this space intentionally left blank

October 24, 2011

Filed under: random»personal»events

Not A Sentimental Wedding Post

This weekend, Belle and I got married. It was a small, homemade, personal kind of wedding. Among the crafts we made was a "photo booth" consisting of my laptop running a bit of custom ActionScript and a box of very silly props. Unfortunately, we didn't have power and I'm not sure I had the screen saver all set up correctly, so some people may not have had a chance to take their pictures with it before the batteries died. If you'd like to give it a shot, feel free to download and install the Official Nerds Get Hitched Photo Booth (works on Mac or Windows, requires Adobe AIR). It'll take four pictures of you, then save them to a folder on your desktop. There's no quit button (it's a kiosk), but you can hit Escape to leave full-screen mode and then close the window.

This is a great case of what ActionScript (and the AIR platform that Adobe built out of Flex/Flash) does well: pair a better version of JavaScript with a comprehensive runtime library for exceptionally fast, easy multimedia production. I procrastinated on this project like crazy, but in the end it only took me a few hours of real work to create. Sure, we could have paid for software to do the same thing, but if it's so simple, why bother? And this way it's all under our control--it looks and acts the way we wanted it to look.

Anyway, feel free to install our photo booth and send us a picture. And thanks to everyone who came out to our little wedding celebration!

January 4, 2010

Filed under: random»personal»events

Review: 2009

  • Celebrated five years together with Belle, an achievement for which few words would be sufficient. Thanks, babe!
  • Mostly followed my gaming resolutions from last year. Definitely played more indie titles, skipped tedious grinding, and avoided console shooters when possible. Did not get around to trying an MMO, which was probably for the best.
  • Bought a Kindle 2 and an Android Dev Phone. Became a developer for the latter, much to my dismay.
  • Wrote about a quarter of a game engine, then quit when I got to the parts that aren't instantly gratifying (preloading, faux-threading, AI). Still managed to learn way more than anyone should know about high-performance Actionscript optimization.
  • Survived a congressional session, a corporate purchase, and a promotion.
  • Survived a mild case of extensor tendonitis, and resolved to take better care of my hands.
  • Rewrote my personal subset of Blosxom in PHP, increasing the speed of this blog by an order of magnitude. Resisted the urge to convert to a real publishing platform like Wordpress. Purged a number of old entries, while I was at it.
  • Read a fair number of books, including a long, miserable slog through Chris Anderson's Free.
  • Began taking breakdancing classes, which (after six months) qualifies me as something of a b-boy-in-training, I guess. Lost about 20 pounds in the process, but failed (so far) to conquer a general deficiency of flavor.

Reviewer's notes: The special effects may be showing their age, and portions seemed rushed or in need of additional polish. But overall, 2009 delivered a solid annual experience, not to mention a definite improvement over previous franchise installments. Possible candidate for Year of the Year. Score: 9/10

February 15, 2007

Filed under: random»personal»events»holidays

Kitchen Confidential

Michael Chiarello's Best Button Mushrooms are a pretty tasty Valentine's dinner, if I do say so myself. Seen here with roasted baby potatoes, hummus, and some kind of white wine that Belle said was pretty good for $7. The green tea root beer, unfortunately, was a little weak.

I'd show you the mango ice cream with triple chocolate sauce, but we had to devour it before all of the chocolate hardened, and then we just sat around for a while muttering because it was too rich to finish.

Filed under: random»personal»events»holidays

In French, she would be called "Le Renard"

Wait, was there something I was supposed to do today? I took unscheduled leave because of the weather, but I just feel like there was something...

"Ooooh, dreamweaver..."

Was it something at work? Because I already sent the e-mail to let people know I wouldn't be in, and as far as I know I don't have any urgent projects right now. I'll have to put a podcast together tomorrow, but that's easy enough. And of course a couple of videos were going to be posted, but they're still well within their deadlines. Man, what was it?

"...I believe you can get me through the niiiiight..."

Something around the house maybe. Was it the package I'm expecting? I thought that wasn't supposed to be here until tomorrow. No, as far as I know, today I'm just hanging out with Belle...

Belle. I feel like she had something to do with it...


That can't be right, though. Because I wouldn't have forgotten something related to the best girlfriend on the planet, the girl who makes waking up each morning such a joy, right? I would never let something slip my mind and risk such a bright smile and dark, shining eyes. Why, if only there were a day specifically for our significant others, one day reserved for expressing just how they make us feel, perhaps through cheesy Photoshop gags. Something like Val-

Oh. Right.

"...I believe we can reach the morning lii-iiiiiight!"

Happy Valentine's Day, Belle! Now you know why I was googling pictures of Tia Carrere this morning!

July 19, 2006

Filed under: random»personal»events

Cable Ready

Went down to Comcast today, to get the new apartment activated for Internet access. They kicked me in the shins, knocked me to the ground, stole my lunch money, and then told me that for $50 a month they'd only punch me in the left kidney.

Sadly, this is considered "ahead of the game" for American broadband access.

February 14, 2006

Filed under: random»personal»events»holidays

Science Vs. Romance

About a year ago, I was hanging out with my friend Tomoko in her campus apartment after work. A young man with an unrequited crush on her had also stopped by, and in order to ignore him she asked me about my love life. Specifically, what about this girl I'd mentioned the last time we'd talked? How was that going?

Great! I said. She's very sweet, very cute. You know, she's got the kind of smile, when she's really happy, that the whole room just lights up.

Aw, said Tomoko. And I was a little surprised, to be honest, because I hadn't meant it in a sappy or a metaphorical way. I really thought that everything got a little brighter for that grin. For a minute or so I considered buying a light meter so I could prove it. See! I would say. 15 lumens, easy! I don't need electricity to read at night, I'll just tell her a really funny joke, because my girlfriend is that cute. And of course, she still is.

Happy Valentine's Day, Belle. Thanks for being the light of my life.

November 11, 2005

Filed under: random»personal»events

Our birthdays are better than your birthdays

In a blatant attempt to move Chris Crawford down the page so it's not contantly staring me in the face, here is a new snapshot of Four String Riot Studios:

The new bass, a present to myself, is on the left. Hopefully from this picture you can see how much smaller it is than the All Star--being headless and modeled on Ned Steinberger's designs, it's significantly shorter, lighter, and less bulky--although these are not always good things. I think I'll have more to say about it later. The amp behind both basses is my actual performance rig, a GK 400RB-IV. You can also see my harmonicas in the lower left-hand corner. I really need to figure out how to integrate them into the Riot.

Showing that she knows me all too well, Belle gave me a subscription to Bass Player. I would have never worked up the initiative on my own. With so much celebratory cheer floating around, we picked up her birthday present a bit early.

Puppies, my dear! Puppies!

October 8, 2005

Filed under: random»personal»events»holidays

The Great Pumpkin meets his match

"...and the Great Pumpkin will rise up out of his pumpkin patch with his bag of toys for all the good children!"

"ph'nglui mglw'nafh Cthulhu R'lyeh wgah'nagl fhtagn!"

Future - Present - Past