Sharing is Caring

Realistically I am open to any kind of way to share my blog’s material! What I’ve realized from doing the social media for my band is that the possibilities to get our music out there is really limitless. I know many bands that do not utilize social media to the best of their abilities, meanwhile we’re on close to a dozen different social media sites. There are generally different demographics on each site, to an extent, so we are expanding our reach in multiple ways at once (to more people and to different kinds of people).

With respect to my blog, some posts may be more fitting for Twitter, or some for Facebook or Instagram. That is something that whoever were to share the information can decide. When we post something for the band, we’ve noticed that Instagram and Twitter posts do better if they are simple and easy to follow. With Facebook, we’re given some extra space to write a bit more (which kind of makes sense by the way people utilize those sites). If people want to share posts on my blog by any means they are most familiar with, that’d be great! (I’d even settle for smoke signals or carrier pigeons, if that’s what they’re into.)

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Office Space

So, my GoAnimate experience went a little differently than expected.

After putting a nice chunk of time into creating this:

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I realized I used a theme that was a business model only and so I’d have to pay for a subscription in order to save it! But it fit so perfectly with the scene I was using.

I tried with a different theme, the Comedy Cartoon one:

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And it didn’t take me long to realize it wasn’t going to work out. The closest character I could use looked more like Dwight from The Office than Milton from Office Space. Then I had a realization, JING!

Thanks to this course having taught me all about Jing, I decided I would use a screencast on the preview I was able to get with the business model version. It was playing through my speakers when it was being recorded, so the sound is a little muffled, but it worked in the end and I am much more satisfied with it than I would have been had I kept with the Comedy theme.

Here’s my GoAnimate animation via Jing’s screencast:

http://screencast.com/t/WS35iNKIiK

sQuiRrel

Not long ago, I saw one of my new favorite videos of all time. I’m a big fan of animal videos, and every so often a new one pops up on the Internet that totally takes first place.

While QR codes aren’t used too frequently, I made one for this great squirrel video. Imagine if you’re having a bad day on the train or bus and you see the QR code on the wall. You could quickly scan it and be directed to a great pick-me-up of a video, a squirrel messing around with a GoPro camera. It really doesn’t get much better than that, wouldn’t you say!?

AsquirrelnabbedmyGoProandcarrieditupatreeandthendroppedit-YouTube_kaywa.me_1OaHd

And here’s the video:

Good ol’ Jazz

When I first went to the Creative Commons Search Engine, there were so many options of where I could go for my material. I decided on YouTube and then just typed in “music”. I was given a lot of videos of “chillwave” music or compilation albums for rainy days or different moods, but then I thought I’d mix things up and search for “jazz music”. I ended up with “Jazz Music Vol. 1” which turned out to be a great choice. I’m a big fan of jazz music but admittedly don’t listen to enough of it. The video fits my blog because it’s music based (and the songs definitely have a big piano presence, which is especially fitting for me). Based on “Fair Use”, I am making a comment about the music and its inclusion within my blog, and I’m not using the video for any monetary gain. Just to prove that I’m not denying credit to the author, the songs in the video are curated by “Blulight Gallery” and since they are all independent songs, they most likely asked for permission to use the song in the compilation, but aren’t getting money for it.

The fact that a video like this can be shared helps the artists get support and attention where they might not have otherwise because they are not “signed”.

Listen to the compilation here:

My Name’s Not Rick!

Any true fan of SpongeBob will know the “My Name’s Not Rick!” meme, the classic scene from when SpongeBob and Patrick are fighting in a boxing ring and SpongeBob erases the “Pat” from “Patrick”, leaving just a furious “Rick”. I work at a call center and apparently I say my name too quickly or not clearly enough (even though I’m a Communication major, so I don’t know how that’d happen) so people tend to call me different names a lot! The first time it happened I was called “Keith”, and I shared the following meme on my Facebook:

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And then it happened more recently, to an even crazier extent, because I was called “Edith”. The caller specifically said “What was your name again, sir?” and then when I said “Steve” she said “Edith?” How does that happen!10687121_10152425733178721_257443392532851065_n

So I thought I’d share that meme with you because one, I’m a big SpongeBob fan, but two it symbolizes my feelings on the subject of my name being mistaken. I’m a big fan of reddit so I am constantly following memes, it’s actually one of my favorite things. I still pride myself on having a meme on Rutgers Memes (the Facebook page from 2011-2012), and go figure it was a lame pun coon.

I have to say though, my favorite new meme of the past few months is easily Minor Mistake Marvin. I saw the beginning of it on reddit, and was completely entertained by every bit of the thread.

Tweet-ch His Own

You, the consumer, my best blogging friend, now is your time to shine! You seem like the kind of person that would love to help support my hard work and lame jokes by way of sharing everything I do with your friends! While I am completely open to your support through any social media, I feel that Twitter would be one the best tools to use. Twitter is a perfect way to share information quickly and effectively. As you can tell on the left side of this page, I have shared my band’s Twitter feed. I operate that account and one of my favorite things to do is share songs from bands I like as well as tagging the band in the tweet as well. This has led to a lot of interaction between my band and other bands, which before may not have been possible.

As I post a lot about music on this page, and users who were to share a song I posted could tweet about my post and tag the band in it, which would hopefully allow them to give my page some additional notice. Having a Twitter account that has a lot of followers (like a band) retweet your tweet about my blog could greatly increase its traffic. Twitter is the best platform for this kind of interaction. Facebook, for example, is not often used for one on one conversation and sharing a post is not nearly as effective. Facebook also determines how posts are shown on users feeds (and encourages you to pay Facebook to enhance post popularity), whereas every Tweet from a follower you have on Twitter is shared, no matter how popular it is. So, let’s get this Twitter support rolling!

Look how happy that Twitter bird is! – From travelmaniacs.ro

Soda Pop Stop

For this post, I thought I’d share a video I just discovered today while browsing reddit. It’s a brief (12 minutes, so, maybe semi-brief?) interview/look at the Soda Pop Stop in LA, a small business that has been selling unique flavors of soda for decades. These sodas are hard to come by and in some cases are only sold at that store. I really just enjoy the enthusiasm the owner, John Nese, brings to the shop. I was disappointed to find out that the shop was in California though, and not super close to New Brunswick.

The video can be found here, through YouTube. If you have 12 minutes to spare, definitely take a look.

The owner is doing what he loves, he even said that when he comes to work, he doesn’t “work”, instead it’s just “play” to him. It’s very admirable and it looks like a great shop to check out.

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Galco’s Soda Pop Stop – KCET.org

Steve’s Sleeves Screencast (That’s Alliteration!)

I haven’t made a screencast in a long time (as I mentioned before, I’ve used Screencast-O-Matic several years ago but I do remember having trouble with the site, as it wasn’t as user friendly). Finding out about Jing was pretty cool, it was a very simple application to install and get used to.

The biggest challenge for me was probably to think of a blog/website I wanted to speak about. I went with Cracked.com because I knew it had potential to be humorous but also interesting, most of the other blogs I actually follow are specifically about music and I wanted to mix up my posts a little bit!

Screencasting is an important skill for any type of work. There are many times when demonstrations are needed to share information, and being able to quickly prepare a screencast can save yourself (and others) a lot of time. If you can’t make a meeting or something like that, a screencast could instead be prepared to share that information. Plus, as you’ve probably seen on YouTube, most informational views or how-to’s are done via screencasting, which has made learning topics a breeze!

The cool thing about speaking about Cracked is there is so much information to speak about that I could always talk about something, but since I didn’t necessarily plan out what I’d say beforehand, I suppose I could have been better organized in my topic choices! I also didn’t notice until afterwards that my mic sounded a little fuzzier than expected when it was recorded, which could have been because of Jing, but it was most likely because of my mic. In the future, I could pay more attention to that, but overall I’m pretty satisfied with the way my screencast turned out and I’m happy that I know an easy way to make them in the future!

You can watch my screencast here, hopefully I didn’t waste ~2 minutes of your time!

This Blog Is Going Commercial

You can find my commercial here!

I consider myself better at messing around with audio than I am with Photoshop/Pixlr, so this assignment was not difficult for me. I’ve used GarageBand plenty of times and have played around with adding real songs and things like that, so I knew where to find the area to add a song and how to cut it and fade it.

Naturally, I wanted my commercial to fit my blog (so it had to be epic sounding). I started with “He’s a Pirate”, composed by Klaus Badelt for Pirates of the Caribbean The Curse of the Black Pearl. (I have the soundtracks for four Pirates movies on my iTunes, because you just never know when you’ll need them).

After realizing I’m actually just lame and shouldn’t use epic sounding music and a bad impersonation, I went with “Yakety Sax”(composed by Boots Randolph as the theme song to the old Benny Hill show). This is the silliest song I know, and it’s often used during comical chase scenes in pop culture. I like to think that adding “Yakety Sax” to any video makes it funny (and so do other people). I also tossed in some background vocals that had the weird effects to make “explosion” and other words stand out more.

Being familiar with Logic Pro (a sort of level up from GarageBand) I decided to toss the file into it just to spruce up some things. One thing that bothered me about recording vocals was that I forgot to bring my pop filter to school and I used an external microphone (aside from a computer or headphones). The “plosive” noises in my speaking (because of p’s, b’s, and other words that make that) are pretty noticeable. A pop filter would take care of that pretty well, so I ordered a new one on Thursday night and it arrived Friday morning! Way to go, Amazon!

That’s really it! For “what I think of my work”, I think it was just a quick, humorous little creation that was fun to make!

A Potentially Better Header

So my theme doesn’t give me much of a header. At the moment it’s that photo up to the left that my friend drew of me playing piano. I decided I liked that header just the way it is and that I would instead just create a new header of a random size.

Since freshman year when I first discovered a ‘quokka’ (an Australian marsupial commonly referred to as the Happiest Animal in the World) I’ve been a big fan of it. One picture of a quokka has even been the background of my phone since then because it’s always a nice pick-me-up.

I used to have photoshop back in the day and I actually used it pretty frequently, I’ve unfortunately lost everything I made on it since it was on another computer, but I’m familiar with some basic photo editing and I use an app called VSCOcam to edit most photos I take. For this, since I just kept it pretty silly, I suppose I didn’t put too much editing into it.

Once I determined I’d use a quokka (borrowed from Huffington Post’s article on them) I thought it might have been cool to put a piano on there, just because. It’s clearly poorly done but I was lucky enough to find a decent piano vector image here which took away the need of cropping excess white from a photo to have it look nicer on top of the quokka layer.

Since I haven’t used image editing that involved layers in awhile, it was a little confusing especially when trying to figure out what layer I’m on or trying to copy something or start a photo in a new layer, I’d often get tripped up and have to just back track to the first layer and start from there.

There are so many things to do on or filters to add on Pixlr to make an image look cool, but a lot of them (I’m looking at you, ‘heat map’ and ‘night vision’) just weren’t necessary at the time.

So, I present you with A Header, ft. Quokka

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