How to tell the FCC that you disagree with net neutrality regulations
Im copying this post in its entirety from Gizmodo, who will be re-posting it everyday so long as commenting is open which goes until September 10th.  I will NOT be re posting this (I promise) but obviously as a small time blogger a free and open net is very important to me, and as a consumer who has gone out of their way to cut ties with the cable company, this ruling will directly hit me in my wallet.  So I encourage all of you, make your voice heard, and hope someone is listening.
Image Credit:  Neo Seeker

“How to Yell at the FCC About How Much You Hate Its Net Neutrality Rules

In spectacularly bureaucratic fashion, the FCC just voted to start the formal consideration of itshorrible net neutrality rules. That means the floor is now open for public comment, and the future of the internet is at stake. In fact, it’s up to you. “But how do I comment?” you ask, “How do I politely but firmly express my rage as a member of the public?” Let us show you the way.

This post originally appeared on Gizmodo on May 15th. We’re going to repost it every day until the comment period ends on September 10th.

Step one: Visit and find the proceeding with the title “Protecting and Promoting the Open Internet.” It should be the one on top and should also have over 20,000 filings in the last 30 days.
Step Two: Click the proceeding number “14-28.” You can also try to click this direct link, though it might not work every time. This will take you to the FCC’s Electronic Comment Filing System. It looks a little janky, but hey, the government built it.
Step Three: Fill out the form. Write about your feelings. Express your concerns. Air your grievances. Provide your real name and address. Hope for the best.
Step Four: Click “Continue” and make sure you like what you wrote. If you don’t you can modify your comment. If you do, click “Confirm.”

We asked the FCC what actually happens to these comments, after you send them off into cyberspace. This is their response in full:

To be clear: the NPRM approved by the FCC today has tentative conclusions on which we’re seeking comment, and many broad questions that we are seeking comment on. Once the comment period closes, we review the comments and apply them and the law to our proposals / questions, to come up with final rules. The Chairman has a goal for voting on final rules by the end of the year. Right now, it’s just proposals.

The comment period is until September 10, but you might as well get started now while the news is fresh. And do let us know how it goes!”

May 27, 2014 VIEW POST
May 23, 2014 VIEW POST
Which is Best, AMD or Intel?
That’s the question right?  The first decision you have to make when building your PC is which processor do you pick to be the heart of your system.  When I started looking into building my budget gaming PC I mistakenly Googled “Which is best, AMD or Intel” and man the rabbit hole opened up and sucked me in.  There are a variety of AMD and Intel chips, and I think the term “best” is going to vary depending on your build and budget.  Are you building a massive rig for professional video editing and have an unlimited budget?  Then Intel’s $1000 i7 6 core monster, the 4960X is probably the “best” cpu for you.  Want a small, low powered quiet rig to run simple applications on a shoestring budget?  Well AMD’s $40 single core Sempron 145 Sargas may be the “best” cpu for you.
For my entire build, I had a budget of only $450, and what I wanted was a multi-core processor that could handle day to day workstation task, do some light video editing, and be able to hold its own gaming.  For all of that, I narrowed my options down to three chips; Intel’s i5 4430 Haswell ($199), AMD’s A-10 6800K Richland APU ($139), or AMD’s FX-4300 Vishera ($109).  These are three fantastic processors, with their own pros and cons, what I had to do is figure out which would be “best” for my build.  
The quickest and most powerful of the above is Intel’s i5 “Hyper Threaded” Haswell but it’s also $60 more than the A-10 and nearly $100 more than the FX.  $60-$100 doesn’t seem like much, but that difference alone represents a big part of my total budget.  For a pricier build, the i5 would be the obvious choice, but I didn’t have the room in my budget to justify the cost, so sorry Intel, this will be an AMD build.  The FX’s benchmarks are far and away above the A-10, (6 core vs 4 core) but the biggest pro to the A-10 is it’s built in graphics cores, as it somehow fits a Radeon HD 8670D graphic chip right into the CPU.  If I had, maybe another $100-$150 in my budget, I would have gone with the FX and paired it with a solid graphic card, but I didn’t, and as this is a budget build, I believe the A-10 is the best bang for your buck, giving you the power to handle ever day task, while being able to game right out of the box.  So, for my cpu, or APU as the A series is referred, I picked the A-10 6800K, which I caught on sale for $129.  

This is a quad core, 4.1 GHz processor with some of the most powerful integrated graphics on the market.  It’s also an “unlocked” processor, meaning with some tweaks (and a good amount of cooling) it can be overclocked to boost both the processing and gaming cores.  It’s budget friendly, and the integrated graphics allows gaming without a gpu, which I was not able to fit in my budget.  Now, even within the A series line from AMD, there are options, but for me it came down to the A-10 6800K Richland or the A-10 7850K Kavari which was (at my time of purchase) about $60 more.  When I started looking at benchmarks I did not see enough of a marked improvement over the last gen Richland to justify the added cost of the Kavari chip, plus I think with the pricier newest APU we begin pushing out of the “budget” realm.  I could pick up a FX processor and drop in a decent graphic card which would give me better performance and graphics for just a little bit more than the 7850K. I like the idea of Kavari, but the cost is just too much for the small performance bump, unfortunately I think AMD is beginning to price themselves out this market. For me, the 6800K was the perfect sweet spot for price and performance.
Let me clear up the gaming side of these APUs, because there is much debate on the interwebs of what they are, and are not capable of.  These processors can play really any older game at high setting with good frame rates no problem.  As well, they will play as the vast majority of the newest games on the market, sans gpu no problem… so long as you adjust your expectations for what you are going to get.  This will not play Crysis 3 at 1080P at ultra settings at 60 FPS obviously right?  Most moderate priced cards can struggle with Crysis 3 at its highest settings, but surprisingly the A-10 WILL play Crysis 3… at 720 on medium settings, and not only will it will run, it will still get you a very playable 30 or so FPS.  Now at first that doesn’t sound great, but take a second to think about it.  This processor alone, with just its integrated graphics will run the most graphically demanding game on the market WITHOUT a standalone graphic card.  To me, that is damn impressive, especially for processor coming in at less than $140.  I’m not a big FPS shooter, or MMORG player, I like my RPG’s and less demanding, graphically anyway, sims, sandbox games and world builders, which I have seen this APU run at 1080 or 720 at high or ultra settings without missing a beat.  You also have the option for adding a gpu later, but if that’s what you want to do, here is what I recommend.
If you have the money, or don’t mind waiting to upgrade later, the most cost efficient path is to pair a i5 or FX with a stand along graphic card.  You will get better performance, both for gaming and in applications with either the Intel or FX chip over the A-10.  Also, although AMD boast its ability to crossfire, utilizing both the on board graphic and a lower cost gpu for comparable performance of a higher cost stand alone graphic card, I don’t think it’s worth yet.  Technically yes, you can get better frame rates at higher setting, but from what I have seen and read, the crossfired APU/gpu doesn’t hold a candle to even moderately priced standalone cards.  So, if you are planning on including a gpu in your build from the start or if you can hold off gaming at first and save up for a card, go FX or Intel both for cost and performance.  I MAY add a card later, and if you have an APU or plan on buying an APU you can still do this and see a significant boost in your performance with or without crossfiring with your APU, but realistically for me it will probably be a year or more.  So for this build the A-10 is the right fit at the right time.  It has played pretty much everything I have thrown at it at a graphics standard that I am happy with, with no gpu, while still being very affordable.

So, if you want to run the newest or upcoming games at the highest settings, my Richland APU is not the “best” processor for you, if you have a massive budget, or a tiny budget, the 6800K is probably not the “best” cpu, and if you are an Intel fan-boy, then the A-10 (or the FX for that matter) is DEFINITELY not the “best” processor for you next computer.  That said, if you are looking for a budget processor, that can give you some solid power and performance AND be able to play most games without the added cost of an independent graphic card, then AMD’s A-10 6800K, or any of their other APU’s maybe indeed be the “best” cpu for you. 
May 22, 2014 VIEW POST
MG Summer Reading List:  Graphic Novels
The long days of summer are returning which should give you plenty of time to start on that forever long reading list right? 
So I started this last summer, and only made it through two posts (one of which I want to revisit), but this year I want to make a concerted effort to keep this going.  As a reminder, I suggest one classic and one contemporary “must read” for each “geeky” genre, along with some other suggestions.  As an addition, I am also going to add a section for what I want to knock off my list.  Please feel free to add your suggestions, by either “answering” this post in Tumblr, leaving me a comment on the blog, or tweeting, and I will update this list.  I should be doing these bi-weekly, so keep checking back for more recommendations!
What easier way to start your summer list, than with a comic book!  These are typically easy, quick, fun reads and are great jumping off points for the heavier volumes on your list, or a nice break in between reads or series.  There are a hundred “Best List” of graphic novels, but for simplicity sake I’m only going to be looking at superhero themed novels here, Ill do a  post for indie or non-hero novels latter in the summer, again to give you a break.  Let me also add, to dowse the flames before they start, Im going to include some trades (TPB) here as well.  Some people believe that graphic novels and trades are different mediums, but for the purpose of this post we will agree to disagree.

Classic - Batman:  The Dark Knight Returns (1986)
For me this the definitive story about perhaps the definitive superhero.  Miller’s Batman IS the Batman we know today, the dark, brooding, complicated character was created by Frank Miller.  Beyond that comics as we know them today can be traced back to this graphic novel.  Miller sought to destroy the campy, cartoony comics of the 60’s and 70’s and made a statement that comics and these characters are deep and complicated, and able mediums to carry a complex story.  
This is the tale of an aging, beaten down, tortured Batman who is forced to deal with the changing times, and his reduced capacity.  Its a redemption story, where a decrepit, corrupt, dangerous city full of criminals but no heroes, finds itself once again embracing its fallen savior.  The depth of this book is bottomless, Miller examines such ideas as aging and modernity, as well as storytelling, apathy, and hero worship.
In my mind, this is the must read of must reads, more so than Watchmen or V for Vendetta or Marvels, as this is the ancestor of nearly every superhero book or movie that’s come out in the last 25 years.  Yes, its heavy, and its dark, but damn its fun!
Other classic superhero graphic novels to check out:
Watchmen (1987)
Batman:  Killing Joke (1988)
Kingdom Come (1996)

Contemporary - Hawkeye:  My Life as a Weapon (2013)
Matt Fraction’s run with Hawkeye has been a revelation, and My life as a Weapon trade collects the first five issues of Volume 1 of Hawkeye as well as Young Avengers Presents 6.  Where Miller’s Dark Knight is heavy, brooding, and heady, Fractions Hawkeye is fun, self effacing, self deprecating and light.  This would be a great pallet cleanser after TDKR or other tough read.
What I love about this book, is how mundane it is.  Fraction looks at the life of a superhero, not just their exploits.  Lets be real here, unlike Captain America, a super solider, or Iron Man, a billionaire, Clint Barton is just a regular dude, who has a government job and an apartment in Brooklyn.  That’s what I love about this book, and why its so refreshing, unlike Spider-man Barton isn’t out to redeem his uncle’s death, or unlike Daredevil hes not trying to fight social injustice, he is trying to get the job done in time to make it home in time for Jeopardy.  This isn’t to say its boring, there is a ton of action, featuring brawls, and car chases, and even a super villain or two, but Fraction coats it all with a snide sense of humor, an put Barton in context with the rest of the Avengers, stating clearly that he is NOT exceptional, he is just a guy trying to do his job.
I would be remiss if I didn’t also discuss the artwork, which is really reason enough to pick up this book.  Its unlike anything I have seen in comics outside maybe Daredevil:  The Man Without Fear, black and white with varying shades of purple. Its beautiful, and sometimes jarring, and a nice break from the vibrancy of most of what you find on the shelves. Matt Aja’s art tells as much of the story as Fraction’s writing.  PICK UP THIS BOOK, and then thank me, this is my favorite trade out right now, and the best I have read in a long time.
Other Contemporary Works to check out:
Astonishing X-Men Vol 1 (2012)
Daredevil: The Man Without Fear (2003)
Hellboy:  The Midnight Circus (2013)
I have read all of these books (most multiple times) , and recommend them all without reservations as great summer reads in the genre of graphic novels of the super hero variety, but I still have a massive list that I am working through.  One of the books I have been meaning to get around to for years but haven’t is Neil Gaiman’s The Sandman.  This is, like Miller’s TDKR is a foundation work of modern comics, and Im ashamed that I haven’t read it yet, but I have The Sandman Vol. 1: Preludes & Nocturnes which is the remastered version of the book, which I plan to knock out this summer.  Another Vertigo book Hellblazer: Volume 1: Original Sins is also on my list, I have only randomly read the exploits of John Constantine so it will be nice to get the full run.  

Now I have only mentioned 10 books here, I know there is some Im missing, so let me know and Ill update this post.  What super hero graphic novels or trades are on your list? 
- beside-the-seaside recommends Batman Li’l Gotham Vol 1 saying “By fans (who happen to be professionals) for fans. Fun, happy, at times profound, BTAS influenced, beautiful art.”  I have not heard about this one, but it sounds interesting!
Any more suggestions?
May 21, 2014 VIEW POST
May 19, 2014 VIEW POST
Misguided Geek’s Budget PC Build
Ok, so now that we have started to figure the kids out, and I have finished my degree, I can turn my attention to endeavors of the geeky kind, specifically building MY FIRST PC!  As many folks have told me, this is a right of passage of sorts, so I am quite excited to share with you guys my expreinces with process, from the rational behind building a PC in the first place, to expectations and needs, to the parts selection and then the build itself.  Along the way I plan to offer alternative options, and I hope that my experience can serve as a guide to any of you thinking about building their own PC
So, the first question is; “Why Build a PC in the first place?”  Its a valid point, with the dropping cost of components you can pick up a great workstation PC from any big box store or online retailer packaged in a way that it will fit any budget.  I chose to build my PC for three main reasons:
1)  Components - from what I read, and experienced with my own PC, most pre-built computers use effectively “builder grade” parts, meaning, to keep cost down, they are typically using the cheapest components possible for your build.  In the long run, this may impact nothing, after all there is debatably  little difference between cheap no-name RAM and “Gamer Edition FACE RIPPER” RAM.  But by selecting each and every one of you components, you have complete control of how your machine operates, what bells and whistles you get/dont get, and should something break, you not only know exactly what that component is, but how to fix it.  Another added benefit with choosing everything is lack of bloatware.  Computer manufactures and retailers are able to keep cost low because they prepackage your system with tons of crap, that is both annoying and slow down your system.  When you do it yourself, you do it bloatware free!
2) Cost - yeah I know, I said you can get get a good machine to fit almost any cost point, but what I wanted was a solid little gaming PC that could also operate as a sturdy day to day work station, but still be super inexpensive, need I remind everyone again that I have TWO kids to feed.  I started looking around in my range and just couldn’t find anything that satisfied me.  After playing around on PC Picker, which is an amazing resource that will come up often in these posts, I quickly found that I could indeed have my champagne dreams on my PBR budge, if I cut a few corners and did all the labor myself.
3) Simply I want to build a PC - I always liked the idea of building my own machine, but never had the need nor the resources to do so.  We needed a new computer for the house, and since I now had some time, and had a little bit of extra funds, this is the perfect time to dive face first into the “build” experience.
Make sure to check back weekly through the summer to see how the build is going, and feel free to ask questions about why I did what.  Next week I will discuss my first, and perhaps most important, decision, what CPU to use.
May 16, 2014 VIEW POST
First Shot of “Baffleck” and the new Batmobile!!!
I know, Im way late on this, and every blog and geek/movie site in the world has already reported on this, but…. ITS THE NEW BAT SUIT AND THE NEW BATMOBILE!
Yesterday around noon EST Zach Snyder released the below tweet:

I shot this with my @Leica_Camera M Monochrom. #Batman #Batmobile #Gotham
— ZackSnyder (@ZackSnyder)
May 13, 2014
He had previously teased the back end of the new ‘mobile covered mostly with a sheet, but then surprised EVERYONE by not only showing off the new Bat Car in all its glory, but also posing Affleck in the newly designed bat suit next to it!
This is just One Geeks Opinion mind you, but I love NEARLY everything about this.  Lets start with the Batmobile and get it out of the way, in my mind its close to perfection.  Snyder and his team did a fantastic job blending in the tactical, realistic Tumbler from the Nolan series, with the long, sleek lines reminiscent of Keaton’s and Burton’s run with the Dark Knight.  Its got realism, its got spectacle, its the perfect!
Now, on to the Bat Suit, I really like it, but there is just something that bugs me about it.  I love the Jim Miller inspired short eared cowl, I love the large Bat Symbol and pocketed utility belt reminiscence of Frank Miller’s Dark Knight, I’m assuming the body suit may actually be grey with a black cowl and cape, a first for the movices, and all that is great…. but there is something that just doesnt seem right to me.  Maybe I have just gotten used to the body armor of Bale and Nolan that going back to a rubber/latex body suit seems strange, maybe its the weird veiny/muscle texture that’s throwing me off, or maybe Im just so used to seeing this particular look in the comics and cartoons that it hasn’t translated, in my mind anyway, to reality.  All that said, I really like this, I just need to see more images, preferably a color image, before I can say I love this.
So there you have it folks, the world didn’t end, Snyder didn’t put nipples on the Bat Suit, and Affleck looks pretty damn good as the Caped Crusader.  Im happy and excited to see how Batman V Superman comes out.  Just a quick message to Zach Snyder:  KEEP LEAKING STUFF! 
UPDATE:  Thanks to friend of the blog Dan Sellers, director of the upcoming Hank vs The Undead, for sharing the below photo.  Im not sure if this is a true to life color shot or if its a fan made re-coloring of the above photo, but we could be in store for a gray/blue, gray/black Batman!
May 14, 2014 VIEW POST
May 11, 2014 VIEW POST
May 8, 2014 VIEW POST