Blog Block

The last week or so I have been trying to write my dissertation, I’ve actually made progress as well, but it’s kind of caused me to neglect writing anything meaningful up here on the blog. It’s saddened me a little, as I’ve been enjoying all things blog related recently.

The trouble has been, that as I’ve been spending the day sat at the computer with Word open writing my diss, the last thing I’ve wanted to do is sit and write a blog post. Actually, it’s more that when I do sit to write a blog post I’ve not known where to start or what to write. I’ve had the ideas, but the age old forgetting them, or not knowing how to put them into a post has struck. Guess you could call it a Blog Block!

However, one thing that seems to be rearing it’s head a lot at the moment, partly due to the dissertation, is that I don’t feel very organised. On the outside I might look it, my room and desk are always fairly tidy and useable, my diary is always open with the weeks events and meeting/lectures in it, but for some reason I don’t feel I make the most of my time. So, I’ve been trying to sort myself out a little, bit, get the productivity a bit higher. One thing I suffer from, is that I’ll remember something I need to do at the most random point, but by the time I’m in a situation to do it, I’ve forgotten it! I bought a Moleskine in the summer to try combat this, but it seems to have spent most of the last few months sat on my window sil gathering dust. So I’m now trying to devise some sort of method for keeping it on me at all time and to organise how I record the little task I remember, but also how I record the blog ideas and design ideas I get at random times. Hopefully this will stem the flow of ideas that disappear into oblivion and help them join the few that filter out into the blog.

There’s also another reason why I seem to be shying away from the blog posts at the moment and that’s I feel like I need to sort stuff technically all the time. I recently installed Mint, which has been very interesting in showing me how many people actually visit my site and how often they come back, but I keep finding myself constantly debating whether to use Mint to track my feed or to stick with FeedBurner. It almost feels like I’m falling into the trap of being more bothered about how many people are coming, than providing those that do with quality content. So with that comes the concious effort to stop checking Mint so much and try to spend the time providing the content.

The difficult task in all this, is to not neglect the important stuff, my work, and focus on the getting and staying organised side of things. Also, I need to make sure not exclude God in it all. I have been praying all week about work, particularly the days Lucie is in school, but then I just realised I didn’t pray about it this morning. Perhaps thats why today has been so unproductive, at least in a work sense. Maybe more evidence I can’t do things on my own, and need the Big Fellers help in all this.

The BBC’s thoughts on Steve plea for no DRM

After last nights post from Steve Jobs on the Apple website about the future of downloadalbe music and DRM, the BBC feature an interesting article about the issue. Taking in some opinions from other people and looking at the situation as a whole. Personally I would love to be able to download music from iTunes with no DRM, although at the moment it hasn’t really affected me too much.

Tagging, need some help!

I use tagging here on Electric Weekend in order to filter and sort my content and for some reason lately I have been reading/seeing a lot of stuff about it. I’ve kind of developed a new understanding for how tags should be used, and as a result I want to remove/streamline some of my tags. If anyone out there is experienced in this, or knows how I can remove some and tag older posts with similar tags to the newer posts I would be very interested to hear from you.

What I want to do, is shrink my tagcloud. It has too many tags in it that are very similar to other tags (some are singular, others plural etc) as well as having too many tags that only relate to one post. It’s these tags I want to tackle and then re-assign more relevant tags to the posts. So if anyone has advice about doing this, then please let me know!

I can’t write all day

I think the last couple of weeks trying to write my dissertation have really given me an insight as to how I work as a person. I’ve come to one conclusion. I can’t just sit and write all day! My mind explodes! I need to do something creative as well.

I started writing this morning at 11 o’clock, and I’ve spent the last hour and a bit doing not a lot. Well, I say not a lot, what I mean is a lot of staring at the Word Document I have open and a lot of looking at the print out thinking, but not a lot else. It kinda made me think. I thought maybe it’s time I did something a little bit creative, a step away from the thinking and writing to something which comes a little bit more naturally, and you know what, it worked. ha!

I actually started writing this post at about 2pm this afternoon, but then I got creative and played in PhotoShop for a bit (you might see the results soon!). I went back to my diss and managed to get another hours work out of myself. So it seems I can’t write non-stop all day, but doing something creative lets me re-focus, a small amount anyway. So its a wooo for the creative, a boo for the dissertation, and come on we can do this for the doing the dissertation part!

Dramatically more secure” ›

Bill Gates sais Vista was “dramatically more secure than any other OS”. Apparantly its not. It still requires extra software in order to fend off upto 99% of attacks. Although it seems non of the security software in this test worked 100%. Makes me glad for my Mac security!

Bored Design? ›

Fantastic article by Jason Santa Maria about beating what he calls “Design Stagnation”. It’s interesting that he talks about it having been in the industry a few years. I think it also applies to students as well, it can be easy to do what yout hink is expected, to do what the industry would expect, rather than push theboundaries a bit more.

What hands can do ›

Fantastic advert by VW. I love stuff like this, it just demonstrates how close to home creativity and inspiration can be. Although I’m not sure I would’ve liked to have been on the team that choreographed it all! Looks incredibly complex.(via)

More than just symbols

I’ve spent the last couple of days writing, or at least trying to write, stuff for my dissertation. It’s been qutie a hard task, the subject of my dissertation is looking at the use of Christian symbols in advertising and one of the things I’ve been trying to do is look at the key symbols and themes of the faith. On the surface this would a peear to be quite easy, but, its not! It’s taken me longer to write this than it has anything else, not that there was a lot before it, but it’s certainly taken a long time!

Now being a Christian I have an understanding of the symbols and concepts that are the basis of my faith, but thats the issue, that’s why its taken me so long to write this section. Reducing something you believe in so strongly down to just symbols and concepts is incredibly hard. These items/stories etc are so important and mean so much more personally than you can portray in an academic paper. Approaching these ideas in an objective manner is incredibly hard, I find it hard to talk about them in a detached manner, in a way that doesn’t inject my own beliefs into the paper. Even now writing this, I can’t quite fully put into words how difficult it is. Describing these aspects of my faith as just objects or ideas in incredibly challenging, refering to them as ideas is so hard, they are so much more than ideas. It’s making me question if I can write about these concepts/ideas/symbols as things that are personal and that are more than this. I would like to, but everytime I start to do it I can see my tutor asking where the back up for these meanings is coming from. Argh so hard!

I guess it leaves one thing for me to do. Pray about it. ›

I came across this site a couple of weeks ago, but didn’t post it for some reason. I thought it would be quite helpful as I know Nick just bought a Mac. Fittingly it’s called! IT has some useful tid bits on it but I’m sure it will grow into quite a comprehensive list.

BBC on-demand MicroSoft only! ›

After pointing you all towards the BBC plans for on-demand content, my initial excitement is now somewaht diminished! It looks like it will be Microsoft only! Personnally can’t believe it and think it’s a very bad idea. Mac users are known for pioneering technology, so not providing an option for them seems a bit strange to me, plus as a UK citizen, who has and will pay the TV license not being able to use a service I’m effectively funding is not fair.

Tagging Takes Off ›

This is probably nothing new but I found finding out a view on tagging to be quite interesting. It’s something I use on this site to organise my content and as a concept find quite interesting. Personally I think it will show a more accurate representation of what someone thinks, than a more broader category.