Do or Do Not.

The All-New, All-Different Do Or Do Not Mission Statement

without comments

Those of you reading this via RSS or other forms of syndication may not realize that I’ve change domains. Or rather, changed back — I’ve repurposed the URL based on my real name and have gone back to using Do or Do Not as the name of this site. Using my real-name-as-domain-name never felt quite right to me; I only started using it in an attempt to start building the “brand” of my name, but ironically enough, it kind of alienated me from my own site. And I have bigger and better goals for this site now. So I wrote a brand new Mission Statement! Wanna hear it? Here it go!

I want to start this mission statement by defining what I don’t want this site to be: I don’t want it just to be a blog. I don’t want it simply to be a recording of my gut-level reaction to pop culture ephemera. I don’t want it to feel meaningless, either to my audience or to me, and I don’t want it to be something that doesn’t push me to improve myself as a writer, an artist, a programmer and a person.

"Do, or up your rear this lightsaber goes."

I do want this site to be a repository for all of my various creative endeavors. After all, nothing really counts as being done until I put it online for praise from the masses, right? I can tell you right now this will not be a single-focus site. It’s more of a tour of my brain, and my brain can be a wide-reaching and messy place.

I do want to do write about a more diverse array of topics than I have traditionally: sure, the old standbys — movies, sports, comic books, TV shows, books, kids, music — those will all still have a place here, if something moves me enough to write it. But I also want to write about deeper topics, too. I want to push myself — I want to write about societal issues, about web development, about parenting, about anything that strikes me. Maybe even about politics if I’m feeling brave. (Yes, I know that nothing prevented me from writing about anything I wanted to before, but I was far more concerned about cultivating an audience than I was plumbing the depths of my own head.)

I want to post things that aren’t writing and feel confident in doing so. If I’m inspired, I should feel free to put artwork up, or graphic design, or even code samples, if it’s something I’m feeling strongly about.

I want to write short pieces. I want to write long pieces. I want to write multi-part pieces.

I want this site to grow beyond being simply a blog; I want to create projects that live here. I’m a web developer; I should develop some web stuff and put it out into the world. It’s what I do for a living, so I should be able to do it for fun, too.

I want to use this site as a way to learn new things, as a way to enhance and expand the skills I already have. I don’t want this site to be easy for me.

I want to help others. I want to write posts or create projects to help people, to inspire and motivate them. The name “Do or Do Not” doesn’t apply just to me — I want to get other people to Do, too.

Ultimately that’s what it’s all about – the Doing. The name “Do or Do Not” (and, of course, the famous quote from which it derives) has always spoken to me, and I’m sad now that I abandoned it for several years. In four simple words, in nine letters, it sums up a world of motivational speeches and inspirational techniques and ass-kicking and butt-chewing.

Do. Or do not.

I’m choosing to Do, and I’m hoping maybe I can get others to Do, too.

Written by Allen

June 14th, 2011 at 8:36 pm

Posted in Meta

Noisemaker

with 2 comments

Ah, vacation! After a ridiculously hard month or so that featured a whole lot of sixty-plus hour work weeks interleaved with multiple familial tragedies, it’s time to take a week off from work to get my head back on straight so I can stop making ridiculous coding errors and find wherever it is my creative mojo disappeared off to.

Staying home should be nice and relaxing, right? No work stress, time to myself, some quiet space for rebraining. You’d think that, wouldn’t you? Oh, that’s right, I have a one-year-old.

It’s amazing how a human so small can make so much noise. A few minutes ago, I’m pretty sure he managed to get every single one of his toys to make a racket at the same time, even including bouncing his favorite beach ball off of so many surfaces in such a short time that he must have cloned himself and the ball. (Dad, remind me to thank you so much for the remote-controlled Caterpillar truck which comes with a 300-watt Rockford Fosgate amplifier built into it.)

And when he’s not making all the noise ever, of course, he’s into everything oh em gee. The boy has a voracious curiosity combined with a stubborn determination, which I think will serve him very well in later years…provided those same qualities of his permit me to let him live long enough. Normally, his favorite room in the house is the bathroom, because that’s the one room he’s not allowed to explore; today, however, his favorite room by far has been the office, because that’s where I’m trying to concentrate on stuff.

ANDREW: Oh, hey, Dad. What’s up? How’s things?
ME: Andrew, I’m trying to do some thinking and some planning in here, can you maybe go–
ANDREW: Oh look it’s hair and dust bunnies in one little ball I can put right into my mouth nom nom nom! Dad, you should try this, it’s so good.
ME: Hey, Andrew, come on, let’s not play with–
ANDREW: Dad did you see that there’s a mouse up here and a keyboard and hey look it’s a coffee mug did you have any idea?!
ME: Andrew, really, I’m trying to–
ANDREW: Oh hey is this a surge protector and is that your computer plugged into it and is that the off switch?!
ME: Andrew, no! That’s not–
ANDREW: YES IT IS OH WOW IT’S THE OFF SWITCH I COULD JUST–
ME: Andrew, don’t! You can’t–
ANDREW: OH PLEASE I HAVE TO I HAVE TO LET ME–
ME: Kelsey, come get your brother!

…but repeat that, oh, a dozen or more times. The boy is exhausting and he doesn’t even walk yet.

(For extra added bonus noise/fun, there’s an occasional loud clanking or crashing sound from the eight-year-old, followed close after by an “Everything’s okay, Dad!” I’ve learned not to ask about those sounds.)

Written by Allen

November 10th, 2010 at 4:47 pm

Posted in Family,Kids

Purple

with 6 comments

Larger view available at my Deviant Art account at the link.

Written by Allen

September 18th, 2010 at 10:22 pm

Posted in Art

Overthinking It

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So as many of you have undoubtedly noticed, I’ve been putting up a bunch of comic strips here over the last month-ish. But I’ve never really felt like this was the best format for doing so, just because, well, it’s not what standard blog designs are really for, y’know?

Therefore, I’ve copied my strips out into their own site: Overthinking It — and I have to say that I think “http://overthinking.it” has to be my most awesome URL evar.[1] It’s actually set up to allow for looking at comics, and I’ve ported all of the existing strips over there. In most cases, I’ve reformatted the strips to make them bigger and more readable.

And to celebrate, there’s a brand new strip up there today! With ninjas! I’d paste it here, but I want you to go click over to the site and take a look.

[1]: Funny-and-sorta-ironic thing: the site is “Overthinking It,” which is exactly what I’m trying not to do with it, and why I haven’t fussed too much with the design. It’s me doing instead of thinking-but-not-doing.

Written by Allen

August 24th, 2010 at 1:27 pm

Posted in Comic Strips

Pilgrim-age

with 3 comments

So after an incredible amount of hype (at least incredible to the film’s target audience; more on that in a sec), Scott Pilgrim Vs. The World finally opened this weekend to a lackluster (to put it gently) $10 million of box office, good for fourth place on the weekend. I think a great many geeks people are disappointed by that haul, because, frankly, it means the film’s pretty much a bomb.

I don’t, however, think it’s a failure.

OK, yes, The Expendables made a ton more money this weekend — it opened in first place with about $35 million. But as other people have pointed out, The Expendables will be gone from the public consciousness by a month after the DVD release, while I think Scott Pilgrim is going to live on for years and becomes one of those movies that gets watched over and over and over again, slowly building up a larger audience over time.

Look, while in absolute terms, the movie seems like a dud, it’s A) still far and way the biggest U.S. opening director Edgar Wright (Shaun of the Dead, Hot Fuzz) has had yet, and both of his previous movies have had healthy post-theater lives; and B) pretty damn respectable for a movie based on an indie comic with a lead character who is, frankly, a clueless dick. And the soundtrack has been a success, which will go a long way toward keeping the movie alive, as good soundtracks almost always do.

Maybe those of us into such things expected too much, especially after the early trailers were so epicly awesome. But after Kick-Ass opened to big hype and not much money earlier this year, I thought this was likely to happen. We geeks knew the movie was coming and got excited for it; most of the rest of the world didn’t seem to care and didn’t seem to know what a “Scott Pilgrim” was. I think Wright hit this one maybe a little too squarely at his target, which will, again, likely help its long-term prospects as much as it did hurt its short-term ones.

No, this isn’t the death of the comic-book movie, just as the relative failure of Kick-Ass (which still fared better than Scott Pilgrim has so far) didn’t put as much as a smudge on Iron Man 2‘s golden armor. If the next Batman movie opens at under $50 million, then I’ll worry.

(No, I haven’t seen it yet; I was too busy relaxing on a lake in Maine this weekend. But I’m hoping to see it tonight. I’ll be sure to report back once I do.)

Written by Allen

August 17th, 2010 at 9:00 am

Posted in Comic Strips,Movies

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