Why email when you can Eyejot

Let’s face it. Email, for all of it practicality, is kind of impersonal. Even the best writers out, and I know a few good ones, can be misconstrued via email. Sometimes, you need to see, or be seen, in order to get the message across. Well guess what party people, that where Eyejot comes in. Eyejot is a free video messaging service that is easy to use. It’s basically video email. And guess what, you don’t need much to use the service. All you need is:



A webcam – Easy enough to find. you can get a Sony Eyetoy (make sure you get it without the game unless you have a PS2) and use it as a cheap webcam. It’s about $30. All you would need are the drivers to run on the PC/Mac. You can just Google Sony Eyetoy Drivers and find them.



A microphone or headset – Most webcams have a built in mic, but you can opt for a better quality or a headset/mic jobby that you   may have lying around.



A PC (or Mac) with a web browser and Adobe Flash installed – If you can see this post, chances are, you have this already. I could be wrong, though.



Once you have all of this, you can put them together, set your phazer’s on stun, and point your browser of choice to Eyejot.com. Sign up (it’s free, like I said), and start recording using the easy to use controls. The first time you use it, you will have to allow Flash to access the webcam, which should come up the first time you try to compose a message (If it doesn’t, press the little camera next to the stop button and go through the setup assistant). It go time from then on. You can record your message and send like you would a regular email. It’s just that simple. You have an inbox to house incoming Eyejot from friends and also a friends list (address book) to keep your email addresses in.



There’s also a couple other neat features to the service. You can get a widget for your Blog, website, Myspace page, whatever so that people can see you profile video and/or send you an Eyejot through it (should they have the proper setup…What am I thinking, of course they do.  I forgot where I was.). I’d do this but… I really don’t think so. For you iTunes users, you can enable support for RSS and subscribe to your messages from iTunes or any RSS reader (Firefox, Google reader, etc). What’s also cool is that you can also enable viewing Eyejot messages on your video capable smartphone. That’s pretty neat! I should point out that the site is in Beta (of course), but it seems to work pretty well from my tests.



Now I know what you might be thinking, “why on earth would I want put myself on a webcam and send it to someone”? My answer: go back and read the beginning of this post. My real answer? You do it anyway with the webcam you have set up in the bedroom that you charge for. And you’re all over Skype video, so why not? Maybe your friends you like to actually see your face instead of the cold heartless emails (forwards, mostly) that you keep sending them. You ever thought of that? Of course not, you selfish bastard! However, if you do this, don’t try to hold me responsible for when you send them drunk messages with some other body parts in the webcam outside of your face. It would NOT be my fault (though if you’re cute, I might want to see it)! And don’t try to blame me for giving you any ideas that you, or anyone else (me), didn’t already have.





So, if I didn’t give you a good enough reason to try this out, allow me to leave you with my slogan for the service. Feel free to use it, it’s good. Ready?



Eyejot – When you care enough to let them see how crazy you look.



I just want credit if you do use it!



Peace





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’06 roddy suxed musically

Song of the Moment

“Music For Life” Ft. J Dilla, Nas, Common, Busta Rhymes Marsha Of Floetry


It’s true. I was there. I was in a box musically where I’ve never kept myself. I missed out on a lot of good music in the past year or two. I’m getting better. I have help. Pandora’s riding shotgun even though I hadn’t been on there much lately. Honeysoul and Neosoulcafe are starting to keep me in line and I can’t forget about my man T. Grundy who constantly reminds me what and where the real music stays. I’m set, but I hate the fact that I believed that Soul music was in hibernation.



I don’t listen to the radio much because it seems that the same songs get played every 15 minutes or so. I can’t deal with that. And as far as Rap is concerned, I don’t know, i’m biased because of the school I came from seem more true than these cats out now. That’s now fair even if it is true, so I plan to stick my ear back to the ground check the sound. Jazz for me is an ever growing love. I’ve been exposed to it when I was little and I was hooked ever since. In ’06, I checked out a couple things on the contemporary front, but I lapsed on the classic stuff. Anyway, I am making a conscious effort to rebuild the blocks that fell off my house. Wanna know what I’ve done so far? Let’s stick with Soul for the time being. It’s actually not much, but it’s a step.



You’ve seen my post on Sy Smith, right? I’m looking for true artists like this lady. There are a few and unfortunately I may have to trek into that ungodly den called Myspace (no offense to my known Myspace junkies. I still love you all.) to listen to them. Here are a few:



Darien Brockington



Chrisette Michelle



Choklate



Kimy (Definitely check this one out.)



There are a few more, but you get the point. Like I said, I’m working out. And speaking for working it out, it’s is Valentine’s Day. Whether that means anything to you or not, it’s always a good day for some great music. On that, I’m going to have to ask you to point your browser to this link:



NetInfoWeb 2.0: Soul, R Jazz and Blues on the ‘Net » ‘The Event’: Valentine’s Day-Triple Play…



In a case of my man never letting me down, Mr. TGrundy hosts a very interesting post full of great music mixes as he says, “3 Musketeers” style between himself, Grantlove, and EJ Flavors (whom I’ve checked out in the past and will be hitting up his spot with more frequency). And even if you see this post after February 14th, still check the mixes. After all, you’re still going to Love and/or be in love after today, right? RIGHT?

A hum dinger of a site

Quick, what’s the name of song with that guy who did that thing with the thing….? Here wait, let me hum about 2 seconds of it.

Come on, you know who is it!



If this happens to you on the regular (Don’t lie, it’s not just me), then I have a site for you to send these people and get in some kicks in the process. Midomi.com is a music search site that identifies songs by humming them. If you have a microphone hooked up to your computer, you can go to this site and you can sing (or hum) a few bars of that ditty you’ve trying to find the name of. It then goes out and tries to find the name of the song that you are looking for. It is said to be fairly accurate according to the article that I’ve linked to below. I’m going to go out on a limb and say that it’s not too accurate with Rap songs. Now that I think about it, I haven’t tried it. Oh, if it finds what you are looking for and you want to buy it, there will be a link to where you can do that.



And now for the beautiful part. The site also let’s you record said rendition of songs and share in a Youtube / Myspace type fashion. So now you can bring that shower version of Mariah Carey to the masses. This is my favorite part because anyone can come to the site and listen to some good and some not so good versions of songs from Joanne and Joe Shmoe. HOTNESS! It’s the stuff that American Idol was made from (God help us). I’ve actually heard some people with some pretty good voices on the joint. And I can always go on a Youtube style hunt for the next William Hung. That’s where the kicks come in.



But hey, you don’t have to take my word for it, check out the article below from Webware.com and then go to Midomi.com and check it out. I’m sure I’ll hear a couple of you there shortly. 🙂



Midomi names the tune [with video] | Webware : Cool web apps for everyone

Super Bowling

I’m going to be honest with. i’m not crazy about watching Football. In fact, I’m not so much a sports fan, either. I’ve watched Basketball. Boxing for sure, Track and Field, HELL YEA! Tennis, if Serena (or Venus should she ever) is on, but that’s outside the point. hell, I don’t even have cable so I couldn’t catch too much if I wanted too. I’m going well away from the point now.And yes, I am, for what it’s worth, an American AND a fully secure in his masculinity male child. BELIEVE IT! I say that because it always comes into question when I mention these facts. Meh!

The point is, while I suppose it is historic (for lack of a better word) that there are two teams with African American coaches playing, I’m not so much in caring. First of all, 32 teams, 5 African American coaches, 70 or 80 percent African American players, how ever many years of the NFL, and something still doesn’t add up but you do the math. And on that note, how many African American owners are there? maybe I’ll look into that, but I bet I don’t have to go far. That’s an issue that is as big as (if not bigger than) the coaches and THAT’S being glossed over for what it’s worth. That’s a whole other issue that i’m not yet qualified to argue, but I thought that I would mention it. As a matter of fact, that’s not even the point of this post.

The points are that, (a)while I might tune into the game around the forth quarter, the winner has already been declared. I site this article as evidence:

Colts Win (Madden) Super Bowl news from 1UP.com

(UPDATE) Here’s video of the match to support my claims.

See, now I don’t have to watch the game. Which brings me to what I will really be tuning in for: the commercials. I love the commercials that come around Superbowl time. They supply me with half of my year’s entertainment. Think about it, you know there will be some funny one’s. You know there will be some summer movie lovin’ going on! you know there is probably going to be the one tasteless one that everybody likes but will never ever be shown again. and you know that fool who is proposing to his girlfriend is finally going to get his shine. And I bet his girlfriend already knows about it. I call the dude a fool because you couldn’t turn on the TV or read the web without running across a mention of it. Dude’s been on Entertainment Tonight (a show I despise) with his back to the camera like no one who knows him well enough will EVER know it’s him. Don’t get me wrong, his idea was cool, but really. That should have been kept on the LOW low! And I hope for his sake that the girl says yes because you know it’s going to come out. Alright, once again off topic (DRINK).

Anyway, as much as I’m looking forward to the commercials during the game, I can think of better things to do than sit through the game to get to that part. Luckily, there is an answer for that. Last year, there was a website that posted all of the commercials as they aired. Come to think of it, there were a couple. Ifilm.com has a commercial channel that has old and new commercials on it (you will see this mentioned again one day). In that channel, there is a section for Superbowl commercials for the last year or two. I don’t expect them to stop doing that anytime soon. My personal favs are the Terry Tate, Office Linebacker (AKA The Mighty Rasta, BKA Calvin from My wife and kids). Dude ran for Governor of California. I did not know that! Anyway, Check it out:

Ifilm.com – Superbowl Ad Showcase

The site I’m really I’m really talking about is this site I ran across on a blog last year about this time. As i said, this site posted the commercials as they aired in an RSS feed so that anyone could download them and watch at their leisure. If you know anything about RSS (most of you have your own blogs, so you might have an idea), this means that you can suscribe to the feed and as the commercials air, you can download or watch them when the feed updates. I loved that idea last year and they are doing it again. As a matter of fact, if you go to the page:

Watch 2007 SuperBowl Commercials – Super Bowl Ads Podcast :: Technology News and Opinions

You can subscribe to this year’s feed (yes, there is also an iTunes link) or watch this or last year’s commercials as a podcast right there. And it appears that there are already some commercials for this year popping up. So now, all I have to do is check for halftime, and i’m set! Love it!

Didn’t see that one coming huh? Yea, I’m watching Prince at halftime. That’s a given! What! Don’t act like i’m the only one whose going to be checking out just the commercials!

Oh, I’m pretty sure Youtube will be doing this also… Call it a hunch.

YouTube – Supervote

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Keep track of your branches

Do you remember that night you went to the club with your people and got clowned because you saw old Aunt Ruthie in the middle of the dance floor [Insert current dance craze]? You know when you ran into that fine ass person on the way out that you saw on the way in? How you both chatted away over drinks in the deepest darkest corner of the club. You had your head down the whole time and they though it was funny. You started getting to know each other. They were looking finer and finer the more you talked. The jam came on and you got up to dance (right near the table so that you wouldn’t run into Aunt Ruthie or your people). You started grindin’ really close even though it was a fast song playing at the time. Then you heard ‘Sexual Healing’ over the sound system (when it was really playing ‘Smack my Bitch up’). So you decided to invite them back to your place, you know, because it’s a little less crowded and noisy. Well, that and you thought you saw Aunt Ruthie heading your way. They agree after you say, ‘I don’t normally do this”. You creep out the club real fast, find your car, and head for some head to the crib. The night ends with some toe curling sex on your overturned couch.



You wake up in the afternoon to the phone. It’s your mom asking why aren’t at the family reunion that started 2 hours ago. You also look around and see that your late night conquest has flown the coop. Shit, that turned out better than you expected. You don’t even remember their name. so you tell your mom you’re on way, rush the shower, get dressed, and roll out. And then you get there. People are eating, most are drunk, and the music is loud kinda like last night, eh? You try not to notice that Aunt Ruthie is still in the same clothes as last and is still dancing away. Pretty spry for 82 years old, but that see through mini skirt and matching top, ick. Still embarrassing, though. You grab a plate in between hugs and finger pulls. Junebug still can’t get right and you refuse to do the shufflebutt like you did when you were little. Uncle Wally still preaching but makes the best whiskey in the country. Secret ingredient, Tequila, and you always wondered what that car that sat in his yard was for. Pee Wee still smells and “Aunt” floyd is still with Uncle Jimmy. There goes Aunt Frida cheating at Spades again and arguing like she didn’t to Uncle Junior. She’s at the point where she’s about to take her blade out cut him….again. You hold your head down and keep asking yourself why do you keep coming to these things.



Anyway, as you mumble to yourself and after Bug asks you for $5…again (He’ll pay you back. He promises…again), your mom taps you on the shoulder. She wants you to say hey to cousin Jenny, the second cousin that haven’t seen since you two used to bathe together as babies. You don’t remember what happens next because you fainted….





Well now, in between therapy sessions, you can keep track of your whole sordid family tree with the website, Geni.com. It’s free and seemingly easy to use. You just start putting in your particular info (you, mom, dad, other mom i’m not sure of) and the branches of family that you know of and keep going. You get a temp password emailed to you at the time and then when you login the first time, you can make a permanent one. You can even put in email address that can be used to invite other family members to fill in spots that you didn’t seem to figure out in time. So supposedly only your family will see your tree. Granted, it is said not to be a professional tool so you won’t be going all Alex Hailey all of a sudden, but it can be a cool way to start going about it. Below is a link to where I found out about it. It should be noted that the site is in beta, which means it’s got miles to go before it can walk. But then again, Google has stuff that is in perpetual beta and is floating about.



Sorry, I wasn’t able to tell you about it before the reunion, but you might have still not known better (or cared). Try it out still and stay away from next year’s reunion. Here’s an article from where I found out about it.



Webware.com – Geni: Finally, Genealogy made easy

Attention all shoppers….

The holiday season is upon us and you know what that means….



Ok, yea, you’ll wish you hadn’t had that last mound of stuffing, but besides that it’s one week away from the busiest shopping day of the year. The time of year stores LOVE because they will be giving thanks to you for giving them all of your money for the sake of Christmas. You know, when you CLAIM to be Christmas shopping for the family when you are really just getting stuff for yourself (selfish ass). For those of you crazy enough to want to go out and shop during that day, I know you will want a leg up on all of the sales going on for Black Friday. Wait a minute, who came UP with that stupid name anyway and why is it BLACK Friday……..oh!!



Anyway, how will you get a heads up on the sales when the paper with those sales won’t come out until Thanksgiving (sometimes they start advertising the Sunday before)? You are in luck, there are a couple of site that will help you in this time of greed need.



They are:



BlackFriday.info



and Fat Wallet.com



Now Blackfriday.info covers just that day. It usually has all of the sales that are going to be had on Black Friday at least a week in advance. Which is why i’m telling you about it now. Usually when a store puts it out, they post it. Well, Except this year for Best Buy, who made them take theirs down this year. I don’t know how long they have been doing this, but I found out about them a couple of years ago.



Fat Wallet, I believe, works all year round. They have been around for a while and they pretty much sniff out all of the deals and coupons around the web from places and posts them up on their site. I haven’t used it much, but I have heard of it. It might ask you to sign up, but it appears that you don’t have to in order to take advantage of what is posted.



And there you go. consume until your hearts content. Oh, I want to give up a bonus site that also works all year. It’s called Woot.com. Their thing is: “One day one deal”. Every day they have a new or refurbished item, mostly of a tech related nature, on sale. Once the day is over, the deal is over. Sometimes (like right now when i’m writing this), the will have what is called a Woot-off! That is a day or two when they put something up on the site until it sells out and then put up another item. As I said, that goes on for a day of two and sometimes there is some good stuff that comes up. They even have a nice little funny podcast to go along with the item. The write ups on the items are amusing, too.



Anyway, go check that stuff out if you are so inclined. I just want my 10% commission of front. Leave it at the door on your way out. And no plug nickels either, ya cheapskates!



Peace





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And now that my head has been gassed up…

     You know, I think what I originally wrote might have be nicer than what i’m posting now, but what can you do (see bottom). Anyway, a while ago, I mentioned a nice music blog that I said I would check out and write about.  Actually, it was two sites, NetInfoWeb 2.0 “Tracking the sites, Tracking the Soul ” and RIBS: Rhythms in Black Satin, an MP3blog, ran by the MAN TGrundy. I can’t seem to find the post that I mentioned them in, but go with me on this. Maybe if I would get off of my ass, I would finish the post properly (and I will. it’s a great site). I will say right now that RIBS has some great audio mixes (and the playlists for them) and that you should go check them out. Anyway, i’ve been checking the site out and commenting on a couple posts here and there. I went there earlier tonight and saw that I got a nice post written about me. Well, it’s not really about me, but a post I did fairly recently.  How about this, you go check his post and you’ll see what i’m talking about.

NetInfoWeb 2.0 » Roddykat… Working Hard For The Money!

     Now, I thought it was nice and and I quite possibly blushed when I saw it… well, you know, being brown and a man, it doesn’t happen often. Actually, this reminded me of something that i’ve had on the back burner for a while now. I may try to dig some stuff out and post them. Oh, and don’t get me wrong, i’ve been mentioned in other’s post before (not that i’m anybody), but this took it to another level for me. So once again, I will say thanks to tgrundy for the post and I can’t wait for the mix!

Peace!

Performancing Tip(s): 1) Save early, save often. Pretend you are in Microsoft Word and fear a crash. It does happen. 2) Unless you are 200% confident in it’s delivery, don’t clear the post until after it’s published. Performancing is pretty good about letting you know if it wen through or not, but why risk it (unless you did #1). Firefox could possibly crash and not recover you post (don’t know if the new version works for running extensions). The last tip is mainly for Blogger users because I can’t tell you how many times i’ve posted something only and it not be there or worse. Oh wait, yes I can, it’s about 5.

Harness the POWER of Google on your site!

From the pages of the web productivity site, Lifehacker, comes this story.

Google Gadgets open for all web pages – Lifehacker

That’s right you, yes you website slash blogger, can add even more stuff to your site(s). Not from any old place, oh no, but from the mighty Google empire! Games, news, weather, horoscopes, calendar, it’s all there, plus more! And you, yes you, can select any number of “gadgets” (as it’s being referred to) to compliment pimp out your already off the hook well populated website or blog to the highest of pimptivity. This is what you’ve been waiting for. It’s Google,  It’s you. It’s Google with you making as much whoopie as you can finally stand! How can you do this? Check the link above…if you dare!

The views expressed in this post are not in any way sarcastic, but meant to be slightly humorous, though the content is real. If, said post was taken out of context (read: someone thought I was trippin’), please proceed to get a life and laugh a little. Or, just dont get it because it might not have been as funny as I believe it to be. This really is cool. All right now. I’m ready to go home and i’m threatening to fire up MSN and play UNO, which is far less distracting than what I am doing as opposed to what i’m doing now.

Opening Pandora’s box or something like that.

We interrupt the previously scheduled rant for something a little more or less productive.

For those of you Pandora users, you might want to check this link out.

jkOnTheRun: As if we needed more to like about it: 15 Pandora tweaks

Now, i’ve talked about Pandora enough in the past and I probably won’t stop talking about it any time soon.  This post, outside of having some other good links, clicks through to this post on the Lifehacker site:

Technophilia: 15 ways to get more out of Pandora – Lifehacker

As the title says, there are some useful tips for handing Pandora. Some of them I have heard of and/or used before. An issue in one of these tips, I hadn’t encountered. The only one I didn’t see is the one on how to rewind a track and I know there was a way out there. I’m not so much concerned with saving tracks (which is mentioned in one or two or the tips), but it is handy, I guess. At any rate, if you use Pandora, check it out. If you are curious about it, check out my stations to the left of this post.

And now back to the previously scheduled rant or whatnot.

Where are they now #3

Well, I least I think it’s number 3. I can’t remember the last one I did that counted as one. I have one I’ve been sitting on for a couple of months, but haven’t put it up yet. Forget that, this one has priority.

So I was talking music with my dear friend Baby Jaguar last week (Hi Daneita) and she asked a question that I totally could not answer, until NOW. The question was…

Where the HELL is Maxwell!

And I thought to myself, yea, where the hell is he? He hadn’t had an album since 2001’s Now. Hell, Sade’s done something since then and you KNOW she can space out her albums like nobody else. And Maxwell was on a pretty good run when he came out. The voice, the timing, the blowed out hair, it was all there. However, I didn’t go snooping around for it right off the bat. It wasn’t until I was listening to a NeoSoul Cafe podcast last night at work when I heard “Each Hour Each Second Each Minute Each Day: Of My Life”(I love his song) from his second album, Embrya. This is what sent me to finding out what’s the deal is. So let’s back up a bit.

Maxwell hit the ground running with his 1996 debut album, “Maxwell’s Urban Hang Suite”. I knew the album was going to be something when I saw the video for “‘Til the Cops come Knockin'”. And I only saw it once on B.E.T. The whole album was a hit and it played out like a story, or a suite, if you will. Notable songs* were, “Ascension (don’t ever wonder)”, ‘Reunion’, “Sumthin’ Sumthin'” (of course), and my personal favorite, “Suitelady (The Proposal Jam)”. He followed this album a year later with an MTV unplugged album. Let me go ahead and say that I don’t usually count “live” albums as full albums because they usually they are usually concerts centered around whatever album was out at the time and not full of any real new material. This one was no exception, but it did spawn a single from it and it was popular. He remade Kate Bush’s “This Woman’s Work”, it took off, and he rode it until the wheels came off.

The video that started it all (for me)

1998 saw the release of the aforementioned album, “Embrya”. This also brought the release of some quite long and strange ass song titles. Nonetheless, the album was about as good as the first. Some would argue better. It worked the way it worked for me. Notable songs, “Everwanting: To Want You to Want”, the single “Luxury: Cococure”, “I’m You: You are Me and We are You”, “Submerge: Til We become the Sun”, and my personal favorites “Matrimony: Maybe You” and the aforementioned “Each Hour Each Second Each Minute Each Day: Of My Life” Which, by the way, is exactly what was being taken typing all of this out. Jeez! Pretentious, much? Anyway, good album, terribly long titles.

Now that my hands are tired, i’m breezing through the res of this. Maxwell rode Embrya until 2001 (not really, but go with it) when he released “Now” where he re-ran “This Woman’s Work” as the jump off. This album was as good as the other albums, in my opinion, which is good. I happen to like consistency in an artist. Call me crazy. I guess now I should take the time to say that through out all of the albums laid the consistent production of Stuart Matthewman. The name may not sound familliar but the his sound does. He is part of the group Sweetback who also doubled at one point as Sade’s backing band (okay, do you see the connection?). So if you know the sound, then you know what this album sounded like. In fact, I forgot that Sweetback’s album and Maxwell’s first album came out the same year, so they had the connection even then. Maxwell also sung the song “Softly Soflty”, which is a nice song, on their album (go pick it up. It’s sexy).

Back on track. Notable songs… really, f like the first two albums, you probably liked this one. But since you insist on having notable songs here they are: “Get to know ya”, “W/as my girl”, and the hit single, “Lifetime”. After that, he dropped off the face of the earth. Or so I thought.

I just so happened to do a Myspace check and sure enough, he’s there. Not only that but it appears that he is working on a new album that looks to be out around Valentine’s day? This is great news, personally. There is one thing that has me worried. If you go to his Myspace page, you will notice something quite wild. No, not the fact that there are 3 tracks presumably from the upcoming album. The brother done cut his blow out! Oh wait, I think he just has it dreaded up and pulled back. his hair was kind of signature for him, so I got worried. Actually, I still am. Is this going to be the Maxwell of yesterday with some new material, or is this a new Maxwell that feels the need to flow with the mediorcrity of today’s R & B? Who know? Well, I guess I would if I had checked out the tracks on Myspace and I will later on. Right now, I’m kinda glad to see the brother is coming back out. Maybe lifting up the underground (Neo)soul genre, perhaps? We’ll see. Hopefully, he’ll still do a little Sumthin’ Sumthin’ (yuck, yuck yuck).

Sorry, had to make the joke.

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