Year: 2011

The DC Comics New 52 Survey

The Man of Steel

Action Comics #1

Last month at All New Comics we conducted a little poll to find out what people thought of the 52 title relaunch of DC Comics.

The results were interesting, mostly expected, but contained a few surprises.

Our customers had some good comments too (which I’ll include in a separate post soon).

About 1/4 of our subscribers replied, and with 31 responses, we’ve got a nice little sampling of what you think.

68% of our members will be buying more DC Comics (at least for a little while), and 12% of All New Comics members say they will buy less DC Comics because of the change.

The Batman family of titles as a line are by far are the most popular, with Batman #1 being the most popular.

JLA #1 is the second most popular title, and Grant Morrison’s Action Comics #1 is the third most popular.

Some of the surprises included:

Justice League Dark, Batgirl and Aquaman are all in the top 10. Batwoman is close behind at #11.

There are strong showings for Firestorm, Nightwing, Swamp Thing, and Animal Man.

There’s a little more interest in Legion Lost than there is in the regular Legion title (that was surprising to me as Legion Lost seems like a companion book to Legion rather than the other way around).

All Star Western has way more interest than I expected.

The top ten and bottom ten fleshed out pretty much as I expected (and I’d be surprised to see most of the bottom 10 around in a year), although there are a few shake ups (Batgirl, a title that has struggled in the past is top 10, suggesting that the decision to put Barbara Gordon back in the batsuit has a lot of interest, despite what you may read on the internets).

I’m excited about the stories that will get told in September, and I think this will be a nice shot in the arm for an industry that needs a good boost right about now.

For interest’s sakes, here’s the full list.  Any surprises you see in here?  Anything you expected to do better or worse?  Chat it up in the comments!

Rank Title Percent Votes
1 Batman #1 78.12% 25
2 Justice League #1 71.88% 23
3 Action Comics #1 59.38% 19
4 Batman And Robin #1 53.12% 17
5 Superman #1 53.12% 17
6 Green Lantern #1 53.12% 17
7 Batgirl #1 46.88% 15
8 Detective Comics #1 46.88% 15
9 Justice League Dark #1 46.88% 15
10 Aquaman #1 46.88% 15
11 Batwoman #1 43.75% 14
12 Batman: The Dark Knight #1 40.62% 13
13 Flash #1 37.50% 12
14 Fury Of Firestorm #1 37.50% 12
15 Green Lantern Corps #1 37.50% 12
16 Nightwing #1 34.38% 11
17 Swamp Thing #1 34.38% 11
18 Green Lanterns: New Guardians 34.38% 11
19 Animal Man #1 31.25% 10
20 Legion Lost #1 28.12% 9
21 Teen Titans #1 28.12% 9
22 All-Star Western #1 28.12% 9
23 Blue Beetle #1 28.12% 9
24 Wonder Woman #1 28.12% 9
25 Red Hood And The Outlaws #1 25.00% 8
26 Red Lanterns #1 25.00% 8
27 Birds Of Prey #1 21.88% 7
28 Legion of Superheroes #1 21.88% 7
29 Stormwatch #1 21.88% 7
30 Suicide Squad #1 21.88% 7
31 Justice League International #1 21.88% 7
32 Catwoman #1 18.75% 6
33 Supergirl #1 18.75% 6
34 Hawk And Dove #1 18.75% 6
35 Superboy #1 15.62% 5
36 Demon Knights #1 15.62% 5
37 Frankenstein: Agent Of SHADE #1 15.62% 5
38 Captain Atom #1 15.62% 5
39 I, Vampire #1 12.50% 4
40 Resurrection Man #1 12.50% 4
41 DC Universe Presents #1 12.50% 4
42 Static Shock #1 9.38% 3
43 Grifter #1 9.38% 3
44 OMAC #1 9.38% 3
45 Savage Hawkman #1 9.38% 3
46 Green Arrow #1 9.38% 3
47 Batwing #1 6.25% 2
48 Deathstroke #1 6.25% 2
49 Mr Terrific #1 6.25% 2
50 Sgt Rock And The Men Of War #1 6.25% 2
51 Voodoo #1 6.25% 2
52 Blackhawks #1 3.12% 1

What I’ve learned so far

I went through a really tough time about a year ago.  My buddy Ryan thought at the time I was having a mid life crisis.  He was probably right, but the problem was just as likely that I was moving out of my comfort zone of “doing” and into an area I was less comfortable with of “managing”.

At the time I had tons of experience the “how’s”, but not nearly as much experience with the “why’s”.

As I roll towards the big milestone of 40, I’m looking back and reflecting on my life.  This isn’t where I thought I’d be when I was 20, I thought I’d be either Michael Bay or Kevin Smith by now, but fate moved me in a different direction.

Now I’m a web guy, I’m in IT (I NEVER thought I’d be in an IT department).  I’m a Manager (capital M), telling rather than doing.  I’m a leader (lower case “l”), who rallies and motivates people.  I’m an entrepreneur, I started Canada’s Online Comics Superstore All New Comics (plug), opened and closed HeadsDown Internet Design, and I’m a partner in New Ninjas Inc..

Over the last year or two I’ve been compiling a massive post of what I like to call “What I’ve Learned So Far”.  This is a list of things that I’ve taken away from each job I’ve had, and stuff that has shaped me into the person I am today.

Netstar / TSN / TSN.ca (January 1997 – January 2000)

Pressure is good for the soul

I always hear people upset that dates are arbitrarily made.  I believe in deadlines and dates.  Trade Deadline is March 3rd.  The Draft is July 6th.  The Olympics are February 12th.  You cannot miss those deadlines.  That kind of pressure inspires you to work your hardest.

Get things done

We just did stuff.  We said we’d do it.  We worked together.  We got it done.  One of my favourite memories is of a micro-site that the sales guys had sold for Honda Power Tools.  Two of us built a 12 page site in 6 hours one night, from design and concept through populating content.

Get things right

Bloggers think that it’s most important to get it first, at TSN it was hammered into my head a billion times that it’s most important to get it right first.  In three years nobody will remember who broke that trade story, but they will remember when you got it wrong.

Be able to scale

When I arrived at TSN we had one single web box, it was even called Webbox.  It was an old Sun server, pretty tiny really, and it just served up our website…out of our building (right behind the security guys).  By the time I left (the first time), we had 14 custom Dell Opteron servers and we were serving up about five times the traffic we had in 1997.

Learn something new

I came into TSN knowing CSS and HTML,and that was it.  I learned how to program a batch job, how to create shell scripts, how to use UNIX.  I taught myself how video encoding worked, and became our best encoder of video, constantly tweaking and improving our video encoding and our ability to stream.  Meanwhile I spent time in the video editing booth, doing SportsDesk and Soccer Saturday shows, and some time in the graphics department learning how to use their sweet $50k O2 machines that built the graphics packages. I learned about business plans and business cases. In those three years at TSN I did a masters’ degree worth of learning, and got paid for the privilege.

Don’t be afraid of change

As we were rebuilding our website, going from an all flat HTML site to one that included things like “Server Side Includes”, and a “content management system”, Joe, our Tech Guy decided we should move to this funky new “ASP” platform by Microsoft.  I got on board and started building pages as quickly as I could.

Activate (January 2000- January 2001)

Work Hard

I only worked at Activate for a year, but I put in about two year’s worth of time there.  I did so much stuff that was cutting edge and at the far limits of what I was capable of.  I templated most of my work so that I could do more custom development, and took on anything they threw at me.  Sure I was crusty as all hell most days because of the never-ending torrent of work…but I was doing a LOT of good stuff.

Don’t be an idiot with your money

When I arrived at Activate, its parent company had a $4billion war chest.  I watched as they squandered millions of dollars on the most ridiculous of things.  Saw them burn through cash at an alarming rate, and witnessed stupidity like company events for twelve people that cost in the tens of thousands of dollars.  All while we weren’t making enough money to cover our base costs.

A good network is the most important thing you will ever build

When I was laid off at Activate, I sent out an email to all of my contacts.  Five minutes later I got a call asking if I wanted to meet for lunch.  Over lunch I had a job offer.  The next day I started my new job at Alliance Atlantis.

Up Next: Alliance Atlantis, Centennial College, Bell Globe Media, All New Comics, Info-Tech, and New Ninjas Inc.

Why Day and Date Digital Doesn’t Matter to Comic Shops

Yes, his name is really Al

I met up with Pete yesterday, and he asked me what I thought about DC Comics’ decision to release comics digitally at the same time as the physical books are released.

I don’t think it will affect All New Comics’ sales at all for 3 primary reasons.

The price point is too high to matter
The markets are completely different
Digital is already day and date

The price point is too high to matter
We sell a $2.99 comic for a 20% discount, so $2.39.  DC is selling digital editions for $2.99 the first month and then $1.99 a month later.  I’ll wager that the cycle of digital will eventually resemble the retail cycle with 80% of sales happening in the first week.

That makes their product too expensive the first month, and then irrelevant the second month.

The markets are completely different
I asked Pete if he thought that DC selling subscriptions directly to customers in the back of every issue impacted us.  You can get a 12 month subscription to Batman for $20, or about $1.66 an issue.  

He asked me “Have you seen the condition those things arrive in?” – they usually end up rolled, dinged and dented.

Well digital doesn’t arrive in ANY condition, you can’t resell it, you can’t even lend it out.  It’s an entirely new market, one I kind of like.  This week I bought 5 issues of Firestorm (from the 80’s), and the first 10 issues of Perez’ Wonder Woman, for .99 each digitally because I wanted to read them, but I don’t want to deal with them later.  No need to bag, board, and store them, or find a home for the trades.  I also like the fact that I’m carrying those and about 20 other comics, 5 magazines and two dozen books in package about the size of two comics.

Digital is already day and date
Go to The Pirate Bay on any Wednesday, navigate to comics, and watch the listings roll in.  DC can combat this because their versions will be better quality (direct from the digital source), and since they have the pre-press files, they can release them Wednesday morning.

Really, digital is a different audience. It might be lapsed fans, maybe people like me who have no space, or just technophiles (also me), who have been transitioning all of their media to digital for the last decade

DC Digital – You’re Doing It Wrong

The DC Comics App

The DC Comics App

I have a confession to make. I’m an online comics retailer, but I’m a huge fan of digital comics. I’ve had an iPad for about 3 months now, and in that time I’ve purchased a number of titles via DC Comics’ iPad app.

On New Year’s Day DC had a massive sale on Blackest Night and I bought 12 comics for .99 each. A great deal (I own the single issues AND the hardcovers of all these titles, but I wanted them digitally so I could have them with me). I picked up Chase #1-4, one of my all time favourite comic series, and I was trying to figure out whether this would be how I get comics going forward.

Unfortunately it won’t be. It’s simply not cost effective, and downloading comics on the iPad is a slow and cumbersome job. The average comic takes quite a few minutes to download, and there’s no way to do it in the background (that I’ve figured out), which means my iPad has to sit idle for a bunch of minutes. If you have an iPad you know that it’s an impulse tool. “Oh, I want to look this up.” Grab iPad, look up what you need to, put iPad away. All is good. Having it “down” for even a few minutes becomes irritating. Combined with the fact that my iPad is now how I read emails, Twitter, and Facebook, and it sucks not having it available.

Having a desktop version of the app which would let me manage my collection and somehow tell iTunes what to sync up with my iPad (or even better just simply wirelessly transfer stuff over) would be tons better.

I love buying books using the Kindle app, so I’m used to using my iPad to purchase digital content. Same with digital music and movies, I use the iPad for that all the time.

I don’t have a problem not owning a physical artifact, in fact that’s one of the most compelling features of digital comics for me. Owning a comic is a burden. Owning a digital artifact is simple. Digital storage is pennies and I have plenty of it (I have a 4TB array in my home server right now which even though my content is mirrored, still has an astonishing 3TB free right now). Physical space…not so much. With our recent basement renovation I have even LESS space down there than ever before.

Price though IS a barrier. I can’t conceivably pay more for a digital product than I do for a physical one.

No other medium works this way. Well, except movies which I refuse to buy on iTunes either because quite frankly it’s dumb to buy a digital file for $20 when I can get a physical DVD for $5.00 and rip it for free.

DC announced their new day-and-date digital comics program. $2.99 per title, dropping to $1.99 a month later. If you want to get it when it comes out (when the actual conversations will be happening online), you’re out of luck. Hey, early adopters…just wait a month. You’re good at that right?

Meanwhile I can buy that same comic from my local comic shop for $2.39 (a 20% discount is pretty standard, we offer it at All New Comics, some online shops offer 25-50% off cover price, other shops give 15% off).  So digital is more expensive than print.

A print subscription is $19.99/year on the DC Comics Website.  $1.65 an issue.

Digital is more expensive.

I won’t even use Amazon as an example (although I believe collections of comics for sale digitally should be bundled and sold for the same 33% off cover Amazon offers for new TPB’s).

Instead, let’s look at something that is directly similar to comics, it has a subscription offered by the publisher directly, and there are electronic versions as well.

I have a digital subscriptions to both Wired Magazine and Family Handyman. Both are on my iPad.

Wired available on it’s own dedicated app. It’s not only a magazine, but each issue is interactive, with the addition of video and cool interactive elements. It’s not as good as the print edition, in my opinion it’s better. A 1 year subscription to the digital version of Wired is $20.00. Up until this point I paid $3.99 an issue digitally. Meanwhile I paid $40.00 a year for my print version, and about $5.99 an issue if I bought it off the newsstand.

It is released day and date with print (faster than my print subscription which usually arrived 2-3 weeks after shipping.

Family Handyman is part of the Zinio app, which let’s you download and read tons of publishers stuff. I had a print subscription which was $20.00 a year. Each issue is $4.99 on the newsstand. Digitally each issue is $1.99, and an annual subscription is $10.00.

It’s released day and date with print.

Remember, there’s no real market for pirating specialty magazines like there is for comics, although I’m sure Wired is available on torrent sites somewhere, the entire issue IS available online via the wired.com website.  However the barrier to entry is so low it just made sense to buy this thing that I enjoy every month (which let’s me know when it arrives even!).

Apple just announced yesterday that they have integrated newsstand sales with their iBooks application, which means iBooks just became useful to me.

Now is the time for DC to make a bold announcement.  Support the new digital economy.  Buy Comixology, PanelFly, or Graphic.ly and turn them into your exclusive app.  Offer low cost subscriptions, and turn the apps into something that the comics can’t be.  Include Facebook style postings and ways for fans to interact with each other, and embrace the future.

Imagine if the movie industry had said no to VHS tapes which movie theatres were telling studios would ruin the movie business.  Imagine if studios had listened to rental stores that said pricing DVD’s at $20.00 would ruin their rental business.  When movie studios (and the music industry) stopped listening to their consumers and didn’t provide them with their content in a way they wanted it (digitally), sales plummeted.

DC is trying to prop up the past of comic shops by holding back the future, and it simply won’t work.  Comic shops also need to change or die, they need to provide experiences that are different than what we’re used to, and they likely can’t continue to sell a $3.00 product and hope to pay their expenses which have doubled or tripled in the last decade while their profits have remained flat.

Not understanding the lessons of the past will destroy the ENTIRE industry, and not just the few thousand stores that are still around.

The DC Comics Reboot of 1986

The Crisis on Infinite Earths

The Crisis on Infinite Earths

September 2011 will see a whole new DC Universe begin, a move which was originally scheduled to happen in 1986, and which didn’t take place then because so many titles were in the middle of great runs.  Instead we got a few titles rebooting due to the Crisis on Infinite Earths (the TPB is available at All New Comics right now).

Crisis took decades of convoluted DC history, where multiple “Earths” existed, each with a specific purpose.  Earth 1 was the Silver Age earth, home of “The Flash”, Barry Allen, “Green Lantern”, Hal Jordan, as well as Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman and so many others.  Earth 2 was home of the Golden age characters such as Flash Jay Garrick, Green Lantern Alan Scott, an older Superman, a world where Batman was dead, but he and Catwoman had given birth to a daughter who became Huntress, and an entire legacy of heroes had become Infinity Inc.

Other earths housed creations that DC Comics had purchased but never integrated into their mainstream universe.  The Charlton heroes of Blue Beetle, Captain Atom, Peacemaker, The Question, Judomaster, and Nightshade (who had all been remade as The Watchmen by Allan Moore a year earlier) lived their own earth, as did the Captain Marvel Family, Crime Syndicate of Amerika, and tons of others.

At the end of the Crisis, all of the earths were merged into one.  Wonder Woman was turned into clay, and the world started over with only a few heroes remembering what had happened.

It was a perfect time to reboot everything, and we got some wonderful stuff out of it.

George Perez’s run on Wonder Woman is one of the defining runs for the hero.

John Byrne’s Man of Steel was a defining moment for Superman, and turned him from super-human uubermench into someone who audiences could relate to.

Batman got a facelift and Frank Miller was able to tell the Year One stories.

However the changes weren’t line wide.  Legion of Super-Heroes and Teen Titans stayed in current continuity which created massive problems for both titles.  How do you have a Legion when they were inspired by Superboy…a character who in this new world had never even existed.  Who was Donna Troy?  She actually predated Wonder Woman in this new world.  Even simple things like the Justice League now had significant problems as Superman hadn’t made his debut until years after many of the other heroes.

With a bunch of partial reboots, things quickly got murky and other events were created to clear up the anomalies.  Along came a Superboy story in Legion, a whole event in Titans, and finally Zero Hour and eventually Crisis on Infinite Earths and the weekly series 52, which finally brought the whole thing full circle, and returned the concept of a “multiverse” back to the DC Universe, about 20 years after it was eliminated.

Flashpoint seems to be a chance to revisit this concept again, and maybe create a brand new world which can be started pretty much from scratch with some of the best writers in the industry learning the lessons of yesterday to create a better tomorrow.

Or at the very least…tell a bunch of cool stories for the next year.

DC Comics Starts It All Over Again

The Full JLA

Jim Lee and Geoff Johns' JLA

In September of 2011, the entire DC Universe will start from scratch.  That month 52 new titles will debut, all #1’s, and all with new creative teams. The move spins out of the FlashPoint storyline, a summer storyline where Professor Zoom, the reverse Flash (one of Flash’s most deadliest of enemies) has altered time to change the world.  A world where Bruce Wayne and his mother died, while his father Thomas lived and became the Batman, where Superman was never found by a kindly pair of farmers and raised as their own, where Aquaman and Wonder Woman battle for control of what is left of Great Britain, and where nothing is as it should be.

The new DC Universe is being created whole cloth by the two creative visionaries of the new DC Universe, Geoff Johns and Jim Lee.

Johns is responsible for the revitalization of dozens of heroes including the JSA, The Teen Titans, Green Lantern (and the entire corps), Superman, and most recently Flash.

Jim Lee most famously revitalized the X-Men in the 90’s, but also created his own universe in WildStorm, and has recently had terrific runs on Batman, Superman, and the All Star Batman and Robin the Boy Wonder title.

Together they will be taking on the Justice League (one of only two comics to be released on August 31st from DC Comics).

So what does the future look like for the DCU?

Update: Comic Book Resources has updated the creative teams of a bunch of titles.

  • A new title starring Superman written by Grant Morrison.
  • Birds of Prey #1 – This new ongoing series will not feature the work of longtime “BoP” writer Gail Simone. In fact, many tried and true approaches to books will be getting a second look at DC in September.
  • Teen Titans #1 – The new start for the teen team will be written by “Red Robin” scribe Fabian Nicieza.
  • Justice Society of America #1 – Only one of a number of current titles that will welcome a creative team shift, the future of the original superhero team will apparently not involve current writer Marc Guggenheim.
  • Wonder Woman #1 – Don’t expect the recent changes from writer J. Michael Straczynski to stick when the Amazing Amazon sees another new #1 hit.
  • Green Lantern #1 – Even with a new #1, Green Lantern remains in Johns’ hands, and readers can expect the effects of major crossovers like “Blackest Night” to stay in place moving forward.
  • Hawkman #1 – While fans have known a “Hawkman” series by James Robinson has been in the works since the writer mentioned it on a panel at New York Comic Con, Bleeding Cool’s Rich Johnston has been reporting the rumor that the book will be drawn by “Batman & Robin” and “Outsiders” artist Philip Tan.
  • Aquaman #1 – No surprises here. The already announced series featuring the sea king by Johns and Ivan Reis will be part of the relaunch wave.

Another Update – June 2nd

DC Comics The Source has published a post titled “The New Justice” where they introduce 11 titles with their creative teams.

  • Justice League – Writer Geoff Johns and artist Jim Lee
  • Wonder Woman – Writer Brian Azzarello and artist Cliff Chiang
  • Aquaman – Writer Geoff Johns and artist Ivan Reis
  • The Flash – Writer/Artist Francis Manapul and Brian Buccellato
  • The Fury of Firestorm – Writers Ethan Van Sciver, Gail Simone, and artist Yildiray Cinar
  • Green Arrow – Writer JT Krul and artist Dan Jurgens
  • Justice League International – Writer Dan Jurgens and artist Aaron Lopresti
  • Mr. Terrific – Writer Eric Wallace and artist Roger Robinson
  • Captain Atom – Writer JT Krul and artist Freddie Williams II
  • Braver and Bolder – Told by some of comics’ most exciting writers and artitsts

Update – June 3rd.  Back to Bleeding Cool, where Rich Johnson is now reporting  – DC Relaunch: Four Green Lantern #1 comics in September.

  • Green Lantern #1 by writer Geoff Johns, artists Doug Mahnke and Christian Alamy.
  • Green Lantern Corps #1 starring Guy Gardner, John Stewart and more. Writer Peter J. Tomasi, artists Fernando Pasarin and Scott Hanna.
  • Green Lantern: The New Guardians #1, a team made up of Rage, Avarice, Fear, Will, Hope, Compassion and Love under the leadership of Kyle Rayner. Written by Tony Bedard, art by Tyler Kirkham and Batt.
  • Red Lanterns #1: Previously announced, Atrocitus and the Red Lantern Corps in their own series. written by Peter Milligan, art by Ed Benes and Rob Hunter.

There’s a ton of possibilities, and I’m actually quite excited by them.  I imagine this won’t go much more than a year, and in the end the powers that be will just relegate this to a shelf on a wall and call it “new earth”, and bring the “Earth Prime” status quo back.

But just for a second, imagine What If?  Chat with me in the comments, and make sure you read how this ALMOST happened in 1986.

The Personality of Cities

I’m in Baltimore at RailsConf right now, and wandering around the downtown I’ve been struck by the character of the city, and how it compares to other cities.

Baltimore seems to be a beautiful city with an undercurrent of poverty. We’ve seen a lot of homeless in the downtown core, and I’ve sensed just a menacing feeling. The further you get from the water, the less polished the city gets.

Chicago was an absolutely gorgeous city, but just outside of downtown you have areas of profound poverty. The downtown seems like a fat banker polishing his pocket watch and puffing on a stogie.

Las Vegas is the partied out girl in the corner who’s friends should have taken her home two hours ago.

Toronto meanwhile is like your country cousin dressed up in a suit, he looks refined, but he’s down to earth.

London Ontario? It’s a 20 year old kid in his father’s borrowed suit, it doesn’t quite fit him, but he’s really trying to make it fit.

UFC 129, Truly an Epic Show

Way back in 2005, when I was still living in Toronto, Ryan and I decided we need to go to Vegas to see UFC 54, which was highlighted by Randy Couture vs Chuck Liddell for the light heavyweight championship.

It was the payoff for the televised “The Ultimate Fighter” show which had just debuted on Spike TV. We got to Vegas, watched the weigh ins, and then went to buy tickets at the box office. We paid $50.00 for our tickets to that show, and the 18,000 strong crowd was absolutely electric.

We saw some amazing fights that night including two, that five years later are still highlight material before live events.

When the UFC came to Canada for the GSP vs Serra blow-off, we went, and the show was unbelievable, I’ve never heard a crowd like that.

We went back to Montreal in December for GSP vs Koscheck, and while the show was good, it didn’t rival my first two UFC shows.

The thing that sucked is that as the UFC increased in popularity, the ticket prices have gotten exponentially higher. At the last show in !ontreal, we spent $180 on tickets, for 200 level seats.

I knew I had to go to Toronto, but $100.00 for 500 level seats seemed ridiculous. Still, I am a ridiculous human, so me and six buddies shelled out a hundred bucks each to sit in the bleeders.

It

Was

Awesome!

The crowd was so loud, not quite as loud as 23,000 people witnessing GSP dominate Matt Serra convincingly, but really loud (in fairness I don’t think I’ll ever hear anything as loud as that show).

The fights were amazing. We saw KO’s, distances, and submissions. The two main events were amazing, and the whole show was spectacular from start to finish.

So at the end of the night was it worth $100.00 to be in the building with 55,000 of my fellow UFC fans?

Hells yeah.

Zite for iPad is Awesome

Zite

Zite, your personalized magazine

Since I bought my iPad a couple of weeks ago, there are two apps I use constantly. One is Flipboard, which turns your Twitter and Facebook feeds into a social magazine, which is pretty cool, but it separates Twitter from Facebook, and while it can use Google reader feeds, they are buggy at best.

The other most constantly used app is Zite. The difference being that it only shows you the links to stories in your feeds. You get none of the social context around it, your friends and people you follow become simple curators.

What’s more is that as you tell the app what stories you like, and what types of content you’re interested in’ it gets better at predicting what you will like in the future.

When you couple this with Delicious as a way of collecting and saving the real good stuff for later reading, you have a killer app.

So long Edge

Adam Copeland a.k.a. Edge

Adam Copeland a.k.a. Edge

This week one of the guys that I’ve followed since the very beginning of his career retired from professional wrestling, and in a lot of ways it kind of closed the chapter on a period of my life. WWE’s Edge has retired from active duty as a WWE wrestler after an amazing 14 year career.

There was a time where I was TSN.ca’s defacto wrestling guy, and my columns “Tales from the Darkside” regularly brought in a couple hundred thousand page views. Continue Reading