Monthly Archives: July 2015

Two and a Half Years of Comparative Geeks!

Merlin Relaxing

At this point I’ve made a tradition of celebrating the milestone every six months of Comparative Geeks! With the Geek Baby we’re now counting much shorter increments in time, like age in weeks, or hours between feedings (or hours we get to sleep!) so six more months suddenly feels like a really long time!

As part of this most recent six months, we had six weeks of guest posts, along with the Friday posts I wrote in advance. That was a lot of great content from some really great bloggers, so if you missed that, I collected them all here. We are still incredibly grateful for that, because without it, I would not be sitting here now saying that we’ve had a successful, continuing blog here on Comparative Geeks!

Seeing how much success we had, and how our life has changed for sure, we are continuing to operate with additional bloggers – now contributors in their own rights, and not just guest writers! And with that, there are now more Comparative Geeks!

Which means some of the basic conceit of the site – it being the two of us, a married couple able to talk through our post ideas on a daily basis – is just not the same anymore. There are more opinions. More fandoms. More experience to bring to the table. And that’s great!

It does mean that some high-level changes need to happen – like the First Time Here and About the Authors pages need an overhaul. There’s already an authors scroll in the sidebar on those pages – recent posts by all of the different Geeks!

I’m still slowly plugging away on a Geek 501 page, as well. In the mean time, I’ve also added a link to our whirlwind board game recommendations – our annual 12 Days of TableTop Day post. And the LitFlix… well, we’re working on it. It’s been hard to make it to movies this year, which makes us sad. It’s the number one getaway thing we have done without the Geek Baby – but we haven’t pulled off both going to see a movie together yet.

At some point we really need to recruit a babysitter!

I think we’re on a roll now, and I forsee we’ve definitely got the next six months in us. I fully expect that in January we’ll be talking about three years of Comparative Geeks! Where it goes from there? Time will tell. Like I said, I’m hoping I get a few more hours of sleep tonight… we’ll see about months of blogging!

Thank you for reading and commenting and liking this blog. It really means a lot to us. We started out with low goals, and have stayed small and consistent on purpose. Hopefully you like what we have going on. If there’s something you especially like, let us know in the comments. If there’s something you really don’t, let us know in the comments or a private message on Twitter or something if you prefer! Help us make this a blog you want to read and keep reading.

Shadow Relaxing

Cloud Connected Vehicles

Every year we see new technology growing in leaps and bounds. One of the areas that has not moved as quickly – but is still progressing – are vehicles, in particular cars. In today’s world you almost need to be a computer programmer or engineer to work on a car anymore. No longer is it simply about an engine, but now a computer runs the entire system. Not only does it run the entertainment, air, and windshields it also helps you park and warns you when you almost hit another car.

Weren't we supposed to have this flying car by now? Found on http://io9.com/5989200/20-lies-back-to-the-future-ii-told-us-besides-the-hoverboard

Weren’t we supposed to have this flying car by now? Found on http://io9.com/5989200/20-lies-back-to-the-future-ii-told-us-besides-the-hoverboard

While not fully functional we are not far off from being able to have driverless cars as a viable option. Now on one hand this seems like a a great idea, on the other you could easily raise issues with a computer being able to control all the features on a vehicle. Particularly the question is: how do you protect the vehicle programming that makes it run correctly?

Recently an article in Wired magazine shows that these questions are actually issues that currently exist. The problem seems to be the fact that the cars are not closed systems, but connect wirelessly, presumably to the manufacturer somewhere. This means that someone can access the vehicle remotely and mess with a large number of functions that could cause serious problems. Continue reading

Character Study: Scott Lang (Ant-Man)

Ant-Man army

Real Name: Scott Lang

Powers: Thanks to Pym Particles, Scott (Ant-Man) can shrink to the size of an ant. He can also communicate telepathically with insects. When he shrinks, he retains his human strength.

Abilities: Scott has expertise in electronics.

Background

Scott Lang is the current Ant-Man, though he achieved the title by unorthodox means. He stole the Ant-Man suit from Dr. Henry (Hank) Pym, in order to save his daughter’s life. Not the first time Scott stole in order to support his family. He turned to crime when he was no longer able to support his wife and daughter, and became a skilled thief as a way to make ends meet. Of course this path didn’t end well, and Scott spent a time in prison.

After his release, he worked in the design department at Stark International; trying to turn over a new leaf. When he discovered his daughter had a fatal heart condition, he decided to call on the help of Dr. Erica Sondheim. It turned out she had been kidnapped by Darren Cross of Cross Technological Enterprises, who had a heart condition of his own. Scott stole Hank’s suit to rescue Dr. Sondheim and save his little girl. The mission was a success, and Hank allowed him to keep the suit – as long as he continued to use it for good.

scott and his daughter

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Thoughts on Exclusives

Recently the trailer that was shown at Comic Con for Suicide Squad got leaked on to the Internet and then shortly afterward got officially released. The only reason that it got officially released is because the WB did not want the shaky phone cam footage of the trailer to represent the film. They actually went so far as to admonish any fan who posted or shared the footage as it was illegal and they wanted to create a special or exclusive experience for the Comic Con attendees.

Exclusives can be great incentives for people to buy or attend something, but can some exclusives be either elitist or seem counter intuitive? A lot of times video games have exclusive content based on the console the game is on, which awards people who own that console. Other people still get to play the game, even if they miss out on that one piece. It is the same thing for exclusives during pre-orders that those who are willing to put down their money early can get extra features, but anyone can buy the game later and play the same game. These are very different types of exclusives than showing a trailer only at a convention and it makes me wonder if they really do anything. 

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My Current Nostalgia: Nancy Drew

Maybe it was because I was watching a new mystery show on Netflix (post on that to follow, I’m sure), but I got the biggest urge recently to play the Nancy Drew computer games I used to play with my mom. They were the absolute BEST, and I hadn’t played them in ages, so I decided to pick one up and play.

And now, I’m absolutely hooked. I’m going through those mysteries like they’re…some sort of candy I loved in the ’90s when I was first playing these games.

The first one I ever played with my mom was Message in a Haunted Mansion. And oh my GOSH was it scary but also so, so fun. I think when I played it I was nine or so, and looking back I can’t believe it didn’t give me more nightmares then. I think what I loved about it though was how based on history it was, and how complicated but fun the puzzles were.

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image via

Each of the Nancy Drew games has an underlying theme that the puzzles and mysteries are all usually based on, and the puzzles, themes, clues, and underlying mystery will revolve around those tidbits of real history and culture. Nancy is usually called to the location she’s at because there have been accidents, someone is missing, someone was killed, or sometimes poor Nancy is on vacation and stumbles upon a mystery. Either way, the mysteries flow like the books do or like watching Scooby Doo – if there’s something supernatural going on, Nancy will figure out which suspect is behind it all and how they were pulling it off.

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