Friday, October 14, 2011

Link roundup

1. Part of a longer interview, William Gibson explains how he got published:

As soon as he got home he sent me a draft of a short story he had written perhaps an hour beforehand: “This is my new genius short story.” I read it—it was about someone who discovers there are things that live in bars, things that look like drunks and prostitutes but are actually something else—and I saw, as I thought at the time, its flaws. I sat down to write him a critique, but it would have been so much work to critique it that instead I took his story and rewrote it. It was really quick and painless. I sent it back to him, saying, “I hope this won’t piss you off, but it was actually much easier for me to rewrite this than to do a critique.” The next thing I get back is a note—“I sold it!” He had sold it to this hardcover horror anthology. I was like, Oh, shit. Now my name is on this weird story.

People kept doing that to me, and it’s really good that they did. I’d give various friends stuff to read, and they’d say, “What are you going to do with this?” And I’d say, “Nothing, it’s not nearly there yet.” Then they’d Xerox it and submit it on my behalf, to places I would have been terrified to submit to. It seemed unseemly to me to force this unfinished stuff on the world at large.
2. "How to Get iOS 5’s Biggest Features in Android Right Now ."

3. Kotaku and Destructoid gave Arkham City great reviews, but this was definitely my complaint about Arkham Asylum:
It's just confusing to have so many buttons doing so many things, and so many enemies that require so many different ways of dispatching. It's certainly great to have options and variety, but there's an information overload that can drown even the most focused of brains. This is an issue that doesn't just affect combat -- with so many gadgets, it's tough to keep track of which items perform which tasks, and when they're needed against certain obstacles. I was stuck at one point because I forgot that, among everything else he can do, Batman can slide to get under low barriers. It totally slipped my mind among all the things I needed to remember. This ties into the earlier criticism of Batman's grappling hook -- there are so many things to latch onto that the game itself gets confused.
4. Relatedly, Topless Robot is giving away Arkham City figures.