Editing Fun

Posted on March 30, 2015
Filed Under podcasting | 11 Comments

I am working on the podcast with my friends from Beyond the Wall. It is a big scale, long duration job editing a 150 minute conversation with five people. Additionally, at patron request I am for the first time adding in chapter marks for the conversation. That’s another big job as well as completely new functionality to me. It’s a job on its own separately from trying to cull all links for the show notes and fixing any sound glitches.

Despite all that, just listening back to this is making me about as happy as I was recording it in the first place. I will really be interested in listener feedback on this one. I can’t tell if this is objectively good or if it is just a memento of getting to spend an evening discussing a subject I enjoy with people I enjoy. We shall see. For those that like it, you will get a lot of it to like. Lengthwise this episode is to my typical episodes as Song of Ice and Fire is to ordinary fantasy series.

The one thing I am pleased with is how well the conversation went with such a large panel. By being explicit traffic cop and directing the question to specific people as it went, there is way less talking over each other than you’d expect in this situation. I expected I would have to fix some crosstalk as best I could, but there has been practically none. Color me pleasantly surprised.

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My Audacity Wishlist Feature

Posted on March 30, 2015
Filed Under computers | 8 Comments

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If I could get a FOSS genie to grant me one wish in the open source world, it would be for Audacity to have pitch correction on the playback so that when you listen sped up you can do it without the chipmunk effect. Especially as I am reviewing and editing a 2.5 hour file that is a panel of 5 people, I can’t differentiate most of the voices when listening faster than nominal speed because they all blur together. I’m not looking to permanently alter the file with “Change Tempo” (or even temporarily) but I just want to be able to review at higher (or lower) speed with the original pitch. My podcast player can do this, given enough resources I’m sure someone could do this. I saw that 2.1.0 was just released and I downloaded it with limited hope that maybe this feature was in this version. Alas, it was not.

The real question is do I want this enough to download the code, set up an Audacity development environment and try to figure this out for myself? Possibly not. I need one more project like an aperture in my cranium.

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Evil Genius Chronicles Podcast for March 26, 2015 – Catalogs of My Failures

Posted on March 25, 2015
Filed Under audio | 2 Comments

In this episode, I play a song from Steve Conte; I discuss the blast I had with the Beyond the Wall podcast; I ask for feedback about long shows and hangout times; I talk about my failures to get serious about organization; I discuss my efforts to stay out of the despair pit; I tell the story of how I lost access to Scott Sigler books I had paid for; I discuss how using Linux is like driving a British sports car.

Here is the direct MP3 download for the Evil Genius Chronicles podcast, March 26 2015

Links mentioned in this episode:

You can subscribe to this podcast feed via RSS. To sponsor the show, contact BackBeat Media. Don’t forget, you can fly your EGC flag by buying the stuff package. This show as a whole is Creative Commons licensed Attribution-NonCommercial 3.0 Unported. Bandwidth for this episode is provided by Cachefly.

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Scott Sigler 10 Year Anniversary

Posted on March 23, 2015
Filed Under books | 5 Comments

Today is Scott Sigler’s 10th anniversary since he entered the new media world, podcasting and giving away his fiction. It’s worked for him, and he is celebrating with a special deal. For TODAY ONLY – which is code for “don’t dawdle” – he is giving away 10 ebooks for his 10th anniversary. This is all five of the published GFL novels, the three novellas set in the GFL milieu and two of his short story collections.

I have a blog post percolating about the fiasco that lost me access to GFL books 3 and 4. It’s a story of my being a serial idiot. I got them as a package deal with the hardcovers but had completely lost the ebook files. Now, I have them back. It’s a great day for my Kindle.

I recommend the GFL series and it is even safe for middle school and up. I read a lot of SF books and a lot of sports books as a kid. I’d have loved to have this mix back then in between my Heinlein juveniles and the formulaic stories of football championships won or drag racers peeling out.

Don’t forget, this offer is for TODAY ONLY.

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Evil Genius Chronicles Hangout with Beyond the Wall podcast

Posted on March 21, 2015
Filed Under podcasting | 4 Comments

At 10 PM EDT (you have to do the math for yourself) I will be on a live Google Hangout with my friends from the Beyond the Wall podcast. You can watch it on YouTube later if you miss it. It’s all good.

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Evil Genius Chronicles Podcast for March 20, 2015 – Humanity

Posted on March 20, 2015
Filed Under audio | 3 Comments

In this episode, I play a song from Paul Westerberg; I talk about internet controversies, the culture of dehumanization and violence we live in; I conclude by relating how I feel as a parent to how I felt the victims should deal with harassment.

Here is the direct MP3 download for the Evil Genius Chronicles podcast, March 20, 2015.

Links mentioned in this episode:

You can subscribe to this podcast feed via RSS. To sponsor the show, contact BackBeat Media. Don’t forget, you can fly your EGC flag by buying the stuff package. This show as a whole is Creative Commons licensed Attribution-NonCommercial 3.0 Unported. Bandwidth for this episode is provided by Cachefly.

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Me on the Nutty Bites Podcast

Posted on March 20, 2015
Filed Under podcasting | 4 Comments

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If you invite me to your podcast via Google+ Hangout, it will look kind of like this.

If you want to experience our epic conversation about Patreon, crowd funding in general and the ups and downs of this strategy, the whole conversation is on YouTube. Enjoy!

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Jimmy Dore on WTF Podcast

Posted on March 20, 2015
Filed Under podcasting | 4 Comments

Here’s a funny quote from Jimmy Dore on this episode of WTF:

“One day my brother out of nowhere starts complaining about the estate tax. ‘Hey, we got to get rid of this estate tax.” I said, ‘Phil, what are you talking about?’ He said ‘That’s when you die and you have millions of dollars, the government just takes half of it.’ I said ‘That’s horrible. Let me know when that becomes a problem for you but until then maybe you should turn off your AM radio and get invited to your own life. I’m sure the estate tax sucks but I’m pretty sure estates don’t have two cars that don’t work on the front lawn. You should be worried about the t-shirt tax at WalMart, you dickhead.’ ”

This episode is funny and I like Dore’s stories. The one part that was a drag was when they discussed Dore starting a podcast before Maron and how he was a “pioneer” and “one of the first guys doing it.” This is 2008 they are talking about. There were at least 50,000 podcasts by then. Even though I listen to a lot of podcasts from the comedy world, it always bugs me how they consider everyone outside of the comedy podcast world as non-entities. Forget us dumb schmoes who just built the entire infrastructure that makes what you do possible, nothing much counted until standups got involved. You’re welcome.

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Tonight on Nutty Bites

Posted on March 19, 2015
Filed Under podcasting | 2 Comments

Tonight at 9 PM EDT or whenever I can get there, I will be a guest on the Nutty Bites podcast. It will be streamed live via Google Hangout and YouTube so you can watch real time.

The discussion will be about Crowd Funding and Patreon. I will discuss my recent experiments in my Patreon campaign and more I’m sure. It looks like the Q&A module is turned on so you can ask questions if there is something you’d like answered by the panel. I’m looking very forward to this discussion. Come join us!

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Evil Genius Chronicles Bonus Podcast for March 17 2014 – Discussing Game of Thrones

Posted on March 18, 2015
Filed Under audio | 2 Comments

In this BONUS episode, I mostly discuss my experiences with the Song of Ice and Fire novel series and my recent viewings of the beginnings of the Game of Thrones television series. In there is a little discussion of my new lavalier microphone, comic book retailing and other good bits.

Here is the direct MP3 download for the Evil Genius Chronicles podcast, March 17, 2015

Links mentioned in this episode:

You can subscribe to this podcast feed via RSS. To sponsor the show, contact BackBeat Media. Don’t forget, you can fly your EGC flag by buying the stuff package. This show as a whole is Creative Commons licensed Attribution-NonCommercial 3.0 Unported. Bandwidth for this episode is provided by Cachefly.

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Sayre’s Law and Internet Controversies

Posted on March 18, 2015
Filed Under politics | 11 Comments

duty_callsI just watched Christiana Ellis’ most recent episode of Five More Minutes where she talks about the Batgirl variant cover being pulled. I mentioned in a comment to her that it is time to invoke Sayre’s Law, not just for this but pretty much every time one of these internet controversies erupts.

The law states “In any dispute the intensity of feeling is inversely proportional to the value of the issues at stake.” This is the dark flip-side of bike shedding, which is that trivial decisions get more discussion because the important and high value topics are difficult to discuss and require expertise to criticize.

I will admit to completely not understanding the mentality that leads people to make death threats over comic book covers and stories, Kickstarters they don’t like, keynotes by UX designers and other such things that are ultimately bullshit in the scheme of things. How a dislike of posted words or easily ignorable actions leads one to make real world (if virtual and thus far always bogus) threats of violence is beyond my way of thinking.

My own half-baked hypothesis is that these are the follow-on effects of the 9/11 aftermath. When America responded to a horrific unconscionable act of violence with a decade and a half of violence on nearly random targets and a culture of dehumanization, that spreads. We’ve picked up innocent people and locked them in Guantanamo indefinitely with no recourse or process to prove their innocence. We’ve decided certain populations are subhuman and don’t deserve even the minimal treatment granted by the Geneva Convention. When this permeates the culture, what do you expect is going to happen?

That’s why persistent racism, misogyny, homophobia, religious intolerance are such a large problem. When you have that mechanism of dehumanization against one group, it doesn’t take much to broaden that out to any group you decide is the next for that feeling. The best way to deal with it is to grant that everyone – your friends and your enemies, the followers of religions you believe in and the ones you don’t, the citizens of friendly countries and unfriendly countries, saints and suspected terrorists and criminals – everyone has a certain floor of humane treatment they must be afforded as a living member of the human race. It’s not a question of whether they deserve it or not, which is always where the discussion goes.

It’s not that terrible people forfeit their right to humane treatment by their actions. Humane treatment isn’t on an accrual basis like your Social Security benefit, you don’t bank it up or exhaust it. It’s that for a culture treating even the worst people as subhuman takes away our humanity, makes lives worse for the good people, foments a culture of fear and hatred and violence. The only way to avoid violent threats about silly bullshit is to avoid dehumanization as a cultural backdrop. Everyone deserves a base level of compassion and humanity, because to deprive them of it makes us monsters just like them and we want to be better.

In the end, this all sounds a little Jesusy for an atheist, no? So be it.

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Bill Gates on Nerdist

Posted on March 17, 2015
Filed Under podcasting | 5 Comments

I am listening to Bill Gates on the Nerdist podcast. I know it is one of those things that is a “good get” for the program in that he’s an extremely famous person. However, the first time the handler jumped in to steer the conversation back to the Gates Foundation, I thought very hard about hitting the skip button. I understand they have a message they want to push, but it if you think the only way to spread that message is with Soviet level control, you may not understand the modern mediasphere as well as you think you do. That doesn’t make me feel better about the thing you are pushing, it makes me feel like the handler is pushing me around.

The only upside of the tight control from the handler is that it kept Matt Mira from trying to steer the conversation to what Gates thought of Frazier.

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Kickstarter Hatred

Posted on March 16, 2015
Filed Under podcasting | 5 Comments

I am currently listening to Episode #2 of Ditchdiggers with Mur Lafferty and Matt Wallace. They are discussing the Stacey Jay Kickstarter fiasco and how the YA community gave her enormous grief about asking for readers to support the creation of her work. Which is the basis of EVERY KICKSTARTER CAMPAIGN EVER!

On Thursday evening at 9 PM EDT (or whenever I get there after child bedtime) I am going to be a part of a roundtable for the Nutty Bites podcast talking about these issues. I am really looking forward to the conversation and hearing what everyone else has to say. I will just note here that although I didn’t know about the Stacey Jay situation when I recorded my Patreon video, there is a reason why it was done with me pretending to smoke a pipe and affecting a highly exaggerated pomposity. I was trying to preemptively short circuit exactly that line of thinking.

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Evil Genius Chronicles Podcast for March 12 2015 – Negation

Posted on March 12, 2015
Filed Under audio | Leave a Comment

In this episode, I play a song by the Kropotkins; I discuss the ongoing struggles to enjoy media and how much it is like having another job; I talk about negation, negativity, opinionation and other life anti-patterns.

Here is the direct MP3 download for the Evil Genius Chronicles podcast, March 12 2015.

Links mentioned in this episode:

You can subscribe to this podcast feed via RSS. To sponsor the show, contact BackBeat Media. Don’t forget, you can fly your EGC flag by buying the stuff package. This show as a whole is Creative Commons licensed Attribution-NonCommercial 3.0 Unported. Bandwidth for this episode is provided by Cachefly.

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Soaking in Game of Thrones

Posted on March 10, 2015
Filed Under books, tv | 12 Comments

I’ve spent since Thanksgiving reading A Song of Ice and Fire. I finished Storm of Swords and A Feast for Crows and now I’m a third of the way through A Dance with Dragons. Three books in 4 or 5 months is pretty good for me in recent years. However when you consider this is 3,000 pages which is 6-10 of the kind of books I normally read, it’s phenomenal.

I’ve now also seen S1E1 of the TV show. I bought the first two seasons on DVD/BluRay during a Gold Box special recently. Having immersed myself in this world in multiple media, I thought it would be a great time to start listening to the Beyond the Wall podcast as I watch the episodes. Basically, I get to relive 2011 with everyone else. When I went to try it, the first few episodes are no longer there on the site. The posts exists but the media files give a 404 error. Do they exist somewhere that I can get them? These are the dangers of living your media life half a decade off of everyone else.

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Sonic Subversion on Radio Valencia

Posted on March 5, 2015
Filed Under podcasting, radio | 1 Comment

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Back in January, my friend Michael Butler was a guest on Sonic Subversion, a program on Radio Valencia. I’m finally getting around to listening it today. I heard my own name mentioned in the first few minutes, so I think that counts as a great show. Rock on!

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What’s on my Headphones?

Posted on March 5, 2015
Filed Under comics | 2 Comments

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People in my neighborhood that see me walking my dog with headphones on. They might imagine a guy like me rocking out to Blue Oyster Cult or Black Sabbath in my cans. Little do they know, I’m listening to Gregg Schigiel talk to Chris Staros about the history of Top Shelf Comix.

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Evil Genius Chronicles Podcast for March 5 2015 – Evo Terra and Sheila Dee

Posted on March 5, 2015
Filed Under audio | 4 Comments

In this episode, I have a chat with my friends Evo Terra and Sheila Dee about their running away from home to become digital nomads.

Here is the direct MP3 download for the Evil Genius Chronicles podcast, March 2015

Links mentioned in this episode:

You can subscribe to this podcast feed via RSS. To sponsor the show, contact BackBeat Media. Don’t forget, you can fly your EGC flag by buying the stuff package. This show as a whole is Creative Commons licensed Attribution-NonCommercial 3.0 Unported. Bandwidth for this episode is provided by Cachefly.

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Evil Genius Chronicles Patreon Campaign is Live!

Posted on March 2, 2015
Filed Under podcasting | 5 Comments

After consultation with a set of podcast supporters and taking in some input from those folks, the Evil Genius Chronicles Patreon campaign is now live!

The response from the first few days was completely off the charts from what I was expecting. The milestone for getting the show on a weekly schedule was met within the first 36 hours. I was hoping for the best but I wouldn’t have placed that bet. Thank you to all the supporters thus far.

If you are interested in supporting, feel free. So far, all of the pledges have been at the higher levels. No one has pledged at the $0.25 level but as I mentioned on the last episode, there is nothing preventing you from pledging at that $0.01 level. I misspoke during the episode, I am a $0.10 per episode supporter of Cordkillers not the $0.01 I stated. If you want to support but don’t have a lot of money, support at the nickel level. It’s all good.

I’m posting here the two alternate versions of the pitch video. I uploaded all three but the main version is what is linked from Patreon. For those who watched the video, these differ only by 13 seconds from version to version. Yes, it is THAT 13 seconds. From A to C they ramp up in redonkulousness.

Thanks again to all the supporters. My biggest fear was this campaign publicly eating it in spectacular fashion. It went so well so quickly that was off the table. I appreciate all the support my friends. To the future!

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Yes, You Have a Problem

Posted on February 28, 2015
Filed Under life | 1 Comment

A week ago I took some Merlin Mann advice from Back to Work and checked out Peter Walsh’s It’s all Too Much from my local library. Yesterday I realized I hadn’t read it because I couldn’t find it. That is a pretty clear indicator that yes, yes I do have a problem and need help.

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