Dec 29 2008

Contest #27: Monster Resolutions

Category: Uncategorized @ 1:02 am

Since this is the last contest of 2008 and the contest that will take us into the new year, I thought it would be appropriate to do something that involved new year’s resolutions.

This week’s contest is to write a new year’s resolution for a monster from a book or movie. Godzilla’s resolution might be to patch things up with Mothra. Tell us which monster you’re picking and what the resolution for 2009 will be.

Standard contest timeline and contest rules apply this week. By leaving an entry you are agreeing to those rules. The entry voted the favorite by MM users will earn its author their choice of a $20 Amazon.com gift certificate OR a $40 gift certificate to the MM Online Store.


Contest Summary
Assignment
: Write a new year’s resolution for a monster. 
How to enter: Write your entry in the Contest Entries section.
Deadline: Friday, January 2nd at 5pm EST
Prize: Your choice of a $20 Amazon.com gift certificate OR a $40 gift certificate to the MM Online Store.

Announcement: This contest is closed. Feel free to continue to leave your answers here, but you'll be doing so strictly for our edification. Why don't you see what's going on in the forum or check out the latest update or contest?


Dec 28 2008

Contest #26: Winner

Category: Uncategorized @ 5:56 pm

Hope everyone had a good holiday. If you’re anything like me you’re probably playing Settlers of Catan with your family, so let’s get right to it. The winner this week is newcomer bonzaipotato. The entry that did it:

"Throw ring in volcano." Lord of the Rings

The prize is bonzaipotato’s choice of gift certificate. The winner of our MM participation reward is Mike Fo’ Sho’. He wins a $10 gift certificate to the MM online store.

Come back tomorrow for our New Year’s resolution themed contest.


Dec 26 2008

Contest #26: Finalists

Category: Uncategorized @ 7:38 pm

Before talking about this week’s finalists, I’d like to plug the current photo contest. There’s still plenty of time to enter, but as of right now there are only 4 people who’ve entered. Remember, the prize is $25 + number of people who enter. The prize stands at $29 right now.

I’d like to recognize the entries this week that, despite not making the finals, were either user or staff favorites: Spumoni’s prostate exam, greg’s shiny side up, Taylor’s polar bear, Stevel Knievel’s smoke detector test, vlad’s worldwide crisis, Snoconegrl’s Hell in a handbasket,  SesameStreetGang’s New Testament, and Mike Fo’ Sho’s speak any language.

The four finalists we chose this week were Alex, Bovine of doom, giraffe1089, and bonzaipotato. The fifth finalist was chosen by contest-creator What. He chose Mach3. The poll will be open until 5pm EST.

[poll id="33"]


Dec 23 2008

Alternative Hazard Merch Announcement: Round 3

Category: Uncategorized @ 8:09 pm

Mental Magma Online Store


Introducing two more designs from:

Contest #13: Alternative Hazards

 

Streams by SomeGuyNamedDoug Punch by fooly cooly

We did these designs to replace the image that we removed for copyright issues from this contest. Let us know what you think.


Dec 22 2008

Contest #26: Deficient Directions

Category: Uncategorized @ 1:20 am

This is Christmas week, so I won’t be posting too much. We’re not having a Christmas-themed contest this week. That’s what Photo Contest #2 is for. And no, we’re not creating lolcats this week. Why don’t I just tell you what the contest is?

This week’s contest is to give some grossly understated or useless directions/advice/information. Let me give you some examples:

“Make, then eat.” for duck a l’orange

“Turn.” for how to get from Ontario to Quebec

“Win battles.” Sun Tzu’s rough draft

This week’s contest (including the examples) was created by MM user What. He will be guest judge and select one of the finalists this week.

Standard contest timeline and contest rules apply this week. By leaving an entry you are agreeing to those rules. The entry voted the favorite by MM users will earn its author their choice of a $20 Amazon.com gift certificate OR a $40 gift certificate to the MM Online Store.

Contest Summary
Assignment
: Write some grossly understated or useless directions/advice/information.
How to enter: Write your entry in the Contest Entries section.
Deadline: Friday, December 26th at 5pm EST
Prize: Your choice of a $20 Amazon.com gift certificate OR a $40 gift certificate to the MM Online Store.

Announcement: This contest is closed. Feel free to continue to leave your answers here, but you'll be doing so strictly for our edification. Why don't you see what's going on in the forum or check out the latest update or contest?


Dec 21 2008

Contest #25: Winner

Category: Uncategorized @ 6:03 pm

Approximately 6 months ago I consulted an old gypsy woman to whom I talk prior to all major decisions. I asked her what she could see of the future of the website I was about to build. She spoke of a champion whose ideas would be so hot that they would have to be described as molten. I said, “Hey, that’s a good tagline, can I use that?” She also told me this champion would be a pioneer and accomplish something that would be recorded in the history of my website. I now know that this sagacious gypsy was speaking of Mental Magma user Jakutz. He has won Contest #25 and has become our first 2x champion. The entry that did it was:

Dad died this morning. Couldn't think of a good way to tell you. -Charlie

Jakutz wins his choice of gift certificates. Congratulations on the historic win. The winner of our MM participation rewards prize this week is fyrtygr.

See you tomorrow when we announce Contest #26, which was submitted by an MM user.


Dec 19 2008

Contest #25: Finalists

Category: Uncategorized @ 6:32 pm

I liked the entries for this week’s contests so much I thought about getting them made by some custom fortune cookie company and giving them to the winner. However, based on the prices, I must conclude that making custom fortune cookies is more difficult than cold fusion. Let me know if anyone finds a reasonable price for a set of custom cookies.

Before I tell you this week’s finalists, I’d like to recognize some entries that were either user or staff favorites: etmoose‘s poisoned, Mach3‘s offensive Chinese diction, What‘s vague self referential fortune, Fuzz O.T.C.‘s don’t want to know, S.G.N.D.‘s Sarah Connor, nmrboy‘s entropy, Arkansasinspirational cookie, greg‘s pretend atheist, Alex‘s slaves, pennydreadful‘s Konami code, rudolphs001‘s your mom, and amueth‘s missed droids.

The 5 finalists this week are Jakutz, Iaoia, dana, mike fo’ sho‘, and jbirdpowers. The polls will be open until 5pm EST on Sunday. Don’t forget to log in if you want to qualify for the MM participation reward this week.

[poll id="32"]

photo by flickr user rickharris


Dec 18 2008

Photo Contest #2: Unintended Uses

Category: Uncategorized @ 12:59 am

We know that many of you will be having some time off soon and we wanted to make sure you weren’t bored, so we’re launching our 2nd photo contest today. Use those new digital cameras you get as presents and recruit your relatives to help you with this one.

This photo challenge is to take a picture of an object being used for something other than its intended use. If you’re receiving gifts this time of year, we encourage you to come up with unintended uses for the presents you receive. However, your photo can involve any objects.

Please read the photo contest rules and instructions for uploading.

Standard contest rules also apply for this contest. By leaving an entry you are agreeing to those rules. We’re offering a variable prize for this contest.  The entry voted the favorite by the MM users will win its photographer an Amazon.com gift certificate worth $25 + the number of users that entered the contest (up to $100). So, if 75 people enter the contest, you can win the max prize.

Lastly, if you have creative friends and relatives, tell them about the contest and get them to join MM.  If they register, list your name in the "referral" field, and then win the contest, you’ll receive the exact same gift certificate prize that they do.

photo by flickr user donaldist

Contest Summary
Assignment
: Photograph an object being used for something other than its intended use.
How to enter: Post your photo in the Contest Entries section 
Deadline: Tuesday, January 6th 2009 at 5pm EST
Prize: An Amazon.com gift certificate worth $25 + the number of users that enter the contest.


Dec 15 2008

Contest #25: Cortune Fookie

Category: Uncategorized @ 1:24 am

By our estimate, there are two kinds of fortune cookies. One kind describes some positive quality about your current self (like: “You are wise beyond your years”). I’ve never liked this kind. I’ll eat the cookie when I get this kind, but I don’t consider myself fortune cookie’d. The second kind actually makes a prediction, usually positive, about your future, although with about as much specificity as a horoscope (like: “You will have an emotion today”).

This week’s contest is to write a bizarro version of a fortune cookie. You can negate either form of fortune cookie. It can be an insulting statement about a person’s character, or it can be a prediction about something negative in a person’s future.

Standard contest timeline and contest rules apply this week. By leaving an entry you are agreeing to those rules. The entry voted the favorite by MM users will earn its author their choice of a $20 Amazon.com gift certificate OR a $40 gift certificate to the MM Online Store.

Contest Summary
Assignment
: Write a negative version of a fortune cookie.
How to enter: Write your entry in the Contest Entries section.
Deadline: Friday, December 19th at 5pm EST
Prize: Your choice of a $20 Amazon.com gift certificate OR a $40 gift certificate to the MM Online Store.

photo by flickr user craftygoat

Announcement: This contest is closed. Feel free to continue to leave your answers here, but you'll be doing so strictly for our edification. Why don't you see what's going on in the forum or check out the latest update or contest?


Dec 14 2008

Contest #24: Winner

Category: Uncategorized @ 6:09 pm

The streak of no-time-winners beating one-time-winners continues this week. We get to add another name to our list of competitors in the future Tournament of Champions. User Mike Fo’ Sho’ won this week’s contest. He had two haiku in the finals, but the one that earned him the prize was:

I am in sleep mode,
But if you turn me on, I’ll
Return the favor

Mike F. S. wins his choice of gift certificate. Our MM Participation rewards winner this week is rudolfs001. He wins a $10 gift certificate to the MM store.

We finished an exciting week but have another one ahead of us. In the coming week we will announce our regular Monday contest, a 3-week long photo contest, and more merch. I can’t wait.


Dec 12 2008

Contest #24: Finalists

Category: Uncategorized @ 8:26 pm

This week was a special week in a lot of ways. As I wrote in the preamble to the contest, I was a little worried we’d regret this contest. I regret nothing. It was special because the timing of the contest was seemingly prescient. User Ameuth posted a link to a story that was all over the web involving an inventor who had created a robotic mate for himself. Lastly, it was special because two users did something that hasn’t been done since Contest #1: get two entries into the finals.

Before I mention the 3 people that make up our top 5 entries, I’d like to acknowledge some of the entries that, despite not making the finals, were user or staff favorites: jupchu’s binary poem, SesameStreetGang’s port 2 jam, etmoose’s evolving vibrator, Stevel’s BBSOD, Alex’s protesting feminists, What’s buzz-whir-squeek, dana’s his and her dual bot, Jakutz’s pimpin aint easy, Garrett’s sexbot downloads, and SomeGuyNamedDoug’s DRM vagina.

Our top five entries this week were done by drewbert (1 of them), mach3 (2 of them), and Mike Fo’ Sho’ (2 of them). This may be controversial, but the MM selection committee stands behind it. The entries this week were fabulous, but sometimes one person contributes more than 1 entry that deserves a top 5 spot. The poll will be open until 5pm EST on Sunday.

[poll id="31"]


Dec 11 2008

Gravatars and my secret method for selecting them

Category: Uncategorized @ 10:18 am

I’m sure most of you have noticed the small images that appear next to some people’s names in the comments/entries section.  Just in case you’re interested, I thought I’d tell you how to get one.  They’re called gravatars and you can get them (for free) at Gravatar.com.  Once you confirm your email address and choose your little picture, it will automagically appear on any blog on which you make a comment (well, any blog that uses Gravatars, which is a lot).  The only thing you have to be careful of is to make sure the email you give Gravatar and the email you give the blog are the same.

That brings up the topic of how to choose the image to use for your Gravatar (which, by the way, is short for Globally Recognized Avatar).  Some people use images of themselves (like MM user Shirin).  Some people use drawings (I use the old version of the MM brain, and user Bunny Slippers just started using a drawing of what appear to be bunny slippers).  

If you’re having trouble deciding what image to use, there is a method I invented that I’ve used to help people.  You’ve probably heard about how to figure out your porno name.  You take the name of your first pet as your first name and the name of the street you grew up on as your last name.  Well, I suggest Googling your porno name and using the first image that shows up in the image results (Which for my porno name, “Doc Oaks”, is this stud).  If the image is not really usable or terribly boring, a secondary choice is to select any image that shows on the first page of the image results.

Lastly, the rumor that you’ll have your soul stolen if you upload a gravatar pic of yourself is nearly unfounded.


Dec 09 2008

Idea: MM Tournament of Champions

Category: Uncategorized @ 2:16 pm

A few members of the MM staff and I were having a discussion the other day about what we should do during blog sweeps week. We’re not even sure that such a thing exists, but we’d like to be ready for it if it comes knocking. :)

We came up with the idea to host a Tournament of Champions.  We’d invite every previous MM champion, at this point 23 of them, to a grand multi-contest, week-long tournament that would challenge them mentally, physically (lots of typing), and spiritually (they would have to ponder the most treacherous of philosophical questions in order to enter the contests).

We wanted to put this out in the open and get your opinions on it.  How does everyone feel about having a contest in which not everyone is allowed to participate?  What should the tournament have in terms of structure?  A single elimanation bracket?  A format similar to our current contests?  How about the judges?  For the judges panel should we pull from the MM regulars who haven’t won a contest yet?

We have a few ideas for prizes, but we’d like to hear yours.  It would need to be something more significant than our normal prizes.

Put those creative brains to work and let us know what you think.

photo by flickr user markal


Dec 08 2008

Contest #24: Sexbot Haiku

Category: Uncategorized @ 1:07 am

Sometimes we do things on Mental Magma that we later regret. I’m really hoping this week’s contest isn’t one of those. :)

This week’s contest is to write a haiku from the perspective of a sexbot working in the future. If you aren’t familiar with the term sexbot, it’s just what it sounds like: a humanoid robot designed to have sex with humans. So with this haiku, you are writing as if you are the sexbot. Your sexbot can be female or male (like Jude Law’s Joe Gigolo from A.I.).

Standard contest timeline and contest rules apply this week. By leaving an entry you are agreeing to those rules. The entry voted the favorite by MM users will earn its author their choice of a $20 Amazon.com gift certificate OR a $40 gift certificate to the MM Online Store.

Contest Summary
Assignment
: Compose a haiku from the perspective of a futuristic sexbot.
How to enter: Write your entry in the Contest Entries section.
Deadline: Friday, December 12th at 5pm EST
Prize: Your choice of a $20 Amazon.com gift certificate OR a $40 gift certificate to the MM Online Store.

photo by flickr user moleratsgotnofur

 

Announcement: This contest is closed. Feel free to continue to leave your answers here, but you'll be doing so strictly for our edification. Why don't you see what's going on in the forum or check out the latest update or contest?


Dec 07 2008

Contest #23: Winner

Category: Uncategorized @ 6:10 pm

I went through a bit of an Abbot and Costello Whose on first? routine when telling people who won this week’s contest. Just to be clear, a user named What was the winner this week. He was quite prolific this week and had many great answers that might have been winners, but the one that was in the finals and people voted for was:

Plagiarism was my idea.

Congrats to What, he wins the gift certificate of his choice. I should also mention that we haven’t had a margin of victory like this in a while (probably since Etmoose’s win). The MM rewards winner this week is Alex. He wins a $10 gift certificate to the MM Store.

We’re developing a backlog of merch to be made (not to mention the Star Wars PSA videos), but that’s not such a bad thing. We should have the extra selections from the Alternative Hazards contest done sometime this week. We should also finish up the merch from the medieval bumper stickers contest soon too (it’s mostly bumpers stickers, but there are a few shirts in there as well). After that we’ll be free to turn our attention to the excellent entries from this week.