Wednesday, December 16, 2009


Taking the Geek out of Science?

I'm a bit frustrated by this story about Geeks driving out Women from Computer Science.

I'm all in favor of women in Computer Science, and Science and Technology jobs in general. I'm a big believer that these are good jobs and careers.

But I'm not at all comfortable with the idea that "typically geeky" stuff like video games and science-fiction stuff can not appeal to women. CONvergence, as a large Science Fiction convention, is evenly split between men and women. I know lots of women geeks -- some in technology careers, and some that aren't.

But I've tended to encounter more women through my science fiction geek travels than I do through most of my IT travels.

I certainly can't really evaluate this research based on this news story -- I mean, besides clearly getting the impression that Women Don't Like (and aren't) Sci-Fi Geeks. And that may be more a comment on the reporting than the underlying research. Because I don't believe that is at all always true.


Why Lifehacker is awsome, or Google Contacts Can Kill Duplicates in Bulk

One of the things that had been very frustrating for me over time is that I was seeing a lot of duplicate contacts in my address book. This was being made worse by me trying to synchronize my contacts with my Mac address book, my iPhone, my prior smartphone, and Google Contacts.

So seeing the article on Lifehacker about mass merges of duplicates was just about my favorite post all week.

Wednesday, December 02, 2009


The Death of Captain America

One of the things that I think is important when reading any long-running series is to enjoy the run for what it is. We know that when the Captain America movie comes out, Steve Rogers will be Captain America, and that the Avengers movie will put Thor, Captain America, and Iron Man in the same film. For any character that is on-going, there is a "default" status so you know that changes aren't really permanent.

And if you're a fan of a long running series, you should accept that -- and enjoy each run on the series for the quality of how the make that series appropriate for that time. While continuity is valuable -- it's what the creators do with the series to make it fresh and appropriate for today that counts.

And that's exactly what I enjoy about Ed Brubaker's work on Captain America - I've picked up Captain America Omnibus, Vol. 1 and The Death of Captain America Omnibus collecting the first 42 issues of this series and it's by far one of the best runs on Captain America that I've had the pleasure to read. One of the things that I love about it is that it's part spy story, part super hero fantastic action, and part political parable. It is a Captain America appropriate for our time.

I don't want to go into plot details -- and really, it's that wonderful mix of heightened reality that you might get in a James Bond film or Alias [the tv series]. But the book also isn't afraid of being relevant for our time -- but without being preachy, which can so often happen when a comic is trying to be "relevant".

And I love the art on this run -- Steve Epting and the rest of the art team does a fantastic job and it gives the book a cinematic look that I think is just fantastic. I can just look at the pages again and again.

One of the things that is good about the recent batch of Marvel films (when they are good) is that they're happy to use the most recent examples of the characters to make successful films. And I can see challenges to bringing Captain America to the film is making a movie that is accessible, especially to a global audience. But if they make a Captain America film that uses Ed Brubaker's work as an inspiration, they will be well prepared and I will be very excited by the film.

Definitely recommended!

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