Infopost | 2024.03.10

Spaceballs comb the desert

"We ain't found shit!"

I wanted to (cross)play some Helldivers 2 with J. I already have it for Steam, he bought it for PS5 since Steamdeck compatibility is spotty.

When either of us clicked 'Accept' on our respective friend requests, nothing happened. What the heck?

Google gave me a whole bunch of AI-generated non-answers that started with describing Helldivers and proceeded to talk about the importance of co-op play. We've talked about this before, LLMs are sometimes pretty good via chatbot, they're atrocious when laundered through Google search and SEO.

Despite its 'enshittification', there's the old standby, "put 'Reddit' in your query". That gave me this post which recognizes that there is an issue and suggests workarounds.
None of those applied to or worked for us. Zooming in and out of a planet showed a handful of joinable games, after a few cycles I'd seen most of them already. When I re-logged I saw completely new names, suggesting I hit a different server and would likely not find my PS5 buddy. To make matters worse, we're in different regions so it's probably a lost cause.

This story/rant/faq doesn't totally relate to the rest of this post, except that search and SEO content are recurring themes in my Web 1.1 saga.

To summarize my site's external link recommender in one line: I've been working on an unambitious web crawler to provide 'further reading' links for all of my posts. Most recently, I created a directed graph to associate posts by similarity and thereby accelerate insert and lookup.

For the most part, the past month has been spent crawling and refining my filter algos.


Spaceballs Yogurt merchandising

Content classification has been a winding path. My original intent for this project was to elevate the 'personal web' but also provide references to informative mainstream content. I wanted to offer these links as separate lists; Joe Schmo's blog on one side, The New Yorker on the other. I expected the means of partitioning the two to just, you know, work itself out.

It's not a straightforward problem. There are plenty of renowned tech personalities writing good content on their FAANG employer's blog. On the other hand, lots of companies have blogs that are just attempts to game SEO. And plenty of personal bloggers are just AI-assisted affiliate link garbage (see my experiences with the blogging subreddits).

While I haven't solved the partitioning problem, I think I can reduce its severity by offering results that don't suck. And that can be maximized by only indexing content that is some combination of informative, entertaining, and authentic. And to ensure I'm still linking the subsurface web, I added a rudimentary partition algorithm and will try to pull at least two of my three end-of-post external links from the indieweb.
Combing the web

potch image recycler Blue Angels

I've come across some neat links as I've worked on this project.

potch image recycler photomosaic page middle out

It's just a photomosaic but, you know:
And then there's this guy who is into gaming, exploring the indieweb, software, and renouncing/eulogizing Reddit. Also he does like marine search and rescue or something.

What do Ukraine, Orwell, and (I think probably) hockey have in common? This entertaining opinionpost.

I've mostly focused on crawling posts, but my image crawler has stumbled upon some cool images.

Note: Some of the exact urls disappeared as I was working on the code and so some links only go to the domain.

Book Rek Bell Wiktopher
Source. I'm not sure what this is about but it is a cool book cover.

Aloy Tallneck Horizon snow
Source. Horizon screenshots, yes please.

Architecture photography
Source. This has professional/commercial written all over it but it's neat nonetheless.

Helicopter ship waves Microsoft Flight Simulator
Source. This is from Flight Simulator? Whoa.

Rock climber perspective view
Source. Eep.

What no smorking heck the rules

Cozy cabin
Source. I guess two neat architecture photos made it in this list.

mspaint map
Source. Look I don't know what's going on here but I like it.

X-Wing Star Destroyer PC game screenshot
Source. Nostalgia intensifies.

Ship maybe stuck in ice
Source. This guy probably wants someone to helicopter a diesel generator to him.

Mt Shasta CHP helicopter rescue
Source. Chippies rescuing someone from Shasta.

Related - internal

Some posts from this site with similar content.


A random walk

Some examples of linking the indieweb.


Links pages, webrings, and search.

A walk in the dark forest

All of the internet in one short stroll.

Related - external

Risky click advisory: these links are produced algorithmically from a crawl of the subsurface web (and some select mainstream web). I haven't personally looked at them or checked them for quality, decency, or sanity. None of these links are promoted, sponsored, or affiliated with this site. For more information, see this post.


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