You know how you'll be straightening up your abode and at first it's pretty easy? I know where this goes! I know where this goes too! And then you get down to the stuff that you can't find a good place for, so you just shove it in the closet? Welcome to the closet. If you're looking for any rhyme or reason to what follows, I'm so sorry.

The Lyttle Lytton Contest

Quite possibly the most popular thing on this site, the Lyttle Lytton Contest has run annually since 2001. The basic idea is this: the annual Bulwer-Lytton Fiction Contest challenges entrants to pen the world's most atrocious first line to a novel. The problem is that most entries are so long that they're not amusingly bad — they're just flat-out unreadable. So the Lyttle Lytton Contest forces entrants to keep their masterpieces down to 200 characters or less. It runs year-round, so check it out!

Stochastic Planet

A few years ago I coded up a little PHP toy that would pull up a random spot on Earth. Now imagine running that script every day and archiving the nearest photo on a Tumblr blog. Except you don't have to imagine it, because Stochastic Planet is already doing it! If you tumbl at all, go check it out — once you've seen a few dozen of these you might have a different sense of what the land mass of the Earth is actually like.

Paintings of rectangles
'70s Mondrian

When I was a toddler, these were the only colors that things were allowed to be.


I ripped off this idea fairly blatantly — I once commissioned video game art from clearfour.com, but thought I ought to do this one myself since it was for Jennifer's birthday.

CGA 1 (fake Jo Baer polyptych)

Jo Baer is an artist who painted a number of "black band" paintings that I like a lot. Here's an homage using the palettes offered by IBM's Color Graphics Adapter of 1981, on which I deeply imprinted as a child.

And then, for the stuff that doesn't even belong on any of the closet shelves, there's that box on the floor way in the back. In real life, mine has, among other stuff, a raccoon hand puppet, a bunch of old license plates, an empty box that once held some crêpes dentelles, and my psychological evaluation from when I was five. Online, it has this stuff.

I recently updated my annotated list of favorite songs. Listen, learn, laugh, love.

I try to audit at least one class every semester, and the one I picked for 2013/Fall was a combined astronomy and integrative biology course called "Origins: from the Big Bang to the Emergence of Humans." In one lecture, the professor showed off an analogy for genetic drift. Take a few dots with different colors, and simply flip coins, two per dot. For each head, give the dot an offspring. Watch how a very small number of colors will quickly dominate the population, not because they offer any type of selective advantage, but simply randomly. I thought this was neat so I coded it up as a PHP toy. Check it out.

I made a Youtube movie about date formats. (When I told Elizabeth about this, her reply was a resigned sigh of "You and your date formats.")

The end of Daylight Saving Time on 2009.1101 got me thinking... you know how most of the world cheats a little where time zones are concerned, so that even during standard time the sun rises and sets later than it technically should? What would a map of time zone deviance look like? Answer: like this. (Or this, if you're colorblind.)

Gull is a guide to Glulx Inform, which is used to create interactive fiction. It is also mentioned on the IF page, but I figure it can't hurt to mention it here as well.

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