And so I'm back… *

Back less than a day and already my calendar is filling up. Hey, it’s not my fault I’m popular. Right? In the week I was gone not a lot happened really, the holiday was good but nothing to write home about, so I didn’t. That plus the fact that we’d have been home before any postcard arrived. Suffice to say that there was a lot of sitting around in the sun, a few meals out (including one gorgeous fillet steak that I struggled to finish and cost all of … £14? would’ve cost me at least £20 here…) and I chipped into the Spanish economy as best I could via the golden nectar that is San Miguel (which shouldn’t really …

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Camtasia

Back from a week in Spain (weather was lovely, as was the cerveza and tapas!) I’ve taken some time to look into some suggestions for screen recording. Part of the developer community website we have was always aimed at providing online video tutorials showing the latest features. However we’ve had acres of issues getting these produced. The recording usually goes ok but editing them and getting them into a format that is acceptable for the website seemed to be causing us problem after problem. Having checked out all three suggestions, Wink, Demobuilder and Camtasia Studio I have to admit (and you’ve probably already guessed from the title of this post) that Camtasia Studio blew me away. It’s a very slick …

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Versions

I’m not sure if this is a good thing or not. I’m not sure if I’m about to completely humiliate and embarass myself. Or (I hope) this is another one of those things that everyone else does but that we just don’t talk about. No, not picking your nose… I adapt who I am depending on who I am with. The most obvious change is when I’m in a heavily alpha male environment, where I become a lot louder, more forceful and laddish (aka “non-politicially correct) behaviour is not only pushed to the fore but heavily encouraged and instigated. In less intimidating surroundings I become the joker, eager to make people laugh, possibly eager to gain some level of acceptance …

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Because they must

A couple wander through quiet streets and in the darkened night of early winter a storm creeps in overhead. The wind dashes leaves and litter against buildings, rattles them off glass, heralding the change. Swirling eddies race each other across puddles and fingers of icy cold wriggle through gaps in clothing. They pull their jackets tighter, clinging to each other in warm embrace. They should be inside, they know, but on they walk. Braver now than before, happier and content with each other, relishing raw emotions that still sting as pellets of rain splatter their faces. They knew this was coming, they knew the forecast, but still found themselves eager to be outside. Neither fully understand why but press on …

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Because they must

A couple wander through quiet streets and in the darkened night of early winter a storm creeps in overhead. The wind dashes leaves and litter against buildings, rattles them off glass, heralding the change. Swirling eddies race each other across puddles and fingers of icy cold wriggle through gaps in clothing. They pull their jackets tighter, clinging to each other in warm embrace. They should be inside, they know, but on they walk. Braver now than before, happier and content with each other, relishing raw emotions that still sting as pellets of rain splatter their faces. They knew this was coming, they knew the forecast, but still found themselves eager to be outside. Neither fully understand why but press on …

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Red Bull

Is Red Bull the Marmite of my generation? Although strictly speaking, Marmite is the Marmite of our generation but bear with me here… Red Bull, that sickly sweet, caffeinated drink, the one that gives you WINNGGSSS, seems to be increasingly popular. Particularly when mixed with vodka. Standing at the bar the other night instead of vodka and coke, the tipple of choice for the 30-somethings of the evening appeared to be, almost exclusively vodka and red bull. As an aside, why is the alcoholic part of a mixed drink always first? You don’t order a Tonic and Gin, do you? Hmmmm. Where was I? Ohh yes, Red Bull. Six cans of Red Bull (no vodka) got me through an overnight …

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Teaching Demos

Taking a break from the Author-it, I’ve been playing with WINK, an open source tutorial and presentation authoring software. It’s quite nice but unfortunately I’ve been having issues getting the recorded presentations rendered into Flash. So I’ve started to look about for other options, but there are so many options out there that I’m a little befuddled and overwhelmed. We want to record some presentations that show off the new features in our product. A few of our developers have given a few of these to internal staff, but I want to get them recorded and viewable online in our development community website. Getting the recording software to do what we want is proving the biggest obstacle though, so it’s …

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I AM A WINNER!

In January 2007 a website I designed was launched. The mission of the website was to highlight great writing on personal blogs; to draw attention to blogs that you might not have heard of before; and to point you to one absolute guaranteed humdinger of a blog post, once a week, every week. One year and several months later, I’ve been honoured to be the Post of the Week. I’m hugely flattered given the quality of the other nominations, although there is part of me that wonders what took so long! I highly recommend you head over to the Post of the Week website to check out the other nominations from last week and all of the previous winners, the …

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Dear President Obama

Dear President Obama, originally uploaded by Gordon. There is a Flickr group where you can post a message to President (elect) Obama. But what to say? I’m not sure what kind of job he will do as President, he’s inheriting one helluva mess, but that’s almost secondary to the fact that he was elected in the first place. One thing at a time and all that. With that in mind, there really was only one message to send with the hope that “We hold these truths to be self-evident: that all men are created equal.”.

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