Metafilter Podcast, Episode 122: "Your Dumb Early Feet" (2016-11-01)

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Transcript

Jingle:
podcast, it's time for the metafilter podcast
jessamyn:
I helped somebody get an attachment out of her AOL mail.
cortex:
Nice. What was it? Was it a photo or, [spell]…
jessamyn:
It was a pdf, but she'd renamed it as a document, and so it came up gibberish, and I fixed it, and, ehh, hero!
cortex:
Yay! Go you.
jessamyn:
Yeah, it was nice. But it was like seven people with complicated computer problems, so I came home and had a slice of pizza. Now I'm like
cortex:
(laughs)
jessamyn:
"I want to talk to somebody who knows how to use a computer." Hello, Josh.
cortex:
Well, you're listening to Metafilter… pod… something. Oh, Jesus Christ.
jessamyn:
(laughs)
cortex:
Ohhh, I was gonna- I was just gonna take us right in there.
jessamyn:
Best of the web! Metafilter Podcast! Come on! Come on!
cortex:
that's the one; that's what you're listening to, the best of the web, metafilter monthly podcast; with I, your host Josh Millard aka cortex, and also --
jessamyn:
and me, your other host jessamyn!
cortex:
Yes! and here we are, episode 122. Uh, it's -- I'm gonna be excited about 123, but 122 is just kinda like near a good number.
jessamyn:
Why, what's 123?
cortex:
That's just like 1-2-3, it's just like a good sequence.
jessamyn:
Oh, it's like my mailbox! 3-4-5
cortex:
Yeah, there you go!
jessamyn:
And then my zip code, 05060, so it's like 3-4-5-6 --
cortex:
Yeah, you've got some good numbers on that address! That's a solid address
j: I tired, I made them shuffle
jessamyn:
I tried, I made them like shuffle through a whole stack of empty post office boxes
cortex:
Oh, nice
jessamyn:
Well, and then I got this other phone number, I finally got a google voice phone number, so that I had a local Vermont number because that actually matters to people here? So my google voice number is like 802, which is Vermont, and then it's 234-8-9-10
cortex:
NICE!
jessamyn:
pretty good, right?
cortex:
Nice.
jessamyn:
Good luck calling it, it goes straight to voicemail, everybody, BUT you could leave me a message.
cortex:
heh heh heh. Speaking of which, we've still got to figure out a call-in show thing too.
jessamyn:
yeah!
jessamyn:
yeah! I mean if people have ideas for that, leave them in the comments in the thread, 'cause we'd like to do some kind of call-in thing. I do like the idea of having people, like, read their favorite short comment, you know? Something like that.
cortex:
yeah, that'd be a nice way to go, sort-of like we have metatalk threads like that every once in a while, but why not do it, you know, out loud?
jessamyn:
great!
cortex:
that'd be cool. We should -- I was just saying before we got going here, ah, how much the election remains such, like, a weird looming
cortex:
the election remains such, like, a weird looming shadow on getting other shit done, and wanting to like, you know, try and dig on various side things, so, I'm -- I'm really feeling enthusiastic for like the middle of November and being out the far side of that epochal day, next --
jessamyn:
I do have one reccomendation too, I don't know if that'll help or not but this helped me, um, early vote!
cortex:
Oh, well, it's -- I'm in Oregon so I have totally done --
jessamyn:
Oh, perfect! Yeah, I'm done voting!
cortex:
Yeah, the voting part is not a problem!
j: just, like the worrying and other people worrying
cortex:
The voting part is not a problem! The, the --
jessamyn:
Just the worrying and the other people worrying?
cortex:
Yeah, life in the mixture, life on metafilter
jessamyn:
Sure
cortex:
It'll, it'll be a nice change
jessamyn:
But from a personal perspective it's been really nice for people to be like "rur rur rur, this thing!" and I'm like, "I don't care, already voted." And they're like, "BUT!" I'm like, "Already voted! Already voted." "But who did you --?" "Already voted Already --"
cortex:
It's possible, I haven't gotten a lot of election stuff in the mail, and I mean there's another week to go so maybe it's about to blow up, but, the, one of the notes people have made about like the benefits of early voting includes from a
cortex:
includes from ah, you could look at it, uh, basically you can get yourself by getting your vote in, you'll potentially get off people's list to get off election related action for, which, from a selfish perspective, it's great if that means you just don't get a bunch of mail and you don't get a bunch of phone calls because you, oh well, shit, well, that's --
jessamyn:
Right! Oh, I saw rtha and gingerbeer while I in California! And got to snorgle with yorbit and roswell, which was so fun!
But they were looking at their voting stuff, and there's this thing called the Pissed-Off Citizens' Guide?
cortex:
(laughs)
jessamyn:
Which I was like, jokey joke joke, I thought it was one of those satire things, you know? No! There's an actual group of lefties in San Francisco that puts out this, I think it's San Francisco, maybe California, they can correct me, but puts out a thing that tells you, "Hey, I'm a concerned leftie, how do I vote?"
cortex:
Yeah.
jessamyn:
And it kind of gives you advice and it's *amazing*! There's like so, there's like, I don't know,
50 different things to vote for besides just people to vote for, because they've got all these crazy initiatives, and there's a lot of pro- and con-, a lot of the stuff?
cortex:
Yeah.
jessamyn:
You know? Like, there's a pro-weed bill and an anti-weed bill!
cortex:
(chuckles)
jessamyn:
And there's a pro--I don't know--thing!, and an anti-I don't know--thing, pro-soda, anti-soda, pro-smoking, anti-smoking... it's *crazy*. But, you know, they're super politically involved. So we actually had a great time. Like, I was exhausted. I've been at the Archive all day just talking and euhh.
And I just got to go there and we ate tacos. And I asked them about politics, which I sincerely was interested in, local politics, and they just kind of told me all about it, and it was great!
cortex:
Yeah.
jessamyn:
Pissed-Off Citizens' Guide.
cortex:
Yeah, we've got a couple newsweeklies here that do varying levels of sort of earnest and whatnot voting analysis aside from the voter guide stuff in Oregon.
jessamyn:
San Francisco League of Pissed-Off Voters. Yeah, I'll drop you the thing. And they have a little voter guide, and it's *amazing*.
But it's, you know, there's, what, 20-something propositions just in California? Proposition A through X? Oh my god.
cortex:
There's not that much in Oregon this time, but we always have a few, too. We don't have any of those weird contradictory it-could-go-either-way ones this time.
jessamyn:
Yeah. We have nothing! Which is a little surprising to me.
cortex:
Well, you've [??] state for so long, it's like, you've got it all figured out.
jessamyn:
Tsss! But, like, Massachussetts has weed on the ballot. So does Maine. We don't?
Somehow? I don't know, it's weird!
cortex:
Is it possible that the relative low population and relative rurality of Vermont means that people just don't deal as much with some of the headaches of acquiring weed in a casual way?
jessamyn:
Yes.
cortex:
And so just no one cares.
jessamyn:
I think it's that no one cares.
cortex:
Yeah. Huh. Interesting. Anyway.
jessamyn:
Aanyway.
cortex:
The election! That's a thing [??]
jessamyn:
But it's still illegal in New Hampshire, so I can't drive with it in my car anyhow, but whatever.
cortex:
Right.
jessamyn:
I don't even care.
cortex:
Yep.
jessamyn:
Alright. Yeah, so! 122.
cortex:
122. Tell me about it.
jessamyn:
Nothing!
cortex:
Nothing?
jessamyn:
It's just that--no! It's natural, which is, you know, numbers.
cortex:
(chuckles)
jessamyn:
It's a non-totient... and it's a non-cototient, neither of which I understand. In math. It's the atomic number of some chemical nobody's heard about.
And it's the name of a United Nations Security Council resolution that has to do with Jammu and Kashmir? And the only thing I know about Kashmir is that Led Zeppelin song.
cortex:
Yes.
jessamyn:
This is just as bad as it gets.
cortex:
Yeah, that's, this is--let's--sorry, 122, you're a stinker. We're moving on. That's all you get.
jessamyn:
Yeah. I had hoped for more.
cortex:
Yeah. There are some interesting Jobs up. I always talk about, like, I slag on having to report on Jobs, but there's a few that are kinda interesting.
jessamyn:
No, no, no! I looked at Jobs too, actually.
cortex:
I liked this one from ApathyGirl--
jessamyn:
Of course!
cortex:
Who wants someone to buy a copy of Circus Flohcati, the Japanese version of it, and send it to them in the US, so.
jessamyn:
That's what it's called?
cortex:
Boom. Really.
jessamyn:
Flohcati. Is Flohcati the name of that rug that I have?
cortex:
I don't know. I don't know the word.
jessamyn:
I'm a-clicking this link!
cortex:
Alright. Do it!
So yes, if you're--
jessamyn:
Oh, I can't figure anything out. What is this? It's like a card game! I assumed it was a video game. Oh, that's cool.
cortex:
Oh, I did too.
jessamyn:
That's [??].
cortex:
Nice!
jessamyn:
Hah. Hahah!
cortex:
Well, anyway, if you're in Japan and want to send a game to ApathyGirl in the US, there you go. The location on this is listed as 13,564 miles away from me, so--
jessamyn:
That's about as far as it gets!
cortex:
Yep.
jessamyn:
Well, and I enjoyed Quisp Lover's job. He just needs someone who speaks Bengali. "You are a native speaker who can articulate Bengali and record yourself. I need you to record 25 words and
read through a little article on the culture to identify errors. Please. Fifty bucks."
cortex:
Boom.
jessamyn:
Yeah! Nice. Little. Simple. Job.
cortex:
And dirtdirt needs someone to edit a music video, so.
jessamyn:
Ahhh. dirtdirt! dirtdirt has a Milo. He's one of the Milo-havers.
cortex:
This is definitely also a not-big-paying gig, he's pretty clear about it being like (chuckling) hey, we need someone to help with this, and that'd be great if you can.
jessamyn:
But they're a--he's in a band!
cortex:
Yeah, yeah.
jessamyn:
His elderly machine chokes on it.
cortex:
Yeah, that's pretty much...
jessamyn:
If he had more money, he'd buy a computer.
cortex:
Yep. Being in a band... I mean, he's probably not just in a band, but--because who can afford to be just in a band.
jessamyn:
I think he's got a job too.
cortex:
Exactly.
jessamyn:
He's married.
cortex:
Yeah, yeah.
jessamyn:
He lives in Texas.
cortex:
But yeah. And there's a few other things in there too. So go check out Jobs. Jobs are things that exist.
jessamyn:
Yeah!
cortex:
We did it! Let's talk about Projects.
jessamyn:
Okay! Well. In the pandering category, metaquarry, who is also known as Galen, who I actually know in real life, did this little talk about a cat? And a librarian. The librarian is him. Writing about wasps and such. So it's just a set of notes to the cat. And, you know, it's no like [rick rick rick ?] kind of thing, but I enjoyed it because I know Galen, I'm not sure if
you didn't know Galen if you would enjoy it so much, but I enjoyed it. It's just a little Storify story about Galen and Galen's cat.
cortex:
Yeah. It's nice. I mean it's... yes. It's a pleasant little thing.
jessamyn:
And it's for Halloween. Yeah!
cortex:
I co-sign that.
I also dug--there's a, from moonmilk, it's a... it's... I'm trying to think of the thing I'm comparing it to, but anyway, Trumpet Practice (elegy for vine), is what he called it, and it's basically live mixing of
Vine loops together to make sort of party music. Which... [Kutiman ?], that's who I'm thinking of, that guy who did the YouTube mash-up stuff. It reminds me of that. Somewhat different flavor and sort of live mixing stuff, but it's cool. It's a neat thing.
jessamyn:
Oh, this is Ranjit! I confused moonmilk with... the other moon guy, from North Carolina.
cortex:
Yeah, there's several moonfolk on the site.
jessamyn:
Who also does a lot of interesting stuff on Projects. Oh, this is great!
cortex:
Yeah.
jessamyn:
Real-time remix. Found video footage. That's really cool.
cortex:
Yeah, it's the sort of thing that I like watching someone else do, because I don't think I would have specifically the attention span or the patience for it all. It definitely feels like a specific kind of skillset, so.
jessamyn:
Why is Vine going away?
cortex:
Because Twitter is terrible? I think? Is the basic thing.
jessamyn:
Okay.
cortex:
Like, they bought Vine, and then now they're shutting down Vine.
jessamyn:
In order to do Periscope, or something else, or...?
cortex:
I think maybe the idea--maybe they're just trying to cannibalize all of the Vine stuff into, hey, you know, we support short--we support GIFs and videos now, so just use Twitter for those things, and that's... I don't know. The comment I saw from someone that sort of rang true for me was that this reminds of Google Reader a lot in the sense that it looks like a company killing something that people enjoy using in hopes that that will force them to use something that they don't like.
jessamyn:
Heh.
cortex:
Like, maybe by shutting Vine down, Twitter will get people who do Vine stuff to just do that stuff on Twitter instead. But, like, there's a whole sense of space and community and affection, and the kind of stuff you find on Vine, and [??] constraints are sort of a valuable part of it for a lot of people.
jessamyn:
Right!
cortex:
But that just doesn't translate for her, so...
jessamyn:
It's a different thing.
cortex:
Yeah.
jessamyn:
And you want to do it on Vine, not on fricking Twitter.
cortex:
Yeah.
jessamyn:
Bah!
cortex:
When we get to Metafilter we'll definitely link that thread.
jessamyn:
Heh.
cortex:
Of people collecting Vines, because that's been kind of an amazing pile of proof that this was a stupid idea on Twitter's part.
jessamyn:
I'll bet!
cortex:
But I also enjoyed... the same thing you just--
jessamyn:
Hey!
cortex:
--linked in there. The Fake App Review Detector, by hodgepodge.
jessamyn:
By hodgebodge! So this is something that they've done before, and then they've added a bunch of new features.
cortex:
Yeah.
jessamyn:
So you can talk about what it is.
cortex:
Yeah. Yeah. I mean, there's a lot of review fraud in mobile, and sort of app store environments.
jessamyn:
So fraud is like an app that isn't what it says it is, or it's an app that pretends it's something else, or just a...?
cortex:
In this case it's an app that pretends to be better than it is through fake reviews, basically.
jessamyn:
I see.
cortex:
A lot of... there's, any sort of app store sort of context, there's a big problem with findability and recommendation and whatnot that comes out of the fact that there's so much stuff. And people churn out a lot of crap. And one way that you can sort of find something that's not crap is at least check, well, does it have a lot of reviews? Is it well reviewed? Sure.
Which means, of course, that there's a lot of fuckers out there who are trying to monetize the process of ruining that metric, and so you get lots of fake reviews.
jessamyn:
Well, and there's no... the reviews are kind of a shallow metric, because you can't be like, reviews from my friends! Reviews from... like, there's...
cortex:
Yeah. It's such a broad space, and it's so underfeatured as something that we really have that kind of... nobody wants, like, nobody gets excited about Yelp. You know? No one's like, there's not a hundred thousand people or ten million people like, "You know what I love?
Hanging out on Yelp and reviewing stuff." Like, no. The only people who get excited about Yelp are the people who are angry when they're excited about giving a bad review.
jessamyn:
Heh! Heh! Heh! Heheh. Okay.
cortex:
So it's never gonna be a big social natural fun thing that people just do and make good content for at the scale that you would need it to for these sort of review spaces to really work super well organically.
jessamyn:
Although Yelp does let you look at your friends' reviews and stuff like that.
cortex:
Oh, sure. Sure. But tell me, what are your favorite ten Yelp friends that you have?
jessamyn:
My friend Dawn, and my friend...
cortex:
(chuckles)
jessamyn:
I mean, I maybe use Yelp more than you do.
cortex:
Yeah, maybe. I could be being more of a dick about it than I need to be. But basically, my feeling is, there's not, you don't have that same--
jessamyn:
That's you being a dick? That's not very dickish, Josh.
cortex:
Ehhh. I [??].
jessamyn:
Try harder!
cortex:
(jokingly) Fuck y'all! (chuckles)
jessamyn:
(laughs)
cortex:
No, I have nothing against Yelp specifically. But, I mean, my point is basically, you're not gonna like, you can think of those people following on Twitter because of what they do.
jessamyn:
I know.
cortex:
You probably, the average person doesn't have anything like *that* degree of a sense of a space like Yelp.
jessamyn:
I don't think so.
cortex:
Same thing with app reviews. So you aren't going to have this really robust natural system for generating good reviews and whatnot, you're just gonna have, you know, people review when they do, and one of the things that that means is there's kind of a vacuum that's really easy to get in some sort of compromising bullshit to overwhelm.
jessamyn:
Yeah, yeah, yeah.
cortex:
And so things like coercing a review out of people in order to unlock stuff in an app, or et cetera.
jessamyn:
Well, that's the thing that's crazy about this! Like, I clicked around and actually looked at App Recs, which is the thing hodgebodge built, and, like, oh my god! Like, the things it looks for. Like, the worst offenders, if you look at this page, it's just basically apps where the people who review the app specifically say, in their five-star review, "I needed to rate this in order to keep using the app."
cortex:
Yeah.
jessamyn:
Or get coins within the app. Or blahbuhblahbuhblah. And you just read, like, review after review,
"I just did this for tokens." "Free VIP with review." "I'm doing this for 100 points, LOL."
cortex:
Yeah.
jessamyn:
"I'm only writing this for the coins, yikes." "I'm doing this for the free stuff." "Only doing this for the free updates." And it just goes on and on. And it's all shit like, "Get friends on Instagram! Get more comments on Instagram. Blahbuhblahbuhblahbuhblahbuhblah." And some of these are apps I've actually used, like, Calculator Plus, that hides, you know, your porn, I guess, or whatever, I've tried those out because I read about them on Internet.
But it's really a service to collate this stuff somewhere other than the app store, which really tries to drive you through in a very specific path.
cortex:
Yeah.
jessamyn:
I think it's awesome.
cortex:
So it's smart stuff. Smart, smart, smart.
jessamyn:
And, hodgebodge is looking for, hodgebodge is looking for feedback, so if you're interested in stuff like that, please head over to the Project post and give him some feedback.
cortex:
Yes.
I also enjoyed this fractal art that Jimbob's been making. (chuckles) Named F_ract_l.
jessamyn:
I looked at the title and I couldn't figure out what the hell it was and I just kept, I... whoo!
cortex:
Just click on through, it's just pretty art.
jessamyn:
Ooh-ooh-ooh-ooh!
cortex:
He's doing pretty computer-generated art stuff.
jessamyn:
Whoo-ooh. Oooh, oooh.
cortex:
And talks a little bit in the comments there about [??].
jessamyn:
Ooh. And it's all hashtagged, so I can look for stuff that's tagged "orange". Oh! Can I tell you, Josh? I tried really hard to go find some sheets for my bed that have some kind of orangey splashy sunburst look that your room does?
cortex:
Yeah.
jessamyn:
The room that you made that crazy color?
No.
cortex:
Nope.
jessamyn:
Impossible.
cortex:
Yeah.
jessamyn:
That's what I want now, more than anything, and it's impossible.
cortex:
(chuckles)
jessamyn:
At least on Amazon, and now I've got to expand past Amazon. But much to my chagrin.
cortex:
It seems like it could be like a home tie-dye project, if you're willing to put in [??].
jessamyn:
Well, but I like the kind of hard lines to it, right?
cortex:
Yeah, yeah.
jessamyn:
The tie-dye thing is a little too 24 years old for me.
cortex:
Yeah. You might be able to do a hard dye, sort of like a hard-line dye somehow. I don't know.
jessamyn:
That sounds like work.
cortex:
Yeah. It does. It sounds like a lot of effort. This is probably something that someone's like, oh, yeah, actually, no, if you want to do it they can tell us, but yeah. Well, I'm sorry you didn't find it.
jessamyn:
Well, and it may just be that I have to... because here's what happened, right? Twitter sent me a link that was like, "Tell us how you use Twitter for business, and we'll get you a gift card!" And I was like, "Alright!" So, you know, I did--twenty minutes? Fifteen minutes? Ten minutes? worth of surveys. "I use Twitter for my business like this, blah-la-la-la-la-la." And then I finished it, and they were like, "$25 gift card!" And I'm like, "This is the bomb!"
And then I got another e-mail from them. "Tell us how you use Twitter for your business!" And I was like, "What? Okay!" (laughs)
cortex:
(laughs)
jessamyn:
And I tried to fill it out the same way again, figuring I'd get to the end of it, and they'd be like, "Hey, you fucker, you already filled this out!" But no! They've got their heads completely up their asses, and I got another $25 gift card, so I was like, "I'll buy sheets."
cortex:
Well, you know, this is just paying dividends on the money they're saving for not running their Vine servers again in the future at some point, so, you know, boom.
jessamyn:
That's a good point. But I just, you know. I mean, that's the thing that's so weird about Internet stuff generally, right? Is that, like, you know, it's just free money to them, whereas 50 bucks, I mean, 50 bucks isn't going to make or break my life, but it's a real amount of money, you know what I mean?
cortex:
Yeah.
jessamyn:
Just, aah, it's weird. Weird. Made me feel weird. Not *so* weird.
cortex:
(chuckles)
jessamyn:
But yeah. I need sheets, is what I'm saying.
cortex:
I believe you'll get some sheets. I'm visualizing you getting some sheets.
jessamyn:
Well, and then Jim, bless his heart, is like, "How about these?" I'm like, "Those aren't even made of cotton!"
cortex:
(laughs)
jessamyn:
1500 thread count is not a real thing, right? That's like too many threads.
cortex:
That seems like a lie. That seems, yeah, that's like...
jessamyn:
That's, like, made of soda bottles. That's not cotton.
cortex:
[??] That's just corrugated plastic.
jessamyn:
I don't want it. Doesn't breathe.
cortex:
(chuckles) One other one I want to mention, I liked, lawrencium posted Lost In Shinjuku--
jessamyn:
Oh, I loved this!
cortex:
A series of multiple exposures.
jessamyn:
This was so much cooler than it had any right to be. I don't know why I loved this.
cortex:
Yeah, they're really cool. I mean, I kind of like a double exposure in general, but these are like good.
jessamyn:
So these are like double, triple exposures, quadruple exposures in Japan, black-and-white, and just really tense and full of interesting things, and he's got--he? she? they?--have a real eye for it. And I just thought it was the best.
Clip:
(Walking on Eggshells by chococat)
Clip:
(Walking on Eggshells by chococat, continued)
cortex:
But yes. Yes. Let us talk about Metafilter. Now I've just misplaced the tab where I had my shit organized, so I've segued this nicely into me delaying.
jessamyn:
Well. Let's talk about GifCities--
cortex:
Yes!
jessamyn:
--because I was just at the Internet Archive for their 20th anniversary party, which was about as much of a circlejerk as you would think it was going to be.
cortex:
(chuckles)
jessamyn:
But fun! And they basically unveiled GifCities [ˈgɪfˌsɪtiz]--GifCities [ˈjɪfˌsɪtiz], everyone says GIF [ˈjɪf], apparently--the GeoCities animated GIF [ˈgɪf] search engine, so it's got 4 million animated GIFs, and you can search it and it's cool. And they launched it, and at the Archives thing, which of course is in an old Christian Science church, DJ Spooky was there with some art that that he specifically made from this archive, and they handed out free
flexi discs and whatever. And so zarq made this post, which actually was one of those kind of like, you know, 20 comments? 34 favorites? I don't know why *everybody* wasn't in there, like, "Whaat? Whaat? Whaat?" Because it's so fun and ridiculous! But yeah. Who knows? I loved it.
cortex:
Yeah. It's good. (chuckles) I dig that.
jessamyn:
I mean, it's just a huge nightmare page of animated GIFs, some of which are
like, banners, old-style banners, you know, blinky this, that, or the other, a lot of kind of 8-bit little [whatses ?], there's a banana that's waving at me... but, you know, it's just one of those fun things, you type a word in, you see what you get.
cortex:
Yeah. Well, and it's one of those things, too, like, I don't know. It's like, I have a real sort of strong attachment to historical GIF stuff on the Internet, because that's, I was... you know,
growing up on the Internet when the web was finding its dumb early feet, you know--
jessamyn:
(laughs)
cortex:
And so that's of an era, and it's one of those things where I do kind of wonder--
jessamyn:
You and your dumb early feet.
cortex:
(laughs) That's episode title there, Your Dumb Early Feet.
jessamyn:
(chuckles)
cortex:
I'm just going to type it in right now.
SFX:
(typing sounds)
cortex:
(musically, with ascending pitch) Doop-boop-doo!
jessamyn:
Beat you to it.
cortex:
Aagh!
jessamyn:
Aagh!
cortex:
There we go. (chuckles) Quality radio.
Yeah, no, I don't know. I mean, I wondered, like, are the kids today gonna care about the GIFs, you know? I mean, like, GIFs are obviously a huge medium, again, in a completely different context at this point, like, we were just talking about Vine--
jessamyn:
Right.
cortex:
--and it sort of ties into the same sort of, large-file GIFs essentially, you know. Like, these these days people post up on mlkshk and there's ongoing arguments between the people who think you should or should not post 100-megabyte animated GIFs--
jessamyn:
Speaking of which, this has just fucked up my whole browser.
cortex:
(chuckling) Shit. Dammit, GeoCities.
jessamyn:
Alright. Alright. No, keep going. Keep going.
cortex:
But yeah, so, like, the old shitty pixel-arty GIFs, like the old-school GIFs, it feels very dated in a way that I have affection for, but I also wonder if it's gonna come across as, "Oh, yeah, it's one of those old GIFs," or just like a "What the fuck is that?" sort of thing to younger people on the Internet.
Like, what's their relationship going to be? Is it going to be primarily baffled, or ironic, or embracing, or [??]?
jessamyn:
Right! Well, because I don't have any concept of what the Internet pre-me was. Like, I've been around since there was the Internet.
cortex:
Yeah.
jessamyn:
So I can't imagine, like, oh, that's old. You know, like, it's how I would think of the telegraph or something.
cortex:
Yeah.
jessamyn:
You know, not even record player! I had a record player. Like, what's the old tech where I'm like, "I can't get my head around it." I don't know!
cortex:
(chuckles) Yeah, it's a weird thing.
I said I would mention the actual Vine thread, so here's a Vine thread. I think we stuck it on bestof as well. But basically, someone made a post, rewil made a post about Twitter discontinuing Vine, and linked to a few of their personal favorites, which technically speaking is a little bit of a I'll-go-first thing, but it's not Ask Metafilter and hey, they're shutting fucking Vine down, so a post saying, "oh, here's some Vines I like, by the way, while everything burns to the ground," seems like an okay way to go. And people just ran with it in the best possible way.
So if you've--
jessamyn:
Dude, this is awesome.
cortex:
Yeah.
jessamyn:
I'm enjoying this! Well--
cortex:
If you need to kill a lot of time and hurt yourself laughing--
jessamyn:
--I've never spent any time on Vine! You know? So to me, having somebody select fifty Vines for me to look at, like, I occasionally see them in random places, mostly like weird dog and cat Vines. So having somebody be like, "Hey!"... enjoyable.
cortex:
Yeah, exactly. Yeah, I'm basically the same, I catch it second-hand for the most part.
jessamyn:
poffin boffin got in there with a *lot* of good... a *lot* of good.
cortex:
(chuckles) She is on it.
jessamyn:
Yeah.
cortex:
She's in the right curatorial position, I would say. Oh, hey, did you hear that Jack Chick died?
jessamyn:
Did I hear that Jack Chick died?
cortex:
Yeah, did you hear that Jack Chick died?
jessamyn:
Of course I did!
cortex:
Okay.
jessamyn:
Is this a set-up for like a--
cortex:
No, not really, there was just a thread about it. Which, was it--
jessamyn:
Did nobody add 'obit' or 'obituary' to this? I swear to God, you guys.
cortex:
I didn't even look at the tags at the time.
jessamyn:
I mean, we've been sort of too busy, I think, in the, you know.
cortex:
Yeah. I'll add it.
jessamyn:
In the MetaTalk of deaths, which is also, kind of, it's been a tough month.
cortex:
Yeah. It's been a whole thing, so... I think we talked about it a little bit last time, and...
jessamyn:
It has not improved.
cortex:
And now there's more stuff. Yeah. Yeah. It's been a weird couple months. Because, you know, people die, it happens. But it's still, there's been a cluster.
jessamyn:
It seems like it's been a cluster.
cortex:
It's just enough to sort of put it on the radar, as, oh, that's a *thing*, rather than just like, oh, that person died.
jessamyn:
Right. And, you know, in the case of MetaTalk, it's been three long-time users that you'd probably recognize if you've been around for a while, so, yeah.
cortex:
Yeah.
jessamyn:
Maybe more, if you counted everybody's sockpuppets.
cortex:
(laughs)
jessamyn:
I said it. You heard me.
cortex:
Yeah, yeah. That's a whole complicated situation.
jessamyn:
So, back in the lighter things--
cortex:
(chuckles)
jessamyn:
--this is a great post by matrixclown, which is basically just a single link.
"As you may know, a couple weeks ago, an unidentified woodland creature ate our Internet"--and this is just like a wildlife preserve? And this goofy guy basically makes use of the collection of animal skulls they have and talks about whether or not they could be the things that ate the Internet.
cortex:
(laughs)
jessamyn:
So, like, "Suspect: Pleistocene horse. Last seen on the North American continent 2 million years ago. Now-extinct ancestors of modern horses. Would not have been alive at the time
of wire chewing."
cortex:
(laughs)
jessamyn:
And it just goes on like that, and it's hilarious. Box turtle… and there's all these pictures of these skulls next to this wire that got chewed up. "European hornet: No, I do not want to live in a world where hornets can disable our communications at will. … White-tailed deer: Don't be ridiculous. … Black snake: In science, sometimes you've got to attack the question from an unusual angle." At any rate, it's just delightful, it's clearly
kind of a funny little PR blog post thing.
cortex:
Yeah.
jessamyn:
But it's cute, it's funny, you learn some things, twenty-four comments, twenty-one favorites, and it's… adorable.
cortex:
It's cute. I had not seen that, that's kinda great.
jessamyn:
Oh, and apparently slithytove says… (pause) Oh, sorry, they linked to something else.
cortex:
(laughs)
jessamyn:
About bunnies, and a link to a page that was up in 2003, but not the main one, it was something else. But, super fun. Loved it.
cortex:
I really enjoyed and then managed to forget about
jessamyn:
(laughs)
cortex:
because it was all of a week and a half ago… Well, I was going to make- I found something on the internet, and I was going to make a post about it, and then someone else had made a post earlier that day, I was like "Oh, damn it!". I think I said as much in the thread. But this is a post, pyrogenesis made a post about some work someone did with Yahoo's
jessamyn:
Are there pictures? Is this link itself NSFW?
cortex:
Ah, it's… uh, yes?
jessamyn:
_AAAAAH!_
cortex:
It's abstract! It's… it's… it's… it's… OK,
jessamyn:
_AAAH!_ [crosstalk] _UGH!_
What am I even…? Augh! This is like a…
cortex:
This is sort of the same territory of
jessamyn:
Butthole Surfers' album cover.
cortex:
(laughs)
jessamyn:
Blehh.
cortex:
It's using… so Yahoo developed a Not Safe For Work, you know, neural network filter, essentially, to
jessamyn:
(gasps)
cortex:
help them, you know, try and predict whether or not they needed to screen images.
jessamyn:
Aagh.
cortex:
And so it studies
jessamyn:
Ugh.
cortex:
a bunch of, you know, it's fed a bunch of
positive input, like, "this is not safe for work", so basically a bunch of porns, naked people, bunch of porns, you know--
jessamyn:
(laughs)
cortex:
[??] And then the definitely not, definitely safe for work stuff--
jessamyn:
Dumb early, dumb early feet, bunch of porns.
cortex:
--is things like, you know, beaches and landscapes and whatnot, stuff that's totally safe for work. And the thing is, you can take this and sort of run the brain backwards and generate imagery by altering it to create imagery that has not-safe-for-work properties.
jessamyn:
So make it pornier.
cortex:
Yeah. And so you end up with these wonderfully weird, horrible abstract landscapes that feel very in some sort of weird Geiger sort of situation, or whatnot.
jessamyn:
Yeah! That's totally what it looks like.
cortex:
Yeah. So it's just really fascinating. It's great output, it's a super neat project, I was super excited about it. And so is Pyrogenesis! And so we got to be co-enthusiasts about it being on Metafilter.
jessamyn:
Giant penis Guitar Hero. Heeheeheehee!
cortex:
Yep.
jessamyn:
--heeheeheehee.
cortex:
(chuckles)
jessamyn:
Genitals of the Universe. *Yes!* B. Kliban has a Genitals of the Universe cartoon from a million years ago. And zompist, at the very end of this thread, is like, does anybody remember that? Because this looks like that. And they are not wrong.
cortex:
Oh, nice.
jessamyn:
Yeah!
I, because it is now cold here and it snowed, a week before Halloween, it is now wintertime.
And so Diablevert actually made this post right after the podcast last week, er, last month. It was basically 83 of the funniest books ever according to some of the funniest authors. Like, remember that thing from Ask Metafilter where it was like, "What if you asked a specialist in the field what their specialist books are?"
cortex:
Yeah, yeah.
jessamyn:
You know, like a meta-specialist? Well, this is like funny books according to funny people. 83 of them.
cortex:
Nice.
jessamyn:
And then, of course, the first comment is like,
"This user interface sucks."
cortex:
(laughs)
jessamyn:
Second comment, sort of annoyed that they just duplicated the books that got recommended multiple times, I mean, you know.
cortex:
Yeah. Well...
jessamyn:
It's hilarious. The thread itself is hilarious.
cortex:
(chuckles)
jessamyn:
But, I'm always looking for a good funny book to read, and I appreciated this, and thank you Diablevert.
cortex:
Boom.
I'm going to mention my own post, because--
jessamyn:
(softly) Oh, did I make a post this month? Okay.
--it's just stuff I really, really like. I came across, I don't know, via Twitter or something, someone tweeted some of this, and it's music from the beginning of Metroid, which was a huge formative part of my childhood.
jessamyn:
Is that where Metroid Baby's username comes from?
cortex:
Presumably, yes. I'm not sure where the baby comes in. But that's probably what the Metroid is.
jessamyn:
Mm-hm.
cortex:
And yeah, so this person named Luminist is just making, like, a week at a time they're doing another bit of the music from the original Metroid using an MS-20 synth
that--I don't know my synths worth shit, but some people in the thread are like, "actually, it's a blahdededuh!"
jessamyn:
Heh!
cortex:
"And this is why it's cool they're doing it that way!" Which was nice to get some detail on. But it's just really great music! I loved music from this video game. And I really, really, really loved these treatments.
jessamyn:
And you get to listen to it.
cortex:
Like, they're just *so* nice. Like, the title theme is one of my favorite bits of video game music ever--
jessamyn:
Awww.
cortex:
Brinstar's pretty great, Kraid's Lair--
jessamyn:
Awww.
cortex:
It's all good, it's all good, it's really *good*! So go listen to it! That's all I'm going to say. Go listen to that music.
jessamyn:
Well, speaking of antique video games, what about my post about Meridian 59, one of the longest-running online role-player games, launched in 1996, and then there's like 100 people who *still* hang out there. They open-sourced the game in 2012, but it still runs on the servers. I'm basically reading this book called Death by Video Game, which is a guy who writes articles about video games and then clearly someone was like, you should write a book! And so the book is basically a lot of disparate essays.
cortex:
Yeah.
jessamyn:
But the one chapter, I was like, oh, this is great, I love this, Metafilter would love it! Well, it turns out it's a New Yorker article, basically exactly the same.
cortex:
(chuckles)
jessamyn:
And so I made a post about it. A little post about Meridian 59. Fifteen favorites, nine comments. I loved it.
cortex:
Yeah, no, I saw that, that fell on my, I should get back to this list. Because I love the idea.
jessamyn:
Yeah!
cortex:
Just, that sort of continuity is fantastic, people sticking around with something--
jessamyn:
Yeah!
cortex:
--after it's clearly sort of been kicked aside as a, you know.
jessamyn:
Well, I do feel that way about Metafilter sometimes, don't you?
cortex:
(chuckles) Ehh, it's not a hundred people kicking around. I'd say we're doing better after 18 years--
jessamyn:
No, it's like ten thousand people kicking around. Yeah. Yeah!
cortex:
But yeah. But it's still, yeah. No, but--
jessamyn:
But that whole idea about--I mean, I liked the title thing, which was basically "Fighting with the same two hundred people we've known all our lives."
cortex:
Yeah.
jessamyn:
That totally pushed a Metafilter button for me. Like, "Oh, this asshole!" And it's like, "You've grown up together at this point."
cortex:
(chuckles)
jessamyn:
Like, you know, it's, they're family, you know?
cortex:
Yeah.
jessamyn:
And even if you fight with them, they're the people you've always known.
cortex:
Yeah.
jessamyn:
So I enjoyed that part of it.
cortex:
At a completely random aside, I helped a friend move, and I discovered, probably I discover this every, like, year or so when I see it somewhere, but there's a brand of children's car seats called Evenflo?
jessamyn:
(sings, underscoring cortex as he talks) Even floo-ow! Ba-ba-da-da! Sa-ba-da!
cortex:
And every time I see it (chuckles), I spent the next two fucking hours moving stuff and singing parody [better ?] lyrics.
jessamyn:
[transcriber's note: unsure about onomatopoeia here, so this only indicates syllabic count] Blu-blu-blu-blu-blu-blu blu-do-blu!
cortex:
But the thing about Pearl Jam's songs is I don't know what any of them are about. I've discovered this--
jessamyn:
I don't know what they're saying except "Jeremy's fallen."
cortex:
No, "Jeremy's spoken." "Cla-ass today."
jessamyn:
And the one about "You're adopted," and there was one where the girl's father interferes with her.
cortex:
Yeah.
jessamyn:
Those are the ones I know.
cortex:
Yeah. It's been getting, Pearl Jam's been getting a lot of play on one of the stations in town I listen to on the car radio.
jessamyn:
Hi!
cortex:
So I've been slowly picking out some of the new, some of the lyrics,
finally. Anyway. Evenflo. That's all. I'll stop talking. (chuckles) I don't even know what, I just needed to tell someone.
jessamyn:
(sings) Ad-ba-sa-ba-daa! Um-buh-duh-buh-doom-buh-doom-buh-doom-buh-doom!
cortex:
It's a tricky thing. It's hard to come up with good parody lyrics for a song if you don't know the original lyrics. You just sort of have to, you know.
I'm going to do a double segue trio of posts here, real quick.
jessamyn:
Whaat?
cortex:
Because I liked all three of these, and I don't really need to talk too much about any of them.
jessamyn:
You say that now.
cortex:
Well, we'll see how it goes. But number one,
Foci for Analysis posted a roundup of flute and kazoo covers from, I want to say the shittyflute, is the name of the YouTube account? It's somebody who does recorder and kazoo and maybe melodica covers of various songs where they replace the main melody stuff with them playing the song very badly on recorder and kazoo and stuff. And it's a hard pitch to get any more detailed in, because that's all there is to it, but it's fucking hilarious, and if nothing else go listen to the Jurassic Park one
that is linked in there somewhere.
jessamyn:
I got two seconds in and I am done.
cortex:
(chuckles) Yeah, no, it's intentionally terrible.
jessamyn:
*Done.*
cortex:
Not like, well, interesting outsider. It's just intentionally very bad.
jessamyn:
But the pictures are really funny, because it's all the pictures of all the people with fricking recorders in their mouths, and for whatever reason that is hilarious.
cortex:
Yeah. But speaking of weird music--
jessamyn:
Uh-oh.
cortex:
--I also liked this post by But tomorrow is another day... about bicycle horn music.
Which, it's using samples of various bicycle horns to play various songs. And that's exactly what it sounds like. It's like cats singing, except for it's bicycle horns instead. And I feel really bad, because I got in with a first-comment joke on this because I misread the post at the time about being about both bicycle *and* car horns, and so then I took "I'm Never Gonna Honk Again" and followed up with "Guilty Fiats Got No Rhythm" because we were doing a Careless Whisper thing. But it's not about cars! And Fiat doesn't make bikes.
So I fucked that up.
jessamyn:
Maybe they do.
cortex:
Maybe they do. Maybe that's what the five favorites are, are all from people who are like *deep* fans of Fiat.
jessamyn:
Yeah, Fiat totally makes bicycles.
cortex:
There we go.
jessamyn:
What the hell is wrong with you? Like, is your Google broken?
cortex:
I didn't even look! I made an assumption--
jessamyn:
I mean, they make one.
cortex:
--and then I realized it was wrong later. So I just, I'm owning it.
jessamyn:
(chuckles) There it is! There's the bicycle. It's 420 pounds.
cortex:
I'm going to call the--wow.
jessamyn:
I know.
cortex:
What. Oh, oh! (chuckling) British pounds, okay. It's like, that's a heavy fucking bike! (chuckles)
jessamyn:
It folds up! I mean, it's still an expensive fucking bike, honestly!
cortex:
Well, yeah, but... anyway, speaking of *bicycles*, though, let me--
jessamyn:
Sorry to ruin your joke.
cortex:
I ruined most of it, so anyway.
jessamyn:
Heh-heh!
cortex:
Speaking of bicycles, there was a post by Doctor Fedora of the video of designing and creating and testing the Unibicle. And this is a YouTube video, it's about, I don't know, fifteen, fourteen minutes, by a fellow who does this, I think he does a whole series of these.
I think I've seen another one at some point. But anyway, it's all about what if you made a bike that had less bike to it, because you just use the way you can sort of jump on the pedal a bit while doing a one leg dismount to keep the bike going forward, so let's… So he… you just have to watch it, because there's no way to sum it up in a way that will do it justice, it's just a super nicely made dry comedic thing about badly designing a bike.
jessamyn:
Is it humor?
cortex:
It's humor,
cortex:
It's humor, it's humor and sort of like, a little bit of wacky engineering, but it's definitely, the whole thing is definitely- basically a joke. I think it's like a straight-faced joke, in the sense that like, he's actually saying "well, I've got a dumb idea, let me see if I can execute it," and he tries, and- spoiler alert- it turns out the dumb idea doesn't work very well.
jessamyn:
Ha ha ha.
cortex:
But it's one of those things where it's like, it's both humor, and also him being thoughtful about the dumb thing he's doing?
jessamyn:
Uh-huh.
cortex:
It's interesting, you can sort of see in the comments a couple people get slightly different takes on that, where I feel like a couple people actually reacted to it, like "Wow. No, that was a terrible engineering idea!" And it's like, well... (handwavey noise) that's kind of the idea.
jessamyn:
Oh. Josh.
cortex:
But you do super straight-faced comedy, what are you going to get.
jessamyn:
Josh.
cortex:
Yeah?
jessamyn:
Josh.
cortex:
Yeah?
jessamyn:
This guy's other videos include "Portmantout: A portmanteau of every English word,"
cortex:
(laughs) Oh. Oh.
jessamyn:
I don't even- I can't even- but, like,
cortex:
Yeah.
jessamyn:
But I like this guy, 'cause he's in it, so maybe if that hasn't shown up, we will try that for later.
cortex:
Yeah, maybe so.
jessamyn:
'Cause... I appreciate the hell out of that.
cortex:
Yeah. That's a good plan. Anyway. There's my super tightly presented double segue.
jessamyn:
Well all right! I have a couple more that I appreciated, including this sort of goofy one- it's not goofy. This serious one from jack_mo. It's not serious either. I don't know what it is!
cortex:
(Laughs)
jessamyn:
It's a website about the British Rail Corporate Identity, like lots and lots and lots of digitized British Rail design material. But it's neat. I mean, it's an old-school kind of HTML-y website with lots and lots of scanned information. They've got a nice, serious business graphic identity. I mean, you know "mind the gap" and all that stuff. And this has their Corporate Identity manual, and a whole bunch of other stuff, and it's all in, ugh, Helvetica? I don't even know. It looks like it's all in Helvetica. And it's got a big document with all the stuff
jessamyn:
And if you're really into graphic identity and graphic design, it's FASCINATING. I totally clicked through it to see how they do all the stuff.
cortex:
There's a page specifically about the Rail Alphabet, where they designed a typeface in 1964 that's... looks pretty Helvetica-y at a glance, actually.
jessamyn:
Yeeaah!
cortex:
Oh, well, see, it's interesting. It's possible there's a couple different here. I haven't read through the thing, but...
jessamyn:
There's pictures of everybody's outfits, pictures of everybody's trains, a whole pictogram set, obsolete pictograms, including one for, like, the telephone, uh. What are some other obsolete pictograms? "Luggage lockers"-
cortex:
(laughs)
jessamyn:
"Hair dresser"- this is great! Um, but yeah! It's fun and interesting.
cortex:
Yeah, that's neat.
jessamyn:
Obsolete "buffet", "ladies", "gentlemen"- they must have changed that. So yeah. And you know, the thread was, uh, little. 16 comments, 24 favorites.
cortex:
That's some good web.
cortex:
That's some good, solid web there.
jessamyn:
And there's actually a page about the person who designed the British Rail thing, that's in a comment that How the runs scored made. And so basically it talks a little bit more about that alphabet.
cortex:
Mm. Neat.
jessamyn:
It is neat!
cortex:
I'll have to read that. Well! I think that's all of my MetaFilter stuff for the month-
jessamyn:
ONE MORE!!! SPIDERS!!! Johnny Wallflower's post about spiders. "Jumping spiders don't have ears- but they can still hear you coming." However, orb weavers can control the tension of their web to help identify potential partners as well as prey. It's just a video about spiders. And, it has a gif about how to deal with a spider infestation? Which always makes me laugh, it's like you try to hit a spider with your broom, but then it turns out it's one hundred baby spiders?
cortex:
(laughs)
jessamyn:
And then it turns out that this guy goes to the space center with all of his luggage and shoots himself into space and then destroys the planet?
cortex:
Like you do.
jessamyn:
Because there's a hundred baby spiders. And it's funny. So. I don't know. I enjoyed it. And, dhruva's in there, because he's a spider researcher!
cortex:
Nice!
jessamyn:
Yeah!
cortex:
An arac- arachnologist?
jessamyn:
Maybe!
cortex:
An arachni... yeah. Something like that.
jessamyn:
Yeah! And it's got a couple funny tags, and I don't know, the whole thing just made me smile.
jessamyn:
Yeah! And it's got a couple funny tags, and I dunno, the whole thing just made me smile. Spiders.
cortex:
Speaking of spiders, I saw a tweet yesterday by a guy named Tom Astle-
jessamyn:
@thomasastle
cortex:
Anyway, he's developing a game and, uh, I think I made a post about it a couple months ago when I first came across it. But it's got generative-
jessamyn:
(gasps)
cortex:
-little dogs, and so he made some spider- some Halloween versions of the dogs, including a little spider dog with a whole bunch of legs that he tweeted about yesterday. I though it was adorable.
jessamyn:
That's right! Didn't you go to your video game conference thing?
cortex:
Oh yeah! I did!
jessamyn:
Whatever the hell that thing was? That looked fun!
cortex:
I did! It *was* fun. Yeah, I did a little thing in Portland, Retro Gaming Expo, me and some other folks from the Portland Independent Game Squad, the PIG Squad went and showed off-
jessamyn:
Wait.
cortex:
-uh, games.
jessamyn:
Wait, wait. Did you say "pig squad" or "pigs squad"?
cortex:
Pig squad.
jessamyn:
Alright, alright. Nice!
cortex:
But yeah! It was fun. It was a good time.
cortex:
It was weird, you know, expos are strange and I don't really go to them, so being there on the other side of the table was like double-weird, but bunch of friendly people around, so hey!
jessamyn:
Cool! Yeah, I was doing a whole bunch of demos of Open Library at the Internet Archive thing, so yeah, I totally know what you mean.
cortex:
Yeah, (laughs)
jessamyn:
Lots and lots of talk talk talk talking and then Brewster shows up and he's like "THIS THING's STILL BROKEN," and I'm like, shut up dude, it's a demo.
cortex:
(laughs)
jessamyn:
Also it's your company. Pay more money for people to do things here.
SFX:
(music) Another Bottle by jeffxl
jessamyn:
But *that's* it for me from MetaFilter.
cortex:
Alright, let's move on to the ol' Ask Metafilter.
jessamyn:
Ask MetaFilter- always, always great.
cortex:
What were you excited about this month?
cortex:
You said that you had a bunch of stuff.
jessamyn:
Well. Yeah, one that I really liked, we mentioned robocop is bleeding and his new store last month, and this month, he's basically, "Hey, women of MetaFilter, when you purchase a t-shirt, how cognizant are you of how the design might interact with your chest?" Basically, he wants to print t-shirts but he's got a wife, and the wife is like, "Rrrrgh, you gotta be careful, for you know, reasons," and he's like, "I'm just looking for feedback, 'cause I wanna do the right thing."
jessamyn:
And BOY, DOES HE GET FEEDBACK! Heh heh heh.
cortex:
(laughs)
jessamyn:
Because that's the thing, right? Like, women are shaped differently, often, though not always. Unisex t-shirts are often men's t-shirts that they try to convince women to wear. They're not really kind of agendered t-shirts, which would be terrific if it were true, but it is not, and figuring out things like, hey, if you have a triangle, or a square or something with straight lines, but then you put it on a women who has breasts,
jessamyn:
Like, the straight lines kinda stretch out and that doesn't look very good at all, so, things to think about, you don't want to- you know, like the Hooters t-shirts?
cortex:
Yeah.
jessamyn:
Have the owl with the big eyes, and each one is over one breast, and you're like, "hubba hubba." Well, that's kind of ok if that's what your intention is? But you do that by accident to somebody and that person is *never* buying a t-shirt from you again.
cortex:
Yeah.
j:And so it's a great thread of mostly helpful, occasionally snarky, feedback of what women would like in t-shirts.
jessamyn:
And they don't always agree, but they have a lot of opinions, and it's helpful!
cortex:
Yeah! And I've got that one favorited, cause I kind of want to dig through it and take that into account- because at some point we'll put out some more MetaFilter t-shirts, and I want to think about design stuff there-
jessamyn:
Well, and originally when I had a MetaFilter t-shirt, it was kind of a women's medium, which is a little snuggy on me, but there's nothing wrong with a snuggy t-shirt. But, you know, I'm a middle-aged lady, and the text was *right on top* of kind of above my chest
jessamyn:
and it made it look even weirder? Like it made it look like I was wearing a little kid t-shirt?
cortex:
(laughs)
jessamyn:
Only I was a grown-up lady, and, like, that's not a good look for most people. Some people can make it work. And I specifically asked Devils Rancher, who worked at the company, and they had kind of tried to do that on purpose, because they didn't want to put it, like, *right* across your chest, you know, but I don't know if that was right either, and, ER, AH, I mean, it's hard!
cortex:
Yeah.
jessamyn:
I don't think there's any right answer, except maybe don't have words going right across the middle of the front of it.
jessamyn:
Yeah. It was interesting reading what other people had to say about it, because I know my opinions on it, but not necessarily what other people have to say.
cortex:
Yep. Yeah, and I think especially if you're a dude designing t-shirts you probably haven't thought about that as much, so it's... read up!
jessamyn:
Yeah! Or you know the women that you know, but maybe not *all* the women.
cortex:
Yeah.
j:So it's a good thread for anybody considering t-shirts.
Yep.
jessamyn:
Like, what kinds of things women like in their t-shirts.
cortex:
Exactly.
cortex:
I dug uh-
jessamyn:
Did you read Ask MetaFilter this month? Yes? Little bit?
cortex:
I, uhh, yes-
jessamyn:
You've been busy.
cortex:
I had to moderate some stuff.
jessamyn:
(laughs)
cortex:
But there were some things that I actually were interesting too. Well, there's this-
jessamyn:
'Cause I could just go on and on and on, so.
cortex:
I'll throw out a couple here- this one is, this is totally the borderline-ish, I was being generous in not saying "you know, your framing here sucks," because I was kind of curious-
jessamyn:
Ohhh, oh, this one was recent!
cortex:
where it went, yeah. This is a post from... just the other day, yesterday or the day before.
jessamyn:
suelac
jessamyn:
Yeah. Yesterday!
cortex:
About what's the deal with people basically leaving bagged up dog poop in the park, in the woods. 'Cause it's one of those things where it seems like, on the one hand, they stopped to actually put poop in a bag, but on the other hand, then they left it sitting there, what's the fucking deal. Is essentially the-
jessamyn:
Which is probably actually worse, right?! Because poop left on its own, that's not awesome but at least it will biodegrade. But poop in a bag just turns into a fetid, blehhhh.
cortex:
Yeah, it's just gonna stay there.
jessamyn:
uggg ehhhh ahhhhhg blaaag
cortex:
It is a phenomenon. The question framing was, you know, a little bit handwavey,
jessamyn:
Sure.
cortex:
It felt a little bit like, "well, I'm bummmed about this!" But, there was a question there, so I was like, ok, you know what, I'm going to let this go, and we'll just sort of watch it and clean up some of the comments if we need to. And yeah! A bunch of people had thoughts on it that weren't just "Oh, I HATE that!" they were like, oh, well, here's a context where I could have ended up being the person who did that.
jessamyn:
Sure!
cortex:
Or, maybe that's actually, you're catching it at a moment where it's been deposited and someone hasn't come back for it yet, but they're actually on a run at the park or something. So there were some actual thoughts on it rather than just, hey, people are terrible. Although there was also an aspect of "well, you know maybe some people are kind of lazy and noncommittal about cleaning up after themselves."
jessamyn:
Right.
cortex:
So I thought that was kind of interesting. Is what I have to say.
jessamyn:
Yeah. Well, I enjoy a lot of those kind of survey questions, as usual, here was another one that I did like, which is, uh-
cortex:
Yeah!
jessamyn:
When you're not in the bathroom, so, like, you're in your house, you have a bathroom,
randomly, is the door to the bathroom open or closed, why? And so basically this is a person who has a housemate who always closes the bathroom door, and that person grew up in a house where you only closed the bathroom door if you're in the bathroom. And so they walk by and see the bathroom door closed and assume somebody's in it, because that's just their assumption, and they're like, "Well, maybe that's not right! And I don't know what the default is, or even *if* there is one."
And, you know, it tends to break down around whether you have cats--or dogs, you know, like a dog that'll drink out of the toilet, or a cat that has a litterbox in the bathroom, or something, whether or not your bathroom door locks? I was very surprised that people in the UK, at least in this thread, seemed to think that having a bathroom door that didn't lock was weird? Whereas every bathroom I've, I mean, most bathrooms I'm in don't lock. You know, they close? But they don't--
cortex:
Yeah.
jessamyn:
You know, they're old doors that have keyhole locks, and that nobody put a hook and eye or
something else on them. And I'm just used to them.
cortex:
Yep. Yeah, I'd say it's kind of a 50-50 thing for me. I've seen both. Like, I never use, I think... I can't actually remember right now if our bathroom door has a lock. We certainly never use it, if it does. But my childhood home did.
jessamyn:
Yeah, my childhood home, we all shared one bathroom, and it didn't lock. And there was one downstairs. And so people knocked, and whatever. But you kind of just left the door open.
cortex:
Yeah.
jessamyn:
And we had cats and dogs, and they didn't have litterboxes because it was the country.
But like, yeah. I just, you know, I never thought about it that much? Door's always open in my house. But I live alone! So easy, right?
cortex:
Yeah.
This is... it's an interesting sort of question, and I think part of the reason questions like this can be so fun when they're put together well enough to (chuckling) survive, basically, is that it's something that people... sort of everybody has some experiential contribution to make on it.
jessamyn:
Right. You grew up with a bathroom, regardless.
cortex:
But it's not something you've probably spent a lot of time thinking about having an opinion on--
jessamyn:
No!
cortex:
--until the moment it comes up. Well, I don't know. Maybe I'm wrong there, and most people think *a lot* about bathroom doors when they're not interacting with them. But I think if the average person, if you asked them about this, they would develop a statement of opinion fairly quickly, but if you asked them when the last time they've thought about it, well, I don't know, I guess, you know.
jessamyn:
Well, and I think it's one of those things too, where, like, if you've lived alone or if you've lived in a family, and then at some point you maybe live with roommates, and at some point you live with a partner? Like, I think if you live with roommates, you kind of work it out with your roommate? But with partners, the whole idea of "do you leave the bathroom door open? *even when you're in there?*" is like a thing people feel strongly about, or at least people I've been with certainly do, you know.
cortex:
Yeah.
jessamyn:
That, like, I shower with the door closed if somebody else is in the house. But if no one's in the house I leave the door open.
cortex:
Yeah.
jessamyn:
Because it weirds me out if somebody walks in the bathroom when I'm in the shower.
For no reason! Like, it's so stupid! But it just, it's weird. But if I'm [not ?] home, I just leave the door open, because then the steam gets out, and everything else. I don't know! Again.
cortex:
Yeah.
jessamyn:
And, you know, I've dated guys who were like, you know, if they went in the bathroom to take a piss, they would like the door open. If they went in the bathroom to take a dump, they would shut the door, and that was the thing, and you were supposed to know not to knock. I don't know, people are weird.
cortex:
Yeah. Well, and yeah, it's like, if you get an agreed-upon rubric for any of these things, they sort of fade into the background, because everybody just sort of is on the same page.
jessamyn:
Right.
cortex:
And it's only when there isn't that agreed-upon that it comes up, which is sort of how that question came up. It's like, oh, yeah, well.
jessamyn:
Right.
cortex:
Anyway. Yeah, no, I thought that was a really interesting read.
What else you got?
jessamyn:
Well, similarly, garbage disposal!
cortex:
Ooh.
jessamyn:
So this was a user, space snail, who has... I'll just put it in their words. "I've left two garbage-disposal-equipped apartments behind me now with mysterious, intractably slow-draining sinks. Whatever I did to them, it was beyond the powers
of maintenance to reverse." How do I deal with a garbage disposal?
And again, this is one of those US and everyone else kinds of things, where people in the US, in a lot of places, use garbage disposals. And people everywhere else kind of mostly don't, or think they're weird, or think you're not supposed to, or they fill up your septic with crap, or whatever. That it's just not a thing.
cortex:
Yeah.
jessamyn:
And so it's people talking about how to... hey, I got a best answer in this thread.
cortex:
Nice!
jessamyn:
It's people talking about how to take care of your garbage disposal, number one. But also, maybe you just don't use it at all, kind of. Because rental units have crappier garbage disposals than maybe the kind you'd put in your house? Maybe?
cortex:
Sure, yeah. I could buy that.
jessamyn:
Like, I have one at my dad's house. I don't have one here. And I had them when I was a kid, and I was afraid of it, so I never really used it. Because, you know, you get one spoon in there, like your finger, and, like, raaa, it's all over! So.
cortex:
(chuckles)
jessamyn:
But I enjoyed, kind of, again, reading people being like, "this is what you need to do," and other people being like,
"don't use it!" or other people being like, "Yeah, just pour a lot of hot water down it and everything's fine."
cortex:
There's a scene in Stephen King's novel Firestarter where someone who's had their head messed with by a mind-altering person in the story sort of goes crazy and ends up sticking their hand down a garbage disposal.
jessamyn:
(gasps) Stephen King!
cortex:
Yeah.
jessamyn:
He would just do that, wouldn't he?
cortex:
Yep.
jessamyn:
Bah.
cortex:
Anyway. That's a thing. Just want to throw that in there! (laughs)
jessamyn:
Well, thank you!!
cortex:
Oh, you know, I'll mention one other one that I had this month that I've gotten genuine utility out of. This is-
jessamyn:
Ooooh!
cortex:
peentapicasso? pintapicasso?
jessamyn:
Yeah.
cortex:
Posted this about a week ago, saying "What are the most scary movies available for streaming?" Like, what can I just go stream right now on Netflix or so on.
cortex:
And, you know, there's a bunch of good horror movies out there! We ended up watching both, uh... Let Us Prey? Which got mentioned- DirtyOldTown mentioned that, and it's got Ser Davos from Game of Thrones as basically-
jessamyn:
I like that guy.
cortex:
A mysterious supernatural fellow. Yeah, he's- it's a small cast, it's sort of a crazy little movie, but I enjoyed it a lot. And the cast was all good. So strongly recommended. Let Us Prey. But we also finally got around to watching The Babadook. Which I have heretofore only-
jessamyn:
All I know about the Babadook is what I heard on Twitter, basically.
cortex:
(laughs) I've seen that- "when you go to the Halloween Party as Babadook but turns out it's more of a drinking wine vibe" photo that went around a ton on twitter. Did you see that one?
jessamyn:
Yes!
cortex:
And then someone the other day managed to post an inversion, like a "when you go to a wine and chill Halloween party but it turns out it's more of a Babadook vibe".
cortex:
And there's some woman just sitting there surrounded by, like, three people in Babadook makeup, and it's (laughs) fantastic!
jessamyn:
Right, right!
cortex:
Anyway, that's the entirety of my understanding of The Babadook until I watched the movie, and the movie was actually quite good!
jessamyn:
Nice.
cortex:
There was less Babadook in it than I expected, based on the memes. But it's a good watch. Australian horror film.
jessamyn:
Nice. I... don't watch scary movies.
cortex:
Just ever at all?
jessamyn:
Noo, like, you know, the inside of my head is scary, like I'm a jumpy anxious person, like anything that kind of turns that up really doesn't solve a problem for me?
cortex:
Yeah.
cortex:
That's fair.
jessamyn:
The world- the world is scary.
cortex:
Yeah, no. It's a specific sort of experience.
jessamyn:
I mean, I get that people are into it, I just, aaaghh. It's hard, I guess, to have a movie for me that is scary but that doesn't push any of my "I can't actually deal with that" buttons?
cortex:
Yeah.
jessamyn:
You know, like pet torture,
cortex:
Yeahh...
jessamyn:
or like, lady torture. Like, a bunch of dumb kids in the woods running around scared, that's one thing. But as soon as you take the woman out and, like, extra-terrorize her, then I'm like "Nope! Fuck this!"
jessamyn:
As opposed to, like, if all the kids were just terrorized equally, I guess it would be ok? (laughs) I don't know! I don't know!
cortex:
Yeah. Did you ever watch It Follows? We may have talked about that previously.
jessamyn:
No...
cortex:
It's interesting, it's... the premise is there's a monster that always chases whoever the person is who it's after, but who it chases, it's the possession sort of situation, is sexually transmitted? Which sounds like the setup for a BAAAD movie-
jessamyn:
AAAAHHGG. That sounds like Liquid Sky or whatever. It's just eggghhh.
cortex:
But it turns out it's actually a really good movie, and not, like *remotely* exploitative, despite that the premise is-
jessamyn:
That's impossible.
cortex:
-what if teens passed around a sexual- yeah, no, I, it's-
jessamyn:
That's impossible.
cortex:
I would say maybe give it a shot sometime-
jessamyn:
There's not [??]
-if you feel like it, it's also got a super great soundtrack by a guy named Disasterpeace.
(laughs) Keep sellin' it, Josh.
cortex:
So yeah. I dunno. It's a good movie. It's- I think it's a better movie than it ever sounds like when someone's trying to pitch it.
jessamyn:
Alright! I'll remember it.
cortex:
Yes. What else you got? Ask MetaFilter.
jessamyn:
Uh, well, I enjoyed the problem-solving in castlebravo's thread, where basically, this person had to go on a work retreat. That her manager had arranged. Four days, three nights, with her, and the two colleagues who make up the team, in a rental house with every minute planned out, and this person, who is more of an introvert, and has a young kid, and a husband, is like "How do I deal with this!? Like, I need some me time! How do I- gaaahh!"
jessamyn:
And, um, the manager's really high-strung, and she's like, I need my alone time, this is ridiculous, you know, everything's scheduled from the minute you wake up until the minute you go to bed, how do I carve out time for myself.
cortex:
Yeah.
jessamyn:
So I like this because I offered some helpful feedback, but it was also good reading other people's feedback. Like, for introverts who have to really fight to get time for themselves when other people are like, "Now we have a meeting! Now we have another meeting! Hey look! Another meeting! Isn't this the funnest time, just us girls hanging around?"
cortex:
Yeah.
jessamyn:
And a bunch of people, giving them good advice on how to deal with it. And it sounded like it was going ok. Like, she updated saying "Here's some things that I did," but I haven't heard after the fact, maybe she... has been killed.
cortex:
(laughs)
jessamyn:
By her highstrung boss! I have no idea!
cortex:
Oh no, turns out it was a horror movie setup! (laughing)
jessamyn:
(laughs) I mean, it does seem that way, right? Now that we've been talking about horror movies.
cortex:
Yep.
jessamyn:
(high-pitched voice) "Oh, just us girls, at the cabin, alone in the woods, doin' work, for a long weekend, where nobody's expecting us home until Monday!!!"
cortex:
(laughs)
jessamyn:
Yeah. But I enjoyed that. And, to segue into holiday time, a little bit. Did you guys do anything, Halloween? Do you do a thing? Do you dress up? Do you hand out candy? Do you go to a party?
cortex:
We hung around and handed out candy, yeah. We had like, uh, probably five knocks on the door-
jessamyn:
What.
cortex:
Which is I think up from last year? It's- there must somewhere in the neighborhood that's more of a trick-or-treating zone, but our street is just not it.
jessamyn:
Uh-huh.
cortex:
And to top it off we have a weird doorway that faces sideways instead of out to the street-
jessamyn:
Right, it faces kind of the driveway, right?
cortex:
Yeah, so people have to kind of *believe*. So, you know, we got a few trick-or-treaters. But we've still got a bowl full of candy.
jessamyn:
We gave out 400 pieces of candy.
cortex:
Dang. Yeah, different worlds.
jessamyn:
It was crazy.
cortex:
Mathowie was posting pictures of his, like, one hundred and something full size candy bars that he was ready to give out, so.
jessamyn:
I told you I had dinner with him, didn't I?! Or no?
cortex:
Uh, I think I may have seen a picture? I don't remember.
jessamyn:
Probably.
cortex:
Probably? Yeah, ok.
jessamyn:
He was in San Francisco, I checked in to the Internet Archive on Foursquare,
cortex:
Yeah.
jessamyn:
I noticed Matt was in San Francisco for Slack, I was like, "Heyy, buddy, we're having a party tonight, you should come." He came by, you know, like stopped by the booth, said hi, it was awesome to see him, and then went to the event. And afterwards, we're standing out on the sidewalk, he's like, "You wanna get dinner?" and I'm like "Yes I do! Take me away from this place!"
cortex:
(laughs)
jessamyn:
And we went and had dinner at 9:30 at night in San Francisco. It was so fun!
cortex:
Nice.
jessamyn:
Yeah! I mean, he's doing good, it was good to see him. But, uh, yeah. Him and his candybars. I know.
jessamyn:
I know how he is. Every year. Every year.
cortex:
Yup.
jessamyn:
But, the reason I ask, was shesbookish, grew up in Ohio, moved to California, and is used to being somewhere where trick-or-treating is scheduled. Like, it's on a certain day, at a certain time, and that's published in the paper, and that's when it happens, and she's like, "I can't find any information? About this? And I brought it up and a friend laughed at me, what is going on? Is it scheduled where you live?"
jessamyn:
And apparently, suuper regional! And this whole thread is about people talking about whether it's scheduled or not. Halloween is scheduled. Yes or No.
cortex:
Yeah. Yeah, interesting. We have a- there was some sort of Nextdoor organization- there's a little bit of Nextdoor uptake in our neighborhood, and so there was some organization there about identifying yourself as a trick-or-treating house, so people would know to go there?
jessamyn:
mm-hm
cortex:
I have no idea if it *did* anything. But it's interesting, because yeah, like-
jessamyn:
So wait, there was a thing about how to identify yourself as a trick-or-treating house, and you just didn't do it?
cortex:
No, we did it! We put ourselves on there.
jessamyn:
Oh, ok.
cortex:
We were like, oh, we'll be there. And then we ended up with like six door knocks. So. Who knows.
jessamyn:
Hah. Oh, now it's six!
cortex:
Yeah. Was it-
jessamyn:
It was five. (laughs)
cortex:
Five or six. I'm going to revise my official answer: eh, it was five or six.
jessamyn:
Ok.
cortex:
(laughs)
jessamyn:
Fair, fair.
cortex:
Yeah, it was interesting to see that happening, because that was the only organization we were aware of, cause, I don't think of- as a non-parent, I don't really think about trick-or-treating organization until it gets to like, right around Halloween,
and then I was thinking- we definitely though, like, over the weekend, what if people trick-or-treat-
jessamyn:
What if trick-or-treating is on Sunday! Right! (laughs)
cortex:
Yeah. What if they just do that! And we're like, well, fuck. Then they won't get any candy, cause the door's going to be closed.
jessamyn:
Right.
cortex:
So yeah. It turns out that didn't seem to happen, so that's fine, but yeah, it is kind of a weird thing.
jessamyn:
Well, and we've got a little, like, you take your little tiny children, and there's a "Safe and Seen Halloween" where they can trick-or-treat in our two block downtown, during daylight?