Laura "Tegan" Gjovaag
Saturday, December 17, 2005
I gotta confess, I went a little nuts with Frappr after I learned about it from Mike Sterling.
I made three maps. One for this blog, Bloggity-Map-Map-Map, one for Aquaman Fans, and a last one for Oz Fans Around The World.
I'm in awe of Mike, whose map has 155 entries as of this writing. The most any of my maps got was the Oz one, which has 40 entries at the moment, and we advertised it on The Oz Blog, Eric's mailing list, and the Oz Club message board. Bloggity-Map-Map-Map stalled out at 19 entries, and there are apparently only 9 Aquaman Fans around (oddly, that doesn't surprise me much).
Friday, December 16, 2005
New Favorite Program
I never understood the appeal of a sticky notes program. I preferred the original hand-written notes, if anything at all. And for longer stuff, I have a text file on my desktop that I use. So what's the point of a sticky notes program?
Well, after reading that 46 freeware utilities article, I decided to try one just because. I was giving a lot of those utilities a chance after reading the article, and found some good ones. I picked Stickies because it looked like the most simple one available, and sounded solid and reliable.
I'm in love.
It's a really simple program, yes, but very powerful. I put it in my startup, and it's always running in the background. And it's not a memory hog, either, which had me a little worried. No, it's a very small program, with no extra garbage in it at all.
I wasn't sure I'd use it, but the review mentioned alarms, so I tried it. And I quickly discovered that it can completely fill the spot on my system formerly occupied by Mozilla Sunbird. See, I used to use Outlook, which had nifty recurring alarms that I really needed to keep myself on track. Then I switched over to Sunbird when I got rid of all the MS Office stuff, and to my dismay the alarm function on Sunbird doesn't work right. I was really missing my alarms... but Stickies alarms can do every single thing, including recurrence, that I wanted from Sunbird and used to get from Outlook. (I'll note here that I still want a good calendar program that can import sports' schedules and stuff, but Sunbird is just way too buggy and memory hogging for me right now. At least I have my alarms back!)
To my surprise, I'm also starting to use it as an actual sticky note program, with a To Do list on my desktop most of the time. And during those times I want to have a clean desktop, I set any stickies I don't want to lose to sleep for awhile, and viola! Clean desktop until the notes wake up. If I accidently close a note I didn't want to get rid of, I can recover it as long as I don't keep closing notes (the program saves a user-set number of closed notes, just in case).
This particular program also has network and e-mail options, but I'm not very interested in them. It would be nice to send stickies to hubby-Eric, but unfortunately his OS isn't supported (he's a Mac guy, I use PCs (I wonder if his Mac sticky program can read notes I send to him from this one?)). Still, the alarm function alone makes this program worth it for me. And I was also able to do a quick skin customization to make it fit my desktop style (which is Windows classic in green). I also have the option of changing the styles of notes: the background colors and font styles, and can save up to ten different styles. I made a style with courier font for certain types of lists, which is useful.
The drawbacks are few. I had to strain to think of any. I could only think of two, and they are minor, to say the least. The first would be the lack of a way to minimize notes. The sleep function makes up for it, in my opinion, but it might be useful to be able to drop them to the program bar instead of having them on the desktop. Then again, that would kind of defeat the purpose, too.
The other issue I have isn't even with the main Stickies program, but with one of the tools the programmer offers to go with it. It's called Stickies Store and I simply cannot get it to work on my machine at all. I'd love to have it, even in its limited form. I'd love it even better if it automatically stored any closed Stickies then allowed you to delete anything you didn't want to keep. But I can't get it to work at all. A minor disappointment, to be sure, yet a disappointment nonetheless.
All-in-all, I love this program. I'm really glad to have my alarms back, and in a better format than either Outlook or Sunbird ever provided. If you have need of a reminder program, give this one a try. I'm sure glad I did, even though I was certain I'd never use a sticky notes program of any kind.
Update: After reading my review, the programmer e-mailed me to help troubleshoot my issues with Stickies Store, and fixed everything. I now have it working nicely. I suspect that this is going to be one of those programs that I support with a donation. Once I have a little money to spare.
Thursday, December 15, 2005
If you are driving on the freeway, and the person in the fast lane isn't going fast enough for you, do NOT move over to the slow lane and start flashing your high beams at the person driving over there. If you absolutely must flash your high beams and make a complete ass of yourself, do it in the fast lane.
By the same token, don't drive in the fast lane unless you are, at the very least, going faster than the traffic in the slow lane. And in general, don't get in the flippin' fast lane unless you are passing.
If people just obeyed basic traffic laws and used common sense while driving, road rage would never happen.
Wednesday, December 14, 2005
Mark Waid talks about the Legion title change. Eric and I aren't certain we'll continue buying Legion after OYL.
Doctor Who - Attack of the Graske.
TangognaT reports that the Earthsea books are going Anime. Oooooh.
Ever wanted to know your birthday in another calendar? Try the Calendar Converter. I was particularly interested in seeing how my birthday looks in Mayan (since I've been reading, and enjoying, 1491).
Girl Genius Carols.
Boing Boing Links:
Tuesday, December 13, 2005
Rapid Reviews - 30 November 2005
Wonder Woman #223: "Marathon Part One": Diana breaking her oath in order to save her people. About right. Sums it up. I wasn't all that interested in the fighting in this issue, and there just wasn't much more, so it qualifies as ok, nothing more.
Batman #647: "Franchise Part 2: The Away Team": Ok, I'm beginning to understand. The Black Mask wants the Red Hood dead, and Batman can't help but try to help Red Hood because Red Hood is an ex-partner. And they work well as a team. But if you were to jump right in, like I did, it takes too many issues to figure out.
JLA: Classified #14: "New Maps of Hell Part Five": Ok, this book suddenly has more significance to me because the art is by Jackson "Butch" Guice who is the new Aquaman artist. Fortunately for me, then that there are a couple of good "water" moments in this issue, including Wonder Woman in a liquid universe and a scene looking up out of water from Green Lantern's point of view. The story, which involves the JLA fighting nightmares, doesn't do much for me. But the art is good.
Legion of Super-Heroes #12: Not a bad issue. One character makes an unforgettable entrance, and some serious fighting happens. The backup story was good, too. Not bad. About superhero average.
Neil Gaiman's Neverwhere #5: "Chapter Five": Again, I like this one, and again, I'm glad I haven't read the story it's based on yet. I'm sure I wouldn't like it nearly as much if I was comparing it to me own mental image of the story. I'm definitely enjoying this book.
Usagi Yojimbo #89: "The Treasure of the Mother of Mountains: Chapter Seven": Tomoe's worries become remarkably vivid, and I really liked how the story worked through it all. A fine ending to a good tale.
Wonderful Wizard of Oz: I was expecting something interesting from Richard Maurizio, a new graphic interpretation of the book. But this is just a reprint of the book, right down to Baum's intro, with a handful of coloring-book style pages in the center. Those pictures alone might have made the book worth it, but they are all extremely derivative and very simplistic. There's nothing new here. If you want a copy of the book to give to somebody, you might consider this. But if you want a new version of the book with new images... find something else.
Aquaman Cover in Color
Monday, December 12, 2005
Solicits are Up
DC for March is up, also at Newsarama and Comic Book Resources.
AQUAMAN: SWORD OF ATLANTIS #40
It's the Bloggity-Map-Map-Map
I noticed that Magnificent Mike had made a Frappr Map for folks to point out where they are from, so I went ahead and made one for Bloggity. Feel free to join in and point out where you hail from.
How close did Aquaman come to cancellation? From Kurt:
"When Dan says the book was on the verge of cancellation, he's not kidding. Had he and I not wound up talking that day, it'd have been too late..."Elayne Riggs tells us about her hospital experience.
The Foglios are tormenting their audience with a fill-in Fan Fiction story by Shaenon K. Garrity and Phil Foglio for the next two weeks. And you can still check out the radio show via this RSS/Podcast link.
FilkerTom points out that somebody poisoned the well, and it's only the symptom of something worse.
BBC Radio 3 is going to play all of Bach's works in a ten day marathon ending on Christmas Day.
Sunday, December 11, 2005
Rapid Review - Manga Online
Manga Online, for December 2005. Here's July, August, September, October and November.
I'm not going to review chapters that are continuations of ones I reviewed already and disliked, so if you see it on the page but not in my list, I probably didn't like it much. I'm also keeping new features separate from continuing features.
Another annoyance. The website stopped accepting my password, then refused to send me a replacement one. After nearly a month of trying, I gave up and tried to reregister, but it wouldn't let me use the same e-mail address, so I had to use a different one just to reregister. VERY annoying, especially as you need a membership to read the entire previews now.
Previously Reviewed Titles:
Only two new ones this month, which is a nice change. I'm almost reading too many of them already.