Wednesday, December 24, 2008

A Merry Drinking Day

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Welcome to yet another holiday approved inebriation fest. Expect items of concern to worsen throughout the new year. Alcohol consumption seems to be off the charts during the winter festivities named 'Christmas' and 'New Years.' But not too worry because this blog will put all of that swaying fun to work with a great drinking game for everyone with an inner geek (and really who does not have a little inner geek somewhere in them). The wisest wizard is a role playing game where you and your mates attempt to level up and build a staff out of used beer cans (as one should know, each staff's powers manifest themselves in different ways; apparently the staff in the picture can conjure up stuffed cows). Besides being possibly the greatest reason to drink until you drop, who would say no to a wizard staff built from PBR cans. So everyone get up and go down to your local "Bud's east *insert town name here* liquor store" and pick up a 30+ rack of your favorite watered down excuse for beer and have a merry good time.

On a lighter note, and I mean what could be lighter then playing drinking games that involve medieval weaponry, everyone needs to have a wonderful Christmas. These are the times to drop the design and coding work (unless you are way behind) and be with the loved ones in your life. Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays, and peace be with all

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Exciting Changes

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Yello all! I have not been around too much lately and it is mainly due to my crazy schedule that just got a lot less hectic. Moreover, I have been doing a ton of research on the blogging software in the world and have come up with a great design for a new blog through Wordpress. This new blog will be a much more focused effort to keep people in the loop of design and mainly web freelancers and the lives that we live. However, this blog will still remain around mainly due to the fact we just went through a redesign a month ago as well as a great opportunity to play with Blogger's amazing and fun technology.

As per usual I will keep you all in a daunting and an imaginative loop of of darkness about our location and simply say it is snowing. Lots of snow actually and none of which is at all appreciated. So God, listen here friend, how about we sacrifice the ski season (another hint) and just say we leave it to pot and lets have some blessed sun. Worth a try right? Besides the snow the other humongous fail of the week goes to loosing another job to what could have been the fault of this blogger or the general stupidity of the user...who knows (or cares). What this does mean is there will be WAY more time spent caressing the huge user base on Tkubed.

Returning is an old favorite on this blog is the weird "what Braden is into this week" reviews. Follow after the drop

MailPlane: This app has an amazing amount of integration with Gmail right on your dock. Most designers out there have a pretty long number of Gmail accounts and this app makes it a trifle effort to control them all. In addition, it gives you some robust controls over gTalk, some nifty, still in gLabs functions, growl notifications, and iPhoto integration for sending great pics. Not too sure about the price they are asking but well worth the download and try period. Maybe the folks over there will throw me some promo codes for you all.

Mint iPhone App
: Who knew anyone out there could really live without an iPhone. I hounded it for a long time (check some posts from last year) but now it is completely natural to check stocks, play games, find directions, or be depressed with the weather forecast all within the reach of your pocket. Moreover, Mint is a wonderful "webby" way of managing money and now they have an app to watch your little assets over your phone. It is not the most secure thing in the world but if you really are having a hernia about this niggly issue simply log out of your account. Props peeps at Mint, keep it up you all are amazing.

WoW Miniatures: Anyone who is a geek remembers the pain that came with Warhammer minis. You had to have a steady hand like a crack whore with trimmed fingernails just to be able to pain the little things. Blizzard and Upper Deck have solve this problem with pre painted minis that actually look amazing and an interesting game that goes along with it. The game, just like the card game appears to have a great amount of promise and should be a staple to any nerds stocking this Christmas. Check them out here.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Facebook Soars

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During this nice downturn of jobs, generally due to stupidity we are seeing a steep rise in boredom. Bring on the likes of the homework steamroller known only as "Facebook." Apparently the user base of Facebook is growing at a rate of 600,000 to 700,000 users a day. This is a phenomenal number of people, or if you crave some closure on the word phenomenal; there are around 700,000 on the waiting list for affordable housing or around 700,000 people on the national terrorist watch. Who knew a little network way back in 2004 that at the time only appealed to college students would grow to the behemoth it is today. This just shows each and every one of us that taking risks and trying something new is not always an automatic fail. Although I am sad that you can not down Facebook ads for being pornographic (this function I felt disappeared after this tweet(this tweet not found)) but we should all regale at Facebook's success. Oh yeah, and props all to understand the picture.

Cutting Corners

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Getting "let go" is always a bad thing. Most of the times it is due to downsizing issues or other random reasons that frankly are nonsensical reasons. However, getting laid off a week before Christmas is a huge slap in the face. Here is the issue at hand: You work for an employer that has already laid off plenty of people simply because they can not find enough "expensive work" for them to do. Lets start by defining "expensive work." This type of ideal is found in high functioning businesses that only choose to do the projects that they want to. Often times these projects are for multi-millionaires or simply done to raise the firms self image. This creates a problem especially now when the credit crunch is putting these millionaires back into their portfolios and off buying new homes. The problem already is visible, you have walled yourself into a community of people who are not buying and you have removed extra workers from being able to find business in other areas via research.

Stepping back yet again, lets look at what this firm wants to be thought of. They want to be open and building a community among themselves but none of them talk to each other unless they absolutely have to and although the entirety of the studio is open it is dead silent. In addition to all this basic shit, you have two people in charge who have no idea the first thing about running a business or basically anything that starts with the letter B. After working with these people as a part time gig for half a year I realize all these little problems but they, like any problems with a company should not deter an employee from attempting to better the overall firm. However, betterment seems to have been cut off for these folks which is shame because they could have done some truly great stuff. Good luck all in your separate endeavors because lets face it, it is going to end up like it really quickly.

Thursday, December 11, 2008


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Hello all those readers out in the internet. This week I am technically OOF or out of the office for all you unhip type. HOWEVER, going from somewhere completely remote to a place where you can find absolutely whatever you want whenever you want it should yield better connectivity. What a slap in the face I had when this was completely wrong. Having lived with little connectivity and cell phone service before this was not too hard except when it comes to missing out on great blogging abilities and random bills. All will return to normal next Tuesday when I somehow get back to civilization / leave it far far behind for the remainder of the winter. Lots of things have happened and everything will be updated in due time. Peace all.

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Top 10 Geek Picks (2008)

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Having mentioned several ways to save money and help make people more happy during the holiday season, as well as getting the gift picks right, I present a top 10 gift ideas for your local (or lovable ) geek.

1./ HP Mini 1000: The best netbook out there right now (399-500$)
2./ Crank Bros 19 Tool: All Geeks love Fixie's so help em out with this great pocket tool (20-30$)
3./ Drobo FW800: Unlimited storage for..well, everything (500-1000$)
4./ Canon G10: By far the best point and shoot camera out there (450$)
5./ iTunes Card: Good for music, videos, apps, etc (starting at15$)
6./ Apple In Ear Headphone: Great sound and soon to work great with the iPhone (80$)
7./ Flip Video Mino: For easy access for the video blogger (159.99$)
8./ Xbox 360 60GB: Amazing console, great games, just classic and worth it (300$)
9./ OCZ 16gb ATV USB Drive: Great padded casing, lots of room, and fast (30$)
10./ WRT45Gl Wifi Router: Great basic router that is open to Linux Firmware (60-80$)

iPhone 3g Vaja Limited Case Review

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Iphones are absolutely saturating the smart phone market and causing some serious gains. The phone itself is a well crafted piece of sexiness and I should know, waiting in line on launch day for a long time always makes one appreciate something much longer. Even though the iPhone is a fairly sweet piece of kit which includes a consistent bit of durability. However, just like all ipods, one should look into purchasing some kind of protective film or case to cover the expensive and shiny investment. If you have any idea about the world of "DAP cases" then you have heard of a company called Vaja.

Vaja makes leather cases from only the most premium dead cows from Argentina. They incorporate great colors and patterns to compliment any digital item (even laptop cases). By knowing this I was one of the first people to jump on their original iPhone 3g Limited Edition Red and Black Case. Since then they have released one in an all brown color and an all white color. The outside leather is called "Floater" which is actually a fairly dumb name for some leather that is very coarse and seems to be very strong. The interior of the case is lined with Caterina leather which is very svelt and quite a contrast from the exterior. This allows the iPhone to have a classy ride encapsuled in something that will not easily scuff like most leather.

Overall this case is amazing. It gives complete access to the top of the case and all the side functions without having to flip open the screen cover (a lot of people do not like this idea however, it works extremelly well and you can flip it open very easily with your thumb). The outside floater leather always seems to look new although I never hold anything else in my front right pocket besides the phone. Before I finish the review you all need to give me a scale on how to rate the items that I do. Who likes the 1-10 or whatever, give me something cool cause if you don't I will come up with something and it will be simply odd. Give me an idea and I will give you some ups on the blog and my twitter. Ciao!

Nip Tastic Temps

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Yep, you guessed it, it is freezing cold here (here is classified due to the generous amount of fans who would absolutely hound the crap out of me if they found out my location). Beyond the dimming light, shrouded in an impregnable veil of money is the Christmas season and boy is it coming up fast. So what might you ask should you do about all those hard to buy for people in your household? Well how about ask them? Christmas becomes this bonkers time where you spend money to show off your economic status on presents that you "think" will be well received. Well never fear, a solution is here and it is called Google documents. By setting up a simple two column document and sharing it with the fiancee we both can share links to great things we would enjoy way more then a guess for Christmas.

Sure this is not the "correct" or timeless way of doing things but Christmas is really about being with each other, help people out and taking a day away from your usual binge drinking routine (especially before new years hits). So take the time to be smart this season even if you have to play the game a little different.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008


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Pownce friends, pownce on someone and then shed a tear for a truly great platform for sharing links / mp3s / videos with friends in a Twitter like environment. Pownce was recently acquired by Six Apart and will close their doors soon. However, there will undoubtadle be another web 2.0 app, perhaps by the same people that mimic Pownce's great functionality. Anyway, there is a short ode to the death of yet another great web app caught up in all of this financial malarkey; jou will be missed.

The real intention of this post was something that I was realizing the other day (refrain from worrying since it is not that big). How many of you out there love to listen to podcasts? You were exstatic when you were given the ability to download them directly to your iPhone and they happen to be one of the prodominant ways you aquire your news? But have you ever thought how hard it was to begin to like new ones? Personally, it took me a long time to like and love the ones that I pine for week by week. It all began with Diggnation (episode 3, 4 or something) and I did not really like it. But it ended up a weekly thing, it was a struggle at first but once I got to know Kevin and Alexis's personality it was all uphill. Does this mean that we internalize podcasting or netcasting much like we read books? You start with a character that you know nothing about and you usually need to slosh through a good 100 pages to truly know if you are going to enjoy it or not.

Now I am a podcast freak but, I never started that way. I sat down day by day and week by week and eventually saw the magic behind the curtain and I do not regret a bit of it. A lot of things would be way better in this world if we actually took the time to fight through stuff instead of giving up on it on the outside. Podcasts are cool and they are a start but there is a whole world we throw over our shoulders because we do not want to take the time to understand it. Pony up folks!

Monday, December 1, 2008

Steel Baby, Stainless

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Google Chrome is a spectacular browser, no matter what anyone says. It is mind bendingly fast, works very well with Google Docs/Gmail/etc, and against all the hater's ideas, Google did remove the clause in their ULA that claimed anything you posted on the internet through Chrome was property of Google. Of course this is all well and good for the folks who still run a Windows PC as an every day machine and not just for games but, for the people who use Mac OS X or Linux on a daily basis are a little up the river.

We could use the Crossover Cromium port but it really just looks like what you get on Windows XP. So it looks like we are stuck waiting it out until the end of the year (MAYBE!)...or you could check out Stainless. Stainless' simplicity is an almost identical match to that of Chrome; with it's single search and url bar (brilliant), extreme light weight, and how it actually looks like it belongs on the Mac. Personally, I have been using it for a couple of days now and it is blazingly fast and very lightweight (compared to firefox with 1 extension). Of course there are some problems due to it being very early in its development phase.

Sometimes it is so lightweight that OSX does not realize you have jumped from one window to Stainless. The options literally get stuck to say finder or iTunes. This can be solved by simply minimizing and bring the Stainless window back into view. It also does not show you a view of all of your visited sites, like Firefox and Chrome have on their smart bars (which both work very well in my mind). Overall these issues can be overlooked because of the speed and horsepower that the browser brings to the desktop. Check it out here (Leopard Only..segway into previous post) and give me some feedback on what you all think, ciao. Oh, also give share the browsers that you have in your dock, or on your desktop (quick launch). Currently I am rocking 4: Safari, Cruz, Stainless, Firefox.