This site showcases the (mostly) digital work of Andrew DiFiore from both Virtual Arts Studios and answerYES Interactive as well as random thoughts and experimental projects too volatile to be contained anywhere else.

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    Zombie Love?

    I really want to like Frank Darabont’s directed adaption of the acclaimed comic book series The Walking Dead.

    I really, really, really do.

    My initial reaction to the first season was this is going to be the coolest program on TV. AMC gave producers a wide berth and the show received a great deal of press prior to its debut (all of which paid off with a zombie horde of 5.3 million). But after last night’s season premiere I’m concerned that the series is going to be nothing more than a self-indulgent gore-fest.

    I know, I know, that’s what zombies movies are all about. The show is being true to Robert Kirkman’s vision. And I’m sure die-hard fans are enthralled (even as they barf up a liver).

    I guess I was just hoping for something more. Something better. Something that took the zombie apocalypse idea seriously enough to flesh it out with strong character development and provocative plot lines. Gore is fine. I expect gore. But the stories are being defined by it, requiring the audience to suspend their belief not in the existence of zombies (that’s a given) but rather in the “reality” set by the genre itself. Rick Grimes can’t outrun a zombie in the woods? Really? Have you hiked in the woods? Try it with rigor mortis! Let’s disembowel a zombie to see who it ate. Really? There are plenty of plausible opportunities to gross people out, you really don’t need to go that far afield.

    I would love to observe survivors of a hellish post-apocalyptic world. Social mores breakdown. Religious convictions tested. But once pass the gruesome reality that undead stagger among us, it is a matter of rebuilding. Though it would be nice to know how the zombie outbreak occurred (government experiment gone awry, despotic alien extermination of the human race, unholy retribution from primordial beings) but in the end, zombies are ultimately a transient threat. The zombies on The Walking Dead are slow-moving dullards in a state of decay (let’s not forget that we are in Atlanta amidst 100 degree weather) so their bodies will eventually be incapable of locomotion in a matter of months. Survivors just need to wait it out (preferably where there are no zombies)… but what fun is that?

    Pandora Free All Day Long!

    Just a quick note to say I really like Pandora and the Music Genome Project. Genious! It is exactly what radio should be — personal and immediate. And today I got the following email informing me that it is now free all day long!

    Pandora now has Unlimited Free Listening

    We’re emailing you because at some point in the past you hit the 40 hour monthly listening limit on Pandora. We’re excited to tell you that we’ve removed the monthly listening limit for Pandora. Starting now you can listen to Pandora as much as you’d like for FREE.

    Stay Hungry. Stay Foolish.

    Steve Jobs passed away today due to complications with pancreatic cancer. He was 56. Though not surprised by the news, I am sadden… as I’m sure most people are. He was (and remains) a source of inspiration for me, growing up in between baby boomers and Gen-Y (the last generation not born with an electronic device in their hands).

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    In celebration of their 25th Anniversary, the wholesale division of Metro Business Systems (leading  refurbisher of computer equipment and consumer electronics) wanted a site of their own that could be easily managed by the sales team. Built upon the Umbraco content management system, we created a configurable login based on “client type” so account managers only access the clients they are responsible for.

    This month’s Cool Tool is actually a set of SSL Certificate Tools from SSL Shopper that help webmasters and average Joes troubleshoot problems they may have installing SSL certificates (not like that ever happens). The SSL Checker, CSR Decoder, and Certificate Key Matcher all came in handy recently when trying to sync up the SSL Certificate issuer on a separate Web Server Host where the private key and CSR were generated. It was a big help and thought others would appreciate the convenience. The only limitation I’m aware of is that there is no validation of intermediate certificates. For this you might try Why No Padlock.