Wins and Fails This Week in Geek v 8

What do you get when you take away a caps lock key and put a death ray there instead? You get a technologically-advanced wine vending machine with robust DNS service. No, the preceding were not sentences spat out by blog spam bots. They’re just part of the wacky wild fun that’s been this week in geek. Read on…

WIN: Superpowers
With the apparently unceremonious departure of Charles “Chic” Eglee from the creative team at The Walking Dead last week came a boon for fans of Brian Michael Bendis’ cop tale Powers. Word has it this week that Eglee has been pondering making Powers into a television series for months. As the series crosses the ever-popular police drama genre with stories of superheroes and supervillains, it might just have what it takes to be a commercial hit. Eglee certainly backed the right horse with The Walking Dead, after all. More superpowers on our television? Maybe we’re the ones who win this one.

FAIL: Caps Lock Paranoia
Keen-eyed and concerned folks noticed the Google Chrome notebook appears to be without a Caps Lock key, which sparked a considerable amount of angry grumbling this week despite the fact that the average geek’s eyes bleed at the mere appearance of “noob-ish” ALL CAPS. Never fear, however; Google hasn’t done away with the key altogether. They’ve merely allowed users the choice of modifying key functions.

WIN: Wine Connoisseurs
If you love wine, live in Pennsylvania, and have a thing for creative (if not slightly dubious) application of technology, you’ll be pleased with this recent development. Walmart’s found a loophole in Pennsylvania legislation that otherwise makes it illegal to sell booze in grocery stores: sell it in a vending machine. A vending machine that scans your ID, shows your face real-time via CCTV to a state official off-site for verification, and gives you a breathalyzer to check that you’re not over-indulging. The machines are in place in select stores, and may be spreading throughout the state soon.

FAIL: Fact Checking
When WikiLeaks was knocked off the grid due to DNS service revocation, the press misidentified the culprit company as EasyDNS – when, in fact, the company responsible was EveryDNS. The end result of this seemingly minor mistake? When any story about something as explosive as WikiLeaks hits the New York Times, correct information or not, attention is attracted. In this case, not so nice attention. EasyDNS were the targets of multiple attempts at retaliation, but in actuality they agreed to help WikiLeaks when they were approached about services.

WIN: Mythbusters
What do you get when you cross 500 schoolkids with President Obama and something called the Archimedes Death Ray? It’s not a plot from one of the several Barack comic books floating around out there – more’s the pity. It’s an episode of Mythbusters that aired this week, in which the myth busting team tackled the Archimedes Death Ray concept for the third time – with some (scripted) help from the Commander in Chief. If for no reason other than giving us the ability to discuss the President of the United States and “death ray” in the same sentence, Mythbusters FTW.

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