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The Bones Blog


Rule 3: Be Concise

Posted by bonesiii , Apr 07 2011 · 68 views

How to Disagree Well: Rule 3: Be Concise

Continuing my explanation of how to disagree well, today I'll look at rule 3. I know, it might seem so obvious there's no point in elaborating -- but there's a very important point here that might not seem obvious from a first glance that I think many BZPers need to hear. smile.gif

To restate, the four rules are:

How to Disagree Well

1 Listen fairly
2 Avoid negative labels
3 Be concise
4 Speak your mind

Important points are bolded for optional skimming.

Let's jump right into the less obvious point first.

And that is the issue of semantics.

Many times I have encountered people who try to argue their perspective by picking out a key word in an opponent's argument, and nitpicking it to death, trying to argue to redefine it unnaturally, etc. But at the end of the day, they miss that the opponent was simply using the obvious, plain-English definition of the word. They spend a ton of words to really, in the end, just restate the exact same concept but with tons more words, and to try to enforce an awkward ban on using plain English.

Bad idear. tongue.gif

Instead, we should try to relax and read people's posts for how they probably obviously mean them, and almost take it on ourselves as a moral that we try to use and appreciate Plain English with a Capital P and E. tongue.gif If you're unsure how they meant it, ask, etc.

That said, there IS such a thing as a poor word choice.

But just to use two examples from recent topics (names shall not be included here), someone seemed to try to argue how to define down the exact details of the words "MOCability" and someone else did the same for the word "poseability". They came across as trying to arbitrarily ban some concepts from counting, so that others couldn't use those words to describe those concepts, based on their own personally preferred emphasis on other concepts.

Neither are exactly normal English words. But if you relax and just ask "what do they mean by that?" you can intuitively understand what they meant by them.

And word definitions are determined by usage anyways -- any dictionary will usually list multiple meanings for any given word, for example, and new develop all the time.

What these members really meant was to simply say "I don't care personally as much about those aspects of MOCability or poseability; I focus more on these other aspects" and then list them. That could concisely get the point across without appearing to be argumentative.

I don't blame those members for missing this. Instead I try to explain in this entry what the better way would have been. =D

And the point is, in the end they spent many more words to say what could have been said with a few. Making walls of text. tongue.gif

The elaborations were interesting -- don't get me wrong. There's nothing super wrong with this as long as everybody is civil and in the end they all realize what I just said up there. At the very least it can generate more posts, lol.

But in practice, most people don't end up realizing that in the discussion and this is a good way for things to get antagonistic fast. People really don't like it when someone not only disagrees (which is their right), but appears to be trying to take even their own words away from them. It feels unfair to them, and for good reason, and many people don't know how to react to it. So they get angry.

So avoid it yeah? happy.gif

Now -- you're probably shouting at the screen right now, "but bones, but bones, professors hate plain English? Should I be super concise and use only Plain English words in my term paper due tomorrow?"

Well... yes and no.

Frankly, a lot of teachers/professors have an attitude about the English language that isn't logical. They have an emotional desire to preserve "Standard Proper [read fancy-schancy tongue.gif] English." And they loathe casual tones in papers.

That said, it's their class.

Let's just say I didn't get on the Dean's List at my college and get almost all As by putting this philosophy of mine into practice in school. tongue.gif That matters, so if you want the grade, do it their way.

Also, there's something understandable and easy to sympathize with about someone wanting to preserve the variation of English they personally love.

I put it in terms of dying languages. It's sad that knowledge of these languages is dying out and there's something admirable in someone who wants to preserve knowledge of it. That could be important for many reasons besides just cultural enrichment (okay, not really much enrichment in Professorspeak... but that's my bias maybe). At the very least, knowledge of past languages, dialects, or Standard Proper versions can help go back and understand things written in history, etc.

Plus even I agree with Profersorspeak folks about certain rules of grammar which when violated make for harder-to-understand communication or just silly looking mistakes. (Like "there" versus "their" or using the apostrophe s when you mean plural.) There's something to be said for professionalism even while using Plain English.

All that said, I do hope that one day Plain English will be embraced as Standard Proper English, along with a well-educated understanding of the benefit of immediately embracing the ongoing crafting of newer and better words and uses of words. While simultaneously documenting past incarnations of all speech and people learning old words just for variety, etc. smile.gif The internet and computers are making that closer to a reality even as I type, heh.

Beyond focusing on using Plain English (where currently appropriate, like on BZP posts where it's just casual discussion smile.gif), you can also be concise by being careful not to just repeat the same idea over and over.

(Unless, possibly, you see that in discussion people missed that point, for example; it can be useful to repeat just that idea again, taking it out of all the other distracting points you'd previously raised.)

I for example have a really bad habit (yeah, I know you know tongue.gif) of saying the same idea three different ways throughout a post. Usually 'cuz I'm just typing on the fly and I kinda forgot I'd said it lol. And in my mind I DO think of many different ways to word it -- and that's good. But at the end of the day, often it's better to pick the most effective one and cut the rest, versus showing people multiple facets of it (though that has its uses wink.gif) and losing them due to Wallotextitis.

Another very helpful idea is to watch your paragraph lengths and the "meter" of them. Paragraphs beyond four lines get very hard for human eyes to read. Break them up.

Also, the occasional one-liner paragraph or nearly so makes posts much easier to read. And feel concise.

Often what I do is I write a post, then I first go back and ask "does this paragraph have Wallotextitis? Yes, cut it up." Then I'll notice "hey, now the whole post seems long." And since it's now split up, it's easier for ME to see where I've repeated myself, and which wording I like best. Then I cut. Reorganize to improve the logicoemotive flow of it, and cut it so both the paragraphs AND the overall length are short. Ish. tongue.gif

For spoken equivalent, it's basically something you gotta learn as you gain experience, how to do a mental equivalent of this before you speak. Develop an intuitive sense of the most concise ways to say things -- that'll help ALL your communication. smile.gif

And if you're still saying "But you've said HOW to be concise, now WHY?" at this point... that's basically it. Wallotextitis.

It's a Plain English made-up word that describes the reason. Get it? 'Cuz I'm not gonna bother using it to explain it further. tongue.gif

------------THIS ENTRY BROUGHT TO YOU BY------------


Spoiler Tag Notice & Glitch Solution

Posted by bonesiii , Mar 30 2011 · 44 views
NOTICE: "Tag doesn't work for me" is NOT an excuse not to use it. For spoiler tags to work for you, you must use the "default" skin, NOT the "default blue" skin. That is most likely the problem if they're not working for you. Even if it isn't, you MUST use the spoiler tag as the policy outlines for others' sake. See here for more.

A lot of people seemed to need this notice, so just posted a new rule explanation topic in S&T, and the above notice text has been edited into the Complete BZPower Spoiler Policy and One-Stop S&T rules topic. Figured to post a blog entry about it too juuuust to make sure lotsa folks see this. happy.gif

------------THIS ENTRY BROUGHT TO YOU BY------------


Rule 2: Avoid Negative Labels

Posted by bonesiii , Mar 24 2011 · 117 views

How to Disagree Well: Rule 2: Avoid negative labels

Continuing the elaboration on my simple four-rule theory on effective disagreement, today I'll look at Rule 2.

This is one that I think a lot of people could really use a better understanding of and to seriously experiment with putting it into practice. smile.gif It's probably the most radically unusual concept in these four rules, and since I've tried using it almost universally about a year ago the results have been profoundly positive so I really hope people read this, if nothing else. happy.gif

To restate, the four rules are:

How to Disagree Well

1 Listen fairly
2 Avoid negative labels
3 Be concise
4 Speak your mind

Important points are bolded for optional skimming.

Okay, so what do I mean by "negative labels"?

Obviously, direct flaming would count under that. Flaming is essentially extremely negative labelling of someone or their actions without merit. A synonym is insulting. The problem is, different people, even experts on the concept of insulting, have different ideas about exactly where the line is drawn -- so everybody arbitrarily draws the line in different places.

This causes all kinds of trouble beyond the problems with the insults themselves; this disagreement about where the line is.

One thing most people agree on (which this rule actually challenges to some extent) is the idea that you can negatively label someone or an action without it being a clear insult.

However, in my experience, true as that might be, when I strive to always try to find more positive ways to word things (i.e. a mistake instead of an evil action, or dislike / disagree with instead of hate), the results are almost always better.

More on why I think this is in a moment, but first a caution.

Notice that I said "avoid".

Avoid does not mean "never label anything as a negative." There is a serious danger to just going around pretending everything's okay when it isn't. The stock example is, if you see a kid about to eat poison, it isn't harmful to label that action as bad (and try to stop the kid from eating it). If the kid really eats the poison, something bad really will happen even if people were to oddly try to label it positively. The loving person would of course want to stop that.

There thus has to be some line where something really is a negative.

But... that said, what if we usually misjudge where that line is? Most examples are murkier than the kid with poison case.

One negative we should all be able to agree on is that all humans are capable of making mistakes and misjudgements. And we all have, at least if we've lived long enough to be reading this. tongue.gif

So my advice is for all of us to increasingly challenge our own thinking, asking ourselves, "is this negative label I'm using here really judging the line in the best way?" Don't let pride force you into a rut where you have to continue on as you did before, or always defend whatever you've said before just because you've said it or you fear you might look bad if you admit you did something right (I've said a lot more about this in the past; it's what I call "The Confidence Trap").

Another important concept to remember is the difference between the realms of objective facts and morals -- and the subjective realms of personal taste.

Something subjective can honestly feel "very bad" to someone. But we often make an understandable slip-up by wrongly assuming that means (per se tongue.gif) that it's also morally or objectively wrong. (I.e. "LEGO should change this because I personally dislike it" which ignores that other people have their own tastes too. Honestly right now I think BZP mostly has this lesson learned well, though -- but from time to time newer members and the like can use a reminder. happy.gif)

This rule would argue strongly against using such harsh negative labels, even for things we personally dislike. This can have benefits to the self -- it causes you to dwell less on negativity and have a more open mind. You might even find that the thing you thought about "hating" but now merely "dislike" is actually growing on you!

But more to the point, you might actually 'hate' it, but people reading your posts (hearing you speak, etc.) might misunderstand and think you are hating anyone who has that personal taste. So it's best to use more sensitive words like "dislike."

I know. I know. That feels so wrong to many people for various reasons. So many times I've run into people who basically look at this as downright silly, saying (for example) "I just dislike that toy" when you feel like you hate it. And it can be hard to change from being very negative to being very positive overnight. People I consider close friends just detest having to be polite. And I respect that attitude. I get it. I've been there.

So I cannot in good conscience tell everybody you absolutely must do this "right now" or even ever per se. I don't know everything; maybe there's a time or a place (or a speaker tongue.gif) for it.

I just know that for me, when I don't follow this rule well I have concluded that I myself suffer, and I spread suffering to others... who are then much more likely to feel negatively and not friendly towards me, thus I end up suffering twice over. I am ashamed how often I have pushed people away on here who I admire, just by using so many negative labels in disagreeing with them. I sometimes almost wish I had gone around trying to agree with everyone just so I wouldn't lose them as friends (tried that too though and it usually just lets the bad ideas and emotions fester and worsen; more on that for Rule #4 with scientific backup smile.gif). It still torments me, because I see scars of my past failures still around despite my trying hard to reform my actions.

So think about it, yeah? smile.gif

In any event, this rule is vague for a reason -- "avoid", but avoid however much you feel comfortable with, for now.

About drawing the line somewhere, I've concluded from experience that the line (of what is negative that should be avoided, not what to call flaming per se, to be clear) is basically twofold: 1) Things your taste cause you to dislike, using gentle words in describing your dislike, and 2) Things you think are harmful to someone else as a moral mistake, using wordings that make that important distinction clear; that it's a mistake, unwise, etc. rather than evil or whatnot.

Yes, there are things that are evil. That line's easy to draw in fiction, for example; there's no harm in saying "Makuta was evil; Greg confirmed it". But in real life... basically we're not telepathic and in most cases I now believe it's better to avoid calling it evil. The reason is, using a negative label like that on someone who's too far gone to come back makes sense... but it's so hard to know who can come back from evil and who cannot, yeah? You might be unwittingly making evil more likely to get worse or at least continue by appearing to imply someone can't reform from it.

(Obviously, if you're in a life or death situation, that is generally different... although caution is often important there too. But a soldier deciding whether an enemy will shoot first if the soldier doesn't is different from the vast majority of other human experiences, where there's really no reason you MUST leap to the negative judgements.)

Also, there is a very real, but little known psychological phenomenon in which by labelling something negative (usually with the intent of saying "hey, you're doing something wrong, fix it"), you can actaully MAKE it true, even if it wasn't, or at least solidify its truth.

In other words, the person you're talking to often reacts -- even if subconsciously -- "So I'm [insert negative label here], am I? Okay. I'm fine with what I am, so I'm [insert label again]. And I'll stubbornly stick to it without even considering that I MIGHT be wrong."

I like to call this "painting."

It's called that often in common parlance, but people usually miss what it implies. Just like if you took a paintbrush and slapped paint on someone -- the paint would stick -- by applying that label, you can very easily do the opposite of trying to remove the label. You don't remove paint by adding more of the same paint. smile.gif

Just two more major points left.

I have noticed soooo many times that someone who goes around using negative labels to try to at least make others see why they have their perspective -- if not convince others to agree with them -- fail miserably at convincing anyone. I've often wondered why this is -- and I've suffered it myself of course -- and I think I finally get it.

It basically has two causes. One emotional, one logical.

Point number one -- when people see you behaving so negatively (sometimes even while trying to argue for positive things!), subconsciously they think "this guy is miserable. I don't want to be like that. So I will disagree."

Now that's not logical. That's not necessarily good "truthseeking." BUT it's a real psychological phenomenon, and fighting it is like fighting nature, yanno?

But in this case, it actually has a logical grounding.

Point two: The logical fallacy of Ad Hominem. Logic actually teaches that negatively labeling something does not logically argue for the labeler's conclusion. Now, caution: this doesn't necessarily mean the conclusion is wrong, merely that the reasoning used to reach it is wrong. There could be other reasoning all the people involved are missing that would prove the same conclusion.

But when people see a logically invalid argument -- even when they aren't well educated in logic; these principles are built into the human psyche -- they're a lot less likely to agree with your conclusion even if their concern is logic rather than emotion.

So here's where I end up with this. I do NOT tell you that this is necessarily the best way or say "do this."

Instead I'd like yall to think of it like a challenge or an experiment. Try it! See if it works for you! And try it ever increasingly so, over a long time. Don't give up on it if it doesn't seem to be working right away -- it could be you're just not being quite positive enough. I betcha it can work for anybody. biggrin.gif

Comment thoughts (FTR, no mentioning of specific people involved in examples of such mistakes, okay?), questions, concerns, etc. smile.gif Next entry on being concise probably will be up next week. Already have it written.

------------THIS ENTRY BROUGHT TO YOU BY------------


Ldd4 Bionicle Contest

Posted by bonesiii , Mar 23 2011 · 116 views
Bionicle Paracosmos

So, in the interests of this blog not being entirely dead, I'm launching another blog contest. tongue.gif

This one will be very simple, with rules designed already into the program LEGO Digital Designer 4. I love using this program and watching the upload gallery, but Bionicle MOCs are rarely made with it. Of course, it doesn't have many Bionicle pieces, but what about something like a Playsets location? There's all kinds of possibilities.

So for this contest, you are charged to use LDD4 to make Bionicle locations, nonstandard beings (example: Morbuzahk, who didn't have the typical Bionicle pieces style), objects, vehicles, etc.

This is, like all my other MOC contests, a Bionicle Paracosmos contest; so the winning MOCs will be used in future fanfics of mine in that series. smile.gif


1) Yes, you must use the current version of LDD (version 4; download here).

2) I'm allowing two separate categories -- in the Standard Category you must use standard mode, so only pieces/colors that may be uploaded to the LDD gallery (the ones backgrounded in green). In the LEGO Universe Category use LU mode to have many more pieces and wider color ranges, but cannot upload to the gallery. Please say which category each entry is in. smile.gif

3) Please no "normal Bionicle beings" -- I've had plenty of these already winning previous contests, most of whom I haven't used yet. So no beings that would normally be MOCed with Bionicle pieces, but I won't make this an absolute rule per se. tongue.gif

4) You may use locations or beings from the official story, or if you follow my fanfics you could work from descriptions there (you could even use illustrations I've made, etc.) Or you could make up your own stuff but be aware it might be more difficult for me to work these into stories, so simpler may be better for that.

5) Please when you enter, first state what type of MOC it is -- i.e. location, object, being, etc. as well as the name of what the MOC is (ex: if it's a location like Kini-Nui say that name). I'm not going to bother with fancy entries forms, though. tongue.gif

6) You may enter as many as you like in here. smile.gif

7) Please post at least one screencap of the MOC. (And if you could make sure the image is not huge, that'd be nice. tongue.gif) FTR, the best screencaps aren't left in the design mode, but viewed in the mode with the background images at strategic angles, the blue background of building guide mode, or the white background as in the images uploaded to the gallery. And be sure to put the pic on brickshelf or the like rather than trying to direct link if you go with the gallery pic.

Also, I would greatly prefer if yall would upload the MOCs to the gallery and include a link to your own member gallery (the closest thing it seems to allow to linking to specific MOCs) so that I could download the file, but this is NOT a rule. (It's often difficult to do this with big MOCs, etc. and I wouldn't want to discourage entering if you don't have time for this.) If that doesn't work, you may alternatively email me the file directly at bonesiii@gmail.com (but please only do this if the gallery method doesn't work). Being able to look at the file 3-dimensionally can help in judging winners, though it isn't necessary per se. smile.gif

(Note: Your gallery here means the public side, not the "my gallery" button; once any MOC of yours is approved for public (this usually takes about a day), then click it, and click your member name. The link that appears in your address bar then is the link I mean.)

Entry period begins now and closes July 1 2011, at midnight EST. smile.gif

Judging notes:

Weight will be given to cleverness of design. Try to shy away from the plain stacked rectangle bricks designs (not a rule tongue.gif). I don't require that the MOC hold up well in plastic form to win, although that will help (and I can tell tongue.gif). Yes, mini-scale is fine (ex: the Hau statue in the banner here could see a mini-scale stone statue and the mouth could be a door entrance to some important location).


Ldd: Hatman, Fogman, Wooden Sailing Ship

Posted by bonesiii , Feb 04 2011 · 102 views
LEGO Digital Designer
So, I felt like finally making LGD topics for some of my LDD creations. Go and post and stuff. tongue.gif

These are actually only my three most recent MOCs. I might do topics for some of my best older stuff too at some point. Other angles provided in the topics.

Hatman vs. Fogman

Wooden Sailing Ship

Edited for Fogman V2.
Edited again for Hatman V2 (from advice by MechaFizz).

Welcome To The Bones Blog

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"You are getting veeery sleepy. You need more Bubble Wrap. That's right, little member. Wallow in bubble wrap forever. Say it with me now. 'Must. Have. More.'"

--Evil Lord Survurlode

"Brave Knight--I mean, Cowardly Sponge Binkmeister has attempted to attacketh me once again! But lo, I am-- What? Sponge? Is that what I said? I meant Scum. Brave Scum Binkmeister-- What now? Oh, be quiet, minion."

--Evil Lord Survurlode

"No, I am not a girl!"

--Evil Lord Survurlode,
on his power over water

"Muahahahahahahahaha*cough* *hack* *gurgle* ..... *ahem* Must remember to watch the evil laugh when the floodwaters get that high..."

--Evil Lord Survurlode

"Oh, that's an easy question. See, Sauron's One Telephone Ring looked like a metal ring, right? Well, the One Refresh looks like a ring made out of those green arrows... like on that refresh button up there. Wait... why am I telling you this?!"

--Evil Lord Survurlode,
in a BZP interview

"No, I do not get rusty! This is Stainless Steel! What? Yes, yes! They had stainless steel thousands of years ago. Yeesh."

--Evil Lord Survurlode

Gallery Of Explosions

Because explosions are the answer.


"While it's all well and good for someone to turn the other cheek in daily life, in times of great hardship another thought comes to mind instead; namely that one cannot turn a blind eye to the actions of evil and still call himself good."

"This is a discussion forum for a reason; it's a place where opinions can be discussed and debated civilly, not where one person can claim their opinion as fact and all others as "just opinions." Every person should, however, support their opinions with facts and evidence of all kinds."

"'The challenge of being a Biological chronicler is understanding why Lego are using another method to sell better. It gets boring using the same ones all the time. Variety is the spice of selling, after all.'
— A Biological chronicler"

"I could convince a thousand people that the moon is made of cheese... and yet it would remain as rocky as ever."

"This is simple, people! If it hurts to hit yourself with a hammer, then don't do it!"

"A famous drummer sits down to do a drum solo, but he has to keep his solo up for five minutes. Does he do all his amazing stuff first? no! If he did that, he would loose all attention because the end would be so boring. If he were smart, he would start out with something simple, and then add to its complexity as he goes along, so that more people would be into it.

The point is, writing either a drum solo, or is like a mountain, the bigger the base, the higher it can get, and the more amazing it is. Think about it, when building a mountain of dirt or sand, you need to slowly create your huge base, then as you build towards the peak things get faster and easier to pile on. The High points are where the story is fast paced and we are reaching the climax--what we just left on the last mountain of story we had (the MU story arch), and now Greg is building a new story mountain for us."

Gallery Of Galaxies

~through the macroscope~


92% of people have moved on from Gregorian chants. If you are part of the 8% that still listens to real music, copy and paste this into your sig.

Least Favorite Edit Of Your Least Favorite Post On Your Most Favorite Day Of The Month?

Secret Info: The Red Star is Tahu's mobile space mansion, complete with servants.

Join the petiton for ban bad grammer toady!

9009 Ways To Say "I Heart Spam"

92% of all teenagers claim they're in the 8% that hasn't moved on to rap.
If you are part of the 0% that still uses real math, copy and paste this into your sig.

What Is Your Alter-Ego's Imaginary Friend's Least Favorite Pet Collar?

Certificates Of Approval

Various award imagery and suchnot:

(Above from Makaru; resized to fit.)

(Resized to fit.)

The above earned twice.

Certificates Of Approval

Part 2

Needs sized down

Needs sized down

/This blog has been approved by \
/-For demonstrating outstanding-\
/~~~~RHYME and REASON~~~~\


Logic is the key.

I am insane. I know that I am insane. In fact, I know that I am so insane, that I am incapable of realizing that I am insane. Therefore, I know that I am not insane.

Forgetting things since.... umm....

Creativity should not be confused with nuclear weapons.

I heart logic.

Only dead things do not change. Much.

Pay attention now. Repeat after me. "Bones. Can. Be. Wrong."

The problem is, "Tradition for tradition's sake" is like flying blind in an airplane. It's like saying as you approach a mountain "But we've always flown in this direction before... why would we change direction? It isn't the tradition!"

Remember that -- clever absurdity, designed to harmonize with certain tastes, is the key to originality.


People are like snowflakes. No two are the same.

Yes, the Toa will win somehow. But let me give you a challenge. Write a story. In which the good guys win, or the bad guys win, doesn't matter. But write it with only introducing the challenges that the winner must overcome, and avoid showing how the winner wins. Just set up the problem, then skip to the end:

"In the end, this character wins, somehow."

Now, do you think this is a successful format for a story, that anybody would really want to read? [...] Readers demand that you as writer have thought through the "how" of the story.

Where is this idea coming from?


[L]et's not mince words here -- all LEGO products are toys. It's a toy company, in the toy business. There's nothing wrong with that.

[A] wise Daoist once said that a name is merely a label. If a person calls me a "nerd", then that is their label for me. If a person calls me a "human", that is a label. If they call me "bonesiii", that is a label. I would simply reply that, if "nerd" is the term they wish to apply to me, like "human", then so be it -- I would thus be proud of that label, because I am proud of who I am.

I'm not telepathic.

I don't know if this is just the way I'm wired, but I don't really think like "hey, wanna be my friend?" I just be myself, treat others with respect and friendliness, and those who would make good friends just sorta show up. And I really don't think like "well, you're not my friend, you are, you aren't" etc. Anybody can be my friend.

*revives topic, only to kill it seconds later*

My two pieces of eight.

Ha ha! Voriki myth still isn't dead? It's been so long since the constant flow of these topics stopped I guess I thought Voriki had finally kicked the bucket. Well, I hate to put another nail in the old guy's coffin, but...

Topic closed.

I Heart Logic


Ahhhhh, the sweet smell of complaint topics in July!

I think Evil Lord Survurlode is out to get me.

Bionicle doesn't revolve around ANY one fan. Not even you.

Bionicle does NOT age with its fans.

If something absolutely has to be done for the greater good, it is by definition NOT evil.

Think, guys, think! You have brains! Use them!

Logic is not some meaningless buzzword you can throw around like pie, at least not as long as I, an actual logician, am here.

Common myth. The answer is: "Yes, if you are an ancient Greek."

Last I checked, most of us aren't ancient Greeks. tongue.gif Some of us are ancient Geeks, but...

Besides, show me a brown rock, and I'll use your logic on you. "That's not a rock, it's hardened lava."

The best symbol of stone would be gray. But it would probably sell almost as bad as brown -- LEGO needed a "flashy" color, more like what Ta, Ga, and Le Toa have.

Do not insult cheese.

Omi's right.


(Four eight fifteen sixteen twenty-three... *ahem*)

Logic! Why don't they teach logic in these schools?

Can you imagine MNOG ending with the Turaga and Matoran executing Ahkmou?

So here's the question: If LEGO working harder by listening to fans is "lazy", then wouldn't they be "lazy" if they listened to you -- a fan?

You don't need to hate to say it.

Four extra letters. "Bionicle sets." How hard is that?

Actually, three extra letters since the s just moves.

If they are "Bionicles", then you are "History".

BZPers are often the exception, not the rule.



Of course it's cruel -- did you think bad guys were Mother Teresa?

It isn't like I hide it, but it also isn't like I go up to random students at college at say "Hey, I like Bionicle, isn't that something?!"

One man's junk is another man's treasure.

I had the same theory in ages past, and Greg personally disproved it.

The thing can destroy time, man. You guard those kinda things.

Brevity is the soul.

Which I suppose is a fancy way of saying, "I have no idea."

I attack my own theories. I'm weird like that.

If only books could be updated like web pages.

Bionicle was supposedly a betrayal of everything LEGO stands for, its pieces far too clunky, a horrible turn away from the more "intelligent" Technic and a total stabbing in the back of the good old brick, an insult to AFOLS, evidence of a mythical trend away from the construction toy, far too violent, etc.

It's really pretty simple:

Gadunka is one of the "coolest" sets ever. Most inventive, most unusual, most striking. Thus, he is horrible.

Of course they're weird. All Bionicle names are supposed to be weird. Show me the Bionicle name that is "normal".

You just completely contradicted yourself. If Mata Nui was working out great, then wouldn't Metru Nui have made less money?

If that's greedy, then you are greedy for driving in a car to get somewhere far away fast, for wearing shoes so you can walk at a reasonable pace without cutting your feet, using silverware to better eat your food, using a telephone to avoid having to make a trip and speak, using a computer to type a forum post when you could walk personally to everybody's house and speak what you just said over and over and over again.... At least 2000 times to account for all the possible active BZP members, and preferably about five million times -- and you'd have to go door to door throughout the whole world to even figure out which people were Bionicle fans anyways before you started confusing monks in Tibet with strange words like "Kongu" and "Cordak". All within your own lifetime, regardless of whatever else you had wanted to do in your life.

And forget speech. You have to scratch out the message with your fingernails in stone. Then maybe you wouldn't be greedy. Maybe.

Nobody would surprise me, so it's probably Makuta. But I went with Hydraxon, because he's a weapons master and it would make sense, no?

Why didn't I think of that earlier?

I don't just ask rhetorical questions -- I answer them.

I knew you'd say that.

You're a body with a head. So what?

A simple conversion is not a business plan to actually get two radically different markets to behave as if they were the same.

Um, hello? Are my posts invisible?

Universe go poof.

We All Live In An


I hate typing Roman numerals above three.

I always find these topics funny -- everybody goes in circles, pointing to the exact same aspect of the set and going "See that? So it's obvious it's horrible! How can you not see that?", and then someone else saying, "See that? It's obvious it's awesome! How can you not see that?"

Obviously, not everybody sees I to I.

They have their uses -- like if you're making a MOC that's supposed to be a light green faceless humanoid.

I hate it when I can't tell if someone's joking.

Yes, that's an excuse to be lazy.

Hold on just a second. I think you have things backwards. Mata Nui was not paradise -- it was a place of horror and war for a thousand years!


I'm a logician. I can tell you that your argument does not merely sound illogical. It is.

Yeah, that'd be bad. Next question?

We'd still have wooden ducks, no plastic bricks, and definately no LEGO if change was prevented. Really, we wouldn't even have that.

It is unfortunate that it's this way (at least for us). But it is. We might as well come to grips with it.

And I walk away in peace.

You have no idea how many times I've read this style of opening to this kind of topic, man. I must admit I am very very tired of it.

*deeeeep breath*

*shakes head madly*

Okay, I'm good.

My memory doesn't go back that far.

If I didn't agree with something, I'd try to find out the reasons for it before doing anything else, which is something I think some people forget to do and instead they dig themselves a hole for no reason.

Lol, I think you missed the point -- BR isn't going to think your forum deserves approval if he has to be told it exists.

I'm a coolomaniac.

But I like spam!

This is not a country. This is a website. Countries are led by governments. Websites are owned by owners. Countries are places you physically exist in, and may have difficulty leaving. Websites are places YOU choose to go. Countries are places you may be born in, or grow up in, etc.

BZPower is a place YOU sign an agreement in order to join. Blame cannot be placed on us when a member violates that agreement. And if a member chooses not to like that agreement anymore, they are free to leave at will. If a member violates the agreement they made with us, we are justified in punishing the member as agreed.

I'm a logician -- I think in terms of what makes sense all the time. I don't just agree -- I know why I agree, and I think my reasons are pretty sound.

If I'm breaking a rule, it's because I gave myself permission to allow myself an exception, thus I am not technically breaking it.

[A]lthough Evil Lord Survurlode does seem to be making a bit of a comeback, just like Sauron, so we might have an epic war that will spawn a novel and three giant books of a trilogy soon... but yeah...

I object to the wording of this question.


I'm A Doctor, Not A Great Being

_bonesquotes #whatever

Ever had one of those moments where you think you just passed into an alternate timeline? This is one. ()_o

Rants are based on pompous egos and desire to pick a fight. Not intelligence.

The Monster on LOST is Makuta.

Cynics are some of the most naive people on the planet. They hear someone claim things are bad, and they accept it without question.

I'm a realist with an imagination.

I blame Survurlode.

You see a flamer, your response should not be to just flame him back -- you lower yourself to his level if you do.

Let's open that can of worms, as unpleasant as it might be. [...] *I'm not afraid of you, worms!*

"Transformation" can be as simple as a bomb rearranging a building into a debris field.

Far better to be proven wrong than to be wrong without knowing it.

I remember when I was a kid, and I was just playing around, I didn't know this stuff, so I said gas prices were five dollars at my play gas station.

My dad laughed, said gas would never be that expensive.

Toa carrying rifles... as they ride their space shuttles into... Klingon territory...

Kazi [ha]s Rahkshi staffs. (Oooh, Kazi=evil??)

Take an election between two candidates. Obviously, both candidates will get votes. However, one will get more votes, and one will get less. You would be, in this example, voting for the one with less votes (Mr. Olderfanson). You see why the fact that you, one person, did vote for that guy, doesn't prove that he won the election? [...] "Mr. Newerfanson" won the election.


In general, I do enjoy debates--but I don't enjoy being flamed, no. Nor do I enjoy wasting time when I have tons of PMs I need to reply to and top secret reference projects to work on and all that responding to things that could have been cleared up with more thought before posting, heh. Debates can still get tedious when it seems (please note "seems"!) that a few people refuse to approach them with an open mind.


I didn't even spell "the" right.

Lol. I never said I'm always right! Yeesh, what do I have to do to convince you guys I don't think that? Purposefully take wrong positions or something?

Guess what? I could draw before I learned to write, but does that mean I should get all huffy and insulted at the fact that not everybody shares my particular talent? This is just absurd, isn't it? Did you honestly think that everybody has the same talents and gains proficiency at the same time?

When someone much older than you was a kid, LEGO was wooden toys. [fogie teeth voice]"These newfangled plastic things are insulting! As if there isn't money to be made in good old fashioned woodblock toys!"[/fogie teeth voice]

Can we sing kumbaya yet? Sing it! Koooooooo----oom---bah-----yaaaaaaaaahhhhhh.

Or something... Sing it! You don't even have to agree with me! Just sing it anyways, maaan!


Your mistake is that you are thinking in terms of a simplistic "formula" of strength, and thinking that can be used to predict everything. It can't--every situation is different, and sometimes a weak Matoran might catch a glimpse of a passing Rahkshi while a powerful "Toa Ultimaultrasuper" might get blasted to bits when the same Rahkshi actually attacks. You need to be realistic--think in terms of the situation. Stories are based on that--they are a "game of seconds and inches" where dangers both big and small can occur to both powerful and weak people, and how you perform depends on your brains and the time you have to prepare more than your actual power level.

Why did the entirely robotic Bohrok need teeth? Someone explain how that is okay but teeth in Piraka isn't?

Phew. Now, to post, and see if I maxed the text limit out.

Yabo! Hahaha!

_bonesquotes #whatever.2

Thanks X. Thanks D. Thanks X and D. XD

I lazy.

You can make any innovation look bad if you point to the non-innovative ways (the old "normal" ways) and claim they must be followed blindly.

But what I don't get about it is -- why the apparent desire to kill characters off for no reason? In real life you meet tons of people who you will never meet again, and they're not dead. Is that to you a problem? I don't get it -- you'd go insane if you tried to stay in touch with every random old lady that said hi when you were walking the dog...

Yes, my post in this topic is product placement. So sue me.

In addition, high gravity affects spacetime on a fundamental level, slowing time down and bending the spatial brane. Not to be confused with the spacious brain.

It would create a field of electrogravimetry that would pull all nearby matter in and then make it explode. The explosion cloud would take the form of an anchovy.

There's only a slim chance that we exist.

I love taking myself out of context.

I think it's admirable to be careful not to offend people where it makes sense. But at some point, you have to be willing to stand up for yourself and be confident enough that if someone comes at you with an unreasonable accusation, you don't take it.

I think aliens invaded already and have fooled us into thinking they are mere animals who "meow".

Good stories aren't puppet shows. They are tales of life, with realistic characters -- people -- living out their lives, with really minimal "guiding" by the author.

Oh goody, a complainer to blast to oblivion.

To begin with, I disagree strongly with pretending it is "killing off", rather than a serious story being told, with serious themes and life in the story. Characters aren't "killed off". They die.

I find this term somewhat offensive, because it implies the writer kills the character like a TV show host telling a contestant to leave. This is not a game show. It is the events of the storyline that kill the character. That term is merely a psychological shield to avoid the emotion of the moment in the story. IMO, that's a kind of immaturity.


You can't always get what you want "now now now". Your logic makes no sense -- if you want to know what's in the books, that means you support the books' existence. Yet you apparently want spoilers to go up the day it's out, so in the countries where it is bought, people could just read the spoilers and not buy the book, risking its sales going down and the books ending, and thus no more spoilers for you to read!

Truth = Truth. And nothing else.

I had spammed ten thousand times.

A good comedy is a development, like a story, not a punchline. You start with a situation, and it goes in unexpected, funny ways, which leads into other twists, to a conclusion that often can be more serious than funny, avoiding random cliches and developing enough logic that it doesn't feel like you slapped random nonsense down. Comedies Forum has this bad rap of having a lot of Unfunny Stuff -- I think it's the temptation to write short punchlines drawing on typical one-liner cliches that causes this. The 300 word rule is a good basic start to avoiding that problem.

Dude. My voting precint is a "23". ph34r.gif

And what people are saying about randomosity is true -- I hope that it's not surprising that as a logician, I understand how to be funny (though I won't try in this post ). Logic isn't for Spock who refuses to smile -- you actually need logic in your comedy to make it funny. In my experience, a balance of logic and random nonsense helps -- even logic OF the random nonsense.

I highly recommendate it.

Another mistake a lot of people make is thinking a comedy must be 100% funny -- reality is that that tends to just overwhelm the reader and come off more as spam. If you look at my Survurlode interviews, for example, there is always at least one serious theme that the whole work revolves around. The serious aspects support the humorous, and vice versa.

*strongly approves of the use of the term "bionical"*

Well, my observation has always been the opposite -- more established official facts inspires MORE fan imagination -- at least with imaginative official facts. It was really only once the "gappists" starting complaining, in my observation as a 2003+ member here, about "tons of official facts" that I saw the fanfiction community here really explode with creativity.

Think about it -- imagination feuls imagination. Less imagination doesn't -- it starves imagination.

Search My Blog

_bonesquotes #whatever.3

How much wood would a woodwood wood if a woodwood would would wood?

But my point related to that isn't that I literally think it should be FULLY sun-sized. I'm just saying, there's a whole range, from a little larger than Earth, to a LOT larger, to a TONTONZILLION larger, and it's all possible if the story team just feels like it.

*imagines massive asteriod pulling out a pirate's telescope lol*

GD is NOT for storyline-only discussion. That discussion belongs in S&T.

S&T policies are designed for good reasons, tried, tested, and they work.

Sure I'm sure -- it's Bionicle. Anything's possible.

I never understand these claims -- how do you know what "proportionate" is for that character? He's a fictional character, made out of plastic LEGO parts.

So why get annoyed at it? When you look at a giraffe, do you get annoyed? It makes no sense to me to do so.

Besides, you're setting yourself up for it. Nobody ever told you these characters were supposed to be exactly human.

If you look at an ape, would you say it's done wrong, just because it resembles a human?

I plan not to, but I guess if the site shut down I'd kinda have to, wouldn't I?

...they usually give their jokes when they have the upper hand at the moment, though, or when they've just run into a frustrating difficulty that's not immediately dangerous, which are realistic IMO. When they're in immediate danger, I am not aware that they pause to crack jokes.

I strongly disagree -- everybody capitalizes their name. It's cliche.

(I do not capitalize because 1) I hate being cliche, and 2) it is symbolic of humility.)

I knew you'd say that.

Seriously though, obviously the focus groups like silver, guys -- there's no mystery, those of you portraying it as odd that LEGO keeps using the color. This is how personal taste works -- it differs, and you're gonna find yourself in the minority sometimes. Best get used to it -- that's life.

*lets self dp*

I'm not a soldier, but I know that keeping your sense of humor alive even in dangerous or serious situations can be a huge boon to keeping your sanity.

He who forgets how to laugh forgets how to live.

I heart silver. My favorite metallic. If I had my way, gold would be considered lesser than silver.

The red eye thing is the closest thing you have to evidence, but I could argue that Berix is the traitor for spending time away from the villages, or Ackar is the traitor because his name sounds like Admiral Ackbar and there was a traitor in Star Wars called Darth Vader.

Ultimately it comes down to this for me -- YOU choose to dissapointed or miserable.

If you expected the universe to be perfect, that was your choice, and really not very sensible of you.

If I as a writer were to try to appeal to the attitude you express in your post, I would feel like I am constantly walking on eggshells. Everytime I had a cool idea how to use a character, or more importantly logic told me the character naturally would be involved in something, I would have to worry about whether I shouldn't do it as it might offend someone.

That's a miserable way to write, and I wouldn't wish that on the story team, myself, or anyone.

But one thing. Everyone expects something when they do something.

Very true. For example, when I posted the above post, I expected somebody to reward me with this point, giving me an excuse to discuss it in a separate post so as to give it better focus.

Therefore, the more "things to expect" from a "donation or whatever the heck you want to call it", the more likely we get mooooolaaaaaaaa. Therefore good.

I don't see what the anology has to do with this. "Chevys" (or "Chevies") makes sense. Like "Keets" or Morby or my personal favorite for Makuta -- Terry Mack. "Biological Chronicles" referring to beings makes no sense. And as I typed this, a Chevy ad came on TV. They called it "Chevy." Seriously, exact same time.

Oh my, you're completely irrelevant metaphor makes you look sooo intelligent.

This is obviously getting out of hand, so I guess I have to close it. Also, you failed to answer my question. When a moderator asks you a question, answer it. Capisce? wink.gif

Please do not attack people like that. That is flaming, or at best trolling, both of which are not allowed.

What does a premier member buy?

1) YOUR right to be on here for free.

2) Their right to be on here.

3) PM perks, like poll-making, blogs, etc.

4) Proto.

No matter how you slice it, sending in that money is NOT just buying proto. Even if proto is all they want, they're still buying YOUR right to be on here for free. Yall should be grateful.


IPB Image