trying-too-hard

It’s good to be back.

Let me tell you, PAX was amazing, but as I settled back into the week I felt inexplicably unproductive. As if I had done nothing the past four days. Amongst friends, this has been called PPAD, or Post PAX Affective Disorder, which can only be described as a severe depression and deep yearning for the next PAX. The things my brain puts me through.

The events in the comic actually did happen. Everything you see was portrayed in unerring detail, right down to the waifish ‘booth babe‘ calling me a nerd.

Well alright, in her defense, that was totally made up. Also, they were lemon heads. Oh, and I politely asked where we put our guesses, and she put us down gently. My hat is very real though. Very. Real.

I placed ‘Booth Babe’ in quotes because one of the big draws to PAX is the creators’ desire to not make anyone (particularly women, in this case) feel unwelcome. This is evident in the now legendary Dickwolves incident, (in which they initially defended their right to draw any damn comic they wanted, but acquiesced in regards to the expo) and in the ban on booth babes. That’s right. There are no booth babes. All exhibitors “need to be trained/educated about the product.”

Despite being a raging womanizer (Don’t tell my wives) I agree with their decision. It’s corny and demeaning. Plus, I get annoyed when I see an blatant displays of the ‘sex sells’ code of marketing. It’s cheap and it’s easy.

Most exhibitors skirt around the rule by making sure to pick the prettiest of their sales reps to come to the expo, but for the most part, the sirens are kept to a respectable level. Besides, there are enough half-naked cosplayers running around if you’re into that sort of thing. Me? This is SRS BSNS. So lady, please remove your supple breasts from around my face. I’m trying to buy dice here. Jebus. Now where’s that d100?

We really did try to crowdsource the non-existent contest though!  Crowdsourcing is a term coined by Wired Editor Jeff Howe to describe the act of utilizing large groups of people to solve problems or fund projects. In this case, the wisdom of crowds was used to try to guess how many lemon heads were in a jar. Except it was among a crowd of two or three. I can’t remember. So it was more like… guysourcing. Another example is the recent rise of Kickstarter, an organization that helps people raise funds by connecting them to a wider pool of potential donors. Recently, the Imagination Station in Detroit made headlines when it raised over $50,000 to build a statue of Robocop. Hell yeah!

While it remains to be seen whether Detroit will actually go through with the erection of such a monument to 80′s Sci-fi, this is truly the wisdom of crowds.

 

This comic has been brought to you by Quantum Tunneling, which I mentioned a while back. Here Dr. Moriarty (Best name ever) explains how it is used in touch screens.

In case you didn’t see, we posted a butt-load (this is a real measurement. sort of. I’ll explain later) of photos on the Facebook page.

Shoutout to Stupid Evil Bastard for sharing the Red Flags of Quackery, which is all over the googles now.

Announcement: The Northeast Conference on Science and Skepticism is coming up fast! It is without a doubt the premier summit for Science and Skepticism this side of TAM. If you live in this corner of the USA, I urge you to grab some tickets, get up here a day early and drink with us. Then oversleep and miss everything! No no, I kid, I kid. You can’t miss this event. Phil Plait the Bad Astronomer will be delivering the keynote this year, and George Hrab will be performing as well. For more info head over to the NECSS Home Page and IMBIBE IT.

For the be all end all about Crowdsourcing, you can read Jeff Howe’s book/blog, called uh… Crowdsourcing. Go fig!