BikeIM 0.5.1


May 5, 2017

On Thursday of this week (May 4, 2017) I released a mail client. It's pretty humble, but I've been using it for a decade and so it was worth it to me to iron out a handful of bugs and make it good enough for other people to use. Currently it won't be much use to you if you run Windows, Mac OSX, don't run your own mail server, or don't understand what fetchmail is*. But those things are fixable and I intend to fix them in the months to come. That means this blog post doesn't have to cater to end users, so I won't attempt to. This blog post will be about how I came to write a mail client and why it makes sense in 2017.

* The wording of that sentence was pretty bad so I'll reverse it. BikeIM-0.5 is usable to you if you run Postfix, if you run Dovecot, if you run OpenSMTPD, if you run fetchmail, if you use GnuPG, if you use Mutt, if you run Linux or *BSD, if you use Git, and understand how to report bugs.

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AltSci Concepts in Python


Mar 1, 2017

It took quite a few months to get the time to work on this blog. I had AltSci Cell and AltSci Blog updated to the new blog system back in November. I ported most of AltSci Concepts to the new blog system a few months ago, but I didn't want to convert it until I had comment working. You can see there are no comments at the bottom of this page because I'm not ready to backport the comments to AltSci Cell yet. But if you go to any of the posts on AltSci Concepts you'll be able to post your comment.

In all the years of AltSci, only a handful of people have commented. The main purpose has been to collect a large corpus of spam (389245 spam comments from 67085 unique IPs, 9683389 csrf spam attempts rejected) which I've had to filter at times. But the opportunity to post responses is a valuable part of the Internet. That's probably why sites like Hacker News and Reddit are so valuable: they let you comment on important topics where the comments are disabled or too toxic to post in. That doesn't mean that these sites are infallible. In fact, that's a lot of the controversy in any open forum -- people post in a thread that is going to stay linked to that website for a long time and time increases a search engine rankings. When should the post be deleted? When should the admins leave it alone? These problems are not trivial to solve. If you think they are... please create a thread to discuss this post and e-mail me a link.

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Reverse Engineering Flash Games


Dec 7, 2014
Unproprietary 0.4: Nov 25, 2015
Unproprietary 0.5: Sept 11, 2016

unproprietary-0.5 [sig]
unproprietary-0.4 [sig]
unproprietary-0.3 [sig]
unproprietary-0.2.1 [sig]
Git repository: git clone https://www.altsci.com/repo/unproprietary.git

Lume is a simple point and click Flash game available from Steam and Humble Bundle. I got it as part of of the Humble Weekly Sale: Amanita & Friends bundle and played it because I was interested in playing a short puzzle game one night. Since it's only 30 MB, it's pretty much guaranteed that it's a short game. It took an hour or so to complete and had some excellent puzzles. One of the main features of the game is the graphics which were made by a good artist with good style. Today, I was able to reverse engineer the game in a short amount of time using some custom tools I wrote, so I'm going to release them and ask for pull requests. Reverse engineering file formats is not a difficult process, but it is time consuming and it is more difficult to automate, so tools that do the work for us are valuable. That is why I'm releasing this simple set of tools I wrote.

If you'd like to follow along, you can buy Lume on Humble Store for $5.99. It supports Linux, Mac, and Windows. Lume has a Metacritic score of 69 and a high score of 83 by GameShark. A sequel was released recently called Lumino City (5 days ago) and it has gotten good reviews. It looks brilliant but it isn't released for Linux yet.

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AltSci Concepts Computer Journal - Jan 2014

AltSci Concepts Computer Journal

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