25 comments posted · 9 followers · following 1

11 years ago @ Atomic Toasters - User Input: Fictional ... · 0 replies · +1 points

I just played Portal for the first time last week. Fantastic game, I can't believe its taken me (an avid gamer) this long to buy it. I'm playing through Portal 2 currently and its just as good as the first game, if not better.

That said, its going to have to take second place in video game renditions of computer science fiction to BioShock 2: Minerva's Den. Its the secondary, DLC storyline available to BioShock 2 and its fantastic. BioShock, for those not in the know, takes place in a dystopian underwater city called Rapture. Its a political, economical, and cultural marvel, with extreme attention to detail. Minerva's Den takes place in the computing center of Rapture, isolated from the rest of the city. In short, this game is an ode to 1950s science culture. The artwork, propaganda, and of course the storyline and dialogue are enough to make George Orwell proud.

The regularly used slogan is "The Thinker knows." Enough said.

11 years ago @ Atomic Toasters - The Road to Idiocracy · 0 replies · +3 points

I use my TomTom on long trips, Google Maps on short ones (when necessary). The only maps I have are of railroad networks, past and present. Only because Google and Apple don't acknowledge half the tracks in this country.

11 years ago @ Atomic Toasters - Nuclear Rails · 3 replies · +2 points

What wasn't a candidate for nuclear power in the 1950s?

11 years ago @ Atomic Toasters - Northern 4-8-4 · 1 reply · +2 points

Its no secret a lot of steamers were more powerful than their diesel counterparts. Trains Magazine did a great piece on the Pennsy S2 Turbine wherein they compared it stat for stat with a top of the line EMD E-Unit. The S2 put more power to the rails than a string of three A-B-A E's.

Big difference was in operating and maintenance cost, where the diesels handily beat the steamer. You can think of it in terms of this. The mighty Ford Tempo might have displaced its big block V8 toting muscle car ancestors, but not because it was more powerful (it wasn't), but it was just easier and cheaper to own. Better on the skin, nicer to the touch.

11 years ago @ Atomic Toasters - Shutdown: Another 4-8-4 · 0 replies · +6 points

Oh, Norfolk & Western. One of my favorite railroads. Had such a unique identity, and its legacy is evident today in the Norfolk Southern. Both the NW and NS seem especially friendly to railfans. O. Winston Link's legendary artwork surrounding the final days of steam on the NW is one example. NW was more than willing to allow Link to photograph and tape their trains and employees, so long as those steamers were blowing white smoke and not black. And today NS carries on this rail-fan friendly tradition. For example, NS recently released a series of custom painted diesel locomotives in fallen flag railroad liveries. They paid incredible attention to detail in their recreation of the paint schemes. So much so, when a few rail fans found an inaccuracy in one of the locomotives, NS took it back to the shop and paid to have it repainted correctly.

11 years ago @ Atomic Toasters - Northern 4-8-4 · 1 reply · +2 points

Handsome locomotives indeed.. I'm still partial to the 4-6-4 Hudsons. The pride of the Water Level Route and holder of the land speed record on two different continents, they definitely didn't have the pulling power and versatility of the Northerns, but they excelled on relatively flat land. The Hudsons were immortalized by Lionel Electric Toy Trains and given art deco flare on the NYC System by Henry Dreyfus.

I'd love to have a model Northern or Hudson.. For now I'll just have to stick with my 2-8-4 Berkshire.

11 years ago @ Atomic Toasters - Why Did A Railroad Own... · 0 replies · +2 points

Interesting read. I did not know about CN's history in radio. Then again, I don't know much about Canadian railways to begin with...

11 years ago @ Atomic Toasters - Startup: Point and Shoot · 0 replies · +1 points

You know you're a redneck when...

11 years ago @ Atomic Toasters - User Input: Collective... · 2 replies · +1 points

Some people just really don't like it. You're definitely not alone. The critics are strangely polarized, some being enthralled with it and others thinking its just plain boring and predictable. To each their own. It certainly doesn't have universal appeal; not even to zombie lovers. For me, I love the anticipation. I even love the drama. I too love zombie flicks and am always frustrated that feature length films don't capture a more broad picture of the zombie apocalypse. The Walking Dead, for me, is able to do that simply because of its format: television. You can watch the deterioration of social order, the gradual onset of insanity on weaker individuals, or the less morally sound citizens grasp the opportunity an anarchistic world presents.

11 years ago @ Atomic Toasters - User Input: Collective... · 9 replies · +1 points

The Sopranos, Dexter, The Walking Dead, Hell on Wheels, and of course Futurama. These are the shows I watch religiously. Definitely have found myself liking AMC shows more and more. I highly recommend them all, but especially the Walking Dead. If you haven't seen it, watch it. If you have seen it and weren't impressed, I implore you to give it another chance and watch for more than 3 episodes. Andrew Lincoln is an incredible actor with better character development than I've seen in any 21st century TV show.