Saturday, September 12, 2009

Blog #105: Visual and Video Time!


President Barack Obama hit one out of the park last Wednesday evening before the joint houses of Congress. And what a pleasure it is to have a president who can both reason, and articulate with passion. Way to go, U.S.

One More Thing . . .

Excellent advice for the Obama administration from Bill Maher.

The Wrath of the Web

By calling President Obama a liar in a joint session of Congress South Carolina’s Joe Wilson earned himself thousands of tweets on Twitter. Courtesy MC Siegler of Tech Crunch, here are a few: “Joe Wilson Spit In Your Beer”, “Joe Wilson Used Your Tax Dollars To Pay His Medical Bills”, and “Joe Wilson Hit Your Car In The Parking Lot And Drove Off Without Leaving A Note”. Then of course they veer into the humorously absurd: “Joe Wilson Ate The Last Slice Of Pizza”, “Joe Wilson Hit On Your Mom”, and our personal favorite, “Joe Wilson Shit In Your Kitchen.” You can discover more when you point your browser here

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He-e-e’s B-a-a-a-a-c-c-c-k!

As I’m sure that all who are interested already know this, Steven P. Jobs was back at the helm of Apple’s music event in San Francisco last Wednesday, Sept. 9. “I’m vertical, I’m back at Apple and I’m loving every day of it,” Jobs said after a rousing standing ovation from the crowd of Apple employees and journalists, who were gathered for the announcement of new products and services related to music.

Sounding just a bit hoarse, Mr. Jobs began the event by discussing the very personal matter of his liver transplant. “I’m very happy to be here, and thank you all,” he said. “As some of you know, five months ago I had a liver transplant. I now have the liver of a mid-20s person who died in a car crash and was generous enough to donate their organs. I wouldn’t be here without such generosity, so I hope all of us can be as generous and elect to be organ donors.” The event consisted of refreshing the iPod line and the look and feel of the iTunes store. And well, if we weren’t the first place you heard it from, I’m pretty well sure we’ll be the last.

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This week’s Blog – Visual with Video

This week we’ve decided to turn our blog into a visual and video showcase. We’ve collected some truly memorable photos and videos for your gratification, and the only question is where to begin. Well, since September 9th marked the release of Rock Band, Beatles edition, and that memorable date also saw the cd release of the entire remastered Beatles catalog, but not the release of the Beatles catalog on iTunes, we figure what better way to begin our video edition than with those very same Beatles. This clip is from their famous Rooftop Concert, which ironically turned out to be their last live performance as a group. The song “I’ve Got a Feeling” is only one click away. (And thanks to the magic of YouTube, if one Beatles song isn’t enough for you, you can access Don’t Let Me Down, Git Back and One After 909 and more from the thumbnails floating at the bottom of the final screen.)§

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The Sweet Smile of a Winner!

At the 2009 U.S. Open in Flushing Meadows, Queens, 17 year old Melanie Oudine celebrated a victory over her third Russian conquest of the 2009 U.S. Open, 9th seeded Nadia Petrova. She had previous wins over No. 4 Elena Dementieva and No. 29 Maria Sharapova. "You don't know if she's winning or losing," said her father, John. "She doesn't seem nervous out there — and I don't know where that came from." Ms. Oudine’s magical run ended Wednesday evening under the lights, as she lost to the world’s highest ranked teenager, Caroline Wozniacki of Denmark.§

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And as Monty Python used to say:
“And Now for Something Completely Different!”

And how different can we be as next we offer you a preview of the new film from our favorite documentary film maker, Michael Moore, he of Bowling for Columbine, Fahrenheit 9/11, and Sicko fame. His new movie, opening soon in a Multiplex near you, is called: Capitalism – A Love Story.

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Is Apple’s iPhone a Legitimate Musical Instrument?

That sleek Apple iPhone is a full fledged computer which can wirelessly access the internet, store and play music like an iPod, and, of course, make phone calls. But when Apple opened up the platform to allow developers to create applications for it, it became truly a jack of all trades. And developers have come through with thousands of programs. This week we look at two videos displaying some fascinating apps which turn the iPhone into a serious musical instrument. The first video combines nine musical apps, and in the second one noted keyboardist Jordan Rudess demonstrates one iPhone app, Bebot.

From the San Francisco Chronicle, Sept. 7, 2009:

The open development platform and touch-screen technology of the devices have spawned a flurry of new musical instruments and tools: digital synthesizers, samplers, drum machines, vocal tuners and even a trombone you play by blowing into the microphone (the latter two were both created by Smule of Menlo Park).

Words can only convey so much about the new applications and how they're being used, so we decided to share our favorites among the many videos out there showing IPhone musicians doing what they do.

This first clip demonstrates what can happen when you get nine IPhone musical apps playing together at the same time: Melodica, Easy Guitar, NLog Synth Free, iRockGuitar Lite, Mobilesynth, Drum Kit Lite, Kalimba Free, Junglist Lite and Bebot.§

Hidan - Timeline Music for iPhone from Paul Higham on Vimeo.

Jordan Rudess, the world-renowned keyboardist of Dream Theater, has made a fascinating video showing of some of the capabilities of one particular iPhone musical app. It is called Bebot, and it is calculated to amaze when you click the arrow below.§

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The Stark Look of Terror

Is it a horse? Or a donkey? At any rate it conjures up a look of sheer terror on the face of the unknown boy in this picture. Since he remains close to the enraged animal one must assume that like a good boy he has his seat belt on. But we bet he wishes he didn’t. – Photo from§

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A Peek at a Camera of Tomorrow

Isn’t that amazing? Imagine being able to refocus the camera after the picture is taken? And to compensate for light and dark extremes while the picture is still inside the camera? The guys in the lab can do it now, in their “Franken-camera.” The question, will the Japanese (and German) camera makers begin to include programable capabilities into our cameras of the future?§

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Mind Boggling Robotics

Isn’t it amazing what they are doing in robotics these days? This video, sent to us by Daniel Badeaux of Seattle, WA., shows some of the incredible things robots are capable of these days.§

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Photoshopping a Lie

We dedicate the publication of this ridiculous but compelling example of a Photoshopped photo to Fox News’ pillar of irresponsibility, Glen Beck. Mr. Beck recently caused the resignation of an Obama staffer named Van Jones because of a petition he had signed some years ago which had accused the Bush/Cheney administration of deliberating causing 9/11 to happen in order to facilitate the war in Iraq and Afghanistan.

One could make a reasonable case for Bush/Cheney not paying proper attention to a clear warning it had received well before 9/11, but accusing them of maliciously making it happen is about as stupid as are those right wing nut jobs like Mr. Beck who are spreading lies about Obama and his Health Care Reform. However, stupid or no, the rumor about Bush did take flight, and the photo shown above was created by someone to illustrate the lie of Bush/Cheney deliberately causing 9/11. Note the really malicious smiles on all three, Rumsfield, Cheney, and Bush. It is a rather crude example of the power of Photoshopping several photos together, but we have to admit it made its point. While we would normally not publish such a bald-face lie, these days the way the right wing is freewheeling absurd lies about President Obama, we said, “what the hell?,” and decided to run with it, with a dedication to Fox’s lamest of the lame, Glen Beck. – Photo from§

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And so the video and photography edition of the Little Eddy blog winds down and fades into the sunset. We hope you found something of interest in this week’s offering.

Next week, who knows? Maybe no videos. Maybe more interminable rants concerning Little Eddy Pet Peeves. We never know in advance. Like you, we’ll have to return next week to find out. Meantime, we hope something in this week’s offering made your journey here worth your while. And do come back next week to check out what we have been up to by then. Bye now.§

The Real Little Eddy,

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