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from Matthew Graybosch

If you're a parent, and you've denied your children the experience of Dark Souls: Remastered, you have crippled them for life.

Do you even consider the lessons your children learn from the video games you buy for them? Have you considered the possibility that your children might learn the wrong lessons from their games? These are the lessons your children will miss by not playing Dark Souls: Remastered:

  • Failure is inevitable.
  • Concentrate on the task at hand.
  • Be patient.
  • Know yourself.
  • Know your enemy.
  • Know your tools.
  • Dodge. Don't block.
  • Face one enemy at a time.
  • Fight dirty.
  • Avoid expectations.
  • Don't be a one-trick pony.
  • Victory isn't the end.

    Reasons Dark Souls: Remastered Is Not for Kids

I will acknowledge a single reason to deny your children the frustration and joy of Dark Souls: Remastered. If you're one of those responsible parents who take the time to read the ESRB warnings for games, and only choose “age appropriate” games for your kids, I understand. Did this warning for Dark Souls: Remastered put you off?

This is an adventure role-playing game in which players battle monsters and collect souls to lift an undead curse. Players use swords, axes, and magic arrows to kill fantasy creatures (e.g., zombies, demons, giant spiders) in both ranged attacks and melee-style combat. Players can also use stealth attacks (e.g., stabbing) to dispatch enemies at close range. Battles are highlighted by slashing sounds, cries of pain, and large blood-splatter effects. Blood pools may also appear on the ground, and some environments depict flaming bodies impaled on spikes. Boss battles include instances of dismemberment and decapitation (e.g., cutting off a gargoyle's tail, slicing multiple heads off a dragon). During the course of the game, one female enemy's breasts are barely obscured by strands of hair; some bird-like creatures are also depicted with exposed buttocks.

The Kids Will Be Fine

If the above made you wary, I would understand. Here's the rub: if you let your kids watch TV news, or surf the web unsupervised, chances are they've seen worse. Much worse.

Instead, think of the valuable moral instruction From Software and Namco/Bandai is helping you provide, especially if you sit with your children as they play — which you should be doing anyway.

Failure is inevitable.

Dark Souls: Remastered isn't an easy, forgiving game. If you screw up, you get hurt. If you screw up badly enough, you die. Just like real life.

Unlike real life, however, you can take a deep breath, think over what went wrong, and try again from the last bonfire at which you rested. Try not to die again before recovering your souls.

Concentrate on the task at hand.

If you're thinking about anything except the enemy you're currently trying to fight, that enemy is going to kill you. There's no time-out in Dark Souls: Remastered. Hell, there isn't even a pause button.

Be patient.

You're going to die in Dark Souls: Remastered. You're going to die often. You're going to die because you tried to get a quick kill. You're going to die because you dodged the wrong way and rolled off a cliff. You're going to die because somebody invaded your game and was better than you.

You're going to die in real life, too. Accept it, take a deep breath, and remember that your feelings don't matter. Control the things you can control, and let everything else do their worst.

And if you're gonna die, die with your boots on.

Know yourself.

Understanding the character you've chosen to play is the first step to success in Dark Souls: Remastered. Your character's capabilities will help determine which tactics are most likely to work in the game. Tactics suited to for a character built to wear heavy armor and wield massive weapons aren't ideal for a character built for speed or a character built to wield magic.

Your own capabilities will help determine your options in life, as well. You must decide what skills and abilities you will cultivate. Will you build on existing strengths, or improve on your weaknesses? Do you even know your strengths and weaknesses?

Know your enemy.

Just as you must know your own character in Dark Souls: Remastered, you should also understand the enemies you've set out to fight. Every enemy type is different and will fight differently.

Learn the enemy's attack pattern, and you can exploit it. Learn the enemy's weaknesses and you can strike with weapons capable of inflicting more damage faster.

You can't solve a problem you don't understand. You'll just get stuck, flailing away to no avail.

Know your tools.

You'll likely collect dozens of different weapons in Dark Souls: Remastered: swords, daggers, hammers, axes, polearms, bows, catalysts, and other, more exotic implements. Each has its own movements, speed, rhythm, and requirements.

Some weapons are versatile, and usable in a broad range of situations. Others are best used in specific situations. A spear might be effective in a narrow passage where enemies are unlikely to surround you. In a wide open space, however, you might prefer a two-handed sword you can swing in a wide arc.

Remember the wisdom of Sun Tzu, who wrote in The Art of War...

It is said that if you know your enemies and know yourself, you will not be imperiled in a hundred battles; if you do not know your enemies but do know yourself, you will win one and lose one; if you do not know your enemies nor yourself, you will be imperiled in every single battle.

Dodge. Don't block.

Maybe your kids have never been in a fight. Maybe they've never been bullied. If so, good for them. But if they do find themselves in a violent situation, you want them to know how to handle themselves.

While imitating the action in Dark Souls: Remastered is a bad idea, you can still apply some broad principles. The most important of which is that you should never let the enemy make contact.

Blocking a blow still hurts, and can still damage you. It's better, therefore, to avoid your enemy's attentions altogether. Why block an attack you can dodge?

Face one enemy at a time.

This really should be self-explanatory. You can't ever count on having allies beside you in a fight. When shit gets real, you're likely to stand alone. You're more likely to survive a one-on-one duel than you are a battle against multiple adversaries — especially if they've got solid teamwork and a grasp of small-unit tactics.

Fight dirty.

I know you want your children to learn to be honest and to play fair. They aren't going to be knights of Arthurian romance facing chivalrous adversaries who salute before attacking, and never kick a downed enemy.

The enemies you will face will use every nasty trick available to get the better of you. They'll gang up on you. They'll sneak up on you. They'll play dead and strike from behind.

They'll do anything to avoid a fair fight, and you should emulate their example. If you're in anything resembling a fair fight, rather than a fight where the odds are outrageously in your favor, then you fucked up.

Avoid expectations.

Here is a principle that applies mainly to fights against other players. Others will invade your game unless you burn a Human Effigy at a bonfire or play offline.

None of these invaders will fight the same way. They may not fight as you expect them to fight based on their armament. They may fight honorably, greeting you with a bow that you might prepare for a duel, or they may strike from ambush.

Appearances deceive. Actions deceive. Always be on your guard.

Don't be a one-trick pony.

It is easy and therefore tempting, to become attached to a favorite weapon and thus a favorite style of gameplay. I am guilty of this myself, especially when playing against others. I tend to favor one-handed slashing weapons, and I like to remain in constant motion.

According to Japan's sword saint, Miyamoto Musashi, this is a mistake.

You should not have any special fondness for a particular weapon, or anything else, for that matter. Too much is the same as not enough. Without imitating anyone else, you should have as much weaponry as suits you.

Don't depend on a single weapon, or a single spell, or a single tactic. To do so is to lose flexibility and leave you unable to adapt to changing circumstances.

Victory isn't the end.

When you finally win through to the end, you won't find an ending. You won't find closure. You won't even find an opportunity to begin your journey anew until you decide whether to rekindle the First Flame or let it die.

But when you do finally start your journey anew, you'll find that it's the same journey, only harder. Life is also like that. It isn't enough to succeed once. Success' reward is the need to redouble one's efforts and succeed again, and again.

It's an allegory for samsara, the cycle of birth, life, death, and rebirth that has no beginning and no end. We are bound to it by fear, desire, and attachment, and can only break free by letting go.

That Isn't So Bad, Is It?

You might think that Dark Souls: Remastered is just a gory, violent action game. You might think it's inappropriate for children. You might be right, but to deny your children the experience is to deny them an opportunity to learn lessons that will serve them well in school, and in adult life.



Waking up at 3 am isn't nearly as romantic as I'd thought. You read about it, like you're doing now. You see it in movies and TV. But it's not all watching the sun and sleepily doing fun shit. It's awaking in a haze, turning to look and realize it's still dark. The clock reads 3: 30. Right? But then it reads 3: 45. And 3: 50. So you sit up, confused, and notice you can see. Your contact lenses are still in. Which means your eyeliner is still on. You reach over, guzzling some of that 2 day old Diet Coke that tastes sweet and caffeinated and delicious, even though you surely won't be able to fall asleep again. You're hot. So hot. Why? You don't know. Everything is blurry even though you can see. There are things you didn't do. Shit. But you can't do them now. You're hot, tired and awake yet asleep. So you return to your moderately comfortable bed. And when you wake up for real, you can't tell what's real and what was a dream.


from Van Voorbijgaande Aard

Gisteren was er zoals zo vaak een item voor tv over tv. Het nieuws ging over seksisme, volgens het bericht werden er veel te veel knappe vrouwen in beeld gebracht tijdens wk wedstrijden. Dit lijkt me een gezocht item. Deze vragen alleen al: Hoeveel is veel en wie is knap.

Maar ik werd wel gestimuleerd om ook te zoeken naar mogelijkheden om te klagen over wie er in beeld worden gebracht. Ik kwam uit bij Ronaldo. Het gaat om het Ronaldoistische karakter van het beeldmateriaal. Bij een wedstrijd waar Ronaldo aan mee doet komt hij te vaak in beeld, wordt zijn naam te vaak genoemd, hij krijgt meer meeval en grotere tegenval. De beste beelden gaan over Ronaldo, iedereen verliest de focus op de anderen. Dus ik vind dat er moet worden ingegrepen.

Ik heb de volgende voorstellen, noem zijn naam niet of bleep de naam weg. Beeldmateriaal van een vrije trap of overtreding moet zo geschoten worden dat hij meteen uit beeld gaat uberhaupt er niet in voor komt. Dus de focus op de keeper of bv het grasveld (in de hoop dat dit niet naturalistisch is) of even op zwart (maar dat is racistisch). Focus op een dood spel object, de bal, een klein detail (de anderen). Dan als alles klaar is en het een doelpunt is of hij is weder opgestaan. Gaat de wedstrijd verder, focus dan op die helft van het veld waar geen Ronaldo is. De verdediging van Portugal, of de bank.

Ondertussen probeer alle elementen die ook maar enigzins aanstoot geven uit het beeld te houden, geen knappe mensen, geen lelijke, geen vlaggen, geen tekenen van onmin, geen gescheld, geen reclame, geen in opspraak geraakte spelers. Alleen Messi (dat is wel Messiaans maar daar heeft duidelijk niemand problemen mee) of Telstar (Wie, Wat)?

Maar omdat we toch min of meer kijken om een wedstrijd te zien, gaat dit niet. Het zou een beetje gedaan moeten worden in zake Ronaldo, Neymar etc. door ze weg te vegen, zoals bij het soft porno kanaal secret circle altijd iets voor de schaamdelen geplaatst bij de sex, dr staat altijd wel een element in de buurt voor de camera (bloempot, trapleuning, dopje voor de camera). Doe dat.

Tsjeezus.. waarom is de spellingschecker aan. Op engels. Onder ieder woordje rooie golfjes. .. en hoeveel browsers heb ik nodig .. bij iedere browser moet ik de instellingen aanpassen.. dit is zo erg.

Voorbij, voorbij


from iw10m

I have been thinking about creating a private torrenting site for a while. Basically, a site listing things you can download using torrent software (I use Deluge). Private meaning you need to be invited to the site in order to have access to it.

What are the primary things you need to launch a site like this ? Not much. You need to find a name for your site, then register a domain name, then get a VPS or a dedicated server somewhere, then find the right software to run (this one can get tricky). As a developer and system administrator none of these steps are difficult to me, but I'm not sure if I should take some existing software (torrent-site specific software or some forum software like NodeBB or Flarum) or create the website myself from scratch. The first option can get the website running pretty quickly, but the second option is probably more secure.

After you get the site launched, you need content. Nobody wants to get onto a private torrenting site that has only ten torrents on it. You'll probably want to invite some friends and get them to upload some torrents. Once you have a small torrent database, you'll start inviting some people. I'd recommend not to launch before hitting at least the 250 verified and quality torrents mark.

Of course everything in this blog post is very much simplified. You shouldn't run a torrenting website if you don't know what you're doing.

See y'all.


from broening.writes

I received a special invitation in my inbox today. It was sent by my dear friends at AliExpress and explained that I should backup my important data (a very good idea), preferably with a storage devices by one of their vendors (not quite such a good idea).

Given the somewhat suspect quality of the genuine Samsung gazillobyte SD cards you can buy from the Chinese website, I very much doubt that I should move years a holiday pictures to a $26.99 KingDian SSD drive.

Bad bad SSD

What I am doing, on the other hand, is to backup my important data to, a zero-knowledge cloud storage platform. Hopefully, they do not get their hardware from AliExpress...


from lupus fecit

Some product names are quite clever, e.g. “iPhone”. Others less so, e.g. “Aygo” (I see what you did there, Toyota!).

bad name

Not taking personal preferences into account, it's probably a very good idea to leave product naming to professionals, such as augurs, shamans, voodoo priests, or monkeys with typewriters.

Under no circumstances must the naming process be left to the R&D department! Before you know it, you will have to deal with “Backup Interpreter Control Module Connector (alpha)” and “Loose anchor bolt retriever and transmitter – for US market only™”.

If the milk is already spilt and you are being presented with a bunch of insane product names, don't waste your time crying over it. Simply start using acronyms: The “Loose anchor bolt retriever and transmitter” thus becomes a “LAB RAT”, which is easier to handle anyway.

That'll teach them!


from iw10m

I watch videos on YouTube, like most people, but I do it too much. You see, I can spend hours every day watching countless videos, and learning nothing from it. I keep scrolling, mindlessly, until there is no content anymore. I started realizing a few days ago that YouTube got worse at telling me what videos to watch. I guess it's out of interesting videos. Watching interesting videos makes me feel like I'm learning something but in fact I am not, I just forget about it two minutes or even two seconds later.

I want to stop doing that. Not only stop watching YouTube videos all day but also stop forgetting what I “learned” from them. That is, actually learn what the video tries to tell me. Realizing I'm on the wrong path is one thing, but I've done it in the past and just started binging again. Now I'll put forward something else: I will write a post on my blog about every YouTube video I see, every movie I watch and every book I read. That'll ?probably? stop me from binging. I can do it !

See y'all.



Honestly, I don’t care anymore. Your truth , my truth , it’s all in the past.

We hurt each other so bad , I don’t think we can ever go back .

It’s time to walk away from the negativity and move on.

I’m a dumb slut, That is what you call me. This dumb slut is completely numb and signing off for good .


from Matthew Graybosch

Having seen Marvel's Iron Fist on Netflix, I can understand why many reviewers disliked the way Danny Rand fought. However, if he was unable to truly be the Iron Fist because of his unresolved emotional issues, then his inability to fight with the skill expected of a superhero like Iron Fist makes sense.

That said, Danny Rand isn't the most sympathetic protagonist I've seen in the various Marvel series produced for Netflix. He isn't exactly stupid, but the plot imposes certain demands that make it difficult to characterize Rand as anybody but an immature, unstable man-child who should never been permitted to wield the power of a dragon.

However, Rand's appearance in the second season of Luke Cage was that of somebody who has gotten his shit together and resolved his issues, so perhaps the next series of Iron Fist will give him some character development. He might have grown up a bit during The Defenders, as well.

Still, I can't help but wonder what the people in charge of casting were thinking. The whole whitewashing controversy could have been avoided, and better choices might have lent a greater sense of verisimilitude to the story.


from Sweet nothings

You can try to write me off You can try to take what's mine You can try to deny my truth My memories My experiences My accomplishments The things I actually achieved You can try to re-create me into a new character Try to change who I really am Turn me into someone I'm not Turn me into someone you want me to be Someone who you think I am When you really know nothing about me You can try to re-write my story, Give me false truths Put false intentions in my heart Put false thoughts in my head Make me the villain you so desperately crave The antagonist you need to tear down to feel whole You can try to shut me out Squash me down Silence me with fear Intimidate me Make me feel small and unworthy But the truth always comes out in the end You will not be the one to write my story You will not be the one to speak my truth You will not be the one to determine my worth You will not be the one to shape my character I know who I am I know what I've done I know why I did it I know that I'm flawed, imperfect, and strong I know my mistakes and how I was wrong I've been there, I've lived it I'm her and she's me This story is mine You can't take it from me Re-write what you want Your voice is unkind Your hand holds the pen much different than mine You can't write the truth of what you don't know I know you have proof but have nothing to show The truth beats the proof They exist side by side The truth is not something to be ashamed of, to hide It's straightforward, upfront Looks you straight in the eye The truth is not something we have to deny You don't like it, it hurts It means you were wrong You won't read my story It's far, far too long It's not what you wanted It's not what you like My story isn't written with your pleasure in mind



Younique makeup is utter garbage. No exceptions.

Younique relies on a business model of minimum quality and maximum markup.

An entire Presenter Kit (you know, the one that claims to have “$300 worth of product”) costs them around $10 to bring to market.

Those brushes? A few pennies to make. But for you, the full collection is only $350!

At every step of the process, corners are cut. From using low-grade paper packaging, to choosing the cheapest injection molding, even if it results in product that looks and feels as cheap as it is. They don't care.


#Younique #MLM #antiMLM #cult #ripoff #girlboss


from iw10m

I'm a VA, or Virtual Assistant, or at least it's what I want to be. You see, I have no clients. Why ? Because I never advertised myself as a VA. This is the first time. I have more than the required skill set needed to be one so I wonder why I waited so long before telling people.

Here it is: I'm a VA, and you can hire me to do anything you need done but don't want to do yourself.

But who wants to hire some random stranger, without even knowing what he can do, and for that matter, who he even is ?

Here on this blog, my identity will remain private, so if you want to get into touch with me, I made myself a email address: OK, here we go.

I'm fluent in English, French and Dutch, and I can do anything on the following list:

  • Any type of data entry
  • Programming in Python, NodeJS, JavaScript, PHP, HTML and CSS (I spent a few years learning how to program)
  • Scripting: automating various tasks
  • Data conversion
  • Copy/pasting
  • Image editing (using Photoshop, ...)
  • WordPress posting
  • Maintaining websites
  • Product listing
  • Transcription
  • Reports and spreadsheets
  • Managing your email inbox (get to inbox zero !)
  • Researching (+ note-taking, eg using Evernote)
  • Managing (projects, people, ...)
  • Social media
  • Transcription
  • Recording myself reading texts
  • Making subtitles
  • Formatting documents & cleanup
  • Proofreading

And so much more. I can do a lot of stuff, and if needed I can learn. There's no limit on how you hire me: ten minutes, a few hours or a few hours every week, it doesn't matter ! Email me ( so that we can start talking about tasks.

Have a good one !


from G to the SQUARE

Every software project has a need for periodic refactoring. We need to add more tests (if any), improve readability and decrease tech debt. Otherwise the code base becomes hard to work with and deployments, well... “deployment jenga”:

deployment jenga

So, how do you argument, market or pitch refactoring work ?

package it with a feature

This means that all refactoring work should add a new feature. The whole purpose of the refactoring is to add a new feature, with the nice side effects of improving the codebase :). Instead of just pitching refactoring, something that will always be reprioritise.

It is about finding a win-win-win situation: developers get to improve “smelly code”, product gets the new features and users get a more stable service/product.

Otherwise illustrate your feelings when you deploy with the “deployment jenga”.


from lupus fecit

STE is short for “Simplified Technical English”. Or alternatively “Sucks The joy out of Everything”.

I have been a strong advocate of using STE for technical documentation. The idea behind it makes sense, and since we usually need to translate our manuals into 30+ languages, providing an easy to understand source text seemed like a good idea.

What we did not take into consideration was that writing technical documentation is not terribly exciting at the best of times. Having to double-check every single word and making sure that it is in fact allowed by the latest issue of the STE specifications did not improve overall job-satisfaction.

So after a year or two of producing ISO 9001 certified manuals we are now back to writing pidgin with the odd limerick being thrown in.



Just wanted to test and see how distraction free the interface really was. I'm curious about the federated model that was discussed on hackernews and may find myself setting up my own private mastadon server in the not so distant future.

Having written this paragraph I will say the interface is pleasing and I enjoy the minimal nature. I was just thinking to myself I wonder if they have a dark mode and moving my cursor over to the menu area I see not only is there one but I didn't have to actually enter any menu's to get to it – smart touch.

Having the word count up there is also a useful touch.

I will need to investigate this more but initial impressions are good.


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