Working on art

April 22, 2011 by Joshua
in Art, Blog, Creativity

When you feel like a superhero it’s hard not to indulge in sharing why you feel so great. Solving technical problems makes you feel like a genius when you get it.

I’ve had two days straight of amazing progress. One thing after another fell into place. It all took a lot of research, trial and error, moving step-by-step, not biting off too much at a time.

Most of that was software and deliveries coming in. For those who know, the software I’m working on was getting the Western Digital media players for the Union Square digital linear zoetrope display to work remotely, which requires getting into the hacker community for the product. For anyone who doesn’t know, working with hacker communities means searching all over the internet to see if someone has done what you want to do. It takes forever — wild goose chases, wrong turns, undocumented software, etc.

Then finally you get a toe-hold. Something works and you stop chasing your tail. You can progress. You move a bit, document it, test the parameters, etc. Eventually you take more steps in the right directions. Next thing you know, you’re on track, making great strides.

Eventually everything works and it’s amazing how simple it is. In my case, my end result was three files from the internet, a shell script of fewer than ten lines, and a few commands. And I’ll be able to run the back end of the Union Square display with the media players with no moving parts or complicated electronics.

Then it was on to the televisions. I took one apart to get rid of the unnecessary and bulky casing. I turned it on. It worked. Suddenly it stopped working and won’t start again.

From zero to hero and back down to zero so fast. I wish I could figure out what went wrong with this television. Still, there’s eleven more of them. I’m sure I’ll figure it out.

All in all, major progress on a problem I couldn’t figure out for maybe a year. In fact a solution.

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