Monday, November 04, 2013

Natural Beef for sale November 7, 2013

Part of my income comes from a personal exploration of sustainable agriculture. I made this iPad video of our herd of 40 heifers in August 2013. Located in western Nebraska, the cattle have now gained more weight eating organic crop stubble, native grass buffer strips and clover.

On Thursday November 7, 2013 at the Ogallala Sale Barn I am selling most of the 650+ lb herd. Our supporting website is Ogallala Natural Beef. My brand is the 'lazy S backward B.' A link watch a real time video of the auction is found via You need to register with the sale barn to buy cattle online. I need to sell these beauties per the stipulations of my loan with Pinnacle Bank.

Depending on a favorable outcome at auction, next year I want to pursue a two year all natural organic grass fed cattle practice from birth to slaughter. These calves will be chipped to validate their genetic source that is a requirement for organic certification.

Suitcase farmer,

Wednesday, October 09, 2013

[HELP] How to tightly crop live video to VGA output

I am in Montreal providing video support for musician Terri Hron for her performance in 2 days, Friday 8pm. I want to take a live component video and crop out most of the moving image to present only a narrow horizontal rectangle of video for output VGA for the projector like the stand-in image above.

I've got an old MacBook and an old MacBookPro with VGA dongles out but they seem useless as I have no way to get the video in. I've got the loan of two nice Sony PMW EX1 cameras that I am just learning to use.

I think I am looking for a VJ switcher. If yes, then what are a few model names of those units I might find this evening in Montreal?

Tuesday, October 01, 2013

SCOUT, robot boat passes Mid-Atlantic 1000 mile mark

"Scout is a twelve foot long autonomous robotic boat designed to cross the Atlantic Ocean, relying only on prr-programmed commands and information that it can collect about its environment through sensors. It is built to deal with anything the ocean can throw at it, and its status will be reported live online." -

Read a thoughtful article on site.
Live tracking
And following good DIY practice, the trolling motor was purchased at Dick’s Sporting Goods.

Saturday, August 31, 2013

Last Day #HTB2013 of Hot Ephemerates

Today is the last day of my Hot Ephemerates at Hack The Barbican London residency #HTB2013. While I couldn't attend personally, the project gave me some insight and inspiration for new code work. Hey, launching an unlimited number of code sculptures in the Barbican is exposure!

Below are two views of No. 1, one of the six sculptures that visitors to the public hallway near the Curve exit have discovered. I modified my iPad settings so as I work in Greenport NY, the iPad thinks it's located in London.

The neighbor's house across the intersection in Greenport shows a corner of sculpture No. 1.

To the right of the sculpture is the top of sculpture No. 2.

I'm paying for comments and documentation images by visitors taking screenshots of the sculptures.

In the spirit of hacking and sharing, I'm publishing the code for Hot Ephemerates here. The other five sculptures in this location use the same code with different variable names so all the sculptural elements will show at the same time.

Seventy-three separate elements (35 .zip model files, 35 .jpg images, 3 .mov movies) were used to build these Hot Ephemerates. I wrote 533 lines of code which includes commenting. My tool set are SketchUp Pro to build the models, Adobe Photoshop CS4 to edit the images, Final Cut Pro v.7 to edit the movies, Junaio to provide AR specifications and free browser, SubEthaEdit to edit the PHP files, and Fetch to load the files to the internet server. 1and1 is the hosting company.

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Image of two sculptures Flaneur Barbican

Screen shot today from iPad in Greenport NY of two sculptures from Flaneur Babican - Hot Ephemerates. This is hack, I put the local latitude and longitude coordinates of the #HTB2013 Barbican in London into my iPad to relocate the sculptures in the USA.
Hack The Barbican website:
Facebook page:
Twitter feed: @hackthebarbican
Flickr pool:
Event page on Barbican website:
Schedule on Lanyrd

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Flaneur Barbican - Hot Ephemerates moves to London

"Flaneur Barbican - Hot Ephemerates" is public and live at the Hack The Barbican. Effectively, this means the installation is in technical trials until its opening on Monday, August 26th. More details available at installation page where visitors can download this Junaio channel by QR code method.

The installation begins in the Curve Exit Gallery 5B arcs around the crescent of the venue to give a pleasing perspective to the 3D sculptural elements. Additionally, three Doric columns are aligned along Beech Street. Each 3D column launches a different short video when the visitor touches the object on the screen.

I renamed the AR channel "Flaneur Barbican - Hot Ephemerates" - - my partner Terese Svoboda proposed the catchy Hot Ephemerates moniker. Here's the channel description,
"You, a wanderer at Hack The Barbican discover Hot Ephemerates automatically rendered 3D code sculpture.
- Walk into any sculpture.
- Share a screenshot with icon found on lower left hand corner of screen.
- Touch a street side column to see a short video."

For the curious in today's development, note in this screen grab of taken from the Junaio iPad-view browser interface, I was launching the channel from my studio in Greenport NY see the blue dot within the blue circle on the left. I will continue to tweak the installation in London until Sunday. Zooming in on the venue by the two finger iPad method produced the image at the top of this posting.

Monday, August 19, 2013

Monday 3D model for Hack The Barbican

- two of the six 3D multi-element ephemeral objects visible, getting close to the final model

Comment on Ambrose Deepwater Port

Since I took some time this morning on the federal .gov site!submitComment;D=USCG-2013-0363-0181 asking for comments on the development of the Ambrose Deepwater Port, I thought I would share them again below:

While I am in favor of national and international commerce and the creation of new infrastructure that will bring jobs to local citizens, I am NOT in favor of the proposal to create the Ambrose Deepwater Port and grant a license to Liberty Natural Gas, LLC.
Here are my several reasons:

1. The deepwater port will be located in the middle of a proposed offshore wind area, and among several fishing areas and wildlife migration routes. The offshore wind area should be permitted to go forward, the fishing areas remain and the wildlife migration routes undisturbed by the development of a deepwater port.

2. Liberty Natural Gas, LLC. is a semi-transparent company with unknown stakeholders. Here is what I have read, "Liberty Natural Gas is a foreign energy interest -- the corporation may be licensed in Delaware with an office in New York City, but it is managed by an investment group in Toronto, Canada, and entirely owned by a bank account in the Cayman Islands." The LLC distances the individual investors from any liability in development, maintenance, operation and eventual decommission of the deepwater port. Simply put, for a small risk Liberty Natural Gas, LLC. gets easy profits and NYC, NYS and the community get too small a return on this investment. I would prefer an applicant of a completely transparent company and this should be a requirement in all future applications.

3. This deepwater port indirectly promotes hydrofracking for shale gas using an undisputed short term method for extracting natural gas BUT an unknown long term damage to aquifers. The deepwater port is an obvious high profit money making scheme that will benefit the few investors while directly and indirectly doing tremendous harm to the aquifers and local environment.

Therefore, I propose this application be suspended for at least 5 years to better understand the overall impact of the deepwater port on NYS, NYC and the local region.

However, I would be in favor of a less ambitious proposal integrating a smaller port with smaller shipping vessels as a part of a broader plan that includes development of offshore wind power electric generation, and of course, promotes sensible acknowledgement and preservation of the local environment.

Thank you,
Stephen Medaris Bull

Saturday, August 10, 2013

Progress 13.08.10 Flaneur Barbican ARt

On a Greenport NY intersection I am experimenting with another direction to create 3D objects for the Flanuer Barbican installation at Hack The Barbican.

Within the red cylinder a blue transparent rod appears. In the background beyond the red cylinder a DNA taro leaf spiral appears. In the upper right hand corner of the screen/image three objects are shown captured in this view.

From a position outside the perimeter of the red cylinder the blue cylinder does not appear. Apparently[pun], a transparent 3D object can not be seen within another transparent 3D object. An unrelated second large blue cylinder appears alongside the red cylinder.

Friday, August 09, 2013

c1 model test for Hack The Barbican:

c1 model test created in attic studio in Greenport NY

Check out the nine photos Flickr in order with captions beginning "c1-test" for some how-to on how I made the 3D object.

Here is the code of the two object files exported by SketchUp Pro.

FILE: 8x8x8_ceiling_2walls_c1.mtl (materials file)
## Alias OBJ Material File
# Exported from SketchUp, (c) 2000-2012 Trimble Navigation Limited

newmtl sky_256x256
Ka 0.000000 0.000000 0.000000
Kd 0.501961 0.501961 0.501961
Ks 0.000000 0.000000 0.000000
map_Kd sky_256x256.png

newmtl M_13_256x256
Ka 0.000000 0.000000 0.000000
Kd 0.501961 0.501961 0.501961
Ks 0.000000 0.000000 0.000000
map_Kd M_13_256x256.png

FILE: 8x8x8_ceiling_2walls_c1.obj (the 3D oject file exported from SketchUp Pro
# Alias OBJ Model File
# Exported from SketchUp, (c) 2000-2012 Trimble Navigation Limited
# File units = feet

mtllib 8x8x8_ceiling_2walls_c1.mtl

g Mesh1 Model

usemtl sky_256x256
v 4.13539 8 4.84642
vt 0 0
vn 0 -0.0833333 -0
v -3.86461 8 4.84642
vt 1 0
v -3.86461 8 -3.15358
vt 1 1
v 4.13539 8 -3.15358
vt 0 1
f 1/1/1 2/2/1 3/3/1 4/4/1 

vn -0 0.0833333 0
f 1/1/2 4/4/2 3/3/2 2/2/2 

usemtl M_13_256x256
v 4.13539 0 -3.15358
vn -0.0833333 0 -0
v 4.13539 0 4.84642
f 5/1/3 6/2/3 1/3/3 4/4/3 

vn 0.0833333 -0 0
f 5/1/4 4/4/4 1/3/4 6/2/4 

v -3.86461 0 -3.15358
vn 0 0 0.0833333
f 7/1/5 5/2/5 4/3/5 3/4/5 

vn -0 -0 -0.0833333
f 7/1/6 3/4/6 4/3/6 5/2/6 

Monday, July 29, 2013

bARbican 3D object sketch

view from within a 3D cube
I am in Ogallala Nebraska as a suitcase farmer while also preparing 3D objects for the Flaneur Barbican AR installation scheduled in London at the end of August. I am working with rendered object variables on 3 surfaces of a common cube form, surface textures/colors and manipulations of voids and how these objects and their placement coordinate with the download of these assets.

Saturday, July 27, 2013

Perkins County corn feld report

Today at latitude 40.7168 and longitude -101.959, I discovered 100 acres of four foot tall corn with two ears per stalk. This crop, and my other farming interests, I share with Terese Svoboda. Her dad, Frank Svoboda, introduced me to farming in Western Nebraska. This crop has successfully weathered earlier stress from lack of rain and now appears better with recent moisture. More moisture is expected this week. I hope without hail.

Saturday, July 20, 2013

"Flaneur Barbican" in Hack the Barbican

Location: Curve Exit, Barbican, London UK
Dates: August 26-31, 2013

"Flaneur Barbican" is a site specific augmented reality installation for the Hack the Barbican residency, August 2013. Fortuitously I just ended the 150th Residency at the Atlantic Center for the Arts (ACA) leaving with a greater clarity of this installation. In part, I plan to put a room within a room by AR method. The interior of Roberson Dance Studio of ACA will be placed into the Curve Exit interior space of the Barbican.

Using their smart phone or tablet, each visitor to the "Flaneur Barbican" AR installation will look for floating sleeping faces. Touching a face wakes a short performance video.


I have a working prototype now. I plan to share a work-in-progress link to the AR channel soon. The installation AR is coded for the Junaio browser, a FREE download found in Android and Apple iPad/iPhone stores, use "junaio" in your search string. The installation code will become publicly available.

I would like to include more performances from the Barbican locale or wherever. The current AR performers are either movers (dancers) or musicians of the 150th Residency. Interested in adding your's? Please email/DropBox me your performance video, .mov, 10 to 30 seconds; your performance video length, thus file size, is limited by the download bandwidth to the mobile device. It would be really awesome if a submitter(s) made their video in or around the Barbican so later the installation visitor will try to discover the performance location and possibly create her own own mobile phone performance video response. I will review all videos submissions and the engaging ones will get my further formatting and preparation for the AR installation. HINT: I prefer steady video shots using a tripod - - it's only ~15 seconds! IMHO: The zoom lens is only useful to frame a shot, then leave the zoom untouched. OKAY: Challenge me and break the earlier directives. SAMPLE: To give you a taste of what I am looking for touch the floating AR face above. TECHNICAL: The linked movie was shot in the Roberson Dance Studio using a Flip camera and finished with FCP + a QuickTime conversion for AR mobile browser display.

Production code: R112

Monday, June 17, 2013

Cattle Report, June 2013

The Svoboda/Bull Cattle Company now has a herd of 40 heifers.
(click for larger image)
"The cattle have been grazing hard grass pastures for the last few weeks. We have been moving them everyday to new grass within a pasture. They have been doing well." - Scott

Friday, June 07, 2013

Oyster Report - June 2013

Yesterday I performed some maintenance on my oysters that I over wintered at the SPAT facility at Cedar Beach.

I left Greenport at 9am and culled 4x hanging lanterns of oysters into 5x 4-tier lanterns with 20 oysters per tier. Result: 80+80+80+80+50(smaller oysters in final lantern). There were 24 empty shells. There were two floating cages with 50 oysters/cage - - I just scrubbed the marine growth off the outside of those cages. I took 50 oysters home for eating. I returned to Greenport at noon.

Total 2012 oysters living into 2013 season: 520. (Expected 2013 oysters spats: 1000)

2 hours of labor + 2x :30 minutes travel time = 3 hours.

If I value my labor at $20/hr, then $60/520 = ~$0.12/oyster invested in this maintenance cycle.

Removing my travel time, 4.33 oysters received one minute of my attention (=520/120).

Assuming no improvement in my work flow, 50,000 oysters would require 11,547 minutes (=50000/4.33) of maintenance that equals ~192 hours aka 2.5 weeks of service. This an on-the-cuff reality check of my thoughts to nurture a large number of the bivalves.

Tuesday, April 30, 2013

"x twelve v.1" is latest AR on Junaio

"x twelve v.1" is my latest ARt attempt, channel No. 171744 on Junaio. This 12x loop 3D cylinder object built around a common axis is cast forth by the user in front of where ever (s)he is standing. Like my AZZA series, this 3D object is created in code using a multi-part random number sequence, thus ephemeral, never to be repeated, only a view of the result can be recorded by the mobile device still camera.
x twelve v.1 recorded on iPad2
Using a simple hack of closing the iPad I was able to drag this object created on East 63rd Street into the "F" line subway tunnel, a portion under renovation, many feet below. I like the painterly quality of the higher resolution image. Click on the image and if you agree, or not, let me know.

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

2013 Heifer Herd

This is the beginning of the Svoboda/Bull Cattle Co. 2013 heifer herd wrangled with care under the watchful eye of Scott Hanson in western Nebraska. These fine animals were purchased at the end of March 2013 from the Ogallala Sale Barn. We will follow an organic practice raising the cattle this summer. We receive our financial support from Pinnacle Bank, Ogallala NE. Note our lazy S backwards B brand.

Monday, April 22, 2013

Please respond with YES or NO

A fragment of an annoying phone call exchange with a bot, an agent of my new health care provider gathering demographic information. The questions are presumptuous and the bot has a hearing disability. I hung up on the bot as no other options were provided.

Sunday, April 07, 2013

AR Please Use Other Door

This is an AR Junaio browser screen grab of my augmented reality piece from last night's show Swell Sound & Vision at The Firehouse Space, Williamsburg, Brooklyn. The event was organized by Jessica Nissen and Sasha Sumner. Many thanks to Ben Blachnitzky and Felix Bull for their help producing the alpha channel video fire. If you're not in Brooklyn in front of this door sign, then use the show poster below and DIY.

Wednesday, April 03, 2013

Sneak Peak - tech location review - AR WAR OF 1812

The augmented reality model of the USRC cutter in the 1813 incident is at GPS position mid Hudson River. Crew member Rubin poses to check photo opportunity.

The spirit of Captain James Lawrence appears adjoining his tomb in the Trinity Church yard.

Inflated international (1813) bank notes are floating mid air on Wall Street. The spirit of Cap. Lawrence is strutting down Wall St. celebrating his naval prowess.

Come to Castle Clinton, Battery Park at 2pm on Saturday, April 6, 2013 and co-creator public historian Kathleen Hulser and I will give you a personal tour.

For those who want to sojourn on your own with an iPad/iPhone/Android device, scan this:

Sunday, March 24, 2013

Ferry: Battery Powered

This was spotted from the crow's nest today and now I share it with you.

MARCH 22, 2013 — Rolls-Royce plc has signed a contract for the delivery of its Azipull propulsion and control system for a "ferry of the future" that will operate on battery power alone.
The vessel is being built at the Fjellstrand shipyard in Norway, and once in service will be operated by Norwegian ferry operator Norled between Lavik and Oppedal.
. . . . more . . . .

Saturday, March 16, 2013

Mount Sharp, MARS

PIA16769: Mount Sharp Panorama in Raw Colors

This mosaic of images from the Mast Camera (Mastcam) on NASA's Mars rover Curiosity shows Mount Sharp in raw color as recorded by the camera. Raw color shows the scene's colors as they would look in a typical smart-phone camera photo, before any adjustment.
Target Name: Mars
Is a satellite of: Sol (our sun)
Mission:  Mars Science Laboratory (MSL)
Spacecraft:  Curiosity
Instrument:  Mastcam
Product Size: 29178 x 4037 pixels (width x height)
Produced By:  Malin Space Science Systems
Full-Res TIFF:  PIA16769.tif (353.4 MB)
Full-Res JPEG:  PIA16769.jpg (4.928 MB)

Earthlings, here is a white balanced image with a blue sky. Does this make you feel more comfortable?

Support the NASA mission with a letters to your elected representatives.

Sunday, March 10, 2013

QR codes - a brief investigation

In the process of using a "free" Internet QR code generator for SONic Geography, I have always had a suspicion that a different QR code result would occur depending on the website visited. There are differences. Look below and then read the explanation.





1. =
2. =
3. =
4. =
5. =
My testing method was provided by QR4 - thank you. Beyond the obvious sneaky redirect in result 1 the explanation of the differences is found in this discussion thread from The variable seems to be the error-detection algorithm.

From my investigation I recommend as they give you control over the QR code parameters mentioned in the stackoverflow thread.

Note the URLs of the "free" QR code generator websites in the QR file name of the .PNG

Wikipedia writes about the QR code standard.

SONic Geography runs April-May, 2013 via Toronto CANADA.

Saturday, March 09, 2013

Sock Ludlow

On a relaxing Saturday morning while listening to Click and Clack on WNYC and reading the Village Voice, I discovered this contest and here's my submission.

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Reinventing Payphones in front of Subway's

On the NW corner of Ludlow and Grand Street, Lower East Side, Manhattan, New York City a 3D model of a future payphone was positioned, along with many others across the city, in support of the proposal Kara-boothie for the NYC Reniventing Payphones competition.

Looking West

Looking North

Media Bistro talks about the Frog Design vision.

Sunday, February 10, 2013

Lazy S Backward B

I was prepping last year's taxes when I came across this photo. In 2012, Terese Svoboda and I briefly owned a small herd of hand picked heifers in Perkins County, Nebraska. Our first choice was not to brand them, but then we had to mark their hides to prevent owner confusion. The brand description is Lazy S Backward B that ironically describes these efforts in raising these animals. You'll need to find me to tell you the story. Giddyup!

Wednesday, February 06, 2013

SketchUp Pro 3D .obj in Junaio

This is a developer note about using 3D objects created by SketchUp Pro in Junaio GPS channels. Good news, the process is relatively easy. My comments reference these work-n-progress objects. Since they are imperfect they provide some talking points.

Above is a place holder building for another building that you see as a multicolored splinter piercing the right hand frame of the image. The intent here was to build a simple 3D object near my studio of the 18th Century Federal/City Hall, New York City and later place it over the current historic landmark Federal Hall, the splinter 1.2 miles away.
1. With SketchUp I was able to quickly construct a rough building. However, note that I got the roof pitch wrong, see the roof peak over far end of the building. I used a 256x256 .png file as a single image decal on the ends of the model.
2. I painted the rough model using a gaudy pallet and paint bucket so I could quickly see the 3D shape without having to export the walls and roof into Photoshop, a complexity for another post, and then re-import. However, when I put the 256x256 .png decaal on the building ends, the .png images strobes with shifting pixelation patterns when viewed through the Junaio browser on my iPad2. Perhaps this effect would be an design element asset in another model.
3. I had no drawing of the side of the 18th century building so I tiled the building sides with the SketchUp Pro 'white shingle' texture. The result looked okay in SketchUp Pro, but exported poorly as an .obj. Notice there is just a bottom row stripe of the 'white shingle.'
4. The building is floating. I need to reposition the building to the 'ground' in lat/lon attribute code associated with the object in Junaio.

Above is a 3D sketch of a future public phone booth that as a stand-in for the final 3D object I plan to use in the NYC Reinventing Payphones competition due mid-February 2013.
1. Again note my use of bright colors and bucket in SketchUp Pro to quickly define surfaces and edges.
2. The 'ad' on the side of the phone booth strobes with a shifting pixelation pattern. I just got lucky and took this photo when the image was whole--it only took me 15 attempts. But the strobbing might be more appropriate here because it mimics the video ads that now appear on the sides of some public structures.

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Placeholder Federal Hall NY 1790

As a placeholder for the final 3D object of the Federal Hall building circa 1812, I have built this model using SketchUp Pro with end elevation provided by Amos Doolittle engraving from Wikipedia article. The final 3D object will be included in the Cutter v. Smuggler AR installation.

Sunday, January 20, 2013

Drill Ship Kulluk on the rocks

I support the efforts of Earthjustice to curb arctic ocean oil drilling. Shell oil response. Alaska Dispatch. However, I am fascinated by this customized ship design for specialized work.

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Cutter v. Smuggler

The New York Council for the Humanities has provided a partial funding grant to create the augmented reality (AR) channel "Cutter v. Smuggler" for the Augmented Incidents of the War of 1812 series by Kathleen Hulser, public historian, and Steve Bull, user experience designer and AR coder. Harvestworks is the fiscal sponsor for the Hulser/Bull team. The channel "Cutter v. Smuggler" will be available for FREE to the public by the Junaio Augmented Reality Browser. For more information on this Hulser/Bull project read their blog at The War of 1812 - 1814.

Friday, January 11, 2013

Salvaging SANDY Flotsam

On a beach under the Manhattan Bridge I have been unbolting the floats from a piece of worn flotsam, a gift of Hurricane Sandy. I plan to re-attach each float to a oyster grow-out bag/pouch/cage. Later, I will provide photos of this result--see my earlier posts on my oyster growing efforts in Greenport NY.

Side note: Hurricane is one of the few Carib and Mayan native people words in the English language. Let us not forget that the Carib native people were exterminated in the Caribbean Islands because they violently resisted enslavement. Perhaps you are more familiar with the enslaved force that was bought and brought to provide the 12/7/365 labor.

Wednesday, January 09, 2013

Winter Wheat 2012-2013

Organic farm report: I have approximately 100 acres of winter wheat planted in Perkins County, Nebraska. This photo shows the state of the crop on December 23, 2012. When I first walked the field I could not see the wheat shoots anywhere and then I noticed the thread like leaves you might discover in this photo. Overall, there were not many shoots. Hopefully there will be enough moisture this winter and in the spring to permit a successful harvest of this dryland crop. On the photo horizon the sandy band is the southern edge of the sandhills.