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Awesome Sites That You Don't Know About

A while back someone asked me what sites I like to visit. I forgot to answer, so I'll write a post about it.

Bobby Burgess' Journal
This guy was ahead of his time. Back in 2000 he had a blog, and a killer one. In fact, he's probably one of the reasons I write a blog. When you go to his site, hit archive, and start from the beginning. It starts off slow, but you will be unable to stop reading pretty soon. I've read every entry on the whole site. Later he turns into a druggie and his stories become much less frequent and less interesting, but even that transformation is worth reading.

Paul Clow's Sole Goal and PhiMix
These two sites are lumped together because they're similar. They're both sites written by polynappers who also write about other interesting things. I wouldn't have found out about either of these sites if they hadn't written comments on my posts in the past. I check both of these every day.

Eyezmaze
This site is created by a Japanese flash programmer. The real gems are the Grow games. DO NOT CHEAT AND LOOK UP THE ANSWERS. Once you finish you will be wishing there were more grows to play. The order you play them in doesn't really matter. I think the Cube one is the best. Some of the other games are fun too, like Tontie (Jonah and I used to be obsessed with this one).

Lessons Learned from the Firestorm of Controversy

On SEBASTIAN MARSHALL

Two days ago I wrote the Genius and Tragedy post. It was extremely controversial - very popular on one hand, but got some very strong visceral negative reactions. I'd like to share with you what I've learned about writing, so I can step my game up and improve. Also, I got some downright hateful comments made about me, some really bad and terrible stuff. If this has never happened to you, maybe you don't know what it feels like, and I've got some advice on how to deal with it. I also did some detailed reading and analysis of the kinds of comments I got, and there was some fascinating results that I'll share.

So, first and foremost, I made a mistake - If you're writing to help someone, it can be pretty presumptuous to do it without touching base and clearing it with them first. I made that error for a few reasons - first, two of my best posts have come from the same format, and both achieved their desired objective. ("How do I write so much, you ask?" and "I think greatness is something you do, not something you are" both publicly called people I like out - and both times it worked) - so that's the first thing, I'd had a good track record with this, however those were people I'd been touching base with already.

Second, as a general principal I believe in working really quickly. I analogize it to "fighting out of formation" - quick, lightly edited writing is always worse than well-edited best practices. But, the more you do of it, the better you get at it. And by producing anything really quickly, you get better faster. If someone produces 10 times as much content, how long until their lightly edited work is superior to the other person's highly polished work? This isn't a rhetorical question - check out "Quantity Always Trumps Quality" on codinghorror.com sometime. If you produce quickly and of lower quality at first, you can iterate and improve, and eventually your quick production work is better than the obsessively refined person's work who isn't getting as much done (and thus not learning the lessons). Pablo Picasso talked about this quite a bit, if you're particularly interested on the topic.

The downside, of course, is that you make mistakes. And I did - I should've touched base before writing that post, or had it vetted, or at least, spent more time editing it to be clear, concise, and unambiguous, and even more polite. Mea culpa - my mistake! It's okay for me to work quickly and bring errors upon myself because of it, but I need to be more careful when involving others.

Then, why is that post still up? This is what I wrote as the episode was winding down, it was well-received by the community -

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