I’m Crazy and I’m gaming for 24 hours for an amazing cause! Sponsor Me!

Cool! Playing pandemic online.
Update:


I’m kinda into gaming — y’all know that. And I’m into my dogs — ya’ll know that too.

So when an opportunity like this popped up, I couldn’t resist.

Sponsor Me!

On February 27th, starting at 7pm, I’m going to be gaming my ass off, gaming for 24 hours straight. Board games, Video games, card games, whatever! I figure that this will get me out of my vast game deficit I’ve been accumulating over the last few years.

And I can help a great charity at the same time.

UNDERDOGCaliCan Rescue is the organization we foster for, and they’re also the folks that brought Bogart into our lives. They do amazing work, and have rescued over 400 small dogs to date. And they have a great dogumentary showing why and how they do, what they do if you wanted to find out more about them and why we love them!

So this is where you come in.

Sponsor Me! I’m figure I’m going to be hurting at about Hour 13, and have a serious case of Console Claw at about Hour 20. Help me stay focused. Inspire me to keep on gaming. Sponsor Me — you can be the reason that I stick it out the whole 24 hours!

It’s easy. Just visit this link at CanadaHelps.org and make a small donation – any will do (thank you in advance!)

And then cheer me on! Go Team Brad! On the 27th, Join me online. I’ll be updating Social Media and this Blog regularly with game results, updates, sleep-deprived comments and other fun stuff. You may see me at my dopiest! Cheer me or Jeer me, but have fun with me!

Or, if you want, let’s hook up online and play something! I’m open to suggestions. I’ll post a schedule when I get my act together.

But back to the why.

It does take a lot of time, energy, and money to keep an organization like CaliCan running. Time and energy are at a premium around here, but I think that it’s sometimes easier to like a cause and wish you could help out. Well this is one way I know I can. I’ll be pinging you, my peeps, quite regularly over the next few weeks. Not only through the Twitter, but I hear that there’s this thing called Email. Pretty effective too, I’m told.

CaliCan is an organization we believe in, and one we enjoy helping. So help us, help them. Sponsor Me, and then join me online on the 27 to cheer me on, or laugh as I lose every game I play.

Go Team Brad!

Expected: Keurig’s attempt to ‘DRM’ its coffee cups totally backfired

I’m amazed that someone thought that applying DRM to a coffee machine was a good idea. Using single-use disposable coffee pods is not great for the environment — we use a refillable pod, which would be locked out under the Keurig 2.0 system.

Consumers hate DRM — in music, in movies, in anything — but applying it to coffee feels especially galling. It’s the most open caffeinated beverage there is; all you need is beans and hot water and, I guess, a vessel to brew it in. Locking it up in plastic cups was already a little silly, though something lots of people were happy to buy for the sake of convenience. Building a complicated infrared scanning system so that you can only use Keurig-approved cups was a step too far.

Read more at  Keurig’s attempt to ‘DRM’ its coffee cups totally backfired | The Verge.

I like that I can update the image on our digital thermometer

I like that I can update the image on our digital thermostat. Just added this one from NASA APoD:

Posted by Brad Grier on Saturday, January 31, 2015

Teenage Engineering designed a set of incredible pocket synthesizers that cost $59 each

Teenage Engineering designed a set of incredible pocket synthesizers that cost  each | The Verge

Very cool! High quality yet affordable. Very minimalist. Worth checking out!

But that all changes with the launch of the Pocket Operator synth and drum machine series, a set of three calculator-sized music-making tools that can be yours for less than $200 total. “Our goal was to make a synth that cost $49,” says CEO and head of design Jesper Kouthoofd, before pausing a bit sheepishly and admitting: “but we failed on that, so it’ll be $59.”

 

Brushstroke – a rather cool iOS filter app

Blue JayI love the idea of taking a good photographic image and manipulating it so it looks like it was a painting. It follows then, that I quite enjoy experimenting and finding a cool ios filter app that facilitates this.

I like seeing how technically gifted people have created software to ‘see’ as a watercolour artist sees, or as an impressionist sees. Creativity. You can see some of my experiments on my Flickr stream.

My latest exploration has been with Brushstroke — a rather fully-featured iOS filter app. The Blue Jay image above is a render created with Brushstroke — almost has an illustration quality about it.

Yeah, it’s pretty powerful — handling both watercolour style as well as oil – and things in-between such as acrylics and gouache.

Unfortunately it doesn’t really label them all accordingly (Oil, Washed, Hatched, Simple, etc) but then again, it’s kinda fun to explore.

Currently $2.99 in the app store — a fair price for a pretty capable app!

 

Testing Duet – an OS X display extender app for iPad

You’ve probably seen the online hype around Duet – an OS X display extender app for iPad. Basically it’s supposed to allow you to extend your current desktop screen to an iPad – just as if you had an extra monitor. Other apps already do this, but Duet’s claim to fame is it will extend your desktop in a way that’s lag free. So if you’re watching movies or animation and moving elements between monitors, you’ll not notice lag.

Duet’s unique feature that allows this is that Duet connects to your Mac using the USB port and either 30 pin connector or Lightning connector.

I’ve previously used similar apps, Air Display and DisplayPad, though both have utilized WiFi to link your display to the computer. Also, both support Windows or OS X. Currently, Duet doesn’t support Windows.

Duet also doesn’t support the original iPad, where the two other apps do – a consideration if you have an older original hanging around, as I do.

Duet has been getting mixed reviews on the iTunes App Store, but that may be related to the high CPU usage needed to render out a retina display to a retina iPad – there’s a lot of work going on. If you’re using a new computer, or have a lower resolution iPad, then you may not encounter this issue.

Regardless, I’ll take a look at the app and report back when I’ve been able to give it a workout.

 

From the It Must Be Christmas Holiday App Deals dept.

It seems like a few of the good strategy and board games are going on sale now on the Apple App Store as quality publishers have started cutting prices  revealing their holiday app deals.

I’ve played these games and do recommend them as valuable additions to your iOS gaming collection. Prices are discounted at the time of this post, but they may change at the whim of the publisher.

And on with the deals:

Talisman – A great conversion from the well-known adventure board game. Reduced to @2.99 from $6.99.

 

 

 


Small World 2 – Huge discount (9.99 -> 2.99) for this sequel to strategy board game of the year. Well worth picking up at any price.. a steal here 😉

 

 

 


Battle Academy – Derived from an original BBC online game concept, Battle Academy blends intuitive design, compelling gameplay and technical innovation. Reduced to $9.99 from $19.99. Yes, a premium priced title that gets you hours of engaging gameplay.

 

 

 


Drive on Moscow: War in the Snow – Half-priced. Full value. Great strategy presentation of the pivotal battle for Moscow in WWII.

 

 

 


Panzer Corps – Grognards rejoice! Considered teh spiritual successor to the Panzer General series, Panzer Corps is the closest you can currently get to serious armor strategy on the iPad. Reduced from $6.99 to $2.99.