Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Link roundup

1. TC:

I don’t understand why in the United States the only thing that is really noncompetitive is sports. In Europe, the only thing that is really competitive is sports. In Italy, soccer you are the first division, second division, you are promoted or demoted, according to performance. You don’t buy your way into the NFL or the Major League, et cetera.
Here, you buy the franchise, and once you’re in, no matter how incompetent you are, you stay there, which is completely un‑American.
2. TNY:
Breaking with a pattern of quietly transferring predator priests, the Vatican under Benedict and Bertone began removing significant numbers of them from the priesthood—defrocking some three hundred and eighty-four priests in 2011 and 2012, the last years of Benedict’s papacy.
...
VatiLeaks was partly the result of widespread dissatisfaction with Bertone’s management of the Vatican. Both he and the Vatican insist that there were sound legal reasons for not granting regulators access to the I.O.R.’s records—not least, the defense of Vatican sovereignty. It took two years for the I.O.R. to reach substantial compliance with international standards of transparency, and it has quietly closed around forty-six hundred accounts.
3. "I created a fake business and bought it an amazing online reputation"
For $5, I could get 200 Facebook fans, or 6,000 Twitter followers, or I could get @SMExpertsBiz to tweet about the truck to the account’s 26,000 Twitter fans. A Lincoln could get me a Facebook review, a Google review, an Amazon review, or, less easily, a Yelp review.
4. Designing Lara Croft Go:
“I didn't replay those old games because I feel the best version of the first Tomb Raider is in my heart,” says Routon. Maybe that's cheesy, but so often if you go back and look at a game you loved so much that's twenty years old, and you play it....it sucks. I didn't want to have that feeling, you know? I just didn't even want to check. So I keep the version I have in my memory, and tried to design a game around that.”

There were other influences too, of course. The Lara Croft Go team took art design cues from Eric Chahi’s seminal adventure game Another World, as well as the Tintin adventure comics created by Belgian cartoonist Hergé. But Routon says the team returned again and again to the idea of trying to recreate how it felt to play those classic Tomb Raider games.
5. Pancake machine:
I had the sublime pleasure of being served a continental breakfast at a Best Western that included pancakes produced by this miracle machine. It had instructions pinned on the wall above it:

1) Place your plate on the right.

2) Press the OK button.