Write, Teach, Laugh

E3: Games, Doritos and Wiz Khalifa take over LA


This year’s Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3) was bigger and more virtual than ever. In recent years, the event was confined to the Los Angeles Convention Center and the sidewalks outside. This year it expanded to the street between Staples Center (home of the LA Lakers) and beyond into the popular eating and entertainment district, LA Live. The expansion made elements of the show available to not only attendees, but also casual passersby. And this year, there were dancing Doritos chips.

E3: Games that Don’t Go Boom, but are Fun Anyway and Have Bacon


E3, the Electronic Entertainment Expo, invaded the Los Angeles Convention Center from June 12-16, and left craziness and delight in its wake. I’ve never been a great fan of the shoot’em up games. Instead, I searched the humongous displays in the Los Angeles Convention Center for build’em ups. I found two: a relative newcomer, Farming Simulator, and the newest iteration of a classic, Sid Meier’s Civilization.

Interview: Ayla Brown at Concerned Vets Rally 2016 – Country Music Is Not Just Country Anymore

Ayla Brown

Country singer Ayla Brown is the whole package – singer, songwriter, and owner of her own music production company, Ambient Entertainment. And that’s not counting her previous careers as a college basketball star at Boston College and a correspondent for ‘The Early Show’ on CBS. She was also an ‘American Idol’ finalist.

PlayOn Makes It Easier to Cut the Cord

PlayOn DVR

“Cord cutting” means getting your news, sports and entertainment direct from the Internet, rather than through a cable company. PlayOn software makes this task less daunting by pre-populating its interface with almost all the popular online programming sources. On top of this, it gives you a software based digital video recorder (DVR), they call a Streaming Video Recorder (SVR).

NAB Show 2016: Batman versus HDR – You ain’t seen nothin’ yet


Eighty-nine years ago, Al Jolson said to the audience watching his film ‘The Jazz Singer,’ the first film with synchronized dialog, “You ain’t heard nothin’ yet.” After viewing the demo of High Dynamic Range (HDR) video and Dolby ATMOS sound at the Future of Cinema Conference in Las Vegas, I can confidently say, “You ain’t seen nothin’ yet.”

SXSW: Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality Everywhere, in Everything, and Everyone has a Story


The question that dominated many of the VR/AR seminars at SXSW was “How do you tell a story using this new technology?” “New” because the hardware has become affordable for consumers, and game engines used to create VR have become more powerful. The market is attracting a range of companies, from startups to ancient tech giants like IBM and Microsoft.

SXSW: Sucked Into the Story: Virtual Reality and News

VR News

Can news reporters use virtual reality? This is the question that participants at “Sucked Into the Story: Virtual Reality and News” tried to answer at SXSW. I had the feeling that somewhere around 1950, a similar group of people sat around discussing what the impact of “this television thing” would be on radio news. We may be at a similar juncture.

Software Review: Xara Designer Pro X11


(Originally published on Blogcritics.org) Xara Designer Pro X11 is an all-in-one design tool that handles bit maps, vector illustration, photo editing, page layout, and website design/publishing. It combines the features found in Xara’s stand-alone products — Xara Web Designer 11 Premium, Xara Page & Layout Designer 11, and Xara Photo & Graphic Designer 11 –…

AdobeMAX: ‘Moulin Rouge!’ Director Baz Luhrmann on Creativity


Three very different speakers, but each one inspirational, discussed creativity during the second keynote session at AdobeMAX entitled “Community Inspires Creativity.” Taking place in Los Angeles this year,AdobeMAX brought together users of Adobe programs, such as Photoshop, InDesign, Premiere Pro, and Acrobat, with the engineers, developers and other people at Adobe Software responsible for improving and supporting the software.

AdobeMAX: Sneaks, and ‘Parks and Recreation’ Star Nick Offerman


Attendees at AdobeMAX love Sneaks. AdobeMAX brings together users of Adobe software, such as Photoshop, InDesign, Premiere Pro, and Acrobat, with the engineers, developers, and managers responsible for improving and supporting the software. Sneaks, which was co-hosted this year by Parks and Recreation star Nick Offerman, demonstrates currently in-development technology, which may or may not work its way into products.

AdobeMAX: Creating Impossible Worlds with Photoshop


My favorite Photoshop instructor of all time, Bert Monroy, took people on a search for impossible worlds at AdobeMAX, at the Los Angeles Convention Center, October 5-7. It is fascinating and amusing to watch Monroy work. Not only does he have a great dry sense of humor, but the reactions he evokes from his audiences are entertaining. Even people who have used Photoshop for years can be seen literally gasping and muttering “OMG” at the tricks Monroy shows them.