Wednesday, 30 July 2014

I can't think of a title

It's been a fairly chilled out day today, I've been off work as it's my birthday, and spent the day going to the gym, having a spot of lunch, a nap, and playing on the computer, so it's all been pretty good.

On the Travelling Book project front, I'm going in to Radio Humberside in the morning to talk to them about the project, which I'm really looking forward to.  Not sure if I'm going to be live or recorded but at any rate I'm really grateful to them for taking the time out to find out what the project is all about.  Hull College Student Union have also been really positive in promoting the project, so big thanks to them also.

I don't really have any news, but wanted to say that the Travelling Book Project campaign ends in a few days, so if you do want to support the campaign, please do so over at https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/the-travelling-book-project/ and if you want to find out more about the project go to www.travellingbook.eu

Apart from that I'd recommend that you keep an eye on Tim Clark over at Life, Explained, he's currently gearing up with computer hardware in an effort to beat me at video production - to be honest I don't think he needs to try that hard, bearing in mind the quality of my videos!  But it's all good fun.

That'll do me for now - hoping for some cake in the not too far distant future!

Monday, 28 July 2014

The shot is fired...

In my last blog post I mentioned how Tim Clark of Life, Explained has kicked off a video production death match between the two of us.  Not being content with being the superior blogger, Tim is also looking to win on the video side as well, and started off the war with a very worthy animation about President Dawg.

Well, I have video editing software too Mr Clark, and here is my response!

Be warned - this video does include what some people could interpret as singing and dancing.

Badly.


In other news, the Travelling Book Project is entering its last week of funding before we move on to the next phase - making and sending the books out!  If you don't know what I'm talking about, get over to our new website now, find out all about the amazing international phenomenon of the Travelling Book Project, and please do consider sharing the project with your friends, and perhaps even supporting the project via our Indiegogo page.  Thanks!

The new website does appear to feature a death star, so all I can assume is that my design skills are equivalent to a nine year old geek.  Which is probably about right for my mental age.

Thursday, 24 July 2014

I was going to write a blog post, but...

I made a website instead.

It's the new home of the Travelling Book Project, as the campaign for the project will end in 11 days (I can't believe how quickly time is going - almost halfway!) and I need somewhere to be the home of the project after the campaign ends.  www.travellingbook.eu will point to the new site in a few hours, but for now it still takes you to the Indiegogo campaign.

Actually, I do have something to blog about - I bought a rechargeable vacuum cleaner, as I need to go vacuum somewhere where there isn't electricity.  Had a look at the instructions when I got it back, and I'm very relieved that I learned from the instructions that you need to not only plug the vacuum into a power socket to charge it, but that the socket needs to be turned on as well.

Plug the adapter into a power socket AND turn the power on?!?  Easy tiger, almost lost me there.

I feel so relieved now that I know that.

Finally, Tim Clark over at Life, Explained has seen fit to challenge me to what he calls a "Death Match of Video Production".  I'm looking forward to it!

Monday, 21 July 2014

Markets

I quite like a market.  At a market you can often get some cheap goods, perhaps with slightly questionable logos (anyone else own a pair of "Adibas" or "Mike" trainers?), but nevertheless inexpensive.

Now, I don't know if this is a international phenomenon, but the markets near me tend to have a particular feature for one type of seller.  See if you can spot it.

People with fruit market stalls will shout their deals out.
People with vegetable market stalls will shout their deals out.
People selling meat meanwhile... have a microphone and speakers.

I don't know why meat sellers at markets get to have a microphone and get to blare over the entire market "I'M NOT GOING TO SELL YOU THIS LEG OF LAMB FOR TWENTY POUNDS, I'M NOT GOING TO SELL YOU IT FOR TEN POUNDS, I'M GOING TO SELL YOU IT FOR FIVE POUNDS AND THROW IN FOUR PORK CHOPS!!!", but they do.

And they don't even just use it to advertise their goods.  Whole conversations go on over the microphone.

"BAG OF BACON TWO QUID... HELLO LOVE, WHAT'S YOUR FANCY?  A POUND OF SAUSAGES?  HERE YOU GO, I'VE THROWN A PACK OF BREAD ROLLS IN FOR YOU TOO, NO CHARGE, ONLY SLIGHTLY MOLDY. THAT'LL BE EIGHT QUID."

And if they aren't getting enough custom, they'll pick you out as you walk past.

"MORNING MATE MORNING!!! HOW YOU DOING?  GOOD, YEAH ME TOO.  FANCY SOME STEAK?  NINE QUID FOR A LOVELY PIECE. NO?  SEVEN QUID.  OKAY SIX, BUT I'M ROBBING MESELF HERE.  YOU'RE VEGETARIAN?!? WELL DON'T WALK PAST A MEAT STALL THEN! GO AND WALK THE LONG WAY ROUND AND PRETEND TO LOOK AT THE ANTIQUES AS THOUGH YOU KNOW SUMMAT ABOUT THEM!"

It's enough to make you want to stay at home.

Quick update on the Travelling Book project - funding is now up to £135, which is great, I've had some brilliant support from various places, I've now bought a domain name (for about £2.50!) - www.travellingbook.eu currently takes you to the campaign page, but the plan is that, should funds allow, I'll have an actual website set up here that people can visit to keep track of books.  We're one third of the way through the funding round, which finishes on the 4th of August, as always I would really love people to check out the campaign, share it with your friends, and if you'd like to support the campaign, do head over to the campaign page and anything is greatly appreciated.  Thanks!

Saturday, 19 July 2014

Happy Lucaria!

I'm ambivalent about this morning.

On the one hand, I'm a little rough.  I was out on the town last night, making merry, and today I'm paying for it a little bit.  It's the middle of the morning and I'm still in my pyjamas, waking up.

On the other hand though, it is the weekend, and generally things are pretty good - the Travelling Book Project is doing reasonably well (check it out if you haven't already), I should say thank you to the Watt Club at Heriot-Watt University for publishing an interview about the Travelling Book Project, and I'm keeping my fingers crossed that some more promotion of the project which I've been working on will develop.  The campaign for the project ends on the 4th of August, so do check out the project before then and if you'd be willing to share the project with your friends, or even support it via the campaign page, it'd be hugely appreciated.

Historical note of the day: July 19th is the first day of Lucaria, a festival of the grove held on July 19th and July 21st by ancient Romans.  Unfortunately little information about Lucaria survives, and indeed even in the latter years of the Roman Empire knowledge of the festival had faded.  It is possibly a celebration of a battle between Romans and the Gauls, where a group of surviving Romans hid in a grove, or it may have originated earlier as a way of regaining the favour of gods and spirits when forests were cleared.

At any rate, to celebrate, here's a photo with a tree in it.

Apparently it's somewhere near the British Trust for Ornithology.

Happy Lucaria!

Wednesday, 16 July 2014

The Travelling Book Project - Update #1

So, my Indiegogo crowdfunding campaign for the Travelling Book Project went live Monday night, and to be honest I was a little worried that the response that I'd get would be somewhere in the region of zero.

However, it is not the case!  Hurrah!

I've so far received 14% of the funds towards my £500 target, which is a great start, and the campaign appears to be getting a fair bit of attention, from some places that I wasn't expecting, which is brilliant.  It's been getting a good few views, but I think that I may have made a error initially with the perk levels set.

So - I've added more perks in, I've reduced the cost of a lot of perks, and I've added a load in, so now if you live in the UK (sorry if you don't, but international postage is pricey!) you can get a book in your hands for as little as £12 instead of the previous £20.  Hopefully the wider variety will entice some folk!

Me handing the first and so far only Travelling Book to my son.  You can almost feel the tension as I wonder if he's going to start ripping the pages out.

I am going to repeat myself from my last post I'm afraid - it's absolutely critical for me to get the word out about this campaign as far and wide as possible, if you do think it's a good idea (check my last post for a recap) please do stop by the campaign page and share it with your social networks, the more people that hear about the campaign, the more people become aware of it... it's all good.  Thank you for your help.

Monday, 14 July 2014

IT LIVES...

I have, as of about ten minutes ago, launched my very first crowdfunding campaign.

The Travelling Book Project, which I wrote about last time, appears to be quite popular.  As a summary, Travelling Books go from person to person, with each person writing in the book a little bit about themselves and their lives.  It's a brilliant way (I think!) of connecting with other people globally, being creative, and taking part in a bit of an adventure (and who doesn't secretly want to take part in an adventure!)

Originally I had planned to make five books, and just send them out to people that was interested, but very quick it became clear that more than five people would like a book, and as much as I'd like to, I can't make all of the books that people want for free.  Plus if we're going to have a good number of books (which I hope!) ideally I need to spend time, and quite possibly money, on tracking the books, perhaps by a website set up for the project.

So, I decided to set up a crowdfunding campaign, with people able to fund the project, and in return get their own book (or go for some other perks listed).



I would hugely appreciate you taking a look at the campaign page, and sharing it with your networks.  I've got three weeks to raise as much funds as possible to make the project as big and as successful as possible.

Do expect regular updates here, and on the campaign page.  I hope we will be raising a glass in a few weeks to a fully funded project!

Thanks :)
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