Nov 2012 09

by @NicolePowers and @VizFoSho

October 19 was a momentous night in the Twitterverse. We were having some after-hours lulz involving over nine thousand #tittysprinkles, when all of a sudden our favorite Twitter play thing, the @DBZNappa bot came to life. It was a miraculous moment; synapses and circuits were blown. Our sugar-titted tweets had caused the automated entity inspired by the Japanese manga series Dragon Ball Z to break character.

For the uninitiated, @DBZNappa, in homage to dialog from a legendary Dragon Ball Z episode, is programmed to respond to mentions of “over 9000” or “over nine thousand” on Twitter with the obligatory reply: “WHAT, NINE THOUSAND?!” However, when SG was iron trolling his ass, he responded with an “I love you girls.”

Seizing the opportunity, we asked the temporarily lucid autoresponder if we could honor his master with an SG membership. Thus we tracked down DBZNappa’s elusive Dr. Frankenstein, Daniel Lo Nigro from Melbourne, Australia. We had oodles of questions for him – well over 9000. Here he answers just 15 of them:

SuicideGirls: What’s your favorite episode of DBZ?

Daniel Lo Nigro: To be honest, I didn’t really watch a lot of DBZ. I used to watch it but not really pay attention (I’d have it on TV in the background, while doing other things). Obviously, the “Over 9000” episode segment is a favorite of mine 😛

SG: What inspired you to code the bot?

DLN: Some of my friends had a habit of saying “Over nine thousand” a lot, and so I started replying with “What? Nine thousand?” (Yeah, I was a bit lame.) They suggested creating a Twitter bot to do the same thing. I loved the idea and started working on it right away. I didn’t think that it’d get as popular as it did!

SG: What did you study? What do you do now to pay the rent?

DLN: I studied software development at university. I graduated last year and I’ve been working full-time as a web developer since then.

SG: How long have you been coding?

DLN: I’ve been coding since I was 8 or 9 years old. Even before then, I had an interest in computers and computer games. My uncle introduced me to computer programming and showed me how to do a few things on the computer. Together we made a little Tamagotchi game (much like the handheld Tamagotchi) and my interest for programming grew from there. I was mainly self-taught and “learnt by doing” (that is, giving myself projects to learn new things). When I got an internet connection for the first time (dialup!), I spent ages browsing the internet. It was amazing. I was interested in how web pages were made, so I got a copy of FrontPage and messed around with it. I started to realize that I really liked creating websites, and decided to focus on web programming. At high school I met other people with similar interests, and spent more time learning about programming. This helped pique my interest even more.

SG: What’s your favorite language?

DLN: Definitely C#. It’s is my language of choice because it’s a very powerful, clean, clear and concise language. Microsoft’s developer tools and languages are generally very good, and they keep adding very helpful features in every new release. JavaScript is my second favorite language; in the last few years I’ve been learning it more. You need to know it well to truly appreciate it. In the end though, all programming languages are pretty similar to each other. They’re just tools that help you build awesome things, and it doesn’t matter which one you use as long as you know how to use it well 🙂

SG: Do you have any other bots on Twitter?

DLN: No. I’ve considered it, but haven’t had any good ideas

SG: Hypothetically, would you make an SG #TittySprinkles bot. And, if so, how could you see it working?

DLN: I could totally see myself doing that! I can if you like. I have no idea how it would work or what it would do though. What do you think a #TittySprinkles bot would do? Haha

SG: Chocolate or vanilla?

DLN: That’s a tough one! They’re both good. I think a mix of both is best – then you get the best of both worlds 🙂

SG: What other anime do you watch?

DLN: I don’t really watch anime any more. I used to watch Speed Racer, Cowboy Bebop, Naruto, Death Note, Bleach, and Inu Yasha. I’m sure there’s others that I can’t remember at the moment though, haha.

SG: Do you have a favorite SG?

DLN: I only got a subscription recently and haven’t had a chance to explore much yet. Having said that, Quinne is definitely one of my favorites. I think she’s really cute (but most Suicide Girls are). There’s just something about her that makes me like her. Bob is one of my favorites as well 🙂

SG: How much time do you spend on Twitter?

DLN: I used to spend a long time on Twitter, but nowhere near as much any more. I use it mainly when commuting to work since I catch public transport.

SG: Would do you follow and why?

DLN: Being a developer, the people I follow are mainly web developers and people that are very influential in the web development industry, mainly for inspiration and to learn about new development techniques and resources. I also use Twitter as a way to get news quickly, as stuff pops up on Twitter quicker than it does on news sites. Of course, I also use it to keep up-to-date with what my friends are doing. And @SuicideGirls of course!

SG: Any other bots you admire?

DLN: I love @CapsCop. It replies to people that tweet entirely in uppercase. @KingLeonidaz_ is somewhat similar to DBZNappa. There was also @AnnoyingNavi – but it’s been suspended by Twitter. Twitter don’t seem to like auto-reply bots and a lot of them end up suspended by Twitter. Not too sure how @DBZNappa has survived. I guess I’m just lucky?

SG: How would you improve Twitter?

DLN: Honestly, I don’t know. I think it’s pretty good as it is now.

SG: What else are you working on now?

DLN: No personal projects at the moment. I used to work on random projects (half of which I’d never finish), but recently I haven’t had much time or many good ideas. So now I’m just doing my day job 🙂

If readers have questions about @DBZNappa, Daniel will be happy to answer them in the blog comments below. For more from Daniel, read his blog and follow @Daniel15.