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William Cochran
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William Cochran

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I'm totally intrigued with this technology:

http://www.engadget.com/2014/04/22/lytro-illum/

If one element of the world has stagnated it is photography. Sure we have better lenses, more megapixels and bigger sensors but ultimately you generate a flat image to look at. We have much better software and hardware now so why not make photographs more of an interactive experience? The closest example I think can think of is from the Harry's Potter series of movies. They had moving pictures in newspapers and paintings all throughout the movies.

On the web page above there is a Lytro widget of some sort that will show you some potential of this technology. You can refocus the image to anything that was captured with the original photo (or light field). Now imagine a moving GIF with Lytro tech being used (moving through a scene that was photographed). Now imagine if you had a set of Lytro cameras (ala Matrix special FX - an array of these cameras) and then could not only refocus but change angles in the photo (look around in 3D and focus on what you want). We already have digital picture frames...this seems to be the next logical step.

I may have to get one of these to play with :).
If Lytro's first camera offered us a sneak peek at the promise of light field photography, the company's second-generation product swings those doors
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William Cochran

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So where does everyone sit on the next generation gaming platforms? Has everyone made the jump? If you didn't get both how did you choose between the PS4 and the Xbox One?

For those who don't know me I'm quite the gamer. I have two PS4s and one Xbox One. While Titanfall has been amazing fun it got overshadowed, for me, by a sleeper hit - Plants vs Zombies. The best way to describe Plants vs Zombies would be a cross between Battlefield 4 and Team Fortress 2. It has a HUGE number of unlocks and I've already spent 100 hours playing it and am having just as much fun as when I started (the sign of a good game). What are you playing?
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William Cochran

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Well this could certainly change things up a little: http://www.engadget.com/2014/04/02/windows-will-be-free-on-small-devices/

The first comment says what I was thinking. OEMs have a choice now. Go with Android and be prepared to pay patent fees to Apple, Nokia and Microsoft for the "free OS" or go with Microsoft and truly have zero cost.

I've had two Windows phones and they are great to use BUT I'm too heavily invested in another ecosystem (cough Apple cough) to make a jump now. As a matter of fact my personal pecking order for most desirable phones would be: Apple, Microsoft and then Google (pure Android only). I say pure because a) I can't stand Samsung/Sony's skinning of Android and b) when a new version of the OS is released I want to download it immediately. I don't want to wait for the vendor to port their skin/custom apps to work on the latest Android OS.
It turns out that those rumors of Microsoft cutting Windows prices to spur adoption were true -- and then some. The company has announced that Windows
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William Cochran

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Today is a sad day.  I've traded in my last PS3 for credit towards my PS4 which releases on Nov 15th, 2013.

Before I formatted the PS3 though I went browsing through the downloaded games and it brought back a lot of fantastic gaming memories.  My family played Rock Band together on this console for who knows how many hundreds of hours.  Then when you combine the time spent on a slew of amazing retail games such as:  Resistance, Uncharted, SOCOM, Little Big Planet, The Last of Us, Diablo 3, Killzone and many others; you realize what an amazing bang for your buck the PS3 was.  We had so much fun with this system!

Hands down my family's favorite downloadable PS3 game was Supersonic Acrobatic Rocket-Powered Battle-Cars!  We must have played that game for hundreds of hours and competed in that game relentlessly.

Sony - Thanks for eight amazing years of gaming and all the memories that came with it.  I can't wait to see what new memories the PS4 is going to bring me and my family.
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William Cochran

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As I grow older I find my heroes are changing. 

I used to think that success and even materialistic success (how big is my house, how nice is my car, how big is my bank account) was the biggest priority in life.  My thinking was the more "successful" that I was the happier I'd be.  Time has taught me that long ago I made enough money to be happy and materialistic objects yield no such rewards. 

What brings me real happiness now is the thought (or idea) that I can make the world a better place before I go.  My new heroes are the people who are effecting positive/good change in the world (~7min video):

Patrick Stewart Gives Passionate Response to Question At Comicpalooza 2013

It is no secret that I'm not a big fan of movie stars, sports stars, singers and especially these reality celebrities.  I equate all entertainers to court jesters.  They are nice distractions from reality yet some how in our society the court jesters make more than scientists, teachers, doctors, etc.  The people who effect amazing, positive change in the world.  For example, I'd much rather see a society that pays a person millions of dollars a year when they sign up to the "teaching team" (when they become a teacher) rather than pay an entertainer, who plays a game for his/her own enjoyment, millions of dollars that has no long term meaning what so ever.  Can a quarterback deflect an asteroid and save a city?  Can a baseball player's accomplishments of playing a game even come close to a teacher who, over the course of their career, impacted thousands of young minds (their students learning to read, write, etc)?  Can a basketball player cure a disease that affects millions?  Why does a professional golfer make millions of dollars playing a game while a soldier, who risked their life defending our country and freedom, barely gets by?  In my eyes our society's value system is totally backwards.

Patrick Stewart is an entertainer BUT he is making the world a better place before he goes.  In my older age I'm seeing that as 100x more valuable than any of the entertainment that he has ever produced.  He's made the world a better place.  If he just did that and nothing more he'd fall into my re-defined hero category.

Just imagine if every single person improved the world before they left?  What a wonderful world that would be.  They'd be my hero.
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William Cochran

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While I don't agree with everything that he states the overall message is fantastic:

THIS IS WATER

--I don't believe you need an education to raise your awareness.  Some of the most insightful people I've met don't have college degrees!
--I'm living proof that not all jobs are boring and/or routine.  Find something you love to do, a job that challenges you and you'll find it isn't monotonous at all.  Life isn't boring and your work doesn't have to be either :).

I've been told so many times, in my life, that I'm an extremely patient person when it comes to how I react to what most people consider very frustrating situations.  I don't get frustrated easily simply because I live consciously in the moment and see/experience the world differently than most (an excellent trait for a writer!).  Trust me I'm not most patient person in the world.  However choosing how to see reality and more importantly how you react to those "frustrating" situations totally changes your experience.  You definitely get to choose how you react to the world around you!
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William Cochran

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So I finally pulled the trigger on a reducer lens for my telescope and took it out for a spin last night. For those who don't speak "telescope" think of it as a wide angle lens that makes snapping astrophotography easier (43% larger field of view, captures light faster). We checked out the locals that were in view (Mars and Jupiter) but then decided to focus out into deep space. We stumbled across the Sombrero Galaxy (M104 or NGC 4594).

The Sombrero Galaxy is an unbarred spiral galaxy found in the constellation Virgo. It is a paltry 28 million light years (8.6 MPC) from Earth. Nasa spent 2.5 billion on the Hubble to take the photo on the left but I took my picture, on the right, with just a few thousand invested <grin>.

Sombrero Galaxy...Check. Just a few billion other celestial objects to photograph/catalog and I'll be done :).
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William Cochran

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Just wondering...

When you discover a video on a social network or a website, what is the maximum length, of the video, that you'll watch immediately? Seven seconds? One minute? Two minutes? What is your limit?

Context - I'm still kicking around the idea of a video blog and was thinking about the length of the video blog entries.  I'm wondering if I would I be able to say what I wanted to say while still keeping the video under the majority of people's instant watch time limit.  I can do quite a bit with a minute of your time but is there room for more?
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William Cochran

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I caught the movie Office Space this morning.  Isn't it sad that the movie was released in 1999 yet almost all of it still applies to my current employer?  Unreal!
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I just said the exact same thing at Tuesday lunch this week!
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William Cochran

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Ultimate Apple fanboy checklist...

Shiny new iPhone 5s (that I waited in line to get day 1) - CHECK
Shiny new MacBook Pro (2013) w/27" monitor - CHECK
Shiny new iPad Air (that I just waited in line to get today) - CHECK

I have achieved the status of fanboy now.  I'm done :P.
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If you ever sell ANYTHING Apple, please give me an opportunity to buy from you!!!! :)
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William Cochran

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It is difficult to shift to paying for something that I've gotten free for years but I think this has a lot of value that may make it worth it:

http://www.youtube.com/user/BigThinkMentor

Anyone going to take the plunge?  $20 a year isn't a big risk!
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William Cochran

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I really hope this concept takes off.  We play a lot of board games in the Cochran household and some of those games have very complex setups.  I'd love to see digital versions of those board games enable us to spend more times playing games rather than setting them up.

http://www.usatoday.com/story/tech/columnist/baig/2013/05/07/lenovo-ideacentre-horizon-27-inch-table-pc-review/2139669/

If it gets enough board games available on it, I'd buy it in a heart beat.
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Oh yes...we love Dominion :).
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I love the fact that I get the same team cleaning my house each visit. They do a great job and I never have any complaints.
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