Jump to content

Froggy the Great

Randomness XIV: THE FLOOR IS LAVA!

Recommended Posts

3 hours ago, Unruly said:

 

No, Thursday. Or really, Wednesday night. Because Saturday is Friday.

 

Also, junkies can all just go die. I'm sick of sweeping up their used needles and bloody gauze, and having to deal with their too stoned to function personages. I was 40 minutes late getting home because I had to waste a bunch of my time dealing with a junkie that decided to speedball meth and heroin in one of our garages tonight, then pass out in a pile of used syringes, bloody gauze, tourniquet straps, and alcohol wipes. When we called the cops on her they went through her backpack and she had meth, a bunch of prescription bottles that weren't in her name, about a dozen unused syringes, 3 vials of narcan that were in various stages of empty, a meth pipe, a couple empty stamp bags, the list went on. She ended up going with EMS after the cops confiscated all her drugs.

 

So yea, my night ended on a crap note.

 

I know many people will consider me cruel for saying it but, honestly we should just legalize and regulate the whole mess:  have safe places to stick those who want to do the more nasty chemicals and comfortable environments at reasonable rates for those who choose the opiates.  Making these illegal has not helped anyone but organized crime.  People are going to try and run and hide from their problems, and drugs can be that gateway for a portion of them.

 

Although I know it can sound weird, I think its better that, if people are going to take these drugs, they be given instruction and a place where the mess they make and the trouble they cause can be minimized.  There are a number of countries that have shown that by monitoring and, controlling the use of habitual drugs, quite a number of addicts can return to relatively normal productive at least comfortable lives (I'd say normal but I haven't met many people with normal lives ::):, me included). 

 

35 minutes ago, Doug Sundseth said:

 

Doesn't that kind of defeat the purpose of being a junkie? (At least for opiates.)

 

"Dude, I'm going to get totally wasted! But I have a comptroller's meeting at 11, so I need to kill the buzz before then." ^_^

 

You smirk but this is a lot more common in the business world than I would really like it to be.  There are a number of high end lawyers and doctors and others who spend their waking hours seeking a way out and only come back to the real world to do the thing they feel they have to or because its the one thing in life they really love.

 

I would love to see drugs legalized. I would also love to see mandatory blood tests before congress sessions and boardroom meetings.  I would also like to see screenings before someone walks onto a shop floor and goes to operate heavy equipment or perform surgery.  The advantage of making them legal is that there is no onus to hide it.  If you are high, you just don't participate, your aren't going to be jailed or imprisoned.  It makes it much more likely that the person who is affected will just not risk it.

  • Like 7
  • Thanks 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
9 hours ago, Unruly said:

My coworkers are stupid about math. They're talking about how a guy got screwed because he took out 2 loans on 2 cars at the same interest rate instead of taking a single loan out for both at that same interest rate. They're saying that he's dumb because now he's paying twice the interest. I try to explain that that isn't how interest works, and if he took out a single loan for both cars that was at the exact same interest rate and same loan period he'd still be paying the exact same amount. Because all a loan payment cares about is the money owed, the interest rate, and the loan period. They tell me I'm dumb because they think that he's paying twice the interest because he has 2 payments instead of one, so to them that means he's paying twice the interest and getting screwed...

Many people are stupid about percentages.  That's why we see so many of those coupons combined with sales - "on sale for 30% off, plus an additional 25% off your purchase price with this coupon!"  No, that doesn't mean you're getting 55% off, as many people will argue - it means you're getting 47.5% off. 

My wife got into an argument with some coworkers once over something like that.  She's not real good at doing math in her head, so figuring complex problems out can take her some time, but she is aware of all the basic concepts and how they work.  So she at least knows when something doesn't look right.  Anyway, this one coworker had some combination of a sale and coupons that they were insisting was going to get them something for 70-80% off,  because you know, 30% plus 20% plus 20% equals 70%, right?  Sure, if you're looking at a pie chart, but not when you're looking at coupons and sales that have fine print.   My wife _knew_ the coworker's assertion was wrong, but because she was being so slow in figuring the right answer, she was being ridiculed about being stupid. She called me for verification, I helped her figure the real discount, and the co-worker and a couple others who joined the argument still wouldn't believe her.  The co-worker went and made the purchase, but was strangely silent about how big a discount they got, until my wife asked them about it, at which point the co-worker launched into a rant about deceptive advertising and sales tactics, and how they should be outlawed. 

  • Like 10

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hunting down minis for Megan made me realize something...

 

I haven't really run D&D since I was twelve.

 

I have run games using the D&D (and Pathfinder) rules, but not embraced the setting's tropes - by which I mean that a whole lot of the 'iconic monsters' were things that were never in my games.

 

Beholders, Umber Hulks, Mind Flayers, Mimics*... even Owlbears. (My tendency with Owlbears is just to use plain old bears or cave bears....)

 

Megan is running Eberron - and is gleefully embracing all the creatures I had been ignoring.

 

Because Eberron is D&D, in a way that Regency Space, The Elf & Orc War, and Falling Empire were not. So, I am adding some of those iconics to Regency Space, if in somewhat modified form. (I am keeping my own version of the Mind Flayer - it is freaky deaky, as Megan might say.)

 

The Auld Grump

 

* I did use a Mimic in the kids version of Beyond the Borderlands.... It is fun to watch the kids panic. ::P: It would be less fun if they didn't eventually pull it all together, but they do, so I get to have my cake and eat theirs too. :lol:

23 minutes ago, kristof65 said:

Many people are stupid about percentages.  That's why we see so many of those coupons combined with sales - "on sale for 30% off, plus an additional 25% off your purchase price with this coupon!"  No, that doesn't mean you're getting 55% off, as many people will argue - it means you're getting 47.5% off. 

My wife got into an argument with some coworkers once over something like that.  She's not real good at doing math in her head, so figuring complex problems out can take her some time, but she is aware of all the basic concepts and how they work.  So she at least knows when something doesn't look right.  Anyway, this one coworker had some combination of a sale and coupons that they were insisting was going to get them something for 70-80% off,  because you know, 30% plus 20% plus 20% equals 70%, right?  Sure, if you're looking at a pie chart, but not when you're looking at coupons and sales that have fine print.   My wife _knew_ the coworker's assertion was wrong, but because she was being so slow in figuring the right answer, she was being ridiculed about being stupid. She called me for verification, I helped her figure the real discount, and the co-worker and a couple others who joined the argument still wouldn't believe her.  The co-worker went and made the purchase, but was strangely silent about how big a discount they got, until my wife asked them about it, at which point the co-worker launched into a rant about deceptive advertising and sales tactics, and how they should be outlawed. 

I was once uninvited to a playtesting group because I was crunching the numbers.

 

The game designer did not like it when I pointed out that his math just plain did not work. (I swear to the gods - he thought that taking 30% either above or below a target number was 30%... so if he rolled 40 on a D100 any number between 10 and 70 was within the target 30%, and therefor it was a 30% chance....)

 

Unsurprisingly, the game never saw publication. (This was before Kickstarter.)

 

The Auld Grump

  • Like 9

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
8 minutes ago, TheAuldGrump said:

The game designer did not like it when I pointed out that his math just plain did not work. (I swear to the gods - he thought that taking 30% either above or below a target number was 30%... so if he rolled 40 on a D100 any number between 10 and 70 was within the target 30%, and therefor it was a 30% chance....)

His inability to do math aside, what the heck kind of game mechanic is that? 

  • Like 5

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 minutes ago, Kangaroorex said:

 

I know many people will consider me cruel for saying it but, honestly we should just legalize and regulate the whole mess:  have safe places to stick those who want to do the more nasty chemicals and comfortable environments at reasonable rates for those who choose the opiates.  Making these illegal has not helped anyone but organized crime.  People are going to try and run and hide from their problems, and drugs can be that gateway for a portion of them.

 

Although I know it can sound weird, I think its better that, if people are going to take these drugs, they be given instruction and a place where the mess they make and the trouble they cause can be minimized.  There are a number of countries that have shown that by monitoring and, controlling the use of habitual drugs, quite a number of addicts can return to relatively normal productive at least comfortable lives (I'd say normal but I haven't met many people with normal lives ::):, me included). 

 

You're not wrong and I don't disagree. But we gotta end the conversation there, or else it's going to get buzzy.

 

3 minutes ago, kristof65 said:

Many people are stupid about percentages.  That's why we see so many of those coupons combined with sales - "on sale for 30% off, plus an additional 25% off your purchase price with this coupon!"  No, that doesn't mean you're getting 55% off, as many people will argue - it means you're getting 47.5% off. 

My wife got into an argument with some coworkers once over something like that.  She's not real good at doing math in her head, so figuring complex problems out can take her some time, but she is aware of all the basic concepts and how they work.  So she at least knows when something doesn't look right.  Anyway, this one coworker had some combination of a sale and coupons that they were insisting was going to get them something for 70-80% off,  because you know, 30% plus 20% plus 20% equals 70%, right?  Sure, if you're looking at a pie chart, but not when you're looking at coupons and sales that have fine print.   My wife _knew_ the coworker's assertion was wrong, but because she was being so slow in figuring the right answer, she was being ridiculed about being stupid. She called me for verification, I helped her figure the real discount, and the co-worker and a couple others who joined the argument still wouldn't believe her.  The co-worker went and made the purchase, but was strangely silent about how big a discount they got, until my wife asked them about it, at which point the co-worker launched into a rant about deceptive advertising and sales tactics, and how they should be outlawed. 

 

One of my coworkers, who was involved in the discussion last night and who is often giving poor tax "advice," is one of those people. He's got an obsession with shoes, and he's always going on about how he gets his shoes for 80% off or whatever, because he goes to the outlets and buys when the outlets are having sales and all that crap. So he's like "the outlet is already 25% off, and then they're having a 50% off sale, so I'm getting these $200 Jordans for 75% off!" And when I try to explain to him that that isn't how it works, he just starts yelling about how I'm not listening because he just told me it's 25% and 50% and if you add them together it makes 75%. Then he won't ever tell you how much he actually paid for the shoes.

 

It gets even better when I point out that outlets aren't the same shoes as you'd get for full price at a regular store. He's still under the impression that outlet stores are where factory seconds get sent, and while that may be true in small scale, on the whole it's a miniscule amount of their product. Most outlet items these days are made specifically for the outlet stores using cheaper materials and lower quality methods. Or did you really believe that a company like Nike has such an inefficient production process that they're really messing up on that many pairs of shoes, including their "limited edition" ones?

 

He really gets heated about that one.

 

But then again, today he was also trying to tell me about a news story involving a sex offender being shot in town, swearing to me that it was in the local news when I said I hadn't heard anything of the sort. But a check of the last 3 days of the local newspaper, as well as checking the 3 locally-based news stations(as well as 4 or 5 that are based within 2 hour's drive), showed nothing. Then he tried to show me a link on Breitbart, and then one on InfoWars, both of which had the headline of what he was describing but directed you to a "Page Not Found." He finally found one that worked, claiming to be from ABC, but it's an ABC affiliate that looks fake as crap, doesn't use any of the real ABC logos, doesn't list where they're located, and is filled with all sorts of sensational headlines that look like they belong in Weekly World News. And let me tell you, the story he was describing is the type of thing to make front page news locally and in surrounding counties...

 

I don't claim to be a genius. Heck, half the time I don't claim to be anything other than dumb. But man, sometimes I'm just left speechless at other people and how seemingly senseless they can be.

  • Like 10
  • Confused 1
  • Sad 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
18 minutes ago, kristof65 said:

His inability to do math aside, what the heck kind of game mechanic is that? 

Crappy, crappy, crappy ones.

 

His core concept was 'rolling against'.

 

The GM would secretly roll a D100 for the '01' of the roll, and then the player would 'roll against' that number - looking for his skill or under. So, if the GM rolled a 20 and the player had a 20 in his skill, he would be looking for a 20 to 40 to succeed.

 

So far, so good, but then the designer decided that 'close enough' would be the rule, both up and down.

 

Which made his encounter tables ridiculous - a 20% chance of an encounter actually being a 40%.

 

And his weather rolls had modifiers for the next roll - but always upwards, so over a month every PC ship sailed into harbor on a hurricane.... (That was my actual breaking point - the captain of any ship would have needed a 100+ skill for every major voyage.)

 

Basic failure in regards to number crunching.

 

The Auld Grump - the high point for me was when one of the PCs cast a teleport spell to go home - fumbled it, and turned himself inside out... in front of his mom. :blink: There was about a 10% chance of fumbling, which made any spell more difficult than lighting a campfire a lethal gamble....

  • Like 2
  • Confused 6

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, kristof65 said:

Honestly, I think a large part of it is how we teach math and arithmetic to kids. For most kids, I think math would be better taught by liberally disguising new concepts with other activities.

We do this in the early grades by having kids count blocks and stuff, but in later grades we strip it to the dry, uninteresting (to most) facts.  For most kids, math could be better taught with things like shop and science activity based classes, like launching model rockets, or designing and building papercraft models. 
 

 

Gaming is a really effective means of exercising maths. My maths have improved significantly because gaming.

That gaming - table-top RPGS, specifically, although I suspect some others may also exercise these - also teaches other useful skills makes me completely baffled on how people can so easily demonise it. It's not like it's video games where you don't really do anything but push buttons... you're interacting with people! Solving problems, as a group! Doing math! (very quickly, frequently in your head, with random numbers). Other skills that I can't think of right now because I just got up and I'm only half smart right now.

 

My math skills have not improved enough that I can make useful sense of percentiles, though. Adding the damn things makes my brain itch. Which is one of the reasons I'm happy to have math-capable people in my groups; if I can't work it out, one of them probably can. ^^;

  • Like 10

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
7 hours ago, Pegazus said:

 

Regarding math, I have to constantly remind me wife that she is indeed smarter than she thinks she is, or at least, compared to a lot of people when she's not in a mood to consider herself "smarter". While working on her store booth, she was asked by the store owner if she could pull out her phone for the calculator to find out what 25% of $100 was, since the store calculator was missing. She laughed at the "joke", then realized the owner wasn't kidding so simply told her $25. But the owner insisted on seeing it on the calculator. She finally obliged, and the owner was shocked and awed that my wife had actually managed to do it in her head.

 

And I wish I was simplifying those numbers, but I'm not. It was 25% of $100.

 

This is pretty much how yesterday's conversation with my daughters went.  They all scored well on their standardized English and Math tests last spring.  Including the high schooler, who was convinced she'd failed the English one because she got wound up about the written questions and her anxiety gave her massive writer's block, so she didn't complete all the questions.  This test is a pretty big deal since it's a graduation requirement, they kept giving her more time until she broke down crying.  Not only did she pass, she scored well above her school average, which is well above the state average, which is where the pass line is.  But she'll turn right around and say she's not good at English, because she's got an incredible ability to analyze text and her writing doesn't meet her own standards.  <_<  Parenting bright kids is hard.  

 

As for the educational value of gaming, I saw a little table run by Game To Grow at PAX.  They've got an RPG based curriculum to teach social skills to kids.  Seems like an idea people are warming up to.  

  • Like 12

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
4 minutes ago, Sylverthorne said:

 

Gaming is a really effective means of exercising maths. My maths have improved significantly because gaming.

That gaming - table-top RPGS, specifically, although I suspect some others may also exercise these - also teaches other useful skills makes me completely baffled on how people can so easily demonise it. It's not like it's video games where you don't really do anything but push buttons... you're interacting with people! Solving problems, as a group! Doing math! (very quickly, frequently in your head, with random numbers). Other skills that I can't think of right now because I just got up and I'm only half smart right now.

 

My math skills have not improved enough that I can make useful sense of percentiles, though. Adding the damn things makes my brain itch. Which is one of the reasons I'm happy to have math-capable people in my groups; if I can't work it out, one of them probably can. ^^;

Gaming would be an awesome one. Can you imagine how excited kids would be to go to school if they got to play games for a couple hours a day? 

  • Like 8

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I've tried using gaming to teach certain real life skills I think are important to my kids. You know, proper use of cover, fire discipline, don't piss off people/things that can crush you. But I'm not enthusiastic/pushy enough to keep them playing when they have to make the decisions and accept the consequences. If I had a dad like me that has tons of cool toys and wants to play games I'd have been in heaven. But while they will grudgingly play with me they prefer super mario and stuff like that where you're toughest decision is how fast to push the button. 

  • Like 9
  • Sad 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, kristof65 said:

Honestly, I think a large part of it is how we teach math and arithmetic to kids. For most kids, I think math would be better taught by liberally disguising new concepts with other activities.

We do this in the early grades by having kids count blocks and stuff, but in later grades we strip it to the dry, uninteresting (to most) facts.  For most kids, math could be better taught with things like shop and science activity based classes, like launching model rockets, or designing and building papercraft models. 

 

 

If all you have to do is teach basic arithmetic, that would probably work fine. 13 years from K-12 is a long enough time to teach that without working hard. But there are many things that actually need math, and teaching arithmetic in a way that is fun is not efficient enough for that.

 

A possible answer is to teach most kids arithmetic and put a few kids on the math track, but how would you choose which? This turns out to be really important, because if you don't teach the foundational math skills, you have essentially foreclosed any career that requires math for those kids. Do you want to make that decision in 4th grade?

 

FWIW, that's a real question, and it's a path that Germany, for instance, sort of follows. For the first four* years, all the kids follow the same general curriculum, then about a quarter of the kids are separated out to go to Gymnasium, which is basically a university track. The remainder are prepared for other jobs in a different track. As you might expect, the decision of which track the kid will end up on is very highly stressful. Their society works for them, but that society isn't the same as ours. I'm not at all sure I'd like that kind of early gating in our schools.

 

(To be fair, GTE kind of does that here, but it's not quite so locked down.)

 

* There are variations.

  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
40 minutes ago, Zink said:

I've tried using gaming to teach certain real life skills I think are important to my kids. You know, proper use of cover, fire discipline, don't piss off people/things that can crush you. But I'm not enthusiastic/pushy enough to keep them playing when they have to make the decisions and accept the consequences. If I had a dad like me that has tons of cool toys and wants to play games I'd have been in heaven. But while they will grudgingly play with me they prefer super mario and stuff like that where you're toughest decision is how fast to push the button. 

Well, Mario is a tad tougher than timing on buttons, especially if you get into some of the insane Mario Maker levels (just look at how badly Markiplier rages in some of the videos for example), but I do understand the point you're making. ^_^

  • Like 4

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

As a tangent on the math discussion, I have found that I am decent at grasping other languages with study. The thing I struggle with is doing math in another language. I tend to drop back into English for it.   

  • Like 6

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I think I'm gonna have to turn off the news for the weekend...

 

A friend I haven't seen in 20 years is coming to the city for DragCon, and we're getting together for breakfast on Sunday!!

 

And tomorrow I'm running D&D for my nieces and nephews! I... Should probably figure out what I'm actually running...

  • Like 9

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest
This topic is now closed to further replies.

×