The System 342: Other Sports

My brother is a master of the Why Are You Hitting Yourself-athalon.

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The System 338: Important Questions

What would you ask your subconscious if you had the chance?

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The System 337: A History of Video Gaming

This one originally ran as a guest comic for Steve “Dueling Analogs” Napierski, and did pretty well for him making the rounds on Reddit and the like.  I couldn’t let him have all the fun, not to mention I wanted it somewhere in The System’s archive. An old addage says “the more things change, the more they stay the same”.  In this case, “the more things change, the more buttons you have to memorize”.  Sometimes less is more, simpler is better.

gaming_print

Oh, and what’s that? You want a print? It’s even for sale in the store, Hilariawesome.com!

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The System 336: Pat-rooms and Imblad-ance

Patrooms, Imbladance, and Skiffs.  3 more terms to add to the growing System lexicon. I’m beginning to think there should be a wiki for all this.

Sure puts the “toil” in toilet!

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The System 335: Robot Takeover

Dividing by zero is our ace in the hole. Remember that when your toaster has you backed into a corner.

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The System 334: Thread Theory

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The System 333: Full Gadget Ratio

UPDATE-UPDATE: I know what you’re thinking. The equation is crap! Here’s how you can help me fix it!

Everything you need to know to calculate the true size of the gadgets you carry. There are way more factors than you may have considered. I invite you to calculate yours, and post in the comments. Use standard metric system for all measurements. As for Planck’s Apple Constant (based on his original work on Planck’s Constant), everyone knows that’s a physical constant used to describe the size of the smallest iPod available used in the pricing of running arm bands and quantum mechanics.

Systemic Harris has helped us better define the Full Gadget Ratio, with an equation that has now been reflected in the above image. Here’s his breakdown:

On the FGR of Mobile Devices:

Clearly, FGR should be a measure of how bulky/inconvenient the object is, amortized over how useful it is. So:

FGR, the base term at first glance should be affine in S,A,B, as these all contribute more or less additively to bulkiness. T is an issue, though for now we can add it in as well. I see lots of people use S*T or some such, which is clearly not right, though my S+T isn’t much better. Really, the question is whether S is a volume, or the bulkiest dimension, or maybe, it’s the largest face divided by the opposite direction (screen size divided by thickness, say). The question is whether S should be a measure of useful dimensions vs. non-useful dimension, like the latter, or a general matter of how bulky something is to carry around, so a simple volume, or the bulkiest dimension. The interaction w/ T then plays into that. Not sure the best way to handle it. The most accurate would be to break S into the three dimensions and apply T directly, recomputing the volume, but that will complicate the device enormously. So for now we leave it linear.

If a device is twice as useful, it’s clearly functionally half as bulky, so divide by U.

Higher H makes it more useful, but how? On the one hand, H should essentially contribute to higher U, as you can’t use it if the battery is dead, so will use it more. But only past a point, as if it can do, say, 24 or 48 hours w/out recharge, it’s not an inconvenience to recharge every so often. So replacing 1/U by (1 + 1/H)/U is good for bulkiness, as low H decreases effective usefulness a lot, but past a point high H is diminishing returns.

Additionally, though, H plays off against A, as the longer it lasts w/out power the less you need to carry the power adapter around. So perhaps replace the A term by A/H, that is, the bulk of the adaptors is reduced by you maybe not needing to carry them around. Really this should be a threshold effect of some kind, though, where either you are carrying the adaptors around or you aren’t, so maybe multiply A by an appropriate shifted Heaviside function of H. Still, the linear approximation is ok for now. And of course, that you rolled chargers & adapters into the same category muddles the issue.

The worry factor increases bulkiness, presumably linearly. But, if newer versions are out, you don’t mind it breaking as much because you want to buy the new one. So there should be a W/N factor in there (where obviously we must count N as the number of generations at least as new as this one, to avoid division by 0). Again, though once it is old enough you don’t worry at all, but this shouldn’t go to 0, so it should be (1+ W/N).

And the constant should definitely be used as a multiplier, to get the units (whatever they are) to come out right.
So maybe:

FGR = (S + T + A/H + B) * (1+1/H)/U * (1 + W/N) * h, or reordered to look a little nicer

FGR = h(1+W/N)(1+1/H)(S+T+A/H+B)/U

This is why I outsource the really mathy stuff. It’s just easier that way.

UPDATE: As always, if you want a print of this comic (or any comic), they are all only $10 at our online store, Hilariawesome.com!

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The System 329: Titles

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The System 318: Shopping Terminology

We can now add Dejabvious, Retale and Internab to our growing list of The System’s rules and terms.

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The System 315: Snowkill 2009

It’s ridiculous out there, and nobody telling you “it’s gonna snow” can really prepare you for it.  Btw, if you’re talking about the snow (which I hope that you are), tag it with #snowkill2009 and spread the word. We’re making it a thing.

Btw, if you’re really cold, cut open a Tauntaun! Turns out I know the guy who came up with this. His name’s Christian and he’s the kickass designer over at ThinkGeek. I’m a little jealous of his job.

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