I made u a martini, but I drinked itWednesday had a potluck at work. I made a casserole early in the morning, then decided that it’d be too difficult to take on the bus, so I drove in for the first time in months. It’s pretty annoying driving in, though it is about 5 minutes quicker.

I had the casserole in an insulated bag wrapped in towels, so it actually stayed warm enough to eat when we got the news that everything was ready. There was all kinds of stuff, though some people brought in store-bought desserts. Turkey, ham, mashed potatoes, pasta salad, fruit trays, deviled eggs, chocolate pie, and a couple of different casseroles were there. About half the casserole I made had been eaten when I finally got to the food. I took a bit and was surprised by how bland it tasted. I went back to get seconds on a dish that looked odd but tasted great, and found that people had eaten all of my casserole. Ah well, if people liked it, that’s all that counts.

Wednesday night had the usual Rock Band. Steve’s older son wondered when there would be a video game that was totally photorealistic. “In about 20 years. Same as true artificial intelligence,” I said. That touched off a conversation that went all over the place, from Marvin Minsky to Dune to “Avatar” (James Cameron). Iain M. Banks has said that truly realistic entertainments should probably have a “this is not real” symbol that appears every 15-30 seconds, so that people wouldn’t mistake virtual reality for real reality. But there are a ton of things that aren’t quite there yet in games. “Too Human” showed quite a few shots of vehicles moving over snow, and the snow didn’t look or react the way real snow does. Same thing with people; even the best human characters in games are cartoonish.