Reading List Links, 17th November

The Reading List is a round-up of interesting blog posts and articles I’ve recently read, curated and posted every couple of days.

Something Called ‘The Race To Zero’ Is Scaring A Lot Of Tech Companies
First Clip From Doctor Who Christmas Special Is Full Of Weird Intensity
The Kindle wink
How To Be Secret
The Big Screwup

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Talking to the Press

Almost every time I’ve talked to a reporter has gone this way: they had already decided the narrative beforehand. I’m never being asked for information — I’m being used for quotes to back up their predetermined story, regardless of whether it’s true. (Consider this when you read the news.) Misquotes usually aren’t mistakes — they’re edited, consciously or not, to say what the reporter needs them to say.

Talking to reporters is like talking to the police: ideally, don’t. You have little to gain and a lot to lose, their incentives often conflict with yours, and they have all of the power.

A good anecdote (which is true, in my experience) from Marco Arment in his look at the narrative that podcasts are suddenly “back”.



My girlfriend and I were watching the first episode of new series of Tabletop yesterday, which introduced us to a board game called Tokaido.


Almost immediately we both agreed it was an amazingly beautiful game. I could quite happily frame the board itself to display. The illustrator, Xavier Gueniffey-Durin, has done an amazing job.

The game play of Tokaido seemed to be that winning combination of simple to learn, but with enough depth to make it a challenge to master.

tokaido2Maybe I should buy two copies – one to frame the artwork, and the other to play? Or one to give to my sister, as I think the art would be right up her street.



Kings of War 2nd Edition Kickstarter

This afternoon Mantic have launched their “mini” Kickstarter for Kings of War 2nd Edition, and in true Mantic style, it’s already smashed its funding goal. The video above gives a good rundown of what the kickstarter is about, as does this previous post, so I’m not going to go into too much detail here.

Obviously, Christmas is coming up, so if you’re like me, you’ve got more important things to be spending your money on than another Mantic Kickstarter, so what I did, was pledge a single dollar. Once Christmas is over, I can increase my funding level to add in some of the cool extras and bonus content Mantic are known for.

‘Assassin’s Creed: Unity’ review: bigger doesn’t mean better

I loved the first 3 Assassin’s Creed games (I, II, and Brotherhood), particularly the second in the series, but each successive release feels like it is tarnishing the series even more. Revelations was (IMHO) terrible, AC:3 frustrating and dull, and Black Flag simply didn’t interest me enough for me to play it. Sadly, it seems like the new “next gen” game, Unity doesn’t really do anything to move the series forward:

When everything clicks, Unity reminds me why Assassin’s Creed has become so popular. The joys of scaling a massive building or expertly pulling off an assassination are unique to the franchise, and they’re thrilling. But aside from the beautiful setting, there’s not much here to distinguish Unity from past games. A bigger game doesn’t make for a better one, and while Paris offers more places to go, it doesn’t give you new things to do.

via The Verge.