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So what?s the story with wires? You know, cords.

The other day I had to move my monitor off the top of my computer to put in some more RAM (yay a gig now), & then after getting everything to work again & back where it was supposed to be, noticed my desktop speakers weren?t working.


The stereo hook up, all speakers, living room, dining room, kitchen, & back porch are all working when tested, just no desktop. What the hell is up with that?

OK, I figure a jack must have come unplugged. No problem, I?ll just plug it back in. Well I decide to leave it to the morning, right before work, when I figure a few seconds, a minute at most.


I shift my monitor move my box a bit, & peer behind the machine. What greets my eyes? A tangled mass of wires that defies description! It?s incredible! How did this happen? I mean, when I added things, when I last ?hooked things up? everything was organized! I can play music from my computer to the home stereo, to any room (or porch) I have speakers. I can rip MP3s from my turntable, I can play my I-pod through it all. I can do ANYTHING audio! How did they inexplicably tangle themselves into the most incredible knot of twisted interlaced confused wires ever to meet the human eye?

THAT is the question!

I mean, I DID have all this stuff organized. It was supposed to be just sitting there. I have to move the monitor a bit more to get at them a bit better?.SHIT?that unplugs some more things! I can?t find the ends! I search & search, I use a flashlight, I crawl under the desk, and I look & look no ends! I try moving my headset in & out of the wires, it catches on everything & eventually breaks off the earpiece. CRAP! I have to actually cut the headset wire to get it untangled. Scratch one headset. Oh well, I didn't use it much anyway I guess! It?s hot, the sweat is pouring off me, I only have a few minutes before I have to leave for work, and my shirt is soaked. (Imagine the angst here!!!!!)

Well, Fuck it, I go & change my shirt & then I have to go off to work. One last quick look first though?well, there it is! The errant plug; just off floor level. I plug it in & problem solved. WHEW. At least I don?t have to brew about it until lunchtime when I can try & fix it again.

OK, so what happened? I had a perfectly wired system, no problems, that turned into an unbeliebably tangled mess. How did this happen? I?m convinced that they try & breed at night, their sweaty wire skins rubbing against each other in their wire sex throes, twisting & winding until they can?t move any more. Or they conspire to make the most impenetrable morass of knotted hell that is imaginable & do it surreptitiously when you?re not looking.

Either that or its aliens.

Filed under General, Sep 16, 2005


Flickr Badge


More flickr stuff. Theres? this really cool add on program thingy that lets you show off your photos using Java script.. Here it is?

This is a Flickr badge showing public photos from redmann. Make your own badge here.
Cool eh?

It's supposed to go through your entire photo stream, but I don't think it does. All I've seen is the last 20 or so. Still, it's a pretty nice little gizmo!

Filed under General, Sep 15, 2005


Photoshop - The Dark Side

Photoshop is a program that manipulates digital images to the Nth degree. You can make a picture into just about anything you want. You can turn a photograph into something that doesn?t even resemble the original. Is this a good thing, or an evil force to be reckoned with?

Surfing on flickr, my favorite photo sharing site, I?ve noticed many images manipulated with this program. Some to the detriment of the shot by rank amateurs of the program; others skillfully crafted & enhanced to make an incredible image. My question is, is this still a photograph, or now just a computer generated image?

I guess part of the beauty of digital photography is that you can do this. Still, on one hand you have a photo with great composition that can be made better, on the other you have crap that is manipulated to the point where it resembles something else. Is this still crap, or all of a sudden ?art? ?

You have the question of enhancement, to rid the shot of small flaws, or gross manipulation to change the image completely. Is this the Dark Side of photoshop? How far do you go?

Pictures, art, or just crap?

After seeing some of the beautiful enhancements, I?m tempted to go over to the ?Dark Side? and learn this program. However, will I then I cease to be a photographer, and become more of a computer software user or photo manipulator?

Help me Obi-Wan?.you?re my only hope?

Filed under General, Sep 12, 2005



Tags. More about Flickr

What exactly are tags anyway? In this context, they are words added to a photograph to help describe it. You know, where it was taken, what the subject matter is, type of camera, lens, etc. etc. They help people find pictures of a particular subject or venue

There?s a recent phenomenon that kind of bugs me, a lot, so I thought I?d rant about it.

The current trend is to ?tag? your shot with your screen name?thereby attracting people to your shot because it was taken by you. How fucking pretentious! Gag me! Lets make mediocre shots taken by a popular person even more popular. THAT alone made me write this, it crossed the line of what I could take before I had to vent. Give me a fucking break will ya? I mean, if people want to find a picture by that person, they?ll go to the photo stream, what do you need to tag it with your name for? I notice it more & more, even from talented photographers. It?s becoming sort of a sub group of the clique phenomenon.

I figure, in the end, no matter the hits, comments or faves, if it?s crap, it?s crap, if it?s good, it?s good.

Filed under General, Sep 11, 2005



You know what?

I?m on this really fantastic photo-sharing site. I mean it?s awesome. But there are some things that kinda bug me about it. I can?t really say anything in any forums, because there?s the whole censure thing & getting kicked out of groups & offending people & upsetting others & so on & so on. But you know what? Catharsis I think. Isn?t that what a blog is all about?

So, I have contacts, friends, am in a bunch of groups where I post my photos where relevant, check out others & I take a whole pile of shots with a bunch of different cameras & lenses. Last month I took over 800. I only post the good ones, or at least, the ones I think are worthy of posting.

Before I start my rant, let me say that there are a ton of extremely talented photographers on the web site. There are some amazing shots, lots of them, lots too that are acknowledged by their peers. I am humbled by their greatness...BUT there are some really shit shots out there. Real crap you know? Garbage. Crapola. Stuff anyone could take with an instamatic camera. Although there are some great shots with camera phones, fantasitic composition, but there's alot of no talent stuff. Household snaps...mediocre snaps, you know? It's a real melting pot.

That said, some mediocre stuff has become a popularity contest. How much talent does it take to point an automatic camera at a flower & press a button? (Yes, I?ve done it!) There are thousands of these shots on this site. There are a TON of groups dedicated to this type of shot. It appears this type of shot is immensely popular. Some are worthy, but many are completely banal yet get hits & comments galore. I guess it's a soft spot for alot of folks. BUT, no matter the subject, why do many mediocre shots in ANY category get hundreds of hits & dozens of comments? Why do absolutely brilliant shots (hundreds of others I?ve seen by other photographers), perfectly executed, fantastic composition, amazing subject matter, awesome results, get few hits or comments? Don?t get me wrong; I?ve had my share of successes. But a virus is diluting merit.


Yup. ?In-groups?. Little knots of individuals that cater to each other?s photo streams regardless of merit.

There was a ?contest? a short while ago, where people were ?recognized? (by what critical body? I don?t know?In case you were wondering I was nominated in two of the dozens & dozens of categories but I withdrew from the contest because of all the bullshit) for ?excellence? in their field. Well, it became a heyday. Some folks were actively trolling for votes, others gratuitously voted for their friends, and in one case I know of, someone was forcibly removed from the voting process because of their dissenting opinions. Now THAT?S democracy!

I think that happened in Germany in the 1930s.

But the real thorn here is the clique. It kinda reminds me of high school. If you?re not in the ?in? group?forget about being acknowledged. Many talented photographers, are being ignored. Don?t get me wrong, I?m in my own little ?clique? I suppose, with folks who enjoy my shots & regularly comment or look, & I look and comment on theirs with great regularity but that doesn?t stop me from ranting about the phenomenon?

Filed under General, Sep 9, 2005

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