phamos: (wangchungorillkickyourass!)
Question of the Day: Why does the iTunes Genius feature insist on putting "Careless Whisper" by Wham on every single 80s-related playlist I ask it to generate? Starting with Whitesnake -- gives me Journey, Foreigner, Genesis, Def Leppard, Van Halen...and WHAM?
phamos: (wangchungorillkickyourass!)
Favorite Thing of the Day: Mattel LED Football for iPhone/iPod Touch! I'm in '80s Hand-Me-Down-Toy heaven! (Actually, I think the one my sister had was baseball, not football, but it's the same sort of interface and makes the same little satisfying bloops and bleeps.)
phamos: (wangchungorillkickyourass!)
Thing I like: Genius playlists in the new iTunes. Hell YEAH if I want to listen to "Time After Time" by Cyndi Lauper I'll also want to listen to Heart, Wham, and Til Tuesday! Love IS a motherfuckin' battlefield, Pat Benatar, thanks for pointing that out!

Thing I don't like: That Nancy Botwin keeps fucking stuff up with her hot shirtless boyfriends. I already don't get to see Romany Malco on my TV anymore; now just because she has a moral problem with human trafficking, I can't see the sexy telenovela guy next season? SHENANIGANS.

Other thing I like: Teeny baby bump.

Corollary thing I do NOT like: Pregnancy heartburn. Whooorf.
phamos: (Default)
Somehow I managed to isolate all my vocals in the left channel on my podcast. I'll fix it, but I can't get to my website until after MobileMe is up and running. So, in the event that any of you had downloaded it before the site went down, listen at your own risk -- it sounds shitty. Wait until tomorrow evening, when I will have had a chance to reupload, presuming the DotMac-MobileMe switch doesn't go horribly awry. In which case, I will have more pressing issues on my mind than the podcast.
phamos: (12th level)
Cool thing I just did: Went back and put markers with chapter titles after each song on my podcast. Then, when I synced the podcast with my iPhone and put it in widescreen/Cover Flow mode, tapping the screen once brings up a track listing within the podcast -- just like an album despite the fact that it's a single file. Easy to navigate! Skip the last 4 minutes of "Goodbye Horses" because it's extremely repetitive! Skip the parts where I talk because you find my voice annoying! It's all up to you, the listener!

Good thing I just learned: iPhoto has always been the bane of my existence, with the twenty different levels of file storage and duplicates and pictures totally disappearing on me because I moved the file around or something, whatever, I don't know. Well, iPhoto '08 has the iPhoto library in your Pictures folder as a single package. This makes it seem like you can't access those pictures, which might be extremely annoying. But really what it does is keep them out of sight so it's harder for you to mess with where they're stored in the hierarchy rather than change the organization within iPhoto. That way they don't disappear on you. But you CAN access the library hierarchy by right clicking and selecting "Show Package Contents" -- and, as someone over on TUAW suggested, you can create an alias of those contents to put in your pictures folder or on your desktop, so that you can access the files if you need to attach them to an email or otherwise upload them somewhere, but you wouldn't actually be fiddling with the data itself. And now, when I rearrange my pictures in iPhoto, it just rearranges them in that library package behind the scenes, so I won't have multiple copies in multiple locations and won't accidentally delete the one that actually IS still linked in iPhoto leaving a giant annoying "missing picture" graphic in its wake. I look forward to playing with this more. A lot of people find it counterintuitive to make it HARDER to access those pictures from the finder, but it honestly makes a lot more sense than the way iPhoto data was saved before.

Awesome thing I plan to do now: Sleep.
phamos: (bruce)
Why are consumer electronics such crap? Our Logitech USB headphones, which came highly recommended, are dying. It's not like we've done anything even mildly abusive to them -- they sit on our desk and then periodically we put them on our heads. I've looked at the cord, and it doesn't appear that the cat has been gnawing on it while we sleep. So I have no idea what the problem is. They're about a year old. This is bogus. (Though it has been interesting to find out what it would sound like if Kele Okereke sang while dunked in a swimming pool.)
phamos: (bruce)
So, two new NBC shows are up on iTunes -- Journeyman and Chuck. Confused? Don't be -- neither of them are actually produced by NBC/Universal, so Fox and Warner Bros. still gets to put 'em up there. However, this doesn't bode well for House fans -- House is an NBC/Universal productions, even if it shows on Fox. Ergo, no House on iTunes. As far as I can tell, the returning shows that won't be on iTunes this fall due to the NBC/Universal fallout are House, Heroes, The Office, 30 Rock, Friday Night Lights, and Battlestar Galactica. Am I missing any? Apparently My Name is Earl isn't an NBC/Universal production, so we might see that premiere on iTunes come Friday morning. Unfortunately, I HATE My Name is Earl, despite my enduring love for Jason Lee. If I can overlook the Scientology thing, I think I can get past the fact that his show is horribly unfunny.

Please, NBC/Universal, I just want to give you money -- why won't you take it?
phamos: (regent)
The MPAA: coming soon to a computer near you. I would strongly advise anyone reading this to avoid the website MiiVi.com at all costs, unless you want Media Defender illegally poking around on your hard drive. Yikes.
phamos: (12th level)
My new favorite thing in the whole world is NetNewsWire, which I'm sure everybody in the whole universe knows about other than me. It's about a million times better than Thunderbird, which I had been using as my RSS aggregator. Unfortunately, I'm not sure when my free trial runs out, and I'm always loathe to pay money for software if I can avoid it. (I am a cheapskate.) However, this may be something worth paying for. If anyone has any suggestions for Mac RSS readers that rival NetNewsWire, please let me know. Otherwise, I might try out the free Lite version when my trial expires. They don't have a lite version of the current iteration, but it's worth a shot. If it's crummy, I'll probably just pay the $30. If I was employed, I would have no qualms about paying, but I'm a little chintzy right now. Also, if I was employed, I wouldn't have time to be reading all these blogs in the first place. Catch-22!

(Also, the interface on NetNewsWire is pleasantly aesthetically similar to that of Peel, which is my other favorite aggregator. That makes my brain happy. Of course, since iTunes 7.3 is still all cracked out, I can't download any new music right now. So bogus.)
phamos: (regent)
Interesting side note to the whole Strikethrough debacle -- Brad Fitzpatrick no longer works for LJ. Probably a smart move to disable comments on that post. There would no doubt be thousands of Brad-ciples committing virtual hara-kiri upon finding this out. Six Apart wins, open source nerds lose. The end.
phamos: (twilight)
New Favorite Thing! Peel is a program that compiles all the mp3s listed on your favorite music blogs, lets you stream them to see if you like them, and lets you download them straight to your iTunes library. AWESOME. It's currently only for Mac, which is unusual and also kinda awesome after two decades of getting shafted on software.
phamos: (12th level)
The one thing that makes this day salvageable is that I learned I can press control+option+apple+8 and get my screen to do what my dad used to call "Video Vortex".
phamos: (nerd)
I just realized I'm still running the very first Microsoft Office ever made for OS X, back in 2001. No wonder it's so damn glitchy!
phamos: (gonzotwirl)
iPhone is teh pretty. The Beatles are coming to iTunes. Apple stock just went up $5.50 in two hours. If my day at work weren't so crappy, and if my butt didn't hurt so much, this would be an amazing day.

It's a shame I have no reason to buy an iPhone -- I have a video iPod, I bought a RAZR not 4 months ago, and I don't really use my phone for internet shit (though I MIGHT, if the iPhone really makes it as easy as Jobs made it seem). Segev has a Cingular upgrade he's sitting on, though. Maybe we could get a rebate through that? And then just switch our chips, and Segev can have the RAZR and i can party with the iPhone? Or *sigh* he could use the iPhone and I could wistfully pet it every now and then? MUST HAVE GADGET! THAT I DON'T NEED IN ANY WAY! BECAUSE I AM AN ACQUISITIVE YUPPIE AND I WANT IT!
phamos: (12th level)
Today's favorite nerd quote, re: the Mac version of TiVo to Go, from The Unofficial Apple Weblog:

"Sure, it was probably a painstaking and grueling process to build a Mac OS X client, and it's even likely that many Bothans died to bring us this software."

I will give 1000 dork points to whoever can name the character who said that line.

Happy Macworld, everybody. Do you think we're getting a phone?

ETA: iPHONE!!! iTV!!! STOCK UP 3 POINTS!!! YAAAAAAY!
phamos: (12th level)
Gross, gross, gross. And the RIAA wonders why people illegally download music? Why not, when none of the money from buying it actually goes to the people who create it? Let's sue 6-year-olds and lower royalty rates! Damn you, technology!
phamos: (surrealbaboon)
Tower Records recently filed for bankruptcy, again, and this time their stores are actually going out of business. I have a real soft spot for Tower Records. Unlike many music nerds, I did not learn about indie rock by going to some tiny store, flipping through vinyl and having some grungy clerk tell me about Television or XTC. I learned about music through a combination of a friend with a very hip older sister, subscriptions to Sassy and Spin, and a dad who would go with me to Tower and buy me a handful of CDs that I'd never heard before every time we went to Chicago. So the Tower Records on Clark is where I bulked up my knowledge along with my collection. Tower Records was also where I first bought a Sandman book. (There was also a comic book store downstairs where I bought my first Cerebus book, but that's neither here nor there.) When I lived in Chicago, trips outside of Hyde Park often revolved around going to Tower. I very specifically remember buying double albums by Tori and Trent on their first day of release my second year -- that took a bite out of my wallet! The last batch of CDs I ever bought at the Chicago Tower included an album by Mandalay that was in one of their listening stations, saying it was Madonna's new favorite album. It's a great, great record.

I never had the same connections with either of the Tower Records stores in New York, but in my first couple of years here the Tower by Lincoln Center was a fairly regular destination on my Upper West Side outings. So today, we decided to go down there and scout out their "Blowout Sale" to see if there were any remaining Battlestar Galactica DVDs to be had for cheap. MAN, was that place ever torn to shit. It was the dregs of popular culture to be had at that store today, though if you're looking for a copy of the Spielberg/Cruise War of the Worlds, you'd be in luck. And the prices weren't even that great! A blowout sale where almost everything is only 20% off? You could buy this stuff for cheaper any given day on Amazon!

But I realized, when Tower closes, and when Kim's inevitably closes (and it will soon, have no doubt), there will be hardly anywhere to buy DVDs in the city -- certainly nowhere with any decent selection. There are the Virgin megastores -- I haven't heard how they're doing. According to rumors floating around the Kim's staff, Blockbuster will soon be closing, so their paltry retail selection won't be available. Barnes and Noble sells DVDs at some of their stores, but their selection is small and expensive.

I buy the vast majority of my DVDs and books on Amazon. Their prices are the cheapest, and if you spend over $25, the shipping is free. (The free shipping may not work so well for people in more isolated areas, but in New York, it's actually faster than UPS.) So I realize I have personally contributed to the downfall of brick and mortar stores. I suddenly regret it. I will miss the ability to wander through a store, leisurely considering items and making impulse buys. Sure, I can (and often do -- beware late-night Ambien induced Amazon shopping, folks) accomplish the same thing online. But the depersonalization of it is suddenly very unsettling. As a matter of fact, I do almost all of my shopping online -- I hate trying on clothes in stores and would rather do it at home and then take back the things I don't like to the physical stores. I bought my new phone online. When I buy a new computer, I will likely do it online. I buy furniture and gadgets online. But I always did it with the understanding that if I wanted to go to a store and do it, I could. And soon, I won't be able to. I love shopping on the internet. I've never been a great window shopper. But I always reserved the right to window shop if I so desired. That's ending.
phamos: (12th level)
Interesting thing to note about LJTalk -- [livejournal.com profile] billyphuz is showing up on my gmail chat list. Which, I'm guessing, means that if you've received a comment from someone, it's thus on your gmail contacts list, and so if they're signed in to jabber as "soandso@livejournal.com", gmail will see them.

Which means I don't really need to have a separate client at all, because I'm assuming anyone who would actually sign in to LJTalk and whom I would actually want to talk to, has probably sent me a comment at some point.

But if I don't sign in to Audion, where will I get to hear odd, vaguely sexual grunts? I'll just have to listen to "Big Love" on repeat.
phamos: (12th level)
I know I have said before that Vox is probably just a giant pile of suck. But, you know, if something is invitation only, I'm lame and feel the need to join to reaffirm my sense of self-worth through the implied approval of others. Of course, I got the invitation because Go Fug Yourself was handing out 1000 of them for free and so few people really cared to get one that I was able to snag one even 2 days after the post. Yes, 2 weekend days, but still...I don't think there's really a lot of people clamoring to get on Vox out there, or so it would seem. Good going SixApart -- your business acumen is unparalleled.

And so, I have a Vox account. If any of you have one, let me know so I can add you to my "neighborhood". Whatever. Gotta love that the only client currently available is for Windows. Vox isn't OSS, is it? That is teh suck.

EDIT: Oh no. Oh no no no. I'm playing around with it and...well...I kinda like it. The multimedia aspects of it are actually kind of cool. Its interface still kinda looks like something that would appeal to a 15-year-old with a fetish for Takahashi Rumiko manga (not dissing -- that's the stuff I read when I was 15). But I've been clamoring for a way to put images of books and albums in my LJ sidebar for a couple of years now, so that's nice. Embedding movies is even easier than on LJ -- it lets you upload .mov and other files directly to your account, so you don't actually have to depend on YouTube being up. There's a way to link your Vox account to your TypePad account, so maybe someday there will be linkage between LJ and Vox -- so my friends could read both my LJ and Vox posts on their friends page, and vice versa. Honestly, given that most of my public posts recently have been multimedia based, Vox makes a whole lot of sense for those. But I feel like none of my FRIENDS will read them if they're hiding over on Vox. Maybe I'm deluding myself that my friends read those, anyway. :) I am very torn. If only I could combine aspects of Vox with aspects of LJ, all would be right with the world. Stupid SixApart, splitting its efforts and making something new instead of improving what already exists. Annoying.

EDIT PART DEUX: I created a feed for my Vox blog to see what it would look like on an LJ friends page. And of course, the html embedding the video in the Vox post isn't the same code used on LJ, so you can't just watch the video, there's only a link to it. So it looks shitty. But it's something -- maybe they'll work it out eventually.

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