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Archive May 2008
Friday 23 May 2008
Is there a running joke in advertising now, kind of like the Wilhelm scream in movies, to see how much cancelled superlative one can work in? I just heard an ad say that some sort of dishwasher tablet "may make dishes up to 100% drier".

May make dishes up to 100% drier? Also, even if they did make dishes 100% drier, that just means dry. You know what else makes dishes 100% drier? Leaving them alone for an hour! [18:39] [9 comments]

Thursday 15 May 2008
I was just looking at some legal cases for some uninteresting reason, and was amused by the names of some of them; particularly "Equity and Law vs (someone)". Equity and Law is a building society or something, but its name gets reduced to that for case-naming purposes. Also "(someone) vs Pears".

So I was thinking how enjoyably foregone-conclusion it sounds if you have a case like "Equity and Law vs Pears", and thus, that if you expect your company to ever have a legal problem, you should name it something dramatically favourable at its inception.
"The Forces of Good vs McDonalds."
"Justice and Freedom vs Jones."
"All That Is Good And Holy vs Does It Matter?"

Though "The Forces of Darkness versus Pears" might work too. [21:14] [2 comments]

Saturday 10 May 2008
Also, amusing things from TV ads:
"There's only one reason you'll be watching Dark Angel, and her name is Jessica Alba."
Unexpectedly honest. If they said "one main reason" that would be one thing, but "the show has no other redeeming features" is great.
"Sponsored by Doomsday."
At last, someone using this always available resource! [06:45] [2 comments]
Mysterious - recently I've been getting about 20 spams a day of the "hello, I am tired today" format, with an attached image whose filename is just "me" (not even a file format extension). The files are gifs. They are all the same picture, but they are not all the same image. The cropping varies, and there is noise in the image which also varies. Is there perhaps some sort of steganographic message concealed? A couple of images to show what I mean; one and two. I recommend loading them one after the other in the same window, so you can click 'back' and 'forward' to see the difference.

The other possibility, of course, is that they just have added noise and cropping to make it so spam-filters can't just identify and reject the specific file. [06:39] [0 comments]

Thursday 1 May 2008
I recommend the PC indie-developer game Mount & Blade. I recommended it just over three years ago as a work in progress, and it's still a work in progress, but the progress, though slow, is pleasing. Graphically it used to be "good for an indie game" and is now "mediocre for a full-price game". At the core mechanics level not much has changed, but it now has quests and something vaguely plot-like (generated plot, so not really story-telling sort of plot). Things are a lot more polished and balanced. The player-character face (generated to your own preferences with slider-bars) looks pretty human unless you do something deliberately daft with the bars. Unlike, say, Oblivion's, which looked like crap unless you worked the bars for about ten minutes trying to make a face, any face, that doesn't look more like a sausage.

The price change is about right too - back in 2005 it was $11 for essentially "all beta versions and early purchase of the full version". Now it is $25. The price when finished is expected to be $39, so, er, if the price is increasing parallel to development then the final version can be expected in May 2011. But I imagine that's not the case, it feels pretty close to a full version now, to me.

And there's a free trial version, which is limited in a lovely unobtrusive way - you can play as much as you like until you reach level 7. There's plenty there to give you a taste of the game, and if you like it enough to buy it, you can carry on from your trial save file. However! The current trial version at the website is of version 0.903, whereas the version I got a couple of days ago is 0.950, and the save files aren't compatible across versions, so that may not actually be true. [18:04] [1 comment]