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Thursday, August 30, 2007

Blog Day 2007 - 5 blogs for you!

Blog Day 2007

What is BlogDay?

BlogDay was created with the belief that bloggers should have one day dedicated to getting to know other bloggers from other countries and areas of interest. On that day Bloggers will recommend other blogs to their blog visitors.
With the goal in mind, on this day every blogger will post a recommendation of 5 new blogs. This way, all blog readers will find themselves leaping around and discovering new, previously unknown blogs.

In the spiirt of BlogDay, here are my 5 picks:

AnimalBytes withg Keri Dearborn

This blog and podcast focuses on all things natural, from the backyard to around the world. Recent posts include Creating a Garden That Attracts Wildlife, Of Mourning Cloaks and Hummingbirds and Beneficial Wild Creatures In Your Garden.

Goosing Your Muse with JoAnn Braheny

Need help being a bit more creative, check out Goosing Your Muse. News, creativity exercises, insight and more. Recent posts include 7 Ways to Help Yourself Recognize Opportunity, Writing Tips - Paul Graham, and 7 Ways to Help Yourself Recognize Opportunity.

Dumb Little Man: Tips for Life

We all need some good advice sometimes, and Dumb Little Man brings it right into your RSS feed reader. Recent posts include How to Teach Children and Learn from Them Too, 9 Ways to Have a Better Day than Yesterday, and Finding a Healthier Lifestyle - Committing to Change.

Managing with Aloha

This blog (and the author's book) apply ancient Hawaii philosophies to our modern world. Delving into this (for me) foriegn world provides an invigorating mental challenge that allows me to think in new ways.

Chris Brogan.com

I came across Chris Brogan's blog through some common Twitter friends and I have been following him closely since then. Chris is all about digital community -- what it is, how it can be used, what it means for all of us. As I expand my own work into this realm, Chris provides a welcome guidepost along the way.

I hope you enjoy these blogs, especially if they are new to you.

Do you blog? If so, check out BlogDay2007 and highlight 5 blogs that you find exceptional.

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Found Profile in Shadow - Photo-A-Day 8/30/07

I was sitting in a restaurant for lunch today, when I looked over that bench seat across from em and spotted this perfect profile of a face cast in shadow. A quick glance around showed me that it was caused by the window moulding.

It is not often you find such a perfect result from the accident of sun, shadow and timing.

Monday, August 27, 2007

Creative Commons Salon LA - Aug 30, 7 pm

Creative Commons Salon LA

Thursday, August 30, 2007 (7:00 PM - 9:00 PM)

Presenters: Eric Steuer, Creative Director for Creative Commons
Zadi Diaz, JetSet Show/Pixelodeon
John Gillilan, Vosotros Music

CC Salon is a free, casual monthly get-together focused on conversation, presentations, and performances from people or groups who are developing projects that relate to open content and/or software. Please invite your friends, colleagues, and anyone you know who might be interested in drinks and discussion. There are now CC Salons happening in San Francisco, Los Angeles, Toronto, Berlin, Beijing, Warsaw, Seoul, Brisbane, and Johannesburg.

Venue Details:LAND
366 E. 2nd St.
Los Angeles, California 90012

View Larger Map

For more details about this event, including maps, comments, and other attendees, visit the event page at http://upcoming.yahoo.com/event/257289/?invitation=20082ce6a9

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Event: NASA - Total Lunar Eclipse: August 28, 2007

Lunar Eclipse DiagramFor those night owls out there, you can check out this total lunar eclipse at 3:28 am Tuesday morning. I, unfortunately, will be happily ensconced in my bed, but I figure I will see many pictures once I arise. (SMILE) Three o'clock in the morning is a bit late to stay up, even for me.

NASA - Total Lunar Eclipse: August 28, 2007 TOTAL LUNAR ECLIPSE: AUGUST 28, 2007

--- Live Webcast of Eclipse! ---


A total eclipse of the Moon occurs during the early morning of Tuesday, August 28, 2007. The event is widely visible from the United States and Canada as well as South America, the Pacific Ocean, western Asia and Australia. During a total lunar eclipse, the Moon's disk can take on a dramatically colorful appearance from bright orange to blood red to dark brown and (rarely) very dark gray.


Sunday, August 26, 2007

Sometimes podcasting is way too much fun!

The LIVE webcam caught this picture as I was recording Mortgages Made Simple with Rick Gundzik this week. It is amazing what the webcam catches when it fires ever 30 seconds.

Event: UCLA Extension Writer's Faire

Note: Rosanne and I are speaking at this event. -- Douglas

UCLA Extension Writers Faire

Date: September 9, 2007
Time: 11:00 AM - 3:00 PM
Location: Writers Faire: UCLA Campus; Young Hall Courtyard
Address: 405 Hilgard Avenue , Los Angeles, CA , 90095
Cross Streets: Hilgard / Westholme

Phone: (310) 825-9415

Admission: This festive event is free. Parking in Lot 2 on the UCLA campus is $8 per day.
Food Services: The Bomb Shelter Restaurant on campus will be open for lunch. Numerous vending machines are in the area.
Accessibility: Wheel Chair Access
Website: uclaextension.edu/writers
Description: The UCLA Extension Writers Faire is an annual gathering of writing-minded people ? students of all levels, more than 70 Writers? Program instructors, a handful of select Los Angeles-area graduate writing programs, and more than 15 writing-related professional and community organizations and businesses ? all celebrating what it is to write. Now in its eighth year, the whirlwind event, held on the UCLA campus Sunday, September 9, includes 24 free mini-panels and lectures, where students have the opportunity to see their favorite instructors in lively discussions about the art, craft, business, and life of writing. All participating instructors are slated to teach Writers? Program workshops this fall, so students can get a taste of their upcoming courses at the Faire completely for free.

Submitted By: UCLA Extension Writers' Program

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Elsewhere in LA: Tour Downtown with Free Podcasts

I had thought about something like this, but never got around to doing it. Good to know that someone else has got the city in its sights! I will be heading over to check out these podcast tours as soon as I can.

Tour Downtown with Free Podcasts

Lace up those tennies and grab that trusty iPod! Our good friends over at Metro and LADOT in conjunction with the Confederation of Downtown Assoc. are now offering free podcast tours of downtown L.A. through the program Downtown LA Walks.

Downtown LA Walks describes itself as an urban “way-finder”, and was designed to help people navigate their way around via new signage noting landmarks, and historical facts.

The fun and informative podcasts offer several tours; Art & Culture, Shopping, Historic and also an International tour which explores the areas international highlights. Each tour also comes with a downloadable map.

This innovative way of exploring downtown is a good way to make lots of new discoveries for both long-time Angelenos & visitors alike.


(Via LAist.)

Some of my favorite places to visit in the LA area

I started making a Google MyMap the other day, pointing out some of my favorite places to visit in LA. This is a really eclectic list, as it is quite personal, but perhaps you might find some interesting places for your own travels.

I keep adding to this map over time as I revisit some places and discover new ones.

View Larger Map

Monday, August 20, 2007

Event: Friday Nights at the Getty: Bethany & Rufus - Sept 14

Performances and Films

Friday Nights at the Getty: Bethany & Rufus

Friday September 14, 2007 -- 7:30 pm

Harold M. Williams Auditorium, Getty Center

The boxcar blues of cello and voice duo Bethany & Rufus break new musical ground. They push the boundaries of American roots music far into unexpected territory where intense groove meets sweet, heartbreaking soul.

Reservations available beginning August 21.

Saturday, August 18, 2007

Elsewhere Online: Robots: PicoBotz Let You Build Your Own Robot on the Cheap

I love playing with robots and this little platform looks to be a great entry-level kit for you and your kids. It sounds like it might even be a bit hackable, once to you assemble it and get it working. I could see putting in some circuits I have found in other books and web sites, like photovore/photophobe behaviors and more. With a big enough solar panel you could probably also use the sun to power it.

For more infor on robots check out these great resources:

Previous mentions of robots on WelchWrite.com
Solarbotics - Robot kits, parts and more
BEAM Online - All things beam robotics
How to build BEAM Vibrobots
BEAM Robotics page @ Wikipedia

Robots: PicoBotz Let You Build Your Own Robot on the Cheap

30529-95-1.jpgThese $77 PicoBotz kits are the perfect thing to let the budding engineer (your kids) get their hands on some robotics. The "robot" has 180 programmable commands and operates in three modes, obstacle avoidance, sound repositioning mode, and line tracing mode.

It also runs on two AA batteries, just like the Cylons from Battlestar Galactica. It's also a good thing these bots have their "kill all humans and enslave humanity" mode removed. That first version didn't sell so well. [Scientifics Online via MAKE via Slashgear via Uber Gizmo]

(Via Gizmodo.)

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Friday, August 17, 2007

Event: Rally in the Alley - Sherman Oaks - Sept 8

I came across this note on From Sherman Oaks today and thought that some of you might be interested in helping out. -- Douglas

Rally in the Alley

Hi All,

On Saturday, September 8th from 9 am to 11 am, the Sherman Oaks Beautification Committee is having a “Rally in the Alley.”

Volunteers will meet at the northeast corner of Van Nuys and Ventura Blvds., by the California National Bank building. After some food and camaraderie, we will go through the north and south alleys, sweeping up trash and debris, pulling weeds and painting out graffiti.

There will be refreshments, courtesy of The Coffee Roaster, Western Bagel, Whole Foods and Sherman Oaks Hospital. Walk-ins are welcome!At past cleanup events, we have had a great deal of support from the Office of Community Beautification, Council District Offices 2 and 5, the Buckley School, Dixie Canyon Elementary, Riverside Drive Elementary, Boy Scout Troop 139, Sherman Oaks Hospital, the new Best Buy staff, New Directions for Youth, Van Nuys Middle School, Pacoima Graffiti Busters, the LAPD, and many wonderful Sherman Oaks residents.

We are encouraging businesses whose rear entrances face either alley, to come out and meet your neighbors and our wonderful volunteers, and join in for a productive and rewarding morning.

If you have any questions, please email leslie_elkan@yahoo.com.Walk-ins are welcome.

See you there!

(Via From Sherman Oaks (1927- ).)

Event: Franklin Family Campfire - Aug 23

WED 8/23 6:30pm

Sooky Goldman Nature Ctr-Amphitheater

Franklin Family Campfire

Enjoy old-fashioned family fun with stories,singing and s’mores around the
campfire. 2hrs WODOC/MRCA

From the Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area Outdoors Guide

Thursday, August 16, 2007

Event: Facebook Developer Garage - Los Angeles

Facebook Developer Garage - Los Angeles

Roshambull your way over to Red Bull North America for cocktails and Facebook geekery.

Host: Nate Warner
Type: Party - Night of Mayhem

Time and Place
Date: Wednesday, August 22, 2007
Time: 7:30pm - 11:00pm
Location: Red Bull North America
Address: 1740 Stewart St. Santa Monica, CA

RSVP using Facebook

Sunday, August 12, 2007

Event: Franklin Family Campfire - Aug 16

WED 8/16 6:30pm

Sooky Goldman Nature Ctr-Amphitheater [Map]

Franklin Family Campfire

Enjoy old-fashioned family fun with stories,singing and s’mores around the campfire. 2hrs WODOC/MRCA

From the Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area Outdoors Guide

Bird Cinema.com - Share your bird pictures and video

I received a nice email from Albert Mitchell. Associate Creative Director
over at Bird Cinema.com and I wanted to let you know about this neat site.

Think of it as YouTube/Flickr for the birding set. I just uploaded a couple of my bird-related videos to share and you can find almost 1000 other videos, like the one above, on birds of all types.


Link: Bird Cinema

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Douglas on the Photowalk

Originally uploaded by mikehedge
Photographer, Mike Hedges, caught me on the photowalk

Saturday, August 11, 2007

Podcasting for Writers Class at UCLA Extension

The UCLA Extension calendar for Fall 2007 is now accepting admissions. Among the offerings is our new class, Podcasting for Writers -- a 10-week online course.

If you, or someone you know, would like to join us for this class, here is the complete information.

Rosanne and I are really looking forward to the class.

Podcasting for Writers (Online)
X 430.27 Film & Television 3 units $525

Podcasting has given writers direct access to a worldwide audience and freed them from absolute dependency on television networks, radio stations, and publishers to buy and market their work. To the audience, podcasting is "what you want, where you want it, when you want it," while to the podcast creator and producer, it is the ultimate creative freedom. This course covers the current state of this new medium; the basics of writing for it; and strategies for publicizing your podcast and expanding your readers, viewers, and listeners. Guest speakers available via audio and video podcast interviews, live interactive podcasts, and video conferences introduce you to the variety of ways you can use the medium. The course goal is to develop your own podcast based on individual professional or personal needs, interests, and goals. For technical requirements click here. Enrollment limited to 18 students. Additional technical requirements: Students need a recording device with microphone that is compatible with their computer; built-in microphones on laptops are acceptable. Students must have Apple iTunes software and access to audio recording software, such as Audacity or Apple GarageBand, to perform course exercises. High-speed Internet connection is required.

Course Open Reg# T3254U

No Textbook Required

Online Course
October 10 -December 12
$55 nonrefundable.

Rosanne Welch, writer/producer; WGA member whose credits include five seasons as staff writer, executive story editor, and producer on the CBS series Touched by an Angel. Ms. Welch also has written for Fox Broadcasting's Beverly Hills, 90210; Picket Fences for CBS and David E. Kelly Productions; and is the author of The Encyclopedia of Women in Aviation and Space.

Douglas E. Welch, writer and computer consultant, whose work has been published in Wired, MacWorld, and Los Angeles Times. Mr. Welch is a member of Friends in Tech, and produced his first show, Career Opportunities, in 2004. He has written and produced over 300 individual episodes and conducts podcasting seminars for schools and businesses.

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Friday, August 10, 2007

Neat "Light Painting" Video

Time-lapse, glowsticks and flashlights are the paintbrushes in this cool video.

Wednesday, August 08, 2007

What I'm Reading...

I won this book from the (now closed) InBubbleWrap book giveaway site. Author Marshall Goldsmith has some excellent insights on how your previous behaviors might not be a good choice when you start to move up the success ladder.

My final gift from InBubbleWrap. I have been immersing myself in innovation and creativity books lately, so this seems like a good book to delve into.

I learned about this book from the July 7 episode of The Splendid Table with Lynn Rossetto Kasper You can listen to the show directly from their web site, or subscribe to their podcast, like I do. You can also subscribe using Apple's iTunes software.

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Tuesday, August 07, 2007

Get my newsletter and find great LA Events!

If you would like to receive my regular email newsletter, you can join my mailing list, WelchWrite. This newsletter highlights upcoming events, interesting sites and more.

Google Groups


Visit this group

You can also find out about some great Los Angeles Events by joining the WelchEvents mailing list. Here I highlight free or cheap, family events around LA that I enjoy. I monitor event calendars for many of hte museums and parks in LA and select thos events I will be, or would like to, attend.

Google Groups

Visit this group

Sunday, August 05, 2007

Photowalking Santa Monica - The Video

Watch the iPod Version Here

Saturday, August 04, 2007

Photowalk in Santa Monica

Originally uploaded by dewelch
This is only one of over 40 photos I shot today on Photowalk Santa Monica with a bunch of Internet folks. I heard about it through my friend Leah at LeahPeah.com She is always showing off her great photo work there, so I knew I had to check it out. Both Rosanne and I were feeling a bit under the weather, but the walking and the sea air perked us up quite a bit. That said, I was a bushed little puppy when we returned.

Check out Photowalks in your area or start one yourself. They are a great excuse to pull our your camera and shoot something, especially when life threatens to crowd out any creative pursuits.

Thanks to all we met today! You were a great group of people and I look forward to Photowalking with you in the future.

Friday, August 03, 2007

Web Site: The Cool Hunter

The Cool Hunter Screen ShotDespite my (ahem) advanced age, compared to other Internet hipsters, I love to find out about cool, new stuff as much as your average MySpace user. Bzzagent.com's service, Frogpond hooked me up today with this cool new site, The Cool Hunter.

Generically, cool hunting is find great new trends, products and services and sharing them with others. The Cool Hunter certainly fits the bill. Lots of cool new stuff in architecture, design, fashion, art and more! Even better, they have RSS feeds so you can subscribe to whatever interests you most or the entire collection of cool items.

Link: The Cool Hunter

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Event: Santa Monica Pier Photowalk - Tomorrow

A little late on the notice, but I only found out about this event tonight. I had been thinking of organizing a photowalk myself so I would have an excuse to go out and shoot some photos, but this sounds made to order. I don't get down to Santa Monica much anymore, so this also makes it interesting.

As for camera gear, bring whatever you got. I can guarantee you that I will probably have the cheapest camera and tripod of anyone else in the group. My little point-and-shoot doesn't look like much, but it let's me be creative and occassionally takes some pretty good pictures...if I get out of its way. (SMILE)

Here is all the info on when and where. You can RSVP, if you like, using upcoming.com.

Santa Monica Pier Photowalk

Saturday, August 4, 2007 @ 4:00 PM

Santa Monica Pier, 100 Colorado Ave, Santa Monica, California 90401

Join us as we photowalk the Pier. We're meeting in the afternoon so that we can hit the area during the last bit of light, and then hit the pier once the sun sets.

Thomas Hawk has blogged that he's coming too!

***UPDATE: We're meeting @ 4pm in front of the Apple Store, at the Third Street Promenade.

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Wednesday, August 01, 2007

Event: Movies in Will Roger's Backyard

Years after the demise of the Drive-In Theater, it seems that al fresco entertainment is staging a comeback in a big way. Now the California State Park System is throwing their hat into the ring, with this outdoor screen of
a Will Roger's film, at the stars own house. -- Douglas

Movies in Will’s Backyard

Date: August 15, 2007
Time: 6:00 PM - 9:00 PM; House tours begin at 6:00 pm, program and film begins at 7:30 pm.

Location: Will Rogers State Historic Park

Address: 1501 Will Rogers Park Road , Pacific Palisades , 90272

Cross Streets: Sunset Boulevard / Will Rogers Park Road

Region: North Beach Area

Phone: (310) 454-5809

Admission: Free

Accessibility: Wheel Chair Access,

Website: www.willrogersranchfoundation.org

Description: Come see one of Hollywood’s brightest stars under the stars! Join us on Wednesday, August 15th, for an outdoor screening of one of Will Rogers’ most popular movies - the 1931 classic, “Ambassador Bill.” Bring your blanket (or low beach chair) and relax on the lawn at Will’s house for an evening of classic film. Open to the public, the event begins at 7:30 p.m. and includes free popcorn, sodas, and ice cream. Prior to the show, come take a free tour of Will’s house. A special event parking fee of $5 per vehicle is available after 6:00 p.m. at the park.

Submitted By: Will Rogers Ranch Foundation

From ExperienceLA...

WelchWrite in Hollywood

I had some spare time last night, so I went up and changed this sign just a few miles from my house. (SMILE)

I don't think they'll mind.

WelchWrite Hollywood Sign