To Do, To Do…So Much To Do

I’m a big fan of Patrick McManus.  For those who don’t know, he’s an outdoor humorist who has written several books – all of which are hilarious and I highly recommend.  Anyway, one of my favorite stories of his is called “Worry Box”.  In it, he explains how we all have an worry box that remains constantly occupied.  When a worry is removed, one immediately replaces it, meaning there are a never-ending supply of worries for everyone’s box.

I have a similar theory about to-do’s.  My mental list remains constantly full.  The past year has been amazing.  I’ve started to sell art somewhat successfully around the city, which has always been a dream of mine.  I passed Calculus 2, landed an amazing new internship, a story about a past relationship of mine was made into a verse of a song on a pretty successful local hip-hop album, I got a dog and I got a stellar girlfriend.  Not a bad year.  YET, I’ve accomplished very little in terms of this site.

And for that, I apologize.  I still love to blog, but it seems like it gets so easily lost in the hustle and bustle of everyday life.  However, I have not stopped blogging.  I still try to put out at least one post every few weeks, and I have lots I want to work on in terms of the site’s organization.

This leads me to 2 things.  First, subject matter.  Since this site started in 2006ish, I have maintained that it is a tech-related blog – and specifically it will remain devoid of any and all political discussions and references.  All that said, one of the reasons I don’t blog as often is that I am trying to increase the quality of posts.  If you look at the archives, you’ll see that I used to blog quite frequently, though many entries would be short and, in a few cases, extremely pointless.  I don’t like that.  As a result, I’m contemplating trying to migrate this blog to a more wide-reaching selection of topics.  The quality would (hopefully) remain the same, and chances are many of them would still be tech-related.  However, it would allow me the opportunity to discuss more things that are of interest to me and readers.

Secondly, the domain.  No doubt you’ve noticed that the header image and title has changed, and that techpadawan.com redirects to rybomedia.com.  I’m still at odds of what to do about this.  On the one hand, I want to keep rybomedia.com, as it was the first domain I ever bought and the only reason I know any HTML or CSS.  However, the name does not describe what the blog is.  I had contemplated using rybomedia.com to contain information about the different projects I’m working on (Joupes, TaskPl.us, RyboMedia, PalmettoGraffiti, etc), but since I’m a terrible decision maker I’m still torn.

Lastly, the design.  This site has gone through 5 major design changes through the years.  Essentially, as I became a slightly better designer, I would re-make the site.  As it is, and although it’s somewhat simple, I’m proud of the site.  There are a few tweaks I would like to add in the near future that would make things more visually appealing, and I would like to optimize it to be more search-engine friendly.

So, I’ll ask you, the reader, what you think of all this.  Leave me a comment with your two cents and I’ll see what I can do to host another giveaway soon.

Desert Island Wave!

If you’re a regular reader, you saw my feeble attempt to persuade and change the world a few weeks ago…and here we go again. This time, let’s keep it light.

The inspiration for this post came last night, while sketching in my blackbook and watching The Office. More specifically, I was watching “The Fire”. In it, Dunder Mifflin employees must think of ways to pass time while they wait for a small fire to be put out. Enter Desert Island. I thought it would make a cool blog post.

So here are the rules. I will name a few categories and list the top 5 things in that category that I would bring to a deserted island (or imagine you can only use the following for the rest of your life). You will do the same. On your blog. And send me an email or trackback so I can read it! For my game, a full season of a show counts as one DVD and a 2 disc audio set counts as one cd. Let’s begin!

DVD’s

  1. Empire Strikes Back
  2. No Country for Old Men
  3. Hustle and Flow
  4. Little Miss Sunshine
  5. Scrubs Season 6

I’m young.  I’m allowed to be shallow.

Music CD’s

  1. Weezer’s The Blue Album
  2. 2Pac’s All Eyez On Me
  3. Dave Matthew’s Live at Fenway Park
  4. Brad Paisley’s 5th Gear
  5. Flipsyde

What can I say?  I could listen to Jim Dale all day long.

Audiobooks/Spokenword

  1. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows
  2. Star Wars: Dark Forces
  3. Father Gilbert: Dead Air
  4. The Westing Game
  5. Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone

Books

  1. Ender’s Game by Orson Scott Card
  2. The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne
  3. The Fellowship of the Ring by JR Tolkein
  4. Harry Potter and the
  5. Brave New World by Aldous Huxley

Board(ish) Games

  1. Mancala
  2. Chess
  3. Scrabble
  4. Risk
  5. Monopoly

For all my designer friends, assume you were restricted to using only the following for the rest of your life (#000 & #FFF are freebies).

Colors

  1. #00BBEE
  2. #FF77FF
  3. #FFBB00
  4. #DDDDDD
  5. #444444

For now, that’s all I’ve got.  So, if you have a few minutes, play with me!  Copy and paste this template or come up with your own.  Add lists (writing utensils, sports equipment, etc) or take away lists.  Have fun with it.

Look forward to seeing your choices!

Star Wars + Adidas. #TearsOfJoy

adidas_atat_bg1

Coming soon, in a galaxy far, far nearer than you’d expect with this type of intro…Star Wars shoes by Adidas!  If you know anything about me, you know I love Adidas and I love Star Wars.  Yes, I have the Collector’s Edition of the Dark Forces dramatized audiobook, and yes I listen to the entire 6 hour adventure multiple times per year.  And yes I bought it when I was about 12.  I’ve also photographed myself with all my Adidas gear and sent it off to the company.

Point is, I couldn’t be happier about the news.  The most influential science fiction work ever produce is coming together with the makers of what I consider the highest quality everyday apparel.  It’s a dream come true.

Sadly, it hasn’t been released yet.  The few images we Star Wars fanatics have been granted leave us drooling and appetite-whetted, though not yet satisfied.  The official Star Wars release says that they will be available in select stores and online in January.  Here are a few of my favorites, though I believe I’ve decided to go with the AT-AT high tops (pictured above).

adidas_luke_bg adidas_sand_bg
adidas_yoda_bg adidas_tie_bg

To add to the frustration, I stumbled across more Star Wars apparel that is currently only available in Japan.  This time it’s hats – New Era (59Fifty) hats to be specific.  Here comes the drool again.  I’m already a huge New Era fan (got my LA fitted a few weeks back and I love it), so again this excites me beyond words.  Here are a few pics of the hats currently available, though I have yet to hear if they will come to the US anytime soon.

59fifty-star wars 59fifty-imperial
59fifty-chewbacca 59fifty-han

59fifty-falcon

Until January, enjoy the pics. I’m sure if you’re anything like me, you will come back for a second or third look. Oh, and a note to all relatives, friends, and random people who might want to get me a Christmas gift…all cash gifts will go into what I like to call my “ATAT FUND“.

100 Things I Love On the Internet

Wooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo

ooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo

oooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooot!

This is the 200th post on RyboMedia (hence the 200 “o’s”).

To celebrate this milestone, I’ve put together a list of 100 things I love about the internet. Why not 200? Read until the end and you’ll see. Enjoy!

    50 Random Goodies

  1. Overusing hashtags.  #awesome
  2. Watching The Office on Hulu the day after it airs.
  3. Blogging.
  4. SideReel.  Where else can I go to find links to watch my Scrubs and Friends?
  5. SquaredEye.  Because they rock and look perty.
  6. Amazon wishlists.
  7. Tupac is alive!!!
  8. Pandora.  Seriously, the more I use it the more I love it.
  9. Hey Ya! acoustic style.
  10. Graffiti t-shirts.
  11. Restaurant.com.  Admittedly, it was better when I had a lady friend, but still an awesome place to get gift certificates dirt cheap.
  12. Joupes.  Yeah right, I’m going to list 100 things and not do some self-promotion?
  13. Farmville.
  14. Kobe Bryant highlight videos.
  15. Wookieepedia.  It’s a Star Wars Wikipedia.  Need I say more?
  16. HTML color code charts.  Far more useful than you’d expect.
  17. Nerds proposing.
  18. More nerds proposing.
  19. Horrible, horrible, horrible albeit hilarious parents.
  20. Amazing dance skills that I will never have.
  21. The Star Wars tattoo chick.  Actually not a turn on for me, but still quite interesting.
  22. Google Reader.  Sharing is quick and easy, and I can star items for later, more intense reading just like Gmail.
  23. Retrievr.  If you’ve never used it, it lets you find Flickr images by color.
  24. Google Image Search.  It makes staring at my future wife so, so easy.
  25. ESPN Fantasy Football.  I’ll never play football so this is as close as this 160 pound white boy gets.
  26. Cute dogs.
  27. Google Chrome.
  28. Google Voice.
  29. Google cake.
  30. Google.
  31. The best song ever, sung by Percy Sledge and Michael Bolton (live footage).
  32. SEEN painting the Hollywood sign.
  33. Bob Parsons.
  34. Listening to NBA games for free.
  35. The things I’m going to put my kids through (because I’m a Star Wars junkie).
  36. This dude.
  37. Hungry Howies.
  38. Extensive graffiti guide.
  39. Awesome pictures of cute babies.
  40. What up with that?!
  41. Personality driven ministry.  #SARCASM
  42. Nature in all it’s beauty.
  43. Really, really, really good web design.
  44. A 63-can color test.
  45. DRM-Free mp3 downloads for less than $1
  46. Listening to the exact songs I want…for free! (Yep, same as above)
  47. Google Chrome Extensions
  48. Mitch Hedberg
  49. My cousins baby trying to hug my dog.
  50. Star Wars Adidas shoes!
  51. 50 Blogs

  52. SiteSketch101 Teaching You How to Blog with Passion, Power and Profit
  53. BlogussionBlogging Discussion, Tips & Tricks
  54. ColorFreak – Make sure to check out the Banksy piece!
  55. KomodoMedia – BEAUTIFUL site, great design-related posts
  56. UnmatchedStyle – Reviews of beautifully designed websites
  57. Webdesigner Depot – One of the coolest header images I’ve ever seen on a site
  58. The Design Cubicle – Well researched, deep posts on blogging and web design
  59. Design Milk – Neat design, from home furnishings to computer equipment
  60. ThinkVitaminCarsonified’s Blog About the Web
  61. Desizn Tech – Great design blog (CSS, textures, etc)
  62. CrazyLeaf Design Blog – Beautifully designed blog
  63. Daily Blog Tips – What’s it sound like?
  64. Blog Oh! BlogWanna sizzle up your WordPress blog?
  65. WordPress JediFeed your WordPress Demons!
  66. Unique BlogCreate A Blog That Stands Out From the Crowd
  67. Million CluesTechnology Guide for the Digital Citizen
  68. Spyre Studios – The blog of a small but high quality design agency
  69. Lumos Studio PhotographyGreat photography from an old teacher of mine
  70. Allan Cole Roberts – More grat photography from a great web designer
  71. The Official Gmail BlogNews, tips and tricks from Google’s Gmail team and friends
  72. Rands In Repose – Great writing, make sure to check out the Nerd Handbook
  73. iGeekTrooperOn the Front Lines for the Geek Empire
  74. Necessary CoolThe Premier Guide to All That is Cool (That’s me!)
  75. Cope2 – Personal blog of graffiti legend Cope2
  76. Senses Lost – Graffiti pics, interviews, product reviews, and other cool stuff.
  77. Jersey Joe Art – Blog of graffiti icon Rime
  78. Hurricane Game – That’s right, I’m a big fan of The Game
  79. Chip OglesbyRandom Whatness
  80. Jeff Elder –  On Charlotte Networking
  81. LakersNationFor fans.  By fans.
  82. The No Look Pass – Great NBA blog by Lakers fan
  83. Cleveland, Curveballs, and Common SensePutting 2 and 2 Together Since 1987
  84. People of Wal-Mart – You guessed it – pictures of Wal-People
  85. Fail Blog – Funny FAIL pictures and videos
  86. Awkward Family PhotosSpreading the Awkwardness
  87. eSarcasmGeek Humor Gone Wild
  88. SocialWayne – Tech tips and tricks!
  89. Jasongraphix – The journal of Jason Beaird
  90. Technically Incorrect – Awesome news related to tech stuff…yep…
  91. Chris Pirillo – Great posts by a true all-around geek
  92. BDawg – Great blog from a good friend of mine, unveiling web apps, etc.
  93. Conversion Rate ExpertsTurning Clicks into Customers
  94. Joupes Blog – Of course I’m going to put it here.
  95. Tynan on TechTechnology from a jaundiced perspective
  96. Carrie Underwood – More of a news feed, but it helps me stay up to date with my lady
  97. BoingBoing – Tech, gadgets, science, culture and art news, etc.  Whew.
  98. Download Squad – Latests in tech news and software downloads
  99. ISO50 – Great photography and design work by Scott Hansen
  100. GeekDad – Logic puzzles and other awesome geeky things
  101. The Star Wars Blog – Need I say more?

Now, granted, this post would have been a whole lot more effective if I had 200 items in my list. However, I seriously doubt you’ve read this far…and even fewer of you would have if I had 200 things. SO, here’s the challenge.

By this time next year, I would love to have a completed list of 200 things (blogs, videos, awesome Twitter people, whatever!) – half of them mine, half of them yours.  Lame?  I don’t care, it’s my blog.  Start commenting.

My Columbia Twitter Revolution

cae

Several weeks ago at Social Media Club Columbia, SC, Dan Conover (@xarker) spoke about the potential for standardized Twitter hashtags for cities.

For example,  Charlotte and Charleston have been trying to adopt localized hashtags for news, traffic, etc.  For more on this, read this post.  Thanks to search lists, Charleston natives can simply add “#chs” to their tweets to be seen by other .  Here’s a wonderful example of it’s usefulness:

2009-11-08_2315

Obviously, one hashtag for an entire cities worth of tweeting can get crowded.  That’s why the proposed plan adds includes tags for traffic, news, breaking stories, weather, the election, etc.  Genius.

Well, I’m ready to do the same in Columbia.  We have lots of people who use Twitter on a day-to-day basis, and our local news stations are getting into the game.  I keep up with weather updates and breaking news throughout the day by following the Twitter accounts of local papers and TV stations.  If we had standardized hashtags, it would be much, much easier.

So here’s my plan.  I’ve tweeted with a few local Columbia people and I’ve decided to try and start something.  Thanks for your help @cophotog, @mandiengram, @hollybounds!  The “base hash” for this is #cae.  This is the airport code for Columbia – just like Charlotte uses #clt and Charleston uses #chs.

  • #cae – A bit long, but #csc and #cola are already taken.  Add this if you need the quick attention of other locals.
  • #caenews – Pretty self explanatory – used for local news.
  • #caebrk – Breaking news.  Again, it’s longer but…oh well.  🙂
  • #caewthr – Weather updates and alerts.
  • #caetrfk – Columbia traffic updates.
  • #caefood – Local food tweets.
  • #caetech – Blogs, social sites, web contest, etc from Columbia.

Got any suggestions, additions, or proposed revisions?  Leave me a comment below.

Now here’s the important part.  I’m one person.  I can’t do this alone.  For this to catch on, I’m going to need lots of help.  It’s going to take getting used to, but I think if it ever does take off it could serve very useful.  Think about it – a live list of tweets to keep you constantly informed on traffic problems, breaking news, local food deals, and weather alerts.  All for free.

Let’s face it – this is long overdue.  People want news, and they want it right now wherever they are, right when it happens.  The great thing is that it’s a collaborative effort.  Everyone in Columbia (or Charlotte, or Charleston, or wherever you introduce these standardized hashtags) can contribute to a constantly updated stream of news and traffic updates.

Twitter Marketing Done Right – @HowiesIrmo

Often, businesses and organizations are such a nuissance on Twitter.  Let’s face it – we all get spammed by followers who only wish to promote their own business, sending out only formal updates with their advertisements.  Every now and then, however, a business gets it right.    Enter Hungry Howies Pizza in Irmo, SC.

howies_irmo

HowiesIrmo is a pizza place – an unlikely type of business to get involved in social networking.  However, if you’re a Columbia Twitter user (especially one active in link-sharing and everyday discussion on the site), chances are you’re familiar with Howies – you would probably even recognize the bright yellow logo.  What’s different about this, compared to other businesses on Twitter, many of whose logo’s you may be familiar with?  Howies is personal.

Howies engages in everyday discussion.  They participate in Follow Friday,  they help out my blog, they help me think of crazy Halloween costumes, and they help spread the word about Joupes.  In short, Howies uses Twitter for casual conversation – having 2-sided conversations and creating a quirky and fun personality that’s always fun to interact with.  And at the end of the day, their business is still advertised.  I’ve been out to Irmo for some Hungry Howies pizza and cinnamon bread – have you?

To all the businesses out there – study HowiesIrmo.  Be more personal, easily able to chat about things that aren’t your product.  Have fun with other users.  To all the South Carolina people – head out to Irmo.  Tell them you’re there because of Twitter.  Enjoy the pizza.  I know I will as soon as I can find another date to go (and some time that I’m not studying!).

Akshun “Sinner’s Therapy” Sampler – Free mp3’s!

A former co-worker and good friend of mine is releasing a new album in November. Kevin sent me and a few others the 4 track press sampler a few days ago and encouraged us to help spread the word and give the songs away to anyone who wanted a copy.

akshun

I’ve been a fan of Akshun (Kevin’s stage name) for years now and I’m still impressed. His first official release, Diamond District, was voted one of the best SC releases of the year.  Since then, he has gone underground, releasing 2 mixtapes – “Speaks for Itself” and “Let’s Be Clear Vol. I” (with Dan Johns).  For more on Dan Johns, see his website.

If you like good, lyrical music, check out the sample below.  Feel free to download the mp3’s by right-clicking the mp3 link and selecting “Save Target As…”.  If you like what you hear, stay up to date with Kevin at his Twitter, MySpace, and Magnum-Opus website for more information on the CD release.

Grizzly feat. Cajwell [mp3 link]
[audio:http://rybomedia.com/music/akshun/sinners-therapy-sampler/01-Grizzly-feat.-Cajwell.mp3]
Green Light feat. Lou Hall [mp3 link]
[audio:http://rybomedia.com/music/akshun/sinners-therapy-sampler/02-Green-Light-feat.-Lou-Hall.mp3]
I Don’t Need [mp3 link]
[audio:http://rybomedia.com/music/akshun/sinners-therapy-sampler/03-I-Don’t-Need-(The-Drama).mp3]
Breath Easy feat. Cajwell [mp3 link]
[audio:http://rybomedia.com/music/akshun/sinners-therapy-sampler/04-Breath Easy-feat.-Cajwell.mp3]

250 Sticker Giveaway from UPrinting!

UPrinting

Congrats to @ColumbiaSC – looking forward to seeing those #famouslyhot Gamecock stickers!

It’s that time again – UPrinting is sponsoring a 250 sticker/label giveaway for one lucky RyboMedia reader!  Aren’t they swell?

I love stickers.  I don’t know why – it’s just one of those things.  I think it’s the fact that they are semi-permanent, can be placed anywhere, and make a statement.  I mean really, when I walk into class and pull out my stormtrooper-faced laptop, what else need be said?

The winner will be given 250 2” x 3.5”, 2” x 4” or 3” x 3” 70lb label matte stickers.  Sweeeeeeet!  If you want to know more about the quality or details, check out the sticker printing page from UPrinting.com.  Worried about quality?  Don’t be – UPrinting is seriously awesome.  I received my custom poster a few days ago and couldn’t be more happy.  Great quality printing, fast shipping, and awesome customer service.  Plus, it’s free if you win!

Since the guys at UPrinting love me so very much (or maybe because I’m the owner of this blog…nah, it’s definitely the first one), they’re giving me 250 stickers too!  Since I heard I would be hosting this giveaway, I’ve been brainstorming about what I want printed.  When it comes down to it, I’ll probably end up doing something simple, like this:

rybo sticker

Plain, yes.  But bold.  Plus, can you imagine how much it will annoy my friends when I plaster these babies all over their notebooks?!

Read the rest of this entry »

Poster Giveaway from Digital Room

UPDATE – The contest is over. Congratulations Daniel Farmer!

digital room

Thanks to the great guys at DigitalRoom, I have been permitted to give away one custom 18×24” rolled poster print. You can see more details by checking out poster printing. The contest is open to anyone in the United States, and the winner will get their poster delivered UPS Ground for free.

Since DigitalRoom is so cool, they have given me a free poster print simply for hosting this contest. I’m ecstatic. The only problem is, I’m also a horrible decision maker. While I am tempted to go with the classy and sweet choice of enlarging a family picture for my poster, I’m feeling a little more selfish and a lot more ghetto. I love graffiti. LOVE IT. Anyone who follows me on Twitter will already know this, as I am constantly TwitPic-ing my work, linking to Facebook albums, and so on. The obvious choice, then, is to put together some work (I’m thinking somethings from COPE2, SEEN, maybe some old Dondi pieces) and have it printed up and framed!

DigitalRoom specializes in high quality digital printing, so the quality reviews are fantastic – my graffiti should look great!  But that’s just me. And now that you’re a bit turned off, here’s how to enter the contest for your chance to print whatever you want.

    To be entered, all you need to do is leave a comment below explaining what you would like to have printed. Please be sure to use a real email address, since I will need to contact you for your information if you win.

For extra entries, you can:

    Tweet the giveaway:

    @rybo is hosting a custom printed poster #giveaway from @uprinting and DigitalRoom.com! http://j.mp/IAQU8

    Write a post on your own blog that links to this post and DigitalRoom.com – due to time restraints, go ahead and send me a link on Twitter @rybo or ryan at rybomedia.com.
    Subscribe to my blog – I’ll be going by the honor system, so just let me know in your comment.
    Follow me on Twitter – Leave your Twitter username in your comment below.

This contest will close September 28rd at 2pm. At this time, I will use random.org to generate a winner. For each of the 4 things you do for an extra entry, I will add your name once.

So that’s it! Good luck everybody – I look forward to reading what you want printed!

UPDATE: In an attempt to get a few more entries before the winner is selected next week, I’m adding “refer a friend”. If you refer someone and they mention your name in their comment, you will get 2 extra entries, and the person who referred you will get 1 extra entry.

Strange But Awesome: Google Maps Monopoly

Starting tomorrow, Monopoly will expand its vast collection of game variations to its biggest “board” yet – Google Maps. That’s right, as of September 9th, you can play Monopoly on Google Maps.

google_maps_monopoly

While all the details are still fuzzy, as of this post the game is set to release around 1pm EST. What we do know is that this will be a full out Monopoly game – except that you could, in theory, purchase the street you actually live on! If my understanding is correct, almost all streets and places on Google Maps will be “playable” in the game. You can build houses, charge rent, and even test your luck with the famous Chance cards.

Be sure to check out the official blog for more details and game rules, and definitely keep checking the website tomorrow for the official release.  Another fine move by Google to think out of the box, uniting a classic game with the web service we have grown dependant upon.