Dad performs video game gender reassignment for daughter’s benefit

Another awesome dad doing something awesome for his kid. Ars Technica covers a gamer father who’s been playing Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker with his daughter. Because she’s not yet old enough to read, he’s been narrating aloud, carefully changing Link’s gender by swapping pronouns and titles, in order to facilitate his daughter’s immersion in the game. But that was tedious and imperfect, so he grabbed the Gamecube rom image and hacked it.

To make this process smoother, Hoye eventually decided to hack away at the actual text of the story, producing a female-oriented version by altering the game’s data files. According to his blog post on the project, Hoye took a GameCube disk image (.GCM) of Wind Waker and dug into it with a hex editor. He changed all story text and dialogue by hand, then tested his work by playing the game file in the Dolphin GameCube emulator.

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Republicans’ Greatest Hits: The Rape Album

While Republicans point the fingers at all sorts of ridiculous scapegoats for Mittens’ crushing defeat (303/332? to 206, depending on Florida’s outcome!), from Hurricane Sandy, to Chris Christie, to Black Panther voter intimidation, to the oncoming End Times, there’s a few very real reasons Obama won. One of those reasons is Republicans’ war on women.

Protecting blastocysts from evil murderous doctors is surely a greater priority than protecting women’s bodily autonomy and self-direction. Surely bodies have ways of shutting down legitimate rape pregnancies (like a uterine on-off switch?), don’t they? And if they don’t, that’s because God wants you to to have those babies. Never mind that God might have allowed humans to develop contraception and abortion in the first place so we could carry out his will without it seeming supernatural. If we like it, God did it; if we don’t, it’s humans being sinful. If rape happens, that’s God’s will, but the rapist is a sinner for doing God’s will. Legitimate medical procedures to protect a woman’s bodily autonomy are murder, but being forced by the government to carry a rape baby to term? Well that’s just a gift from God — a consolation prize. Sorry about your rape, here’s nine months of agony and eighteen years of financial and emotional dependence.

The contortions you have to go through to make sense of this worldview are simply mind-boggling. These people all need to be drummed out of office. Every last one of them. None of ‘em are fit to serve me french fries, much less manipulate the levers of power.

Via The David Pakman Show, whom I’d never heard of before I saw this video.

All hail our new reptilian overlord

Well, it was bound to happen, as Travis Irvine so ably points out in this pre-election video — both Obama and Romney are reptilians, humanoid lizards, so no matter how the election panned out the new leader of the free world was bound to be a lizard person.

Don’t blame me, I voted for Kodos. Err, I mean, I’m Canadian and couldn’t vote.

Ohio’s election results will be suspect, thanks to an untested last-second voting machine patch — UPDATED, TABULATION MACHINES ARE APPARENTLY ISOLATED

UPDATE:
Evidently, there are some fundamental errors made by the original reporter that change the timbre of this story altogether. This report has Joseph Lorenzo Hall of the Centre for Democracy and Technology in DC, asserting very strongly that the tabulation machines are “air-gapped” — the tabulation results from the original voting system are in actuality walked over manually (via a data export to, say, a thumb drive or flash card) to the tabulation machines. Apparently, no code run on those machines can access the primary system because they’re isolated. So what the code has write access to, then, is apparently the export of the database, not the originals in any way.

It still means that processes should be followed to ensure the integrity of the data, to ensure that the exported data matches the CSV conversion. But I suspect these folks are more “with it” than I’d originally thought.

See below the fold for my original story.

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Xbox Live to crack down on sexism

So Halo 4 is being released tomorrow (what, is there something more important going on that I don’t know about?). Thanks to the recent acknowledgement by 343 Industries and Microsoft that half their potential market was being weeded out by the “early adopters” who are defending their territory via terrible sexist remarks, rape threats and abuse, it appears that the folks responsible for the Xbox Live service have had it with that nonsense behaviour and are about to start dropping the banhammer on their users.

Apparently this is a zero tolerance policy too, so if you’re found to be making sexist comments, don’t expect to get away with just a slap on the wrist. Wolfkill and Ross say that developers have a responsibility to break through gender stereotypes and stamp out sexism in the games industry too. It’s sad that it has to come to Xbox Live bans just to get people to act civil toward one another, but that’s unfortunately what you get when everyone is hidden behind a veil of anonymity.

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Harper government celebrates destruction of long gun registry… quietly

Via Winnipeg Free Press, a spokesperson for the Public Safety Minister Vic Toews confirmed that the long gun registry has been destroyed — at least, except for Quebec’s, where legal battles are ongoing. Interestingly, the Harper government did not issue a press release on the matter; it took gun enthusiasts rumoring about the registry’s destruction before the spokesperson would confirm.

No formal news release appears to have been issued by a Conservative government that has made repeal and destruction of the long-gun registry one of its bedrock promises.

Nor has the government said exactly how much taxpayer money will be saved by repealing the registry, although a study by The Canadian Press suggests it is a small fraction of the millions spent annually on gun licensing.

Could it be because the suggested “savings” are a total canard? A non-starter? A… dare I say it… complete line of bullshit?
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Paul Ryan’s new Old Spice ad

I’m doing an overnight tonight for work. Yes, tonight. Saturday night into Sunday morning. When I should be adjusting the time on my various clocks and catching up on sleep. Lucky me.

So, click this image to behold what a Paul Ryan Old Spice ad might look like. Via the Mansplaining Ryan tumblr.

"Hello, ladies. Look at your abortion rights. Now, look at me. Look back at your abortion rights. Your abortion rights are now beans. Look down. Now I'm Jack Kennedy.

Ryan Spice turns your abortion rights into a hill of beans. I’m on a horse.

It’d be funny if it weren’t so true.

Jim Garlow: Sexual orientation is a “modern construct”, therefore a choice

Following the logic chain Garlow lays down here, apparently because “sexual orientation” wasn’t described in the Bible, us mere humans have invented the concept rather than describing something that previously existed. In the exact same way, I guess everyone just chose to stay anchored to the ground instead of floating away, until Isaac Newton invented the modern construct of gravity.


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Noah’s ark film delayed due to… yes, flooding

Via WorstPreviews.com, a slight silver lining to all the bad news coming out of Hurricane Sandy. It seems Darren Aronofsky’s current project, Noah, has suffered from delays and set damage owing to all the flooding in Oyster Bay, New York. The best part? This quote:

To make it as realistic as possible, the director built a massive ark, which measures 450 feet long, 75 feet tall and 45 feet wide. Unfortunately, it was never meant to be sailed.

Emphasis mine. That’s what you call irony. Considering scholars pretty much uniformly agree that the Bible dimensions wouldn’t carry the necessary load, that’s as realistic as I think Aronofsky could have made it!
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