Author Archive

Migration to multisite on Amazon

Saturday, March 17th, 2018

Hey, all, 🙂

Took me a bit, but the site is now running on a WPMU installation on an AWS EC2 instance.

If you don’t know that any of those letter thingies means, don’t worry about it, it’s not important. It’s a geek thing…


Edit 2018/03/24 Now with HTTPS and an A+ security rating from Qualys SSL Labs, whatever that may mean…

Falling Off An Airplane

Tuesday, June 7th, 2016

Yoes, 🙂

So, I fell off an airplane, last Saturday. On purpose.

Yes, it was a perfectly good airplane, in perfect working order, leisurely cruising at 120 Km/h, at a 4.2Km altitude.

No, I was not wearing a parachute. Instead, I was wearing a dude who was wearing a parachute. It’s called a tandem jump. 🙂

They do a video montage of the whole thing. Check it out:


Soul of a New Machine

Saturday, December 22nd, 2012

Ahey, 🙂

Right, so, today, I updated to WordPress 3.5, and moved the blog to a new 64-bit server. Let’s see how it holds up… 🙂

This is just so anyone who’s interested knows that this… “repository”… is still being maintained…


Give It Five Minutes

Friday, March 2nd, 2012

Hoy, 🙂

A coleague at work pointed me towards this. I figure it was worth sharing.

Give It Five Minutes


Agora – Solar System goes Space Opera

Friday, February 3rd, 2012

Hello, all, 🙂

Wikipedia defines Space Opera as “a subgenre of science fiction that emphasizes romantic, often melodramatic adventure, set mainly or entirely in outer space, generally involving conflict between opponents possessing advanced technologies and abilities. […] Perhaps the most significant trait of space opera is that settings, characters, battles, powers, and themes tend to be very large-scale”.

Indeed, Agora is a game of space battles, interstellar intrigue, kings, emperors and dictators, air locks and blaster burns, a galaxy-wide Faith, an Imperial Navy, and naturally, an autonomous and self sufficient space station parked in the middle of nowhere.

The above is the introductory section for Agora, a space opera setting for Eero Tuovinen’s Solar System rules set, as based off of The Shadow of Yesterday, by Clinton R. Nixon.

In addition to the obvious Babylon 5 inspiration, Agora drinks from many sources, ranging from the strictly historic, like ancient Rome or the Spanish Inquisition, to the most outlandish science fiction franchises, like Star Wars and Star Trek. References will be obvious throughout this text, and the authors make no claim to the referenced material.

Agora was developed by Gonçalo Cardoso Dias, Diogo Curado, Luis Figueira and myself. Originally, we were going to license it under the Creative Commons Attribution 2.5 Portugal license, but then this happened, so we’re not. Instead, we’re going to get it illustrated and published as both a PDF and a print-on-demand book, and sell it. All the proceeds will go to a charity in Gonçalo’s name.

We think it’s a fitting memorial.

In any case, I’d like to show some writing samples, stuff that’ll give a feeling of where we went with it.


The Bear

Monday, January 16th, 2012

Hey, 🙂

As I was browsing the other day, I ran across this:

The Bear

Being a proud father of a brand new one-year-old, it just blew me away…

Thought y’all should know. 🙂


In Memoriam

Saturday, January 7th, 2012


I lost a friend and a gaming partner over New Year’s Eve.

Just before four A.M., we watched him go through a rather violent convulsive seizure, from which he made what looked like a full recovery. Still, it was a violent thing, and we called an ambulance and insisted he get to the hospital and get checked out by a doctor.

As it happened, somewhere between five and six A.M., still in the hospital, he went through a second massive convulsive seizure, and this time, he didn’t recover at all.

This post is dedicated to the memory of Gonçalo Cardoso Dias. You played a good game, my friend, but now your seat is empty, your boards are folded up, your pieces are all put away and your characters lie lifeless in their folders.

Still, their memory lives on in the worlds you helped create, design and build, just as you yourself live on in the memories of everyone who’s ever played with you and worked with you, and lived, laughed and loved with you.

Maybe we’ll meet again, in the end.


Smart People

Sunday, January 16th, 2011

Ahey, 🙂

Here’s Simon:

Is there scope for asking people to do things that may not come naturally to them, that might make them uncomfortable, but that you think they might come to love?

How much can you ask someone to stretch themselves? Should play always be easy?

And here’s Vincent’s reply:

Is there scope? Of course!

How much? Well. You get to design your game to be as demanding as you like, but your audience gets to choose whether to try it and whether to stick with it. That’s how you find out whether you’ve judged them well – if they do the unnatural thing you ask them to, then you have. If they don’t, then you’ve misjudged them.

Should I underline that? Maybe I should. If your audience doesn’t seize upon the game you’ve designed for them, you have a choice. You can reevaluate your own judgment, or else you can throw blame. Blame your audience for failing to live up to your ideals, blame cliques and status-attention in the scene, blame me for monopolizing their attention, whatever. My suspicion is that reevaluating your own judgment will give you the most fruitful way forward.

There’s smart people out there in the world, and they can teach you things. 🙂


Happy Birthday, Diana

Tuesday, December 14th, 2010

Hello, 🙂

Yesterday was my little girl’s birthday. Literally. It was the day of her birth. At 23:50, she turned zero! 🙂

I held her in my hands barely within an hour of her birth. She’s tiny, vaguely expressive, imminently banal, as all babies are, and her greatest skill to date is an uncanny ability to suckle while asleep. And yet, there is a beauty in her that is steeped in all the potential that comes with a newborn human life.

Happy birthday, Diana! My gift to you is my pledge to love you, guide you, teach you, and share with you all of the joys and sorrows of life.

May your path bring you untold hapiness, and may you take on the whole world with all your might. May the whole world gaze back in wonder and awe at the marvel that is you, that your footprint may shine forever in the wet sands of all our lives!


How To Play Sorcerer

Tuesday, November 9th, 2010

Ahey, 🙂

Here’s Ron:

  1. Don’t fucking drop the ball on me. You have my Kicker. If it’s a mystery, you’re supposed to know what’s going on. If it’s an action-event, you’re supposed to round out its human and motivational side. If it’s just freaky, you’re supposed to embrace the weirdness. Don’t cop out. Above all, our shared agreement is that this Kicker is going to matter, and that means not only to at least one other character besides my own, but also to us, the people, here, during play. I know it matters to me, in its unbaked, unspiked form. You make sure your private/prepped version of it matters to you. All of that goes double for Humanity checks and Humanity gain rolls. (more…)