Thursday, February 25, 2010

The iPhone jumps the shark!

I've never been a fan of the iPhone. For one, Apple is just so smug about all its offerings, and that attracts smug users. That arrogance leads to high prices, for which the equally arrogant hipsters are willing to pay.

There's no question that the iPhone has utility. But then there's apps like this:

Apple - Web apps - Virtual Squirrel

Is Apple owned by Milton_Bradley?

Friday, February 19, 2010

WowWee's Paper Jamz: fake guitars make the jump to 2D, gain some musicality -- Engadget

WowWee's Paper Jamz: fake guitars make the jump to 2D, gain some musicality -- Engadget
Just when we thought Guitar Hero had removed every shred of dignity from the once proud profession of "rocking out," along comes Paper Jamz to do away with all pretense. WowWee, known primarily for its creepy robotic toys, has put some of its technical chops into a new musical line of utterly flat instruments. The "paper" guitar and drum sets use capacitive sensors to pick up on touch, and there's even a fake amp built of cardboard to complete the ensemble.

Friday, February 5, 2010

The Boss has Class

Gotta hand it to The Boss - he really handled this one beautifully. Hat's off to him!

Springsteen wants name off royalty lawsuit against NYC bar - Yahoo! News

NEW YORK – Bruce Springsteen wants his name off a lawsuit demanding licensing fees from a Manhattan bar where a band played his songs.

A statement on Springsteen's Web site Thursday said he didn't know about the lawsuit that was filed Wednesday in federal court and wouldn't have agreed to be a plaintiff if he had been asked.

It says Springsteen's representatives demanded the immediate removal of his name Thursday morning after learning about the lawsuit filed by the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers. ASCAP didn't immediately return a telephone call seeking comment Thursday night.

The suit claims Connolly's Pub violated Springsteen's copyrights by letting an unidentified band perform two of his songs for profit.

A man who answered the phone at Connolly's said the pub had no comment.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Still just can't make this stuff up

Wis. women avoid jail in glue-related revenge plot -

Ziemann, a mother of six, acknowledged that she lured the 37-year-old man to a motel last July after the man's wife contacted her and told her he was seeing other women.
First she tied the man up and blindfolded him under the guise of erotic play. Then she summoned the other three women with a text message, according to court documents.
She told police she slapped the man in the face, cut off his underwear and used the glue to attach his penis to his stomach. The other three women arrived, and several berated and belittled the man. Eventually he worked his way out of his restraints and the women fled.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

The 2010 Grammies

This was the first year I watched the Grammies.  I'm sending a bill to The recording Academy - whoever they are - for my wasted time.

I saw only a couple of bright spots:

Stephen Colbert was right on when he chastised them for not including Susan Boyle. One comment that seemed to fall flat was saying that their  industry was saved by a "48-year-old Scottish cat lady in sensible shoes." They can't handle the truth. 

Another bright spot was  that at least someone can sing. Pink can really do it  (which I already knew). She did a much harder thing with her vocals than anyone there, including The Annointed One, Beyonce. It's much more difficult to sing softly and accurately than it is to belt it out. But even that was ruined with her cirque-du-soleil nonsense. Musical performers only take the attention away from their music when they give the audience a huge visual show.

Speaking of Beyonce, I wasn't big on her man-hating-themed show. And her crotch-grabbing. Who's that lady?

Speaking of crotches, haven't we seen enough of Lada Gaga? When she mounts the piano bench, I wonder how the suction doesn't get her stuck to it. Her show should be sponsored by Glade air spray.

The Grammys are more and more like the BET talent show to me - where's the rock music? They give awards for rock, but you never see them. Unless it has something to do with a black rapper. Remember Joe Perry emerging from obscurity when he played the Grammies with Run DMC? As one who is down in the trenches on music, I know that rock music is more popular than ever.

Lastly, what in God's name are the Grammies? It's an award given by the Recording Academy for what they feel are good records.  But who are they? And does what they do make one better than another? Of course not.  it's all just big hoopla marketing.

In short, this is nothing more than a musical popularity contest run by people with no musical talent.

The thing that makes me really sad is that people seem to just want to be told what to like.  I tell them, Keep the faith, and like what you like.  Don't let "The Academy" define your tastes.

Monday, February 1, 2010

The squeaking wheel

The squeaking wheel doesn't always get the grease. Sometimes it gets replaced.
  - Vic Gold

Media Center out-of-sync issues

I recently ran into a problem with Microsoft Windows Media Center 2005 - the audio and video went out of sync.  Those working with Windows media know this can be  nightmare, but I found a quick fix (maybe I was lucky!).

Try changing the order of the audio CODECs. In my case, I had AC3Filter as the first CODEC.  I changed the order to be all the Microsoft CODEC products first.  Whammo, audio synced right up with the video.

I suspect the problem was AC3Filter decoding the audio at 44.1 KHz, rather than 48 Khz, which is the video standard. 

Hope this helps.

Zebron and James