Archive for October, 2006

Not Sherry

Sunday, October 29th, 2006

I recently came across a great picture of the hot rocker, Pat Benatar, that proves beyond a shadow of a doubt, that she and Sherry must be related. Posted here to let the world know – and since Sherry has not signed a model release and won’t let me post her picture on this page, you’ll just have to take my word for it.

[No. I don’t know Pat and did not get her permission to post the photo. But I hope she doesn’t mind.]

Simon Elvins

Sunday, October 22nd, 2006

I was made aware of designer Simon Elvin’s website in a post on the Records Collectors Guild forum. The list below are the various wonderfully creative projects you will find presented. I found the site’s design was refreshingly clean, simple and elegant. I encourage you to spend some time exploring his portfolio.

  • Notation, Audible prints using pencil and ink
  • FM Radio Map, Modified radio and interactive print
  • Paper Record Player, Fully working manual player
  • Architecture Annual, A5 128pp book
  • Silent London, Map of the capitals quietest places
  • Sound Walk, Booklet and CD
  • ARC Magazine, 28pp newsprint magazine
  • Direct Line, Collaboration in Hyde Park
  • Framework, Exhibition identity
  • Portrait, Photographic series
  • Personal Sense of Place, 124pp book
  • Loom of Language, Letterpress poster
  • One for One, Double sided exhibition poster
  • 64-95 DVD, Animation and poster for Airside
  • Power of Two, Print exhibition
  • Grafik Magazine, whilst working at MD
  • Photo Document, New York
  • True to Form, LP sleeve whilst working at MD
  • Everyday Environments, Photographic study
  • Sound Book, Writings on Sound in the Arts

Buggles – Video Killed The Radio Star Live 2004

Wednesday, October 18th, 2006

The song that started it all… and the killer hook holds up after all these years.

What Doesn’t Kill Us Makes Us Stronger

Monday, October 16th, 2006

Just before the end of September, my personal website – weidemannia.com – ran out of room on the free space I get with my Mindspring (now Earthlink) DSL service. After finding out they could not increase the space allocation – even though I have been a customer of theirs for almost 9 years, I bitched and moaned until they reduced my monthly bill by $10. While I appreciated the price break, I felt it was time for me to look for a formal web host.

BannerInterestingly enough, the 3-year free web-hosting preview package with 1&1, that I had been using to host my world-famous Epiclectic’s Vintage Vinyl website, was due to expire at the end of October. I received an email from them offering a conversion to a Linux Business hosting service for $7.95 a month. Economically, it made perfect sense since I just saved more than that by playing tough guy with Earthlink. The BIG plus, is that now I had 2000MB of web space to play with – which was more than enough to host ALL of my various weidemannia components that I previously had in 10Mb chunks for each of my Mindspring email addresses. In addition, the 1&1 package included 3 domains, unlimited email addresses, and all the bells and whistles that would let me hone my webmaster crafts once again.

Over the last 2 weeks, I have been FTPing all of my sites to my local hard disk, setting up the webspace on the new host server, and then FTPing everything back over to their new homes.

I restructured weidemannia.com, and transferred DNS to my 1&1 from my Register.com. This eliminated my need for URL forwarding. I’m excited about NOT having to limit my creativity to the minimal webspace I had previously.

Epiclectic.com moved over and was working great. Great, UNTIL the database went missing last Friday night. I could no longer access the site, and had no idea what went wrong. Because the site requires a mySQL database, and I had no idea how to even spell mySQL, I rolled up my sleeves and began doing my homework. To make a long story short, I figured out how to successfully upgrade my site’s php software, build a new mySQL database, reinstall and configure the site to point to the new database, and restore the database from my previous backups. This last activity failed repeatedly with “internal server error” messages. My “ah HA” moment was when I discovered that there was a 2MB limit on importing data. So, I tried splitting my backup file into smaller pieces and worked like a charm. I love when logic actually works. The new, improved site was back on line Saturday afternoon. In addition, I activated an RSS feed that lets people subscribe to my site. Too cool!

[Insert deep breath.]

Well, its late Sunday night, and I’m heading to bed. But its nice to know that there are parts of my brain that still are able to come out of retirement “on demand”, and solve what seem like impossible problems.

I feel good and inspires me to try other things that seem impossible.

My Cliff Notes Work Update

Monday, October 16th, 2006

Geeze… its’ been 8 months since my last update to this blog. To the casual reader, it might appear as if I finished my 2nd broker training class and then disappeared from the planet. I’m happy to announce, that is not the case, and I have just had other things that took my eye off of my blog maintenance responsibilities.

So, here is a brief overview of some milestones that were met:

MARCH – Started and completed State of Oregon Entry Level online course; 20 hours.

APRIL – Passed the proctored Oregon MLEB exam. Now certified as loan originator in Oregon for 2 years. Successfully closed a challenging loan for a client in Utah.

MAY thru AUGUST – Helped design and implement a direct marketing program for the company. Coordinated production of material with third-party marketing company, and was quite pleased with the product. On the other hand, the results were much less than expected. However, the mortgage industry has been in a slump for the first half of 2006, so we just tightened the belt and worked smarter – eliminating unnecessary overhead expenditures. Beginning to put more of a marketing strategy in place.

SEPTEMBER – Relocated our office to a much nicer location. New digs provides a real shot-in-the-arm as a moral booster, and purges us of the ghosts that had haunted the company a year ago. While still working our client database, I was also responsible for updating all of our State of California corporate, broker information, as well as records with the other states we work in, and the lenders with which we are approved. At the same time of the move, we switched our DSL provider, had to have the new facility wired for telecommunication and network, and move our servers and computers minimizing downtime. The ONLY glitch was that AT&T was unable to provide us with the DSL line in time, so we had to operate without email or internet access for a week. (Found out that it IS possible to live your life without internet or email.)

OCTOBER – The phones are ringing. People are returning calls, and seem to be taking refinancing seriously. Probably helped by some mortgage rates and indexes starting to flatten and drop.