Support SaysBrad
  • (Most Compact 20000mAh Portable Charger) Anker PowerCore 20100 - Ultra High Capacity Power Bank with Most Powerful 4.8A Output, PowerIQ Technology
    (Most Compact 20000mAh Portable Charger) Anker PowerCore 20100 - Ultra High Capacity Power Bank with Most Powerful 4.8A Output, PowerIQ Technology
    Anker

    This thing, you need. Run your smartphone for days.

  • Klear Screen iKlear Cleaning Kit for iPad, iPhone, Galaxy, LCD, Plasma TV, Computer Monitor and Keyboard (Cloth, Wipes and Spray)
    Klear Screen iKlear Cleaning Kit for iPad, iPhone, Galaxy, LCD, Plasma TV, Computer Monitor and Keyboard (Cloth, Wipes and Spray)
    Klear Screen

    I use this cleaner for my iPhone, iPad 3, iPad mini and MacBook Pro. It’s great all-around and won’t mess up the oleophobic coating on iOS device screens.

  • Arctic Silver 5 Thermal Compound 3.5 Grams
    Arctic Silver 5 Thermal Compound 3.5 Grams
    Artic Silver

    If you’re having problems with your Adonit Jot capacitive touch stylus or Hex3 Jaja, you can improve its performance and reliability with careful application of thermal paste! For more on this, check out my capacitive touch stylus how-to fix-it guide. Months later (Sep 2013), my styli are still performing great!

  • Adonit Jot Touch with Pixelpoint pressure sensitive stylus for iPad - Black
    Adonit Jot Touch with Pixelpoint pressure sensitive stylus for iPad - Black
    Adonit

    Adonit Jot with Pixelpoint, works with a lot of new drawing apps on iPad.

  • Klear Screen's iKlear 8 oz. Pump Spray Bottle 7351-IKHP, Others, Electronics & Computers
    Klear Screen's iKlear 8 oz. Pump Spray Bottle 7351-IKHP, Others, Electronics & Computers
    Klear Screen

    The stuff I use to keep my iPad screen nice and clean!

  • Cosmonaut: Wide-Grip Stylus for Capacitive Touch Screens
    Cosmonaut: Wide-Grip Stylus for Capacitive Touch Screens
    Studio Neat

    Awesome capacitive touch stylus created by Studio Neat. Great guys, great product. I use mine every day! Bradtastic Approved.

  • Adonit Jot Pro Stylus for iPad, iPhone, iPod Touch, and Other Touch Screens (ADJPG)
    Adonit Jot Pro Stylus for iPad, iPhone, iPod Touch, and Other Touch Screens (ADJPG)
    Adonit

    Adonit Jot Pro is an awesome capacitive touch stylus for iPad & other tablets.

  • Pencil by FiftyThree Digital Stylus for iPad Air, iPad Mini and iPad 3/4 - Walnut
    Pencil by FiftyThree Digital Stylus for iPad Air, iPad Mini and iPad 3/4 - Walnut
    FiftyThree

    Even if you consider yourself a casual doodler or note-taker, you’ll love this well designed stylus. Built for Paper by FiftyThree, the iPad app — however, many other apps support Pencil.

  • Bicycle Standard Index Playing Cards (Pack of 2)
    Bicycle Standard Index Playing Cards (Pack of 2)
    Sportsman Supply Inc.

    Playing Cards for your password creation or poker game!

My Amazon.com Wish List
If you’re looking for an app, need personal or corporate branding, marketing material, an illustration, logo, sketch or design — there’s a Brad for that!

Entries in games (11)

Saturday
Dec202014

Winning Video Poker and a much needed change in luck

Video Poker is a game of variance, skill and luck.

Even a knowledgeable player playing an advantage game can lose a ton of money really quickly. An advantage game one is where the player actually has an edge over the house — in Video Poker, this advantage is usually no more than a few percent if you include cashback, comps and casino perks. The best consistent game in Reno offers players a 0.762% advantage on the base game (Full Pay Deuces Wild).

I’ve been on a bit of losing streak, aka negative fluctuation. These fluctuations are the real world results of variance, or the standard deviation from the expected return (ER). Example: holding four cards to a Royal Flush has a 1 in 47 chance of turning into a Royal Flush; on single play, I’ve been dealt over 60 of these (RF4) without completing the Royal Flush. This isn’t very unusual, but it does suck.

Because the Royal Flush makes up, on average, between 2.5-3% of a game’s return, any given cycle without a Royal is played at a negative. Royal Flush Cycles (the average number of hands played between hitting Royal Flushes) are usually between 37,000 and 44,000 hands, and unfortunately, it’s not unlikely that you’ll play through several cycles without a Royal.

Understanding the math behind the game makes session losses a lot less painful, but it still sucks when you’re trying to make money and leave with less than you started with. Playing Video Poker is not an easy moneymaking endeavor; if you play less than perfectly (failing to hold the mathematically most valuable cards every time — not always intuitive or psychologically easy), you cannot expect the theoretical return in the long run.

And then there’s Lady Luck.

Good luck, or bad, makes up a significant part of the Video Poker experience. Any given day, you can do everything right and lose your entire bankroll while the idiot next to you plays poorly a terrible short-pay game, hits Four-of-a-Kind after Full House after Flush and feels like a genius. Although mildly irritating, I accept it. I also know that that sort of player will be a long-term loser, and that that type of play keeps casinos open 24/7.

As stated, recently, my luck hasn’t been great. I normally play Deuces Wild ; when dealt three Deuces (or any three-of-a-kind), drawing two leaves a 1 in 23.5 chance of getting that elusive final card. I’d been dealt three deuces 51 times on single-play and 11 times on triple play (three line Spin Poker) without getting a fourth Deuce. Many times I’d thrown away Straight Flushes (such as WWW45) and Five of a Kind (WWW77) when 5oK pays 75 instead of 80 coins (as it does on NSUD, normally a 99.73% return game) and ended up with a 25 or 20 coin Four-of-a-Kind.

And then finally on Sunday, magic happened.

I was essentially killing time before a slot tournament, playing off $20 free play with a 5¢ Spin Poker machine with the NSU version of Deuces Wild, playing three lines (75¢ per play). A few hands go by, some missed Wild Royal Flush chances… and then I’m dealt Three Deuces — and it completes in the center line. Woo! Though only a $50 win, it was still a relief to finally see the elusive hand.

I played a few more hands, was dealt a Straight Flush playing nine lines (+$22.50) cashed out, and moved to my usual 25¢ “progressive” NSU Deuces Wild game.

(It’s called Progressive, but the reality is that the Royal Flush is just set at a perpetual $1199 — one dollar underneath the W2-G amount and $199 more than a normal quarter machine Royal Flush.)

Initially, I was dealt into several Flushes and natural Full Houses (no wild cards), drew into a bunch of Full Houses some Straights. And then luck turned and $70 turned into $1.25 really quickly.

I dropped in another $20 and fluctuated between $30 and $2.50 over five minutes. I was considering quitting to walk around a bit because nothing exciting was happening. A lot of Wild Royal misses. Not fun. Last hand, I suppose.

I was dealt a single Deuce and garbage. On average, holding a solitary Deuce is worth about even money. I’ll get my bet back and cash out. Draw.

The remaining three spill out. +$250

Up about $300 for the 35 minute session with hours until my slot tournament round, I played for an hour or so and stayed even. I hadn’t eaten lunch, so at 5pm I went to the Chinese restaurant in the casino and had a decent fried rice while relaxing, resting, writing/working a bit and watching some YouTube videos. After eating, I still had a few minutes to kill, so I sat down again. Put $25 in and lost most of it really quickly, and then drew a Five-of-a-Kind.

At 6:30 I played my slot tournament round, got a decent score but nowhere near the top ten (I did manage to place finally last week, somewhere between 21st-40th, at JA Nugget in Sparks, NV — winning $100 free play), and headed over to another casino (Grand Sierra Resort) to pick up a free gift that they give away every Sunday. It happened to be a Christmas dinnerware set; apparently, it was extremely popular because they ran out and needed to get more from the stock room. Twenty minute wait I was told. Sigh.

At this casino, the best game I’ve found is a particular Progressive Double Double Bonus quarter machine.

Recently on Instagram, I was indirectly criticized for playing $1199 Royal Flush Jacks or Better (99.956% return) instead of (probably 9/6 — Full House returning 9 coins per coin bet, Flushes returning 6) DDB (a practically unplayable 98.98% return). However, because the GSR progressive was at a decent number, it’s playable, albeit volatile.

The night prior, I hit four Queens twice in five minutes ($125) so psychologically, I felt good about the game. Plus, I needed to earn some tier points to get the next level card (Earning me a free buffet every Tuesday. My parents like to go there on Tuesday).

I sat down and started playing, staying fairly even. A few Flushes and Full Houses, many Three-of-a-Kinds and tons of duds. About 25 minutes in, I thought that the sets were stocked so I hit the service button so an attendant could watch the machine for a moment. A minute later, a slot guy came by. Right then, I was dealt a Full House, Aces and Eights. I immediately hit hold on the Aces.

While many people are probably happy with a guaranteed 45 coins, ($11.25) it’s the wrong play. By a lot. Playing Double Double Bonus, Aces are worth so much that you toss the pair and keep the three Aces. Most of the time, this will end with a 15 coin Three-of-a-Kind; on a rare occasion, it will become a Full House again (albeit with another pair since it’s impossible to draw discarded cards). Very rarely, it will become Four Aces (worth 818 coins on this particular machine, though normally 800).

But when luck is on your side…

I was just about to leave to get the free Christmas set before drawing two replacement cards, but thought, I shouldn’t leave the machine mid-game. I hit draw.

Woohoo!

Very, very rarely, three Aces becomes Four Aces w/ 2,3,4 — a hand that normally pays 2000 coins, or $500 on a quarter machine — but this progressive was at $547, or 2188 coins. That’s why you don’t just hold the Full House with three Aces. Most of the time it’ll be disappointing, but occasionally: jackpot!

In this DDB game with the 2188 coin progressive 4 Aces w/ Kicker and 818 coin Four Aces, a Full House is worth just 9 coins for every coin bet for a total guaranteed return of 45. Holding three Aces and drawing two is worth an average of 13.1665 coins — about 1.46 times more than the Full House.

In the long run, holding the Full House instead of just the Aces on a quarter machine will cost you about $5 each time.

After this big win, I cashed out, got my free Christmas dish set and checked my tier points. I was close to upgrading my card, so I went back to play the machine. (Incidentally, since hitting the Aces with kicker, the game went from being practically even to a slightly negative game.) Unfortunately, someone was sitting there playing Video Keno (a game with a huge house edge) 5¢ per play. With several bucks in the machine, I thought it’d be a long wait. Unfortunately, there’s only one in the progressive bank of machines set with a good payable, and he happens to sit there and play a game he could find on dozens of nearby machines. I almost offered $5 for the seat; I wasn’t thrilled about it however, because the game was worth slightly less due to the progressive reset. Fortunately, he ran out of money and left after several minutes.

Since I only needed a few tier points, I didn’t need to play too many more hands. Fortunate, since I wasn’t really feeling well. Twenty or so hands in, nothing exciting. I was about to leave, down about $20 or so. And then I hit four Sixes.

With perfect play on a positive game, you’ll still lose about 60% of the time.

If you’re going to play Video Poker with the goal of making money, know that after any several hour session you play, you’re likely leave the casino with less money than you started with. Competent players can play 500-900 hands per hour; most people play quite a bit slower than that. Within a several thousand hand sample size, it’s unlikely that you’ll hit a jackpot hand, which can account for 2-3% of the game’s payback (depending on the game type).

It’s a very risky way to try to make some money, but if and when you do hit that big hand, it’s pretty nice. If you’re going to play, remember the odds and the math — and practice, practice, practice.

For more Video Poker stuff, check out my Instagram (@bradtastic).


Since I normally play Deuces Wild, here’s a bit about the variations worth playing:

The NSU game paytable (99.73%), betting five coins, should have the following numbers from Royal Flush down to Three-of-a-Kind: 4000=1000=125=80=50-20-20-15-10-5 — With the $1199 Royal Flush, this game has a slightly positive return.

Full Pay Deuces Wild (100.762%): 4000-1000-125-75-45-25–15-10-5 — It seems like a lesser paytable, but the 25 coins for Four-of-a-Kind makes all the difference. In Deuces Wild, 4oK is a common hand due to the presence of the wild cards, mathematically more frequent than Full Houses, Flushes and Straights, appearing about 6.5% of the time.

Note: These variations of the same game cannot be played the same way. There are numerous strategy changes based on the payout.

Lastly, I’m not a “video poker expert” — if you’re looking to learn, check out books by Bob Dancer and Dan Paymar. Good place to start. If you’re looking to check unique paytables, check out the Wizard of Odds Video Poker Strategy Calculator. It lists the odds of the game, probabilities and generates a strategy chart.

Wednesday
Jan152014

Mac and More, "Quick" Update!

Hey, everyone. Things have been hectic and stressful around here, but I’m hoping to get some writing finished today and tomorrow. I was going to write about markdown and apps straightaway, but I want to address recent revelations about the theft of customer information at Target — the 2013 Black Friday hacks. I don’t like the way Target is handling it, and I’ll explain why in detail. I found out about the severity of the issue because of an email target sent! but almost didn’t trust it because their email is super-sketchy and looks like phishing spam!

 

I hope that you aren’t affected by Target’s negligence and the data thieves. Everything about identity theft is stressful.

 

Also, I want to share more Mac OS X (Mavericks) tips that I’ve come across, in particular:

 

  • How to get rid of (disable) the pesky, nigh-useless (redundant, slow) OSX Dashboard… and how to get it back again later if you change your mind.
  • How to access the iCloud Photo stream without opening iPhoto.

 

Sort of like my post about removing apps from Launchpad, these are a few things that I wanted, and believe that it may be of interest to other Mac users.


 

Last, if you like strategic cards games and anime, check out Tanto Cuore.

 

Superb gameplay that really doesn’t have much to do with anime or maids. I’ve been a bit obsessed with Crunchyroll recently.


If you’d like a 48-hour all access pass, leave a comment about your favorite anime or drama, and send me an email!

I need some way to send you the code :-) I only have a few, and it’s first come, first served!


Well, if you get Tanto Cuore and want to play it with me, you’re at the top of the list. ;-)

 

Thursday
Sep192013

Birthday

"Happy Birthday, dear Bradley..."

On Monday, my birthday passed by quietly. No Hawaiian vacation, Disneyland trip or Reno excursion... just a quiet evening with family (sans sister, unfortunately, due to proximity) and it was just fine by me.

It's been a difficult year. Illness and disability has kept me inside for most of it. Spent a lot of time reading; some writing, some designing, some sketching. Researching politics and world history has led me to reevaluate many things — it's been very troubling and somewhat disheartening, to really understand the dark and ugly truths behind American government, the Federal Reserve Bank and our fiat money system, and the push toward disarming America and moving toward a globalist, collectivist authoritarian government. Post 9/11 America — post-Bush, post-Obama America, how much free speech and independence will we have?

A worthy cause...?

At a minimum, it's inspired me to want to spread information and ask more questions, difficult questions. We should always question and scrutinize our government and leaders. We should always be skeptical of government and its messages — especially when they've told us they not only have and will continue to lie, but they have an obligation to. For our safety and security, they claim.

To that end, I will be working vigorously on my new website project, aimed at asking hard questions and unveiling inconvenient truths. Americans have been locked in an increasingly hostile left vs right paradigm for over 100 years when we should really be looking at individualism vs collectivism.

But that doesn't mean I want to give up on having some fun.

I still love art. I love the good in the world. Technological innovations and video games. One minute after my birthday ended, Rockstar's Grand Theft Auto V released — a sort-of belated present, I suppose. I installed iOS 7 also, though I must admit to being slightly overwhelmed by it.

I miss the tweet/post widget in Notifications. I think I'll leave my phone on iOS6 for now because of it. I never updated my iPad 2 to 6 because of YouTube. Now I have devices on each OS from 3-7.

If you have PSN, add me: rainfault — especially if you want to play VITA games like Soul Sacrifice, Dragon's Crown, Earth Defense Force 2017... or Diablo III for PS3. My GTAV copy is also PS3.

Life.

I was listening to an interview with survival guy Blake Sawyer — he thinks that 90-95% of Americans will be dead within 5-15 years. According to him, he's researched some of the same stuff I've been looking at, but for the past 35 years, and it's time to bail — flee America for safer, better, libertarian nations.

But I love America. I believe it's worth fighting for. I believe in The Constitution, and I believe that there are millions of Americans willing to fight and die for the freedoms here, at home. Mass exodus won't solve the problem.

It comes down to this: are you willing to die for what you believe in. Are you willing to die for the things you love?

Not just people, but things. Maybe sports, or movies, or video games, or bike riding. What would you give up to stay alive?

 

The thing is: everybody dies. Sometimes early, sometimes late in life... fulfilled and unfulfilled. My family is here. My dreams are here. And I am not alone.

 

 

So this post got kind of serious fairly quick. But that's what I've got. I'll try to get that new site up soon (it shall be, as soon as the content is written well enough), so this blog can go back to being about tech and toys.

 

Take care, stay safe, and have fun. While you can. Dun dun dun...

 

Monday
Sep022013

Warlords Classic for iOS, Free!

Warlords Classic - official port from Mac/PC/Amiga (universal, was $4.99)

If you're into old school strategy games, grab this now! It's still free — but probably not for long. It's less than 9MB, so you can download it (and play) on-the-go. I don't think I'll spend much time with this one, so let me know what you think!

(I never played the original!) I think I'd rather play Baldur's Gate: Enhanced Edition, however.

 

Monday
Sep022013

Star Wars Pinball Free & Terraria iOS! Hardcore Gamers, Rejoice!

FREE! Star Wars Pinball by Zen Studios (universal, normally $1.99) — includes one table with two additional tables available as in-app purchases. If you own Zen Pinball, you'll probably want to unlock (purchase) the tables inside it instead, but since Star Wars Pinball is free (for now), why not play around with one of the tables and see if you like the game mechanics?

Light side or dark side?

I love pinball. It's not nearly as visceral and exciting as playing in an arcade in front of a real pinball machine, but playing on the iPad is pretty great — especially with the retina display. Much better than playing on the TV or PC.

Zen Studios has done a great job capturing the frenetic pace and unique physics of pinball in their sims, this app is no different. The Star Wars tables are stylish and well constructed — the sound effects, imagery and storylines feel authentic and will likely satisfy sci-fi fanatics.

 

Also on the App Store, Terraria!

Terraria by 505 Games (universal, $4.99) I've been waiting for this for a long time! (Still waiting for the Playstation Vita version... hopefully it's out soon!)

I haven't checked it out yet, but I have played desktop/console versions of the game (on Xbox 360 & PS3). It's a different take on survival/crafting, and isn't just a 2D version of Minecraft (iOS link). Terraria has a huge following and much has been written about it, so I won't go into detail.

The iPad has become an interesting games platform for hardcore gamers.

It's very exciting. Hopefully, more indie games and Kickstarter type projects will surface now that people are starting to take iOS seriously. Initially thought of as simply a casual games device, iOS now has games like:

*MAKE SURE to check system requirements before downloading these games. Many of them are ~2GB and require iPad 3 or newer.

I could go on for quite awhile, this list barely scratches the surface — this is just skim off the cream — there are dozens more fantastic games for iOS. If you have an iPad, you can't be bored! Look at that list; look at the App Store, check out all the great stuff available right now — know it's just the beginning. Apple will likely announce new iPads soon, and with next-gen devices come better games and new ways to interact with conventional gaming devices. A current example is Xbox SmartGlass — but I'm really looking forward to Ubisoft's Watch Dogs tablet mode multiplayer.

What games are you most excited about? Did I leave your favorite off of the list? Let me know!

 

Oh yeah, just in case...

Cut the Rope HD is free right now, too. Whatever.

 

Currently, I'm enjoying Dragon's Crown for PSVITA. There's been a fair amount of controversy surrounding the game since its North American announcement and early teaser artwork, but don't let that stop you from enjoying a superb side-scrolling action RPG. For an amazing breakdown of Dragon's Crown, check out HokutoAndy's Kinja blog and his site, Art-Eater.

If you want to play, add me at XBLIVE/PSN: rainfault — just include a little note to let me know a bit about you and how you found me. (Thanks!)

 

Wednesday
Jul242013

Why we can't agree on what we can't agree about

Last night, I decided on a few minutes with an interesting distraction. Poker Night 2 for iOS (universal $4.99) by Telltale Games — creators of Walking Dead: The Game. Here's why.

 

So recently, I've been so frustrated with things. People who fervently tried to convince me to change my beliefs and vote for Barack Obama in 2012 are now unwilling to discuss politics. Many outright ignore it. To fundamentally disagree with them is incomprehensible to them, and they become outraged and hostile at the mere suggestion of it.

Sometimes, the religion card is played. It's not that I'm a right-wing ideologue, it's the conservative Christian social beliefs that have clouded everything in front of me. Never mind the basic inaccuracies in the statement and the underlying assumption that isn't correct — when liberals call Christian Conservatives crazy for their Christian beliefs, why aren't they calling Obama crazy, too? Doesn't he profess to believe in Jesus Christ? Maybe nobody's mad about Barack's so-called beliefs because no one believes that he actually believes those things. And no, I'm not trying to call him a Muslim. I'm calling him unprincipled. Conveniently principled. He does and says what's politically expedient, whether that's saying he believes in Christ and that "marriage is between a man and a woman" in 2008, or that he's anti-gun and pro-gay marriage now.

But everything flung in my personal direction is meaningless compared to the hate-filled flak fired at George Zimmerman, the jury that acquitted him, and anyone who openly supports the not guilty verdict. They don't want to hear about the content of George Zimmerman's character or his background — or that he's as white as Obama. (When calling him a "White Hispanic," you might as well refer to the President as White African American — but wait, that would be considered racist.) If you mention the character of Trayvon Martin; his disciplinary trouble in the months prior to his death, his autopsy report revealing liver damage consistent with drug use, his suspensions from school, or the burglary tool and jewelry recovered from his school locker — that's speculation and attacking the victim. Or racism — racial profiling. Or both.

If you mention that no one who personally knew George Zimmerman thought he was racist, or bring up his past defense of African Americans, or that he was behavioral profiling and not racially profiling Trayvon Martin — well, then you obviously haven't seen all of the protestors signs. THE PEOPLE SAY GUILTY.

Now, if you happen to think some of these unpopular things about George Zimmerman and you're black — well, you are in for a fiery shitstorm of hate and a special kind of racism. A segment of the African American population wants street justice since the racist white court system failed to deliver it to them, the new Black Panther Party going so far as to offer a $10K reward for Zimmerman. Because George Zimmerman is a racist, cowardly murdererand they want his head on a spike for all of the other racist cowards to see (think Game of Thrones, only real). Anyone who won't jump on the race-baiting, hate-spewing bandwagon is an ignorant, bigoted animal deserving of the same decapitation-murder-execution they want for Zimmerman — although if you're a juror who acquitted him, that is, a woman, they want to rape you first, and then kill you in your home. African Americans such as P. Diddy and Jay-Z, publicly boycotting Florida, are black heroes — others like Lupe Fiasco, Charles Barkley and Bill Cosby are called blackface wearing, Uncle Tom niggers. They are called these things primarily by angry African Americans who believe that these Oreo crackers are race-traitors.

The idea that someone could even be a race-traitor is a racist one.

But I'm getting slightly off-track here.

I've been trying to understand the beliefs, mindsets and mentalities of people who passionately and vigorously disagree with me. Well, not me — people who share similar beliefs as me. Practically every time I've tried to discuss issues of society or politics with liberals, it lasts a few exchanges before a personal insult is hurled at me and all dialogue stops. Not because I stop, no. I'm willing to overlook it — it doesn't bother me that much anymore.

It stops because although these people want to share their opinions with others on social networks and blogs, and its worth their time to spread their beliefs, it's not worth their time to defend them. I'm only worthy as an audience if I agree with them.

So I lose so-called friends on Facebook. Such a shame.

Well, it would be, if I cared to be popular with my fellow young American, middle-class, high-school classmates. Most of them are college educated and consider themselves cultured intellectuals. Perhaps that's the problem: I'm not considered smart enough to join their club.

Though it likely has more to do with three letters: GOP. By identifying gop instead of pog — you know, those Hawaiian milk caps you flip over in stacks — (or virtually anything else) I've lost the popularity contest. I'd probably have more Facebook friends if I called myself a socialist or communist. I could probably list "Totalitarian Dictatorship" under political belief or affiliation and receive greater acceptance amongst fellow American twenty-somethings.

The two most important sticking points I've identified in this group are same-sex marriage (LGBT rights) and abortion. The antiquated conservative core loses their votes with those two things — right there. So-called moderate liberals say that they want debt reduction, lower taxes and a fiscally conservative government contributing to a sound, prosperous economy. It's just that they want gay marriage and abortion more.

Never mind that the two groups tend to talk about two different things without realizing it, or that abortion is a human right to life issue and not a social one. I'm pro-choice — in large part because I won't tell a woman what she has to do with her body (especially in cases of rape and incest), and I think that there are already (far) too many people on this planet (to be sustainable and prosperous for the majority).

Never mind the fact that they could vote Republican and have gay marriage and abortions.

Voting R>D would make them greedy, sexist, racist corporate stooges, and the social stigma would stain their underwear forever. They need to champion Obama irregardless of repercussions or irrationality. They must support Obama, even when the evidence points to him being wrong, because that's what cultured intellectuals do. After all, that's what their college professors do — and whom among us can claim to be more cultured or more intellectual than them? After all, Obama has the law degree and taught at a college. Cultured intellectual. Unlike those moronic red-state, Bible-toting, incestuous honey-crusted nut bars.

Barack Obama is also black! Well, White African American, anyway. So his skin color dictates full-cooperation and support from anyone with a skin color darker than alabaster. Even the fair-skinned amongst us must support Obama — because if you don't, you are a racist.

The African American community overwhelming supports Democrats, and they've elected and installed them in major cities across the country. Cities like Detroit. Chicago. Los Angeles. Cities with astonishing levels of poverty, homelessness and violence. Cities with the most black-on-black gun crime.

Not entirely surprising; this support has been fixed and paid for. Support for Democrats amongst African Americans is strong in spite of the Democrat party's long history of fucking with African Americans. Even though MLK was a Republican.

But it's not all bleak, the problems of these cities can be fixed. But they aren't going to like how.

People might not get all they work for in this world, but they must certainly work for all they get. — Frederick Douglass

To solve the gun violence gun problem, Eric Holder and Obama want to effectively rescind our second amendment. (The same Attorney General and President directly responsible for giving automatic weapons, guns used to murder over one hundred people, to Mexican criminals in an effort to track and catch them.)

They want to heavily restrict the types of guns that can be bought, sold and owned by law-abiding citizens (including retired-military, law enforcement and retired law enforcement), and have all registered gun owners in a publicly available database that they have to reregister for annually. They do this under the guise of our safety. Despite the fact that states with tougher gun laws have more gun crime, obviously, criminals will eventually follow these new laws... while breaking a bunch of others.

Though uncorrected, irresponsible spending and government expansion will bankrupt The United States of America within several decades. Though Obama has lied repeatedly from the beginning, about Guantanamo, to simple, effective healthcare reform, the military, fast and furious, Benghazi, the IRS and the NSA. Though caught red-handed in these lies, he still has the support of the media and their liberal fat-cat backers, and the people.

Because there's a sure-fire, cultured, intellectual response... a reply to whatever misdeeds Obama might do or may have done:

"All politicians do it, you can't single out Obama, and besides, Bush was way, way worse."

 

That just isn't anywhere near good enough an excuse for the flaws of the elected leader of the greatest nation and that the big problems with our government today stem from big problems in the thinking of some of the American people. Thinking that I don't fully, and am desperately trying to, understand.

I'm definitely not the only one with these beliefs and a willingness to attempt to articulate them to, and dialogue with, the other side. Check out my Twitter and follow my Facebook for links to videos and articles, check out PJTV, AlfonZo Rachel and a YouTuber named Vladimir Jaffe (a man who escaped from behind the USSR's Iron Curtain).

 

Tuesday
Jan012013

Happy New Year

Well, I guess those Mayan calendar December 21st 12/21/12 people have something in common with those Y2K doomsday preppers. Earth is still here! Assassin's Creed III had me really worried…

If you haven't seen it, I recommend watching the Showtime series Penn & Teller Bullshit. Enlightening and fun! Unless you're easily offended. But if that's the case, why are you reading my site?

Happy new year, friends and family. More real content coming soon. It looks like a few of my scheduled drafts never actually posted, so there'll be those, too, after I edit them a bit to make them more relevant.

And of course, stuff about apps.

It looks like Adobe canned their Touch Apps Collage and Proto, as well as Kuler. Damn. If it means that Photoshop Touch and Ideas are going to be better, however — maybe it's okay.

Hopefully you snagged a few discounted apps and games during the holiday — lots of cheap and free apps!

Saturday
Apr072012

Productivity App Reviews, Bad Morning iPad, games

I'm having one of those mornings. My body hurts really bad and it's making me oddly emotional. I tried to do a little art/design but my hand is shaking a bit and it's frustrating. So now I'm sharing some iPad/App Store stuff.

I really wish Blogsy worked (natively) with Squarespace. I also wish the Squarespace iOS app didn't suck. I can't edit pages or the layout with the app.

Sometimes progress on things is slow with a disability. I try, but I get tired quickly. I know that many people out there have disabilities both physical and mental much worse than mine, and I hope that they too have a solid support system and good friends. Those fortunate enough should try to get an iPad as a primary computer, it's completely doable. My goal is to help others to make the most of a bad situation, and use tools to the fullest.

So, here's a little Apple iOS App Store update, for Mac and iOS.

New apps & discounts

Paper by FiftyThree

There's an app called Paper by FiftyThree available for iPad. It's free to try... each tool beyond the first costs $1.99 — and it's not worth it. Some might argue that the limited color palette and brush options is cool and minimalist — not so.

  • The custom ink engine is cool. The lines look nice and the tools are natural.

  • Non-artists wont benefit from the coolness. For a casual user, $8 to unlock everything is pricy. Apps Sketch Club and Layers offer many basic and advanced features for $2.

  • Artists will find the app too limiting. No layers, no wrist/palm rejection. Wide eraser. No variable widths; one-size, one-setting brushes, fixed diameter. No zoom.

Clibe

Clibe (App Store link) was free when it was released, and I suggested that people grab it... it's now $4.99 — here's their website. Is it worth it? For $5, I dunno.

Byword

Byword is an awesome word processor for Mac and iOS. It uses Dropbox or iCloud to sync between devices. If you write on at least a semi-regular basis, you will love Byword. It's an attractive, effective text solution, with great functionality and a low price.

iA Writer

Serious writers and web authors may want to look at iA Writer. This app is stellar, minimalistic and focused. This is distraction-free and usable. Focus Mode, formatting, and reading time make this app one of my all-time favorites.

I first found distraction-free writing with WriteRoom by Hog Bay Software. I think it's cool, and Jesse is a really nice guy. I happen to like iA Writer and Byword more now, but the original is still awesome.

GAMES — Some games worth looking at.

  • Assassin's Creed Recollection (FREE) if you haven't downloaded it yet. Get it now. Seriously.

  • The Bard's Tale ($1.99, usually $5.99) The hit Playstation 2/XBOX RPG plays great on iPad 2 and iPhone 4, and the cheeky humor is a nice change of pace. Get this while it's on sale for $2... if you like games like Baldur's Gate, Elder Scrolls, Diablo, and Dungeon Hunter, you'll thank me later.

  • Combat Mission Touch ($4.99) announced on April 1st and so cool, people thought it was a Fool's Day prank. It isn't. Requires iPad 2 or new iPad to run! More info at battlefront.com (CMTOUCH site). If you like strategy games and WWII sims (and you have an iPad 2 or newer...) check it out.

There's also a game called Battle Academy for iPad, released recently. I don't have it, it's $19.99 presently. More information here; apparently, it's a port of a PC game.

Perhaps next post, some art.

I'm still finishing designs for Lance Barton (Fomola) CEO of the company behind Blogsy for iPad. It's been tough recently because of my migraines and nerve pain. Maybe I'll share some other doodles, however. Until then, take care!

Sunday
Dec182011

Changes, says Brad

Things have been sort of static. Many changes this year; friends, people, politics, society, work, health. If I had more time during the day to do things, you'd probably be able to read all about it. As things are, I just can't keep up. Kim Jong Il is dead now, though. Merry Christmas.


So here's what's going on. I'm spending time on illustrations, science, physics and general design, and I've been looking into my disability, health and general well-being. Made some discoveries. I've gotten a lot of great ideas this year from Apple, Disney, console video games and iOS apps (and their developers).


I'm going to try to get out more, and use the iPhone's good-enough camera. Instagram, Hipstamatic, Camera+ and a number of photo editing apps make iPhotography really fun. I've been thinking about switching to 4S (8MP camera, Siri and Sprint — AT&T SUCKS), but I'm hesitant, because of the 3GS. I think the iPhone 5 isn't far away and will be a major upgrade over the 4S, and will share hardware with the iPad 3. Why wouldn't Apple do this? The iPhone 4 form factor isn't that great, and it'll soon be surpassed by Android alternatives (some think that this has already happened). I'm excited about a retina display iPad.


If you have an iPad and you like games, oh wow. Infinity Blade II, GTA3, Bard's Tale... how many hours of fun is that?! Enjoy it. This is an amazing time, despite the turmoil that the world is going through. If life outside is looking too bleak, step into Skyrim. It's great there — you can kill dragons!


I want to share more about health, fitness, self-defense (these are crazy times) and my disability, and this is probably the place to do that. I don't need Typepad. I've tried to like SAY's service, but I just don't, really. If I knew how to properly monetize my blog, it might be worth it, but I'm not sure that I'd want to do that. I wouldn't mind advertising on my blog, but I'd want to advertise Bradtastic Approved things, things I use and love. Maybe there's content there worth saving; I'll have to spend a few hours going through it and figuring out what to bring over here... maybe I'll setup a few pages with the best of the best content.


I've decided to change my diet and focus on super foods and micronutrients. Veggies, fruits (I love satsuma oranges) and some mercury-free fish every now and then. No more red meat. More brain foods.


There are a few people I'm interested in spending more time with... I'm going to change my schedule to accommodate this change. I think I need to. I had so much more energy in Disneyland because of the sheer number of people there... it was amazing. It felt like 2008; needing only a few hours of sleep, that sense of true clarity. And now that the weather is more to my liking, it's the perfect time to take advantage. Of everything.


Enjoy the holidays. Life is short.