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A Response to Heavy Hitting Internet Sites’ Blackout

Posted on 20 January 2012 by DM

While All Geeks Considered as an entity does its best to hold to a non-political standard in favor of providing you with information and commentary on the various things people geek out about, there are times when this is not possible or appropriate.  On January 18, 2012, as of 12:01 AM we along with many other large and small entities “went black” in order to protest the SOPA and PIPA bills that are being considered by the United States of America’s Congress.

Among the larger Internet entities, Wikipedia, Google, Mozilla, Twitpic, Reddit, Craigslist, the Cheeseburger Network, and WordPress participated in this protest, their actions ranging from making their position clear on the site’s banner to shutting down services and redirecting traffic to petitions and places of information about the bills.

We cannot go into sufficiently detailed information here to describe in detail what changes these bills would make to current U.S. law but we will provide you with links to find this information yourselves. In Google’s words, “These bills would censor the Internet and slow economic growth in the U.S.” Considering that, we encourage you to follow the provided links and look into how this may effect you and how you utilize the Internet.

All Geeks Considered

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Over-Saturation of a Franchise: The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly

Posted on 09 January 2012 by DM

It has been a while since I put finger to key and for my first foray in the new year, I wanted to write about something that has crossed my mind, as well as many others, which is proliferation of a work into every corner and crevice of entertainment and lifestyle items as possible. Now honestly the first thing that pops into my mind right now when I think of this is Game of Thrones.  Before anyone jumps on me too badly, it is just the first thing because of its recentness. No, we all know that if there was one thing that has been infused with our lives in a way that we may never escape, it is the Star Wars franchise.  Obviously, this saturation is not a new thing, but is it a good thing? Does it do affect a franchise in an inherently good or bad way? Alternatively, is it like so many things, it that it all depends on how it is done? Continue Reading

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All Geeks Considered Picks the Best of 2011

Posted on 05 January 2012 by VinnieAve

Best Limited Comic Book Series-

DM: Flashpoint: Knight of Vengeance- More than twenty years ago  a tragedy occurred in the alley behind a movie theater and Thomas Wayne lost what he loved most to a petty criminal.  From that moment on a Knight of Vengeance was born.

Vinnie:  Flashpoint: Knight of Vengence- the Flashpoint Sidestories might have been the best of an event that was pretty good. However, the best of these was the Batman, tie-in. This could have stood alone from Flashpoint and just been an Elseworld. If you like Batman this series is pretty worth checking out.

Best On-Going Series-

DM: X-Factor- Peter David just keeps knocking it out of the park.  I have yet to read a thing this man writes that I do not love.

Vinnie: Swamp Thing- I mentioned the New 52 the other day and I mentioned this book in particular a while ago. I will admit that I haven’t read the Alan Moore Swamp Thing books but the art and writing are utterly outstanding on this making this the best.

Best Comic Book Storyline-

DM: Spider Island – Spider-man is in over his head as every New Yorker obtains the powers of a spider without Peter Parker’s sense of responsibility.

Vinnie: Spider Island- A fun story that doesn’t get too heavy, a perfect place for someone who knows the bare minimum to get into Spiderman.

Best TV Series:

DM: Sherlock- Too many times “updated” franchises fall short of the mark, but this interpretation of Sherlock Holmes has knocked it out of the park.  Great cast, great writing and a fantastic feel makes this the best of last year in my mind.

Vinnie: Game of Thrones- My friend had been a fan of this a few years ago but I have never read the book. Overall this was a great show with wonderful production values and fantastic acting. Fans and fantasy and political action/drama should check this out.

Best Movie-

DM-  Super 8- There is no question in my mind that this is a movie that stirs the heart.  It is a period piece of fantastic quality, touching back to Spielbergian science fiction.

Vinnie- The Muppets- I have no question that this was the best movie of 2011. In the most successful attempt to revive a franchise, Jason Seigel manages to bring back all the things that made the Muppets great in the past. I hope to see more in this series

Best Board Game-

DM: Eminent Domain- Race for the Galaxy meets Dominion.  Do I need to say more? This Kickstarter funded game is of such great quality and fun that I truly wish I could have contributed to its getting off the ground.

Vinnie- Best Board Game- Survive: Escape from Atlantis- this is a bit of a cheat in 2 ways, one it is a release of an older game and 2 I played it first in 2011. This game has much of what I like in a game, its versatile, it’s quick and, it’s easy to teach. With great production values this game is a must have for any collection want a game that can be competitive or co-operative.

From here we each did things that the other didn’t so from DM we have:

Video Game: Magic the Gathering: Duel of the Planeswalker 2012
Despite the name, this 2011 video game release provided hours of entertainment as well as the ability to play the Archenemy and practice your maniacal laughter.

Novel: Ghost Story
Jim Butcher continues his Dresden Files series with an engrossing continuation to 2010’s cliffhanger.  Harry fans loved it and those who are not fans just have not become fans yet.

Iphone App: Ascension: Chronicle of the Godslayer
This was a fantastic digital conversion of a great board game. With one expansion out already, the app is firmly entrenched on my phone.

and from Vinnie we have:

Best Anime- Tiger & Bunny- This also qualifies as the best superhero thing of 2011. A series that managed to get everything I love about superhero stuff and have great interpersonal stories makes Tiger & Bunny and show that will be remembered for years.

Best Manga Release- Codename: Sailor V- This series managed to grow on me and not get stale after a while. The characters developed and she was a much more independent character than Sailor Moon.


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The Christmas Challenge Schedule Part 1

Posted on 25 November 2011 by VinnieAve

Friday Nov 25 – It’s a Wonderful Life

Saturday Nov 26- Scrooged

Sunday Nov 27- Tokyo Godfathers

Monday Nov 28- Die Hard

Tuesday Nov 29- Father Christmas

Wednesday Nov 30- A Blackadder Christmas Carol

Thursday Dec 1- Santa Claus is Coming to Town

Friday Dec 2- Rare Exports

Saturday Dec 3- Elf

Sunday Dec 4- Miracle on 34th Street

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Spoiler Alert Special: Mutants in a Post Schism World

Posted on 09 November 2011 by DM

As a special spoiler alert for mutant lovers or those of you who think you might like to love mutants but aren’t quite sure yet, I thought I would give you my two cents regarding a few of the post-schism books that have come out from Marvel’s Mutant family.

Wolverine and the X-men: I wanted to hate this book.  I cannot communicate to you the full amount of hatred that I wanted to give to this book. However, I cannot do it.  Until I read this book with its silliness and full daily recommended dose of carefree, I had not realized how dark the X-men have gotten and how much I missed the light heartedness of olden days.

So I liked it, a lot. Regardless of how I feel about Wolverine in general, the book had a lot to love.  Some fun mutants, new and old and a great sense of comedic timing.  This is a book to read for someone who wants to start reading something about the X-men but did not want anything too dark or serious.  Pick it up and see if Beast succeeds in flooding the entire school with lava.

Uncanny X-men: Everything Wolverine is not this book is.  This is a serious X-men book with some heavy hitters, most of whom have been a villain at one point or another, that looks to show you the super hero side of the X-men franchise.  There is plenty of tongue-in-cheek humor, but this is definitely a book to read when you want a more serious story.  I was not kidding about the heavy hitter either; this team could take apart The Avengers. Read it to read an X-men book that is a bit more serious and has more impact on the mutant world it not the world in general.

Honorary Mention New Mutants: I think we have a nice mix of fun and serious in this book with none of the mutant politics from other post-schism books (except maybe X-factor). The New Mutants have some old and new members and are now living away from Cyclops and Wolverine, although they are still under the auspices of Cyclops.  Read this book if you want some mutant stories from old favorites whether those favorites are from New Mutants, X-Factor, or Age of Apocalypse.  Also, read it if you want a nice starting point on what should be a fairly low maintenance book.

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Need A Way To Feel More Inadequate? NaNoWriMo Is Here For You!

Posted on 03 November 2011 by DM

Its November again and you know what that means! It’s time for Vincenzo to start quoting Jimmy Stewart, Turkeys and Tofurkys to quaver in fear, and you to tell yourself that you are going to write that novel you’ve been mulling over since third period English your freshman year.

National Novel Writing Month has been going on since 1999 and has become something of a sensation for creative writing geeks all over the place.  The challenge is to write a 50,000-word novel over the course of the month of November.  This means that every day you are expected to get somewhere around 1600 words down that will go towards a final draft.  To say it is challenging is a big understatement depending on how much experience one has.  For newbs to NaNoWriMo, it can be downright impossible.

Then again, I am not so sure that matters.  It certainly does not seem to matter to its sponsors or even its veteran participants.  The state on their site that over 200000 individuals participated in NaNoWriMo in 2010 and more than 30000 crossed the 50000-word count on time.  Not bad considering that all kinds of individuals sign up to participate in this endeavor.  Certainly, the participants I have talked to and heard about do not put the 50000-word goal as the point but more a side effect to the actual endeavor.  To those people it seems to be about fostering your creative urges and developing self-discipline towards doing something worthwhile.  My impression is that it’s a supportive community geared towards self-efficacy.  What is not to love about that?

Go by their website and check it out.  Sign up even if you think you have the time and the will.  All kidding in the title of this article aside, it could be one of the most important things you do for yourself this year. Also, try to remember that hitting 50000 words is almost a bonus.  The real prize is actually taking the time to sit down and create something.

All Geeks Considered

NaNoWriMo Website

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Getting a Jump On The Important Things: A General Invitation

Posted on 01 November 2011 by DM

It is the first day of November and retail Christmas has been in full swing for a solid month.  I am not going to use this space to complain about how ridiculous that is (aside from that comment).  What I am going to say is that if it works for them why can’t it work for us?  Every year millions of people make New Year’s resolutions and by this time of year, those resolutions have been completed, turned into lifelong habits, or given up in a fit of apathy.  Now I have never made any myself, but I can see the appeal.

So here is my proposition: For this year, I am going to make several pre-New Year’s resolutions, and I invite anyone who glances over this to do the same (including my fellow writers).  These resolutions have a shelf life, the 1st of January, and they have a purpose, to fulfill those things I crave to do but am too apathetic to accomplish.

  • Do something physically active to log into Fitocracy at least once a day
  • Write at least two solid blog entries every week for All Geeks Considered
  • Write two pieces that I would be willing to have read in public
  • Learn to say three complete phrases in ASL and Spanish
  • Learn to play and sing one song on the guitar

Not a lot there for two months of time right? In any case, I again welcome any reader that passes by to join in and make a pre-New Year’s resolution.  If you do, I hope that you will write it in the comments below so that I can see it too and give some morale support.

Now you will forgive me if I go back to being the snarky geek that I am.

All Geeks Considered

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Sometimes The Grass Is Actually Greener: Amazon’s Slippery Slope

Posted on 10 October 2011 by DM

So Quickster has gone the way of the dodo.  Well If nature thought about making the dodo, told the world the dodo was going to exist and how cool it would totally be with the wings and whatnot, and then said, “well the dodo may not have been thought out as well as I would have hoped and maybe we’re just going to not have the dodo”.  What does this mean? I will be damned if I can tell you.  What I do know is that it has confirmed the second guess I have been having for a while now.

Now I am not a business analyst and I can’t tell you what Netflix did wrong from that perspective, but what I do know was that Netflix seemed to have a good deal going for them and then decided that they could make some questionable decision regarding money, services, and customers because they had no legitimate competition.  Or so they thought.  Now you got streaming coming out of the woodwork and a few very promising mail to home DVD/blu-ray providers and Netflix is scrambling because their impenetrable fortress was a well-put together house of cards.

What does this mean to you? I have no freaking clue.  You have to make the right decisions for you, based on what technology and resources you have available.  What it means for me though is that I am looking very hard at Amazon Instant Video as well as the Kindle Fire.  Seven hours of streaming per charged up battery is not too shabby.  Talk to me about what you think your entertainment decisions will be.

All Geeks Considered

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DC Signs Exclusive Graphic Novel Deal With Amazon

Posted on 03 October 2011 by DM

I tried to come up with a fun witty title for this one but I am still somewhat astonished to be reading this.  DC, just after launching its unprecedented reboot and same day digital release plan for comics, has now signed a deal to release their graphic novels, including best selling older titles such as Batman: Year One, Watchmen, Superman: Earth One, various Fables trades, various Y: The Last Man trades, and the Blackest Night trades.  It is as if they are trying to bury Marvel and the small comic book retailer all at the same time.

See, I can see how same day digital releases are less of a threat to the comic retailer than one might think.  Working as a retailer myself, I see collectors come in day in and day out who are tech savvy but refuse to purchase their books in a digital format.  They want that issue in their hands.  They want to smell the ink and feel the pages and keep the hope alive that if they ever tire of it, they can sell it back to someone for something.  Trades paperbacks are a different animal altogether.  You buy your trade because you want to read the story, understanding that, for the most part, it will not be a resalable product.  I acknowledge that there will still be those hold outs that prefer to hold the book in their hands, but this is a dark day indeed for the comic book retailer.

With that said, this is a stunningly brilliant move for DC Comics.  As I have stated before the Kindle Fire will be a force to be reckoned with and tying themselves to Amazon, a proven powerhouse internet retailer, is a brilliant move.  It is a risk to be sure.  The Kindle Fire (doesn’t that name sound a bit redundant?) is a device that has not been released yet.  The possibility, however remote, exists that it will bomb.  I doubt that will happen though.  No, I think they are going to sell the hell out of those trade paperbacks.

What do you think? Is this another nail in the coffin of comic book stores? Is an exclusivity deal too bold? I want to hear your thoughts.


Source: DC Digital Graphic Novels Coming Exclusively to KINDLE FIRE

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Comments on Caves of Steel Film Announcement

Posted on 27 September 2011 by VinnieAve

I am going to keep this brief since there isn’t too much to say.

Late last week it was announced the 20th Century Fox was developing a film adaptation of Isaac Asimov’s Caves of Steel . This is big news for the science fiction fandom. There is not been a particularly good adaptation of an Asimov work in my lifetime, I, Robot was a film unrelated to the book and Bicentennial Man wasn’t really that impressive. Even with both of these dark spots on his works being adapted to the big screen I still have hope. Part of this is due to the nature of the conversion, I, Robot is a collection of unrelated short stories and Bicentennial Man is a novella about a robot trying to be human, but this is a generally boring story. The difference is that Caves of Steel is a detective novel, with a bit of a sci-fi twist.

I think that there is enough material to make a good movie. I think that people will enjoy a traditional detective film in the light of The Maltese Falcon or The Big Sleep. It could easily be turned into a generic action movie with only a minor resemblance to the original work. My hope is that this is not going to be the case. I also realize that this will most likely not happen, no film based on Caves of Steel will be made into film.

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