Narcissistic Vanity is the personal website of Butch Lebo.

I'm really not all that interesting, unless you consider the coffee-fueled mania from my daily struggle of my love affair with data.

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The gears in my mind . . .

One Thousand Daily Photos


Today I uploaded my 1000th Daily Photo.

The Daily Photo project started on September 4, 2007. I believe Natalie and the boys had just started school for the year, and I was home working alone, and hadn't exactly figured out how to deal with an empty house, and a blog that was starting to seriously lack fresh content.


The idea for the daily photo is obviously not originally mine. There were already plenty of people who were posting daily pictures of their view, skyburn, their children, their non-human children, other significant people in their lives, and cats well before I bothered posting the first picture. The idea that this might be a good thing to do came from Mena Trott's 2006 TEDTalk.

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2013 to 2014: My Mostly Invisible Year

Today is the 11th anniversary of A year ago, I posted the tenth anniversary. There was one additional post over the course of the year, and that was it.

I'm not really sure what happened.

A lot of my spare time over the last year has been poured into Ingress.

After getting over the mid-level lull in February, I was able to correct my expectations, deal with some of my own antisocial tendencies and become more active in the local Ingress community. And being part of the local community in Ingress is very important.

In many ways, trying to play Ingress casually is more work than just playing the game hardcore. The XM game and the portal hacking game both require that one is out in the field either collecting XM or accessing portals. Locally, there is an understanding that the agents that can hack more, all other things being equal, will win more often against an agent that doesn't hack as often.

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Sam's First Day 9th Grade

Today was the first day of school here in Virginia Beach.

One of the teachers at Sam's high school included an assignment for parents to send them an e-mail. I'd like to present to you for your reading pleasure, my first draft:

An Open Letter to Sam's Teachers

Hello. I am Sam's father.

I think Sam is great. He loves learning, and is capable of absorbing information like sponge. Unfortunately, Sam is also highly flammable and would probably dissolve easily in most solvents. I have also been told by a number of dragons that Sam would be crispy and good with ketchup.

Sam is also a very deep thinker. Given enough time, he is capable of seeing through vast amounts of information and formulating an argument that presents a new and unique perspective on almost any topic. Unfortunately, Sam tends to present his argument in either Wookie or Klingon. On his best days, he is capable of moving fluently between both those languages, sometimes using both in parallel.

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SysMango turns 10

March 26, 2003 was the day I pushed the publish button the first time for this site.

It's almost hard to believe that this site has been going, slowly, for the last decade.

I was hoping to do a big post going over the last 10 years, but I ran out of time. I am off of work next week. I should have time to write about the site and my thoughts on trying to maintain it over the last 10 years. I do have one picture showing how much I've posted over the years.


The Internet is a very different place today than it was in 2003. Social media had only just started to gain attention. Twitter and Facebook were still in the future (2006 and 2004). Spending all day on the web was not yet something most people I knew did.

Today, most of the people I know would have trouble living without a broadband connection at home and a mobile data plan on their phone. looked very different.

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A month plus of Ingress, so what's next?


i think this is going to be my last regular post about Ingress. There is really not all that much to write about beyond my own progress (which is boring compared to others) or discussing the current state of the game. There are plenty of sites dedicated to the state of Ingress, both the game and the state of play. I'll still post occasionally about it, but I do want to talk about other things.

Ingress isn't everything.

A big issue in Ingress right now is not balanced. As with most MMO, game balance is a serious issue. New players have to be supported as they are discover the game, but there has to be something to reward established players, particularly those that have reached the level cap. Unlike other a non-ARG, it is very difficult to partition the game space to address the different needs of the different populations of players.

Another significant issue with game balance is the amount of time individual players can dedicate to the game. Imagine trying to compete against a player who has the time to play the grind for 48-hours straight. Or a player who was able to grind to level cap in their first week of playing.

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Coffee 2009-2012


Just sent a postcard

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Goodbye Facebook and Instagram

It was the final goodbye today for my Instagram and Facebook accounts. I don't even want to link to them.

In the past, I have left a still running social network because of the way other people were abusing the offering, and the service's lack of doing anything about it. This time it is different.

I deactivated my Facebook account in Februrary 2011. I don't even think I wrote about it, I just did it. I figured if there was a compelling reason to do come back, it would find me. Nothing ever did. I wrote about the problems I had with Facebook late in 2010.

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