Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Happy One Year Anniversary! Part 2

So how'd you like the new site? I think things have come a long way since this time last year. Not only am I happier with the look of the site, I'm also happier with the content that I've been putting on it.

It's only natural to gain experience and to grow as you continue doing something that you love, and photography is no exception. Sometimes I often wonder what previous shoots would look like if I could redo them with the techniques I learned later on. And that's where my dear friends have come into play.

A little over a year ago I desperately searched for people willing to have shoots so that could test techniques that I was learning and tweaking. I remember having tons of conversations and offers, begging for models. Especially annoying were the ones that completely wasted my time agreeing to shoots, then canceling two days after the shoot was supposed to happen. I really love that one person that I actually took off work to accommodate and they text me a hour before the shoot with some whack excuse that didn't even matchup with their Facebook status' (wasn't trying to be a investigator but when people post their life story in Facebook you can't help but put one and one together...)

Anyway, with the handful of volunteers I had, i did my best to offer a high quality, attractive, product. With the exception of one model, everyone was happy with my work. Behind the scenes, though, I was struggling with failing cameras, defective lenses, corrupt memory cards, and sluggish computers that couldn't keep up to the demands I was putting on them.

In the end I was left needing to ask for reshoots to improve in areas I felt fell short. It was my friends that ended up helping make me a better photographer. When I needed a model, they were there. I could only pay them in food, photos, and profile pics but they still helped. My new website is a testament to their donated time and support. You all know who you are. Thank you!

While I'm thanking people, thank you for reading this blog. To date there has been no ads here because it was never my intention to try and make money off of this. Just to try and provide some level of entertainment via my love of writing. Thank you for the "likes", comments, retweets and referrals. I'll try to keep stuff coming your way...

See you next blog!!!

P.S. Facebook friends wanting the answer to Monday's question on the video game referenced in my website design will appreciate this pic... (Kudos for MVC2 Steve!)

Friday, November 26, 2010

Happy One Year Anniversary! Part 1

Sure, it's probably something only important to me. But the 27th of November marks the one year anniversary of a site dedicated to my photography.

Now for those few supporters that have been with me from the very beginning you'll note that I actually have 2 websites. There's the one hosted by webs.com, and then one hosted by Apple's MobileMe service. Each has their pros and cons but in the end I decided to go with the MobileMe host. The webs.com site will remain for a while but it's purpose may change.

The one major problem I had with it was the fact that the URL was too long. In addition, when spoken, people often couldn't tell if I was saying "web" or "webs". The moral being that DennisVicePhotography.webs.com was a pretty bad choice for a site name. The MobileMe site had a shorter name, using the traditional DVDeluxe label but it was also confusing because if you added the popular prefix "www" you would not be directed to my site. It had to be web.me.com/dvdeluxe.
Which brings me to a quick side question. Is that a slash or a backslash? I always come across confusion when people try writing it down...

Well anyway, I'm happy to announce that it's no longer a issue because I now have my own domain name! (Pause for applause, those crickets are louder than usual today)

For now on, no matter who the host may be, The Professional Services of Dennis Vice will be found at... www.VicePhotos.com

The second issue I had with both sites is that the templates just didn't match my vision for my site. The MobileMe version was better but it still wasn't "there."

I have since, redesigned my site from the ground up, using no templates! Some tweaking will occur in the coming days, but I'm interested to know how my readers like the new look. Please comment...

That's it for now. Part two goes up tomorrow on the official day...

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Sellers Beware of SMITH SANTIAGO

Ok so I got a lot to cover so I'm gonna get straight to it...

Recently I attempted to sell my computer on Craigslist. The next day I was happy to receive a reply to my post saying;
"I will like to know whether this item is still avaialble forsale . And also i have a Moving Company that will handle the pick up of the Item from you place."

Umm ok... well let me just reply to this and get some more details. The reply was this;
Thanks for your prompt responds, However, i will need your name and address for payment,As am only able to make payment by Cashier check, at this time b/c i am away on assignment. It will be nice if you can send me more pictures.It will take some days for the payment to get to you.As per pick-up,And the rest funds on the check will be send over to the movers inorder for them to come over for the pick up.So i will send the payment which will include the pick up charges, in which you will make payable to the mover via money gramm/Western union immediately after you have receive the payment and you will be compensated with $50 extra for your running around to the money gram/Western union outlet to avoid the delay..Please take the posting off Craigslist today and consider it sold to me, Include your phone number.
Expecting to hear from you soon.

Ok something sounds fishy here. Spelling and grammar aside they're red flags in these messages. Why is that your only way of payment? Ever heard of PAYPAL? Why do you need "movers" for a computer? This isn't the Bat Computer we're talking about. Just a normal PC. USPS, UPS, DHL. Any of these ring a bell? Sounds like a typical case of check fraud to me. But maybe I'm being overly cautious. Well lemme ask for some more details...
Its $2,225 so you are to deduct your asking price from it and make out the rest funds to the movers once the check gets clear with your Bank.Expect the Tracking number soon.

Um, No thank you! I must be in the wrong business if it costs over 2000 dollars no move a computer! Yep typical FRAUD.
But what's the harm in attempting to cash a check like that. Either you get the money or you don't right? WRONG!

Here's the deal, the payee’s bank credits the seller’s account before the funds have actually arrived from the paying bank. Therefore, it looks like the funds have cleared and everything is ok. If the check turns out to be a fraud then YOU are held accountable by law!

Sellers, don't fall prey to this kind of shady dealing. keep these warning signs in mind:

A buyer wants to purchase a product and will use a cashier’s check.
For whatever reason, the buyer has a check made out for an amount in excess of the purchase price.
Then, the buyer wants the seller to accept the full amount and send the extra money (either back to the buyer or to a third party).

What it will come to in the end is common sense so keep your guard up as you try to make a few extra dollars this holiday season and avoid the scammers... See you next blog!

This message was brought to you by the scammer SMITH SANTIAGO "smiththenice01@gmail.com" (give it a google if you don't believe they were dumb enough to continue to use the same FREE email address for scams.)

Monday, November 15, 2010

Nuke it!

(Gotta love this PC mod...)

Ok here's a question for you.
What is the wattage of your microwave? I need to know if I'm the only one who never bothered to remember that.

Within the sea of random thoughts that is my brain I always find myself asking that question as I pop something in the microwave that has a label similar to this;
"microwave ovens below 1100 watts may require additional cook time to reach proper temperature."

In fact while I'm on the subject of microwaves, are there ANY microwaves that have a setting marked "HIGH"? Just choosing a time and pressing start is considered high so this seems to be a default setting right? Maybe if it was considered "Full power" it would make more sense to me.
After all, instructions tell you to microwave it on high like that wouldn't be your first choice, so then what's so "high" about it.

I like how some instructions like to make things complicated by throwing in percentages like 50 percent power. My microwave doesn't do percentages so I'm assuming that since the power button let's me select between 1 and 9 then 5 is 50 percent. But even that gets tricky. I mean if they expect you to have a 1100 watt microwave but you only have less, then fifty percent to you is even less to them, and then you've passed out from starvation because your stuck doing math instead of just nuking the plate until it's hot. After all, hot equals done, right. Guess I'm just overthinking things again.

But since I'm on a roll, riddle me this? We have smoke detectors, and carbon monoxide detectors, but why don't we have radiation detectors? Old or even dirty microwaves can leak radiation and I doubt it's the kind that will give you superpowers. Guess that just means we need to keep our microwaves clean and heads away from the door. That shouldn't be too hard right? Right? ... (cleans microwave) ... Right?

See ya next time!

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Facebook's new motto shall be, "If it ain't broke, break it!"

Over the past months it would appear that developers are attempting to keep their sites or even computer interfaces "exciting and fresh" by making changes to the user interface for one reason or another.

Recent examples include NewTwitter, The Xbox 360 Dashboard, and Facebook to name a few.

Why? Who knows!? The majority of the time the excuse is for security reasons but why make such drastic chances to the UI (user interface.)

Could it be simplicity? Let's think about the huge strides that came when the world was introduced to Microsoft Windows. Windows offered simplicity that gave the PC user a environment similar to the Macintosh. Some thought it was easy to use, some thought it was complicated. In the following years Windows was fine tuned with newer versions, but the overall structuring remained the same. If you were familiar with a earlier version you could still navigate without the need to learn a entire new system. When new features were offered you still had the ability to do things the old way, for the most part.

The point being, before they started smoking crack and made Vista, you had the freedom to "opt out" of new features, for the features that you were more comfortable with.

Now look at Facebook. I've been on Facebook since early 2009 and everytime I get used to some feature, they either take it away, or change it beyond recognition. If you don't like it, tough! Remember all the "Bring back the old Facebook" pages? I sure do. We were told that the changes made things "simple". Do you agree?

One way they decided to make things simple was by removing the "clear chat" button in FB chat. Why!? I guess having your chat auto delete after 24 hours was just what we all were all begging for.

Recently the new feature called "Friendships" has raised a ton of questions on privacy. I wanna know what my readers think of this new feature.

While these may be nice features to some why not give us the option to "opt out" of using said features if we need more time to adjust. Granted change is sometimes necessary, but at what cost?

Should "simplicity" always win against "functionality"? Comment below...

See you next blog!