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Originally posted to dormant as 1152470379 Go there for the full post with pictures.

I learnt what this actually meant the other day, and made a little more sense of it. Before we enjoyed the luxuries of the electronic printing press people suffered with moveable type. A process of shifting little metal letters around which had barely changed since Gutenburgs days. The poor guys left to pull the appropriate letters out of little drawers and arrange them would have to be damn careful to make sure they weren't confusing the letter "p" with the letter "q". Because they're used as stamps all the letters are reversed so as to leave an imprint which looks correct, because of this the p IS actually a q and vice-versa. Hence it makes sense to mind your p's and q's.

Other than that useless little tidbit I think it was about this time last year when I took these photos and I only just found them. They're some of my favourites, taken at the station on the way home from uni one night. Soon afterwards it was decreed that no cameras were to be used anywhere on the station platforms. I think they started installing signs 2/3 days after these babies were taken. All the train cables and posts make for a weird shot, but I like it.

(LJ users see the pics.)

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Originally posted to dormant as 1152167182 Go there for the full post with pictures.

Ok, this is just a heads up. It may surprise some of you to know this, but to others the truth will hit fairly close to home. A great deal too many of us are neglecting to learn or remember which way is left and which way is right. No way you say? I'd say that about a quarter of the times I give someone a left/right instruction I spot them either:

A) Head for the wrong one. Perhaps by mistake. Not quite sure how that could happen but this is probably the least despicable offence. At least these people THINK they know which is which. Or have gone to the effort of memorising the two, even if they've done it incorrectly.

B) They use some voodoo system of looking down at an L shape they can make with their left hand and use this witchdoctor nonsense to bluff their way through.

(I assure you I am only including cases in which we are all facing the same direction and there are no mirrors or reflections to haze an already difficult concept.)

It's not as if knowing your left from right is some obscure fact which only Macguyver is likely to use to save his family. I understand that admitting you don't know something so rudimentary could be embarrassing. Which is why I'm going to clear this baby up once and for all. Before you continue make sure you are looking directly at the screen and aren't actually viewing it in any kind of mirror or reflection. Also ensure that you eyes are pointing in the same direction as your nipples are. (ie. forwards. hopefully.)

Now that we've got that cleaned up I think the world is a safer place...and should it ever come down to a two-corridor backseat-driven left/right affair, I'll feel safer with you at the helm.

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Originally posted to dormant as 1150242521 Go there for the full post with pictures.

It's been a typically giant final month of the semester. All night shifts, people everywhere bolt around to avoiding the falling sky, and of course, some of us snap. I got away fairly unscathed, most of my assignments could be finished within the short time I cruelly left for myself. In about the last two weeks of it we finished our "Miracle Gluey String!" (cellotape) infomercial. I finished my "Computers Made Easy" instructional cd complete with crudely lip synched narrator. And I managed to get my ridiculously time consuming animation finished. I apologize to those good hearts who offered their services to help with the animation. Due to technical difficultied and just my disorganization I didn't get my usual alert that somebody was actually responding. And so I just assumed nobody read it. Thanks to all those who offerred though. My bad.

Looking around I wasn't as far up the proverbial creek as some others, but I was much further upstream than the 8 or so people who had worked steadily from the start. (Contrary to the spirit of the uni bum, and no-goodnic's everywhere.) Of course now, afterwards I'd be happy to condemn myself to the whole process again to spare some play time earlier but when all hell is breaking loose in the final weeks I start to think otherwise. I doubt I could find them but does anyone work steadily and avoid cramming things in at the last minute? Does it work?

Anyhow I am now on holidays, looking to live it up, and get some fun done. Hope to avoid neglect on some cool sideprojects and get some cool stuff done. Huzzah, I leave you with a few finished stills from the last month. I swear my retinas have these babies etched into them so it wouldn't surprise me if these were just blank squares.

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Originally posted to dormant as 1148322818 Go there for the full post with pictures.

Sorry for the hiatus, I'm still cooking up schemes dastardly in nature. But I've been charged with the creation of a 60 second narrative in 3d and I'm about ready to start jotting up my script. Work for uni is pretty full on this time of year. But anyhow. Film noir is to be the name of the game, stylized lighting, static camerawork, angular framing, rotating fans, venetian blinds and one doosie of a monologue. (Unwritten) Anyway here he is, I need a character voice for this guy, I might end up just doing him myself minus the accent if nobody is up for it. He looks about the quality of a game model but that's better than I was hoping for.

Other things to find:

-Some kind of royalty free dark fills/music (ie homemade)

-A different voice actor for a muppetlike animated mouse which guides the clueless around a "computers-for-dummies" type getup.

-Time machine.

So if anyone thinks they can help, perhaps their engineering skills are up to it? Perhaps their squeaky/ultra manly voice can finally be rendered useful? Maybe you're just bored? Either way come and get me.

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Originally posted to dormant as 1146079344

Cramming in uni stuff as usual.

This time it was 3d animation. A 40 second animation basically displaying a particular motion so that we learn something about the art of convincing movement. It's harder than it looks, but I ended up doing a book moodily being tussled by the wind. Very deep. Heh, the actual animation came out almost as well as I hoped, and after I'd rigged it up I wish I'd left more time for the animating itself which I really quite enjoyed. It's something I think I'd like to look into a bit more, 3d stuff, special effects and animation type stuff. Even just 3d stills are pretty cool.

The thing about animation is you have maniacal control over the actors. It's way easier than bossing around actors and cast who eventually crack it at you and your creative intolerability. Imagine this:

Director: Arnie, remain perfectly motionless for 33 no wait...34 frames.

Arnie: Shooer ting.

... 34 frames later ...

Director: Ok now, melt your face into a pool of liquid on the floor in the shape of a duck.

Arnie: You gardit dood.

... End film ...

It's the perfect medium. Anyway here's a few stills from my book thing. Some of what the other kids are doing is amazing, I was dumbfounded. We only started like last semester, in earths most layered and in-depth interface. (Maya 6.5) Anyhow if I can get motivated to do a few more 3d stills or things I'll be sure to chuck them up here. Next assignment is a 60 second narrative piece with characters and voice overs and all, I'm thinking I'll do a kind of film noir detective type thing. 60 seconds is a bit steep though. But if anyones got any tips or stories I'll be listening. PS this means I'll be looking for a detective voice over guy, anyone up for it? Maybe a saucy vixen voice too. (Note: a voiceover means I can avoid lip-synching, how dastardly of me. Mwuahaha.)

Related images.

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Originally posted to dormant as 1145769869

Here's just a bunch of kudos to some groups I think deserve it. Number 1 goes to the creative genius behind the Highett station redecoration. Crossing the "Hi" off of the station signage and adding an "o" leaves Highett station forever etched in my mind as "ghetto station". Words fail me.

The second is a little more complicated. An english faring webdev fellow made a bet with his friend that he could usher 1 billion users through a website, and with that a bet was laid. £1000 was to be the prize. This is his page. He sits at about 600,000 at the moment. This would be some feat and some kudos does go to him for this. But the real kudos has to go to the guys who ripped him off, and with their "Australian Flair" and claims that it will win them 20 slabs. (Apparently equivalent to $1000) These guys just ripped off the first guy, and spammed their page with annoying ads and seem to be making a fair bit of money out of it. But with a slogan like: "One step closer to winning lots of beer with every visitor" how could it be a fair fight? Anyhow the second group gets my kudos and are already blitzing the first guy.

Thirdly, the good people at "Jensens" who make crushed garlic, when it came to choosing a mascot or logo for their garlic identity what could serve better than a musty old moustached man. His character being the very embodiment of garlic, in my mind anyhow. Kudos to they.

But fourthly I have come across another group in kudos-neglect-land. In googling the word moustache (to test my spelling as I'm half zombie at the minute) I came across these blokes. Those hardworking souls of the world beard & moustache championships. Do check out these greats of grooming, they surely deserve it. Kudos to they.

beard championship image

I've been away camping and things since easter so lay in wait for a few things I still have to say, some photos and even more importantly the return of a beer review or two!

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Originally posted to dormant as 1144916307

How the hell does organize themselves at all?

It occurs to me that in any given day there are people around (somewhere) completing at least a dozen or so specific tasks which they've been handed or have planned out themselves. Little things, remembering this or that, mentioning something to him or her. Are they truly doing it all by memory? Mine's terrible, absolutely deplorable. There are black holes speckled throughout it. If these busybodies aren't running on the fly then are they writing little notes down on pieces of paper they are about to throw away like me? (A system I use with limited success.) Or scrawling them onto their hands, so they can manage to ignore them until tommorrows shower.

Seriously you'd think I would have read todays "RETURN LIB BOOK" at least once before it was too late.

A few people keep diaries (or seem to). That's never really worked for me either, I just can't put anything in them. PDA's and things like that I doubt help anyone. Somebody has to actually be USING Outlook's ultra in depth complicatasaur. Or do they have an even simpler system?

Have you ever noticed how there are two types of people when dealing with dates? I'm the kind who has no idea when easter is this year, and if you quote me a date without a grounding point or offset from the current one then I tune out pretty quick. (2 weeks from now is a surprisingly common date.) I'm tossing around about 12 dates in this month for uni and holidays and camping trips and the like. I'm getting a little better but I can't believe I managed this long off my shady memory and fuzzy idea of what month this is.

I read a while ago a group of people who were sold on the idea that all the little notes/dates/phone numbers/appointments/snippets and usernames they need to write down can just get dumped into one giant txt file. It seemed like a harmless enough idea and these guys were pretty evangelical on the whole issue. I started doing this a while ago too and it's actually working pretty well. Tasks are added and crossed off when completed, links/contacts/snippets/notes/thoughts and plans are tacked into this giant file which is sorta crudely chronological. (In that newest stuff is added at the top which shunts everything else down a line.) I'll keep using it to see how it works out but here's hoping I get rid of that damn library book.

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Originally posted to dormant as 1144303244

Imagine you've just said the stupidest thing a group of idiots could think of in an hour, in their natural environment, say, an idiots convention. How do we get out of this situation? What possible excuse could you have for a statement as dumb as that which just passed your lips? I tell you, your cause is not lost. You must pretend that what you've just said is the line of a character in a film they haven't yet seen, and you were repeating it in jest. The same works for events they didn't attend, days they were absent etc. Here's an example:

Idiot: I don't really like you much.

Conversatee: "Ahh...eh?"

Redeemed Idiot: [slight pause, then look of relief]"...Oh you haven't seen that movie have you? Oh don't worry, I'll tell you about it one day."

Conversatee: "Oh ok, resume conversation."

This type of retract is or will now be known as the "esoteric reference recovery" and I wonder how often it truly goes on. I'm sure it exists in many variations, like "Oh you weren't there that day were you?". Has anyone pulled this kind of stunt before or am I just paranoid? Or perhaps even the first to have thought up such a diabolical mascerade? Then again perhaps guess damage control mightn't be as necessary in conversation for you regular folk as it is for me.

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Originally posted to dormant as 1144034286

I painted and half-arse renovated my room a while ago. But in particular my desktop, and decided a nice set of medium priced speakers would suit me. They turned out to sound like particularly lofi coke cans. So what'd I do? Hit the garage and pulled out grandma's old woodpanel hifi stereo speakers. And these babies sound like they've been desperate to play something with a little less crackle than old Glen Miller and Benny Goodman recordings. (Bless their souls.)

To suit I decided my spine-o-mangle of a chair had mangled it's last spine. (Mine.) I tried wheeling in one of the "comfortable-adjustable-oh-so-ergonomic" executive desk chair from the lounge room computer den. It was quickly superseded by grandma's 1988 old lady recliner which is built like a volvo. I was asked to come out and get rid of it for her, (she claimed it was too hard to get out of, which I now believe.) We were about to turf this ugly piece-o-crap when I decided to take off the hideous floral pattern cover which was zipped onto it. To my astonishement underneath this travesty was a mint condition green leather chair. (Well, at least the floral cover did their job.) And now it lives majestically in 35% of my bedroom. Its solid wooden base for that extra stability is perfect when leaning back from 80* through 10*. Ohhh yeah. Many of you have seen or sat in this marvel of comfort, and can attest to it's virtue. So heres to ya.

So much of this modern plastic crap would benefit from a bit of the old world design ethic. Like sturdiness, when was the last time a product looked remotely like sustaining any great impact? The same old dudes who decided to fill old speakers with concrete should be in charge of the new ipod. CNC mill the entire brick from a solid piece of cast iron, 30mm of bulletproof glass on the screen and genuinely solid parts. Where is it I ask? Phone ads should show vehicles of increasing size driving over the latest models, instead of the flimsy hinges they love hawking. Apply the mag-light design ethic to the latest nokia and I'll never lose or smash my phone again. Enough talk, it's time to get back in my chair of doom, which I really should fit out with a drinks holder and intercom. Long live grandmas stuff!

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Originally posted to dormant as 1143572169

While I'm in the same mood I thought I'd better put up a few photos from the other trip we took over the summer, 6 or 7 of us went up to Apollo Bay in a 4 car convoy. Road trippin' style. We had a really good time and I think everyone wants more of these little trips, we chose to leave on that 40'C day to leave and literally ate a bag of ice between us in the car on the way up. The drivers soon picked up the "rally spirit" on the Great Ocean Road, and harrassed every driver below the speed limit into While I'm in the mood I thought I'd better put up a few photos from the other trip we took over the summer, 6 or 7 of us went up to Apollo Bay in a 4 car convoy. Road trippin' style. We had a really good time and I think everyone wants more of these little trips, we chose to leave on that 40'C day to leave and literally ate a bag of ice between us in the car on the way up. The drivers soon picked up the "rally spirit" on the Great Ocean Road, and harrassed every driver below the speed limit into letting us pass.

It's a pretty nice road though, Km upon km of tight looping road, built deliberately winding for driving enthusiasts decades ago. One corner we took was a genuine 270' arc, felt like a roundabout, and that we'd hook see in front of us the people driving behind us. Apollo Bay and the areas around it are a huge tourist area, particularly internation tourists headed to the 12 apostles. But we began to see a pretty frightening sight around. Someone had deemed it necessary to install signs that read:

"Drive on left in Australia." (Signs every few hundred metres.)

One suggestion which did the rounds was that there was some kind of international gateway somewhere on Great Ocean Road. And that American drivers could at any moment pull out of the cliffs and casually begin driving into oncoming traffic. My favourite explanation however, is a little more glorious.

It is assumed that one could drive what could only be described as the epic trip from Melbourne Airport, a niggling hundred odd kilometers of highway and freeway, in the wrong lane. Don't get me wrong, if this were actually achieved, I'd be mighty impressed. But what seems even less likely, is that those frogger champions who had made it this far upon their frogger pilgrimage would be prompted back into the correct lane; not by the hordes of screaming commuters, or the general example set by 95% (wild estimate) of the other drivers; but by a 30cm firmly worded roadsign. Only kilometers from their destination.

We actually missed these signs when we got back to town, kept finding ourselves zipping along without a care in the world on the wrong side of Kings Way because we didn't have the reminders.

See the photos!

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