A journal of questionable quality

Wednesday, March 23, 2005

sick, sick and tired

This has been going on since Friday. It's Wednesday now. Long time to be down and out.

Don't know what caused it, all I know is whatever it was it made me violently ill and it's taking it's time going away.

Suspects include that bloody pool where I seem intent on consuming the water, Yvonne who may well be slowly poisoning me, or a random happening because no one else seems to have been afflicted with it. If they had I would know it, trust me, when someone in this house gets sick everyone knows about it. This is a household that really puts effort into being sick. Buckets, coughing, dark rooms, the mandatory apple (which always causes more vomit, what's with the apple? They still make pectin don't they?), lemonade, fevered brows, the lot. You have to be here to see it. Often for stomach ache we get the 'limp', leaning on the wall, suitably tragic, groan, cough, limp again.

A week today until I am required to present myself to . I shall presume I am going to be feeling better by then.

Not sick enough that I cannot go out - we attended 'Women In Voice' last night. A semi annual production by women, from all styles of entertainment, performing whatever they like. It's good. It's always good.

Not sick enough to notice the subtle change in the temperature, down a little, autumn sneaking in, summer slipping away.

Not sick enough to be unable to continue learning . At this rate I will have done nothing more than get a grip on the program by the time the deadline arrives. I love it. I didn't expect it to be so easy to get to grips with - every reviewer seems to have the impression that it is hard to get along with. Not me. I must admit to being stunned initially by the sheer amount of options, and I'm still finding more everyday, but it runs well, even if it is a CPU super intensive.

This version here is 'Unlimited', which may account for some of the thousands of things happening all over the place, maybe with the lesser versions they give you fewer buttons so you don't have a nervous breakdown wondering what you just did. I must admit I got a surprise when it attempted a full raytraced render of the original scene, informing me that it would be just 17 hours away. Especially as I was looking for a save button at the time.

I'm sure it gets better.

Meanwhile I have to contemplate what variety of junk food I should consume this evening - being sick means you can eat what you like because it's all going to come out again one way or another.

Friday, March 18, 2005

458 Mb of Maya, salt/chlorine overload

At 458Mb it has to be the biggest program I am running on this machine. It also has to be one of the most comprehensive, all encompassing, RAM eating critter, than can send CPU usage straight to 100% anytime it renders.

A long time LightWave fan, an reasonably proficient 3D Max user, I have to say that seems to have the goods on all of them. It's taken three days to get to terms with the basics; it would take almost a lifetime to get the head around all of it - simply an amazing program, but one that will eventually have to go back to it's owner. Probably better that it does - I feel an obsession coming on. Again. Soon.

It has already caused a call to Alias to confirm how Maya is pronounced, a sign I am badly stuck on something.

On : The pool, as in swimming, has caused me major physical drama. A result of spending too long churning out lap after lap on Thursday left me embarrassingly half blind, assumed reaction of too long with eyes open in chlorine / salt water. Also left me violently ill. Possible cause: a minor incident when I accidentally breathed in while still under water, an intake of salt / chlorine / piss contaminated water. Proof, if it was ever needed, that consuming public swimming baths water is to be avoided - at all costs.

So, yesterday afternoon was spent administering eyedrops to the eyes to get rid of the milky outline on everything, and feeling like I may yet manage to vomit my own heart up. A less than exhilarating finale to a major swimming session.

The main worry was the lack of clear vision - murky vision makes reading small text difficult, and annoying. We are pleased to note it is gradually reverting back to the way I like to see.

In amongst all that self induced damage the toaster blew up, the kitchen tap gave up, and the household cat developed a major limp. Trying to pick which one of those events was to turn out the most expensive turned into a challenge, but, being the luckiest person in the world the next day saw the cat quit limping, the toaster replaced by the grill, leaving the tap, the preferred repair to deal with.

$300.00 gets the tap fixed - stunning money - but money you pay when you find that you need to do some major plumbing to get the new tap/mixer, whatever it's called, to fit in the space provided. Great.

On Tuesday next it will be one week before I leave for New Zealand, the trip to see the ailing but still fighting Mother. I am trying not to think of the temperatures encountered there. I am talking it up. To myself. That is a bad sign. All will turn out OK. Won't it? Not only that but I will get to spread about a few of the PostSecret card over there as well, Kiwis will be more likely to embrace the idea rather than our local Australian, cautious, suspicious, citizens.

Beyond all that I am haunted by the movie '' a 1998 movie that seems to have taken up residence in my head overnight. Something to do with the scenes with the mirror. Why do these things have to get stuck in my head when it's already full? There will be a reason. One day I'll tell you all about it.

Tuesday, March 15, 2005

Maya 6.5 and 40 klms biking

Tuesday and the week is peaking out already.

We have been lent a copy of Maya 6.5 Unlimited. This is right up there with good. Perhaps even very good. An amazing piece of kit that can simply do anything in the world of 3D.

The drama is going to be when Barry, currently on an extended vacation, returns and expects the license back again. Went through a process similar to a triple heart bypass to get the thing transferred onto this machine, Maya doesn't suffer fools too lightly, so naturally we made more than a million mistakes before getting it right..

Haven't had time to investigate it fully - it's a program that could (and does) take over your entire life, and I have no desire to be crash teaching myself this close to a trip to New Zealand. It's for when I get back, hopefully full of ideas for a new project we have landed, requiring some serious 3D.

It's open ended so I don't feel the need to spend the next 40 days and 40 nights getting a grip. Story boards are done, animatics are completed, materials in the process of being picked, colours selected, fonts being negotiated, all looking good for an early April completion.

Exciting: Yes.

Swimming yesterday, biking today - an good effort at 40 klm. Feeling a bit second hand at the moment because of it though.

A good swimming session tomorrow may help to sooth the aching legs, or it might make them worse..

New Zealand is two weeks out now. It's indeed a pity I have begun to feel that very first, very slight chill in the air in the mornings - that translates to bloody cold mornings and rapidly shortening days in New Zealand.

Still, it's good to be going to see the Mother. It seems to have been a long time. The one good thing about Mothers is that they always remain the same - older perhaps,, slower as well, but always the Mother.

Investigations will naturally be made in to the feasibility of moving over there, but it doesn't look too good for that. The lifestyle may have to change, the body would have to acclimatize, I might even have to get a job. Impossible.

It's all too much for me I have to get back to Maya.

'E', thank you for your kind comments. You made my day.

Friday, March 11, 2005

the end of the week

Another week over.

It wasn't a hard one.

  • Avoiding a tropical cyclone by being so far away from it that barely changed the weather.

  • Lose weight /get fit account rises by 4klms for swimming and 70 klms for biking (unfortunately there appears nowhere evidence that I have indeed lost any weight).

  • Came up with various methods of propagating the PostSecret experience.

  • Did not Tried not to berate myself as badly for losing another week where I could have been buggying rather than pissing about 'getting fit'.

  • Did manage to formulate some small plans gargantuan plans for the reboot of the Zoetrope site.

  • Finally managed to find and own Strunk's 'Elements of Style', so now I can check I am indeed making sense. (I'm not)

Failures included the total inability to remember what I needed the other blog addresses for. Not that I am inclined to mind - they can sit there as place holders until I figure out what the grand plan was.

Other failures I cannot recall. I don't even feel like it.

Still trying to get used to these new glasses. It's a bit of a shock to be able to see so clearly, and I find myself having to pull back form the screen whereas before I would be glasses off, pressed up against the thing trying to focus on something.

I am a sucker for good vision.

Entirely new subject:
I have found, through extensive surfing, that the trend toward vector art is indeed a valid move, and not the aberration I had suspected.

This is good. We like vector stuff.

Go here The Design Chapel to be exposed to some of the greatest vector stuff on the planet.

I do not exaggerate.

Luckily we have plenty of vector making gear including, somewhere, a rather old version of Streamline, which will quite possibly refuse to go on XP. Naturally.

Wednesday, March 09, 2005

and now we are 3

It's true.

Not content with having two Blogger blogs, one Live Journal one which I seem to be unable to access because I was obviously creative when I made up the password, an old TypePad one with the 90 day trial expired, we can now boast a new one - zoetrope on msm - for reasons which we are still unable to remember.

What is the advantage of all this? None. It seemed like a good idea at the time. I remember it was something to do with wanting to create an online facility for something, I just don't have the details.

I hate it when these master plans go astray. The idea, such as it was, came to me during Monday's swimming. 2klm of back and forth you'd have to have something come to mind other than water. I firmly believe it was something to do with the PostSecret thing - we have the cards and I was going to emulate the PostSecret originator and have a few turn up at random, similar to the 47 bottles in the lake affair.

Rather handy when we live right up the road from a lake. Wouldn't have far to go to set them off on their journey.

Not one part of the Post Secret thing seems to have demanded more blog space, so I'm still in the dark. As I recall I was thinking about some 'send it in' type thing, but I didn't get it written down in time.

I'll get to the bottom of it, meantime, try finding content for three blogs sometime, and if you find the time, and the subjects you need to get yourself a real life. I have trouble keeping up with the site and Blogger.

Weight loss / get fit effort for this week:
Monday 2klm swimming
Tuesday 35klm biking
Wednesday - this very day - 2klm swimming

And I still have Thursday and Friday to go.

I hate being such a legend.

In amongst all this angst about why we suddenly had to have so many blogs I have also taken delivery of the second pair of new glasses, these ones the new look - Ralph Lauren plastic (bakelite we are told) type rectangular frames, when all my glass wearing life I have worn aviators or round metal frames, both, naturally, a product of the esteemed Bausch & Lomb.

The evolution of the glasses is a story all of it's own, but the summary is - it's not easy changing form glass to plastic for a lens material, no matter what anyone says (and I have the first pair here beside me - unworn these last 2 months), even if the plastic (perhaps poly carbonate?) lenses are indeed superior, lighter, tint quicker, and safer.

Problem I have with them is they are not as sturdy as the glass. More prone to scratching, not comfortable around solvents, likely to craze, all the things that you never have to consider when they're glass.

Total outlay over the two pair is around $1000.00 so I figure on getting used to them, and getting used to them very soon.

Still can't say I'm convinced about the rectangular frames though.

Even less sure about the reasoning behind the multiple blogs.

Monday, March 07, 2005

Stand back we are two now..

There's a new kid on the block. I cannot, for the life of me, remember why we had to have it.
There was some big plan. A plan I don't remember.

I hoped I had written it (the plan) down somewhere on the 100 sheets of hasty scribbling that litter the place, words, single words, designed to remind me of things.

I have to write things down to decompress my brain. Sometimes there's so much going on that it's a relief to make a note of some things just to ease the pressure.

Written down or not, I have no idea of the reason for the newest plan.

PROPAGANDAFACTORY - so easy to type, so easy to remember, if you're into names that take a day to type in.

PROPAGANDAFACTORY.blogspot.com - it's our newest blog. It's also an email address - propagandafactory-at-gmail.com. How big is that?

The new blog, hereinafter reduced to 'pf' for speed, will contain - things that I will remember soon. In the meantime it will contain rubbish. Perhaps it will even contain rubbish when I have remembered what it was for.

We will announce the real reason for it soon....

Meantime, things are happening at great pace. Technorati have been kind enough to let us trial a new search engine on the blog - which you will see to your right somewhere. To your left if you are reading this upside down. We are also in the process of learning to use the Technorati Tags system, so should you find any strange looking links splattered about the page you may want to take them and see where you end up.
In fact, here's one , a fine example that you should follow, all the better to broaden you narrow outlook on life beyond these four walls.

All too exciting for me - I'm going to have a cold shower. It will cure this madness. So they told me at school.

Friday, March 04, 2005

Day 18,348 in my life

The PostSecret cards arrived. Far sooner than I expected.

Contact us for yours. Fill it in - send it in. See it posted on PostSecret.

Meantime I think we may have to involve the media in this. It has the potential to be big, so we might as well put some honest effort in to it.

Autumn has officially begun. Apparently. 33 degrees (about 95 real ones - they made us go metric, now I never know how far I am away from anything, how fast I'm going, or the actual temperature) inside, storm clouds to the south west indicate a possible storm this evening. Still, if they say it's autumn, it is, and I will notice it first in the mornings, just a bit of cool evident when we get out of bed.

Collection of warm under garments for New Zealand continues. Must be prepared for a rapid change of environment. Been trying to prepare the head for it - insisting it's a state of mind.
Hopefully it will stick.

The get fit effort:
..for this week was only swimming. For some reason I am seriously into getting into that pool with flippers attached and motoring non stop up and down, alternating on to my back, until my legs give up. No chest or arms allowed least I end up looking like a barrel chested fool with skinny legs.

The affect it has on my ailing old knee, slated for repair / replacement within a year, is great. The knee repair was to be followed by intensive physiotherapy, including, as I remember, a lot of swimming. I am naturally doing it the wrong way around - I am doing the swimming before the rebuild - and I have to say I already notice the slight improvement in it. Seems to feel more stable. Mind you, with a gut full of Celebrex, anything would feel stable, or at the very least, pain free.

All I have to do now is combine the pool and the bike. As I have mentioned - obsessives have real trouble 'combining' anything - we just make one thing the object of attention, and keep doing it, over and over and over, until something happens and we're off on another tack, in my case, hopefully biking my legs off around the suburb here.

Am I losing any weight with all this madness? Hard to tell. To know that I would have to weigh myself and I am not into that sort of thing - if I find no change I will get all girly, and we don't want that - at all.

The site:
..is suffering through an update. It has no choice. The journal stuff needed a revamp. It's done. Decision to be selective with the Flash page turning journal made.
The next iteration will be the same menu, but with a white background, just for the hell of it. Not until I have done the New Zealand thing. We don't want major site works on the eve of flying out, safer to keep site as is until I get back, brimming with enthusiasm. Assuming, of course, I arrive back in that state.