Improve your voice

It is becoming popular to do voice overs on shared videos. It probably indicates that , on the whole, we want to improve how we sound in our video clips. There is a constant improvement model in lots of ways on the internet now and that’s good. Videos are still being produced with poor sound quality and a search on this blog will give you some easy tips for improving that. What about your voice itself , though? Around this time in 2016 I put up a post about getting over the sound of your voice.  Just do it. Make the clip. Record your voice. Don’t worry about it. If the sound quality is good , people are probably not going to worry too much about how you sound. They worry whether they can hear you and understand you. If you want to improve the sound of your voice then do it without a fuss. Listen to the tips of experts. Try things out. Work on incremental improvements through practice. Don’t criticise yourself . Listen to what you can do to improve. Ask trusted people for feedback. It’s threatening to have feedback from just anyone. You might take it to heart. Get general tips and look for people who will work with you. You are not in a competition. We all have different voices and we all sound different on video. It’s a habit and practice thing. Have faith in that.

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Fixing Facebook

 

Mark Zuckerberg’s plan is to fix Facebook in 2018. That can only happen if there is a clear idea of what the actual problems are and not the perceived problems. That requires interaction with users because it is the user experience which is now creating problems. Some users have left or significantly cut back on Facebook time. It used to be a place where people spent time but that is no longer the case because it is no longer a user friendly site. What is of interest to me is that no one is complaining about it any more. If Facebook made changes there would be an outcry. If Facebook wasn’t the place people wanted to be there would be outbursts of criticism. Now people just leave or limit their time. They say nothing. That is how much Facebook has changed. Maybe they no longer feel it is a platform where they will be heard.

Part of the problem is Facebook is a stalkers paradise and I have said that before. Facebook and Messenger now broadcast when you are on the sites and Facebook broadcasts your comments, activities as well. Facebook enables people who are not your friends to see what you are posting and saying. This is all invasive and makes people feel insecure. Facebook is no longer a friend. it is a threat. People keep using it because it is still the best way to keep in contact with those overseas and interstate that you cannot easily contact.

The other part of the problem is Facebook pushes propaganda, tabloid news and fake information. It has a seedy feel which can create fear mongering or worry. So much tripe. I regularly go through my feed to try and cut that down but Facebook creates unsolicited posts and puts them in my feed. Some people just want to see what their Facebook friends are posting and then the sites they subscribe to. it then becomes their Facebook feed and not this space where you can be done too. Comments on those sorts of sites can be unpleasant and nasty. There is a pack mentality which surrounds tabloid news and considered opinion is out the window. Facebook used to be a good place for discussing ideas and views.

One of its real strengths is getting missing people home and safe and missing people home and safe. it is also powerful at getting lost items back to owners. That is a strong, positive network which keep sits strength in spite of interference. Facebook can be very uplifting and achieve positive outcomes but it is constantly undermined by interfering with the wellbeing of its users. Telling everyone everything about your activities and then telling them when you are online is a good way to deprive you of privacy and individuality. Respect for space is important.

There is no place on Facebook for nastiness of any kind. The world has issues and the world has problems. Enabling negative behaviour and comments, undermining someone’s post or victimising them isn’t helping. Feeds by organisations or public people can be hijacked and turned into something nasty and critical  and contributes to the distastefulness of the site. People fight back and they set things straight but it was never necessary before. Those sorts of behaviours of destroying someone’s positive information need to be stopped.

Everyone will have their opinion of what is wrong and what should be fixed and so Mark Zuckerberg has quite a big challenge to sort this out this year.  Part of his capacity of creating a worthwhile  social arena in the first place ought to be to be able to fix what is going wrong now. The easiest thing to fix would be the chronology. People are sick of seeing the same post over and over or having stuck feeds or having things pop up out of nowhere so you literally lose the thread. When you lose track of the feed or see things from before , you switch off. No one has the time or interest in trying to get that right in their heads. It’s very messy as it stands. May all the Facebook fixing go well.

Save video from Messenger

MessengerEvery device is slightly different and each upgrade brings something different. To save a Messenger video on your computer , click on the video , hover over the video and the choices will come up top left on your screen if you are using a mouse. On your phone or tablet you need to tap and hold on the video and the choices will come up at the bottom of the screen. These choices may or may not be blocked by your hand, wrist or arm. The basic instructions for how to do this are here on the wikiHow.

 

Puzzle Craft 2

Puzzle Craft 2

Castle upgrade

When you are in it for the long haul , you can find a game isn’t what is was and becomes something totally different. Puzzle Craft 2 , at this stage, is less about the puzzle boards and very much more about strategy and meeting the challenges of the game as effectively as I can. The boards are playing out differently because I have to mainly pay runes to open very important chests. Sometimes I can open them with the challenge for the chest but that is not often the case even when I try my hardest! I have upgraded the castle several times now to get the extra tools benefits. That certainly makes a difference but I have to ensure I have the resources to make the extra tools. This is proving to be quite hard now I have passed the upgrade in the picture and am onto the next one. It requires such vast quantities of critical resources that balancing that all out to allow myself to keep playing the game is an interesting test of my thinking skills. At one stage with the castle upgrades I invested in workers because that simplified the collection of resources for me. Never underestimate the value of workers. I have had to think about which ones too. Just buying any workers is not helpful. I have to think about  which ones will help me progress in the game. I have to check the almanac too. Information about plants and animals is important when you want to gain more points or fight the swamp or moles.

I haven’t worked out what the blocked board is about. Only that it comes out of nowhere very suddenly, takes the whole board and replaces  it and there is a message of congratulations which is never there long enough so I can read it! The blocked board totally upends my cognitive flow, annoys me no end and then I am forced to just let it go and get on with the board I am given. There is never any feeling on my part the board is blocked and I should have thought I’d be the one to decide that and have a way of unblocking it. It’s aggressive play on the game’s part to make me a victim like when I first encountered the pirate ship and had to deal with that as a victim and fall foul of it. Not any more ! I have cannons!! I  have also done the castle upgrades to get MORE cannons.

Bit by bit I am achieving all the animals and plants. Bit by bit I am achieving all the awards. I shall never completely finish the game because I won’t be doing the royal challenges where I have to network the game. I have networked 3 other farm games and then all fell apart either because people are very mean, self centred players or because I have had things stolen. Lesson learned. Meanwhile, I have hundreds of resources to collect and a cave painting to find so I can continue on…

Internet of Things

We are pretty good at labelling things and then making them seem real. When the net first took off in the 90s we were using it how we wanted and we were saving to our computers or 1.44MB floppie disks. We had fun downloading programmes of our own choice to run on our computers. The desktop became the laptop became the tablet became the smartphone. We now have streaming and cloud services. Programmes became software became apps. Everything has a chip in it. We can do computer diagnostics on our cars and we have life saving monitoring equipment in hospitals. Every bit of a pregnancy and birth is monitored and tracked on a computer. Cars cannot get us easily from one place to another because of roadworks and infrastructure changes. The internet of things isn’t what they say it is but it is. It does exist and it can serve us well. We can have a smart home if we want one. We can sometimes navigate our way out of a difficult driving situation if we need to. We can connect with businesses and organisations in a helpful , effective way if necessary. We never have to live in ignorance or feel disconnected because we have internet access and we have technology tools which link us and help us to collaborate , share and grow ideas.

The problem appears to be that we are not driving it. We are being driven.  Our photos are hijacked helpfully to the cloud. Tabloid news is bingly bonging onto our devices whenever it wants to. Adverts will hang a device or a computer because they feel like it. Our privacy has been ignored and our capacity to develop our own way of being with our device has been overridden. We now have world class gamers which the gaming industry cannot keep up with. They can finish a new game and then be waiting several months for  a new game to come out. They are very good at what they do. They think at the speed of light and can process information and strategy at awesome speeds but the games are complex and take time to make. The gamers don’t want to be held in a holding pattern until something new arrives and virtual reality isn’t appealing to them much at the moment. We haven’t addressed that level of complexity. We created it but we can’t deal with it.

So many people are walking away from technology other than for essential services and contact because is has become TheirNet and no longer MyNet. The upsurge of board games is an interesting by product of that. Monopoly, Cluedo and Ludo , in particular, are enjoying new found success. People are dumping their smartphones because of all the notifications, interfering buttons and screens and lack of capacity to just do something. They are buying cheap phones which  call and message. Just like in the 90s when a phone did what you wanted. The ever growing minimalist movement is doing a lot to counterbalance and rationalise this internet of things because it isn’t what we were thinking. It exists but we need time to think about what we need and want. We need clarity but we also need our own personal space on the net which is ours and not theirs.

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