I am off!

Saturday, December 22, 2007
As many of you know, I will be out of town for the next week, so don't plan on any updates from me!

Hawaii, here I come!


Me needs some Media!

I am out of media! I need:
CD/DVD labels
CD/DVD cases (black mini jewel cases)
Mini-DV tapes

I need a bunch of each of these. Anyone know of a good (cheap) place to get all of these in one place? I usually just buy them separately when I find them on sale, but I have less than 10 of each of the listed above, so I need to find a sale now!


For Hurley!

Thursday, December 20, 2007
For Hurley:


I passed!

Tuesday, December 18, 2007
I have been worried that I might not have passed all of my classes this fall (I had to get at least a C). There was no reason for me to fail any of my classes, but that didn't keep me from worrying.

Well, today I went online to check:

All As and one B, with an overall GPA of 3.17.



Best Program Ever!

Thanks again to Macenstein for the video. It shows a revolutionary program that they are writing that will change the design industry.


See why?

Monday, December 17, 2007
See why I wanted the new iLife '08? It can create some pretty stunning photo galleries.

Don't forget to click on "Carousel" in the bottom left to be amazed. =: >



Thanks for the great (short) Christmas break guys, it was a lot of fun, and it felt great to hang out with the family for a while.

I look forward to doing it again soon!

Oh, and a late night bonus! This got me laughing so hard! A post on ThinkChristian showed me an underside of YouTube I have never seen before: Nooma Spoofs! Now, if you don't know what a Nooma is, don't worry. You can still watch, but you may not find it as funny. For those that do know who Rob Bell is, here is the one that got me laughing so hard:



Thursday, December 13, 2007
I am done!

No more Chick-fil-A!

No more school!



A Few Files

Here are a few files from projects that I have been working on this week. I have organized the files by class. These files are as they were turned in for a final grade. If you would like to comment on any of the files, please leave a comment or e-mail me, I would love to hear your thoughts (even though the projects are not still being worked on).

Intermediate Film:
I edited a film for this class, but it is actually on film, so I have no upload yet.

Directing for Narrative Film:
I have a few videos, but nothing ready to upload right now (and nothing that would be interesting to you guys).

Intermediate Scriptwriting:
Second Chance (Alone): The script that Hurley and I originally started to write/work on in high school. The script is very different from the original idea, and I think is far better than it was originally (although it could still use some work). This is a full short script at 20 pages (but don't worry, you can read it in about 10 minutes). It is interesting (to me) how the original idea was based on Sara and Jimmy, and we wrapped the story around their lives. The same thing happened again with this rewrite. For example, the introduction of Chet, their baby. However, old personalities remain, like the scene where they are playing video games in the living room (using the "new" model would have put the characters playing Warcraft!).
Hot Sleep: This is an adaptation from a short story book thingy... OK, let me explain. Orson Scott Card (made famous by writing "Ender's Game") started his writing career by writing short stories, most of which were submitted to magazines and the like ("Ender's Game" originates from one of these stories). There was one "universe" (my term meaning a group of stories that exist in the same reality, such as the Star Wars Universe, or Star Trek Universe) that he wrote many short stories in. These short stories were bound into a compilation called "Hot Sleep." Later, Card wrote a long story in this universe, and this was released with the original shorts in the book "The Worthing Saga" (to say it again briefly: "The Worthing Saga" exists of one long story and a bunch of short stories, all in the same universe). OK, I have spent way too long talking about this, but IMO, "The Worthing Saga" is the best Orson Scott Card book ever (which is a topic all on it's own). Anywho, this script is an adaptation of "LifeLoop," one of the original short stories.

Media Entrepreneurship:
My Business Plan: This is an 18 page business plan that I made for the class (I took out my address when I uploaded it). This is the only file in this post that I have an official grade for: 325/400. Not great, but seeing as I didn't do any research, I am conformable with the grade (I made a B in the class).

Visual Editing:
Pink Tux (YouTube link, also a part of this post below): My final project for the class. Our assignment was to make a video that showed we knew how to use the software. We had to use effects, transitions, key frames, and all of the other little buttons and do-dads. So, I figured if he wanted something that was over the top with effects and transitions, I might as well make an '80's music video. So I did. I used the required video clips and grabbed "In Love With the 80's (Pink Tux to the Prom)" by Relient K as the background music. I like the way it turned out. I will show this video to my instructor tomorrow, and that will be the last time that I have a scheduled class in college... yea!

On another subject: I am sure that no one noticed, but I switched hosting companies. I am now using .Mac (pronounced "DotMac"). I say this because there are posts with links still to the old server, and seeing as I have over 250 posts on this blog, I don't want to go back and change all of my links. SO: old post's links may not work any more. If you are browsing my archives and want a link updated, post a comment to that post and I will see what I can do.


Cow Countdown

Tuesday, December 11, 2007
In honor of me quitting Chick-fil-A in two days, I thought that I would count down the time that I have dressed up as the Chick-fil-A Cow.




#3.5 (I dressed up but was not seen by anyone)








#11 (was for a film shoot)




Best Price?

OK, so I am graduating this week, and I want to get rid of all of my old text books. Who will buy back the textbooks for the most money?

The University Bookstore, on campus
Voertman's, the "bookstore" just off campus where you can buy anything and everything UNT (similar to the local bookstore chain in College Station)
Eagle Text, the small, rundown place just off campus that is run by those Chinese guys, all they do is buy and sell used books.

Which will pay me the most money, and why? I would guess that it is not worth the $10 to "shop around" at all three.


I hope that they come in...

Monday, December 10, 2007
I ordered Drew's and Momma's presents today on Amazon, but just saw that the "expected ship date" is "December 17-18th," meaning that both presents may not even SHIP until after we open gifts.

If they don't ship by Thursday, I will cancel the order and buy locally. They are not things that can't be bought locally, I was just looking for the connivence of not having to walk up and down isles looking for what I wanted.



Neat gift idea.


True Love

OK, I understand that I am moody. I have mood swings, more that most people. One minute I can be laughing, the next minute I can be depressed and lonely.

Right now, I am depressed and lonely. But don't worry about me. Thirty minutes from now I will be watching old Friends reruns and laughing (I am just glad I don't drink, if I did, I would be REALLY moody).

Tonight I saw the movie Dan in Real Life. It is about a guy who meets a girl that he instantly falls in love with, then finds out that he can't have her. He spends most of the movie trying to move past her, but he can't. The entire movie is about love and family, about most people being happy while one person in the group is faking the happiness because he can't be with his true love. And of course at the end they end up happily ever after.

Even though it was a feel good movie, it has me depressed. The more I go though life, the less likely it seems like I will find my one True Love. I don't use that phrase the way that the movies use it, I use it the way that family and friends show it. Sara and Jimmy. Stephen and Bwige. Hurley and Helen. Each couple has an amazing love for each other that amazes me, and puts the True Love of movies to shame.

But where is my True Love? Stephen keeps telling me that "God has a girl picked out for you," but I don't believe that. I don't think that each person has exactly one perfect match. I think that there is much more randomness involved, more luck in crossing paths at the right time. This is not to say that God isn't preparing someone for me, it is just that I have never been on a real date with a girl, much less felt anything that I would classify as love (attraction, yes, but it seems all of the girls I am interested in are taken). I guess like I feel like an illiterate person at the library. I want to stop and read a book, but I can't even read the titles, so I just walk down the isles looking at the spines, longing to know what's inside.

Even outside of True Love, I am having (have been having) problems finding happiness in my life. I used to have a few friends, but I don't any more. I struggle to have fun filming things. I am lonely most days, and my work is unfulfilling. And even as I search for love and happiness in religion, it never satisfies. The few times that I am happy are when I am with family. Being with other people that love me is the only time that I am not depressed. But even then it comes with mixed blessing because I look around me and all of my siblings and friends are married, they have True Love, and that reminds me of how lonely I am inside.

The more I traverse in life, the more accepting I am of the idea that I will spend my life out as an old hermit in the woods: alone. And of course, thinking about this just makes me more depressed. I want happiness, I want True Love, but the more I search for it, the more it runs away from me, then taunts me from afar.

Like I said, don't worry about me, I am just being moody. I am sure that after I finish crying, I will be laughing again.


I hope.



Sunday, December 09, 2007
How 'bout them Cowboys?

'Nuff said.


Random links...

Saturday, December 08, 2007
Random links of the week:

Star Trek Inspirational Posters (mostly for Hurley, but there are some funny ones in there)
Speed Racer trailer (looks interesting)
Narnia: Prince Caspian trailer (neat first look, even if it wasn't my favorite of the books)

Now going to a completely different, but relevant topic: A few months ago, I was working at Chick-fil-A, and on my break I was browsing through the newspaper. In one section they had the picture of the new Mach 5 (the car Speed Racer drives). And I was like, "Wow, they are making a Speed Racer movie." I don't remember what I said or mumbled, but a kid (about 10 years old) in the booth next to me said "What?" I showed him the picture of the car in the newspaper, and said "They are making Speed Racer into a movie."

I knew it would happen. I saw it coming a mile away. I never wanted to get this reaction in my life, but here they were, right in front of me.

He said, "What's Speed Racer?"

AHHHHHH! NO! I never want to hear that phrase! And I am not talking about the "Speed Racer" words, I am talking about the "What's [insert culture icon from when you were a kid]?" phrase!

*sob* Now I know what my sister means when she talks about feeling old.



Friday, December 07, 2007
DFW set a record high today.

84 degrees.

Yup, with less than 20 days until Christmas, here in Texas, it is summer weather at 84 degrees!

Thankfully, there is a front moving in, and in the next 24 hours temps will drop 20+ degrees.


Not again!

Wednesday, December 05, 2007
Remember 6 months ago when the "Time with God" set (and Cathy's house) flooded? We had to put off taping a few months while we re-located to a room that Cathy's church let us set up in.

Well, this morning I made my way to Gainesville and got there right at 9:10. While we were "scheduled" to meet at 9:00, me getting there ten minutes late is fine: Cathy has been at least 15 minutes late each day for the last few months. When I get there, though, she is already there, and has had a heroic morning.

She got there early for once (8:45) and decided to have everything set up for me so when I got there we could just start taping. So she started turning on the lights, a job that I normally do. As she turned on the last light (a 500w bulb on a light stand) it popped (like a few have done in the past), so she first unplugged it. About that time, she thought "I am surprised that it didn't catch on fire."

Now let me stop here. I will admit that I claim responsibility for this. In the last few months I have done many stupid things in order to cut costs. For example, I was using $2 extension cords (with no grounding wire) instead of surge protectors. Instead of buying $20 worth of ND filters (sheets of plastic to put on the light to cut down the brightness) I had clothes pinned up large sheets of paper to cut the light. Needless to say, I was putting money in front of safety.

So, as I was saying, Cathy thought "I am surprised that it didn't catch on fire," at which point she looked up and saw that the sheets of paper were indeed on fire. She grabbed them, and just like in cartoons, her first instinct was to blow on them to put them out. And like in the cartoons, this only fanned the flames. So she threw it on the ground, grabbed the quilt that we use as a table cloth, and smothered the fire. Then, for good measure, she poured her $4 latte on it (running early, she wanted to treat herself to something better than a $1 cup at Braums, her usual stop, so she went across the street to Starbucks).

The good news is that no one and no thing was hurt, and the sprinklers didn't go off.

The bad news is that she now has to pay for the cleanup, and the church smells like smoke (personally, I like the smell, but I am sure that most people won't).

As she said, maybe this was God's way of getting our attention on safety so that something bigger didn't happen later (like at her new house which is being remodeled right now). But what I can tell you is that I feel like an idiot for not listening to my professors when they talk about safety. I sure won't do that again!


One more thing...

Tuesday, December 04, 2007
Just adding one thing to my Christmas wish list:
a new mouse!
Nothing fancy, just an optical wired mouse is all. A few extra buttons would be nice but not required.


They suck you in...

Thursday, November 29, 2007
(the following is copied directly from Dvorak's blog)

If you don’t want to be sucked into a vortex of iPods, iMacs, iPhones and various other Appley products, stay at least 25 feet away from Apple Stores. That’s the conclusion Gene Munster and a group of Piper Jaffray analysts came to over the weekend after doing a little mall-based Apple Store fieldwork.

In the end, the team concluded that the stores seemed to exert a mysterious ‘gravitational pull‘ on shoppers who did venture closer than 25 feet of the entranceways. According to Munster, about 27 percent of people who came within 25 feet of the store thresholds ended up being sucked inside. And while the same force did not compel them to buy anything, Munster believes the mere fact shoppers were drawn inside may be indicative of future purchase decisions.

“The important point is this gravitational pull highlights that consumers’ future buying intentions could be shifting to Apple from PCs,” he said in a research note. “If materialized, this shift should benefit Apple in 2008 and 2009.”



This is sad!

My spelling skills have always been lacking, but lately, they have downright filed me! I was just trying to type "instruments" and had to think long and hard about it... and even then, I got it wrong!

Arg, I need to take a spelling class... this is humiliating (yea, I spelled that right!). Stupid computers with auto-spell-check-and-fix.


Christmas VS The Bible Quiz

Wednesday, November 28, 2007
Take this quiz, and tell us how you did! It is a simple true or false quiz, written by my LifeGroup leader Jason Vandever.

Christmas VS The Bible.

To test it out, I ran through it once and got a perfect score. I am interested in seeing what others will answer.


Christmastime is here!

Seeing as people need to know these types of things soon, I thought that I would go ahead and post my Christmas Wish List (yes, I am more selfish than Stephen who doesn't want anything). One note: I am posting this open list, but I don't want duplicates, so I leave it up to YOU ALL to pass along what you got me so that I don't get 5 of something. Also, I know that part of my family will not be participating in giving gifts this year, and that is cool. This is just a list for people who want to know.

Here goes:
Serenity Collector's Edition DVD ($20, Amazon link)
A watch (I was going to give you all of these parameters of what I want, but then I thought it would be neat to be surprised)
A new mouse (wired or wireless, I don't care)
iLife '08 (if you want to splurge: $70 from Amazon)
a wireless router with "bridging" capabilities (ask Jimmy)
a new mouse (nothing fancy)
iTunes gift cards (available at any retail store, usually near cash registers)
and of course, cash is always welcome.

Or you could just be creative and get me whatever you feel like.

I am sure I will append this list as I get more ideas.



Just so that everyone knows what is going on about my graduation:
I am graduating in December 2007 from the University of North Texas with a BA in Radio/Television/Film.
I will not be walking the stage for many many reasons (too many to post here), but mostly because I will be hanging out with family in the weeks following, so there is no need for everyone to drive up here.
I am considering taking one last class in the Spring (technically as a post-grad), but am leaning away from taking it at this point.


A big move...

Just to let everyone know, I am canceling my old server (where I stored all of my stuff on the internet) and am moving it to a new server, so if old links don't work, it is because they are pointing to the wrong place. One of these days when I have a lot of time on my hands I may go back and change out the old links.

Note that wile www.MeMediaWeb.com still goes to my site, parts may be down or missing as I upload everything back.

Oh, and I uploaded a page with all of my cell phone pics (over 575), but am debating if I will actually post it...


Too Geeky!

Tuesday, November 27, 2007
(this post is directly copied from Macenstein)

Any Apple fan with limited garage/basement space has at one time or another been told by the woman in his life (be it a wife or mother) that they need to throw away those giant Apple computer boxes their machines came in. Well, I challenge any nagging wife to refute the awesomeness of THIS shot taken at the DragonCon Labor Day Weekend Parade.

That’s right. It appears to be a Darth Vader costume made predominantly from a Mac Pro box - and the fellow is wearing the Apple logo where it counts. By combining an obsession with Apple and an obsession with Star Wars, this brave soul has achieved a level of super geekdom that most of us can only dream of reaching. We bow to you, Mac Vader Pro.

Too... much... information...

So, on another break from my assignment, I did a vanity search for MeMedia, and what came up first? www.MeMedia.com. On their front page is the following text:

MeMedia is a leading, full-service, online advertising solutions provider and behavioral ad network achieving superior results through innovative multimodal technologies, expert advice, and global reach.

Utilizing our advanced behavioral targeting capabilities, our diverse portfolio of rich advertising solutions, and our rapidly expanding global inventory, MeMedia connects premium advertisers to a global audience delivering superior monetization and advertiser campaign performance.

Can you say "overuse of the thesaurus?" I mean really! Outside of the Declaration of Independence, those are the longest two sentences I have ever read! The average letter per word is just under ten! This text needs to be reworded so that people that did not graduate from Yale and/or Harvard will be able to understand it. Try this on for size:

MeMedia is trying to copy Google by being an ad company. However, we think that we are better because Google sucks (oh and we have a lot of technologies that they don't have).

We will use these technologies to advertise to people.

See, that wasn't so hard. Next time, try using less thesaurus and more Simpleton Speech.


I can't breathe!

Monday, November 26, 2007
The weekend away from work and school was amazing! Family, food, and War Craft made a great vacation.

But Sunday afternoon something in the air blew in, and my allergies are going haywire, just like they do every year at this time. My nose is stopped up, and I constantly have mucus dripping down the back of my throat. The mucus hits my tonsils (or something back there) and makes me cough, giving me a sore throat. The mucus then goes down to my stomach where, if I haven't eaten in a few hours, it makes me nauseous.

All day. Every day. But night is worse. Because my nose is stopped up, I can't breathe, and I wake suddenly grasping for air, coughing, and feeling like I have to throw up. Needless to say, I didn't get much sleep last night (while it was cold in my room, I was sweating so much I had to turn my sleep mask inside-out because the inside was so wet).

But there is good news. For all of this to go away, all I have to do is get a needle in the butt. I have an appointment with the Wellness Center on campus tomorrow at 1 to get the shot, so hopefully tomorrow night I can get a good night's sleep. Right now, I am just trying to work on a script due tomorrow without thinking about my clogged nose for more than 30 seconds (which is hard because I have to look down at a book, and if I am not careful, my nose will start dripping everywhere...). Then again, if I have a Dr.'s appointment tomorrow, then I can skip class and give him the note later. Hmmm....

Ya, this post is gross, but then again, so is life, so get used to it (that is, get used to life, not gross posts... I try not to be gross too often).



Wednesday, November 21, 2007
Your trivia for today:
"Five of the world's ten biggest megachurches are in just one country."

What country is it?

Hint: It isn't America!



I just thought that I would let everyone know who Rhonda is.

While most of you do not know her name, she has been an integral part of my life for the past five and a half years. I fully believe that God gave her to me, and she has served me well through rain, sleet, and snow.

Of course I am talking about my truck:

(file photo)

Her name came from a TV show from a few years back called "Random1" where two guys drove around in an old beat up truck doing random acts of kindness (can you guess that it only lasted one season?). The name of their truck was Jackie, and while that would have been a perfect name for my truck, I didn't want to steal a name.

In one episode, the guys helped an older African American gentleman, and his daughter said that Jackie was not a good name for that truck, and suggested that they name it something else. I couldn't remember what the name was, so a few months ago I sent an e-mail to the Random1 guys asking the question. They responded:


It was so cool to get this email reminding us of that moment with Steven's daughter Asia. I was finally able to get a hold of Andre and he loved that you asked this question. Asia said Jackie should be named Rhonda!

Thanks so much for getting in touch and supporting R1. We all appreciate it:)
best, thea and the Random 1 crew

So a few months ago I officially named my truck Rhonda.

There you have it. Happy Thanksgiving!


Latest Ad

Tuesday, November 20, 2007
This is the latest ad from Apple. It appears on news websites, and consists of two parts, a horizontal ad on top and a larger ad on the right hand side. The coolest part is how they both work together to make a neat and funny ad.



Thursday, November 15, 2007
I thought that this was interesting and fun...

"All of the designs submitted to the Jars Of Clay Design Contest were amazing, but these 30 shirts are the cream of the crop. The next part is up to you! Vote on your favorite shirts! The 4 shirts that receive the most votes will advance to the next round of judging, where the members of Jars Of Clay will choose a grand prize winner and 3 runners-up. Voting ends on Friday, November 16 at 11:59pm PST."

Vote here!

I suggest that you look at each individual photo by clicking on it. Or (as clicking on it wouldn't work for me) viewing the photo directly:

I will tell you what I voted for laters!


Follow up...

In a followup to my last post:

Australian Santas Asked Not to 'Ho Ho Ho' - "phrase could frighten children and could even be derogatory to women."


Naughty or Nice

Wednesday, November 14, 2007
"Liberty Counsel’s Matthew Staver is out with a “Naughty & Nice” list for stores this holiday—excuse me, Christmas—season."

Follow the blog post here.



For the few of you that read this who aren't in my family, and in honor of the warm weather, here is my Featured Recipe of 2007:

(Almost) Kelling Family Doritos Salad

1 head of lettuce
4 Roma tomatoes (the small kind)
1.5 cups shredded cheese (or more to taste)
1 can black beans (or kidney or Ranch Style) (washed and drained)
1 lb. hamburger meat
1 packet of taco seasoning
1 bag of the cheapest tortilla chips Wal-Mart has to offer
1 bottle Light ("Free") Catalina

Chop lettuce and tomatoes fine, put in a large mixing bowl. Sprinkle cheese and beans on top.

Fix meat according to the taco seasoning packet (usually you brown the meat, add a bit of water and the seasoning and simmer for a while). Drain mean (if needed). Sprinkle meat on top of salad.

Grab three large handfuls of chips and crumble on top of meat. Pour on half of the bottle of dressing, and mix well. Add two more crushed handfuls of ships and half of the remaining dressing, mix well. Add one more handful of chips, crushed, and the rest of the dressing. Mix well. (It takes me this many steps because I have a just-big-enough mixing bowl. If you have a large enough mixing bowl, you might be able to get away with less steps.)

Serve immediately. Accept praise from everyone who is eating the salad (even if it is only you).



Sunday, November 11, 2007
For those of you that haven't seen this, it is the panoramic view from our hotel in Hawaii earlier this year.

Click for larger view... but not for the full size. Even the linked to image is 20% of the full size.



Saturday, November 10, 2007
I am lonely, and don't want to do any work, so I am watching Clue. Thanks, Sara!

EDIT: Sweet, the DVD gives you the option to see all three endings, or choose one ending at random... I choose all three. =: >



Friday, November 09, 2007
Here is the second best Mythbusters myth ever!

Linky (right click, save as)(60 MB)
It will want to open in iTunes, however, it is best to watch in QuickTime, so I recommend that you "open with" QuickTime, or (Sara) use VLC.


It is true...

Tuesday, November 06, 2007
My quote of the day:

"If you're going to make fun of us using sign language to make fun of each other, you might as well make fun of us using sign language to make fun of each other using sign language."


My leaky basement

Sunday, November 04, 2007
Well, my upgrade to Leopard is going good so far. I am finally settling in and getting used to things (although I still have lots of preference panes to go through and fix, like my Mail filters, for example).

But one problem that I am having is the lack of Photoshop! I have Photoshop 7, but it won't run in the new OS. I could get away without PS (or use a different product), but every week I have to format pictures for the church's PowerPoint, and everything is set up and ready to go in Photoshop... and I haven't found a way to automate this in another program. Also, older versions of Photoshop are not supported by Adobe in this OS, so buying an older copy is out of the question.

So, I am looking at a few options:
Buy Photoshop CS3 (just under $300 educational)
Buy some other program (I will have to learn everything all over and hope that I can automate the process)
... umm... that is really all.

So, unless someone comes up with a great solution, I am officially giving you my birthday wish list: Photoshop CS3.

What? You think it is too expensive to buy for your favorite person in the world? Fine, I will take cash earmarked for the purchase of CS3.

Buying CS3 isn't a bad thing (I have always planned on upgrading eventually), I guess I just don't like being forced into the upgrade. But then again, I am the one that upgraded my system. =: >


A new house!

Friday, November 02, 2007
So, lets say that you live in a house. It is a nice house (at least it was a few years ago when you moved in), but a newer and better house just became available down the street. The new house is not much more expensive than the one you already have. Your current house is nice, you have treated it well, but you constantly think about all of the great things in the new house. So much so that you write long blog posts about all of the great things in the new house, and how everyone from apartments will be moving into this style of house because it is so great...

Umm, ya...

So then you ponder getting the new house, going back and forth, until one day while walking across campus you stop by the bookstore and buy that new house (for the bargain price of $74.56), but you don't open it until the next day.

For the next 24 hours you pack up your old house, still not sure if you are moving, but just in case. You put all of your crap (and you have a lot of it, let me tell you!) in boxes and on external hard drives so that nothing will be lost in the move.

Then, the next day, after you finish your shift at Chick-fil-A, you take the plunge and move into that new house. It has that new house feel, that new house smell, and everything is as great as you thought it would be.

Except all of your crap is still in boxes! And when you get things out of boxes (called .dmgs), and put them on the shelf, they aren't where they were used to be, so you have to go in and change their preferences so that they are the same as before. All of this unpacking takes time and energy, most of which makes you forget about the new house smell and the new house feel. You even forget about the cool new features of the new house because you are so frustrated with unpacking and re-prefrencing.

So that night (your first night) you go to bed early because you don't feel like unpacking any more.

Lets say that all of that is true.... and.... ummm.... shoot, I lost my train of thought.

Good night.


It is done...

It took less than 35 minutes to do a clean install. Now I get to play!


It is here!

Well, thanks Hurley for the reply to my last post. Your point makes a lot of sense.

To be honest, I bought it yesterday afternoon, but was not 100% sure I was going to install it (99.5% is not 100%).

But, I opened it, so that is that!

Here is the inside (always beautifully done by Apple):

And the disk (one DVD for ALL versions of Leopard that Apple offers (IE: one)!):

And, last but not least, the BEST part of EVERY Apple product: the stickers!

I am planning on installing any minute (once I send an e-mail off), so my next post will be via Leopard!

EDIT: BTW, this is the coolest lamp EVER!


The other side...

Wednesday, October 31, 2007
It is funny... not HAHAHA funny, not HAHA funny, not even (ha) funny, but ironic funny.

I made that long post about Leopard, and I had pretty much decided to get it soon, even asking for my birthday present to be money earmarked for that purchase.

But then I thought, why? Do I really need it? Sure, there are some great features, and I will get it eventually, but is it worth the $70 to get a prettier looking OS? Or would the money be better at paying off debt, or maybe even given to a local church?

So after I had decided on buying it, I thought against it, thinking I will just get it later, and I would ask for money to be earmarked for me getting out of debt ("Kicking Sallie Mae out of the spare bedroom" is what Dave Ramsey would say... but I live in an efficiency... hmm.....).

But now that I type it, my thoughts are: "If I am going to get it in three months for $60 on e-bay anyway, why not just get it for $70 now?" I guess something deep down (some would call it the Holy Spirit) is making me feel bad about spending money on myself. But I can't figure out why.

Any thoughts?


Can you guess?

OK, I tend to not do the Halloween thing, but when I do, it is the So-Cheep-It-Is-Hokey kind of costume.

Case in point:

From Leper to Leopard: Why 2008 will be the biggest year for Apple since 1981.

(This article was written entirely by me; special thanks to Leo Laporte and the rest of the TWIT gang for your ideas and motivation)

Most family and friends of mine would call me an Apple Fanboy, but I insist that I am only an Apple Fan. There is a distinct difference between a fanboy and a fan; a fanboy will praise the item no matter what the entity does, a fan can be critical of the entity when it is wrong. For example, I am a Dallas Cowboys Fanboy; no matter how much they suck, I will root for them in every game (OK, this year they are half decent, but in years past, I cheered for them even at their worst).

I consider myself an Apple Fan because I am able to be critical of Apple. I don't like that they have kept the iPhone closed (they will fix this next year) and how expensive their products are (they have a 33% profit rate, a number that makes most technology companies jealous). However, I am a huge fan because I think that they are the most forward thinking technology company (more on this later).

Now, on a slightly related topic, I do not consider myself a Windows Hater. I simply hate Windows. I don't consider myself a Windows Hater because I empathize with Microsoft: they have a huge problem to overcome! The problem is "legacy," which means that with nearly a billion computers in the world running Windows, Microsoft can't just come out with a fully new version (like Apple or Palm can). Because of this, they have not created a "new" Windows in the last 15 years; they have simply updated their old version. For example, there are still snippets of code in Vista that were written for Windows 95! This means that there is code running on most machines that is over 15 years old! This is absurd! Would you buy a new TV with technology from 15 years ago, or a 15 year old printer? Would you listen to music on a tape, or use Super-8 to film your home movies?

Like I said, I do empathize with Microsoft. There is no easy solution for this. Because of this legacy problem, I consider Microsoft a "backward thinking" company. Their legacy problems force them to cater to people running old software, old computers, and computers that they can't control. They are spending more time fixing problems then looking forward at new features. This is why the OS has not changed in 15 years. Windows 95 and Windows Vista are, deep down, the same product. Sure, they look different, they have a few new features (search, backup). But your use of the OS as a user is the exact same. You install programs the same, you open files the same, the desktop has not changed.

Now, this post is not here to bash Windows, but this point is important. See, I find that people are tired of using the same OS, looking at the same thing, doing things the same way, and having an operating system that reminds them of 1995.

OK, enough about Microsoft, lets drive 850 miles north to Apple. Apple, is by definition, a "forward thinking" company. They have a small market share, so they are forced to revolutionize to draw more customers (look at the iPod... these days, we take the iPod for granted, but when it came out, it blew all of the competition out of the water by being innovative and customer-centered). They are forced to make things better so that more people are interested in their product. If Apple had not changed their OS in 15 years (they did in 2001 with OS X), than they would be out of business right now.

And Leopard, Apple's latest operating system (released last week) is the perfect example of this. Most reviews of Leopard are downplaying the importance of Leopard. But they are wrong, because Leopard will be the spring board to bring new customers to OS X.

A specific example between the backward thinking of Vista and the forward thinking of Leopard:

How do you view files in Windows?

Not too bad. You can see what type of file it is (Word file, PowerPoint file, Audio File), and for the pictures, it gives you a thumbnail of the photo, so you can see what it is. But lets say you are looking for a specific file, how would you find it? The same way as you did in Windows 95: by name.

Now, here are the same files using OS 10.4 (the now "old" Apple OS):

Pretty much the same thing: the icons for the files are a simple generic icon (even the photos, which aren't saved with a thumbnail).

Here are the same files in Leopard:

It looks the same, but if you look close, the thumbnails of all of the files are actually previews of the files. It doesn't matter if the file is a Word Document, a PowerPoint document, a photo, a PDF... (almost) anything your computer can read, it will show you an actual preview of the file (including album art for the music). Apple has created a new technology called "Quick Look" that shows live previews of all files. No more looking at the name of a file to see what to open, you now can SEE inside of every file.

But it doesn't stop there. For those that use iTunes, you may have been using Cover Flow, which was released a few versions ago. In this view, you can see the album art of your songs, and the art flips by as you scan your music:

When I first saw it, it was one of those "oh, OK, whatever" reactions. But now I have it in all of my play lists. Not that it adds a whole lot of functionality, but it is cool to watch and play with it.

With Leopard, Apple has introduced Cover Flow into the finder. Mixed with Quick Look, it makes it amazingly fast to find your documents. Here are the same files as above in Cover Flow:

Lets say you are looking for a project in a folder. Now, instead of looking for the file name, you look for the content of the file! And this isn't just photos; it will show you previews of movies, text documents, presentations, spread sheets. If your computer can open it, it will show you a preview of it. And not only does it show you a preview of, for example, the first page of a presentation, but you can scroll through the pages right there IN THE FINDER! Play movies, scroll PDFs, etc.

But it STILL doesn't stop there.

The preview in Cover Flow not big enough? Hit the space bar, and said file fills the entire screen in a preview. Again, scroll through presentations, see all of the pages in a spread sheet, watch movies, all in full screen, all in real time, all without opening a single program!

(note that when checking music, it uses the album art, and you can hear the music playing)

This will change the way that you browse files, and you won't be able to go back! (for a live preview of this example, I reccomend that you watch the Guided Tour on Apple's website, Cover Flow starts at 3 minutes and 50 seconds)

Another in depth example. Leopard has an automated backup that will backup (by default every hour) onto an external hard drive. No fuss, no worries, no set-up, it just happens. Vista also has this feature (in fact, some say that Apple stole the idea from Microsoft as this was an announced feature of Vista long before Apple implemented it). So the two are the same, right? Wrong.

While the backup mechanism that runs in the background operates the same, Apple has taken it one step further. In Vista, it simply backs up your information. Puts it into folders, so that if you loose your data, you have to go search in nested folders for what you lost. In Leopard, you open a "program" (a subset of the OS) called "Time Machine." What happens is hard to describe. Lets say that you had some files in a folder, but the files are now gone. With the folder open, select Time Machine, and you get this:

The window that you are in is now stretching "back into time." Each window behind the current window represents a backup of that window. To find your missing files, you simply scroll back in time until your files appear. Or, you can click the arrow in the lower right to jump back to the last time the folder was changed. Select the missing document(s) and hit "restore." The files are now back where they should be.

So, lets compare restoring files in the two Operating Systems:
Vista: open your external HD, open a few sub-folders, looking for the file in whatever convoluted manor Microsoft decided to use. Get frustrated and decide to do a search. Finally find the file; drag over to the other folder and hope it was the right version.
Leopard: with the folder open, activate Time Machine, press back arrow, select files, press Restore. Four clicks, no searching, no worry, no time wasted.

Which would you choose? (again, for a live preview of this example, I reccomend that you watch the Guided Tour, Time Machine starts at 9 minutes 35 seconds)

I have only mentioned two out of the many many many updates in Leopard (they claim 300 updates over the last OS, watch the rest of the Guided Tour for more of the improvements). The above examples prove my point: people are tired of the same old OS, and want something new, refreshing, and different. They are tired of using the same old OS, they crave a new way of browsing and opening files. Couple that with the ease of use of the rest of the OS, and it is a home run! I see Windows users wasting no time in migrating to Leopard. In the last quarter (summer 2007), Apple announced that half of the customers that bought Macs via Apple Stores were new to Macs. I think that that number will rise.

Five and a half years ago I purchased my first Mac. When I told people that I had a Mac, they looked at me like I was a leper. Now, with so many switchers, and attitudes towards Apple different, I am proud to be a Leopard.