Submitted by Dale on March 12, 2007 - 1:07pm
Finding out intermediate level audio recording information is time consuming and a little daunting! Having recently entered the world of podcasting for Mad About Movies I'm researching the gear needed for great audio. There's lots of basic information out there that goes something like: plug any old microphone into your computer and record with GarageBand or Audacity. And this works, to a point.
If you want to go to the next level, information gets a little harder to find. Take microphones. You can spend anywhere from $10 to $5000. How does a person with no experience know the appropriate amount to spend? If you have more than one person on your podcast you quickly conclude multiple microphones would be very nice. Again, options for mixing microphones start at $40 and go over $10,000. And when you've finally made a decision on the gear you think you want, where the heck is the best place to buy it in Canada?
What follows are my research results, so far. Turns out one of best sites, Transom, comes from the world of radio. If there's one thing I've learned after following Todd Maffin, radio people are just short of fanatical about sound!
Submitted by Dale on March 12, 2007 - 12:53pm
A shout-out to the folks at Lullabot for their latest articles:
Submitted by Dale on March 10, 2007 - 1:03am
This month the Vancouver PHP Association and Vancouver League of Drupallers had a combined meeting. Mack Hardy of the Post Carbon Institution spoke on how the Post Carbon Institute was using Drupal to meet their organization's goals.
Mack has promised to post his slides, and hopefully there will also be a video of this presentation available. My summary forgoes the more involved details. Please check the slides for those.
Mack started with an overview of the Post Carbon Institute:
Submitted by Dale on March 5, 2007 - 5:00pm
Have you heard about the initiative to provide a notebook/laptop computer for every child in the world? They're One Laptop Per Child (OLPC), and their stated goal is:
To provide children around the world with new opportunities to explore, experiment and express themselves..
If this sounds interesting, I recommend reading: Can the "$100 Laptop" Change the World?, by Laurie Rowell.
I think this project will change the world, maybe in the ways they predict, and definitely in ways they can't. The OLPC project is breaking away from the current market definition of what a notebook computer is, and how much you pay for it. Having a self-powered $100 computer will lead to a wave of first world application experiments, both software and hardware. Consider what experimenters have done with XBoxes, PDAs, and $100 broadband routers. Consider what a cheap, self-powered, grid-networked, semi-rugged notebook might do in a disaster relief situation, to name just one possible alternate application. At that price point, trying something out is very easy.
Submitted by Dale on February 27, 2007 - 12:45pm
James Gosling, the head of the team that created the Java programming language and arguably it's biggest cheerleader, was named to the Order of Canada. Details in this CBC article: Java creator named to Order of Canada.
In other news, James Gosling is a Canadian!
Submitted by Dale on February 21, 2007 - 11:46am
I've done corporate IT internal customer support as a manager and front-liner (not everyone agrees with thinking of internal users as customers, while it's not a direct analog it's a useful frame-of-mind at times), and most recently front-line technical support for an enterprise product in the Education sector. Joel Spolsky's piece: Seven steps to remarkable customer service totally rings true on a number of levels.
Submitted by Dale on February 20, 2007 - 12:10pm
Submitted by Dale on February 19, 2007 - 11:16pm
Submitted by Dale on February 12, 2007 - 11:27pm
It's time for the 2007 Vancouver PHP Conference!
It was a full house this morning for Rasmus Lerdorf's keynote speech. I'm a member of the conference committee so I didn't get a chance to watch the whole thing. What I did catch was quite interesting. His discussion of the reason people contribute and happy hormones was quite entertaining. He demo'ed Pipes, of course, which has the coolest web interface. Rasmus has put the slides from his presentation on the web, but I didn't manage to copy down the URL.
This conference scored some very good presenters. I enjoyed the sessions I managed to catch. And thankfully the day went quite smoothly. There were some minor hiccups but no major disasters. Except for having to get up at 6am, the first time in a long time, it was a great day.
Submitted by Dale on February 10, 2007 - 12:25am
Another Drupal website released into the wild:
The Firefly/Serenity fan group is organized via the Vancouver Firefly/Serenity Meetup Group. The Meetup website has many advantages the group does not want to give up, but Meetup has a rigid format which doesn't lend itself to some kinds of content. In particular, announcements for charity events/sales are awkward because of HTML markup limitations and cumbersome URLs that don't lend themselves to publishing. The group wanted to enhance their web presence without creating a split personality.
The Drupal based Browncoats.ca site displays Meetup information via RSS feeds, leaving the group's two-way membership interaction with Meetup. People visiting the new site can see what's happening at the Meetup site and if they're interested are directed back to Meetup. The Browncoats.ca site provides a location for content that doesn't work well on Meetup as well as providing a nicer URL for promotional purposes.