Controlling the Light, part 2

My introduction to DMX and controlling light really started back in the late 90’s. I was working as the Interactive Operations Manager at the flagship Warner Bros. Studio Store. I got a chance to see how an Electronic Theater Control (ETC) playback unit worked.

Back to One

During the heart of winter, I finally made the switch to using Next.js coupled with a Strapi, a headless content management system (CMS), and deployed to a DigitalOcean droplet (a virtual server). I designed the frontend site. I built the backend CMS, and deployed to a server that I provisioned and configured. I was in total control. That should feel great. But what happens when it is not.

Controlling the Light, part 1

At the start of any project, I review the requirements and ask questions. What is the playback device? Does it require an online content management system? Is there anything unique about this application? From time to time, there are projects that require learning a new skill or discovering some technology that will make this work within the project's demand.


Unity + BrightSign, part 1

I love the idea of a BrightSign, a small device without the overhead of Windows to drive some interactive content. I did some simple tests and gave the OK to use these as playback devices for a number of projects for this installation. In Unity, the ease was to switch platforms from Standalone to WebGL simply by clicking a button (sort of).


Bonsai Start

I was there at the Minnesota Bonsai Society novice spring class. There were dozens of trees and this one spoke to me. In a cycle of searching, pruning, wiring, uncertainty, and just running out of time, I arrived at the end of this session. Did I cut too much? Did I remove the right branches?, Does this make sense? What did I just do?

At Home with Category 6, part 2

The right tool for the job. That phrase is a core principle in my work and home. Sometimes I’ll explore workarounds and “creative” solutions, but when it comes to any kind of construction it is best to use the right tool. Ultimately, you will save money, time, and have better results.

Ethernet crimping

At Home with Category 6, part 1

If only I had known. It had been years since I crimped my last bit of ethernet cable. I’ve pulled and crimped many feet of category 5 (Cat5) cables from trade show floor to retail store installations.

Headless & Decoupled CMS

It's been over a year. I've been searching for the right decoupled Content Management System (CMS); avoiding the obvious and exploring the limited open-source systems out in the wild world of the internet. During this time, I've gotten my feet wet in the DevOps pool and venturing in exploring Node.js and app deployment to Amazon Web Services.

Happiness with Unity’s Cinemachine

Once I dug into the Cinemachine tool, just after a few online tutorials I knew it was the right choice to simplify everything; just in case someone else needed to make changes with the updated code. I was delighted that I could remove a massive code block in the Update function.

Suggestions for the Event Software Developer

There is no better time than to observe users in the wild than day one of a trade show. After setting up monitors and computers, techs must be around but not in the booth. If we’re lucky there are tables near the exhibit.

idc featured

My First Code

My first bit of coding wasn’t a webpage or application but a laserdisc controller. The RA Gray IDC-02 was a small metal box about half the size of a standard book.  I remember I was handed this device and told to re-engineer the functionality to an existing installation.

Under Pressure or Slow & Low

I have two tools in my arsenal to combat the short time for our daily family time, our pressure cooker and slow cooker. Both devices convert time, energy, and ingredients into a tender and flavorful family meal with ease.