Response to Some Recent Comments

I

t’s Spring Break and I am blessed with extra time… NOT. Yes, yes, yes. I said I have work, and I swear I will get to it. Maybe not today, maybe not tomorrow, but soon. Insteeeeeeeead, I’m writing on Xanga. Anyway, here are some responses to some recent comments. I could respond to some individually, but what would be the fun in that?

Yay! Spring Break! For me, spring break is unlimited…till I get a job. Which, I am going to realize in about a month, is important.
Posted 3/14/2007 6:52 PM by Mr_Mephisto

I envy youth. Even when I was broke, I could do what I wanted and I felt so free. I want an unlimited spring break too… actually–this is only for those of us here on Xanga, but I’m planning to take a semester sabbatical in Spring of 2009. So that would be my unlimited spring break. But don’t tell anyone yet. It’s not official yet.

Spring break… Wow, I would love a spring break… Guess I’ll just have to wait for Golden Week…
Posted 3/15/2007 7:51 AM by LaMangust

Welcome to adulthood.

yay! nice to read your update.i graduated from college and i just started my first real job! =)
Posted 3/2/2007 11:52 PM by Di_Gah_Jea

Welcome to you too.

(In response to choosing a Mac.) It’s your funeral…..
Posted 3/14/2007 12:41 AM by bane_vixen

Aaah, the Vixen. I haven’t heard from you in ages. Of course, I really haven’t left many comemnts your site either. But it warms the cockles of my heart to see that you are still mean and cynical and so straight-forward, just the way I like ’em.

There’s no better machine than a free machine. Any choice you’d make would be a good one (which is usually the hardest choices to make anyway). Macs are nice enough and their hardware is usually of higher quality. Apple+click. Just remember that whenever you have one of the urges to right-click something on your new computer. Apple+click!
Posted 3/13/2007 2:20 PM by chenchanx

A man who thinks just like me–cheap. Thanks for the Apple-click tip. I try to remember that.

HOLY CRUD! You teach in the DC area? I’m going there during spring break for Japan Bowl! XD
Posted 3/8/2007 1:53 AM by onigiri

What? You just figured out I live in the DC area? I thought EVERYBODY knew that… but yeah, have a nice time in DC. If this is your first time here, take make sure you that you make time to see the National Mall, the Monuments and the Smithsonian. It is rather impressive: the expansive Mall, the sense of space. Visually, it is more grandeur that massiveness. It is closer to the Palace of Versailles than the other capitals of the world that have impressive buildings in the middle of a crowded city. DC is NOT a big city. It is not London, or Paris, or Rome, or New York. It is certainly not Tokyo. It is its pastoral quality that makes it rather impressive, I think… Have a good time in town.

Oh wow, can you post up on how you create these DVDs? What software do you use?
Posted 3/14/2007 4:18 PM by ekin

How I create these DVDs? Hmmm… I put the DVD in the DVD burner and click on the “burn” button. Basically, that’s how easy it is these days. I use Nero Express which came bundled with the external DVD burner I bought, a Liteon. If you don’t have one already, these external DVD burners are pretty inexpensive these days. I got mine on sale for less that $80 and got free shipping to boot at newegg.com. It burns DVD-R and +R at max 16x (depending on the type of disc you have), as well as CDs. I think I read somewhere that DVD-R was the initial standard for DVDs so virtually any player will play them, so I stick with DVD-R. I have tried a number of different DVDs as well, and I now only buy Verbatim. They can be more expenseive than others, but I have had only one bad Disc out of what… 250 disks? Philips, Memorex, Ridata–I’ve tried these and I’ve burned my share of “coasters”.
Since Nero is for PC, it will read PC compatible files, typically mpeg and avi files. It has been my experience that mpeg files are larger (less compressed? not compressed at all?), so most video files that last 45 minutes–like a typical drama–will be compressed in the more compact avi file. You will need Codec to decompress the files, but these are free online. I think many people just use the one that comes with the DivX player that anyone can download for free. I used to use ffdshow codec, but I have had occasional trouble since some of its fancier features slows down my computer significantly.
Speaking of which, I’d bet that you out there–expecially gamers–already have fast CPUs and a gig of RAM. But I don’t, so when I burn a DVD, it is a prohibitively time consuming project. Since I only have a 1.5 GHz CPU and 512 RAM, the encoding/burning process needs virtually all of my assets. So when I burn, I cannot use my computer, for it will significanlty slow down encoding time–encoding is close to real time for me: a 45 minute show will take me almost 40 minutes to encode. Further, any spike in memory use, such as when you load an Internet page or shut down a program, can cause a hiccup in the encoding process and audio synch can get screwed up. Once everything is encoded, the actual burning onto the DVD is not long and does not take a lot of memory/CPU power.
Other than that personal info, everything is pretty self-explanatory. Most free DVD burning programs on download.com have very few features–limited menu options, limited bitrate options, no customizing, etc. The only non-free program I have tried is Nero, but it does everything I want it to do–take screen shots, use your own menu backgrounds. Just read the instructions. Good luck.

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