Over at my other website I take part in this podcasting/vlogging challenge for cartoonists called Art Soundoff. The past couple of years I’ve had some kind of technical issue that made me miss a few days even by my chosen schedule (just on weekdays; it’s up to the participant if they even post the recording or just keep it for themselves, and how often during the month of November you do it–technically you could make one recording, not share it, and complete the challenge). So this year I thought I’d use my project day to go through and put everything together so that come Sunday night I could record something and easily have it ready for Monday morning.

So instead I set a new record by having technical issues BEFORE I begin the challenge. Oh, lucky me.

Part of this is going to come off as venting but without getting too technical (since this isn’t a tech blog but a clutter fighting blog and yes in a way this does fit in…good thing, given that it took up the whole afternoon and I woke up late Saturday) here’s what I tried to do using some old electronics…and what failed to happen.

  • The main goal was to fix some of the audio issues in the app I use to turn my old smartphone (the one at the top) into a webcam, so I don’t have to buy a new webcam. This is the clutter part as I’m repurposing old smartphones. The volume is so low, even with the microphone boost slider, that I have to boost the audio in OBS Studio, the software I’ll be using to do some screen recording for the v-log, higher than should be necessary.
  • I did manage to get better volume from the other smartphone up there, which I use as a sort of second “mini” tablet and had a few ideas for that I didn’t get to properly test, but the sound would keep cutting out. With all the other issues ticking me off that day I didn’t get to try a work around, a second app that uses the phone as a microphone. Yeah, this is when the technical stuff comes in as I tried to get other things to work in OBS Studio. I’ll just have to use the raised volumes for now.
  • I did manage to get everything updated to the latest version, including apps not necessarily tied into this project, and at least test a few features in OBS that will with luck allow me to do the recordings I need of my art software in action. I just have to see if I can run the program on the laptop, which is my art computer. Otherwise I have to keep switching the tablet to the desktop computer and record the stuff I want to show of that way.
  • The sad thing is the features I was trying to get work in OBS Studio were not requirements but would have added some flavor to the recordings, something fun to try to make them more interesting. That ended up eating a good part of the day.
  • Then my noise cancelling headphones started shedding all over my face so I had to throw them out. I’ll have to buy new ones because editing and testing audio would be better through them.
  • I did nothing with the tablet. This picture was taken before I started in the belief I would be discussing how I use each for various projects but like the rest of the day that didn’t happen.

So what I have instead of something really good is what I was hoping not to deal with: good enough for now. That’s what I had going into previous Art Soundoff years and the technical issues came after. In other words this has been about as unproductive as everything else this year, and this time I can’t blame being sick or recovering. Suffice it to say I am not in a good mood right now.