Archive for April 19th, 2009

Whoah! On Digg’s front page!

Wow, I had no idea, until the thumbnail I was looking on Digg’s pages looked familiar! Scott McIntyre submitted my jellyfish video on Digg, and he managed to get it to the front page! So far the video has acquired 24 new “likes” and over 5,000 new views! Thanks Scott!

Some random pictures

We went to a park this afternoon, got some pictures. I used my HV20 with a manual focus ring, flower hood & ND filter to get some handheld pictures in higher shutter speed. They came out underexposed. I think I will be using Zebra at 100% from now on, instead of 70%.

My JBQ snapped a picture of me with my tricked out HV20. He shot it with his Canon 5D Mark I and his ultra-nice portrait lens (check that background blur).

Me, shooting with my HV20

My (noisy) HV20 pictures (all licensed under the CC-BY 3.0):

In search of a Hi-Fi system

Our 300 CD changer holder is out of space with our 400 CDs, and there’s no way to playback our digitally-bought 3.5 GBs of mp3/aac files that we have around. We need either something like the AppleTV where we can move all our 35 GB of ripped music in there, or a new 400 CD changer system like this one but with the ability to also play mp3/AAC and have a UI viewable via composite-out.

As it stands right now the AppleTV doesn’t do what we need because it doesn’t have composite-out, as I would like to use a small portable DVD player as external monitor for it. I simply don’t want to hook it on our 50″ TV and have our TV “on” all the time just so we can listen to music. If that was the case, we already have a PS3 that can do that (I currently use it for video playback only). It’s such a shame that the AppleTV doesn’t do RCA because it would have been perfect for music. 🙁

As for the linked Sony CD changer above, it doesn’t do AAC, it doesn’t have a hard drive (and I am not sure it reads mp3 files from DVD-R disks and not just from CD-Rs), while its UI simply sucks from what I read online.

The funny thing is that the device we need actually existed once as a prototype product. Back in 2000. And it was created by my husband’s then-company, Be Inc. The Be Aura was a beautiful device (unfortunately I couldn’t find any picture of it online to link, there used to be one), with a specialized UI, a remote control, and had a nice monitor too. Surely you could put together a small PC today with Windows Media or Linux on it, but it will still look like an ugly ass PC in our living room. That was a targeted device like the AppleTV, not a quickly-put-together PC job. Update: The device I was thinking was called “HARP”, btw. “Aura” was the software platform for it.

So, we basically need a device that can accept a SATA drive with mp3/aac and preferably FLAC music, has composite-out with a usable UI, and good digital-out for audio. The CD changer feature is optional as long as there’s a hard drive in there and there’s lossless FLAC support. So, do you know anything that would work for us?

Update: We might just be going for the Sony 400 CD changer it seems. We feel that the home entertainment systems today are in a state that resembles mobile phones before the iPhone arrived. The Sonos system is close to what we need, but no cigar.

You are hungry, hungry I tell you!

Last night we had this Archer Farms‘ pizza that JBQ bought at the Target superstore (where he also bought a new bicycle). While I was reading the back of the pizza box to find its cooking time, I noticed the pictured map of Italy and surrounded countries. Suddenly my eyes go to the uppermost right corner of the map, where “Hungary” was misspelled as “Hungry”.


Picture taken with the T-Mobile G1 phone and its autofocus ability.
It was impossible to take the above macro shot with my iPhone!

I crack a smile, and I tell JBQ to look at it too. We figured that we could send the box to Jay Leno for his “funny products/headlines” section of his show. But immediately after I became suspicious that this was a deliberate “mistake”. That this is a subliminal message. This was a word that was easily reached by the eyes at that corner, a word that subconsciously was telling you that you were hungry. Hungry enough to buy their product.

Honestly, being one of the geeks, I never liked (or more accurately, I never understood) the marketing bunch of people, and such sleazy practices, in association with other viral campaigns out there, make me really dislike the whole marketing “art”. I am a very straightforward person, you see. I could have never worked in marketing.