The Big Think

April 17, 2008

Lifeway Project

Filed under: Music — jasony @ 2:32 pm

This via Patrick’s website. This past year I did a few arrangements for this project. It’s a very cool idea of being able to assemble the parts that you need for your church service and have the computer print out the charts in the correct order and key (vs, chorus, vs, vs, whatever). I had a lot of fun doing the arrangements and only wish that I had gotten involved sooner. By the time they called me there weren’t that many arrangements left to do.

Anyway, here’s a video describing what the project is. The coolest part is the third section about

LifeWay Worship Project from Patrick Watts on Vimeo.


Filed under: Hobbies — jasony @ 9:47 am

An incredible 1/8th scale working tractor.

Don’t miss the other amazing models at the Craftsmanship Museum.

April 15, 2008

Things Break

Filed under: Disclosure — jasony @ 8:24 pm

Dang it, today is the Day Of Broken Things. I took my very favoritest wrist watch to the jewelers to have the battery replaced. It’s quite a nice watch that Erin gave me as a present many years ago, and has a bit of sentimental value to it (as well as some modest real value). I figured that a jeweler would be slightly pricier but would be worth it. I went to the Samuel’s Diamonds place that is now located where the old Krispy Kreme donut shop used to be (should have been a warning).

He actually put a battery in two of my watches- the other one was a gorgeous Bulova pocket watch that Erin gave me as a wedding present 11 years ago. The pocket watch works fine, but two hours after he installed the battery the Swiss watch quit. I don’t know what’s wrong. It was working fine until the battery ran out (usual set of symptoms… bad time keeping for days followed by complete shutdown). I’m rather miffed at the whole situation, partly because the lawnmower went belly-up today as well. I have to go in and talk to them about it tomorrow. Chances are that they’ll say they didn’t do anything wrong (says you), then I’ll counter by saying it was working fine when I brought it in (except for the battery). Odds that they’ll make it right?

One hint: donut shop.

R/C Mario Theme

Filed under: Games — jasony @ 5:54 pm


Lawnmower Man

Filed under: Disclosure — jasony @ 5:26 pm

Well, I started today with good intentions. Went to Sears to buy a bunch of stuff that I needed to do some much-needed maintenance on our lawn mower. New blade, spark plug, oil. Came back and installed everything and fired it up. It worked like a charm, but just as I was finishing the back lawn the mower started acting strange- coughing and running rough. After a minute or so of this it quit altogether and wouldn’t restart. Hmm…

The gas was a bit old, but I had put Sta-Bil in it to extend the life (hey, gas is expensive!). Near as I can tell, I think either the Sta-Bil didn’t work or the gas just went bad. From online discussions I believe I have hosed the carburetor. Drat.

So now I can either take it in to a repair place and get the carb cleaned, or I can be brave and try to repair it myself. I’m thinking I’m going to call and see how much it would cost to clean/rebuild the carb at the shop. If it’s very much (50% of the price of the mower, or about $125), then I’ll do it myself. Assuming that’s the problem and I repair it correctly, I’ll only be out the cost of the repair kit (about $25). If that’s not it then I don’t know what to do short of throwing more money at the problem and visiting the shop.

It’s been a good mower, and it’s only 6 years old, so I hate to buy a new one. Since I just mowed the yard I’ve got a few weeks to solve the problem before the grass starts to get too long again. Anybody know how to rebuild a lawn mower carb? Comments welcome.

What a pain.

April 14, 2008

It Takes an Expert

Filed under: Uncategorized — jasony @ 5:13 pm

Just discovered Expertvillage. Lots of DIY and other how-to videos there. Great if, like me, you learn by watching and doing, not so much by reading.

April 10, 2008

Making a Difference

Filed under: Computing — jasony @ 11:43 am

Microsoft multimillionaire Nathan Myhrvold funded a complete build of Charles Babbage’s Difference Engine. Wired has a short article and some amazing pictures.

April 9, 2008

Die Hard 4: The Stupiding

Filed under: Movies,Woodworking — jasony @ 11:22 pm

Erin and I watched Die Hard 4 tonight (Live Free and Die Hard is the actual name). Pretty fun, if you’re willing to suspend your disbelief by a razor thin thread, then have that thread repeatedly thrashed by very sharp blades. At one point during the film we paused the movie and both burst out laughing because Hollywood had stepped over the line of believability so far. Not only were we calling the major plot points out thirty minutes before they happened, but seeing one Bruce Willis endure punishment that would have put Bruce Banner in the ICU, then walk away and crack wise, was a bit much. I mean, how much punishment can a human body take?

I found out a small amount of the how much in my shop yesterday, actually. I have been working on the entertainment center and was gluing together some boards. I reached for a clamp hanging on the wall and one of the clamps next to it fell off, pirouetted through the air, and landed sharp side down on my forearm. Didn’t break the skin, but I thought I had maybe fractured the bone or cracked something. Turns out I didn’t, but there’s a nasty deep bruise in the spot.

If I were John McClain I’m sure I’d just laugh it off and make some clamp-related pun. Fortunately, I’m only Jason and so am far too unclever to think of any.

The Craftsman

Filed under: Hobbies — jasony @ 9:31 am

Core77 has a review up of Richard Sennett’s book “The Craftsman,” which is a conglomerate of case studies that explore the relationship of hand to mind, craftsmanship to Enlightenment. Herein, Sennett, a renown London-based sociologist with a zest for the human experience, argues that the most basic, fundamental ability we humans share is that of craft. When properly trained, this process functions as muscle memory, literally training the mind while working the hand. If its up to Sennett, all those hours spent learning how to throw clay pots, plane wood, and mix plaster for some toy-design/coffee-maker/mobile-phone project actually might just make you, the designer-cum-craftsman, a more enlightened person. From the computer screen to the workshop table, it’s the stuff we’ve known for years: think, make, share, and do it again. It’s what we wake up to do every morning, and what we dream about at night.

April 4, 2008

Put a Tiger in Your Tank

Filed under: Humor and Fun — jasony @ 9:32 am

College kid makes 1/2 scale Tiger tank for paintball. Joy.

April 3, 2008

Need a Color Printer?

Filed under: Computing — jasony @ 3:12 pm

HP has my printer, the HP2600N, on sale for $199 after rebate w/free shipping. I bought mine two years ago for $250 and love it. This is a screaming deal since this particular printer comes with full ink cartridges, not the lame-sauce half-full carts that require you to buy more soon after getting the printer. This is a very good thing since 4 new carts (CMYK) are $88/each. Yes, you read that right: buying refilled ink cartridges costs more than buying the printer new with full carts. When my cartridges go dry I’m just going to buy a new printer. Wasteful, I know, but I’ll save $152.

Give away the shaver and sell the blades, indeed.

Little People

Filed under: Hobbies,Movies — jasony @ 2:39 pm

How to make a stop motion puppet.

Shuttle Prep

Filed under: Space — jasony @ 12:43 pm

Incredible space shuttle launch prep photo essay here.

April 2, 2008


Filed under: Current Reading — jasony @ 9:44 am

John Scalzi on the perfect level of fame. If you haven’t read Scalzi’s “Old Man’s War” trilogy, it’s an excellent read. Highly recommended.

April 1, 2008

Miniature Mastery

Filed under: Humor and Fun — jasony @ 9:53 pm

Check out artist James Pridham’s wonderful miniature work.

Me, Me, Me

Filed under: Uncategorized — jasony @ 9:36 pm

I went to a party the other nigh where a photographer had been hired to document the event. He just posted some of the pictures he did and I was really happy with a couple of candids he caught of me. Don’t worry, this won’t become the Vain Jason Photo Page, but I thought they were cool pictures so I wanted to post them.

Now I’m just missing an introspective acoustic album. I have the perfect cover shots.

Jasonpic 2.jpg

Jasonpic 1.jpg

Project Virgle

Filed under: Humor and Fun,Space — jasony @ 8:43 pm

Google and Virgin Galactic plan on going to Mars. Couldn’t happen on a better day…

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