Friday, December 21, 2007

New "Exclusive" Clip from Cloverfield (01-18-08)

I saw this posted on Facebook, and it's probably cropping up in other places as well.

They also seem to be running a contest of sorts, so if you "grab" the embedded copy here in my blog (or on my Facebook... or anywhere else I post it) then you increase the chances of them doing a pre-screening in Pittsburgh!

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

"I'm Not Bruce" - FCP Tip Blog

Found an interesting blog recently.  "I'm Not Bruce" is simply a place used by some editor (who is not, apparently, "Bruce") to record little tips, links, and reminders to himself about various aspects of editing with Final Cut Pro.  I've found a few useful as well.

Friday, November 16, 2007

WGA Strike: Delicious Daily Show and Colbert Report Snarkiness

Classic biting sarcasm, used here to illustrate the inanity of some of the studios' positions in the ongoing Writer's Guild of America strike.  (You know, that whole "We can't pay you residuals on digitally-distributed content, cause we don't know if there's any money in it!" line.)

If you're not up-to-date on the WGA strike, here's a helpful introduction.  (Wow, lots of YouTube links tonight...  Clearly, there's no future in online media.)

First, the Daily Show writers explaining things from the picket lines:

And now, the writers of the Colbert Report helpfully provide the other side of the story...

Moral of the story: Come on. Pay yer freakin' writers!

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Funny Song - "That Calls for a Wilhelm Scream"

Ah, movie geek in-jokes, how I love thee so.

If you don't know what the Wilhelm Scream is... go educate yourself. ;) It's pretty much one of the longest-running cinematic in-jokes out there, particularly among sound designers who like to sneak it in wherever they can.

Certainly a clever idea, and it's nice that within the lyrics of the song, they pretty much tell the whole story of how the Wilhelm Scream came to be the acoustic cliché it is today.

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Happy Halloween!

It's after midnight, it's October 31st... It's now Halloween!

I love this holiday! Probably won't get much opportunity to celebrate it today, since Wednesdays are my busiest day of the week this semester, but who knows. I do know that I went to a couple great parties last weekend, and costume, while still kind of last-minute-ish, (put it together over about 2 days) is much better than last year's poor stab at Indiana Jones.

The Scrubs fans in the audience will likely recognize this clip:

May I present... myself! Zach Braff. J.D. Dr. Acula!

The costume went over really well. I was surprised by how many people liked my attempt at J.D.'s hair - I really didn't think I had the hair to pull it off, but it seemed to come across. The fangs were nice too. Something possessed me to get the nice ones when I was at Spencer's, and they basically consist of this low-melt plastic that you use to literally custom mold them to your teeth. They stay in as well as, and are no more uncomfortable than, a retainer, which made it not too much of a hardship to have them in all night.

I love Halloween...

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

I Have... Another Blog?

This semester I'm taking a class - IST 195. It's an "introduction to information technology" class. Yes, as anyone who knows me can tell you, the vast majority of information in this class is way below my level. But hey, it fulfills a requirement for Newhouse, one that would otherwise require me to take another math class, or a third semester's worth of a foreign language. Not exactly my idea of a grand old time. Besides, in a 19-credit semester, it's good to have one easy class.

Well, just because a class is easy doesn't mean you don't have to do anything, and for the second of 3 large projects in IST195, I have to create a blog and maintain it for three weeks. And that's exactly what I've done over at the un-creatively named "IST 195 Project 2" Blog. I could have tried to just put all my required posts in my existing blog, but separating them will probably help me keep focused on the 195 one. If the posts over there are interesting at all, I'll likely merge them back into this blog once the assignment is all said and done.

As a sidenote, the default theme I picked for the IST195 blog is pretty nice-looking. Perhaps another facelift is in the future for Dev/Null42?

Monday, October 15, 2007

V for Vendetta - Simplified

Just in case you could never quite figure out what the heck V was talking about in that movie... or if you just wanted a laugh!

Such a good movie. :)

Thursday, September 20, 2007

My Wallet Sucks.

Now, you just know this isn't a good sign for us:

What the hell, man? And other countries are wisely considering cutting their losses and pulling out their investments.

Well, wisely for them anyway, It kinda sucks for us.

(Note: I posted this a couple of days ago when the US dollar was just dangerously close to the Canadian dollar. Now that it's actually dipped below, I've updated this post with the newer, scarier image.)

Thursday, August 30, 2007

The New Dorm is... Pretty Nice Actually

As so many times before, I'm not even sure if anyone reads this anymore, but hey, what the heck?

As anyone who was nearby me during the online housing selection process knows, I wasn't overjoyed last spring when I got a 2-person suite in Booth. I was in a 4-person Watson suite last year, and for the most part it rocked! Some roommate re-shuffling had left another year of 4-person suiteness (see what I did there?) out of the question, so I had been gunning for a Watson 2-person suite.

Needless to say, it didn't work out that way. Despite a decently respectable number in the housing lottery, by the time I logged on there was nothing left in my selection phase but Booth, Dellplain, and South Campus apartments. I love the South apartments, but I'm not a huge fan of South Campus. Especially those bits regarding the bus to main campus, and the carrying of laundry to another building in the middle of a Syracuse Winter. Dellplain is huge and primarily filled with freshmen, so I begrudgingly went with Booth - Dellplain's smaller (but equally ugly) sibling.

Turns out, a Booth 2-person suite is pretty nice! And only $200 more than a plain old split double. And I actually think I have more space than I did in the Watson suite (when you consider there were 4 people in that one)

Of course, we all know the whole reason of this post is to show off the stitched panoramic mode on the digital camera I got last Christmas...

Yeah, you know it's awesome. ;)

Tuesday, August 21, 2007 - Slowly Coming Together

Summer's winding to an end (I head back to SU on saturday) and the Hanley Films website is finally seeing some life. I still haven't gotten around to putting all the old video online yet, since I'm re-encoding it all after reprocessing it with better deinterlacing.... But! I do have a few other things on there now.

I've set up a home base of sorts for my freelance production work. This is stuff like the LWV segments I put together last year (and am doing again this year). For now the work is still coming slowly, but with a website to point people to now, perhaps that will change. It's all just "learning by doing" and building up a resume.

Speaking of which, I actually have a resume now, in the still-a-work-in-progress About section of the site. I also put up a description of my "Studio," just in case you wanted to know the gear I use. (needless to say, the stuff I used in VPA Film, and now use in Newhouse TRF, is quite a bit better than what I have in my personal aresenal.)

So that's the state of right now. Hopefully I'll get the rest done soon enough. If you want to see my old stuff in the meantime, most of the High School movies are on my old site, My entry for the Modest Mouse "Missed the Boat" video contest is on YouTube. Unfortunately, Remember the Chase is still not online, as I'm really dragging my heels on the post-production with that one (I'm being really OCD about getting rid of the telecine judder at the edit points), so there's no way to see it at the moment.

As I said earlier, I'm heading back to Syracuse on Saturday, so the next 4 days promise to be very busy. I'm producing to presentation videos for the League of Women Voters of Greater Pittsburgh's Good Government awards again this year. (that's a lot of words...) I have two more interviews to tape before I leave, one of them with Senator Jane Orie! So that should add to the frantic-ness of my week.

Thursday, July 19, 2007

Lesson of the Day: Speech Recognition is Not For Writing Code

Windows Vista's speech recognition actually does an admirable job of trying to keep up with this, so most of the blame lands on operator error. But it is pretty ironically funny when the computer interprets a sarcastic "Thank you. Thank you Windows..." as "like you like your Windows". (about halfway in)

Saturday, June 30, 2007

Blade Runner: The Final Cut Commercial

I just found it now, but this apparently played June 20 during AFI's "100 Years... 100 Movies" on CBS. (They rated BR #97, beating out Toy Story and Ben Hur, and only 3 spots behind Pulp Fiction) As should now be common knowledge, I love this movie, and have been looking forward to the Final Cut since I first heard about it.

It's up several times on YouTube, but Warner Brothers keeps taking it down. Hopefully the DailyMotion version I've embedded will stick around for a while. It has better quality than YouTube, in any case.

I can't say I'm terribly impressed by the herky-jerky, "look what we can do in After Effects" style of the commercial, and the audio cutting is downright sloppy. I guess it's a side effect of foolishly trying to make a film that came out in 1982 look "new."

(Listening closer, it sounds like the audio actually drops out for a split second at somewhat regular intervals. Very sloppy, and it makes the whole commercial feel "rough" and "harsh".)

Nonetheless, I'm still hyped for this definitive release, which has been a long time coming. (If you don't know, the studio politics surrounding Blade Runner were beyond messy, and it's taken most of the last 25 years to sort them out so that the film as Ridley Scott shot it can actually be seen fully)

The titles at the end indicate the Final Cut will be released on DVD, HD-DVD, and Blu-Ray, but make no mention of the rumored limited theatrical run. I'm still hoping though...

My Dad at "Jazz In The Meadow" 2005

My dad singing (yes, he can sing) at an event a couple years back. He was sitting in the audience, and he got "asked" to come up and do something. When I embedded the video on this page, I set it to skip all the other stuff before then.

This video was posted to my blog so that my mom could have a link to send people to where you don't have to "fast-forward" through all the other stuff first.

Tuesday, June 26, 2007 It's coming

Yes, I have a "Coming Soon" website for all my film/video work again. But this time, it's different. (promise!) I've given up on the rolls-off-the-tongue-slightly-better .net extension, and joined the rest of the world in .com-land. (Once the site truly goes live, the old will redirect to the new Before, I'd relied on donated, friend-of-a-friend, or otherwise "free" hosting space, but now I've got all-out paid-for shared hosting from Dreamhost, with effectively unlimited storage and bandwidth. (The only thing they really get ticked off about is CPU time, and I have no intention of running overly convoluted PHP-driven content management systems. HTML, CSS, and a spattering of PHP for menus and such is fine for me)

Now that I've geeked out about my new hosting (it really is rather cool) - what exactly will the new site offer? Before, the "Hanley Films Website" has usually just been a single page with a bunch of links to QuickTime files (see the current

The new site will be... just a little bit more than that. I'm planning, at the moment:
  • All my movies, from the North Hills stuff, to the 16mm short I made in VPA Film last fall, to my entry for the recent Modest Mouse music video contest. (If you really must see that, it's on YouTube). All in higher quality, and more formats than before.
  • Information on my freelance production work. Seriously. I've already paid for my camera doing this, and I just ordered a $150 microphone to step up my game for a job later this summer. Need a low-budget commercial/music video/help on a student film/etc? Call me.
  • Tips, tutorials, and other resources for up-and-coming (or so we wish) wannabes like myself.
  • At least one sweet picture of the editing suite setup I've got going in my room. ;)
The video and film stuff is obviously the important part. Before, as I've said, I've put a bunch of QuickTimes on a page - sometimes in various sizes, sometimes not - and left it at that. With the extra space Dreamhost gives me, I can offer more formats than previously - for now, I'm thinking QuickTime 7, Windows Media 9, and DivX should cover most bases.

In addition to more formats, the videos will also be much higher quality. Not just higher bitrate either: Back when I first encoded most of the "masters" for the North Hills Pictures, I didn't know half what I do now about digital video. They were deinterlaced poorly, and went through a lot of unnecessary scaling up and down. This time, wherever possible, I'm going back to the "source" and redoing a lot of that, to preserve as much detail as possible.

How much of a difference can this make? Well... (click image to see full size)

I'd say that's a difference! (Of course, this shot is the most drastic example I could find, but it's still an all-around improvement to one degree or another.)

So that's where the "one, true" Hanley Films website is for now. It should turn out pretty cool, I think.

Now if I could just do something about that day job... :-/

Monday, June 11, 2007

Apple Previews Leopard & Safari 3 - O RLY?

I am writing this bog entry on Windows XP. I also happen to be writing it in Safari.

Seems Apple has seen fit to release a public beta of Safari 3.0 not just for Mac OS X Tiger, but for Windows as well. Not only that, the new version of the browser has resolved the two nagging issues that I had with it on OS X: The rich-text editing boxes on GMail and Blogger now work, and it now asks "Are You Sure?" when you close a window with multiple tabs open. Nice - Safari's been my browser of choice on the Mac for a while now (it's just much more responsive than Firefox) and those were really the only two annoyances I had with it. (Well, along with the fact that ver. 2 kinda chokes up when you start having 4 windows open, with 8 or so tabs each, and keep the program running for a week solid. Am I asking too much?)

I should stress that Safari 3 for Mac & Windows is still very much in beta. Blogger's rich text form works, but I had to go into Firefox to add the picture to this post because that button seems to do nothing in Safari 3 beta. So don't go dumping Firefox 2 or IE 7 just yet, (Although you might do well to dump IE 6 if you're still using it...) but this is definitely something to watch over the next few months.

It's really interesting to see Apple's strategy here. Since the awesome software (OS X and iLife being the biggies) are one of the big draws go getting a Mac these days, making Windows software doesn't seem to make much sense on the surface. However, the plan becomes clear when you realize Apple is trying to get people used to using Apple software first, so that the thought of switching to a Mac doesn't sound so foreign. it started with Quicktime, especially once Apple got something of a monopoly on movie trailers. Then iTunes for Windows came bundled with everyone's favorite music player. (iTunes is even more important to "switchers" now, since Apple's taken a lot of cues from it in the design of the file browser in OS X 10.5 - "Leopard"). Now they want Windows users to see what an Apple web browser is like, aguably the most-used application on a personal computer today. It's all quite clever really. Although, to be honest, if they're really serious about this Trojan horse idea, they really ought to do something about the performance of Quicktime 7 on Windows. QT-haters do have something of a point on the Windows platform - it's nowhere near as elegant, fast, and seamless as it is on OS X (where it's my default media player for just about everything - even DivX).

There's a lot of other interesting things happening with Leopard too - and they aren't all making front-page news like Time Machine and the just-maybe-do-you-think-inspired-by-Vista new look to the familiar Mac desktop. I'm more excited by the changes to Boot Camp. Today, if you have an Intel Mac, you can dual-boot Windows on it - something I'm very interested in, as it could mean putting all my Windows games on the same Mac I use for Final Cut Pro, and I could finally give up lugging my giant PC Tower to college. In Leopard, you don't have to totally restart to switch OS's: Instead you can go to a menu item in OS X to put MacOS into "safe sleep" mode before switching over to Windows. Likewise, you can make Windows hibernate. That way, you never lose what you were doing in either OS, and you can jump between them in 20-30 seconds - each running totally native (I could use something like Parallels to make it wholly seamless, but Boot Camp gives better performance for gaming).

Update: Boot Camp's hibernating feature was mentioned on Apple's site at the time I wrote this entry, but the feature was later dropped. Pity - seemed like a good idea.

The Mac platform just keeps getting more interesting.

Thursday, April 26, 2007

New Diet Pepsi Can

Is it me, or do the people at PepsiCo enjoy introducing new can designs on, oh, a bi-annual basis or something? (Yes, I'm aware how mind-bogglingly not important this is, but I've been trying to describe it to people, and couldn't quickly find examples with Google.) I bought more of my only habitual drug today, and noticed they did it again. Old on the left, new on the right.

If you ask me, the new one looks like a prop from the set of Back to the Future II.

Saturday, April 21, 2007

We don't need tighter gun control laws. We just need to ENFORCE the ones we have...

I've seen talk around the 'net saying the Viginia Tech shootings clearly demonstrate the need for tighter gun control laws in this country, since Cho was able to walk into a store and purchase the gun he used to kill 32 people. Now, I am by no means an NRA "More guns = less crime because we can shoot the bastards!" sort of guy, but I've never been for banning the ownership of firearms by private citizens either.

I found this article in the NY Times: U.S. Rules Made Killer Ineligible to Purchase Gun

Yeah, he bought the gun. But that shouldn't have happened. If the proper checks were made at the federal level, that purchase would have been denied. Sure, he could try to get one on the black market, but that's possible even if a ban is put in place. (Banning guns will get them off the streets? Sure! It's worked so well for drugs, underage alcohol, not-yet-released Hollywood films...)

We don't need tighter gun control laws. We just need to properly enforce the ones we have!

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Bush + Blair Love Song

It's so true...

The really funny part? I first saw this on Al Jazeera... Yes Timmy, they have "viral video of the week" in Qatar too.

Wait- I'm up at this ungodly hour watching the (horrible quality) online stream of Al Jazeera English, and laughing at satire about how the leaders of the U.S. and U.K. are attached at the hip? Yeah... must be nearing the due date for my Communications & Society paper on global coverage of the "British sailors held in Iran" incident!

Monday, April 02, 2007

100th Post. Nothing Special, but My iPod is Filling Up

I seem to have lapsed in my blogging for awhile (not that anyone cares). I hate big catch-up posts explaining every little thing that happened while I was "gone," so I'm just going to post something trivial and pointless, as if something ever happened. What else is a blog for? (All hail New Media!)

Food For Thought

My iPod is almost full. When I got my Nano about a year and a half ago, I figured 4 Gig would be plenty for my meager library. Well, owning an iPod tends to make one listen to music a bit more, and I've been steadily expanding since then, so that I'm now 90% full (Tha't's after I set all the Christmas songs and Monty Python sketches to not sync over...)

While noticing this, I took the time to notice a couple statistics in my iTunes Library, just to add some fuel (and hard numbers) to the RIAA vs. the World fight. 5% of my music was purchased through the iTunes Store. (The rest being primarily MP3's of... varying origin.) However, purchased tracks make up 40% of my Top 25 Most Played songs. The number 1 spot is an MP3, though. I'm sure that says something about the iTunes business model, DRM, etc., but damned if I know what...

Monday, February 12, 2007

Birthday Time Again!

Past Midnight, means it's my birthday. Twenty - I'm not a teenager anymore.

Meh, for some reason I'm really non-excited at the moment. I'm more posting this out of tradition than anything else, especially since I'm fairly certain no one reads this blog anymore.

Truth is, it doesn't even feel like a birthday.

Must be because it's monday.

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

Music, DRM, and Mr. Jobs' Good Idea

Today an interesting item appeared from within the annals of Apple's website: post by non other than everyone's favorite CEO/Mogul/Salesman, Steve Jobs, entitled "Thoughts on Music". The page addresses recent calls for Apple to open the FairPlay DRM used in the iTunes Store, and points out how the current content-protection systems of the industry came to be in the first place.

However, the real interesting bit comes a little further down, where Steve outlines the three possible directions the online music industry can take from here. First, they could "stay the course" and keep up the fragmented, proprietary DRM systems that consumers love to hate today. Second, Apple could license FairPlay to other companies, but that would make meeting the music industry's security requirements monumentally more difficult. Finally, we could probably take the best course possible, and just do away with DRM entirely.

In 2006, under 2 billion DRM-protected songs were sold worldwide by online stores, while over 20 billion songs were sold completely DRM-free and unprotected on CDs by the music companies themselves. The music companies sell the vast majority of their music DRM-free, and show no signs of changing this behavior, since the overwhelming majority of their revenues depend on selling CDs which must play in CD players that support no DRM system.

So if the music companies are selling over 90 percent of their music DRM-free, what benefits do they get from selling the remaining small percentage of their music encumbered with a DRM system? There appear to be none.
It's not a new request to hear, but it's certainly new to hear it from the guy in charge of the world's largest source of DRM'ed music! Unlikely though it may sound, if the music industry would ever do this, Steve Jobs is the man who could convice them.

Honestly, I think the reluctance to sell DRM-free music is mostly due to corporate nervousness, not any justifiable business position. Here's an example - take Fred, a fictional college student living with 3 other undergraduates in an on-campus 4-person suite. He's a mostly honest kid, but he's pirated his fair share of music in the past. Fred wants to get a new song he heard on the radio. He could use his university's Ruckus subscription, but that wouldn't play on his iPod because of incompatible DRM. He could buy it from the iTunes store - that would make sense, but he'd like to be able to share the song with his roommates, and FairPlay would only let the music play on Fred's iPod. So he resorts to Limewire, or BitTorrent, or any of a million other illegal sources that you, dear reader, are likely intimately familiar with.

Now, here's where the RIAA throws a fit. Fred resorted to stealing because he wanted to do something illegal! You can't just get a song and share it with your friends! That's wrong and we won't allow it!

Ah, but see, it's happening anyway. Thousands of times every day. Even people who still buy CD's are likely to let friends and family rip them. You can't stop that with anything short of Big Brother. I feel for the content creators, I really do. Heck, I'm going to school to become one of their ilk. But, illegal or not, this is simply the way the world works, and it will still happen no matter how much the RIAA screams about it. Fred is going to share his music. He has some morals of his own (independent of the law, I might add), so he won't post it on the internet, but he still wants to share it with his roommates, and that pulled him away from legitimate online music sources. From my own experience, I'd say "Fred" accounts for a very large portion of my generation. (Most of the rest won't settle for any price but "free," so there's little you can do about winning them over)

Now, let's pretend iTunes sold DRM-free music. What changes here? Well, Fred might decide that the song is worth a buck to him, and buy it. He's a nice enough guy after all, and the DRM was the only thing stopping him before. (He'd probably be even more likely to go legit it he could get it for free from Ruckus) He buys the song, then throws it over AIM to his roommates. They all listen, and a grand time is had by all. How did the record companies fare in these two scenarios?

Profit made from DRM'ed store: $0
Profit made from DRM-free store: $1

Now of course, in this situation the record companies would argue they're really entitled to $4, not $1, and probably that Fred has "stolen" $3 from them (if the lawyers got involved). But that's their fantasy world. In the real world, the choice isn't between $1 and $4, it's between $0 and $1.

So the real question is, who wants a dollar?

Sunday, February 04, 2007

Superbowl Ads

Seeing as A) The Steelers weren't playing, and B) I'm in a communications school, watching the superbowl this year was mostly an exercise in watching the ads for me. (Although, after that first amazing touchdown, it was pretty sad to see the Bears lose it.)

Since I already have to pick my favorite Superbowl ads to discuss in my TRF class tomorrow, and since iFilm has pretty much all of them available online, I figured I might as well post my favorites here. CBS also posted all of the ads, and in somewhat better quality, but I'm having trouble getting many of them to load. Probably just swamped with traffic. So without further ado, and in no particular order, my favorite ads from Superbowl XLI...

Bud Light: Language Course with Carlos Mencia
Come on, it's funny. Even if you hate Carlos, it's still funny.

GM: Robot
I felt so sorry for the little guy!

Coca-Cola: Happiness Factory
Very imaginative, to say the least. Apparently there's also an extended version of this that was shown in movie theaters.

Bud Light: Rock Paper Scissors
The first commercial that grabbed the attention of the people I was in the room with, and said "The Superbowl Ads have started!" Clever.

I also liked the "Grand Theft Auto" Coca-Cola ad, but I've seen that one in theaters (and also on TV I think), so it wasn't new to me. The Bud Light crabs stealing and worshipping the beer was funny, and the Dalmation was cute, but I think my list had enough Bud Light ones already!

Honestly, no blow-you-away amazing ones this year, but I thought it was pretty good overall for Superbowl ads. (The "sexed-up GoDaddy" bit is starting to get a little old though...)

Sunday, January 28, 2007

Got My Transferred Film Back!

Before the break, I posted some shots of my final film. The screen shots were achieved using the old trick of pointing my video camera at the Moviola screen. Since then, I have paid to have a real transfer of the film done by the Debenham Media Group in Pittsburgh. I finally got the results back, and they're a pretty impressive improvement! The following shots do my best to mirror the same shots I put up last time.

Unfortunately, there's some issues that keep this transfer from being pristine: Some of my splices were apparently not up to snuff, so on about half the cuts, the picture "jerks" a little right before the cut. Also, there's a few scratches, and quite a bit of dirt. All of this could, of course, be called my fault, not Debenham's. Judging purely on the clarity and sharpness of the images, I'd say they did a fine job. (And it only cost me about $40... it's kinda sad that working in film has made me regard that as cheap, isn't it?)

Hopefully I'll have the video available online somewhere sooner rather than later. I still want to tweak it a bit first.

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

The Future of Computers - Or At Least I Hope So!

A while back, I mentioned a video about some really cool multi-touch interaction research being done by Jeff Han and others at NYU. Like most of the rest of the internet, I was fairly impressed by it.

Well, the little research board has matured a bit. It can now be set up as a truly massive video wall, going even further in a "Minority Report" direction. To top it off, the experiment has become product, as one of these monsters has been sold to the military for a reported 6-figure sum.

Of course, there's a new, even more amazing video...

(Larger video here, but with ads)

Yes. Yes, yes, yes! That is the computer I want to be using in 10-20 years. In fact, I might go so far as to say if I can't get a computer like that for my own home in 20 years time, if not sooner, I may feel personally offended!

Ahem. All drooling aside, I wonder how all of this relates to the in-some-ways-similar (if smaller in scale) iPhone multi-touch interface, especially with regard to Steve Job's comment that "And boy have we patented it!" (Not sure if that's the exact quote)

Full Article: "Can Touch This"

As an aside, that video is being hosted by Brightcove, one of the many would-be YouTube challengers that has sprung up recently. It's one of the one's I've been considering for hosting my own movies - what do you think? (quality, interface, the actual Brightcove site?)

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Switching Majors

Alright, this is the "big thing" coming up that I hinted at on this blog about a month ago. Some people I have already told, but I didn't want to shout it from on high until it was approved and "for sure." Well, I just got the confirmation e-mail (finally!) so here it is:

I'm switching majors from Film (in the School of Visual and Performing Arts) to Television-Radio-Film (in the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications).

This is effective, well, now basically. I have an informational meeting monday afternoon, then I'll be frantically rearranging my schedule. (Why didn't they have the meeting earlier than the day before classes start? I have no idea...)

I spent a lot of time thinking over this decision last semester, and while some people (family & high school friends) might not see much difference between the two majors, anyone in VPA or Newhouse definitely does (and probably has some misconceptions about the other, as I did).

Oddly enough, this didn't have as much to do with the Film program's "Sparticus" letter incident as one might think. Rather, it was primarily about me doing some soul-searching about where I wanted to be going, and the ridiculously broad range of my interest in "media". Suffice to say, while both programs obviously have their faults, I'm fairly confident in my decision. (Not 100% confident of course - I'm way too big a worrywart for that to be possible...)

I apologize if this caught you by surprise - I know I didn't tell a whole lot of people at the end of last semester, but as I said, I didn't want to make a huge deal about it until it was definite. (I didn't know it would take this long for it to become definite...)

To my friends in VPA: I'm not dropping off the face of the earth! I'm still at S.U., I'm still friends with you guys. Heck, I'm still in the directing class this semester! (probably going to turn all that time with Deb et. al. into a Theater minor) And if I'm not swamped with my own stuff, I'm still up for helping out on people's shoots. (Heck, since TRF is all video, I might relish a chance to keep working with 16 mm from time to time!)

To my friends in Newhouse: Well, looks like you'll be seeing a bit more of me! (And probably hearing a lot of questions regarding scheduling and whatnot...)