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Greg Vargas
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My favorite thing I've read about comic-con is this excerpt from Film Crit Hulk's coverage of Hall H (at the bottom of page 4):

THIS PANEL ALSO CONTAINED THE BEST SINGLE MOMENT OF THE CON:

AT ONE POINT A GENTLEMEN WEARING A BIG SUPERMAN SWEATSHIRT CAME TO THE MIC LOOKING AT ZACK SNYDER AND HENRY CAVILL AND SAID “Oh my god, you guys are so hot.” AND HE FOLLOWED UP THIS MOMENT BY BREAKING DOWN A LITTLE AND STARTING TO CRY. HE COULD BARELY GET OUT THE WORDS “I’m sorry, I’m so emotional right now.” AND YOU COULD PRACTICALLY FEEL THE REACTIONARY HALL H AUDIENCE START TO GROAN AND GET UNCOMFORTABLE FOR ALL SORTS OF (POTENTIALLY HIDEOUS) REASONS. AND JUST THEN… CHRIS HARDWICK RAN OFF THE STAGE, DOWN THE AISLE, AND GAVE THE GUY THE BIGGEST HUG YOU EVER SEEN. AND JUST LIKE THAT? THE WHOLE SITUATION CHANGED. PEOPLE SUDDENLY FELT COMPELLED TO CHEER. HARDWICK THEN WHISPERED SOMETHING IN THE GENTLEMAN’S EAR AND STOOD BY HIM FOR SUPPORT. THE MAN STARTED TO STAMMER OUT HIS QUESTION AS HARDWICK JUST KEPT HIS ARM AROUND HIM SMILING KINDLY. THE MOMENT WAS HONESTLY BEAUTIFUL; A POTENTIAL BIT OF AMAZING AWKWARDNESS OR POTENTIAL HOMOPHOBIA WAS TURNED AROUND IN A SECOND BY ONE PERSON’S COMMITMENT TO BEING A GOOD HUMAN BEING. IT WAS A MOMENT BORN WHOLLY OUT OF EMPATHY, JUST LIKE SO MANY OF THE GOOD THINGS IN LIFE. AND HARDWICK’S PARTING WORDS TO THE GENTLEMAN RANG OUT: “You are what comic-con is truly about.”

AND HE’S RIGHT. NOT JUST ABOUT THE SPIRIT, LOVE, AND ENTHUSIASM, BUT HE’S RIGHT IN AN UTTERLY DIFFERENT WAY TOO. THERE IS THIS UNSPOKEN ISSUE THAT RARELY GETS DISCUSSED REGARDING THE SUBSECTION OF “GAY NERDS” AND THEIR ROLE IN THE GREATER COMICS COMMUNITY. AND IT’S OFTEN UNSPOKEN ABOUT BECAUSE IT IS HULK’S OPINION THAT A GREAT DEAL OF FANBOYS CAN BE STARTLINGLY HOMOPHOBIC. AND THIS NEVER MADE ANY DAMN SENSE TO HULK. BECAUSE THE ALLURE OF SUPERHERO-DOM AMONG BOTH GROUPS ARE BORN OUT OF THE SAME KIND OF DIFFICULT EXPERIENCES. THE PAIN OF BEING DIFFERENT. THE PAIN OF BEING WHO YOU ARE. BOTH GROUPS ARE TRADITIONALLY PICKED ON AND THEY TURN TO COMICS AS A WAY OF FINDING STRENGTH, UNDERSTANDING, AND HUMANE RESPONSIBILITY. THE TWO ARE WHOLLY INTEGRAL TO EACH OTHER BECAUSE THEY ARE FOR THE SAME PURPOSE. AND SOMETIMES IT JUST STINKS WHEN TO SEE PEOPLE NOT REALIZE THAT AND BE JERKS.

AND SOMETIMES IT TAKES A GESTURE LIKE HARDWICK’S TO MAKE IT ALL SO DAMN CLEAR.
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Fantastic TED Talk about incarceration, race, and identity
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Flying a kite today with B1 on the first spring day of the year. Hope it lasts.
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This is pretty exciting. Also a little disheartening that the difficulties ahead of them are clear even before they go to college.
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If you have trouble articulating your problems with Fight Club (or David Fincher's films in general) please read this article. It's an excellent discussion of Fincher's style and why it might end up glorifying the state of mind he intends to satirize. Really really great article.

Warning: it's a bit long and it's in all caps, but it's definitely worth it.
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Film Crit Hulk's list of reasons why you love movies.

I <3 Film Crit Hulk
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Just signed up for some of Stanford's and Udacity's online classes. I'm pretty excited to see how they are :)

From Stanford, I'm taking these:
Machine Learning - http://jan2012.ml-class.org/
Software as a Service - http://www.saas-class.org/
Technology Entrepreneurship - http://www.venture-class.org/

and from Udacity, I'm taking both of these:
CS 101: Building a Search Engine
CS 373: Programming a Robotic Car
http://www.udacity.com/

I'm really looking forward to the Udacity ones. They seem like they're taking a really neat approach.

Anyone else taking any of these classes?
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Sal Khan also has an excellent video explaining the ramifications of SOPA and PIPA. He even directly addresses the text of parts of the bills.
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Clay Shirky's new TED talk about SOPA/PIPA explains some of the motivation from the big media camp. It's quite good.
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