Friday, December 31, 2010
After reading Brian Ashcraft's great book on the Japanese arcade gaming scene, I figured I'd like his next book on Japanese schoolgirl culture. It didn't disappoint.
Japanese Schoolgirl Confidential is a pretty deep dive on a number of different aspects of what can only be called a phenomena: The idolization, monetization, and 'fetishization' of the Japanese schoolgirl look and surrounding culture.
I picked this one up as an audio book for our recent ski-trip, looking for some different stuff that my wife and I would both enjoy. Enjoyed it somewhat, but I'm not putting it at the top of any lists.
Don't Get Too Comfortable: The Indignities of Coach Class, The Torments of Low Thread Count, The Never- Ending Quest for Artisanal Olive Oil, and Other First World Problems
Monday, December 20, 2010
Sunday, December 19, 2010
I have it on good authority that Mr Claus may be depositing an iPad under the tree for me on Xmas morn.
- Best Feedreader? (Would like it to sync feeds between PC/iPad/iPhone, allow offline viewing, set refresh frequency, etc. I've used RSSBandit and others in the past. Currently using IE8 because I like the Outlook integration, but I'm guessing it's not an option on iPad)
- Best eReader app? (Would like it to have top-notch typography, support for EPUB and other formats, bonus for PDF support, should be able to keep multiple bookmarks support for annotations and the like)
- Best document-sync apps? (I'm thinking of apps to let me view and/or edit Word & Powerpoint files off my PC)
- Best sketching/drawing app? (keeping in mind I'll have a stylus)
- Best notetaking/sketching/brainstorming app? (e.g. Onenote equivalent)
- Best GPS app?
- Best Browser? (Is the stock one sufficient?)
- Best Wikipedia client? (I use Wikiamo on iPhone - is there something better?)
- Best magazines/news site apps?
- Best cookbook-type apps?
- Best Twitter client/aggregator? (Yes, my opt-out experiment is over and I'll become a Twit in the new year)
- finally, recommendations on best stylus?
Thursday, December 16, 2010
My friend and former co-blogger & co-worker Vlad Cole has started a new blog where he's documenting 99 days of moving to an all-cloud model and using a Chrome OS laptop.
Vlad used to blog for Joystick, and we jointly worked on VGVC.net for a year. He's tech savvy, and definitely a guy that walks his talk, so it'll be a good experiment to follow:
The runtime rendering being done here doesn't look like anything that far beyond what we're seeing in other titles. However, the content authoring - combining a high-end mocap rig with recognizable actors and whats likely to be TONS of dialog - is clearly going to be a huge cost increase.
Monday, December 13, 2010
So, back in 2006, Microsoft did a deal with Burger King to do 3 BK-branded titles and distribute them with value meals at a nominal fee ($3.99). The fee aside, these were essentially free advertising-subsidized game titles for the console.
If only people don't assume that they get what they pay for.
Friday, December 10, 2010
I've been doing a lot of non-fic reading as of late, and so with a long flight giving me a reading opportunity (I spoke at GDC China in Shanghai last week), I picked up Boneshaker for the flight.
Thursday, December 9, 2010
I got pointers to a couple music videos doing some really nice kinetic typography. In the future all the examples here should be possible to do using HTML5 & related tech. (Would be a cool to see someone tack a crack at doing a Chrome Experiment at implementing the Shopvac video below in realtime).
Wednesday, December 1, 2010
Brian David Johnson is a fellow Intellite, though he works in group pretty distant from mine, we both have future-forecasting type roles.
- The book has numerous typos, grammatical, and technical/terminology errors. I'm not sure who proofed it, but being an Intel Press book I'd expect them to do a better job especially on the latter of these.
- There are places where Brian opts to "go deep" on how something might work, but stays at a high level powerpoint-ish description that hand-waves around a lot of the how, and so it's not clear these pieces actually add any value. (i.e. Just saying "assume this all works" is no less valuable than the approach of "you'd have to have Box A talk to Box B using a protocol - assume that just works".
- While some of the book talks about business models and business issues, the book is way too limited in this respect. Also, it doesn't talk about issues around intellectual property rights and how they will have impact (e.g. DMCA's impact on innovation).
- Brian has lined up some REALLY good interviews with folks in the book, from around the globe. Henry Jenkins, Stephen Conroy (Australian Senator revamping their broadband and broadcast policies), Amy Reinhard (Director of Strategic Planning at Paramount), and numerous others. Some of the riffing these folks do around the topic are alone worth the price of admission.*
- The book has a global perspective - and is not just US-only like other views on the entertainment business tend to be
- Despite my complaint about the under-served business discussion, the book does attempt to cross technical, business, and cultural boundaries, not just treating it as a technical subject.