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Colin Fredericks

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Boom Comics [Jun. 21st, 2009|08:37 pm]
Colin Fredericks
I always find it a little sad when a new comics company starts up.

Let me explain why.

I started reading about 1993. For those who were around then - you remember Valiant? They had some good comics, man. Visitor, Hard Corps, Harbinger, XO-Manowar, Eternal Warrior, Solar, pretty solid books. Good concepts. Started in 1989, almost had a crossover with Image in 93-94, sold in 1994 (after the Great Comics Collapse), went under completely in a fiasco in 1999, might or might not be doing anything useful as of last year.

Or how about Crossgen? Man, I miss these guys. Meridian, Negation, and Abadazad were some of my absolute favorite books. Founded in 1998, went under in a horrific bout of financial mismanagement. I had a "lifetime" subscription to their online comics, which unfortunately lasted about a year before they finally took it down. I read almost everything they had published in that year. Remaining assets owned by Disney. (Finish Negation War? No? sigh.)

How about Defiant Comics (1993-1995)? Awesome Comics (1997-2000)? Come on, they had Alan Moore. Tekno Comix (1995-1997)? They had licensed stuff from Roddenbery, Asimov, Nimoy, Gaiman... sheesh.

So when a new comics company starts up, I don't pay any attention. However...

Boom comics was under my radar. Started in 2005. Did some miscellaneous stuff, nothing I saw or knew about. Even when Mark Waid joined up, I was a little sad that he was probably wasting his time on a company that would collapse. However, just the other day they picked up the license to publish Disney comics.

Yeah, they're set for life.
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I was a sicko (and still am) [Jun. 21st, 2009|05:58 pm]
Colin Fredericks
I'm currently getting over one hell of a flu. Knocked me on my ass for three days. On the plus side, I got a lot accomplished in Zelda. On the minus side, a fever of 103 doesn't really let you do much. This started happening on Thursday and I still have a 99-100 temperature today (which is a hell of a lot better than yesterday). To anyone I was in contact with on my trip to the valley: you might want to take some vitamins.

Emma and Mirkwood have both been taking good care of me, Emma by worrying over me continuously and the cat by standing watch for evil spirits. He made the other cat go through a lengthy vetting process before allowing her into the bedroom. I would like to thank the two of them, and also ibuprofen.
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NoHo? YesHo? [Jun. 17th, 2009|04:08 pm]
Colin Fredericks
I'm headed towards the Amherst/Northampton area for the next few days. I may or may not show up on your doorstep or at your diner.
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Comics [Jun. 17th, 2009|02:25 am]
Colin Fredericks
You know, I'm normally not a fan of advertising, but sometimes it's hilarious.

I Love Robert Kirkman.Collapse )
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Good Day [Jun. 16th, 2009|02:44 am]
Colin Fredericks
I am far behind the times here, but I just discovered the Paul Harvey passed away this year (February 28th). As a radio aficionado, especially an old radio aficionado, I had a real appreciation for Harvey and the way he talked. There's a joke that one of his old station managers threatened to sell ads during the pauses in his speech. There are few radio personalities left - frankly, the whole medium is due to be sucked down the drain and reborn - and losing one of the big ones definitely leaves a hole.

For what it's worth - good night, Paul.
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FDATF [Jun. 13th, 2009|09:45 pm]
Colin Fredericks
A new tobacco bill moves tobacco regulation from the ATF to the FDA, which begs the question - will they just be the AT now? You can't have a two-letter acronym in DC these days, that's reserved for the name of the place only! The AT* obviously needs to find something to do while they drink and shoot.
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Good comics and kitties [Jun. 9th, 2009|01:38 am]
Colin Fredericks
I recently picked up a year-long subscription to Marvel's online comics. I've been reading two things so far. The first is the run of Captain America that started in 2002. 9-11 was very much a factor in every single issue; it's a really powerful read. I'm looking forward to continuing it.

The second is the current run of X-Factor. I started with #1 earlier tonight and I can't fucking stop. I just finished #10. If you've ever wondered whether the book is as good as everyone says it is - yes.

In other news, Mirkwood has a temporary friend! Our friend Meara has dropped off her kitty Hermia last week, and after much hissing and anti-social behavior from the new kitty, they seem to be playing today. I hope that Mirkwood is finally getting the playmate that he always wanted Shinobi to be. Hermia's only here for another two weeks, but it's good to have her here.
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Oooh, dangerous. [May. 31st, 2009|05:34 pm]
Colin Fredericks
I read the excellent chemist/pharmacist blog In The Pipeline, which has some really good stuff for a budding chemistry geek like myself. Here's one of my recent favorites.

This is material excerpted from an MSDS (Materials Safety Data Sheet) for a common chemical compound. I've stripped out any direct references to what it is, as well as many parts that say "not dangerous in that way" (e.g. not explosive, doesn't polymerize random crap, etc.) Try to guess what chemical this is before you get to the end.

Section 3 - Hazards Identification


Appearance: light beige to gray powder.
Warning! Cancer hazard. May cause eye, skin, and respiratory tract irritation.
Target Organs: Respiratory system, eyes, skin.

Potential Health Effects
Eye: Dust may cause mechanical irritation.
Skin: Dust may cause mechanical irritation.
Ingestion: May cause irritation of the digestive tract.
Inhalation: Dust is irritating to the respiratory tract.
Chronic: May cause cancer in humans. Prolonged exposure may cause delayed lung injury/fibrosis.

Section 4 - First Aid Measures

Eyes: Immediately flush eyes with plenty of water for at least 15 minutes, occasionally lifting the upper and lower eyelids. If irritation develops, get medical aid.
Skin: Immediately flush skin with plenty of water for at least 15 minutes while removing contaminated clothing and shoes. Get medical aid if irritation develops or persists.
Ingestion: Do not induce vomiting. Get medical aid if irritation or symptoms occur.
Inhalation: Remove from exposure and move to fresh air immediately. If not breathing, give artificial respiration. If breathing is difficult, give oxygen. Get medical aid if cough or other symptoms appear.
Notes to Physician: Treat symptomatically and supportively.

Section 5 - Fire Fighting Measures

General Information: Material will not burn. Substance is noncombustible.

Section 6 - Accidental Release Measures

General Information: Use proper personal protective equipment as indicated in Section 8.
Spills/Leaks: Vacuum or sweep up material and place into a suitable disposal container. Avoid generating dusty conditions. Provide ventilation. Do not let this chemical enter the environment.

Section 7 - Handling and Storage

Handling: Minimize dust generation and accumulation. Do not get in eyes, on skin, or on clothing. Do not ingest or inhale. Use only in a chemical fume hood.
Storage: Store in a cool, dry place. Store in a tightly closed container.

Section 8 - Exposure Controls, Personal Protection

Engineering Controls: Facilities storing or utilizing this material should be equipped with an eyewash facility and a safety shower. Use only under a chemical fume hood.
Eyes:  Wear appropriate protective eyeglasses or chemical safety goggles as described by OSHA's eye and face protection regulations in 29 CFR 1910.133 or European Standard EN166.
Skin: Wear appropriate protective gloves to prevent skin exposure.
Clothing: Wear appropriate protective clothing to prevent skin exposure.

Section 10 - Stability and Reactivity

Chemical Stability: Stable.
Conditions to Avoid: Incompatible materials, dust generation.
Incompatibilities with Other Materials: Strong oxidizing agents, strong bases.
Hazardous Decomposition Products: Oxides of silicon.

Name That Chemical!Collapse )

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For the math geeks out there. [May. 22nd, 2009|05:06 pm]
Colin Fredericks
iPhone * iPhone = -Phone

When plotting complex phones, the iPhones usually go on the vertical axes.

By also using jPhone and kPhone one can define a set of Phone Quaternions. It is important to remember that multiplication over this set is non-transitive - you calling your friend is often a different operation from your friend calling you. In fact, when your friend calls you, you typically end up with a third person entirely. Calculating the outcomes of conference calls can quickly become tedious.

Trust me, if you know the associated math, this is hilarious.

(No, I didn't just get one. In fact, from the above it's clear that if you gave me one I would have zero Phones.)
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old Sluggy [May. 21st, 2009|08:42 am]
Colin Fredericks

I may have posted that before, but it's worth repeating.
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