Wired's Adam Rogers wrote a lovely, sweeping obit for Dungeons and Dragons creator Gary Gygax in this weekend's New York Times that included this flowchart showing how D&D was a gateway drug into every kind of nerd-dom:
We live in Gary Gygax’s world. The most popular books on earth are fantasy novels about wizards and magic swords. The most popular movies are about characters from superhero comic books. The most popular TV shows look like elaborate role-playing games: intricate, hidden-clue-laden science fiction stories connected to impossibly mathematical games that live both online and in the real world. And you, the viewer, can play only if you’ve sufficiently mastered your home-entertainment command center so that it can download a snippet of audio to your iPhone, process it backward with beluga whale harmonic sequences and then podcast the results to the members of your Yahoo group...
Geeks like algorithms. We like sets of rules that guide future behavior. But people, normal people, consistently act outside rule sets. People are messy and unpredictable, until you have something like the Dungeons & Dragons character sheet. Once you’ve broken down the elements of an invented personality into numbers generated from dice, paper and pencil, you can do the same for your real self.
Update: Alan sez, "that great D&D geek flowchart from the Times should really be credited to Sam Potts, who also happens to be the designer of John Hodgman's The Areas of My Expertise."
Rep. Jaime Andrade (D-Chicago) was giving a TV interview about the pigeon poop problem at a train station when a pigeon promptly illustrate the lawmaker’s point. “I’ll just have to go clean up,” Andrade said. “That’s what happens to my constituents. They get [expletive] on all time.” (UPI)
Choices. https://t.co/o3bJPCDApG pic.twitter.com/uYrI6mype5 — Cliff Pickover (@pickover) August 10, 2019 I can only hope that there was a second chance. (via Daily Grail)
🧻 😠 🚽
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