ASCII by Jason Scott

Jason Scott's Weblog

Archive for July, 2007

Good PDF, Bad PDF —

It might come as a surprise to some that I’m such a fan of PDF (portable document format), considering I’m all into textfiles and all. But PDFs, in the abstract, are just what I like most: a way to guarantee, through onset of changes in technology, display, and interaction, to ensure the original intent of […]

Outdated — is apparently outdated. I’ll be closing up shop later this week. Maybe it’s just the rough-hewn do-it-yourselfer in me, but as soon as I find a site is at *, I’m automatically dropping points off the final score. There’s something about it which says “built with stock parts”, especially when the majority of the […]

Blockparty Dates! —

Blockparty already has the dates for next year, thanks to the forward-thinking efforts and planning of the Notacon crew: April 4-6, 2008. I’ve already gotten general commitment from 4-5 speakers or workshop presenters, pending a number of factors. The magic number is 4; there have never been 4 successive iterations of a demo party in […]

120,000 MODs —

So some time ago I acquired 120,000 mods. MODs, in this context, are music files. Created in the 1980s as a brilliant way to save space while giving you good music, they’re basically collections of music samples paired with sequencing data, all inside one file. Like a lot of very brilliant things, it either makes […]

Nailing It —

Quag7, one of my contemporaries and collaborators, absolutely nails how to put up an informative webpage about a technically geeky and nostalgic subject. (Archive) I thought I’d spend a little time describing what about this page I like so much that makes me think of it as an absolute nailing, so it might explain other […]

HVX-200, A Year and a Half In —

So, I’ve had this HVX-200 camera, this monstrosity that I and 50 really great people paid for, and perhaps it’s time to just give some overview/insight/thoughts on the thing, since I’ve been living with it through over 60 interviews of various types (as well as a lot of recreational/test footage and one music video). A […]

Referrers, or, The Ever-Present Jason —

I was reminded recently of the joy and hazards of following referrers. Referrers are one of those things that, if it hadn’t already been extant at the starting gun of the world wide web, would have been decried as a privacy-killing who-sis, but which, because it existed as part of the initial technology, an awful […]

Hirschberg, Again —

Peter Hirschberg, who I raved about some time ago, did a bunch of animation and graphics and design work for a documentary called Chasing Ghosts, about arcades. (Don’t worry, my film’s on a somewhat different trajectory.) Besides being a great programmer and nostalgia engineer, he’s also a really, really good design/graphics guy. I was struck […]

Kaminsky!!! —

I got the DEFCON Schedule and browsed it for my location. Point of fact, I got an excellent time-frame: 9pm, Friday. People will have arrived in droves, Dinner will potentially be had, and folks will be open to hearing my stories and suggestions around computer history. But then my eyes drift to the left, and […]

When They Started Hating You —

I’ve tried to figure out when a portion of software and application development started to truly hate its users. First, we need to go back in time a bit, to 1983. IBM PCs are still sparkling new. Time magazine has made the personal computer “machine of the year” because of the effect it’s having. Comparatively, […]