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Showing posts from July, 2014

Tabletop Gaming: Adventure Time Card Wars

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I was recently browsing in a game store and came upon an interesting box that I knew the Dude would love: it was the Adventure Time Card Wars game. In real life.

Card Wars started off as a fictional game portrayed in the cartoon show Adventure Time (see the episode below). In the show, the main characters Finn (the human) and Jake (the dog) square off in a rousing card game which escalates into the usual insanity that defines the show.

[Aside: If you've never seen Adventure Time, I basically describe it as Ren & Stimpy on crack. I still haven't figured out if you're supposed to watch it when high or never ever watch it when high. LOL]

The game setup is basically similar to other tabletop card games like Magic the Gathering: two opponents, each gets some land and a basic hand of cards containing some combination of characters, buildings and/ or spells. The goal is to build up an army and wage wars on the opponent's territories, with the intent to reduce their life …

Ottawa Geek Social Club: Meetups For Getting Your Geek On

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So, I was looking for geeky things to do with the fam in July and came across this Meetup Group: The Ottawa Geek Social Club.

There is a group of people in Ottawa whose sole purpose is to get together and do geeky things.
I had no idea.

OGSC is meant to bring together folks of the geeky persuasion from the Ottawa area. With its 19+ (age) membership, they target adults, however they do have some kid-friendly events. Wondering if you're geeky enough? They certainly do seem open to just about anyone based on their profile:
Calling all geeks! Socialites and shy; trekkies and star wars buffs; cosplayers and bookworms; fluent in MS-DOS and Objective C and those who don't even know what those are; workers, students and non-workers; alliance and horde players! There are 619 members according to their Meetup page and 24 upcoming meetups, including such things as game nights, stargazing and movie nights, nerdy speed dating :), geek garage sales (yes, please) and OMFG: the Saturday Morn…

UXCamp Ottawa Update: Regular Tickets go on Sale Today

Just a quick note to let you know that if you missed the Early Bird tickets earlier this week, you'd better keep an eye out for the first batch of regular-priced tickets going on sale TODAY. 100 tickets will be released and they don't last long!Buy UXCamp ticketsP.S. Not sure if UXCamp is for you? Read this!

UXCamp Ottawa 5 Tickets Are on Sale NOW! (UPDATED)

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UPDATE: YOU GUYS. Early Bird tickets sold out in less than half a day. Heed my advice and follow that link to the UXCamp site to get on the mailing list and so you can find out when the regular prices tickets are released! This is going to be a great UXCamp!

Did you get the most lovely email in your inbox overnight? The one declaring Early Bird tickets to be on sale for UXCamp?

(If not, you need to head over to the UXCamp site, scroll down to the footer and register to be on the mailing list. These are announcements of the utmost importance, people!)

Here's the scoop: there are 100 Early Bird tickets available at $189 apiece. Once those are gone, we'll have regular tickets for $249. And then there will be last minute tickets at $299. So really, you should get on this ASAP.

In fact, you're kind of late, already. The tickets were released at 1:30am and the first two tickets were gone by 1:34! How insane is that?!

Overview of UXCamp Ottawa 5 If you've been to a UXCamp bef…

On Conferences and Quotas: A Conference Organizer's Perspective

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As many of you know, I am a co-chair of UXCamp Ottawa, Canada's largest user experience community conference. I've been asked numerous times how I feel about being a woman who runs a conference that is male-dominated. So I thought I would write down my response once and for all.

I don't believe in quotas. I believe in equal opportunities.

I run an annual conference that generally seems to have a highly male roster of speakers. But it's not for lack of trying.

Our goal when we set out to create the lineup for each event is to find speakers who are "doing something interesting this year" - we want to find the best speakers this year for our event. That way we can keep the topics timely for the conference audience. We don't want to bring in someone who was really great 10 years ago but hasn't done anything relevant since. So we're definitely selective with the people that we invite; we're picky, but we don't discriminate. Especially on gende…

Science Explains Why We Blew on Nintendo Games (video)

One of the fun things about being bilingual is that I indulge in geekery from places like France. Language not being a barrier, I follow some great French blogs like Le Journal du Geek. And good thing, too, since one of their posts taught me (and now, you!) some science this weekend. The best kind of science, too: science that has to do with geekery.

Even better.

In fact, I have to say that I absolutely loved this video. The title seems a little link-bait-ish at first, but then it all comes together quite nicely. You see, they don't get to the part about blowing on cartridges until around the 2:40 mark. What they do cover in the first two and a half minutes is all about cognitive science.

What. Wha?

It turns out that our penchant for blowing into our Nintendo cartridges has nothing to do with physics or chemistry or even technology. It has everything to do with sociology and cultural norms. Who knew?

A science lesson wrapped up in retro gaming awesomeness and just a hint of an incr…

Summer Science: What Makes Your Ears Ring? (video)

So, it's the summer and hopefully the kids have not yet been out of school long enough to start proclaiming how bored they are. I mean, between Canada Day this past Tuesday and Independence Day tomorrow, there should be no shortage of celebration and awesomeness, regardless which side of the border you are on.

Now, if you're anything like me, you spend these types of celebrations at events with loud music and fireworks. And you might come home afterwards with the. most. annoying. problem.

P.A.R.I.T.E.
That is, post-awesomeness ringing in the ears.
Totally a thing, amirite?

This year was no different for me; in fact, annoyingly, I still had it a bit of tinnitis the next day (which I take to be a sign of my fallibilityaging).

So what causes tinnitis? Can it cause permanent damage? The answers from SciShow might surprise you. It's a quick, insightful video packed with plenty of info. So grab the kiddos and gather round the YouTubes for a great little summer science lesson!