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"Goodbye, Jean-Luc, I'm gonna miss you. You had such potential. But then again, all good things must come to an end."
- Q, Star Trek: TNG

Geek Dad

CNN: No benefit going high-tech for math and reading

by Ken Newquist / April 9, 2007

CNN had a blurb today about a new federal study that reveals no benefit to deploying computer-assisted learning programs for students. It's a malnourished blurb written by the Associated Press but to me it illustrates one of the things wrong with education in America -- namely that people believe there is some silver atom bomb that will solve our problems.

Rise of the Nintendad

by Ken Newquist / March 14, 2007

Hat-tip to Joystiq for this Reuters story which notices that hey, parents like to game ... and they're likely to get their kids to game as well. They dub these strange creatures "Nintendads" since many grew up on Nintendo systems and are now happily doling out $250 to buy Nintendo Wiis for their kids (and themselves)

Way to catch on to a trend that's been going on for at least a decade folks! Every gamer dad I know has been breaking out their old gaming systems (what, you think we traded those in?) to educate their children on the wonders of old-school gaming. The Nintendo Wii, which allows you to buy those old school games and comes with the convenient "physical exercise" rationalization provided by Wii Sports, just lets them do that with a spiffy new gadget.

Red-Eyed, Hack-Lunged Geek Dad

by Ken Newquist / March 9, 2007

There's nothing quite like waking up in the morning with your eyes glued shut.

That's what happened to me this morning as I struggled awake on the sofa bed, annoyed at a certain yellow Labrador who was trying to push me off the mattress so she could have more room to spread out.

My eyes were crusted together, which is a lovely indicator of Pink Eye, or a Pink-Eye-like condition. And the said thing is ... that's an improvement. The last week has seen me sidelined by a particularly nasty cold that had me fighting my old nemesis Post-Nasal Drip for three days.

As per normal, I have the kids to thank for this. Both got sick last week, and took Sue down with them. I'd hoped to escape the Week of Hacking Mucus unscathed, but alas, they dragged me down on Monday.

Ken, Son of Thor, Thwarted by Samsung

by Ken Newquist / March 1, 2007

When last we saw our villain, he had just destroyed his Samsung integrated receiver/home theatre system with a touch as a spark of static electricity leapt from his finger to the power button of the system, destroying it in a flare of blue LED light.

Flash forward two weeks, and see our heroine Sue calling Samsung about the destruction of said system, which was sadly just out of warranty. Amazingly though, Samsung volunteered to fix the broken system because it was just out of warranty, thus saving our happy couple about $300 as they narrowly avoided having to buy a new stereo/dvd player. The fixed machine arrived back yesterday, and is now setup and working just fine.

Time Burn

by Ken Newquist / January 13, 2007

Ah yes, my coffee shop starts blogging, and I all but stop. It's been that kind of week. Heck, it's been that kind of Interim. Working in IT at a college, January turns into a mad, frantic rush to get everything done between when the students leave campus in December, and when they return at the end of January.

This semester is all the more stressful because of two pilot projects starting up in the spring: one for Moodle, an open source course management system, and the other for iTunes U, Apple's education-oriented take on its iTunes Music Store. There's a lot to do, and not much time to do it. So instead of writing or blogging, I've been working.

Suicide Girls: The Next Generation of Geeks

by Ken Newquist / January 4, 2007

Wil Wheaton speculates on raising the next generation of geeks, in the form of his two teenage step-sons. His success, as seems to be the case with most of my friends, is hit or miss: some things the kids love (Battlestar Galactica, Harry Potter, Munchkin, comic books, some they hate (2001, The Prisoner) and some they just don't get (Watchmen).

A Geeky Christmas to All!

by Ken Newquist / December 26, 2006

Enterprise 1701 A very merry (and hopefully, very geeky as well) Christmas to everyone! Right now the Newquist clan is basking in the occassionally turbulent afterglow of the holidays, gifts strewn across the living room and library like some sort of Toyland apocalypse. Jordan and I are escaping it for a few hours to hang out with fellow geek and long-time friend Dave and his daughter, but we'll be back by night fall to continue with the unpacking, assembling and organizing.

And gingerbread TIE Fighters zoomed in their heads...

by Ken Newquist / December 14, 2006

I have my geek tree ... this German geek has a gingerbread TIE fighter. Inspired by Darth Vadar's advanced TIE fighter from A New Hope, this thing features over-sized wings laced with white icing, I can only assume that the brown stuff holding it together is some sort of super-strength molasses. The question is, will this give rise to an entire gingerbread Empire, complete with star destroyers, death stars, and shuttles for little gingerbread rebels to steal so they can sneak on to a gumdrop moon? Only time will tell.