Falling Skies

If you watch anything on TNT, you’re probably aware that this show has been coming for some time now. I remember thinking I’d like to watch the show as I usually gravitate towards shows like this (Sci-Fi in general).

However, the thing that really got me hooked was Klout; more specifically Klout Perks. If you’re not familiar with the service, Klout basically rates your influence online by analyzing your Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn profiles.

Because I fulfilled some sort of criteria in the Klout system, they identified me as a person who might be influential in talking about this showing online. The result? I was sent a “Survival Package” which included a drawing, cantene, compass, bag, hat, and map. It was packaged beautifully and I felt special, which was the intention, so good job.

So that’s how I came to watch the show. Now about the show.

The show starts several months after the aliens have arrived and invaded. For that reason, the potential for all sorts of back story is available. They started revealing a little bit of that, but spent more time on the character development, as they should. Some of the development was overkill; we understood Tom was a history teacher the second time they mentioned it and were bored of the fact after the 15th.

Overall, the story is starting to unfold. This is what I know. So far there are two types of aliens, a robotic form and a biological form. There are survivors, though most of them came from civilian backgrounds (the armed forces were all taken out in the invasion as well as everything electronic). There is some sort of hierarchy, with the fighters in charge. Not all humans are good guys, there are still some thugs out there. Food is scarce and dangerous to acquire, ammo is a valuable asset, and there isn’t a currency but for the traditional barter system. Lastly, we are already seeing the debate flare over the the importance of the civilians versus the importance of the fighters.

In summary, the makings are there for a good show. It has to do something spectacular though, as shows like this that stay the course end up dying (Like “V”). The storyline isn’t all that new; foreigners come and take over your land, leaving you to fight for survival with the hope of overcoming. Because of that, there needs to be some sort of hook, which is what I look forward to. Great marketing, great use of social media. Now it’s just the hype to live up to.

Thanks for reading.

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Books, Screenplays, Blogs, and Writing Stuff

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First of all, I don’t write screenplays, or books. I’m more in the blogging category. Regardless, I think this is an amazing tool to get the job done. If you’re like me, you tend to have an attention deficit when doing any work with multiple windows open…or the internet in general. Writeroom allows you to kill the distractions. Not only that, but it brings back that cool DOS looking screen that we all love so much, Matrix style, hello Neo.

Since I’ve been writing a lot more for my company blog, this is the type of tool I’ve grown to adore. Don’t be scared to try it out for free, you just may like it.

The end, thanks for reading. 

Inspire to Inspire

I’ve mentioned before just how much something creative can inspire me, and right now I’m feeling about as inspired as I ever have. Jeremy Cowart has been my favorite photographer since the day I first discovered him. Though he is more likely known for his celebrity portraits, this project proves all the more that he is every bit as talented as you would guess him to be.

This type of work is inspiring. It makes you want to create something. To build something out of nothing and feel the joy of that creation, and the joy of sharing that with the world. I hope we all take this to heart and do something inspiring today. Thanks for reading.

P.S – If you’re a photographer or even know someone who is, visit http://help-portrait.com/ to find out how you can give back.

If you’re gonna ask…

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Let me preface this by saying you should take this as advice, not criticism. And by you, I’m talking about companies who place big n’ pretty buttons all over their website saying “Contact Us!” If you’re gonna ask, you have to follow up. If, after you read this (and I know this will circulate pretty quickly given the popularity of this blog) you decide it’s still not important, then it’s criticism…just saying.

I work for a creative agency. I was asked to do some research on a couple different companies for some web-based software we were looking to purchase. TO PURCHASE. WITH REAL MONEY. I did what I thought was the logical thing…clicked the big shiny button and requested demos. It has nearly been a week and I still have one company who hasn’t contacted me back yet. The worst part was I got an email immediately after I signed up saying someone would be in contact with me shortly…

All I’m saying is that you need to follow through. In this case it was amplified by the fact that I wanted to purchase analytics software, to track mentions, clicks, etc. You know the deal. I even sent a tweet about it. Long story short, this type of response doesn’t make me a buyer, nor an advocate, nor give me any reason to think your software will do what I need it to. The sad thing is that it was my first choice…pre-demo sign up.

Who knows, maybe I’ll get an email or something and they’ll change my mind. Right now, it’s safe to say that there’s a gap for a competitor to steal my business.

On the other hand, I had one company call me fairly quickly after researching my tweets and preparing questions to see if their service was a fit for me and my company. That’s how you do it.

Music? Yes Please.

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I like to listen to music, and to play it, but when I’m working it’s usually the first. If you’re like me, your iTunes library gets a little boring 8-hour + workday after 8-hour workday. That’s why I love Grooveshark and Pandora. They provide me with two different music options. If I’m curious about an artist and I want to hear one of their albums, I look it up on Grooveshark, add the album, and let it roll. This is also a great way to decide if you really want to buy that CD (or download that album), or if you can stand just listening to it when you have an internet connection. This usually saves me $9.99.

If I’m not in the mood for just one artist, I like to mix it up a bit and head over to Pandora. At Pandora, you start with and artist (or genre, composer, whatever) and they pick songs that they think you will like. It’s sort of like the Genius feature in iTunes. And now, so this post isn’t one of those, “Why are you telling me something I already know?” type posts, here are some Pandora stations I like to listen to depending on my mood and what I’m doing at the time:

Chill/Interesting Background: Explosions in the Sky or Radiohead Classical

Pop/Nice Melodies: Jon McLaughlin Radio , Syndicate (The Fray), Parachute Radio

Indie Sounding: Band of Horses

I’m Working but I want to listen to some rap: Instrumental Hip Hop (no words, but all the beats you love)

That should give you a few stations to play with, thanks for reading.

The Face of Story

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© 2011 Dustin Reynolds Photography. Not for Reproduction. All Rights Reserved.

I took this photo today of a man who told stories like it was his only job in the world. Amazing. Thanks for reading.

Hawaii!

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Saturday was an interesting day for us. We went from the depths to the heights of Big Island. Starting out driving around the Hawai’i Volcanoes National Park, we saw steam vents, craters, and pre-historic looking plants. Also, it’s National Volcano week if you’re interested, so go find your favorite volcano and you’ll be able to enter the park for free.

These are a few of the images we captured that day. There are a lot more. We’ve done a lot more since then. I have hi-res photos available if anyone wants them.

Thanks for reading.