- Projects – I’m still feeling dissatisfied with my productivity, especially the sense that I haven’t made much of anything that would really interest other people, so I’m going to carve out some time to think about that this week and do some planning.
- Bookmarks – I made a miniscule amount of progress on this one, with the main result that I’ve decided to create a template project as I write my other programs to keep a record of my solutions to general problems so they don’t slow me down in the future.
- Map magnets – I made a prototype magnet set to test my idea, and you can see the result below.
A photo posted by Andy Culbertson (@thinkulum) on
- Media – My key word right now is mystery, by which I don’t mean an unsolved crime but something closer to a transcendent puzzle.
- Books – On the experimental fiction side of things, the book of mystery I’ve been reading since Christmas is S. by JJ Abrams and Doug Dorst, a book made to look like it was printed in 1949 and in which half the story is told as a conversation handwritten in the margins about the intrigues of the book and its author and translator, and the conversation spills out into numerous loose-leaf inserts, which make it necessary to keep the book in its slipcase. I’m hoping to read a lot more of this kind of book this year, and to help me plan out my reading list, I’ve bought The Routledge Companion to Experimental Literature, which will guide the bibliography for my wiki that I mentioned a couple of weeks ago. On the creepy fiction side of things, I’ve been listening to Jeff Vandermeer’s Southern Reach trilogy, which certainly fits my definition of mystery and is a very philosophical and psychological series, which is the kind of story I look for, though many times I’ve wondered if the plot is going anywhere, but then it rewards my waiting by lurching in a more definite direction, leaving me partly satisfied but still confused though intrigued.
- TV – My Sara Jane Adventures viewing has been interrupted by The OA, a Netflix series my boss recommended to me, and it is both mysterious and rather heavy in its themes, which is also what I’m into right now.
- Comics – I want to get back into reading comics this year, and I kicked it off by finally finishing my José Luis García-López collection (Adventures of Superman) after a little over a year. Now I’m on the much shorter Super Human Resources Vol 1, which I bought last year at Free Comic Book Day.
- Livestreams – Last week was an annual event called Awesome Games Done Quick (AGDQ), a video game speedrunning marathon to benefit the Prevent Cancer Foundation (over $2 million raised over the course of the week), and I tuned in to the livestream for a few of the runs and interviews, which you can watch in the playlist on their YouTube channel. Even though I’ve only played one of the games I watched, it was interesting to hear the different kinds of issues and strategies that come up in speedrunning them. I especially recommend the mind-boggling Portal run, performed by a robot called TASBot that makes an appearance each year.
- Housekeeping – I’ve cleaned up a bit more. The maintenance guy has replaced the cracked part of the ceiling, but he still has to cover the patch, and while that’s exposed, the water pours out the side when the leak happens. I’ve written to the managers about it, so now I’m just waiting.
- Socializing – Sunday I had lunch at Zoup! with my friends Linda and the Keevers, where we talked about books, as usual, and Pokémon. It had been a while since we’d all gotten together, so I was glad we could.