A journal of questionable quality

Friday, March 31, 2006

the perils of editing

one hour - maybe the day
All day editing. Having discovered that iPods handle video - well, some must do anyway, and enamored with the idea of appearing on an iPod screen, the morning was devoted to producing such a thing in the .m4v format - a slightly different format than .mp4, which, I am now informed, will play on an iPod anyway.

The output is no problem - Quicktime Pro simply converts to it. The problem, as always is me, and my unfailing ability to make epics.

Proud father that I am, the completed, non epic is available for download from our good friends here http://xthost.info/zoetrope/yellowarrow.m4v. You might try a right click on the address, or whatever method you use.

I think you are then supposed to put it in your iTunes video folder. I actually have no idea because I don't have an iPod, or iTunes. All I know is it seemed like a good idea at the time, but after making a few 100Mb epics, and a causing a crash on Premiere I was pleased to get it done.

Consider iPod video a new toy. I'm thinking it might be a helpful thing with some of our upcoming esoteric arrows.

And - as you do - barcodes for all
The day before spent putting together a mobile mini site to cater to anyone scanning in this:

scan this fucker into your imode phone and see how you go

An iMode phone bookmark which happens to make an appearance on a few of the cards we have been leaving about the place.

As does this:

Yes Mildred, another barcode format that requires more software for your nice new phone.
The newly found 'Shotcode' format.

We now sport some very barebones mobile content accessible via the main site - assuming you are dialing in, on the new Google Pages, and, a minor trial here, where the iPod stuff lives.

I would venture that I am entirely out of control.

We have barcodes, MMS video, interactive maps, CD's, DVD's, call back email addresses. We have DataGlyphs, MECARDS, iPod video, Quicktime image sequences, Flash videos, and probably the kitchen sink tied in together, all because of a bloody thing called YellowArrow.

Still, I suppose it beats being bored.

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80klms and 40 laps

the price of weight loss
80 klms on the bike - over two days. 40 a day. Feeling good. Rained out the third day to take it to 100klm.

Went to the pool instead and splashed out 40 laps there. Suffering today for no reason - maybe because I haven't been to the pool in a week or two.

The bike is as addictive as ever. I don't know what it is about bikes, but once I get on them I don't feel too keen to get back off. It's happened before. Especially when I stick to a fixed course - the lake is one. I can go around there all day (and have done a few times), in a dream, legs doing the work, brain somewhere else altogether.

Obsessives do that. Repetition. Over and over. Like trying to edit video - over and over again. Like all this messing about with barcodes and arrows and the like - perfect for an obsessive, I can spend all day working on variations on a theme.

It gets tiring sometimes. Always for the people around. Sometimes for me.

Doesn't alter the fact that the bike is the greatest weight loss tool I have ever seen. Last time I had to do this, after a year or two of sitting on my arse, like now, I was dropping a Kg a week. I don't actually know how much that really is because I still think in Pounds like normal people.

Gets me out of the house - a bit of fresh air does wonders for the mind. Mine anyway. Time away from a keyboard. Time to mull over the latest obsessions, especially ones that DON'T include computing.

They're beginning to bank up - the things we think, the things I think. I'm not sure that the rest of the World lives in a place somewhere between 'Saw', 'Silence of The Lambs' and 'Fatal Attraction'. I'm liking the idea of Basic Instinct II's 'risk addict' thing. It's a sad thing, but sometimes you just have to wonder how far you could push something - don't you? I mean, don't you?

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Tuesday, March 28, 2006

the House

and away..
We've moved asylums. Moved to an older one. Not, in my mind, as creepy as the original, but certainly containing a taste of life in splendid 'seclusion' up until the late '70's.

The information to actually get people there is being disseminated - almost as we speak - by randomly placed business cards with the coordinates and instructions provided on a barcode printed on the back, laminated to ensure they last more than one night in the wild. The previous post featured them. Some of these will be pointed out by yellowarrows, some will compete for space in the normal collection of dross inside phone booths, bus shelters, the usual suspects.

Now, what you do is..
Here's the deal. If you're reading this you obviously won't have access to one of the wonderful barcode creations, so we have produced another, more high tech barcode for you perusal, and use, should you feel so inclined. However you have to do some work.

First thing you do is click on the image below which will give you another page with the original sized image. Save that to your desktop. Go to this place here: www.parc.com click 'decode' and you will be facing a page that will want to upload an image - in this case the image you just saved from here. (PARC is a subsidiary of Xerox Corporation, we thank them for their dataglyphs)


You will see, when the decode is done, that you have enough information, assuming you're in the Southern Hemisphere, to get you to the front door of the place and slightly beyond.

Go there, follow the instructions. If you want.
Got a Q Card phone?
Excellent! We have just the thing for you:

Jam this thing in your phone and it should give you the coordinates you need.

And, for good measure, below - the URL of our latest enterprise:

Go forth, confuse people, find mental asylums to play in. Tell us when you get to the end of the trail.

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Friday, March 24, 2006

cyclonic conditions exist..

bad weather day
Forces writer to stay inside. Twisted. Could have gone down to the pool and swum it off but had to spend most of the day trying to tame the bastard program that purports to connect my phone to the PC. Rotten piece of shit.

The idea was, and still is (now that I have managed to convince uber policeman Norton to let it access the internet), to compose MMS messages on the PC and upload them to the phone. Ready for when I want to fire off directions for some obscure arrow chase created by one of those barcode cards. The whole thing is out of control. I realized I didn't have a plan beyond the initial location - decided to wind in some MMS slideshows as well - just to get everything involved; barcodes, still images, 3gp video, yellow arrows, grafedia email messages, and anything else lying about. Got so big I have to have a dope sheet beside me to see where I am in the plan.

The MMS saga - was what I was actually talking about. Yes you can use Phone Tools to compose MMS slideshows. Yes you can add just about anything to them. No you can't upload the things to the phone. It don't do that. Most of the day, crash after crash, inferior software bundle wreaking revenge for not being updated to the deluxe edition, killing my connections over and over again. Finally. Gave up. Gave up, sent the entire MMS to myself, so that I may have the joy of sending it on.

Why do I need to send it from my phone, why not just send it from the PC? Could be that I am out when I need to send the MMS; don't want to have to come home just to honor an arrangement I entered in to, by barcode, with a complete stranger.. that's why.

It's come down to a more simple way. Send the images to myself, put the MMS together on my phone (that way I CAN actually add the text where I want it, not where PHONE TOOLS wants it) and simply keep it till it's needed.

All this because it's cyclonic - rain squalls, followed by sunshine, no pattern to it, stay at home, fight with shit software, trying to get it to do the only thing it doesn't seem to have been built for.

There must be better things to do.

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Thursday, March 23, 2006

idle hands..

cyclones, bikes, laminate
The weather has not been helpful. We are just getting the edge of the whooper cyclone that tore through North Queensland earlier in the week. We only get the rain and the wind, no houses falling down, no people being blown away, just enough to keep me inside. We still have another one coming down the coast but I expect to survive that too - probably more indoor stuff.

Indoors is a dangerous place for me. Indoors and too much time on my hands is a danger to everyone.

behold the laminate
The new plan 'a'. Bold, daring, stupid. In any particular order. Yesterday it was all about laminated business cards bearing simply an email address - pointing back to a pile of grafedia images. ie: find_us@grafedia.net, riskaddict@grafedia.net, and on they go - all nicely enclosed in laminate, a thought to get me around the rain.

Last night; everywhere, sticking empty arrows pointing to the strategically placed cards. Bus stops, shelters, phone booths, pay and display robots, you name it they all got the treatment - plain stickers as well. All with a single, but varying, grafedia address on them.

Today; plan 'b' - still nothing better to do - weather still hassling, still waiting for me to leave the house so that it can rain. An extension of the business card thing - veering off badly - hung up on barcodes, as I am, decide to incorporate them as well.

The final solution:




A triumph of barcode madness. The big thing is they actually do say something. The 'instructions' one contains the Google coordinates to another, older asylum that we have been looking at. They manage to get the barcodes read, get to the coordinates, they will be faced with a yellowarrow that will move them through the building, eventually ending up at a 'seclusion' cell that truly does reek of another time. If they get it right they actually get a yellowarrow DVD all of their own. Yummy.

These cards are going to be deployed over the weekend and next week, accompanied by the yellowarrows necessary to 'drag 'em in'. Should be interesting to see if anyone actually 'gets it' because they haven't got anything else yet.

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Tuesday, March 21, 2006

Broken (yellow) arrow

is this the end of the world
A weekend spent - apart from a bit of work just to make things interesting - looking for suitable yellowarrow locations and messing with the new grafedia idea. Ended horribly twisted when I discovered that an Australian based phone is not going to be capable of sending an MMS message to a server in the States. I spent a lot of time finding that out, a lot of phone messages, and a lot more phone based emails - things that you really don't want to have to do a lot of with a phone.

Eventually managed to get around it by flying out of bed early Monday and uploading the relevant images to the grafedia server, which was better anyway because I had wanted to add some text along with them, as in transformer@grafedia.net which displays the transformer near a 'pay and display' (I don't make these up) parking station out at the university.
The station itself now sports a jaunty sticker with nothing but the email address on it. Get all that? You would think that, at my age, I would be past graffiti. Wrong, I'm only just beginning.

The end of the world began when I found that the Australian Yellow Arrow number was out of service. Don't even know how long it's been like that - we have been in the habit of using the US number, and just happened to check the local one.

Major panic. We have some 50 arrows out there with the wrong number on them. Have about another 40 here ready to go with the wrong number on them. Major.

Yellow Arrow have taken action already - I'm not sure what action, but they are handling it after receiving a million emails from me as psychopathic state after psychopath state rolled over me. Damn near had to go out and kill someone. Just a needed a little something to dampen down the desire you understand.

bike that aggression off
This week also marks the start of the cycling program. The real deal one this time. Real deal on Monday, opening the account with a 50 klm ride, a shake down cruise, something to blow out the dust and cobwebs. This time managing to avoid blowing a tyre.

A category 5 cyclone crossing the coast up between Townsville and Cairns does nothing for the weather down here, and threatens more. Why, we might even get rain. So today, ahead of the worst of the weather, managed to crank another 30 klm out before it started to get wet. Wet forecast for the rest of the week, but I have enough up on the bike - I can fall back to the pool if I need.

Biking saves lives. Other people's lives. I seem to manage to go from a frenzy of complete madness down to some mildly twisted deviant as long as I'm peddling that bike. Don't know why. Don't care. All I know is it makes a powerful improvement in my demeanor, which, in turn, make life a whole lot better for other humans.

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Friday, March 17, 2006

Grafedia - how cool is that?

discoveries along the way to the CD
I am unable to maintain concentration when the plan is not complete. It happens. This time it was advantageous. Tripped over Grafedia while ploughing through the yellowarrow press kit.

The answer to my dreams.

A place where I can make up an email address on the spot - literally.

It's like this - I go to see someone (unlikely I know), they're not home, I take a photo of their front door, upload it to grafedia along with a unique name for it, I then scrawl that name on their door - imagine, if you will 'iwashere@grafedia.net', and I underline the name in blue. They get home, enter the address into their phone, and get the photo I took (or the voice, or whatever) delivered to their phone. Proof that I have been there, at that very spot.

The uses are, for me anyway, enormous. I can think of loads of applications for it.

A sort of topical graffiti, similar to an arrow. I see them both working together. They will be after the weekend.

Even the CD's that are ready to go have an email address what??@grafedia.net which will return a - fuzzy but readable - image with an explanation of reason for the CD on it. Try it, take the link above - you should use a mobile, but any email will do - don't put anything in the subject line, and just a cursory hello in the body.

Try it again - zoetrope101@grafedia.net and see what riches you receive in return. Love it.

Look for email addresses underlined in blue appearing on significant (to me anyway) locations about the place. Reply. A reply gets you my thoughts (think about that).

Think deeply about that. Not many out there need to have my thoughts delivered. Anytime.

All this proves that there is so much out there in the way of colaborative projects, non commercial projects, heaps of stuff around WiFi, and related technology.

I'm hanging out to make some sort of treasure hunt out of RFID tags, another out of barcode labels, printed on stickers, similar to the yellowarrow system, but the requirement of a barcode reader - the list goes on, and on.

RFID - I'm telling you, has potential, but it has a cost factor - sponsors are always welcome, always welcome. Make us an offer and we'll tell you what we have in mind.

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ready to launch..

CD's done, cooked, ready to fly
A jerky start. An uninspired production. Finally managing to put a bit of a spin on it before the burn.

The Brisbane invitation to join yellowarrow. Packaged, complete with instructions, conspicuous with it's cover of the bit that's left over when you peel the arrow off (the anti arrow), shrinkwrapped, and further enclosed in sealed plastic, enough we hope to ward off the elements, long enough for someone to find them. Even sporting a sticker 'no, I'm not lost, take me home with you', in case the entire population of Brisbane decides to come clean and actually hand the bloody things in.

A sort of a mini site, running video - stolen from the original yellowarrow DVD, google maps, all the bells and whistles that needed to be trotted out. Running off a mini CD. Seems to run. Autorun, with a Flash .exe as a launcher.

Now, it's time to release them into the wild. These ones don't come with a starter sticker, given the fact that we seem to never see any I have let go in the wild resurface. Maybe they would be more inclined to keep it up if they had to get their own arrows. Who knows. It's Brisbane after all.

Trouble with the actual getting the thing together. Not usually such a problem, I'm usually sitting down with Dreamweaver, a full layout on paper close by, all the imaging gathered ready, simple. This one, I don't know. I worked with the colors of yellowarrow, started with a blank mind and it stayed that way. I was expecting more. Could have been so much bike work during the week (another story). Could have been too many choices. It's happening a bit these days, so many ideas and no place to put them. Can't very well put 100 different design ideas in one site.

Managed to get it done is all that matters. Now, with the weekend in front of me - my weekend alone at work too, which is always good - I hope to have time to work out where they need to go. I figure a railway station - sit one right there on the seat -It's not likely to have anyone thinking it's a bomb, it's only a CD case. A bus stop looms likely as well (Great that I haven't managed to ride a train or bus in 30 years), and a few other public type places.

meanwhile, losing weight
It's back on the bike for me. Only one swimming day this week, two sessions on the bike. Two 30klm runs. Medium pressure. Stayed near the lake. Saves that massive hill climb, with it's attendant 2 block downhill cruise. Constant effort.

First day out, took a while to shake everything, including my nether regions, back in to place. Parked the bike up, inside, shower, settle in front of the screen, a ear splitting blam emits from the garage - rear tyre on bike is now a lot flatter than it was.

Seems that when I pumped them up from the moribund state of months of neglect I managed to move the valve stem till it touched the wheel - eventually wore through and blew up. How lucky am I that didn't happen out on the road, walking home, in cleats and pushing a dead bike.

Second day out was a bit on the tender side - seems it must have been some time since I straddled the saddle, and I can still feel it now.

The crash weight loss program has begun - one month before I am due to present myself to Lady Dr, and hopefully have something to show her. Other than a waistline.

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Friday, March 10, 2006

Fridays are so regular.

Opps there goes another one
Having managed to get the entire geocaching community offside by trying to post a yellowarrow location as a geocache, it's time to get back to basics.

Seems the prison location wasn't such a good place to choose. The moderator did a quick Google fly-by and reported back that it was looking somewhat too new for anyone to be running around the place unattended. And, what was the yellowarrow thing about anyway? It seemed like it might be a useful cross - geocaches, yellowarrows pointing things out - all running, in our case anyway, on coordinates, but, I fear, not to be.

meanwhile back at the maps
The idea is was to create a small arrow trail, leading through a few railway stations, to another interesting building, and another DVD and arrow (a 'starter kit' we call it here). Being so good at custom mapping as we now are the idea was to add the arrows to the stations with message to go to the next station, and so on. Conquered the problem of people starting halfway through by mentioning the start point on each one, and adding digits of the cell phone number which would only come together when all arrows were interrogated. (sounds kind of heavy, don't ya think?)

What to do with them then we intended to worry about later. Much later.

An offshoot, because we can, was to have a map of the rail stations and the site, listing all the arrows, and the cell phone code for each, along with a natty little photo so they had a visual available, on the internet, before, or during their journey. Each with a link to the arrow on the yellowarrow site. Did you get all that?

Looked great. I've been playing with it all day in preparation for the 'rollout' (important sounding name) on the weekend.

At this time of the day, getting on dusk, time to wind down, kick back, enjoy the fact that the kids are at their dads for the weekend, I have just realized that the map I have worked on all day will be no good at all - anyone can click on any location in any sequence, making it a ridiculous idea. Someone could click on the ultimate location one and simply go there. They wouldn't get the cell phone number but that would be all.

Back to the drawing board. It was only an entire day after all..

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Thursday, March 09, 2006

the great Google fascination

The sad thing about being obsessive-compulsive..
Is that you never really have time to give your brain a rest. I keep notebooks all over the place, especially in the bathroom where some of my more ambitious schemes seem to sprout. The idea is if you write it down you don't get a full brain and can function for a while longer.

The sad thing about it is you just have to KNOW everything about whatever subject has got your attention. EVERYTHING. And, in the case of web oriented stuff there is the need to at least produce proof of concept. Just once. Maybe ten times. Variations on a theme.

The sad thing about it is that, having done that, having lived believing that whatever you were doing was the best thing ever, you find something else and the cycle starts all over again.

Google Maps. It started as an idea to combine obsessions; stickers, photography, and treasure hunts, geo caches if you will. The yellowarrow thing was predictable and timely - I had been studying stickers, mainly because I have not the talent of the likes of the great Banksy, and even if I did I am too old to be outrunning people all the time (although..)

Naturally, boringly, predictably, the entire collection of current obsessions all came together at such great speed it was like watching the universe go down a black hole.

The arrows - I've got shit loads of them. I even use the anti-arrow, the bit left behind when you pull the arrow off it's backing, to point out the real arrow. More bang for your buck. More arrow for your arrow.

The maps came slowly enough - bit of a pisser that the URL's were so long, and plenty of sulking because I wanted to add more information to them. Package the things.

Behold, the arrow location, in real time, on a building near you, indicated by the anti arrow, made accessible by the yellowarrow website, it's place in the World indicated by a satellite overhead, exact co ordinates, anyone can zoom in to it, find it, find out about it.. amazing.

Now we step on the gas - the arrow is up, the story told. Now, we need to do something like Boston - a compilation, a database of arrows.

I want to add every arrow location to a Gmap, is what we started with. Several days on the web, hours testing code and we have a system that can not only point out the arrow, it can be an all singing all dancing application. Click on the arrow and get a image, a video, an audio reading. Secret New York, eat your heart out.

So many hours of messing, checking, breaking, achieving, all because I got suckered in to the idea. Seduced by an idea. Now, with any luck, having proved that just about anything can be done with the maps, and the arrows, maybe I can have a rest, maybe my brain can have a rest before 'the next big thing' hits.

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jomh

If you go down to the woods (again)
Charged, as I am with an almost fatal attraction to ridiculous things, I have been compelled to learn as much as possible about my new toy, Google Local, the mapping thing.

To show off, and to possible help people locate the elusive and probably dangerously placed 'treasure' mentioned many times over here in these very pages, I have decided we should do it all again.

Behold the new map
Complete with all manner of coding goodness, as much as I could fit in without feeling even sillier, the new map features yellow arrows, naturally, pointing the way to the cache.

Clicking on them produces all manner of excitement and even an image or two. Be grateful I didn't try and cram audio in there as well.


Before you do anything go here and print off the map it produces. You will need it to keep your sense of direction within the place.

More bells and whistles
For those who can afford the GPS implement - a Garmin (insert any model here) we have thoughtfully provided a GPX file, which we are told will drive you right to the door of the place. Download that file here, and do with it what you will.

It has a start point of right outside the old Gabba police station (Gabba Cricket Ground), and will steer you all the way to Wacol, your destination. Should you find there are too many waypoints blame me, I had trouble keeping on the straight and narrow while recording it.

for the poor people
Including me. Take a train to Wacol, get off, find Wolston Park Road which is opposite the carpark gate, follow it, past the kids prison, until you see Explorers Walk on the right.

Follow Explorers Walk to it's conclusion and the building you will see on your left is the target.

Do not try and enter through the front door - it's a problem, instead, bear left and walk around the side as indicated on the map above.

Your target is in one of the few courtyards that cannot be accessed form the outside. Remember that.

Once inside follow the arrows. You will find a large amount of spent ammunition left from a tactical squad training session, don't be alarmed. They also caused most of the structural damage. They floor is littered with glass, wear sensible clothing. You may find it more comfortable with a torch.

Once you locate the 'target' leave via the same route. Do not deviate unless you are sure of your way back. If you become hopelessly lost find a courtyard whose outer gate is open and leave the compound that way. Walk around the perimeter until you find where you got in.

Having done all that get out there and get arrowing.

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Tuesday, March 07, 2006

up and away

fully functioning
Right, that little stitch drama is officially over. It was over last week but I was getting off on doing nothing, dragged it out another week.

Two weeks off the road, and I begin the week by getting back in the pool. 50 laps - 2.5klms, standard daily effort two weeks ago leaves me with some savage muscle pain today one day after. A fine day, good buggying wind and I am inside again.

From the pool yesterday it was straight out to the mental prison.

I had wanted to have a good long hard look at the place, get on a first name basis, find my way around, and needed to be alone to do that.

Alarmed to see some tactical response group had been there training since my last visit, and doors had been blown off, spent mini(paint) 9mm ammo rounds by the thousand. Definitely detracts from the value of the place.
bad attitude visitors
no one tried knocking
So yesterday went back out and got personal with the place. Figured how it worked, got to know who had been there. Courtyard gardens, open to the sky and growing with serious abandon, make the place quite pleasant.
chess anyone?


look up and note our ability to confine you

Checked each wing, each ward, checked individual names, looking for some idea how they lived, traces left from previous residents indicating some to be in not the best state.

The layout puts the minimum 'simply confused' inmates toward the front of the complex, visitors would then see some semblance of control.

Medium security gets you further back in the wings, not as much fun, thicker glass, and no access to anything hot, electric, or sharp. Some get toilets in their rooms, some don't. You also get to meander in a much smaller courtyard.

Maximum gets you a cell with minimum clutter. Your bed is a part of the floor, seamless, and immovable. Your mattress sits on top. Showers are taken in a big room with an officer controlling the water flow for you from an adjacent room in case you feel the need to eat the taps. You don't get a shower head to play with either.

You do get to see a courtyard, but it's across a walkway and visible only through the windows - yours and the corridors. They don't bother you with light switches, they're on the outside of your cell. Much easier. You get doors on either side - easier to move you without running into someone that might want to chew your face off.

Serious vibes still abound here I have to report.

Maximum also gave me the first rubber room I have set eyes on. It was locked. That lock is not one you can break easily. The entire interior is coated with some dense spray foam. Blue for some reason. Through a viewing slit I managed to do a mini panoramic..
life is good in the rubber room
.. although I wasn't too keen on the idea of someone inside grabbing my hand. Stuff horror movies are made of.

Nicely labeled 'seclusion'- makes it sound positively fun.

Naturally had to yellowarrow the place.

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Friday, March 03, 2006

What happened was..

from the beginning
It was all about video. Flash video. FLV. That was it.

The idea — as I remember it, and I do remember it because I wrote it down, knowing that I would veer off into other territory, as I do — the idea was all about putting the entire site into some form of video. Video of people holding up banners as menus. Talking head stuff - me on me. Me on Zoetrope. Me. Video, in containers, able to be moved. Drag and drop.

About the time I had added a third level of menu to the idea it became apparent that I may be going to over run the pitiful space that we get given, allotted, by our cable provider. How it works is you pay them a lot of money and they give you broadband and a tiny bit of your own space with the longest URL in the world.

Video, as in, real video was out. Suddenly Flash video was in, and in in a big way. Been looking for a decent excuse to use it since it finally got easier in Flash 8.

FLV. Just what we wanted. Shoot in video, convert to FLV, load up behind the scenes. Might look a bit blocky, but we had already decided a distinctly amateurish, gritty look would not only look good, it would be all we could produce.

That was about the time the camera got involved. The little Canon. It got involved because of the yellowarrow project I had fallen in love with was going to need a faster image turnaround than running off a 35mm, sending it out for processing, bringing it back, scanning images in, uploading them..

Too much drama. We already had the little PowerShot. Hadn't done anything with it. Didn't know too much about it.

Used it. Loved it. Documented all this before. You don't need it again. We're digital. All of a sudden we're digital. Shit, at 72dpi any camera will do after all.

Soft. Blur. Who cares. I'm starting to eye off the camera in the V3 - it seems to be able to take photos and movies as well. Where have I been. The photographic purist in me has got up and run off.

If the phone can take a movie what about..? Hell, yes, this little digital thing can do the movie thing as well. Astounded. Still looking at grungy movie footage, and holding a grungy movie maker in my hands. I would have had to concentrate really bloody hard to get some of those grainy effects with the 35mm, now I'm getting them in moving footage from something that weighs nothing.

By this time we have indeed veered off the track. The site has been forgotten while I grapple with this revolutionary idea that I can take photos and mini movies anytime I want and bring them home with me, plug myself in to the Dell and download them.

Site forgotten, too much going on with the yellowarrow thing. We've already done proof of concept stuff in movies - it's here, prior, somewhere. We're fooling with formats, messing about. In amongst all this we have discovered, while trying to make multiple photos of a Google map, a zoom effect, to illustrate an arrow, that Maps not only zoom, but you can do all sorts of incredible things with them - getting right down to ground level, exact coordinates of a building, one that we have photographed with the digital thing.

Now you get the photo and the exact location. The exact location and notes as well, after spending a day figuring out adding notations and custom icons.

Then we fell into that bit about mobile video too. Got all over the place making phone videos, emailing them to myself before I realized I can connect the phone to the computer too.

Found out that I'm an URBEX - something I didn't know I was. Didn't even know it existed. Urban explorer. With phone. And arrows.

So, now we end up with videos shot with a digital powder puff, Premiere'd out to 3gp and loaded into the phone, loaded on the site, next thing will be instructions for arrows delivered by mobile phone. The joys of MMS.

The site - what site? I just remembered it today when I found the original notes I
made about video menus for it.

That's why I make notes.

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Thursday, March 02, 2006

I don't do cold

I don't do cold
I'm too old for cold. I'm 51. My body is now paying me back for car accidents, motorcylcle accidents, skydiving accidents, falling out of things, hitting things, breaking both my arms at the same time, and as many other things as it can think of. Payback time happens when you get older children. Remember that.

The arthritis medication that I am partial to is trying to kill me so I try and not use too much of it - don't want to die of a heart attack just at the moment. The good thing is I can still hang on to a Glock 17, and I can still shoot straight.

When it gets cold I start to feel it a bit. My bones seem to ache. My fingers get bigger and a tad more clumsy. My knee reminds me I need it rebuilt. It's had metal in it for 30 years from an incident, and the tendon thing has done one too many big stretches.

When it gets cold and wet I start to feel it even more. It's not a good combination.

It's been raining on and off all week. It has also dropped the temperature by about 10 degrees. It's beginning to take its toll.

Wet - I don't mind. Kills the kite buggying, but I have plenty to do indoors. I'm hooked into another yellowarrow project - my own - I want to Google Map every arrow I've placed. Right down to the closest foot. I have been overflying the city collecting coordinates. I finally figured out how to load them all into one city wide map. XML to the rescue.

If I get sick of that I can always go back to the planning of the great arrow trek - I'm scheming, I want to place a trail of arrows. Have people follow them to a conclusion. It's harder than I expected. I'm stuck on the bit about what happens if they accidentally find an arrow other than the first on. I need to send them back to the first one, and I need to fit all the instructions in a 140 character SMS text.

I'll get there. It's going to require imagination. It's going to require CD/DVD waypoints. Play the disc get the visuals. Clues. Now that we're up on 3GP mobile video we can send stuff straight to their phone. It will all feature me. I'm vain enough to handle it. I wish I didn't have jowls though.

I've found another, considerably older, abandoned mental institution to play with. It will probably be the feature. Spooky shit this one. Trust me.

All this because I am inside, and was waiting for the stitches in my gut to come of age so I could haul them out. Did that a couple of hours ago. So, now we have mobility what we need is a dash of fine weather. And a plan for the hunt.

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