Tuesday, November 29, 2005

Stills from the upcoming Aeon Flux movie (opening in theaters 12-2-05...this upcoming Friday). Playing at a theater near you.
Aeon Flux Gallery

Stills from the upcoming Aeon Flux movie (opening in theaters 12-2-05...this upcoming Friday). Playing at a theater near you.
Aeon Flux Gallery

Stills from the upcoming Aeon Flux movie (opening in theaters 12-2-05...this upcoming Friday). Playing at a theater near you.
Aeon Flux Gallery

Stills from the upcoming Aeon Flux movie (opening in theaters 12-2-05...this upcoming Friday). Playing at a theater near you.
Aeon Flux Gallery

Stills from the upcoming Aeon Flux movie (opening in theaters 12-2-05...this upcoming Friday). Playing at a theater near you.
Aeon Flux Gallery

Aeon Flux Still Gallery

Below are some stills from the upcoming Aeon Flux movie (opening this upcoming Friday). Be sure to also check out the official movie web site.

Monday, November 28, 2005

Bosnia unveils Bruce Lee bronze

Bosnia unveils Bruce Lee bronze

"A bronze of martial arts legend Bruce Lee has been erected in the Bosnian city of Mostar - a day before a second statue of him is unveiled in Hong Kong.

"The life-size 1.68 metre statue depicts the Chinese-American actor in a typical defensive fighting position.

"Hong Kong unveils its own statue of the kung-fu star on Sunday, at a ceremony to be attended by Lee's widow Linda.

"The Mostar unveiling was attended by the ambassadors of China and Germany, both of whom assisted the project.

"The city witnessed fierce fighting between rival ethnic factions in the 1992-95 war.


"It remains split with Bosnian Muslims, Croats and Serbs still deeply divided.

"Lee was chosen by organisers as a symbol of the fight against ethnic divisions.

"'We will always be Muslims, Serbs or Croats,' said Veselin Gatalo of the youth group Urban Movement Mostar.

"'But one thing we all have in common is Bruce Lee.'

"Lee, who died in 1973 at the age of 32, was born in the US but moved to Hong Kong as a child.

"The statue there will be unveiled on what would have been the Enter the Dragon star's 65th birthday."

Sunday, November 27, 2005

Risus In Print

S. John Ross' rules very light RPG, Risus, is now available as a POD product through Lulu.com. A very interesting system, and S. John is a designer full of interesting ideas. It is ironic, though, that a six page RPG now comes in a 200 page edition.

If you haven't check it out yet, you should. The Risus homepage can be found here.

Google Blog Search

Never one to leave any stone (ever) unturned, Google now has a Blog Search in Beta. I'm sure this this old news to some, but not to me. Enjoy.

Google Blog Search

GURPS Powers

This is something that I want to plug for a couple of reasons. First, it is going to be a kick-ass book. Finally, with Fourth Edition, GURPS is able to handle super-powered characters. Second, I get my first GURPS Playtest credit in this (check the Table of Contents preview) which is pretty darn cool for me.

My first "professional" attempt at becoming a game designer was back in 1986. After seeing a "want list" for proposals (back in Roleplayer, the zine for GURPS that SJG originally published) for the first edition of GURPS Supers, I sent in a proposal. It was awful and, rightly so, I received a rejection letter about it. It was a personal rejection from Steve Jackson though, which I actually thought was pretty cool.

If you haven't yet, you really need to check out GURPS 4e, it is the best version of the system to date.

GURPS Powers

"Save the World . . . or Destroy It!

"GURPS Powers is the ultimate book for the ultimate characters in the new Fourth Edition of GURPS! Here's everything you need to create every kind of amazing, off-the-chart superhero you can imagine . . . as well as amazing wizards, wuxia fighters, shamans who command spirits . . . even gods!

"Written by GURPS Line Editor and Fourth Edition co-author Sean Punch, GURPS Powers introduces some new rules, but it is mostly about using the rules that are already in the GURPS Basic Set to cover superpowered characters, megawizards, and earth-shattering psionics. GURPS Powers also include guidelines for 'special effects' and several different ways to vary a power on the fly -- two crucial concepts for comic-book superheroics.

"GURPS Powers is a Fourth Edition GURPS book that completely replaces the Third Edition books GURPS Supers and GURPS Psionics. Like our other Fourth Edition supplements, it's a gorgeous 240-page, full-color hardback.

"If you've got a high-powered campaign . or high-powered players . you want GURPS Powers!"

Saturday, November 26, 2005

Get Killed By Stephen King!

Here's a cool one for geeks...win an ebay Celebrity auction and become a character in a book by one of your favorite authors.

Writers' Plot Thickens Into Auction for Free Speech

"Now's your chance to die in a Stephen King novel or be portrayed 'in a good light' in the next thriller from John Grisham -- while championing the cause of free speech.

"That's the idea behind a charity auction on eBay that starts Sept. 1 and features 16 authors selling character names to the highest bidders. All proceeds go to the First Amendment Project, a nonprofit legal group dedicated to free speech."

Gamers Seeing Glitches in New Xbox

I'm not really a computer gamer, but I figured that this was worth passing along, since I am sure that there are video game playing dorks out there.

Gamers Seeing Glitches in New Xbox

"Microsoft's Xbox 360, the much-anticipated video game system that made its debut earlier this week, is apparently experiencing some technical glitches -- screens freezing only minutes into a game, for example -- and that has left some users pretty upset.

"At gamer-oriented Web sites, Xbox 360 owners have reported system crashes in games such as the space-marines-vs.-aliens title Quake 4." [Washington Post site does pop-ups]

Thursday, November 24, 2005

William S. Burroughs: A Thanksgiving Day Prayer

The link is a direct link to a .mov file of William Burroughs' Thanksgiving Prayer. Not your traditional prayer, but then Burroughs wasn't a very traditional person. I do, however, think that it is still pretty relevant in America today. It is well worth checking out, particularly if you aren't familiar with Burroughs' work. Just keep in mind that the link isn't very work-friendly.

Enjoy, and Happy Thanksgiving.

William S. Burroughs' Thanksgiving Prayer

Wednesday, November 23, 2005

Sustainable Housing for Refugees via Mass Production

While this may, or may not, take off here in the real world, this is something that could be of great use conceptually in Cyberpunk or other "dark future" types of role-playing games. Reading this reminded me of some of the imagery from Neal Stephenson's novel Snow Crash. Pile enough of these onto a decommisioned naval battleship and you have the Raft. Of course in a cyberpunk world, this type of thing would most likely end up being used for permanent housing.

Vestal Design

"The SHRIMP (Sustainable Housing for Refugees via Mass Production) is an attempt to bring housing and other relief to large displaced or homeless populations, especially those who have suffered in a natural disaster. Providing shelter to a family of four, it folds up into 1/4 of a shipping container for efficient deployment."

By the way, for those who haven't heard yet, R. Talsorian Games has announced that Cyberpunk v3 is finally done, and about to go to the printer. Will this actually happen in our lifetime? Who knows.

Monday, November 21, 2005

Open Core Quick

I am putting the finishing touches on my next project, and more "rules light" approach to a system. Like the baseline Open Core System, OCQ has been developed from the best in available open content. However, this is not just the Open Core System with some of the options cut out. OCQ is a complete role-playing system that has been structed from the ground level to be fast and robust, with many system difference between it and the parent system.

Playtesting of the book is winding down and I am finishing the layouts...getting them into just the look that I want them to have. People who have been playtesting and people who have seen the early layouts have been really impressed with things. I think that I have developed the system that I really want with this one (not that I don't want the other system).

OCQ will be available through the usual outlets, as well as our new online retailer of Steve Jackson Games' e23 store...once we've finished all of the paperwork for the site. Keep your eyes open for more information.

Saturday, November 19, 2005

Baen Books to launch online sf mag edited by Eric Flint

Boing Boing: Baen Books to launch online sf mag edited by Eric Flint

"Copyfighting SF writer Eric Flint will be editing a new online adventure sf magazine for his publisher, Baen Books. The magazine will be called Baen's Astounding Stories.

"The magazine will focus on publishing side-stories from the long-running serials that are Baen's stock-in-trade, and promises to pay enough that writers could make a substantial portion of their living from for them."

Monday, November 14, 2005

Boing Boing: Sony anti-customer technology roundup and time-line

Here's a round-up up what Sony's been up to lately:

Sony anti-customer technology roundup and time-line

"Since Hallowe'en, we've been posting the details about he revelations relating to Sony's DRM systems, which show jaw-dropping contempt for their customers, for copyright law, for fair trading and for the public interest. With all these posts strung out over a couple weeks, I thought it was high time we put together an omnibus post, summing up all the posts to date."

The 4 Ways to Choose Your Next Game

Some interesting advice on techniques to use in swaying your group towards playing the game that you want to GM. Reading it makes me glad that it is a concern that I really don't have as a GM>

The 4 Ways to Choose Your Next Game

"When your group is ready to start a new game, there are a numbers of ways to handle deciding what to play. By far the most common approach I?ve seen is this one: The GM says, 'I?m going to run this game,' and the rest of the group says, 'Okay' (or sometimes, 'No thanks, we?re going to go play World of Warcraft').

"There are some obvious downsides to this approach, though ? so let?s look at the 4 ways to choose your next game (and there really are only 4 ways!), and then ask an open question: How does your group tackle this?

"This list assumes that you?re not in the market for a new group ? in other words, you want to start up a new game with your regular group. (Things are a bit different if you want to GM, but don?t have any players. In that situation, joining another group and waiting for your chance to GM, or picking a game and looking for folks who want to play it, are the two best approaches.)"

Saturday, November 12, 2005



"When a veteran comic book writer with hundreds of stories to his credit returns after a hiatus of more than a decade, it's newsworthy.

"When that same writer is also the man responsible for creating the Huntress and for developing Power Girl into a major character in the DCU, his return merits even more attention. But when that writer is also DC Comics' President and Publisher, returning to a group of heroes with whom he was closely associated more than two decades ago, then it?s big news indeed!

"Paul Levitz, who helmed the Justice Society's All-Star Comics series in the 1970s in a series of team adventures that rank right alongside his Legion of Super-Heroes tales as some of the best books in his impressive resume, is returning to the keyboard in early 2006 to once gain tackle the exploits of the Justice Society. This time, Levitz will be writing a six-issue run in JSA, where he'll be joining a true all-star creative team that includes a pair of the most respected artists working in comics today: George Perez and Rags Morales."

Thursday, November 10, 2005

Food Not Buns

Did I go to sleep last night and wake up today in a completely warped world? I mean even more than usual.
Food Not Buns

"A model parades in front of street children, some of whom are sniffing glue, in the drug-infested 'Barrio Triste' (Sad Neighborhood) in downtown Medellin in Colombia November 7, 2005. The event was organised to entertain the children by a member of a local charity that helps children in Barrio Triste by providing food, clothes and cleaning facilities."

Empire's 50 Greatest Independent Films

Empire's 50 Greatest Independent Films

I'm not really familiar with the website (I came across it through a link at Boing Boing), but it doesn't seem too bad. The only one in the top ten (which is what I linked to) that I might dispute would be Sex, Lies and Videotape.

Let the debate begin. Post a comment with anything you think is wrong.

Wednesday, November 09, 2005

The Dark Side of Hello Kitty

The Dark Side Of Hello Kitty

[via Boing Boing]

Portable Apps

Portable Apps

These portable applications can be run entirely from a USB thumbdrive, portable hard drive, iPod, CDRW, etc.

* Portable AbiWord - The lightweight AbiWord word processor
* Portable FileZilla - The excellent FTP client
* Portable Firefox - The popular Firefox web browser
* Portable NVU - Edit web pages with NVU
* Portable OpenOffice.org - The full-featured OpenOffice.org office suite
* Portable Sunbird - The handy Sunbird calendar
* Portable Thunderbird - The popular Thunderbird email client

I have already checked out the portable versions of AbiWord and Firefox (I am actually making this blog posting using Portable Firefox) and AbiWord opened a Microsoft Word (Standard XP ver. 2002) without trouble. Great streamlined and portable applications that you can run on the go. Now if only they had one for Desktop Publishing.

Check the site out. And, if you download any of these programs and have spectacular successes or failures, please be sure to leave a comment about them. Just feedback since I am pluging these apps.

One Red Paperclip

It started with a paperclip.

This is a story of a man with a mission to barter. He started with one red paperclip and he wants to end with a house. Right now....he's got a 1000 watt generator. Is this dorky? I'm really not sure. It very well could be, but it is fascinating to say the least.

I hope that he gets his house. I am sure that I will check on this later. [via Boing Boing]

Tuesday, November 08, 2005

Bad CDs

These are the music CDs that:

"1. Prevent you from copying it for personal use or from playing it on computerized devices (computers, DVD players, game consoles, MP3 players, consumer CD duplicators, car CD players and more)."

"2. In the United States, these 'copy-protected' CDs are often unmarked. Once you buy it, you can only exchange it and hope that the replacement isn't defective too."

Click on either the link in the Headline (above) or the link below for a list of some of the known bad CDs here in the United States.


From Fat Chuck's website: "Return Defective CDs Every Time. You'd be surprised how often people don't return CDs that are defective because they think it's their fault. If you get a defective or corrupt CD, please return it for a good exchange or a refund."

Edit: Apparently the EFF has released an incomplete list of Sony/BMG CDs which have the root install DRM on them. The page also shows where to look for the labels, which it seems you can only see after purchase. I thought coming accross this link was worth updating.

Monday, November 07, 2005

French Film Star Le Pew Injured in Paris Cat Riots

"PARIS - Former French matinee idol Pepe Le Pew was among the hundreds injured last night amid violent feline rioting in the impoverished Parisian suburb of Dans-le-Crappeur. Le Pew, 58, a former Warner Brothers studio actor turned Chirac government spokes-skunk, sustained severe scratches and concussions in the melee before nose-pin equipped EMT rescue squads could drag him to safety. He is expected to make a full recovery.

"Last night's rioting marked the eighth consecutive night of violence in the Paris suburbs, as thousands of immigrant feline youths continue to rampage to protest a lack of jobs and cuts in French government tuna programs. Dans-le-Crappeur, home to tens of thousands of unemployed first-hundred generation immigrant cats, has been particularly hard hit.

"Violence erupted here last Wednesday night after French Interior Minister Nikolas Sarkozy announced a crackdown on crime and furniture-scratching in the sprawling Chateau des Chats public housing projects. Enraged feline youths went on a rampage, smashing windows of local fish shops and overturning hundreds of public pay-litter boxes. Violence intensified over the weekend as enraged cats began burning and looting sprees across the suburbs, sparked by Sarkozy's remarks that they were 'easily enraged.'

"In a stark warning of continued violence Monday, immigrant community spokes-cat Imam Tariq Al-Felix of the Lipi Le Lyon Mosque said that arson and looting would continue 'until the French government does something to solve the problem of all the burned out looted buildings in our neighborhoods.'

"Seeking to quell the burgeoning Kitty-fada and restore public order, French President Jacques Chirac and Prime Minister Dominique de Villepin enlisted the help of Le Pew yesterday. It was thought that Le Pew - who led France's UN efforts to oppose US sanctions against the so-called 'pussies of evil' of Sylvester, Tom and Mr. Jinks - would help establish a diplomatic dialog with the Gallic feline community.

"Instead, the outreach effort appeared to backfire. According to witnesses, Le Pew's appearance on the scene last night caused a stampede as panicked crowds began fleeing the smell. More trouble ensued when Le Pew was seen as making 'inappropriate contact' with a burqqa-clad female cat, which reportedly sparked a mob of feline activists to don nose clips and begin beating him. Youths also set fire to a street-stripe painting truck which was allegedly involved in the incident.

"From his hospital bed, Le Pew issued an apology to the Parisian cat community, explaining that 'I am to be walking in zee park one day, in ze merry merry month of Mai,' and 'Pepe, he is to thinking this feline girl, she is un belle skunk femme fatale, no?'

"Le Pew also appealed for public calm, and cautioned French citizens not to let the violence lead to anti-immigrant sentiment.

"'To ze multiculturalisme, we must say ‘Vive L’Amour!' said Le Pew.

"'And remember, France needs zee cat community,' he added. 'Who else is going to pay for Pepe’s free hospital?'"

Sunday, November 06, 2005

My Battle Imp

Battle Imp

Who's your battle imp?

Backstabbing: 1

Dodgin': 3

Guts: 3

Magic Mojo: 10

Smackdown: 4

Will your battle imp beat Chris's?
Enter your name and fight.

1976 Marvel Fun Book (Flickr)

You might be too young to remember the Marvel Fun Books, I barely remember this one myself. But this Flickr set shows some of the fun that were in the books. Enjoy.

http://www.flickr.com/photos/apelad/sets/1302533/ [via Boing Boing]

Saturday, November 05, 2005

Energy Fiend: Death By Caffeine

How much of your favorite caffinated beverage will kill you? Take Death by Caffeine and find out. Share your results with us, if you dare!

Thursday, November 03, 2005

Juxtapoz Magazine

This is a follow-up to my posting about the Lowbrow/Pop Surrealism posting of yesterday. Mostly because I was asked about the art style and some of its proponents.

Let's start with Juxtapoz Magazine.

If you check out the Links Page, you can find some interesting links to artists of these particular styles.

And, last but not least....Robert Williams, the "founder" of Lowbrow art.

Welcome to Science Fiction and Fantasy Writing

Here’s an interesting resource for GMs, a good “how-to” writing resource is always a good thing. Online is also a plus for many. Just click here for the page, and leave some comments on how useful/interesting that you find it, so that other may be able to better judge this as a resource.

“Have you always harbored a secret (or not so secret) yearning to write? This course is designed to help you learn many of the skills you need to write successful science fiction and fantasy stories. You can use the skills you'll learn here in other kinds of storytelling, as well.
Whether you're trying to write for the first time, or have been at it for a while, you'll probably find some useful tips here. The course is intended mainly for younger (high school and middle school) writers, but it covers fundamentals you can build on no matter what your age.
You can choose between two approaches:
• Quick Launch – Grab a few suggestions and get started writing.
• Hyperspace – Learn in depth about the elements of successful story writing.
Switch between approaches anytime you want. You can follow the navigation bar on the left to any Hyperspace section that looks interesting.* However, the sections build upon each other, so there's a benefit to following them in sequence.
There are no rules, exactly. But we do have what you might call guidelines. And that's to have fun writing!”

Wednesday, November 02, 2005

Testing Blogger For Word

So, now I can post to my blog by writing the post up in Word first, and then publishing it to Blogger. This, of course, would be my test post to see if it will in fact work.

Dorky, huh?

Seattlest Interview: Kirsten Anderson, founder and owner of Roq La Rue Gallery

"In 1996, Kirsten Anderson opened an issue of Juxtapoz and fell for an art movement. Two years later, she founded Roq La Rue, Seattle’s first art gallery devoted to Lowbrow and Pop Surrealism. Last year Anderson literally wrote (and edited) the book on Pop Surrealism, sensically titled Pop Surrealism. And last month Roq La Rue moved into its fourth space -- the largest yet -- just in time for its annual Halloween group exhibit and a book signing by Robert "godfather of Lowbrow" Williams. (You're invited. This Friday evening. We'll remind you.) Seattlest has enjoyed every show we’ve seen at Roq La Rue -- and Anderson's blog, Thumbmonkey -- so we were very pleased when she agreed to let us interview her."

Why did I blog this entry (particularly after my extended family emergency related "vacation" from updating the blog)? Probably because I found the concept of Pop Surrealism interesting. And I am sure that somebody else out there might too.

From the interview: "The Pop Surrealism/Lowbrow movement was spawned in the 60's, with the rise of the underground comix scene as well as the outlaw biker/hotrod scene. Robert Williams was an artist working within both genres as well as doing 'fine art' -- paintings that were shown in galleries and being taken seriously as "art". A generation of mainly southern california artists became inspired by him and started painting things that were in their personal experience -- usually relating to subcultural lifestyles such as hot rod, tattoo, tiki,lounge and kitsch nostalgia. A magazine called Juxtapoz (founded by Williams) was started and showcased the work of these artists and the mantle of 'Lowbrow' was adopted."