Friday, December 08, 2006

Buh Bye Blogga!

As much fun I've had here on Randall@NYC, I am indeed no longer in NYC, so it's time to move to the next stage of my life. To make this blog transition easier for everyone (I'm looking at you, Shauna! :) ) I created a new domain name. Write this down!

http://www.randallcbennett.com/


Easy, right? I've switched to Dreamhost with Wordpress, which seems to be as extensible as I want it to be.

Again, thanks for reading. I'll have my first post within minutes!

Thursday, December 07, 2006

Nobody's watching Taran on the Price is Right

I've talked about Nobody's Watching a bunch of times on this blog, mainly cause I think it's so genious, but today as I was working for the CBS O&O KUTV, I saw him as a contestant! The other guy was also in the audience, which is friggin awesome. Too bad, however, Katie Couric cut in on the price is right. I'm sure it'll end up on youtube within a few hours.

Sidechannel: I switched hosting providers to Dreamhost, and as such, I'll be moving my blog within a few days to a new address, RandallcBennett.com (randallbennett.com is taken, of course...) right now that address redirects here, but it's going to completely change (new design, new publishing platform, etc etc.) expect to see more soon.

Wednesday, December 06, 2006

James Kim & Ryan Bennett

Similarities?

Check Wikipedia for Ryan and James, but off the grief factor / sadness tip, both were 35 when they died (Ryan was born August 20th 70, James August 9th 71) both leaving behind a wife and kids, both were well respected members of the media, both popular in their own niches, both gone too soon. It's been almost exactly six months. (Ryan was May 31, Kim was reported missing on November 30)

Yeah, talk about old wounds.

James Kim, RIP

I was just sure of it. Absolutely sure of it. I thought after searchers found the family that James would be found alive. Unfortunately for the tech community, and more specifically his family, the body of James Kim was found in the oregon wilderness earlier today.
http://beta.blogger.com/img/gl.link.gif
CNet, Kim's employer, has the full details.

I thought it would end differently for his family. I really truly did. It's hard for me to know if it was for a reason, or why things like this happen, but one thing is for certain... I hope my brother and James get to meet up for the heavenly equivalent of a cup of coffee and talk about their awesome lives as fathers, husbands and men who are deeply respected in their communities.

As I write this blog post, the tears come welling up. It's an unfortunate reminder of our mortality, and an unfortunate flashback to June.

James, I never knew you, but if you can read blog posts in heaven, I know a ton of people who cared for you deeply. Have a good time up there, and continue to watch over your family always. Your kids can always watch videos of you, which I know is of little consolation, but for me and my brother's situation, it seemed to calm me down a little. However, now that you've got the ultimate perspective, say what's up to my brother and sister. Let them know I miss them a lot.

Ryan and Veronica, I know it doesn't help right now, but I know exactly how you feel. Ryan, you were there for me at a crazy freaking time. I was in complete shock, and you somehow helped me through it. You've got my number/email, call me. Anytime.

Chase, you're horrible.

Chase Bank... in case you were wondering why I hadn't used my checking account in three months... this is a pretty good indication.

I logged into my account, which had about five bucks in it, and I see my checking account balance is $0.00

12/05/2006 SERVICE FEE $5.82

Yeah... The service fee? They took all my money cause I hadn't used the account in a few months.

This, Chase, is why I'll never use you again. You served a convienient purpose with your numerous New York ATMs, but going forward I'll only deposit a few hundred dollars at a time to use your convenient ATMs.

I hate you Chase. I hate you, and I never loved you. I won't take it back, we're THROUGH.

Saturday, December 02, 2006

Slipping...

So I'm not depressed again, but I've been having a kind of rough three days. A few things kind of kicked off the crap. First, I started clenching my teeth real bad, and now my front tooth hurts kind of bad.

More importantly, second, James Kim & family are missing. I don't know James Kim, I just know some friends of friends, but the whole story makes me sick to my stomach. For the uninitiated, James went to thanksgiving dinner in Seattle. He never returned to his San Francisco home or office. There's a full scale search in progress, but no one knows where he or his family are. Remember last Saturday? There was all that snow in the northwest, making the roads kind of bad. Police have also confirmed that neither James, nor his wife, have used their cellphones or credit cards in a week. While I don't want to think for the worst, I do. The whole scenario is horrid, and kicks me right back to June... but it also makes me realize that part of my family is still here, and just my brother is gone. Tragic? Of course. Both scenarios are horrid. I'm praying for his family, I'd encourage you to do the same.

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Confidence part deux

So two things...

Thanks to the commenters for rocking out. No one has my back refers to my immediate life, as opposed to my life at large. My immediate little circle of goodness that I see frequently and talk to frequently, no one has expressed true support in my eyes. REGARDLESS, I heard an awesome quote today... some astronomers from the early days of astronomy that discovered all the different kinds of stars and the sort (Galileo, etc) said they had to stand on the shoulders of people that came before them to see new ideas. I feel kind of like that. I think I'm standing on the shoulders of people around me to see some new ideas. I'm sure people do have my back (Especially J, Josh, Kerry, Christoph, Alex, the list goes on...) but some folks in my immediate circle were pissing me off, which resulted in the anger filled (and excessive) blog post. Sorry if I pissed you off, I was probably not talking about you if you're reading this blog. It's people that don't read my blog, and I was venting.

As for the other thing... J is one of the funniest kids EVAR, and I just realized that in my google reader refresh (I switched RSS readers from Newzcrawler to Google's wonderful reader) I forgot to bring along his site to the goog. Now I did, and I'm so glad I did.

Example of his brilliance?

He want's backup dancers.

Yeah, he's awesome, right?

Monday, November 27, 2006

Smil gave me a frwn

Smil is an xml markup language. Basically, it tells video files what to do, kind of like a playlist. The only prob being, it doesn't transition smoothly between video files as I'd like. So I've either got to figure out how to command flash to do my bidding via XML, OR, figure out a better way to make Smil transition properly between video elements. I guess I could always white flash for a few frames and do it cheezy, but then there's no gaurentee that the video won't be jittery. I'm going to do some research into flash playlisty stuff with XML. Wish me luck!

Things I'm thankful for

So on this post-thanksgiving black friday, let me breakdown exactly what I'm thankful for, and provide perspective on why I'm thankful for such things.

a) Trials
Weird choice to be first, eh? I've had my share of life trials, and I'm sure they'll continue. For now, they've seemed to subside, but I expect they'll be back.

b) Spirit
the spirit, and as a subset my spiritual life in general. The spirit of God is how I try to live my life. When I ask questions, He answers through the fruits of the spirit [Gal. 5:22]

b) Family
Kind of a subset of trials sometimes =) but family is the first material thing I'm thankful for. Over the last year, I've come to understand more how I need my family. I need them, and I can't live without them.

c) the Internet
Greatness! Creating opportunities that didn't exist before. With the Internet, I've had a bunch of opporunities I wouldn't have had, had I lived even five years prior. Big ups the internet, and all my internet dawgs (Jason C, Peter R, Ryan B (All Three of em) C.K. S)

d) Nathan Nelson
Enabling my dreams, just like the internet. He's seemingly come out of no where, and now as a big advisor for me, he's helping me achieve my dreams.

By the way, my eyes are this crazy shade of red, because I was coughing so hard my blood vessels burst. Sorry for the imagery.

This blog post took a long time, so I'm also breaking down other thoughts: Cinemax has all six star wars episodes!!! IN HD!!! Yeah, I want it now.

Confidence

I've got a post in the queue about thankfulness, so I'll get to that momentarily (sometime today or tomorrow.)

In the meantime, let me unleash a little rage that's been building up inside of me.

No one has my back in this life.

I'm starting a business. When I hear things like "You don't have to quit your dayjob," or "That's great and everything, but it's always good to be secure," it's a backhanded compliment at best, and a strike at who I am at worst.

The only person who believed in me is gone now. My brother ryan once wrote me a letter that said something to the effect of "No one said I could do radio. I did it. No one said I could do sports TV. I did it. Everyone said there wasn't any money in MMA. I found it. You can do it if you want to. Don't let anyone tell you otherwise." He also gave me a keepsake watch that says that to me every time I look at the time.

I'm doing it, and if it takes me closing my ears/eyes from all of my family and friends, I'll do it. I'm going to live my dreams. You can't stop me, so please try to be supportive and see the same vision I do. If I fail, what happens? I get another regular job. Stop pulling me down with your negativity. This isn't a little pet hobby project, it's my life. If you disrespect what I'm doing, it's disrespecting me directly. I'll still love you and everything, but you know, when you get torn down on things that are so close to your heart, you only stay open and take the punishment so much.

Sunday, November 19, 2006

Paying for hosting!

Wow everyone! Huge milestone today... as my site paid for it's own hosting.

Lemme give you a minute for that to sink in. I've made a whopping $8 off of my site.

Yeah, that's right. $8. That's three different ad networks combined.

$8 per week, $40 per month! Not too shabby of a start! Now I've just got to make sure my site continues to rock.

If you haven't checked it out yet, what are you waiting for?!

http://www.techcheckdaily.com

Thursday, November 16, 2006

Calacanis to leave AOL?

Wow.

If you come here for my insightful and interesting life, please pause for a moment while i discuss some geek-related news.

Tech Crunch drops the bomb, says my former boss, Jason Calacanis, is leaving Netscape/AOL.

Do I believe it?

Yes.

If you look at his blog posts over the last little bit, he's drifted away from the social news angle he once held. Now, instead, he seems to be posting a lot about wikipedia and Jimbo, arguably wikipedia's founder.

I'm going to go out on a limb here, and say he's thinking about starting some sort of wiki-related service. A wikipedia competitor? Doubtful, although it may work. I think he's on to something with placing ads on wikipedia to donate to charity. Don't know how it'll work, but if one thing is certain, Jason can get it going.

The real question is: if J.C. leaves AOL, can he still host his blog on Blogsmith? Better yet, can I host my blog on blogsmith? =)

Startup Checklist

If you couldn't tell by my last few blog posts, I'm obsessed with my new internet startup, Tech Check Daily.com. What do you think of it so far?

Alex, bound to be internet famous at some point for his and Gavin's eMurse, pointed me to a startup site targeted toward software developers, but good advice for any small business starting out. Lets see if my startup requirements fit.

1) If there is no business model, its a hobby, not an idea.
Yay! I've got a biz model that some say will grow consistently for twenty years.

2) The best ideas make your customers money.
Blast! Sorry guys, I'm the rich one.

3) If you're going B2C, look for revenue models that don't come right from the consumer.
Check!

4) Revisit every bad idea every once in awhile
Mark Cuban tried broadcast.com in the late 90's, so I guess this would be a throwback to that era of webcasting... except a whole lot betta.

5)Do your best to create a system of recurring revenue.
"Advertising on websites and such is easy. " Check!

More later.

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Beta is the new Alpha....

www.techcheckdaily.com

That's the new gig. Ain't it cool? Yeah, I claim Beta, but i'm not anywhere near where I'd like to be. I've got three phases of public release. Alpha was going the last month or so. Beta is where I try to start attracting users. Gamma is where I quit my dayjob and make the site exactly how I want. 1.0 is when I've got people supporting me (financially or as employees.)

Roadmap for this project? Alpha -> now. Beta -> February/marchish. Gamma -> June 15th. V1.0 a year??? I don't know what the realistic development cycle for a website is, but hey, we'll find out.

Gamma has some awesome features potentially. That's what'll really cause a breakout of new users. Cume 20% growth is why I'd like till Gamma, then I'd take 10-15%. Then, I'll be really close to profitable.

Monday, November 13, 2006

Video hosting provider

Hey hey y'all...

Since I don't know who exactly reads this blog, i've got my requirements list for a videohosting provider... with one in particular in mind. Let me know if you know of any other hosting providers who could fulfill these requirements.

Main and primary requirement:

Seamless integration of video files. I want to be able to stack video back to back with literally NO GAP. NONE. AT ALL. Zero Frames. Nada.

Secondary requirement:

Stats tracking on all video elements played. Most obvious reason: ads. Would like associated tracking to be as detailed as possibile.

Tertiary requirement:

Creating a player with a manual playlist (IE daily or perhaps hourly shows) as well as players that can be created dynamically (permalinks, category pages, etc.)

Also, have a player that can syndicate part of a video (perhaps referencing the story's permalink player) or syndicate an entire video.

Oh yeah, and some sort of standards based podcasting solution with little or no intervention from me would be the awesomeness.

Help me out here!

Friday, November 10, 2006

Changing the game

If I told you I was planning on changing the way we see indie video on the web, would you believe me?

Didn't think so.

Looks like we'll have to see how it goes, but I think by next June, you'll look back at this blog post and either A) say "Randall was really thinking!" B) "What a smarmy butthole" or C) "He tried, but too bad he failed."

Either way, I'm happy enough. I'm going to create a job I love on the side, and try to bring it to me full-time. Lots of dependent variables, but the one constant: I want my life to rule, so it's going to. End of story. Let's hope that a ruling life will include some extra cash on the side, but that's not a primary motivator.

My new project goes into beta on Monday... I'll tell you more then.

Thursday, November 09, 2006

What's happening with me

I noticed I haven't posted in quite a while, but I've got some exciting news coming. I'm starting a business, and while I haven't given any details to anyone yet, I'm planning on launching next monday in Beta, with a full launch coming in June.

What else... what else.... New MacBooks! I'm a little excited about them.

I can't think of what else to post, but I'll post more later.

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Disillusioned

I'm having a hard time right now. I'm really glad I didn't end up becoming a local news producer or reporter, although that puts me at a loss for career choices. I decided I can't handle all the murder, death and sad stories anymore. Graphics are one thing, but right now it's really hard for me to hear any of these sad freaking stories, because of my personal experience right now. I still want to be a tech reporter, but I'm not going to do any local news.

You'll see my plan soon.

Monday, October 09, 2006

Poyntered....

Wow... I gues Poynter does know how to use Technorati.

Me on Poynter.

OK, I've only seen one instance of this, so I can't say it's a trend. But it really cracked me up.

Randall
randallatnyc.blogspot.com
Blogger "Randall" from New York City.
Excerpt from a July 13 blog posting by "Randall" -- "I don't mean to go all Poynter on everyone, but seriously... like every CNN lead to reporters is 'What's the latest steve?' Aren't there more effective leads to reporters than 'In Haifa, CNN reporter Ben Wheadaman is live. Ben... What's the latest?...'"

This is the cultural zeitgeist, dear colleagues. Poynter has been reduced to a neurosis. Our unraveling continues...

Sunday, October 08, 2006

Personality tests

So I took a personality test.

the snapshot:
messy, outgoing, open, self revealing, ambivalent about chaos, not good at saving money, social, likes large parties, likes to stand out, risk taker, quick to make friends, does not like to be alone, rash, fame seeking, sarcastic, social chameleon, assertive, not a perfectionist, anti-authority, thrill seeker, likes to fit in, reckless, emotionally sensitive, leisurely, trusting

They put these, but I don't agree with them. What do you think?
unpredictable, craves attention, low self control, food lover, not rule conscious, weird,

The big picture:
Advanced Global Personality Test Results
Extraversion |||||||||||||||||||| 83%
Stability |||||||||||| 43%
Orderliness |||||| 30%
Accommodation |||||||||||||||||||| 83%
Interdependence |||||| 30%
Intellectual |||||||||||||||||| 76%
Mystical |||||| 30%
Artistic |||||||||||||||| 63%
Religious |||||||||||||||||||| 90%
Hedonism || 10%
Materialism |||||||||| 36%
Narcissism |||||||||||||||||| 76%
Adventurousness |||||||||||||||| 63%
Work ethic |||||||||||||||| 63%
Self absorbed |||||| 30%
Conflict seeking |||||| 30%
Need to dominate |||||||||| 36%
Romantic |||||||||| 36%
Avoidant |||||||||||||||||||| 90%
Anti-authority |||||||||||||||| 70%
Wealth |||| 16%
Dependency |||| 16%
Change averse |||||| 23%
Cautiousness |||||| 30%
Individuality |||||||||||||||| 70%
Sexuality || 10%
Peter pan complex || 10%
Physical security |||||||||||||||||||| 90%
Physical Fitness |||||| 30%
Histrionic |||||| 23%
Paranoia |||||||||||| 43%
Vanity |||||||||||||||||| 76%
Hypersensitivity |||||||||| 36%
Female cliche || 10%
Take Free Advanced Global Personality Test
personality tests by similarminds.com

Monday, October 02, 2006

Radiohead Phase 2.0

I went through a Radiohead (the band, btw) phase about five-ish years ago. For some reason, when I'm sorting through a lot of crap, it calms me or something. It's really good music to kind of pop in when you've got some philosophical issues to work through, or when you're feeling melancholy in general. I'm back to The Bends, the album that captivated me originally (Sorry, OK Computer was all about Karma Police when i was listening the first time around.) Kind of fun to put together a playlist called "Sappy" with people like Radiohead, Foo Fighters gentle stuff and Badly Drawn Boy (with some Ben Folds mixed in for good measure.) Blah.

Back from Vegas today! Vegas was pretty fun, but you know, it's vegas and gets old quickly. A one-day trip is a little short, but not by too much. I worked for the MTN TV network (Nevada V UNLV, in case you were wondering.) I heard a rumor from some of my friends in the TV freelancing world that if you head to the ESPN zone, you can get a discount if you say you're a freelancer. We'll see next time I'm in Vegas, which is probably the Saturday after Thanksgiving, with potential for the Friday and Saturday.

Sunday, September 24, 2006

On the edge...

So I've been on the edge of a lot of things lately. My emotions have been on the edge, I'm on the edge of going crazy, and sometimes my posts are on the edge of making sense (like this and the prior post.) Now for some clarity into my life, and what I'm doing.

I'm switching TV stations as of Monday. I'm no longer in the KSL Blue... now I've moved over to the red side and joined KUTV. I'm still a graphic artist, but I think that's really something I can excell in, without having to advance my career as much. Do I think it'll be useful for my career? Perhaps... but in the long run the real reason I took the job was the cash and the stability. KSL was an awesome place to work, and I'd recommend it to anyone in Utah. It's a great place with a ton of great folks, and if you're really interested in seeing people who care about their jobs, head there. The opportunity with KUTV leaves a lot of unknowns in front of me, but with a lot of answers in the near term. I know that after a few weeks, I'll love it, and hopefully they'll love me!

On the edge of Healthcare is something I'm really excited to be near. I've got to make all my benefits decisions within the next few weeks, and realistically that makes me stoked. I'm doing the 401k thing, the benefits thing and maybe i'll try to get some brain health in there too.

I'm also on the edge of having my life be great. Right now, it's going ok. I'm the only person who can make it be great, and I'm finding that pretty difficult right now. It's still hard (really hard) for me to go through all this stuff with my brother. He was someone who I used as a blueprint for my own life, and it's hard for me to deal with it. It's hard for me to watch UFC fights, although it's somewhat thereputic as well. It's really hard for me to visit my brother's family... because they all mean so much to me, and when they say things like "you look like daddy" or anything that deals with the "D" word, I about lose my mind and start bawling. I can't really deal with this world right now, and it drives me crazy.

I'm on the edge of a lot of things, and while I've been on the edge of something that starts with S, I don't think it's really an option for me. I've been dealing with so much lately, when it gets late at night, I get pretty sad still. I think I'm bi-polar, and if someone could help me treat it effectively without making me feel all crappy and tired, I'd be pretty stoked.

PS-- Going to vegas next saturday for the UNLV game. Not the biggest vegas fan, but frequent flier miles! =) I've got enough for a trip for myself already. Anyone know how to spend frequent flier miles on things other than flights?

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

Holy poop.

Wow kids.

I'm leaving KSL.

Wow kids.

Engadget redesign.

That should pacify both of my main audiences. I'll post more later.

Saturday, September 16, 2006

I need a job. Badly.

Wow. I truly need a job... well more specifically health insurance. If you're an employer, looking for a true multi-tasker and multi-talent (writing, graphics, editing, producing, Internet content) with experience (Netscape.com and KSL-TV) you should email me right now.

jobs (at) randallatnyc.com

If you know anyone else who is hiring, that would rule too. Email me with any job prospects in the Salt Lake City area. I really need health insurance and college graduate level pay. Please, oh please, hook me up.

Thursday, September 14, 2006

Happy? Nah... Sad? Definetely not.

I get a lot of people checking in on me, wondering exactly "how I'm doing..." or "hey, heard you had a seizure, hope you don't die!" I'm here to clear up exactly how I'm doing.

I'm Ehh. When I say Ehh, it's not "I'm doing bad, investigate further" but it's also not "Holy crap, I just moved to New York, my life feels perfect!" It's exactly what it sounds like. Yeah, my brother died a few months back. I'm still not really over it. I've got a lot of emotional issues to work out... and PS, I'm concerned about my family. I recently moved back from New York to live with my sister so we could be a support structure for each other. I was very concerned from afar about how my family was doing, and I decided its most prudent for me to be back in Utah. Utah isn't working out that well yet either, between the low pay, under appreciated feeling, job switcheroo and udder lack of health benefits, I'm not that happy to be here.

Honesty isn't necessarily what people are looking for when they check up on me, and when they show concern, it almost makes me want to lie to some extent. I don't know how anyone can help me, I don't know what you personally can do for me, but the fact that you care about me enough to call is enough. Know that when I respond "I feel really crappy today," you replying with "well, regardless of how you're doing, I still love you and care about how you're doing daily. I know things can be grey, but they'll look up," is a good answer, as long as its sincere. Sincerety is all I desire. I don't need someone to fix my problems. They're not going to be fixed easily. You caring about me though, will go a long way. Probably a longer way than you think.

Big ups to people who care about me. It really means a lot to me. If you read this blog and haven't emailed in a while, hit me up. I've got a real easy email address... it's yourname@randallatnyc.com . Email me, ping me, call me and say hi. I want to know how you're doing.

[completely unrelated]
Oh, and this just came across my RSS reader: Nintendo Wii launches November 15th for $250. I wish I had some cash. Maybe i'll save some money.

Monday, September 11, 2006

Pointless thoughts

So.... pointless thoughts on september 11th.

I, like all Americans, am pretty bummed out by today. I don't know if I feel like crying because of my brother, my connection to new york or my connection to all americans. It's difficult to pinpoint feelings of sadness, but ultimately it doesn't really matter why I'm sad, why I'm happy, but more or less it just matters that I (we) keep growing and moving forward.

I had more to say, but... it doesn't really matter. Remember today always, and don't forget other major days, like 4/20 and 12/7. If you don't know what happened on those days... look it up today and remember the brave americans who died.

Monday, August 28, 2006

Seizure!

Hey,

Had a seizure again.

Weird times in the life of Randall.

Don't know what it means / what's wrong with me / if I should go to the doctor or not. This one was a lot different than the one before. Could be hypoglycemia, or could be that I'm still crazy.

I also got these weird blotches underneath my eyelids.

Anyway, now I'm going to look for jobs that have healthcare, as I am in genuine need of it.

Friday, August 25, 2006

Hint Hint....

Hey,

If I say I'm angry, that means listen to what I have to say. Don't provide feedback. If I'm depressed, then provide motivating helpful feedback. If I'm angry, I just want to talk to hear myself talk and get it off my chest. Even if what you're saying is completely valid, chances are that I've already thought of it, and you saying it doesn't really help me out.

Not a slight at anyone in particular, but this is definetely a useful code for the future.

Monday, August 21, 2006

Cars.

2005 Chevrolet Malibu Base 4D Sedan White 34,346
2004 Mitsubishi Lancer Evo 4D Sedan Silver 31,847
2001 Mitsubishi Eclipse Spyder GT 2D Convertible Black 67,023
2004 Pontiac Sunfire SE 2D Coupe Gold 2D 18,584
2003 Mitsubishi Eclipse GS 2D Coupe Silver 53,645
2004 Mitsubishi Lancer ES 4D Sedan Silver 35,135
2004 Dodge Neon SXT 4D Sedan Red 43,206
2005 Chevrolet Cavalier Base 4D Sedan Blue 53,467
2004 Dodge Neon SE 4D Sedan Silver 46,568
2003 Oldsmobile Alero GL 4D Sedan Silver 36,304
2002 Mitsubishi Diamante VR-X 4D Sedan Black 47,883

Blah. Buying cars isn't a very fun activity, but I sure am glad I can buy from an auto auction. I'm expecting to spend no more than $9,500 total including tax, licensing, etc.

Good times!!! I am excited.

Sunday, August 20, 2006

PS-- I called it.

Check this post, and notice the last line.

so I'm bracing for some tough issue that is about to be thrown my way.


I've often told people that I knew something HUGE was coming in terms of my personal life, and I had way too many blessings and things going my way.

I knew something was coming, but I thought it would be something easier. Wow. I was wrong.

One reason why SLC > NYC

So I've pretty much used the tired ol' "I hate Salt Lake, I love New York" phrase too much over the past two weeks. Now, I'm going to tell you why SLC kind of rules.

Internet speed.

Verizon says they're rolling out FIOS to NYC residents, but certinaly not in my former Manhattan residence. However, Comcast has already offered me 8 Mbit internet for $33/month, and Utopia is on the horizon [15 mbit fiber for $40.]

Haha NYC. Eat that, old infrastructure.

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Financial / other new york lessons

So I've moved, I don't know if you heard. I'm back in Utah and am going to help my sis out with some issues she's got (and vice versa.)

This is airing out my dirty laundry for financially how I spent my new york life, in an effort to save other people from the same fate.

As my collegues on the Engadget Podcast always used to council, wait to buy consumer electronics devices. While they were counciling more along the lines of, "Wait till the next version comes out, it's going to rock!" I'm counciling more along the lines of, "Wait till you can afford the next version."

Life lessons I've learned: Life isn't constant, nor is it easy. Don't expect everything to stay the same as it has been, because I gaurentee it won't stay the same. I had just gotten to a point in my New York job / life where things were evening out. I had all the furniture I needed, all the consumer electronics I needed, and I was just about to start settling down for some good ol' credit payments. Then May 31st hit. My brother died. In the immediate term, nothing changed. I came back to New York two weeks later, kept collecting the same paycheck I had before, and nothing was really different. BUT, that was before I realized the full impact of my brothers death not only on his wife and kids, but my other brothers and sisters.

I'll post more later.

Note to Cingular potential customers

So... I hate Cingular. I like GSM, and I liked the phones I had [both stolen/lost] but unfortunately Cingular's subpar customer service and expensive rate plans mean now that I'm back in the west, I'm back with t-mobile. I know its going to cost me $175 to switch to t-mobile, and I know this means I've spent over $1,000 on cingular phones/service fees, but its really worth it.

For my mobile dollar, T-mobile is the best. That's all there is to it. $1,000 later, I can confedently state that T-mobile = the bomb.

Sunday, August 06, 2006

OK GO!

I've always really dug OK GO, well at least Get Over It!, and now their new song kind of catchy, plus the video is probably one of the coolest videos i've seen in a bit. AND.... they're using the internet to market effectively.

Case in point:

OK Go - "Here It Goes Again" Buy OK Go - Oh No at iTunes.



Freaking crazy, eh?

Thursday, July 27, 2006

Info

Hey,

I'm going to be out of pocket for the next little while [three days.]

I'm purposfully avoiding the internet as a method of cleansing my soul.

I'm getting on a plane, heading to fresno, and not touching a computer till Sunday.

That's the plan anyway.

If you need to get a hold of me... [646] six seven zero 1291.

Later!

[ps, congrats potentially to Jason who may or may not have been married in the month of July.]

Tuesday, July 18, 2006

Thriving under pressure

So I've come to learn a couple key things about myself over the last 12 hours.

#1--I've got something wrong with me where I don't need to eat.

#2--I thrive under pressure.


I'm getting on a plane in 9 hours, haven't packed yet [going to try to sleep on the flight...] and my final graphics are just now rendering.

For some reason, cutting it close isn't a matter of choice, its a matter of necessity. I seem to solve problems more creatively when I've got a deadline monkey on my back. I think that's what I miss about TV sooo(ooo) much. I love the idea of having nothing at 11pm, but then putting on a two hour show at five am.

Now, i'm going to be tired/hungry for a few more hours. I may end up picking up some food somewhere, but I'm not quite sure where yet.

Later,

Randall

Sunday, July 16, 2006

Top of Google!

Check it! I've almost completely monopolized the front page of google! That's the start of my world domination strategy. Next step? Take over the little league of awesomeness.

Thursday, July 13, 2006

The Latest?

I don't mean to go all Poynter on everyone, but seriously... like every CNN lead to reporters is "What's the latest steve?" Aren't there more effective leads to reporters than "In Haifa, CNN reporter Ben Wheadaman is live. Ben... What's the latest?" or "With the western wildfires, CNN's Kyung La. Kyung, what's the latest?" How bout "Kyung, we hear the fires have scortched more than 200,000 acres already.... Thats right anchor..."

Annoying!!!!

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Nobody's Watching.

via Brian Alvey.

Update

Haven't posted in a while.

Not dead, although that explosion was near to my house (sarcasm...) and I'm busy.

I'll post more. Swear.

Friday, June 30, 2006

best comment ever

chitownruler (9 hours ago)
omg nerds its just a computer screen stop fighting

In relation to this story.

Thursday, June 29, 2006

WHERE ARE MY HORRORSCOPES!?!!11!1!/!!


This is how the day goes for us

As of this writing, i've got 2700 emails from angry Netscape users.

Most of them are screaming "WHERE ARE MY HORRORSCOPES!!" (their spelling, not mine.)

Some are yelling the more helpful "WHERE IS MY EMAIL?!"

They took long enough to find the "send us feedback" link at the bottom, without seeing the "MAIL" link at the top.

2715 now.

Wednesday, June 28, 2006

Chase + me = OVER

Chasebank is the worst bank in the history of banks. If it wasn't enough that they charge $10 for access using quicken, today i went in to check a transaction that was supposed to go through today for $500, and they removed $500 from my checking, but only deposited $400 on my credit card.

I'm angry.

Now i've been transferred to seven eight nine different representatives.

I'm more angry.

Chase and I are through as a bank.

59 minutes on the phone so far.

UPDATE:

So no one could tell me WTF was going on with my account. Grande total of minutes taken for them to say "I don't know what the deal is?" 65 minutes.

Update:

On hold again after being called back. 5 more wasted cell phone minutes.

Chase PR, if you're reading this, you owe me something. 65 minutes.
I hope it was all roming so Cingular hates me now.

Sunday, June 18, 2006

Word.

Back in NYC.

Thanks to everyone!!!

I'm sending out personal replies tomorrow afternoon/evening.

Later,

Randall

Friday, June 16, 2006

Vid from me

I know this breaks my site design, but frankly, I don't mind.

Thursday, June 15, 2006

One of the eight...

I'm too tired to blog this, but you should read this times article.

I feel special too that my chosen career path has lead to a story in the New York Times.

More later.

Wednesday, June 14, 2006

Ryan Tribute Video

Yo yo.

My homie Christoph is working on a flash player for this vid, but in the meantime, if you want to download it the old-skool way, hit up here:

http://www.dvguru.com/videos/randall/RyanTribute.mp4
http://www.dvguru.com/videos/randall/RyanTribute.mov
http://www.dvguru.com/videos/randall/RyanTributeBig.mov


This is the non-done memorial version. Still some roughness, but pretty good.

Photos are courtesy Scott Peterson, Nepal Plummer, and my Fam of course. Music is courtesy Coldplay, Jimmy Eat World, Badly Drawn Boy and some random mormon band.

Watch it, and watch for a flash player version soon.

Sunday, June 11, 2006

Drama

Names have been changed, language has been made more friendly.

See if you can guess which one I am.

[22:30] Agent RBU: word
[22:30] Not me: word
[22:30] Agent RBU: so i just told the girl i'm in love with how i felt
[22:30] Not me: snap
[22:30] Not me: rejected?
[22:30] Not me: jk
[22:30] Agent RBU: needless to say, things could have gone better...
[22:30] Agent RBU: lol
[22:30] Agent RBU: it was "odd"
[22:31] Not me: oh no!
[22:31] Agent RBU: there's so much history/drama
[22:31] Not me: c-razy
[22:31] Agent RBU: yea
[22:31] Not me: you'll have to tell me about it over a pint (of milk.)
[22:31] Agent RBU: LOL
[22:31] Agent RBU: awesome
[22:31] Agent RBU: that literally made me crack up
[22:31] Agent RBU: will you have some tiny violins too?
[22:32] Not me: yeah
[22:32] Agent RBU: so i was hoping my misery helped you along just a little ;)
[22:32] Not me: yeah, not really
[22:32] Agent RBU: i know the rest of my a****** friends will get a big kick out of it
[22:32] Not me: my sister would say "my talk went awesome"
[22:33] Agent RBU: honestly, i had you in my thoughts/prayers all day today
[22:33] Not me: it helped dude
[22:33] Not me: cause i literally put away all the speeches i prepared
[22:33] Not me: and just talked
[22:33] Agent RBU: i do what i can, i was thinking about sacrificing an animal...
[22:33] Not me: and i think it turned out great
[22:33] Agent RBU: good
[22:33] Not me: it just sucked
[22:33] Not me: cause its like
[22:33] Not me: well
[22:33] Agent RBU: there was no way i was going to even suggest anything to you, but i wanted to tell you that
[22:33] Not me: not so much sucked as made me realize stuff
[22:33] Agent RBU: to just "talk"
[22:34] Not me: like i realized that at this second
[22:34] Not me: this very second
[22:34] Not me: before my brother died
[22:34] Not me: our lives were like at a crossing point
[22:34] Not me: like before this week
[22:34] Not me: my life was always looking up to ryan
[22:34] Not me: and after this week
[22:34] Not me: it was going to be as a peer
[22:34] Not me: with the site launching
[22:34] Agent RBU: crazy...
[22:35] Not me: yeah
[22:35] Not me: and here's the more *bleep-a-roo!* part
[22:35] Not me: thursday: site launches
[22:35] Not me: friday: funeral
[22:35] Not me: saturday: I go back home to new york
[22:35] Agent RBU: wow...
[22:35] Not me: (or maybe sunday)
[22:35] Not me: then monday
[22:35] Not me: my life begins
[22:35] Agent RBU: monday, you get to look at my pretty face and it helps
[22:35] Not me: it sounds really overly hyperbolic
[22:36] Not me: to have it displayed that way
[22:36] Not me: and to say something about like "my life begins"
[22:36] Not me: but i really feel like it's the truth
[22:36] Agent RBU: not at all, i feel you
[22:36] Not me: like i feel like everything in my life has been leading up to this moment
[22:36] Agent RBU: well, you know what i mean
[22:36] Agent RBU: that's a big part of why i said something to *REDACTED* tonight
[22:36] Agent RBU: everything changes this week
[22:36] Agent RBU: everything
[22:36] Not me: we're like a crappy plot for a movie
[22:36] Agent RBU: lol
[22:36] Agent RBU: a very crappy movie
[22:36] Not me: yeah
[22:37] Not me: its like traffic
[22:37] Not me: sans the coke, and about nerds
[22:37] Agent RBU: hahaha
[22:37] Agent RBU: yea
[22:37] Not me: "somewhere.. *PROJECT X* is effecting someone else's life."

Laterr.

Memorial Notes

So... today was the big-ol' memorial in San Luis Obispo. Pretty crazy times indeed (theme of my life right now.)

Order of speakers (for postarity, and uber-zealous people reading this awesome blog)

Rick Bennett
Myself
Nepal Plummer (Ryan's techie homedawg that helped him start MMAWeekly when I told him I was "too busy." Yeah, I'm an idiot, but also don't know as much as Nepal.)
Dave Alles (Ryan's former KSBY colleague. Dave is the sports director of the station, and freaking rocks.)

Rick started off with a bang. He was the one to read the eulogy (or you-googly, if you're derek zoolander) He did a great job summing up some of the greatest moments of the hitman. I wish I woulda taken notes, because I didn't really get a great mental note of his talk.

Then, I stepped up and started rawking. Yeah, it wasn't the best talk ever given by man, but it had it's moments. I started out by trying to read what I wrote. I wrote an awesome talk, but couldn't read it through the tears (literally) so I closed my PDA (HTC Wizard, Cingular 8125 for you gadget freaks) and started yappin'. I felt like i was really talking from my heart, and I was really glad I had prepared because it gave me the ability to express what I was really feeling, since I had preprocessed some of the thoughts.

Some of the parts that really stick out for me in my talk were the parts where I had the chance to open up about exactly how Ryan inspired me, and how my career echoed his. The hardest moment was definetely when I came to a realization in front of everyone: I'm now officially lost and in uncharted territory. I always had my brother to figure out exactly how to do a career, and since I could look at him, it made it easy for me to move around and figure out what I liked and how to get what I wanted most effectively. Now, that major advantage is history, but I also think I don't need it anymore.

Ryan got me to such a point in my career that I've accellerated past where I thought I would/should be at age 21. I'm in a position to help reshape media and journalism, which sounds overly hyperbolic and probably is a little bold of a statement, but it's my blog so tough. This new project i've been basically blessed with will let me express myself in new ways, and I think will let people take control of their media even more.

I'll be sharing more about the new project as it launches (this week, fools!) but till then, let me get back into what my talk was really about: Ryan. It was really easy to start rambling and talking about what I thought was important, and what I knew was important. I tried to emphasize something that I felt in my core: God will answer your prayers.

Lemme try and frame it in an easy to understand context. When you do something nice for someone, you get a really nice feeling, right? Kind of like a "Yeah, that was the right thing to do" feeling. That's God teaching you a princple of the gospel. He's saying, "You did something really right this time, [insert name here.]" God also talks to us that way when we ask. Yeah, it's not as clear cut, and all the physical indicators aren't there so that we really understand exactly what He's saying, but we get a general sense of what's right, and how to implement it in our lives. I want every single person reading this blog entry to try this little excercise, and see how it works out for them. Pray, with an open mind and heart, and ask if God loves you. I know it might sound preachy, but if you believe that there is a supreme being out there, or a power controlling this universe, try it, and see how it works out. Once you get a bearing on how that feels, try praying about other stuff, and see if your outlook on life doesn't change a little.

So, this is a huge blog post, but we're not done yet. As I wrapped up my talk, I felt really good about the things I said, and really good like I knew I expressed the thoughts that needed to be expressed. I sat down, Nepal took center stage, and shared some of the comments rocking off over at the MMAWeekly forums.

Check out what people are saying at MMAWeekly here and here.

I'm tired, and I know I tend to say I'll post about something and then usually forget, but I've got to go to bed. I SWEAR I'll POST ABOUT DAVE'S AWESOME THOUGHTS TOMORROW.

Also: Real quick deets on travel plans. Heading to SLC tomorrow (early, like 6 am) I'll be in SLC for the rest of next week, and then be heading back home (NYC) on Saturday or Sunday. Email is the winner as the way to get a hold of me.

[ps, I'm going to throw up a post of the obituary that ran, the obit I originally wrote that turned into a skeleton for my video, as well as the talk I didn't deliver tomorrow as well.]

Saturday, June 10, 2006

Posts that make me happy

http://www.blogger.com/img/gl.link.gif

I just finished tribute #1.

Expect it on here asap.

evdo = the best

So, blogging from the road in CA. Literally on the road sitting next to my bro Rick as we drive toward Atascadero for the memorial service.

EVDO is the best. Word.

Friday, June 09, 2006

We never change.... do we?

Blech.

I feel crappy right now... mainly because it's two am, and I've got to get on a plane in 10-ish hours bound for sunny CA.

Blech.

Also, putting together a tribute video that makes me bawl.

Blech.

And a sequence in it literally makes me sick to my stomach every time i watch it.

blech.

I've still got to write for saturday.

blech.

No biggies, but i still cant freaking stand this situation.

Blech, Indeed.

Tuesday, June 06, 2006

The new "real world"

So i'm still grappling with reality, and it's crazy that i'm stuck here without the same direction I had before, but now i'm going to pause mourning for a few minutes and talk about the new "real world" i'm about to come into.

So those of you who don't really know me, I work for a division of AOL, and we're launching a new website in oh say... 10 days (crazy timing indeed.) The site is still on the down low, but expect to see it when it launches here. The best part about my job? I'll be working at 8am every day! I know it sounds stupid and whatevs, but it's really exciting because i haven't had a regular 8am-5pm job ever. I've got to get my sleep schedule back down, but once that happens we'll be in business.

I'm going to write more later, like tomorrow, and also give you a preview of what's coming up for Ryan's tribute video. I've got the skeleton script done, and there's much more to come.

Lizzata,

Rizzandall

Sunday, June 04, 2006

Big-ups.

Yo again. Big ups to a couple of peeps for being there, and getting the word out about the memorial fund.

Ryan Block
, the managing editor of Engadget

Tom Biro, blogger at large for Weblogs, Inc.

C.K. Sample, III, who is lead of my secret (almost launched) project.

I've also set up another email address, if you see any coverage of my brother in your travels on the web, or want to send a tribute letter that might end up in a Ryan Bennett tribute video I might be putting together, hit me up at ryantribute [at] randallatnyc [dot] com

My brother on Wikipedia

Hey,

If you've got any info about my brother, and want to update his wikipedia page, someone just added it.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ryan_Bennett

I'm going to write in a few days, after I get his obituary done. It's pretty much done, but i'm going to make sure to flesh it out till I like it. I'll probably post it on wikipedia afterward.

Video Tribute at some point

Hey hey again.

http://www.ifl.tv/News.aspx?i=86

If you've got a tivo or some sort of recording device, and fox sports cable channel, and could do me a favor and record this show, I'd really appreciate it. I hear they're going to do a tribute to my brother, but since I'm in a household that doesn't have cable (I know... i didn't think they existed anymore either!) I'm not going to be able to record it. If you can, pllleeasssee DVR it and put it up on youtube or something. I really want to see it.

Friday, June 02, 2006

Linkfarm!

Press release from the fight network (Ryan's last employer)
Savage Truth from Sherdog, an MMA publication
KSL's report
MMA Forums postings about my brother
Family Fund info
Paypal donate:

I'll keep updating this post with more links, as I get them.

Clarification

So basically, let me give you a brief summary of what's happened.

Better yet, let me have google news and technorati give you a summary of what's happened.

Google News

Technorati

I'm still kind of too frazzled to write anything. I'm working on an obit, and that seems to kind of pass the time away for me, but i'm having real trouble feeling comfortable blogging on this one. I'm still in that state of shock, fear, and basically every other emotion (sans happyness and joy) you could go through.

He made a mark, on both the mma community, central california, and myself. He's the reason why I got into TV news. He's the reason why I helped start a college radio station. He's the reason I went to Weber State. He's basically the reason why I'm in New York, and he's the reason why i can't go to sleep, and don't really want to.

Ryan Bennett, my brother, my inspiration.

Without being too long of a blog post, let me get into something a little deeper. I miss my family, version 2.0. For those of you not up to date on the affairs of one Randall Bennett, let me help take you a little deeper. My sister (22 years my senior, although she'd probably not appreciate that term =) died when I was 14. 8 years ago, I went through the hell and horror of realizing that my sister was gone, and now my bro-in-law Kent would be left to raise 4 kids all by his self. It was a different situation, she had brain cancer, it was a three year process, but it was just as hard as this is right now.

Fast forward eight years, brother has 4 kids, dies tragically, leaves the kids behind with sis-in-law Tonya. What's different? I am. I have this eery sense of overmind about how i'm greiving, and how i look at myself through some sort of lens. It's probably wrong, and i'm probably sending all sorts of different vibes to others, but i feel like i'm going crazy. I just want to be a normal person, grieving normally (is that possible?) but instead, I'm looking at myself and my family with this sense of disconnect, and I don't really like it. I'll get over it soon, maybe when i go to sleep.

Thanks for your concern, especially Alex and J. You've never met each other, but you guys have a ton in commmon. I hope this makes more sense now.

As for the technorati and the google news stuff, it is really comforting to see everyone's outpouring of support. I really appreciate everyone who's sent support our way, and who continues to do so.

Guess i'm not too frazzled afterall.

Thursday, June 01, 2006

Expressing the inexpressible

To try to sum up my feelings right now would be a definite exercise in futility.

In brief: the man who helped me realize my dreams is gone.

I will devote my life to his memory, as well as my living family.

That's all i've got in me for now. More to come, as i get toward utah.

Sunday, May 28, 2006

uno = runing my life

Note the timestamp on this post.

That's right, its 2:51. I've been up, playing UNO for the past few hours.

It's simply ruining my life. If you'd have told me my favorite xbox 360 games would be 5 bucks or less, i'd have laughed at you. Geometry wars and Uno are undoubtedly some of the best gaming experiences i've ever had, and they're both cheap.

Also, of note, Tiger Woods golf is as fun as ever, Tony Hawk is also a blast (as usual) and for the xbox exclusive games, PGR3 is amazing (probably the best racer i've seen, and while not quite on par with every other racer i've played, pretty good none the less.) Also, two noteworthy games i haven't played: Metroid Prime Hunters -- still in the shrinkwrap due to addiciton, and same with Elder Scrolls 4: Oblivion. I basically want to ruin my life with Uno, and don't need an awesome first person shooter for the DS or a great RPG for the 360 to do it for me. They're staying in the shrink wrap, till I decide I want my free time consumed with those great games.

Later,

Randall

Wednesday, May 24, 2006

QoD!

I really don't like Valleywag, because they usually (almost always) get the story wrong, but I don't mind their commenters. Case in point:

http://www.valleywag.com/tech/cory-doctorow/kazaa-sues-p2pnet-for-libel-gets-cory-doctorow-in-a-lather-176072.php

KaZaA, the P2p company who sued the RIAA for copyright infringement, while they were getting sued, is suing another company for libel. Bloggers are kind of mad, and Cory Doctorow posted this message:

This is about as bogus as it comes -- real crybaby stuff, wah, someone said something nasty about me, I'll sue the site on which it appears -- and P2PNet deserves better. They're raising funds for their defense, and I'll pitch in a hundred bucks once it's live.


For the non tech folks: Cory Doctorow writes for a blog that runs neck-and-neck with Engadget as the biggest blog in the world.

Nick Douglas, the internet's biggest leech, then posts

The lesson we can all learn: Do not make Cory Doctorow think you're an asshole, or he will hurt you with words and money.


A little funny, but more of the irony and the "DRM 4-eva" easy route on Doctorow.

Then, an awesome commenter comes back with something ACTUALLY funny.

Let's hope he keeps throwing words and money at stuff so that he will eventually run out of both.

by Anonymous


Yeah, I'm definitely not a Valleywag fan, and not really a Gawker fan in general, but I do care for their commenters, which is something I can't say for WIN commenters.

Joystiq, TUAW commenters, I'm looking in your direction. Shut up already.

Monday, May 22, 2006

Best Photo Evar!!1!1!!!!

[Redacted, out of my deep respect for my dogg.]

Best.

Photo.

Ever.

Ballmer!

Hey, I just heard that ballmer could be getting fired. That bums me out, since that'd mean less of these awesome moments:



not to mention the best part:

Friday, May 19, 2006

Xbox 360, a modest review

I've had my xbox360 for a couple days now, and I'll say it's some of the best graphics i've ever had in my home. While i feel pretty for playing it, I definetely don't think that the Xbox has the best gameplay of any console. I think Nintendo is on to something with their new Wii console, but i'll get to that later.

I went to E3, the electronic Entertainment Expo in LA last week, and it basically convinced me to buy an Xbox360. I decided that it was going to be the next gen console of choice, next to the Wii, and since I'm not waiting for the PS3, the time was right to plunk down the cash, and get the 360. I've got to say that I'm satisfied with PGR3, Tony Hawk: American Wasteland and Tiger Woods 06, but as for Madden 06, NBA Live 06 and Quake 4, I'm taking them back tomorrow. The games were obviously rushed out the door, with an emphasis on pretty graphics and not gameplay. While I appreciate the effort of those EA artists, I'd appreciate more forthought from EA management, and I'd hope they'd realize that graphics can sell a game, but not make me happy. The controls, animations and overall feel of the games feels like an E3 demo, and not a finished product. If Microsoft wasn't breathing down their backs, and EA wasn't in such a rush to get the games into the marketplace before the hoidays, Madden 06 could have been a great game. Same goes for Live (although Live is infinately better than Madden.)

I've been enjoying my time with the 360, and haven't started playing oblivion yet, mainly because I know it will ruin my life. I think that life ruining will take place on saturday, and i'll be a slave to the game.

Later,

Randall
This photo makes me look like i have cool hair.

Wednesday, May 17, 2006

Good times, good times indeed

Word to your moms, and since it was mom's day last week, I gave a bunch'a people a call and kind of caught them up with what's been happening in my life, sans you, the loyal blog reader.

So first, with the boring news, my blog is going to migrate over to the most advanced blogging platform in the near future, so it'll look all crazed in the very near future.

I haven't written in this blog in about a month, which seems to be the standard. Gone are the days of daily, neigh weekly, posts. Now, you've got to be able to stick with me through my crazy times, and what crazy times they've been.

I've been to LA three times in three months. You know how many times I flew before I moved to New York? Once. (Twice if you count the year later round trip from Tampa, FL.) Now that I've moved to New York, my life has changed in a lot of key areas. I think when one makes such a bold statement, it needs to be followed with bullet points. Here goes:

Money

I've always had to pinch pennies in the past, and while that's definetely paid off with how I plan financially, now I can be kind of a New Yorker in the way I spend. When I left KSL, my pay more than doubled, but so did my cost of living. I've got a pretty posh standard of living, even though my rent is $1015 a month. Yes, that's how much my rent costs... and it's a deal.

Socially

While i've always considered myself quite the little social butterfly, in New York, I find it easier to talk to women. Maybe its the new job, maybe its the money (see reason 1) or maybe its the new found freedom i've aquired with a fresh start. In any case, it's definetely positive. I've gone on more dates since I moved here four months ago, than I did in my last two years in Northern Utah. (maybe like three, but hey, it's a start!)

Career

So this little Project X thing is getting down to the wire, and soon we'll take the wraps off what is going to be a huge deal. Right now, I can say my bosses are pretty awesome. Jason Calacanis is a pretty visionary man, and while he kind of skips over the logistics sometimes (visionaries can't be constrained!) I've already learned a lot from him, and am looking forward to learning more. When we're just hanging out, sometimes I think to myself, "This crazy dude is my boss?!" but then when we have big meetings, he gets up and can answer every question and leave the room completely excited and satisfied all at once, that's when I realize how good business people stick to making profits, and great business people stick to making killer products for consumers. Sounds very dot-com bubbly to say "get the idea first, and we'll make money second," which isn't Jason's philosophy at all. He says, "get your users happy, make sure you're on the same team, make sure you're making money from day one, and you'll be fine."

Enough about Calacanis, since you could just google his name and find any number of blogs and rumor sites talking junk about the man. Let's get to the two people behind the scenes that shock and awe me: Brian Alvey and C.K. Sample.

Brian is the sort of guy that a lot of people don't necessarily get at first glance. The guy is wicked smart, wicked witty, and wicked.... awesome[?] (sorry, reaching for another adjective, came up blank.) He's thinking so fast, figuring out problems so fast and anticiptaing user reactions so fast that he can't help but make something awesome come out of his skull. He created Blogsmith, the platform that weblogs, inc. publishes on, and it's a really amazing peice of software. He also oversees project X, and makes sure that it's on track, and doing what it should be doing. Read his blog for his full history, but basically the guy is a genious, and I wish we got to hang out on a more regular basis.

Now, for the guy I hang out with on too regular of a basis (joking!) C.K. Sample. While his name oozes prestiege, Clinton Kennedy Sample, III, M.A., he's quick to point out he's a regular mortal just like the rest of us. The fool with the degreez hits me on AIM daily, and we figure out problems with Project X, he's my travel buddy (we've gone to every event together) and basically someone I really look up to. He's done pretty well for himself, as the author of PSP Hacks [By O'reilly... so buy it!] and as the lead for TUAW. His sarcasm and ability to help me with my weaknesses is much appreciated, and his ability to deal with people (and parrots) is on the scale we need for a manager.

As for my day to day job, I still haven't found out what it's going to be like. I've been helping with Weblogs, Inc. as a preperation for the real stuff I'll be doing on the road, but for now i've got to wrap that crap up and get some sales presentations ready.

While I don't know what my daily job will be like yet, I do know I've got an AOL assigned 17" monitor, 24" monitor, and there's a MacBook Pro with my name on it headed toward the Upper East Side. Yay!

Gear

As an extension to point number one, my gear library has grown extensively. Yes, I'm wasting money on consumer electronics, but you know what? I'm 21, and I get the privelage of wasting my salary on consumer electronics. I'm working on my stock portfolio strategy, and i figure within the next year, i'll start saving for retirement. Till then, i'm going to keep blowing cash the old fashioned way.

Gear I've picked up since NY:
  1. Shure E2C headphones [lost]
  2. Shure E3C headphones
  3. Treo 650 [lost with the headphones in JFK airport last week...]
  4. HTC Wizard (Cingular 8125)
  5. 60 GB iPod
  6. Xbox 360
  7. Sweet bed frame / desk thingy
  8. Linksys Router
  9. Company Assigned gear
So i'll go through the list fairly rapidly. I had some E2C headphones, which i strongly recommend if you want to spend some money, but the E3C replacement ones aren't really worth the extra cash. Word of warning.

Treo 650 was pretty cool, but with the loss of it, I knew it was time to ditch Palm. You see, I haven't had the best luck with Palm. First, I broke something in the screen of my Zire 71 (digitzer or the LCD or something....) and replaced it successfully. Then, the Zire winds up missing. Fast forward to the Treo, lost in an airport. It's not Palm's fault, but I don't like the streak of luck i've had. The HTC Wizard is a really sweet phone (if I can figure out how to transfer my Verichat Lisence, that is)

I've had a 3g iPod, and I've always said that was my favorite iPod design. The 5g iPod, however, was a work related necessity. I was really holding out for the Toshiba GigaBeat S series, but some crafty fast talk from the higher ups, and I was forced reminded that it is the most popular player, and I should test my podcasts etc on it. Why the 60 GB? Because i'm a consumer whore.

As for the Xbox 360, realistically, it serves no useful purpose. In fact, to the contrary. I gaurentee i'll waste more time playing Project Gotham Racing or Geometry Wars than I should. Gaurentee. (Side note, I bought that yesterday, the same day as the 8125, and basically spent way too much money all in one day.)

The other stuff isn't important for their own paragraph, so I'll sum it up: my router rocks, my loft bed is basically where I live, and AOL is giving me some awesome equipment to do video with (FX1, Quadcore G5, MacBook Pro, 2x24" monitors at the office, 1x24" monitor at home, etc.)

Half an hour later, I'm only to the end of gear? BLAST! I know if I stop now, I won't post for another month. Unfortunately, I'm going to have to stop. I'll post more.... probably after the site launches and i get some down time. In the mean time, to bed I go.

Later-o,

RB

Coming up on the next post:
Nintendo World
E3
Milken
The Nintendo Wii
Why I bought an Xbox 360 (and initial impressions!)
Why I won't buy a PS3 (basically the same as why I bought a 360)
Shout outs to Ryan Block and Peter Rojas (seriously, I shoulda included it on this post, but outta time!)
Anything else you fools comment on.

Thursday, April 13, 2006

Yorkville, NY!

So, a couple interesting points about my current abode:

Technically, I don't live on the Upper East Side, I live in Yorkville.

Check the wikipedia entry:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yorkville%2C_Manhattan

Sadly though, Yorkville has the highest robbery rate in Manhattan (due to its deserted streets and pockets of wealthy residents).
HAHAHAHAHA. I totally saw some dude trying to break into a car outside of my apartment. Totally called him on it, and called the cops. Go me.

Update: Yorkville is a subset of the Upper East Side.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Upper_East_Side

Also of note: going to the gym everyday, well except today and tomorrow, due to the fact my Gym is closed for the first two days of Passover. I've literally gone every other day the last three weeks (sans Sundays, natch.) Interesting times indeed.

I'm going to write more posts in this here blog, probably on a daily basis. I'll give it a shot and see how it turns out.

Yeah, so update #2, I really live in Carnagie Hill.

I'm stupid.

I really don't know where I live.

Later,

Randall

Tuesday, March 28, 2006

Disgust for chain letters

So, I've come across a pretty popular chain letter among the Latter-Day Saint faithful. I knew it was coming, but I thought by now the folks arcitechting these would have learned a thing or two. Let me debunk this peice by peice, so maybe people will stop forwarding this crap.

I'm asking for your help- for about 3 minutes of your time.

HBO's new series, "Big Love", is about a polygamous family and is set in a Salt Lake City suburb. About the likely impact of this sexually driven show, the New York Times said, "We may never look at Utah and think white bread again."

Parodies of beliefs of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints occur- belief in priesthood by a man blessing his hunting rifle, belief in personal revelation from the Holy Ghost by dramatic visions that the polygamous leader discusses casually with a friend. Talk of "celestial kingdom", "free agency", and the "Choose the Right" slogan are included.

I'll concede these points. I haven't researched the show in depth, so I can't speak for the voracity of their claims, but I could see that in the show.

There is a brief disclaimer stating that the polygamists don't have an active connection with the LDS Church. But if the writers don't intend for viewers to make the connection, one wonders why they set the show in Salt Lake City, the Church's world headquarters, and why they included distortions of LDS beliefs.

Ok, that's fine too.

NBC recently cancelled a show about a dysfunctional Episcopal priest who saw a "Jesus", after almost 700,000 people emailed and complained.


Let the spinzone begin. That show was low rated, and controversial. If it were just controversial, NBC could care less about how controversial, they're just in it to make money. Cold hard facts, people. NBC delivers eyeballs, and if there are less of them watching a controversial show catching flack for featuring religion, they'll can it. HBO, however, is a different story.

Couldn't we do the same for this show? If you agree, will you:
- forward this email to at least 8 people
- print this out
- email a polite protest to HBO:


OK, here's where I get even more sketchy about this. Seeing how I've already recieved this from 3 people, I'm starting to say "WHOAAAAA" and I think if people in the LDS church haven't heard about this now, they will soon. Please, stop emailing chainletters along to others when you haven't confirmed the veracity of the statements. Let's keep going:

Go to www.hbo.com, scrol l to bottom of page, click Contact Us, click on The Sopranos (unless Big Love is listed when you do so), scroll to the light blue box near page bottom, on the line just under Submit an Email, click on Contact Us. Then enter your information, specify it's about Big Love, and leave a message asking them to cancel this offensive show.


It's your right to voice your opinion, but if you do, please don't use this text below.

One or two sentences is all it takes. Or feel free to copy or edit
this message:

I am offended that you would produce the series Big Love. It demeans and distorts sacred beliefs of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. By setting the show in Salt Lake City, it blurs the line between the Church and the long renounced practice of polygamy..
If you had any idea what horrible things the people who practice polygamy did, (the FLDS people) you would be revolted.

Do you think that by having the producers came to 'visit' the town you understand what life is like for the FLDS or what they do, you are WRONG.... You have no idea of what you are trying to mimic. 14 year old girls are raped, and forced to marry their uncles - 60 year old men, with 5 other wives. They don't teach their children and force the young boys to NOT go to school and to work construction. Because they are in-bred, they have a lot of physically, and mentally retarded children, that they don’t take ‘out’. Because a man can only claim one wife, and each woman has so many children, the ‘unmarried’ wives claim they are single parents and mooch off the welfare, while they drive Brand New Cadillac’s, trucks, and S.U.V.’s. Do not make a show about something that you know nothing about.

Please cancel the show immediately

There are a couple main problems with this letter. One, it feels confrontational. Using words like "I'm offended" and talking about the rape of the children tugs at certain heartstrings that media outlets are trained to dull. I'd probably shift focus away from things that have been explained in many different documentaries. I mean, they've got to know about Warren Jeffs at bare minimum. At least turn on the freaking TV in Utah, where polygamists cause problems for the whole state. May I suggest a better letter for forwarding?

Dear HBO,

I've enjoyed your programming up till now, especially the family friendly HBO Family. Your selection of first run cable movies and original programming is typically top notch. While that may be the case the majority of the time, I'm particularly concerned about the program, "Big Love." Despite the opening disclaimer, the show makes grand allusions to the mainstream Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints ("LDS Church") as practicing poligamy, and does little to quell people's already warped sense of who these people really are. I've been asked on many occasions how many mothers I have, or if I'm going to marry more than one wife. While these assumptions are based on ignorance and typically can have an innocent reply, the show "Big Love" is doing little to educate the public, and causing more misinformation among them.

While I know your concern for entertainment trumps my feeling of being slighted religiously, consider how stereotyping in any other form would draw outrage among other groups. Take Islamic fundamentalists. Typecasting middle-eastern fundamentalists living in Pakistan would send the message that while comedic, a lot of these people are really into suicide bombing and hating westerners, while (one would hope) the majority of Pakistanis are good people, and not interested in suicide bombing. I know the example is not without its holes in logic, but I'm not looking to present an infalliable argument. I know you understand the gist of what I'm saying, and hope you'll feel more respect towards a religion that promotes family values so ferverently.

I know while I am one person, "Big Love" has made me reconsider my subscription to your channels. Unfortunately I'm not a subscriber to HBO. Please reconsider your decision to air "Big Love."

Best,

Randall

See? The tone of that letter is one of logic and understanding, as opposed to being offended and harping back at "the liberals."

One final note:


Source of info: www.lds.org click on Newsroom for News Media



Please see the church's stance on this topic here.
They also lay out the framework for understanding, and don't promote the show's misrepresentation of Latter-Day Saints.

Sunday, March 26, 2006

Memories!!!

DSC00733.JPG
DSC00733.JPG,
originally uploaded by ucf_xealot.
Just got back from CA... post more l8r.

Cya,

Randall

Tuesday, March 21, 2006

Difference between good, and great

Hey hey,

So I'm blogging at you live from Santa Monica, CA, where we're jammin' out some awesome code. Funny thing, though, so I'm designing some new motion graphic elements for web, which I've never (ever) done before, and I'm going to start busting them out in After Effects (probably, and then follow it with flash, if there's some sort of cross compatibility, that'd be awesome.) Anyway, I have no idea what my limitations are for doing stuff for the web, and I go to the developers and am like "so, I've got this great idea, what are my limitations?"

They're like, "Dunno, go wild, and then we'll see where we have to scale back."

At a previous organization, if I were doing motion graphic projects, it'd be the opposite. "Here are your limits, now design." Basically, instead of having the best idea from me, they get the idea that fits inside the box. That, ladies and gentlemen, is the difference between good and great.

I'll post more later.

Monday, March 13, 2006

Bedroom

Bedroom
Bedroom,
originally uploaded by dex0doom.
A view from the top of my bed, courtesy of Flickr.

So I'm basically in now. I've been tidying up for the last little bit, and while my room certainly isn't clean, it also isn't too dirty, which works for me, for now. I'm in dire need of some housecleaning assistance, mainly because I really have a lacking part in my brain that isn't clean. I'm really trying though, sincerely.

I'm gonna post more photos, or alternately, you can go to my flickr page.

Sunday, March 12, 2006

Tom

Tom
Tom,
originally uploaded by C.K. Sample, III.
My friend tom is hot.

Just found this photo of him on Flickr.

I'll post more later, I promise.

Wednesday, March 08, 2006

New Place

Yo yo,

I'm in my new place now. Call me if you need the address, or drop me a line.

Later,

Randall

Tuesday, March 07, 2006

Responsible Journalism!!!

Wow. I really love / hate new york news. I really like Newschannel 4, and it's really well done from every angle. I do live in the number one market in the country, so in theory, it should be the best, but a quick viewing of Fox5 makes me hate new york news. 5 starts with the tagline of "do you know where your children are?" Yeah, it's that sensationalist crap. Newschannel 4 found a possible suspect in the case of a person who was raped and murdered. They witheld the name of the suspect, because they weren't sure he was the actual suspect.

Wow.

Journalistic integrity now?

Amazin!

Wednesday, March 01, 2006

Introspection, by Ordinary People

I'm cleaning my room for my delivery of some furniture from Ikea. Exciting times indeed. I started listening to my iPod w/ my Shure E2c headphones, and right now I'm blown away by how it makes you feel in your own world.

And in this world, I realize how freaking lucky I am.

Seriously, how many people get the chance to live their dreams in the city of their dreams? Not enough, that's for sure. I'm never going to settle for anything, I'm always going to work to get the best possible experience out of life. Right now, I'm not loaded or anything... but I'm sure not broke, and my bank account for luck seems to be full, so I'm bracing for some tough issue that is about to be thrown my way.

Regardless, I'm having a blast.

Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Quote of the day

"I graduated in Communications with a lucrative career in Retail."
-- MTV's "True Life: I'm a Professional Eater"

Sunday, February 19, 2006

Questions....

So two things I need responses on.

1) I've got 15 bucks in iTunes credit, what music should I buy?

2) I've got a free domain coming my way, which domain should I get?

Answer these pressing issues either in the comments below, or hit me at pressingquestions[at]randallatnyc[dot]com replacing [bracketed] sections with real charecters.

Later,

RB

Friday, February 17, 2006

Great Writing

Wow.

Certainly the administration, even given its penchant for excessive secrecy, disinformation and image manipulation, isn't naïve or mischievous enough to think they could have covered up the first shooting casualty involving a sitting vice president since Aaron Burr shot and killed Alexander Hamilton 202 years ago.

http://seattlepi.nwsource.com/opinion/259841_bunting17.html

That's great writing.

Little Kid

So... in New York specifically, I turn in to a little child. I'm eager to learn about everything, and ask anyone who's been here longer than me (read: everyone) all sorts of idiotic questions as soon as they pop into my mind. "Whats HSBC stand for?" "Why is new york traffic so ephed up?" Yadda yadda yadda, you get the idea. I'm grateful for all of my surrogate parents out here in the big (huge) apple. Thanks.

Wednesday, February 15, 2006

If I see a press release about you, you're not hardcore.

News Flash:

Rapper Penelope Jones will appear on americas most wanted this weekend.

http://www.prnewswire.com/cgi-bin/stories.pl?ACCT=109&STORY=/www/story/02-15-2006/0004283056&EDATE=

News Flash:

Rapper Penelope Jones exploiting past for future gains.


I really enjoy hip-hop, and I really like the more positive spin on hip-hop, IE Kanye West, Black Eyed Peas (some may hate me for that, 'tis ok, I really liked them pre-fergie, like that gets me any cred back) and on the more independent side, Mos Def, Talib Kwali, De La Soul, the Fugees, Tribe Called Quest, and others in the more vibrant and interesting style of hip-hop that so many Americans aren't necessarily accustomed to.

I really REALLY hate hip-hop when it sells an image of a star, and not just their music. When's the last time you heard 50 Cent say "its about the music, stop going over my past." When you see 50 cent on stage, he's rocking a bullet proof vest, with gun targets in the background. Really, really, stupid.

I'm not just player hating, because I can, I'm player hating because I'd rather hear someome rap about money, cars, and rims than how hard they are. Jay-Z walked the fine line, and turned out gold. I wish he could have been lyrically Talib Kwali for more than a few albums, but, yeah, we all yell holla. I think Jay-Z and 50 were bordering on a rap feud "I didn't get shot up a whole bunch of times.... or make up [ish] in a whole bunch of rhymes..." sounds like a 50 cent call out to me. Whatever though. Positivity reigns supreme.