Friday, January 25, 2008

New Title?

Yesterday while editing my manuscript yet one more time, a new title came to mind: The Flight of the Barbarous Relic.

Pros: 1. For fiction, titles are almost always symbolic rather than literal, and this would better fulfill that expectation than the current title. 2. No one has used it yet, according to a Google search. 3. It calls attention to the story's opening action, which is the foundation for the rest of the novel. In this sense, "The Flight of the Barbarous Relic" is a better fit to what I've actually written.

Cons: 1. "The Flight of the ___" is a prosaic pattern for titles. It sounds almost computer generated. 2. Though it connects strongly to the story, it doesn't convey my message as directly as "Jolly Roger Dollar." 3. Not only does it fail to reveal my message as well, it serves to hide it. How many laymen have heard of the phrase "barbarous relic"? My guess is, not many. So, if they see the "Flight of" title they will be left scratching their heads. If they see JR$, they could conceivably make the connection between piracy and the federal reserve note. I'm assuming most people understand what "Jolly Roger" means.

I'm still thinking about it. For the record, I ditched my original title because it was too sentimental and prosaic - The Crimson Rose.

Also for the record, I've added some more family videos to my YouTube collection, which now stands at 10.

Saturday, January 12, 2008

Barbarous-relic.com

For the past week I've been using iWeb 2.0.2 to create the new barbarous-relic.com (BRC). Since iWeb is built to work with .Mac, I had to acquire a new version of Panic's Transmit to use as my FTP client. It works beautifully with iWeb development and is worth the $30 price.

There are limitations to iWeb, but none too serious for what I want to accomplish. iWeb gives you a broad selection of themes to build from, but I haven't seen a way to modify the underlying layouts of those themes or create your own. But I've been working in a hurry and have consulted the help and tutorials only briefly when I was stuck, so I may have missed something. You can't group (or ungroup) objects in iWeb, but you can paste grouped objects from other apps. If you attempt to drag an object outside the current layout, it gradually disappears, though the selection handles still show. Given that my last experience with creating a website was coding my own HTML, I find iWeb very pleasant and efficient. This version comes with iLife '08.

Inasmuch as my web site is dedicated to exposing the fraud of fiat money and central banking, and given Ron Paul's current popularity and our intellectual alignment on money and banking, I've added a special Ron Paul section to BRC. I already have a stub for Rothbard and may do sections for others, including the guy sitting here typing this.

I'm having some trouble with fonts. I'm using Helvetica, which works fine in most cases but in others the text appears squashed, as if it's in a small font size. There are variations of Helvetica to choose from, and I will try one of those to see if I get consistent results.

After I get my novel uploaded, I will make the prolog and first three chapters available as a free PDF download from BRC.

Friday, January 4, 2008

Google videos

Posted "It shouldn't be like this" on Google videos today, which is available here. The video window on Google is twice as big as the one on YouTube, so that part is nice. Google videos is still in beta, though I had no trouble uploading. The poster frame can't be changed, however. I'm sure Google will get around to making that an option.

I'm planning to do at least one more presentation and post it far and wide. Perhaps something on the order of "Common fallacies about the Fed."

Came up with a temporary image for my Kindle upload. Used iDVD from iLife 8 to acquire the theme, though the particular theme I chose was available on iDVD 6, which I never owned.

iLife 8 arrived early afternoon, and I was able to install everything except iMovie 8, which was no surprise. iPhoto is much nicer than the version I had been using, and of course iDVD, with the help of Grab, allowed me to come up with something to fill in the blank for the book image on Amazon.

Thursday, January 3, 2008

It Shouldn't Be This Way

Using Apple's Keynote '08 with support from iMovie HD, I put together a presentation about the fiat dollar and posted it on YouTube last evening. Called It Shouldn't Be This Way, it features a clip of Ron Paul telling Ben Bernanke he can't lower interest rates without creating more money, which depreciates the dollar and cheats savers, among other things. It also includes two brief excepts from the Why We Fight trailer.

A link to the video is also posted on Barbarous-relic.com.

I wish the quality of the YouTube video matched the quality of the Keynote presentation on the computer. Originally, I tried saving a portion of the presentation as a QuickTime file, but the results were unacceptable -- the embedded videos especially. By choosing File > Send To > YouTube directly from Keynote I had much better resuilts, though still far from ideal. I'm quite pleased with Keynote at this point. I found only a couple of quirks, which for a package that does so much is more than I expected. It ran fine on my 1 Ghz G4, too.

The second-last slide of the presentation features a promotion for my about-to-be-uploaded novel to Amazon, The Jolly Roger Dollar.