Sunday, 4 April 2010

Catching Up...

Wow, it’s been a while since I’ve written something for the blog. When we returned from Japan, things were pretty hectic for a while, so the blog was bumped down my priority list. Then once it made its way back to the top, I had to work for weeks on end to finish and publish all of the videos. Now that those are all done, I can finally catch up on what happened since then…


As you may have noticed, my videos have changed in format (several times) since my first one. There are a few reasons for the changes.

First of all, space. When we travel, it takes up a hell of a lot of memory to constantly record in HD. As much as I’d like to capture my life in HD, it’s just not feasible right now. And every time we return home from a trip, all of the videos get dumped onto Jess’ shrinking hard drive. We still have 5 months out here, so we’re starting to ration out our remaining memory…

Second of all, I’ve been experimenting quite a bit with the new Sanyo Xacti HD camera that Jess bought me to find the BEST way to show our videos on the blog. I spent a lot of time playing with different recording settings and rendering qualities to find the “sweet spot” of quality vs. performance.

If I record at full HD, I can’t edit it in full HD (Jess’ computer doesn’t have s strong enough graphics card). Since I can’t edit in HD, my videos become skewed (making us look really fat or really thin depending on which axis the video is skewed) during the editing process, so I’m forced to render the videos in a format that opposes the skewing process. For example: If the video is stretched vertically during editing, I have to render it in such a way to stretch it horizontally again to restore the “widescreen” look. It’s a little complicated, but sufficed to say, I’m trying really hard to make them look good for you guys…


The new school year is well underway. My new kids at my main school are severely lacking in the discipline department, but it’s nothing that a nice bamboo stick can’t take care of (refer to my post: “Corporal Punishment”).

On a positive note, it’s nice to be tuned into the “groove” of things. I know how to make my lessons, I know how to run my classes, and I know how to efficiently use my school time. As a result, I now have a lot more free time on my hands to do whatever I want. In the beginning, this free time was wasted on unnecessary things (surfing the internet until my eyes glazed over), but now I’m finding it a lot more fun to use that extra time for the school. I recently decorated my classroom with useful worksheets (common greetings, expressing emotion, basic vocabulary etc.). I also spent quite a bit of time reading through the instructions for most of the board games that were ordered for my English Hub so that we could actually use them (rather than just letting them sit there and collect dust). Yup, life’s all good on the school front…

My Laptop:

Dead. Jessica killed it.

She tripped over the power cord and it took a flying leap off the table onto the floor.

And just like magic, I inherited Jessica’s HP Pavilion!


Sweet, beautiful, and perfect as ever.


Well, that’s about it. We have some big events coming up so be sure to keep checking back!

Signing off for now,

- Ken

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