Electronic Hatrack

Dave's Philosophical Nattering
Last Updated: 1/10/23

    Every so often I wax philosophical...it helps keep the brain shiny and rust-free. Here's a few pieces I've written, either about life in general or dealing with the online world.

Life In General
a.k.a. the Deep(ish) Stuff
Life in Specific
a.k.a. the Shallower Stuff
  • Personality Test - (1990s?) These are the results of my taking the IPIP-NEO Narrative Report personality test. I took the short form, so the subscales are less than reliable, but the main scales should be reasonably solid. Some interesting apparent contradictions in there, but I contain multitudes.
  • Personality Test 2015 - (2015) I dug up a site for the IPIP-NEO and gave it another try. Within the limits of the short test's reliability, there's definitely some places where I've changed. Nice to know I haven't been static for half my life.
  • Web Design Philosophy - (1990s) As someone who has been online long enough to remember when adding images to a webpage was the latest thing, I think I'm legally required to write something about how this crusty old netter thinks webpages should be made. Written before 2000, so a lot of details are incorrect now. The underlying philosophy is still valid.
  • Net.Equanimity - (1990s) Originally written to apply to a specific newsgroup, the tips in here are helpful for anyone wanting to learn to live with the more frustrating elements of online communities.
  • Moving Weekend - (2002) A sort of proto-blog, keeping a diary on my PDA of the experience of moving from Michigan to Kansas by car, taking a leisurely three days.
  • A Geek's Guide to Gerrymandering - (2013) Fun with voting districts, put in more fannish terms.
  • Applying Myself - (2017) A chronological listing of all the jobs I applied for (and can remember) from 2010-2014.
Writing And Storytelling Theory
  • Dave's Guide to Guides to Writing - (1998) Lots of people tell you how to write, I tell you how to listen to those people. :)
  • Getting Into The Story - (2005) Some musings on how authors end up in their own stories. Good, bad and Mary Sue.
  • Advice On Running Mysteries In RPGs - or "This Ain't A CRPG, So Loosen Up!" (2008) Trying to run a mystery on rails rarely works with players, and it can be frustrating for all involved. Here's some other ways to do it.
  • The Curse of Foreknowledge - or "How Knowing What's Coming Can Mess Up A Story." (2022) Prophecies and time travel can cause a lot of problems with a plot, especially if the writer doesn't realize how much they hijack the plot.
  • What Makes The Chosen One Special Anyway? - An analysis of the spectrum of Chosen One narratives. (2023)
Lack Of Life In General
a.k.a. Other Hobby Stuff

    There's also an essay section on my Transformers Fanfic page, mostly focused on Transformers-specific geekdom, but a few of the essays are more broadly applicable to fandoms in general.

  • Why Is Scalping Wrong? - (1999) No, I'm not talking about removing someone's scalp. In this essay I address the matter of buying up toys the instant they leave the truck and then reselling them at huge markup, and why it's a Bad Thing.
  • The Bad Girl Art Index - (mid-90s) Before Diamond Distribution became a monopoly, I'd mock Previews on a monthly basis, pointing out all the hideous Bad Girl Art in the catalog. This is how I kept score.
  • Grandparent Gifts - (2008) Some stuff really only gets given to kids by people other than their parents, here's a guide to two of the more common types.
  • Galaxy Rangers: Why the Cowboy Hats? - (2009) It doesn't show up much in my fannish activities because the line didn't last 30+ years like Transformers did, but I really like Galaxy Rangers. And sometimes I get to thinking about things that the writers might have wanted viewers to just let slide....
  • Humanity: Champs or Chumps? - (late 2000s, I think) In science fiction stories where interstellar travel occurs, there's a lot of ways to deal with the question of alien races. This is a spectrum/taxonomy I came up with one morning in the shower and later refined.
  • Why I Enjoyed The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey - (2013) Not really a review of the movie, more of a contemplation of the fannish mindset, using the movie as a specific example.
  • Who'd Win? And more importantly, why you should probably stop asking. - (2017) Addressing one of the oldest preoccupations of fandom, who would win in an arbitrary fight.
  • NFTs in MMOs, EIEIO. (2021) Some thoughts about how to incorporate NFTs (or other uniqueness systems) into an MMO without it being any more horrible than NFTs are already.
  • Toxic Nostalgia (2022) An expanded version of a Tumblr post I made in 2021, analyzing why no one ever seems happy with reboots of corporate IPs.

Dave's Online Nest