Ranting and Raving

Mistaking a Mountain for a Molehill

Or "How I heard about the global semiconductor shortage."

My six-year-old graphics card inexplicably died. I fought against the idea for a long time, eventually even reinstalling my whole system to wipe out the possibility of any bugs from cruft left over from previous versions or even a prior OS clogging up my filesystem.

So I had to start fresh with a new image and re-import all of the SVG's again, simplified this time. I am being super literal when I say that. When exporting to SVG, you can choose to "Simplify geometries to reduce output file size"... I discovered the simplicity of the exported paths...

I'm Not A Cartographer

I don't make maps. I've drawn some crude representations of areas, towns, cities, continents—all with no thought to accuracy or scale. "Gee, that looks pretty." Aaaand... Done! ...

Try to buy some imagery and the process starts with "contact us for a quote" and that roughly translates to "Waaayyy outside of my meager budget"... So let me tell you what I did find...

Pixel art coins arranged in rows on a gradient background.

When I was a kid, a candy bar cost 50¢. A can of soda, the same. I could get a Tootsie Roll for a penny... Today a candy bar is $1.25. That's a 250% increase in price for the same product. Probably a lot of things have increased in a similar manner in more than 30 years... The prices on everything just keep going up.

Except on video games.

Animated GIF showing gameplay from Opus Magnum by Zachtronics

It has been a minute, but I finally got back around to spending some time with Opus Magnum while waiting for my ride to Easter Fiesta, which is to say we celebrated the holiday by eating at a Mexican restaurant with my parents.

Free of Cat Poop

Between work and dinner I did some sandbox puzzling. The wonderful thing about a "sandbox" puzzle game is that there is no single solution. You are free to be as optimal or Rube Goldberg as you wish. The only goal is to successfully complete the challenge at hand. In the case of Opus Magnum that will consist of using various mechanisms to manipulate alchemical elements that look very much like marbles in order to achieve some desired final configuration and then dropping your creation into a target slot.

Image of a foraging pouch with included gift bag.

My town is full of trash. It. Is. Everywhere.

I have been making an effort to get my big ass up and moving lately. I have been doing some yard work and I have gone on some walks, usually with the dogs. I also walk to work almost every day but that's not exactly a long walk.

It started with the leaf raking. I decided to rake up my leaves and start producing "leaf mold". That's a whole other conversation. While raking, I picked up litter of various sizes and compositions from all over the lawn. Beer cans, gum wrappers, all sorts of junk. The boys and I put the leaves into a big lawn bag and the trash into a smaller kitchen bag as we went.

Once I started looking, I couldn't not see it.

Cover art of Malo album Suffermore

I "randomly" (probably actually selected by my Google AI overlords) found this guy on Google Mu-- er, I mean, YouTube Music, of course...