Hein (fub) wrote,
Hein
fub

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More interview

sol_nuada wanted to know:
1) Which culture has, according to you, the most interesting mythology? Why? Which part of it is your favourite?
Whew. I'm not an expert on mythology -- far from it. I know the Greek and Norse mythology best, and know too little of the others to compare.
The cool thing about the Greek mythology is that the gods are almost human, in a tantrum-throwing four-year-old kind of way: they are jealous, lecherous, capricious, deceiving and hot-headed. If your gods are amplifications of humanity, isn't that how they should be? This makes for lots of really entertaining myths. On the other hand, the humans who populate the myths are mere toys for the gods, to be used for their own ends, and that takes away the ability of people to make their own fate -- and I'm pretty big on that.
That is precisely what is cool about the Norse mythology: people are, essentially, their own men, and they have to face the consequences of their actions themselves. But in return, the gods are not so human -- they are grave and operate out of necessity, rather than because they want things (other than Loki, of course).

As a human, I'd rather live in the Norse mythology. But for sheer entertainment value, the Greek myths win.

2) What does todays music lack compared to the music from the 80s?
90% of everything is crap. That's a hard-and-fast rule, and it almost always works. 90% of the music in the 80's was crap, but those songs are never played on the radio anymore: only the remaining good 10% of the 80's music is played. People got rid of their crappy singles and retained the great albums.
We get 100% of today's music, and 90% of that is crap. It is tempting to think of today's music as crap but the 80's music to be so much better, but that is simply false. In 30 years' time, only the good music of today will be left.
As for your question: I like what can be done with electronic instruments, but I dislike them when they are used out of lazyness. Music in the 80's didn't have that, because electronic instruments were so uncommon.

3) What do you think is the best board and/or cardgame ever made? Why?
A boardgame is good if it is fun, and you keep taking it out of the closet to play it over and over again. For that, it needs a certain set of characteristics: the gameplay should be engaging (no waiting until your turn comes up with thinking), it should be both cooperative (you should be able to form 'alliances' with other players) and competitive (you should be able to benefit from something that will hurt the point total of another player), and it should be fair (a lucky die throw shouldn't give you a sure-fire way of winning the game). Also, it shouldn't last too long -- games that take all night are rarely played.
As such, I still think that Carcassonne (and almost all of its variants) possess those characteristics.

4) You've been quite busy with them LED's and the like lately, what aspect of it is what really got you interested in them? Is this still the main drive?
I mainly got into LEDs in order to learn how to program microcontrollers. Just like printing out 'Hello world!' is the first excercise of any programming language, making a LED blink is the first exercise for microcontrollers (since they don't have a screen attached to 'em).
And I wanted to learn to program microcontrollers for two reasons: one was so that I could make the track display for the MACH F. In order to be able to do that, I had to learn how to drive shift registers, how to multiplex, etcetera. Pretty complex stuff if you've never worked with microcontrollers before, so I took it one step at a time. So it started out with blinking a LED, then I got the idea to make a binary LED clock, etcetera. After about half a year, I started working on the MACH F display in earnest. It has been well documented elsewhere how that went down, but I haven't gone back to that project yet -- it works, and it's finished.

The other reason microcontrollers grabbed my interest is that I have never been able to make something physical. Sure, I have a very active imagination, and I can come up with ideas and stories and fantasies and software and algorithms at the drop of a hat, but you can't touch those. It was all in my head (and/or in the heads of my players and/or in the heads of the people who read my stories) -- it wasn't something you could touch.
paultje, my sister, is a very creative person, and she crafts a lot of things herself: she decorated her kitchen with mosaic, she paints T-shirts, tiles, shoes, you name it. I'm not like that -- I can't create those things. My mind is made of metal and wheels and cogs, not of fabric and wood and paint. But with microcontrollers, I could apply my knack for abstract reasoning and set it to work for me. I picked up PIC assembly pretty fast, because I think that way. I can expand on the examples I see, and I can make something physical. Something that is so nice that people want it in their homes. That was very satisfying -- I've never had that happen to me.
The reason of the track display has dissapeared, but I am still charmed by the way I can pour my imagination into a physical form with electronics.

5) I think I asked this one last time as well, not sure though: Are you considering to get children? Why (not)?
You did, more than two years ago. Our thoughts on the issue haven't changed.
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