Introducing: My Desktop, ASC’s First Video Blog!

Those who were following my late night tweeting last night were given a heads up. I had been talking about cleaning my room, and lots of people wanted to see if I really did spend 3 days on it, so here we are! Apparently the fine version on my camera uses up 400mb for a 5 minute video which preceded a 5+hour upload on vimeo I thought I’d start off the busy month of October with something totally different. It’s not like video blogs are new by any means, but hey - its new for me. So enjoy, and give me a comment or a tweet if you liked it, or help me out and tell me why I should stick to text.

PS - The camera adds 10 pounds.

10 Reasons to Clean Your Room

My findingsI’ve spent the last couple of days cleaning, vacuuming, and re-organizing my room. Now, I wasn’t paid by your parents, wife, (or the clean freak ‘hubby’) or roommate to say this, but I actually caught myself enjoying it at times. This isn’t to say that I’m going to become the next Monica Gellar of course, but I thought I’d share with you the top 10 reasons you should clean your room. Hopefully you’ll give that broom another thought. If not- hey its not me who lives with you.

10. It’s dirty.

9. It gets the people you live with off your back.

8. It gives you something to blog about.

7. The air outside will taste better: After hours of being stuck with dust flying everywhere, Mother Nature’s air will never taste sweeter.

6. You’ll know where stuff is: When you get somebody else to clean your room, you’ll never find anything. It’s one of those things you gotta do yourself.

5. It beats cleaning someone else’s room: Bored on a rainy Saturday afternoon? It gives you something to do before somebody gives you chores or errands to run.

4. Watching dust get murked by your vacuum cleaner is almost as good as watching Die Hard: Just like Bruce Willis, you’re armed with never-ending ammunition as you suck the life out of those bunnies. Yippee Kay Yay.

3. You can invite people afterwards, if you know what Ross means.

2. You find interesting stuff: I found a cigarette looking like pencil that I got from a friend, my long lost-call of duty 4, and 6 guitar picks. It’s practically like shopping.

1. You can get rich: To my surprise, when gathering all my pennies, I totaled up to a sum of two whole dollars. Or you can be like my buddy and find forty.

So how bout it? You gonna let those bunnies taunt you? Or will you raise up your Dyson and take them out?

Let me know how it goes by leaving me a comment, pictures are welcome too! or give me a tweet

RSS - Really Simple Sam

Big Fat RSSRemember when I promised to give a more lengthy explanation on what ’subscribing’ meant? Well this is it. An online subscription is actually nothing like the the free subscriptions you get by mail - you know, the stuff you throw out every week. In fact, subscriptions are there to make your life easier. The technical term for a subscription is RSS or Really Simple Syndication. It’s more commonly associated with that big orange button you see on a lot of your favourite web pages. In short, RSS is the future that replaces browser bookmarks.

I know you’re all wondering what syndication means so I did a little dictionary work:

a group, combination, or association of gangsters controlling organized crime or one type of crime, esp. in one region of the country.

Of course, that didn’t really cut it for me so I looked a little further down:

to combine to form a syndicate.

That still doesn’t solve the mystery of what a ’syndicate’ is (although it sounds like a mysterious alien slime from Spiderman) so I’ll try to explain it in simple sam terms. Syndication means to group stuff together and in this case, stuff you like. If you’re anything like me, you regulate between 5 or 6 websites which you check back now and then to see if anything cool or exciting has happened. You’re here reading this so I’m going to assume this is one of them. However, many pain in the butts like me don’t update on a consistent basis so more often than not, you type away and BAM - the same old stuff again. Wouldn’t it be nice if somebody just gave you a memo when all the Sams update so you don’t have to keep clicking away in hopes of something new to read?

That’s where RSS comes in. RSS is a bunch of smart-computer-junkie-stuff that checks your favourite sites so you don’t have to. All you need is a reader to get started.

The Reader:
A reader is a site that lets you place all your favourite sites. I personally use Google Reader but that’s not to say you have to follow the evil empire. Yahoo, AOL, MSN, Bloglines and NewsGator are some other choices as well. Just go ahead and google ‘rss reader’ and pick one you like that has a pretty logo. Most of them are free. Sign up for an account and you’re well on your way. Next step, getting the sites you want on your reader.

The Big Bright Orange Thing:
As I’ve mentioned before and again, most sites (the cool ones anyways) will have some variation of the orange button you see above. When you’re making your online rounds, take a look at where you can see the orange button. Usually they appear somewhere near the top or bottom of a web page. If you use Mozilla Firefox, it should also be in right side of your address bar. If you are a Apple Safari user, it will say RSS in a blue button instead of the standard orange. Go ahead, click on it. It won’t bite. It will then ask you which reader you want to add the site to. Pick the reader you signed up for, or if you want, your browser’s default reader. Once you hit Okay (or some kind of affirmative button), the site is yours to own.

So since you’ve already spent five minutes reading about it, I really encourage you to try it out if you haven’t. Seriously, I was once skeptical (or lazy) to get it all figured out but now I’m obsessed enough to write about it. It comes in really handy during trade deadlines, nba drafts, and election days. No more of that needless ‘refresh’ while waiting for Mats Sundin to eat a sandwich or the latest ipod to come out. You’ll be happy to know that mainstream sites like ESPN, CNN, and even gmail and craigslist support RSS. There’s also video RSS and podcast RSS but that’s another story for another day. For your convenience, I’ve left some of the links to the most common readers so you can just click on them to subscribe to me.

They are somewhere over there ———————–> (maybe a little lower)

Both the browser and the big orange button at the top work fine as well. Still don’t uunderstand because of my irregular teaching methods? Try another blogger’s shot at it or an oprah explanation. As always, leave me a comment and let me know if you have started using RSS. Thoughts on which reader is good are also welcome.