Recent Posts

Something from Nothing: The Art of Rap

This trailer looks like the documentary could be very well done. They’ve at least got a lot of the big names in hip hop history. Gotta see it.

‘Something from Nothing: The Art of Rap’ Trailer – YouTube.

virtual lighting setup

Wanna try out a bunch of lighting setups, but don’t have an assistant to move the lights around for you? Only got a couple lights and you want to see what more would look light? Wish you could try out a ring light? Now you can do it virtually. Check out this brilliant website, http://www.zvork.fr/vls/ that allows you to add lights, move them around, adjust distance, height, strength, light type, gelled and see the results quickly before having to create the setups for real in the studio.

Check out this “Jill Greenberg-esque” setup I tried out. It was so fast to change light locations and light strengths to eliminate nasty shadows I didn’t want.

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Once you’re done, you can save an image of the lighting diagram and the resulting portrait image.

Try out some lighting at http://www.zvork.fr/vls/

Be frugal with your time

I found this quote inspiring, it’s what I think of frequently. Time is more valuable than money. Frequently ask yourself – am I using my time the best way I can right now?

Your time is limited.
If we’re fortunate, we’ll live 80-100 years.
Money is unlimited. There are trillions of dollars in the world. There’s more money in existence than our minds can grasp.
So why do we cling to money like it’s in short supply, but trade our time like it’s never-ending?
Be frugal with your time, not your money.

via Think Like a Creator, Not a Consumer | Afford Anything.

Must listen music of 2011

One thing I really enjoy about the end of the year is the “Best Of” lists, especially for music. I don’t get to pay much attention to all the music happenings and this does some of the sorting for me.

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What music do you recommend someone “must listen to” for 2011, that if someone overlooked they’d be missing out on something great. Last year, for me it was Phoenix – Wolfgang Amadeus. This year, it is Foster The People – Torches. Neither of these are unknowns or overlooked music, but they were unknown to me. Actually, those two I found via their Saturday Night Live appearances. The Foster The People album is good from start to finish.

Hip-hop is my primary music genre, so it’s great to find exposure to bands of other genres that are undeniably good. What is good that I’ve been missing?

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For 2011 in hip-hop, you’ve obviously got to listen to Kanye West – My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy. And his other album from this year, with Jay Watch the Throne. It was a good year for Kanye Fans. There’s lots of other great stuff, but I’ll let you read about it in the year’s Best Of lists.

What have I missed that I should be listening to right now?

Hint: Enable AirDrop on older Macs

My work machine is one of the newer unibody MacbookPros and my main home machine is the previous model MacBookPro. I needed to move files between them and decided to try out AirDrop. For some reason I couldn’t find it on my older home laptop. Did I forget to enable a preference? Did I have security tight so it can’t work? I did some googling and found out that even thought both machines have Lion installed, AirDrop doesn’t work on some older machines. Further digging found a way to enable it and it even worked in my case.

from MacWorld Article “Enable AirDrop on Macs without supported wireless hardware

AirDrop is a handy way to share files between Macs. Unfortunately, it is only supported on newer models which have the hardware necessary to support a certain type of point-to-point WiFi connection. There is, however, a hidden setting to enable AirDrop on older Macs. Just type:

defaults write com.apple.NetworkBrowser BrowseAllInterfaces 1

into a Terminal window, hit enter, and relaunch the Finder.

Note that:

  • You must do this on both the sending and receiving macs, even if one of them already has the correct WiFi hardware (I think).
  • You will be able to see other macs on the same network, and they will be able to see your Mac (when AirDrop is open), even if they are not physically nearby. On a larger network with many Macs, this could potentially cause some confusion, although it shouldn’t be a real security issue. This may be why Apple decided not to enable this feature by default.
  • Both macs must be connected to the same network somehow (ethernet, existing WiFi network, etc.)

After restarting Finder, AirDrop appeared and I could transfer files from the old machine to the new machine. The old machine still didn’t appear visible on the new machine (I only did the steps above on my old machine), but I could have done it to get file transfers working both directions.

My favorite Podcasts

90% of my time with earplugs in is listening to Podcasts. Music is on for when I’m working and need to focus, but if I’m walking around, commuting, doing work around the house – I’ve got a podcast on. And 90% of the podcasts I listen to are “comedy” podcasts. Almost all comedians lately have been starting podcasts as a direct connection to their audience and it helps a lot when they’re doing standup dates.

The article below lists 8 of the top comedy podcasts and I listen to 5 of them as soon as they’re available.

Best Comedy Podcasts | PopWatch | EW.com.

1. WTF – Marc Maron does really great one on one podcasts with comedians and gives you an hour-long glimpse into the personalities behind the celebrity you see in movies and on tv. He’s a great interviewer and is very open with his own personal life as well. I even subscribed to his back catalog of some of his first shows so I could listen to the controversial interviews with Carlos Mencia, Dane Cook and Robin Williams. Twice a week. http://www.wtfpod.com/

2. Comedy Bang! Bang! – Formerly known as Comedy Death Ray podcast, this brings in a lot of improv and comedians from LA and the Upright Citizen’s Brigade theatre. More than just interviews, there’s some hilarious improv games and people do characters on the show that are hilarious. Definitely download any show that Andy Daly appears on. My favorite is #94 with Andy Daly and Ben Schwartz – I’ve listened to it at least 20 times. What’s up hotdog? Posted every Monday morning. http://www.earwolf.com/show/comedy-bang-bang-podcast/

3. Adam Carolla Show – the one that started it all for me. Back when Adam Carolla was on Free FM radio, they also put out a podcast of the show and I listened to that every day for 2 years. After the radio show was cancelled, Adam turned to podcasting, bringing his audience and instantly becoming one of the most downloaded shows. Now he’s got the Guinness World Record for most downloaded podcasts and has become the show that’s blazing the trail for others to replicate. After years of listening his stories and rants are getting repetitive, but he really excels in his long-form One On One interviews. The show is usually a review of a couple news items (nothing too heavy) and a guest with a wide range of subjects. This one’s daily, so set your subscription feeds in iTunes. http://www.adamcarolla.com/ACPBlog/

4. Doug Loves Movies – the famous pot head, Doug Benson (Super High Me) hosts a weekly podcast from the UCB theatre with a wide range of comedians and movie stars. A short discussion of recent movie watching followed by a humorous and competitive trivia game, the Leonard Maltin Game, guessing movie titles based on a cast listing. This is posted on Friday, for your weekend listening while you do house projects. http://douglovesmovies.com/

6. Pod F. Tompkast – Paul F. Tompkins is one of the regulars on the Comedy Bang! Bang! podcast above and he has just finished his first year of podcasting, putting one out monthly. His podcast is wide ranging with clips from his standup show, phone conversations/stories with his close comedian friend, Jen Kirkman as well as a story of characters (Ice T, Sir Andrew Lloyd Webber, John C Reilly, John Lithgow, Cake Boss, others…) all voiced by Paul F. His laugh is infectious. This comes out monthly, but is on a break right now, gearing up for the second “season”. Listen to the first year show once you get familiar with his work on Comedy Bang! Bang! http://pft.libsyn.com/

Other podcasts that are currently on my iPhone are:

* The ABC’s of SNL – Kevin Smith (who has at least a dozen podcasts of his own) interviews Jon Lovitz about his start at SNL and what went on behind the scenes. There’s been 2 episodes so far and they’re very interesting if you’re an SNL devotee.
* The Best of the UFC – video interviews and clips from UFC fights and fighters
* Best of YouTube – some of the best viral videos from YouTube
* ESPN: The B.S. Report – Bill Simmons does great interviews from the sports world and tv/comedy. I don’t listen to the sports ones unless it’s a sport I’m really interested in. But he usually has a lot of SNL staffers on, Adam Carolla, and occasionally does a breakdown of a few reality tv shows (my favourite episodes) with Dave Jacoby, the self-dubbed “Czar of Reality TV”. Download every episode that Chuck Klosterman is on – he’s such a great interview. http://espn.go.com/espnradio/show?showId=bsreport
* Fitzdog Radio – another standup, he does a show on Sirius XM radio and then usually follows it up with a podcast. Lots of great comedians on the show.
* Girl on Guy with Aisha Tyler – Aisha Tyler has been one of my favourite female comedians and she’s typically described herself as a guy’s girl. She drinks, plays video games, watches sports and likes burping and farting – not a dainty lady. She’s just starting out and episode #4 with Adam Carolla as a guest has me interested enough to keep listening.

There’s a few that I just added and haven’t had the time to listen to yet but I’m hopeful they’re decent
* Back to Work – Merlin Mann talks productivity, software and other things. I’ve listened to one show so far and it has possible potential. Not a gripping show, but decent background listening.
* Mohr Stories – Jay Mohr’s recent start
* The Smartest Man in the World – Greg Proops, from “Whose Line is it” fame is a very interesting guy and definitely smart and somewhat eclectic.
* The Todd Glass Show – a funny comedian, he makes lots of appearances on Doug Loves Movies, Comedy Bang! Bang and others, now trying it himself. Subaru!

What are some of your favourite podcasts? Let me know in the comments.

Clean it up

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A little housekeeping for something that has been annoying me – the clutter of external drives and backup solutions going on. Dust fills the area. Now the drives are on a raised grid from an excess Ikea drawer insert that should also help with airflow. Cables are numbered so if I need to unplug I can see which one. Electrical is sorted much better as well. Should keep maintenance much faster.