guitarist > writer > coder

May 28, 2015
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  • When The Gang-bangers Are White Guys
    We talked to Pollack about why biker gang violence typically gets so little attention. He believes the Waco incident confounds our expectations regarding the race and geographic location of people who perpetrate crime, causing us to see biker gangs as more of a “curiosity” than a threat.

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May 27, 2015
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  • Why Guild Wars 2's 'execution'-style ban was a bad idea
    Which brings us to the good practice embodied here: transparency to the banned player. If community moderation is meant to help mold the behavior of the playerbase, then punishment must always be leavened by a rational and personalized explanation. What hope do we have of encouraging good behavior if we do not clarify how transgressors have erred? Riot Games built a policy around this notion: if a player is banned, they will be told why, comprehensively, in an email. ArenaNet merely gave a public demonstration of this good practice, encouraged by the players themselves.
  • This battle will define us. We must protect our children from austerity
    In Battersea, the Conservative council shut down a supervised children’s adventure playground, only to reopen an unstaffed public space and hand over the other half to a private company called Go Ape offering treetop adventures. “I suspect it will be the first thing that many children ask to do when they’re thinking about how to celebrate their birthdays,” is how one local councillor sells the idea. Go Ape typically charges about £25 per child ticket.

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May 23, 2015
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  • How to use Photoshop Layer Styles like a Boss – Advanced guide for game illustrators
    [The] Styles palette is comprised of squares, while the PSD method allows me to use custom shapes that will better represent the potential of each Layer Style. As you can see below, I use two shapes per Layer Style; together, they show me what a layer style looks like on a large layer, a tiny layer, a round edge, straight edge, corner, and hole. 

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May 21, 2015
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  • This was Sony Music's contract with Spotify
    This contract — like every other contract involving a music label and a streaming service — has been secret until now. Given the myriad ways Sony Music came out as the winner, it’s worth asking who really should shoulder the blame for the lackluster streaming payments that artists like Swift have been complaining about — the labels or the streaming service?
    This isn’t new news…

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May 13, 2015
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  • How different is Scotland?
    Isn’t the SNP left-wing? Not really, or at least, its economic policies are not. As the IFS said, its policies on public spending cuts are, if anything, slightly to the right of Labour. Until 2 months ago, the SNP was proposing cuts to corporation tax and, since 2010, it has cut NHS spending in real-terms. It is, says John McDermott, a lot less radical than you might think. It has its socially conservative wing too. Some of its members were bitterly opposed to gay marriage and a few of its MSPs voted against it.

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May 12, 2015
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  • I was an undercover Uber driver
    So then Uber cuts fares down by, like, a lot. Like, here, they just cut fares almost in half. So most of those initial drivers quit and are replaced by people willing to work for the lower amount, who are the same people who used to drive cabs. They’re just doing it for a new boss, for less money and no tips, and they’re carrying most of the liability themselves. But most riders never change that first impression that drivers make a lot of money.

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