Tuesday, June 30, 2020

Some Things

I guess I should be happy they're continuing the develop Blogger's user interface. 
This is still hilarious.
EndeavorRX is the first prescription video game for ADHD.

Everybody's Gone to the Rapture is an art videogame.

The First Tree is even moreso. 

Cava is a place I ate at once. In the before times. 

Zed Bennet is an animator, specializes in rigging. 

Saturday, May 30, 2020

Narwal Impedance

Audio Movers is a plugin you can use to send audio over the Internets in just a bit past real-time.

Synchro Arts Vocalign.


Space Sounds.

How to get Microsoft Office 365 for free.

APA style. And more on formatting.

Tuesday, May 12, 2020

A Piece of Paper

I got my diploma.
Andrew Bellware, M.A.

Now I have a Master of Arts from the University of Chichester where I graduated with merit.

Monday, April 27, 2020

Drew's story about the movie Wolfen

Drew's story about the movie Wolfen. My dad made handrails. Technically the field was "architectural metals". But mostly that meant handrails. It was '79 or so that he got a strange call to bid on a movie. They needed a big, curved rail for an apartment set for the movie Wolfen. My dad thought "Well Andrew likes movies" and he came in with a low bid on the handrail. I was a freshman in high school at the time. I THINK he may have taken me out of school one day to go up to the set, in any case I certainly went with him. They were shooting at Kaufman Astoria. It may have had another name at the time. But let me tell you. That. Soundstage. Is. Enormous. I have seen some serious construction sites in my time, but that place was and is Huge. Sure. I'm 12 or 13 and trying to play it cool. But it was really amazing. Now my memory here gets fuzzy. We met the director (Michael Wadleigh) or maybe it was the Cinematographer (Gerry Fisher.) But we really did meet one of the big-wigs (production hadn't started yet.) And I remember he did the whole thing with the scarf and the pipe and looked the part. (I could have sworn we met the director, but looking at pictures of the guy now I'm not too sure. I'm gonna say we met Wadleigh and he had a scarf and a hat and a pipe.) He talked all about this new wolf POV look they were doing. To us. Some guy making the rail and his son. This was all during pre-production, obviously, and they had what was and is to me and infinite budget. If I hadn't mentioned it, those studios in Astoria are enormous. Now I didn't work on that at all. I mean, I was in high school. But there were funny stories about iron workers getting lost at Astoria and finding themselves in these rooms filled with body parts and gore. We saw the movie in a drive-in. If you didn't comprehend just how old I am and just how long ago this all was, we saw it in a drive-in. A drive-in. In New Jersey. The question that is on your mind is "Can we see Drew's dad's handrails in the movie Wolfen?" And the answer is yes, you can.
My dad's handrails.
TL;DR: my dad under-bid on a railing project once so I could go visit a movie set and it was pretty cool.

Sunday, April 05, 2020

Glimpse of the New

Glimpse is the new GIMP.

Pixel artist waneella.

Red Giant has made their Complete collection free for students and teachers.

A 3D-printable mask. I don't how how great it is really. More washable, or at least more washable quickly.
Here's a mask head harness, which is less annoying to the ears. You can print on PLA but you need to bend it while it's warm. I think you can warm it with hot water too.

Tuesday, March 17, 2020

Distance learning

Having just completed one online degree, and having started another, here is a arbitrary list of things I know or think.

Lots of people used appear.in for one-on-one meetings with students, but the people who used to be "appear.in" lost the domain. They're now whereby.com. The free version only allows you to share with 4 "participants."

Skype is, as always, the default for so-called "1-2-1" meetings.

Zoom allows up to 100 "participants" for free, but the meetings are done after 40 minutes. That might be a feature, not a bug.
And there's also Google Hangouts.

There are dedicated distance-learning systems which you might have access to (or even be required to use.) I've taken courses on Big Marker and a couple others. I have a couple "universal" notes.

  • One is that if you have a system that is capable of playing (say) YouTube videos -- just don't use it. Give the students links to the YouTube videos, tell everybody to watch, mute your microphone, and then tell the students to type "done" in the text box when they're done watching the video. 
  • Even better is to make a Dropbox or whatever of all the materials you'll be going over -- any videos (in .mp4 format because it's the most universal), any .pdf's, even PowerPoint presentations if you have them. The key here is you're trying to not use the Internet to stream high-resolution graphics or video. 


  1. Try to not use wifi for the computer you're using to run the class, webinar, or 1-2-1 on. Please just plug an ethernet cable into your computer from your router. Don't make us fight with whether your wifi is crapping out on you. 
  2. If you need to listen to students talk, wear headphones. And not poopity earbuds neither. 
  3. Get a microphone close to your mouth. 

I suggest wearing headphones and any of the Antlion mics. If your students are interacting with you (especially if there's more than one student) and talking, they'll end up hearing one another "directly" through the feed and also through your own speakers and your own microphone, which will get tiresome very quickly.
If you're not going to get nice headphones and an Antlion mic, then at least get a gaming headset. I want to press home with you that the mic built into your webcam is not good. It is not good. Not. Your students might be able to hear and understand you, but they will be straining to hear you through all the reverberation of the room you're in and that won't be good for anyone. They might even say "It's fine." It isn't. Your microphone must be within 12" of your mouth -- even closer if it is a webcam mic. Just don't. Get a headset microphone. If you're very fancy you can use a lavalier or some sort of boom that's within a foot (30 centimeters) of your mouth.
Can you get away with just using your iPhone if you're teaching "one-on-one?" Yes, probably. But as soon as you get into a multi-student situation, you gotta move over to the close mic.

There are some advantages to "webinars" over "seminars." For instance, you know all that stupid stuff students have to say, both to other students and also to just make a comment? Well if you're using a system that has a little comment box off to the side, they can say whatever they want without interrupting your flow. Honestly, in my experience, a lot of that is just students being polite to one another, saying "hello" and if someone asks a question or branches off-topic, another student can provide a link to whatever they needed without really interrupting the class.

When all students are on videocams and all have mics, you can get chaos pretty quickly (just like a real classroom) but the worser part is that the Internet feed will probably get very cranky and freeze and drop out and be ugly. One technique to deal with that is if you need to hear students talk (I know, what's the point, right?) just select one student at a time to talk or ask questions through their mic. Try to keep the number of open microphones down to 2 at any one time.

Yes, when teaching remotely like this you do have to be something of a live video engineer. When students are supposed to be watching/listening to other materials you need to mute your own mic (nobody wants to hear you typing or sipping tea while they're watching a video you carefully curated for them to think about and discuss later). When students come onto the webinar you need to control who can turn on their own mics (and then when they're done you need to turn them off -- you don't want everyone to have to listen to the garbage truck outside a student's house while they're watching your webinar, not realizing they're broadcasting their own sound.)

It's a bit more paying attention to the technical aspects of transmitting/receiving than you're used to probably. And you're likely to have all kinds of whackadoo technical issues and limitation the first few times you do it. It's also sort of lonely. You're not looking at your students and seeing if they're totally confused by what you're saying -- you need to use your experience and also to ask them questions to make sure they're following along. It's a bit disconcerting at first, but you need the confidence that you know what you're doing and they're all paying attention.

But I enjoyed my experience with it. You might too.

Thursday, March 12, 2020

Stuff someone needs to know maybe. Probably not.

Custom vinyl decals on Etsy.

Designing futuristic vehicle sound effects.

Salford Doctoral calendar.

"How to Spot a Film" -- my point here is that it never goes further than "a work in progress."

Elevator to the Gallows is the only "noir" film to have a jazz score. It's technically new-wave, it's not American noir. But it's got Miles Davis. A very brief history of film music.

The Development of Black Theater in America. https://books.google.com/books?id=srqVIZrRxl0C&ppis=_e&lpg=PA107&ots=YbWovFYE0l&dq=black%20music%20played%20under%20sermon&pg=PA107#v=onepage&q=black%20music%20played%20under%20sermon&f=false

Hammond painted stompboxes.

The MXR Carbon Copy R48 wet mod.

Blackmagic makes a $300 video switcher.

Loophole Pedals makes custom guitar pedal enclosures.

Thursday, February 27, 2020

Dialog Anchor

"To be absolutely clear, long-form programs are supposed to be mixed and measured with a dialog anchor, not a full program measurement."
That's Izotope's Guide to Loudness for Broadcast.

Fun facts: ROLI refactored the juce::dsp::AudioBlock class. 

If you're using the AudioBlock<>::copy() member function. 

This member function has been replaced with AudioBlock<>::copyFrom().

The full change ROLI made to the AudioBlock class here: https://github.com/WeAreROLI/JUCE/commit/41055ad782bf16cd6aec0af99318524fad216fed#diff-b68fd0081c02fd681b24b0473b5eede2L315

It's a simple function name fix.  Change 'copy()' to 'copyFrom()'
 Pedal Playground is for designing pedalboards. This should be on the Tyrannosaurus Mouse blag.
 But it's not, so that's just how it is.
I want to say the word "panda." Or at least write it down.

Saturday, January 11, 2020

Saturday, January 04, 2020

You are here

Embettering Windows 10 with an ultimate performance power plan.
VST Scanner. Seems cool. Crashed when I tried to use it but still it seems cool.
Process Lasso for performance on a PC. The free version works well.