My introduction to magic
The first trick I remember seeing was a little wierd.
My grandpa, Papa, used to take my brother and I to Waffle House. While there, he would casually hold a knife in his hand, facing up, then act like he fell asleep… ON TO THE KNIFE! White liquid would spill out and I was sure he had poked out his eye.
Turns out he was just holding a coffee creamer in his hand, but seriously – what kind of joke was that?
The first real magic trick I learned how to do was the “Magic Coloring Book.” I just looked it up and it seems like the same thing is still avaible today.
The trick was easy – simply flip with your finger at the top and there were blank pages, in the middle there were black and white outlines, and at the bottom there were full color images. Each section had little tabs cut out so you could flip to specific pages. (Magicians, don’t hate on me for spilling the secrets!)
But, if you didn’t know the secret, it caused a moment of pause. “How did this little kid just do that?”
It was this moment of wonder that I was in search of. I got some books and little kits on magic and learned a few math based card tricks, cut the rope and restore it tricks, seperate and join steel rings, switch the order of balls in a tube, and other simple, but fun to perform acts.
I got really into svengali decks, card decks that were slightly tapered on one end. This meant that I could ask someone to pick a card, reverse the deck, then pull their card out with no questions about it. I spent hours memorizing the patterns on the back of marked decks so that I could read the deck from the back and know what cards people had.
Eventually I ended up taking all my little tricks, bundling them into an act, and doing a show for at least one birthday party. I can’t remember how much I got paid (probably about $5), but I remember the feeling after. It was great! The kids laughed, had a good time, and so did the parents, and I got paid to do something I enjoyed doing!
I don’t really do magic tricks anymore, but I am still a fan of pranks – which will be a later post. I still like instilling people with a sense of wonder, second guessing their assumptions, and making them smile as the realize things are different from how they seem.
Next up – Reading
August 22, 2012 Leave a comment
I am starting a series on the things that have interested me over the course of my life.
I enjoy trying new things. New gadgets, new ideas, new hobbies. I don’t stick it out with all of them, but often, some aspect of them stays with me and benefits me later in life.
One of the most intriguing facets of new things is that I never know how they will become integrated, what uses they may have, or what will come of them.
The series starts back in elementary school, with a little game known as Pogs.
Pogs – if you dont know – are small cardboard discs with printed designs on them. The game started in Hawaii using the tops of bottle caps.
It consists of a stack of cardboard discs, and a “slammer”, a heavy metal or plastic disck that you drop onto the stack, in an attempt to flip as many over as possible.
Often, the game is played for keeps, which means you get to keep any pogs that you flip over during your turn. This was my introduction to gambling
Now, if you like to play pogs in the 2nd grade, chances are you will lose them pretty often, and they are not cheap (for a 2nd grader).
Enter the “pog maker”. If you know what a button maker is, then you know what a pog maker is. It is a die cut circle that can punch a disc shape out of any magazine, print out, etc… Combined with adhesive backed pog blanks, I had an unlimted supply of pogs. Even better, I had custom pogs. I could color them with markers, make pogs out of people’s favorite comic heros, anything I wanted. One comic book had about 50 images of Spiderman to use, so it was easy!
I quickly moved from playing pogs, to dealing in pog customization on a gradewide scale.
I think this was my introduction to the marketplace, and to the power of design and being able to design specifically for a customer. My first clients were other 2nd graders who wanted a cooler pog, and they wanted it then and there.
Next up – Magic Tricks
August 21, 2012 1 Comment
Babybird – organically masticated food for your child.
I bet some crazy new age parents would pay bookoos for this.
August 20, 2012 Leave a comment
This is one of those signs where you have to push the letters in individually. Someone took their time and did it right.
July 16, 2012 Leave a comment
I can now use my iPad to capture a fully textured, accurate 3D model of my office, friends, food, anything at all. It takes me seconds to capture, a few minutes to process in the cloud, then I had a fully useable 3ds file that I can edit in blender or my graphics program of choice.
View the 3d file: http://www.123dapp.com/obj-Catch/Hot-Sauce/707293
How much does this cost me?
Nothing. Eventually this will be the new way to view photos. I can pan, tilt, zoom, look under, spin around and investigate a full scene unlike any photo representation I have ever seen before.
If I choose, I can tweak it a bit, then print it out on a MakerBot as a plastic model.
Imagine when this process utilizes a video feed to make the 3D capture? Live pawnable 3D video? Amazing.
June 27, 2012 Leave a comment
Do you know anyone who freelances? Or do you freelance yourself? I want to find out who, of all my connections, actively freelances. Full time, or on the side, let me know!
June 12, 2012 Leave a comment
Which interface looks easier to use?
Bing has recently redesigned and removed much of the clutter from their search results pages.
Very reminiscent of Google circa four years ago.
May 2, 2012 Leave a comment
Livehoods: San Francisco Bay
April 29, 2012 Leave a comment
Can you iterate?
Iterating is not the same as having no idea what you are doing. It is in fact quite the opposite. You know where you want to be, but don’t know the way to get there.
Because where you want to be is in the future, you will know more about how to get there the closer you are to it. As you pave that road, you will discover the sink holes, the hills, and the wide open spaces that you could not see from afar.
So start paving. It doesn’t matter if you need to go back later and put up some cones.
April 26, 2012 Leave a comment
iOS’s incorporation of photo stream is a marked improvement for sharing photos and media between devices. However, right now it is always a two way street.
If you want to upload to the photo stream, you have to also download.
This is fine for my iPad, and my MacBook pro, but I have more limited storage on my iPhone. I want to upload from my photos to get the images off of it. I do not want to download all images from my other devices.
Anyone know a way (jail broken or not) to make this change?
April 13, 2012 Leave a comment
When you make something better and people just don’t get it, sometimes you need to be blunt. I know the feeling.
March 27, 2012 1 Comment
Often, when pressured to finish something quickly, with the client looking over my shoulder, I am tempted to use my first incarnation of a design.
There it is. It works. I already have it. It is done. Changing it means more work, more time, and a second review process.
It often takes me a weekend to evaluate how I actually feel about a product. Why was I not sold on it? What, exactly, was that nagging feeling in the back of my brain that sad it isn’t right yet. You are missing something.
By taking a day away from the project and getting some distance, I am able to look back at it and see it how someone else might see it – as if for the first time.
March 24, 2012 Leave a comment