“Flickr” by Jonathan Coulton

Flickr Logo

I’ve been a fan of Jonathan Coulton for a long time.  He has produced a ton of music, so I probably haven’t heard all of his songs (but I am familiar with lots of them).  In February of 2012, my friend Nathan Lott brought the song “Flickr” to the Halfway Around the World podcast that we co-hosted together.  It was part of Season Three, Episode Six “Good/Evil”. The song stuck with me.

I might not have heard “Flickr” at ...

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The Best of No Market Collective – 2014


Last year, Shawn and I put together a list of blog posts that we felt were the very best ones that were created in 2013. We didn’t have any specific criteria to go by. Instead, we selected some that we thought were the most interesting. Admittedly, this was a completely subjective way to make decisions.

This year, I decided to use the stats that WordPress provides in order to find out which blogs got the most views in 2014. In addition, I created some limitations. I’m leaving out all the gaming related blogs. I won’t include any blogs that were written and posted to No Market Collective before 2014. I also decided it would be fun to pick the “top ten” best and stop there.

Number 10: Arizona Passed a L...

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System Malfunction

hand with red nail polish

She slowly held out her hand to the technician behind the desk. It had been a long, frustrating, work day and she was ready to go home and relax. Instead, she had to wait in line for a while just to be able to speak with a technician who might be able to help her.

“It’s malfunctioning”, Janessa complained. “I just bought it a few days ago. You need to fix this right now or give me a new one!”

“Can you explain the problem?...

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Second Challenge to HB2 – The Clinics’ Argument at the Appeals Hearing


On September 12, 2014, the U.S. Court of Appeals, Fifth District, located in New Orleans, heard the appeal of the second challenge to HB2. The case is called Whole Woman’s Health v David Lakey.  If you would like some background on this appeals case, I suggest you start with a previous blog in which I gave detailed information about each of the judges on the three-judge panel.

In another previous blog, I gave detailed information about what the State of Texas argued in the appeals case. In this blog, I will provide information about what the clinics (represented by the Center for Reproductive Rights) argued in the appeals case, and what the judges comments and questions were. As before, my information is coming from the audio recording of the case.

I’m g...

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Flight Rising: Legacy Challenge – Ninth Generation

Penelope as baby

Flight Rising is a game that lets you manage a Lair full of dragons. You can do many things with your dragons, including breeding them. I am nearly finished with the Flight Rising Legacy Challenge. It is a ten generation breeding challenge with specific rules and limitations. The goal is to end up with an attractive triple gened dragon at the end of the challenge.

Those who are posting blogs about their experiences with the Flight Rising Legacy Challenge on Tumblr are using #Flight Rising Legacy Challenge. I had no idea what to expect from this challenge when I started it. Now, I’m nearly at the end of it. All of the artwork in this post is copyright of Flight Rising.

The d...

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Why Helium Failed

The Old Helium

Helium.com was the very first writing website that I contributed to. I’m certain I was writing for Helium in 2006, but it may actually have been 2005.  The main reason why I wanted to write for Helium was because it paid its writers.  That seemed like it had more possibilities than LiveJournal (which I was, at the time, using to post my book reviews).

On December 15, 2014, Helium.com will close forever.  Writers were giving plenty of warning about this.  I think it was around June of 2014 that all writers were informed about Helium’s upcoming closure.  We were given the opportunity to take our writing that had been posted to Helium and find new homes for it.  A tiny fraction of what I wrote for Helium has been re-homed here at No Market Collective.  The majority of it, though, was so bad that I choose to just delete it.

How could a writing website that, at first seemed so promising, end up failing?  I’ve had plenty of time to think about that and will share my thoughts in this blog.  In short, Helium failed because it didn’t successfully adapt as things changed.  Writers moved to more lucrative sources of payment, especially after Google made it harder for “content farms” to come up in its searches.

When I started writing for Helium, ...

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Hearthstone: Blizzard 2014 Card Back

Blizzard 2014 card back

The Blizzard 2014 Card Back was part of the in-game goodies that people got if they attended BlizzCon 2014. Those that purchased the virtual ticket also got it. This card back is one of the few that people could obtain without having to earn Rank 20 in Ranked Play.  It is a nice little memento of BlizzCon 2014.

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Diablo III: Season 1 – Gurr’s Adventure through Act V

Gurr Season 1 Act V Normal mode

This is part of a series of blogs that I am putting together about my experience in Season 1 of Diablo III.  In this one, I focus on Gurr the Barbarian’s adventure through Act V of Story Mode (Normal difficulty).  I will show the Legendaries he found, the monsters he fought, and the Levels he gained.

An upcoming blog will feature the Achievements that he earned during this trip through Act V.  My main goals for Season 1 were to complete the content in all five Acts in Story Mode, and to get Gurr to Level 70.  Ideally, I wanted both of those two goals to be completed at the same time, but that’s not quite how it worked out.  The screenshots you see in this blog were taken on September 6, September 7, September 9, September 11, September 12, and September 13, 2014.

Grr the Bar...

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The Official Holiday Guide for Retail Shoppers

Santa Linejpg

Work in “retail hell” for as long as I have, and you, too, will believe that you have seen it all. Crying, screaming at high volumes, temper tantrums, pushing and shoving, …. and that’s just from the adults!  There have been countless times that I wished I could print out flyers of an etiquette guide for holiday shoppers, force people to read it, and physically remove from the store those people who just can’t manage to play nice with others!

There is nothing stopping me, however, from posting that imaginary flyer onto this blog.  It is my hope that people will read it, follow the advice in it, and make the holiday shopping season a little less stressful for those who are stuck in customer service jobs in December.  Consider this to be the Official Etiquette Guide for Holiday Shoppers.

(1) Remember the rules you le...

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Flight Rising: Cragbacked Bouldursa

Cragbacked Bouldursa

The Cragbacked Bouldursa was part of the 2014 Rockbreaker’s Ceremony in Flight Rising. It is an annual event that takes place at the end of November. This year, all of the holiday Familiars are bears. (Last time, they were sprites).

The best and easiest way to get a holiday Familiar is to do it while the Elemental Festival is going on. If you miss that opportunity, it gets much more difficult to obtain one. There is a chance that someone may be selling the Familiar that you need in the Auction House. Expect the price to be high!

Or, it is possible that the Familiar might re-appear as part of a festival that takes place in December. If you are trying to collect all the holiday Familiars, your best chance is to get one while its Festival is taking place. All of the artwork in this blog is copyright of Flight Rising.


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