Photo of a black dog in comic book style.

This comic book photo filter really is as cool as they say. It’s too bad it’s so inconvenient to use.

Sunset light on the tips of the San Francisco Peaks.

Mountain sunset last night was pretty excellent.

Photo of a man fishing hip deep in a river.

My mom snapped this photo of my dad last week, fishing in Dillon, Montana. I’ve looked at it dozens of times since. My dad has hit some health problems the last few years, and it gives me joy to see him wading in a river, fish on, in such a spectacular place.

Josh Ritter performing on stage at Flagstaff Cornucopia.

Last weekend I got to see my favorite songwriter, Josh Ritter, perform his first ever show in my little town. It was a wonderful, outdoor solo show on a perfect autumn night, a needed change of mood from a tough week. Josh plays with such a joy, such a tremendous heart and hope. Today I continue to reflect on that as the week ended again in a way that makes me feel gutted and bleak, and I’m playing more of his music on a long Sunday afternoon.

From his “Girl in the War”:

Because the keys to the kingdom got locked inside the kingdom
And the angels fly around in there, but we can’t see them
And I gotta girl in the war, Paul I know that they can hear me yell
If they can’t find a way to help, they can go to Hell
If they can’t find a way to help her, they can go to Hell

Paul said to Petey “you gotta rock yourself a little harder;
Pretend the dove from above is a dragon and your feet are on fire”
But I gotta girl in the war, Paul her eyes are like champagne
They sparkle, bubble over, in the morning all you got is rain
Sparkle, bubble over, in the morning all you got is rain
They sparkle, bubble over, in the morning all you got is rain

We got an inch of early-season snow overnight (all melted, now, but it’s still cold out), turned on the furnace for the first time today, have a bison roast in the oven, and I’ve been playing loads of Forza, AMA.

It’s 2018 and Apple Music still can’t properly play a live album without mixing it up with studio tracks.

This cascade of reboot-required windows updates is really putting a dent in my Friday afternoon work momentum, which was already pretty significantly unhurried.

Photo of the San Francisco Peaks.

From the commute cam: it’s just starting to look like autumn up on the mountain.

Photo of a black dog.

Puppy keeps an eye out on the porch.

Black dog lying in an orange sunbeam.

Wildfire haze makes for a pretty delicious pupper sunbeam.

Photo of an espresso

Friends, let’s all pause and have an afternoon espresso, what do you say?

Dusk light through smoke and trees.

Only a touch Mt. Doom-ish with smoke wafting up from Sedona the other evening.

Photo of a black dog laying on a staircase.

Guess who’s all clean and shiny today because she met her first skunk friend last night?

Photo of a record playing with album jacket behind it.

Thursday afternoon work music update: playing Same Trailer Different Park by Kacey Musgraves. I’ve heard a song or two from this album, but somehow never listened to the whole thing. It’s so very good.

This weekend I learned that one can invite someone to share/control their Mac using the Messages app. Wow! Tech support for Mom and Dad just got way easier.

Photo of flowering blue grama grass.

Late monsoon season blue grama is just lovely.

Photo of a black dog in a deep stretch.

Inspired by @belle and her so handsome Samoyed, I realize I haven’t posted a pup photo for a while. Here’s Ms Young Lady Puppy having a stretch on the porch.

A while back, I wrote about my "Destiny Diary," a combination hobby coding and gaming project that uses the Destiny 2 API to gather information about my in-game loot and identifies new items so that I can annotate them with my own tiny journal about my play. This was a way of telling stories that come out of my time playing the game, and trying to play conscientiously. 

For "season 3" of the game, I continued this tracking, and added a brand new feature: game-by-game storing and aggregation of my stats. There are tracking sites that use the API to monitor the meta -- overall weapon dominance and how those numbers trend over time -- but they don't provide per-weapon detail *per player*. So I set about to do that for myself, and kept the record of every activity (more or less) that I played through this season of the game (roughly, early May through early September). Each game is stored as a json file that I can parse (again, with my favorite ever tool, jq), build summary data, and then bring into R to analyze and visualize.

Now, just as the Forsaken update is about to launch and end season 3, I thought I should actually go look at that data. Here are my top twenty weapons, by kills, for each of the PVE and PVP game modes:

|       PVE         |  n   |               PVP                |  n  |
|-------------------|------|----------------------------------|-----|
|      Sunshot      | 2408 |          Vigilance Wing          | 325 |
|      Crimson      | 1763 |         The Jade Rabbit          | 251 |
|   Origin Story    | 1199 |             Crimson              | 188 |
|     Valakadyn     | 1193 |            Valakadyn             | 120 |
|   True Prophecy   | 1024 |            Kibou AR3             | 116 |
|   Polaris Lance   | 852  |         Perfect Paradox          | 63  |
|  Niflheim Frost   | 822  |         Positive Outlook         | 62  |
|    Vacuna SR4     | 715  |         Main Ingredient          | 56  |
| IKELOS_HC_v1.0.1  | 613  |       The Time-Worn Spire        | 39  |
|    Conspirator    | 522  |            The Vision            | 37  |
|  Perfect Paradox  | 443  |            Vacuna SR4            | 33  |
|     Kibou AR3     | 442  |           Proelium FR3           | 28  |
|   Better Devils   | 392  |         Sins of the Past         | 25  |
| Positive Outlook  | 355  |         Legend of Acrius         | 23  |
|   Machina Dei 4   | 333  | Hawthorne's Field-Forged Shotgun | 22  |
| Sins of the Past  | 244  |           Manannan SR4           | 18  |
| Inaugural Address | 200  |       Stochastic Variable        | 18  |
| Nameless Midnight | 170  |          Retrofuturist           | 15  |
| Skyburner's Oath  | 170  |           Conspirator            | 13  |
|  The Conqueror 2  | 156  |         Magnum Shepherd          | 13  |

There are actually a lot of stories just in this summary data! The top 2 for each game mode have a ton of kills, in part because those were required for the masterwork catalyst for each: Sunshot and Crimson had PVE masterwork requirements, while I went to the crucible *a lot* for the Vigilance Wing and the Jade Rabbit masterworks. And while I told myself at the time that I came to really enjoy the Jade Rabbit, you can see here that I did exactly the 250 crucible kills required for the masterwork, plus 1 (!), and then put it away again. Oh, well. 

On the PVE side, after the masterwork grind, two auto rifles and a hand cannon round out my top 5, which tell a lot of stories of running strikes and story missions. Four of the rest of my top 10 are great, favorite scout rifles that I rotate frequently (Polaris Lance melts big enemies and I still haven't finished its masterwork). That Vacuna SR4? That's the D2 equivalent -- almost! -- of the legendary Hung Jury from Destiny 1. Also noteworthy is that three of those scouts are new in season 3; my previous season's favorite scout, Nameless Midnight, barely makes the top 20 (sorry, buddy; still <3 you). 

I would like to have a season 2 to season 3 comparison for PVP, because I changed a lot this season. These numbers show a lot of Crimson and auto rifle use, and less pulse, but the Time Worn Spire (pulse) was one of my favorites in season 2, especially during my grind for competitive wins at the very end of the season. Otherwise, while my numbers overall are much lower than for PVE (of course, because I play far more of that mode), there's a lot of variety here: more SMGs, shotguns and fusions. (Also, The Vision: the weapon finally, finally awarded by my forever faction, Future War Cult, for winning a faction rally finally.)

Bar graph showing number of kills per weapon, by game type (PVP and PVE)
Bar graph showing number of kills per weapon, by game type (PVP and PVE)

The plot above is just a different way of visualizing the same data, mostly to show how steeply different the overall numbers are for PVP and PVE, and to call out the handful of relatively big PVP numbers: again, those blue spikes are the weapons that I worked hard on for masterwork catalysts, and you can see how much higher they are than the comparable PVE numbers for the same weapon. 

This is a really interesting and useful way for me to document one of the hobbies that occupies a good chunk of my free time, and now that I've explored some of the data I'm happy that it sparked as many gaming memories as it has; there's a lot of time in successful and unsuccessful raid attempts, gradually improving crucible skill, and questing for specific items represented in these numbers. Forsaken/Season 4 introduces a new weapon system and will have a ton of brand new gear, so I'll look forward to watching my trends as we go into the new several months of the game.

Pizza and beer on a countertop Clouds over mountains and a wet road in morning light.

A couple of snapshots from my so far excellent weekend: pizza and farmhouse ale, and a monsoon season sunrise on the way to the gym. Our monsoon looks to be just about over for the year, so I’m eager for the wet weather to start giving way to cool autumn nights.

A picture of a turntable with Josh Ritter's album Animal Yeats next to it.  Photo of a small espresso cup on a table in front of a window.

Okay, that’s it. I’m checking out of work for the long weekend, moving six feet to the right, and putting on some music. 🎶

Maybe if I post about the Ink Jam (https://www.inklestudios.com/2018/07/12/ink-jam.html) this weekend, I’ll actually follow through and write some tiny IF?

Learned tonight that my favorite musician is playing my little town’s fall festival next month, and I’m just over the moon surprised and excited.

Photo of an English muffin egg sandwich with tater tots and orange coffee cup.

Current status: Sunday morning with this awesome breakfast sandwich with tots.

👍 Liked: C:\\TEXTRIS

Textris is really cool! It’s a tetris-style word-building game that unfolds into an interactive fiction story where you have to form words to perform each action. Recommended!

Photo of a Negroni on ice.

There was some Negroni discussion earlier in the day, so I felt I should follow up with confirmation that my evening is turning out fine, thank you very much.