The perfect Espresso (and how handy is Podscope?)

A recent episode of G’day World (G’DAY WORLD 190 – Evan Maloney: Paid Blogger, Screenwriter, Tough Guy) got me thinking about coffee. This Christmas my sister Naomi, knowing about my caffeine addiction, bought me a coffee machine. So far I’ve been making fairly average cappuccinos with very little care or consistency. Just your typical garden variety someone-bought-me-a-coffee-machine-for-Christmas-style coffee.

But now that’s not enough. See in this particular episode of G’day World Cam mentions that on that particular morning he’d made his first perfect cafe latte. He seemed to be pleased as punch. Which made me think, why am I settling for an average coffee when I could with some practice make a really good coffee?

So I’ve decided to start learning and practicing. I’ve been reading various articles on coffee making (I’ve bookmarked The espresso guide and How to present a latte) I’m going to pick up some proper espresso cups and a milk jug, and I’m going to make a lot of coffee.

I’m thinking it might be fun to photograph my progress and keep an ongoing log so that anyone who knows good coffee can feel appropriately smug about how poor my early efforts are.

On a completely different note I just tried out Podscope for the first time. In their words:

Podscope lets you search the spoken word for audio and video that interests you.

I used it because I couldn’t remember precisely which episode of G’day World Cam mentioned his perfect latte in. So I used Podscope to find it 🙂 It certainly still has some kinks to iron out. For example ‘espresso’ wouldn’t come up with his podcast nor would ‘latte’ however ‘coffee’ worked perfectly and I eventually found what I was after. Overall I was very impressed! It will even play a short clip containing the search term in context so you can figure out whether you have the right podcast. I definitely think it’s something worth playing with and I’m sure they’ll tidy up the speech recognition over time.

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Podcast

Been thinking about it some more and if I can think of something interesting to talk about I’ll do one…

But only if I’m convinced that I can make a proper show about it. I’m not interested in doing it if it only ends up being a couple of shows and then I run out of stuff to say.

And I guess another requirement is being able to figure out how to actually get it onto the internet. Video is actually a far easier medium on the net for some reason…

Doing a podcast/vidcast

I never really considered this an option before mostly through a combination of what’s the point and ack! its a camera! sort of vibes, but that confounded Cameron Reilly, personally responsible (along with Richard Giles) for this atrocity of a blog you are currently reading, has got me thinking about the whole thing.

It is in some ways an interesting idea and I’m sure it would be a load of fun. I’d even most likely be able to get the hang of the whole camera thing and stop being self-conscious about the sound of my own voice on tape. But there is one major stumbling block. I don’t really have anything to say. I mean yeah I could pad out a couple of shows with discussions about bisexuality and the changing social views towards bdsm. But I don’t really think I’m capable of coming up with interesting content on a regular basis.

See, I’m one of those people who self-censor (yes I know everyone who was at the TPN dinner are currently rolling on the floor laughing at that). What I mean by this is that I censor my creative ideas. When I was a musician I would take ages to write a simple melody because I’d only get a bar in before I decided it was crap and deleted it, in english creative writing I would decide that every idea I had was bad.

Just unconvinced that I’m up to the challenge and being a perfectionist, I am hence reluctant to try.

I love podcasts

I’ve realised today why podcasts are absolutely fantastic… They give me the opportunity to know everything before Colin. Occasionally he even incorrectly corrects me which is even more delicious. Then I know exactly where to find my corroborating evidence and 1 point to me, zero points to Colin…

Typical conversation now goes:

C – apple have a hifi for their Ipod now
M – I know, I heard about it on the Geeks of Hazzard last month – apparently its crap.
C – annoyed noises because I outgeeked him.

I was also recently right about what web 2.0 was. Lots of fun watching his face when he saw several websites agreeing with what I was saying.

So three cheers for podcasts and way they make me effortlessly knowledgeable about current affairs in the tech world.

Falling asleep listening to the Geeks of Hazzard gives you weird dreams

Last night I was feeling somewhat sickly and tired so I went to bed early, like 10.30 early. However given it was so early I decided to listen to a couple of podcasts before I went to sleep. Halfway through an episode of The Geeks of Hazzard I fell asleep. This resulted in several hours of subliminal Geeks of Hazzard listening before Colin came to bed and tried to get the mp3 player off me whilst, startled from my unexpected awakening, my eyes darted around the room like a crazed lunatic.
The general result of this was bizarre dreams which may or may not have included bad Star Trek sound effects, a groggy awakening, and a flat battery on my mp3 player.

So if anyone saw a rather confused looking girl in black trackpants, a pink hoodie and a large empty backpack wandering around Richmond this morning that was probably me on my way to the markets, not a drug addict preparing to shoplift.