April 9, 2017

Q&A: Design lessons learned from a decade at Nintendo’s EAD

Like the great warlord Oda Nobunaga, Yamauchi wanted his vassals to compete with each other. Nintendo once had three hardware development departments plus EAD. Each of these three departments had its own game development team, and Yamauchi made the leaders of these departments compete with each other. This resulted in successes like the Nintendo Entertainment System and Game Boy, but the departments never shared information with each other.

A fascinating look behind the scenes.

Reading Steffen Rendle’s paper of Factorization Machines (PDF). Not only is the algorithm interesting, the paper itself is worth mentioning because instead of only equations, it includes a real-world example. More ML researchers should take note.

April 7, 2017

Hunting for treasure at low tide

Joseph Fox photographed the mudlarkers who comb the shore of London’s River Thames. Originally a term for the city’s poor who scraped a meagre living by scavenging in the river’s mud, it has been adopted by a new breed of treasure hunters, often armed with metal detectors.

These men and women show off their favourite finds, and discuss the joys of mudlarking.

March 18, 2017
March 14, 2017

After spending 40+ hours with The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, it’s hard for me to remember another game that evokes the same sense of exploration. No matter what you do, you’ll likely be sidetracked by a new quest, a quaint village, a new gameplay mechanic or just the beauty of the open world.

I’m hesitant to call this the best game I’ve ever played, but it’s not far off. I haven’t had this sense of childlike discovery in over a decade.