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July 31, 2010

Pro audio apps leave much to be desired (, , , )

by fluffy at 11:16 PM
So, I'm finally getting around to reinstalling Native Instruments Akoustik Piano on my MacBook, and I'd forgotten how much of a royal pain in the ass it is.

July 29, 2010

Current status (, , )

by fluffy at 2:53 PM
It's been a while since a self-indulgent blog post about my ongoing woes, and seeing as how that's the whole reason to have a blog anyway, I'd might as well update the three of you who still bother to read it.

July 28, 2010

CreateSpace ()

by fluffy at 7:21 PM
I'd been thinking of trying out CreateSpace for a while, and for some reason I got the notion of putting foodsexsleep on it to test the waters.

Synology DS410j ()

by fluffy at 9:04 AM
So, about a month ago I bought a Synology DS410j NAS and four Western Digital WD20EARS 2TB hard drives to replace my old PowerMac G5 as my NAS/backup archive/etc. Now that I've put it through its paces a while, I guess I'd might as well review it.

July 26, 2010

A somewhat ironic blog entry ()

by fluffy at 10:16 PM
Every now and then I look at some of my older blog entries and then get a bit horrified about how much old crap I have on here that I don't really want people reading anymore (if only because it comes across as horribly narcissistic if nothing else). But going through and cleaning it up is an obnoxious pain. So today I finally did some SQL-fu and had it automatically unpublished all entries older than 3 years except for ones in a few categories which are generally full of stuff I would want to keep around (or which were already friends-only).

I'm sure there's still plenty of stuff that I should remove but I think this is good enough for now. I went from 2300 to 1300 published entries so I've already contributed to a roughly 50% reduction of blog effluvium!

July 24, 2010

Reevaluating drawing apps again (, , , )

by fluffy at 9:42 PM
Since I'm in a break between comics, and I've been completely redoing my MacBook because of upgrading its hard drive and adding a dedicated NAS to my network and so on, I decided to go ahead and upgrade to Photoshop CS5. Which is, frankly, terrible in how slow and laggy it is.

I've owned a copy of Pixelmator for years, and they've improved it immensely over that time, but there are still a few glaring deficiencies in the UI. They've finally gotten the brushes to work really well, but now I'm finding that all tools are set to use the same brush all the time - including the eraser, which is always sized exactly the same as the brush tool. Which makes drawing much more of a chore than it should be.

So, once again I'm looking at alternate drawing apps. I have VectorDesigner as well, but vector drawing has never really agreed with me for a number of reasons (usually tablet pressure support is rudimentary or even nonexistent, and I also like being able to screw around with things at the raster level which I find to be much more flexible, even with its "inaccuracy"). This also pretty much rules out Inkscape, although I might give it a try again anyway.

GIMP on OSX is of course a joke (the various native efforts are in perpetually primitive states, and the X11 version doesn't support tablet pressure since X11 on OSX doesn't support much of XInput).

Basically, I need a drawing app with the following features:

  • Runs on OSX
  • A drawing/sketching-friendly workflow
  • Tablet support (pressure, subpixel brush positioning)
  • Layers (ideally with groups, and group blend modes)
  • Magic wand selection and filling, as well as fast selection refinement (expand and contract at least, ideally with fast keyboard access)
  • Is affordable and I can justify paying for it with the understanding that I'm an amateur who likes drawing for fun and doesn't intend to ever make money on this
There's a lot of free/cheap drawing apps out there, but most of them have critical flaws that make them pretty much not worth working with. It seems like there's a whole bunch of niche apps which work pretty well for their niche, and then Photoshop is what everyone else turns to, ignoring that it's slow, bloated, and massively overpriced for just a drawing app...

July 13, 2010

Any community CMS or auth framework recommendations? ()

by fluffy at 11:32 PM
So, I've had an idea for a site pinging around in my head for a while, and I'd like to program it up, but I'm being a virtuous (i.e. lazy) programmer about it, and I was wondering if anyone had any recommendations for things that would make my life easier.

Gig reminder: Song Fight Live #10 ()

by fluffy at 1:19 AM
Song Fight Live is this coming weekend! If you're in or near San Francisco, please come to the show. My band will specifically be playing on Saturday night, but I will also be helping out on a few other bands' sets on Sunday.

July 9, 2010

Well, it's not gallstones ()

by fluffy at 3:48 PM
Not an ulcer, not gallstones, so no idea what it is. Time to finally get my bloodwork up-to-date.

At least I know I'm not going to die of a ruptured gallbladder in my sleep...

July 3, 2010

Yet another boring post about my stomach ()

by fluffy at 11:29 PM
So, the endoscopy didn't find anything (those of you who follow me on Facebook got to see the inside of my stomach, even!), so last week I had an ultrasound because my gastroenterologist is pretty convinced it might be gallstones. I'll get the results of the ultrasound soon enough, I guess. The tech of course wouldn't let me see the screen while it was happening or tell me anything about what she saw, so I guess I can just fret about it for a while.

I still have the pain that I thought was ulcer pain, and I guess it does happen more after eating fat-containing foods than at other times, so that fits a gallstone diagnosis I guess. Hopefully this ultrasound was enough to figure out what it was, and if i need my gallbladder removed it can wait until after Song Fight, because no way do I want to miss that.

July 1, 2010

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Song Fight 10 ()

by fluffy at 7:58 AM
After some last-minute shenanigans, we've finally secured a venue, so Song Fight: Love and Haight is a go! I am tentatively scheduled to play on the Saturday set (July 17 at the Abbey Tavern), but I strongly encourage everyone to come to the whole show on both nights. Or at least all of Saturday since I'll be in several of those bands.

Note that despite the name, we're not actually doing anything on Haight Street (just as how in Seattle we didn't get wet or wild, and in Santa Cruz only a couple people got high).