March 27, 2009
Taking Notes Hostage
It all begins with the same step whether it is a blog article, a short story, a novel, a movie, a song, or a role-playing game session. It can be on paper, in a text file, or just sitting there in the brain waiting for the right time. It can be short and sweet, or long and convoluted. It can come all on in an instant or take time to form. It can be left the way it was when it was first considered and put down or it can be expanded on for a long time. It can be the full idea or just a fragment. It can be used as is in the middle of things or only as a rough tangent. What is it? A note. It should be differentiated from a simple reminder. It can be wholly from recollection, and creativity, or it can involve research. A good one is liable to be on more than one topic, or at least cover that topic to some depth.
Great creative projects require great notes. The larger the project the larger the note or the more numerous they are. There's something of an art to great notes. Notes have to express the right ideas. They can state facts, set the ball rolling on speculation, and by all means consider the topic(s) from several directions. This is just the beginning of a look at making great notes from top to bottom starting with four articles. Each spawns a number of ideas. They connect up in both direct ways, and with outside input, indirect ways. The topics are interesting and speak to a certain aesthetic and bear general importance to a specific project even if they might not directly become a part of it. It is enough that they may inspire or give a level of understanding to the project's subject matter.
Music: Like a Knife in the Back by Twisted Sister.
March 20, 2009
A Little Bird Told Me
It's been something of a week. On one hand a lot of nothing went on, on the other a lot of ideas, information, and general data have flowed through my eyes into my brain. First I want to point people in the direction of Jon F. Merz (available at www.twitter.com/jonfmerz ) who kicked off a great idea on Twitter called Thoughtful Thursday. Check out the group, join it, post your Twitter link on the wall and join us next Thursday. Last week's blog post came about as a result of the admittedly awesome torrent of posts on Twitter (known as tweets if you're not hip to our jive already). Tonight I thought I would get into it a bit regarding just what I do with that flood of information. Hopefully it will be of some interest. Like everything it's a learning experience.
First let me tell you about how I use Twitter. As with the rest of my life I have a number of different focuses on Twitter. There's writing, role-playing games and horror fandom. This came from Facebook actually, but someone pointed out an illuminating article about how "fan" is a four-letter word with which horror professionals refuse to be saddled. I've seen sheep with LED vests make art on darkened fields. I pulled three articles out for my Thursday TechStop, two of them related and the third tied back to last Friday's Inchoate Ascendant. I have three articles already for the next TechStop which will tie in with next week's Inchoate and hopefully result also in the first of the "Deeper" looks I've previously mentioned.
Music: Peace Sells by Megadeth.
March 13, 2009
Everybody's Going Info-Surfing
In most circles I'm often the first person to admit that I'm insanely busy. For ages now people have been saying that they have too much information. Going back to 1999 even Quiet Riot sang about it. That's how much there was then! It's been a long time since then. A recent video detailing the past 5,000 days of the Internet (13 and a bit years) revealed some absolutely staggering numbers about the amount of information flying around even just daily. Think about how much goes on at a person-to-person level on your favourite social network site, like the one you're reading this on right now. Now, add to that notes, blogs, and articles like this one. Pile on that the links to articles that your friends post on their profiles and send to yours. What about what you and they don't read/post?
How many people are on multiple social network sites? Do you have a number of them, and email only contacts, and IM friends, and how about Twitter? Do you get newsletters in your inbox? How many? How many email addresses do you have? I for one have enough data flow that if I printed it all out I could bury a small nation with it. The fun part of course is that I contribute to the pile quite vigorously and I run in the same circles as a lot of other generators. It only gets worse when the information spawns inspections, retrospections, and general commentary about the information, which leads to examinations of the people and processes of examining the information floating out there. The point to all this? It's like a wave, you have to take it, ride it, and try not to wipe out too often.
Music: Mr. Popeil by Weird Al Yankovic.
March 6, 2009
Great Striding Progress Cluster
This week has seen a lot of success for me in getting things done and out there that have been in the planning stages for weeks. First up I have upgraded the Horror Cares gadget to include all of my regular charity apps at Facebook. On the software end of that Iíve streamlined my process of updating the numbers as well. In a few more days I should have the gadget available to be added to anyoneís site. There is still no decision yet on gathering numbers from other people. Suggestions are still welcome.
Iíve added Google Friend Connect to several pages at Battered Spleen Productions. The front page has a membersí gadget, and the bar at the bottom has a link to a membersí window. With Google Friend connect people can sign in with their Google, Yahoo, AIM or OpenID account and join my site. The current level of set up I have on Battered Spleen shows member and site activity and allows for commenting and conversations. Comments can even have attached video. People can also invite their friends to join the site. There are several gadgets that can be added. Time will tell what if any of those get added.
Itís been a long time coming. Battered Spleen Productions is now selling shirts from my new site with CafePress. There are two different models in white. There are also four models of shirts for Horror Cares, two white, two black. Buying a Horror Cares shirt has no direct link to any kind of charity yet, however if Battered Spleen can start making enough income I want to set up donations to a charity that provides clean drinking water to disadvantaged areas. To that end I will track all sales and each Horror Cares shirt sale will count toward the donation. I hope the promise of help and the idea that all sales will help keep me in business is enough. Fans of the Battered Spleen Grotesquerie will soon be able to buy shirts and other merchandise bearing one of their favourite images.
Music: Rocket by Def Leppard.
Name: Robert G. Male
Location: Ontario, Canada
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