Who Do? ooVoo

 

 

Today was the kickoff of “My ooVoo Day With…”, a “week-long experiment in blogger to fan interaction.” What’s ooVoo? According to the website, it’s “the next evolution in online communication.” It enables up to six people to participate in an online conversation, at the same time, via video chat or text. Other features include video messaging, file transfer, even phone calls. The name makes me smile, since it reminds me of an old comedy routine quoted by Myrna Loy and Cary Grant in “The Bachelor and the Bobby Soxer.” (“You remind me of a man…”) But the technology has me intrigued.

To showcase the ability of the technology, well-known bloggers are hosting chat sessions throughout the week, covering a wide range of topics. Anyone is invited to grab an available slot and join in the conversations. As a thank-you to the hosts, ooVoo is making a donation to each blogger’s charity of choice.

I didn’t even own a webcam—but the opportunity to talk with these bloggers on a face-to-face basis was too good to pass up. So I ran out and got a webcam, and had it set up just in time for the start of “My ooVoo Day With…” I had the privilege of participating in a chat with artist and new media consultant Susan Reynolds and communications specialist Connie Reece, founder of Every Dot Connects. Susan’s battle against breast cancer inspired the creation of the Frozen Pea Fund, which is working to raise awareness and funds for the fight against breast cancer. The FPF is one of the organizations benefiting from the ooVoo Day event.

The site proclaims that ooVoo is “remarkably easy to use,” and I agree. Being familiar with web chat, I was able to intuitively use the features of ooVoo, even though I had no previous experience with video chat. The design—with its theme of black, gold and gray punctuated by bright primary colors—is aesthetically pleasing, and makes it easy to identify things at a glance. I quickly found myself looking at my own face onscreen, alongside those of the other participants.

For the first chat, I was on my laptop, with a high-speed Wi-Fi internet connection; but found that it had trouble keeping up. The audio and video were erratic, making it tough to follow the conversation. Thankfully, the simultaneous text chat capability helped me have a say even when my voice couldn’t make it.

A quick query to Scott Monty garnered the advice to use a wired connection–so I moved operations to the desktop PC. An ooVoo chat from there worked just as it should–decidedly cool. I noticed that if a chat participant is using external speakers rather than a headset, I hear my own delayed voice in the background–which makes it kind of surreal at first–but beyond that the chats were as easy and normal as sitting across the table from people at a coffee shop.

The possibilities of using ooVoo have me enthusiastic—whether it’s to connect with my siblings in the same state or get to know my readers from all over the world.

And I’m also looking forward to other “My ooVoo Day With” chats coming up later this week. They remind me of a place, actually. What place? A coffee shop. Who do? ooVoo.

 

Project Mermaid | Series Two: It’s Alive!

 

 

Allll right—let’s rock and roll!

Project Mermaid|Series Two has suffered through my disorganizational delays and an actual blackout that prevented it from going live last night, and it was late today—but it’s ON! Firmly nestled in its new time slot of Thursdays at 7:30 pm, voting for the new series will go live here on this blog every week, followed within minutes by the debut of the original artwork in my eBay auctions. You can comment on the fashions, vote for your favorite, and even bid to own the originals! It’s all good.

Plus this is doing mighty weird things to my writer’s brain—I think I’ll be posting mid-week behind-the-scenes gossip news about what’s going on backstage at Project Mermaid! (Well, yes, I do have a life, it’s just a very…storified one…)

So click on the link above to check out this week’s challenge—and also stop by last week’s page to see the winner and read the recaps! What are the designers thinking…?

(This one’s thinking it’s time for more cough syrup and some bedtime.)

 

We Are Experiencing Technical Difficulties

 

Yesterday it was my lateness, combined with the slowing effects of a brand-new cold. Today it was because the power went out when I was painting, and stayed out till it was too late.

So, loyal fans, PROJECT MERMAID: SERIES TWO will air at an unprecedentedly late THURSDAY time slot. Can it be unprecedented if it’s only the second week of the series? I guess so, since the first episode aired on time. Well, not really on time, it was late, as well, but at least it aired on Tuesday. But this works out well, after all, since next Tuesday is Christmas Day, and who will be browsing online then?

So—hang with me here—Project Mermaid Series TWO will start THURSDAY and end NEXT THURSDAY. Series Three will start next Tueday, as it should. Overlapping schedules, but we do what we need to do.

Apparently we need to be drinking way too much coffee and eating too many chocolate chips at an unconscionably late hour, prompting us to speak in the third person and spend more than the usual amount of brain cells pondering fish folk and writing about events that never existed…yet make it seem as if they did…but I’m a writer, so I can do that, right? Right. Okay, so go read the recap of this past week’s episode and see what the imaginary characters have to say for themselves.

I’m having way too much fun with this series.

Wait’ll you see the next installment…I spent way too much time painting them, too.

 

Project Mermaid: Series 1 Ends Tonight!

 

 

Project Mermaid: Series One: “Found Objects” ends tonight! The poll closes at 7:30 pm PST! So swim on over and vote for your favorite mermaid fashion—today’s winner will make it into my new mousewords calendar, and will go up against the winners over the next eleven weeks to determine the champion!

Which fish-ion designer/mermodel team gets your vote?

~~Designer Clay and mermodel Penelope with “Caught Looking Fabulous”?

~~Designer Sasha and mermodel Andrea with “Sea Wed”?

~~Designer Coralie and mermodel Raine with “Pearls Before Swim”?

~~Designer Sharky and mermodel Carmen with “Coral Fire”?

Just a few more hours to decide…until the poll closes and the NEW episode airs tonight! Tune in right here to find out what Challenge Two will be!

 

“PROJECT MERMAID” Goes Live!

 

 

 

 

Proving, once again, that I must have more time on my hands than I realize, I have just launched PROJECT MERMAID!  Any fans of Project Runway out there?  Then check out my Project Mermaid for fun!  You be the Judge—comment on the fashion designs, then vote for your favorite! And if you really, really like a design, you can bid to own it in my eBay auctions!

WEEK ONE’S CHALLENGE is: “Found Objects.”

Visit my “Project Mermaid” page and let the fun begin!

 

TwittyTales!

 

TTa:01 Marian stood in the empty camp and stared at the devastation. 4 days. She was 4 days late. How could one make up for 4 days lost?”

…And so begins the saga of “Four Days Late,” a brand-new short story I’m writing on TWITTER! I’ve decided to participate in “TwittyTales” the challenge to write a full story in 1 month, 1 Twitter post at a time, one post a day. Very challenging, considering the fact that you only get 140 characters worth of space in a Twitter post. Plus I have six characters used up to identify and number my story. I’m finding it to be a great exercise for writing—teaches me to say more with less.

TwittyTales is the idea of Twitterer seamusspeaks. Check out his Twitter for his short story, “Meet Edward the BellyCat,” this December, and come visit mine to follow my mini-saga-in-progress! (Which I started…four days late.)

Here’s a preview of the first four installments to get you started:

“Four Days Late”

A TwittyTales Story by Christine Taylor, aka mousewords

12-04-07:

TTa:01 Marian stood in the empty camp and stared at the devastation. 4 days. She was 4 days late. How could one make up for 4 days lost?

12-05-07:

TTa:02 A winter wind bit at her lips as she drew a gasp. Tents & supplies were scattered. No sign of life. She was afraid to start looking.

12-06-07:

TTa:03 A messenger had been sent but was caught. He escaped after 4 days. Only then did Marian get the news: Her home camp was under attack.

12-07-07:

TTa:04 Marian had grown up among the forest camps. Now she was lady in waiting to a baroness. But her blood was wild, & her spirit was free.

To be continued…tune in tomorrow, same Bat-Time, same Bat-Channel.

 

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