Posts Tagged ‘computers’

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The best thing you will see on the internet today

March 6, 2014

I found it on io9.com: velociraptors replaced by cats.

I’m just thinking about other movies where this would be awesome…

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My arranging book is now available!

March 4, 2014

Arranging book 2.2.14 cover

I know, I’ve been teasing it for months, but it really is out now! It’s available as a pdf ebook from Marketing Vision Partners for $ 30. I invite you to go take a look! Here’s the Table of Contents page:

Arranging book TOC

While I don’t think anything I put in the book is exactly controversial, I have included quite a bit of material that is based on my years of writing, judging, and working as a band director. One of my goals of the book was to help young band directors not make some of the mistakes I made, or that I have seen others make…hence the “Band Director’s Guide” part of the title. You don’t need to be a working band director to find value in the book, but if you are a marching band director, you will – even if you never plan to arrange a piece of music yourself.

There is an accompanying web page on my publishing site for owners of the book. I hope to expand the materials on this page in the near future so that it can be a resource for those interested in the art and practice of arranging for the marching band.

It took me about three years to write this, off and on, and I think now it has information you will find useful. I hope you enjoy the book!

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Adobe Creative Cloud is a blessing and a curse…

January 17, 2014

About two years ago I needed to get a copy of Adobe InDesign for layout of my marching band arranging book, which is finally almost done! We looked at the prices for that and for Photoshop, and even though I could still sort of qualify for the education discount, it was pretty pricey. Then we looked at the Adobe Create Cloud service. The price per year was about the same as for buying two apps as standalones, and since it would update them and I had access to the entire Adobe suite, it looked like a pretty good buy. The educational discount ran out and it’s $ 50 a month now, but I’ve found I try (and use) apps that I never would have because I wouldn’t want to spend the money on something I might use occasionally.

The latest one I’ve worked with is Adobe Muse, which is a little WYSIWYG web page development tool. It’s easier than using DreamWeaver, especially if  you don’t need a lot of bells and whistles on your web pages. It uses an interface that looks a lot like InDesign, so I was good there. It’s sort of like a hybrid of those two bigger programs.

Muse isn’t available as a standalone, which is too bad. (Although you can do a monthly charge for it, separately, for $ 15 a month.) I’ve not had to do web page design for a couple of years, and using it is a lot easier than getting myself up to speed on the new version of DreamWeaver just to do a few simple pages.

The other advantage to the Creative Cloud service is that it keeps watching for updates and asks you when you want to update. At first the updater was somewhat buggy, but it seems pretty stable now.

Adobe CC isn’t for everyone, but if you use Photoshop and one more Adobe app, it will probably be competitively priced against the standalones. I’d be interested in hearing if anyone else likes or dislikes the Creative Cloud service.

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iOS7 thoughts

September 22, 2013

I updated both my iPhone 4s and my third-gen iPad to iOS7, and everything worked fine. I think the default typeface is pretty light, making it a bit more difficult for those of us with older eyes, but it is a kind of a refreshing change…although it tends to look more “Windows-8-like” than I expected from Apple. But the apps seem to work fine. I’ve encountered no problems or speed hits.

But, I have one issue not really related to the update: I am going to move up to a new iMac soon from my aging Mac Pro. I’ve done the research on how to back up the iPhone first, and all of that, but the process still seems very tedious and fraught with potential disaster. Does anybody have a good, simple way to do this?

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…and now we’re back to normal…

April 29, 2013

After my post about the unusually large number of spam and bot hits this blog received recently, the number of hits have dropped off even from the average before the assault started. Sorry, bots, if I said something to annoy you…

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Spam! Spam! Spam!

April 17, 2013

I’ve not been posting for a while because of parent medical issues. However, Monday, April 15, the site got about five times the usual number of hits for any given day. Thanks, spambots! And some spam comments are sneaking through the filter. Where are these people? What makes them want to create spam messages? If they are that good, wouldn’t they want to use their skills for something better?

My gmail account has been receiving a lot of variations on the old Nigerian money scam messages lately. Like, a dozen a day. The spam filter is catching them (thanks, Google) but sheesh! I guess if you can get to a billion email accounts and only a very tiny fraction click on the thing, that still could be tens of thousands of idiots waiting to be sucked in.

Oh, well. First world problems, I know. Anyway, I don’t have much to contribute right now. I’m not watching much news or politics, and nothing else has struck me lately. I’m sure that y’all have been hanging on every word…

Later.

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Few posts over the next few weeks

February 28, 2013

Sorry, campers, I know you hang onto my every word. Family medical issues will keep me away most of the time until about May 1. I know you can hang on that long without my observations!

I really recommend that you check out Jerry Pournelle, at www.jerrypournelle.com. I think he’s the original blogger, and his commentary and that of his readers covers science, science fiction, politics, music, health care, education…a very wide range of topics. He is a very wise man and a kickass hard science fiction writer. In fact, he and Larry Niven owned most of the hard science fiction real estate for about 20 years, and both are still writing, together and separately!

See you around the intertubes. Keep your heads down.