Weekly roundup for… um… this week.

Look, I don’t know if I’ll ever do another “Weekly Roundup”. Shit, I don’t even know what a “weekly roundup” is… but I had a bunch of little things that were percolating near the front of my noggin, and I didn’t wanna do a whole blog post about them, so I figured I’d do this sort of… “catch all” kind of post. It sounded like a good name and… oh who am I kidding? “Weekly Roundup” is the lamest name on earth. I mean honestly, if that’s any indication of the depths of my creativity, then I should just give up and go home… If I do this again, I promise I’ll be a little more creative next time with my naming…

Hold on, I’m gonna go brush my teeth. As I sit here typing, I have the distinct feeling that I’m sporting some serious morning coffee breath. Be right back…

Okay, cool.

A while back I got this sample of “Crest Whitening Expressions” toothpaste. It was an odd flavor, “Refreshing Vanilla Mint”. I wasn’t sure how I felt about it, I was conflicted. Was toothpaste supposed to taste yummy like vanilla? What exactly was “vanilla mint”? Why was I so emotionally invested in toothpaste?

So I gave it shot. Holy shit was that stuff good. We’re talking life changing good. We’re talking, “oh, THIS is why I’m emotionally invested in toothpaste…” good. I actually spent the next couple of weeks stopping at every shelf that I passed that had toothpaste on it (Target, CVS, Bi-Lo, Food Lion…) and scanned them to see if they had it anyplace. I was convinced that someone had played an elaborate prank on me and no such toothpaste existed. Then I ran into it at Bi-Lo and it was on clearance! I was both elated at having finally tracked it down, and dismayed because I had a feeling I knew what “clearance” meant. So I bought two tubes. Just trust me on this one. If you EVER, and I mean EVER see “Crest Whitening Expressions Refreshing Vanilla Mint” toothpaste, buy a tube. Don’t ponder the decision, don’t think about it. Just kneejerk impluse buy the shit out of it. You won’t regret it.

Rocketship… Powered by Typekit
Hey, notice the little logotype at the top of the page? Pretty sweet huh? Over the last decade and a half of doing web pages, the one topic that I’ve never been able to escape is at some point saying some variation of the phrase, “you can’t use that typeface on a web page”. Oh sure, it’s gotten more polished and less confrontational over the years (“I’ll specify it in the CSS, but you should just be aware that most people don’t have the font installed and probably won’t see it, but I’ll make it work for you as best I can”),  but it’s always been a source of disappointment and friction between development and design.

Well, not so much anymore. I mean, I know Typekit’s been around a while, and yeah, I know it doesn’t degrade “ever so gracefully”, wonking out in older browsers (more about my philosophy of, “fuck IE6” later, I promise) but you know, for the most part, it’s a pretty tight technology. Don’t abuse it, set up your CSS all sweet, make sure you cover your bases, and for the most part, it works pretty well. It was always on my radar, but attending a recent session at Max by Greg Veen of Typekit convinced me. I staggered up to the front, threw my arms in the air, said, “I believe!” and came back one of the converted.

So what you’re seeing is my first foray into Web Type. I like it. Additional bonus points because it’s a Blambot Typeface AND I have the added benefit of good typeface karma because it’s all on the up and up, fully licensed, legal, and approved by the board of directors (okay, there are no board of directors, I made that part up).

Hmmm… looking at it just now also made me keenly aware that I haven’t changed the blue/purple theme in over a month. I’ll have to remedy that tonight. Doesn’t quite feel “Fall” enough.

“Luke, join me, together we can rule the Galaxy”
As I type this, I’m sitting anxiously in my seat, squirming. I’m waiting for the guy from HTC to deliver my iPhone 4. I know what you’re going to say, “But Jeff, didn’t you JUST get a Droid 2 last week?”. And yes, I did. Which is precisely why I’m getting an iPhone 4 today. I’ve had my G1 now for almost exactly 2 years. I’ve ate, slept, and breathed Android. Of course, I couldn’t upgrade the OS and was forever frozen in 1.6 Hell. So it was nice to get a new phone without having to pay for it. It’s a Verizon CDMA, and I don’t have Verizon, neither does the company I work for, so there was really no way to activate it as a phone. It’s good over Wi-Fi, it will run apps, I can download development work to it for testing, and so as a development platform, it’s perfect, which finally freed me up to get an iPhone. HTC was completely awesome (seriously, those guys rock) and helped me jump from T-Mobile over to their service without so much as a moment of pain, and even offered to drop off my new phone at the office today. So it was what we refer to in the programming world as a “Win, Win, Win, Win”.

I do plan on spending some time detailing my journey to the dark side. Buying an iPhone really pushes a lot of my “daily-organizational-workflow-life-shit” into a whole new place. Calendar management, email and document sharing… I’m not really sure right now how I’m going to manage assets that I’ve grown to love in google’s cloud, but we’ll see. I’m considering a Mobile Me account, but a couple of people have said, “wait”. So I’ll wait. If anyone has any insight or reviews of Mobile Me, please share. I’d love to hear your experience.

“I’m sorry this happened to you.”
Holy crap was Walking Dead good. I have loved that series since it first began, buying it at a comic shop that doesn’t even exist anymore because it just looked cool. The greatest thing about Walking Dead is that it really isn’t about the Walking Dead. Zombies are merely a backdrop. The story is actually the people. Who they are, what they become when everything they know and love is taken from them. When you wake up one day and everything you took for granted, electricity, running water, food, friendship, trust, law & order, is just… gone. When the framework of society evaporates, what you’re left with is “what are people really like?”. As I read the series I constantly found myself saying, “would I do that?” or “would I have acted that way?” or more often, “why am I not repulsed by this person’s behavior?”. I think the series, produced (and the pilot directed by) the great Frank Darbont (yes, THAT Frank Darabont, of Shawshank Redemption fame) really nailed the essence of why the comic book resonates so deeply with its audience. I’m only one episode in, but I can already tell, this is my absolute favorite new show to watch (with “No Ordinary Family” right behind).

Okay okay… that’s enough for today. I wanted to jot some things down and wound up writing a small chapter to a novel. I’ll dig into more fun stuff and play around this weekend. My whole weekend right now revolves around taking my daughter to see, “Mega Mind”. That’s all I’m currently focused on, and when that’s the sum total of your “plate”, life is extremely good.

I think I’ll have my daughter help me write a review of it this weekend.

Oh yeah! And more Fallout: New Vegas. Holy shit am I having fun with that! Right now, hands down, bar none, the best game of 2010. It was my “game of the year” last year, and this new sequel has quickly become the front-runner for top of my 2010 list. Even more awesome is the fact that with daylight savings time, I actually get an extra hour of playtime Saturday night! Woo Hoo! Coffee and Fallout! If you haven’t played it yet, stop what you’re doing, close this browser window, get off your ass and go buy an Xbox and Fallout New Vegas. You can thank me later.

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