Meltdown Comics, a Los Angeles landmark, is shutting down

See the original posting on Boing Boing

Last night I learned that one of my favorite things about Los Angeles — Meltdown
Comics on Sunset Boulevard in Hollywood — is closing its doors after 25 years. It was always much more than a comic book store. It was a community center for creative nerds. It had a performance room and gallery, a podcast studio, and all kinds of fun pop-up stores-within-the-store.

I interviewed many cartoonists there for live events over the years, including Dan Clowes and Ed Piskor, and our Dungeons and Dragons group played our game at a table on Sunday afternoons. I saw Ninja and Yolandi Visser of Die Antwoord play and talk about their videos to a packed crowd in the back room. I bought bitcoin from its Bitcoin ATM. And I bought lots of great comic books and art books. I’m going to miss the place and LA won’t be the same without them.

Here’s a letter from the owner of Meltdown Comics, Gaston Dominguez-Letelier:

To The City of Angels,

As is the case with all good things, at some point they must come to an end. Meltdown Comics is no exception to this rule and so, after 25 years coveting every comic treasure we could lay our hands on, I’m sharing that on March 30th I’ll be closing our doors for the final time.

No business is easy, least of all one rooted in paper surrounded by brick and mortar, yet against all odds we survived just long enough to host, share, and celebrate some of the most creative and imaginative artists in the world. It has been my personal privilege to welcome so many incredibly talented minds through our doors giving them and their work a home in this great city of ours.

And what a wonderfully surreal run it’s been… we’ve watched every fad, trend, and next big thing come and go while customers became celebrities, children blossomed to adults, geeks morphed into moguls, and fanboys scored Oscars. Throughout it all, I’ve been most fortunate to be surrounded by my family and the best staff anyone could have ever wished for – through thick and thin you supported Meltdown and invested in me, I will never be able to repay you but know that I am eternally grateful and forever in your debt.

As I prepare to extinguish Sunset’s neon know that there is a new path for me (more later) and I close Meltdown without any regret. For 25 years I have been enriched by every inquisitive mind I have encountered on this journey and for that I humbly thank you, all of you.

In signing off, I urge you all to continue creating comics, buying comics, and supporting the comic book world that has given us all so much over the years.

For one last time, #LetsgoMELTDOWN!

Thank you, LA


Gaston DL

Meltdown Comics

October 26, 1993 – April 1, 2018

Image by Justin Sewell, Attribution 2.0 Generic (CC BY 2.0)

You can finally send money to your contacts by asking Google Assistant

See the original posting on The Verge

Google is rolling out the ability to send peer-to-peer payments with Google Assistant. Starting today (only in the US), iPhone and Android users can say something like “Send Lauren $2,” and Assistant will take you through the steps to send the money via Google Pay. Your recipient will also need to set up Google Pay to receive the funds.

In January of this year, Google finally ended the Google Wallet / Android Pay confusion by merging them into the Google Pay system. Although, the confusion still exists: for the next few months, there will still be a separate “Google Pay Send” app for peer-to-peer payments.

But you don’t have to understand the weird history of Google Pay to use the new feature in Assistant. If you’ve ever sent money via…

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Oculus’ $199 Go headset feels pretty good so far

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Oculus Go, the newest virtual reality headset from the Facebook-owned company, isn’t a flashy piece of hardware.

The $199 Go is Oculus’ third major product release, and it occupies a similar niche to the mobile Gear VR, which offers affordable but limited VR experiences. The Oculus Go’s big draw isn’t raw power or total immersion. Like the Gear VR, it doesn’t track a full range of movement, just the rotation of your head and a small remote control. But instead of being a fusion of phone and plastic shell, it’s a single self-contained device — and Oculus is selling it by promising optimization, accessibility, and convenience.

The Oculus Go, built in partnership with Xiaomi, is aggressively nondescript. It’s a smooth gray headset with a…

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This conceptual AR app helps you build Ikea furniture

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Anyone who’s ever bought Ikea’s furniture understands the struggle with the assembly, Allen wrench, and the textless instruction manual. A new conceptual app called Assemble AR envisions how Ikea could use its technology to assist with furniture assembly.

Ikea already uses AR to show potential customers how pieces of furniture might look in their home (or anywhere, really), but this concept extends that technology. The proposed app, created by digital designer Adam Pickard could show you where different components belong — like which wooden plank goes with the other piece of wood and where all the different screws should go. You can hold up your phone and the instructions will be overlaid on the materials in front of you. The app would…

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Instagram will be better about showing you new pictures first

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Instagram has announced that it’s updating its algorithm to make sure that newer posts will be more likely to appear first in your feed. According to the company, the goal is that “your feed will feel more fresh” by showing more relevant new pictures, while still striking a balance with the algorithmic feed to make sure that you don’t miss important posts that you care about (like a friend posting in a different time zone, for example).

It’s the latest attempt to continue to refine the company’s algorithmically sorted feed that it introduced in 2016, which was recently updated to include recommended posts late last year.

Along with the updated algorithm, Instagram is also testing a “New Posts” button that will let users choose when…

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Gamer makes edible polyhedral dice, scores a crit hit

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German pastry chef, gamer, cosplayer, and Twittizen, Sonja decided to make a batch of edible candy RPG/polyhedral dice. She posted pictures on Twitter and all the nerds came running to her yard. Realizing she might have a hungry market on her hands, Sonja has quickly opened up an Etsy store, the cleverly-named, Sugar and Dice.

Batches of the dice are Isomalt sugar and are edible. They can either be “eaten as a hard candy bonbon or dissolved into a hot cup of tea or coffee.” Sonja points out that they are not balanced and not perfect on all sides, so they can’t really be reliably used in gaming.

A set of 7 dice (1 each of d4, d6, d8, d10, d12, d100, and d20) will run you £18, shipped to the US (and take 1-2 weeks). Not exactly penny candy, but a cool novelty and a unique, fun gift for a gamer friend. I will definitely be getting some. A set of these will make a nice gaming night prize.

Watch the Philharmonic Turntable Orchestra remake classical music with vinyl

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In this video, a room full of deejays (including a few world champs) create a cacophony of noise by using vinyl to reconstruct classical music. They call themselves the Philharmonic Turntable Orchestra and are described as the “world’s first ensemble performance using only turntables and mixers.” They recommend putting on headphones before hitting play.

Here’s its behind-the-scenes video:

Thanks, Stewart!

Tinkercad has a nifty Arduino simulator

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Tinkercad is a web-based 3D design application. It’s free and easy to use. I’ve been using it for years to design models for 3D printing. What I didn’t know until recently is that Tinkercad also has a circuit design and simulation app, including an Arduino simulator. You can program the simulated Arduino with text or with Scratch-like drag-and-drop blocks. Here’s the getting started page.

An Introduction to Storm Detector Modules

See the original posting on Hackaday

Lightning storm detectors have been around for a surprisingly long time. The early designs consisted of a pair of metal bells and a pendulum. When there was a charge applied, for example by connecting one bell to the ground and the other to a lightning rod, the bells would ring when a lightning storm was close by. In the mid 18th century, these devices were only practical for demonstration and research purposes, but very likely represent the earliest devices that convert electrostatic charge to mechanical force. A bit over a hundred years later, the first lightning detector was considered …read more

Geoffrey the Giraffe’s Last Call of Toys for Hacking

See the original posting on Hackaday

Many of us in the United States frequently browse the shelves of Toys R Us for things to hack on. Sadly that era will soon end with the chain’s closing. In the meantime, the entire store becomes the clearance shelf as they start liquidating inventory. Depending on store, the process may begin as soon as Thursday, March 22. (Warning: video ads on page.)

While not as close to hacker hearts as the dearly departed Radio Shack or Maplin, Toys R Us has provided the hacker community with a rich source of toys we’ve repurposed for our imagination. These toys served …read more

The latest Deadpool 2 trailer introduces X-Force

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This is a bit unexpected: Avengers: Infinity War won’t be the only big superhero team-up film coming out this spring. When 20th Century Fox released the latest trailer for Deadpool 2, it revealed that the film will introduce the X-Force.

What is completely expected from the trailer is more of Deadpool’s mouthy wisecracks, a lot of bloody violence, and meta-commentary on the nature of superhero films. From the looks of things, Deadpool is still doing the vigilante thing, until Josh Brolin’s Cable arrives with plans to kill a kid who seems to have powers. Cable isn’t letting anything stand in his way — including Deadpool. Violence ensues.

When Deadpool realizes he can’t take on Cable by himself, he brings together a few superheroes and…

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Twitch’s extensions come to mobile

See the original posting on TechCrunch

Twitch’s extensions – the tools that allows streamers to customize their channel pages with interactive experiences, including leaderboards, polls, schedules, and more – are now available on mobile. The game streaming company announced this highly requested feature at the Game Developers Conference this week, along with the launch of a web app for developers that […]

AngularJS, Basic to Expert: Day One

See the original posting on DZone Python


I am going to write this article series to help you to learn AngularJS 1.x.x as quickly and as simply as possible, from a basic to expert level.

We will see what AngularJS is, and will learn the basics of AngularJS, modules, controllers, directives, expressions, filters, data binding, Scopes, Validations, Routing, Service, DI, and more.

We need to talk about tablets

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Late last year, Apple ran a video ad framing the iPad Pro as a Real Computer, a narrative it has pushed since it first launched the tablet and smart keyboard coupling — but it’s one that hasn’t stuck. Apple did this not by hitting viewers over the head with the specs of its big tablet or fancy pencil, but through a bit of reverse psychology: at the end of the ad, the young iPad Pro user asks innocently, “What’s a computer?”

Point being: the whole notion of a “computer” is being redefined for generations of people who are being raised on (or by) touchscreen devices with desktop-grade processing power.

The thing is, the tablet market is actually on the decline when you look at global shipments, and it has been for awhile. There are…

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Cloudflare introduces free network monitoring tool for mobile app developers

See the original posting on TechCrunch

When Cloudflare acquired Neumob, a mobile performance startup last fall, it was a sign that the company wanted to move beyond web performance into helping mobile app developers understand what’s happening at the network level. Today, the company introduced Cloudflare Mobile SDK, a free tool which could help developers understand network-level performance problems. Cloudflare’s co-founder […]

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