Random stuff from around the ‘net.

I didn’t find any one thing I wanted to talk about today, but I figured it was time to get back into the blogging habit. I took a few days off after my marathon of posting at least once a day every day last month, and I was missing it.

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First up is this NES/Famicom system, carved out of solid block of aluminum. It’s $500, and to have an adapter that upsacles it to 720 or 1080 is an additional $50. Same goes for a new controller or a custom, anodized color. The two things really throwing me off on this is how clean and modern the console looks, and the price. I’m all for a clean aethstetic, but it really conflicts with my nostalgia bias here.

For this price, you can wind up with a really solid mid-level gaming PC that plays NES roms…

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Next up is this charming trio of Pokemon pixel art prints. TheDailyRobot crafted the outline and filled it with Kanto inspired landscapes. So neat!

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Lastly, these crayon sculptures are fucking amazing. The details are made all the more impressive with the added color accents. He melts down other crayons to fill in. Make sure you check out the article that image came from for more examples, or check out his Etsy shop for even more.

Different Perspectives

This comic is a new take on King Kong, depicting the unfortunate sap that had a window at just the right height for Kong’s junk to be pressed up against it.

The reason I love it is because as big of a fan I am of King Kong, and how many times I’ve watched the movies (classic and modern versions), I never once contemplated what a person in the building looking out at his crotch would see.

As a designer/developer, I often need to take a step back from what I’m working on to gain a new perspective about it. I have to clear my cache on the project, so my current inclinations don’t outweigh the possibility of a better idea coming through. This comic is a great metaphor for that.

It doesn’t matter how many times you review something, there’s always a possibility for a new take on it.

I’m an Analysis Nerd

One of the things I really love about baseball is how far back the statistical record goes, and how large of a sample size exists to test hypotheses for validity. In this 538 article, Walt Hickey takes a look into the occurrence of the different visual elements in Bob Ross’s paintings on his PBS show. It’s fascinating to see it broken down like this, and the probability of different elements appearing in the same painting is equally interesting.

I also learned something interesting that I never noticed before. “[H]is cabins never had chimneys on them … because chimneys represented people, and he didn’t want any sign of a person in his paintings.”

Of course, there’s examples of cabins with lights on, and those with chimneys, but they’re in the minority. I find it very interesting that he liked the added depth of human-built structures, but didn’t want their direct presence felt in the scene. Maybe it’s about the structures being abandoned and allowing nature to overtake the surroundings and heal.

I’m not trained in art interpretation, so I’m in a wild supposition mode. However, it seems like a sound hypothesis on which to expand. To the internets for research!

I’m Inextricably Afraid of Insects and Arachnids

I’m not allergic to the stings of bees, but they petrify me. I guess my mother’s fear carried over to me as I was growing up, so I never had a chance. I understand the size difference between the insect and myself, and that the worst that’s going to happen is I have an itchy bump on my body for a few days…

I also know that they don’t attack unless provoked. I’m not sure why I can’t get over it. I’m not going to sign up for some aversion therapy and stick my arm in a box full of bees either. I accept this as a downfall in my makeup, and I live with it. Besides, it’s pretty funny when I go darting off to the side because a bee or a housefly buzzed past me, though, so I’ll keep it around as comedic relief for my friends.

Imagine, if you will, the sheer amount of discomfort I had looking at this photoset on The Atlantic.

She Ping, a 34 year-old beekeeper, covered with a swarm of bees on a small hill in southwest China's Chongqing municipality on April 9, 2014. Ping released more than 460,000 bees, using queen bees to attract them to his body, and made himself a suit of bees that weighed 45.65kg (100 pounds) within 40 minutes. (AFP/Getty Images)

She Ping, a 34 year-old beekeeper, covered with a swarm of bees on a small hill in southwest China’s Chongqing municipality on April 9, 2014. Ping released more than 460,000 bees, using queen bees to attract them to his body, and made himself a suit of bees that weighed 45.65kg (100 pounds) within 40 minutes. (AFP/Getty Images)

Nope.

President Bush certainly does use the Google.

President George  W. Bush was so quotable, and one of my favorites was his answer to a question asking if he’s ever Googled anyone.

Occasionally. One of the things I’ve used on the Google is to pull up maps. It’s very interesting to see that. I forgot the name of the program, but you get the satellite and you can — like, I kind of like to look at the ranch on Google, reminds me of where I want to be sometimes.

It’s a little curious that he daydreamed about being at his ranch, since he spent more than a year of his presidency there. He also apparently draws inspiration for his paintings from the Google as well. There’s a fantastic piece by Marina Galperina outlining the images he used.

Check out this softball interview he did with his daughter, Jenna. The best part is how Matt Lauer is so amazed by it, and finds it so enlightening. Gag me. The stupid banter ‘news’ people spout is tiresome. My favorite quote is about how he hopes the people he’s painted take the portraits “in the spirit in which these were painted in. That was the spirit of friendship and that I admire them as leaders and was willing to give it a shot in terms of getting people to see how I felt about them.”

Yeah, I cared so much about you, I just used the first picture I found on the Google. Not one of the multitude in the archives from the White House photographer that followed me around for eight years, just the first ones that popped up.

Mission accomplished, Mr. President.