Year: 2014

Multiversity

Multiversity Makes Me Happy

This is my first new comic book review since August 31, 2011 when I reviewed Justice League #1, the first comic of the “New 52”.  This one shouldn’t come as a surprise though, as Grant Morrison owned a full 10% of my “50 Greatest Comic Runs“.

Grant Morrison and Ivan Reis bring us the first iinstalment in the culmination of Morrison’s involvement in the mainstream DC Universe with The Multiversity.  Morrison is bringing all of his chickens home to roost with this one, and with this issue he deftly ties in threads from his runs on JLA, Final Crisis and Action Comics among others.

Morrison is a massive DC Comics fanboy, he’s been a fan his entire life, and loves to pay homage to tradition, while taking things in entirely new and unique directions.  One of my favourite Morrison concepts, the “Super Young Team”, a Japanese super hero group, was his take on Jack Kirby’s “Forever People”, which is amazing because the two couldn’t be more different.

His run on Batman is among my very favourites, and he wrote what I consider the definitive “Dick Grayson as Batman” story in Batman and Robin. Continue Reading

Fan Expo Canada 2014

Fan Expo, Kaylin and MaksI wasn’t even planning on going to Fan Expo this year.  I’ve been pretty much every year for the last eight years, and this year I thought I’d skip it.

Then some stuff happened, and I realized I’d like to see my friends, some of whom I only get to see once a year.  So I contacted Peter, and asked him if he had space at the All New Comics booth.  He did, so it was settled.

Then I mentioned to my kids that I was going to the convention on Friday, and I got a chorus of “awww’s”, and I thought…why not take them?  It meant paying $35 for a ticket, and waiting in line ups…but what the heck?

No sooner had I suggested it, than they had figured out their cosplay (Finn and Fiona from Adventure Time), and promised that they would be up bright and early.

Continue Reading

You Need a Mission

You Need a Mission and a Vision

This past weekend, the BalanceDo team got together for an all day strategy session. We do these once every three months. The idea is to get together, talk about what we’ve accomplished, what our goals are, and what we plan to get done.

This one was the first meeting under our new official name. We recently federally incorporated as “BalanceDo Business Management Software Inc.”.

Continue Reading

Chris, Mike, Brian at the Goretorium

See You Around Mike

 

Today is my friend Michael Halliday’s last day at work.  I’ve been at Info-Tech for seven years, he’s not the first person who’s left, and he won’t be the last…but he’s the one I’ll miss the most.

It all started when I didn’t hire him.

Mike came in for an interview at Info-Tech with my boss Gord and I.  He was charming, personable, and incredibly bright.  He’d worked with Gord before, and was a solid coder.  He answered everything right, and told us he was doing iOS development (this is four years ago when that was still a relatively rare skill).

We left the interview promising him we’d get back to him, and had him on our short list.

But I didn’t hire him. Continue Reading

Why I Love Drawing Bears

Socially Awkward BearA few people have asked me why I have been drawing bears so much in the last two years, it all started out innocently enough. I drew a not-very-good picture of a doofy looking teddy-bear creature on a post-it-note, and put the caption “Socially Awkward Bear” on it. Continue Reading

The Magic Word to Transform Developers into Designers

One of my favourite parts of RailsConf is the lightning talks.  These are 5 minute talks that can be about anything.  As a result, you see a lot of cool stuff in two hours, and if you get a bad one…you just need to wait 5 minutes until the next one comes along.

This year, inspired by not only my own team, but also by the many talks I saw about harnessing your creativity at RailsConf, I decided to give a talk on one of my own personal pet peeves.  People who say “but I can’t draw”, and how that internal script is holding you back.

I got a really good reception from people, which kind of surprised me since most of the talks were super technical, and mine was only one of two or three that were about non code related skills.

This is my talk from RailsConf – The Magic Word to Transform Developers into Designers Continue Reading

Are You Building The Right Stuff?

Are You Building the Right Stuff?

“Am I building the right thing” is one of the hardest questions to answer. There always seems to be “one more feature” you could add, one more tweak you could make, or one more “Absolute Must Have” that you could do.

When we started working on BalanceDo, we knew there was a ton of things to do, but because we’re such a small team, we would need to aggressively prioritize. Because of that, we decided to use a favourite prioritization exercise of mine. Continue Reading

The Walking Dead Season 4 Finale

The final panel from Walking Dead #63

I have some thoughts on The Walking Dead and the season finale, if you aren’t caught up, turn back, because I am about to combine what we saw on TV with some comic book stuff.

It’s important to remember that while the big arcs are similar between comic and show, individual beats are not, the most obvious of these is that Daryl isn’t even in the comics, and Sophia is still alive 120 issues on. This is all just speculation, I have no idea how right or wrong I am.

Spoilers, do not pass. Continue Reading

Our Disney Cruise

Our Disney CruiseClan Garside sailed the majestic Disney Magic from February 24th through 28th, and while it was a welcome break from the ridiculous winter that we’ve been dealing with back home, it wasn’t exactly the “magical experience” that others have raved about.

We’ve been on two other cruises, both by Royal Caribbean…and we were recently spoiled with an all expenses resort vacation to Le Blanc in Cancun (which was one of the most amazing vacations I have ever taken).

This was our first “big trip” with our kids.  The first time either of them have flown, the first time that either have travelled 6-8 hours in a day, and the first time that either of them have been at sea.  I have to say that they were amazing little travellers and are among my favourite people to travel with.  They were easy going, listened well when we needed them to stick with us for safety, and enjoyed exploring off on their own then the opportunities presented themselves.

They had an amazing time – so much so that Maks cried when it was over because he didn’t want our vacation to be done.  This review is just how I felt about things. Continue Reading