Hypercritical.co Has Moved
The domain name hypercritical.co no longer points to this Tumblr site. I’d always planned for Tumblr to be a stopgap solution until I could get my own site up and running. Turns out that process takes me 1,079 days. Rest assured, I felt guilty each time I wrote something new for this Tumblr, knowing that this would not be the post’s final resting place. To ease the transition,...
CES: Worse Products Through Software
Watching the CES coverage out of the corner of my Internet eye, I’m reminded of exactly how bad most hardware makers are at writing software. Mat Honan summed it up nicely last month: No One Uses Smart TV Internet Because It Sucks. Amen to that. But it’s not just TVs. Who really likes the “software” in their car, microwave, or blu-ray player? All of this software is...
This article originally appeared in issue 2 of The Magazine on October 25, 2012. Journey for the PlayStation 3 is the best video game I’ve played in a long time. I’m going to use it to illustrate a larger point about technology, and in doing so, I’m going to spoil the game. If you have any interest in video games at all, I strongly recommend that you do not read any further until you’ve played...
About My Mountain Lion Review
As I have for the past 13 years (yikes!), I wrote a review of the latest major release of the Mac operating system, OS X 10.8 Mountain Lion, for Ars Technica. There are several ways to read it. Read it for free on the web Buy the Kindle ebook for $4.99 Subscribe to Ars Premier for a month for $5 and get all of these options: Read it on a single, ad-free web page Download an...
I like pasta. I’d like to help people make better pasta. It pains me to think about all the poorly prepared pasta being served and eaten in America. My advice will focus on plain old store-bought dried pasta. Nothing fancy. You’ve probably made some yourself. I’m specifically not talking about preparing or cooking fresh pasta, how to execute any particular pasta recipe, or why you should...
Highlights from 2011
This past year was an eventful one for someone like me who has already passed most of the common milestones of adulthood (college, marriage, home ownership, children). The highlights: I started a weekly podcast with Dan Benjamin, named after this blog (which, in turn, was named after something I wrote for Ars Technica in 2009). I’ve been amazed by the popularity of the show and the quality of...
Summer Movies: 1982
The following movies were released in the summer of 1982. An Officer and a Gentleman Annie Blade Runner Conan the Barbarian E.T.: The Extra-Terrestrial Fast Times at Ridgemont High Firefox Poltergeist Rocky III Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan The Road Warrior The Secret of NIMH The Thing Tron Is it just nostalgia, or does that lineup positively trounce any summer in...
Here’s my brief entry in the speculation derby surrounding the departure of Mark Papermaster from Apple. Assuming Papermaster is out at least partially due to the iPhone 4 antenna and not some completely unrelated matter, and assuming Apple really did know about the iPhone 4’s antenna problems even before Papermaster was hired, it may seem strange or even unfair that he’s ended...
Black Hole Sun
Many years ago, I recall talking with some of my Mac-nerd friends about how strange it was, after Apple’s near-death experiences of the late 1990s, to be living in a world where it’s just assumed that any tech luminary will mostly likely use a Mac. A year or two later, Tim O’Reilly gave a name to this prognostication technique: watching the “alpha geeks.” This trend...
No Movie for Old Men
2012 is an awful movie. I knew this when I added it to my Netflix queue, but I wanted to stay up to date on the latest in computer-generated apocalyptic destruction. I’m a fan of special effects in general and stories about the end of the world in particular. All the boxes were ticked: absurd “science,” impossible escapes, a nonsensical plan to save humanity, familial and...
I’ve never considered Obama a very good speaker. It may be because he speaks slowly and pauses a lot, all of which drives my fast-talking-Italian-New-York-native-self up a wall. Whatever the reason, my low opinion of his speaking ability meant that I was willing to believe that the Obama teleprompter gibes could very well be indicative of a real problem. Those jokes fed my fear that Obama...
I have a blog where I write about technology stuff, and I have a Twitter account where I write about whatever strikes my fancy. When I want to write something non-tech-related that’s longer than 140 characters, I have a problem. Maybe Tumblr (or something like it) is the solution? We’ll see. Update: Of course, now I just spent 20 minutes futzing with Tumblr themes (before giving...