Crusaders & Villains Pt4: The Superhero Handbook

Superhero Handbook

The Superhero Handbook

Are you naturally amazing? Have you been sent here from a distant dying solar system? Do you have a preoccupation with dubious rubber suits?

If any of the above apply, then The Superhero Handbook is for you! Find the answers to all your questions, plus lots of advice on how to develop your superhero potential. You’ll soon learn that you’re not alone, that your retro hairstyling choices are perfectly normal, and that there’s more to being a superhero than saving the planet, changing in phone booths, and struggling to disguise your fatal flaws.


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Diversity In All Its Glory

I’m not the kind of person that likes to try new things (unless it’s shiny and expensive), I’m kind of an old fart really, settled in his ways. But I’ll listen to you if you think you have a better mousetrap because you know, you may have discovered a way for me to be even lazier or more informed than before, so I’m all ears. 🙂

I also like discovering new things, which is different than *trying* new things. This never ending process of discovery includes learning more about who’s visiting Geeknews. That’s probably the one and only reason I like MyBlogLog, when I see a new face or avatar to the right of this humble little site I can not resist clicking it to learn more about this person, what might we have in common, what does their own blog look like?

Yesterday I found Fredric via Mybloglog which led me to the blog he’s co-editor on called Young Black Professionals. The site covers topics ranging from Faith and Politics, Money Saving Tips, Tech News and much more, sometimes with a ‘black’ spin on the topic to make the thought provoking subjects more relevant for the audience. I really like what they’ve got going on there, it’s good stuff and even though I’m not black, I am subscribed to their feed. Check them out.

Geek News Roundup: 9-05-07


Programming Grads Meet a Skills Gap in the Real World
What programmers learn in college and what they need in the work force are out of sync.
Despite the best laid plans of colleges and universities, there remains a skills gap between what computer science graduates learn in their undergraduate years and what they need to become proficient in a typical at-work environment.

Report: Virginia Tech Massacre Unrelated to Shooter Games
Game Daily
According to a review panel put together by Virginia Governor Tim Kaine, the shooter during the events of April 16 wasn’t really a “gamer” at all. During Cho’s childhood, he played games like Sonic the Hedgehog, and during his college experience, he didn’t play games at all.

China wants to take out the space trash
Chinese government seeks to monitor and reduce debris from spacecrafts. Basically they’re trying to make up for all the crap they’re leaving behind.

Chicago cop chases down gunman on Segway
Believe it or not, Chicago policeman Thaddeus Martyka isn’t the first cop to chase down a crook with the help of a Segway.

NASA clean rooms breed hardy bacteria
The ultra-clean facilities used to assemble NASA’s spacecraft are inhabited by some hardy bacteria, which could be hitchhiking their way to space. Samples from NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL), Kennedy Space Center and Johnson Space Center, show the variety of bacteria that make it into the spaceship assembly areas despite the clean rooms used to build the craft in.

Justice League Begins Casting

Justice League

obsessedwithfilm alerts us to the fact that the upcoming film for ‘Justice League’ now has casting directors in place to go forth and fill the roles. Likely heroes would include Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman, Green Lantern and possibly more heroes getting lesser screen time, this B list of heroes could include Atom, Aquaman, Plastic Man, Captain Marvel and more.

OWF is speculating that producer George Miller is looking to find several unknowns or up and coming actors for the film. So if you washed out of Sci Fi channel’s Who wants to be a superhero? then now is your best opportunity to hit it big as a real (er, fake real) superhero.

Here’s the link to OWF’s info on Justice League. Don’t get too excited just yet, this film likely wouldn’t see a release date until 2010.


[via Superhero Hype]

Your New Mobile Office From Samsung

Samsung i760

Samsung is close to releasing their new mobile phone with slideout QWERTY keyboard through Verizon Wireless. I would tell you that “it looks like a doozy” but the feature page for this little fellow is lacking in technical detail.

What I can tell you though is that it will ship with WM6 Professional, *stereo* Bluetooth headset capability…let me repeat that last for you, I said stereo headset via Bluetooth. Can I get a witness from the congregation? Amen!

The Samsung page for this beauty says :

  • It will have enhanced email support through Direct Push out of the box (I’d think this is a given)
  • Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g – seamlessly move between your corporate WLAN, home WLAN and local Hot Spot.
  • Built in Camera and Camcorder – Use the built-in camera to take digital still pictures with 1.3 megapixel resolution or use the camcorder to capture life?s more active moments.

Chewie Teams With NASA In Lightsaber Caper

The Star Wars blog details the teaming of LucasFilms with NASA to celebrate the 30th anniversary of the Star Wars saga in this post. Last week, in a special ceremony at the NASA Space Center in Houston, many of the most popular characters in Star Wars showed up to officially pass over the possession of Luke Skywalker’s lightsaber from Return of the Jedi.

In this photo Chewie hands off the lightsaber to one of NASA’s Directors of Marketing, where the device will be transported to Houston and held in inventory on board the Space Shuttle STS-120 during the Oct 23 2007 mission to the space station.

Dear NASA: Please for the love of all that’s holy, don’t turn the blade on when STS is in orbit. Thank you, Andy.

Chewie and NASA

Below you can see the gang was back together for the event where everyone posed and got all chummy on the tarmac of the Oakland airport:

The Gangs back together

Want even more photos of the sendoff? Check out the Star Wars Blog flickr page.

Free Penguin Project

It started with a ‘sitting duck’ toy from a McDonald’s Happy Meal, a little reverse engineering of said duck and led to The Free Penguin Project. An effort to bring all Tux lovers open source plans to develop and deliver their own Tux plushy.

Follow the news and see pics of plushies sent in from fellow Tux lovers.

Their HW requirements? Quote:

First research efforts have shown that at least a needle, a long thread, black and white plushy fabric as well as yellow textile are necessary. Other assets that might be needful are thimbles, more thread and scissors. Warning: Before you start, make sure that you know what you are doing. Doing things on a trial-and-error basis in the fields we are dealing with here can do a lot of harm.

Download sewing patterns from this page.

Tux Pattern    Tux Plushy

[Found via MAKE]

Mars Rovers Again Doing What They Do Best. Rove.

Mission Day # 1,271:

After a 6 week worldwide dust storm has finally ended, the Mars rovers are out and about once again, with Opportunity making a bee-line for the slope of Victoria crater to help shake off the flees while in an inclined position.

NASA had put the two rovers into hibernate mode over a month ago since the sun light would be blocked and they’d effectively be without a means to recharge the batteries.

However, though the sky has cleared somewhat, project scientist Bruce Banerdt says “The clearing could take months. There is a lot of very fine material suspended high in the atmosphere.”

And as those fine particulates fall from from the heavens they are posing an additional challenge in that they cover the solar panels causing the rovers to again be without a means of recharging. Perhaps future versions of the bots need some kind of squeegee mounted to the panels?  This is the reason for sending Opportunity up the hill, crossing fingers that the sand will fall off.

One more problem arising from the dust – particulate matter has embedded itself on the optics of the microscopic imaging equipment, reducing its photo quality.

Hey, the warranty ran out on these buggers long ago, prop them up with duct tape and bubble gum if you have to, we’re basically getting all kinds of data and learning experiences for free now baby.

Read the NASA Mission News report on the rovers for full details.



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What Is That? 9-01-07

Welcome to September, first post is a ‘What is that?’

This little fellow is about 120 years old and was popular enough to spawn 6 different models. Though this model stopped manufacturing in 1906, the device is ubiquitous today and has a very different appearance.

WIT_9-1-07a WIT_9-1-07b

Update: Congrats to Bryan Pierce (not to be confused with the Seattle Mariners coach) for getting the answer! The previous guesses were interesting. If you have a ‘What is it?’ you’d like to post here, please let me know and you’re welcome to guest blog on GN.

Linux Job Market Is Red Hot

Tux, Ready to battle the workplace

Got Linux skills and looking for better work?

Right now is the perfect time to upgrade employers, trade in your current old and busted sweatshop for something new and better before this whole Linux fad dies down (flamebait). 🙂


Strong demand for Linux professionals outpaced overall job growth during the past year, according to IT job clearinghouse As of August 1, job listings for Linux-experienced tech pro’s have jumped 36 percent so far this year, and 55 percent from 12 months ago, the service reports.

In contrast, Dice says, total job postings are up just 13 percent since January, and 18 percent from one year ago.

Link to the full article


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Crusaders & Villains Pt3: The Government Manual for New Superheroes

Gov't Manual for New Superheroes

Join the Undersecretary of Superheroics in her never-ending battle against evil. You can start by getting this manual ‘The Government Manual for New Superheroes‘ and then by registering your Superhero name and identity.

The Bureau of Superheroics Mission Statement:

To support those who take the law into their own gauntleted hands and defend the planet and its population from threats both supervillainous and alien; to administer all Governmental Regulations pertaining to Costumed Crime fighters and to provide Indispensable Guidance in Straightforward Language regarding the same; to eschew Unnecessary Capitalization wherever Practicable; and to revise and publish, from time to time, The Government Manual for New Superheroes.


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Crusaders & Villains Pt 2: How To Be A Villain

Villains always lose, but let’s face it; they have more fun.

Hatching dastardly plots, almost achieving global domination, these unrepentant fiends do what they will until the Goody Two-Shoes of the world catch up with them in the final chapter. Neil Zawacki, a California-based freelance writer and secret evildoer, has concocted a sly step-by-step guide to joining the forces of darkness.

How to Be a Villain

How To Be A Villain

Crusaders & Villains Pt1: How To Be A Superhero

I was bumbling around the bookstore the other day looking for a good book on handguns and home defense (a different story) when I stumbled across a totally geeky book, which led to another and yet another great geeky paperback for the wannabe hero or aspiring villain.

Fellow do-gooders, I’m telling you it was a treasure trove of coolness and decided to blog about them all, starting with the one that began my little odyssey; written by non other than Dr. Metropolis himself, it’s:

How to Be a Superhero

“How to Be a Superhero: Your Complete Guide to Finding a Secret Headquarters, Hiring a Sidekick, Thwarting the Forces of Evil, and Much More!”

How To Be A Superhero


Microsoft Sidewinder Mouse Returns On Steroids

Sidewinder Mouse

What we have here is the Performance Gaming Mouse System. You heard me, it’s a ‘System’, a gaming system with performance handling and custom tuning capabilities for that finicky gamer. Get the details and overview on the MS hardware site here.

Welcome to a revolution in gaming mouse performance, handling, and custom tuning. Microsoft SideWinder Mouse introduces one-of-a-kind features like veritcal side buttons, an LCD display, and a unique shape designed for quick and super-precise action.

On Gaming System features we have:

  • The first LCD on a gaming mouse
  • Cable anchor and accessories storage box. Adjust the length of the cable
  • Quick launch button

On Performance Handling features there are:

  • Vertical metal side buttons
  • Wide Metal Scroll Wheel
  • Engineered for Speed, Shape designed for quick, balance, precision gaming action.

On Custom Tuning:

  • On-the-Fly DPI Switching
  • Adjustable Mouse Weights, select your preference for mouse weight.
  • Changeable Mouse Feet, choice of three different materials for glide preference.
  • Macro Recording, record in-game macros using a dedicated macro record button.
  • Quick Turn, check your perimeter with the click of a button.
  • 5 Programmable Main Buttons

You can pre-order on Amazon for US$79.99

Retro MacOS Blog Theme

I’m a pushover for retro. Retro games, music, clothes, slang….and blogs. Blogs?

That’s right kitty kat, take a stroll down memory lane with the original MacOS and recall the days when computing was a daily exercise in learning something new and refreshing and gnarly dude.

Relive those totally tubular times. (clicky)

Retro MacOS Blog theme

The Newest Roomba Robots Are Smarter Than Ever


MSNBC celebrates the latest robotic vacuum from iRobot, the big news is ‘they’re getting smarter’. My question is “Is it smarter than Rosie?”.

The Roomba 560 is now available, this little fellow has a lineage going back 5 years now and at US$349.99 this bugger better do a helluva job.

Among the latest enhancements in the new version of the Roomba are:

  • Won’t get stuck (riiiight)
  • Improved navigation and floor coverage
  • Improved edge and corner cleaning
  • Improved brushes and filters
  • Improved anti-tangle technology (e.g., on rug tassles or electrical cords)
  • Improved Virtual Wall blocks off-limit areas
  • Automatically returns to its Home Base to dock and recharge

You can watch a video of the model 560 in action.

If it wasn’t so durned expensive, I’d love to have one of these, but $350??

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