Tuesday, November 29, 2016

Doing My Part

It seems like spam is unavoidable and inescapable on the internet, and those who perpetuate just don't seem to understand that nobody likes them and that they'll die alone.  I've been receiving spam comments on this very blog from some SEO/whatnot company, who has taken the extra step to impersonate Blogger in the process of spamming.  I'm not going to link their shit because they don't deserve the attention, but I did investigate them, whois their domain, and submit an abuse report to their registrar.  I realize it's a total long shot with a minimal chance of success, but hey, I'll take what I can get.

"Why not just report them to Google?"  I've done exactly that.  Unfortunately, the report process for "impersonating a business" actually requires you to be a representative of said business.  I had to report them for some other reason and just mention in the comment box that Blogger itself was being impersonated.  Being that Google is a giant faceless corporation that doesn't pay any attention to anyone if they don't have bags of money to throw around, I don't expect anything to come of it.

The domain registrar, while being the long shot I've already admitted that it is, is still a much more likely avenue of success.  Below is the message I sent them via their abuse report page:
This company is spamming my blog on Google's Blogger service, and likely many other blogs as well.  Thankfully, I have comment moderation enabled and none of their spam comments are actually visible (because I've been manually marking all of them as spam).  They are impersonating Blogger in the process of doing this, and Google gives me no avenue to report them for it.  I realize this is a long shot, but I simply seek to strike back against them in any way I can.

Their profile on Blogger (the link "My Web Page" links to <domain redacted>, I used an internet whois service to find your site): <link redacted>

Even though the comments were never published, I get email notifications of comments on my blog that contain the full text of each comment, and can forward any number of them to you if necessary.  This has been going on since June 2016, basically since they registered their account on Blogger.
We'll see what happens.  If you're actually reading this and want a follow-up, I'll probably just edit this post.  There may not be a follow-up, though, it depends entirely upon the domain registrar's response, if I even get one.

Monday, November 21, 2016

I have Super Mario Maker now

Since this month contained my birthday, it apparently means I get a 30% "Just For You" discount on one of a few select titles on the Wii U/3DS eShop.  It was either going to be New Super Mario Bros U + New Super Luigi U (a two game bundle!), or Super Mario Maker.  As you could infer from the title of this post, I went with Super Mario Maker.  I had about $10 left over from the $50 eShop card I got for Christmas last year, so I only had to part with a little over $30.  I've wanted Super Mario Maker for a long time anyway, whereas I only have a general level of interest in NSMBU/NSLU, so the choice was clear.

I haven't done much in it other than the accelerated method of unlocking the course elements.  What is that, you ask?  Well, I feel like it's already pretty well documented, but since you're here:
  1. Go into the editor, place things.  I hate having "New!" indicators on things, so I placed everything I had available.
  2. Make a large square of blocks, and copy/paste it a bunch.
  3. Eventually the game will tell you that you'll get the next batch of unlocks tomorrow.  That takes too long, so keep pasting things.
  4. The game will give in after a few more pastes and give you the next set of stuff now.
  5. Change level styles and game styles as you unlock them.  Or at least, that's what I did, I dunno how essential it is.  Play around with things while you're there, you might as well.
  6. Repeat until it says you have everything.
  7. If it won't let you paste any more, use the rocket to erase everything and start over.
Also, you may have seen in videos that different people have different cursors for placing stuff in the editor.  The default is the hand with the stylus, but it can be changed.  Nothing ever says how, so you just have to mess around pressing buttons until you figure out that pressing the analog sticks in will cycle through the available cursors (and change whether they're right handed or left handed).

Finding levels to play is the next step.  Fortunately for me, I've watched a bunch of Mario Maker videos, so I know of a bunch of good creators going in.  Unfortunately, Nintendo doesn't make it easy to follow a creator.  You have to get one of their levels, either by entering the course ID on your Wii U, or through the bookmark website, then you can find their profile in-game and follow them.  Nintendo's idea of a search is "enter the 16-character hexadecimal unique identifier for the level that you already know you want to play".  No, sorry, that isn't a search.  Let me type in a creator's name and find them that way.  Let me follow a creator from the bookmark website.  Let me search for a level by name.  Fortunately, the community has stepped up and created makersofmario.com, which makes finding levels a bit easier.

The bookmark website is otherwise really nice.  You can bookmark levels on your computer, and then they show up in your bookmark list in-game.  This makes it a lot easier to use their bookmark system, because entering course IDs on the gamepad touchscreen is far less preferable to being able to use a mouse and keyboard to navigate a website.

Playing levels is only half the game, though.  What about making them?  Well, I do have a few ideas.  I'm not going to say anything about them now, since I haven't really played around with what's available to see how possible everything is.  It won't be worth doing an entire blog post about each level I make, so the way to find my stuff will be to follow me on either Miiverse or Twitter.

Thursday, November 17, 2016

Wii Fit U, six months in

Just like last month where I lost 14 pounds, I got the complement of 16 this month in order to get that extra ten pounds.  I'm now 80 pounds down, and have 20 to go until I reach my Scientifically Determined Ideal Weight™, which is of course what I will weigh if I can get my BMI to 22.00.

Anyway, descriptions of things and general complaining and whatnot after the break.

Sunday, November 6, 2016

Crossword Puzzle Rant Part 2: Supported With Evidence

So a while ago I had a post that came out of nowhere about crossword puzzles.  I offered plenty of hypothetical examples in that rant to support my arguments, but I didn't offer anything taken from actual crossword puzzles.

Now, because not all crossword puzzles contain every element that I ranted about, some will naturally be missing, but hopefully, you'll see what I mean, perhaps a bit more clearly.  My example crossword is one you can easily locate and work on yourself, since it was a Google Doodle.  Fair warning, if you want to do the crossword and don't want answers given to you, you may wish to do the crossword before continuing to read this post.  Jump break here, just to be nice.