grep jason_


You may be familiar with this little movie from 1999 called Office Space. I would call it a classic, dare I say, perfect film. This isn’t an in-depth think piece on Office Space but rather a journey of sharing the movie in a somewhat new way. One of the things that makes this movie special to me and many others is just how damn quotable it is. It feels like every line of dialog can stand alone and is totally relatable (for a certain segment of office workers). This got me thinking, it’s 2024, gifs from movies are still fun and there are certainly Office Space gifs all over the web, but what if there was a gif for every single line of dialog!?

Ok, so how the heck are we going to do that? Certainly not manually, that would suucckk. There has to be a way to make these confounded machines do it for me, right? I began searching for some kind of scripting tool that might help with this task. After a few rabbit holes, I landed on this lovely GitHub repo that was a fork from this repo! 🎉

Now that we have the tool let’s get set up. What do we need?

  1. The movie (I have been using 1080p Blu-Ray rips in .mp4)
  2. The subtitles file as an .srt. (Open Subtitles has been a reliable resource for me)
  3. The script repo I mentioned above.

After installing the prerequisites you will need:

Once everything is set up, you run the script and wait many hours. (Office Space took ~28 hours) Good little beep boop computer

Office Space Example
python3 /movie/offie_space.mp4 /srt/

Ok, so now I had a glorious folder of 1002 .gifs.
Q. What do I want to do with it!?
A. Make a Mastodon bot that automatically posts a random one of these .gifs every six hours!

I set out to get an account on one of the “bot-friendly” Mastodon instances. This seemed straight forward, but I ended up never hearing back from the first instance. I tried a few more times before trying a different instance and was ultimately left with no response there either. 😢

I was a bit defeated at this point, but rather than give up I decided to do what you should always do, put it on your blog! So I did just that and put it up on so at the very least the world would have access to these beautiful gifs. Once I got it all going with some html/css/js I posted it on Mastodon and considered it to be job done.

This was not the end.. This page took off far wider than I could have imagined. It quickly hit 1000 page views, 5000, 10,000, and kept going. And the cdn serving 100k+ requests. 😱 Thanks Bunny! My Mastodon mentions were a disaster. (in a good way) 😅

Ok, this really needs to be a Mastodon Bot, but how!?

The captains of industry Robb Knight and Adam Newbold came to the rescue! Robb with his genius code smithing to create the mechanism that would then be posting the gifs and Adam with his internet wizardry not only got a mastodon account setup that could be used, but a whole damn instance (Beep.Town) dedicated to bots-only use! These guys are just pure gold, amiright!?

Because of Robb and Adam’s fantastic AND incredible work, the lives in our timelines and hearts. ❤️