Today’s comic is once again a true story. I picked up the first book in the Dresden Files series for a little trip I took down to L.A. this week. I picked it up because Patrick Rothfuss and Scott Kurtz both recommended it at a dinner we had back in Boston. I had avoided the series because it sounded sort of silly but Goddamnit this is a fun book!
Anyway the reason I’m down here is because I was invited to a Microsoft Surface party. It was a party of maybe a hundred people or so comprising what MS called their biggest Surface fans. It was a really cool little get together and honestly seemed like an opportunity for them just to say thank you to a lot of the folks who have supported Surface over the years.
It was a really fun party but two things stood out to me as being especially cool. The first was meeting Jason Wishnov the designer of There Came An Echo. I don’t do well at parties and I can’t mingle for shit but Jason seemed to be in a similar situation. Jason and I talked about games and how awkward we both felt. Later in the evening after we had all had a few drinks I saw him doing what can only be described as “dirty dancing”. Needless to say, I was quite impressed.
The best thing about the night though was the musical guest. The Surface folks do an amazing job of reaching out and working with artists in all sorts of fields. One of them is a musician named Allen Stone who I had never heard of but holy shit this guy and his band were incredible. I can’t imagine how hard it must be to play an event like the one last night. You had a room full of executives, doctors, engineers, and just general purpose nerds. Allen busted right through all the awkwardness in the room and managed to get people singing and dancing together. I may not have been a fan before but I’m a fan now. If you have some time today check out his music, I don’t think you’ll be disappointed.
I’d like to thank the Surface folks for inviting me. I was able to bring my wife Kara and both of us had a great time. I genuinely love my Surface, and I can honestly say it has changed the way I work. What I’ve been most impressed by over the years with the device though is the willingness of the Surface team to listen to feedback. I’ve spent hours at MS talking with the engineers about drawing on the device and how it feels. They want to hear what I like but more than anything they honestly want to hear what I don’t like. They have showed up at the Penny Arcade office with Surface machines running crazy experimental versions of drivers just to see what I thought of drawing performance. They have actually fixed issues I had with the device and continue to make it better. If last night was an opportunity for them to thank me for my passion, Then I’ll go ahead and take this opportunity to thank them for theirs.