Be Serious for 30 Seconds

Be Serious for 30 Seconds looks like a fun video project. If you do it, you’ll be in good company.

Hat tip: PetaPixel, which also lists the rules for your convenience and embeds some great videos (though I’m not convinced they follow all the rules…).

Level-Headed Chicken

Now that I’m on vacation, I have time to write thoughtful posts. The time, mind you, not the inclination. You get this instead. Enjoy!

Categories
General

Say Hello to my Little Friend

In my back-right pocket is my cell phone. Actually, it’s quite a bit more than a phone. It’s also a digital camera, video camera, audio recorder, alarm clock, calculator, etc. But it’s not enough. I want more. My ideal pocket device would be:

  • Phone — It must have both speaker/mic and Bluetooth capabilities. I don’t want to play Trekkie all day just so I can answer the phone quickly but being able to use a headset is mandatory. One of these days, driving while pressing a cell phone against my head will be illegal. Might as well be prepared for that. Visual voice mail is cool, but being able to use a web-based phone management site like GrandCentral would work, too.
  • Camera — The higher the resolution, the better, but 2-3 MP is adequate (for now). Zoom is fine, but higher resolution lets cropping provide the same benefit.
  • Video camera — My current cell phone has video capability and it’s a blast. Unfortunately, the video is crappy. I don’t need a lot of resolution. Just enough to max out video sharing sites like YouTube and Revver.
  • GPS — Automatic downloading of maps centered around my current location in case I should ever lose Internet connection would be nice. Interoperability with an online mapping site with satellite views would be cool. It should automatically geocode my pictures and videos.
  • MP3 player — As much as I hate wires, having a standard headphone jack would improve my chances of connecting to a car or home stereo. Being able to use stereo Bluetooth headphone would be nice, too. The audio source should be both internal and streaming.
  • PDA — Must sync with Outlook, both live and offline modes.
  • Web browser — Wouldn’t want to go anywhere without being able to browse the interwebs.
  • Connected — This device should be connected anywhere there’s a signal, 3G, WiFi (open or protected, as long as I know the codes), Bluetooth, WiMAX… You get the picture.
  • Computer — Now things start to get interesting. The stuff I’ve mentioned above wouldn’t require the device to be a general purpose computer, but wouldn’t that be ideal? One that third-party apps could be loaded on. That way, all the extra functionality I want (calculator, alarm clock, image editor, audio recorder, etc.) need not be included in the device as delivered.

The current state of technology is getting close. Once Apple figures out how (or whether) to allow third-party apps without creating iBricks™, we’ll be a lot closer. Then we can dream about having this device replace my computer…

What would you add (or delete) from my list for your ideal pocket device?

Categories
family

Disneyland Video

Here’s a video I recorded with my cell phone at Disneyland during my sabbatical. Not bad…

It perfectly captures the feeling of sabbatical at about 1:03. ;-)

Categories
politics

Politicians: Still figuring out YouTube

If you were running for office and your opponent’s campaign had a video camera following you, what would you say? If you were George Allen, you’d use a racial slur.

Before YouTube, this video might not have seen much airplay. Those days are over. Politicians need to come to terms with having every flaw recorded and broadcast, every statement fact-checked and blogged. Voter need to come to terms with an avalanche of information.

For now, Allen continues to lead in the polls.

Categories
Law

This Stop May Be Recorded For Customer Assurance

Chicago’s new police cars will have video cameras and sensitive microphones to record vehicle stops. I say, about time!

Of course, the ACLU’s up in arms about the alleged privacy infringement. But what privacy invasion are we talking about here? What’s more invasive? The officer standing by the car peering into the back of the car or the camera in the police car parked behind? 

I say this is a win. The recordings will provide objective data on supposed acts of police brutality. They will expose what is termed by the defense bar as "testilying." That’s good for honest citizens and honest cops both.

And having represented those charged with driving under the influence, I welcome the cameras. They’ll add some fun to trials. What’s more humorous, the defendant performing field sobriety tests or the officer trying to demonstrate them? Some times, it’s hard to tell who’s having more difficulties.

Congratulations, Chicago! Now let’s not have any "unexplained technical difficulties" during selected stops, okay?