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Saturday, February 28, 2015

Baguette French Toast Bake

I Am Not Spock, I Am Spock

Leonard Nimoy and the lasting dignity of being Spock.
Leonard Nimoy, who died Friday morning at 83 from obstructive pulmonary disease, also struggled for a while with the notion that no matter what else he did in his life and career (acting, directing, reciting “Desiderata”), he would always be Mr. Spock, the logically driven Vulcan he first played in the original “Star Trek” TV series nearly 50 years ago.

His first memoir was titled “I Am Not Spock.” Twenty years later (once the “Star Trek” movie franchise had validated his and his co-stars’ work and legitimized Trekdom for all) he wrote a second memoir, titled “I Am Spock.”
These books are going to get a lot more reads now.

Rest in Peace Leonard Nimoy.



Friday, February 27, 2015

Meerkat: Tweet Live Video from an iPhone.

Meerkat. Tweet Live Video.

LAUNCH Ticker reports:

Twitter-centric live video streaming app Meerkat launches on iOS; when user begins streaming, Twitter followers are notified & can click/tap through to view; followers w/ Meerkat installed get push notifications & can chat w/ other watchers; videos can be saved to phone but are not preserved by app

Just tried this out.

Very easy to get started live streaming.

When you start a live stream, it tweets out a link to your followers for you.



Oh but look, when you chat from the Meerkat iPhone app, each chat message gets sent out as a tweet.

Hi. ;-)

The interface looks like this on my iPhone:



...and it looks like this to viewers watching on a browser.



There's a 21 second delay.

The image on my iPhone is a nice tall rectangle in portrait mode, but when looking at the stream in a browser, it's a square.

Weird.

UPDATE - Asked on twitter and answered:




Your live stream does not get saved online, but you can save it to your camera roll.

Here's my live stream, uploaded to YouTube.



Audio here is not in sync. I wonder if the live stream was out of sync too.

iRig Mic HD. A digital microphone for your iPhone 6/6+

iRig Mic HD.



I had the analog version of this mic, and it did a great job for me over the years. No battery required and an easy connection with nothing to worry about. Until the audio quality failed on me on a recent trip.

So I decided to try this digital version of the iRig Mic which plugs into the digital input on iPhone 6, allowing me to plug headphones into the headphone jack of the iPhone. This let monitor audio quality in real time. I really did miss being able to do that with the old version of the mic.


Specs:
iRig Mic HD sports a 24-bit audiophile-grade A/D converter, a 44.1/48 kHz sampling rate and a low-noise/high-definition pre-amp.

- Affordable handheld digital condenser microphone for capturing audio on the go
- Plugs directly into the digital input on iPhone, iPad, iPod touch and Mac/PC via its included 1.5m (59”) Lightning and USB cables
- High-quality 24-bit, audiophile-grade A/D converter
- 44.1 - 48 kHz sampling rate
- Gain control with mutlicolor LED indicator
- Handheld design — also compatible with standard mic stands
- App/software bundle*, mic clip and carry bag included
- iRig Recorder, VocaLive and AmpliTube (iOS & Mac/PC versions) included
- Available in black or in an exclusive silver version (only available at the Apple Store)
- 30-pin cable available separately

Apps:
iRig MIC HD comes with a full suite of apps that let you start processing and editing vocals (or any other audio source) straight out of the box. iPhone, iPad and iPod touch users will enjoy: VocaLive FREE*, a real-time vocal effects processing and multitrack recorder app. iRig Recorder FREE*, a professional field recording and audio processing app. And AmpliTube FREE*, a recording and studio app that features stunningly realistic virtual models of some of the most desirable amps, cabinets and stompboxes of all time. iRig Mic HD also comes with the free version of AmpliTube for Mac and PC and many other powerful IK apps.

My test, recorded with VocaLive FREE, uploaded to Soundcloud.



Next test will be with iRig Recorder.

Recorded with iRig Recorder FREE, Uploaded at 192 kbps .m4a (stereo):


Oops. iRig Recorder Editing is an upgrade:


iRig Recorder Multiple upload quality formats:


Oops. Uploading a WAV file is an upgrade with iRig Recorder:



QUESTION: What App do you use to record AUDIO on an iPhone?

VocaLive:


VocaLive Filesharing:


I shared to Soundcloud. You have to sign in under the settings with a Soundclud username/password.

VocaLive Reverb:


Fun to play with.

Buy on Amazon.com (affiliate link):

IK Multimedia iRig Mic HD high-definition handheld microphone for iPhone iPad and Mac

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Mercedes-Benz of Burlington - Front Page Boston Globe

Luxury car dealers boost showroom amenities. Features Mercedes-Benz of Burlington. By Callum Borchers GLOBE STAFF FEBRUARY 25, 2015

At dealer Bernie Moreno’s Mercedes-Benz of Burlington, for instance, the cafe is next to a salon where customers can get free manicures and hair styling while their cars are in the shop. If routine maintenance is not done in 45 minutes, that work is free, too.

“If we can deliver value and speed — plus the experience — and the price difference is minimal, then the client comes back for everything, which is what we want,” (Bernie) Moreno said. “We want them to get used to coming here for anything that has to do with their car.”
It's exciting to see one of the companies that I have a financial interest in, featured on the front page of The Boston Globe.

Let me know if you are in the market for a new or certified pre-owned car, and I'll be happy to introduce you someone who can take care of you and give you a fair deal.

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Now You Can SAVE Your Snapchat Story

Wow.

Snapchat added a button that allows you to save your story, to your camera roll.


Now Snapchat is one of the easiest, real-time story telling tools around.



Saturday, February 14, 2015

Twitter Video, It's 30 Seconds.

I wanted to test out Twitter video to see how it might work for reporting.

I initially thought that it could hold 18 minutes of viddeo, but found out with this test that it only supports 30 seconds.



Very cool.

If I wanted a longer report, I'd have to put together a series of twitter video posts. A twitter video storm?

A viewer tweeted in that you can minimize the video, and it still plays, while you are scrolling through twitter posts.



Thanks Jon.

Friday, February 06, 2015

My Super Bowl - NFL Experience

As part of our trip with GMC to the Super Bowl, we went to the NFL experience.

I've been to the baseball Hall of Fame, and the NFL Experience is even better for kids. There's lots of stuff for them to do there, and we ended up doing a lot of it.

There was an exhibit where you could see how footballs got stitched up, and we examined these super bowl footballs very carefully.


We found these fans from New England, bring these GRONK signs to all the games, and they brought them down to the NFL Experience. We borrowed them for a second.

This guy drew my caricature, and I think it came out pretty well.

They also had a green screen where they could take a picture you, and then put it on the front about Madden NFL game. This one was fun.


We also grab some patriots Snickers Patriots candy.


Outside was an impressive lineup of GMC Yukon Denali's, each one with the team logo on the hood.


We're number one, we're number one, we're number one.


If you ever get the chance, the NFL Experience is a great thing to attend with families.




Created this video on an iPhone 6 in the GMC Yukon Denali and uploaded over the truck's WiFi.

Super Bowl Sunday – The Game

Heading into the game for Super Bowl Sunday where the Seattle Seahawks play the New England Patriots, was very exciting. As we entered the stadium and walk towards our seats the concourse was June packed with fans, many more Seahawks fans then patriots fans, and we had no idea how loud the crowd was going to get during the game.

We checked out a map of the stadium beforehand, and saw that we were going to be sitting in section 111, great seats. The game soon began. And the first quarter went by so fast we couldn't believe it when it was time for the second quarter.
Inside the stadium the crowd was electric, and the noise level was unbelievable, I've never been in the stadium so loud. We were told the Seahawks fans were loud, but this was the loudest I've ever heard a crowd. They had a chant, and it goes like this: Sea, Hawks, Sea, Hawks. Over and over again. Really loud.

Before we knew it the first half was winding down and the Patriots were ahead until at the very last minute, the Seahawks came back and tied the game going into halftime.

I took this opportunity to go to the restroom. In Boston, going to the restroom in stadiums has always been a fun challenge. Back in the old restrooms at Fenway Park, you'd go to the bathroom and what was something like a large horse trough, and when you couldn't go in front of other people that's called the Fenway freeze.

Well, in this restroom there were probably about 20 urinals all lined up and there  was about 10 guys waiting in line behind each one. While waiting, a really huge dude dressed up like some kind of monster screamed out SEA and hundred and 50 other guys in the restroom yelled back HAWKS. Over and over again.

Update: Found him while watching Inside the NFL.

Image: Courtesy Inside the NFL

I'm here. I was wearing my patriots T-shirt that said Gronking on the front of it and #gronking on the back. When it was my turn, and as time passed, the guys behind me started yelling what are you doing texting Gronk?, hurry up.

Oh man.

Back from this ordeal, it was time for the halftime show to start, and Katy Perry came out riding on top of a lion. Extremely impressive. Then the whole show went on and everybody in the crowd had a great time.

As you know, the second half was a back-and-forth battle, with ups and downs for both teams.

I purchased these in stadium headphones that allowed you to listen to the on-field announcer, or over the air broadcast, but the noise was so loud in the stadium that these headphones were almost useless.

Back-and-forth, back-and-forth, back-and-forth, it was fun sitting next to Seattle fans as the game changed.

Our friends held up there lucky Penny, to give Seattle some luck, and then as the tide turned, I held up my lucky $10 bill that I found, and the tide turned the Patriots way.

They got nervous when Tom Brady got the ball at the end of the game and drove in to score giving them the lead.

Then Seattle drove down and in the final seconds many miracles happen, and in the end, The Patriots won. It was one of the most exciting games in Super Bowl history, and we were so happy and excited to be there, and celebrate with the patriots as they got the Super Bowl trophy present been in the post game celebration.



Thanks again to GMC for bringing us to the game as their guests, and letting us share the experience with our followers on social media.



Super Bowl - NFL Tailgate

I'm a huge fan of the Patriots, so I was totally psyched for game day on Super Bowl Sunday. 

It was fun to be a guest of GMC as a #VIPwithGMC, on our way to the game, in GMC Yukon Denalis. We got to the stadium and entered the NFL tailgate.

Before I tell you about the NFL tailgate, let me tell you about my expectations for University of Phoenix Stadium. When I heard we were going to University of Phoenix Stadium, I wondered, how could they be having the Super Bowl in the college stadium, that makes no sense. How could they upgrade stupid college stadium into a Super Bowl class stadium?

Well when I got there and saw how awesome it was, I was informed that University of Phoenix is an online university, doesn't have a campus, and is just the sponsor of the stadium, University of Phoenix has no football team. Ha ha ha Ha ha ha Ha ha ha.

Note: we were there with other guests of GMC, and one of them found a penny on the ground, he shoved it in my face and said look at this, we are lucky we can know when it's a lucky penny! Soon after as I was walking towards the stadium, I found a $10 bill, I picked it up and I was so excited, I said, look a much more lucky the Patriots are than the Seahawks,

Now, we entered the NFL tailgate, and it was unbelievable. The NFL transform a vacant lot into a luxury experience for invited guests. There were food stations all around, and in the middle was entertainment by that guy who plays strings in the air, but I think I saw on america's got talent.

It was a main stage two, where Gavin Degraw played, and then Dierks Bentley. Really great shows by two country artists I wasn't totally familiar with before I saw them live here. Now I'm a fan, what a great show they both put on.

If the only thing we did that day was hang out at the NFL Tailgate, I would've been happy, it was probably one of the best corporate run events I've ever been to, and the weather was perfect. Next up onto the Super Bowl.

Walking towards the stadium, that was a huge number of Seahawks fans in game jerseys. Seattle is closer to Phoenix so it was an easier commute for Seahawks fans, as patriots fans were definitely outnumbered. 

Next up, the game.