Monthly Archives: August 2011

My Dragon*Con 2011 Schedule

I’m a guest at Dragon*Con again this year, which means I’ll be on all kinds of panels. If you’re wanting to find me to say hi or to hang out, your best bet is to find me right after one of these panels. Or you could haunt the Hilton — that’s where all of my panels are save the Late Show.

The Dragon*Con Late Show. Every morning at 9 I and my co-hosts Brian and Ally will go through the latest news, schedule changes, and what’s hot for the day. This gets broadcast on the host hotel channels, so you don’t even have to leave bed!

D-Wave One: The First Commercial Quantum Computer. Friday, 11:30 AM, Hilton 201.
The first quantum computer is now available on the market. Who is buying them and why? Are they ready for prime time? Can encryption be broken?

Answer key: Lockheed Martin, to play with it and see what it can do, sort of, not yet. I expect this one is going to be all kinds of fun, and should be accessible to anyone who’s willing to learn a little bit of binary.

Planet Hunting: Watching Stars Wobble & Dim. Friday, 8:30 PM, Hilton 203.
The new ‘in’ field of astronomy is the search for exo-planets but we don’t have the technology to ‘see’ an exo-planet. So how are we finding so many?

The description is actually inaccurate: we now can see extrasolar planets! And I have to admit, it’s extremely cool that we can. I’ll run through the history of exoplanets including some of the embarrassing claims that turned out not to be planets.

Evil Geniuses for a Better Tomorrow: 9th Annual Recrument Drive. Saturday, 1:00 PM, Hilton Crystal Ballroom.
Methods of taking over the world for fun and profit – demos and audience participation. Plus evil ice-cream and a working nuclear reactor!

We’re not kidding about either the ice cream or the nuclear reactor. My co-panelists and I will go through real mad science, the crazy stuff we’ve been doing, and how to survive as an evil minion.

What The Cast – Live! Sunday, 2:30 PM, Hilton 204.
Join Brian, Crispy, Patrick and Stephen (the team behind DragonConTV) for nerd punditry at its best.

Or at least funny nerd punditry. Last year we had a guy in a squid hat, the team behind Chad Vader, and our one Zune listener. Who knows what we’ll have this year? (Seriously: we don’t even know. That’s improv for you!)

Helicopter Drone Units. Sunday, 5:30 PM, Hilton 208/209.
Autonomous helicopter drone talk and tentative demonstration.

Sadly no demonstration, as the quadcopter demo isn’t ready for prime time yet, but I will go through the awesomeness that is robot helicopters and how they’re taking over the world.

RevolutionSF’s RevCast – Live! Monday, 1:00 PM, Hilton 204.
Join the crew from RevolutionSF for a live recording.

Well, the crew from RevolutionSF and me. I’ve guested on several RevCasts and had a blast, so I’m looking forward to doing it live with the crew.

So come say hi! Stop by one of my panels and ask pointed questions! It’ll be fun.

First Day of Second Grade

And Liza starts preschool tomorrow.

We stepped outside this morning to take this photo and there was a cool breeze blowing. Nice change of pace to the hot weather we’ve been subjected to most of the summer. The summer is over and I’m glad to see it go. I’d like very much now to settle into a boring routine for at least six months.

It’s a Disasterpiece!

I’m pleased to announce Disasterpiece Theatre, a new podcast in which I and my co-host Alex White come up with the worst idea for a movie that we think Hollywood might actually make. We pick a topic, like animal horror, or an actor, like Milla Jovovich, and each come up with a movie that we pitch to the other. Then, in grand Hollywood tradition, we tell each other how wonderful the idea is, but that it still needs a bit of tweaking…. By the end we’ve got some awesomely terrible movie ideas.

Don’t believe me? How about a Betty White and Tracy Morgan buddy dramedy where Tracy raps? Or a period family drama starring Milla Jovovich, Brian Dennehey and Albert Finney in which Milla Jovovich is in the Vietnam war?

By the way, those are some of our less-bad ideas so far.

So head to the website and listen to me and Alex describe our bad movies while our long-suffering producer Brooke Fox tries to rein us in. You can also subscribe through iTunes. We’re also on Twitter, should you wish to tell us your terrible movie idea.

We’re Up For Two 2011 Parsec Awards!

Two of the podcasts I’m involved with are finalists for the 2011 Parsec Awards, which celebrate excellence in speculative fiction-related podcasts. WhatTheCast is up for Best Speculative Fiction Fan or News Podcast (General), and Dragon*Con TV is in the running for the Best Speculative Fiction Comedy/Parody Podcast. I’m excited that both are finalists, especially given the competition in those categories. Come Dragon*Con 2011, we’ll see if we win!