More Second Life employee Rap Battles

Oh yes. The IRC Rap Battles continue at Linden Lab, creators of Second Life. My friend Bridie is in town, and we decided to bitchslap some suckah MCs…

Bridie:
I got so much chips I swear they call me Hewlett Packard
I got so much chips you can have a bag if you’re a snacker

Me:
Running on energy I stole from Half-Life
Too dark to see gotta use my keyboard backlight
Preying on newbies / I like to watch them break down
Running with Bridie / We start the grid they take down

Both:
Aww. Aw yeah.

Previous Linden Lab rap battles

Rearranging the books, playlists

I can’t sort out my head properly, so I’m sorting my books. Plover the cat and I are drinking red wine and water, respectively, and pacing the apartment listening to Motown.

I’m rearranging my books.

I’ve you’ve read Nick Hornsby’s book High Fidelity or seen the movie, you might remember Rob rearranging his record collection. Today is sort of that, but without the breakup.

When I have something big on my mind, usually related to self-definition, I become more interested in music and stories.

The music I listen to becomes Important. The books on my shelves become Me. I download. I read. I sort. I fuss and swap and graze over my books, looking for the right system. And through this, somehow, I describe myself to myself. Whatever is going on in my head benefits from the organization I’m doing with my hands.

I externalize this stuff because it’s easier than neurosurgery and cheaper than therapy.

Behold my books. They are arranged by priority, then color.

Nerdcore Rap Battles in which I have participated…

In my new role as a user experience goon at Second Life, I’m often called upon to participate in rap battles with other employees.

Because we’re all busy, rap battles tend to be text-only and asynchronous, conducted over IRC, twitter, or instant messenger.

Past themes have included: My prowess as a Developer, My (imaginary) Car, Linden Lab Office Culture, and Various Programming Languages.

Below are a few examples of my amazing rap power, mostly gleaned from IM logs. Enjoy responsibly, and please remember check yourself before you wreck yourself.

Killing jira issues like Rambo kills commies / Tasks and subtasks crying for their mommies /As&Os got me going mental / Yoz wants to rap but he’s too CONTINENTAL

Chillin wit’ Jonhenry / Talking ’bout JIRA / Drank me some coffee / Wish it was a beerah

open up email to try and cat-heard / 60 threads later / time is going backward / I just get in when wham! it’s lunch / wtf have I done besides data-crunch?

think you bad / ’cause you so much taller? / you may be blue / but I’m white collar / rollin’ in my office working on a search / you think you’re rapping but its SO MUCH WORSE

Kickin’ it smoove in my GTO / ops wants to have a meeting / but I’ve got ta go!

An Interview with Myself

Bowing to the demands of my own powerful curiosity, I have agreed to a give an exclusive interview to myself. My publicist disagrees with my decision, but I believe I have a strong connection with myself and I think I can be trusted to report my answers fairly.

tat3.jpgQ: Hello Erica. I’m glad you agreed to this interview. You have been pretty reticent with the press lately. What’s been going on?

A: There have been major changes in my life this year. I haven’t felt it was appropriate or respectful to write about them here.

Things have settled down a bit recently. I’m no longer engaged, and I’m living in rural Ithaca near some friendly horses and sheep.

Q: Wow. Do you want to talk about what happened?

A: No. Thank you.

Q: I hear you are moving to the Bay Area in the next few months?

A: I’ve been looking at the Bay Area and NYC as possible places to relocate. After visiting last week, I decided to move to San Francisco.

San Francisco is one of the geekiest, friendliest places I’ve ever been. The city is beautiful, I’ve got good friends, there are interesting projects, and I’ll be among my fellow dorks.

I’m really looking forward to learning the city, starting a new job, volunteering at 826 Valencia, and being immersed in the calm, weird, sunny West Coast atmosphere. Come visit. Bring chocolate babka.

Q: Where are you going to work?

A: An excellent question. I’ve interviewed at a few places where I would like to work. I will know more by next week. Stay tuned.

Q: Don’t you like Ithaca?

A: I love Ithaca and I adore my job at the Cornell Lab of Ornithology, which is why I’ve been here for four years.

However, that translates to about 40 years in Internet Time. It’s time for me to start a new project. I might return to Ithaca someday, once I’ve made my fortune. I’d like to live on a big farm with dogs, books, a wood stove, and all my friends.

Q: Ok. That covers the big topics. What else is going on?

A: I’m having the best year of my life. This weekend I swam in a waterfall, watched a turtle lay eggs, drove a sports car really fast, petted dogs, helped a friend find tractor parts, drank local beer, picked flowers, was charged by a deer, and met one of the first US African refugee coordinators who was working in Botswana in 1965.

Q: Well, thanks again for letting me interview you, Erica.

A: I’m welcome. Thank me.

Animal Recordings. Dotcom.

Eat my educational interactives baby! The Cornell University Lab of Ornithology project I designed won second place in Science magazine’s 2006 Visualization Challenge.

Plus, we were on the front page of Der Spiegel last week, so Germans love us!

What does this mean for you? It means you can now go online and visit the world’s largest collection of animal sounds and video. Listen to animal recordings and watch videos for free. Explore the crazy world of animal behavior.

Right now you can use Realplayer to listen to sounds, or you can download our plugin that lets you watch and manipulate spectrograms in real-time. Which has never been done before, incidentally.

So, to summarize, alligators, elk, robins, and whales, all online and free. Good? Go nuts. Version two should be out in a few months.

Hey Kids! Be a Librarian for Halloween

Target sells these INCREDIBLY accurate Librarian Halloween costumes in its online store.

Still, why spend $59.99 on a costume when we librarians can just open our closets and wear one of our many ALA-mandated cape/miniskirt combos?

Not to nitpick, but my book-skirt is a bit longer.

Update: Holy cow. Here’s another one.

Teenagers at the Library

Even nature sanctuary libraries have problems with unruly teenagers hanging around in the parking lot. These geese are at the awkward stage between being yellow fuzzy poofballs and tall feathery adults. As a result, they listen to emo music and wear heavy eyeliner. Someday they will grow up to be bankers. In the meantime they cause trouble and occasionally mess up cars.

Letter to the Deer that ate my Tulips

Dear Deer,
You may not remember me, but we met one evening after dinner. You had hopped into my backyard and were chewing on my rhododendrons. I had stepped outside to refill the bird feeder when our eyes met. I’ve always admired your grace and fortitude. Your ability to leap tall fences and survive harsh weather leaves me without doubt that you are a strong, adaptable animal.

Which brings me to the subject of the 45 tulips that were recently growing in front of my house. I don’t mean to imply that you are responsible for their recent disappearance, but the circumstances give me cause for concern. These tulips were from the Netherlands, brought to me as a gift, carted by hand through customs in an overloaded carry-on. Every day I looked to see how tall they had gotten. As they grew, I sprayed them with liquid capsaicin to make their leaves unpleasant tasting, not because I don’t trust you (because I do, deer) but to prevent any accidents. I didn’t want you to mistake my tulips for, say, the salad bar at Applebee’s.

This morning I woke to discover that all of the tulips had been eaten. Someone (and I don’t necessarily mean you, deer) had chewed them to the ground. If it’s not too much trouble, I wonder if you could describe for me your whereabouts during this event? I happened to notice some unusual footprints in the mud, a product of the rain which also washed off my pepper spray. They look cloven.

Would you mind clearing this incident up? I hate to bother you, but as you can see, the evidence is troubling.

Sincerely yours,
Erica