Thought pieces

Showerthoughts to researched opinion. May display signs of intelligence.

Adventures in machine-generated text: short-burst creativity, and why classical CS has it wrong

I’ve been reading Robin Sloan’s video game development diary with much interest. Partly because his joy of creation that shines through – and the world desperately needs more of that in these COVID-19 times. But also partly because he’s using machine learning to generate descriptions of castles for his video game. A bit of background: the three people who actually do read this blog of mine (and the significantly largely… Read More »Adventures in machine-generated text: short-burst creativity, and why classical CS has it wrong

On the destruction of metanarratives: the map is not the territory, but . . .

A friend of mine recently posted this article, rather boldly titled “How French “Intellectuals” Ruined the West: Postmodernism and Its Impact, Explained“. It was either read that or watch that man eat a $120,000 banana, and any attack on intellectuals seemed slightly less depressing than wondering how the hell a banana is worth $120,000. The article opens with “Postmodernism presents a threat not only to liberal democracy but to modernity… Read More »On the destruction of metanarratives: the map is not the territory, but . . .

What I learned from The Malazan Book of the Fallen

In which I read the Malazan Book of the Fallen as a writer and talk about the things I’ve learned, from handling themes to the tradeoffs of branching storylines to shaved knuckles in the hole.

The Ricepunk Manifesto

As a writer, I am powerless. In the face of armies and governments and foreign media corporations with overblown pundits, I am just one beige soul with a keyboard. But I have my words. And while I cannot dispatch these pocket tyrants I can strike at the stories they build. And because we are Homo Narrator, and not Homo Sapiens, if I can change the story, I can change how… Read More »The Ricepunk Manifesto