Friday, November 18, 2005

National Racoon Week

This week I trapped and released three racoons on consecutive alternating days. The coons had been wreaking havoc in the tack room, pushing open windows, knocking over everything on the shelves and taking a big dump on Terri's saddle blanket. I take the coons to work with me 16 miles away and release them into the woods. We'll see how many more I bag in the coming months.

Saturday, November 05, 2005

Austin PowWow (click here for podcast)

We made our annual pilgrimage to the Austin Native American PowWow.
This is a very colorful Native American dance competition and a *major* Kodak moment. The costumes are really beautiful. Lots of Native American kiosks and merchandise booths. Daughter Sarah picked up a new bow. Here's a shot which shows some pottery I really admired.

Thursday, November 03, 2005

Vacuum Tubes!

A colleague of mine told me that good old 6550 power audio tubes are
selling for a ton of money! This got me to thinking about "Virtual Valves"
or "Perma-Tubes". The idea is to build HV mosfets into the base of a
standard power pentode pin-out. Give 'em the same V-I curves and viola!
You have "tube sound" that doesn't wear out and can actually be used in
your old Fender and Marshall amplifiers! If I produce such a product I'll
use the name Virtual Valve, Perma-Valve or Perma-Tube whichever I can register.

Wednesday, November 02, 2005

The iRiver

Seems like anything "pod-like" has the letter "i" in front of it. So it goes for the MP3 recorder player called the "iRiver". This is the tiny little recorder I used for my podcasts mentioned below in my previous postings. It does a great job of recording live action sound using the built-in condenser mic. If you think this little critter can't do a good job then listen to my train podcast. The unit runs from a single AAA battery and can record about 8 hours of high quality audio. It also has a LINE IN jack so you can record in stereo. I have a stereo mic and preamp built into an ALTOIDS tin. Works great for binaural recordings. At $99 the iRiver is a bargain.