Ski day

Last Day of Season at Steven's Pass 062

Down the mountain full of snow with the sun at my and I stop to take a photo.  The photo to remind me of a wonderful day and a wonderful time and how great mother nature can be.  Shadows on the freshly groomed trails.

DVD Ripping Guide Coming

Just a quick note to remind myself to blog about what I am investigating.  Currently I am looking at what it takes to rip my DVDs.  I like having them on my PC so they are available via my Media Center interface.  All my movies without having to worry about the actual disks.

Last night I spent some time messing with DVDFab Platinum to find the right settings to get a single file that renders in Windows Media Player and Windows Media Center.  The nice thing is that I don’t have to use separate software to handle the encryption because DVDFab handles that.  However, I still have not found the right settings to get the files onto the PC.  I tried to use the VOB pass through setting but I cannot fast forward and rewind movies which is not cool.  When I have everything worked out I will post the entire process here.

I did learn about one new piece of software, handbrake (from www.handbrake.fr), but it looks like I will need AnyDVD to get through the encryption.  I will post results once I investigate.

Let’s get it started!

I am such a geek.  I can’t help myself.  I love learning new things, from new technology to a new word to new species of life I just love the excitement of learning something new.  I also love to solve problems and help others.  My intent is to marry all those things I love to do into this super blog where I can record all the things that I have done to help friends solve their problems.  Mostly this is related to computer software problems but I don’t want to limit myself to just that.  I will be looking into computer hardware, home theater, basic electronics among other things.  Once I have my solutions published I can easily refer my friends to my blog when they need help.  I am trying to fill in a hole where many people that offer tech support assume the users knows more than they actually do.  I want my help to be easy to use, accessible and applicable to everyone’s lives.

So here are some things that I have been intending to do for a while.  I am going to jot them down here with the hope that I won’t forget them and can refer back to this posting when I need an idea.

  • How to rip my CDs to my PCs in a quick, efficient manner.
  • How to get my songs on my PC onto my Zune.
  • How to register your own domain with GoDaddy.com.
  • How to use Windows Live Mail as your email provider using your personal domain.
  • How to download and install the Windows Live Suite.
  • How and why to create a Windows Live ID.
  • How to import photos using Windows Live Photo Gallery.
  • How to setup Windows Live Mail as your email client.
  • How to tag your photos using Windows Live Photo Gallery.
  • How to create your own blog at WordPress.com.
  • How to Windows Live Writer to easily post to your blog.
  • How to setup your XBox 360 to view your photos on your Windows XP or Windows Vista computer.
  • How to use a newsgroup to get help with a Microsoft Product.
  • How to get your DVDs on your Zune.
  • How to edit commercials out of TV shows recorded on Windows Vista Ultimate Media Center PC.
  • How to create your own website.
  • How to create a logo.
  • Create a movie

I am sure there is more for me to add but that is all for now.

How do you make a logo?

I am not talking about how you draw it.  I can get around in MS Expression Design or Adobe Illustrator but what I want to explore is how I do I make a good meaningful logo for my web site that ties into then name of the site and embodies the purpose for the web site.  With that in mind I went searching for a book or web site with helpful information.

The books I found so far are more about branding:
Killer Brands by Frank Lane
Primal Branding by Patrick Hanlon

Killer Brands has a lot of neat stories of how a brand can make a company great and how a great company can make a not so good brand recognizable but not much on how to create an icon.

Primal Branding takes a look at how to connect to people by going back to their primal instincts.  It was more focused on creating a brand but it had some things that were good to consider.  There were 7 steps to creating a brand:

  • The Creation Story
  • The Creed
  • The Icons
  • The Rituals
  • The Pagans, or Nonbelievers
  • The Sacred Words
  • The Leader

These steps were interesting and of course I took to "The Icons" step right away.  I will post more about what I found later.

Creating My Web Site: The Birth of BarnesYard.com

I am embarking on a mission to learn more about the web and some of the new 2.0 technologies. I thought there was no better way to do this than to just dive in and start creating my own web site. Thus, the birth of BarnesYard.com. It was my wife’s aunt Trudie that thought of it while we were on vacation. On my site I can add things that will cause me to learn more. I will soon put a document on my site that will hold the details of what I want. This document will be my “spec” and by that I mean it will contain the specifications for what I want on my site.Should be educational and fun. 🙂