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Saturday, December 20, 2014

Floor Plans? There's an App for That

Builder Magazine: A new product from toolmaker Stanley puts the power of accurate measuring and floor plan creation into a smart phone or tablet. The Floor Plan App digitally measures and creates floor plans. Using a smartphone or tablet’s camera, users view a room or space through the app’s augmented reality function and can designate placement of room corners and doors. The app’s intuitive software estimates and automatically populates each room with dimensions and square footage calculations.

The Greater DC Diversity Pilot Initiative, #2: Talking Diversity in the Arts (Reflections on the Community Diversity Forums)

ARTSblog » Blog Archive » : I had never been accused of being white. It was the second Diversity Forum with about two dozen local arts stakeholders and a clearly skeptical gentleman asked, “What are two white guys from a national arts organization doing facilitating a local conversation around diversity in the arts?” The question took me aback. “I’m not white, I’m Latino,” I instinctively responded as if my bona fides to facilitate this conversation were my non-whiteness.

Friday, December 19, 2014

Expert advice on digital design for "multi-platform" museums

It's Nice That: It’s strange to think of an Egyptian statue of Rameses from 1250BC, Ice Age sculptures, or the Rosetta stone and their place in a digital world. The awe-inspiring physicality of the things feel so at odds with The Cloud, or an app, or words like “omnichannel” that are bandied around so readily and confusingly. As head of digital at the British Museum, Chris Michaels’ job is to examine these conundrums, moving the organisation and its BC-dated objects firmly into the 21st Century. This week he’ll be discussing the future of multiplatform media at the Remix creative summit, so we picked his brains about the role of new technologies in promoting very, very old objects.

Collaborate or die! LOV network

ArtsProfessional: Since 2010, Lincolnshire One Venues (LOV) has been developing a new way of working; challenging how venues and cultural organisations work together to become stronger, cohesive and more adaptable in the current economic climate. This network of ten visual and performing arts venues* initially came together out of a necessity to survive – the group’s motto at the start was ‘Collaborate or die’, or as any good motto must also be in Latin: ‘Aut mori collaborate’.

Wage Watch: What Carpenters Earned in 2014

Remodeling: Every year, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reports wage totals for hundreds of occupations in every metropolitan and non-metropolitan area in the U.S. as of May of the previous year. Local differences matter: For carpenters, the pay in one part of California is nearly quadruple that in South Carolina.

Next Prague Quadrennial Set for June 18-28 2015

Stage Directions: After four years, the largest world exhibition of performance design is set to flood the center of Prague. The event spans 11 days and will feature 64 national expositions and more than 500 live events at more than 100 locations in the center of Prague, drawing an expected 50,000 visitors.

Eight Key Mixing Mistakes—And How To Avoid Them

Pro Sound Web: Most recording musicians, engineers and producers are well aware what a difference mastering can make to our mixes. And as we’ve discussed in previous columns (such as Audio Mastering Basics: Taking Your Music That Extra Step), mastering is an art form in itself, and is best placed in the hands of a specialist.

9 jobs robots could replace in 2015 Walking through the city, I find myself thinking about all the jobs a robot could do. A robot could probably stand in for my coffee truck guy, though I doubt he’d smile, call me “buddy” and ask if I said “three sugars” or “no sugar.” A robot could probably take over for that guy spraying down the street every morning — though I often wonder why we need anyone doing that at all.

7 Signs of a Toxic Culture at Work

Bernard Marr | LinkedIn: Do you dread your job as much on Friday as you do on Monday? Do you dread going into the office or interacting with a particular co-worker? Are you chronically stressed out or anxious at work? We often continue working in a job even when the culture is making us unhappy. It's like that old analogy of frogs in hot water: If you put a frog into hot water, it would jump out. But if you put it into cold water that slowly starts to boil it would happily sit there until it is cooked.

The Nonprofit Sector Has a Ferguson Problem

NPQ - Nonprofit Quarterly: Nearly 1,200 miles away from Ferguson, glued to my television, watching CNN coverage of the protests there, I could hear the reaction to the grand jury’s decision loud and clear. Chants and police sirens rang through my Boston neighborhood. I was one of many in the nonprofit community pondering how a Midwest town descended into unrest we haven’t seen since the L.A. Riots.

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Creating sounds, mix, more for 'The Hunger Games: Mockingjay, Part 1'

postPerspective - Randi Altman's postPerspective: It may be called The Hunger Games, but in Mockingjay, Part 1, the games are over. Life for the people of Panem, outside The Capitol, is about rebellion, war and survival. Supervising sound editor/sound designer/re-recording mixer Jeremy Peirson, at Warner Bros. Sound in Burbank, has worked with director Francis Lawrence on both Catching Fire and Mockingjay, Part 1. Without the arena and its sinister array of “horrors” (for those who don’t remember Catching Fire, those horrors, such as blood rain, acid fog, carnivorous monkeys and lightening storms were released every hour in the arena), Mockingjay, Part 1 is not nearly as diverse, according to Peirson. “Catching Fire was such a huge story between The Capitol and all the various Districts. We had different areas of the jungle in the arena, and all the different traps and mayhem that was happening. I have to say Mockingjay is a little more straightforward. It’s more like the big set up for the final chapter.”

Why we’re better together: Benefits of partnership working

ArtsProfessional: Meander through the streets of Liverpool’s Bluecoat Quarter right now, and you will almost certainly pause to ponder the dismembered bodies of the mannequins peering through the floor-to-ceiling gallery windows as part of the Art of the Lived Experiment exhibition at the Bluecoat. Alternatively, you might want to go to the Salisbury Arts Centre where Hoodwink Theatre Company is preparing for its next performance. Or maybe take a trip to Curve in Leicester, where Let’s Dance International Frontiers is likely to be conducting rehearsals for its fifth dance festival next year.

Closer Look: HDCP 2.2

Projection content from Live Design: At one point or another, HDCP has probably stumped all of us. HDCP problems can be difficult to identify and aren’t often the first thing you begin troubleshooting when your setup won’t work. Established in 2000 and adopted in 2004, HDCP is a protocol that is meant to protect copyrighted content from being redistributed illegally while still being able to view it in the privacy of your own home. By description, it sounds like a perfectly acceptable idea, but in practice, it might just be one of the worst things ever created. It causes headaches not only for consumers, but also for professionals with complicated AV setups. What this generally means for us is when a system is setup, no content makes it to the display and the display is black or shows an error message. These problems can be challenging to troubleshoot.

Ancient Art, Modern Maker

Carnegie Mellon University | CMU: Sacred geometry first inspired the art of James Gyre (A'03) during his time studying painting at Carnegie Mellon University. He paired those ancient principles with the modern practice of laser cutting at TechShop Pittsburgh. Gyre embodies the growing Maker movement, and his merging of past and present caught President Obama's eye on a trip to Pittsburgh.

Want to Hire and Retain Good Workers? Pay Up.

Remodeling: By the time Robert Criner realized his mistake, it was too late. One of Criner’s best workers told him that he was leaving to work for a competing remodeling company. The reason? The company was willing to pay $1 more per hour. Criner thought that he was paying fairly. But after doing some research, he discovered that he was paying a full dollar less an hour than his competition. “I gave everyone a $1 an hour raise on the spot,” says Criner, president of Criner Remodeling, in Newport News, Va. “But I still lost a good man.”

Megan Hilty Brings Her 'Kennedy Center Christmas' Dec. 13

The Georgetowner: In a telephone interview, the singer-actress Megan Hilty will sometimes tell you that she felt “terrified” on certain occasions in her career: when she took over the role Glinda in the Broadway smash “Wicked”, for instance, or when she performed in her first solo concert. Yet, if you’ve seen her on stage or on television, solo or with a big cast, you notice something about Hilty. She’s a big voiced but rangy song stylist with a blonde and curvy, glittery presence. She is the epitome of people born to the stage, to the “gotta sing, gotta dance (and gotta emote and act)” world of the Great White Way. She’s a Broadway baby in the best and whole sense of the phrase.

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Driving The Displays With the freedom to display real-time video clips and graphics in virtually any configuration on its 127 on-set monitors, ESPN’s “SportsCenter” raises the bar on live studio news and sports production. ESPN’s new Digital Center-2 (DC-2), which opened last June on its Bristol campus, houses the 10,000 square-foot “SportsCenter” studio, a visually rich eye candy showcase where imagery splashes across wall, floor and banner displays.

Production company in Carnegie adds different spin to 'Christmas Carol'

TribLIVE: “A Medieval Christmas Carol,” to be performed by Stage & Steel Productions, is a retelling of the timeless classic “The Christmas Carol.” King Scrooge and the Three Ghosts of Yuletide are set in a fantasy medieval period. Stage & Steel Productions, based in Carnegie, is community theater with an edge.

The sincere beginning of a 24-year theater performance The spectacle - exhilaration and humiliation all muddled together, on stage as in life - will appear at FringeArts Thursday through Dec. 13 in the form of The Sincerity Project. Then, if all goes as planned, it will return with the same cast every few years for the next 24 years. Like a live-theater version of the Up documentary films that have tracked a dozen British children since 1964 from age 7 to 56, it will, Torra hopes, capture the aging bodies, evolving relationships, and changing views of seven cast members whose ambitions, impulses, and fears provide content for the show.

'Big Hero 6' Fuses Science, Technology and Artistry Disney’s latest animated film, Big Hero 6, is a blend of science, technology and art. Cutting-edge technology was used in the making of the movie, and one of its key characters, a robot, is based on real world science. The action adventure movie about a boy genius, his robot and his friends started out as an obscure comic book. Directors Don Hall and Chris Williams kept the title and the characters' names, but transformed Big Hero 6 into something uniquely Disney.

'Fool For Love' Will Be Revived on Broadway The Tony Award winner Nina Arianda (“Venus in Fur”) will return to Broadway in September in an acclaimed revival of Sam Shepard’s moody, bruising drama “Fool for Love” opposite film actor Sam Rockwell (“Confessions of a Dangerous Mind”), Manhattan Theater Club announced on Wednesday.

4 Reasons Why Owners Should Fire Up Their Resumes

PowerTips | Remodelers Advantage: How long has it been since you’ve updated your resume? As the owner of a remodeling business, I wouldn’t be surprised if it’s been many years (if ever). But you need to update it today. Don’t worry. It’s not because I’m privy to an impending doom that is going to close down your company. But I think you’ll find this exercise to be both practical and enlightening.

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

A Little Bird Told Me: Twitter Analytics

Arts Hacker: Did you know that you can access analytics about your Twitter followers, impressions and engagement, for free, right in your own profile? Twitter sure doesn’t make it obvious unless you’re already using Twitter ads / promoted tweets.

Go Direct Or Deploy Mics For Electric Bass?

Pro Sound Web: My first day as a real engineer rather than an assistant was all about bass. The engineer (who was the studio manager as well) took a break after we recorded basic tracks on a Salsa song. Before leaving the room he told me to punch where the bassist wanted. I started, and was easily able to hear and punch individual notes rather than whole phrases. A few times I disagreed about which note was pulling the groove off but punched where I was told anyway.

Drag Queens Reflect (Grrr) on the Christmas Season It must be Christmas if a drag queen is singing about S.T.D.s. “What am I going to do, a show about how wonderful Christmas is?” This was Jackie Beat, who is known for parodies of Christmas carols including “It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like Syphilis.” “It’s annoying.”

Bionic Bra Proves Necessity Is Apparently Not the Mother of Invention The recent story about a “Bionic Bra” from the University of Wollongong had me wondering...why?! Of all the medical devices we have a dire need for, a sensor-equipped, “smart yarn”-infused, automatic-tightening bra certainly isn’t one of them. The bra in question essentially monitors a woman’s breast movements during physical activity and adjusts for proper support through the use of integrated sensors and actuators.

Monday, December 15, 2014

An Autistic-Friendly Version of ‘The Curious Incident’ He cannot stand the color yellow or the color brown or loud noises or being touched or the way everyone thinks that rats, like his pet Toby, have the plague or something. Because they don’t.

New OSHA Reporting Requirements Coming Jan 1

PTR: With the new year always comes changes in the law and that includes OSHA reporting requirements for several areas in 2015. The big ones involve serious injuries and death. Of course, it’s your responsibility as the business owner to make sure that your project managers and employees know what to do in the event of any workplace injury.

Sunday, December 14, 2014

A Tough Season for Some Plays on Broadway While this fall’s batch of Broadway musicals are struggling to sell tickets, the picture is more mixed for plays that have opened in recent months, according to box office data released on Monday and to similar reports in recent weeks.

Festool Vecturo OS 400 Multitool Review

Pro Tool Reviews: I’ve had the Festool Vecturo OS 400 Multitool in my arsenal now for several months, and this is a completely different type of multitool than what you may be used to. I have a lot of experience with oscillating multi-tools, both corded and cordless, and the new Festool Vecturo takes on the high end, but with a decidedly woodworker angle.

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