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Kevin's Ideas' Journal
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Below are the 17 most recent journal entries recorded in Kevin's Ideas' LiveJournal:

Thursday, May 15th, 2003
7:42 am
Automated poetry generator
Uses random words, but pays attention to number of syllables and rhyming, and maybe even rhythm.
Friday, April 11th, 2003
12:39 pm
Jotto Puzzle OTD
Make a Web site that posts a random Jotto puzzle every day (and also have an RSS feed for it). I could just have it pick one from the many that I've already generated, so that it could all happen without me having to do anything.

I could also set it up so that the first person to send me the correct answer gets some sort of recognition (maybe keep a list of first responders on the Web site?).

Update: For some really useful content, every day I could post an annotated solution to the previous day's puzzle. That might be fun. If I'm going to do that, then there's no need to automate the creation of the Web page, since I'll be doing something with it every day, anyway.
Thursday, April 10th, 2003
11:33 am
Online role-playing stuff
Might be nice to let people make characters online for Krayzen, when that finally gets done. Could also develop a tool on the Web site to let GM's keep track of their games, from the GM being able to look at everyone's character sheet at once, to blog-type stuff for the game. Also, having supplemental material available would be good, such as sortable skills list, and other things to go alog with the book.

I also had delusions of having an auto-generated character sketch, using POV, but we'll have to see about that.
Friday, March 21st, 2003
10:00 am
Programming: Photochallenge viewer
Make a Web page where people can enter in the challenge they want to see and then all of the names they want to see. It will put the selected pictures on one Web page, so that you can easily compare the ones you like to help you decide which ones you want to vote for.

For use with http://www.photochallenge.org

Probably allow for both thumbnail and full-size views.
Thursday, February 27th, 2003
8:30 am
Game: "Little Countries"
Make a game (computer game, probably), where people play "little countries." Big superpowers like the United States would be played by the computer. You play some dinky little country, and you are trying to have a voice in international politics while avoiding getting squished by the big guys.

That's about all I have for the concept now. If I do this and someone who knows about history and politics and such feels like helping, I could make it fit some particular period in history. Or, i suppose once I get the basic framework done, any sort of initial parameters and AIs could be put in to simulate whatever I want.
Wednesday, February 5th, 2003
8:31 am
Automatic LJ downloader
A tool to let you download your entire journal automatically, using the export feature. Note that this requires figuring out cookies. Also make a utility that can be run once per month to take the most current month and add it on. Might be nice to make a nice searchable interface, as well. And, while we're on "might-be-nice", it might be nice to have the tool be able to download comments, too. Probably not for mass distribution, though, since the people who run LJ probably wouldn't be too happy about it.

Update 19 February 2003: So, I've got a front end for the export feature that lets you specify a starting month and an ending month. Note that this did not, in fact, require the use of cookies, but I did learn a little about cookies in the course of making this. It basically just grabs all of the months in range and slaps them together. It does a little fiddling so that they slap together well (removes headers in the middle). It also will try three times on a month if it gets timeout errors, so I imagine it should be okay except for the busiest of times, except that it may take a while (5 minutes?) to download your whole journal. If you're planning on doing something interesting with it, I'd recommend exporting it as XML. I will probably make something interesting in the future to parse the XML output of this.
8:17 am
Horoscope aggregator
Put together a Web site (and associated RSS feed) that gathers daily horoscopes froma number of sites, so that people can look at all of theirs at once. Could do this with lots of other things as well, including several "Today in History" Web pages.
Wednesday, January 29th, 2003
5:05 pm
WESUN Puzzle RSS Feed
Make an RSS feed for the NPR Weekend Edition Sunday Puzzle. Can just have it run once per week, on Sunday night.

And, while you're at it, here's a cron tutorial.

Update 30 January 2003: Made the program that scrapes it and writes it into an RSS file. Need to put in functionality so that it will add additional items if the file already exists, thus not erasing what was there from week to week. Might also consider setting something up to archive it after a certain number of items, so that the file doesn't get too large. Could also look into an RSS templating module, which I'm sure exists. Then just need to set up the crontab file.

Update 3 February 2003: After some trials installing XML::RSS, I have this working, I think. I have the most recent puzzle added to the feed, LiveJournal is pointing at the feed (wesun_puzzle), and, if I set up the cron file correctly, it should update it every Sunday evening. Also, it does not update the RSS file if the puzzle has not been updated.
Wednesday, January 22nd, 2003
11:18 am
Programming: More RSS stuff
Look into scraping the screen of hrafn's FitDay Web site and turning it into an RSS feed, possibly for syndication, but possibly just for an exercise (at her discretion). Maybe look into some standard Perl screen-scraping modules or programs.
Tuesday, January 21st, 2003
11:54 am
Writing: The Games Journal
Think about writing something for The Games Journal. Maybe this would be a good place for the Cities & Knights and Carcassonne rules writeups.
11:33 am
Programming: KODT RSS feed
Experiment with making a screen scraper that generates an RSS feed. Use the KODT online strips page. Set up a cron job to check the current page for changes in the comic, probably only need to do the check once a day, or possibly once every 12 hours or so.
10:25 am
Writing: 100percentgaming world
Come up with a world to use with the 100percentgaming core rules. Think about running a campaign in that world, possibly when the current game I'm in ends.
Sunday, January 19th, 2003
9:43 pm
Article: Game rule rewrites
Talk about reasons to rewrite game rules. Talk about some of the bad things about some game rules. Give some small examples. Then do a large example with a complete rewrite of one set of rules. Would I have to get permission from the makers of a game to rewrite their rules in an article? Probably. Even if not, it would be a good thing to do anyway.
9:39 pm
Article: Teaching Games
How do different people teach games? How do I teach games? What bits of strategy, are okay to tell people when you're telling them the rules, or is it better to leave strategy completely out of it, letting people figure it out on their own? How much is dependent on the personalities of the people involved? What do you do differently if people are only going to play a game once, as opposed to possibly many times? Do an extended example of a game and give a way to teach it and a way not to teach it. Possibly interview some people, or maybe try to tape-record people teaching games.
11:42 am
Writing: Catan & Carcassonne rules
Write up rules telling people only what they need to know if they have played Settlers of Catan but not played Cities & Knights of Catan.

Write up rules telling people only what they need to know if they have played Carcassonne but not played Carcassonne Hunters & Gatherers.
Friday, January 17th, 2003
12:55 pm
Programming: Email-to-Web
Set up a Web page that I can update via email. That's what I was originally going to do instead of using this journal, but I figure that this is a decent temporary measure, at least. Eventually, though, I'd like to set up an ideas Web site that I can update by just sending an email with the info I want to update.
11:41 am
Programming: Jotto word scorer
Read lesson four of Ovid's Web programming course, and then make a Web page that uses forms to allow people to score Jotto words. There are already Web pages like this out there, but they are all for five-letter words. Mine will work for words of arbitrary length, and the two words don't have to be the same length (so that it works for X-Jotto).

Update: I have a very crude and preliminary Jotto scorer up.
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