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  Update for Everyone II - Less Boring, More Whoring (search mode)
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Author Topic: Update for Everyone II - Less Boring, More Whoring  (Read 102055 times)
traininthedistance
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« on: November 10, 2013, 01:17:55 pm »

I saw someone walking a small pig on a leash on Friday while walking around Fort Greene.  Thought it was a small dog at first- then did a double take. 

I wonder what exactly the regulations are for that; I know there are laws against exotic pets here and many other places but I don't know whether a pig qualifies.
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traininthedistance
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« Reply #1 on: February 01, 2014, 11:12:04 am »

This is not an update about me (I have nothing interesting to say about my own life), but...

A friend of mine from college has been been using game theory to dominate Jeopardy! all week.  And has also been using Twitter to expertly fend off the various dimwits and racists who don't like that he's playing to win, or that he's Asian and kind of frumpy.

Apparently there's a three week break for various tournaments, but he'll be back after that.
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traininthedistance
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« Reply #2 on: February 03, 2014, 12:52:27 pm »
« Edited: February 03, 2014, 12:58:58 pm by traininthedistance »

A friend of mine from college has been been using game theory to dominate Jeopardy! all week.  And has also been using Twitter to expertly fend off the various dimwits and racists who don't like that he's playing to win, or that he's Asian and kind of frumpy.

I hope that you aren't offended that I've been rooting against your friend all week. There are few things in this world that bother me more than people who play Jeopardy! the way that he does Tongue

Don't hate the playa, hate the game.

This is not an update about me (I have nothing interesting to say about my own life), but...

A friend of mine from college has been been using game theory to dominate Jeopardy! all week.  And has also been using Twitter to expertly fend off the various dimwits and racists who don't like that he's playing to win, or that he's Asian and kind of frumpy.

Apparently there's a three week break for various tournaments, but he'll be back after that.

Let's kick the sperg up another notch. Whatever his strategy is, there's nothing "game theory" about it. The only thing that comes close is the final wager strategy, and the guy from whom he got the idea is only doing some simple backwards induction.

The only real problem is: why has it taken so long for someone to do what he has done? Anyone with an above-even probability of guessing all Daily Doubles can deprive others of such chances. I'm going to hypothesize that historic Jeopardy players did not have the Internet, and the fluidity of difficult trivia in multiple fields it provides. The norm entrenches itself and all that. I can't imagine his answering probability being so high to last him 74 games...

Well, there's also the aggressive betting on Daily Doubles, but perhaps "game theory" is a bit grandiose to categorize all of the strategy here.

Most people don't think to do it, and some who do probably think it goes against some sort of imaginary sense of norms or traditions. And of course he's not the first person to do all of these things.  It's pretty similar to why (American) football teams don't go for it on 4th down, even though the numbers say they should.

This was all taped a couple months ago; no idea how long it'll keep going on but I can say that he's not still taping episodes; presumably the streak ended at some point.  What that point is, not too many folks know, and those that do have a nice NDA to keep their mouths shut.
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traininthedistance
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« Reply #3 on: February 20, 2014, 05:40:04 pm »

My computer might be dying.  Bluh.  Just what I needed when I was already feeling pretty crappy about my lack of IRL forward progress (no, not talking about it more than that here, sorry).
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traininthedistance
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« Reply #4 on: February 25, 2014, 08:45:21 pm »
« Edited: February 25, 2014, 08:47:19 pm by traininthedistance »

I've made the decision to boycott Jeopardy! until the current champion is defeated.

Given how committed I am to that show, this is definitely a big enough change in my life to warrant being posted in this thread.

I'm sorry that you hate excellence and effort.
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traininthedistance
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« Reply #5 on: February 25, 2014, 10:49:30 pm »

I've made the decision to boycott Jeopardy! until the current champion is defeated.

Given how committed I am to that show, this is definitely a big enough change in my life to warrant being posted in this thread.

I'm sorry that you hate excellence and effort.

I don't advocate doing things poorly, but I do believe that it's possible to do something too well. Found between the two aforementioned extremes is the medium that is happiest for all.

So I assume that, for you, Ken Jennings was the worst Jeopardy contestant in history, and you would basically throw things at your TV in reaction to him steamrolling opponents for months on end, because he was too good.
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traininthedistance
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« Reply #6 on: February 25, 2014, 11:58:35 pm »

I've made the decision to boycott Jeopardy! until the current champion is defeated.

Given how committed I am to that show, this is definitely a big enough change in my life to warrant being posted in this thread.

I'm sorry that you hate excellence and effort.

I don't advocate doing things poorly, but I do believe that it's possible to do something too well. Found between the two aforementioned extremes is the medium that is happiest for all.

So I assume that, for you, Ken Jennings was the worst Jeopardy contestant in history, and you would basically throw things at your TV in reaction to him steamrolling opponents for months on end, because he was too good.

My objection isn't to this guy winning - my objection is to him not playing the game the "right" way (which entails beginning at the top of a category and working one's way down the board).

Yeah, well that's a bulls**t objection and you should feel bad for having it.  If it's so important to do things the so-called "right" way, then they should change the rules- otherwise it would be crazy to not play to win the game, as the esteemed Herm Edwards would say, and besides, strategic innovation and variety is just what the game needs anyway.

I will note that the world's foremost authority on such matters agrees with Arthur and me:

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Also, it's worth your time to read the full transcript of Jennings' interview, which he posted on his blog.  In particular, this idea of a "right" way to play is loaded with a lot of kinda ugly subtext that you may not consciously mean... but it's hard to avoid wondering, and it's hard to respect once you start wondering:

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traininthedistance
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« Reply #7 on: February 26, 2014, 12:00:09 am »

I like how spazzy Chu is at hitting the buzzer.

They all mash the buzzer like that- and in fact are instructed to at the contestant orientation- he's just not great at hiding it behind the podium.
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traininthedistance
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« Reply #8 on: February 26, 2014, 11:10:22 am »

...you people are serious about game shows.

Context: Arthur is a friend of mine from college.  I went to his freaking wedding fer crissake.

So I'm kind of contractually obligated to come to his defense here.  (It helps that I do genuinely think what he's doing is good and worthy of defense, but I don't know that I'd be so emotionally invested in it otherwise.)
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traininthedistance
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« Reply #9 on: April 08, 2014, 12:37:25 am »

The good news: Won $330 at a pub quiz tonight, split three ways.  My favorite question of said quiz: after the USA, what country received the second-highest number of European immigrants during the great emigration wave from the mid-1800s to early 1900s?

The bad news: We whiffed on the number of California's Prop 13 (I thought it was Prop 17; one of my teammates thought it was 7 or 11).  Bah.  Way to lose all my Atlas cred. Tongue
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traininthedistance
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« Reply #10 on: April 08, 2014, 12:44:33 am »
« Edited: April 08, 2014, 12:50:58 am by traininthedistance »

Is the answer Argentina or Brazil?

Argentina, which I figured out primarily because plenty of Italian (and German and even English, but mostly Italian) immigrants populate Jorge Luis Borges' stories.  

(And, well, Argentina is a lot whiter than the rest of Latin America, and it wasn't gonna be Canadia or Australia or anything like that.)
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traininthedistance
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« Reply #11 on: May 23, 2014, 08:02:34 am »

Jury duty today.

Surprisingly this is the first I've ever been called.  Well, unless you count the time Pennsylvania tried to call me for literally two days after I moved out of state.  Tongue
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traininthedistance
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« Reply #12 on: June 01, 2014, 08:54:13 pm »

Returning from Philly, for what was probably one of the tamest and non-debauched bachelor parties in the history of bachelor parties.  I'm pretty sure the only person around who properly boozed up was myself, and even I could have stood to have a couple more over the course of the weekend.

I'm only posting this because as we were walking the streets of Old City from one place to the next, who passed us by but one of those "pedal pub" bikes that BRTD posted about awhile ago. And, well, they fit perfectly in with the traffic on Chestnut Street.  And they were clearly rowdy and buzzed and havin' a ball... but of course there wasn't any actual pub on that vehicle (I assume state regulations saw to that.)  Presumably they all pre-gamed.
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traininthedistance
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« Reply #13 on: June 09, 2014, 01:18:59 am »

Last night in the Bay Area, coming back home tomorrow.  Haven't seen much of Atlas all week, which is probably a good thing.

I will say, and this will probably come as an insult to both cities though it's not really meant as such, but my first impression of San Fran was intensely reminiscent of Washington, D.C.  After a couple days and some exploring that sense faded somewhat, but it's not entirely gone.  Obviously the two factors that led to this impression were the fact that BART and the DC Metro are very very similar systems, as well as similar architecture (and general lack of tall buildings) in the "nicer" residential areas.
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traininthedistance
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« Reply #14 on: June 09, 2014, 01:30:21 pm »

I've spent a decent amount of time in both cities (more than any other cities, in fact) and never gotten that impression, but I adore San Francisco and don't really care for Washington much at all. To me Washington seems awfully artificial; the immense tourist trap that is the federal buildings in the heart of the city serves as a real impediment to the creation of real communities like San Francisco has. But then I suppose I feel compelled to leap to the defense of my city because it does read like a bit of an insult. I'll have to keep this in mind when I go back to DC and environs in September; perhaps that'll make me appreciate it a little more.

The comparison of BART to the DC Metro is interesting; last week I rode BART for what I think was the second time ever (BART doesn't run to Santa Clara County, where I've lived my whole life) and I was struck by how familiar it felt. I wasn't entirely sure whether the similarity was unusual, since the Metro is the only subway system I've used extensively, but I guess it was.

Well, both BART and the Metro date from similar times (70s basically); have similar looking cars, station architecture, and even system maps; serve a sort of hybrid function that is half subway and half commuter rail; and have fares based on distance (which is unusual to someone most familiar with Philly and NYC, which are very different systems but are united in not having that feature.) 

I definitely find DC to feel very artificial through and through (and, being the New Yorker I am, blame it on their really restrictive height limits); TBH my initial impression of SF in areas like Pacific Heights and along Valencia Street actually conveyed much of the same feeling and you're entirely right to want to rebut that.  Ultimately the more time I spent here the more areas I found that didn't have that problem, and the downtown area (which I didn't really spend time in until my final day here)  is unquestionably better than DC.

And obviously Berkeley and Oakland are pretty great too.

In general I would say that I prefer the Bay Area to the DC area, the one caveat being that Metro is somewhat better than BART (more coverage especially in the center city; more frequent service).  Also it's a little crazy that there's an alphabet soup of at least a dozen different transit operators- BART, Muni, Caltrain, a different bus operator for each county more or less- instead of just one for the region. 
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traininthedistance
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« Reply #15 on: June 22, 2014, 02:07:53 pm »

At a wedding this weekend and people were taking about, dear God have mercy on my soul, Ingress.  I think.
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traininthedistance
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« Reply #16 on: June 22, 2014, 04:55:48 pm »
« Edited: June 22, 2014, 10:08:15 pm by traininthedistance »


Some subjects are not meant for mixed company.
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traininthedistance
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« Reply #17 on: June 29, 2014, 11:34:12 am »

Well, I will have a summer job. I like it because I learn a lot of things about toyotism. But this is really stressful. For several weeks, I sleep less, and I'm more stressed than usually.

...what is that?
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Toyota_Production_System
This, what has replaced fordism and taylorism as production system in many companies.


Wow, that Wiki article really reads like a press release.
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traininthedistance
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« Reply #18 on: July 27, 2014, 08:53:29 pm »

The Love Song of Jay Street-MetroTech has won yet another season of pub quiz.  Woot!

Probably time to retire this name.
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traininthedistance
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« Reply #19 on: August 13, 2014, 01:18:27 pm »

Things kind of really suck right now- well, they have mostly sucked in general for a long time but are doing so especially hard at the moment. 

I hate to be all cryptic like that, but I'm caught between needing to vent while also not really wanting to broadcast the full extent of my various failures and depressions.  So, there you go.
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traininthedistance
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« Reply #20 on: August 13, 2014, 01:27:07 pm »

We've all been there (kind of, probably, those of us without gilded lives anyway). Solidarity, etc.

My life is in some ways more gilded than I would ever like to admit and to be brutally honest that's part of the problem.
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traininthedistance
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« Reply #21 on: August 13, 2014, 05:17:52 pm »

I'm really sorry to hear that, Traininthedistance. You understandably may not want to discuss this with strangers on an internet forum, but you should at least talk about it to people whom you know care about you. In my experience, talking to people about what makes us sad is the only way out.

Thanks.  Smiley  I am planning on doing so.
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traininthedistance
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« Reply #22 on: August 28, 2014, 09:54:18 pm »

Visiting Philly for the weekend.  Good to be here again.
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traininthedistance
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« Reply #23 on: August 29, 2014, 03:45:40 pm »

Visiting Philly for the weekend.  Good to be here again.

oh god my friends are talking constantly about ingress now maybe i spoke too soon
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traininthedistance
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« Reply #24 on: September 12, 2014, 11:42:17 pm »

I saw John Adams take a selfie earlier tonight.
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