Tag Archives: New York Comic Con

PTJ 249: “Alexa, Activate My New York Comic Con Badge!”

It’s not just the abundance of pumpkin spice revving up the Big Apple air the first week of October — it’s the buzzy excitement of New York Comic Con returning once again to the Jacob K. Javits Center on the west side of Manhattan for four days of high-octane pop-culture fun. J.D. gets an insider’s view of the expo from Rich Bernatovech and Jamie Fay, two local comics creators who’ve been attending the event for years. This week’s episode also features a ramble through the recent tech headlines — including Amazon’s avalanche of Alexa gear — and a certain El Kaiser who’s more than a little leery of Apple’s new Face ID technology. Bang! Pow! Play!

Links to Stories on This Week’s Show

Interview With Rich Bernatovech and Jamie Fay

Badge In!

It’s that time of year: The massive New York Comic Con exposition at the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center on Manhattan’s west side is THIS WEEK. To celebrate, Janifer Cheng, host of The Mass Invasion blog and podcast dropped by Pop Tech Jam HQ to share some cosplay tips and other insights for attending one of the biggest annual pop-culture gatherings in the country.

If you’re planning on going for the first time and don’t know what to expect, check out Rob Jason Enate’s helpful How to Survive New York Comic Con guide and download a copy of the official NYCC mobile app for Android or iOS. (And while you have your phone out, make sure you have a decent transit app or a PDF copy of the New York City Subway map downloaded as well.)

Need a break from the crush of costumed humanity whapping you with wings and swords as you move around the Javits Center? Hey, it’s New York freakin’ City. We got other stuff to do here, too. Knock yourself out!

PTJ 163: Oh, Oh, Oh, It’s Magic!

El Kaiser is back from the House of Mouse with a Tech Term focusing on the magic of technology at Disney parks and J.D. fills us in on the many commands available to use with Siri, Cortana, and Google Now. Don’t fret, we have the week’s tech news sprinkled with our usual generous helping of snark.

PTJ 68 News: How ‘Bout an October Surprise?

This week brought the annual Ada Lovelace Day, a remembrance of the First Lady of Computer History — and a celebration of women in science, technology, engineering and math. Several events were held in honor of the the day, including a Wikipedia Editathon to add and enhance entries for notable women in science and technology.

Change is in the air for Twitter, which is rolling out an update in the way it handles direct messages. A new setting allows anyone to send a direct message to another account without having to follow it. While this could be a spam magnet, it’s an optional setting at the moment. And Google has updated its privacy policy for those Shared Endorsements on the way. (Want to opt out already? Here’s the settings page.) The change to the Terms of Service prompted Senator Ed. Markey of Massachusetts to fire off a letter to the Federal Trade Commission asking the agency to look into the matter.

oct22Apple has finally confirmed that it will be having its second fall announcement on October 22. New iPads are expected, as well as new MacBook Pro laptops, that funky Mac Pro that looks like a canister vacuum, OS X Mavericks and who-knows-what-else. Here’s hoping for a genuine, giddiness-inducing surprise next week. (At least TUAW had some fun overanalyzing the official invitation to the event.) As for Apple’s earlier product releases this fall, while there have been reports that the iPhone 5s is outselling the 5c two phones to one, the 5c is still selling. And in other phone news, Microsoft’s Windows Phone 8 software is getting another update later this year and HTC showed off its One Max phablet earlier this week.

From the Paranoid Security News desk, the National Security Agency has been collecting buddy lists, online contacts files and address books and a researcher has found a backdoor in the firmware used by a number of D-Link routers (here’s a Sophos blog post on the issue with a list of affected models). And an app for Snapchat called, naturally, Snaphack, can save videos and photos sent through the self-destructing instant message service.

Nextflix is reportedly in talks with some cable companies to get its service included in set-top boxes, a move which Wall Street seemed to like a lot. And Netflix has signed a deal with Sony Pictures Television to produce a 13-episode psychological thriller from the creative team that made Damages for the FX channel. Grab the Lime ‘n’ Salt popcorn and stand by for a binge!

But some shows still stick to that old once-a-week airing plan, which can attract viewers as well, as the fourth-season premiere of The Walking Dead on AMC drew enormous ratings last Sunday night. (It’s a good bet many attendees from last weekend’s massive New York Comic Con staggered right home to watch.)

And finally, from battling zombie rot to stopping link rot: A coalition of about 20 university law libraries is trying to provide a permanent home for online documents cited in legal documents. The new consortium, called Perma CC, includes Oxford, UCLA, Harvard, Yale and Columbia and will hopefully keep those legal links that escaped the Wayback Machine all nice and Downy fresh.

Comics Relief

For East Coasters, New York Comic Con rolls into the Javits Center from October 11-14, bringing fans and creators together on the West Side of Manhattan. But even if you’re not making the schlep to NYCC, if you’re a current or lapsed reader and haven’t checked out the digital side of comics, you have plenty of options for keeping up (and catching up) with your favorite titles on an Android or iOS device.

Many serious aficionados of the digital comic book favor the app simply called Comics by ComiXology, which has versions for Android, iOS and the Kindle Fire. The Comics app is best known for its huge selection of titles from mainstream and indie publishers and its Guided View mode, which shows you one page panel at a time in sequence. This can be great for reading big pages on the small phone. ComiXology also has a junior version of its comics-store-and-reader for iOS called Comics4Kids, which keeps the adult material out of sight.

If you are seriously partisan — either DC Comics or Marvel Comics — you can get specific apps for each, but both are powered under the cape by ComiXolgy’s technology. Marvel’s site has links to the Marvel Augmented Reality App, which lets you unlock exclusive bonus content when you scan Marvel products with your Android or iOS device; the site also has a Marvel Events app for conventions. DC Comics has other apps as well, like the family-friendly DC Nation. And DC has two apps tied to The Dark Knight Rises, but they only work on Nokia Windows Phones.

Some comic-book publishers have their own standalone apps, like Dark Horse and Star Trek comics. Other notable comics apps for iOS and Android include Comics+ and Komik Reader for Android and Panefly for iOS. You can also find some trade graphic novels in Apple’s iBookstore, Amazon’s Kindle Store and Barnes & Noble’s Nook Store.

Even if you read your comics on your phone or tablet, you may find yourself missing the hustle and bustle of your favorite comics shop on a Wednesday afternoon. If you want to mix and match your media, check the app store. Your store may have an app of its own — like good ol’ Midtown Comics here in Manhattan, which has an app for pre-orders, pickups and product searches. It’s the best of both worlds, and we’re not talking about Earth 1 and Earth 2.