blog.purplearth.net

Welcome to purplearth, the home of Obbie and RoZ.

We are creators and curators of multimedia content, specializing in subjects related to sustainability, social justice, and travel. We strive to include the right mix of quirky creativity, refined quality and professional polish in everything we do:

  • Photography and videography
  • Audio production and engineering
  • Web design and programming
  • Presentation development
  • Copy writing
  • Media editing and cataloging

Obbie's Help Desk provides system configuration, network administration and user support services in Macintosh and Linux environments.

We also have extensive experience (often in remote places and under extreme conditions) in event planning, food service and kitchen management.

Let us know if there's something we can do for a project of yours.

Obbie's Help Desk provides system configuration, network administration and user support services in Macintosh and Linux environments.

Apple, Linux, NO WINDOWS
  • For individuals: A personal guide to the geek world.

    If you need any kind of help with your Macintosh or Linux computer, then contact Obbie's Help Desk. You'll find his rates to be very reasonable and well worth it.

    Tutoring and Training One-on-one over-the-shoulder guidance and assistance, Geek to English translation.

    System Setup and Configuration Hardware and software installation and customization, network setup and system connectivity.

    Upgrades and Repairs System troubleshooting, problem diagnosis, repair or replacement of defective parts.

  • For business: Freedom from proprietary systems.

    Obbie has extensive experience managing and configuring Macintosh and Linux systems. He'll show you how free and open source software can save your business thousands of dollars in licensing fees.

    Data Management Organization of file system and access permissions, backup maintenance, Intranet data access services.

    Process Streamlining Apache web server and MySQL database administration for internal and/or external access, PHP scripting for web-based data entry and queries.

    Hardware Support System replication and deployment, memory and hard drive upgrades, connection of audio-video equipment, logistics for trade shows and other off-site set-ups.

    User Support and Training One-on-one guidance and assistance, tutoring and training on new software.

  • Programming: Adapting computers to you.

    Programming teaches computers to do your repetitive and mundane tasks automatically while you concentrate on real work. On the Internet, the right code will transform your web pages into applications. Here's a sampling of the technologies Obbie can tap into with code:

    Web Programming HTML5, CSS3, Javascript, DOM manipulation, Apache, PHP

    Databases MySQL, FileMaker Pro

    Programming Languages PHP, JavaScript, MySQL, C, AppleScript, Unix shell, 8-bit Assembler.

Obbie's resume (pdf)
Obbie's profile on LinkedIn.

Purplearth cozmik imagez produces multimedia content for publication to print, video and audio channels.

We capture content with our lenses, microphones, and keyboards. We edit and refine moving and still images, sounds, and words; and we assemble media components into a cohesive and coherent message.

The finished product could be...

  • ...a still image, or a series of still images

    A picture says much more than a thousand words. No amount of words can convey an emotion that the right image can.

    We have an extensive library of images in digital and 35mm formats. Let us know what you're looking for, and we'll let you know if we have it.

    Photography Our favorite subjects are urban and rural scenes and the interesting details they contain.

    Processing and retouching Removing wrinkles, stains and other imperfections; color correction; composites and panoramas.

    Scanning services Most consumer scanners do a poor job of capturing detail in dark areas of an image. Our Microtech 5700 flatbed scanner will do a much better job, and our Nikon 4000 film scanner will accurately capture all the detail your 35mm negative or slide can deliver.

  • ...an audio or video production

    Short format video Some of our videos are on our youtube channel. We use Final Cut Pro to edit and assemble our video products.

    Audio Our production studio has churned out numerous podcasts, and is well-tuned for radio production and voice-over work. The output of our 12-channel Mackie mixer is fed to Audacity software for editing and engineering, with some help from Apple Garageband for effects and music composition.

  • ...a presentation

    Too many presentations are little more than bullet points on a screen repeating what the speaker is saying. We believe the content of the screen should keep the audience engaged visually while reinforcing - not repeating - the speaker's message.

    Our presentations incorporate still photos, videos, graphics, sounds and a well-crafted script melded together as a complete, compelling and powerful message.

  • ...printed communication

    As photographers we design images, and many principles of good photography also apply to print design: The subject should dominate the image, and the key message should dominate the page. And needless clutter distracts from the message.

    We share decades of experience in typesetting, and have applied this to newsletters, posters, promotional materials, and album packaging. If you're looking for competitive rates and fast turn-around, contact purplearth.

  • ...a website

    Your website is your online storefront to the world. Your home page is the window display: it should highlight your most important "stuff" without bombarding users with distracting clutter; and it should be easy for people who know what they want to find it easily.

    If your website needs help, we will fix what ails it. We apply the latest tools for a consistent "look" from page to page, and for a clean and easy-to-navigate user interface.

For a helping hand - or a helping eye, or a helping ear - on your media project, contact purplearth.

Some of our projects

Transportation Liberation

The Transportation Liberation Roadshow is a 40-minute multimedia presentation on the why's, how's, and what-to-do-now's of the "less driving" lifestyle. People who attend this show will leave with a new way to drive less.

View a 5-minute preview
Watch the whole thing

purplearthcam - The eyes and ears of purplearth

We present a random series of videos based on what our cameras and microphones see and hear, mixed with our thoughts and observations.

rss feed for your favorite video software

Visit our youtube channel: purplearthNet

Whirling Rainbow

Whirling Rainbow is a musical journey thru time and space.

rss feed for your favorite audio software

A Different Reality

A Different Reality is an entertaining and thought-provoking audio zine to promote a sustainable civilization.

rss feed for your favorite audio software

purplearth 2001 oddyzee

In 2001, Obbie and RoZ were blessed with the opportunity to embark on the roadtrip of a lifetime in the Western United States, followed by an adventure in Europe. These tales - written and posted during the trip - illustrate how the destination is secondary to the journey itself and the people encountered along the way.

Links and other fun stuff

We are developing an online database of the thousands of bookmarks we've found worthy of keeping and cataloging.

Until that database is available, here are some of our favorite places to go regularly:

  • The morning paper

    Our daily news sources from around the world.

    La Crosse Tribune Our hometown newspaper.

    Capital Times (Madison) This is where we keep track of goings-on in our state capital, one of our favorite places.

    The Guardian (London) You don't get a good look at your own country until you're on the outside looking in. The Guardian is an excellent source of news from Britain, Europe, the US, and the world.

    The Globe and Mail (Toronto) The news from our Canadian neighbors.

    Christian Science Monitor (Boston) One of the more well-written American papers.

    BuzzFlash This is an aggregator of stories from a wide array of media. BuzzFlash is where we find important stories that might have been missed in any of the papers above.

    InfoShop This is an outlet for activist and anarchist news, consisting of everything from childish rants to long-winded intellectual screeds, but every now and then it alerts us to an important story and/or discussion that the other media ignore.

  • Columnists and bloggers

    Opinion sites we like to follow, though some update relatively infrequently.

    Jim Hightower Living proof that there are good people in Texas. A new commentary shows up here every weekday.

    Thom Hartmann Radio host and author, his show is a three-hour education on economics and corporate shenanigans.

    Randi Rhodes Another radio host. Loud, funny, entertaining and not conservative. We call her "Rantin' Randi", but she probably wouldn't like that.

    Rachel Maddow She has a show on MSNBC, but we first heard her on the radio. Good at metaphorically hanging conservatives with their own rope.

    Tom Tomorrow Artist of "This Modern World", an icon of the struggling comics pages of alt-weekly newspapers.

    Michael Moore Oscar-winning documentary film-maker, his webmaster keeps offering new reasons to raise hell.

  • Friends of purplearth

    Blogs and websites of people we know.

    Coulee Progressives Occasional activist updates on peace, social justice, transportation, and other issues in the La Crosse area.

    Divine Mystery Healing Our friend Chan explores the intersections of magic and reality.

    Driftless Bicycle Coalition Looking out for the interests of those in our area who spend a lot of time on bikes.

  • Comics

    Daily comic strips we like to read.

    Dilbert Too many offices are actually like this.

    Doonesbury Political comic following a cast of characters representing the baby boom generation.

    For Better or for Worse Mom and Dad, two kids and a dog... and everybody ages as the strip progresses.

    Get Fuzzy Single guy talks to his lovable shar pei dog and arrogant siamese cat, and they talk back.

    Non Sequitur Another brilliant effort at following the twisted logic of those in power to its extreme conclusion.

    Pearls Before Swine Lovable pig, arrogant rat, and a host of other animal characters try to live normal lives.

    Calvin and Hobbes This artist retired many years ago, but these timeless strips are still worth seeing in reruns.

    Bloom County Another rerun that's worth reading, though Opus the penguin might make occasional references to Reagan-era goings-on.

  • Weather

    The weather report has come a long way from a guy with a marker drawing on a map. We can now track every minute detail of weather anywhere in the world in real time.

    National Weather Service forecast The ultimate source of all weather forecasts. This link gets the forecast for La Crosse, but you can get this page for any zip code in the USA.

    La Crosse Climate Data Highs and lows, how much rain we got, sunrise/sunset times, and other useful daily weather data.

    Regional Radar Loop From Intellicast, an animated radar image for our part of the world.

    US Radar Loop Intellicast animated radar image for the entire continental USA.

    Global Satellite picture This is a composite of all satellite images in the world, updated every three hours.

  • Geek news

    Keeping up-to-date on new developments in the computer world.

    MacFixit Once a repository of advice on new troubleshooting issues, this site is now more newsy.

    MacOSX Hints Mostly reader-submitted hacks and work-arounds, frequently useful.

    O'Reilly One of the best publishers of computer-related how-to books, this site has lots of articles on using the newest and latest programming languages and tools.

    Apple Investor News This is more than just a site to obsessively watch Apple's stock price. It's a good aggregator of news and rumors on new products and how they're being received.

    AFP548 This is an excellent source of advice and how-to's for Macintosh network administrators. Very smart reader base.

  • Geek reference

    Places to go to find out exactly how a piece of code is supposed to work.

    Mozilla Development Center Definitive documentation source for CSS, Javascript, DOM, and all other things related to web development.

    Apple Safari Reference Library An excellent reference to web programming overall, not just in Safari.

    PHP Reference Official reference to language used for server-generated web pages.

    MySQL Reference Official reference for the open source database behind many web-based applications.

    AppleScript Language Guide AppleScript can control several applications simultaneously, passing data and issuing commands to each other.

    SitePoint Good CSS reference, publishes some books on web programming.

    QuirksMode Some excellent articles on navigating the maze of things that work fine in some browsers and crash in others.

    Google Code Link to all of the program interfaces for Google applications. The scope of this list is a revealing look at how much Google is up to.

    Ubuntu Documentation Official documentation on the most popular and easy-to-use Linux distribution.

Weather in
La Crosse, WI
at 5:53am CDT

A Few Clouds

60° F

Wind:

Southeast 3 mph

Quick Links

Transportation Liberation

purplearth on youtube

Whirling Rainbow

A Different Reality

purplearth 2001 Oddyzee