Links 2021-02-12

Hi. I’ve decided to start sharing some links to interesting things I’ve been reading. I’m not sure how often I’ll post them. Let’s see how it goes. I’ve added archive links when they work.

Dice, Rubik’s Cubes, and Error Diffusion

Data genetics has an article about programmatically creating images from (virtual) dice and Rubik’s cubes. It explores various dithering techniques. (archive)

Wellness Culture, Jesus, and Qanon

Snowden Stieber writes about how and why people believe conspiracy theories. Particularly interesting is the exploration of the role disgust plays in our beliefs and world view.

How Prince won the Super Bowl

I didn’t really know anything about Prince (besides his popular hits) before reading this. Anil Dash breaks down his 2007 half time Super Bowl performance and explains the cultural and political importance of his song choices. (archive)

The Real Novelty of the ARPANET

Two bit history writes about how people misunderstand the importance of the ARPANET. The ARPANET was not novel because it people connected remotely to computers; this was happening already via remote terminals (and remote connections were available for a long time via phone or telegram). ARPANET was novel because it allowed a person to connect to a remote program without any human needing to be on the other end.

How to Create Pay-Per-View Worthy Adventures

/u/jeffjeffries77 on reddit made an in-depth and entertaining post on reddit about how wrestling creates “heel” characters (bad guys) and how to apply the same techniques to your D&D games. The main lesson is that D&D is usually not a subtle storytelling medium. Most of the time, players aren’t going to appreciate nuances, they want big action and big emotions. Just like wrestling. (I found this post via Sly Flourish.) (archive)