Random Stuff, Part 29

* I never watch music award shows, this last Sunday was a first with the AMA awards. Watching Coldplay performing live was a proof that Chris Martin can’t sing. He was only a tiny bit better than in the SNL show a month ago that I blogged about. As bad was the Jonas Brothers’ singer too. Everyone else excelled in vocal performance that night, and I was positively surprised by Miley Cyrus.

* Our webmaster on this server, Adam, blogged about economist Peter Schiff who has been predicting the house bubble, oil prices, economy crash since the beginning of the decade. Watch the video on Adam’s page about how everyone laughs, live on TV, at Mr Schiff predictions — it’s so pathetic. I guess he laughed last. On a recent interview with him, he predicts very dire stuff, like this recession will be much worse than the 1930’s Great Depression, as the crime will rise a lot and there will be civil unrest. He predicts that the rest of the developed world won’t be in the same situation, only USA will pay the price of its own “consume a lot, and don’t produce enough” philosophy. You can read more of Schiff’s articles here. He made me think twice that bailing out failing businesses was the way to go.

* Handbrake 0.9.3 was released yesterday and it now allows for single file transcoding instead of just DVD ripping. It’s also available for Linux now, not just Mac/Win. I put up a tutorial on how to use it to export in 720p HD. Change the resolution to 640×360 and bitrate to 1500 if your camera is a widescreen miniDV instead.

* YouTube supports HD now. Sure, you did see the widescreen new page format, but that’s not what I am talking about. YouTube re-encodes videos 4 times: 192×144 3GP for cellphones, 320×240 FLV (this is what it loads by default), 480×270 h.264 (“high quality”), and 1280×720 h.264 (loads only if you append the &fmt=22 code at the end of the URL of a video that was originally a 720p uploaded video). My Android video was uploaded in 720/30p, so when you click on this specific URL you can view it in HD. I believe that YouTube’s h.264-based HD re-encoding is better than Vimeo’s, not only because of the video quality, but because they support 30 fps (Vimeo only goes up to 24), and also it seems that Adobe’s h.264 decoder is faster than its FLV HD one. However, I expect Vimeo to follow suit in terms of h.264/fps, so I am staying with them rather than moving my videos to Youtube’s ugly user base who know only how to discredit you and spam your comment section to hell.

* Speaking of YouTube, I watched a bit of the first YouTube Live show the other day: Katy Perry can barely sing. From all the Youtube internet personalities, Mr Safety, Smosh and Sxephil are my favorites. Smosh’s latest video is really funny.

* [BSG SPOILERS]: SyFyPortal says that one of these five people will be the last Cylon. Given that the… Xena Cylon said that “the last Cylon is not among you”, we can easily take out 3 people out of the list. It will be between Ellen Tigh and Cally Tyroll. And if Cally is indeed the last Cylon, I will do a big fat “I told you so, twice“, blog post. 😉

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