Stevepohl.com

Finally!!

The new stevepohl.com is complete and online!

It took a bit longer than I expected but the extra time allowed me to add some more complex scrips… Needless to say; JavaScript is required to view it properly.

Soon I’ll be modifying the contact page and perhaps adding the RSS feed back to the main page, but that is all in the future now.

I hope you enjoy the new look and please visit the sponsors to help support the site.

-Steve
www.stevepohl.com

Published in: on August 3, 2009 at 5:35 am  Comments (1)  

Update…

In the past two weeks I had a fatal hard drive crash, my van windows smashed, and nearly bankrupted myself installing security cameras…. So my rebuild of stevepohl.com has slowed to a crawl.

The new site is still on the way but since I’ve been re-enacting the film Rear Window with my cameras time has been of a premium.

Once I have the punks who did it on tape I’ll get things back to normal.

Published in: on July 17, 2009 at 3:19 pm  Leave a Comment  

Massive rebuild…

Greetings readers, I am in the midst of a MASSIVE redesign of stevepohl.com. It’s slow going because I’m changing everything from the ground up. While this is an exciting change it is also time and resource consuming so there will be a couple more google ads on the pages to try and offset some of the cost.

The new stevepohl.com is going to combine the portfolio site with the best parts of the current stevepohl.com. SladeArt will be unaffected so rest easy Sladists. I still have much to do and many decisions to make so I can’t say for sure what may make it onto the new site and what won’t.

If anyone has any suggestions for additions or changes or features please let me know, I’m interested in hearing from you.

Thanks,

Published in: on July 2, 2009 at 9:57 am  Leave a Comment  

My merchandise…

While creating some new stuff for specialx.net I have been introduced to the site zazzle.com and I’ve liked it so much I created my own merchandise store there… Take a look:

My store!

Published in: on June 15, 2009 at 4:27 pm  Leave a Comment  

Star Drek….

I am a Star Trek fan.

There, I admit it.
I remember racing home from school in the seventies so I could catch re-runs of the original series. Memorizing all the details since you were never sure when or if you’d see it again.

I remember buying books, role playing games, and what have you so I could get more back story.

I remember waiting in line for Star Trek: The Motion Picture, and then making rationalizations about all the things wrong with it.

I remember crying at the end of Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan when Spock died, and then again at the end of Star Trek III: The Search for Spock when the Enterprise blew up.

I remember cheering at number IV and nitpicking the first few seasons of The Next Generation to death.

I remember my instant dislike for Deep Space Nine (I later got over it) and when Shatner took the director’s chair for movie number V.

I remember being sad at the end of Star Trek VI when it was obviously the last time we’d see the original cast together.

I remember being so furious at the Generations movie because they killed Kirk that I swore I would never watch anything else about Star Trek (that lasted all of a month or two).

I remember Voyager and Enterprise (fondly, BTW).

I remember all the movies since, good and bad (and there have been plenty of each).

And, unfortunately, I will have to remember the new Star Trek movie as well.

This movie is the lowest point of the entire franchise, and I am sorry I wasted my hard earned money on it.

All your memories of Star Trek? Gone. All the rich history that has been established? Gone. All the things that made the Star Trek universe so attractive and hopeful? Gone, gone, and gone…

The idea that it’s okay the throw 50 years of history and back story on the fire under the auspices of “it’s an alternate universe” is just repugnant and lazy. But that is the unfortunate path that the production team decided to run down.

Thanks to a lazy director… I sorry I mean; an angry, time-traveling, Romulan, all history is changed and the once bright and hopeful Star Trek universe is transformed into a dark, angst ridden universe where Vulcan is destroyed, Kirk’s father is killed in his youth, the Klingon’s don’t exist (evidently), Phasers are actually Star Wars blasters, and just about every cliche’ and stereotype known to man are substituted for cohesive storytelling. Finally when old Spock shows up you hope they might redeem this movie by fixing time… Well, tough shit Bud! The once logical and moral Spock, who would have given his life to uphold the Prime Directive, starts handing out advanced future technology, telling people all about their futures, introducing himself to himself, and just numbly accepting this new reality even though he has the knowledge and skill to move through time and fix this travesty (including the death of his mother!).

“So, Steve, other than all that what did you think?”

I’ll tell you:

Sets that look like they came from Galaxy Quest, sound effects that are taken directly from Star Wars, a score that Ed Wood wouldn’t have used, a vibrating camera delivering the ‘puke-o-vision’ experience, a cast culled from the rejection pile at the WB, and writers, producers, and a director too lazy to work within the framework and rich history of the Star Trek mythos to deliver the Cadet Kirk story line that’s been bandied about for a decade.

…And the bonus for all this cultivated failure? The entire mythos being stricken from the collective record in favor of this garbage. And before anyone tries to whip out the “alternate time-line” BS on me, think about this; if they are going to continue to make sequels based on this abortion then the rest of the franchise, and all your favorite characters, are DEAD and will not be used again!

This was the laziest example of film making I have ever seen, and a shameful waste of material.

Star Trek is gone.

Star Drek is upon us.

…And may you burn in hell for it J.J. Abrams, Alex Kurtzman, and Roberto Orci!

Published in: on May 9, 2009 at 11:39 am  Comments (5)  

Ignorance, or con game?

As I mentioned earlier; thanks to the crummy economy I have had to dig for clients harder than ever before. Recently I was ask to come to a place of business (no names, I’m not that bitter :) ) and discuss the possibility of, essentially, creating a web sales department based around an e-commerce website that I would create and run for them. The interview was quick but, I thought, productive.

That evening, on the phone, the owner of this company said he needed me to prove my capabilities by creating a site that would demonstrate my abilities… Strange that he would ask for that since, given my resume’ and portfolio, he had access to numerous sites that I had built and art I have created for a wide variety of clients. But ok, why not? I agreed…

He then hinted that the “example” site should be about his business and fully functional w/ e-commerce capabilities… WTF? AND, because he was under a deadline to get started, he needed it in 12 hours or less!

Let’s pause for a moment to think about that… Before I can build his site, I have to prove I can build his site… By building his site?

Normally when you are trying to sell someone on a web design you will create 3-4 comps (image mock-ups of potential designs) that the clients can choose design styles from. What you don’t do is create the entire site for them!

So, if alarm bells are ringing in your head right now then you aren’t alone!

There are two options here, either this person is ignorant in what creating a website actually entails, or this person is attempting to get a FREE website. Which means that I had two options; I could assume it was a con-job and decline to continue the process or I could give him the benefit of the doubt and build a generic site to showcase an e-commerce style site.

I selected option #2. I built a quickie, generic e-commerce site and sent him the link. His only comment during our last phone conference? ‘This is not about my company!’ Surprise, surprise, this guy, who was under a deadline remember, suddenly needed “more time” before he could decide.

Needless to say I will never hear from him again because I now fully believe that he was trying to get a free website out of me.

Sorry pal, I may have been born during the day, but that day wasn’t yesterday!

Let this be a cautionary tale to you aspiring web designers out there; never work for nothing! Everyone out there wants something for free and if you do it then why should they ever hire you for real?

BTW, check out condron.us for more great blog content.

Published in: on March 19, 2009 at 8:26 am  Leave a Comment  

“Quis custodiet ipsos custodes?”

Comic book characters come in all flavors and varieties, but few superheroes ever had such a impact as Alan Moore’s brilliant work The Watchmen. The Watchmen movie is out today and couldn’t resist my fanboy urges, so I went to see it today.

First let me say this: Awesome!

Now let me expand on that:

The Watchmen movie is beautifully filmed (if you can really call such a special FX event “filmed”) and it is brilliantly acted. The mega-size graphic novel is abridged to a severe degree, not just for time but to make the extremely dense plot more accessible to average movie audiences. I understand the necessity of this, without condoning or condemning it. See, as a fan of the comic I saw all the things that were missing or changed for time sake, but I accept that this movie is an ADAPTATION not an exact copy of the original story.

And I accept it on those terms.

I will leave a full scale review for a later day and time… I just wanted to give you my quick impression: Awesome.

Published in: on March 6, 2009 at 7:41 pm  Leave a Comment  

SEO and good Web Design…

Thanks to the economic slow down I, more and more, find myself looking for more freelance clients. Today, in the never ending quest for more work, I stumbled across a request for a freelance SEO job…

SEO, for those of you who don’t know (or care), stands for Search Engine Optimization. In the most simplest of terms it means that you design, code, and market a search engine friendly site and then disseminate it through the search engines. There is a lot more involved in that, but for the rest of this anecdote it’s all we need.

This request asks for an SEO specialist to raise their placement on google but not to bother him about changing his ten year old website. A bizarre request if you understand what SEO means and how it relates to web design, but I suppose understandable if you are a complete layman.

Any good web designer knows about SEO processes and how to maximize your site’s placement potential. It just a standard part of web development process.

But the key here is Web Designer. To build a good site with high potential for placement you need to design and code the site in a very specific way to best take advantage of the algorithm that search engines use and to best communicate with the web crawlers they send out. This is impossible if you cannot alter the internal code of the site.

Imagine someone asking you to change the oil in their car without touching it.

I sent him an email offering to talk to him about it, but if I can’t make some changes I might as well not even start. I guess we’ll see what happens.

Published in: on February 25, 2009 at 1:39 pm  Comments (2)  

New Special X…

Work is finally complete on the new Special X website!

The site went live last night after the final tests were completed and the feedback, so far, has been positive. Working on this site has been a very positive experience and I look forward to working with Slade as we add new things to the site.

Don’t get too comfortable though, Sladists, It’s not done yet. Slade has some exciting ideas on the horizon and the future looks very interesting….

Take a look at Special X and then stop by the forums and tell us what you think!

http://www.specialx.net/

Published in: on January 26, 2009 at 10:17 am  Leave a Comment  

It’s been a while…

It’s been a while since I posted on my blog here so let me give you some updates:

I’ve been spending a lot of time on facebook and working on an overhaul/upgrade of the Special X website with Michael Slade. I’ve brought my TV equipment into the 21st century (with a little help from Sony and Direct TV), and I finally gave in and let my daughter have her own TV.

Finally, I’ve been trying to set-up a great Christmas for my family. It isn’t easy with finances being a little tight but it seems to be coming together very well… Just another present to buy, and a few more to wrap, but then we are ready for our family to arrive on Christmas Eve and presents on Christmas morn!

With time being at a premium lately I can’t promise a new post (read: rant) soon but I can say Merry Christmas to you all! Christmas is a great time of year where everyone can have fun, feel good, give presents, and generally act the way you wish you could act the rest of they year. If you don’t like Christmas, well, too bad! Everyone, regardless of religion or anything else, should enjoy this time of year.

So here is a Christmas song for everyone:

Merry Christmas everyone!

Published in: on December 23, 2008 at 7:44 am  Leave a Comment  
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