January 19, 2013

Frequently Asked Questions

by fluffy at 12:40 AM


These are some of the questions I get asked fairly often, and some other questions which some people might have. Mostly it's stuff I actually do get asked regularly though.

This Weblog

Why should I care?

You probably shouldn't. Mostly I just ramble on about whatever things interest me at any given time. Mostly I like talking about things with a lot of people but hate repeating myself. So, a blog.

Mostly this is just used for friends-only stuff now anyway; for general-interest stuff I'm somewhat more active on Tumblr.

What's with the title?

It's sort of a pun.

What software do you use?

I use Six Apart's Movable Type weblog engine for the main content management, and phpBB for the comments system. I have some custom glue to keep it all together, and also a few cheap hacks to do a few other things that MT was missing. This isn't to say I couldn't write better-integrated software to do all this on my own, of course; I'm just lazy.

Why do you use such a [garish|dark|purple|plaid] color scheme?

I like to experiment with color and patterns, as I have a fairly odd sense of aesthetics. I try to keep things readable, but also like to use colors and patterns to make my designs uniquely mine. I also tend to change my color schemes based on my overall feeling of self-identity.

What's with all of these entries which are "friends-only?"

A lot of the things I say on here aren't really intended for public consumption, and so I'd prefer to only say them to people who aren't likely to use it against me or the like. (Believe it or not, but there's a lot of folks on the Internet who seem to take joy in making people they barely know suffer for no particularly good reason!)

If you want access to my friends-only entries, you can request to sign up for the group, or send me a private message asking politely. If I don't let you in, it's nothing personal, though, which is exactly why I'm not letting you in.

The layout looks kinda ugly.

Unfortunately, I don't have access to every webbrowser on the planet. My layouts are usually tested entirely in Safari and Firefox (which are the only two browsers I use), and tend to use HTML and CSS features which are broken or unsupported in IE (and I only use CSS for layout, so older versions of Netscape and so on are right out — though I design things so that they'll at least be viewable and otherwise usable in older browsers). Since my website is designed for me and not for others, though, there's only so much I'll do to make sure it looks right for everyone.

If you're using a browser which renders the site correctly and just think it's ugly, well, there's no accounting for taste.

What do you mean by MLP?

"Mindless Link Propagation." It's a term from a community blog I used to hang out on, although I don't use it anymore because of the other thing.

Real Life

What do you do for a living?

I have done many things on both a freelance and professional/salaried basis, though most of them revolve around computers and Internet technology. Currently I'm a software engineer at a media company you've probably heard of, with occasional audio and music production on the side.

And what do you do for fun?

Aside from spending more time than is healthy browsing the Internet, I like to draw comics (though I'm not very good at it), play piano and guitar, compose and perform music (especially for Song Fight), and play video games, particularly music-related games like Beatmania, Dance Dance Revolution, and Rez, though I really like any sort of offbeat, zen-style game (like Katamari Damacy) and the occasional platformer or action-adventure (e.g. Zelda).

I also enjoy occasional recreational programming.

What's your name?

I prefer to go without one, though you may call me fluffy. Finding my legal name (which I only use in my professional and family life) isn't too difficult, but I'd rather not be called by it here. Also, since it's so easy to find, it's not as if I'll be impressed by anyone figuring it out, so don't even bother if that's what you're going for.

If you insist on a last name, I use <3 (or ♥ if you're feeling particularly fancy).

You mean Fluffy, right?

No, fluffy. It's an adjective, not a name.

(Also, it's a visual thing; a capital F breaks the flow of the letters.)

Wait, Fluffy Porcupine[sic]?

This is a source of much confusion, but fluffy porcupine was a band name I used for music I produced, while at the same time I was using the name "fluffy" in other contexts of separate lineage. It got too confusing, though (even the people I perform with semi-regularly don't understand the difference most of the time). But basically, I'm fluffy, and fluffy porcupine was a band with an undefined number of members but was primarily me and Fred (my SIDstation, who I felt was an equal creative partner at the time because of its nondeterministic nature).

For a while I released music under a number of different names based on the sort of song that it was, but I got tired of keeping track of all the alter-egos so now I just use the band name Sockpuppet, which has a particular meaning.

Are you a boy or a girl?


That wasn't a yes or n— wait, what?

I prefer to think of myself as more gender-agnostic. I don't particularly identify with either, although I lean somewhat feminine.

Some use the term "neutrois" but perfectly I like the ring of "epicene."

Which pronouns do you prefer?

Feminine (she/her) and neutral (it/its or they/their) are fine. Please don't use masculine or neologistic ones (ey/em, sie/hir, zie/zir).

Basically just use whatever you think is right and I'm probably fine with it, until English gets decent epicene pronouns anyway. (It might take a while.)

Okay, so what do you really look like?

Not plaid.

What part of the world are you in?

I live in Seattle, WA, specifically Capitol Hill, back after a five-year exile in San Francisco, CA. (Before that I lived in Ballard.)

Before that I lived in New York City. My apartment was in Queens (in a neighborhood called Ridgewood, which sounded nicer than its previous yet more-fitting name of Lower Flushing), while the grocery store across the street was in Brooklyn. I worked in Chelsea (which is either in the lower part of upper Manhattan or the upper part of lower Manhattan, depending on who you ask and how recently they were a hipster).

Before that I lived in New Mexico (I grew up in Albuquerque, and moved to Las Cruces to go to NMSU when I was 17) for as long as I can remember (aside from an unhappy but brief time that I lived in Virginia), though I was born in Arizona, and shortly after that my family moved to California, where we lived until I was 3.

Are you currently seeing anyone?

What, like, with my eyes?

No, you know, dating.

Oh. No.

Journal Comic

Why do you draw your comics the way you do?

I like to abstract people and things and draw them how I see them. The amount of detail I give something is usually proportional to the amount of attention I give it. Peoples' colors/appendages/etc. (including my own) are just based on the concepts I have of them in my mind, and are certainly not intended to be literal or whatever.

Also, I'm not particularly good at drawing.

Why do you draw yourself the way that you do?

Well, I give myself the same treatment that I give others, really. I draw myself as a personification of how I "see" myself, and that can vary from time to time. Sometimes this can even change within a single comic, for example if I'm depicting things which happen in an online space, particularly if it's related to what's happening in real life.

Virtual life

So, where can I find you online?

I read (and often comment on) way too many weblogs, and go through cyclic spurts with various forums. I also hang out on a few MUCKs. I'm also on both AIM (plaidfluff) and sometimes Jabber (fluffy@[this domain]). "plaidfluff" is also my PSN and Steam ID.

If you just want to stalk me, my friendfeed is probably the way to go.

Are you a furry?

Why, is that a problem?

Help and Support

Can you help me set up phpBB to work with MovableType?

All of what you should need to know is in the instructional writeup. If you are truly stuck with something, post a comment, though I may not get back to you right away.

Can you help me with my programming homework?

I can.

Okay, but will you?

Probably not.

Will you write me a song/draw me a picture/design my website for me?

That depends on a number of things:

  • How much free time I have
  • How motivated I am
  • What sorts of compensation would be involved (money is nice, nifty barter is nicer)

If you're interested, just drop me a line.

How can I drop you a line? Your email address isn't posted anywhere.

You're a smart person. I'm sure you can figure it out.

My name is [name], I'm the webmaster of a high-profile [content type] site. Would you be interested in a link exchange?

No. Also, die in a fire.


Did you really expect me to read all that?

No, but thanks for your interest!