Thursday, March 05, 2009

The targets of my shameless fanboyism

When I got to thinking about posts I could write on Castles of Air, I got to pondering cool stuff that I like.  There aren't a huge number of things that reduce me to shameless fanboy praise; normally I tend to be critical of even things I like.  However, there are certain topics where, if someone brings them up, I can't help jumping in and waxing poetic about their sheer awesomeness.  In no particular order except for my stream of consciousness, they are:
  • Joss Whedon
  • George R. R. Martin's A Song of Ice and Fire
  • Douglas Hofstadter's Godel, Escher, Bach
  • Douglas Adams
  • Back to the Future
  • Blizzard Entertainment
  • Valve Software
  • The Internet
  • Web 2.0
  • Senator Al Franken
  • PZ Myers
  • Star Control II
  • Steve Meretzky's A Mind Forever Voyaging
  • Richard Feynman
  • "Weird Al" Yankovic
  • Queensryche's Operation: Mindcrime
  • Jon Stewart
  • Most books by Ken Follett
  • Jim Henson
  • Chuck Jones
  • W.A. Mozart
  • Gilbert & Sullivan
  • Rachel Maddow
  • Portable music devices + Podcasts
...I think that about does it.

Actually there are quite a lot of them, I guess.


    1. I appreciate "portable music devices" instead of just ipods, how inclusive. :D

      And soon enough I will get Doctor Who up on that list. Soon enough...

    2. For me a big one would have to be anything to do with Dune NOT written by Brian Herbert.

      I've gotten into hours-long discussions/geekoffs with people over Dune. That and Ursula K. LeGuin's earthsea series.

    3. Anonymous10:39 AM

      Ahh, Blizzard and Rachel Maddow. Very nice.

    4. Star control II! Oh man, that brings back memories of Melees. The Thraddash! The Ur-Quan! The Sylandro! (When designing a self-replicating algorithm, always check twice before hitting compile).

      It's scary just how many things on that list are also on my notional list. Actually, reading it twice, there is nothing on that list that I actively dislike, although there are a few things I haven't heard of.

      There's the obligatory Feynman and Adams, required reading for any skeptic, but what really gets me is things like Chuck Jones.

      By the way I'm now using Chuck Jones' Singing Frog cartoon as my go-to example of how personal revelation can, and should, only be convincing for the person who had that revelation.

    5. What's amazing about the Slylandro is that the actual "puzzle" is no puzzle at all -- basically just walk through a dialog menu and find the right sequence of statements that will get you the code. But if you're like me, you figured out the answer to the puzzle about 30 seconds before the guy you're talking to did, which makes you FEEL like you're the smartest person in the world. That's brilliant writing, right there.

      You combine that uniformly excellent writing with the amazing freedom that comes with exploring this vast galaxy full of star systems, and you've got one of the truly great games of all time.

    6. I like Maddow, yet I wince at her mimiking of Olbermann.

      Atfirst I thought she was an Olberman parody. The body language and inflection made me think she could be Keith's sister.

      I wish she had a personality of her own.

    7. She was a flagship host on Air America Radio, one of the few hosts who has lasted from inception to present day. I found her very insightful and fun way before she started guest hosting for Keith -- in fact, I started paying attention to him partly because of her. Unlike Keith, she has a Doctorate in Political Science, and she gets geeky excited about serious topics like national infrastructure. I like her personality a lot... pity she's gay, but good on her for being out.