Lazy Reading for 2013/06/02

Last week was a lot of very brief links.  I’ll go for verbosity this week…

  • Regular expressions and regular grammar.  I hope you like detailed explanations.  I’ve said it before: you should understand regular expressions.  The difference between knowing and not knowing is sometimes the difference between knowing how to finish a project, and being hopelessly swamped.  (via)
  • A plea for less (XML) configuration files.  From the same place.  I don’t advocate rejecting XML files out of hand like some people, but I think you need to have a certain existing level of complexity already in your program before you use XML.  For example, so complex that nobody will notice some XML sprinkled in there too.
  • Where Looks Don’t Matter and Only the Best Writers Get Laid, a talk about the Internet from roughly the late 90s to the 2000s.  Some parts of this get farther into political notes than I usually care to read, but I like the point made with “Many women and men alike are using, not building, the web.”  I am frustrated by how the Internet is effectively one-way transmission for so many, like TV.  (via I forget, sorry)
  • Bringing Unix commands to a Windows world.  It’s about Cygwin.  I’ve installed Cygwin a number of times, but it’s such a strange hybrid I eventually stop after using it for whatever specific reason caused the first install.  These days, it’s almost easier to set up a virtual machine on a Windows system and just switch over as needed.
  • The Weird Stuff Warehouse.  How much does this look like your basement?  I like looking in stores like there cause there’s always some hardware item that seems to be worth resurrecting.  (via)
  • Open Source Game Clones.  I feel iffy about these things.  This tends to be viewed as “I want a free game”, not “I want the right to modify a game”.  Also, you could argue it takes revenue away from the original artists who work on a product when it copies the original game methodology, reducing the incentive to produce.  That could be debated, but I am certain of this: I wish people tried original rather than rehashed ideas in open source, because it has a much lower threshold for success.   You don’t need a studio to tell you when you can be published…  which is sort of the idea behind “indie gaming“, I suppose.  (first link via)
  • Remember those old not-a-desktop-not-a-laptop computers?  They looked like this image I saw recently.  I actually learned to use vi in a mild panic on a Sparcstation Voyager, which would be another device in that land between categories.
  • SSH Tricks, found by accident while I was searching for how to do per-host configs in ssh, so that I only had to type a short name and leave off the long suffix (like when connecting to a server.  Someday I might even get remote port forwarding over ssh correct.
  • USSR’s old domain name attracts criminals.  Somehow I doubt you can identify a criminal site by domain suffix that easily.  (via)

Your unrelated link of the week: Massive Chalice, a Kickstarter for a new strategy and tactics game.  It’s by Double Fine, who has made some fantastic stuff, and it has permadeath, turn-based combat, randomly generated maps… it’s a roguelike!  It’s cross-platform, apparently, though I don’t know if it will work on any BSDs.


One Reply to “Lazy Reading for 2013/06/02”

  1. To be fair, several of those game clones need the original game data

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