The 40oz. Robot Armada
Ladies and Gentlemen, your panel of experts:
Miles holds a Masters in Library and Information Studies from the University of British Columbia and a Bachelors of Arts from Cornell College in History and Philosophy. A native Minnesotan, he’s followed suit with his fellow states-people, living throughout the U.S. in places like Boston, Chicago, Seattle,Vancouver, and currently, San Jose, California – where you can find him watching old episodes of Fraggle Rock.
He is putting the finishing touches on a novel, and has always been interested in writing – publishing editorials in the Minneapolis Star-Tribune as early as age 13. He’s also been a multi-instrumentalist, playing guitar, trumpet, omnichord, or whatever else he could get his hands on, and he served as a disc jockey at KNRL radio – the campus station of Cornell College (active 1995-1998).
His love of music is only matched by his love of the creative process – as a whole – and he extends this philosophy to his reviews; because nothing is more challenging than sharing your creations with others. Pimpin’ ain’t easy, and he ain’t no holla-back girl. So, c’mon people, now. Smile on your brother, everybody get together, try to love one another, right now. Dammit.
Dr. Mahctagon, is not a doctor – no matter what anyone tells you. Nor was he born in a crossfire hurricane. He grew up in a small town in Kansas, much like Superman, but without the heat vision or the super speed. Following high school, he headed north to Cornell College in Iowa with the intention of becoming a real doctor. However, after failing to understand a lick of Chem 212, he opted for another locale and career path. Transferring to the University of Kansas, he obtained a very expensive piece of paper saying he graduated with a Bachelors in Film Studies.
Instead of making critically acclaimed independent films, he watches them. To pay the bills, he works for an internet marketing company producing video content for the web. One of his other passions is music – not making it, just listening to it, and talking about it. A lot. To the point where he thought it might be a good idea to write about it too.
Nick Johnson is a graduate of Cornell College with a major in International Relations. When not writing for 40ozRobot.com he is busy combing the internet and the real world for that which he thinks is cool and will somehow add to his hip sense of self.
The “artificial intelligence” of the Atari 2600 fascinated him as a child in 1981. In 1986 he became hooked on hip-hop when he heard Eric B. and Rakim on the radio for the first time and the current name for “rap” had yet to be invented. In 1999 he was spellbound by the advent of DVDs and their ability to make old movies seem new through digital re-mastering. In 2010 he went to the theater and saw “Scott Pilgrim vs. The World” and all of these different fascinations coalesced into something very cool.
Nick Johnson currently maintains a hipster existence in Davenport, Iowa with his two workhorse computers: M-1530 and XPS-410.
J4k3 was raised in a sleepy tourist town on the shore of Lake Michigan. Having spent much of his youth playing C64, Atari 2600, and Atari 7200 games, he remembers the first time he saw an NES resting on a store shelf… pleading that it came with Mario AND Duck Hunt (whatever those were). It worked, eventually, and it was the point of no return. Fond memories of childhood gaming include: playing Metroid with a broken-collarbone after getting kicked off of a bed by his sister, sitting on a friend's couch playing Wheel of Fortune so many times that it became more like "Name That Tune", purchasing a Virtual Boy, selling a Virtual Boy, and an all-time favorite in Street Fighter II: Championship Edition.
The interest continued and has grown with him as he graduated from Cornell College, while getting his Master's from Georgetown, he met his wife while playing an MMORPG (and NO, it wasn't WoW!), and on through adulthood. This is probably a good thing, since being an avid gamer can be quite costly these days. His game interests are not defined by genre, though SRPGs such as Warcraft I – III, Command and Conquer, and the Disgaea Series, may not hold his interest the best.
When not gaming, he can be found in Central Texas with his wife and their menagerie, where he works in the software industry.
This goofy gal hails from a small town outside of Sacramento that no one seems to know about. She obtained an Art and Design degree from Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo in 2006. Currently you can find her running amuck in San Francisco, where she spends most of her money on shows. Her love of music can easily be attributed to her Dad, who raised her on the Grateful Dead, Bob Marley, and Neil Young. To feed her music addiction, you can find her with massive headphones plugging away as a Visual Designer.
When she is not listening to amazing bands, you can find her obsessing over Disney and Pixar movies, blowing through the stack of comic books on her coffee table, or creating some sort of food masterpiece in her kitchen. She really leads a dull and boring life, but she loves everything about it.
Distinguished Guests and Occasional Contributors:
Ron Logan loves music. A lot. He is a graduate of Cornell College with degrees in Music and Computer Science, and hopes to go on to pursue his Masters and Doctoral degrees in Music Composition. Ron has played saxophone in a number of local Colorado bands, such as the classic rock cover band 15C, and the gypsy-folk band Julia and the Unexpected. He plays more instruments than he can count, including saxophone, clarinet, piano, bassoon, a bit of guitar, and even sings from time to time. Ron's dream is to eventually teach music at the college level and to open up his own recording studio on the side. Armed with a keen ear for music, his debut at 40oz Robot marks the beginnings of his adventures as a music critic.
The Mahdulator usually writes his bios in a third person, humourously self-deprecating tone. He also prefers the British spelling of humour. Because it's funnier.
He earned his Bachelor's Degree in studio oil painting in 2002. Following divine intervention during the LSAT, he returned to school to study photography. Over the next five years, in roughly chronological order, he directed/shot/edited a feature film (no-budget indie), contemplated moving to L.A. (silverlake), moved to New York (brooklyn), worked in commercial photography (camera loader/lens wipe), retired from commercial photography (ran out of work), relocated to Santa Barbara (job chasing), and directed a short film.
He's an avid reader of philosophy and literary fiction when he's not working his day job as an Anatomic Pathology Technician or president-ing his production company Churchkey Productions. He still believes in the power of celluloid and hand written correspondence and he hopes you like his reviews more than he will admit.
KRObot was born in a log cabin by the side of a railroad track, but his early facility with higher mathematics and his beautiful contralto singing voice led him quickly to the big city. He had purchased a bachelor's and two PhD's from some of the nation's finest diploma mills before he was able to drive, a skill he would not pick up until his early 30s. Working as an analyst at a premiere think tank drove him to the absinthe bottle, but also led to his to famously elegant solution to algebra's famous "p versus not p" conundrum. After a blackout of indeterminate length, he awoke in a touring company of Bizet's Carmen, singing the title role and doing the troupe's laundry. The tour ended in Eugene, Oregon and that's where he is now. There're also a very nice lady and little girl in the house who seem very fond of him, so he tries not to make waves.
Rebecca Lane is not your average critic, and she’s not your average music lover, either. No sir, this girl is the real deal, and she has managed to feed these two obsessions since she was a bright-eyed undergraduate at Carleton College in Northfield, MN. Her critical career began there with a B.A. in Art History, followed by an M.A. in Art History and Criticism from SUNY Stony Brook, after which she played hooky from real life a bit longer by dabbling in doctoral work (that’s right: just another statistic!) back in her native West Coast at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver, B.C. Since way back in the day she has been publishing film and music reviews, making exhibition catalog contributions, and writing art criticism.
Rebecca is now a sufficiently hardened, skeptical critic: tough and salty on the outside, but tender, with a burning passion for quality writing and creative production on the inside. Ever the world-traveler, she is now exploring the Wild East from her current home of Varna, Bulgaria with her artistic partner-in-crime and twin baby banditos. There she writes art and cultural criticism for love, but teaches English for money. Happily, The 40 oz. Robot provides a link back to the birthplace of rock ‘n roll, and Rebecca counts herself lucky to be a contributing writer.
Born in 1976 to parents too young and too stupid to know better, Bill P grew up poor in the 80s and early 90s. While his fellow contributors were playing video games, Bill P became absorbed by the fantasy worlds of table top role-playing games. For the last 20 years, he has spent hundreds of hours pretending to kill monsters and do great deeds in living rooms and hobby shops.
Bill P is also a graduate of the University of Nevada, Reno where he majored in art history and sociology, which he found prepared him very well to write movie reviews for free and to go to graduate school but not much else. Coming to accept that fact led Bill P to complete his Master of Arts degree in counseling and educational psychology, specializing in college student development, and to write movie reviews for free. He applies this peculiar area of expertise at a small technical college in southern Oregon, helping students from disadvantaged backgrounds figure out what they want to do and how to do it well.
Bill P spends his free time watching cooking shows on Food Network, enjoying movies, and playing table-top role-playing games. He also writes movie reviews for free.