It’s been 20 years since the game Earthbound came out in Japan as Mother 2. There are so many moments in the game that I absolutely love, but there’s one particular moment that always comes back to my mind every time I start to wonder whether I might be too messy or disorganized.

At one point fairly early in the game, you meet two inventors, and have the opportunity to fund inventions from each of them. One of these inventors, the Orange Kid, is well-groomed and has a house that’s absolutely immaculate. The other, the Apple Kid, is unkempt and has a house that’s equally messy.

The Orange Kid’s invention plays a silly song praising him… and fails to even do that after being used just once. He doesn’t manage to make anything else useful during the game, either.

The Apple Kid’s invention allows you to get rid of obstacles that block your path, for the remainder of the game. And he continues to supply new inventions as needed by the plot.

Huh. So apparently, judging from the label on my Puggsy cartridge, Psygnosis’ US office used to be in the building in Central Square where I currently work.

That’s kind of neat.



andreashettle and others in our corner of tumblr who are deaf or who need captions or a history of needing captions, I have a couple of questions? (I use captions myself to augment for auditory processing reasons but I don’t have the same level of connection to stuff.)

1) does anyone have data on percentage of political adverts that are or aren’t captioned? One of the projects I’m involved with are interested in pushing for this in our state but numbers help a lot. (I’m in pa, but nation wide numbers might help too.)

2) what are the standards or links to standards that you know of for captioning? What are more common preferences? I know what my preferences are but more data would help me!

3) what is up with having to flip through like 10+ different options to find the right caption line for a broadcast? What are the ones that are often empty for? Like legitimately I’m curious but not sure what is going on.

1: No idea, but you might be able to ask some of the people involved in the Captions Capture the Votes campaign.

2: Several that I can think of off the top of my head:

Note that these disagree with each other in multiple ways— much like different publishers have different quirks to their house style, the same is true for closed captioners.

3: I don’t think I’ve ever seen anything used beyond the first three captioning streams. Part of this has to do with technological legacy, I think— only the first four streams existed at all prior to digital TV, and each pair of them shared a single line of the video feed.

Generally, I see the 2nd or 3rd stream used for translation subtitles (e.g., Spanish translation of a show that’s in English or vice versa). I’ve also seen a few PBS Kids shows that use one of the alternate captioning tracks for an abridged version of the dialogue for early readers.

…I just realized that I’m old enough to remember when the Verdana, Georgia and Trebuchet fonts were originally released.

Yes, kids… once upon a time, these fonts did not ship with Windows or Mac OS. They were a free download from Microsoft’s web site.

…come to think of it, I’m old enough to remember when Comic Sans was initially released with the Win95 Plus pack…

I’ve just fixed Tumblr Savior for Greasemonkey so that it works even when pages are loaded via SSL.

You can grab the updated userscript at, but be warned that it will overwrite your preferences. (I should really code it so that it uses GM_setValue and GM_getValue for persistence, but to do that, I need to come up with a good way to actually edit the preferences in that case.)

A much quicker fix, if you’re already using the script, is just to edit the script and replace the @include and @exclude lines with:

// @include        /^https?://www\.tumblr\.com//
// @exclude        /^https?://www\.tumblr\.com/blog//
// @exclude        /^https?://www\.tumblr\.com/upload//
// @exclude        /^https?://www\.tumblr\.com/inbox//
// @exclude        /^https?://www\.tumblr\.com/inbox$/

I still can’t wrap my brain around the fact that it’s been longer since the Nintendo 64 came out (2014-1996 = 18 years) than it was between the NES and N64 (1996-1985 = 11 years).


like/reblog this post if you are autistic, have a paper/”official”/”professional” diagnosis, and are willing to offer support toward autistics who are self-diagnosed who come to your askbox asking for help with coping strategies and/or getting paper diagnosis

It still amazes me how, in 2014, so many web sites and email campaigns can’t even get basic accessibility things right, like having alt text that’s reasonable or even existent.

As I mentioned earlier, I was experimenting with a bill-tracking app for Android that I had found. I decided to see if this app could export its reminders in a format that could be imported somewhere else, because hey, I’m that kind of person.

The app did store backups to SD storage, so at least there wasn’t the “everything in /data and only in /data” issue that plagues so many apps. But the backup was in some weird hexadecimal format that I couldn’t figure out at first. I tried the obvious approach of running it through a hex decoder, but that just produced gibberish; clearly the developer had thought things through at least somewhat.

I was chatting with my girlfriend about this while I was experimenting with it, and jokingly said “maybe if I read it backwards?”

…yeah, as it turns out, reading the hex digits in reverse order produced a perfectly readable SQL script.

You Know You’re A Developer When…

karalianne replied to your post:So I was playing around with setting up a bill…

I just have a set day that I set up bill payments each month and then I worry about when they’re actually due and when we’ll be able to pay. Otherwise I’d have the same problem you’re talking about here with the lack of pattern.

Hm. Now that I’ve looked again at the due dates, it looks like they’re never earlier than the 25th of the month. (Whether that continues to be the case is another question entirely, of course, but it’s at least a good starting heuristic.) Good idea, thanks!