Saturday, 28 June 2008

Update Plus Hoodie!

Two weeks ago I was in the thick of end-of-semester silliness. The entire time I assured myself that I'd get right back into doing all my web stuff once it was over because, surely, with no assignments to do I would have oodles of free time.

But no! No! The world does not work in this way - no matter how much I would like it to. I think my friends and I have been so relieved that the semester is over we've gone and celebrated its end more times than I can count. Starbucks has done well out of this arrangement: my coffee consumption is actually higher now than it was when frantic loose ends had to be tied.

Well of course celebrating only takes up the night time hours of my day, which I can't really use for filming anyway because my camera does not deal with murky environments very well. What have I been doing with the useful light-filled hours?

Well apart from sleeping (with which I love to fill the late mornings), I've been filling my mind with lots of witty, clever things. This is one of my favourite things to do with my time, and I look forward to being able to do it more often.

Speaking of which, I've just finished reading Alice's Adventures in Wonderland. I'm wondering if I should go on to read Through the Looking Glass, or if I should give nonsense literature a rest for now and read something like Slaughterhouse Five or Catcher in the Rye. Oh the choices - they are legion.

Also I have come to acquire a hoodie. Here is the photographic evidence:

Please excuse me; my exceptionally well-read and super-fashionable self has to go finish his quest to read every John Green blog entry in the world ever. Then he has to do the same with Maurneen Johnson.

And yes, they did get two links in this post. I feel like they deserve it.


Friday, 20 June 2008

It Is Accomplished

Last day of semester today! Aaaaaaah so excited!

But you know what sucks? I finished one of my assignments with half an hour to spare (a whole half hour!) And then it wouldn't upload to the server. Sad faces all 'round. Good thing my lecturer is an understanding guy. I'll upload it later on today after I've slept. You know, seeing as it's one in the morning.

By the way, it's taken me a while to put it up, but this picture is the best ever:

Also, if you haven't added the Virtual Bookshelf application on Facebook I'm telling you to do it NAOW or else I'll book your face off:

See what I did there? I... you know... face...

Do it.

Tuesday, 17 June 2008

Books > CDs

This post is about books, or more specifically, what the music industry can learn from the book industry. (Is that the name the book industry is actually called? Or is it, like, the publishing industry?)

What I think is interesting about the music industry is that at the moment they get really pissed off when you take the music without paying for it. If you illegally download a song the record companies and usually the artists themselves get really mad at you and threaten never to make music ever again. Ever. Because the downloading makes them poor. Apparently.

Not that I've ever actually had anyone famous yell at me for stealing music, although I have read those notices they put on CDs saying 'downloading music has the same effect as stealing it from a store'. This confuses because if I'm reading the inside of the CD I've obviously bought the music and haven 't downloaded it at all. Why are they telling me this?


The people who write books are usually really pleased when people steal their stuff. Not steal-steal, but on the whole authors just love libraries and second-hand bookstores to bits. I kind-of-sort-of knew this before today, but I had my suspicions confirmed when I watched this old Brotherhood 2.0 video:

Quote of the day: "How are people supposed to afford to buy everything they want to read?"

Because I am a clever-dick, I would like to apply this logic to the music industry:

How are people supposed to afford to buy everything they want to listen to?"

Today's authors have obviously grown up accepting the fact that libraries and second-hand bookstores exist and are very useful to their users, even if they deny a bit of revenue to the people who write the books. People who like to write books also like to use libraries. Today, a paperback book costs around the same as a new CD, only to download a song is illegal but to borrow a book (or to buy an on-sold one from a book exchange, which gives no money to the author) is not.

So in ten year's time, won't musicians who have grown up accepting 'illegal' downloads be just as happy to have their work available for free as well as in a format where the user has to pay?

Authors do not make a lot of money. Popular musicians do (I stress popular). A lot of money. So do the record companies. Allowing free downloads might make being Britney Spears a lot less glitzy, but maybe that's okay.

Should record companies move toward becoming more like publishing houses?


Monday, 16 June 2008

Subscriber Bankruptcy

I'm declaring subscriber bankruptcy. I just cannot thank all these people with all the YouTube errors and CAPTCHA codes they make you do. No. No no no.

I promise I'll stop talking about YouTube for a long, long time after this. I've got to write some posts for my technology blog called Neobabbage that I'm doing for uni - I might mirror them here?

Sunday, 15 June 2008

How To Say Hi To hayleyghoover

Talking about subscriber numbers is kind of like talking about how much money you have - people without much tend to resent it. But please, please allow me to tell you a story so self-indulgent I had sworn that I wouldn't actually ever tell it in blog form.

My excuse for posting it is I might want a record one day about what went down. Please accept it. I'm not trying to gloat or anything - I'm just stoked and want to tell someone!

In January I discovered hayleyghoover via the fiveawesomegirls channel. I enjoyed her videos so much it blew my mind into a million little pieces. Six months later I collected enough of those pieces to kick things into gear and make a fan video:

About two days after I posted it, Hayley found-slash-was notified of it and very kindly put my video on her front page:


Hayley is not a YouTube partner, so my video wasn't autoplaying in her channel and people had to manually click 'play' in order to watch it (however, it did autoplay for a day or two on chrisontv88's channel). After Hayley put it up the views skyrocketed and the new subscribers poured in like a Hayley fan club parade had just marched through my living room.

Then she went to London.

I have no idea whether she meant to leave my video up or if she forgot and just hasn't or can't change it because she's away. Either way, my video is still up there and the subscribers are still marching their way around my house. It's all a bit overwhelming really.

It's not over. As you can see from this graph, the views on that video have peaked but haven't quite settled off into a nice, comfortable tail yet either.

So thank you Hayley very much for humouring a crazy fanboy. Also great thanks go to all my new subscribers and visitors - there hasn't been a single hater amongst you.

Friday, 13 June 2008

What Is Your Ultimate Goal?

Yesterday at uni my lecturer asked me an interesting question: "In a world where everything goes your way, what do you want to be when you 'grow up?'"

This lecturer is one of my favourites because he takes such interest in his students and he hates to see people settle for second best. This is actually a question he asks in all his lectures every week - different students each time.

I told him that I'm studying to become an English/Media Studies teacher. He asked me if that was my most ultimate goal in life. I had to admit to myself that no, I'd never really wanted to be a teacher 'when I grew up'. It was always a career option for me. Both my parents are teachers, for example.

He asked me what my most ultimate goal was, and I avoided the question. I guess I was embarrassed. I thought I had me figured out but I didn't.

Then as I was driving in my car I remembered a video posted by Maureen Johnson where she interviewed fellow author Libba Bray. Even though neither author really writes the kind of fiction I'm into (although in writing this post I discovered Maureen's delightful blog!), I was impressed. Lookey:

I wanted to be an author! (The specifics of the epiphany are outlined in a tweet I posted)

Also in the same car ride, a remix of the Dr Who theme came on Triple J!

Teaching is still something I'm going to do. I don't think the year I will spend getting qualified will be wasted. But writing is something I'm definitely going to put more deliberate effort into.

Then I will move to New York and live in the YA Mansion.

This is going to rule.

SO! In a world where everything goes your way, what do you want to do with your life? What's really stopping you from fulfilling that dream right now?

Monday, 2 June 2008

Pictures With Hitler

They want to put an Adolf Hitler wax figure in the Madame Tussauds wax museum in Berlin.

Johannes Tuchel says "young people could try to take pictures with Hitler."

It is my firm opinion that taking pictures with wax-Hitler must be avoided at all costs. Unless it is halted we'll soon have a spate of wax-Hitler pictures popping up all over Germany.

Children will put it on their lunchboxes and that sort of thing. They will say "when I grow up I want to be like wax-Hitler." Then wax-Hitler could get possessed by aliens and brainwash the minds of the children from his base in Antarctica where he keeps all his UFOs.

Won't somebody think of the children?!

I know for a fact that if wax-Hitler actually was possessed by Nazi-sympathising aliens, the first thing he'd do is kill wax-Churchill. Where would we be without wax-Churchill? Under the wax-Reich, that's where.

It's genuinely mortifying.

PS: In regards to my last post, I wasn't having a go at you Anonymous. I'm not sure if you thought I was or I wasn't. Anyway, sometimes my posts are done tongue-in-cheek. Thanks for reading and commenting =)

PPS: Jeshua! I love that you read my blog, but it would help if you actually read my blog. I explained your involvement in the creation of Black Duck in a fair bit of detail in the seminal post about Black Duck.