Twenty microblogging bits from ActivityPub.

Microblogging Journal through 5/28/2024

1,485 words.

Microblogging Journal through 5/28/2024

Dispatches from

Monday 05/20

  • 10:04 # I’m starting to wonder if YouTube is counting all the times I just hover the mouse over a video and let the thumbnail play for a while as things I want to see again and again in my recommendations.

  • 14:18 # Whoops I think I forgot to actually commit and publish last week’s microblog thingy. So there’ll be two appearing in a row shortly.

  • 16:12 # I thought I might try Spotify to listen to a podcast. Spotify is absolutely awful at podcasts. No way to listen from first to last instead of last to first? Seriously?

Wednesday 05/22

  • 09:01 # My little village in Manor Lords just got completely wiped out by wandering brigands. Every single building burned to the ground. Probably should have made some kind of army.

Friday 05/24

  • 07:35 # I got Crusader Kings 3 on Steam but it crashed twice in the first two hours so I returned it. I might get it on PS5 though. Good “busy hands” game for when you’re listening to podcasts/audiobooks/shows and don’t want to actually pay attention to the game. Weird that the game industry has evolved into making a ton of games that are designed in a way that you don’t have to actually pay any attention to the game while you’re playing it.

  • 07:39 # Timberborn is another good “busy hands” game for the purpose of listening to a podcast. However I find it extremely limiting in its current state because unless I missed something all the maps are hand-made instead of procedurally generated, so you can only play the game so many times. Also it seems to lack any kind of threat so it’s almost impossible to fail to make a thriving beaver community. Once I make a stable community in these kinds of city-building games, I generally consider myself to have “finished” and uninstall the game, and I did that on the very first tutorial game.

  • 07:52 # One thing I like about Manor Lords is that it isn’t an automatic win everytime you play. It seems kind of hard to make a stable community. Well, it’s not super hard to make a community, but when the brigands arrive in the third year and wipe out your community because you spent all your time dealing with food and shelter instead of building an army, you realize there’s a little more to it than you thought. However I’m a little wary of playing too much because the game seems like it’s still early in early access.

    • 07:54 # I made the mistake of assuming this was a typical early access game, which usually means “the game is finished but we need beta testers.” Manor Lords actually isn’t finished yet.
  • 16:00 # Of course there’s a storm and a pouring rainstorm an hour before I was able to go outside and mow. At this rain-exactly-every-single-weekend rate I doubt I’ll be able to mow at any point this summer.

Saturday 05/25

  • 18:20 # I don’t remember what, if anything, I said previously about Dune pt 1, but it’s a pretty good flick. However I felt like the first half (of the first movie) is considerably better than the second half, which kind of drags and meanders like the middle book of a trilogy. Dune has taken on a rather biblical mystique among nerdkind in the 50-something years since it was published, and this latest movie definitely captures that, so it’s more of a reflection of the book’s aura than the book’s content. Meaning I found the book rather mundane, so this might be only the second movie I can think of that’s clearly better than the book. (The other was the Lord of the Rings trilogy.) Going to watch pt 2 shortly. Don’t quite remember how the rest of the story goes, just little flashes here and there.

    • 21:49 # Dune pt 2 was a similar visual spectacle to pt 1. I feel like I need to re- read the book. Almost none of the entire pt 2 movie was familiar to me. It either deviated significantly from the story I knew, or I didn’t actually know the story. Admittedly the book was fairly difficult to grok and I didn’t retain much of it, so my knowledge may be significantly infected by the previous movie and miniseries. Hence my interest in re-reading the book. I don’t even remember if I read it or listened to an audiobook.

Sunday 05/26

  • 09:11 # I like these Roll20 listings that are like “looking for players and a GM.” Also I feel like there’s a LOT less listings for LFG games now than there were the last time I looked, last year I think.

  • 16:58 # I keep hearing these new Planet of the Apes movies aren’t as terrible as they sound from the descriptions so I am putting that assessment to the test in an unprecedented third movie watch in two days with Rise of the Planet of the Apes. I’m expecting the worst CGI I’ve ever seen in my life, worse even than the prequel movies or any literally any Marvel movie.

    • 17:14 # That was probably too harsh to broadly besmirch the terrible CGI in “literally any Marvel movie.” What I should have said was, the CGI is terrible in literally any superhero movie.

    • 10:58 # I forgot to post my assessment of Rise of the Planet of the Apes, a movie that at this time has an 82% rating on Rotten Tomatoes, a clear fan favorite. It’s awful. Really, really awful. Has there ever been a story with more characters making absolutely awful, cartoonishly unbelievable decisions in human history? I don’t know. But it seems unlikely. It started right at the beginning and just kept happening over and over and over again and it was impossible to take any of it seriously. Anyway, putting all that aside, you can tell why Andy Serkis is one of the dudes you call when you want to do expressive motion capture. In this case, every human character around him was comically dumb so it was a really low bar for him to stand out as a hero.

    • 11:37 # Sometimes I regret posting what probably sounds like overly-harsh movie impressions, but then I come across quotes from old Siskel and Ebert reviews on Wikipedia and I think, “oh okay, whew, writing that a movie is awful is actually pretty tame.” In any case, I do plan to watch the sequels at some point, because surely they have to get better.

Monday 05/27

  • 11:18 # By the way, I started listening to the Dune audiobook, which I’d gotten and listened to many years ago. I can remember now why the book didn’t impress me all that much. It’s pretty much 100% dry exposition, or at least that’s how it starts. Which, to be fair, is typical for sci-fi books of the time. They can sometimes read more like coldly unemotional encyclopedias than dramatic narratives. Well-written, mind you… far better written than most of what you read today, but still, it’s not terribly gripping to listen to paragraph after paragraph of exposition about the history of the Bene Gesserit. Also, as a side note, it’s one of those audiobooks where they have a cast of characters reading the dialog, which is my least favorite kind, because it’s pretty stilted and jarring and never sounds natural. Sadly I can’t find any alternate versions of the audiobook where only one narrator reads it (in English, at least).

  • 15:08 # I can now confirm that Dawn of the Planet of the Apes is about a thousand times better than Rise. So much better that I personally would recommend just skipping the first one. The 82% rotten tomatoes score for Rise is definitely a mass delusion, but the 91% rotten tomatoes score for Dawn is an accurate reflection of the movie. Andy Serkis is a powerhouse of storytelling through body language. However, most all of the plot advancements still occurred because of incredibly stupid or psychotic humans who only exist on Twitter. Sometimes it seems like the only life experience that modern script writers have when writing modern movies is from reading Twitter.

  • 19:00 # Hey I successfully installed a new fluorescent ballast in the kitchen and it actually worked and I didn’t electrocute myself. Another triumph of the human spirit in the face of adversity.

  • 21:34 # War for the Planet of the Apes didn’t quite go where I thought it would. It gave me strange Dirty Dozen vibes for quite a while. I think I liked the second one better, but the third one was still pretty good. (Although I got kind of bored in the middle of it and wished it would hurry up and be over.) I guess I can see why people praise these reboots. Except for the first one.

Hey look, I added comments again, because it was easy and free. I don't recommend writing anything that you don't want to lose, because I don't know anything about the stability of this platform.