New Twitter bot: @TwoHeadlines

September 11, 2013

A couple weeks ago I quietly launched a new Twitter bot, @TwoHeadlines. It’s my attempt to automate jokes where people mix up two popular headlines from a given day. The algorithm is simple. Because there are no good news APIs out there, I resort to basic screen-scraping. Here’s what it does: Goes to http://news.google.com Grabs […]

Read the full article →

Some thoughts on the IGDA (or: why I quit)

September 3, 2013

For nearly three years, I served on the Board of Directors of the International Game Developers Association (IGDA). I ran in the elections for the IGDA board because in 2009 I really believed in their mission, and I believed that as an organization it could improve the lives of individual game developers everywhere. Three years […]

Read the full article →

New project: automating fandom

August 13, 2013

I just posted up a new project: it’s a bot that makes animated GIFs from TV shows and posts them to tumblr. The way it works is pretty simple: I have a video of The Wire and its corresponding subtitle file, which provides dialogue with timestamps. The bot finds some dialogue at random, looks up […]

Read the full article →

Book Review: Dreamcast Worlds, by Zoya Street

July 31, 2013

I recently read Zoya Street’s book Dreamcast Worlds, a “design history” of the Dreamcast. I really like it and started writing a review for this blog. But I felt more people needed to hear about it than my own meager readership, so I pitched the review to Kotaku and they are running the full review there. […]

Read the full article →

Professor Jocular vs Twitter

July 28, 2013

Inspired by Rob Dubbin, I made a new Twitter bot last week called Professor Jocular (@ProfJocular). It tries to explain jokes. Here’s how it works: grabs short tweets from Favstar’s Tweets of the Day (there’s no API for this so I just scrape it) picks a random short tweet gets three random words (of 4+ […]

Read the full article →

A brief note on hip hop and videogames and the cost of assets

June 21, 2013

I’ve been thinking a lot about the idea that videogames in the late 90s and early 00s were at a “sweet spot” in terms of the cost of producing assets, technological capability, and the expectations of the gaming public when it came to things like graphical fidelity and polish. This is what allowed games like […]

Read the full article →

A brief word on multiplayer lag compensation

May 8, 2013

I help curate a website called Build New Games, which contains longform tutorials about making games for the open web with technologies like JavaScript and HTML5. One of our most popular articles is Sven Bergström’s Real Time Multiplayer in HTML5. I wrote something in the comments that I thought might be valuable to people setting out […]

Read the full article →

BioShock: Infinite and Against the Day — bifurcated transdimensional twins?

April 3, 2013

I just finished playing BioShock Infinite. It’s a game with very high highs and very low lows. Plenty of people have said really interesting things about the game, and I won’t retread their words. What I do want to talk about is Thomas Pynchon and videogames. It’s been a while since I last did that. In […]

Read the full article →

Two new projects: Clickbait and @darius_at_gdc

March 25, 2013

A brief note: this past weekend I launched two projects. Clickbait is a little page born of my anger at Complex Magazine’s 40 Hottest Women in Tech article (purposefully not linking it here, you can find it if you want to). To see two of my friends reduced to a “hotness” ranking made my blood […]

Read the full article →

Basic Twitter bot etiquette

March 16, 2013

So you want to make a Twitter bot! That’s great! Here are some basic rules for making a bot that isn’t an asshole (and also reduce the chance of the bot getting banned by Twitter). Don’t @mention people who haven’t opted in Don’t follow Twitter users who haven’t opted in Don’t use a pre-existing hashtag […]

Read the full article →