Photo Booth?

Patches was laying down on my desk.  I thought it was a good candidate for today’s photo-a-day.  Unfortunately she was sitting on my phone, and my Nikon was not quickly accessible.  What can I do?

Well, I have a webcam on my laptop.  Could I use that?  I did a Spotlight Search for camera and webcam but they didn’t turn up anything useful.  I checked Launchpad to see if there was a camera app of some kind.  That’s when I saw it.

Photo Booth?

Is that still a thing?  I popped it open and sure enough, it’s still a thing.  I angled my lappy to face the cat and BANG, photo acquired.  I opened it up in Photos to clean it up a little and, as always, was a tiny bit saddened by the lack of groovy filters.  I messed around with it a tiny bit and then clicked the export button to see what my options were.  It used to be able to connect to Flickr, but not any more.  I clicked the “more” option at the bottom of the drop down and saw something I never noticed before.

Extensions?  In Photos?  Huh.

There were no options available but I wasn’t ready to let it go so I did something I never do… I went to the Mac App Store.  I searched for Photos Extensions and sure enough a few things came up.  I searched for Photos Filters and much to my surprise a Free app displayed.  I figured I would install it just to use it as a guinea pig for the Photos extensions.  Much to my surprise, it worked!

Now my Flickr Photo-a-Day pic is a Photo Booth snap, edited in Photos, using a third party filter app.  It’s just a day of firsts for me!

253/365 - I took this with Photo Booth because... it was there.


I installed the new Mac OS today, El Capitan. Not the best name, in my opinion.

The first thing I did was shake my mouse back and forth to see it blow up huge. I’ve been waiting for that feature since like Windows 3.1! Finally!

Battery Killer

This is just a quick observation about how you should pay attention to warning messages.

I was in between meetings at work today. I had my MacBook Pro with me so I opened it up to check my mail. One email needed a quick response but I had to use one of our applications to look up a relevant piece of data. The app doesn’t run on Mac so I opened up Parallels to run it in Windows. As it loaded I got a warning saying that I was running on battery, blah blah blah. I ignored it.

20 minutes later I was shutting down and I noticed the battery percentage had dropped 20%. TWENTY PERCENT! Holy cow, Parallels was right to warn me! Sheesh! I should pay more attention to stuff like that.

Operating Systems Galore

I do this every time we go through one of our Macintosh switcheroo’s. I set up a new Mac, and then set up parallels, and then set up a bunch of different operating systems to run on the virtual machine. It’s always Ubuntu because Linux rules even though I really don’t use it. Then I set up Windows so I can use the new Mac for work.

Today though, we did something new. Today I noticed that you can install a pre-release version of Windows 10 without paying for a license. Cool! I am typing this on internet explorer because I don’t want to install another copy of Chrome onto another virtual machine, and internet explorer is running on Windows 10. Windows 9? No way jose, this is Windows 10!

So far it looks a lot like Windows 8 only with a start button. Which is what those few unfortunates who are running Windows 8 wanted in the first place. Yippee and all that!

I think I’ll go start up Ubuntu and run that on my Mac’s virtual machine for a while.

Playing Operating System roulette kinda rules all.

No Added Distortion

This is a little better than the last one. No unwanted distortion.

I didn’t use the GarageBand drummer on this one. I kept the iPad drum part but changed the sound. Same with the vocals. The guitars are all the same between the two mixes except for the signal processing. I added a slap back delay onto the lead and toned down the reverb and delay on the two rhythm parts.

The real question though is when did everything this month turn into either 3/4 or 6/8 time? Is this what it’s like to play in a swing band?


Here’s the iPad mix for comparison. Again, not too different.


As far as the iOS mixes are concerned, I can call the June Music project successfully complete (under RPM Challenge rules). I have written and recorded 10 songs this month. There are two additional songs that don’t have vocals/lyrics/melodies yet. I don’t believe I will have time this weekend to finish them. I think I’ll do them next week in the first three days in July before 50/90 starts on the 4th. Then I’ll have 12 “June” songs and one left over from May, with two different mixes of each song. That will make a nice playlist.

As of right now I am in for 50/90. I have not been writing at a fast enough pace to feel confident, but at least I’ve been building up to it. We’ll see how it goes.

A Sort of Almost New Song… Sort Of

I had a neat idea for a riff but I was busy doing other things and couldn’t record it for future reference. When I did get a chance to sit down with a guitar later that night I couldn’t quite remember it. I came up with something that was in the ball park and that became the verse in the song I posted last night. The next night the forgotten riff came back to me and it became the chorus on this song. Hence the reason why the two little suckers sound so similar.


And here is the iPad mix. I used the drummer function when I mixed on the Mac, which is why the drums will sound seriously different on this mix. Everything else is similar, although all of the processing is different.

The First Mac Mix

Duck and cover kids, here come the Mac Mixes.

This that song that I couldn’t play the riff for, yet again. While working on the Mac I reserve the right to change the drum sounds and the bass sounds, and to change all the signal processing on the guitars and vocals. Also, I reserve the right to replace the drum parts with the GarageBand Drummer function, although I didn’t do that on this song.

I did change the drum sound and the bass sound, although I just ended up using the Mac version of the same bass sound I used on the iPad. They are close to the same, but the Mac version just sounded a little fatter. The only change I made to the guitar was to swap the panning. The rhythm guitar is doubled with each one panned most of the way to either left or right. One of the tracks used the neck pick up on the Strat, the other used the middle pick up. On the iPad version the neck pick up was to the left. On the Mac version it is to the right. For the vocals I changed the preset and the EQ. I also added compression to the drums, the bass, and both vocal tracks, and to the full mix. Just a little on the mix.

Here is the new mix…


For comparison, here is the iPad mix (again)…


My new absolute favorite thing about MacOS is this:


Last night some red haired moron accidentally popped open 220 finder windows at once and needed a way to close them all before he lost his mind in a seething rage.


Done and Done.