lets you delete a line with just a double tap of d.
  21. Google is pushing client side ad serving.
  22. zsh allows for line breaks in quotes, while bash does not.
  23. Pinner for iOS does Instapaper-style text parsing.
  24. The flu shot can make your arm swell.
  25. Keynote has a flame animation. Bad-fucking-ass.
  26. Even Japanese employees who never meet with customers sometimes have to wear uniforms.
  27. Heather Graham is 43.
  28. Lincoln originally started Thanksgiving as a national holiday.
  29. Adam Carolla’s grandpa was a stay-at-home husband.
  30. Next year will be the year of the horse.


  1. Paul Walker was 40 when he died.
  2. JFK had a bowel disorder in his younger years.
  3. Fuck JavaScript. No seriously. That’s what I learned today.
  4. English Breakfast
  5. Objective-C has nightmarish syntax.
  6. If you’re a good looking guy in advertising, you too can have a fiance and seven girlfriends.
  7. Everyone from every country has a “Mama’s meatballs” recipe.
  8. Japanese laundromats can call you when your stuff is ready.
  9. PGP’s been around since 1991.
  10. You can buy doctor’s office-grade cold medicine for cheap on the Internet.
  11. SNAFU and FUBAR were military slang.
  12. Matsumoto Yukihiro is from Shimane.
  13. Mavericks tags can be written from the command line using a plist, but Finder comments can’t be done in the same fashion.
  14. FORTRAN started the practice of using *s for multiplication.
  15. The first computer was built using a punch card system in 1890 for the purposes of collecting the census.
  16. Ajax was originally a term for the flush toilet in 1596.
  17. The term ‘calling a function’ comes from the fact that they used to be referenced by call numbers.
  18. According to Netflix, the average speed of Google Fiber is 3.52 Mbps.
  19. OS X Mavericks has excellent PS3 controller support.
  20. jQuery is just an Ajax library.
  21. Steam’s holiday sale is massive.
  22. Japanese Netflix-style services charge for shipping on mail rental DVDs.
  23. It’s possible for Steam to run out of digital goods to sell (i.e. keys).
  24. Houses are either built on a foundation or a slab.
  25. The Hippocratic Oath is just 300 words long.
  26. ‘The Internship’ is a two-hour Google advert.
  27. Ptolemy was the father of astronomy.
  28. The first birth control pill derived its hormones from horse urine.
  29. Japan’s number one reality show is a show about a guy with too many kids.
  30. There are more irrational numbers than rational ones.
  31. If you pump your butt full of powder, you can fart it out. (Thanks, Japanese TV. )

Games I Played in 2013

Xbox 360

Mass Effect 3

Through the early part of the year, I was still playing quite a lot of Mass Effect 3 multiplayer. Mass Effect 3′s last DLC was early this year and when the newness of it wore off, the multiplayer community started to drift away. I continued to play Mass Effect 3 up through May or so. Mass Effect 3 was the first game ever that I got really into the multiplayer and I’m glad it lasted as long as it did.


Batman: Arkham Origins

I loved Arkahm Asylum and liked Arkham City a lot. Arkham Origins was the Batman game of this generation that I just “enjoyed”. The story is okay, but it’s not great. The combat is just like that of the previous two games, but it makes no sense why a younger Batman has gadgets that an older Batman didn’t have. Also, the boss battles are either too easy or frustrating due to poor implementation of the controls. Arkham Origins lacks balance.

Assassin’s Creed 4: Black Flag

AC4 was a nice surprise. It felt more like an Assassin’s Creed game than AC3, but it largely ignored the Assassin/Templar story. The sailing stuff from AC3 became a major part of AC4 and it’s interesting, but when you’re spending more time sailing instead of assassinating, the game starts losing its “Assassins Creed”-ness.


Super Mario 3D Land

I barely touched my 3DS this year, and even for a Mario game, I could barely bring myself to play it. I didn’t bother to finish SM3DL.


The Wolf Among Us

TWAU is the DC comic series Fables turned into a Walking Dead-style adventure game. It’s full of cursing and over-the-top violence, and I enjoyed it more than The Walking Dead even.

The Walking Dead: Season 2

Speaking of The Walking Dead, Season 2 started. It’s The Walking Dead. It’s great. That’s all.


Teslagrad is a puzzle-platformer that uses magnetism as its main method of puzzle-solving. It’s got a handdrawn-steampunk look that’s gorgeous and the boss battles are reminiscent of classic NES-era twitchy boss fights.

Dear Esther

Dear Esther is not a game. It’s a mildly interactive story, and it’s great at telling that story. Buy the end of the game, you will feel the narrator’s pain.

The Witcher

The Witcher is an RPG with lots of sex, magic and dudes who look like they could be in a rock band. Also, you get trading cards for having sex with different women.

The Stanley Parable

The Stanley Parable is also not a game. It’s a collection of funny endings. It’s great as well.

Interesting Links for 12/17/13

In Historic Ruling, Federal Judge Declares NSA Mass Phone Surveillance is Likely Unconstitutional | Electronic Frontier Foundation

There’s going to come a day, very soon probably, where the Executive starts to ignore the Judicial.

10 CoffeeScript One Liners to Impress Your Friends |

CoffeeScript continues to be awesome.

Unix Shells: Bash, Fish, Ksh, Tcsh, Zsh – Hyperpolyglot

Everything you ever wanted to know about all the different shells. Spoilers! Zsh is still the best.