Podcasting Professional

October 25th, 2011

Sound BoardI have recently produced more than a dozen podcast episodes on the subjects of parenting and homeschooling. The parenting related podcasts are featured on DaddyLife.net with Internet and Technology Safety advice for parents. As of today there are 14 episodes available via RSS, iTunes, and other podcast directories. I am currently featuring an eight part series on The Fathers Mandate from the GKGW material authored by my good friends Gary and Anne Marie Ezzo.

The home school podcast is a little newer and has only two episodes available. My wife Sherry and I are co-hosting this one. We have provided an introduction to our family and given the reason why we home school in the first two episodes. We will be moving the Home School Support Network toward being more of an online homeschool support group providing curriculum and resource reviews, time management tips, as well as experiences with various teaching methods.

Not My First Rodeo

I produced over 60 episodes of a podcast back in 2005-2006. So I know how to podcast. A pod cast is fairly simple to create and  I produced my original podcast via an old school method using a microphone connected directly into my PC and recorded it using software on my PC. I then edited the recording and uploaded it to my web site. I published the RSS feed to iTunes and got to a point where I was pushing 5000 downloads per month even thought the audio quality was very amateur.

Improved Quality Podcast

This time I am using some dedicated recording devices and I only use the computer to add intro music and sound effects during the actual recording process. I am recording everything in high quality WAV format on an external Roland digital recorder. Then I import the WAV files into Audacity for post production and editing.  I am using  Behringer 802 mixer with a Shure SM90 dynamic microphone to record into the Roland recorder.

Scratch my back and I’ll scratch yours

June 17th, 2011

You know this is how much of the business world works, but this one was so in your face. A ZDNet email shows them publishing an article being sponsored by Red Hat recommending Red Hat Linux as a better alternative as an enterprise solution than Solaris. This one made me laugh because it was so obvious.

Apple MacBook Pro Gray Screen of Death

March 9th, 2011

Window has the blue screen of death and Mac has the gray screen of death. This is my second trip through the forced reboot process on my MacBook Pro. The first time I was reading email in Entourage. The screen froze and a gray opaque curtain scrolled down from the top and the the following image appeared.  There was nothing to do except follow the instructions on the screen and power down using the power button. I captured a picture of the screen with my Droid. :-)

Apple MacBook Pro Gray Screen of Death

My second appearance of the Apple MacBook Pro Gray Screen of Death appeared while working in iPhoto and right-clicking to select the “Show File” option.  Once I reboot the machine the following error report option appeared.

Apple Error Report Screen shot

In the comements I entered the following:

“I got the Mac gray screen of death and it gave me no choice but to reboot. This is my second gray screen of death on this MacBook Pro. I feel like I’m using a Microsoft Windows again with a gray screen of death replacing the blue screen of death.”

It seems as though Apple and Microsoft are cut from the same cloth…but in different colors.

iPad or Kindle

June 9th, 2010

Father’s Day and my birthday are approaching. My wife has asked what I would like to receive as a gift on these days. I have been reading more in recent years and believe I am a great candidate for an iPad or Kindle as an electronic book reading device. I travel fairly frequently with my day job and like to read while on airplanes, trains, or in terminals. I often finish a book while on travel and am ready to begin reading a new book before completing my trip. I hesitate buying another book because I don’t want to add to my tight luggage load. I like the idea of being able to order a book on the fly without having to find my book of choice in the the local book store and waiting several days to get a snail mail delivery from Amazon just does not suit my schedule in most cases. So which device should I choose? The industry leaders appear to be the iPad from Apple and the Kindle from Amazon.

The iPad is the newest on the scene with a higher price, but the iPad has way more to offer than simply electronic book reading.  My chief concern about the iPad actually has to do with all the other features.  I am already carrying a laptop when I travel and that will not change.  So I have access to email, web browsing and a plethora of applications to do whatever else I need to do.  Since I am looking primarily for an electronic book reading device I am concerned that all the other stuff on the iPad could be distracting from my desire to simply read books.  If I want to be distracted by email or my social media interactions then I will fire up my PDA or my laptop.

At this point you might have guessed that I giving the Kindle a nod.  The Kindle has access to more titles that I can already surf via Amazon.  Yes I know that people say you can read Amazon books on the iPad, but they don’t bother to explain how if you are not a Kindle owner already with the installed Kindle app on the iPad.  I am not interested in an experiment with the iPad and certainly don’t want to buy both devices.  My experience with my  Windows to Apple laptop (MacBook Pro) has been less than desirable in terms of capabilities I am used to on Windows. So my hopes for a good experience with the iPad are low.  I also don’t want to add another monthly broadband fee to an already more expensive device.  The Kindle comes with all the connectivity for free.

I will be adding the Kindle to my wish list right along with some titles that I plan to download shortly after I get a Kindle.  I am sure I will follow up with a review of the Kindle in a later post. In the meantime I will link you to a few helpful reviews that I have found.

Kindle on Amazon web site

iPad on Apple web site

PC World: Apple iPad’s iBooks vs Amazon’s Kindle

The Apple Blog

chron Computing

PayPal Preapproved Payments

May 16th, 2010

I was using the 123 Flash Chat service and paying for it with a PayPal preapproved payment.  I needed to cancel the service, but the chat service provider had no instructions on their web site explaining how to cancel service.  I contacted 123 Flash Chat several times via email and their online ticket system to request instructions for canceling the service.  I received no response other than the automated response generated by their help desk ticket system.  Then I thought that there must be a way to stop payment or block payments  via PayPal for a service that I no longer wanted to allow access to my PayPal account. Turns out I was right.  PayPal lists a link to “My Preapproved Accounts” under the “Financial Information” section of My Account/Profile.  This area of PayPal allowed a user to manage payments that they automatically send to merchants.  With this feature of PayPal I was able to cancel the automatic withdrawal that I been allowing for TopCMM Software to pay for the 123 Flash Chat service for nearly three years.  This a great feature and a money saver for PayPal users.

Growing Kids God’s Way Leader Site Updated

December 27th, 2009

The new Toddlerhood Trainsition series has been completed by Gary and Anne Marie Ezzo.  The GFI leader site has been updated to accomadate this new series including video clips from each of the class sessions.  The new series is fast moving and packed with the same Biblical principles found in the Growing Kids God’s Way series.

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