This past week I’ve been working on a big redesign of my site. I’m trying to recreate the vibe of MSN / Windows Live Messenger around 2008-2011. Today, I spent most of the day recreating the avatar frame from WL Messenger in CSS.
At first, I was trying really hard to recreate the kind of squircle shape from the login screen. It turns out this is quite difficult in CSS, and the only way I could possibly have done it is through creating an SVG path that I could use to clip the HTML element, but then I would lose access to the border and box-shadow properties.
Man, my one blog post per week goal sure fell apart quickly. To avoid going too long without a post, I figure I’ll give a quick update on what I’ve been working on. Over at the 32-Bit Cafe, we announced we are expanding into a Discourse forum! I’ve been spending a lot of time setting it up and working alongside the rest of the mod team to get it ready before the February 15th launch.
Last weekend I was really getting the semi-annual itch to play Minecraft. When I loaded it up, I realized it would be a good idea to do a backup of my world, because I hadn’t done it in a while. I’ve poured a lot of hours into it with my partner and we would be devastated to lose it. So I wrote up a quick rsync command to send it over to my network storage (a strong term for an Raspberry Pi 4 with a USB hard disk attached).
This week, Riot Games announced they are bringing their Vanguard anti-cheat software to League of Legends. Previously introduced with the release of Valorant, Vanguard is a pretty typical kernel-level anti-cheat software, which is to say, a security nightmare. It runs at the highest level of permissions possible on your system.
A lot of people seem concerned that, because Riot is owned by Tencent, Vanguard serves as a backdoor for the Chinese government.
I recently read fLaMEd’s post discussing the shortcomings of linking techniques frequently used on the smallweb, such as link pages, webrings, button walls, etc. Many websites on the smallweb employ these techniques in order to connect to other stops in the smallweb space. I don’t think they are inherently bad, of course, but the context matters a lot. I want to know why the webmaster has chosen to put these links on their website, even if the explanation is as brief as “these people are my friends and their websites are cool.
The last time I played Cyberpunk 2077 was shortly after release in late 2020 on the PS4 version, which was a rough experience, to say the least. I had been excited for the game since the announcement almost ten years ago now, so the disappointment was quite painful. As a result, I left the game alone for the past 2.5 years, even though I heard the patches fixed a lot of issues.
I did a complete overhaul of the layout of my site. When I launched my website a year and a half ago, I designed it while under the influence of web 1.0 nostalgia. With this redesign, my goal is to better use the amount of screen space PCs have these days, while also making it easier for the content to be responsive on mobile.
The links page has been revamped as well.
It is an interesting time to be online. Twitter went from bad to worse. Reddit kneecapped itself. It seems now that the period of free money is over, tech companies are finding out that operating at a loss to amass users and putting off any sort of monetization plan as long as possible isn’t as great a business model as was once thought. So far it appears to only work in a monopolistic scenario, like with Google and perhaps Meta.