About two years ago I was in LA working on a BMW X5 ad and decided to buy a Mac Mini. That was the start of the AlYousif Household® Media Centre™ Project. Of course I had to upgrade a few items when I got home: a Sony 32″ LCD to replace the tube; a 500GB external drive to hold all my daughters’ DVDs (the justification); and a 2GB RAM upgrade for the Mac Mini which was hooked up to the existing 5.1 surround system.
Now it’s almost 2009 and there’s a feeling in the air that we (I) need to upgrade again. You know, like an upgrade shark I have to keep moving forwards or else. Or else I might stagnate, or something.
So… Blu Ray. That winner of the HiDef format “war”. I’ve watched the 720p version of Iron Man on the Mini and on Blu Ray at 1080. To paraphrase Homer Simpson, “Stupid 720p, you’re no match for 1080!” Even though I work a lot at full HD for ads that are 30 to 60 seconds, there’s a world of difference when watching a feature at home in proper progressive 1080 HD res.
Okay then, upgrades. My LCD screen unfortunately is not full 1080 resolution but the lower HD-Ready, ie, 1366×768 instead of 1920×1080. So to buy a new full HD screen, like the Sony 32W4000 is £620 (and I have to mention that I bought my less-then-full-HD-ready screen for £1000 then). Blu Ray players are now as cheap as £170 and add an extra £20 for an HDMI cable. For £810 plus the cost of the BD discs themselves I could have a complete future-proof (yeah, right) home entertainment centre.
But wait. Reading lotsofreports on the internet and considering the state of the economy, the costs of all of the items mentioned above will drop and they will drop significantly. I think I’ll hang on and see what happens in January.
Finally! A delicious plugin for Safari. DeliciousSafari even puts an icon on the toolbar to add a bookmark, including all the popular tags a particular entry has. To add icing to the cake, there’s a free iPhone App!
UPDATE: Ignore the iPhone App. On a uselessness scale of 1 to 10 it’s 9.99995. Delete.
What a great idea! You download the NumberKey connect software, download the App on your iPhone, et voilà! An external number pad for your MacBook Pro! And with skins to match your laptop. Now if there’s only a way to keep the iPhone 3G from bobbing around while I enter timecodes….
So we’ve been on a health kick for the past seven (l-o-o-o-n-g) weeks and we’re doing well. I think I have another couple of weeks to go and Gillian is half-way. I was browsing the App Store last week and chanced upon Weightbot. It’s a very simple program executed beautifully. Weightbot tracks your weight but uses some of the iPhone’s best capabilities to make it… fun!
It’s a big, BIG day for RED. The new cameras are just spectacular and game-changing. Infinitely modular, extremely adaptable, always upgradable.
I was going to write about the announcements in as much detail a I can, but Dorkman has already done that. His post captures the excitement and the disbelief. I mean, a 28K film camera? Huh? I thought 6K was the upper reaches!
So I’m now on my third new MacBook Pro. The first one had some communication issues (flaky Airport) and the second went nuclear-hot when it was in sleep mode whenever I put it in my bag. To be fair to Apple they swapped the laptops with new ones with no quibbles whatsoever. Thankfully, with Time Machine I picked up exactly where I left off.
Except I forgot to de-authorise iTunes on both old computers!
Last October, FXGuide had an interview with Grzegorz Jonkajtys about his short film The Ark which won Best of Show in Siggraph 2007. It took Jonkajtys 2 1/2 years to make the film whilst working on his day job at CafeFX.
I finally managed to watch the film online. I love the fact that it’s very dark and sombre and that feeling is constant throughout. The detail in the deep shadows is fantastic. The CG charaterisation and animation is extremely good and the matte paintings simply stunning.
Scientists showed it was possible to regenerate damaged optical nerves in mice by knocking out proteins that prevent nerve growth. Two weeks after their optic nerves were damaged half the nerves survived in mice given the treatment, against 20% in those which had not; and 10% of the treated mice showed significant regrowth.