Cleaning Out My Closet #5

Uploaded a Scrabble game between Sean B. Palmer and myself from 2002. This was the first (and only) game we ever played and it ended with only two unplayable letters. He only won cos he kept pluralizing the words I had dropped. Hate the Sean I does. Anyways, I have no idea what "wazzes me off" means, but I'll interpret it as "MY LORDS! THAT WAS SO CLOSE> I FEAR THE LITERATI SKILSLS OF ZEE PENGUIN!" Ahem. Bitchcake.

Cleaning Out My Closet #4

Random line from another chatlog:

<Morbus> you're a dominatrix from a cheesy she-ra ripoff

I love myself.

Cleaning Out My Closet #3

For some odd reason, I kept a whole bunch of chat logs in a folder called "EpiLOG". These aren't IRC chatlogs, more like AOL chatrooms, from 1997 and earlier. A bare minimum make any useful sense, and very few of them give me an inkling on why I actually kept them. Hell, one is called "AOL Warez School" (heh, no file extension. Ahhhh...), and isn't even remotely interesting! I've been carrying this baggage on my drive for a while, and without a reminder stating my intent, nothing worth doing but delete, delete, delete.

Wait a minute. Apparently, back before I was kicked off and banned from AOL for Devil Shat Four, I ran what appears to be a planned chat (1997-04-19) called the CAFE BIZARRE, with the topic of "What Makes Us Afraid?" I believe this was some sort of tie-in for a game magazine (paper, not electronic) I ran called SE MAG ("games" backwards. I'm witty!) where I wrote an article on fear in gaming entitled "Are You Afraid Of The Dark?" (it was bad too). Skimming over this chat is pretty hilarious (MARIO USA: Morbus, you sounded intellegent,but you are getting annoying with your meaningless questions)... it seems this was from my "spooky" years where I actually tried to be uber Amazing (nowadays it comes naturally). Of additional interest is that my sister made an appearance here under the nick SWmania.

In rereading the transcript, I seem to recall this being a "proper" chat for the AOL Horror boards or whatever they were called back then. I think RELMSpectr was an AOL or Board Op (RELMSpectr: Gight, all! And watch the conference room schdule for more hosted chats!). Based on the other filenames in this directory, none seem to indicate other hosted CAFE BIZARRE sessions, so I'm not sure what happened after this (my memory, for those who know my circumstances, is not so good anymore). I'll keep spelunking for more.

Besides converting tabs, this chatlog has been uploaded unmodified. Weep with me.


Cleaning Out My Closet #2

Per my Cleaning Of The Closet, I've added five dog food ads from (per the archived timestamps) Februrary 2001. These apparently come from Butch Petfoods Ltd and contain closeups of dogs and phrases like "I love pussy.", "He buried his face between my legs.", "After a hard day of licking my balls and sniffing my girlfriend's arse..." and so on. They're certainly lewd, but nothing you'd ever imagine seeing in the Wholesome States.

Cleaning Out My Closet #1

I did a backup of my work directory the other day and it came in at 2.2 gigs, which is odd considering that my live sites are only comprise roughly 700 megs. My conclusion was that there must be a lot of stuff in here that I've yet to put up, organize, or otherwise contains enough historical significance to no longer fear TEH SUCK of low quality or "nah, that'll never fly" work. So, I hope to be Cleaning Out My Closet over the next month or so, randomly throwing stuff up in the Detergent directories. First up is stuff that has previously been public, but has been reorganized:

  • The Syncasaurus Logo: Way back in 2000/2001, I was using a bookmark synchronizer called BookmarkSync, and Morbus saw that it was Good. It was better than all the other synchronizers or managers because it integrated with your browser without requiring anything extra: no web based signin, no javascript bookmarklet, no extra steps to take or what have you -- just the way I like my bookmarks. After a year or so of service, they went payware, and I planned Syncasaurus, an opensource alternative. I wrote a bunch of conversion code (in Perl; should be around here somewhere) between IE, Mozilla, and XBEL (an XML doctype), but never actually got around to doing the syncing part (though I had written plenty of development docs on it). Anyways, the Syncasaurus logo was drawn by Julie Wohead (someone I've not talked to in quite a while, much to my deprecating disappointment). It was, and still is, good.
  • urGhyll Archive: Before Ghyll went public, Sean B. Palmer and I spent upwards of nine months letting it ferment in our head, preparing for the inevitable time when we'd actually be "ready" to play. We've since named this the "urGhyll", and this tarbull contains our notes on the subject.

Favorite X-Files Episode

Recipients of my "Share The Love" (where you get a 10% discount off my purchases, and I get 10% credit in exchange -- email me if you're interested in becoming involved) know that I've been buying the X-Files season boxed sets (both to fill in holes I missed during live television runs, and to rekindle my original love for the series). I just finished watching Season Five's "The Post-Modern Prometheus", and I think it's my new favorite episode. Wonderful, wonderful.

I Love Farscape

I laughed, and cried, during Farscape: The Peacekeeper Wars. Man, I love that show.


I'll keep the adulation short: I absolutely love the embedded RSS support within the new Thunderbird. The key commands still bug me (but I can get used to 'em), the lack of being able to key to the folder list still bugs me (count yer tabs, boOooOy!), but I'm ignoring all that for the embedded RSS (which appears to be based on Forumzilla). I jumped right in and switched from Eudora at work (yep, they finally got Eudora import right too!) and I'm loving it.

Biggest annoyance with the RSS support, however, is that you can't sort your subscriptions, which seems like a pretty mindless thing to do. So, I whipped up a quick script (below). Your subscriptions are stored in a file called feeds.rdf in your user's Thunderbird folder, and you'll want to give the full path to that file as this script's only argument:

use warnings; use strict;
use XML::Simple; my $xml = XMLin(shift, KeyAttr=>['dc:title']);
my @titles = sort{ lc($a) cmp lc($b) } keys %{$xml->{"fz:feed"}};
foreach(@titles) {
  print " <RDF:li RDF:resource=\"";
  $xml->{"fz:feed"}{$_}{"dc:identifier"} =~ s/&/&amp;/g;
  print $xml->{"fz:feed"}{$_}{"dc:identifier"}."\"/>\n"; }

The script looks in the feeds.rdf file and writes out a new list of RDF sequence items which, theoretically, you SHOULD be able to just cut and paste. But, for some reason, you can't. I've done side-by-side compares, newline conversion, and yadda yadda yadda, but I just can't get the cut and paste magick working. What does work (but is insanely painful) is using this newly sorted sequence list as a guide to your MANUAL sorting of the feed.rdf itself. Painful, painful.

Anyone know what I'm missing for the last leg of this journey?

Update: Short story shorter, never trust a Windows text editor. Thanks to raku from #joiito, the above script has been edited, and cut and paste magick should work as originally intended. It was a simple matter of amperstands not being encoded.

Multiplayer, Online, World Building

It's taken a long time, but after nine months of gestation, Ghyll lives!

Journalist Uppities

As I'm wont to do, when I respond to a newspaper or online article, I usually copy the writer of the article, and any people in the article itself. So, I sent my previous entry to, not expecting much of a response.

Receiving nothing would have been better than the diatribe I've encountered. I should have known when the author has some link to the "Dr. Gizmo" technology columns (which, based on his signature, he takes credit for writing but refers to himself in the third person: "Dr. Gizmo once tried to clean Al Fasoldt's laptop screen..."). You'll find this Dr. Gizmo crap more humorous in just a second.

My previous entry is a slight revision of a mailing list post I sent to WEB4LIB yesterday, and notice that the subject line is the title of the article in question but, due to anxious snipping, no article URL itself was included - just my reply. Since I felt my reply was equally written for both the mailing list and the author, I just CC'd his email address. No big deal, I thought. Uh huh.

Welp, first out of his mouth is "what article rubs you the wrong way?", and then "is Morbus Iff your real name?". I didn't think much of the fact that he didn't make a logical conclusion based on the email subject (cos, you know, again, it was the name of his article), but after explaining who I am, and why that Kevin fellow only exists to make money, he responded with an impassioned screed about how writing to a newspaper with a nom de plume may be "exotic", but it puts journalists on a wary footing because of its anonymity. And why the hell would I send him a mailing list reply when his articles are only published this, that, and the other way?

I was not impressed. Supposedly, this guy is a technology journalist, but he can't make a logical conclusion about what the email is about (based on the subject line with the article's title), nor make the great leap to think his article could be discussed on a mailing list. And hell, he uses the name "Dr. Gizmo."

It didn't get much better, eventually ending in "don't email me unless you use your real name". I had previously questioned if "Bill Jones", as fake as Morbus Iff, was more real because it looked "just right", but it was never further addressed. He also doesn't seem to appreciate the irony of "Dr. Gizmo" being a non de plume, who gives out anonymous technical facts as opposed to merely opinions. Wasn't the whole intent of the article in the first place to challenge the anonymous and non-authoritative nature of Wikipedia?

Update: Al has given me permission to publish the following snippet:

You'd find my lectures interesting, especially the next few, when I plan to talk about this sort of thing, and about anonymity and the decline of civility. Expecting someone you write to to guess who you are (or, worse yet, to not even CARE who you are) is a fascinating look at a set of ethical values that I don't share. If opinions have any importance, they have them only in the context of who we are and what we stand for. And that can only matter when we are willing to stand up and identify ourselves. The fact that you never learned that is a genuine tragedy.

I'm still debating on whether I want to respond to that, but then I remembered that I already addressed the issue waaaaay back in 1998 with Devil Shat Nineteen's "You Are What You Type" (the opening image is an illustration, but NSFW; it's quickly scroll-by-able). Yeah, reading back on it, it's relatively poorly written and filled with questions not answers, but until further prompted by Al's lectures, I'll hold off further contributions.

"With this loss of identity on the net, we have lost our sense of caution."

Tell me dear readers, is Morbus Iff anonymous?


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