Monday, July 07, 2014
Photos from Convergence.
12:30 Making Lanyards. Failed to make a lanyard, but no-one else was doing well, either, so we commiserated with each other. Met someone from Hennepin County Library who remembered me from Anime Detour.
2:00 Hung out at the free book room with M_ and B_.
3:00 Art Show.
5:00 Crafty Geek Meetup. I made a fairy crown. I'm not used to working with dried flowers, but it actually came out decent.
6:30 Burgers on the patio with M_ and B_.
8:30 Fractured Fairy Tales. Panel discussion of media that puts a twist on traditional tales. White As Snow sounds intriguing.
10:00 Just a Minute. Speaking for one minute without hesitation, deviation or repetition is surprisingly hard. Panelists cheat, insult each other, and make stuff up. Their suffering is our amusement. Thank you, sirs and madams!
11:30 Nescaflowne. Hilarious fan dub of one of my favorite anime, Vision of Escaflowne. An ordinary girl from Japan must save the tiny kingdom of Folgeria's coffee recipe from the empire of Starbach. With giant robots!
11:30 Lunch at TGI Friday's with M_, B_, and their friend.
12:30 Steampunk in the Details. Steampunks sharing their costume and prop tips. I'd love to try using liquid latex to give myself a clockwork cyborg look, but I'm too sensitive and would probably scratch it off. The lady who drew outlines on every piece of clothing to look like she stepped out of a drawing left me in awe.
2:00 One on One with Marina Sirtis. I'm actually not usually that into actor Q & A's but she is one funny lady. I forgot she was a villain on Gargoyles, I should watch that again.
3:30 Dealers' Room. I told myself, no books or tchotckes, but they had a lot of clothes and jewelry, so that didn't work too well.
5:00 Dinner and Angry Orchard cider at TGI Fridays with L_ and T_.
7:00 Joseph Scrimshaw: Future Hole. This man is super-funny. I got to sit in the front row, and didn't even have to buy two drinks. Go follow him on Twitter.
8:00 Party Room crawl with L_ and T_. I drank out of test tubes and played pirate beer bong (it involves tiny cannons).
12:00 Lunch at Dairy Queen with M_, L_, T_, and T's friend from Crafty Geek,
1:00 Impromptu photo shoot. M_ was kind enough to take some pictures of me in front of a backdrop. Photoshop, here I come!
2:00 Geeks Read discussion of favorite urban fantasy titles. I don't read that many, so I talked about The Obsidian Mirror, since it's a faerie/time travel/dystopian future/steampunk book - something for everyone!
2:45 Steam Century Mystery: Secrets in the Asylum. I didn't solve the mystery, but had fun role-playing, The Red Ribbon Society folks are good at the improv.
3:45 Ran into another librarian from Hennepin County at the House of Toast.
4:15 Theater Nippon showing of Tiger and Bunny. A promising anime, I like the idea of sponsored super-heroes, but it could fall into cliche if it's not careful. The character designs are more detailed than most new anime, which is nice.
Thursday, July 03, 2014
The Wonder Of Microsoft Paint. - Created with Haiku Deck, presentation software that inspires
Although I consider myself a Mac person, I'm not slavish about it. Microsoft does a few good things. Publisher is good, Excel is good, Word is good (although the latter's gotten bloated lately). I even have a Microsoft webcam (it doesn't require drivers and works with every program you throw at it).
But my favorite Microsoft is free - Paint. It's light and simple and just does what you need it to do, no frills. One of Apple's dumbest decisions was to get rid of MacPaint, although you can download a free app called Paintbrush that is similar. But, at work I can't install anything, so Paint is a real lifesaver when working on flyers or presentations. I even wrote this little ode to Paint in presentation form.
Do you guys have any little programs that don't get a lot of hype, but save your bacon?
Saturday, May 31, 2014
The Advocate has suggested that the greatest (i.e. only good) reality show ever, Rupaul's Drag Race, have a drag king contestant. That's fine, but it would be much more entertaining to have a whole drag king competition. One of the best parts of Drag Race is seeing all the different types of queens compete: beauty queens, funny queens, conceptual queens, androgynous queens, scary queens, singing and dancing queens.
I want to see punk kings, gangsta rap kings, cock-rocking metal kings, panty-dropping R & B kings, country kings, baggy-pants burlesque comic kings, and of course, Elvis.
I picked out some songs that make me think of different aspects of masculinity: swaggering men, heartbroken men, lustful men, romantic men, philosophical men, and suicidally depressed men (interesting fact: I can think of dozens of songs by men about suicide, but only one female one: "Gloomy Sunday". What's up with that?)
- "That's Life" - Frank Sinatra
- "Mama Said Knock You Out - LL Cool J
- "Stand Tall" - Burton Cummings
- "Stroke" - Billy Squire
- "Fade To Black" - Metallica
- "Love Is the Drug" - Roxy Music
- "Take Me to the River" - Al Green
- "Can't Help Falling in Love" -Elvis Presley
- . "My Prerogative" - Bobby Brown
- "When Doves Fly" -Prince
Saturday, March 01, 2014
Part two of a two-part series. Part one is here.
Although I'm on record as being more about game mechanics than visuals, some games are more fun if you can see the characters facial expressions and some are too complex to work well on a smaller device. I can play Chuzzle or Bejeweled Blitz fine on the iPod Touch, but Plants vs. Zombies is just more fun on the iPad. World of Goo is hard to do on a small devices as you end up pinching and zooming a lot.
I've been playing tabletop role-playing games for several years now (Current game: Interface Zero 2.0). I started old-school with pen and paper, but now I am almost fully digital thanks to the iPad. I still enjoy the feel of rolling real dice, although my co-gamer Rawen uses the Real Dice Roll app.
For my character sheet, I use a fill-able PDF and the PDF Reader app. I tried other PDF apps and none were as good, they were hard to move around in and blurry, PDF Reader has a nice folder organizing system (as a librarian, I do love organizing) and you can import from Dropbox, Google Drive, or from a URL. That makes it worth paying $2.99 for.
Most game books these days come offer a .pdf version as well as print, with the smaller indie ones being e-book only. I use iBooks for reading. The searching by keyword or page number is pretty fast and you can organize your books by collection. I like the virtual bookshelf, although it's too bad they got rid of the fake wood effect in iOS 7. I use Dropbox to transfer the the character sheets and game books from the computer to the iPad, which doubles as bonus storage. When you open a .pdf in Dropbox, iOS detects the format and offers you the option to open it with any app that can read .pdfs.
Having a camera in your device is also nice if we have to end our session in the middle of an epic battle, I can take a picture of everyone's location so that Game Master Jthbeaux can recreate it next time. And if I need to search the game forums for tips, the Internet is right there. Chrome is my browser of choice on mobile, it's light and fast.
Yes, iPads are super-fun, but they can be useful for work too. For taking notes, I like to keep it simple, so I use Simplenote. Just text and URLs, that's all I need. I look at things like Evernote or Diigo and say, that's waaay too complicated for me. Simplenote is available as a web app too, so you have access to your notes wherever. Digital notes make it a lot easier for me to write conference reports or meeting minutes later, just copy and paste. I also use Simplenote for to-do lists, packing lists, movie/book/TV/music recommendations, etc. I am not the fastest typist in the world, but it's easier for me to type on the iPad than the iPod Touch.
For collaborative projects I use Google Drive. It's easy to make simple documents or spreadsheets like grant proposals or program budgets. I so rarely use more than 10% of Microsoft Word's bells and whistles anyway (and if I do, like making flyers, I tend to regret it.) Dropbox I tend to use more when I just need files for a presentation or outreach event, so I don't have to carry a bunch of paper (I have them on a flash drive too, 'cause I'm a belt-&-suspenders kind of gal).
I export my work schedule from our scheduling software and keep it in PDF Reader, along my bus schedules.
Except for Vines and very short YouTube videos, I only watch video on the iPad when traveling. It did save me when I had to spend the night at the Detroit airport. If you want to watch a bunch of YouTube videos while on the plane, VideoCache makes it easy to download them, although it does stall occasionally, so I'd do it a little ahead of time. Of course, I have Netflix, Huluplus, and Amazon Instant Video, along with Crackle, MUBI, Google Play Movies, Vudu, and Crunchyroll, just to cover all the bases. Searching on the Blu-ray player is awkward, so I have my iPad by my side when watching TV so I can do all my searching in the relevant app. If I don't know which service has which movie or TV show, Can I Stream It? lets me check all of them at once. If it's not there, you can set a reminder for when the title is available.
Most social media apps work the same on the iPod Touch, so I'm not gonna get into them. Rest assured, I spend my share of time on Twitter, Facebook, & Tumblr.
Saturday, January 18, 2014
- M.I.A: "Y.A.L.A."
- Janelle Monae: "Q.U.E.E.N."
- Daft Punk: "Get Lucky"
- Pomdexter: "Call Me a Hole"
- Zynic: "Dead End"
- Diana: "Perpetual Surrender"
- Windhand: "Orchard"
- Vista Chino: "Dargona Dragona"
- Dark Earth: "Time Warp"
- Red Desert: "Slow Kill"
- Devil To Pay: "Yes Master"
- Orange Goblin: "Aquatic Fanatic"
- Nightstalker: "Soma"
- The Quill: "Freak Parade"
- Tar: "Walking the King (Peel Session)"
- Ted Leo: "Return to Crap Kingdom"
- My Bloody Valentine: "Only Tomorrow"
- A Place To Bury Strangers: "Leaving Tomorrow"
- Chatham Rise: "Oncoming Daze"
- SHONEN Knife: "When You Sleep"
- Melvins: "Female Trouble"
- Martha Wash: "Dream On"
Monday, January 13, 2014
Tuesday, December 31, 2013
Format once again ripped off shamelessly from the Librarian in Black:
Books--10th of December, NW, Code Name Verity, The Night Circus, Eleanor & Park
Comics--Rachel Rising, Ooku, Genshiken Second Season
Magazine--The New Yorker
Movies (theater)--Pacific Rim, American Hustle, The Hunger Games: Catching Fire
Movies (DVD)--Tai Chi Zero, Dredd, Wreck-It Ralph, The FP, Upstream Color, The Sound of My Voice, Kiss of the Damned, Thale, A Band Called Death, Drug War, No, Byzantium
TV Shows (streaming)-- Nikita, Lost Girl, Being Human (UK), Call the Midwife, Alphas, Continuum, Adventure Time
TV Shows (live)--Community, Parks & Recreation, 30 Rock, Mad Men, Almost Human, Agents of SHIELD
TV Shows (DVD)--Archer, Leverage, Justified, Homeland, The Walking Dead, Falling Skies, Enlightened, The Bletchley Circle, Orphan Black, Children's Hospital, Sons of Anarchy, Person of Interest, Nurse Jackie, Defiance
TV Shows (web) -- Burning Love, BAMF Girls Club, The Lizzie Bennett Diaries, Tabletop
Items of Clothing--marled v-neck sweater, slouchy shirt, little black dress, John Fluevogs
Tabletop Games --Interface Zero, Takenoko
Computer Games -- Plants vs Zombies 2
Albums -- Windhand: Soma, Various Artists: Yellow Loveless, My Bloody Valentine: mbv, Melvins: Everybody Loves Sausages, Janelle Monae: The Electric Lady, Devil To Pay: Fate Is Your Muse, Wo Fat: The Black Code, Troubled Horse: Step Inside, Red Desert: Damned By Fate, A Place to Bury Strangers: Worship, Nightstalker: Dead Rock Commandos, Grand Magus: The Hunt, Jess and the Ancient Ones: Jess and the Ancient Ones, The Vaccines: Come of Age
Songs-- Zynic: "Dead End", Martha Wash: "Dream on", Diana: "Perpetual Surrender", Owl City: "When Can I See You Again", Ted Leo:"Return to Crap Kingdom", M.I.A.: "Y.A.L.A", Daft Punk: "Get Lucky", Adele: "Skyfall"
From the vault--Tar:1988-1995
Radio--Radio K, Sanctuary Radio
Web sites--TV Tropes, Good Show Sir, Hyperbole and a Half
Twitter Twerps--@SnarkeysMachine, @libraryyeti, @loather, @GreatDismal, @FakeLibStats, @robdelaney, @JosephScrimshaw
App-- Brushes, Photoshop Touch, Aviary, Colorsplash
Devices -- iPad mini, Chromecast
Events--Anime Detour, Library Maker Fair, parent's 50th anniversary
Concerts –Magnolias, The Melvins/Die Kreuzen/Negative Approach, Austra, Droids Attack/Tonnage, Blind Shake/STNNNG
Bar--Turf Club, Grumpy's, Triple Rock, Cause
Sweet relief -- getting rid of Comcast, getting reimbursed by my insurance
Treat -- Raspberry Explosion at Cosmo's, Popeye's Biscuits, dumplings at Evergreen
Boyfriend -- JSeux (10th anniversary!)