Wednesday, March 30, 2011

baby steps... (for ideas/plans)

Faith is taking the first step, even when you don't see the whole staircase. - Martin Luther King Jr.

I stumbled across this website this morning, and it got me thinking further.
I have been daydreaming about taking one of my ideas and running with it. And Im sure that many others have a similar feeling. 

There's also a new website that potentially takes your idea, and turns it into reality:
I've already commented on an idea here. Whats weird is that there looks to be 2 versions of the website? There looks to be a hot or not version of idea ranking, then there is a forum version via Im confused...

>>From the SocialBeat article:
The money made from the product or licensing deal is then split among Ahhha users based on a set terms. The idea originator gets 1 percent, then the remaining 99 percent is divided among Ahhha and the other contributors, depending on how much the users actually did.
Of course, 1 percent of a licensing deal might seem like an awfully small payment for your idea, but founder and chief executive Matthew Crowe likes to repeat the common Silicon Valley wisdom that ideas are cheap, while execution is what counts. Or, as Thomas Edison put it, genius is “1 percent inspiration and 99 percent perspiration.” After all, 1 percent of a real product is better than 100 percent of a daydream that doesn’t go anywhere.

FYI - My current side projects are tinkering with a rain barrel system, and researching wind generators.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

iPhone 4.2.1 jailbreak, unlock, apps, accessories

At around $130 (used), I still think the iphone 3G may be the best phone on the market for the money. I have been using it for $15 a month, unlimited texting only (I can make/receive calls for 10¢ min), no contract with T-Mobile for over 6 months now. However, you can easily do that with an AT&T go phone SIM, or Simple Mobile to help keep costs per month, much lower than the average iphone user ($90 month?!?).
I recommend the Otterbox case for the clumsy folks (bulky but best protection Ive seen). My favorite is the rubberized slim Speck case. But I think both of those are way to expensive. Im currently using a $4 hard shell candy case from Amazon.
>>DreamBoard: Advanced Theming Platform For iOS Devices
>>Battery Issues? : 01 | 02 | 03 (4.2.1)

>>AppSync: backup cracked apps
>>AptBackup: for cydia apps
>>AppBackup: for apps settings

I am curious about testing/getting a decent android phone, but I dont know if I could get one for as low as $130. What are your recommended apps?

Monday, March 21, 2011

KILL the Commercial. Embrace embedded Advertising.

Im actually surprised that there are still so many commercials intertwined with tv programming. I wouldve thought that they would taken a cue from the internet, and that the advertising and sponsors are positioned on the edges of the content (around the for the most part). Some blogs are taking it a step further in incorporating the product/service into the article - which may be the best place for it.
I think that advertisers need to work towards incorporating their products/services deeper into the actual program. It could show the value of their product/service in relation to the content being presented. It could also educate the consumer ways to use the product.
Im currently watching an episode of Man VS Wild, and I can totally see the opportunity for various sponsors: he often uses a knife, rope, backpack, clothing (shoes, outfit), fire starter. But I can envision a quick shot of him saying a couple of things while he is: putting on his NORTHFACE shirt/pants, backpack, REI socks, NIKE boots, getting on a plane to the country on DELTA AIRLINES, BP fuel truck in background, eating some CLIF BARS, getting a shot/physical/blood pressure measurement with KAISER PERMANENTE logo in the background, putting on OAKLEY shades, taken to the location via a new JEEP, closeup of MICHELIN tires, as he gets out and begins his adventure.
What advertisers need to understand is, that people do not like commercials for the most part, whether its on TV or Radio, or in the videos that we watch on YOUTUBE

Friday, March 18, 2011

NEED A JOB? Or - where do we go from here

A friend of mine in the graphics field (same as me) recently got laid off from his job of 10 years. This was my email response back to him:

First off, I do think its a good idea to take some time, get some exercise and fresh air, and think hard about what you want to do next. However, do try and use the time wisely, because friends and family may watch you more closely and be more quick to judge you when you are not part of "the system". Its also a really good idea to try to do all the chores/menial tasks that you can to help around the house to help others that are still "doing the daily". It may also make them long for those days when you didnt have a job and were helping out so much.

Lots of people are using LinkedIN to find new jobs/opportunities. I think that is a great way to help put the word out on the street that you are looking for a new direction, and show your skillset. PLAXO is another (similar to LinkedIN)
I would also create a note on facebook and put all that info in it to - to help get the word out. I think reaching out to your friends first can really help "spread the net" for you to catch your next job.

Here is my online resume - makes it easy for me to update and keep track of.
Here is my Google Profile. Has a lot for others to see more about me.

Also - use this time to really dig deep in what you might be interested in for the next 10 years (in a job). Whether that is starting your own biz, doing some small jobs or - until you get a better grasp on what you want to do.

When I got laid off in June of last year - Joy and I really thought we were going to Costa Rica. And we started working towards that goal. Then my friend Kris Sheets said that he needed help at his company - but it doesnt pay well - $32K. I was burnt out on the graphics thing - and was curious about the technology - so I was working there after a 2 week hiatus. That company got bought by a bigger company and I have been at the new digs since late January (near IBM off Windy Hill). Lots of red tape, so change is slow here and frustrating, and right now Im daydreaming about doing something else, something more worthwhile - or more important. Keeps me going...

Wednesday, March 02, 2011

installing/uninstalling games

A friends sons Acer Aspire One Netbook AO532h would boot only to a black screen. And from what I could see, it wasnt the full screen, and all I could access is the web browser. The error on the screen was “Windows could not start because the following file is missing or corrupt: system32hal.dll. Please re-install a copy of the above file.”
I think the problem is that some of the games that my buddy Ethan was having trouble with is that the games that he installed, then deleted, may have deleted some components that the system needed.
From where I stood at the time, the best option for me was to create a bootable Windows7 USB and do a clean install. It turned out to be the right choice.

These are some of the links that I looked at for help:

>> Missing system32 dll file

>> BIOS Recovery by Crisis Disk (not an option for me)
>> Acer Support Downloads & Support Documents (didnt see anything to help me with this problem)
>> Acer Aspire One BIOS Recovery (didnt try this)

I have had problems with an Acer product that I bought as a gift for my mom (Acer 24" LCD, Model #X223W Version X223W bd, Serial # ETLAP 08024841057DF4200) but I do think that Acer does have some good products.

Windows HD troubles? Look to LINUX (uBuntu)

I recently found myself trying to find more space on a 20GB HD for a client. The PC was returning "insufficient system resources existing to complete the API. Just did the basics to give it room to breathe, but within several days, it would not get past that error. I went to take a look for myself, and there was nothing I could do. I took the HD home, tried to mount it via USB, but Windows7 said not enough space (to even view files on the HD). Ouch. I had not seen this problem before. There had to be another way. I could see the HD was mounted, but I couldnt think of anything further I could do with it. Then I thought of uBuntu. I had played around with it before and I knew it even worked with corrupted windows HDs in the past. So I booted the CD from 2007 I had of it, and there was the HD. I could easily delete the pagefile sys, movie maker, outlook, frontpage and more. I just hoped that Windows recognized the delete from uBuntu upon trying to mount it on my Windows7 machine again. It did, but I saw that those files were in the trash. I emptied the trash, and the space on the HD was now at approx 15GB! I put it back in their machine and they were back in biz. Just one more reason why LINUX is better than Windows.