This Week In Geekdom

Hey everyone. First up, my apologies for the lack of posts this week. If you've followed Care and Feeding of Nerds for a little while, you might recall that every three months work takes on a distinctively Lovecraftian bent and effectively absconds with just about every ounce of my time and energy for a few weeks. So we'll have a This Week in Geekdom for now and hopefully (fingers crossed) resume a normal posting schedule next week. So, without further ado, the Week in Geekdom!

More on this in the science section!

One of the single biggest stories this week was Disney's decision to shutter LucasArts, the game development arm of Lucasfilm.  The closure, akin to the decision to cancel Star Wars: the Clone Wars, was done under the premise of redirecting all resources to the forthcoming Episode VII. While I can't say I'm surprised by this, given the difficulties the studio has met with recently, it's a stark reminder to everyone that Disney is, first and foremost, a business and that we're likely to see more of these sorts of consolidation efforts as the Lucas brand is brought completely into the Disney fold. That being said, part of me holds a kernel of hope that some other developer will acquire the rights and deliver Star Wars 1313. Given what several now-unemployed coders have done in the wake of the closure, that hope may not be entirely far-fetched.

In what's likely to be the first of several desperate and likely misguided efforts to win gamers over on Sim City, EA is on the cusp of releasing its first round of DLC for the game. The 'good' news: the DLC is free. How? Because it's sponsored by Nissan. The entirety of this 'content' is a charging station for the Nissan Leaf that uses no resources, produces no waste, and spews happiness into the surrounding area. It's corporate sponsored digital magic! Isn't this so much better than, say, functional servers? 

There's been a bit of an ongoing kerfuffle over at Rock, Paper, Shotgun centering around a sadly typical instance of misogyny in the world of gaming. To the credit of those running that site, they've used that conflict as a sounding board to call attention to this horrendous trend and how the gaming industry as a whole will suffer if it's allowed to continue.

After five years of devout service, the Roadrunner supercomputer was decommissioned to make way for smaller, cheaper, faster processors. 

Despite things going down on April 1, Bill Nye was not fooling anyone with his arguments to the Congress of the United States to restore funding for NASA's planetary exploration efforts. The bowtied champion of all things science managed to secure $223 million (USD) as part of ongoing fiscal negotiations.

Check out this intrepid inventor's video of a homemade, MacGyver-style 3D printer

This right here is possibly the most thorough and most entertaining explanation as to when 99.9% accuracy is the worthwhile and preferred alternative to 99% accuracy. (bonus: lots of zombies)

Ever wondered what our skyscape would look like if the other planets in the solar system were as nearby as our Moon (minus, of course, things like the gravitational distortions that would occur with said proximity)? Well, some clever digital artist did the math and came up with these images depicting just that.

After a few years of post-restructuring dormancy, DC announced that the beloved series Astro City will be released under their label Vertigo Imprint. Issue #1 of the new run will be available in early June.

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