Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Thanksgiving Vacation

I took some time off after thanksgiving, but now I gotta get my act back together.

So I'm installing ubuntu on this old laptop I had lying around. I can't decide if it will be worth the hassle yet. On one hand, it's not like I'm paying anything for an open source OS, and the laptops been around forever, but on the other...

It's a Compaq Presario 2500. It has a Pentium 4 processor ( remember when they still used numbers? ), half a gig of ram, and a 60 gb hdd. I'm not worried about space, I got plenty of externals, but it has some issues with the speed and usability. The wireless doesn't work ( firmware missing ? ), the battery needs to be plugged in or it'll die in 5 minutes ( although it hasn't had a lot of time to charge ), and its still feeling generally sluggish. I want to set up a linux system to run a bunch of open source audio recording programs, and I didn't want to mess around with my macbookpro because it's my lifeblood for the internet and computing ability.

Does anyone have experience with linux and recording? Am I going to toss it after a few trials because it won't be fast enough?

Monday, November 29, 2010

The Screen Part 2

So first I made the frames, basically two of these things. 4x5 foot boxes. 

Here you can see the finesse involved, and my quality of woodwork ( or lack thereof? )

A finished section.

After wrapping the fabric, here it is laid out in a hallway. 

And finally, the product before figuring out the projector, the sides, and getting rid of the sombrero in my room. The final word on this project is that for a cheap screen, its not bad, but its also not that much greater then my wall was. There's less distractions because the fabric is clean, so that's a plus. Playing life sized counter strike has been fun, and with a fancier projector I'm sure movies would be up to theatre-quality. Right now, the sound system is awesome, and the movies quality is bearable, so I had fun. It was cheap enough, and it gives me an excuse to invite girls over to see my "movie theatre".

Friday, November 26, 2010

Rock Show

I was digging through my hard drive, I found a couple of photos I took of a show I did the lighting and effects for. We had projections, fog, and pretty colors. Please don't come to one of my shows if you suffer from seizures, I have a soft spot for strobe lights.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Happy Thanksgiving!

I hope everybody is going to have a warm, food filled, weird family-drama inducing day of drinking, eating, and finding out that Grandpa had a sexchange!

All I have to show y'all for today is a Thanksgiving staple, "Alice's Restaurant". If you have like, 20 minutes, and nothing better to do... check it out.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Moon : the movie

The other day I watched "Moon" for the second time, after I saw it first in theaters when it came out. It was a limited, Ritz kind of release, so you had to find one of the cool "indie" theaters to see it. It wasn't really publicized much, but I'm a big fan of Sam Rockwell's, so I decided to check it out.

Visually, it's inspired by the space movies of yesteryear, before we were sure about what routine space travel would really be like and things were based more of science fiction then application. The movie takes place 90% of the time in the lunar base that Sam Bell inhabits, as he mines for Helium3 on the lunar surface. He's at the end of a 3 year contract, with his only companion an AI unit that swings around the base attached to a rail on the ceiling.

I can't give away the whole plot of the movie, but I'll say its very dark and moody. Sam Rockwell, using a mixture of solo acting and technology, gives more then one amazing performance, and Kevin Spacey as the voice of the robot is hauntingly friendly. The soundtrack adds a lot as well, featuring Clint Mansell who did the score for "Requiem for a Dream".

It's one of my favorite recent movies, and I highly recommend checking it out if you like great performance, great scores, great scenery, and a thoughtful scifi thriller.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Photography is dead

The Third & The Seventh from Alex Roman on Vimeo.

This is video by a guy named Alex Roman. That entire thing is CG. Computer generated.

It's not real.

The gap is closing in on what we need to document with photography, using real things and people, and the ability to create whatever we want to see using computers and enough compiling time.

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Fiscal Rant

So I'm not currently in school right now, although I'm on the books. This is because I'm buried in debt. In order for me to register for classes and get rid of my financial hold, I have to pay my college $11,000.

$11,000! I could buy a car with that, or invest. Or something. Anything really.

Of course, this is all on top of the $90,000 I've already spent. And even with that big old loan building up, I still have at least a YEAR of college left! That's another 30 grand at least.

Now I've tried to use mostly federal loans, like Federal Plus, or whatever so I can bank on my parents co-signing with me, but I've run that dry because banks don't trust me anymore. I've turned to places like Sallie-Mae, and Wells Fargo for private loans, and those are the ones that I'll end up paying 3 or 4 times as much over the course of my life in order to pay off. That $11,000 loan I need to take out will end up costing me $30,000, at least, by the time I finally pay it off.

The only promise I have is the rumor that federal loans can't take all of my property when I can't always afford them. I think they can only take 10% of your income, but I could be wrong. The private loans however, they can go to town on you.

You know that in this country, there is more Student Debt then Credit Card debt? That means more people owe money on their college tuition then the entire population does on their credit card purchases. That blows my mind!

I guess I really just hope the financial world collapses before I have to pay it off. I wouldn't mind a road warrior life, would you?

If you had to be a road warrior, what would you use?

Me: A reinforced jeep with a hatch on top, with chains, and hooks to grab onto the people I'm fighting.