with more and more interesting people joining twitter every day, i’d like to remind everyone, or teach the new people, that twitter is not a desktop application. it is multi-modal. not only can you send your tweets from the web and desktop applications, but also by text and from mobile browsers.

this means you can receive tweets the same way. and you have no control over how i receive your tweets.

so please, do not put a link to something on the big-screen web in every one of your tweets, because many times i’m on my phone and i simply can’t (or won’t depending on what phone i’m on) read them. take the time to summarize the link for me. scott sets an excellent example here. don’t act like i’m going to click it right away. and for that matter, even a linkless post about your computer is usually irrelevant to those of use who are truly mobile.

also, twitter is not IRC or pownce. that fact that it is not either of those two things it was allows it to be so flexible, and work on so many different types of devices. please stop trying to make it into IRC or pownce. really. those applications are great, but are really single mode. if they have features you prefer over twitter, then by all means USE THEM. stop trying to make twitter into something complicated and difficult to use on mobile phones. though mr. messina seems to be a culprit here, i will at least give him credit for keeping his conventions limited to those available on all mobile phones. but what he forgets is that by crowding the 140 character message with group names and all sorts of other delimiters, he’s taking valuable characters away from what count’s most. THE MESSAGE.

twitter is about content. it doesn’t have to be mind blowing, earth shattering super important content, but it should at least have some value. if you can’t post tweets with value, and without URLs, i’m simply not going to subscribe to your stream. ever. even if you’re my friend in real life. tell me more than “eating dinner” or “new blog post [URL]“. seriously. if you were sitting next to me in the real world would you say that? no you’d say “this steak is delicious” or “i just blogged about my twitter pet peeves”. see the difference??


the age old cycle of release product, add features, release next version of product has gotten out of control. so many products and software now have such an overwhelming number of features that most people can’t figure them out. Apple has been guilty of this, but they are also one of the few brave companies to buck this trend too. they’re not afraid to remove features if they’re under used, confusing, or even if they place a low-end product too close to one of their high-end offerings. it’s good business in every sense. too many features scare most users and apple recognizes this. if you want more features, upgrade to an “pro” level product (hardware or software).

so when apple announced imovie ’08 everyone freaked out. it doesn’t just have a whole new interface, it works in a whole new way, and in doing so it drops a number of the advanced features in imovie ’06. in what he calls a review, david pogue spends the bulk of his time listing the features apple removed from imovie and complaining that now he can’t do what he used to. however in the process, pogue made it perfectly clear that he was using imovie for pro-level like work. and now that he can’t do that anymore, he’s upset because he has to go buy final cut express. i can’t really blame pogue, who wants to pay $250 for features that he was getting for free.

but what about all those other people, mr. pogue? the ones who just looked at imovie and said “i can’t figure this shit out. too many buttons and windows and choices. forget it.” the new imovie is a refreshing change for these folks. it finally works like an apple / ilife application – the way it should have all along. now when you open imovie, you see the clips you’ve already imported. plug in a camera and an import window automatically opens up, and lets you choose to import all new clips by default, or manually select specific clips to import. using selected parts of your clips is magically easy. adding transitions is instantaneous. text overlay are easily adjustable and editable on the fly. everything a beginner might have wanted to do works better, and faster with less effort.

yes, there are fewer choices of transitions and text titles now. there is far less control over audio and you can no longer separate the audio from the video on clips. and you no longer work in time codes, but in simple minutes and seconds. but you know what? if you need those features, you need a pro app. admit it. what entry level user even understands time codes? and why should they be forced to learn that just to edit their video?

after reading pogue’s review i decided to try imovie ’08 for my latest video review. i admit i had to make a few changes to some of the things i normally put in my video reviews – i could no longer use a custom color for the title bar at the beginning, and i couldn’t chop the audio from the video so that my voiceover continued while the video faded into the credit screen at the end. but none of those are particularly critical features of my video.

but the joy, the joy of being able to quickly select the good parts from all the video i imported, string it together, add titles and the credit screen, and then crop the video from HD to standard definition with 3 clicks… 3 clicks! it was such a good experience. and uploading it to youtube from within the much more reliable imovie interface as opposed to youtube’s completely wonky web uploader. well, it was amazing. and not just amazing, it was efficient. it took me at least 30 minutes less to do this all in imovie ’08 even though i had to learn how to use it, than it took using imovie ’06. i got back 30 minutes of my life yesterday.

so, mr. pogue, for those of us who aren’t pro level users who refuse to admit it. for people who want to edit video quickly and easily, imovie ’08 is a huge leap forward, not a step back.

—————————–

HELP sorry, i have tried to respond to many of your fine comments with comments of my own, however wordpress.com is currently having problems letting its members comment in their own posts. i am not ignoring you and i am keeping up with the lively conversation below. as soon as this is rectified i promise to jump in.


So last night Logo (a gay channel co-owned by MTV and HBO, i believe) and HRC (a gay rights lobby organization) hosted what they called the visible vote, and what everyone else is calling the gay debate. They invited every candidate, democrat or republican, to come answer questions on gay issues.

I was using twitter to blog it so that my posts would go out to as many people as possible while it happened, but that left an awful mess on my blog. so i just went back and deleted all the one sentence posts from my blog and have re-built them here in proper chronological order and with a little more commentary. I’ve also moved this to my proper wordress blog so people can comment on it if they want.

The order the candidates appeared on the show was the order in which they agreed to participate. No surprise, no republicans chose to come. interesting to note that Barack is first and Hillary is last.

Barack obama just called himself a hopemonger. Awesome! Barack gets it. He’s fair on gay issues without pandering to gay hangups. I like that Barack keeps stressing that while gays have problems, so do minorities, and there are bigger problems as well. He’s a realist, but he also believes that we can move forward.

John Edwards won’t answer questions about rights provided by civil union, turned it into something on universal health care. Sneaky. I’m not falling for it. But Edwards says it’s sad that gays aren’t accepted in society. Edwards also just said we should let gay couples adopt and discuss gay parents in schools. Color me shocked. I didnt expect this out of Edwards. So Edwards is for civil unions, same as Barack. Full rights but not the word marriage. Ok.

Kucinich comes right out and uses the word marriage. He is just too lovey. He’d make a great spiritual leader, but not necessarily a great president. But the gay audience is totally in love with his message. Ah. Words like compassion, mindful… Dennis is a Buddhist.

Mike gravel taking the gays to task. He wants some respect, I don’t blame him. “We need more love, there’s only love and fear.” Gravel and Obama impress me with their emphasis on personal responsibility. Gravel agrees with Kucinich – marriage not civil unions. Says in 5 years the words gay marriage will not be an issue.

Bill Richardson owns up to his mistakes. And then Richardson blows it again. If the New Mexico state leg hands you a gay marriage bill would sign it? …pause… And then answers “I want to do what’s achievable” and then says homosexuality is a choice. Buh bye.

Why won’t any candidate just say “you know what, the words gay marriage still scare too many Americans” Hillary really stressing how much we’ve lost over the past 7 years. And not just gays.<

So everyone who agreed to come believe in conferring federal rights to couples. Most want to use the word civil union, reserving the term marriage for religious authorities to confer on couples however they decide. All the candidates are against don’t ask don’t tell, too. And want to do everything possible to repeal it. Obama was strongest about this, but everyone was vocal and adamant.

Hillary and Edwards are clearly the seasoned politicians of the bunch, shifting questions so that they don’t have to answer negatively outright. and poor poor Bill Richardson. he kept saying “don’t look at my words, look at my actions.” good thing cuz he still kept saying the wrong shit. No offense Bill, but if you’re going to lead my country, you better prove you’re as good with your words. I don’t want you saying something you didn’t mean that gets us into a war buddy. forget it.

Barack and Mike Gravel were really the stand out candidates of the evening for me. 


where is the line between self-empowerment and self-pity? between saying i’m fed up and gonna do something about it and realizing that even afterward you’re not significantly closer to happiness.

i can’t believe i’ve reached a stage in my life where my happiness appears to totally depend on other people, but it’s true. (i guess at least it doesn’t depend on things, right?) this places an undue burden on other people, a burden i would never expect y’all to carry so i’ve tried not to tell you that this what’s happening. not to let on that being around my pals or talking to special folks i don’t get to be around is what makes me truly happy. complete. now i think about it and look back, this has probably always been the case, or at least been the case ever since i met the close friends who i still count among the people i am closest to in this world. these people have always meant so much to me, and always brought me happiness. and not being with them has always made me a little sadder.

i don’t think i am alone in this. i suspect that others i am close to feel this way. they’ve talked to me about not being around enough people they feel close to the same way we feel close to each other. i think there are others too. i think it’s curious that many of us try to turn to buddhism, whether strictly or loosely, to see if that will help become more casual about our reliance on relationships and make us happier. but buddhism is a practice, right? you have to work at it to get better, and in truth i think those of us in this situation prefer to work on developing relationships. and so we become more attached, not less. i have seen others guilty of this, and this week saw myself fall victim.

and then i see so many couples who are so happy. so i don’t know. i am so confused that i’d really like to run away from it all, but all i can think about is running away with someone special. making our escape. i feel weak, frail. i feel like i have failed myself.


fuckin faggot

10Jul07

it’s been a long long time since i’ve heard those words, but reading this summary of a study by a Berkeley prof about anti-gay discrimination in teen culture brings back alot of memories. during the first half of my life, i went through alot of pain because of the word fag. i wasn’t super effeminate, but i certainly was going to meet society’s expectations for what a masculine guy was supposed to be. i sucked at sports and hated watching them more than i hated playing. i wasn’t into cars either, and i spent alot of time rebelling against anything even remotely masculine that i wound up liking later on simply because my parents or anyone else wanted me to be into them. so yah, i found out what fag meant.
and then i started to grow up. i stopped doing shit just to rebel and started doing things i liked – many of which are perceived as far more masculine. this coincided alot with me going away to college and so i got to start over, no fag stigma or history attached. i was around new people who talked a new way and so i got to learn that gay wasn’t an insult related to sexuality. it just meant dumb. and it was difficult for me to come to terms with that. especially when considering just how negative the word fag is. my new friends would constantly use the epithet gay – rarely to describe people – most often to describe a stupid or absurd situation. “they make you do that? that’s so gay!” but fag, fag was still an insult. one that thankfully my friends didn’t use except in rare cases. fag is tied intimately to our concept of masculinity. something which i first appreciated when the excessively politically correct early 90s began to fade and it was ok for guys to be guys again. there was something refreshing about confident masculinity back then. and then things went too far. as they are wont to do.

at some point the evangelicals turned what could have been something awesome into something freakish. masculinity became the ultimate control of the man again. the eschewing of anything even remotely perceived of as feminine, and the ostracism of gays with a renewed vigor unseen since well, modern day west and central africa. so many gays had come so far during the more tolerant 90s. but the new millenium brought new struggles. and i suspect to adapt to new society, hyper masculinity took a role in gay society again. this time it wasn’t just for fetish, this time it echoed this same sort of adolescent mentality that we were seeing in intolerant adults.

gay men split into 3 factions. one chunk calling each other girl, she, bitch, etc. attempting to own the feminine. one chunk being super macho often taking the roids and calling effeminate gays fags and queers as though their masculinity made them superior in the same way evangelicals might act. and a third group standing their with jaws dropped wondering what the fuck was going on. the same divisions we see in adolescent men of all sexual persuasions has returned in adult gays, and just at the time where it finally seems safe for most adolescents to come to grips with their sexuality.

recently their was a big fracas bringing this to light as a couple of gay personals / hook up websites started vetting their users – turning them away if they didn’t meet the minimum physical or masculine qualifications. one of the sites then went on to advertise how superior it was because its founders were far more masculine since they were good ole country boys and would never be seen in drag at a charity run like a couple from san francisco who runs a popular competitor. basically calling the SF couple fags and trying to intimate that made them and their website inferior. (it should also be noted this couple doesn’t vet their members the same way a few other sites do).

reading this study and putting it together with these recent events i realized gays are often their own worst enemy. we spend so much time fighting each other for silly reasons in this country that there’s no possible we could unite to fight for equal rights. hell we actually have 3 separate organizations who are funded to fight for our rights and even they spend alot of their time fighting each other. it’s a lost cause right now. we’re so worried about which subgroup we fit in and how much better it is than any of the others that we can’t get our shit together. this is totally the cop mentality regarding gangs in the 80s (or alternately the CIA mentality regarding latin america or the middle east) – as long as they’re just killing each other, why should we stop them. right? let them destroy each other, save us the trouble. we’re saving the evangelicals the trouble of having to face a united front. (the democrats are typically guilty of the exact weakness.)

i know this spun off a far ways from a simple paper on the word gay vs. fag, especially as i can’t see a near term future in the US (or many other places, have you seen what’s up in Australia lately?) where masculinity isn’t so idolized that derogatory terms for effeminate men hold no power. i don’t believe we can stop the power of the word faggot until we can unite and start moving forward together. and even then, i don’t think the word will disappear.


if you see this post, it’s time to change your bookmarks to n1s.net, or tell who ever’s link you followed to do the same. no matter what blogging platform i use, i promise that address will always direct you to the most current one.


relationshit

24May07

You see it on talk shows or even in the movies all the time. Some woman is in some horrid abusive relationship and she does nothing about it. every time the dude beats her down or insults her or locks her in the basement she just cries. then when the dude is slightly more relaxed she acts like everything is normal, even though she’s walking on eggshells. finally as the movie climaxes, she gathers up the courage to leave her abusive fuck of a man and just as he pulls some straw that broke the camel’s back move on her, she walks out. sometimes she has to fight the dude, sometimes she has to hide from him, but she always gets rid of him in the end. and invariably someone will ask her. why didn’t you leave sooner? and she will always answer, “because the good times were SO good” or “because he could be SO sweet.”

Well i am tired of being the beaten down chick. as of today the VTR and are through. when the VTR worked, it worked well. and then once it didn’t it was never the same. oh sure, we could patch things up for a few days, but then they would turn to shit again and i would suffer. for years, i refused to give up, remembering the good times we had. but what good is holding on to those memories? it is attachment. attachment leads to suffering. blah blah the buddha says blah.

this morning the VTR didn’t want to start up. it would turn over just fine, so i didn’t think it was the battery, but it sure didn’t want to fire. finally, with a little coaxing and a little choke, he finally started purring. so i went for a ride across the city to the outer mission to check out a new cafe (which is totally rip roarin awesome, btw). the entire time the VTR and i just could not get it together. it was acting fine, but we just were NOT on the same page. but i get there safe and sound and fine. there was an awesome on street parking spot about 10 meters from the cafe. it was behind a Ford STOMPER, but there was like 5 feet between the stomper and me and he had plenty of space in front, and i felt pretty good.

so bobby and i are sitting in the cafe not getting much work done and bobby is like “fuck it dude, i need to take the VTR for a ride.” so i hand him my jacket and helmet and key and he goes out. and he comes back and was like “i couldn’t start it. so i thought it was dead, but then i realized your clutch lever was hella loose and there’s a giant dent in your tank. i think someone knocked your bike over dude.” so i go out and sure enough someone, most likely that fuckin explorer, knocked the vtr over, and picked it up like nothin happened. so now it won’t start at all and there’s a fist sized dent in the tank. (the rest is miraculously fine.)

and so, i am done. i’m walking out. not on motorcycles, but on the VTR. this bike has been nothing but trouble to me for too long. i’ve already put some cash down on a beautiful hawk. i’ll just steal the money i been puttin aside for my ma’s retirement present (she’s not gonna retire for another year anyway, i can make it up by then i’m sure!) to pay the rest. And the VTR, well it’s up for grabs to anyone who wants a project bike. by all account most parts on it work fine. but the electrical system is shite and i’m sure a few other things could use some work after today’s little mishap.

i can’t wait to start a new life, with a new bike. one with great upgrades and known faults, and available replacement parts. one i can grow with in a loving, supportive relationship.




Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.