Garbage Game for Garbage People, Sonic the Hedgehog 3, Might Have Had Music from Michael Jackson

Todd Van Luling has an article for the Huffington Post about the sad garbage people who got too caught up in Sega’s marketing to recognize that Sonic gameplay was awful and their sad hunt for finding the hidden connection in Sonic 3’s soundtrack to Michael Jackson.

Spoiler, Jackson didn’t even want to be associated with the crap Genesis sound processing:

Jackson and the team wrote the music “high-profile,” Grigsby said, meaning that although replicating the music on the Sega console would eventually require massive compression and simplification of the audio, they started out sounding like typical Jackson songs.

Sometimes, Grigsby remembers, Sega developers would drop by to hang out or help the team compress the songs — which, according to Grigsby, were recorded aiming for a “cinematic type of sound” Jackson sought at the time — into Sega-ready versions. “It all had to be squashed down for the game and they made more room for the graphics,” Grigsby says. “They had more data happening with the graphics and they had very little allocated for audio.”

[…]

Buxer, Grigsby and Jones say Jackson pulled his name from the game – but not his music – because he was disappointed by how different the music sounded on Sega’s console when compressed from that “high profile” sound to bleeps and bloops.

“Michael wanted his name taken off the credits if they couldn’t get it to sound better,” Buxer claimed.

Even the sad garbage people now recognize that the gameplay was terrible:

“Someone would track down someone who originally worked on Sonic 2, like a level artist,” said James Hansen, a Sonic fan from the Forest of Dean, near Gloucester. “Then they’d just get bombarded with a million emails and then you’d never hear from them ever again.”

[…]

As a teenager, Hansen was more interested in the “secrets in the Sonic games” than the games themselves, he says now.

Eric S. Raymond’s Turn at Becoming The Biggest Asshole in Open Source

Eric S. Raymond

Eric S. Raymond:

The short version is: if you are any kind of open-source leader or senior figure who is male, do not be alone with any female, ever, at a technical conference. Try to avoid even being alone, ever, because there is a chance that a “women in tech” advocacy group is going to try to collect your scalp.

ESR’s blog post goes on to back up this conclusion with IRC logs from one anonymized source that nasty women are all around trying to destroy him and other self-aggrandizing free software/open source shitlords through false claims of sexual assault. The comment thread on the post is an amazing cavalcade of other mens rights assholes who followed through links from terrible websites such as Phoronix and Breitbart. Surprisingly, the comment thread is a little bit better on the Phoronix post where people call out Michael Larabel on linking to ESR’s garbage as if it were fact.

ESR calls this an attempt by women to “… smear and de-legitimize the Linux community (and, by extension, the entire open-source community) in order to render it politically pliable.” ESR is the one who has smeared the Linux community. He has threatened harm to other developers, by all accounts is a terrible developer, and a racist who takes credit for coining the term open source when it was actually invented by Christine Peterson.

Attention K-Mart Shoppers

Archive.org has a special on archived muzak in aisle 89:

In the late 1980’s and early 1990’s, I worked for Kmart behind the service desk and the store played specific pre-recorded cassettes issued by corporate. This was background music, or perhaps you could call it elevator music. Anyways, I saved these tapes from the trash during this period and this video shows you my extensive, odd collection. Until around 1992, the cassettes were rotated monthly. Then, they were replaced weekly. Finally sometime around 1993, satellite programming was intoduced which eliminated the need for these tapes altogether.

The older tapes contain canned elevator music with instrumental renditions of songs. Then, the songs became completely mainstream around 1991. All of them have advertisements every few songs.

The monthly tapes are very, very, worn and rippled. That’s becuase they ran for 14 hours a day, 7 days a week on auto-reverse. If you do the math assuming that each tape is 30 minutes per side, that’s over 800 passes over a tape head each month.

Carmack on Developing the Netflix App for Oculus

John Carmack is one of those rare people who pretty much everything they write is worth reading. He’s not always right, but it is always entertaining to watch his level of genius on display. In this case, Carmack is writing about overcoming the problems he ran into while developing a custom virtual reality environment where you can watch Netflix films and shows on the Samsung Gear VR device. You should read it.

8-Bit Generation

There are not many people I trust to make recommendations about funding another crowdfunding campaign from people who have already failed to ship a documentary once, but you should read the full argument from Jason Scott. Here’s just a part:

Way back in 2012, I posted something, talking about how worried I was that a documentary that looked and sounded great seemed to have disappeared. I’d looked far and wide to contact the filmmakers, and nothing. But I wanted to at least put my voice out there, in case they wanted to talk to me. Unlike people who talked big about what they wanted to do, the small amount of footage I’d seen from the documentary looked so fantastic that I very nearly quit doing documentaries.

Like a lot of people, I’d pre-ordered the blu-ray edition for the forthcoming film, and I’d waited. And waited, and then nothing came of it, websites went down, and I squirreled away the trailer and other footage I’d seen, sad beyond belief such a promising work seemed to be doomed, destined for the shadows of promises and wishes.

Then, in 2014, I got contacted by one of the creators. Yes, they were alive. Yes, they had a lot of pieces of the movie. And yes, they’d run into incredible financial problems, gone bankrupt, lost homes, had massive layoffs… yes, as expected, there had been some incredible shitshow and the production company was essentially gone. They’d had to go into other directions, and put the project into a box and refund whatever they could afford to refund, and make a living.

The Jig is Up

Brianna Wu & Zoe Quinn were interviewed by MTV’s Shaunna Murphy recently, a year after the GamerGate bullshit kicked off:

Wu: When I got dragged into Gamergate it felt like there were people that actually believed, “It’s about ethics in game journalism.” What I [later] saw was people stopped believing that. They understood it was about harassment of women. When you go over to Gamergate headquarters, you can look at what they’re saying, and now I think they’re a lot more honest that this is about harassing feminists. I think they know the jig is up. And I certainly think the press knows the jig is up.

The bullshit cover story about ethics is, thankfully, gone, now we’re just left with the shamelessly hateful who still think that women shouldn’t be treated equally and have equal representation in games and games press. No critique of the status-quo will ever be acceptable. 

The most personally disappointing part of GamerGate for me has been the people I used to respect who bought into GG or have even just been emboldened by the backwards thinking that it represents. Over the past year die-hard racists, misogynists, and homophobes who were once only privately terrible have been publicly hateful and will do whatever they can to defend their attitudes because there is no question in their mind about the inferiority of anyone who commits the crime of being different from birth or by choice. To the hateful, compassion is censorship, feelings are lies, opinions have no place in journalism, and any hint that they should stop being terrible is cause to throw a tantrum or leave when it doesn’t work and they don’t get their way.

There’s One Big Upside to Broadcast & Cable Television

The FCC’s page on the CALM act that outlawed loud commercials:

Q: Do these rules also apply to radio commercials or commercials on the Internet?
A: No, the CALM Act only applies to commercials aired on television.

This explains the deafeningly loud commercials while watching Mr. Robot on USA’s Apple TV app.

Seinfeld2000 Interviewed Wayne Knight

Seinfeld2000 in the intro to their interview with Wayne Knight:

Look. i like to “goof around ” a lot on social media. But when youre talking to a screen & stage legend like Wayne Knight who is ENSCONSED in the seinfeld universe and emblazoned in popular cutlure, its time to get serious. im glad i did bc the result is honestly one of the best interviews in journalism history.

This interview with the actor behind Seinfeld’s Newman character has the best ending to any celebrity interview, and is overall the best celebrity interview ever published by a website.

What do machines sing of?

Martin Backes:

“What do machines sing of?” is a fully automated machine, which endlessly sings number-one ballads from the 1990s. As the computer program performs these emotionally loaded songs, it attempts to apply the appropriate human sentiments. This behavior of the device seems to reflect a desire, on the part of the machine, to become sophisticated enough to have its very own personality.