Ulillillia City
July 30, 2006 2:58 PM   Subscribe

Whether you love it or hate it, Ulillillia City is a fascinating site by fascinating person. It's a meticulously annotated, categorized and laid out record of one man's entire mental life: his colour coded daily life, his dreams (over 400!), his fears, his video game ideas (including the supernatural olympics), his unique personalized mind game, his extensive tips 'n' tricks, how he processes and listens to music, and far more...
posted by The Wig (41 comments total) 16 users marked this as a favorite
... and just a note from myself. Sites like this are often passed around to ridicule their author, but that is not my intention in posting this. If that's the attitude you take in reading it, that is your attitude, but I don't intend to present it as such.
posted by The Wig at 2:59 PM on July 30, 2006

He says he is a video game addict since age 4.

They should show this website to every parent.

Very sad.
posted by wfc123 at 3:05 PM on July 30, 2006

The only clue that this is not satire is its length.
posted by TwelveTwo at 3:31 PM on July 30, 2006

"Imagine multiplying a pair of random two-digit numbers using only your mind and doing it within 20 seconds. That is just how strong my mental math abilities are"

He describes this as a wonder - Is it wrong of me to think this is a little... average?
posted by wumpus at 3:37 PM on July 30, 2006 [2 favorites]

i can actually generate random two-digit numbers in, like, 2 or 3 seconds... now THAT's a wonder.
posted by wumpus at 3:37 PM on July 30, 2006

What's the facinating part?
posted by scheptech at 3:41 PM on July 30, 2006

Multiplying two random digit numbers isn't much of a challenge.

His "audio processing" bit is bizarre. He speeds up the song to twice the speed, drops the encoding to 16kbps (in part because 'hates sounds above 3khz') and then removes one of the stereo channels?

He says he can't tell the difference between stereo and mono.
posted by delmoi at 3:43 PM on July 30, 2006

They should show this website to every parent.

Why? This has nothing to do with his playing video games. There have been obsessive people throughout history.
posted by delmoi at 3:44 PM on July 30, 2006 [2 favorites]

Wowsers. It's like reading a case study on patients suffering from extreme neuroses. I'm suprised he can actually *move*.

"How can you stand 1000 loops per day for a week straight?
This I don't know the reason behind with absolute certainty, but I do have two theories. One of which is possibly that I have OCD (...)"
, he writes. Judging from the amount of detail he puts into everything he does, I'd say yes he does. And like quite a few people that I've read about who have OCD, I've found that the level of detailing that they're able to do is amazing. (Examples: Nick Blinko wiki, Adolph Wolfli wiki)

And. I. can't. stop. reading. it. What an odd find, Wig. Thanks.
posted by Zack_Replica at 3:44 PM on July 30, 2006

"This is what I looked like on April 1, 2006. Click image to see high-res (2048x1536) version."
I bet the logs fall strangely silent for that link.
posted by NinjaTadpole at 3:44 PM on July 30, 2006

I have old drier sheets over the keyboard for the same reason with the mouse: the sticky feeling.

Ahmmm.. yeah. I use Kleenex.
posted by c13 at 3:52 PM on July 30, 2006

And. I. can't. stop. reading. it.

Seriously. I was sort of skimming it at first, but I got to the 'fears' section, and (if true, of course) this really is fascinating stuff. I feel for the guy - he seems so crippled in everyday life by completely arbitrary things. The words 'people' and 'person' because he heard them used in a particular way in a cartoon as a child, red and yellow condiment bottles because they remind him of lava in Metroid, 'blue water'...
posted by terpsichoria at 4:04 PM on July 30, 2006

The mirror fear is the most perplexing.
posted by TwelveTwo at 4:06 PM on July 30, 2006

[this is extraordinary]

Thanks, The Wig, amazing stuff. I knew a kid who was somewhere down this scale when I was at school: gives you an insight into what a controlling and frightening inner life he must have had.

Two things stick out:

1. His imaginary friends, who are basically video game characters come to 'life'.

2. 95% of his diet is cheese pizza and hamburger helper. I don't even know what Hamburger Helper is (even after reading the website), but I'm guessing that this is the express train to cardiac arrest.
posted by athenian at 4:50 PM on July 30, 2006

The only clue that this is not satire is its length.

And its constant self-promotion.
posted by scarabic at 4:56 PM on July 30, 2006

What a fascinating site.

The young man is clearly autistic with a burden of obsessive/compulsive responses, has a great love for mathematics, and is more self-aware than most "normal" folks.

I think it's interesting that he so rarely mentions his parents, with whom he most certainly resides. I wonder about the "no transportation" thing and the lack of variety in his daily routine, mostly why his parents don't seem to try to give him different experiences or find ways for him to get to, say, a pool.

It seems he's been allowed to blame video games for a lot of his autistic behaviours. That seems kind of weird, and I wonder whether he's insisting on it, his parents really think that, or someone else in a caretaker/physician role gave that to him.

I wonder if June 13 actually ended up being important in some way for him. I've not yet found a return reference on it on his site.

Really incredible stuff here. The only thing here that makes me sad is that he's willing to challenge himself on his limitations and oddnesses, and it doesn't seem like he's getting many opportunities currently to do more work on those things. Otherwise, wow, what an amazing attempt at relentlessly cataloguing an entire mental/emotional landscape!

Note to self: do not allow autistic children to overly fixate on video games during heavily developmental phases.
posted by batmonkey at 4:57 PM on July 30, 2006 [2 favorites]

I'm pretty sure this is legit as it's been around for years. I found it a while back and was fascinated by it. unfortunately, I forgot how to spell Ulillillia, so I couldn't google it. Thanks for uncovering this, Wig.
posted by Kronoss at 5:02 PM on July 30, 2006

I am fairly certain it is legit, for the reasons previously mentioned (the sheer volume of material and the regular updates for a few years; he links to his own 'earlier versions' of the site both still hosted at angelfire, or in the archive.org wayback machine), and also because, with a little searching, you can find the accounts with which he posts on the various online forums he mentions, as well as some others. The accounts are active and link back to the site.
posted by The Wig at 5:15 PM on July 30, 2006

The cost of the water for showers part freaked me the hell out. Is this a US thing? Here we get a monthly standing charge but we don't get billed per unit. Do you?
posted by BishopsLoveScifi at 5:22 PM on July 30, 2006

I imagine that future archaeologists are going to dig through data instead of dirt. I hope one of them discovers this. It will be the find of a lifetime.
posted by leapingsheep at 5:24 PM on July 30, 2006

batmonkey, I agreed with everything you said.

The Wig, Poignant reading and disturbing about computer addiction, isolation, depression. I feel for this young man, so isolated and struggling to survive, the austerity of his existence, how sad he suffered through so much bullying. I hope somebody who values his computer skills can reach out and give him work of some kind or that somebody in his commmunity can come pick him up to take him swimming more often.

It sounds as if he is somewhere on the autistic continuum and may have the traits of Asperger's Syndrome:

"Individuals with AS can exhibit a variety of characteristics and the disorder can range from mild to severe. Persons with AS show marked deficiencies in social skills, have difficulties with transitions or changes and prefer sameness. They often have obsessive routines and may be preoccupied with a particular subject of interest. They have a great deal of difficulty reading nonverbal cues (body language) and very often the individual with AS has difficulty determining proper body space. Often overly sensitive to sounds, tastes, smells, and sights, the person with AS may prefer soft clothing, certain foods, and be bothered by sounds or lights no one else seems to hear or see. It's important to remember that the person with AS perceives the world very differently. Therefore, many behaviors that seem odd or unusual are due to those neurological differences and not the result of intentional rudeness or bad behavior, and most certainly not the result of "improper parenting".

By definition, those with AS have a normal IQ and many individuals (although not all), exhibit exceptional skill or talent in a specific area. Because of their high degree of functionality and their naiveté, those with AS are often viewed as eccentric or odd and can easily become victims of teasing and bullying. While language development seems, on the surface, normal, individuals with AS often have deficits in pragmatics and prosody. Vocabularies may be extraordinarily rich and some children sound like "little professors." However, persons with AS can be extremely literal and have difficulty using language in a social context."

Previously on MetaFilter. I think a considerable number of people whose lives are intensely involved with the computer, (especially repetitively, continuously from a very young age) may have Asperger's traits and may contribute to the world of programming etc in excellent ways.

Some traits of Depressive Personality Disorder.

Vitamin deficiencies and depression.

Lack of sunlight increases depression.

Depression and sleep-cycles, over-dreaming.
posted by nickyskye at 5:30 PM on July 30, 2006 [1 favorite]

You gotta have a lot of free time on your hands to actually read through all of this kind of thing... I did check out his music section though, and was vaguely interested until I read this:

"The trick is, don't use Stereo sound... there's no real difference between mono and stereo from what I can tell, nothing significant."

OK. Discredited. And I gotta get back to work.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 5:52 PM on July 30, 2006

This is really terrifying. It's case of life immitates art, but this guy's condition seems worse, considering his slim chances of meeting his goals, and his disturbing aversion to any sort of "adult content." I can't believe his parents are letting him live like this.
posted by obvious at 6:03 PM on July 30, 2006


This must be completely wrong.
Water in New York City is $1.81/748 gallons or 0.242 cents per gallon.

Hawaii has the highest water rates in the US (agricultural rates on Oahu are about $2.25/13000 gallons).

Even quadrupled, it doesn't come anywhere near what this guys parents told him.

Either his parents are lying to him or he lives on the moon.
posted by zerokey at 6:16 PM on July 30, 2006

"The cost of the water for showers part freaked me the hell out. Is this a US thing? Here we get a monthly standing charge but we don't get billed per unit. Do you?"

Yes, people here usually pay a fixed base charge plus a charge based on actually usage.
posted by bcveen at 6:21 PM on July 30, 2006

actual ... brain's a little sluggish.
posted by bcveen at 6:23 PM on July 30, 2006

zerokey, For Iowa City residential customers, there is currently a minimum monthly water charge of $6.79 and sewer charge of $6.51 for the first 100 cubic feet of water which covers fixed costs of operating the City of Iowa City's water and sewer plants and distribution. After the minimum charge, water usage thereafter is billed at $3.17 per 100 cubic feet and sewer is billed at $3.19 per 100 cubic feet (rates as of March 1999...

I can imagine in states where there is a water shortage, maybe Utah, New Mexico, Nevada etc water costs may be high?

100 cubic feet of water = 750 gallons.
posted by nickyskye at 6:51 PM on July 30, 2006

It's a fascinating look into the mind of a severely autistic yet highly self-aware person. I really get the sense that his parents are failing him terribly, but I'm not in their situation, so it's hard to judge, but listening to him talk about his goals and hopes and problems acheiving them is really very sad.
posted by Mr. Gunn at 6:53 PM on July 30, 2006

I vote autistic. Sounds like behaviours a few kids I know would engage in.
posted by five fresh fish at 6:55 PM on July 30, 2006

The response here is more interesting than the post.

One is reminded of the Seinfeld ep with the Cramer picture and the two art lovers... all facinated and ascribing qualities to a person they don't know.

Website as serious art, now that's interesting...
posted by scheptech at 9:41 PM on July 30, 2006

I found that site to be very hard to navigate at first. I had to keep backspacing so I could use your links to get around.

What fascinating documentation, though.
posted by moonshine at 9:47 PM on July 30, 2006

I have a cousin a little older than this fellow who is much like him. He lives on his own, though, on social security, so doesn't have the resources to do even what this guy does (my cousin doesn't get along with his family at all, and his mother is now in a retirement home...he has anger issues, isn't really as brilliant as this guy is, and breaks every computer he gets through obsessive mucking about with the systems). This is all very believable to me... and I want to run screaming from it...
posted by lhauser at 10:32 PM on July 30, 2006

I don't think he's autistic necessarily, but he's classic OCD. My kid brother has Tourette's and OCD (nowhere near as bad as this fellow) but a lot of the obsessive, detail oriented behavior is very familiar.

I hope he gets some help. Paxil can help take quite a bit of the edge off of the worst obsessive urges, and a good neurologist can help him to learn to control/mitigate them further.
posted by stenseng at 11:26 PM on July 30, 2006

Hey, remember the late 1990s? Remember those Web sites with extremely long pages, blocks of multicolored text in a large font size, and guestbooks?

All kidding aside, the page definitely has traits "in the spectrum." Even insignificant elements that few would care about are explained in great detail; here's a few examples.

This logo has yet to be finalized

* All times mentioned on my site are of Central Time, the time zone in which Chicago and my home town are in. All dates are of the Dec xx, 200x format where the first 3 letters of the month name are given, followed by the day number then the four-digit year.

My website is currently undergoing a redesign so some pages, especially those that haven't been updated in at least one year, will have a somewhat different format and style.

Due to the overwhelming amounts of spam I get (see here and here for my most extreme examples (and that's accumulated in just 5 days as messages over 5 days old are automatically deleted)) and research into spambots, I'm using an image for my E-mail instead. It's a 3D image created in Gamestudio.

I would imagine the site might make an interesting read, but I don't want to schlep my way through such cruft as update times and links to the high-resolution verstion of the logo.
posted by elmwood at 8:30 AM on July 31, 2006

Given the educational shows he watches, you'd think he'd be more enlightened on his condition, which sounds like a mix of Aspergers and OCD as people have said.

For instance, his "fears" aren't that -- they're really phobias.

He reminds me somewhat of the hikikomori (housebound) otaku types in Japan, though the basics of their problems are largely unrelated.
posted by Gordion Knott at 9:42 AM on July 31, 2006 [1 favorite]

Neat word, cruft.

Living In the Spectrum: Autism and Asperger's. I disagree with "severely autistic". It seems like his parents are incorrectly blaming video games for a developmental disorder.

Gordion Knott, Thanks for the fascinating info about hikikomori.

According to estimates by psychologist Tamaki Saito, who first coined the phrase, there may be one million hikikomori in Japan, twenty percent of all male adolescents in Japan, or one percent of the total Japanese population. Surveys done by the Japanese Ministry of Health as well as research done by health care experts suggest a more conservative estimate of 50,000 hikikomori in Japan today. As reclusive youth by their very nature are difficult to poll, the true number of hikikomori most likely falls somewhere between the two extremes.

And otaku.

Overweight, unkempt, bespectacled and fantasizing about an anime heroine--a popular otaku stereotype.
posted by nickyskye at 10:02 AM on July 31, 2006

The saddest part to me is that he talks of listening to his favorite piece of music over a million times, and all of his favorite music is from video games.

Also, strong echos of _The Curious Event of the Dog in Night Time_, particularily the arbitrary phobias.
posted by rsanheim at 1:32 PM on July 31, 2006

"#10 Just 5 hours: Well, so far this month, I spent just five puny hours away from the house. That's right. Just 5 hours of the 720 hours of November was spent away from the house. I guess my estimate of 10 out of 720 was way off. I say that it's more like 8 hours instead of 10, meaning for every 90 hours that go by, I'm out of my house 1 of those hours and in the house 89 of those hours."
posted by Baby_Balrog at 2:34 PM on July 31, 2006

"When it comes to high school graduation, one would normally think of a fancy prom or party. I'm not exactly sure what a prom is, but have heard about them, seemingly for college. I was unlucky. I never had a graduation party, even though I did get my high school diploma. The teachers were thinking about it, it just never seemed to have happened. Oddly enough, my sister did. I've had nothing but failed parties so far (even birthday parties), the high school graduation party is one of those failed parties."
posted by Baby_Balrog at 2:54 PM on July 31, 2006

This kind of stuff blows my mind.
Here's his user profile from hww.

...I wonder if he'd want to know that people were looking at his website on metafilter?
posted by Baby_Balrog at 3:01 PM on July 31, 2006

instead of covering everything he touches to avoid grease stickyness, he should just use gloves... or MAYBE SHOWER MORE THAN ONCE A WEEK.
posted by wumpus at 2:03 AM on August 7, 2006

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