Learning About Internet Memes – Ignite Talk

Ignite talks are 5 minute presentations about anything. The talks are designed to be quick, fun, and digestible. Ideas can spark revolutions. I had an idea for an Ignite talk about memes. I am fascinated by internet memes and how they get started. Through my research of memes, I ended up learning a lot more than I expected.

Richard Dawkins Meme

My Meme” is a talk about memes, and how we are hardwired to spread ideas. Humans use a process of imitation, transformation, and combination to invent new things, change culture, or just to share sometime new.

William Shatner at Boston Comic Con!

I had to. I just had to meet William Shatner. I saw that William Shatner was the guest of honor at this year’s Boston Comic Con, so I had to find a chance to meet him. Shatner is promoting a new memoir about his friendship with Leonard Nimoy. It is also the 50th anniversary of Star Trek. In my opinion, the original 3 seasons of Star Trek is some of the best TV ever produced.

Hans Scharler and William Shatner at Boston Comic Con

Shatner greeted us with a monologue about how he liked the Patriots because of Brady’s wife, but now he is a LA Rams fan. The Mayor of Boston, Marty Walsh, named August 13, 2016 William Shatner Day. From TV to spoken word albums, “I think it’s gonna be a long, long time” before I get this star struck again.

First Look at Dog

At the Boston Comic Con, I got to meet a comic book artist in the Boston area named Jay Kennedy. I pitched him my character named, “Dog”. Dog is the subject of some children stories and a board game that I have been working on in my copious spare time. I commissioned a color sketch drawn at the con based on the description from my pitch. Jay called me up a couple of hours later to show me what he had created. This is the first look at Dog… stay tuned. You probably are going to hear a lot more about this character in the coming months.

First Dog

Thanks, Jay!

 

Mesmerized by Frank Miller at Boston Comic Con

Hearing the origins of the Dark Knight as told by the legendary Frank Miller at Boston Comic Con 2016. I got very lucky to be able to watch his panel discussion along with Brian Azzarello. They turned Batman from a low-selling comic to a huge success with The Dark Knight Returns.

Frank Miller at Boston Comic Con
Frank Miller at Boston Comic Con

Frank shared his key to success. He suggests finding a character that no one is writing about or has a bad reputation and turn it around. He said, “Look for a loser, make it shine, and you will be a winner.” This is how he found Batman in the 1980’s – at the bottom of the ratings.

Open Source IoT Debug Tool for ThingSpeak and Particle

Often when building IoT projects, you end up wondering what data is being sent to a cloud service like ThingSpeak. The IoT Debugger tool allows you to see the data inside a ThingSpeak channel in a table view. The ThingSpeak Logger shows you data as the channel gets updated. This is an easy way to see if you are sending bad data or null data. The project is open source and available on GitHub.

IoT Debug Tool

Features of IoT Debugger

  • ThingSpeak Data Logger
  • Particle.io Webhooks Manager
  • Settings are saved in LocalStorage
  • Built using HTML5, Bootstrap, and jQuery
  • Open Source!

Demo and download the source code for IoT Debugger on GitHub.