Thursday, October 24, 2013

J. R. R. Tolkien, Part one - The Hobbit

As I talked about in my post Books That Captivated My Youth though I grew up reading Sci-Fi the past 25+ years or so have been dominated by Fantasy, or Faerie (Fairy) stories especially the sub-genre Epic Fantasy.


I would like to talk specifically about one author who almost single-handed brought me wide eyed and fascinated into the world of fantastic fiction.

Friday, October 11, 2013

Field Notes Notebooks

I have been using Field Notes notebooks for years now. I purchased my first set in 2010. It was the Balsam Fir set and the State Fair Edition (Michigan). These are the perfect notebook. Small, tough, classic. I have not used a paper product from anyone else since that first purchase and I don't know that I ever will. They are that good.

Saturday, August 3, 2013

The Books That Captivated My Youth…

Most of the books I read nowadays are epic fantasy. There is nothing I like more than to start a series where the books are 700 to 1000 pages long and there will be 10 or so books in the series. (Think Brandon Sanderson or Robert Jordan) It wasn't always like that though, when I was much younger science fiction was all I read.

As I believe I have mentioned before most of my childhood is lost to my memory, this the includes a number of the books that I read. Some titles however stick in my mind and they left a lasting impression and I can still remember the stories to this day.

The earliest books that I can actually remember reading were written by Isaac Asimov and they were part of the Lucky Starr series. I still have all of these books in paperback in my library. These books would compare most effectively to the Tom Swift (third series) books. Which I also remember reading though I liked Lucky Starr more. I first read these when I was 8 or 9, but I have re-read them many times since then and they stand up really well. Which is also not something I can say about Tom Swift (any of the five separate series).

Saturday, July 13, 2013

Space, The final frontier...


In my last post I talked about Star Trek: Enterprise and why I was drawn to that show more than others. I explained it was mostly because of the plots revolving around exploration and discovery. That got me to thinking about why Enterprise interested me so much and why the more action oriented series (DS9 and Voyager, as well as the new movies) do not interest me.

I came to the conclusion that it's because real space is something that fills me with wonder. I mean how can you look up into the sky, even in a light soaked city like I live in and not be awed?

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

A trek into the Treks: Star Trek: Enterprise

Being the geek that I am it could only have been a matter of time before I posted about Star Trek. Since I started my second re-watch of Enterprise yesterday I thought this would be a good time to talk about it.
I want to start by explaining my history with Star Trek and where Enterprise fits into it.

Saturday, June 29, 2013

Devices, Gadgets and Gear, Oh My: Bamboo Tablet and Stylus

The most recent gadget I've aquired is the Wacom Bamboo Create tablet and Stylus. I am still looking for some way of taking notes naturally and digitally so that I can store them and search them in Evernote. This is one of the reasons why I use the Note II and why I have a Jot Stylus for the iPad. None of those really do a great job of being a digital notepad. The palm rejection on the iPad is nonexistent and the Note II, as big as it is for a phone, is too small too really take notes on easily. The Create tablet solves both of those problems. The Create has excellent palm rejection even though it is both an active digitizer and a multi-touch surface and is plenty large enough to take notes on.

Thursday, June 27, 2013

Devices, Gadgets and Gear, Oh My: Smartphones

I was going to write separate posts about each of the smartphones that I carry everyday but quite a lot, if not most, of the posts would be the same so I decided to combine them into one post.

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Devices, Gadgets and Gear, Oh My: The Kindle Fire HD



One of the more recent acquisitions for me is the Kindle Fire HD. There are a lot of similarities between the Nexus 7 tablet I wrote about last week and the Kindle Fire HD (KFHD) but they are very different devices with their own strengths and weaknesses.

Sunday, June 23, 2013

Devices, Gadgets and Gear, Oh My: The Microsoft Surface Pro Tablet


As I work my way through this series about all the devices I carry with me I have been unconsciously posting them in the order of which I feel they are beneficial to me. Once I realized I was doing that I made a decision to stop and list the least used device I have next. I had really high hopes for the Surface Pro, it should have been the best device ever but to me it fell short in many ways.

Friday, June 21, 2013

Devices, Gadgets and Gear, Oh My: The Macbook Pro (mid 2010)

Continuing my series on the gadgets and gear I carry with me all the time this post takes a look at my workhorse laptop the mid 2010 Macbook Pro. In my first post in this series (Chromebook) I talked about the advantages (and disadvantages) of a lower cost, simpler computer. The Macbook Pro is kind of the Anti-Chromebook in that regard.

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Devices, Gadgets and Gear, Oh My: The iPad 2 3G

In my second post in this series I explained how a smaller tablet you have with you can be better than a larger one you left at home because it was too much to carry around. In this post I will look at my iPad 2 (3G) and try to explain how a larger tablet is a useful tool as well.

Monday, June 17, 2013

Devices, Gadgets and Gear, Oh My: The Nexus 7

In my first post in this series I looked at the Samsung Chromebook, in this post I will take a look at the Google / Asus Nexus 7. This model is the AT&T 3G edition. This was the second modern tablet I acquired after my iPad. The iPad is a great device but it's like carrying around a laptop. I decided that the best tablet in the world is the one you have with you. An iPad at home on the dresser is not very useful, but a Nexus 7 in your cargo pocket can do anything.

Saturday, June 15, 2013

Devices, Gadgets and Gear, Oh My: The Chromebook.

Anyone who knows me knows that I like "stuff". You know geek crack, gadgets, electronics. I usually have a number of gadgets with me that mostly do the same thing but in different ways and in different sizes. In this series of posts I am going to take a look at each of them and try to tell you what purpose that device has for me and hopefully make your decision easier should you need to get one yourself.

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Best Movies of All Time. The List.

Posting Monday about WarGames and how it's my favorite movie of all time got me thinking. What would be my top ten movies of all time? So I compiled a list and I will share it with you here.

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

WarGames 30th Anniversary

I had written this post yesterday but scheduled the publishing incorrectly, so here it is today instead.

Today is June 3rd 2013. 30 years ago on June 3rd 1983 a movie was released that would strike a chord with me that would never stop resonating.

WarGames is my favorite movie of all time. I watch it on average once a week and never get tired of it. Sure some of it is nostalgia since it's a movie about a teenage hacker in 1982 when I was also a teenage hacker. The whole movie just screams the 80's and lets face it everyone has a soft spot for the decade they grew up in.

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Youthful ruminations...

I had planned to write another rant about the decreasingly excellent service available locally, but I decided that I really didn't want this site to turn into a complaint/rant fest. The next time I experience bad customer service I might return to this topic but for today I thought I would take a look back instead.

Sunday, May 5, 2013

Weekend Mornings...

Let me start by saying how much I love my family. They are the reason I live, the reason I get up every morning and go to work, and the reason I come back home at night. I can't imagine my life without them. That said though weekend mornings are a time I wouldn't trade for anything.

Friday, April 26, 2013

Games, bringing families together since, well forever...

There seems to be a resurgence in board and card gaming. (Hereafter referred to as table top gaming.) I think that's a great thing.

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Freemium is a friendly way to say price gouging...

I don't think anyone begrudges game designers and publishers fair compensation for their work and creativity. We can argue what exactly fair means another time, this post isn't about that.

This post is about the current trend for mobile games to take the concept of free to play (freemium) and twist it into something, oh lets say it, evil.

Monday, April 22, 2013

Why a blog, why now?

There are a lot of things on my mind, things that I want to write down (type?) and let others see and think about.
Google+ isn't the right place for them, at least I don't think so. They wouldn't fit in twitter anyway and I don't have a MyFace or Spacebook account.

A blog will allow me to put these thoughts out there and not really bother anyone who doesn't want to read them.

-John