Alaska Robotics

Archive for the ‘News’ Category

Boring Talk – “Disco” Ray Metcalfe

Friday, January 23rd 2015 by Pat


Boring Talk is back in podcast form! In this first episode, I sit down with anti-corruption advocate and the man who brought the VECO scandal to light, Ray Metcalfe.

Metcalfe explains that with cases like Citizens United, the Supreme Court may be signalling that states need to button up their corruption problems with strict, criminal ethics laws and longer statues of limitations. Metcalfe also talks about his current efforts to do just that through the referendum process.

Boring Talk is a podcast where I’ll be exploring Alaska politics through long, boring conversations. This is a personal thirst for understanding but I’ll be sharing my (largely unedited) conversations because I think civic discourse is important in the age of Twitter and maybe there’s some information here that will be valuable to other Alaskans.

Learn more:

Newsletter – Sowsear and Such

Friday, December 12th 2014 by Pat

Gallery Newsletter is out… Sows Ear comic workshop, whales all the way down, a new holiday album from Marian Call and extended hours.

Marian Call Concert for Colorado Flood Relief

Tuesday, September 17th 2013 by Pat

Marian’s latest tour took her right through the middle of the Colorado flood. She and Scott managed to stay safe and dry but they’ve been surrounded by people who haven’t been so lucky.

Marian’s doing what she can to help with a tiny concert for those who still have power and those who want to support the relief efforts. She’s encouraging people to give directly to charities of their choice. Even if you can’t give, please aim a few positive thoughts towards that part of the world.

More information here – Marian Call – A Concert for Colorado Relief

First Friday, Drawing Night Reboot and More!

Tuesday, September 3rd 2013 by Pat

Updates from the gallery!

  • First Friday this week features work by local artists Charity Green and Brandon Hauser.
  • Drawing night returns on September 17th.
  • I try to spell, “Nn t’sskck tsu ahh ah.”

Read it now, Alaska Robotics Gallery Spaceship Party!

Hey Juneau, Don’t Miss This!!!

Thursday, April 18th 2013 by Pat


Oil Tax Debate

Wednesday, April 10th 2013 by Pat

The oil tax debate continues. Thanks to Senator Bill Wielechowski for being such a good sport. I’m still waiting for my phone call from Parnell’s office.

Oil Taxes

Tuesday, March 26th 2013 by Pat

I guess this is my public testimony. I write and read and make things and I hope those things will float out into the world and help nudge our collective consciousness towards a better place.

I felt like this video was heavy handed and not as funny as some of the other political stuff I’ve done in the past but I’m also feeling the weight of a lot of frustration and futility. It was just a few years ago that we trudged through the VECO scandal and my faith in our state government never really recovered.

Ethics are as lax as ever, we have lawmakers who work for oil companies voting on issues that will directly affect their careers and pocketbooks. It’s a mess.

The amount of money Governor Parnell’s proposed tax structure costs Alaska over the next few years is estimated to be in the 5-6 billion dollar range.

To put that in perspective, for that amount, Alaska could own the New York Yankees, Manchester United, and the Dallas Cowboys.

According to the Forbes Global 2000 we could use that money to pick up Tesoro, US Steel, Fannie Mae & Freddie Mac, Goodyear, Safeway, or even bigger fish if we just wanted a controlling interest.

Or we could start our own oil drilling company.

The argument I usually hear against a state owned oil company is corruption and inefficiency. Well, the corruption is already there and a state owned oil company could only be more transparent to the public and lawmakers. Right now, people are trying to make important decisions based on speculation rather than information.

Inefficient? Yes, it would probably be massively inefficient but all those jobs and all that leaky money would stay right here in Alaska. It’s the Ted Stevens model of trickle down economics, corruption and inefficiency filling the pockets of locals and spilling out into the regional economy.

Whatever happens, oil is a finite resource and we should be preparing for decline and transition in the long game.

Also, I’m really tired of hearing about North Dakota. Let’s come up with a plan that works for Alaska.

Gallery Newsletter – Jan 31st, 2013

Wednesday, January 30th 2013 by Pat


Blat. It’s Alaska Robotics Gallery Newsletter time! In this issue, Lee Post, First Friday, welcoming Christy NaMee Eriksen to the gallery, and much more..

Alaska Robotics Gallery Newsletter – Jan 31st, 2013

Chunk Klang Boink, Watch for Falling Pixels

Monday, January 7th 2013 by Pat

It’s been on “the list” for a while, we need to update our website. If you’re interested in nudging us in the right direction, please let us know what this thing looks like from your perspective.

In preparation for this task, I’m now going to talk to myself a bit. Feel free to follow along…


Websites are a bit like a homestead or a tree fort. You imagine something fantastic, scribble down a rudimentary plan and then maybe, if you’re lucky, end up with something close to what you wanted… in a handful of browsers.. for a few years. Then you start over again when your needs (and technology) change.

It’s a lot of work. I can see why some artists and businesses would want to just exist on Facebook but that’s a bit like building on sand. The community is great but the ground will eventually shift, the rules will change, and your home will be swallowed.


Alaska Robotics was originally created as a label for our personal projects. We do a lot of work-for-hire and we wanted our personal work to be something separate. Right now it’s a bit of a snarly mess, here’s how we’re probably going to sort it out..

LRCD.COM – Lucid Reverie, LLC is our media firm, we specialize in website design, video production, and pick up a lot of random work-for-hire. Unfortunately, people have trouble spelling and understanding the words Lucid and Reverie so LRCD is a handy shortcut. (L)ucid (R)everie (C)reative (D)esign if you like.. or perhaps, (L)ucid (R)everie, some (C)ool (D)udes.

So yeah, we’ll remove the store and rebuild the site as a basic information site for our media business.. it might need a squid illustration.

ALASKAROBOTICS.COM – Alaska Robotics is the label we use for all of our personal projects, things like short films and comics. The main URL used to be but that looked too much like a bad play on the word acrobatics and we also learned that a lot of people don’t know AK is the abbreviation for Alaska… solution.. spell it out. It takes slightly longer to type but is much much easier to remember.

We recently opened The Alaska Robotics Gallery, a physical location in downtown Juneau where we sell our favorite art, graphic novels, shirts, local music, and cards. The online store that currently lives at will get rolled into the Alaska Robotics site as an extension of our new gallery.

Some of the content is going to shuffle as well. The comics are occasionally hard for people to find and we’ve got a wonky setup for the films as well. I’m going to put a lot of effort into smoothing those bits out and making the text on the front page more readable.

Ok. So it’s not a precise vision, more of an opening statement. I’m going to get to work on it this week and I apologize in advance for transitional bumps.

Alaska Robotics Gallery Newsletter 004

Friday, December 7th 2012 by Pat

The latest gallery newsletter is about four miles long due to an overly windy holiday shopping pitch and several glowing reviews of local artists. Enjoy!

Also, a reminder — Gallery walk is tonight — Friday, December 7th. Mitch’s artwork looks great and he’s got the original pencils on display as well.

Hope you make it!