Ninja Cat

So adorable T_T

Also, while I'm still keeping this account to read communities and post comments, this journal really isn't updated anymore. I'm moving to tumblr. I've already got a links and (awesome) things blog called maycontainrobots.tumblr.com and my journal blog will be at robotdreams.tumblr.com (currently empty, updates later)

Lastly, I don't know if my sis ever got around to posting about her new blog, but hers is at andoceans.tumblr.com (art blog ephemeralart.tumblr.com)


Still Alive

I've seen a lot of "Still Alive" fanvids, but this one is my favorite. It's just so stylish!

Team Fortress machinima. Kinda long actually, but still kind of amusing and well done.

life on mars puppets

Thinking about Brains

(This was originally was going to be a review, but it turned out more as a personal reaction. So I thought I might post it here since it's pretty much a blog post.)

[Best American Science Writing 2000]

I've been reading this essay collection in fits and starts. Originally I had marked this as three stars, because I'd read a few and they didn't particularly impress me (other than the fact they were done well) but I've upped it to four after discovering the incredibly personal, descriptive and yet still managing to be strongly scientific and well researched essay, entitled Gray Area: Thinking with a Damaged Brain.

I've taken many neuroscience courses, but as Feynman has so often noted, there is no bigger difference than between knowing the names and the facts of a thing and truly understanding their substance, the real heart of the matter. In this same way, I've heard so much and studied so much about brains, but actually seeing the effect of brain damage on this writer's life speaks volumes, with both a strength and subtly that would be incredibly difficult for a normal, undamaged writer to match. (who lacks the experience and much make up for it with just imagination)

Everything, from the types of mistakes he makes, the things that give him the most trouble in the everyday things in his life, to the ways he has learned to cope with them, say so much about how the brain works. Forget the cartoonish handlings of the brain, the crudeness and simplicity of people getting knocked on the head and forgetting who they are, this is the real deal. The picture of the brain, when it works and when it is damaged, as researched by one who has experience and come to terms with firsthand, whose own life has become irreparably touched by all those fundamental and sometimes so distant facts which us healthy people can barely phantom.

[Also of note, if some reason you cannot get your hands on this book, the "Gray Area" essay is also available for free online at http://www.lostmag.com/issue3/grayarea.php ]

Crossposted at my Goodreads

It's funny...

A few years back, when I was getting out of scanlations and into actual printed manga, I was trying practically every series I could for cheap. I even read some volumes of truely terrible ones (Ragnarok, i'm looking at you) and some others, which I really enjoyed at the time, ultimately aren't as good as I remembered them. (Chronicles of the Cursed Sword in particular, which I loved when i read it, and then I went back and thought it was awful.)

And now, I'm positively swimming in manga. I just did a quick count, out of some morbid curiosity, and I have almost 750 and another 300 up for sale and trade. I have so many I find myself passing over many of the marginally interesting new titles and now i'm trying to concentrate on reading these series i've been so steadily collecting for so long...

Ultimately, while it's pretty cool to be earning money (to spend on more books xd) I have much less time to read than I used to. Which i guess isn't a big loss since I used to read almost all the time, and now I just read most of the time, but still, I used to average 5-7 books a week (counting a manga series as one since they're short) and now I average about 2 or 3. ^^;

Anyway, i'm going to be posting up my impressions and comments on stuff i'm reading over at my anime/manga journal alierarobot

edit: I changed my mind, joined Goodreads instead.

Best Knytt Stories levels (fan-made)

Don't Eat the Mushroom: I agree with erf_, it's very *something*. As in "what the heck..?"
Weird: another nonsense level, but fun.

Some nice environment themed levels
A Walk at Night: a night stroll through the city.
Rain: name says it all.
A Walk in Sad: a lovely little quiet level.
Night at the Arboretum: not much to do, but pretty.
(Gaia note: It's nicely polished, but after a while I got bored. Play another level.)

Dark Sky of Wish Mountain: An adventureish level. Nice, but wasn't always sure where to go next.
Station 07: a level with a simple but enjoyable scifi story
Return to Luminous City: Ok, so i haven't played this one yet but it's been recommended a lot.

It Waits: A fairly creepy level with great but unsettling atmosphere.

Puzzle levels
Scrolly Polly: very cleverly done
Chamber of Trials (in official 3rd party pack): darned hard, but kind of interesting.
Gustav's Daughter (official level): Neat use of themed puzzles.

(Note: obviously play the official levels first. Or the original game, Knytt. Though the original is kinda long, but also the best standalone game)
(Favorite official expansions! The Machine, Sky Flower, an Unfinished level)

New icons!

I can't believe I spent so much time picking them out. Oh well, at least they look neat. Xd
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