sticknick: (kool-aid drinker)
In response to this post where I said I'd get on to my "real post", here it is:

http://www.sticknick.com/?p=91

I'm not posting the entire, rambling post here (there are few beside Jeff and myself that will enjoy it).

Well well.

Jun. 22nd, 2011 09:22 pm
sticknick: (kool-aid drinker)
Hallo LiveJournal!

I went back and read this

Holy fuck. Apple completely proved me wrong with iOS 5 and iCloud.

I seriously cannot wait until the fall to see where this is all going.

Now to get on my real post.
sticknick: (Kings Cross)
127 Hours: Gave up on this one about half way through. It looked good, the acting was good but I don't really see anything special about a dude stuck in a cavern who ends up cutting his arm off. Good job of making us feel the claustrophobia, but whatever. The best this movie did was make me spend $10 on iTunes buying the Free Blood album because they did the song for the opening credits and it is fucking awesome.

The Social Network: I loved this movie from beginning to end. There is not a weak spot in it. Some people are saying that it is only good because Facebook is culturally relevant here and now. That may be but how many movies have you seen about an era in time (ANY era in time) that simply *nail* it like this film does? This is my personal favorite for Best Picture and Best Director. 

Black Swan: This one almost had everything: story, acting, cinematography but, personally, I felt as if something was lacking. Thinking about it, a good chunk of the story has to do with the dancer and her mother, yet this is not really pushed enough to make it anything more than what feels like an afterthought. I also thought the sexual tension between her and the director that everyone is going on about was not all that interesting on a sexual level. It was him trying to get her to come out and be the bad ass black swan... but it didn't feel overtly sexual. Or even  creepy. Or anything really. It was just kinda "there". That being said, Natalie Portman will win best actress.

True Grit: It's a western. Although the acting was amazing (why Hailee Steinfeld was only nominated for best supporting actress is beyond me), I liked this movie better when it was called Unforgiven. Also, the ending was a bit of a letdown in my eyes; the move just kind of ... stopped ... And then kept going nowhere for another ten minutes or so only she had one arm instead of two.

The Fighter: Same thing as True Grit. Some of the acting aside, I've seen this before when it was called Rocky and/or Raging Bull. My least favorite of the bunch so far. Ho-hum and predictable from beginning to end although Christian Bale has a good shot at best supporting actor. 

The Kids Are All Right: Starts off excellent then falls apart when one of the moms has sex with the donor dad. That cheapened the film to me. All of a sudden it went from awesome snapshot of a gay marriage with children to "one gay wife who has frustrations with parts of her marriage needs cock to find the way". Or something . Whatever. It turned into "Bullshit Hollywood Crap". Save yourself the time and watch Transamerica instead.

Inception: Awesome movie, only I grew tired of the gunplay in the last quarter of the movie. Inception builds on an amazing idea, then it turns to a shoot 'em up for a good thirty minutes before getting back to the main idea. The gunplay in the rest of the movie seemed focused and interesting. That snow battle though? Meh. At least it sorted itself out in the end so all was not lost.

The King's Speech: Amazing movie with great acting by Colin Firth. Greoffery Rush plays Geoffery Rush, but he plays him well (that's not really a put down, although I thought Rush's Captain Barbossa was a better acting job than this). Will probably win a lot because the academy loves period pieces. Especially if they're set in England. Firth will probably win best actor not only because it was a great performance, but the character has a handicap of sorts.

Toy Story 3: Obviously lacks the groundbreaking, well, *everything* of the original and the brilliant darkness and human qualities of the second. Still, Toy Story 3 was one of the better movies I saw in the past year. Best picture nomination though? It's way better than The Fighter so why not? It'll probably win Best Animated simply because it's Pixar

Winter's Bone: This is one of the very best of the ten. This movie had me on the edge of my seat from beginning to end. What's incredible is that this is achieved without any lame tricks or effects. It's pure tension mixed with a foreboding landscape shot in cold colours and simply amazing acting (Jennifer Lawrence has a decent shot at best actress but it's Natalie Portman's year I think)

My Pick: The Social Network.

What will probably win: The King's Speech.

Darkhorse: Winter's Bone.
sticknick: (kool-aid drinker)
So I finally broke down and bought an iPad. Nothing fancy. Its the 16GB wireless version. Yes, I was considering waiting for the next version and yes,  hmmm'd and hawed all the way to the Apple store but, in the end, I'm glad I finally shelled out the cash.

I've been working with the iPad for a few days now and I've already unlocked some of its potential, and have slowly been discovering more.

There are a few things about this device that I really love. The first is the keyboard. I don't give a shit what people say, software keyboards are awesome. Time and time again I hear about the "lack of a physical keyboard on the iDevices". 

Why, may I ask, do need a hardware keyboard on a mobile device? They're clunky. They add to the size and weight of the device. More moving parts translates into more shit to break. The soft keys on the iOS devices are amazing. They're there when I need them, and gone when I don't and after a couple of minutes of poking around, I've found that I can type just as fast as can on my Apple wireless keyboard. 

The second thing I love is that when you're working on the iPad; reading, writing, whatever, the device just seems to "disappear". I know I've seen a few reviewers comment on this and never could see what they were getting at. Without all the peripherals needed to work on a PC or laptop, you kind of just forget that you're working on a computing device. The feeling is quite striking.  

The interesting thing is that there is still a large number of naysayers who scream that the iPad is for media consumption only. Time and time again you hear how there is no way to "create" on the iPad. Its for media consumption only. 

I have a hunch that most of these people either hate everything Apple or just don't have a creative bone in their body (or both). 

I've found a nice, simple text editor (which I'm using to write this), and a painting app that supports layers  (which I've already began a couple of drawings - and I cant remember the last time I picked up a pencil or paintbrush to draw something).

I've also discovered a multitrack DAW application that I plan to purchase just as soon as I pick up the iPad camera kit (the USB attachment allows you to plug in a variety of microphones and audio devices). If I can manage to leave the MaBook Pro at home and bring the iPad to jam... that would be a huge deal. I have a small USB recording unit. The difference between lugging a 1.5 pound device rather than a 17" Mac? 

Speaking of the iPad camera kit and USB recording units, There is another sore spot for the naysayers: lack of expansion ports. 

To this I say: "We need to stop with all the cables and make everything  wireless. And I mean *everything*."

I don't know about you but I loose my shit every time I have to untangle the ridiculous mess of cords under my desk and behind my computers.

I'd love to see cameras with full wireless sync via Bluetooth. Monitors that don't require cables. Fully wireless webcams and microphones.  It's already started with printers and other peripherals so who knows where this can go.

Until then, we'll have to make due with the camera kit. 

Make ALL peripherals Bluetooth, turn the iPad's screen bezel into a solar battery charger and you will have the perfect device.    

Not even a week in and I've already glimpsed the potential of this little device. If you just open your mind a little and use your imagination, you can see where this format could go. Right now we'll have to settle for nearly perfect and you know what? The iPad is is the only device on the market that even comes close.

Up next: family, trips, thoughts on past crap.
sticknick: (Default)
It's been a rather ridiculous week so far. I really miss my family. Well, Kailen is here this weekend so it's cool to hang with him, but yeah, I like it when everybody is here.

Tuesday morning we were all up at 3am and I dropped Tara, Lily and Sue off at the airport then came home. I got here about five-ish? Sure. I stayed up for another forty-five minutes, then went to bed. I was up again at eight and since then my week has been like this:

Tuesday: Work from 8am - 5:30. Go to beer store, pick up Mez and Dan. Head back to my place, drink some beer and go over the rough mix of the new recording. New recording is sounding fucking awesome if I do say so myself. Mez and Dan leave - late-ish. I go back to work until 3:30am or so.

It's here I should note that I didn't test the work I was doing. I simply put my fixes into place, then went to bed.

Wednesday: Up at 8am. Check my email to find that the fixes I put in didn't work. Caught some hell. Two major events with another customer happened that day as well. Worked until 6:30 or so. My brother came over until 9pm. I had a meeting at 9pm with the company whose fixes I didn't check to find out exactly what they expected. Stayed up until 4am delivering what was expected (tested of course).

Thusrday: Up at 8am. This day was crazy busy, but I managed to pick up the Good Food Box thingy that Tara has been talking about. Here is a picture:



All that said, I was off at 5 on the dot as I had plans to meet up with my ex-coworkers at Adobe for a few drinks. Cabbed down and shot the shit with Lauren, Brad, and Matt for a while. Brad and Matt left, Lauren and I stayed until a rather horrible cover duo hit the stage. Cabbed home. It was about 10:30 or so. I finished watching Inglorious Basterds (which I've been trying to do since Christmas) and was into be well before midnight as there was only thirty minutes of movie I needed to see.

Friday: Up at 7:30 for some strange reason. Worked until 6:30. Picked up Kailen. Came home. Did a little work (from 8pm - 9pm). Then we watched some Simpsons. He passed out on the couch. Woke him up and we both went to bed.

Kailen was up sometime at O-Dark-Early and had walked the dog and buggerd off to the hockey rink. I slept in (10am whoo!). Got up, made coffee. Made crepes when Kailen came in the door. Ate, walked the dog and headed off to Camp Fortune for some ski and snowboard fun.

Well, it was semi-fun for Kailen and not fun for me at all. You see, I haven't been on skis for about 15 years. The hill we ended up on was the "Intermediate" hill. This means that it's steep. Real steep. There I was, a grown man in jeans and a black jacket standing at the edge of a steep drop off, looking over. Kids are flying past me. They're taking the hill no prob. Kailen gets fed up waiting and zooms on down. I finally go for it and manage to wipe the fuck out and a ski comes off. I did this hill (called, of all things, "Pee-Wee") three times. Each time was a lesson in FAIL.

Kailen did fine. I feel bad that I was holding him back. I told him to go off and do runs and I'd wait. He did one more and then said we could go.

(EDIT: Kailen just got back from the rink. He told me that on my last run I was taking so long he had time to go up and do another run himself before I got to the bottom)

Realized on the way out that there is a less-steep hill I should have been on. Made a mental note for next time.


Kailen in between runs.


Sargent FAIL.

He is now up at the rink skating his ass off. I have just finished some more work (I know, I know. Shut up) and am now posting this. I will be going up to the rink with him tomorrow. And then my folks are coming over for dinner.

Monday, dunno. Work. Then, oh, whatever. Clean up the place a bit. It's not that dirty. I've been living in my office all week.

Tuesday Tara and Lily are back. Tuesday can't get here fast enough.
sticknick: (Kings Cross)
THE MILKY WAY TRANSIT AUTHORITY is motherfucking awesome.




Someone seriously needs to make towels with this image on it. I know I would pay an obscene amount of money for one.
sticknick: (Default)
For [livejournal.com profile] sloot:

Tonight I was getting Lily's bed ready for, well, bed.

Lily comes into the room and goes straight for her shelf of books. She pulls out a book and brings it over to me.

"BOOK! DADDY BOOK!"

Where The Wild Things Are.

I read it to her front cover to back cover and she stopped me only once to point out that Max was sitting on a "Chair! Chair! Chair!"

For the rumpus I bounced her on my knee saying "RUMPUS! RUMPUS!" and she giggled.

She went to be this evening without a squawk.

-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-

Tara and I are sitting in the living room sipping red wine. There is a fire roaring. There is brie dip melting in the oven. Absolute 80's is playing on the Apple TV and there are pictures of the past year looping on the screen. In half an hour it will be 2010.

Life is pretty good.
sticknick: (Kings Cross)
Family.

Wow. My immediate family is fucking amazing. I don't know how else to put it. I am lucky enough to have a super loving and supportive wife, a laid back, kick ass son and an awesome, so-cute-it-hurts daughter. To top it off, another family member will be joining us in 2010.

The three (soon to be four) of you inspire me like nothing else in this world does.

A quick word to a couple of people who just seem think nothing of causing retarded drama is totally OK, and then are seriously confused at the fact that everyone is angry and now want nothing to do with you: FUCK YOU!


Life Stuff: Work and Recreation.

Ah, Adobe. You canned a bunch of us in 2008. Told us we could stay until mid-2009. Whatever. My last day was June 26 and on June 29 I walked into a kick ass job (working from home no less) that I managed to get by keeping my head down, gritting my teeth and eating big, heaping spoonfuls the bullshit you were feeding us. I still love a good portion of your products Adobe. As a company though, you can suck me.

Side note: as awesome as my job is now, I'm still mad at myself for not taking the MacBook Pro with me from Adobe when I left.

The band had a good year. People seem to like us. French people especially. We've noticed a few repeat faces at shows; people who are not our friends. We opened for Exodus. That was fun. We wrote some new songs. That was fun too.

The band is going into the studio in a week or so. I'll let you know if that was fun at a later date.


Cool Christmas Gifts - because I think they're cool and I want to write about them.

The Best = XKCD and Vinyl Cafe gifts from Tara. The XKCD tie and T-shirt were made better by them fucking up the order and sending the wrong shirt. Tara emailed them and they are going to send the right shirt and I can keep the one they sent by mistake.

The Vinyl Cafe books, Stories From The Vinyl Cafe and Home From The Vinyl Cafe, have already been read and Tara is now finishing them up.

The Neat and Geek = A Seymour Duncan Invader for my guitar from Tara's mum and an Apple Magic Mouse and Wireless keyboard from my mum and dad.

Was going to install the pickup myself so I bought a soldering kit. Opened the back of my guitar. Looked at the mess of wires. Closed the back of the guitar. Will be taking it into Long and McQuade this weekend and I will pay them to do the surgery.

Loving the Magic Mouse and the keyboard. Bluetooth rocks my computer world and having a mouse with NO buttons on it is awesome. As well, having a keyboard with no number pad is equally as awesome.


Another Decade Rolls Over...

I actually caught myself writing a Best Ten Albums Of The Past Ten Years list the other day. I promptly closed my text writing app without saving.

That being said, I can't believe it took until the second half of 2009 to find my favorite album of the year and the decade: Patrick Watson "Wooden Arms". Hands down.

Also, Device of the Decade? iPhone. Without question. And I dare you to give me one good reason why this is not so.


Resolutions.

Two Thousand and Ten will see a new family member come into the world and, after thinking about it, that's all I really care about: my family.

A couple of days ago I started to write a long winded, rather whiny post about how much I hate social network sites and one of my goals/resolutions for the next year was to stay away from Facebook (to delete it actually) and do more drawing and painting instead. Then I got to thinking that not only will that not happen (my Facebook will stay and I will probably only paint one picture in all of next year), but I don't really care enough about these minor gripes I hold towards silly things like online comment sections and social network sites. I have more important things in this world to care about other than what some douchebag said in the comment section of the CBC news site.

Fuck all that.

I'm simply just going to focus on being the best husband I can be to Tara and the best father I can be to Kailen, Lily and Sprout. Everything else is entirely inconsequential.

Happy New Years everyone! See you on the other side.
sticknick: (Kings Cross)
Now that OS X and Windows 7 are on par and have pretty much wrapped up a generation of box/monitor/keyboard/mouse computing, I often wonder what The Next Big Thing will be. I mean, come on. What more could you possibly throw into an operating system in order to make people want to buy the next version?

Both OS X and Windows 7 are solid, fast, sleek and shiny. There is nothing Apple and Microsoft can add to make them "better" other than obvious bug fixes.

So what is the The Next Big Thing In Personal Computing?

I asked this question on a Flame War site I frequent and one dude said "OS X with multi-touch". I think this person was referring to the iPhone.

I have an iPhone. I love my iPhone. I believe that the iPhone is the absolute best device to come out in the past 10 years.

Is it the Next Big Thing In Personal Computing? No way. Not by a long shot. It still needs to be coupled with a Mac or PC with iTunes installed to make it work properly. And iTunes runs on the box/monitor/keyboard/mouse model. And even if Apple adds full multi touch to OS X and releases a tablet, it's still the box/monitor/keyboard/mouse (fingers?) model because you have to download and install software in order to do anything and it stores all of your information locally.

Then I saw this:



Looking a this preview of the Chrome OS I finally got this whole Cloud deal and I can now see where it's going. Yesterday I could have cared less. I have seriously been trying to figure out what all the hoopla has been around "Cloud Based Computing". Web apps. Whoo-hoo.

Web apps = little programs that run in a browser.

Google has been chattering on about it's online mail and office applications for years. They've got maps and Picasa too. They have chat and they have Wave. And all of this is on the Internet. If I want to use any of this web based stuff, I'll open Safari and have at it!

I have a MacBook Pro attached to a 24" monitor. I also have a Powerbook for some tasks and storage. I have a Mail app, a couple of web browsers, the Adobe Master Suite, and Microsoft Office. I have around a terabyte of drive space strewn across the home office network by way of physical backup drives. This is all topped off with a mouse and keyboard.

If something happens to my computers, all my stuff is backed up and it'll only take me a few hours to reinstall the operating system and applications and copy over my files. And set up my media libraries. And re-add contacts. And set up my email app again and wait for my mail to download….

Wait… what if… this could all be replaced with a smallish laptop/netbook style device and a tiny operating system that could pull everything I own and need from the Internet? What if this computer was lost? Or stolen? What would it be like to buy a new one an not have to worry about lost contacts or content? All my music still there. Same with my photos and email. And what if I didn't have to spend hours reinstalling programs and tweaking settings? What if I just turned on the computer…

… and everything was there?

What if I could turn on this device, and be editing a photo for your blog in seconds without having to use cumbersome third party system hogging desktop software like Photoshop?

Think I'm crazy? Why is Adobe playing around with this then? Try it out. Sure, it's not Photoshop CS4, but ten years ago I couldn't imagine a standalone program that did basic photo editing that well, let alone something that ran off of a web page.

Need office apps? Microsoft will have you covered. So does Adobe.

I'm sure there are gamers out there who are thinking you'll need a kick ass computer and operating system to play. Maybe. For now. I will say that nine years ago I built a two thousand dollar computer to do two things: 1) Graphics and Web design 2) Play Games. This computer played Quake 3. Slowly. On low settings.

Now Quake 3 can be played in a browser plug-in. Fast. On high settings.

Yeah.

The combination of the upcoming HTML 5 standard and advances in the Adobe Flash platform is starting to really blur the line between standard desktop applications and web applications.

How awesome would that be? This is the Cloud. I finally get it.

Kudos to Google for envisioning what I think just may be The Next Big Thing.


Note: The hardware is fast enough. The Internet is fast enough (although we need to really get working on providing people outside of the main urban centres decent high speed). Now if Google can make Chrome multi touch and perfect voice recognition software, we can move fully away from the box/monitor/keyboard/mouse platform.
sticknick: (Kings Cross)
I've come to realize that Facebook* is like walking though a crowd and catching bits and pieces of conversations I have no real interest in.



* Based on its description, Twitter is also like this. I don't have an account for this exact reason.
sticknick: (kool-aid drinker)
Memory leak in Mail.app (I watched it gobble up 1.8GB of ram in a little under an hour) has me back on Entourage for work email.

Have I mentioned how much I hate Entourage?

Hate, hate, hate.
sticknick: (Muderface)
Tara did our taxes for last year...

There was enough of a refund that my student loan is now paid and I got a $566 refund :)

Dear collections people: FUCK YOU! DON'T CALL ME ANY MORE!
sticknick: (FUCK OFF! - stolen from briansue)
Fuck you Ottawa Neighbourhood Services. Fuck you in your stupid faces.
sticknick: (Beer)
I don't care if it's old or whatever, it's awesome and Imma post it.

sticknick: (kool-aid drinker)
Just some random thoughts on Snow Leopard now that I've been beating it into the ground for over a month.
  • Initially kept Entourage installed because iCal had this weird issue where it would not save my calendar entries to the Exchange server (of course, not sending it to the invitees). Found a simple fix which was to set my timezone city to New York instead of Ottawa. Now iCal works and I've happily ripped Entourage off my system.
  • Am guessing the above issue has to do with the fact that my work Exchange server is in the States somewhere.
  • Now that I've had a chance to work with them full time I can say that Apple Mail and iCal are awesome and fast.
  • Booted the system into full-fledged 64bit the other day...
  • ... WOW. 64bit = Fast. Super Fast. Stable (so far anyway)
  • The only application that will not run under the 64bit kernel is VMWare Fusion. This will change though as version 3 is being released on October 27 and includes 64bit support (and support for Aero under Windows Vista/7 - a small "yay" for me because Win 7 is ok so far, but runs like crap under the Windows Basic UI)
  • Due to VMWare, I am running in the 32bit kernel for now; I need to use VMWare for work.
  • Safari 4 is so full of win, I only Firefox for testing issues at work.
  • That being said, sometimes Safari likes to gobble ungodly amounts of ram.
  • Fucked around and got MSN working in iChat via GoogleTalk over Jabber transport. This is awesome as I love iChat.
  • All in all, SL is worth the thirty five clams I paid for it. Will be worth even more once I can use it full time in 64bit.
  • Will be worth it even even more if Adobe codes CS5 in 64bit Cocoa.
  • Am planning to max out the ram in this thing come the new year.
Enough with the damn bulleted lists. Music. Yeah.

I've been spending a pile of money in iTunes lately. Have to say that my new favourite artist is, without a doubt, Patrick Watson. His new album, Wooden Arms, is the best album of 2009 (yes, I know the year isn't over yet, but there is no way it's going to be topped). That and his previous album, Close To Paradise, are in a constant loop in iTunes and on my iPhone. I think the last album that I listened to non-stop like this was Miss Machine by Dillinger Escape Plan and that was in 2004.

CBC Radio 2 and iTunes is proving to be an awesome combination :)

sticknick: (Default)
Getting Lily dressed this morning, I grab one of her socks:

Me: "Sock."
Lily: "Cock!"
Me: "No. It's sock."
Lily: "Cock!"
Me: "Sock!"
Lily: "Cock!"
Me: "No, Lily. SSSSSSSSSSSSSSOCK"
Lily: "CAAAAAAAAAAAAAAACK!!!!"

At that point I gave up.
sticknick: (Kings Cross)
Got my copy of OS X Snow Leopard yesterday. Went to Future Shop on Merivale while Tara hit up the Running Room for a decent pair of running shoes.

This other dude and myself managed to snag the last two copies they had. Sure, I could have gone to the Mac Store but driving downtown on a Friday night was simply out of the question. The guy at Future Shop said he was pretty surprised: "We got six crates of these things yesterday and put them out today. I thought we had more than enough. You guys are lucky."

Since I had to work last night (Fridays=upgrade nights!) I didn't get around to upgrading until today.

So far the initial reviews I've read online have been pretty bang on; looks no different that Leopard, but it noticeably faster and more refined.

I can say that Snow Leopard is faster than the previous version. The install also reclaimed nearly 8GB of space (most likely due to the fact that Apple has stripped out the PPC code). As well, opening the Activity Monitor and seeing all the core apps running in full 64bit mode is awesome. Safari, which I've started to use more and more, simply screams now. I've yet to really test out all my apps - I'm really interested to see how my Adobe CS4 suite runs under SL - but so far so good.

The one major reason I'm super excited about this upgrade is that the Mac OS now has built in Exchange support. Until now, I've had to use Microsoft Entourage to get my work mail and calendar events. I absolutely loath Entourage. It's cranky, slow, and buggy. I've managed to live with it though; after two years at Adobe running Outlook in Windows loaded up in a VMWare Fusion environment, using Entourage for my new job was the less painful of the two options.

Now, I can happily uninstall Entourage - or rather, I'm going to wait a day just to make sure all keeps on working like it is now. This is a first release OS after all.

So far so good though :)
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