azurite: (cat and mouse)
I'm finally getting around to working on Indigo Ink, my portfolio website and online resume. I've been tinkering with it in various small ways for a while, but a recent decision to re-watch and actually DO the tutorials in a lesson, "Building an Online Portfolio with WordPress," got me actually working on the project.

The lesson uses an example chef to build the portfolio, making custom post types and taxonomies for recipes, photos, and videos. These post types make sense for a chef, but what about for me? My portfolio has three different types of content: writing (the biggie), graphic design, and website designs.

I made three custom post types to reflect this, but now I'm struggling with the taxonomies. Whereas regular blog posts have categories (hierarchical sorting) and tags (non-hierarchical), what would I use for my three new custom post types?

For the example chef in the lesson, the recipes, photos, and videos all have some common ways of organizing, such as meal type. Then it can be further sub-categorized--hint hint, this would be a hierarchical taxonomy, e.g. a CATEGORY--into things like breakfast, dinner, dessert, and so forth. And even those can be further sub-categorized, into things like meat, vegetable, and so on.

But what about my writing?

Well, I have articles--ones I've written for university publications, and ones I've written for I have essays. I have fiction. There might even be further ones. But are these categories? Can I break down the writing custom post type into a category of articles, and then further into specific KINDS of articles? Or would it be better to have something like a "purpose" category, which can span across multiple custom post types? That way, I could say, my reason for writing this article, or designing this website was "school assignment."

I'm trying to find example portfolios that have custom taxonomies that might provide an inspiration as to the architecture or structure of how I should organize my content, but so far, no luck. Any suggestions?
azurite: Organized people are just too lazy to look for things (organized = lazy)
Before my iPad 2 arrives (or at the very least, before iOS 5 comes out in September), I want to get my iTunes library sorted out.

At some point in the past, I deleted chunks of my library somehow, and I either ended up with "MIA" files that iTunes didn't know how to locate, or songs that were just plain missing. Occasionally I would look at a massive copy of my iTunes library that I'd put on one of my external drives and try to find different songs, but it was a lot of work and I didn't get very far.

Enter Dupin. It's a piece of software for weeding out duplicates, even more specifically than iTunes does from its own File > Display Duplicates menu option. I decided to dump everything from my external hard drive and sort it out using Dupin.

And for the most part, it's been okay--I try to match songs using Name, Artist, and Time, because kind (mp3, m4a, m4p, etc.) can be different, and Album might be different if I've imported the song from multiple albums (which happens when I have singles and full albums, or Best Of/Greatest Hits albums in addition to either of the other two).

It was still a pain in the ass. Before I officially deleted anything, I still had to compare that what I had deleted was what I actually WANTED to delete--anything with a lower bit-rate, a protected file, or that was confirmed to be EXACTLY the same as something I already had in my library. Sometimes artists will release a song a second time, not change anything about the title, but extend the song out, remix it, etc. You have to listen to it very carefully to know the difference(s), and that takes time.

I opted to start using beaTunes 3, which allows you to clean up your music library using a LOT of other factors, including sorting issues. And this begs the underlying question: just what fields are important to have for your music?

See, I have lots of albums by multiple artists, e.g. Singer, but also Singer feat. Singer 2. Normally I'd tag these as Compilations, but apparently they're not--if Singer is in the beginning of the Artist field, then Singer feat. Singer 2 is regarded as the same. I don't want to put the "feat. Singer 2" in the Track Title, because in my mind, that's not accurate. The artist is asking about who is behind the song: the vocals, the instrumentals, what-have-you. That doesn't belong in the song title.

But iTunes has all these other metadata fields you can sort by, including Sort Artist and Album Artist. The question is, do I type the artists like I have normally (First Last), or do I type (Last, First feat. First Last 2), kind of like I would be if I were compiling a Works Cited list for a paper? Do I list Singer feat. Singer 2 as (Singer, Singer 2) instead? What exactly is the hierarchy for these sorts?

I get the impression that a track has Artist, but Sort Artist can dominate that, and Album Artist dominates both of those. Does that sound about right?

And if Compilation only matters when you have different Artists (not Sort Artists? Not Album Artists?), and it automatically organizes the tracks by Album instead, then I should be using Grouping instead for my fanmixes, right? Or just make regular playlists, instead of Smart Playlists?

azurite: (elections - palpatine '08)
So, since I'm going to be out of town for the big November elections, I wanted to apply to vote-by-mail. I went to the California state website and read the guidebook, downloaded the two applications I apparently needed (one for Statewide elections and one for County elections). Then I go to the LA County website and see there's an online application, so I fill that out and shred the paper ones I printed. Question is, will the ballot(s) I get be for the county of Los Angeles only, the state of California, and/or the national presidential election? I'm worried I won't get all that I need. Has anyone else done this process before? Even if you're in a different state, maybe the process is similar... *shrug* any help would be appreciated. Of course, I'm going to call the County Registrar tomorrow for "official" answers, provided I talk to a real person and not an automated system.

Question to the general populous: How do you organize your foreign-language music? For example, I have a lot of music by Japanese artists. iTunes supports Japanese in the titles, artists, and lyrics, and I can set my Smart Playlists to find the artists that way... but is it always the best way? Should I use the romanized names instead? And if so, should I do it the Western Way (Hikaru Utada) or the Asian way (Utada Hikaru)?

January 2016

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