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Hello, world. I am Vas, and this is my private playground on the web, courtesy of Neocities. There are no comments, but you can get in touch through email and xmpp. I can read English, Ελληνικά, and 日本語. If you like, you can find lewd things over at AO3.
2020-10-17

emoji MeToo mechanical keyboard with super blacks (MemeToo)

The MeToo is a very cheap keyboard that you can buy on AliExpress. There is not much to be said about those keyboards, as they're usually marketted towards gamers and have very loud blue switches and gratuitous RGB. While they serve as good entry point into the mechanical keyboard market, they aren't very good and they tend to sound terrible, as if they use a special batch of blue switches that are even more intolerable than normal. As it so happens, one of the things I like the most is taking junk and improving it so that it's amazing, or at least significantly better. To that end, I bought the MeToo memeboard with the explicit purpose of spring swapping it and lubing it. I call it the MemeToo and it is here to #metoo your fingers.
2020-07-19

emoji Bad technology memes : save money, fuck hype

Technology is plagued by shitty, incomprehensible decisions by people who should know better. Accepting a shitty deal is something we all have done out of ignorance or hastiness and it is no grave sin. It is a different matter altogether if these decisions are backed by false ideas, because that way you will systematically keep accepting shitty deals. You aren’t even playing the lottery at that point. You’re playing a rigged lottery that’s always going to fuck you over. These shitty opinions are echoed by redditors and techtubers alike, but at least the techtubers get money out of it ; redditors only get ethereal internet points. In this article I will help save you big money that your « influencers » ignore because they don’t make for good clickbait.
2020-07-08

emoji JJ40 ortholinear keyboard build & review (Gateron Clears)

Recently I completed an ortholinear keyboard build using parts I got from AliExpress during their 10th year anniversary. As is well known, I approve of Chinese components and products for their value proposition and indie mindset. I got them for what I consider very low prices; a fully custom build like this will usually run you north of $100, and for the good stuff north of $200. However, for what I consider a medium-range build, I ended up paying under €50, which is great value and I suggest it to anyone who is willing to put in the time to assemble it by themselves. If you want to do it, you will need a soldering iron and solder, which you can order from AliExpress for cheap. Here’s my review of the components and some thoughts on the overall build.
2020-05-19

emoji Microtypography in LibreOffice

This is a guide to making your PDF or print look better in LibreOffice. This is focused on paginated, non-reflowable media. Most can be automated or improved upon through TeX or groff or Scribus, but more people are familiar with LibreOffice than them, so they’re more likely to use them through LibreOffice than learn new software. You can mimic the output of InDesign given time and effort. It’ll never be identical but it can be good enough that a layperson won’t tell the difference, and a professional will have only minor problems with it.
2020-04-22

emoji Joppiesaus asks anything

These are the answers to the “AMA” I announced the other day, which were all from Joppiesaus. Enjoy.
2020-03-29

emoji Custom keyboard layout with xkb and ibus (the poor man’s QMK)

This guide will help you create a custom keyboard layout in xkb and configure ibus to play along nicely. Effectively you can configure any key on your keyboard to do anything you want, for example output curly quotes, em dashes, and mathematical symbols or to use something besides QWERTY. After forcing ibus to cooperate, you can retain your layout even in your input method editor, for example to write Chinese or Japanese using Dvorak. This is also for my personal reference because documentation on this subject is scarce at best. It works for X11 (GTK, Qt, xterm, whatever). I don’t know about Wayland. 1586274573 article

emoji 5+1 ways to increase your productivity by 69,420%

It’s 5AM. Your eyes are sore staring at your screen. You’ve been power farming in World of Warcraft since… you don’t even remember when you started. You look down to your phone every so often so that you can take breaks by farming in Fate/Grand Order and stroking your peen a little to Shuten’s gloriously prepubescent thighs. In the back of your mind, you’re thinking: “man, wouldn’t it be nice if I were more productive?” I got you bruh. Hello and welcome to my self-help guide. I am Chad Thundercock, notorious self-made billionaire, CEO of my Silicon Valley company that I started with my own bare hands and a small loan of a million dollars from my dad. The only thing separating you and me are our habits, and if you became as productive as I am, you would be a billionaire yourself. That’s because the world is fair and exclusively rewards good habits, nothing else, and if you disagree you deserve homelessness. Join me on my wild ride and gradually we’ll lift the bottom 99.9% to the top 0.1% with me so that we can all be the top 0.1% together, just so long as you remember that I’m above you. 1586468519 note emoji First episode of Fate/kaleid liner prisma Illya but it fits in a discord attachment (8MB). 2-pass vp9, 24kb/s, 256×144, 10FPS, opus mono 16kb/s with low pass filter. Barely watchable, albeit not pleasant. At this compression, you can fit all One Piece episodes in a single dual layer DVD.
2020-03-21

emoji Ajazz AK33 mechanical keyboard mod log

Late 2018 I bought a very cheap mechanical keyboard from Aliexpress. Since then, I’ve performed various modifications on it to improve its feel and sound, and basically make it less craptastic overall. I was a beginner when I did these and I appreciated beginners’ guides, so this is me giving back to the community.
2020-02-17

emoji Sell your NAS: Store all your anime in your pocket

I keep reading about these extremely complicated schemes you people set up in order to store all your Chinese child pornography cartoons, with ZFS arrays spanning terabytes in the double digits, and of course running on AMD© Ryzen™ Threadripper® CPUs℠. Let’s not talk about the hoops you jump through to ensure uptime by securing your power delivery, network, and of course security from random Chinese ssh hacker bots. Today, I have good news for you. I have solved the anime storage problem for good, and by “good” I mean “for the next decade”. Forget 100% of the bullshit tedious file system and networking tasks that have given you lots of anxiety and very little anime. Actually forget about partitions; you should just mkfs.bcachefs /dev/sda raw without even a partition table. Sell 👏🏻 your 👏🏻 NAS 👏🏻
2019-12-16

emoji Buy Ryzen

Computer hardware, and in particular consumer PC hardware is plagued with a particular brand of parasite: corporate shills. Whether it is because they enjoy Intel’s fat paychecks, or to rationalise spending hundreds on Core i5s, on silly 4 thread 14nm+++++++++++++++++ nodes, they will argue against reason that you should not buy Ryzen, because fuck you. This is sheer quackery and it deserves to be mocked— nay, it deserves to be gas gulagged. In 2019, AMD CPUs are the objectively superior purchase at every desktop price point, from dirt poor to filthy rich, from normie to enthusiast, for productivity and for gaming. Intel apologias work by: a) undervaluing multi-core performance, b) blowing single-thread gains out of proportions, and c) not considering externalities. This leads to comical results such as a 4 core 4 thread Core i3 8350K “outperforming” an 8 core 16 thread Ryzen 2700X, even though the Ryzen is significantly better and also cheaper.
2019-11-07

emoji 11/11 China Master Race Deals

This is a time-sensitive post about the best deals you can find on Aliexpress by exploiting discounts and Dear Leader’s transportation network, assuming you don’t care about shipping time and warranties. Neocities saves you hosting costs and now regular spending costs too!
2019-10-27

emoji Communism won’t fix incels

Communism, and more broadly egalitarianism, is based on the principle of eradicating the distinctions of class between people, in particular focusing on wealth, but also including gender and race and so on. Incels are people—mostly men—who want to get laid but can’t. In particular, blackpilled incels have an ideology vaguely similar to MGTOW, that in addition to incelibacy includes critique of women’s behaviour, often harshly spoken. There is a belief in left-wing circles that incels will be fixed by left-wing policies, but I think this is divorced from the truth, and in fact they will exacerbate the problem.
2019-10-10

emoji Emacs for writing, 2019 edition

I used to have some tips and tricks for writing in Emacs, but that article no longer exists. I spent the first 6 months of this year giving Atom and VS Code a serious try for coding and writing, and after that I took a short break and returned to vim/neovim. Now I’m back to Emacs, with an entirely new configuration, and these are hacks I use every day to make writing easier. This isn’t an Emacs tutorial. init.el here
2019-10-10

emoji Heatmap in LibreOffice Calc

Heatmaps are a data visualisation technique where values are arranged in a grid and then shaded according to their values. If you’ve seen the GitHub commit heatmap, you know what I’m talking about. You can replicate it in LibreOffice Calc, so that you can see whatever data you want in a heatmap; how many hours you’ve spent being productive, how many words you’ve written, and how often you’ve told someone to kill themselves.
2019-09-29

emoji LG 25UM58-P 25″ ultrawide monitor review

I recently upgraded from my crap-tastic and ageing Samsung Syncmaster T220HD monitor, which after years of use and abuse was really beginning to show its problems. I was fine when my previous and even current smartphone had better colour accuracy, but what started grinding my gears was the crap-tastic Chinese tablet (review coming soon™) that I snagged for free €100 having a better display. It was so old it wasn’t even Full HD; that should tell you something. So when the backlight finally started flickering and it looked like it was on its last legs, I bit the bullet and got myself a proper ultrawide Chad monitor to get into the productivity meme. This isn’t my first encounter with this display, as I have suggested it for a friend and he liked it, but I found it at the unbeatable price of €139 and couldn’t resist any longer. If you can find it at a similar price, I strongly suggest it; ultrawide isn’t a meme.
2019-09-28

emoji Abbreviation mode: write smarter, not faster

Since the invention of the typewriter, people have had only one method to input text faster: actually typing faster. Think about how dumb this is. Your average mechanical keyboard has more transistors than supercomputers used to have, and all that we’ve managed to do with this power is making it more comfortable to press the same dumb QWERTY keys that our grandparents did. Software advancements like speech recognition are only sidestepping the problem that if you have a lot of text to type and want to do it on a keyboard, there’s very few things to help you besides your physical ability as a typist. If you’re into transcription, you’ve probably heard of stenotypes, which, with practice, will allow you to write in excess of 200 words per minute. However, stenotypes, and their software emulators, are mostly aimed at professionals in courtrooms and such, and are effectively entirely new keyboard layouts, with everything that means for computer accessibility. We’ve all heard what’s happened with the supposedly superior Colemak and Dvorak layouts; nobody actually uses them. Luckily, there is salvation: abbreviations.
2019-09-03

emoji Fix the internet in one fell swoop

It is no secret that the web is plagued by bloat, malware and cancer. Despite numerous attempts and conferences, the problem remains and is worsening by the day. The web design community, instead of solving the problem the proper way, is instead doubling down on its pathological behaviour with more frameworks, boilerplate generators and compilers. All of us, including web developers, are aware that faster, lighter websites are superior both for the maintainer and for the user, and yet the industry refuses to adapt. Hell, it is adapting in the opposite direction. We have seen these issues in the past with leaded gasoline and tobacco, and of course presently with net neutrality and climate change. It is a market failure, and considering how much electricity is spent powering the internet, it is of paramount importance that we fix it for the ecological impact alone. As with all market failures, there is but one solution: brutal government intervention. Although I would love to throw every webshit into an unironic, nonmetaphorical and literal gas gulag, today we shall explore a less genocidal, peaceful alternative: money.
2019-08-19

emoji Javascript isn’t slow. Webshits are slow.

Javascript made the web slow and bloated. Javascript is a disaster. I could go on and on about the shitty opinions of proggitors, whose collective IQ is less than my shoe size, but really there is nothing to expect from a community which mindlessly flames everything that isn’t Java or C#. I have long maintained it isn’t Javascript that’s slow, it’s your dumb arse, and today I will back up my claim with a case study: the twist.moe front page, and specifically the search bar. Go ahead, try it out; you’ll notice it’s pretty slow. You have a quad core, 3+ GHz beast, and it can’t even do autocomplete decently: what is the problem? Overengineering.
2019-07-14

emoji I respect women

I respect women. I respect them in the morning, and I respect before I sleep. I respect them in my dreams. I respect them when I’m eating breakfast, I respect them in the toilet, I respect them with each breath, I respect them with every thought. Not a moment goes by that I don’t respect women. I live to respect women. I’d die to respect women, but if I was dead, I wouldn’t be able to respect women, so I don’t die. Every day, I wonder what I could do to respect women more. I respect women. All women, I respect.
2019-04-12

emoji The Redpilling of the Shield Hero

Fresh off last season’s “controversy” with Goblin Slayer comes another ”controversy” with a fantasy series, and it’s about rape again! There’s edge, there’s waifus, and of course, my favourite genre: isekai! Oh joy! I’m not even going to pretend I had any interest in watching this were it not for the drama and I won’t repeat ad nauseam why I hate this trope. What you’re really interested in is whether it’s worth the watch even discounting the drama, and the answer is yeah, pretty much.
2019-03-06

emoji The first 1000 words

While you incels have been spending your time browsing Neocities cause you’re bored, whining about nostalgiamining, and recreating the premium reading experience of Cuckernoon, true Chads like myself have been taking the Neocities experience to the logical endgame: buttsex learning Japanese. That’s right boyos. If you thought static websites were only useful for edgelords to fuck around and post their hot takes, it’s time to have your minds blown and your eggplants inflated. This is the guide to the first 6-9 months. Strap yourselves in.
2019-02-19

emoji Spoiler Hearts III

Well over a decade in the making, the conclusion to the Kingdom Hearts story has arrived. The game, the movement, the voice of a generation, it speaks straight to your soul like a bowl of spaghetti served with rice and a loaf of bread—and absolutely nothing else. Sora will journey through many worlds to awaken all the hearts that are using his body like a Trump hotel and leave you with more questions than you arrived with.
2019-01-12

emoji Kill all programmers

I am paranoid. It’s not to the level of psychosis, but it’s definitely to an abnormal degree. If you’ve any interest whatsoever in computer security, privacy settings, cryptography and the like, you almost definitely are paranoid as well. I can’t offer you any data, but if you don’t believe me, spend any time whatsoever in computer security-related communities; you will find no shortage of people so paranoid they can’t even socialise like normal human beings. I can relate, and I can even see myself becoming as dysfunctional as they are. I loathe spyware with a burning intensity. I wish death on the people who write it, for they enable abject oppression; they are the enemies of humanity, and I don’t sympathise at all with rationalisations about their profit motive—my human rights are more important than your income. After a decade of learning how to protect myself from all those out to get me, I realised I’d lost before the fight had begun.
2019-01-06

emoji Soyboy Slayer

While everyone’s busy fighting the darned Russians or North Koreans or Iranians, our society is facing a graver, invisible menace. An army of nu-males, facial hair sparse and testicles receded, gurgling soylent and threatening our way of life from within. They roam the lands in hordes, chanting strange rites as they wave the Nintendo Switch controller: “sweaty”, “yikes”, “maybe, just maybe”, “let’s unpack this”, “doggo”, “wifey”, and of course “I’m fine with my girlfriend cheating on me with that guy from Tinder because she needs to have her needs met and loyalty is but a construct of the cisheteropatriarchy.” Only one man stands against them, armed with nothing but the memes in his mind and the black pill in his heart: St. BlackOps2Cel Goblin Slayer.
2018-12-29

emoji Transcode all your animu for your shitty phone, TV

You finally got yourself a new phone and you think it would be a good idea to watch some weeb shit on the go. Likewise for your new Smart TV. However, woe is you, because there is format incompatibility: though your OS supports MKV, H.264, ASS, and FLAC or AAC, the file doesn’t seem to be playable. Luckily you’re reading the blog so you won’t kill yourself in desperation.
2018-12-01

emoji Decentralisation will fail

Modernity claims another victim: Google Hangouts. Google is on the deathmarch towards outdoing even Yahoo for the company that’s killed off the most services, not that Yahoo is doing bad for itself: tumblr is in the process of purging much of its content as we speak. I’mma give it to you straight: the longer this goes on for, the more of your “beloved” services you’ll see censored or shut down for profit. That’s because most of these services are directly tied to the company’s stock price, or even worse, rely on ads and venture capital (itself relying on ads) to be financially solvent. Since the ad industry is a bubble matched only by bitcoin, the situation is bound to get worse, and decentralisation will not be the solution.
2018-11-15

emoji Intelligent use of negative space

Following a very intellectual discussion with mariteaux, I present to you my magnum opus, an intelligent use of negative space, quite unlike the default tumblr theme. The following body text is the lolicon article on fanlore, the fannish history preservation wiki.
2018-11-13

emoji Ajazz AK33 mechanical keyboard review

In the past couple of years, I’ve had to move a fair bit of furniture, more than the rest of my life combined. I already wasn’t a big fan of furniture, but god damn it, I absolutely loathe it now. I don’t like stuff. I don’t know when I first started hating stuff so much, but I guess after moving and redecorating a few times, I came to realise how annoying owing too much crap can truly be. I’ve become a minimalist. I want to compactify my life, and the best way to start is with the stuff you already use. The first one on my list was my keyboard.
2018-11-08

emoji House of Cucks

It is done. It’s finally the very last season. After much drama and figuring out that Kevin Spacey is one of us, we have arrived to the conclusion of this tale, one last arc to the most notorious political thriller of this decade, the sixth season of House of Cards, the one where this shoddy construction will come tumbling down, where all the Xanatos gambits will— YO IMMA LET YOU FINISH, BUT WOMEN ARE STUNNING AND BRAVE, CAN YOU SPARE A MOMENT OF YOUR TIME TO DISCUSS HOW WE MUST RESPECT WHAMEN?
2018-10-28

emoji How Some Geopolitics Carried the Novel (vol. 2)

I’m back at it again with the franchise that nobody wished to have more of. That’s right, my dudes and dudettes, it’s the second volume of Realist Hero, the light novel that made me reconsider life with its literary brillia— Ah, who the fuck am I kidding; it was terrible and I wish I had never read it. Deeper we now go into this isekai madness, the worst genre of them all, the turd that keeps on smelling, even as the industry descends ever deeper into the bowels of creative constipation. Perhaps having finished a novel will give the author sufficient retrospective to make the second one less bland. Spoiler: that happens.
2018-10-11

emoji WebAssembly isn’t the Messiah

I’ll keep this as short as I can so subhuman vermin redditors can comprehend it. WebAssembly doesn’t solve the problems you think it solves. WebAssembly won’t magically improve the web. WebAssembly won’t eliminate the pathologies of modern web design, and in fact it’s likely to exacerbate them.
2018-09-02

emoji Turd Emblem: Fated for Flushing

The Fire Emblem franchise has arguably been in hot water since the SNES era, and definitely since the GBA era. What used to be a rich, complicated tactical RPG regressed with Fire Emblem 6’s back to roots philosophy, and it’s been trying to claw its way back ever since. Though some improvements were made, the regressions didn’t stop, instead growing like a malignant tumour, soon to encompass story and characterisation as well. The 14th instalment of the series, coming off the success of Awakening, was supposed to fix all that was wrong with that game, by bringing back complexity to the game, and also a professional author to give us a compelling story. What a nice world that would have been if it were true.
2018-07-14

emoji Why do people like Rem?

If you ask around the retardosphere, people explain that Rem is adored by the fandom because she’s a cute maid with lots of screen time, a stereotype of a demure waifu, a trophy wife for a protagonist imprisoned by heteronormative masculinity, and a power fantasy for incel misogynerds escaping the friend zone. This is, as they say, not even wrong, to the point where I doubt I watched the same series as those “critics” and “analysts”. If you buy into that logic, you should kill yourself, and here’s why.
2018-07-01

emoji Lame Geass: Lelouch of the Disappointment

Code Geass is my favourite franchise in all of media. I’ve watched it almost a dozen times over the years, and it never fails to disappoint. If you think about it, it’s the perfect series for me. It’s insanely edgy, explicitly political, utilitarian propaganda, full of incest, and it romanticises paedophi— I mean, it empowers flat-chested maidens to feel comfortable and attractive in their own bodies. Some people say the Bible is the ultimate work of art; others say it’s Atlas Shrugged. For me, it’s this weeb garbage. Over a decade later, I still look back to it for its insights in ethics, politics, the human condition, and art itself; perhaps the most pivotal work of fiction for me. So when I heard of the new theatrical releases, I had insufficient scepticism as to whether film is an appropriate format for Code Geass’ narrative.
2018-05-21

emoji Bi:POLAR ✨Getting Diagnosed in a Different World with Bipolar Disorder✨

Why, would you look at the time! It's weeb o'clock! Have you noticed that every anime series as of late is an adaptation of some sort? Re:ZERO is another one of those, and it's our favourite trope as well: getting transported in a 〜different world〜. Wait, I mean, 〜getting a harem〜. I'm starting to get things mixed up, but don't worry, it's no biggie, because Re:ZERO has all of our favourite tropes and the kitchen sink. Getting war flashbacks yet? OD on your meds and strap yourselves in for a joy ride through the Vas theme park, where up is down and down is even more down, in our quest to answer but one question: should we KILL ALL JOURN— is Re:ZERO a waste of time? <insert-polarisation-pun-here>
2017-12-07

emoji Reddit Circlejerk Comments

These are my best comments on reddit until I deleted my account. Almost all of them are from technology-related circlejerks, so they're meant to be read as parodies. Enjoy.

2017-11-10

emoji How a Bland Hero Bored the Kingdom (vol.1)

A while back, Anpan on the anime conference suggested I read Realist Hero, as part of my curiosity about Japanese young adult genre fiction (light novels). Of course I am aware of Spice and Wolf and such, but I figured it would be a better idea starting off with something less insanely well-known. Realist Hero is part of the "warped in an another world" trope, which is the sensation that's taken over Japan for the past five years or so. Works in this genre are a dime a dozen; Sword Art Online is perhaps the most well known of these. The trope has become so insanely stale and uninspiring, the best way to describe it is taking a look at the Hollywood horror genre, which has produced nothing but utter, irredeemable garbage for the past 30 years, with exceptions you can count with one partially amputated hand. It's so bad some publishers straight up ban this trope. Predictably, Realist Hero is bad.
2017-09-29

emoji Zuk Z2 Review

In June, I was looking for a phone for my sister, when I stumbled upon the Zuk Z2. At this point, my own phone had been falling apart. Pieces of the body were falling off because they were adhered to it instead of being part of it; a terrible idea, by the way, and shame on Sony for going with it. Performance was questionable at best and always had been, especially in web browsing, which in retrospect should be expected from the shitty SoC. Most importantly, the antenna was problematic, so that any momentary loss of signal (which could happen anytime) was misinterpreted as a SIM card failure, and the software would raise its hands in surrender until the device was rebooted and it could try again, a process that took 2+ minutes. The ageing Lollipop software didn't help. It was time for an upgrade. Or, well, two months later, I guess.