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Podcast 79 Transcript

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A transcript for Episode 79: "Kibo Was Here ."

Pronoiac set up a Fanscribed page, and this transcript came from there.


jingle: (theme music)

mathowie: (singsong, somewhat under his breath) I don't like baseball. All right.

jessamyn: What?

mathowie: Kickstarter was telling me crap.

jessamyn: Stop reading your mail!

cortex: (stifled snorting)

mathowie: I was turning it off! And that was a new message!

cortex: (laughs)

jessamyn: So what?!

mathowie: I hate baseball.

Ok. Episode 79 of the Metafilter Podcast!

jessamyn: Because nerds.

cortex: Yes.

jessamyn: Last podcast was long podcast, short month; this is going to be long month, short podcast. Go!

mathowie: That sounds good.

cortex: I didn't like anything. The end!

mathowie and jessamyn: (laugh)

mathowie: This has been a tremendous waste of time for everyone involved. The end.

cortex and jessamyn: (laugh)

jessamyn: Shut up! This was an exceptional month on Metafilter, but maybe that's why you guys have me around.

cortex: No no, I was just thinking of a way to make it a very short podcast.

cortex: I'm not actually being a negative Nancy.

mathowie: Yeah, let's go fast, though.

jessamyn: All right!

cortex: We'll go normal speed, but I'll speed it up after the fact, in post.

mathowie: Oh, I didn't even look up Jobs. Anything in neglected old Jobs?

jessamyn: You know, the best way to have these go quickly, is to prepare.

cortex: (hearty laughter)

mathowie: I totally prepare for everything, except the, you know, the lesser-known regions of Metafilter.

jessamyn: Well, can I just start us off, then, by saying that Jeremy and I - restless_nomad and I - went to a two-mod meetup -

- which is whatever happens when I'm at a meetup with another mod, and we had 14 people out for Chinese food, at this tiny Chinese restaurant called The Peach Farm, in Boston, and it was super great, thanks to everyone from PAX who came out to meet us, which included some New Yorkers, some local folks, probably some other out-of-towners. We got to meet bondcliff's wife, and it was just a very good time. A very, very good time. Thank you to people who came out.
And then I got to drag Jeremy back to my place and we sat around and went for a freezing cold walk on the beach, and then I dropped her on the train a day and a half later, and she had a Penn Station-area meetup with The Whelk, the Mr. The Whelk, and a couple other people.

mathowie: Ooh, neat.

cortex: Nice!

jessamyn: Yeah! She had a very quick visit, and I think it went fairly well.

mathowie: Awesome.

cortex: I felt so dumb, I was trying to remember, like, I gotta, we rearranged schedules because Jeremy's going to be out of town, and I was like, I can't remember why she's out of town, and it's like, "Oh, yeah, PAX."

jessamyn: (laughs) Maybe you've heard of it.

cortex: That thing that my friends are at too, yeah.

mathowie: That thing that seventy thousand...

cortex: Yeah.

jessamyn: And, well, because she, I know, ninety thousand, I think, was this last one. And because she comes from a career in gaming moderation and community, she ran into a ton of her old friends who are doing this, that, and the other, and so she had, kind of, it's like when I go to library conferences and people are like, "Ohhh, where you been?" It was the same kind of thing. She said she had a very good time.

But PAX is like a monster. I mean, it's significantly larger than the National Library
Conference. It was fun hearing stories about it.

cortex: Well, maybe if Square Enix would start putting up a booth at that library conference, you know, they could...

jessamyn: If what?

cortex: Square Enix, they're a game company, I was just--

jessamyn: UNIX? They're UNIX?

cortex: Enix. Enix.

jessamyn: Oh.

mathowie: Isn't PAX like sixty thousand people or something trying to fit in a monster hotel...?

cortex: It's pretty huge, yeah. It's become quite the event.

jessamyn: Yeah, I think Jeremy said ninety. Ninety thousand.

cortex: Aaah!

jessamyn: And that's just PAX East.

mathowie: I know, right.

jessamyn: Not even PAX--

jessamyn and mathowie: West.

jessamyn: And they're going to have one in Australia. Has anybody made the eunuchs UNIX joke before? They must have.

cortex: Yeah, many times.

mathowie: [??] in Dilbert in 1998, I think

jessamyn: Shut up!

mathowie: (chuckles)

jessamyn: Oh, it is a Dilbert thing.

mathowie: So it's this... oh, dude, ninety thousand people, and it's just those two dorks that do the comic that's not that funny to me as a non-gamer.

cortex: (laughs)

jessamyn: But apparently they have a guy who's another one of the guys who really has made the conference his thing.

mathowie: A business.

jessamyn: Yeah! But he runs it like a business, and it's one of the things like South By where they have a huge excited fanbase, so they have tons and tons of volunteers who are super into it and really well organized, and the big difference between it and big conferences like South By is like, you want to go to South By and go to the conference, it's eight hundred bucks, whereas if you want to go to PAX it's frickin' fifty. Fifty.

mathowie: Oh, that's the problem. (chuckles)

jessamyn: It's sup--no, that's what's awesome about it! I mean, depending, I guess, on your perspective.

mathowie: Ninety thousand bodies in a single place is psychotic!

jessamyn: When did you become agoraphobic?

mathowie: Uh, when it got to ninety thousand. That's unsafe for fire codes.

cortex: (chuckles)

mathowie: That's cra... I'm amazed!

jessamyn: Fire code! You are such a concern troll! Fire code?

mathowie: (laughs)

jessamyn: Oh my God. Oh my God. Other people might care.

cortex: Is agoraphobia a crowd thing?

mathowie: No, agoraphobia's everything.

cortex: I thought agoraphobia [??] wide open spaces.

mathowie: I thought it was just outside.

cortex: Yeah, well, [??].

mathowie: Ninety thousand people... oh, man, I can't believe a comic got that... that is amazing. I'm impressed. That's bigger than Comic-Con, but then Comic-Con costs probably, I don't know, a thousand bucks?

jessamyn: I don't know. I don't think it is.

mathowie: They sell out in five minutes, so I don't know. Wow, and it's just a play games, play console games, play board games, card games...

jessamyn: Well, and the exhibit hall is like the new every single game exhibit hall.

mathowie: Ever.

jessamyn: And if you want to go to that exhibit hall, that's the only place you're going to see it.

mathowie: Huh. Jesus. I know, they just had it in Seattle, I think. The West one.

jessamyn: Yeah. I mean, I don't know just, but yeah.

cortex: They do it, yeah, it's like, it's--

mathowie: It was like a month ago, I think. Because there was that great--did you see that tweet from the Seattle police department, the greatest governmental tweet I've ever seen?

jessamyn: Yes.

mathowie: Like, making an insider joke, I don't know how they pulled that off, but it was amazing.

jessamyn: What did it have to do with, something about horseback? It was a while ago.

mathowie: It was like, someone just tweeted, like, "Hey! Hey, Seattle PD! It's just a bunch of us harmless nerds in this massive line for our PAX West tickets. Do you really think officers on horseback is necessary to keep us in line?" And then the Seattle PD tweeted back, like, "Well, we're just using them for crowd control, user 237. If it helps, try to imagine us cosplaying as..." oh, God, I forgot, "...centaurs."

cortex: (laughs)

jessamyn: Oh, you're Grandpa!

mathowie: (laughs) I just forgot what they called them.

jessamyn: Trust me, it's funny. Oh my God.

mathowie: Let me explain the joke to you.

cortex: Yeah.

mathowie: Oh, so funny side thing: this PAX meetup screenshot I sent of the Google Maps of the--

jessamyn: What?

mathowie: Like, load up the, look at the--

jessamyn: "You can just pretend they're centaur cosplayers, if you'd prefer."

mathowie: Yeah, that was it.

jessamyn: Admit it, I'm the awesomest librarian.

mathowie: (laughs) How did you find it in that time?

cortex: (laughs)

mathowie: Twitter isn't good at that stuff.

There's a Leather District in Boston and it's called out on the Google Maps. That's amazing. What is that?

jessamyn: Because that's where they used to do all the leather tanning! I don't get it.

mathowie: That's just, like, it's a garment district? Okay. They kill horses or cows there, and...

jessamyn: Well, because tanneries used to be a thing, you had to put them in certain places because they frickin' stank!

mathowie: Oh, this wasn't downtown back in the--or this was a day's horse ride back in the day away from center of Boston, I guess?

jessamyn: Probably.

mathowie: Even though it's--

jessamyn: I don't think the Leather District is now like the Leather Boy District, if that's what you mean.

mathowie: (chuckles) It was kind of funny to think of it that way, though, but. Google Maps.

jessamyn: Sure. I mean it, for a lot of super-old cities, that's kind of what, yeah, what you wind up with.

mathowie: Huh. Cool.

jessamyn: So I'm trying to talk about the website, and you're trying to talk about whatever. It's a neighborhood of Boston.

mathowie: I am laughing at Google Maps.

cortex: (chuckles)

mathowie: Let's go back to... any other IRL good stuff at all?

jessamyn: That was all I participated in. IRL appears to be doing really well. Did we, the feature that we added with the notification, was that last month or the month before?

mathowie: I think it was last month.

cortex: Either way, it seems to be working well. That totally worked for me.

jessamyn: Yeah! People seemed, that was one of the first feature roll-outs we had that was just, everybody was just stoked and that was it. Everybody was stoked. Basically, now you can be alerted when a meet-up goes from proposed to finalized, and a couple other things, if you want, and so people are kind of happy about that.

mathowie: And if the advertiser--the advertiser.

jessamyn: (snickers)

mathowie: If the presenter wants to, which is good, because we've had six o'clock meetups changed to 4 p.m. because they found out the place was closed, so blasting out an e-mail to you at that last second is a really good idea.

jessamyn: Yeah, totally. Totally, totally. But other than that, IRL, whatever.

mathowie: Jobs looks like it's actually picking up, if anyone's going to tailor the job market to whatever's happening in

Jobs. It looks like there's a zillion new Jobs in March, which is a good thing.

jessamyn: Yeah, and a User Experience, Director of User Experience for the Wikimedia Foundation, which is very exciting.

mathowie: Yeah, that sounds cool. That would be super fun.

jessamyn: Information Systems Manager for the food co-op in Austin--oh, that was February.

mathowie: I think we mentioned it last week.

jessamyn: Yeah, yeah.

mathowie: Last time. Where's the one with... yeah, yeah, user experience, there it is. Okay. Projects!

cortex: Projects!

jessamyn: Projects was great!

mathowie: Yeah, I got a--

jessamyn: Projects was great. One of the things that I wanted to give a shout-out especially for was we've got a community radio station, sort of in my community, now! Royalton Community Radio, which is two towns over from where I live, or one town over, I guess, if you go the short way, is up and running, and it's just this, you know, it's just what it sounds like! It's independent, community-based, all volunteer, non-profit radio station. They got a license, they're doing it all legit, and

you can listen to it on the Internet.

mathowie: Oh, wow!

jessamyn: And it's cool!

mathowie: Wow, he's using a Mac running just over-the-counter software to cast it out, that's cool. Neat.

jessamyn: Yeah, and then parmanparman asks if they'd consider carrying Interfaith Voices.

mathowie: What is that?

jessamyn: Let's see how that goes!

But yeah, no, it's cool. I'm making slow motion, my little Vermont 251 song was supposed to be bumper music for a set of little radio spots I'm going to do for them.

cortex: (chuckles) Awesome.

jessamyn: Yeah!

mathowie: So wait, terrapin has a morning show. Is that basically, you make a playlist, or does he actually have to show up and do stuff?

jessamyn: I think it depends. I think the playlist can just--

mathowie: Oh, wait, "Smart playlists are created to manage the shows," so yeah, for automatic [??].

jessamyn: But they do have a studio, so you can go and do a call-in show or something like that if you wanted to.

mathowie: Sweet.

cortex: Get your DJ on.

jessamyn: Yeah. And they've been working on it a really long time, and it's really exciting! You can tune in, it's actually pretty good, and it's just cool. It's cool, it's

cool. I thought it was pretty cool.

mathowie: Is this something that started as a low-power pirate kind of thing that they got--

jessamyn: No! They really went straight to legit--

mathowie: Legit.

jessamyn: I mean, at least as I understand it. If so, I don't know about it.

mathowie: Dude, they should make an open-source toolkit to making a legit station, like, everything we learned, write it up somewhere, that'd be awesome to know.

jessamyn: That's a good idea. [???]

mathowie: Yeah, I should. Like, was it five thousand dollars? Was it fifty thousand dollars? Like, how does this work?

jessamyn: I donated my UPS to them, so I think I got a sticker in the mail or something cool like that.

mathowie: (chuckles) Cool.

jessamyn: Yeah!

mathowie: Where are my favorites? I loved yesterday's, it's fresh, it only has three votes, it deserves way more.

jessamyn: Oh, you were tweeting all about this yesterday.

mathowie: That was amazing! bertrandom [ˈbɛɹt ˈɹændəm]'s--

jessamyn: Explain what it is, please.

mathowie: bertrandom [ˈbɛɹt ˈɹændəm]'s space claw, space claws.

jessamyn: Wait, it's bert random [ˈbɛɹt ˈɹændəm]? I thought it was bertrandom [ˈbɛɹˌtɹəndəm]

mathowie: bertrandom [ˌbɛɹˈtɹændəm]? Oh, it's probably bertrandom [ˌbɛɹˈtɹændəm], so it's both of them.

jessamyn: I don't know! Alright, go on, sorry.

mathowie: bertrandom [ˌbɛɹˈtɹændəm] posted this Flickr hack that's all in Telnet, that only runs in Telnet, and it runs your stuff as ASCII. I didn't know there was a color mode for Telnet, that's how in the dark I am.

jessamyn: I think that was like the difference between VT100 and VT102 or something like that?

mathowie: (chuckles)

jessamyn: No, seriously!

mathowie: Someone tweeted at me, like, "Duh, you can put OS X's Telnet in color, you know." So I haven't done that yet, but it's some simple command.

jessamyn: Heh. Heheheh.

mathowie: But you log in, and then it figures out your photostream, and the photos are terrible with ASCII, but it's just an amazing...

jessamyn: Some of them are cool!

mathowie: Yeah, it's a cool proof of concept. You can surf your Flickr stream and all of Flickr through Telnet, like, with gestures, with keystrokes, and it's all ASCII art.

jessamyn: Badass.

cortex: This is tremendous. This is fantastic.

mathowie: And it's, right, I think? Yeah,

jessamyn: Does space claw mean a thing?

mathowie: Yeah, space claw, I think, is Aaron from Montreal, that Aaron.

jessamyn: Oh, yeah, yeah! Aaron Cope.

mathowie: Aaron Cope, yeah. His joke name for the Sutro--no, not the Sutro Tower, what's the thing...?

jessamyn: The other one, the little Martian mother one?

mathowie: Yeah, he called it Space Claw, which I always thought was hilarious. He... what the hell's the thing called, Twin Peaks, I guess? They called it the thing on top of Twin Peaks in San Francisco, that structure, the radio antenna or something? He always calls it a Space Claw, and if you click it it's a picture of Space Claw, you know, done in ASCII.

jessamyn: No, it's the Sutro Tower.

mathowie: Is that...?

jessamyn: The one with the big antennas?

mathowie: Yeah, yeah.

jessamyn: Yeah, that's Sutro Tower.

mathowie: Yeah, so the Sutro Tower, he calls it a Space Claw.

jessamyn: You know how I found it? I typed in 'not the sutro tower' to Google, and I got lots of pictures of that.

cortex: (laughs)

mathowie: I was thinking of the Sutro Baths, Sutro like an old--

jessamyn: Aah! Yeah, yeah, yeah.

mathowie: --pool place that burned down.

jessamyn: Down in the Sutro District.

mathowie: Yeah. I'm like, "Wait, Sutro's on the other side, if that's..." Oh, there's, if you just search for Space Claw there's this photo--

jessamyn: (laughs)

mathowie: There's a user called Space Claw, and it's nothing but Space Claw photos.

jessamyn: One of our users? Oh, a...

mathowie: Flickr.

jessamyn: I assume that's just Aaron.

mathowie: Yeah, it's just Aaron, I think, joking around. Space Claaw!

jessamyn: Because he used to work for Flickr, so.

mathowie: Yeah.

jessamyn: Well, here's another thing that I really enjoyed. Like, if you look at the title, "Adorable Animals, Mildly Amusing Captions", you're like, "Oh God, no." But it's by unsub, and the whole thing is a photo blog of animals waiting to be adopted at the SPCA shelters.

mathowie: Mm-hm.

jessamyn: In Louisiana, and it's one of those things where, you know, a lot of shelter websites, whatever, the shelter people are busy and they're underfunded and whatever, but people who take really good photographs, one of the things that they've found is if you can show a really good picture of an animal looking good, you know, it's often a really good incentive for people, especially Internet people who are used to looking at cute pictures of animals, to actually go adopt them, and they've done studies on

animals that have really good photographs of them have a tendency to be more easily adopted, and so unsub made this really wonderful, very simple Tumblr blog with some cute photos of some cute photos with funny captions, and theoretically that will help the Louisiana SPCA get these animals adopted!

mathowie: Yeah, if you were... it's weird to do a hyperlocal Tumblr, but if you're in Louisiana in their area and you love Tumblr,

and you were thinking of getting a pet, that would be the perfect time to follow him and wait for a perfect photo to pop up.

jessamyn: Yeah, exactly! And they're just good photos, and they make the animals seem kind of well-adjusted and interesting, as sometimes shelter pictures are kind of difficult--

mathowie: Yeah.

jessamyn: Or they get some blurry photo of a cat running away and people are like, "Oh God."

cortex: Yeah, because all you [brought ?] the resources for is for someone to come with their cameraphone or whatever and...

jessamyn: Yeah.

mathowie: If you think about it, like what you were saying, it just depends on how good the photo is, is how successful they are, and if you think about

eBay, like--

jessamyn: Absolutely!

mathowie: Like, why aren't we...?

jessamyn: Get good with your cameras, people!

mathowie: Why aren't we teaching high school students...?

cortex: [??] every time he wants to sell something on eBay or whatever, he brings it over and I take a picture with a 5D and, you know, it's not even a 5D [??], he'd just like a decent camera shooting in decent lighting by someone who can compose a basic photograph, and gee whiz! It always looks good on fucking eBay instead of a bad flash photo in the dark in the basement somewhere.

jessamyn: Right, well, because there's a bunch of social assumptions that go along with it, but, you know, if people all buy into

those social assumptions together, like, "This person with this expensive camera would never rip me off!"

mathowie: Yeah, well, like we're talking about Jessamyn, you're one of the coolest librarians alive according to Flavorwhatever--

jessamyn: According to a website I know nothing about.

cortex: (laughs)

mathowie: And your headshot, your latest headshot is amazingly well-lit. Like, perfect softbox lighting... like, the guy did a great job.

jessamyn: Ben DeFlorio. If anybody's in central Vermont and needs a professional headshot that can make even a monkey like me look good, please look him up.

mathowie: Well, my hypothesis here is that people always talk about--

jessamyn: That I'm not cool at all, it's just the good photo?

mathowie: No!

jessamyn: (laughs)

cortex: It's a big scam.

mathowie: No! No, people say we're not training our workers today for the jobs of tomorrow, like, so many of them are going to be, taking a good photo is going to change the course of your life or your business or your job.

jessamyn: Being able to use e-mail like an adult person, you know, is one of those things also. Because photography's one of those things, I think, that spans

the pre-digital generation and the post-digital generation.

mathowie: Right.

jessamyn: If you can compose a great photo, even someone without a computer can be like, "Wow, nice picture!", you know? Which is a little different with some other methods of communicating information, and so it's a good spanning skill, also. Because you can still take photos for the newspaper!

mathowie: Oh, I'm saying, every fifteen-year-old in America or the world should have to take a digital literacy class, where you're like,

"Here's how you communicate over e-mail, here's how you take a decent photo--"

jessamyn: Preaching to the converted, my brother. I agree entirely.

mathowie: But then the problem is, like, go--

jessamyn: Why doesn't it happen? Let's talk about why it doesn't happen! Because they don't standardized test for that kind of thing, so fuck everyone.

mathowie: No, no, well, what if I could--

jessamyn: Excuse me. That's 25 cents well-spent.

mathowie and cortex: (laugh)

mathowie: Angry money.

jessamyn: (laughs) Hate money. But yeah, no, I totally agree. And it keeps people from getting ripped off! Awesome.

mathowie: Well, no, let's say we got to teach this. I would show up one day and go, "Step 1: Okay, everybody, go write ten thousand e-mails until you're good at it and then call me."

jessamyn: (laughs)

mathowie: Or go take ten thousand photos! Like, there's so much practice necessary. I guess you can--

jessamyn: Well, and learning how to not take the bait when you're dealing with Internet people, you know.

mathowie: Yeah.

jessamyn: Learning how to Facebook effectively isn't just about Facebook, it's learning how to interact socially with other people who may or may not be the people you would choose to interact with, which might include the lady at the

airline terminal in addition to your jerk uncle on Facebook.

mathowie: Yeah.

jessamyn: My uncle on Facebook is delightful, so I don't mean to cast aspersions.

mathowie: (chuckles) So let me get back to Projects.

jessamyn: (chuckles) Yes.

mathowie: My other favorite little Tumblr Project was an ant researcher! Doing a Tumblr of just things they learned while doing ant research, and here are photos from the lab and stuff.

jessamyn: Bucket!

cortex: Nice.

mathowie: So awesome.

jessamyn: Yes. Every time this guy shows up with ant information, I'm always stoked, because he really knows what he's talking about, and he seems like a nice guy.

mathowie: Yeah. It's so good. There's just one for animated GIFs of ants, too.

jessamyn: antgifs.

mathowie: It's the second Tumblr. That's so, so awesome.

jessamyn: Well, I liked another nature Project, which was snowfall, who lives on St. Martin in the Lesser Antilles?

And created a little website to show off who lives on the island. Title of the post, "The area of my expertise is 87 square kilometers," which I thought was great.

mathowie: Is that the Caribbean-ish?

cortex: Well, and I want to be clear. They're still pretty good Antilles, as far as that goes. People--

mathowie: (laughs)

jessamyn: Oh my God. You guys.

cortex: People read too much into that sometimes.

mathowie: (croaks in amusement)

jessamyn: Oh my God.

So this is Mark Yokoyama, and you can Google where the place is.

mathowie: Saint Martin.

jessamyn: His "about" page says his friend Dave is Dr. Bronner's grandson -

mathowie: No way!

cortex: Nice!

jessamyn: I know!

mathowie: One love!

jessamyn: - and Dave's dad invented SnoFoam, which is like firefighting foam, but used to simulate snow. Bam!

mathowie: I've never heard of SnoFoam.

jessamyn: I'm going to go be friends with him on Facebook right now.

cortex: (laughs)

mathowie: God there are so many countries in that island chain. Don't mock my geographic stupidity, but my god, there are so many gazillion -

- countries in that island chain.

jessamyn: No, this is a serious problem, and why Jessamyn does terribly, terribly, on trivia.

mathowie: I thought Trinidad and Tobago (pronounced: "toe-BAH-go") -

jessamyn: Tobago. (pronounced: "toe-BAY-go")

mathowie: I thought that was up by Haiti somewhere. Because people go there, but it's right off -

jessamyn: It's in the same giant circle in the Caribbean, but it's not really near Haiti at all.

mathowie: It's practically touching Venezuela. It's right off the coast. I had no idea.

jessamyn: Right. Right!

mathowie: I knew where Grenada was. I didn't even know Dominica existed until that post the other day.

about the guy visiting every nation on earth.

jessamyn: And then there's the non-sovereign territories like Guadalupe and Curaçao and Aruba, Saint Martin (French pronunciation). So there's St. Martin (English) and then there's Sint Maarten (Dutch).

mathowie: The weird part is, a zillion people go to one island, but not the next island over - I know Dominica is one of the least-visited countries on earth, though it's right next to

super-popular islands that have flights daily.

jessamyn: Is that just because they don't have infrastructure?

mathowie: Yeah. There's some sort of weird visa thing, and then there's only one airport and they only do prop planes.

jessamyn: I feel like I was reading a lot about Dominica in this book I was reading about island bio-geography. That they have really interesting - pause

Let me google before I start talking.

cortex: (laughs)

mathowie: There's an island called The Bahamas. I thought "The Bahamas" were the entire region.

cortex: Like: this is a Bahama. That's a Bahama. [???] They're the Bahamas!

mathowie: I thought Caribbean / The Bahamas was just the region. I did not know that was a thing.

And then I always forget that Bermuda's way up by North Carolina but in the middle of the ocean.

jessamyn: Right. Because it's a place you can go from the East Coast of the United States fairly quickly and cheaply.

Yeah, there's a whole bunch of crazy lizards in Dominica that support -
- island bio-geography.

mathowie: Six months ago, I learned that Puerto Rico's down there in the island chain.

jessamyn: Come on!

mathowie: Because on every school map, Puerto Rico is shown right next to Florida.

jessamyn: Tucked up by Florida.

mathowie: Or South Carolina. So I always thought it was up there and I was like "yeah, why isn't it a state? It's so close on the map!"

jessamyn: Although it's not super far. And the thing about Puerto Rico, of course, is just again, it's in the same time zone, so if you live on the East Coast, it's an awesome place to go to be somewhere else, sort of.

mathowie: Oh, right. Right.

jessamyn: That's still in the United States.

mathowie: Yeah. Hawaii's a nightmare for East Coasters.

jessamyn: A nightmare. A nightmare. And then when you get there, you're--

mathowie: Five hours back.

cortex: I know. And everyone I've ever met from the East Coast, I say, "Hawaii, right?" And they just start screaming. Because they get terrified.

mathowie: two in the morning, and yeah, it's terrible.

cortex: They wake up in a cold sweat from a dream in which they went to Hawaii.

mathowie: (chuckles)

jessamyn: I went there two times. One time? One time.

mathowie: And it takes forever to get there.

jessamyn: And when you get there, you're in a beachy resort, which is... I don't know.

mathowie: (chuckles)

jessamyn: But there's volcanoes, I guess, stuff you can walk around.

mathowie: It's fun.

Last Project I thought was cool was--

jessamyn: Oh, I didn't see this at all! Ohh, yes I did.

mathowie: Yeah, Jesse Thorn's basically taking MaxFunCon to a cruise version of it--

cortex: (laughs)

mathowie: --in the Caribbean, leaving from Florida and going to some of those islands and back. And it's only like a weekend, like four days.

jessamyn: How much? Why aren't we all going to this?

mathowie: I guess like a thousand bucks, or seven--

jessamyn: That's why we're not going.

mathowie: Yeah, I think it's like eight--well, it's also the five-hour flight to Florida, and then

you wait a day, and then... actually, a cruise, those are my agor--what's the opposite of agoraphobia? I guess claustrophobia. I'm not claustrophobic, but being stuck on a boat...

jessamyn: Well, you're also tall, which means that anything that's made for an average-sized person is giant for me and slightly too small for you.

mathowie: Yeah. Yeah. So Jesse's doing his comedy weekend thing on a boat this time, it's, is the site--

cortex: (chuckles)

mathowie: --you can sign up, it's just hilarious. They have an amazing line-up. Marc Maron, Hodgman, every... it's going to be amazing. Nelly McKay, Roderick. It's going to be good fun, but I was like, I've never been on a cruise, I've never heard good things about cruises from people that aren't non-active. The only people I know that love cruises are wheelchair-bound or extremely old, because it's not a hard way to travel. It's easy, you can just eat and look at stuff. I'd rather get out and run around.

jessamyn: And there's stuff to do, and people around, and kind of built-in socializing, and if you like just getting in the sun and not doing much, it's probably great.

mathowie: Yeah. I like getting out and seeing places and I don't want to be on a boat.

jessamyn: That's [??].

mathowie: So that's why I'm not going, but yeah.

jessamyn: Baaah!

Alright, one last thing for Projects that I really liked, which was just kind of a little art project-y thing which you kind of have to be interested in this, but basically it's by gwint ['gi 'wɪnt]? gwint ['gwɪnt]? and you click on it,
and so there's a short story by Borges where you can see everything at once and it kind of makes you crazy, and if you go to the website, it just takes tweets from the Internet and kind of mashes it together, descriptive passages pulled from the web, from Project Gutenberg and tweets that start with 'I saw'.

mathowie: (chuckles) Whoa. Whoa.

cortex: Nice.

jessamyn: But it is like that. It's just like, whoaaa. And you're either kind of into it or you're kind of like, whatever, this sucks.

mathowie: Oh God. Infinite scroll on a book is like torture.

cortex: (chuckles)

jessamyn: Yes.

mathowie: It's like my parents holding something out, making me walk the first time, all over again.

jessamyn: I suggest that you go up to the top, where you can change it from Gutenberg to Twitter.

mathowie: (laughs) Yeah. Oh my God, it's so--

jessamyn: I saw a shooting star, I saw a body on the train tracks, I saw a butterfly in Hell, I saw a guy with grey eyes,

I saw a GOYA commercial with white actors, I saw a picture from this before but not the video... it's just, I enjoy the kind of slightly nonsense, slightly not-nonsense aspect to the whole thing.

mathowie: Cool.

cortex: Yeah, the tendency to look at something like that and sort of introduce a sort of imposed coherence to what is explicitly totally contextless samples is kinda... it's a neat thing.

mathowie: It's almost like, we should do a famous Edgar Allan Poe, like The Raven, like, there's got to be a way to make that out of tweets, you know, the first--

cortex: Probably some way to adapt the--what's the name of project that the MeFite did a while back, where they do iambic pentameter, they make sonnets out of tweets--

mathowie: Oh, yeah.

cortex: Yeah. The Pentametron, I think.

mathowie: (chuckles)

cortex: Maybe it could be adapted to do some Poe.

mathowie: Sweet.

cortex: With a little bit of extra fishing.

Well, I liked a couple things too. One I want to mention is Patent Blaster, which is a brand new little video game from Metafilter user Zarkonnen, who is also a regular over on MeFight Club, the gaming spin-off. And it's a little game inspired by and using crappy patent art.

mathowie: (chuckles)

cortex: Inspired in part by one of my favorite blogs that I probably mentioned on a previous podcast, Context-Free Patent Art, which just takes context art from video game patent applications out of context. And it's great! And it's got a demo, so you can try it out, and there's some screenshots.

jessamyn: Wow! I can think of a very cool thing we should be doing with this on Monday.

cortex: Yeah, maybe.

jessamyn: (whispers) Nice! Nice!

mathowie: I can't get the video to play. Argh.

cortex: Well, don't worry about the video right now. Look at the screenshots and come back.

jessamyn: (laughs)

cortex: That's a neat thing, and another neat thing that I liked was a little bookmarklet from raisindebt called erase_mark, and you can just use it to erase--

mathowie: Oh, yeah!

cortex: --random words from the screen you're looking at, whatever page you're looking at on your browser. It's actually really neat. It's just a little--speaking of creating coherence out of context and stuff, this is sort of, instead of jamming tweets together this is pulling words out and what you're left with can look a little bit like a bit of their poetry.

mathowie: This is Austin Kleon?--is that his last name? The guy who wrote that great book? That was his deal, was grabbing New York Times and making poetry out of it with a marker.

cortex: Ah.

mathowie: That was like his art.

jessamyn: Oh! I know who you're talking about, and I don't...

mathowie: He has a cool book called "How To Steal Like An Artist." It's on that page I just linked to on the site. But yeah, he mostly took New York Times clippings and made poems out of them, just black marker, leaving behind the poem. That was his thing for a few years. He's cool.

cortex: I tried doing that once, years and years ago, with a book I found, just something I got for a dollar at a bookstore, it was a guide to video games from like 1982, so it was like video game advice for a bunch of arcade games and a few

2600 games, I think, or something?

mathowie: (chuckles)

cortex: And it was terrible, it was dumb, but yeah, I was amused, because hey, I like video games, and hey, it's advice that's useless to me, but the intro to the thing was so overwrought, like, the whole book, it's like a couple hundred pages, most of which is really sort of meat-and-potatoes, here's a brief description of the game, and here's a brief description of some of the techniques you can use to do well at the game, you know, it was very straightforward. But the intro was like four or five pages of this guy just writing an essay on the transformative nature of video games, but ladled that on with a whole bunch of figurative

bullshit, and it was amazingly too much. And for some reason I decided what I should do is take a black marker and try and turn this into an epic, mythic book, and so I ended up turning it into the [GeeCare ??], which was some sort of oral telling of the collapse of a civilization, thanks to all the overwrought, figurative language the guy threw into his introduction about his video game advice. It was actually not as hard to do as I would have thought, so.

mathowie: Huh.

cortex: So yeah. It's the sort of thing that's sort of close to my heart.

mathowie: We always do Metafilter before Ask Metafilter?

cortex: We do? Yeah.

jessamyn: I don't know, Matt, this is the seventy-ninth podcast. Act like you remember.

cortex and mathowie: (laugh)

cortex: It's such a natural, instinctive process that we just don't think about the structures.

mathowie: [??] catchphrase. (chuckles)

cortex: It's like, what is it, like, if you get really good at doing something, like muscle memory, and you can totally do it until you start thinking about doing it, then you're like, "bwoolah!" and you just spill everything or whatever?

jessamyn: Like your ATM password or something like that? Yeah.

cortex: Yeah, exactly. Like, you can do it, but you can't think about doing it, otherwise you're just going to mess it all up. (slight chuckle) Do you see what I did there? With not saying... yeah.

jessamyn: With saying a different four-letter word? Yes, I did, here's a cookie.

cortex: Yay!

mathowie: (chuckles)

jessamyn: I had Ask Metafilter stuff. I don't have much for Metafilter, so I'd be happy to start with either.

mathowie: I've got a million Metafilter things. Let me see...

jessamyn: Why don't you start with them?

mathowie: Let me see if I can whittle it down. Oh! Why don't I just start with

avoiding Josh's inevitable self-post here.

cortex: (laughs)

mathowie: By saying the first thing of the month I loved was "I knew you were Tribbles when you dropped in," the Star Trek original series?--

cortex: Yeah.

mathowie: --cover of Taylor Swift's troublesome pop song, and it's hilarious.

jessamyn: (gasping excitedly, with pitch rising between each gasp) Oh my God, I haven't! heard this! yet!

mathowie and cortex: (chuckle)

jessamyn: I'm excited!

mathowie: What? Jesus.

cortex: I didn't shut up about that for like a week.

mathowie: Yeah!

jessamyn: Which week was it? Maybe I was away.

cortex: You know, honestly, it was the beginning of this month.

mathowie: Yeah.

cortex: It's been like a busy enough month with random query stuff that I actually managed to forget about that, so.

mathowie: I had to listen to the song without goat yells for (laughing) for the first time?

cortex: (laughing and clapping)

mathowie: In my life I had only heard that song with goat yelling, you know, as a joke/meme on you tube.

cortex: I had totally missed the boat on this song. It apparently was huge and yeah the goat stuff? I didn't know, like, I tweeted my version ...

jessamyn: It's on the radio constantly now!


cortex: Well I don't listen to the radio that much. So like I listen to the radio when I am in the car.

jessamyn: Sure, sure.

cortex: So like I've got a five minute drive somewhere.. and so if it happens to be .. so like ... so finally I'd heard like a piece of it I think a couple weeks earlier but hadn't like heard the whole thing. So when I finally heard it all the way through, like, a day or two before I put that up on the internet and I was like, "Oh. Okay. Now this is that song that I've seen references to..."

mathowie: (Chuckles)

cortex: And then I was singing Tribbles to myself by the end of the final chorus.

mathowie: (Laughing)

cortex: I was like, "Oooh!"

jessamyn: Absolutely! This is great I cannot wait to listen to this

when I'm not using my internet for Skype.

cortex: Yep.

mathowie: Was it - Josh - Wasn't you and Andy Baio talking about the .. I was like, "It's a joke that fits in a tweet" And yet

cortex: (Laughing)

mathowie: You went and recorded it

cortex: (Laughing harder)

mathowie: And then made a video? Like that was actually good? Like it could have just ended with the tweet idea.

cortex: Yeah. Andy said that was like, you know, one of the highest concept (laughing) song ideas he'd seen.

mathowie: (Laughing)

cortex: He saw the title and he knew, you know, that that was the whole thing right there.

mathowie: Yeah. Well you could have ended it at the tweet but you said,

"No, Sir! I am going to make a song out of this!" Which is awesome.

cortex: Actually, I refrained from tweeting it until I had the song done because I didn't want to give anybody an idea. Because I was surprised like nobody had made this joke on the internet except for like one guy two months ago on usenet. So I was like, "oh my god" Somehow I managed to beat the punch.

mathowie: Usenet still exists? (Snide chuckle)

jessamyn: UUuuggh.

cortex: What? (Laughing)

mathowie: Usenet still exists? Is a place? People go? It's amazing!

cortex: It does. It's still out there.

jessamyn: Matt, where do you get your movies from?

mathowie: HA! WHAT? WHO?

cortex: Laughing uncontrollably

jessamyn: Laughing uncontrollably

mathowie: I don't know what you're talking about. I don't know what you're talking about.

jessamyn: I bet you pay and use that provider money every month. And then you make gallow jokes like that.

mathowie: I am breaking up now (makes breaking up noise with his throat)

cortex: (Laughing)

mathowie: [??] The call is breaking up.

jessamyn: (laughs)

cortex: Speaking of Star Trek there was a post ..

mathowie: Oh god yeah

cortex: by Effigy2000 about Gates McFadden's blog. Gates McFadden played Dr. Beverly Crusher on The Next Generation and she has a blog, a tumblr, where she posts pictures of her Dr. Crusher action figures

she has in various strange situations like she goes on a trip she'll take pictures of the action figure struggling with plane flights as a tiny individual and so on. It's strange and bizarre ..

mathowie: It's really weird.

cortex: .. and it's fantastic that she's just doing this for the hell of it as a random thing, so. I liked that. There's not much to say about it other than, "Hey! Gates McFadden 1/8th Scale Crusher blog."

mathowie: (Laughs)

jessamyn: I actually got a point at bar trivia last night knowing Wil Wheaton's name.

cortex: Yeah?

jessamyn: The last round

mathowie: Nice!

jessamyn: .. was the geek round.

cortex: Nice.

mathowie: Oh Geeze. The Jessamyn round.

jessamyn: I knew what SSD stood for and who .. I don't even remember what the question was but you know, it was like, "Who was on Star Trek and also on -oh I don't know- something else. Oh! And also in Stand By Me.

cortex: Oh yeah.

mathowie: Oh yeah. So easy.

cortex: I kinda looked a sorta Wil Wheaton-ish as a kid at the same time as Wil Wheaton basically? Like Stand By Me was a family favorite and people would say, "Oh you look like ... Gordy"

jessamyn: That guy!

cortex: Wait, was it Gordy?

Wait! He was Gordy!

jessamyn: I don't remember.

cortex: Next generation was Jordy -- Holy Sheeeeeets!

mathowie: You youtube

cortex: Uh yeah.

mathowie: I get my ukulele and go.

cortex: (laughing)

mathowie: (laughing) I was waiting for you to say that.

cortex: But it was always weird for me as a kid when like, that was like the thing .. oh everybody was like, "Oh! You look totally just like that uh that little kid that has a terrible time and and has basically established his completely lacking common self direction because he's depressed and sad and .." It's like, "Yeah! Thanks!" No. I got a role model now.

mathowie: (Laughs)

cortex: No. That's awesome!

mathowie: Everyone still tells me I look like Zachary Quinto.

cortex: Yeah yeah you kinda do look like Zachary Quinto.

mathowie: But then now he's like a gay icon, which is also cool. Like, oh hey yeah. That's awesome.

cortex: So you think there's going to be another MetaTalk post about when the next Star Trek comes out?

Someone like, "OMG did anybody notice that Matt looks just like Zachary Quinto?"

mathowie: Oh. .. Yeah.

jessamyn: Zachary Quinto gay icon, not Zachary Quinto, Star Trek heart throb.

cortex: (Laughs) It contains multitudes.

mathowie: It's like, I'll be at the library

the DMV... I have to be in a weird normal people place and people go, "Hey? You look like that guy from the Star Trek movie. "

cortex: (Laughs)

mathowie: Or Heroes, the TV show when that was a popular..

jessamyn: Oh right. I forgot about Heroes.

mathowie: Yeah. It's forgettable.

jessamyn: (Whistling the theme song??)

cortex: (Laughing) Speaking of tumblr blogs. This is a blog spot blog. See? Mixing it up!

mathowie: Oh yeah! It was my double post! (Laughing)

cortex: (laughing)

mathowie: I searched!

cortex: You didn't search hard enough quite easily.

mathowie: No.

cortex: You should have searched for thumbs.

mathowie: Yeah.

cortex: You got to read the comments, sometimes. See which one of the comments [??]

jessamyn: That's the one I accidentally deleted?

mathowie: Yeah.

cortex: Yeah I think so. Well this one is not his. This is the one that was there before his because ..

jessamyn: Because this is the one that it is the double of ..

cortex: yeah..

jessamyn: So, it's all .. what? Cool dudes giving the thumbs up? Are there any cool ladies?

Is there a single woman on this blog?

mathowie: Yes. There's women.

cortex: I think there's ladies, too. But the thing is...

jessamyn: Find a woman on this blog.

mathowie: Alien! Sigourney Weaver!

cortex: Well let's look at the context. This is ike action movie

jessamyn: Find a single woman.

cortex: I'm not going to excuse their choices there.

mathowie: It's Hollywood's problem!

cortex: But they are showing Hollywood pictures of people pointing guns photoshopped to look like they are just giving a thumbs-up! So it's really more of an issue with Hollywood's tendency to ...

jessamyn: Oh! No. There is Carrie Fisher.

cortex: Yeah

mathowie: Yeah

cortex: So there you go.

jessamyn: In a movie from 1979

cortex: Sigourney Weaver? That was like 80? 86? [1986]

mathowie: Yeah Sigourney Weaver a couple of posts down.

cortex: And Charlize Theron in like what - 2000 -- 2005?

mathowie: Yes.

cortex: Was that when Monster was? That's what I think...?

mathowie: (not convincingly) yeeaahhh..?

cortex: I think there is something to be said for the asymmetry of ahh.. sort of the money shot presentation of male vs female figures pointing guns at people, but, I'm not convinced that people pointing guns at people is an inherently defensible or admirable thing aside from the macho posteuring and whatnot. So it may not necessarily be immediately a bad thing, that there aren't more woman on this blog photoshopped out of being in a position of threatening to kill someone.

cortex: It's complicated I think, basically.

mathowie: They must have done the famous - The Matrix

jessamyn: (To Cortex) Don't you get started with me.

cortex: (Laughing)

mathowie: You know I bet you they didn't do The Matrix

cortex: See my guest blog on Jezebel for the information on that.

jessamyn: [Makes a sound indicating she is astounded with a hint of Oh-No-He-Didn't!]

Don't even say it.

mathowie: That is the word of the day. Cherry.

cortex: (Laughing)

mathowie: They didn't do the woman from Matrix by the helicopter.

jessamyn: They did not do tons of women because they are dudes.

mathowie: Yeah. Weird.

cortex: I have no dog in that.

I hear what you're saying, and I'm merely speculating on some of the contours shaping this.

mathowie: Whoa.

jessamyn: I know that feel, man, I think, is the throwaway of this.

cortex: Yes. What the hell is...?

mathowie: That's from...

cortex: I know that feel, sis.

mathowie: I don't know what some of these movies are. Oh, there it is! That is terrible, because the gun dominates the scene. Look how bad The Matrix one is. It's horrible, because the gun takes up half the frame. You can't magic-stamp your way out of that one.

jessamyn: Well, [??] are in it, it's pretty badass.

mathowie: Yeah.

jessamyn: I like it. But I just like the Trinity character anyhow.

mathowie: Yeah. She's awesome.

(chuckles) I loved the firebomb posts of Punk Rock is B.S. That post was weird, in that some members took it super personally, like they were being criticized live by someone on the Internet. That was... did you see the discussion? It was kind of crazy.

cortex: Yeah, I didn't follow the post at all.

jessamyn: I did. I popped in and out of it, because, you know, I enjoy punk rock, and I don't really know much about John Roderick?

mathowie: Yeah. He's from Seattle, Long Winters. He's a Seattle icon.

jessamyn: But like, he's not... punk, is he?

mathowie: No, no. He's just a guy who had grown up through all that, been in Seattle since the '80s, went through the whole grunge era, and was like...

jessamyn: Yeah, because the whole thing is 'punk rocker John Roderick thinks punk rock is bullshit.'

mathowie: Oh, yeah, that was weird. That's silly.

jessamyn: Was that a joke?

mathowie: Yeah, I think that was a joke.

jessamyn: Okay. Yeah, I just saw people being defensive about it. As somebody who also grew up with punk rock and enjoyed it... I don't know, it's so easy to just be negative and dismissive about anything if you're someone who likes to write on the Internet, and I don't know. I didn't engage with it, because I was like, who cares what he thinks?

mathowie: (laughs) Well, yeah. Yeah. The other thing that was funny is I ran into John Roderick a week later--

jessamyn: Uh-huh.

mathowie: And he goes, like, this was the biggest post ever for that newspaper, the alt-weekly that it was in, I can't remember if it was the strange--

jessamyn: The Seattle Weekly. They've been around since forever.

mathowie: Yeah.

jessamyn: They're a long-time, you know.

mathowie: They said, this is the biggest Internet thing that's ever happened to them, and so we had a biz dev guy call them up and be like, "Yeah, this is a guy in marketing at [??] Weekly."

jessamyn: "How can we do more of that?" And you'd be like, "Super! Post about feminism every week."

mathowie: Right. "Can you do a controversial post every week forever for us? That would be great."

cortex: (chuckles)

mathowie: And he was like, "What?!" (chuckles)

jessamyn: These are the things we are lucky to not have to do or think about at Metafilter. We are so lucky that this is not... we can just post about Jezebel and HuffPo every day!

mathowie: Yeah. Get people fighting.

jessamyn: You know, awww. Although, speaking of popular posts--I'm sorry, you had the Google Reader post--

mathowie: Oh, God.

jessamyn: Became a very fascinating... just, it was interesting to watch people talking about... this is one of the few thousand comment posts we have had

that really had nothing to do with politics.

mathowie: Right, right. Yeah, I can't even get it to load. It's taking so long.

jessamyn: Nope, me neither.

mathowie: But yeah, I saw lots of RSS developers pointing at that thread and stuff saying, "If you want to see what people thought of this closing, go read Metafilter."

jessamyn: Yeah! Well, I mean, I think because there's people who are talking about it, not just wailing and losing their minds, and people like to understand that.

mathowie: Yeah, it's weird. I think this is the, you know, Metafilter was born out of a bunch of bored web designers, I think, and developers, and this is sort of that coming home to roost. There's so many... there's like two hundred people that are really, really, really bummed about this decision, but for most, 90% of the Internet population, you have to explain what any of this is.

jessamyn: (laughs) Right. "So wait, what's RSS? And then you used Google Reader to do what? And it was good because why?" (laughs) Yeah.

mathowie: "And how does that work?" And then when you say, like, "Oh, well, that sounds useful, but it sounds like it took about twelve steps and an entire weekend to set up for, and I'm not going to learn that, and I'm not going to--"

jessamyn: Well, and that's the thing. People are like, "I know! And I don't have a weekend to spare now that I'm middle-aged!"

mathowie: (laughs)

jessamyn: Like, "I can't do it again!" (laughs)

mathowie: So yeah, that was cool.

jessamyn: What was the other thing that you had been...?

mathowie: Oh, no, yeah, the other ranty thing was the thing about kids have a whole bunch of bullshit holidays. (chuckles) That was the other thing I thought

was like a goofy rant that was light-hearted enough to be not contentious.

jessamyn: I don't think I read that one at all. I must have been out of town?

mathowie: It basically talks about how the holidays are just nuts. Like, we have to celebrate everything, all the time, it's just someone ranting about it, you know, it was a pretty good post about that.

jessamyn: You know, that's my favorite thing. One of my favorite weird little things about Community, which I've started watching again, that the Donald Glover character...

mathowie: Uh-huh.

jessamyn: One of the jokes is he's Jehovah's Witness on the show? But in real life, he grew up Jehovah's Witness and they didn't celebrate anything.

mathowie: Yeah.

jessamyn: And it's interesting juxtaposing this "Aughhh, then you got Thanksgiving, then you got bluh bluh," with the, "We never celebrated anything and never had a holiday at all," kind of alternative. And every now and again Troy will talk about, like, "I'm not gonna do anything for Christmas or Thanksgiving or whatever," and it's funny.

mathowie: Oh God. So avoid the last season that's airing right now, oh my God.

jessamyn: I've been watching it. It's not as good but it's not terrible.

mathowie: Oh, it got...

jessamyn: Do you think it's terrible?

mathowie: The first episode was like okay, this is not bad. The second one... oh, wow, this, yeah, the writers are different.

jessamyn: We watched some of them out of order, unfortunately, because of the way the DVR works.

mathowie: I think the... I didn't even wat--yeah, the last one was unwatchable, I was just like, "This is so terrible."

jessamyn: Which was the last one?

mathowie: They had a meta-meta one where there was like a documentary inside of it?

cortex: This is technically bordering on spoiler alerts.

mathowie: Oh.

jessamyn: Ohh! Yeah, all right.

cortex: Proceed with caution while describing that episode that you just saw. (chuckles)

mathowie: Well, I'm just saying, watch the first three seasons and enjoy it--I think they're on the fourth season, right? Maybe? Third? Fourth?

jessamyn: I've been watching the fourth season and I don't find it that horrible.

mathowie: Augh.

jessamyn: So maybe... I mean, I get what was special that's no longer there, definitely. But I still think it's better than other terrible things.

cortex: Well, it's a [??] thing, because yeah, I mean, like, how invested you are in the specific feel of it makes differences there. I remember watching... Red Dwarf was a weird ride that way, because they had a couple seasons at the start where they're sort of getting their legs, and then there's another four seasons that were totally solid, and then it just sort of started sliding downhill. And it was terrible, because there's... it's such a weird...

jessamyn: Well, and part of the appeal of Red Dwarf was kind of its lo-fi thing to begin with, right?

cortex: Sure, yeah. The fact that it was low budget was not a problem at all. But the quality just ended up sliding later

on in a way that was like, it was kind of heartbreaking, because you're like, it's still that show that I like, but I don't like it very much now, because it got bad, and how'd it get bad when the same people, and it's a weird thing. Because yeah, sometimes it's like, yeah, it's not as good but okay, and sometimes you're like, uhh, it's... I know, but it's breaking my fucking heart, you know, it's my darned heart.

jessamyn: Right.

cortex: My heart is just cheesy gosh broken, is what's going on. It's weird.

mathowie: Euh, yeah.

cortex: But I don't watch any Community at all, so I'm all, I'm un... I would say, I haven't been watching Community and I never use Google Reader.

mathowie: Awww.

cortex: So basically, I have no empathy.

jessamyn: I didn't use Google Reader, and Community I'm not... I mean, I'm shruggo about it. It was just interesting because of the Jehovah's Witnessiness of one of the characters.

cortex: Yeah.

mathowie: Do you use an RSS reader, Jessamyn? All this time, not Goog--?

jessamyn: I use NetNewsWire?

mathowie: Oh, okay, so you've always had a desktop thingy.

jessamyn: Yeah.

mathowie: Okay, cool.

jessamyn: But like, now that... but there's a app for the phone, so it's kind of the same, but I don't do it socially, so yeah.

mathowie: Yeah. Wow, I forgot to mention massless on Metafilter is the creator of Google Reader, the first person, Chris Wetherell, who launched it, kind of internally, he left several comments in that thread. They're worth reading. And then, yeah, I think that's the only place he wrote about it. He might have wrote about it on his personal site. But those are worth not missing.

We rarely call out comments. Did you ever see this thing about Shepard Fairey from last summer?

sfx: (jessamyn's phone rings, making a lovely loon sound)

jessamyn: Wait, can you guys hold on one sec? Sorry, my landlady's calling me.

mathowie: Sure.

mathowie and cortex: (laugh)

mathowie: Is that a bird? It sounds like a bird.

jessamyn: Sorry.

(into phone) Hey, what's up?
Sorry, I should just not answer the phone, but because I've been dealing with her Internet stuff for so long. She just wanted to tell me some seventeen-year-old who sold some app for millions of dollars is gonna be on Charlie Rose.

mathowie: Oh, God. Oh, man, that kid.

jessamyn: Thumbly? Does that...?

mathowie: Nick, Nick deSomething... oh, Summly, Summly.

jessamyn: What is Summly?

mathowie: So, Summly, I only know about because lonelysandwich, Adam Lisagor, did the ad for it with Stephen Fry in it, so it was kind of like the biggest star he'd ever had and was--

jessamyn: Can you tell me what it does in like six words?

mathowie: Yeah. It is a stupid--

cortex: It replaces gun photos with thumbs.

mathowie: (laughs)

jessamyn: "It is a stupid..." That's four. Two more words.

mathowie: News summarizer! Like, it turns...

jessamyn: Oh, it's that thing! Okay, yeah, yeah.

mathowie: It turns a CNN article into four bullet points on your phone, and it's all like, it's no UI, it's all crazy gestures you're supposed to memorize.

It's basically a great proof of concept that you would never want to use all the time.

jessamyn: Well, apparently he's on Charlie Rose and my landlady's heard of him, so that's some kind of fame.

mathowie: Yeah, he just sold... he's kind of a fame...

jessamyn: Person.

mathowie: Person, yeah.

mathowie and jessamyn: (laugh)

jessamyn: Gentleman!

mathowie: People have said... he's super annoying, like, Gizmodo has published all these e-mails where he's just an ins--

jessamyn: He's a child, though, right? I mean--

mathowie: Yeah, he's insufferable. Like, "I'm a fifteen-year-old CEO! Please write about my thing! Please write about my thing!"

Like, they keep showing his streams of e-mails and chat sessions where he won't stop dogging every single writer of Gizmodo. But Yahoo! just bought them for thirty million dollars, which is... it's a good idea, like, Yahoo! should have a mobile product, they're good at news now, I mean, I think that's something they make money on...

jessamyn: Well, people have been linking more and more to quality original content on Yahoo!, which I had never would have thought would have been happening, but is. So yeah.

mathowie: Right, yeah! Like, people tell me that Yahoo! Finance and Yahoo! Sports are some of the best writing on the Internet about those things, and there's no real match for... you know, there's no competitors for that. It's the only thing they make money on, because they don't really do search anymore. They just sort of... I don't know, farm it out to Google or Bing or something? So like, what does Yahoo! do, you know, is the real question. And it's like, yeah, I remember [??] saying, hey, we want to become a mobile company, because that's where everything's going.

So they should buy mobile things. And this thing is a news reader app that also summarizes, you can tap to expand to the original article, I don't know. I played with it twice and never touched it again.
But there's a nice little video... oh, let me see if I can find it. Sand... wich...

jessamyn: I can't watch it now anyhow.

mathowie: Oh, I know. We can just put it in the notes. It's got Stephen Fry, it's pretty good.

jessamyn: I missed the Stephen Fry boat too.

mathowie: What? You don't like Stephen Fry?

jessamyn: It's not that I dislike him, I just never think about him.

mathowie: Oh.

jessamyn: Like, I've seen him in Hugh and Laurie stuff, which I love, love, love. But I don't... I don't know! He talks about cars, and...

mathowie: (chuckle) He's like the national treasure of...

jessamyn: He's a wonderful man! I just, my interests and his interests don't overlap where I come across him very often.

mathowie: You know what I does? I mean, he does comedy stuff, he does movie stuff, he writes books, also, that are slightly funny, and he does a quiz show, comedy show

and then with the BBC every six months or so he's done a serious-ass documentary, for like the last...

jessamyn: I've seen a couple of his. I started watching one of his history or biology documentaries, it was great.

mathowie: Yeah, he's driven across America, where he tried to--

jessamyn: So have I!

mathowie: Well, he tried to drive in all--

cortex: (chuckles) He took a camera crew, ha-ha!

mathowie: Ha! He drove to all fifty states in a little British taxi cab, which was great. You know, him just meeting random Americans. And then he did one on the

Gutenberg press. Like, he traces the Gutenberg press to the building where Gutenberg made--

jessamyn: And is he a researcher? Or is he just a dude who works with researchers who put him in front of the camera because he's personable? I really don't know that much about him.

cortex: No, he's just a dude. He's a personable, curious dude.

mathowie: He's a polymath. Like, he's a psychotically brilliant, funny guy that, this is all his personal interests. Have you ever seen his blog? He was one of the early blogger famous people to get blogging and then Twitter, and his blogs--

jessamyn: I mean, I know one of the things people love about him is that he gets and uses Twitter in a way that people find delightful.

mathowie: Yeah, and he was early into blogging. He writes these like, he has obviously no editor, because every blog post is like ten thousand words. He's just one of those brilliant p--I mean, everyone in the UK who is listening to this right now is probably banging their desk like--

jessamyn: (laughs)

mathowie: Like, saying... I don't even know if there's an American equivalent that even comes remotely close. The someone who's just great at everything in a zillion, has their hand in a zillion

different things.

jessamyn: Sure, sure, sure.

mathowie: I don't know if there's an American equivalent I could even say. "Oh, he's just like blank!" I don't think anyone's like him. Like, he's brilliant--

cortex: Dane Cook, basically. He's England's Dane Cook.

mathowie: (laughs) He's the (laughs) Guy Fieri of [??]. Yeah, he's just incredible. I would say, follow his... his Gutenberg documentary is amazing. He did a documentary

on his own struggles with... what the hell is the up/down psychosis stuff called? Manic depression. He does this in three hours, talking to researchers and traveling all around Europe. It's really good. His stuff is good, really good. And he's on silly comedies, and he's, you know.

jessamyn: Sure.

mathowie: And he can quote any line of Shakespeare or poetry off the top of his head in that way that brilliant British people do so often. It's just mindboggling. I don't know how anyone

keeps that much stuff in their hair--head. He was in V is for Vendetta.

jessamyn: Which I have to watch on my desktop.

mathowie: (laughs)

jessamyn: It's literally in the queue for this week. So okay! Maybe I'll understand by then.

mathowie: He is amazing. Totally worth it.

jessamyn: I mean, I'm not saying I don't like him, I'm just saying I've missed him 'til now for some reason. I don't know why.

mathowie: Oh, man. I think, I mean, it's hard to avoid him, he's in so many things.

jessamyn: That's what I'm saying. In

my world, I've avoided him entirely by accident.

mathowie: Yeah.

jessamyn: Accident.

Let's move on!

cortex: Let's... this has been the Stephen Fry Appreciation Hour.

mathowie: Yes.

jessamyn: (chuckles)

cortex: Now for our side segments, a post on Metafilter. I liked this... I've seen some of the stuff from this coming around, this blog called Liar Town USA that's just a collection of weird, surreal, not-quite-right things

some guy or some group of guys had been posting on their blog. And I had originally seen somebody's food fliers going around--

jessamyn: Oh, I saw this! This was very, very popular.

cortex: Yeah, it kind of blew up. I saw these fliers going around, like grocery inserts, without any context, and eventually found out they were from the blog. But the blog does fake Netflix synopses as well and altered screenshots and so on. It's just weird stuff.

jessamyn: I can't actually listen to you and load this page.

cortex: (chuckles)

jessamyn: So just keep telling me what's going on.

cortex: It's a... yeah, that's about all there is to it. It's a collection of various weird things, but done with a straight face, so it's like, you know, if you didn't know you were reading a surreal blog you might be like, "That's awfully gosh-darn weird!" You know, a couple people were saying--

jessamyn: I was wondering where these pork dillingers came from.

cortex: Yeah, yeah. I think those fliers were the highlight of the whole thing.

jessamyn: I've seen them showing up, and I have been like, "What? Where is the...? Where?"

cortex: Yep.

jessamyn: But, you know, I'm old and the world confuses me, so I just figured...

cortex: (laughs) Yep.

jessamyn: What are the kids today doing?

mathowie: This is amazing!

jessamyn: Yeah.

cortex: It's super great.

mathowie: I didn't see this.

cortex: I actually, I need to step away for one minute, I'll be back.

mathowie: I loved this damn site.

jessamyn: Oh, yeah! duien, I think, dropped us a note about that, being like, "Look, I don't want to make this post too Pepsi Blue but I really am into this thing."

mathowie: Oh, right. This is... aww!

jessamyn: And I'm a weather nerd, so I was like, "YEAHHH! Weather nerds!" I'm happy to see this post. I should have favorited it when it came out.

I'll favorite it right now.

mathowie: The people who make this site made that Dark Sky app, which was just a... it was a weird, I have a billion weather apps on my iPhone, always looking for the next perfect one because I've never found it yet, but I found this app that was different than everything else, where it just told you what was going to happen in the next hour where you were.

jessamyn: Where you were, right.

mathowie: And I don't know where they got the data from, but it was scarily accurate. It would just say, it's gonna rain in forty minutes,

and then you're like, okay, I'd better ride my bike downtown now, or I should not do that, and it was almost always 100% right on. So they sold that app. The app has limited utility, because it's only like, most of the time if nothing's happening the app kind of scolds you because nothing's happening right now.

jessamyn: Oh, I saw people, yeah, putting screenshots of that up.

mathowie: It's almost like, "Quit bothering me, kid. There's nothing going on." Or, "Do you want to see what's happening in Omaha, Nebraska? Because they have weather, and you don't." Which is weird.

jessamyn: How do you know Omaha, Nebraska's got weather right now?

mathowie: The app will tell you!

jessamyn: And it has animated GIF clouds that are raining, which is pretty awesome compared to... like, why don't...?

mathowie: It's great. It was great when I'd come out of a building at the end of the day in New York or San Francisco or somewhere I'm traveling it's lightly raining, you pull up Dark Sky and it'll be like, "Heavy rain in 30 minutes," so you're like, "Oh, I better go get a cab," or "I better get down to the train and get to my hotel," or whatever.

jessamyn: Right.

mathowie: So they came out with this site to do all weather, not just what happens in the next hour,

and it is so amazing. I want to replace the weather icon on my iPhone with this. There's no app, you just pull up the website on your phone and it works instantly. It's really cool. And it was the first thing of all the weather apps I had, the day it came out it went far enough in the future that it showed me it was going to be in the 70s this weekend in Oregon for the first time all year.

jessamyn: Yeah!

mathowie: So I was stoked.

jessamyn: Cool!

mathowie: It's a beautiful, awesome weather app. Totally worth using for free. I have no idea, hopefully they'll make money somehow.

jessamyn: Well, it looks like there's a little ad from Instapaper.

mathowie: Yeah. Any other last... we should probably wrap up Metafilter and talk to Ask Metafilter. (chuckles) Talk to.

cortex: I want to mention the post about the Cybermania 94... oh, God, video game award show thing from '94. And it's sort of entertaining and weird, terrible pop culture in its own right,

but it became very exciting for me because then Kibo [ˈkiboʊ] showed up and--

mathowie: Oh, God.

jessamyn: You say Kibo [ˈkiboʊ]?

cortex: Kibo [ˈkiboʊ].

jessamyn: How is this possible? You pronounce every word differently from me.

cortex: It's Kibo [ˈkiboʊ].

mathowie: (chuckles) I've never had to pronounce it out loud.

jessamyn: Kibo [ˈkaɪboʊ].

mathowie: Kibo [ˈkaɪboʊ]?

cortex: It's Kibo [ˈkiboʊ]. It's, by God, (laughs) we don't have to...

mathowie: I would say Kibo [ˈkaɪboʊ] if I was forced.

cortex: (dissolves in laughter)

jessamyn: Sorry, I'm not really trying--

cortex: It never would have occurred to me that it was possible for it not to be Kibo [ˈkiboʊ].

jessamyn: It never occurred to me that it wasn't Kibo [ˈkaɪboʊ]!

cortex: Well, and, you know, when it comes right down to it, I can't point to anything that declared that it's not Kibo [ˈkaɪboʊ]. But for some reason it's unquestioned gospel in my mind that it's Kibo [ˈkiboʊ] for so long I kind of [??] now.

mathowie: Duude! You don't--

jessamyn: And I'm the same way. I don't think it's right. I just, you know.

mathowie: (laughs) Wow! What's amazing about this video game show YouTube video is they included the commercials! Unbelievable, like 1994 cars for sale--

jessamyn: Shit!

mathowie: And local soccer clubs, and... weird.

jessamyn: It looks like you may be right.

cortex: (in robotic voice) Kibo [ˈkiboʊ].

mathowie: (chuckles)

cortex: How would the dictionary know how he pronounces his nickname?

jessamyn: Click the button! It just says! They're agreeing with you, be quiet!

cortex: Well, I know. But...

mathowie: I am watching little people spin plates.

jessamyn: What you're saying is like, your name might be Josh [ˈdʒoʊʃ] and how would it know?

cortex: Well, but as far as I know Kibo's [ˈkiboʊz] just a nonsense word he made up for his nickname. Basically, I'm displaying my

lack of any basis for backing this up. But anyway, Kibo [ˈkiboʊ] was a big--

jessamyn: Sorry.

cortex: --influence on me, culturally, about the time I got out of college, and so I failed to be cool about it, but at least I was self-aware about my inability to be cool about the fact that Kibo [ˈkiboʊ] just showed up. And also there was a MetaTalk post that someone made about this.

jessamyn: The FAQ doesn't say anything.

mathowie: (chuckles) Kibo [ˈkiboʊ]. I've never had to say it out loud. Kibo [ˈkaɪboʊ]? Kibo [ˈkiboʊ]?

cortex: (laughs)

jessamyn: I've always said Kibo [ˈkaɪboʊ]. I don't know why. I don't know why.

mathowie: I first said it--

jessamyn: I'm so sorry.

cortex: [??] I am on this.

mathowie: Kibo [ˈkiboʊ] is such a weird Usenet phenomenon from eons ago that I don't know who I could speak to about this besides Andy Baio would know what I'm talking...

cortex: I have found that Metafilter is a surprisingly safe place to just make a random Kibo [ˈkiboʊ] [??].

mathowie: Yeah. Yeah, wow. Like, he was the guy who invented funny trolling, kinda, you know? Goofin' with people. Man.

Dude. So, this video game show. Hilarious? Crazy?

cortex: Yeah.

mathowie: I'm watching a McDonald's ad from 1992.

cortex: It's like a video game show from twenty years ago, you know. It's terrible and wonderful and exactly the way you'd pretty much expect it to be.

jessamyn: Oh, 1994.

cortex: I was mostly excited about the Kibo [ˈkiboʊ] thing, that kicked it up for me, so.

I probably would have sat through that thing credulously at the time, too. I mean, not totally credulously, I would have been like 15, but I was really into video games, and I didn't watch a whole lot of TV, so I probably would have been like, "Oh, okay, I guess this is what you do. You make an awards show like this."

mathowie: Wow.

cortex: I also want to mention in passing, just in case anybody hasn't had their year ruined by this yet, the post about the math question being posted on Facebook that's rendered somewhat ambiguously and so everybody argues over it.

mathowie: Ohh.

jessamyn: Oh, good gracious! I loved this thread.

cortex: It was fantastic.

jessamyn: Because... Matt, I don't know if you even saw this, but it's basically like--

mathowie: Oh, yeah, no, yeah.

jessamyn: --you know how people just post this pernicious Facebook stuff, and then they teach you some snotty lesson about order of operations? But our community, who all knows math, for the most part, got to actually talk about, well, why is that? And how do we know what we know about PEMDAS? And how do we teach math? And it just turned out to be a really fun conversation for somebody like me, so I loved it.

mathowie: What I loved is I saw it on Facebook, and where I saw it on Facebook was actually a bike guy posting it going like, "Duh. Nine."

cortex: (laughs)

mathowie: And I had gotten one or zero, like I did it wrong the first time, and everyone in the Facebook thread was like, "Yeah, duh. Nine. What the fuck is wrong with people? Why is this a trick?" And I was like, "What?! What, am I a weirdo? I did not get that." And then Metafilter, I was happy to see a whole bunch of like, "That's bullshit!" (chuckles) Like, this is what I got...

jessamyn: Well, and because the whole point is that order of operations is supposed to help you figure this stuff out, but in the absence of indicators there are ambiguous math problems.

mathowie: Yep.

cortex: Yeah, there's...

jessamyn: You know, there is no ultimate answer, because it's all about interpreting a thing through a set of rules. (with surprised excitement) Just like Metafilter, actually! It's a metaphor for the whole website!

cortex: Oh, shit!

mathowie: Whoaa.

cortex: Well, I was going to say, there's a comparison you could make to, we are aware, generally speaking, as language speakers that

there are different dialects even within the same language, that you can say the same thing in different ways in different contexts. Not everybody's always super great about grasping this--

jessamyn: Sure, sure, sure.

mathowie: (chuckles)

cortex: --and you get the people who are like, "No, the way I think it should be done is exactly the only way you can say or spell something." But generally speaking, people kinda get that. They get that you have regional differences. But then mathematics is treated like such a thing, well, obviously math is perfect and pure and there's always a right answer--

jessamyn: And absolute.

cortex: People think that, yeah, these conventions actually matter!

mathowie: That's amazing!

cortex: That how you play the problem down actually is going to affect how people decode it, because there's different practices there, so.

mathowie: So Josh, you're saying this is the metaphorical soda vs. pop of mathematics? That's awesome.

cortex: Kinda, yeah. But everybody's convinced that, yeah.

jessamyn: It is, actually! Because different people interpret PEMDAS FLTR differently.

mathowie: Yeah. Hmm.

cortex: So yeah. It's neat stuff. And I was glad that that thread, aside from everybody screaming at each other that of course it's a literal Viking--

jessamyn: Heheheheh.

cortex: --there was also some good explication by people about those conventions and about the ambiguity, and why is it possible for two equally non-dysnumeric people to look at it and get different things out of it because of the conventions they're used to, so.

mathowie: Yeah, I like that.

jessamyn: I feel like, because nerds! Back to our podcast title.

mathowie: (chuckles) Yeah.

cortex: And I feel like, further... Jessamyn, you remember a few weeks ago I made that mlkshk post that made no sense to you where it was just an image I'd made of white text on black saying,

"Try to think of your own middle name. Your own fucking middle name." And out of context, it was like, what the hell did Josh just post on there? But it was specifically in reaction to those...

jessamyn: Well, and it's really important for me to not just... I figure there's one day I'm going to wake up and jokes on the Internet don't make any sense to me at all.

cortex: (laughs)

jessamyn: Anymore, at all, and I feel like I'm hanging on with my fingertips, and you're one of my connections, and so when you stop making sense to me entirely--

cortex: (laughs)

jessamyn: --I start worrying, so yeah. And so go on.

cortex: I had mostly been jumping the gun, I guess. Well, I mean, I wasn't jumping the gun, but I was assuming too much that everybody was exposed to the same stuff that I was exposed to, because I just kept seeing crap in my Facebook feed of, "Try and name a state that doesn't have an 'A' in it! It's harder than you think," posted on a Facebook--

mathowie: Aww.

jessamyn: Vermont.

cortex: And there's 20,000 comments, and someone posted it, and it's a repost of, like, FM 107.3's posting this thing.

jessamyn: Right. It's just Facebook spam.

cortex: And it's just, yeah. It's total bait. Total B.S. But...

jessamyn: And you were riffing off it in a way that was a little opaque to me.

cortex: Yeah. Yeah, and if you were as annoyed as I was at the phenomenon, it was great.

jessamyn: (laughs)

cortex: So I got this total mix of reactions of people like, "A-MEN!" and other people like, "What the hell... whaa, huh, eh?"

jessamyn: (laughs)

cortex: So I feel like maybe it would have gone better today than it did a month ago, because it feels like this has really been cresting on Facebook as this incredibly dumb thing that people are too un-savvy to realize they're perpetuating by commenting on a dumb quiz question just because an image suggests it's harder than it actually is.

jessamyn: Right.

cortex: (sighs) So I kind of feel good that we had a big hashing-out of a related phenomenon on Metafilter. It made me feel more centered.

jessamyn: Yeah, no, I enjoyed that thread an awful lot.

mathowie: Awesome.

cortex: There was also a giant discussion that I don't even need to go into here, but in case anybody wants a giant discussion about a contentious video game release, the new SimCity came out, and it was a horrible disaster, and here's a 500-comment Metafilter thread about it, so.

jessamyn: Why was it a disaster? I ignored this entirely.

mathowie: It had some DRM problems, I heard.

jessamyn: Oh, I do remember, yeah.

cortex: They made it so you had to be always online, and then their servers completely, completely fell down when they launched the game.

mathowie: Melted.

cortex: So they added this completely unnecessary to the history of the franchise--it's always been essentially a single-player game, with maybe some neat multi-player stuff tied in--they made it so it's always a multi-player game, it's always online, but they didn't add much multi-player stuff.

mathowie: Augh.

cortex: And then it couldn't freaking stay up when they launched it. So the whole thing was just a huge, terrible disaster.

jessamyn: So everybody was like, "Excited to play! Can't do anything because of this new nonsense."

cortex: Yep. Can't get in, can't play. After a week or so, things got better with the servers and people got in and found out that the game's also kind of broken, because the new model they're using, while a neat idea, kinda leads to just really terrible, dumb behavior. So it took a week or two before people could actually even play the game steadily enough to review it--

jessamyn: Sure.

cortex: And then they reviewed it as well.

mathowie: Was it like forty...?

cortex: It's a [??] shiny toy, but it's not very good as a game. So it's like aah.

mathowie: Can you imagine...

jessamyn: What if you have dial-up?

mathowie: Heh. You don't exist.

cortex: Ohh. God help you, I guess.

mathowie: Digital divide.

jessamyn: Awww. Awww.

cortex: Although probably what you'll do is get yourself a copy and then use one of the inevitable hacks that'll come out, because it's been established that none of the actual gameplay needs an Internet connection anyway.

jessamyn: They just do it for phone home stuff so that they can...

cortex: Yeah, it's just totally DRM B.S. They just want to prevent piracy, which will last a few days.

mathowie: Yeah.

cortex: It's terrible. But yeah, it's kind of a fun chronicle of a couple of weeks of terribleness. If you're into that sort of thing.

mathowie: The greatest comment ever about SimCity was quoted in that thread. It got 200 favorites, the original has over 200 favorites, about how SimCity 2000, how... oh, you just have to read the whole thing. It's a bit long, but.

jessamyn: "One of the things I used to enjoy doing was using a cheat to get an absurd amount of money, lowering taxes to zero, and then pausing the game. I would then build a paradise on Earth, a wonderful utopia for my citizens. The second I unpaused the game, BAM! The place would fill up immediately and everyone would be happy.

But then their god turned on them. I would let disasters pummel them and fail to fix the consequences. Eventually there would be huge swaths of the city with no electricity or water. Paved roads were a fond memory to the inhabitants. Fires and monsters would rage through the place unchecked for decades. Naturally, this would result in most everybody beating feet out of my city, but there was always a small percentage who stayed. Nothing seemed to make them budge.
Until I raised taxes from 0% to 1%. At that point, they’d had enough and would scram. The fires, potholes, darkness, crime, and monsters weren't a problem but 1% taxes were an abomination up with which they would not simply put.
What SimCity 2000 was simulating there was Republicans."

mathowie and cortex: (laugh)

jessamyn: That's a lovely story.

mathowie: So, so great. (chuckle)

We should move on.

jessamyn: Shall we move on to Ask Metafilter? Team?

mathowie: Yeah.

cortex: Do it!

jessamyn: I... what?

mathowie: No, go ahead.

jessamyn: Well, I enjoyed this very recent post which was talking about which U.S. politicians are multilingual, show proof.

mathowie: Ohh.

jessamyn: So instead of just being like, yeah, we know Jon Huntsman speaks Chinese, being like, "Show me a video where somebody is actually speaking a language that isn't English," you know, for more than five seconds. And there was just an interesting collection who speak various languages. Like, a lot of Southern state politicians or Hispanic politicians speak Spanish, which you would expect, but there was a lot

of people who speak various stuff that you would not necessarily expect. You know, Jeb Bush speaks, John Kerry speaks French, that was like a thing.

mathowie: French, yeah.

jessamyn: Bill Richardson often speaks in French--I mean, in Spanish--and English. There's a politician in Southern California--it didn't have to be national level--who speaks fluent Korean, and so people, there was a lot of neat videos, watching our American politicians speaking in different languages.

mathowie: Oh, I forgot Mitt Romney speaks French.

jessamyn: Yeah!

cortex: Oui.

mathowie: That came up last summer and was buried. That was awesome.

jessamyn: Which is funny, because he was born in Mexico. He probably speaks Spanish, too.

mathowie: Oh, right.

jessamyn: I mean, it's actually fairly common for Mormons to speak second languages, because they go on...

mathowie: Yeah. Missionary thing?

jessamyn: The missions, yeah. Because they go on missions.

So, at any rate, I just enjoyed the thread because there was some... and I guess Barack Obama grew up part of his life in Indonesia, and so he speaks kind of kid-level Indonesian in addition to
kind of kid-level Spanish, he kind of also speaks.

mathowie: Huh.

Man, I just heard--

jessamyn: But I couldn't find any examples of it, and I guess he doesn't really do it that often.

mathowie: (chuckle) Yeah, that would fan some flames. He mispronounces big words. Huh.

jessamyn: Sure. Who doesn't?

mathowie: Right.

jessamyn: I bet he can't even say Kibo [ˈkaɪboʊ].

mathowie: (laughs) Kibo [ˈkiboʊ]?

jessamyn: Beep! Beep!

sfx: (car horn honks in background)

mathowie: I thought the greatest thing on Ask Metafilter [to] ever happen was someone asking for a random duration timer app for their iPhone that doesn't exist. So someone wrote an app! Like, someone actually wrote an iOS app--let me see, chairface wrote the app. This showed up in MetaTalk.

cortex: Nice.

mathowie: The exact app they wanted, released it to the App Store, whatever, they downloaded it, it's like a real thing. It's psychotic that someone went from idea to free little


jessamyn: Oh, this was the day before my mom's birthday, so I missed this entirely. Aww. That's so great!

mathowie: Yeah, they had a really specific, weird want to get alarms that go off every ten seconds to sixty seconds to seventy seconds to twenty seconds, they just constantly wanted to randomize. There's nothing that does that, and so someone said, "Yep, that doesn't exist, so I'll make it." (chuckling) Which was just incredible.

jessamyn: I'm surprised you could even get that into the App Store with a kind of a...

mathowie: I think it's just non-controversial and harmless and it's really not doing anything, like I have a friend who made a...

jessamyn: Right. It doesn't tie into anything.

mathowie: Yeah, I know someone that made an alarm app in like a day and it was on the App Store the next day, because it only did one thing. All it did was buzz every x minutes and that's it.

jessamyn: No, I know that app! That was to keep him interested in church.

mathowie: (laughing) Yes. I thought that was amazing. Without having to look at your watch, you can just listen, you can count the buzzes.

jessamyn: You would know that fifteen minutes had gone by and you were that much closer to getting out of church.

mathowie: "Ahh, so ninety minutes have gone by! We're about to go home! Awesome."

Wow, I did not notice that was dmd. I thought this was--

jessamyn: What was dmd?

mathowie: This is a great post for... oh, shit, that was the wrong post.

cortex: Yeah, the jokes AskMe.

jessamyn: Quit swearing.

mathowie: Yeah, the joke one was great.

jessamyn: We put this on the Best Of blog.

mathowie: Yep. "Here's the punchlines, tell me the jokes." And everyone kind of digs them up eventually. They're awesome. That's an awesome little service we just provided for that person.

Give them closure on a death and stuff. That's what they always just worry about for years afterwards.

jessamyn: And then filthy light thief did a wonderful mitzvah at the end and actually linked them all so you could actually see what he was talking about.

mathowie: Oh, cool!

jessamyn: Which was nice, too.

cortex: Nice.

mathowie: Sweet! Yeah, because I was like, that's what you should link the Best Of post to, because I was trying to figure out some of them of them I couldn't find. This is great.

jessamyn: Right. We can add a second link.

mathowie: I was going to mention this post that I just put on the Best Of blog yesterday, the one about, "What's the most comforting condolence stuff you heard when someone in your life died from other people?" And I always thought, you know, that's a really awkward time when someone, like a co-worker or a family member or a friend's like, "Oh, my father passed away from cancer this week," and you never know what to say besides "I'm sorry for your loss." So these are all the things beyond "I'm sorry for your loss." And it being Metafilter,

there's a lot of atheists going, you know, "I'm not entirely com--"

jessamyn: "Please don't tell me Grandma's in heaven."

mathowie: Right, don't... like someone said, being in the Midwest, people were happy about it? There's this weird, like, "Oh! She got to meet an angel!"

cortex: (laughs)

mathowie: Like, "You should be very happy!" And being like, "Aah, I want to punch you, lady." So there's a lot of "don't do this." But a lot of people come out with, "I'm sorry for your loss", basically, is not gonna harm pretty much anyone. But then people talk about special weird things that they heard

that stuff I hadn't heard. I can't believe ColdChef wasn't, this is like the ColdChef alarm we should have sounded.

jessamyn: He's on vacation with his family in Alabama.

mathowie: That's true. Yeah, I mean, ColdChef's, he's got a Ph.D. in this, you know, saying the perfect thing at the perfect time.

jessamyn: He is very talented. I left a comment in that thread actually this morning, just talking about things people said when my dad died that were helpful or that I still thought about. But also one of the other Metafilter people in that thread, without mentioning me, actually mentioned one of the things that I said to them, which I was like,

mathowie and jessamyn: Awww.

jessamyn: That's so nice! And without calling me out, which was actually kind of helpful. So I liked that thread all the way around.

mathowie: Yeah, one of the best things I saw was, "I didn't know that person. I know you, so they're probably great, and can you tell me a story about it?"

jessamyn: Right, because you love them, then I love them, because I like you, yeah.

mathowie: And also, I didn't get a chance to know them. Can you tell me something?

Which was a good way to let someone, you know, I don't know, it might be painful for some people to have to remember stuff. But I thought that was kind of a nice opening when you just don't know what to say.

jessamyn: Right, right, yeah.

mathowie: I still remember the first time this happened to me, and I felt so awkward. I've never forgotten it. Like, I went to a, you know, I had a flu or something and went to the doctor and my normal doctor wasn't available at this crazy HMO and I just get this random HMO doc for the day, and it's totally a guy who was just like, "My wife died yesterday, so."

jessamyn: Aaah!

mathowie: And I was just like, "I..." And I'm like thirty or something, I still hadn't had any

experience with having to say something to that. Ugh.

jessamyn: Well, and for a lot of people who do try to kind of math their way emotional situations they may not know how to deal with, it is kind of nice to know that whatever, "Sorry for your loss," or "I'm sorry," or whatever, is appropriate if you don't know anything anything else.

mathowie: Yeah.

jessamyn: Like, it's rare if you say something like that someone's going to come back and be like, RRAR! Or even if they do, whatever, they're grieving, who cares?

cortex: Yeah, I mean, if they're in a place where they're just going to be like euh, then that's where they are. That's fine. Don't take it personally.

jessamyn: Right. But it's like please and thank you: usually okay.

mathowie: Yeah. Yeah, I said "Sorry for your loss," and I was like, was that the right thing?

cortex: (chuckles)

jessamyn: Well, and you had the flu, so.

mathowie: Yeah, right. I was off of my game, is what you're saying.

jessamyn: Augh. Your game? Your game.

cortex: (laughs) My giving-condolences game, you know.

jessamyn: Your game. (laughs)

cortex: Usually I bring it. Usually, you know...

mathowie and jessamyn: (dissolve in laughter)

cortex: I'm undefeatable! Nobody can offer condolences like John [??].

mathowie: I have rap battles.

jessamyn and cortex: (laugh)

jessamyn: Oh, good Lord.

cortex: (raps) My name is Matt / and I'm here to say / I'm sorry for your loss / and [??] away!

mathowie: (chuckles) [??]

jessamyn: So wait, Josh, what's going on here? You just linked to an Ask Metafilter thread from 2006?

cortex: I did!

jessamyn: Tell me what's up with this.

cortex: Because it was just resolved the other day!

jessamyn: What?!

mathowie: Wow.

jessamyn: And you didn't remove the 'stumped' tag?

mathowie: Oh, yeah, [??] let's put resolved.

jessamyn: I'm doing it.

cortex: Do it.

mathowie: Re-solved.

cortex: Yeah, no, this was a--

mathowie: Oh, we can't say 'resolved'!

cortex: MeFite Lucinda asked this question seven years ago, and then they checked

that damned 'Other' box on Facebook, that 'Other' sticks stuff into because they want you to pay for not having stuff--

mathowie: Oh, right.

cortex: --show up there where you'd never look, and last November someone sent them a clip!

jessamyn: They just want you to friend those people!

cortex: No, it's more than that. Even your... yeah, anyway.

jessamyn: What?

cortex: To heck with Facebook, is...

jessamyn: Okay.

cortex: Is a sideline here.

jessamyn: Eff 'em in the ear!

cortex: The point is, via Facebook they got an answer that it was in fact the terrible movie Once Upon A Spy, with Ted Danson and whatnot.

And then, the nice follow-up is, people were like, "Whoa, so some random person on Facebook just saw your thing and contacted you?" And then that person, pikachuFL, signed up to explain what went on! So now we've got a MeFite who signed up to--

mathowie: Awww.

cortex: --respond to people being delighted by this long-overdue resolution.

jessamyn: Awww. Awww!

cortex: So yeah. I just thought that was great.

jessamyn: That's so great! I didn't, I saw the MetaTalk thread but I didn't read it, so

yay pikachuFL, that's really cool.

cortex: Yep.

mathowie: Oh, wow, totally used UBBCode to link to an image. That was awesome.

cortex: (laughs)

jessamyn: That's fine. It's fine.

mathowie: I know, it's just funny.

jessamyn: This is one of the things that I loved, which, this is Blasdelb basically was like, "Hey! When I'm looking for scientific research, here's a couple websites that are very, very good at helping me do what I do.

What are the obsessively compulsive catalog reference websites for your profession?" And it was definitely significantly shorter than a lot of our 'name the x for your profession'; in fact, there's only about 10 or 12, ten comments. But they're really useful! Like, here's where you look up file formats. Here's where you look up W3 Spec. Here's where you look up primate studies. Here's where you look up climate change myths. Here's where you look up FAA incidents. In fact, it's still
open, so people should go back to it and add more things.

mathowie: I should put in that, one of those airplane fan sites, does the tailwing search to where... do you know about this? Or if you see...

jessamyn: Maybe not!

mathowie: Look at a photograph of any plane. Like, commercial jet airliner, anything, private jet, and you see like NA372.

jessamyn: Yeah, well, I grew up right under the runway of a tiny airport, so I'm familiar with those things, but there's a place you can look them up?

Like, a citizen can look them up?

mathowie: You can just, yeah, you just Google search it--

jessamyn: Hey!

mathowie: --and then you get like, not FlyerTalk, but it's like, it's a total fan... so here's what happened. I follow my town's tag on Flickr, just the name of the city, it's awesome, you should probably put in Randolph if there aren't a million Randolphs in the world.

jessamyn: There are a million Randolphs.

mathowie: Wow.

jessamyn: And nobody on Twitter's talking about Randolph except me.

mathowie: Aww. So I put McMinnville, there's one in Tennessee and there's one in Oregon, 90% of the photos are mine.

jessamyn: (laughs)

mathowie: And there's a tiny little airport that has private planes coming and going and stuff. And there was a, someone had a 7, a small jet. And I'm like, "Hey, I can see the tailwing!" And I Google search it, and I get this database, and it's like, "This was a Pan Am jet in the '60s. And in the '70s, it was a United Airlines regional. And then it went to China Airlines during the '90s, and now it's a private-owned, as of 2005, by this guy."

jessamyn: Interesting!

mathowie: And they had photos of every incarnation of this actual plane, like someone is cataloging the tailwing photos of... like, I could see it in the China Airlines livery, as they call it, a photo of it taking off or landing from all these... It's completely fan-done, it's crazy. I gotta find that and post that.

cortex: Clearly. That's nuts.

jessamyn: Neat! Yeah, that sounds great. Go link it!

mathowie: Yeah, I'll do it after the [??].

jessamyn: I had two more AskMes that are both linked sort of to each other. The first one is,

"I know I should exercise but I hate it. How do I motivate to exercise?" and then one that's not quite the same but very similar, which is, "I know I should get out of bed and live my life, but I hate it. What do you do to get out of bed in the morning?" So there's two threads full of sort of motivation tips, but also like, "This is what I'm thinking about when I'm thinking about why I should go to the gym or do that thing or whatever." So I thought they were both really good. The gym one is just kind of a
standard favorite, but like, "How do I get to the gym? I'm a couch potato," and so I always like reading stories about Metafilter people especially who are like, "I was a blob, and then, whatever, this thing changed in my life and now I am a person who does the stuff," basically, "now I go to the gym and it makes me happy because of blah, or now I go for walks with my dog which makes me happy because of blah." Like, the stories are usually "I enjoy this," not like,
"My doctor said if I didn't go I would die and so now I went and I'm not dead but I still hate it," like, it's mostly cheery and stuff.

mathowie: Sweet!

cortex: Nice.

jessamyn: And then motivation for getting out of the bed, just how you set routines, how you get up in the morning to be kind of psyched to greet your day, as opposed to "Euuugh."

mathowie: (chuckles)

jessamyn: Which I think is challenging for many people, and so it was good to get other perspectives on it.

mathowie: What do you guys use for the gym motivation?

jessamyn: I watch Elementary on my iPad, and I used to watch Downton Abbey on it, and I can't watch any more of it if I don't watch it at the gym.

mathowie: Ohh.

jessamyn: And I can eat lots of food if I go the gym. Like, I'm a little person, I get 1600 calories for a day. It's not really that much food.

mathowie: Yeah.

jessamyn: But if I go to the gym and exercise for an hour, I can eat more than I can eat in a day, usually.

mathowie: Sweet.

cortex: [??] go to the gym.

jessamyn: How do you stay in shape, Josh?

cortex: Walking? I've been trying to...

jessamyn: See?

cortex: We've been being more conscious about our--

jessamyn: So you guys used to not have a car, right? But now you have one.

cortex: Yeah. Yeah, and really, that's mostly why I haven't been riding my bike at all. I actually just took it in the other week, it's been sitting in my garage for a year. Because we bought the car, oh, like, a year and a half ago, and I was like, oh, now I'll never ride my bike again, but then I tried to make a point of riding my bike, and that went okay, but then I sort of stopped doing that because then it was like February in Portland. And I got a flat, is what happened.

jessamyn: You gotta get some Under Armour.

cortex: I got a flat, and I was like, "Oh, I better go get that fixed," and then I just didn't for a year. So I finally got that done, and actually, I got it done, I went and picked up my bike, went for a joyful twenty-minute bike ride, was like, "Yeah, I remember this, this is great!" And then I ran over a piece of beer bottle and got a flat.

jessamyn: God--!

mathowie: Aww.

jessamyn: Err!

cortex: Yeah. So I walked it back there, and I'd ridden for twenty minutes (chuckling) and spent forty, fifty minutes walking back to the bike shop with a flat tire.

jessamyn: Aww.

cortex: But the guy switched out the tube quickly, so.

jessamyn: Cursed hipsters!

mathowie: (chuckles)

cortex: Well, actually, probably vagrants. It's a trail that's right along the railroad ravine, so a lot of people camp there.

jessamyn: Cursed vagrants!

cortex: Yeah.

jessamyn: Matt, what's your motivation?

mathowie: Oh, it's social or money, is the only thing that works for me. Social being like--

jessamyn: Like, you pay yourself to go to the gym, is that what you're saying?

mathowie: No, you pay a trainer, and then if you sleep in you know you're out forty bucks or something like that.

jessamyn: Oh, I get it, I get it.

cortex: See, but then you're just out of shape and feel guilt. That's, you know.

mathowie: No, then you get up and go out!

jessamyn: Then you're out of shape and broke!

cortex: (laughs)

mathowie: I try to pre-pay for training, so I know I'm going to waste that money if I don't go. And the other thing is social, when it's like, the only times I ever worked out was when someone at work, I had a buddy at work, and it was like six o'clock, Monday-Wednesday-Friday we're going to go work out, right? Yeah, yeah, yeah. Because we both don't want to do it, but then the other one doesn't want to disappoint the other one, so it's perfect for hiding it.

cortex: Yeah.

jessamyn: I found I actually got to the gym more when I stopped exercising with other people, because it was too much negotiation. Like, I love my friends,

but the gym just requires, "When do you want to go? I'll pick you up then." "Well, I'm not ready then, I'll go a little bit later," and I was like, AAAH! Like, if I don't just get out the door and go, I won't go, so now I go by myself and it's a lot easier.

mathowie: Ohhh. Yeah. Yeah, that's good.

jessamyn: I don't know why that works.

mathowie: If you can make a stable--yeah, you gotta take that out of it as a variable.

cortex: Yeah.

mathowie: Just gotta be a stable thing.

cortex: If the teamwork works for you, awesome.

mathowie: Yeah.

cortex: If it doesn't, then you route around it.

mathowie: Let me see, I had two last ones, satisfying and unsatisfying. One, the epic cookie recipe, which is probably going to be the most favorited thing in the month, I'm sure.

jessamyn: Oh, the "I'm trying to cook up my new boyfriend" kind of thing, was that...?

mathowie: "I'm just trying to make him something nice, any cookie is on the table," and everyone posted their favorite cookies that was not just whose chocolate--

jessamyn: But they totally want to knock him out, right?

mathowie: Yeah.

jessamyn: Then they were like, "I want to make a..."

mathowie: And it's not just a chocolate chip cookie battle, where people are like, "Mine are better than yours." It's just like, "Here are all the wonderful cookies in the world." It's so great. Like, just every recipe for amazing, amazing cookies. Yeah, the best cookie you've ever had, kind of.

And then the not so--I don't know, not super satisfying food other thing I loved was, "What can I learn about our interactions with ingredients?"

jessamyn: Oh, yeah! I loved this thread! Sorry, go on.

mathowie: Yeah, I loved the idea of--like tomatoes, right? Are from the New World, so I totally associate Italian food completely being tomato-based, and what was it like before tomatoes? Like, what was Italian cooking like? Unfortunately, nobody really answers it, they just say, "Read this book! And read this history of food."

jessamyn: They're like, "I like to talk about food."

mathowie: (chuckle) Well, it was like, "Oh, I've got to go get three books from the library and read a thousand pages to get my answer." Because it's not really in the thread, but it's kind of like, "Oh, yeah! This one author talked about it in this one book," and I'm like, "Oh, yeah, but I want to know. Can you give me a synopsis?"

jessamyn: (laughs)

mathowie: But yeah, it's pretty cool. Like, foods... you know, regions have a strong association with a certain ingredient that didn't come until the last two or three hundred years. What was life like before that? What did people eat? It's really interesting. I really wanted to get the answer of it.

jessamyn: Right.

mathowie: But there isn't... the answer is really, go read a whole bunch of--

jessamyn: There's not a pat answer.

mathowie: --medieval books, and history of food books.

jessamyn: The blog has not yet been written on that.

mathowie: Yeah, food history, there's a PBS video... but yeah. Especially America, you know, it's like, we exploded the world with all kinds of weird foods and spices, and what was life like before that? So that was pretty cool.

jessamyn: Neat! I think that was it for my Ask Metafilter. I had a couple nice little things in MetaTalk that I wanted to mention.

cortex: Do it.

jessamyn: Two things in MetaTalk, which were, number one, we have a Metafilter user who right now is hiking the...

mathowie and cortex: Appalachian Trail.

jessamyn: ...Appalachian Trail. wearyaswater, who's a long-time user, is hiking the Appalachian Trail, and she's got a Twitter if you want to follow her--

mathowie: Oh!

jessamyn: And workerant, who I got to meet when I was in Tennessee, actually met her and met up with her, and it was just sort of neat. So if you would like to be part of wearyaswater's informal support team--

mathowie: This is cool!

jessamyn: --follow her on the Twitter, because it's cool.

cortex: I am shocked that there is not a single Mark Sanford joke in this entire thread.

jessamyn: Who?

mathowie: That guy who supposedly wandered the trail.

cortex: He was hiking the Appalachian Trail and he was actually hooking up with his mistress. This was a guy who was in [Congress ?] and as far as I know is still, yeah.

mathowie: Yeah.

jessamyn: Oh, right, the North Carol--was that North Carolina? South Carolina?

mathowie: I think so, yeah. One of them.

cortex: One of them Carolinas.

jessamyn: Yes.

mathowie: Oh, so when this was announced, she hadn't started yet. So it's like, "Oh! I gotta come back to this!"

jessamyn: Right.

mathowie: And I hadn't come back to it, so it's cool. She's three weeks into it already, and that's the best way to follow these things.

I've followed all sorts of cross-country trips before online. It's great when you can do it while they're doing it. You can read it, it's great.

jessamyn: Yeah! So I was happy about that, and then the other thing I was happy about, just was--which it was kind of a weird fun thread, was the "What are your Metafilter white whales?"

cortex: Yeah.

jessamyn: So it was started by grobstein, who I just re-met at the Boston meetup, which was super fun. But he was trying to figure out, you know, there's a post or comment that you

remember, but you can't find again? And, you know, when you talk to other people about them, sometimes other people can find the things that you can't remember. And the best thing about this thread! is ND¢, who basically doesn't even hang out on Metafilter anymore since he's had two kids, one of the comments had to do with his comment about Star Trek that Greg Nog favorited and then when other people favorite it, he knows somehow
and so then he shows up and he's very funny, and so he showed up again and made a very funny comment and talked about his kids, and I had remembered the story totally wrong, I had thought that he had called his kid potato-looking and then I had said something about it, but really I made it up entirely and then just kept rubbing it in thinking it was his joke that I was being funny about, but actually just ragging on him about his kid, which I totally didn't mean to do. So, I'm sorry, ND¢, about making fun of your baby.

cortex: (laughs)

jessamyn: And now she's a toddler. I figure I'll meet her when she's a teenager and I can apologize in person.

mathowie: Oh, yeah, the 007 wedding. I remember that one, I always wanted to hear the followup.

jessamyn: Yeah, yeah.

mathowie: And I guess they did do that on Mythbusters (laughs).

jessamyn: Right, and they were like, "All it proves is that Jamie can wear the thing, but rrr..." Yeah.

mathowie: Yeah. (laughs) These are awesome.

jessamyn: But that was just kind of a fun recent thread where people talked about the things that they haven't been able to track down.

mathowie: Very cool.

jessamyn: Yeah! I thought so. So yeah, some good stuff happening on Metafilter this month. In summary. Land of contrasts.

mathowie: Any last quick Music Minute, Josh, before we wrap up?

cortex: Oh, this month we've been doing a--

jessamyn: Wait, I made a thing! In Music!

cortex: You did! I was... you're jumping the gun. I was all going to be slick about it.

jessamyn: Oh. Go ahead. Go ahead.

cortex: Yeah, well, not much happened.

jessamyn: (laughs) So mean.

cortex: (laughs) No, this month the challenge has been to do stuff in weird times, like 5/4, 7/4, and basically get out of just doing everything in 4/4 or

everything 3/4 if you're one of those people who does everything in 3/4. So there's been a bunch of stuff done for that, and as usual there's a Music Talk thread discussing the challenge and ideas for inspiration. And one that I liked, actually, was just posted just yesterday, I think, a track called Grebos in Love by Grangousier [ˈgɹæŋˌgaʊzieɪ]? Grangousier [ˈgɹæŋˌgæzieɪ]?

jessamyn: Grangousier [ˌgɹæŋˌgwɑˈzi]? Grangous [ˈgɹæŋˌgwɑz]--

cortex: Grangousier [ˌgɹæŋˌgwɑˈzi]? That sounds plausible.

jessamyn: Grangous [ˈgɹæŋˌgwoz]... Grangosier [ˈgɹæŋˌgoʊziɚ]!

cortex: Yeah.

jessamyn: Grang [ˈgɹæŋ]--shoot.

cortex: Grange Hoozier ['gɹændʒ 'hʊziɚ], I believe.

mathowie: (laughs)

jessamyn: Grango User!

cortex: It's just this super dirty blues rock [??] thing, but in 5/4. It's a nice example of a groove that doesn't sound like someone pointedly being in off-time, it just sort of work.

mathowie: Oh man, that's pretty slick.

jessamyn: I'm listening to it right now. It's good!

mathowie: unSane's is kind of incredible, It Gets Better.

cortex: unSane's always had a ton of good stuff. The guy just is a great musician.

mathowie: It's just weird and upbeat and silly-sounding.

cortex: Yep.

mathowie: It's, wow. It's weird.

cortex: And there was also, unrelated to that, but a brand new user signed up a few days ago named Brodyaga, something like that. But nice track called Lama that's this sort of wide-open, sort of Pink Floyd-ish tinged thing that I really enjoyed.

mathowie: Neat. (airy whistle) That's good.

cortex: And then, yes, there's a post by jessa ['dʒizə]? jessamyn ['dʒizəˌmaɪn]? I don't know how you pronounce this user's name, but--

mathowie: (laughs)

Kibo [ˈkɪboʊ]?

cortex: Yeah, no, a song called 251 Towns, by jessamyn ['dʒɛsɑˌmɪn], who might have a comment on this, but at the moment her Skype call dropped, so I'm just gonna run with it while she figures that out.

jessamyn: This is preposterous.

cortex: (laughs) I just said it's your song, 251 Towns.

mathowie: What?!

jessamyn: Yeah! It's my bumper music for what's gonna be my Vermont minute that I'm gonna do on all the different Vermont towns. I figure if I do one a week it'll take me five years.

cortex: Now, haven't you already visited all the towns before as a project?

jessamyn: Yes.

cortex: So you're doing it again.

jessamyn: Well, no, I'm not going there--

cortex: Oh, okay, you're just reviewing.

jessamyn: I'm just doing a little research and finding things out about the towns.

cortex: Oh, okay.

jessamyn: So I can be like, "Now we're going to talk about Randolph, Vermont! Randolph, Vermont is the home of the Morgan Horse."

cortex: Sweet.

jessamyn: "And did you know? It's the geographic center of the state." That kind of thing.

cortex: (laughs) That's awesome.

mathowie: Oh, I thought you tried to fit 251 towns into 44 seconds or something (laughing).

jessamyn: No, I think... which proves you haven't listened to it.

mathowie: I... you guys are talking, and just like, yeah.

jessamyn: (sighs) I thought you were proud of me.

cortex: Don't you follow her on the watch your contact activity sidebar? Like, jessamyn posted a song, I was like, "Fuck yeah!"

mathowie: I didn't see it.

jessamyn: Exactly like that.

mathowie: It's so... it's down the screen, I wish my friends' activity was--

jessamyn: I don't even want to hear about it. I don't want to hear about it.

mathowie: --above other stuff.

cortex: (laughs)

jessamyn: Computers. Because nerds.

mathowie: Ha-hah, I need a [??] SMS gateway for when something huge happens like this.

dog: (barks)

mathowie: 251 notifications for each song for each city.

jessamyn: I'll keep posting them. Towns, mostly.

mathowie: Sweet.

jessamyn: And four gores.

mathowie: Oh, yeah, what is the technical, technological... what makes a town? What's a town versus a city?

jessamyn: I, you know...

mathowie: Post office? Is it 251 post offices?

jessamyn: No! The towns are just, they're actual... this is an East Coast difference from the West Coast. Like, a town is like a little box that the stuff is in, but there isn't anything that's not a town. Like, you guys have unincorporated areas in the West Coast, and we don't

have that here. Like, a town starts in a place but it's got borders, and then when you leave the one town you're always going into another town.

mathowie: Huh.

jessamyn: So it's a region, and most of them in Vermont were started with grants. The governing people would be like, "Here ya go! We're gonna sell you this chunk of space, and you improve it," and eventually they would incorporate with the town, but this was all back in the 1700s.

So the part of the country, the part where I live in Randolph, used to be part of these New York... Vermont used to be part of New York, before there was a Vermont, and the guys who had the grants to the town, originally from the king or whatever, vanished, and no one could ever find them. And so the land was then deeded to the other people who then founded the town. But it was originally part of New York, and the people who owned it just were never heard from again, which is kind of interesting.

mathowie: Mmm-hm!

jessamyn: Yeah!

mathowie: Hmm.

jessamyn: So that's the interesting stuff that I'm hoping to bring to the table. We have 251 towns.

mathowie: (laughs) Awesome.

jessamyn: Yeah. So I think that's it! Now I'm going to take myself to the gym.

cortex: Sweet.

mathowie: Yay!

cortex: Way to be motivated.

jessamyn: Yeah! Thank you.

mathowie: Season 8 of whatever you're gonna watch.

jessamyn: It's the first season of Elementary still.

mathowie: Oh, okay.

jessamyn: But I [??] a whole bunch of them over the weekend, so I've got all new episodes to watch on my iPad.

mathowie: Sweet, this may be the first podcast I have not turned into a robot ever.

jessamyn: Yay, Matt!

cortex: Well done.

mathowie: I can jinx it! Come on, robot!

cortex: (laughs)

mathowie: Give it to me! Darn it.

jessamyn: Well, I've had bizarre tech problems, so maybe you've just [??] me in.

mathowie: Both of you.

cortex: And I had to reboot right at the start, so yeah.

mathowie: Yeah.

cortex: You're a vampire. You're a stability vampire.

mathowie: I farmed it out.

cortex: You suck the performance out of...

jessamyn: (sings) Vampire, I'm a vampire!

mathowie: I guess this new iMac finally solves the USB willies that caused the robot voice.

jessamyn: The willies.

cortex: Clearly.

mathowie: I have no idea what it could be.

cortex: It's probably actual penises.

jessamyn: Aaah!

mathowie: Aaah!

cortex: And that's our podcast! (laughs)

mathowie: Alright, Actual Penises, number 79.

jessamyn: [The word ?]. Don't call it that. Don't call it that.

mathowie and cortex: (laugh)

mathowie: See ya.

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  • beryllium, 211 segments
  • tangerinegurl, 20
  • Pronoiac, 12