Geekdad Passport: Bletchley Park

A visit to Bletchley Park, home of the codebreakers.

When it comes to World War II, much attention is placed on the battles that took place throughout Europe, sites of monumental confrontations and decisive victories. But some of the most epic battles were fought silently on the grounds of Bletchley Park, a British estate just north of London in the small town of Bletchley. Continue reading

A History of Computer Entertainment

Adapted from an image by Paul J. Rush.

Recently, at the Christmas party at work, talk turned to our first computers, and from there to the computer games we played back then. “Ah,” says one, “‘Defender of the Crown’ on my Amiga, that was something.” “‘Monkey Island,'” says another. “Those Infocom games,” says I. As we continue reminiscing, I realize that none of my colleagues is aware of ‘The Digital Antiquarian,’ who during the past years has thoroughly researched these and many more computer game classics. Continue reading

My Favorite Google Doodles from 2015

Google's Doodles are fun for everyone, all year long. Image: Google

Google constantly ups the ante for doodles on their page. The Google Doodles began with static artwork replacing the iconic letters G-o-o-g-l-e, but they’ve lifted it to its own art form. For quite a while now, we’ve expected great things from the doodles. The pressure is on, and Google continues to deliver. Continue reading

Take a Trip to ‘American Places’

Image: Paul Dry Books

Traveling and American history are two of my biggest passions. So visiting locations that are important in history pretty much sums up glee for me. And William Zinsser, author of ‘On Writing Well’ among other books, pulls that all together in his book, ‘American Places.’ Continue reading

Counter-Culture History, 1969-1972: ‘The Smith Tapes’

Image: Princeton Architectural Press

The 1960s were such a time of obvious change in the United States. Portions of society lost their innocence, while others were empowered. Music often made a statement, and drugs influenced lives. What was life like at the end of that decade, and at the turn of the 1970s? The boundless optimism of earlier in the ’60s had disappeared, and times, they were a’changin’. The best way to learn about a certain time is to go straight to the source. Continue reading

Megan Lee’s Gorgeous Nerdy Science Art and Flashcards

Image: Megan Lee Studio

I’ve had my eye on Megan Lee’s scientist art for quite some time. It’s the perfect mixture of simplicity, unity, and graphics, all with science history as the underlying theme. Most of the scientists she has profiled in art are at least somewhat known if not very well known. But for a few, I actually had to research who they were and what they have done. Continue reading

Maps, Time, Geography: 2 Books to Delight the Mind

Image: Princeton Architectural Press

For as long as I can remember, I’ve loved to look at maps. Maps of all kinds. Road maps, house floor plans, diagrams, graphs, and more. I love to know how things work and how they are laid out. I adore any well-done visual representation. I often explain my feelings as graphs. So when I saw these two books, they caught my attention right away. Continue reading

Bristol Banter #2: Libraries

BristolBanterIcon wide

Episode number 2 of Bristol Banter brings lengthy discussion by GeekDad Rory and GeekMom Jenny on libraries, including the Library of Congress, the Library of Alexandria, Andrew Carnegie, and a tangent about ‘Doctor Who.’ Find out the answer to last episode’s trivia question, and take a guess at the one in this episode! Continue reading

Study and Dream With ‘American Homes’

Image: Black Dog & Leventhal Publishers

The new book ‘American Homes: The Landmark Illustrated Encyclopedia of Domestic Architecture’ is a feast for the eyes and the brain. It is filled with over 1,000 illustrations, home elevations, and floor plans. There are dozens of home styles, ranging from the Longhouse to the Saltbox to the German Colonial to the A-Frame to the Passive Solar. Continue reading

‘The World’s Great Wonders’ Explains the Planet’s Masterpieces

Image: Lonely Planet

If you’re looking for some fantastic background information on the world’s incredible sites and sights, Lonely Planet has another quality book that will teach you the wheres, whens, whys, and hows of 50 of them. Continue reading

Designers & Dragons 4-Volume Role Playing Game History Series via Kickstarter

1970 to 1979

If you’re like me and are fascinated by the history of role playing games (RPGs), the folks over at Evil Hat Productions are about to make your day. I’ve written recently about some of the current books available that focus on the history of RPGs, but I’m a firm believer that we can always use more. Continue reading

You Will Want to Own Letters of Note

Image: LettersofNote.com

Every letter I read I end up saying, “Wow.” when I read it. The alternate history of what never was embodied in the letter written in case the first moon landing was unsuccessful. Mothers giving up their babies, the foundlings. Francis Crick sharing his co-discoveries about DNA with his son before the world heard about it. This is one book I will read, re-read, savor, and use to teach my children. Continue reading

Serious Comics, Part 7: Making History

Serious Comics - History

Non-fiction writing, particularly biographies and coverage of historical events, often tends to be accompanied by pictures: illustrations and photography help to establish events in our minds by showing us what people and places look like. For the same reason, comics can be a great way to immerse the reader in these very real worlds, experiencing these very real events. Continue reading

16 Things Young Geeks Should Know About Internet Culture

Internet Things To Know

A big part of being a geek includes understanding the shared culture we experience when working with technology. Here are 16 things geeklets should know (but probably don’t) that can help form a base understanding of Internet Culture. Continue reading