It’s the end of an era over here.  KDawg, who leads the league in comments, suggested that we go to a one column format.  I couldn’t take it anymore, so I agreed with him.  So here it is, the new das Skiz.
We’ll be trying to lay things out in a more sane manner, and making everything more visible, including recent posts which would sometimes get snowed under.  At the same time, we say goodbye to an experiment that had some fond memories, but has probably run its course.  As a final farewell to the old layout, we give you a Sunday Matchup, in the new format.  Click the jump to see the whole thing.
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A clash of the titans this Sunday.  While Catherine might allege that this compares ‘apples and oranges’ … well, we can’t refute that.  But it’s the matchup the information world has been looking for anyway.

So who wins this week?  Does the vastness of Wikipedia’s trivial knowledge overwhelm Google?  Or does Google’s diverse attack stifle Wikipedia’s one dimensional learning assault.  Cast your vote, and let the world know.  And remember, you can vote as many times as you want.

Wikipedia, the website

October 11, 2009

Wikipedia, the website

Wikipedia, the website

Name: Wikipedia
Age: 8 years old
URL: http://www.wikipedia.org
Other projects: Wikimedia, Wikinews, Commons, Wikiquote

Keys to the game:

  • Vast collection of sometimes correct information
  • Included in browser search bar
  • Knows, like, a ton about football
  • Can tell you the winners of every Super Bowl

Game plan:

Wikipedia, like Andy Reid as described by Steve Mariucci, is a great accumulator.  Look for Wikipedia to accumulate yards, penalties, knowledge about the penalties they committed, and attendance data.  Armed with this knowledge, Wikipedia is able to make halftime corrections for a usually disastrous first half.  When asked about a potential game plan for this week, Wikipedia responded by saying it had, ‘no idea’, and would probably look through countless articles on the 2008 season, specifically regarding the Wildcat offense.

Weaknesses:

Despite knowing every thing there is to know about football, he has actually never played football before this season.  He is quickly learning that knowing all of the words about football and actually knowing what to do on a football field are vastly different.  He is also seriously impaired by his quest for new knowledge, as he’ll often have to call a timeout to update a current event.  Look for Google to search for breaking news and pester him with inaccurate Wikipedia accounts.  Also, look for Google to blitz, since Wikipedia has only ‘briefly skimmed’ the audibles article.

Player quote:

Everybody knows about Google, especially me.  I have a gigantic-ass article about him.  I spent a whole day reading about him, his founders, and his hilarious ‘Easter Eggs’.  Wow.  When you type ‘recursion’ into Google, it asks if you meant ‘recursion’.  Seeing as I have a whole article about recursion, I think I understand that joke.

I’m not going to sit here and tell you that Google isn’t useful.  Sure, if I want to find ‘naked britney spears picz’, I’ll use Google.  It’s a great reference for stuff like that.  But when I want to learn about something that real adults talk about, like Philosophical Principles of the Crimean War, I’m staying home.  You can arm yourself for your next social gathering with just a few clicks on me.

And the best part?  If you don’t like what you learn on Wikipedia, just change it!  Think the South won the US Civil War?  They sure did now.  Think dollar bills were made out of baby seal skins during WWII to save on paper costs?  Why not?  Here’s a better question: Ever try to change the search results Google gives you?

Here’s the bottom line.  Google and I are going to play some game, and maybe he wins or maybe I win.  But I think we both know who the winner will be according to Wikipedia.

Google the website

October 11, 2009

Google, the website

Google, the website

Name: Google
Age: 11
URL: http://www.google.com
Other projects: Maps, Earth, Mail, some kind of Wave thing that I promise isn’t e-mail or a discussion board, Death Star

Keys to the game:

  • Good at finding things
  • Diverse interests
  • Simple interface
  • Can read defenses, or at least search for them
  • Real nose for the football

Game plan:

Google’s game plan is a well kept secret.  At times, it looks like they want to really focus on one thing, like the running game.  Other times, they spend entire games diversifying their attack, making it hard to know what they’re doing.  It’s incredibly hard to prepare for a Google matchup, which is just how they like it.  If a guess had to be made though, look for Google to continue to pound ‘things that are cool’ and the running game.  They may also mix in a NASA related project or two, and some play action.

Weaknesses:

Google occasionally has some diva tendencies, which can be poisonous on the sideline.  In his controversial autobiography, ‘Give me the damn search’, Google details how he’d take entire plays off if he knew the ball wasn’t coming his way, and how he’d sometimes ‘only kinda’ work on the new browser, because he was bored with it.  Look for the defense to razz Google and play on his ‘Look at me’ side by making it impossible for the offense to look at him.  Also, look for them to overuse flash plug-ins on their website, causing a full browser shutdown.

Player quote:

Wikipedia is great, man.  Anytime I wanna dick around for an hour or two, I go over there.  Wikipedia is really great for wasting time or looking up the world’s largest penis or whatever other stupid thing might come to your mind that you ‘absolutely have to know or it will bother you all day’.

But when you want to do real work?  Well, that’s when you go over to Google.  Try typing in, ‘How do I get rid of syphilis?’ to Wikipedia.  You’ll probably get a 100 page article about how syphilis got into your body in the first place, or why it’s called syphilis, or who got the first case.  And after about 3 hours of weeding through all of that nonsense, you’ll still have syphilis.

Go type that into my site right now.  Go do it.  First, I can hook you up with real, probably fraudulent doctor advice on how to get rid of it.  Don’t like the mainstream cure?  Type in ‘dark arts syphilis removal’ or ‘castration’ or whatever you want to do.  Want to get hooked up with a badass Candian doctor who will ship you antibiotics No Questions Asked?  I’m your man.  Shit, if you don’t spell ‘syphilis’ right, I’ll even SUGGEST A CORRECT SPELLING.  When you ask Wikipedia about ‘correct spelling’, he starts talking about the first spelling bee and some other bullshit.  That guy just never shuts up about anything.

Here’s what I’m saying.  If you want to become a nerd, or want to increase your nerdness, try Wikipedia.  You will definitely ‘learn’ something, whatever the fuck that means.  But if you just want someone to find the information and spoon feed it to you, boom, here’s Uncie Google with a silver spoon.

For nearly 4 years, Skiz and Catherine have duked it out on the playing field of life. But never have these two squared off in an arena as sacred as the Sunday Matchup.

This week, we’ll learn a little more about these two competitors. Will it come down to a height mismatch? Is das Skiz too old to keep up with his barely younger but still younger competitor? Will Catherine remember anything about the game of football?

Cast your vote for this week’s winner. Remember, voting is anonymous, so Catherine won’t be able to hunt you down if you vote for Skiz.

Last week’s winner was dollars, but only by 2 votes! However, if you feel euros were wrongly defeated, you can go back and change history. So vote now or forever hold your peace.

die Katze, the human

October 4, 2009

die Katze, with frog

die Katze, with frog

Name: Catherine ‘die Katze’ Stocker
Age: basically as old as das Skiz, but 26 actually
Occupation: PhD student
Former Occupation: Non-top secret Victoria’s Secret Employee

Keys to the game:

  • Has European and Japanese ancestral roots
  • Skilled in math and sciences
  • Excellent hoster of events
  • Has a German visa
  • Can sleep with an eye open

Game Plan:
Catherine has worldwide appeal, with an EU visa, a half Asian half white appearance, and command of the English language. Look for Catherine to take Chris places where he is ‘definitely a white guy’, and also not officially allowed to stay for any length of time. She will try to call plays at the line of scrimmage, since Peyton Manning is her favorite player. When Catherine is not globetrotting, she is plotting what can be done to fix the bathroom in the house, or how additional houses can be purchased. Look for Catherine to closely examine real estate dealings, and exploit Chris’ Tampa 2 defense by finding the seams.

Weaknesses:
Catherine is prone to shopping, without usually buying much. She can also slip into bouts of ‘celebrity watching’ through TMZ, Perez Hilton, and other such portals. Look for das Skiz to exploit this by buying her gossip magazines and dropping her off at Fashion Island. Catherine is a Computer Science PhD candidate, but does not like ‘messing’ with computers. This can be exploited by saying you want to install some RAM and that you will need to ‘open up the machine’, causing her to leave quickly. Her 3-4 defense could also use work.

Player quote:

I bet my opponent is going to talk a big game.  He always does.  Ask him about our record in backgammon meetings.  Ask him about heads-up poker,  Tiger Woods golf.  It’s all the same.    I’m driven.  It’s like there’s a fire inside of me, but instead of burning my intestines and stomach, it burns me to do stuff.  I understand that doesn’t really make sense to you, but that’s because you don’t have a fire on your insides.  It could also be related to Del Taco or something.  I’m not sure.  But it is definitely hot in there, and I think that has something to do with wanting to win things.

das Skiz, the human

October 4, 2009

Skiz, with frog

das Skiz, with frog

Name: Chris ‘das Skiz’ Czyzewicz
Age: 27
Profession: Computer Science PhD candidate
Old Job: Top secret government employee

Game plan:

  • Tall
  • Has some understanding of German
  • Conversation starting last name
  • Had a job one time, that he quit, so he can say things like, ‘When I had my job …’
  • Strong defensive skills
  • Has watched, like, a lot of NFL Films

Keys to the game:
das Skiz was a legend in his own mind when he played football at recess in elementary school. Despite never playing any sort of organized football, he still believes he’d be a shoo-in for the hall of fame if he had chosen to go that route. Look for Skiz to talk a lot about what teams did 40 years ago in certain situations, specifically referencing memorable quotes from the NFL Films library.

Weaknesses:
Skiz has weaknesses in the ‘house repair’ and ‘traveling anywhere’ fields that can be exploited. Look for Catherine to suggest that ‘something should be done with the bathroom’ or that ‘we should go somewhere spontaneously’. He also has remembered to buy a birthday present for family members approximately 7 times in his entire life. The comment, ‘isn’t so-and-so’s birthday coming up’ will virtually paralyze him. Despite being a schoolyard legend, he has no idea how to tackle, block, or kick, so he’s pretty much useless on the football field. His durability has also been called into question, as he has been punched, kicked, or run-into by a shopping cart nearly every time Catherine and Skiz do something even slightly resembling horseplay.

Player quote: (Editor’s note: Some sections of this player quote may have been deleted)
Catherine is a nice person.