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Dick DeBartolo, MAD's Maddest Writer, and co-host of The Giz Wiz at GizWiz.TV, The Giz Wiz on ABC's World News Now, Tech Guy Labs on TWiT and on Computer America. But wait, there's More »

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    Dick's Blog & Log...

    Here's stuff that's more than 140 characters so it won't fit on TWITTER, or photos or videos, stuff that I found interesting, and hope you might find it interesting too.

     

    Monday
    Feb152016

    Who shoots those Giz Wiz Videos & much of my ABC WNN b-roll?

    Dennis Wunderlin does that. (He's already shot more than 300 videos for various Giz Wiz appearances!) And I know you're asking: "What's b-roll?" That's the video we use on World News Now when the gadget we're talking about has a demo that can't take place in the studio. For example we needed b-roll when we field-tested the Fugoo Waterproof Bluetooth Speaker. I dropped it in the Hudson River as the engine on my boat ran at full bore making waves, while Dennis shot the video of it still playing! (More info is at www.fugoo.com)

    Dennis also shoots all the videos for The Giz Wiz Show on TWiT. (This Week in Tech.) Although his videos are downloaded via iTunes over 20,000 times a week as part of my Giz Wiz show on TWiT, we also put a few a on YouTube as a stand alone videos. We recently added a green screen to our recording abilities at Gizneyland Studios, but if you want to own a green screen, here's a fun video of a device we found at Pepcom, the Jakks Pacific Selfie Booth! It has it's own built in green screen so you can be 'anywhere' digitally! You can find the Selife Booth at Target. Adult size is about $60 and a smaller kid's version is in th $30-$35 range.

    Giz Wiz Video: http://youtu.be/Wigp6XOlrpk 

    And I have my own YouTube Channel with hundreds of Dennis' Videos:

    www.gizwizvideos.com

    Friday
    Dec182015

    PLEASE! No more Star Wars talk. - A Giz Wiz Holiday Message.

    Let's concentrate on the importance of the holidays.

    Yes, it's the time of year when kids are so excited that The Force Awakens them early Christmas morning. Most will like love want gifts they receive, but a few will not like anything and throw a tauntaun.


    Some folks will stay close to home while others will travel to a galaxy far, far away often on jet-eye night flights.

    But once they arrive, it's time for drinking eggnog and making Wookie. For many the main event takes place on December twenty-fifth, but then it's all over on December twenty-sith.

    Through it all, keep it light and airy, or to put it another way: “May the Froth Be With You.” 

    Happy holidays.

    DickDe

    Saturday
    Dec052015

    Need an unusual holiday gift? Check this out.

    POWERCAP LED Lighted Beanie Hats combine Ultra Bright LED technology with a premium Compression Fleece beanie style hat to provide you with the perfect hands free flashlight. The soft, moisture wicking lining will pull moisture away from your head and keep you warm and dry. The 4 LED's provide more than 48 Lumens. When you click the easy on/off switch hidden in the band, you'll notice that 2 of the LED's are angled down at 55 degrees to light up where your hands are for close up tasks, while the other 2 LED's are aimed forward to light the distance up to 72 feet away. 4 CR2032 Coin Cell batteries hidden in the band provide up to 68 hours of life and are easily replaceable. Under $25.00.

    Company website: http://www.panthervision.com/powercap/general-use/beanies.html

     

    They're $24.99 here on Amazon, plus $1.99 shipping:

     

    http://amzn.to/1IuRMJJ

     

    I have a limited number of these caps for sale in Navy or Olive. Mine are the same price, but you get a free autographed Feb 2016 MAD Magazine, a $5.99 value. (Assuming you like MAD!) Sorry, but only US orders. And I'll also send them by Priorty Mail for no addtional cost, another reason US orders only. Thanks!

    Choose Color
    Autograph MAD to:

    Thursday
    Jul302015

    Lenovo makes an elegant All-In-One, the A540.

    The Lenovo A540 All-In-One, is just like it says, All-In-One, except maybe for a disc drive, but not much use for those these days. Okay, so no disc drive, but this is what IT DOES have:

    Processor – 4th Generation Intel Core i7-4558U Processor (2.80GHz 1600MHz 4MB)

    Operating system – Windows 8.1 64

    Display – 23.8″ FHD LED All In One with Multi-touch function (1920×1080)

    Graphics – Intel® Iris™ Graphics 5100

    Memory – 8.0GB PC3-12800 DDR3L 1600 MHz

    Hard Drive – 1TB 5400 RPM+8GB SSHD

    Optical Drive – None

    Network Card – Broadcom 802.11b/g/n Wi-Fi wireless

    Bluetooth Version 4.0

    Built in SD Card Reader

     

    The A540 also ships with a very high-tech looking 2.4G Silver wireless Mouse & matching 2.4G Silver wireless Keyboard.

     

    The screen is big, bright and tiltable, but it doesn't move up and down. It has a thin, rugged, heavy base so you don't have to worry about tipping the computer over if you accidentally knock against it. All the connections are at the back of the base, so from the front it all looks neat and tidy. The screen is 23+”, but big enough to just say 24”. And it's a great touch screen, one of those ten-finger touch screens Lenovo is famous for. I edit my Giz Wiz videos and even my b-roll for ABC News on this machine and the performance is perfect for that. I think the last gamed I played was the original PacMan, so I can't tell you about gaming on this, but I bet it's just fine.

     

    The A540 comes with Windows 8.1, but you can upgrade to Windows 10 if you like because this machine can easily handle it. Although I use the built in speakers for editing and watching video clips, you'll probably want to use headphones or connect this system to a larger speaker system for watching movies. But for built-in speakers, they're better than average. Also with Bluetooth turned on you can get better sound without wires - assuming you have a decent Bluetooth speaker hanging around. I like the included keyboard a lot, but the mouse doesn't have the scroll wheel you normally expect. At first I thought they left it off to make the mouse look as sleek as the rest of the system. But after playing with it for a minute I realized it's uses track-pad-like scrolling. I tried to love it, but after a week, I plugged in an old 'scroll wheel' mouse. Outside of that.... the Lenovo A540 is an elegant and powerful All-In-One! Price starts at about $1,000, and will depend on the processor and sale prices. I always tell people to check the Lenovo website because they have incredible weekly deals.

     

    www.lenovo.com

    Friday
    Apr242015

    MAD Magazine tries something new.

    .....a guest editor. And who better than Weird Al! Here's more info from MAD!

    A VIEW TO A SHILL DEPT.


    ON SALE March 21, 2015: MAD #533, Guest Edited by "Weird Al" Yankovic!

    MAD's Maddest Writer, Dick DeBartolo with MAD’s Maddest Guest Editor! 

    MAD #533 — featuring our first-ever Guest Editor, the one and only "Weird Al" Yankovic — is on stands now! Pick up a copy today for mandatory fun like "Pages from Weird Al's Notebook," "Snappy Answers to Stupid Questions: Special Weird Al Edition," and "MAD's Tom Bunk Visits a Weird Al Concert"! Plus, Al answers readers' letters and picks his favorite classic MAD article for The MAD Vault! And it gets even worse: this big issue also features "Things You Never Want to Learn from Ancestry.com," "Things to Ask Your Sex Ed Teacher (Just to Mess with Him)," and our parody of "American Sniper"! Plus, we go off the deep end with The Strip Club, the Fold-in, Planet Tad, and Sergio Aragonés' "A MAD Look at California"!

    Dare to be stupid — buy MAD #533 today! Available everywhere magazines are sold, and also on your iPad!

    www.madmagazine.com