Collecting the Internet So You Don't Have To

We work on the Internet. As such, we are constantly consuming information. Believe me, there is a lot of it out there. Sometimes we even forget things unless we write them down. Our blog covers everything from web standards to the muppets, php to comic books, music and everything else that we find interesting. Leave us a note when you drop by.

Captain America: Red Menace Vol 1

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Wil Alambre
Wil Alambre Senior Programmer
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Wil Alambre Whiteboard Ninja
COVER BY: STEVE EPTING
WRITER: ED BRUBAKER
PENCILS: MIKE PERKINS, ERIC WIGHT

THE STORY:
Six months ago, Crossbones kidnapped the Red Skull’s daughter, Sin, from a government re-education facility and disappeared into the night. Now, he and this spawn of infinite evil have come to the American Midwest to tear a new hole in A.I.M. – but none of them counted on Cap and S.H.I.E.L.D. Agent 13 stumbling into the mix, and everything going wrong! Plus: Cap’s newest enemy, General Aleksander Lukin, the head of one of the most powerful corporations in the world, is attempting to buy a piece of land in Germany, and he won’t take no for an answer. What does he want there? The answer to that can only be found in an untold tale from the war – a story that finds Cap and Bucky fighting alongside Sgt. Fury and the Howling Commandos behind enemy lines, trying to stop the Red Skull from launching a monstrous attack on the Allies unlike anything ever seen before! Collects CAPTAIN AMERICA #15-17 and the CAPTAIN AMERICA 65TH ANNIVERSARY SPECIAL.

Iconfactory Being Updated

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Wil Alambre
Wil Alambre Senior Programmer
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Wil Alambre Whiteboard Ninja

It seems Iconfactory is currently updating it's web site, moving toward a standards compliant design. Not only that, but for the week the site is unavailable, visitors can view short animations showing isometric pixel characters reconstruct the identifying factory logo.

There's a new one each day for six days. As of this writing, they are on number three, with trucks "moving out" HTML 4 tags and table tags. You can browse past animations by clicking the colored numbers along the bottom.

They have some excellent free icon sets by talented artists at the Iconfactory. I'm looking forward to the new site.

Giant Robo - Economy Pack

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Wil Alambre
Wil Alambre Senior Programmer
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Wil Alambre Whiteboard Ninja

From Amazon.com: It is a new dawn for mankind. The Shizuma Drive has brought clean, limitless energy and launched humanity into an age of prosperity. But even in this Eden of technology, there lurk the shadows of envy and greed. Big Fire is a secret brotherhood whose only goal is to direct the world toward chaos. The world is protected by the Experts of Justice, a team of operatives assembled from around the globe to stop the ultimate disaster of The Eternal Night. The key to everything is the bravery of their newest member, a boy named Daisaku Kusama, and the great machine he commands.

IE7 Beta 3 and FTP

Technology
Wil Alambre
Wil Alambre Senior Programmer
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Wil Alambre Whiteboard Ninja

I use Windows Explorer for my FTP client. At first, this will attract cat calls for the "smarter than thous", telling me to use a "real" FTP client like Filezilla or CoreFTP or somesuch. I have downloaded, installed, and tried a variety of FTP clients and I had the same problem with all of them: they are a completely seperate program from my regular OS browsing.

I usually have a couple Windows Explorer windows open, accessing folder locally, on the network, etc. I am extremely happy being able to drag and drop between them, double clicking to open a file in it’s associated program or editor. I can easily browse a set of folders and files and make changes to a web development.

What I do not enjoy is then switching to a completely different program, and having to browse to those same local or network folders so I can upload them. And no, I do not want to set up an FTP client to be able to locally browse and open files in associated programs. That’s what the OS is for.

In my opinion, the FTP client should be just the remote directory. I do not need a local directory listing. Windows does that just fine. And I want to be able to drag from Windows Explorer to my remote directory, and back again. Using Windows Explorer as my FTP client gives me that. I still have a seperate FTP client for anything fancier or more advanced, but 90% of my FTP use is uploading and downloading graphics and text files.

So then Microsoft provides IE7 Beta 3 for download and testing. I download and install it and test it. The first problem I encounter is that FTP seemingly does not work. I can get an HTML directory listing, but I can no longer get a FTP client.

I look into it on the IE developer listings, I follow the instructions, still no good. I look into it through Google, and find that authenticated FTP access has trouble in IE7 currently. Some people are successful, but some people are not. I was a not.

No problem. I tried IE7 Beta 2, and after some testing, was able to uninstall it without lingering after effects. I tried the same here, removing IE7 Beta 3, and reverting to IE6. Everything was fine until I tried FTP.

I could only get an HTML directory listing. Going into the IE6 options and tring to reset the appropriate settings and checkboxes had no effect. It seems IE7’s FTP problem had completely infected Windows Explorer.

Curses!

To make a long story short, I eventually had to System Restore back to before I installed IE7 Beta 3. We work off a network specifically so if something like this (or worse) happens, nothing critial is lost. Still, quite annoying.

So, lesson learned: more research beforehand :)

2 Weeks in Lake Tahoe up for Sale

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Julian Moffatt
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Julian Moffatt Purveyor of Good Times

Sadly, getting to Lake Tahoe with 2 small children in tow is not in the cards right now, so if you are looking for a nice place to head for a ski or golf vacation, this might be right up your alley.

2 Weeks in Lake Tahoe, on Ebay. Go. Bid. Win. Have a great time and take some scenery photos for me.

How To Live With A Great Designer

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Julian Moffatt
Julian Moffatt CEO / Partner
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Julian Moffatt Purveyor of Good Times

How to Live With A Great Designer - by Seth Godin is a must read article for anyone who is thinking of hiring or working with a designer.

Seeing as we work with a lot of great designers, we thought that they might appreciate this list! Maybe make it mandatory client reading prior to the start of every project. ;)

Ultimate Fantastic Four Vol 2

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Wil Alambre
Wil Alambre Senior Programmer
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Wil Alambre Whiteboard Ninja
COVER BY: ADAM KUBERT
WRITER: WARREN ELLIS, MIKE CAREY, MARK MILLAR
PENCILS: JAE LEE, ADAM KUBERT

THE STORY:
This deluxe hardcover collects ULTIMATE FANTASTIC FOUR VOL. 3: N-ZONE and ULTIMATE FANTASTIC FOUR VOL. 4: INHUMAN, plus extras. In N-ZONE, It’s the beginning of the FF’s exploration of the mysterious N-Zone! Young Reed Richards wants to duplicate the accident that changed the four into the bizarre beings they’ve become and thereby reverse the process. But will his noble attempts at redress cause more harm than good? And in INHUMAN, a classic Fantastic Four villain makes the debut here in Ultimate form, turning the Baxter Building into a virtual trap set to capture and eliminate the fledgling adventurers. And what of the other denizens of the skyscraper, including Johnny and Sue’s father Dr. Storm? And who has the power to outthink even the most brilliant man alive, Reed Richards? Wait and see! Plus: the first appearance of the Ultimate Inhumans! From a hidden race, she came to steal the heart of the FF’s youngest member. She’s the beautiful elemental called Crystal! Collects ULTIMATE FANTASTIC FOUR #13-20 & ANNUAL #1.

Adventures of Brisco County Jr: Complete Series

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Wil Alambre
Wil Alambre Senior Programmer
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Wil Alambre Whiteboard Ninja

From Amazon.com: The world s favorite western/sci-fi/comedy/action cult hit rides again! Here on 8 discs is the complete series about Brisco (Bruce Campbell), a tough-as-rawhide cowpoke, debonair ladies man and Harvard-educated smarty-britches who roams from Frisco to Jalisco in pursuit of outlaws who killed his father...and in search of a mysterious orb possessing out-of-this world powers. Hot lead and cool anachronisms await Brisco as he and his sidekicks - including Comet, the intellectual equine who doesn t know he s a horse - fight for justice in the way, way, way-out West. Put your boots in your stirrups, your tongue in your cheek and join the fun. Let s play cowboys and aliens.

Spider-Man 3 Teaser Poster

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Wil Alambre
Wil Alambre Senior Programmer
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Wil Alambre Whiteboard Ninja

This popped up on a variety of sites on Friday. I have to say, this is a pretty sweet looking poster. I love the way the spider logo changes with the red and black, particularly the top legs.

Here’s a description from Comingsoon.net...

Sony Pictures has sent a new backlit lenticular Spider-Man 3 poster to select theaters in North America and we’ve got your sneak peek online! As you can see, the poster features Spidey’s chest which goes from red to black/grey depending on what angle you’re looking at it. It’s very cool to see, so be sure to look for the poster in your local theater.

I haven’t had a poster on my wall since I was a teenager, but I might have to make an exception for this one :)

Net Neutrality easily explained........by Jon Stewart

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Doug Ross
Doug Ross CFO / Partner
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Doug Ross Master of Space and Time

The last 2 posts I made on Net Neutrality may not have made too much sense to some so I'll let Jon Stewart take a shot at it.

The video is located here (at You Tube) with Jon's spectacular commentary putting everything in perspective.

It's amazing that such important issues are left to those that just don't..........well.... just watch the video!

New Avengers Vol 2: Sentry

Event
Wil Alambre
Wil Alambre Senior Programmer
Visual Lizard
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1 (204) 957-5520 ext:152
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Wil Alambre Whiteboard Ninja
OVER BY: STEVE MCNIVEN
WRITER: BRIAN MICHAEL BENDIS
PENCILS: STEVE MCNIVEN

THE STORY:
THE MYSTERY OF THE SENTRY REVEALED! The Avengers try to help the most powerful super hero in the world figure out who he is and where he came from! But will this knowledge destroy the man they’re trying to help? Collects NEW AVENGERS #7-10 and the NEW AVENGERS: MOST WANTED FILES handbook.
152 PGS./Rated A ...$14.99

Amazing Screw On Head

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Wil Alambre
Wil Alambre Senior Programmer
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Wil Alambre Whiteboard Ninja

Writer and artist Mike Mignola, famous for Hellboy, put out a one shot comic called The Amazing Screw On Head. It has a similar style to Hellboy, but with a decidely funny and surreal bent. My opinion at the time Mignola was just proving he could take any near-nonsensical approach and make it cool :)

Here’s a description from Dark Horse Comics, publisher of the one shot comic:

Yes, even the creator of the world’s greatest supernatural investigator needs a break once in a while, and when Mike Mignola tires (however briefly) of a steady diet of Hellboy, he turns to diversions such as The Amazing Screw-On Head! When Emperor Zombie threatens the safety of all life on Earth, the president enlists the aid of a mechanical head. With Screw-On Head and Mr. Groin on the job, you just know there will be flying machines to be piloted, tombs to be robbed, and weird alien menaces to be thwarted -- all that and talking dogs, too! It’s pure mayhem -- and pure Mignola!

Well, the SciFi Channel thought it was just as cool, and decided to spend some money and make an Amazing Screw On Head cartoon. Better yet, you can go to the SciFi.com site and watch the entire pilot episode for free! Sweet!

Watch the pilot on SciFi.com

The Bane of Windows

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Ross McDowall
Ross McDowall Senior Web Developer
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Ross McDowall Fearless Dwarven Warrior

Microsoft announced today that it is finally cutting off all support for Windows 98 and its associated alternate Operating Systems (Windows 98 Second Edition and Windows ME). These operating systems originally replaced Windows 95, but were well known for massive security issues and operating instability. According to this BBC article there are approximately 70 million users still running a form of Windows 98. Microsoft has set out an advisory that since they will no longer support this outdated Operating System that it advises its Windows 98 customers to upgrade to a supported OS.

A Scanner Darkly

Event
Wil Alambre
Wil Alambre Senior Programmer
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Wil Alambre Whiteboard Ninja

Unlike most people, I do not mind Keanu Reeves as an actor, if he s cast as a proper character. Plus, this movie has Winona Rider in it, who I always thought was hot :) The two major selling points for me about this movie is the fact it s based on a Phillip K Dick story, and the strange animation style they used in the film. I m interested in seeing how they exploit it. Take a look at this trailer and tell me it doesn t look cool.

Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man\'s Chest

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Wil Alambre
Wil Alambre Senior Programmer
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Wil Alambre Whiteboard Ninja

Johnny Depp was amazing as Captain Jack Sparrow in the original. I don t think anyone was expecting a movie based on an amusement park ride to end up being so good.I have high expectations for this sequel... plus, the Davey jones character looks amazing!

Click here to view the trailer.

BPRD: The Black Flame graphic novel

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Wil Alambre
Wil Alambre Senior Programmer
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Wil Alambre Whiteboard Ninja

The Bureau for Paranormal Research and Defense faces its worst tragedy ever as the war against the plague of frogs reaches a devastating new level. Heralded by a bizarre villain from the B.P.R.D. s past, an ancient monster-god marches across the American heartland portending an end to the reign of men, and leaving a permanent mark on the Bureau. Hellboy-creator Mike Mignola continues his collaboration with artist Guy Davis and co-writer John Arcudi to unravel a tale that will leave the earth shaken and the B.P.R.D. shattered. This collection includes a sketchbook section chronicling Guy Davis s creation of the abominations unleashed in The Black Flame.

New Destination Winnipeg Dining Launch

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Ross McDowall
Ross McDowall Senior Web Developer
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Ross McDowall Fearless Dwarven Warrior

Destination Winnipeg has relaunched its Dining in Winnipeg section. The previous version which was built three years ago, had become a bit cumbersome with only very limited functionality. Destination Winnipeg approached us to revamp this piece and expand its functionality to include a listing of upcoming events along with a page for restaurant reviews. Also an added category for food related news which would then be featured in the section. Considering the number of restaurants we have here in the city, this was a bit of an undertaking both programmically speaking for us as well as content related for the folks over at Destination Winnipeg. After a lot of hard work though we now have the newly revamped Dining in Winnipeg section. A useful tool to take advantage of Winnipeg’s vast culinary line-up. Bon-appetit!

Johnny Cash - American V: A Hundred Highways

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Julian Moffatt
Julian Moffatt CEO / Partner
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Julian Moffatt Purveyor of Good Times

Not much needs to be said about this one. I m looking forward to Johnny making me get all misty from beyond the grave.

Happy Independance Day Mr. Cash. May you always be free.

Wilco at the Burton Cummings Theatre

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Julian Moffatt
Julian Moffatt CEO / Partner
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Julian Moffatt Purveyor of Good Times

Wilco, one of the bands that I have been meaning to see for several years now are finally fitting into my schedule on July 1st ... which means I ll be a day late out to the cottage, but it should be worth it.