Thursday, April 07, 2022

Fishy Cold Place Sweden Mandela Effect

So, have you heard of The Fishy Cold Place and wondered why your friend called it Sweden?  Well, it's not the Mandela Effect.  It's Julie Nolke.  I know.  I know.  Hard to believe, but it's true.  BTW, this post is an experiment based on the comments for Julie's video:

Hi!


Thursday, March 31, 2022

Letter (at least some) that we should think about restoring to English

Eight years ago, I wrote an article about the letter thorn, that used to be used in English to represent TH sound.  Before that, I wrote about even more common sounds in English that aren't represented by English letters. Well, a few years ago, Austin McConnell also covered this topic in his video 10 Letters We Dropped From The Alphabet. In particular, my mind was blown at learning the origin for the name of "&".


Out of all these letters, I think we'd benefit from the restoration of thorn, and maybe some modification thereof so that the voiced and unvoiced TH sounds can both be represented.  (Much like Austin, I'm not a fan of eth.)

Wednesday, March 02, 2022

Confusion about why audiences of Star Trek and Star Wars were alienated in recent decades

 

Chris Gore is an America writer and founder of Film Threat magazine.  I remember him when we was on Attack of the Show on the now defunct G4 cable channel.  The video above, titled "How To Alienate The Audience - Chris Gore", is a recent interview where he discusses how modernization of story franchises alienates audiences.  In my opinion, he badly misses the mark.  His argument is that franchises shouldn't be modernized, instead they should be told in the traditions within which the story originated.  His examples (vague references to Star Wars and Star Trek) are based on either his own opinion about style or bad examples of storytelling in general.  But, instead of recognizing bad storytelling as just that, he incorrectly links his examples to a generalization about modernization of franchises. 

Gore first talks about the movie adaptation of Lord of the Rings, in which he admits he's not read the original books, but he is a fan of the Peter Jackson's movie trilogy.  While I agree that great choices were made in the product of the Lord of the Rings movie trilogy, I disagree where Gore tries to extent his argument to all franchises that are based on older source material.

For example, I don't agree with his reference to Star Trek reboot's use of Beastie Boys music.  His snide comments seem to suggest he is too close to the subject matter.  The Beastie Boys song is an intentional period piece choice that represents what a major character is experiencing.  As such, it's no more out-of-place or dated than any Disney animated movie with a musical number that does EXACTLY the same thing.  Why is 20th Century rock/rap taken so much less seriously than 20th Century faux-classical music?  

Maybe some Sci-Fi fans are turned off by this music choice in Star Trek reboot. However, this rejection may have more to do with established and predictable expectations for Sci-Fi movies more so than what makes a good Sci-Fi movie.  Why are some dismissive of music in a Sci-Fi movie that isn't written by Danny Elfman, Alexander Courage or John Williams?  Even in the original Star Trek series, non-traditional music was used for particular scenes to capture a particular emotion for that scene, so I would challenge Gore's argument on this point as well.  There's nothing inherent to the Star Trek franchise that precludes rock/rap music. 

Gore then states his issues with the quote "It felt only natural to us that an adaption of the author's work would reflect what the world actually looks like."  His issues with this quote reinforce to me that he is confusing bad storytelling with the concept of modernization of franchises.  Well, as I mentioned above, bad storytelling is not the same thing as modernization of a story franchise.  Modernization can include bad storytelling, but you don't necessarily make a story bad because you've modernized it. 

Basically, what works for Lord of the Rings may not work for other story franchises.  Retelling stories in difference periods from the original works often necessitates updation.

Maybe Gore would benefit by exposing/re-exposing himself to Joseph Campbell works about storytelling of myths and how each Age needs to retell stories for that Age.  We don't need to tell stories to preserve them indefinitely for future generations.  We should tell stories so that they make sense for us today.  Future generations will determine if or when a story becomes timeless.

Thursday, February 03, 2022

How to fix Soldyne's Fruit Stand v12 missing asset prop in Cities Skylines as reported by Loading Screen Mod on Steam Workshop

The Steam Workshop for Cities: Skylines is full of buildings, props and other game assets that are uploaded by "content creators" (aka, users who make their own content for the game).  The problem with Steam Workshop is that many assets come and go all the time.  It's difficult to keep up.  If you subscribe to an asset, that asset can be removed from the Workshop for a number of reasons, and you'll never be notified.  You'll just have to notice the empty lot or missing decoration while playing the game.

The problem is compounded when you subscribe to a building that uses other content creator props.  The props can be removed while your subscribed building is still available for you.  This issue causes a silent error when opening your cities.  In turn, this can drastically slow down how long it takes to open your cities (saved games) within the game.

Soldyne's Fruit Stand v12 missing asset

I use the Loading Screen Mod (or its temporary replacement for Airport DLC) which let's me see such errors.  A strange one that keeps popping up is the missing asset of "Soldyne's Fruit Stand v12".  Even with all Workshop assets turned off, this error still pops up and slows down the opening of saved games.  

After looking into the issue, I discovered that the content creator renamed the asset, but other content creators that used the asset didn't update their own assets in kind.  In my case, the commonly subscribed building H2 4x4 Chinatown Temenent uses the originally named asset and was never updated to use its new name.

The Fix

I fixed the issue for myself.  In the Asset Editor, I opened a similar asset named "Soldyne's Fruit Stand v1" and then saved it as "Soldyne's Fruit Stand v12".  Because the name was already used on the Workshop, and I cannot reupload this new asset for everyone else.  Workshop still recognizes it as the original asset and its original creator.  So, you'll have to do this for yourself in one of two ways.

Open "Soldyne's Fruit Stand v1" within Asset Editor and save it as "Soldyne's Fruit Stand v12"

If you don't want to edit assets directly.  Perhaps you may prefer to just download a fix instead.  I can provide the fix via the following PC file management workaround.  First, be sure to exit the game.  Then, download the attached zip file (at the bottom of this article).  It contains the renamed asset.  Unzip it to your folder here:  

%installfolder%:\Users\%yourwindowsusername%\AppData\Local\Colossal Order\Cities_Skylines\Addons\Assets

For example:

C:\Users\brainfive\AppData\Local\Colossal Order\Cities_Skylines\Addons\Assets

Soldyne's Fruit Stand v12.zip

Once I created this replacement asset, the error was gone.

Note: there are no affiliate links in this article.

Wednesday, February 02, 2022

Just a reminder - Han also shot first in Empire Strikes Back (against Vader himself)! Seems like a good habit for a swashbuckler.

Technically, "shoot first" just means you shot before something happened, not necessarily both parties taking a shot. "Shoot first, ask questions later."