Friday, October 31, 2014

Call of Duty: Discover your Power

For the last few years Activision comes up with these new Call of Duty commercials that always make me kinda want to revisit the franchise (Black Ops was the last one I played). This year is no different, first they have these TV ads with Kevin Spacey that look cool because, hell its Keyser Soze telling me to shoot things with future guns. Now they have these ads staring Taylor (Battleship wasn't that bad!) Kitsch and Emily Ratajkowski. They're pretty cool too although I'm not sure I'll be able to look at Emily Emily Ratajkowski ever again without seeing a goat.

And thus concludes my yearly Call of Duty post.

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Impersonating Links

More Fun Fact About Indiana Jones. Now this was a fantastic list of obscure movie facts. Porkins was in Raiders? Harrison Ford crashed a plane? An Elephant ate Kate Capshaw's dress? This list is gold Jerry, Gold!

4 Horrifying Facts About the Sexy Halloween Costume Industry. I'm not sure I would go so far as Horrifying, maybe disturbingly interesting?

Seattle Times Furious with FBI over Allegations That the Agency Impersonated the Newspaper. I don't know exactly how "furious" the Seattle Times could really be. The FBI was trying to catch someone sending bomb threats to local high schools. Long story short they made up a e-mail that looked like a survey from the Times, sent it to him and it infected his computer with spyware that allowed them to find him. It was a targeted attack and it's not like they were looking for someone with an overdue library book. They were looking for a potential school bomber. Oh yeah and it was 15 YEARS AGO. Maybe the Times needs to chillax on this one.

BTW, the Beastie Boys in Sabotage is what I imagine every FBI agent looks like.

Stephen Colbert Took On #GamerGate In Glorious Fashion. Right when this thing is getting some national attention I'm starting to think the whole GamerGate thing is played out. It's a small group of assholes. Don't give them anymore attention and they'll go away. Still Colbert is funny and we only have so many episodes left before he replaced Letterman...

I do declare this to be my last GamerGate post, short of one of those idiots blowing up a gamestop or something.

Marvel's Avengers: Infinity War Teaser Trailer

I'm not sure when it happened but overtime this blog clearly has become an advertising arm of Marvel Studios. Here's a Death Blow cam look at the Avengers: Infinity War teaser. There's not much but it's still pretty cool. The crowd reaction really puts it over the top. Only 4 and a half years away!

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

New Avengers: Age of Ultron trailer... already?

So as promised Marvel released a new trailer for Avengers: Age of Ultron last night during Agents of SHIELD. Considering their first trailer leaked to the web early I don't think any actually anticipated them coming up with a completely BRAND NEW TRAILER. There's at least 50 seconds of new footage here. It's amazing. Just watch it.

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Marvel Phase 3

Hey kids, you like movies? Cause Marvel is going to make some movies. A lot of them. Roughly a thousand.

Earlier today at a big press conference thingy Marvel Studios announced Phase 3 of their much vaunted shared movie universe. Here's the list of films along with their preliminary release dates:

May 6 2016: Captain America: Civil War
November 4 2016: Doctor Strange
May 5 2017: Guardians of the Galaxy 2
July 28 2017: Thor: Ragnarok
Nov 3 2017: Black Panther
May 4 2018: Avengers: Infinity War Part I
July 6 2018: Captain Marvel
Nov 2 2018: Inhumans
May 3 2019: Avengers: Infinity War Part II

Summer 2020: Reboot City

Ok, so that last one was made up.

There's a lot to be excited about here. First thing and probably the most important, would be the added diversity to the Marvel Movie Universe. Once Marvel proved that you can make a billion dollars with a movie staring a Tree and a Racoon it was pretty silly of them to hold off on a film led by a person of color or a woman. We're getting both. Sure there will be 8 movies staring blonde guys named Chris before one Black Panther movie but progress is progress.

The second biggest thing to get excited over is a little thing called the Infinity War. For those unfamiliar the Infinity War was a limited series that spun off from the Infinity Gauntlet, one of the all time classic Marvel stories. The basis behind it was the that mad Titan Thanos stole these gems, each with a tremendous amount of power, slapped them all on this cool looking glove and became god for a day. His first act was to kill half of all living things in the universe as a tribute to his on/off girlfriend Death. Eventually earth's greatest remaining heroes save the day. Like I said classic Marvel.

My guess here is that the powers that be at Marvel will be adapting the Infinity Gauntlet story line and not the Infinity War story line. The Infinity War story meanders a bit and doesn't have the classic confrontation of the original. I'll bet they just balked at the idea of naming their most ambitious film after a type of glove.

Monday, October 27, 2014

The Real Monster

The Avengers: My Heart Will Go On edition

Here's the Avengers: Age Of Ultron trailer set to Celine Dion's My Heart Will Go On. You're welcome.

Friday, October 24, 2014


What Is GamerGate? Here’s An Explainer For All The Confused Non-Nerds Out There. Uggg... Against my better judgement, here's a bunch of bullshit on GamerGate. If you haven't been following the GamerGate scandal consider yourself lucky. It's 99.9% trumped up bullshit and an excuse for bullied nerds to in turn do some bullying of their own. If you really need an example of how people on the internet can be awful for the stupidest of reasons just show them anything related to GamerGate...

The Future Of The Culture Wars Is Here, And It's Gamergate. Double uggg... If something as stupid as Video Game Journalism can devolve into the shitshow that Gamergate has turned into imagine if it was a more relevant topic like politics or religion. Are you for gun control? Well I hope you're ready for your address and phone number and credit history to be leaked to the interweb. You don't think 9/11 was an inside job? Hope your blog can handle a ddos attack. You don't want to hear about our lord and Savoir the flying spaghetti monster? Don't worry in 5 minutes we will have someone at your F'ING DOOR READY TO SPREAD THE WORD!

What Happened To Felicia Day Is Everything Awful About #GamerGate. Triple ugggg... I've been to the GamerGate subreddit, I hear it's where all the "real" GamerGate is happening. Not the trumped up sexist lies the lamestream media is reporting to make these real GamerGate warriors look bad. They have NOTHING. At most they have been able to point out that video game journalists are dependent on big video game companies for access to do their jobs and that can sku their reporting. Guess what dipshits, that's the problem with journalism everywhere. If a reporter for Road and Track dumps all over Ford guess who's not getting invited to the next Ford media event. ESPN pulled out of a report on head trauma in the NFL because they're in bed with the NFL and didn't want to jeopardize that relationship. Politics in DC have always been like this. If a reporter is too critical of the powers that be they can have their White House media pass pulled.

But no, lets ignore all of that. In the grand scheme of life the fact that IGN gave Call of Duty too high of a score is a big fucking deal and totally worth ruining peoples lives over. Get bent GamerGate.

140 up-close photos of ship and vehicle models constructed by ILM for the Original Star Wars Trilogy (1977-1983)

Why I Love Speed Wagons (And You Should, Too). Before I inherited my Passat Wagon I thought wagons were kinda cool but now that I've had one for a full year I can 100% say wagons are awesome. Don't get me wrong, my car still kinda sucks but that has everything to do with early 2000s German "engineering". The actual functionality of a wagon is second to none. I love it and I wish more auto manufacturers would make a traditional wagon. None of this crossover nonsense. Low and boxy is how I roll.

The Future of TV Is Great If You Hate Sports. I tweeted about this a few days ago but you probably don't follow me on twitter (@KevinNewburn) so I'll repeat: The idea of switching from your regular cable service to 10 different a'la cart streaming options doesn't sound very appealing to me. Not to mention that cord cutters are just fooling themselves when they still keep the cable company around for their internet provider. I'd much rather see Cable companies provide more varied options when it comes to subscriptions than have to subscribe to a dozen different aps. I have this feeling that net nerds keep thinking that there's some magical streaming TV option out there that's going to provide everything you want on demand for a ridiculously low monthly fee but there's not.

Kindergarten teacher quits to make six figures twerking for a living. This article sounded sexier than it ended up being.

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Sunset Overdrive, the Launch Trailer

Before this morning I hadn't even heard of Sunset Overdrive. Now, while not quite obsessed with it, I'm totes jelly it's Xbox One exclusive. Call me crazy but I like fun games and this game looks fun. Fun is why I like the Boarderlands franchise over Halo or Grand Theft Auto III over Grand Theft Auto IV. Sure, there's fun to be hand in a super serious game like Mass Effect or whatever but sometimes you need a game that doesn't take itself to serious.

Also we need more punk rock soundtracks. I don't think we've had a good one since the Tony Hawk series folded.

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Hello Avengers: Rise of Ultron Trailer

Ok... now that I've watched this about a half dozen times I guess it's time to write something. First off big ups to Marvel/Disney for just releasing the full HD trailer a couple hours after the bootleg one leaked onto the web. I know they were trying to boost the ratings for next week's Agents of SHIELD but recognizing the cat is out of the bag is good business sense. Not only that, they did it with a sense of humor:

Now, thoughts on the trailer itself:

James Spader had me at hello. His Ultron voice is terrifying in it's casualness. In the comics I've always read Ultron's voice as sort of a stereotypical robotic sounding bad guy. Not quite a Dalek but more like a Cyberman. Spader is nothing like that and I love it! Combine his casual yet earnest delivery with that shambling robot thing you see smash War Machine's armor and woooo doogie, we've got ourselves a bad guy.

LOL, Hulkbuster Iron Man. I know the Hulkbuster Iron Man is supposed to be a big deal in this trailer but anyone that's read their fair share of comics knows that Hulk whomps Hulkbuster armor every time. Also my guess here is that either Scarlet Witch is controlling the Hulk in that scene requiring Tony to try and stop the Hulk or Ultron is controlling the Hulkbuster suit. Either way there's some controlling going on.

Speaking of Scarlet Witch and her brother Quicksilver... Both of them look pretty cool. I'm interested to see exactly how they (and Hydra) relate to Ultron. Technically with an Ultron story you don't need any other bad guys. Ultron has the ability to replicate himself and to take over other types of tech so he creates multiple bad guys to punch all on his own. I wonder if they'll tie him to Hydra or if his interactions with them will be purely accidental.

Hey, I see you there Andy Serkis. There's a lot of speculation as to just who Serkis is playing in this movie. I think he looks like Ulik the Troll but considering Ulik is supposed to be 8 feet tall I'm guessing that's not him. The most popular theory is that he's Ulysses Klaw a scientist obsessed with Vibranium who ends up turning himself into living sound (comics are weird). Klaw is primarily a Black Panther villain so there's rampant speculation that Age of Ultron will introduce Black Panther.

That's all I have for now. Maybe after watching it a dozen more times I'll have more to talk about. Man, 2015 can't get here fast enough.

Why Loot Crate?

Hey kiddos, here's a video of the Screen Team unboxing last month's Loot Crate. Why? I don't know, why do I write about anything? Loot Crate has been popping up on my Facebook and Google ads a bunch so I thought it was high time I rambled on about it.

Loot Crate is a service that for a low monthly price delivers random geeky toys to you once a month. Prices vary depending on how long you sign up for but it's about $20 a month and they promise at least $40 worth of nonsense. I'm 100% completely on the fence over it. On one hand I like stupid geeky stuff like action figures and tribbles. On the other hand there's no way I would go to a store and actually pay for anything I saw in that box. Trips to my local comic book shop are kind of like that. Outside of comic books they have a big focus on toys and figures. A lot of them are really cool, but as much as I like it I'm never paying $19.99 for a Funko dancing Groot.

I guess that's the appeal of the Loot Crate. Random crap you will kinda like but wouldn't purchase on your own. It's the Harry and David basket for nerds.

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Iceland Air Gets It

In case you didn't get the joke Hafþór Björnsson is the actor that played The Mountain on the last season of Game of Thrones. This is what he looks like standing next to normal people:

Real Vs Movie Scientist

This last weekend I saw a gallery of these Real Vs Movie Scientist cartoons and thought they were good enough to share. I'll be honest, one of my favorite parts of a bad movie is when real science is thrown out the window and fake science becomes crucial to the plot. Like uploading a virus to an alien computer using a MacBook or humans being used as living batteries.

I would highly recommend that you check out more at The Upturned Microscope.

Monday, October 20, 2014

Can't Stop Won't Stop: Scrape the Sky

Talk about earworms, this song by Can't Stop Won't Stop has been stuck in my head for MONTHS. Isn't it about time it gets stuck in your head too?

Happy Monday, BTW.

Friday, October 17, 2014

The Walking Drunk

What happens when you replace the opening credits to the Walking Dead with footage of drunk people stumbling around? You get this 43 second youtube video.

This is as good of time as any to write about how much I loved last week's Walking Dead. Woo doggy. I know it's impossible to keep up keep up that sort of pace but if the premiere episode is any sort of indicator to how this season is going to play out it might be their best one yet.

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Columbus Blue Jackets Fan Turns Down For What

There's been a lot of talk about bringing professional hockey to the Emerald City, after watching this video I'm not sure if I am ready for it or if I AM READY FOR IT!

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Production Links

Leaked production images from Star Wars Episode VII. Some of these are production art, which is cool but rarely ever is translated 100% to the film. This picture of Darth Vader's helmet is supposedably a prop from he set. OMG, I don't even know where to start. Are they going back to Endor and someone finds this? Did Luke keep it? Is there a clone Darth Vader out there? Man, I promised myself I wouldn't fall down this rabbit hole again.

Feminist gamers are still getting death threats even as comic conventions are adopting anti-sexual harassment policies. Way to keep the title punchy, Time. Long story short. Comic Book conventions (and in general Comic Book culture, if there is such a thing) has come a long way in embracing female fans and readers. Most big name conventions split 50/50 on boy/girl attendance and many of them have beefed up their harassment policies. You still hear horror stories from time to time but it's generally accepted that things are getting much better.

Video games on the other hand.... Well, if you've been on Xbox live anytime recently I think you know just how accepting gamer culture is to ladies right about now.

Gallery: BrickCon, The biggest LEGO convention we’ve ever seen. Hey I went there! Next to video games Lego is easily my kids favorite toy. BrickCon is a BIG deal for us. So big we were there for at least 30 minutes before he started to cry and whine that he wanted to go home and put his new Lego figure together.

Lesson learned, hit the merch table AFTER checking out everything at the convention.

Cosplayers reveal their day jobs. These are cute. I mean there's nothing groundbreaking here, people like to play dress up. Ever wonder why so many adults have Halloween parties? It's not for the candy corn I tell you.

5 confusing things from Far Cry 4

This video from Destructoid on Far Cry 4 is pretty cute. I wouldn't say I laughed out loud but I might have smirked a couple times. I could have just posted their 20 minute gameplay video but I don't have timeto watch 20 minutes of someone else play video games. I barely have 20 minutes to play video games. That's sort of my fault though, I parent too much. My kids are one and five, it's high time they started cooking their own dinners.

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Captain America 3: Electric Boogaloo adds one RDJ

Word on the street is that Marvel has thrown enough bags of cash at Robert Downey Jr for him to co-star in Captain America 3. This has immediately sent nerds into a Civil War tizzy. For those unawares, Civil War was a big company wide cross over from 2006 where the drew lines for or against the Superhero Registration Act. Iron Man led the pro-registration side of things and Cap led the anti-registration movement. This of course led to a lot of the heroes fighting each other which is something nerds LOVE. The series wasn't exactly critically acclaimed but it sold very well and had a pretty significant impact on the Marvel Universe for a few years.

Random Thoughts:

I don't see how this makes any sense. In what world does RDJ's version of Iron Man decide the Government should be tracking and monitoring all super powered Americans? Has anyone at Marvel Studios watched the first 3 Iron Man movies? In the comics it made sense. For years Iron Man was trying to get the Avengers officially accepted by the feds. You see one of the major difference between the movies and the comic books is that in the comics the Avengers are funded by the Maria Stark foundation and have no official link to shield of the federal government. Are they going to flip the story and have Cap be on the pro-registration side? Considering the events of Captain America 2, that doesn't make any sense either.

As I mentioned part of the fun of Civil War was watching heroes face off against each other. Unless Black Widow, Hawkeye, Thor and Hulk show up too what's the point? And if they do you just made Avengers 3. If it's just Cap and Iron Man you haven't really adapted Civil War you just made Captain America vs Iron Man, which I think is DC's plan with Batman and Superman.

Lastly, Civil War really paints Iron Man as a giant dick. And not the fun happy go lucky one that RDJ has been playing. He kind of betrays all his friends and plays a big part in getting Goliath (minor beloved hero) killed. I'm not sure the character in the Marvel Universe has really recovered yet. I can't imagine that they're going to really portray Iron Man as the bad guy here and with 2 hours of screen time will they have enough time to tell a balanced story? One where Cap and Iron Man look good in the end?

Second lastly where would this leave Falcon and the Winter Soldier? Correct me if I'm wrong but Captain America: The Winter Soldier was hella good. I'd like to see that storyline continue.

Monday, October 13, 2014

Game of Thrones: An Animated Journey

Hey, here's a Game of Thrones animated thingy I stumbled across the other day. It's kinda neat.

Sorry that's about all I have for the day. I took a mini vacation last week and now I'm both ridiculously behind at work and bored out of my skull. I thought you were supposed to come back from vacation and be all energized. I come back and every hour feels like a hundred. At least I had delicious pork loin leftovers for lunch today. I'm trying this whole thing where I'm not killing myself with fast food 3-4 times a week. Also you have any idea how expensive fast food is getting? I go to McDonalds for a 10 piece nugget meal and it's like $7.50. You know how many Legos that can buy? Plenty my friend.

Thursday, October 9, 2014

Cosplay Boom: Origins Part 1 and 2

This group Cosplay Boom has put together a really cool video on cosplayers. I'm not really sure if I'd call this a documentary because there's really no plot or anything it's just a series of interviews. Whatever you want to label it, it's pretty good. It's a bit on the long side, especially since a lot of the cosplayers bring up the same points on nerdery and looking for acceptance. It's still a thousand times better than Heroes of Cosplay, which is funny because it features a few of that shows stars.

Also it looks like a lot of it takes place at the Washington State Convention center. I'm not sure if it was during Emerald City Comic-Con or Sakura-con. Either way I'm still pissed I haven't shown up in the background of one of these things. Next year I'm just going to actively try and photobomb people.

Paper Airplane Machine Gun is a thing I need

Armed with a 3d printer uber-nerd Dieter Michael Krone has developed a gun that fires paper airplanes. This changes EVERYTHING!

New Star Wars Arcade Game: Battle Pod

Sweet Christmas this game looks rad. It actually hasn't been that long (a couple months) since I've been to a straight up, traditional arcade. I was surprised at how many games actually caught my eye. If I hadn't been with the family I could easily have dropped 20 dollars. In particular there was one flying game with reminded me of Afterburner but like on steroids.

It doesn't look like it does in the video but I hope the chair you sit in moves a little bit. It would be shame to have that big immersive screen and not go the whole ten yards. Maybe when I go to Emerald City next year I'll have to schedule in some time at Gameworks.

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Behind the Links

50 behind the scenes photos from RETURN OF THE JEDI. I had seen a couple of these but not all of them. Man I miss physical effects like goofy rubber suits and model space ships. Ever seen any behind the scenes of Episodes I-III. It's just Natalie Portman in front of a green screen acting with a big piece of lifeless plastic.... and that's just the scenes with Hayden Christensen. Hey-Oh!

Imagined Email Correspondence From The Desk Of The Marketing Director For Carl’s Jr. "Hey, so I had an idea for our next commercial: We open on a hot tub with David Hasselhoff in it, then we zoom out to see that he’s in there with some of his old Baywatch co-stars (Anderson, Electra, etc.) They’re all going TO WORK on some bacon burgers. Real sloppy. Real sloppy. BBQ sauce clogging the filter and everything."

Starblazers has been uploaded to youtube. I believe it was just a few months ago that I had this near the top of my "things I want on netflix list", youtube is the next best thing. Every episode is available for free including the tie in movies. Not bad at all.

‘X-Men: Apocalypse’ Marks The End Of The ‘First Class’ Trilogy And Wipes Away The Other ‘X-Men’ Movies. Jeez, YEARS ago I blogged about when Fox was going to reboot the X-Men franchise. It looks like that's finally happening? I liked First Class and Days of Future Past but they've kind of made a giant mess of the X-Men franchise going forward. You have two versions of the same characters running around and while that works in the context of a movie about time travel it doesn't work for a tentpole franchise. At a certain point Fox will need to cut the cord and recast Cyclops, Wolverine, Jean Grey, etc. and start telling contemporary X-Men stories again Sounds like that might just happen after Apocalypse.

Go Nuts! Ryan North & Erica Henderson Launch ‘Squirrel Girl’ Series For Marvel. Dammit, I'm trying to buy less comic books not more. Squirrel Girl is pretty rad. What started with a joke (her beating Dr. Doom with an army of squirrels) developed into the ultra-silly idea that Squirrel Girl can beat any character in the Marvel Universe. It's a nice way of poking fun at the nerds that like to debate Batman vs Captain America or Thor vs the Hulk. The answer has always been whoever the writer needs to win. It just so happens that's ALWAYS the girl with squirrel powers.

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

New Big Hero 6 Trailer

This new trailer for Disney/Marvel's Big Hero 6 came out last week but I finally got around to watching it last night. It still looks really good and I'm still excited to take my son to this one.

Interesting fact here, Big Hero 6 is the first Disney movie based off a Marvel comic book. You would think that with the success of the Avengers and all the other Marvel films Disney would be quicker to acknowledge that. However it's just the opposite. Disney is doing everything it can to brand this a Disney film. If the rumor mill is to be believed there was even some contention between Disney and Marvel in that Disney will be producing the comic book tie in, not Marvel (gasp!). Seems weird. I think when Disney bought Marvel one thing everyone was excited for was Disney or maybe even Pixar produced movies of Marvel properties. Doesn't look like that's in the cards, at least not for the bigger name properties like Spider-Man or the Fantastic Four.

I'll keep crossing my fingers for a Pixar produced Runaways.

Monday, October 6, 2014

Regular Car Reviews: 1998 Subaru Forester

This review for (a heavily modified) 1998 Subaru Forest is pretty glorious. It's both informative and hilarious. I completely lost it when he told the subaru marketing team to eat a dick.

I don't get most crossovers. The old Forester's I get. It's a station wagon but just a bit taller. The new crossovers are smaller than most wagons, most aren't even all wheel drive. They're like tall hatchbacks. It's like someone said, I like hatchbacks but they're too stable. Can we build anything taller and more unwieldy?

Puzzle World 6 looks alright

Back in the Halcyon days of the original Xbox I used to head over to the Microsoft campus and participate in game testing and focus groups. I WISH I got to test something as cool as Puzzle World 6. The only games I remember testing were a terrible Basketball game, a Mech game and a fighting game I tried like hell to have them rebrand into "Karl Douglas's Kung Fu-Fighting". I mean I really highjacked that focus group. I had this whole story about Karl Douglas having to fight his way through ninjas to collect his royalty checks and pay his rent on time. I still think Microsoft dropped the ball with that one.

Thursday, October 2, 2014

Super Link Bros.

How Nintendo Convinced The World To Buy A Weird Mario Game. This article is a load of horseshit... more or less. Nintendo didn't have to convince anyone to buy a "weird Mario game". Super Mario Bros 2 could have been a port of ET from the 2600 and it would have sold like crazy. People WANTED Super Mario Bros 2 BAD, it didn't matter that the gameplay was vastly different from the first one. Super Mario Bros doesn't look anything like Mario Bros, much less that other game staring Mario, Donkey Kong. The idea that Super Mario Bros 2 would be different from the first one wasn't that weird.

What is weird and incredibly interesting, is how Super Mario Bros 2 for the US is WAY different that Super Mario Bros 2 in Japan. It literally is a different game called Yume Kōjō: Doki Doki Panic. Nintendo of America felt like the Japanese version of Super Mario Bros 2 was too difficult and similar to the first one, so they ported over this Doki Doki Panic game and just changed the characters to match the budding Mario Universe. That's why all of the sudden Princess Peach can fly and Toad is a strongman.

What It’s like to Fly the $23,000 Singapore Airlines Suites Class. This made a lot of hay on Facebook so pardon me if you've already read this but this article on what it's like to fly on Singapore Airlines Suites Class is really interesting. Growing up I flew pretty much exclusively in First Class. My parents weren't rich or anything, my mom worked for United Airlines so a first class ticket cost like $25. I flew a lot on my own going from grandparents to my aunt and uncles and back to the other grandparents. Back in the 80s and 90s a single stand by has a great chance of getting a first class seat.

I never flew in a cabin with a bed but I remember once on a trip to Hawaii I got to sit in the upstairs lounge area on a 747. The seats faced each other, it was crazy!

DC Is Sorry About Their Dumb, Sexist Shirts. I've mentioned this before but buying superhero themed stuff for girls is AWFUL. Target had two Superhero themed onesies, the one for boys said "Future Man of Steel" and the one for girls said "I Only Date Heroes". Talk about sexist garbage.

2014′s Most & Least Fair State Tax Systems. Go Washington, we're number 1! We're number 1! This doesn't surprise me one bit. I know Washington is a very liberal state but it's also home to a boatload of tech millionaires. Rich liberals LOVE talking about income equality and social services but it's always on the back of someone else. Usually some other millionaire or corporation that they think is more evil than they are.

Recently the State Supreme Court found Washington State in contempt of court by refusing to properly fund education (something mandated in the state constitution). State Government's response is to throw up their hands and say "nothing we can do" and no one is willing to stick their neck out for tax reform. If I ever move to Oregon you can bet Washington States feckless political leadership will be one of the biggest reasons why.

Also it's worth pointing out that this report got no coverage in either the local paper or TV. Seattle/Washington only likes talking about themselves if it's positive. Come in 7th on Buzzfeed's list of best travel spots and you are going to hear about it ad nauseam. Heaven forbid anyone point out that all the Microsoft millionaires are screwing everyone else.

3 Famous Characters Whose Creators Got Epically Screwed. Jeez, today is just soapbox day for me isn't it? Earlier this week Marvel comics settled a long standing lawsuit with the family of Jack Kirby. In case that name doesn't mean anything to you, Jack Kirby (along with Stan Lee) helped created about 80% of the characters you recognize from the Marvel Universe. Based on some very interesting copyright law, his family was suing that eventually ownership of those characters should revert back to Jack Kirby (and his estate). I won't go into it here but the case was about to be heard by the Supreme Court so obviously there was something to it.

A lot of people are were happy that Jack Kirby was finally getting some sort of recognition/settlement from Marvel but while it's great for Kirby there's a TON of other writers and artists that aren't getting squat. Did you enjoy Rocket Racoon and Guardians of the Galaxy this summer? Thank Bill Mantlo the creator of Rocket. In fact thank Dan Abnett and Andy Lanning too as most of that movie was lifted from their run on the book. You like the X-Men? Well Stan Lee and Jack Kirby created them, but almost every movie or TV show based on them has pulled heavily from Chris Claremont's run on the title. Deadpool? Rob Liefeld. Thor? Walter Simonson. Superman? John Byrne. Batman? Frank Miller. The Avengers? Kurt Busiek, Roger Stern, Steve Englehart, Roy Thomas all of these guys and more had a hand in providing 50 years worth of stories for Joss Whedon to pull inspiration from.

Again, I'm happy for Jack Kirby's family but I'm not going to jump for joy knowing just how many others have been left with nothing.

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

These Windows go all the way up to 11 10

Yesterday Microsoft made the official announcement on it's newest operating system, Windows 10. What happened to Windows 9? Windows 9 is for suckers... that's what happened.

Windows 10 seems like Microsoft's best push at unifying your PC, tablet and phone. Windows 8 had a lot of mobile functionality built in but users BITCHED AND COMPLAINED to death over live tiles replacing the start menu. Windows 10 brings back the start menu and integrates the shit out of live tiles INTO the menu and it still has the option of switching to a more "Metro" style interface if you're using a tablet. Its been pretty well received and it sounds like what they should have done with Windows 8 in the first place.

There are more superficial style improvements like enhanced smart sizing and window snapping. Better search tools more intuitive swipe commands, blah blah blah. In my opinion the big promise here is that Microsoft is promising Universal Apps (patent pending I'm sure). Applications that will work and integrate with phone, tablet and PC. Lately I've been thinking about bailing on Windows Phone, the biggest reason outside of battery life is a lack of apps. If Microsoft can really deliver on expanding what's available on phone and mobile by having them automatically port from the PC we might be back in business.

I've been eyeing a solid state hard drive upgrade for my home computron and was contemplating an upgrade to Windows 8.1. After yesterday I'm definitely going to wait until 2015 so I can step right into Windows 10.

Also what is up with Capt. Microsoft's hair. He's a grown man with a Justin Bieber haircut, who lets him leave the house looking like that?

Interstellar: Trailer #3

I'm not sure I posted the first couple trailers for Chris Nolan's newest film, Interstellar. If I didn't it's because both of them had me near tears. I wasn't exactly a paragon of masculinity before having kids but I swear they've completely turned me into a blubbering mess. Any movie with parents sacrificing for their kids just hits me right in the feels. I still can't watch the opening scene of Star Trek without a Costco sized box of Kleenex.

Interstellar hits theaters in November. Lets go see it... you'll need to hold my hand.

Six Months With a Steam Machine

About 6 months ago SaharaDrac (probably not his real name) received a Steam Machine for beta testing. His review is less than enthusiastic. Apparently the controller blows and the Linux based OS is kinda limiting. That's not great news.

I don't think the controller issue is that big of a deal. If they're not already married to keyboard/mouse, most gamers that pick up a Steam Machine are probably going to find a way to install a Xbox 360 controller anyway. Valve obviously can't just include on, so while it's disappointing that their proprietary controller is hard to use I don't think it's a system killer or anything.

On the other hand, the issues with Linux could very well be a system killer. I've mentioned before that the single biggest obstacle for the Steam Machine is the Linux based operating system. They HAVE to get 3rd party publishers to have games available for it. Can you imagine spending a thousand dollars on a gaming console that can't play Destiny? Half Life 2 isn't going to cut it for Valve. If this bird's going to fly it's going to need some help from the big software developers like Activision, EA, etc.

Anyhoo, watch the video. It's not that long but he goes into some pretty good detail as to why he found the machine a disappointment.


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