Wednesday, February 3, 2010

A Cat's Breakfast

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Something of a cat's breakfast today.  I'm on the road in the morning and there's a lot of prep to do.  Plus, I'm writing a novel.  I don't know if I've mentioned that recently.


The Color of Dinosaur Feathers . . . 

My friend Daniel Dern, who is a fellow dino fancier, sent me the following link.  Unlikely as it seems, a case has been made for the fossil evidence of the color of dinosaur feathers. Yow.  I dunno if I'm convinced, but it's damnably cool in any case.  Click here to read the item.



My Blue-Ribbon Panel Judge of a Son . . .

Dropped by last night to tell me that he'd gone over all the contest entries so far and only been impressed by two.  "Was [term withheld] one of them?" I asked.

"Naw, I didn't think much of that," he said.

So we're getting closer.  Really.  The Panel will convene again, probably this weekend, after I get back from Pittsburgh.


And the Goon Fleet Delenda Est . . .

There don't appear to be any comprehensive articles about this online. But it's inherently interesting, so I'll give you the digest version:

On the massive online game Eve Online, one of the best (and most unexpected) narratives was the sudden appearance of the Goon Fleet, out of nowhere, to best and humble major virtual-interstellar alliances with, well, goonish stragegies. Enormously game-credit-points-expensive warships were taken out by swarms of trash-talking Kamikazi pilots in fifty-cent spacecraft. Huge swaths of virtual space fell before the Fleet.  They ended up controlling planets and resources that made them virtually indestructable.

And yet they've been destroyed.

How? As my son, Sean, explained it to me, the Goon Fleet's strength was always strategy. Their leaders were organizers, not players. So the leaders never actually played the game themselves. And thus none of them ever saw the automatic messages reminding them that if they didn't pay their annual dues, their properties would be cancelled.

So one day the Goons logged on and found everything they'd worked for, stolen, and conquered was gone.

Can you wonder that sociologists and epidemiologists are studying these virtual worlds seriously?  I wouldn't be surprised if members of the War College were interested in them as well.

Above: Our cat's eating station, with water bowl, food dish, and of course his chutneys. It just wouldn't be kibble without chutney.

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2 comments:

Karen said...

So glad you noted that it was chutney. At first glance I thought it was jam, and jam just isn't a good choice with kibble.

Christopher said...

Actually, it sounds like the Something Awful CEO just got bored and decided to pull a massive in-game troll.

http://www.escapistmagazine.com/news/view/98186-EVE-Online-GoonSwarm-Disbanded