"an ology for the new millenium"
Why, it's the vanity site and weblog of Eric Tilton! [*]

Bernie says hello. He'd like to know if you have any wet cat food for him.

Welcome to ology.org! This is the personal vanity site of Eric Tilton and Carrie Jones. It mainly exists so that we can laugh heartily at our clever e-mail addresses (like tele@ology.org). Ho ho ho!

Please wander around, and feel free to enjoy my fine Corinthian web log.

Monday, May 21, 2001

[Posted 5/21/2001 05:56:53 PM by tilt]
Ba weep grana weep ninny bong!

(or, if you prefer, "Destroy Unicron! Kill the Grand Poobah! Eliminate even the toughest stains!")

[Posted 5/21/2001 11:24:50 AM by tilt]
The theme for "Neon Genesis Evangelion" is stuck in my head today. This is not surprising -- I mainlined discs 2-5 between Saturday and Sunday, which is at least four and a half hours worth of cerebral, vaguely mystical, giant robot fighting action. What's not to love?

I'd watched disc 1 probably six months ago, and thought it was interesting but not ultra-compelling. Add to this the fact that NetFlix only had discs 1 & 2 available (out of what will probably eventually be an eight disc set), and I wasn't exactly champing at the bit to find more episodes. I hate getting into a series, and then having to wait forever to see more -- it's hard to keep the continuity straight.

(Side rant: NetFlix's selection is seeming worse and worse to me. There are now several discs in various anime series that are listed in the catalog, but you can't rent them -- there's a little grey box that says "rent" with a big "you can't do this" slash through it. This is super-irritating. I assume it's because someone lost the original disc, but jeezus, don't flaunt the fact that you can't fulfill my rent request. It just reminds me that I'm irritated with you. NetFlix, baby, fix those holes in your inventory, and buy more copies of those anime discs -- they're always checked out with a "long wait" -- perhaps you don't recognize one of your big user demographics?)

Still, I'd kept disc 2 in my queue, and it finally showed up last week. I did a little web surfing to remind myself of the plots of episodes 1-4, and then popped the disc in. I was stunned -- the series was much more impressive than I had remembered. Part of that is that I'm more in an "anime mindset" now -- I'm not put-off by the slightly weird characterizations like I once was. (As evidence, I also re-watched disc 1 of Martian Successor Nadesico this weekend, and loved it. Three months ago, I disliked it so much I didn't finish watching episode 2. Now I think it's the best thing since sliced bread, and rue the fact that I can only find disc 1.) Still, I wasn't excited about the fact that NetFlix didn't have any more discs, despite the fact that ADV films has gotten up to disc 6 by now.

Happily, I was in Encore yesterday, and discovered they had a slew of them. Laughing at my own dorkiness, I swept up discs 3-5, as well as the Transformers movie, and watched until my eyes bled (taking a break for The Sopranos, naturally). Of course, now I'm completely hooked, and I still have to find the last three discs. Hmmm, maybe Encore has the last nine episodes on tape...

Sunday, May 20, 2001

[Posted 5/20/2001 09:05:42 PM by tilt]
The season finale for The Sopranos was, um, fairly low-key for a season finale. Weird.

Saturday, May 19, 2001

[Posted 5/19/2001 07:21:10 PM by tilt]
You can always tell when I have a new toy -- I post to the weblog more often.

[Posted 5/19/2001 07:19:36 PM by tilt]
I just finished watching the web version of 21 Dog Years (link leads to a page with an embedded QuickTime movie), a one man show by Mike Daisey, chronicling his experiences working at Amazon.com.

Watch this show. If it comes to your town, buy a ticket. If not, watch the web version. It's great, it's poigniant, and it's hilarious.

(I'm also looking forward to seeing startup.com, a documentary chronicling the rise and fall of an Internet startup which is apparently beginning general release.)

Since leaving graduate school, I've spent several years in dot-com world. Not as many as some -- despite being involved early with the Web, I decided to go to grad school instead of cashing in -- but enough for this to fascinate and depress me. I work for a much larger company now, which has its own set of tradeoffs -- it may take weeks to get the reimbursement check, but you know the money's definitely coming -- but that small, intimate, and uncertain environment still scares and exhilirates me. Largely, I think, because I like the fluidity afforded by the lack of guarantees. I'm sure one day in the future, I'll jump back into that space -- probably to do computer game work -- but for now, I'm happy.

One of the risks associated with being in that space, though, is of running into that Bezos-like character -- the pied piper whose powerful personal vision overcomes everything, including common sense. Daisey clearly understands that, and understands that desire to... belong to something that might just be meaningful, and that might just make a difference. Even when you know that the claim that you'll "change the world together" is bullshit, you still want to believe, in case it's true this time.

(Besides, you can get better toys when you work for a big company, especially if that company makes the toys.)

Friday, May 18, 2001

[Posted 5/18/2001 10:09:16 AM by tilt]
Was watching Whose Line is it Anyway? on Comedy Central while eating breakfast. There was a commercial for a "Gettysburg commemorative coin" (from the "American Mint"). Two points stood out to me:

  • The $5 coin is claimed to be "legal tender". It turns out to be legal Liberian tender. Note that Liberia is in Africa, not America (odd choice for the "American Mint"), and that today, five Liberian dollars is equal to US $0.12.
  • The coin is part of a "limited run" of 50,000, to commemorate the 50,000 mean who died at Gettysburg. Um... how creepy is that? Every coin represents a dead man.

Thursday, May 17, 2001

[Posted 5/17/2001 09:50:06 PM by tilt]
Well, I've finally seen the "Hot Springs Planet Tenrei" episode of Outlaw Star. It wasn't aired on Cartoon Network's Toonami showing of the series, for the understandable reason that it involves a lot of semi-nekkid cartoon characters, and would've been hard to edit and still remain coherent.

Still, it drives me a little crazy that this quote, explaining why the Tenrei ep was ditched, completely dismisses the importance of the episode:

According to Mr. Akins the only episode being removed from the lineup will be episode 23, 'Hot Springs Planet Tenrei'. "This episode does nothing to further the story and is nothing more than an excuse to get the characters naked," stated Mr. Akins, "It really isn't appropriate for national television."

Y'see, in reality, the hot springs episode explains one of the big mysteries in the series -- what the hell are the caster shells, and where do they come from? (Spoiler below for those interested: select the text to reveal it:)

It turns out that casters are spells in bullet form. Mana is drying up for some reason, and the wizards tried putting the spells into bullets because it was harder to cast them naturally. Also, for some reason it's important that Gene has red hair -- there's an implication of prophecy. Finally, I'd assumed (based on the way Gene talks about the shells in the following episodes) that the numbers of the caster shells implied how powerful/dangerous they were. For example, that a #4 shell was powerful than a #20, and that that was why shooting all of these low numbered casters was dangerous to Gene. Instead, the number indicates the kind of spell that's in the shell. The reason why the shells Gene has in the last few episodes are so dangerous (to him) is because the #4, #9, and #13 shells are more rare and powerful. And because mana is hard to get now (unlike when Gene's original shells were presumably made), the shell makers needed something to trigger the shells -- so the shells are triggered off of Gene's life force. There's no explanation given, though, of where Gene got the caster gun or original shells in the first place, and no explanation given of the whole "red-haired guy prophecy" thing. Season 2?

In general, the series stands better unedited -- the story makes more sense, although without a more careful viewing, I'd be hard put to tell you exactly why. Of course, it helps that I'm feeling seeing the series from the start -- the later episodes feel more cohesive when you view them all over the course of a short time span. Outlaw Star is an excellent series, and I recommend tracking it down on DVD. It's well written, has interesting characters, and has a relatively tight plot arc. Check it out!

[Posted 5/17/2001 04:23:35 PM by tilt]
Hey, this is my first 802.11b (apparently renamed "WiFi" in a completely unsuccessfuly attempt to sound less dorky) enabled post. Got my AirPort card for the TiBook two days ago; got the AirPort hub today. Was very sad that they didn't arrive on the same day.

Apple equipment is very pretty. Take a look at the AirPort Base Station. I was mildly surprised the Apple logo didn't glow as a traffic status indicator.

Now I'll have to invest in a CompactFlash 802.11b card (whenever one actually becomes available -- the one I just linked to may become available in June, but we'll see...).

Monday, May 14, 2001

[Posted 5/14/2001 03:30:20 PM by tilt]
The album of weekend pictures is at Zing.

It seems fitting to mostly tell this story with pictures. This was the first vacation in years that I went on without a laptop, and it was great. So I don't feel like typing about it too much. We used our phones a little bit here and there (I admit I occasionally checked my personal e-mail), but the digital camera was the only electronic device that got any serious use.

Sunday, May 13, 2001

[Posted 5/13/2001 05:39:14 PM by tilt]
Carrie and I had a lovely weekend:

This "barn" is where we stayed:

We went to Fredericksburg, about an hour west of Austin. We stayed at the Old Home Place, a gorgeous B&B about five miles south of town. We had great food (at the Navajo Grill, the Herb Garden, the Fredericksburg brewpub, and the Hill Top Cafe), spent a lot of time in the hot tub, and went wine tasting (Becker's and Grape Creek are both great).


Wednesday, May 09, 2001

[Posted 5/9/2001 11:46:26 PM by tilt]
First post of May. I was using the new OmniWeb browser, which looks very pretty, but completely fails to support javascript well enough to allow for blogging. For that matter, it doesn't support background colors for divs, so my home page degrades a little (but gracefully) under it. Oh, well.

Anyway, what does this look like to you?

Here's some more context:

Why, yes, that is the Apple IIgs version of The Bard's Tale running on Bernie to the Rescue, which in turn is running under the Classic emulation environment of Mac OS X. It's a sick, sick world, kiddoes, but it seems a fittingly symbolic way to commemorate my return to the Apple fold. BT was perhaps the first truly stunning audio/visual game I ever played, and the IIgs was the first Mac-like computer I spent any serious time with. (Sadly, B2R's sound capabilities, at least under Classic emulation, don't seem to do BT's great score justice. Although I'm sure I'm embellishing the IIgs glory in my memory -- the graphics certainly don't measure up to what I remembered.)

(Here's a link to Apple IIgs emulation resources -- just enough to make you dangerous, mind.)

Geez, though, that IIgs Finder looks antiquated now. And it's been less than ten years. It's a weird world we live in.

See earlier stuff in the archives


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