In this video, I go over exactly what these ministry progress summary videos are, and also how they are different from the daily progress summary videos that I upload on a separate YouTube channel.
00:00 - Introduction 00:50 - Outline 01:12 - About these ministry progress summaries 02:44 - These are different than the daily progress summary videos on the other YouTube channel 05:23 - Summary and outro
At a high level, these videos will be a whirlwind overview of all recent ministry progress and news, sent out every couple weeks. These are made for everyone who wants to keep an eye on what’s new.
Most of of the ministry highlights from the given time-window are hit, and then I give a brief description of the goals for the next bit (although not with great specificity, as sometimes my plans change).
I try to keep everything nice and short, so that people don’t have to spend very long to learn about what’s going on.
These are different than the daily progress summary videos on the other YouTube channel
I run a separate YouTube channel where I dump daily vlogs that go over the day-by-day nitty-gritty details of what I do every day (and not just the things related to this ministry, but everything – including my output from my other websites).
These are honestly as much for me as for anyone else, so that I can find things over time if I ever need to reference something I’ve done or thought on, and so that I can keep myself very organized day-by-day, trying to keep in mind all the spiritual pressure that should drive me. Many people probably won’t be interested in these, which is completely logical.
It’s honestly kind of shocking how much work goes into (has gone into) everything, so if you’re ever curious in peering behind the curtain a bit, this would be where you might glimpse some of the thought and effort that has to happen (has happened) to make it all go round.
Although, in these daily progress summary videos, I do ramble about anything and everything I am interested in too, which isn’t as relevant for that purpose of seeing the mechanics.
Although, if you wish to get a better idea of who I am as an individual – to put a person and a face to the materials offered here – well, these videos would be good for that too.
0:00 - hey guys so right now i’m going to be 0:02 - making the introductory video here for 0:04 - ministry progress summaries and so this 0:07 - is going to be the playlist here on the 0:09 - ministry channel where i go over the 0:11 - updates week by week i guess maybe not 0:14 - every week maybe every couple weeks here 0:15 - but the consistent regular updates about 0:18 - the progress and the things that are 0:20 - going on in this ministry so we’re going 0:22 - to go through several slides here this 0:23 - intro video will be pretty short and 0:25 - then the updates as we go here kind of 0:28 - over the weeks as we make progress 0:30 - you’ll get a sense for 0:31 - the 0:33 - direction in which things are kind of 0:34 - being taken on the website and also what 0:37 - content you might not have seen yet and 0:39 - so with that i’ll go ahead and hit the 0:42 - slideshow presentation here and we’ll go 0:44 - ahead and take a look at exactly what 0:47 - these 0:48 - ministry progress summary videos are 0:49 - supposed to be about 0:51 - all right so here’s our slide 0:53 - presentation here and this is just going 0:55 - to be a couple slides going over again 0:57 - the purpose here and what exactly these 1:00 - are for so first we’re going to talk 1:02 - exactly about what these ministry 1:03 - progress summary videos are and then i’m 1:05 - just going to spend a little bit of time 1:07 - talking about how they’re different than 1:08 - the daily progress summary videos that i 1:10 - have up on a different youtube channel 1:13 - so these videos here at a high level are 1:15 - supposed to kind of be a whirlwind 1:16 - overview of all of the recent ministry 1:19 - progress and news and i’m going to be 1:21 - sending these out probably once every 1:23 - couple weeks that’s going to be about 1:24 - the frequency for these videos here 1:27 - and these are kind of made the target 1:29 - audience here is for everyone who wants 1:31 - to keep an eye on what’s new with the 1:33 - ministry so 1:34 - um 1:35 - anyone you know friends family people 1:37 - who have subscribed to the youtube 1:38 - channel people who are following the 1:40 - ministry in general 1:42 - as to the content of these videos it’s 1:44 - mostly going to be the highlights from 1:46 - the given time window like i said about 1:48 - every two weeks here 1:50 - so all of the new content that’s there 1:52 - maybe several prayer requests that 1:54 - things are really important or just kind 1:56 - of the news going on in the ministry 1:58 - within this time period 2:00 - and then after i go through kind of what 2:03 - actually got done within the time period 2:04 - i’ll spend a little bit of time going 2:06 - over what my goals for the next time are 2:08 - although not with too too much 2:10 - specificity just because sometimes 2:12 - things change and i might change courses 2:14 - so i’m not completely locked in but i do 2:17 - generally try to give an idea here of 2:19 - what the next things i’m going to focus 2:21 - on will be 2:22 - so conciseness isn’t exactly a strength 2:24 - of mine but i am going to take pains to 2:26 - try to keep these videos pretty short 2:28 - overall just so that way people will be 2:30 - able to 2:32 - learn all about the new things going on 2:35 - with the ministry without having to 2:36 - spend too much time to do so 2:38 - so that’s basically the overall 2:41 - picture here of what these ministry 2:44 - progress summary videos are about and so 2:46 - the other thing that we’re going to go 2:47 - over here in this video is just going to 2:48 - be a little note about what makes these 2:50 - things different from the daily progress 2:52 - summary videos so i have another youtube 2:54 - channel here and i’ll go ahead and click 2:56 - this link and this youtube channel it’s 2:59 - a separate one you know that way people 3:01 - who subscribe won’t get spammed with 3:03 - videos from this other channel and so 3:06 - this channel has a kind of day-by-day 3:08 - breakdowns of all of the work that i get 3:10 - done 3:11 - and so i started this channel a while 3:13 - back and 3:14 - you know it has you know day by day so 3:17 - over the weeks and months just a 3:19 - breakdown of all of the tasks that i get 3:21 - done in a given time period now not all 3:24 - of the tasks that are show up here are 3:26 - ministry related because i do have a 3:29 - couple other websites and you know some 3:31 - of my work 3:33 - relating to those things will show up in 3:35 - those videos as well 3:37 - but that is more the nitty gritty day by 3:40 - day account of all of the things that i 3:42 - get done whereas these ministry progress 3:44 - summary videos are intended to be just a 3:46 - higher overview of the ministry progress 3:49 - that’s being made 3:50 - so these videos in the other playlist 3:52 - are honestly just as much for me as for 3:54 - anyone else so that i can find things 3:56 - over time if i ever need to reference 3:57 - something i’ve done or thought on and so 3:59 - that i can keep myself really organized 4:01 - day by day 4:02 - trying to keep in mind all of the 4:04 - spiritual pressure that should drive me 4:05 - so we have 4:06 - all of these things that we can keep in 4:08 - mind to 4:10 - help light a fire beneath us as 4:11 - christians you know uh the service that 4:14 - we are called to as members of the body 4:16 - of christ and the ministries that we 4:18 - have all individually been assigned and 4:20 - things like that i just try to 4:22 - keep myself on task day by day so that i 4:24 - can keep in mind all the things that we 4:26 - should be about all right so why am i 4:29 - even bringing this other video series up 4:31 - here and so uh one reason is because 4:34 - anyone who’s interested in some of the 4:36 - work that goes into creating some of the 4:39 - ministry content here so the videos and 4:41 - the website and things like that well if 4:43 - you ever want to peer behind the curtain 4:45 - a bit uh this other series that i’m 4:47 - mentioning here would kind of be the 4:48 - place to do so because i talk about some 4:50 - of the work that 4:51 - i’ve done in these areas to make 4:53 - everything work and kind of 4:56 - all of the things that are involved in 4:57 - making it all go round you can get a 5:00 - feel for 5:01 - more of the technical nitty gritty 5:03 - details in terms of how i implement 5:05 - things in some of those videos there 5:08 - and then 5:09 - just because i do go over other things 5:11 - so things relating to my interests and 5:13 - the other websites i have if you want to 5:15 - get to know me as an individual better 5:17 - so you want to put a person and a face 5:19 - to the materials offered here so to 5:21 - speak well those videos would also be 5:23 - good for that 5:24 - but since this is ultimately the intro 5:27 - video for the ministry progress videos i 5:29 - am just bringing these up as a point of 5:31 - contrast so these videos here in this 5:33 - series will be entirely about the things 5:36 - related to the progress made on the 5:38 - ministry front but if you either want to 5:40 - see about how things are made or you 5:42 - want to get to know me a little bit 5:43 - better as an individual 5:45 - you can go ahead and check out the other 5:47 - playlist linked here in the slides 5:49 - and well that’s going to be it here for 5:51 - today so this video very short just 5:53 - giving a little bit of a high level 5:54 - overview as to what these ministry 5:56 - progress summary videos are so if you 5:58 - stay tuned the other videos in this 6:00 - series will be giving that account 6:02 - period by period of all of the progress 6:05 - and all of the new things that are going 6:06 - on in this ministry
This first summary video here, I go over all of the things that happened in the first couple weeks since ministry launch. Even though we had a three-day weekend in here, I got really caught up in a forum conversation, and didn’t perhaps make as much forward progress as I had initially thought I might. I also spent a lot of time researching various things relating to technology to hopefully make future video content better for this ministry. But, nonetheless, I did get a number of things done, especially in terms of organizing the YouTube channel more.
00:00 - Introduction 00:35 - Outline 02:17 - Emailing back people who responded to ministry launch email 03:41 - A debate on the forum about matters concerning submitting to government authority, and what exactly that means 07:37 - Discussion about forum structure moving forward 08:57 - Helping my good friend start setting up a ministry website of his own 10:29 - Researching/buying technology of various forms, things that will help future content 16:33 - Doing everything to be able to resume the SR4 video series, when the time is right 17:41 - Planning out BB6A content grouping 19:47 - Organizing the YouTube channel better 21:57 - Asking a nearby school about parking policy and grounds use after-hours 22:30 - Upcoming work 25:35 - Outro
Emailing back people who responded to ministry launch email
Thanks to all who took the time to reach out after launch. I got to have a couple conversations with people I hadn’t talked to in a while, and it really made my day.
Even for everyone else who didn’t reach out but still subscribed to the YouTube channel and signed up for the mailing list and such – thanks for all your support too!
For anyone curious, from around ~75 people BCC’d on initial launch (many folks I’ve known from college and such), the ministry has gained about 5 YouTube subscribers, and about 6 people on the mailing list.
But hey, starting small is no big deal. I’m not doing it for fame or money, after all.
A debate on the forum about matters concerning submitting to government authority, and what exactly that means
The timing wasn’t the best considering I’d just launched, but a good friend and I had an extremely active debate going on on the forum for the span of a few days in this cycle. I spent a lot of my time outside of my 9-5 job there, including most of the three day weekend over labor day.
A brief outline:
Initial WhatsApp conversation
Compiling that into a PDF. (~50 pages)
Compiling the conversation I’d had with my mentor about the same topics
Starting related threads on the forum (referencing the above compilations)
Lots of responding to the threads (both of them)
Eventually, a voice chat to iron things out better, since there are some limitations to understanding tone and intent and such over text alone. Hurray for WhatsApp and VoIP. This helped more than much of the text we’d sent back-and-forth over the days.
At the end of it all, we had on the order of 70 responses across both threads, and well over 100 pages of conversation, I’m sure, were we to print it all out.
But it was good. A worthy use of time. (Although of course we’ve learned some things from the experience, and hope to communicate better in the future. At least I sure do).
Just another plug for anyone interested to sign up for the community (forum and WhatsApp group). The registration form is here on the site.
If the scope of that conversation I just went over sounds super-intimidating, don’t worry, that’s just me and my friend in the section set off for us to go chat things out whenever we start getting technical.
Most of the forum isn’t that over-the-top! I promise.
Discussion about forum structure moving forward
I won’t put everyone to sleep by spending much time here, but now that I formally launched, I had some necessary conversations with folks about exactly what that means for the forum I’ve been sysadmin-ing for several years, and what it will mean moving forward.
A couple of my close friends will probably get their own Bible teaching endeavors off the ground pretty soon too, and we needed to chat a bit to figure out what that means, regarding our community and how we interact there.
Specifically, we will all teach as we feel led by the Lord, and it is right and proper for us to be independent, but what happens when you put us all in the same place?
As I say, practical admin stuff.
Helping my good friend start setting up a ministry website of his own
He’d already converted all of his content into markdown, but we spent a couple hours getting the local webserver and template/theme set up on his computer, so he can see what everything looks like as a website.
I had to rework some of the templating for him since he is laying his content out differently from me. Before we do things for real (actually deploy his site), I’ll need to make my theme up on GitHub much more extensible (refactor to use SCSS variables for colors, for example), but that will come in time. Right now this was sort of the quick-and-dirty first pass, to get things scaffolded out for him in the meantime, so he can test everything.
Researching/buying technology of various forms, things that will help future content
First of all, I ordered a new desktop computer to help smooth everything out in the workflow by means of lots more power (it should be here in a few days). This has been a long time in coming, since the Surface Pro tablet I’ve been using since mid-college is getting pretty long-in-the-tooth at this point.
I’d already been meaning to get a more powerful desktop computer to help with the video processing, but the straw that broke the camel’s back here was realizing I’d need more computational power to optimally make use of voice recognition software in drafting video scripts, which is something I’ll get to in a sec.
Now, aside from juicing up my processing power in preparation for really ramping up the video production, I also spent a lot of time thinking about how to best create the video content itself.
While I thought I had a reasonably good idea of how I wanted to actually make the videos, the creation of the initial ministry overview video caused me to rethink some things.
Specifically, I decided:
Being tethered with a wired lapel mic is not cool. I’d like wireless, even if it’s more expensive.
Being unable to directly read scripts when making videos will inherently lead to lower quality than being able to directly (naturally) read them with a teleprompter. It’s a bigger deal than I’d realized.
Scripts for videos of any length are an awful lot longer than you might think – thousands of words. If I wish to improve the video quality with formal scripts, I’m going to need to step up my game in the text-input department, a lot. Otherwise it simply takes way too long to write full scripts.
So, in preparation to tackle these three areas, I did a bunch of research and settled on:
Voice recognition software from a company called Nuance to start dictating transcripts at speeds hopefully exceeding 200 words per minute.
I haven’t purchased these things yet, but probably will soon, after the new computer comes and I get it it set up. We are probably still a few weeks out from scaled-up video production, but I am building out the framework right now to be able to have a high throughput in the long-term. At least that is my hope.
Doing everything to be able to resume the SR4 video series, when the time is right
I had a document mapping out all the remaining content in the section from the study I have yet to cover. But I couldn’t find it!
So I spent a looong time looking for it, and finally found it. Then I verified it was in the right state (the last things I’d removed from it were the slides for the last presentation video I did). So I can now resume that series again right from where I left off, whenever I decide I am ready to pick back up in video production.
Planning out BB6A content grouping
I watched all the way through what had been weeks 53, 54, and 55, where I had intentionally taught through all the points upfront before any discussion.
I also skimmed through the rest of the videos in the series. I decided that I wouldn’t be doing any editing of them to focus them more. Not worth it, time-wise.
All of these will be split out into a separate playlist from the earlier videos in our BB6A playlist, as these are much more organized and focused, and will probably be much more useful to people overall.
Organizing the YouTube channel better
Organize already-existing full playlist for SR4 series
Make no discussion video playlist for SR4 series
Organize already-existing full playlist for BB6A series
Make focused/organized playlist for BB6A series
Created custom thumbnails for each series, and added them to all the videos (around 115 videos total, at this point)
Removed numbers from all the more-focused videos, to leave just video subjects in the titles, which is more natural.
Asking a nearby school about parking policy and grounds use after-hours
Just as it sounds. Will be relevant for potentially improving the parking situation for the in-person side of Bible studies, eventually. Still no response, unfortunately.
One immediate focus will be finishing off the initial organization of already-existing content on the YouTube channel (the ~115 videos or so that are already there, about 60 of which are more organized and focused). In that vein, I’m planning on making a few more initial videos:
Introduction videos for all the playlists
A second channel intro video that is much, much shorter, with timestamped links to the full treatment. Since 45 minutes for an intro video is much longer than I’d initially wanted.
I will also start filling in all of the things for the existing content (timestamps, summaries, the content on the study webpages on the website itself), as I still have a lot of catching up to do.
Finally, I’m planning to keep researching all that I need to do to finish preparing for the video creation workflow. There’s still lots to be done here (at least to get it up to my ever-increasing standards), but I am very hopeful the wait will be worth it, in terms of the quality the preparation should eventually yield.
0:00 - hey guys so right now i’m going to be 0:02 - making the ministry progress summary 0:03 - video here up through the things 0:06 - completed by september 11 2022. so we 0:10 - have quite a list here um this was the 0:12 - very first period since i launched a 0:14 - couple weeks back and so i’m going to be 0:16 - going over all of the things that i’ve 0:17 - gotten done on the ministry front uh 0:20 - kind of between then and now and so 0:21 - you’ll see like i said uh maybe in 0:24 - coming periods we won’t have quite as 0:26 - much as it’s in this one because my 0:28 - focus was torn across many different 0:30 - areas here but we’ll go through the 0:32 - tasks 0:33 - one by one here going over all of the 0:35 - progress that was made here in the last 0:36 - couple weeks all right so starting out 0:38 - here we’re just going to go through the 0:40 - outline real quick so these are going to 0:42 - be the points that i’m talking about 0:43 - here so uh these are all of the kind of 0:46 - the topics that that i got done here and 0:48 - so i’m gonna of course have a little bit 0:50 - more explanation for each of these but 0:51 - i’ll just go ahead and run through the 0:53 - list here up front so i emailed back 0:55 - people who responded to the ministry 0:57 - watch email 0:58 - i had a debate on the forum so we had a 1:01 - couple threads about matters concerning 1:02 - submitting to government authority and 1:04 - what exactly that means for us as 1:05 - christians and then we also had 1:08 - discussion about the forum structure 1:09 - moving forward given that i’ve launched 1:11 - now and i have a couple friends about to 1:14 - also start their teaching ministries i 1:16 - helped a good friend start setting up a 1:17 - ministry website of his own i researched 1:20 - uh and actually bought uh some 1:22 - technology of various forms things that 1:24 - will help future content so maybe that’s 1:26 - a little bit mysterious now but we’ll 1:28 - get into it more things related to uh 1:30 - video recordings and making video 1:32 - recordings better on the content side 1:34 - here 1:35 - and then doing everything to be able to 1:37 - resume the sr4 video series so that is 1:40 - one of the original video series here on 1:41 - the ministry going through part four the 1:43 - satanic rebellion series on ichthys i 1:45 - basically found the 1:47 - uh the planning document that i had 1:49 - lost track of for that series i planned 1:52 - out a bunch of the bible basics 6a 1:55 - content grouping on the youtube channel 1:57 - so that is the bible study that we had 2:00 - in a shared group sense we have about 90 2:02 - somewhat videos up in that series and i 2:04 - kind of figured out how to organize it i 2:06 - organized a whole bunch of stuff on the 2:07 - youtube channel better i sent a question 2:10 - to a nearby school about parking and 2:12 - this is hopefully in line with the 2:13 - in-person bible study that we’ll pick up 2:15 - here eventually and then i’m going to go 2:17 - over the upcoming work that i have here 2:19 - so picking up the initial point here 2:21 - emailing back to people who responded to 2:23 - the ministry launch email so i do want 2:26 - to give a shout out to those people who 2:28 - did take the time to reach out after i 2:29 - launched i got to have a couple 2:31 - conversations with people who i hadn’t 2:33 - talked to in quite a while and it really 2:34 - made my day you know very good to 2:36 - hear from people who haven’t 2:38 - talked to or seen in a couple years and 2:40 - you know we got to share some of what’s 2:42 - going on in each other’s lives and 2:44 - what’s changed since the last time we 2:46 - spoke so shout out to those people and 2:48 - even for everyone else who didn’t reach 2:50 - out but still subscribe to the youtube 2:51 - channel and signed up for the mailing 2:52 - list uh thank you for your support as 2:55 - well so for anyone who’s curious out of 2:57 - about 75 people bcc’d uh many of these 3:00 - people were friends from college or 3:02 - people who had been in bible studies 3:03 - with in churches and things like that 3:05 - well out of about the 75 people i bcced 3:08 - on the launch email we got about five 3:10 - new youtube subscribers and about six 3:11 - people signed up for the mailing list so 3:14 - not tons and tons but you know hey um 3:16 - and as i say here you know starting 3:19 - small is no big deal because i’m not in 3:21 - this for fame or money right i really do 3:23 - hope that some of the resources offered 3:25 - here will be useful for others but we’re 3:28 - not in this to make a big name for 3:30 - ourselves or anything like that so uh i 3:32 - was kind of hoping for i confess for a 3:34 - little bit bigger response but you know 3:36 - if people find it useful that’s good 3:38 - enough for me and so at least some 3:40 - people did and so that at least makes me 3:42 - feel somewhat validated all right so now 3:44 - we’re going to talk about the debate on 3:46 - the forum about matters concerning 3:47 - submitting to government authority and 3:49 - what exactly that means for us as 3:50 - christians so the timing wasn’t really 3:52 - the best here considering i basically 3:54 - just launched when we got really into 3:55 - this so a very good friend of mine and i 3:58 - had an extremely active debate going on 4:01 - the forum 4:02 - probably for the span of probably five 4:04 - days or so uh five or six days in the 4:06 - midst of this two-week cycle here and i 4:08 - spent a lot of my time outside of my uh 4:11 - my normal nine-to-five job i kind of on 4:13 - the forum on these threads um including 4:15 - most of the three day weekend over labor 4:17 - day so we had a monday off but i was 4:20 - pretty heavily enmeshed in this 4:21 - conversation here so i didn’t end up 4:23 - getting a lot done on the ministry front 4:25 - there uh well but of course this is 4:27 - ministry in its own way so we were 4:28 - having a very long conversation about 4:30 - the nature of this and the 4:32 - interpretation of the verses involved 4:33 - and things like that and so here’s just 4:35 - a brief outline of what ended up 4:37 - happening we had an initial whatsapp 4:39 - conversation that’s kind of what sparked 4:40 - this i compiled that into a pdf so that 4:42 - took some time cleaning up the whatsapp 4:44 - transcript so it’s about 50 pages just 4:46 - up front before we really even got into 4:48 - the technical side of things here and 4:50 - then i compiled a conversation i had 4:52 - with a mentor about some of the same 4:53 - topics uh in this conversation you might 4:55 - ask them some questions based on the 4:57 - conversation we were having i started 4:59 - the threads on the forum referencing 5:01 - these compilations then there was lots 5:03 - of back and forth uh kind of each of us 5:05 - representing our own points of view and 5:07 - of course towards the end here uh i had 5:10 - us have a voice chat so i called my 5:12 - friend on whatsapp and uh 5:14 - you know it ended up kind of working out 5:16 - better talking over voice maybe we ought 5:18 - to have done that sooner just because 5:19 - there’s some limitations to 5:21 - understanding tone and intent and such 5:23 - over text alone and you can kind of 5:25 - better pick that up when you have a 5:26 - conversation and so this helped kind of 5:28 - iron things out a little bit better and 5:29 - as i say maybe i’ll learn the lesson 5:31 - here maybe we try to do that a little 5:33 - bit sooner next time but um you know 5:35 - nonetheless uh this was a debate about 5:37 - certain matters of interpretation here 5:38 - so it was a very a 5:40 - good process of iron sharpening iron and 5:43 - us trying to get to the bottom of this 5:45 - matter of the truth here so at the end 5:47 - of it all we had probably on the order 5:48 - of 70 responses on the forum threading 5:50 - and that’s after the 50 pages of 5:52 - whatsapp conversation we had and so i 5:54 - would say at the end of this 5:55 - conversation well over 100 pages of 5:58 - uh responses here and so it was good as 6:00 - i say a worthy use of time and with that 6:03 - being said of course we did learn some 6:05 - things from this at least me especially 6:07 - you know in terms of how i communicated 6:08 - and uh basically not assuming things in 6:10 - the other person’s position and 6:12 - communication styles and learning how to 6:14 - present disagreements in a way that is 6:16 - less likely to be inflammatory things 6:18 - along those lines and of course we can 6:20 - always do better in communication so uh 6:22 - trying to learn um so hopefully in the 6:24 - future we can have even more productive 6:26 - discussions um you know and kind of you 6:28 - know have less misunderstanding before 6:30 - we finally get through to each other 6:31 - that sort of thing so a very good 6:33 - learning experience and of course lots 6:35 - of good interesting discussion on the 6:37 - particular matters here so having 6:39 - mentioned the forum here this is just 6:40 - another plug for anyone who’s interested 6:42 - there is a forum on the website i did go 6:44 - over this in the launch video although 6:45 - that was of course very long itself so 6:47 - this registration page here on the 6:49 - sidebar you get here by going to the 6:51 - community section clicking overview and 6:53 - then from the overview it’s actually the 6:54 - very last thing the table of contents uh 6:56 - this form down here and so the form here 6:59 - is where you can fill out your email 7:01 - address and your phone number if you 7:02 - want to join the forum and the whatsapp 7:03 - group um now i do want to stress that uh 7:06 - most of the conversations on the forum 7:08 - are not entirely like the one that i’m 7:10 - talking about here my friend and i um 7:12 - have kind of a separate part of the 7:14 - forum where we get really technical into 7:16 - stuff if we need to chat through 7:18 - something and uh most of the forum isn’t 7:20 - quite so over the top as us i promise 7:22 - now we are not the most concise of 7:23 - people but there are plenty of other 7:26 - people on the forum 7:27 - who have more normal length 7:29 - conversations than the hundred pages 7:30 - about really complex theological debate 7:32 - but if you’re interested in that well we 7:34 - have that too um so this was the forum 7:36 - debate as i say took up a good bit of my 7:38 - time this particular cycle 7:41 - now we also kind of coming out of this 7:43 - had a bit of just a 7:45 - bit of discussion talking about the 7:47 - forum structure moving forward so i 7:49 - won’t really put everyone to sleep by 7:50 - spending too much time here but now that 7:52 - i formally launched you know a couple 7:54 - weeks back here i had some necessary 7:56 - conversations with folks about exactly 7:58 - what that means for the forum so i’ve 7:59 - been the sysadmin of this forum for 8:01 - about three years now and now that i’ve 8:03 - launched my own ministry it’s kind of 8:05 - being put under the umbrella of the 8:07 - ministry which it wasn’t before um and 8:09 - just a few changes related to that also 8:12 - a couple of my close friends here in 8:14 - this community will probably get their 8:16 - own bible teaching endeavors off the 8:17 - ground pretty soon as well so i just 8:19 - launched here but they’re not going to 8:20 - be too far behind me and so given that 8:22 - we just needed to chat a bit to figure 8:24 - out what that means kind of regarding 8:26 - the community and how we interact there 8:29 - so specifically we’re all going to be 8:30 - teaching as we feel led by the lord 8:32 - right so we may not agree on absolutely 8:34 - all matters but you know we’ll teach as 8:36 - we feel led and it is right and proper 8:38 - for us to be independent right we are 8:40 - not a monolith nor 8:42 - were we ever trying to force each other 8:43 - to be and so given this what happens 8:45 - when you put us all together in the same 8:47 - place we spent a little bit of time 8:48 - addressing this as it will soon be kind 8:50 - of a very relevant matter for us so kind 8:52 - of practical admin stuff not going to 8:54 - spend too much time here but this is the 8:55 - behind the scenes conversations to make 8:57 - sure everything functions smoothly on 8:59 - the community so after this one of those 9:01 - friends that i just mentioned i was 9:03 - helping him 9:04 - start setting up a ministry website of 9:05 - his own so i deploy my website using a 9:08 - static site generator called hugo and uh 9:10 - because i’m helping him set up his site 9:12 - he’s gonna be doing the same because 9:13 - that’s what i know how to do um and so 9:15 - he had already converted all of his 9:16 - content into markdown but we spent a 9:18 - couple hours getting the local web 9:20 - server and the template and theme setup 9:21 - on his computer so he can see what 9:22 - everything looks like as a website so 9:24 - previously he just been editing the 9:26 - markdown files but now everything will 9:27 - come together on a local web server and 9:29 - he can see what it all looks like 9:31 - laid out in terms of a website and so i 9:33 - had to rework some of the templating for 9:35 - him since his content is laid out a bit 9:37 - differently than mine is mine’s actually 9:39 - a little bit more complicated more like 9:40 - levels of nesting and stuff but uh 9:42 - before we do things for real for real so 9:44 - like before we deploy his website push 9:46 - it out on the internet um i will 9:48 - probably want to clean up my theme on 9:49 - github so that i can actually use it as 9:51 - a sub module proper i kind of just 9:53 - overrode some changes kind of quick and 9:56 - dirty here this was the first pass to 9:58 - get things scaffolded for him in the 9:59 - meantime so he can kind of test 10:00 - everything locally but 10:02 - you know one example changes i’ll 10:03 - probably 10:04 - uh switch to using scss rather than css 10:07 - that compiled form that lets you use 10:08 - variables for things uh so that it’s 10:10 - really easy to change the colors across 10:12 - the theme so for example for the sidebar 10:14 - menu you know like sidebar menu or the 10:16 - table of contents here if you want to 10:17 - change the background color for that you 10:19 - can do that with a variable so that you 10:21 - don’t have to go hard-coding css 10:22 - everywhere so i’ll need to think a 10:24 - little bit more it’s my first time 10:26 - actually making a website theme of 10:27 - course and i would like to use it across 10:28 - all my sites as well but that’s it to do 10:30 - to come later now another thing that got 10:33 - done during this period is i made a lot 10:35 - of research and uh i actually bought a 10:38 - couple things relating to technology of 10:40 - various forms things that will help 10:42 - future content so specifically future 10:44 - video content here so i actually ordered 10:46 - a new desktop computer here 10:48 - and this is to help smooth everything 10:49 - out in the workflow 10:51 - and it will do that by just having a lot 10:53 - more processing power so more cpu power 10:56 - a lot more ram um i only had eight 10:57 - gigabytes here i’ve been running with a 11:00 - surface pro tablet i’ve had for gosh 11:02 - probably five or six years now maybe 11:03 - even longer since mid-college it’s 11:05 - getting pretty long in the tooth here so 11:07 - it’s actually served me quite well i 11:08 - don’t have any complaints with it it’s 11:09 - just now that i’m getting into some 11:11 - other things i do believe i need more 11:13 - power so that’s one of the reasons why i 11:14 - got a desktop computer here but it will 11:16 - help with the video processing but 11:18 - actually the straw that broke the 11:19 - camel’s back here uh was realizing that 11:21 - i need more computational power to 11:24 - optimally make use of voice recognition 11:26 - software um and so specifically i’m 11:28 - going to be using that in drafting video 11:29 - scripts which is something i’ll get to 11:31 - in a second but voice recognition 11:33 - software kind of heavy on the processing 11:34 - power as the computer tries to guess 11:37 - what it is you’re saying convert that 11:38 - into text and so i just knew that my 11:40 - tablet was not going to be able to keep 11:42 - up if i had that and a text editor and a 11:44 - browser and maybe a music player and 11:46 - everything else all up at the same time 11:48 - i just didn’t have a powerful enough 11:49 - computer for it and so i probably went a 11:52 - bit far the other way bought a very 11:53 - powerful computer now but hopefully 11:55 - it’ll leave me future proof for a good 11:56 - long time here and help me on the 11:58 - content generation front so that i can 12:00 - edit videos as well and have plenty of 12:02 - power for all of the content generation 12:04 - things that are coming in the pipeline 12:06 - here all right so not going to hopefully 12:08 - get too bogged down here but i also 12:11 - spent time aside from just researching 12:14 - you know that particular facet of this i 12:16 - spent a lot of time thinking about how 12:18 - to best create the video content itself 12:20 - so i thought i’d had a pretty good idea 12:22 - of how i wanted to actually make the 12:24 - videos 12:24 - but then i made the ministry overview 12:26 - video which i had written a pretty long 12:28 - script for but i did not have a 12:30 - teleprompter or anything and i maybe 12:32 - rethink some things and so specifically 12:34 - three areas i 12:35 - made decisions in things that i’d spent 12:37 - time thinking on i decided that being 12:39 - tethered with a wired lapel mic is not 12:41 - cool so i’m still recording the videos 12:43 - like that now i haven’t actually 12:44 - purchased any replacements but it keeps 12:46 - me really tied to the webcam i can’t 12:49 - really move around that much 12:50 - and so i just decided that i’d like 12:52 - wireless even if it’s more expensive i 12:54 - think it will be better experience for 12:56 - me and uh kind of lead to more natural 12:58 - content i 13:00 - am have decided as well that being 13:03 - unable to directly read scripts when 13:04 - making videos oh just will inherently 13:06 - lead to lower content quality so i 13:09 - consider myself a much better writer 13:10 - than i am a speaker and so if i’m able 13:13 - to directly kind of naturally read the 13:15 - scripts with a teleprompter so that i 13:16 - can look at the camera while i’m reading 13:18 - i just think that it will make the 13:20 - content a lot better than it would 13:21 - otherwise be and it’s a much bigger deal 13:23 - than i thought it might be um and then 13:25 - in writing a script for the ministry 13:28 - introduction video that i mentioned just 13:30 - now i realized that scripts for videos 13:32 - of any length are actually an awful lot 13:34 - longer than you’d think so thousands and 13:35 - thousands of words if i wish to improve 13:37 - the video quality with formal scripts 13:39 - like i just mentioned i’m going to need 13:41 - to step up my game in the text input 13:42 - department a lot otherwise it just 13:44 - simply takes way too long to write full 13:46 - scripts for everything 13:48 - and so specifically to solve these 13:50 - problems here’s the ideas that i did 13:52 - research and came up with here there is 13:55 - a wireless 13:56 - gopro compatible mic from a company 13:58 - called road here i think they’re a 14:00 - company from europe not entirely sure 14:02 - but they have 14:03 - kind of an action camera mic here you 14:05 - can plug it into the 3.5 millimeter jack 14:08 - and it’s got um kind of a you know 14:10 - wireless receiver here you can plug a 14:12 - lapel mic into so that’s going to be the 14:14 - microphone solution here there’s a 14:16 - teleprompter set up this is actually a 14:18 - link to a youtube video that i found 14:19 - about a guy who explains how to use a 14:21 - teleprompter setup now he actually uses 14:24 - like a custom cage for his gopro here 14:27 - like this one this aluminum cage i’m 14:30 - probably just going to use a single ring 14:31 - you need some adapter for the 52 14:34 - millimeter like lens adapter so that you 14:35 - can stick uh the teleprompter on the 14:38 - front of it and so uh here is the 14:40 - specific teleprompter that i’m looking 14:42 - at it’s from a company called the 14:43 - padcaster pair it’s really not that 14:45 - expensive and it’s pretty neat you use 14:47 - your phone here as the teleprompter and 14:49 - then you can stick the gopro behind it 14:50 - so this is what i’m looking at here 14:53 - and so that’s the teleprompter hopefully 14:55 - that would help me read content in a 14:57 - more natural way and then as to making 14:59 - the transcripts in a time efficient way 15:01 - i was started looking very seriously 15:02 - into voice recognition software so i’d 15:05 - done a lot of research instead into 15:06 - stenography a few years back i was very 15:08 - interested in it conceptually but voice 15:10 - recognition software doesn’t have nearly 15:12 - as big a learning curve and so there’s a 15:13 - company called nuance here that makes a 15:15 - product called dragon 15:17 - dragon naturally speaking or dragon 15:19 - dictation it’s a voice recognition 15:21 - software and i’m hoping that once i get 15:23 - the hang of it and i need to set some 15:24 - things up of course and it has a 15:26 - learning curve of its own but that once 15:28 - i get the hang of it i’ll be able to 15:29 - start dictating transcripts for videos 15:31 - to the tune of 200 words or more per 15:34 - minute and so that will help of course 15:35 - because even when i touch type on my own 15:38 - keyboard layout i’m only about 75 maybe 15:40 - which is certainly not bad but you know 15:43 - 200 is certainly a lot faster than 75 15:46 - and so these transcripts that are just 15:48 - not transcripts these scripts that i 15:49 - read don’t have to be super polished uh 15:51 - you know of course they need to be 15:52 - grammatically correct so that if i’m 15:54 - reading them i don’t make grammatical 15:55 - errors but i just need to make a lot 15:57 - more content than i thought i would 15:59 - initially and so this became a much 16:01 - higher priority than it was at the 16:02 - beginning so all of this stuff kind of 16:04 - wasn’t on my radar initially but i think 16:06 - all of this will help make the video 16:08 - content 16:09 - that much better and so i haven’t 16:10 - purchased these things yet but i 16:12 - probably will soon after the new 16:13 - computer that i mentioned earlier comes 16:15 - and i get it set up so we’re probably 16:17 - still a few weeks out at this point i 16:18 - don’t want to make any promises because 16:20 - you know i i don’t have everything set 16:22 - up yet i’m still kind of hashing out the 16:24 - specifics of how i want to enhance video 16:26 - content as much as i can but i’m hoping 16:28 - that building out the framework right 16:30 - now will let me have high throughput 16:32 - with high quality videos in the long 16:34 - term so that’s at least the goal here 16:36 - now 16:37 - on the actual ministry side a lot of 16:39 - what i’ve been going over here as you 16:40 - see is kind of 16:42 - meta related it’s kind of things 16:43 - relating to the ministry itself the 16:45 - structure 16:46 - planning for the future stuff you know 16:48 - maybe it’s not very interesting but 16:50 - very necessary steps here 16:52 - so on the actual content side i uh went 16:55 - and found the planning document i had 16:57 - for the sr4 video series that i have up 17:00 - and so i had a document mapping out all 17:01 - the remaining content in the section 17:03 - from the study i’ve yet to cover but i 17:05 - actually couldn’t find it so i had to 17:07 - spend like oh it was more than an hour i 17:09 - checked across all the google docs i 17:10 - have and all the markdown files on my 17:12 - computer and i even used a full text 17:13 - search application i just couldn’t find 17:15 - it and eventually i did find it it 17:16 - wasn’t a google doc 17:18 - but i spent a long time looking for this 17:20 - and i finally found it and after that i 17:22 - verified that it was in kind of like the 17:23 - right state and that is like the last 17:25 - things i’d removed from it were the 17:26 - slides from the last presentation video 17:28 - i did so that means that i can kind of 17:30 - resume that series again right from 17:32 - where i left off right there won’t be a 17:33 - break i won’t be missing anything 17:35 - because i know right where i am and so 17:37 - that maps out the upcoming content for 17:39 - that video series once i decide that i’m 17:41 - ready to pick back up in video 17:42 - production so after this then i turned 17:45 - my attentions to the youtube channel i 17:46 - started kind of cleaning things up there 17:48 - this is where i wanted to start i 17:49 - already have quite a few videos up here 17:52 - and so one of the first things i did was 17:53 - i was kind of cleaning up the videos 17:55 - from the bible study series we had going 17:57 - through bible basic 6a which is 17:59 - parapatiology the study of the christian 18:01 - walk so this is the uh first bible study 18:04 - recording that we had up uh so we have 18:06 - about over 90 videos in this series over 18:09 - the course of the entire thing and uh 18:11 - about halfway through so right around 18:13 - week 53 or so um in the study we started 18:16 - getting a lot more organized so i 18:17 - started organizing things more we kept 18:19 - the videos more focused um so i actually 18:22 - watched all the way through uh the first 18:24 - videos when i had kind of made that 18:25 - switch and we were trying to organize 18:27 - things a little more so i had 18:28 - intentionally kind of like taught 18:29 - through all the points up front before 18:30 - we had any discussion so we had this 18:32 - nice unbroken 35 or 40 minutes of 18:34 - teaching in those videos and i actually 18:36 - at the time had edited them into 18:37 - separate videos and so that’s useful i 18:39 - also skimmed through the rest of the 18:41 - videos coming after that in the series 18:42 - and i thought that i might be kind of 18:44 - doing some editing um some editing out 18:46 - of discussion to kind of just try to get 18:48 - them focused on the teaching and maybe 18:49 - i’d like have uh two versions of all the 18:51 - videos one that was like the more 18:53 - focused version and one that was like 18:54 - the long version but 18:56 - i honestly we’ve done a reasonably good 18:58 - job of keeping things more focused uh 19:00 - after this point um and so i just 19:02 - decided that it wasn’t worth the time 19:03 - you know they’re pretty good quite 19:05 - focused you know most of them are under 19:06 - 30 minutes 19:08 - most i mean many of them are you know 19:10 - more that ballpark versus some of the 19:12 - earlier uh discussion videos in the 19:13 - series for like an hour or even two 19:15 - hours so um i just decided it wasn’t 19:17 - worth it time-wise so i’ll keep going in 19:19 - the focus series there and then i got 19:22 - all of the more organized focused videos 19:25 - from the later time in our bible study 19:27 - discussion once we decided to be more 19:28 - organized split out in a separate 19:30 - playlist from the earlier videos and so 19:33 - uh the 19:34 - this new playlist will kind of have the 19:36 - more organized and focused videos which 19:37 - are probably the ones that most people 19:39 - be more interested in 19:40 - just because it’s more useful they’re 19:42 - more easy to reference and kind of get 19:43 - through you don’t have to wait through 19:44 - so much discussion um just because we 19:47 - didn’t get so organized in our study up 19:49 - until this point 19:50 - so i just organized the youtube channel 19:52 - and better uh better generally during 19:55 - this time as well so for the sr4 series 19:58 - which was my own so that wasn’t like a 20:00 - group discussion series that was just me 20:02 - um i organized the already existing full 20:04 - playlist for it i also made another 20:05 - playlist uh that was just gonna be for 20:07 - the lesson video so i had two kinds of 20:09 - videos in this series which i’ll make uh 20:11 - you know videos on in the introductory 20:13 - part of that playlist for the series 20:16 - explaining the differences there but um 20:18 - one of the playlists here doesn’t have 20:20 - kind of the more tangential discussion 20:22 - videos where i go over points that 20:24 - aren’t really in the study but things 20:25 - that are just additional information to 20:27 - keep in mind and the other playlist has 20:29 - those so one playlist is longer one 20:30 - plays to shorter the shorter playlist is 20:32 - like just the focus study videos the 20:34 - longer playlist has all the discussion 20:36 - as well so it gives you a little bit 20:37 - more of a full picture but you know more 20:38 - videos as well so the bible basic 6a 20:41 - kind of has the same split but because 20:43 - that was that group discussion we don’t 20:44 - really have the concept of discussion 20:46 - videos there so i just split this into 20:49 - uh these the smaller playlist will just 20:51 - have the focus and organized videos from 20:53 - later on in our bible study whereas the 20:55 - full thing will have well it’ll have all 20:57 - the videos up and tell those and then 20:59 - those as well um so some of the videos 21:01 - are kind of double counted in these 21:03 - playlists as well but uh the first like 21:05 - 55 weeks or so of the study we had uh 21:08 - were just quite a bit longer and less 21:10 - organized less focused and so 21:13 - that’s the full series then we have the 21:14 - more focused playlist like i just talked 21:15 - about on the last slide and then for 21:17 - both series i actually created custom 21:19 - thumbnails for each one i mean they’re 21:20 - nothing fancy they’re just uh colored 21:22 - backgrounds with the title of the 21:23 - studies it looks a little bit more 21:24 - professional here at least i think so 21:26 - and then added those to all the videos 21:28 - which actually took forever because 21:29 - there were like 115 videos or so up on 21:31 - the channel already um so uh you know 21:34 - you know that took a while you know 21:35 - video by video i didn’t find out a very 21:37 - good way to do it in bulk um i did try 21:39 - but i i couldn’t figure it out so i had 21:41 - to do it video by video and that took a 21:42 - long time i also removed the numbers 21:44 - from all the titles here um and that 21:46 - just leaves the video subjects in the 21:47 - titles which just looks more natural 21:49 - than having like week 72 of the study or 21:52 - something it just just describes the 21:53 - topics that it goes over makes it easier 21:55 - to reference kind of in a more natural 21:57 - way so that was the organization on the 21:59 - youtube channel here 22:01 - this is very interesting i live really 22:03 - close to a school 22:05 - and so i was kind of wondering on off 22:06 - hours if i have bible studies on friday 22:08 - and saturday nights could people park in 22:09 - the school parking lot walk across the 22:11 - street to my house so that we wouldn’t 22:12 - like plug up you know the roads around 22:14 - my neighbor’s houses and stuff that’d be 22:16 - nice if it were possible but i sent off 22:18 - an email and asked and i haven’t gotten 22:20 - a response yet but i’m fingers crossed 22:21 - you know i see no reason why not and uh 22:23 - i think it would be you know kind to my 22:25 - neighbors and it would make it parking 22:26 - easier for bible studies that we have at 22:28 - the physical house but we’ll see on this 22:30 - but i i got the ball rolling there at 22:31 - least hopefully and then uh now i’m just 22:34 - going to go over real briefly i know 22:36 - this video has gotten longer than i 22:37 - wanted for it to be but we’re going to 22:39 - real briefly go over some of the 22:40 - upcoming work here so 22:42 - my immediate focus or at least one of 22:45 - them will be finishing off the initial 22:47 - organization of the already existing 22:49 - content on the youtube channel so i 22:51 - mentioned we have about 115 videos 22:53 - already up there which is a lot but only 22:56 - about 60 of those are kind of organized 22:58 - and focused so like the first as i say 23:00 - about the first 50 or so in the bible 23:03 - basic 6a series which was our group 23:05 - bible study i was kind of just putting 23:07 - up the recordings because it was really 23:08 - easy for me to record it but i hadn’t 23:10 - taken the pains to really 23:12 - get it organized or focused so it just 23:14 - may not be as interesting for reference 23:16 - for many people um but about 60 videos 23:18 - are pretty good i think and so in that 23:21 - vein i’m gonna try to um organize all of 23:24 - those things before i i kind of focus on 23:27 - other things i want to make sure that 23:29 - everything i have already is kind of up 23:31 - to my standards before i turn my focus 23:33 - elsewhere so 23:34 - in doing that i’m planning on making a 23:36 - few more initial videos related to these 23:38 - i’m gonna make introductory videos for 23:40 - all the playlists that i just mentioned 23:42 - so i mentioned that i split a couple of 23:43 - the playlist here right one for the sr4 23:45 - series another one for the uh bb6a 23:48 - series keeping uh kind of explaining 23:50 - what the difference between the 23:51 - playlists are just to make that more 23:52 - intuitive i’m gonna try to actually make 23:54 - a second channel introductory video so i 23:56 - mentioned the first one ended up like 45 23:58 - minutes which was a lot longer than i 24:00 - wanted it to be and so i’m going to try 24:02 - to actually make one that’s shorter and 24:03 - then just time stamp link it to the 24:05 - longer one for people who want a more 24:07 - thorough explanation 24:08 - because i was very happy with how that 24:10 - video turned out i think it’s very 24:11 - informative but it might just be a 24:13 - little bit too long is all um so 24:16 - that is another plan here a second 24:18 - channel intro video i’m gonna try to 24:19 - keep that one like actually 10 or 15 24:20 - minutes um you know much more rapid fire 24:23 - about uh the main points of the ministry 24:25 - it might serve as a more gentle 24:26 - introduction for people who aren’t ready 24:28 - to go watch 45 minutes of explanation um 24:31 - so finally um 24:33 - i want to start filling out all of the 24:35 - things for the existing content so the 24:37 - timestamps the summaries the content on 24:39 - the study web pages you know this is 24:40 - what i was talking about before i’m 24:42 - making sure that i i do everything that 24:43 - i need to for the things that already 24:45 - exist before i turn my attention to 24:47 - other things and then i’m also planning 24:49 - to keep researching all that i need to 24:50 - do to finish preparing for the video 24:52 - creation workflow so i talked about some 24:54 - of the technology relating to that uh 24:56 - the new computer the wireless 24:59 - receiver for the lapel mic that i can 25:00 - plug into the gopro the teleprompter and 25:03 - then the uh the voice recognition 25:06 - software to help me hopefully make 25:08 - transcripts that much faster so that i 25:10 - can actually 25:11 - speak off of scripts for all my videos i 25:13 - think that will help improve the quality 25:14 - of all of those factors that might go 25:16 - into making higher quality videos i 25:18 - still need to kind of figure all this 25:19 - out so there’s still lots to be done 25:21 - here um at least to meet my ever 25:23 - increasing standards here i keep 25:24 - thinking of ways to do this better 25:27 - ways in which i would like to hopefully 25:28 - enhance the content here but i’m also 25:31 - very hopeful that the weight will be 25:32 - worth it in terms of the quality that 25:34 - this preparation should hopefully yield 25:35 - in the long term so lots of information 25:38 - here um i as i say i kind of hope in the 25:41 - future these maybe won’t be so long um 25:43 - just lots of different focuses here in 25:45 - this first period after launch my 25:47 - attention is getting pulled a lot of 25:48 - ways hopefully eventually things will 25:50 - kind of stabilize a little bit so it’ll 25:52 - be a little bit more like well here’s 25:53 - the study i’m working on right now and 25:55 - you know maybe like three slides rather 25:56 - than 15 25:58 - but at any rate this should hopefully 25:59 - give you a pretty good idea of where my 26:01 - attention has been the last couple weeks 26:03 - and uh with this we will pick back up in 26:05 - uh you know approximately two weeks give 26:07 - or take 26:08 - with the next update going over the 26:10 - things that have gotten done in the next 26:11 - period so i hope you’ve found this 26:13 - helpful um 26:15 - and uh with that you know we’ll close 26:17 - out here and 26:18 - hope to see you all again in the next 26:20 - video
Well, it’s now been a full month since initial launch. I might wish I had gotten more done thus far, but slow and steady wins the race. I’m still sort of in the set up phase – in more ways than one. This cycle, I did all the things for the first video of the focused BB6A playlist on the channel, so that I could set up the BB6A study page on the website. I also made 7 meta-related videos for the YouTube channel. 4 of those videos dealt with explaining playlist structure for existing conternt playlists, 2 were content introductions for both BB6A playlists (the more focused version, and the full version), and the last video was a new banner video for the channel that condensed all of the content from the initial intro video I had made… the one that ended up around ~45 minutes long. That was too long for the general banner video (in my opinion), hence the new shorter version too.
The desktop computer I’d ordered also came this cycle, so I spent a good bit of time setting it up. This entire ministry progress summary was produced on the new computer. It is many times more powerful than the old tablet it is replacing.
00:00 - Introduction 02:13 - Added transcripts 02:40 - Considered upcoming future work, somewhat gloomily 06:28 - But then came up with a detailed plan of attack 08:43 - Phase I: Polishing the basic content related to initial launch 11:44 - Phase II: Supporting discussion pages/videos fully, organizing all the already-existing SR4 content 18:50 - Phase III: Organizing all the already-existing BB6A content, setting up the fully-optimized video creation workflow, and catching up in other areas so that I can more fully focus on ministry without feeling like I’m behind elsewhere 23:19 - Finished all the Phase I tasks this cycle 23:36 - Did all the things for the first focused BB6A video, so that I could get the BB6A study page up and started on the website 25:01 - Created additional meta-related videos on the YouTube channel 30:45 - Did some miscellaneous styling bug-fixes and improvements 31:34 - Set up new computer (for the most part) 33:55 - Upcoming work 35:34 - Outro
I added transcripts to the webpages for several of the recent videos I’d worked on organizing.
Considered upcoming future work, somewhat gloomily
There is still a depressingly large backlog of rather unpleasant tasks that must be done.
Some are boring, tedious, busywork (e.g, formatting all the already-existing content appropriately, writing more documentation).
Others are difficult, time-consuming, and unpleasant – largely due to a bunch of unknowns and the great complexity of the overall system (modifying the codebase for the preprocessor application to support discussion pages)
Then there’s a lot of set up I still need to do to be able to do all the video-related things I’d like to in the future. Using a teleprompter with full scripts for every video (made with voice recognition to make it sustainable time-wise), a whiteboard in the background (or drawing on-screen with my tablet?), etc.
I had a walk with my roommate to vent a bit, and also to talk through my plans and goals. I’m launched now, to be sure, but there’s still so much to be done before I’ll feel like I’m truly where I want to be, and that’s a bit discouraging. Talking through it with someone who truly understands helps a lot.
But then came up with a detailed plan of attack
Deciding that the best way to tackle the large pile of work was with a detailed plan, I set out to make exactly that.
I settled on a plan that has three phases. After each phase (at which point some sort of milestone will be reached), a certain set of things will be able to be done that could not be done before. We’ll get to the three phases in a sec, but first, some other general notes on what I decided:
I made the call to put off fully scripted videos, the teleprompter, and whiteboard-type-things (that is, the completely ideal video-generation setup, as things seem to me) as long as I need to, until these things are truly ready. But the change is, I’m going to keep going with the SR4 series in the meantime (making “less-optimal” videos without the scripts/teleprompter and whiteboard demonstrations), even though I hadn’t intended to make any videos at all until I got the new setup completely operational. That had been the plan even as recently as a week ago.
Basically, I just don’t want to let the perfect get in the way of the good, and I very much wish to do some actual ministry production alongside all the tedious busywork tasks I still need to finish here at the beginning of things. If I just do the latter (as I have been for the last little bit), everything is too painful, and burnout sets in. Which is no good.
Now, as to the actual phases:
Phase I: Polishing the basic content related to initial launch
The Phase I tasks are as follows:
Doing all the things for the first focused BB6A video, so that I can get the BB6A study page up and started on the website
Making some additional meta-related videos on the YouTube channel, to get the content in a more polished state. Videos discussing playlist structure, videos discussing playlist content (introduction videos), and a shorter version of the ministry intro video that ended up over 45 minutes long, to be used as the channel banner video.
The things that can be accomplished after Phase I is completed:
I can be a bit more vocal about sharing the ministry, even more than I have been. My mentor can link to it in the weekly email posting on his ministry site, to hopefully get a bit more exposure. After I had identified these improvements to make, I wanted to get them done before further trying to increase exposure.
I actually finished all the Phase I tasks this cycle. We’ll go over them shortly.
Phase II: Supporting discussion pages/videos fully, organizing all the already-existing SR4 content
The Phase II tasks are as follows:
Fully coding support for discussion pages in the preprocessor application
Writing documentation for discussion pages on the content organization page
Catching up on completely polishing all the content from all the already-existing SR4 videos, reviewing the material at the same time (so that I will be able to pick back up more seamlessly when resuming new content generation for the series).
The things that can be accomplished after Phase II is completed:
I can start making new ministry content: more SR4 videos.
Given that I’ll finally be adding new content on a consistent schedule, I’ll feel even more comfortable with additional ministry exposure – to the degree that I’ll be ready to start getting more involved in local church groups again, something that I have thus far been holding off on in large part. I wanted to completely have the ministry live first.
If there is sufficient interest after meeting some local folks, the in-person Bible studies at the house might be started at any point after Phase II is completed (after I am regularly making new content again). It may take some time for this to happen, however, and it ought to be something organic, not forced.
I’m really looking forward to having a social life again (I’ve been pretty head-down with nose-to-the-grindstone since I graduated from college several years ago – in order to get the ministry website/YouTube channel launched), so I’d like to get through Phase II ASAP, so I can start getting involved once more in local church groups. I’m also looking forward to the opportunity to serve in these communities too, as I am able.
Phase III: Organizing all the already-existing BB6A content, setting up the fully-optimized video creation workflow, and catching up in other areas so that I can more fully focus on ministry without feeling like I’m behind elsewhere
The Phase III tasks are as follows:
Catching up on all the already-existing focused BB6A content = ~38 videos or so, which do not follow as strict a structure as the SR4 videos (that is, as completely follow a set of slides), and will therefore be much more painful and time-consuming to timestamp and organize effectively.
Getting the voice recognition (to quickly dictate full scripts), teleprompter, and whiteboard parts of my video creation workflow set up, so that the workflow will then be configured exactly as I wish for it to be, with no further outstanding TODOs. Also make several changes to the slides part of the preprocessor to further improve the slides the videos are based on. (For example, not using embedded Bible app windows in order to save space, supporting header nesting in the construction of the auto-generated slides outlines, etc.).
Catching up on the huge backlogs of daily progress summaries and random ramblings videos on my other YouTube channels that I need to make/process/post.
The things that can be accomplished after Phase III is completed:
I’ll be able to focus much closer to 100% of my attention on content production, rather than having these other matters steal away my attention. I’m hoping to be able to really crank up the production pace once I’m no longer pulled as many different directions all the time.
Phase III is the last phase. After Phase III I’ll be done with everything on my list, and making all new video content with the workflow I’ve thought out and wish to use in the long-term. Things will then mostly just be a matter of which content I make first.
Finished all the Phase I tasks this cycle
Both main categories of tasks.
Did all the things for the first focused BB6A video, so that I could get the BB6A study page up and started on the website
As part of Phase I. In getting this first focused BB6A video organized and formatted, I:
Built content for it (copy-pasted from Ichthys study, formatted with special content sections as appropriate)
Added timestamps (trickier/more time-consuming since this one wasn’t directly based off of slides)
Subject-tagged all the sections (this took a while)
Built video description
Pushed everything live on YouTube and on the site
Created additional meta-related videos on the YouTube channel
As part of Phase I. There were 7 videos that I made:
Prior to making all these recordings, I had to draft content and make slides (at least for most of them). I made a new “not-displayed” content type to generate .gitignore’d slides for all these videos that won’t have actual deployed pages of their own. I had to ensure that the appropriate structure was still followed so that the preprocessor application would still work properly to generate slides for things in this new content type. Needed all the right folder nesting with _index.md files, etc.
After recording the 7 videos, I had to do all the post-processing on the videos, upload them to YouTube with appropriate thumbnails, and then organize them appropriately in the relevant playlists. And so on.
Because I was concatenating several different takes this time to be able to share identical content across the two videos in each of the structure intro video types (discussion vs. no discussion, full BB6A vs. focused BB6A), I bumped into issues I hadn’t had before (dealing with variable vs. constant frame rate recordings not concatenating properly, and differing audio channels not concatenating properly). I’ll spare you the boring details, but it took a lot of research to fix things, and I had to delete and then completely re-do some processing steps partway through. At least now I think I understand everything better, so hopefully things will only go smoother in the future.
Did some miscellaneous styling bug-fixes and improvements
Made a CSS tweak to the slides template to make the highlight background color yellow rather than blue. Looks better in presentations, I think.
Fixed CSS bug: Centered icons better (more towards middle of lines) in subject index link shortcode.
Fixed CSS bug: Resolved positioning issue with TOC container being offset somewhat from the top of the page.
Set up new computer (for the most part)
The desktop computer I’d ordered finally came. I spent a good bit of time compiling a list of applications I use to make sure I installed everything I wanted to. I’m shifting into using a package manager (called Chocolatey) for as much as possible too, which should help maintainability in the future.
This is the first time I’ve set up a new computer in like 6 years or something.
It went relatively well, but there’s just a lot to set up, is all. I still have a few more things to do, which will carry into the next work cycle. I’m hoping to start using the new computer (which is much faster and more powerful) for absolutely everything within the next few days. It should speed up the content generation process, as it has approximately 4x the CPU power and 8x the RAM of the computer it is replacing, with much faster generation 4 NVMe SSD read/write speeds too.
As mentioned, I actually finished Phase I this cycle, making all the new meta-related videos, as well as finishing things for the first focused BB6A video.
So my main focus in the coming days will be the tasks from Phase II. I’m going to focus on coding support for discussion pages first (and then writing documentation for how they work). This means that I will do the review of the SR4 content I’ve made thus far at the very end of Phase II, right before I start back up content creation in that series. That way things will be maximally fresh in my head, and I can resume more seamlessly.
0:00 - hey guys so right now I’m going to be making the second Ministry progress summary update here and so it’s been 0:07 - about a month here since the ministry launched and uh I’m going to be going over some of the things that I’ve got 0:12 - done in this last two week cycle here now first off I’m really hoping that the 0:18 - webcam quality here is going to be better than the last couple videos that I’ve recorded um I spent some time 0:23 - fiddling around with GoPro settings I am recording inside right now it’s pretty late at night uh you know like past 10 0:29 - o’clock so it’s pitch black and I do have blackout curtains up in the room that I’m recording in now but I fiddled 0:34 - around with the color profiles and the iso settings and things on the GoPro so I’m hoping that this comes out clearer 0:41 - now the other thing that I did was I increased the recording resolution for the screen capture software so I am 0:47 - recording at 4K now which means that hopefully the picture will be a lot clearer than it has been so I just 0:53 - noticed some issues with the videos that I had made uh pretty recently here you 0:59 - know like the second a shorter introduction video that I’ll go over here in just in just a little bit um you 1:05 - know so like the the shorter version of the ministry intro and you know a couple others I just noticed that the footage 1:11 - wasn’t that great and I mean there were several reasons for that and I’m going to be trying to hopefully fix that here so uh you know I’ll stop rambling about 1:17 - that um I’ll get right into the um the slides to go over here for all 1:23 - the things I went over and so uh we’ll pick up with that in just a sec all right so here we are with the slides 1:30 - and this is going to be the ministry progress summary here through September 25th 2022 and so as you can see with the 1:37 - title here uh big categories that we did I made the Bible basic 6A study page on 1:43 - the website so I got the first video for that organized so that that web page could be created as the landing page for 1:50 - that study and I’ll be filling out the other studies over time here I made a bunch of meta videos on the channel so 1:56 - things describing content and structure for the playlist and then the shorter introduction video 2:02 - that I mentioned just a second ago and then I also planned out a bunch of the future work so 2:08 - um here’s the summary uh you know that’s going to be up on the web page as well and I’m not really going to go through the outline I’m just going to go jump 2:14 - right in here um so uh one of the first things I did this last cycle was I added transcripts 2:21 - to the web pages for several of the recent videos that I’d worked on and so 2:26 - transcripts for me are pretty easy I have a spreadsheet program that I copy 2:31 - paste the automatically generated YouTube transcripts into and it spits out everything with the hyperlinks made but I just had to do this and this is 2:38 - something that I’ll have to kind of perpetually keep up with over time now after that I was trying to decide 2:43 - what I was going to do next and so I started thinking about all of the things that I still had on my to-do list here 2:49 - and uh in so doing started getting a little bit depressed because there’s still rather a lot of things that I want 2:55 - to get done before I’ll consider myself truly ready so it’s not so much that I have you know 3:01 - things that I must do as there’s just quite a few things in my backlog of 3:07 - tasks that just aren’t entirely fun so if it were just a lot that’d be one thing but it’s kind of a lot of things 3:13 - and the things that I have to do aren’t terribly Pleasant so some things are kind of boring 3:18 - tedious busy work so for example formatting all the already existing content appropriately writing more 3:24 - documentation for features I add things like that others are more difficult time consuming 3:30 - and just unpleasant generally and this is largely due to a bunch of unknowns and how I’m going to implement things 3:36 - and the great complexity of the overall system so I’m thinking here mostly specifically of modifying the code base 3:42 - for the preposter application I’ve written in Python to support the new page type that I want to do and it’s 3:48 - going to involve a good bit of refactoring to like the main program Loop and I’m going to have to write some 3:53 - other regular Expressions to do the parsing that I want and age just can I I’ve done this sort of thing a couple 3:59 - times before and making this application I just know it’s going to be bad and so it’s been a bit of procrastination there 4:05 - but you know this is something else that isn’t terribly fun it’s just another necessary task that I have to get through 4:11 - and then of course there’s still a lot of setup that I need to do to be able to do all of the video related things I’d 4:17 - like to do in the future so this is kind of setting up the videos for how I wish to do them in the long term and so some 4:23 - of those things are like using a teleprompter with full scripts for every video and so I am planning on making the 4:29 - scripts with voice recognition software hoping to get uh you know input speeds kind of above 200 225 words per minute 4:36 - so that this will be actually possible time wise for me to actually fully script all the videos and then either 4:42 - use a whiteboard in the background or drawing on my screen with my tablet I haven’t quite decided although I think I’m leaning towards like the tablet 4:48 - approach just kind of for a little bit more interactivity when I’m going through things and you know other things like this so 4:54 - there’s uh several to Do’s on the list relating to improving some of the way that I 5:00 - generate video content and so there’s some research and setup that’ll have to do with all of those things as well and 5:06 - again it’s not that any of these things are inherently so terrible as they’re just not very fun tasks they’re 5:13 - not like intellectually stimulating or things that I can kind of spend time researching and 5:20 - talking to others about doctrinally and things like that so they’re just kind of a lot of busy work 5:25 - tasks here and unpleasant busy work at that so in this process here I went on a 5:31 - walk with my roommate we kind of talked about some of these things that I need to get done now that I’ve launched my 5:36 - Ministry and stuff but there’s just a lot that I need to do before I’ll feel like 5:42 - I’ve reached the place where I truly want to be and that’s just a bit discouraging you know it has been a long process here many years I’ve been 5:48 - working on things but uh you know to kind of launch and then still have all of this stuff on my plate 5:53 - I mean that’s just a little bit rough so talking through it with someone else who’s kind of in the process of setting 5:59 - up ministry stuff someone who really understands you know it helps a lot just be able to I don’t know just talk about 6:04 - all of the things that I’m facing and you know talking it out kind of helps you figure out what things you need to 6:10 - prioritize as well so you know good conversation it’s always good to have close friends to bounce things off of so 6:16 - they can give you some perspective and so this was kind of the first step here considering all of the work that I have 6:22 - to do uh kind of trying to make a list in my head of uh here’s all the tasks here’s what is critical for me to be 6:29 - focusing on next and then so after considering all the work the next thing was coming up with a 6:35 - detailed plan of attack to work on all of these things so given that I decided that the best 6:41 - way to tackle the large pile of work was with the detailed plan I set out to make exactly that 6:46 - I ended up settling on a plan that has three phases after each phase at which point some sort of Milestone will be 6:52 - reached a certain set of things will be able to be done that could not be done before we’ll get to the three phases in 6:58 - a sec but first some other General notes on things I decided I made the call to put off fully 7:03 - scripted videos the teleprompter and the Whiteboard type things that is the completely ideal video generation setup 7:09 - at least as things seem to me as long as I need to kind of until these things are truly ready but the change is I’m going 7:16 - to keep going with the sr4 series in the meantime and so that kind of means making the quote-unquote less optimal 7:22 - videos without the scripts and the teleprompter and the Whiteboard demonstrations kind of even though I 7:27 - hadn’t intended to make any videos at all until I got the new setup completely operational and 7:33 - so this is kind of a change I am kind of changing my mind here because even as recently as a week ago I was kind of 7:38 - thinking that I wouldn’t make any videos until I had kind of completely smoothed out that process and had everything set up how I wanted 7:44 - but as I said kind of changed my mind and the basic idea is just that I don’t want to let the perfect get in the way 7:50 - of the good and I very much wish to do some actual Ministry production alongside all the tedious busy work 7:56 - tasks I still need to finish here because if I just do the latter like just the busy work stuff everything is 8:02 - kind of too painful and I’ll start burning out just because I’m not excited and enthusiastic about 8:08 - any of the work it’s just kind of something I have to grip my teeth and get through and so I feel like mixing in 8:13 - some actual Ministry content which is much more enjoyable for me because I get to feel like 8:19 - I’m creating things and I’m I’m providing useful content and things like that it’s just much easier for me to get 8:25 - myself to do that so I’m going to try to kind of mix in the the tedious boring busy work over time rather than front 8:31 - loading all of it and I hope that will actually help kind of make things easier to get through so that I don’t keep 8:36 - procrastinating on things or just burn out from trying to do too much all at once so now as to the actual phases in 8:43 - this plan we’ll go through each one of the phases in turn here so phase one is basically polishing the 8:48 - basic content related to the initial launch the tasks for completing phase one uh 8:54 - there’s only two of them here so the first one is kind of doing all the things for the first focused Bible 8:59 - basic 6A video so that I could get the Bible basic 6A study page kind of up on the website and started on uh you know 9:06 - like having each of the lessons displayed and so over time I’ll be filling in the rest 9:12 - of these lessons but I wanted to get at least one up because that way I could have the study visible on the website 9:17 - whereas it wasn’t before and then the other task here was kind of making some additional meta related 9:23 - videos on the YouTube channel and this is kind of just to get the content in a more polished State overall so I had 9:30 - videos discussing playlist structure and there’s four playlists for this so there’s the more focused Bible basic 6A 9:36 - the full Bible basic 6A that has like all 90 videos the 9:42 - sr4 Series without discussion videos and the sr4 series with discussion videos so I made a very short intro video for each 9:49 - one of those playlists describing the playlist structure then I also made content introductions for the two Bible 9:56 - basic 6A Series so uh videos going over what content is contained in those 10:01 - playlists and then finally I made a shorter version of the ministry intro video like I mentioned at the beginning 10:07 - of this video here because the initial intro video ended up more than 45 minutes long and that’s just a little 10:13 - bit too long I think for it to be the banner video on the channel so I made a much shorter one that goes over much the 10:18 - same information but I tried to be really really concise and only talk about the very pertinent things in a 10:25 - brief Manner and that got the length down to closer to 18 minutes which is a lot better now as to what I can kind of do after 10:32 - I’ve finished phase one I can be a bit more vocal about sharing the ministry even more than I have been 10:37 - of course I’ve shared it with friends and family and people I thought might be interested on the mailing list but uh my 10:43 - mentor you know who runs a Ministry website of his own he can kind of link it in the weekly email posting on his 10:48 - site he’d offered to do that but I kind of had to identify these things you know several days after I launched I’m more 10:55 - like a week and a half or something you know I was just thinking about how could I make things better and I kind of wanted to get these things done before 11:00 - further trying to increase the exposure of the ministry you know if more people are going to see it anyway I might as 11:06 - well make it better before more people see it if that makes any sense and so I kind of wanted to do this this extra bit of polishing get 11:13 - some more of the explanatory videos up there on the YouTube channel to kind of explain how the playlists are laid out 11:19 - and what content they contain just because that’s useful um and so having those things done first I think will make it 11:25 - kind of easier to understand uh when it’s shared with people in a wider sense and so I did actually finish all of the 11:32 - phase one tasks this cycle and so we’ll go over them once I finish going over the phases in the plan here but this was 11:38 - the first phase of my three-phase plan for tackling all the work I have kind of staring me down here so this was 11:45 - phase one now as to phase two phase two is kind of supporting discussion pages so that’s 11:51 - the pages and then the corresponding videos in the YouTube playlist and then organizing all of the already existing 11:57 - sr4 content from the uh sr4 series I have already up on the YouTube channel 12:03 - that has about 20 I think it’s 21 videos in that series already so we’ll go over exactly what those 12:09 - tasks are in a little bit more detail here so the hardest thing probably by far is 12:15 - going to be fully coding the support for the discussion pages in the preprocessor application so uh you know the 12:21 - application itself is probably a couple thousand lines of code at this point and may sound like a lot it’s not that bad 12:27 - but it’s just I have to go modify some logic here and keep track of additional 12:32 - States so that I can pass things up from different page types and it just gets kind of complicated pretty quick and I 12:37 - just know from like I said past experience having made some modifications to this application a couple times in the past that this is 12:43 - just going to take me a while it’s going to be kind of tricky and I’m gonna have to sit there and debug it for a while to make it work properly and so I am just 12:51 - not really looking forward to this because I know it’s going to be kind of a long arduous process to get it to work how I want it to 12:56 - and then after I’ve set up the code base to do what I wanted I have to explain exactly what it’s doing and what these 13:03 - pages are and how people can make use of them and so that means I need to write some documentation on the content organization page which is one of the 13:09 - main documentation pages on the website and writing documentation I mean it’s very useful it’s necessary for people to 13:15 - be able to understand what things are supposed to do on the site it’s just again not very interesting and so it’s something that I have to kind of grip my 13:21 - teeth and make myself do because I don’t inherently want to do it very much and then also on the busy workfront here 13:28 - I have to catch up on completely polishing all the content from the already existing sr4 videos kind of 13:33 - before I make new ones and so at the same time that I’m going through and adding the time stamps and subject 13:39 - tagging everything so that the sections will show up in the subject index and things like that I’m actually going to 13:44 - go through and review the material at the same time because it’s been a few months since I’ve last posted videos in 13:49 - this series and if I go and review it at this point in time I’ll kind of be able to pick back up more seamlessly when I’m 13:55 - resuming the new content generation for this series so again um you know after I have reviewed all of 14:01 - this I’ll be able to kind of pick back up in the series way more seamlessly than I would if it 14:07 - has just been months since I’d last seen this stuff all right so after I do those tasks uh 14:12 - the things that I can kind of do after phase two is completed uh there’s three of them so most obviously I can start making new 14:19 - ministry content and that will be more videos in this sr4 series that I’ve already started and so once I’ve gone 14:25 - back and gotten all the things done for the previous videos that are already there I’ll be able to 14:31 - start adding new content myself and that way uh you know I’ll be able to balance all of the kind of tedious busy work I 14:38 - have to do with generating new ministry content which is something I find a much more engaging something that is not as 14:44 - hard for me to motivate myself to do and so that way getting that mix I think it will be much more sustainable in the 14:49 - long term now this is another big important thing at least in my mind here given that I’ll 14:54 - finally be adding new content on a consistent schedule I’ll feel even more comfortable with additional Ministry 14:59 - exposure to the degree that I’ll be ready to go start getting more involved in local church groups again and this is 15:05 - something that I have thus far kind of been holding off on in large part because I wanted to completely have the ministry of Life first I kind of wanted 15:12 - to get my priorities straight and make sure that I watch the ministry kind of have all my ducks in a row there 15:18 - before I go sinking a lot of my time into other things just to make sure that I’m prioritizing it 15:24 - and also just so that I kind of have a sense of how much time it will take before I go commit myself to other 15:29 - things but once I start making content again I’ll kind of be ready to go get more involved in local groups and stuff 15:36 - and so that’s another thing that can kind of be accomplished after I finish the phase two tasks here 15:41 - and then finally if there’s sufficient interest after meeting some local folks like people from the Bible studies I attend and stuff but they’re interested 15:47 - and maybe meeting in my house another day of the week to go over some of the things that we talk about in more depth 15:53 - you know just in addition to whatever other meetings the church groups we have already have well then the in-person Bible studies at 16:00 - the house might be started at any point after phase two is completed so that is after I’m kind of regularly making new 16:06 - content again now I’m not going to try to force this um it might take some time for it to happen but I want it to be 16:12 - organic rather than something I kind of push super hard so you know I’m not going to try to drag people to my house 16:18 - to do these Bible studies but just that people are interested and we can go that extra level you know I never in the past 16:24 - when I was leading Bible studies at University never had too much trouble uh finding people who I wanted you know 16:31 - this extra Bible study sort of thing that we do and so I’m probably interested in having things developed that way in a more organic sense here 16:38 - but point being here this is something that can kind of happen after I’m regularly making new content again 16:44 - and I’m getting myself more involved in the local church groups around me so even aside from Ministry 16:50 - considerations here I’m kind of really looking forward to having a social life again just because I’ve been pretty head down kind of with nose to the grindstone 16:57 - since I graduated college which was coming on three years ago now I mean that’s just because I had so much work 17:03 - so many tasks that I had to get done to get the ministry website and the YouTube channel launched and you know things 17:08 - have kind of changed over the years as I’ve been planning out what content format organization everything from my 17:14 - Ministry is going to happen so there’s just like a lot of things I needed to get done here and just so that I could 17:20 - focus on all of that and give that my full attention and my time so that I wouldn’t let it slip on the back burner 17:26 - and never get done I really prioritized getting all of this stuff done first and so that meant that I kind of sacrificed 17:33 - a lot of social interaction you know I wasn’t as involved in local stuff as I was in college because I wanted to get 17:38 - all of this stuff done and make it my highest priority um so I’ve just kind of been a little 17:44 - bit isolated as I’ve gone through and uh kind of as I said kept my nose to the 17:49 - grindstone here to get all of these tasks done the last couple years and so I really like to kind of get through 17:55 - phase two as soon as possible so that I can start getting involved once more in local groups because it’s something that I’ve done previously I mean of course 18:01 - even aside from kind of helping serve in those communities you know you get something out of being together with 18:08 - other believers so it’s something I’m really looking forward to I hope I can find communities that you know share enough beliefs with me 18:14 - that I’ll be able to speak my mind freely and find people who are similarly excited about the things that I am but 18:21 - just that social component of it is something that I’m also looking forward to and this is one of the reasons why I’d really like to get through phase two 18:27 - as soon as possible so get through these tasks that we’ve talked about up here these three things even though I think 18:33 - this is going to be some of the worst of it this is going to be kind of busy work unpleasant sort of things you know 18:39 - there’s not a lot here that I really want to do terribly but I’m going to try to grip my teeth 18:44 - and get down to it and finish all of this because I really want to get to the other side 18:50 - so that I can start getting more involved again with local believers all right finally there’s phase three stuff so that’s kind of organizing all 18:56 - the already existing Bible basic 6A content setting up the fully optimized video creation workflow and then 19:02 - catching up in some other areas so that I can more fully focus on Ministry stuff without feeling like I’m falling behind 19:08 - everywhere else so that’s basically what these tasks are the things that we just said 19:13 - so the Bible basic 6A content there’s even more videos in that series than the sr4 series but the thing that makes this 19:19 - even trickier is that the videos in the bb6a content series don’t really follow 19:25 - a strictest structure so that is they don’t completely follow a set of slides as much as the videos that I made myself 19:31 - do because there’s more discussion involved in the Bible study group that we had and therefore they’re going to be 19:36 - much more painful and time consuming to timestamp and organize effectively just because they don’t nearly so 19:42 - rigidly follow a format of an outline which is what makes it really easy to time stamp stuff so I know this is going 19:48 - to be even more unpleasant on that account and then there’s just like a bunch of stuff that I need to do to kind of get 19:54 - the video workflow set back up how I want it to be so to kind of be able to quickly dictate the full scripts I have 20:01 - to set up the voice recognition software completely and then I need to experiment with the teleprompter make sure I can 20:08 - generate good quality video content with that and then figure out how I want to do demonstrations on the Whiteboard or 20:14 - drawing on my tablet and then so I have to get all of these things set up so that the workflow will kind of be 20:19 - configured how I want it to be in the long term and then I also need to make some changes I’m not going to go through this too much but some changes to the 20:26 - preprocessor application to further improve the slides the videos are based on so for example not using the embedded 20:32 - Bible app Windows uh in the slides just because they take up a lot of space but just using the plain text instead 20:38 - supporting like nested headers so like H4 versus H3 in the outlines so right 20:44 - now the outlines are all kind of like one level but would like to support nesting there’s no reason why I can’t I just haven’t implemented it yet so some 20:50 - things there to basically get all of these slide this generation and the video content generation workflow 20:57 - kind of exactly how I want it in the long term and then I also have a bunch of stuff 21:02 - that I need to catch up on on the other YouTube channels that I run so I have almost a Year’s worth of kind of daily 21:08 - Vlogs that I’ve recorded going over all of the the tasks that I do every day to kind of motivate myself to be organized 21:15 - and formal about things and you know kind of keep that spiritual fire lit beneath me for all of the 21:21 - duties and the obligations that I’m trying to to Bear up under and then I also just have a bunch of uh videos that 21:27 - I’d like to make about topics that I’ve researched and kind of written up my thoughts on and so those 21:33 - will go on my personal YouTube channel but I have like 25 or 30 of those videos that I’ve just been putting on the back 21:39 - burner because I wanted to prioritize Ministry stuff first but I don’t want to let these things go forever because I 21:45 - would like to kind of dig myself out of the hole a bit so that moving forward I can much more easily just kind of make 21:50 - these whenever my fancy kind of gets taken by something rather 21:56 - than having you know like this big huge backlog of things that I need to catch up on so there’s kind of not as much exciting 22:02 - that I can do after I complete phase three but the big gist is that I’ll just be 22:07 - able to focus much closer to 100 of my attention on uh the production of new content rather than having like other 22:13 - matters steal away my attention so rather than being distracted by all these you know 50 other things I have to do I’m hoping to really be able to crank 22:20 - up the production Pace uh once I’m not pulled so many directions all at once so once I can focus more 100 of my 22:27 - attention on Ministry stuff and producing new content I’m really hoping that I’ll be able to 22:33 - kind of flip that switch and go into production mode quite a bit more than I have been at present 22:38 - all right and so phase three is the last phase of my plan here after phase three I’ll be done with everything on my list 22:44 - and making all new video content with the workflow I’ve thought out and wish to use in the long term and so after 22:50 - this I hope at least things will mostly just be a matter of which content I make first so if I have a bunch of things 22:56 - that I want to record videos about I’ll just need to decide which thing I do first but I’ll always be making content which again is not something I find 23:02 - nearly as burdensome and tedious as all of this other work that I’m having to do up front here to kind of get things 23:07 - launched the first time and so I’m really hoping that will make it a lot easier for me to motivate myself 23:12 - and stay focused uh because you know it’s just easier if all I’m doing is the content 23:18 - production because it’s actually something I relatively enjoy all right so that was the three-phase plan I came up with after being a little 23:24 - bit gloomy about all of the tasks that are still staring me down here and I actually did finish everything in phase 23:29 - one in this two week cycle here so both of the main categories of tasks in Phase One actually got done so we’ll go over 23:35 - those a little bit more in a sec here so first off I did all the things for the first Focus Bible basic 6A video so 23:42 - that I could get the study web page up on the website and so that means that now the page is there I’ll add more 23:48 - lessons to it as we go in the future here well kind of in the process of getting this first Bible basic 6A video 23:55 - organized and formatted I did a bunch of things so first I kind of built content for it 24:00 - I copy pasted the stuff while fake this turned it into markdown formatted some of the quotes and stuff with special 24:05 - content sections and all the things like that to build slides because for this video specifically I’d actually just 24:11 - been teaching straight off the study and I didn’t have the slides for it so I built slides for it here 24:16 - I added timestamps for the study and again this was trickier and more time consuming since this one wasn’t actually 24:21 - directly based off of slides I subject tagged all the sections this actually took a good bit because you 24:27 - know there are a fair number of sections in the study and I wanted to make good subject tags for everything 24:32 - then I built out the video description and pushed everything Live on YouTube and the site so this is kind of publishing it all making it go live on 24:39 - the internet and so you know there were some other things that went into this too but this was kind of the basic gist so getting all the things done for the 24:45 - first bb6a video so that that web page on the website is now kind of set up and ready for when I go ahead and start 24:52 - organizing more of the later lesson content I think there’s like 38 more videos after this one that I’ll need to 24:58 - do the same thing for but this was just getting the first one up so that at least the study shows up on the website 25:03 - and then the other task that I did here and this was what took a good long time this cycle here was creating the 25:09 - additional meta related videos on the YouTube channel so there were actually seven separate videos that I made here 25:15 - I made two videos for the Bible basic 6A playlist on the channel going over the structure and what’s different in the 25:22 - structure between the focus playlist and the full playlist for videos so basically the focus playlist only 25:27 - contains videos from later on in the study once I was a bit more organized about things and making 25:32 - slides for the content that we went over and stuff and so those videos tend to be just more focused a bit shorter 25:39 - probably more useful for most people on balance just because we don’t kind of go off in as many rabbit trails and get 25:45 - sidetracked in discussion as much so they’re just a little bit more focused on the study itself 25:50 - whereas the full series has like all 90 videos in the playlist and you know like the first 50 or so where we were 25:57 - just recording the study as we had it you know it might be good if you’re interested in lots of discussion on all 26:02 - the material but some of those videos are more than two hours long which is kind of a it’s a pretty heavy lift right 26:08 - and then I also made videos explaining the structure of uh playlists on the channel That do and do not have 26:15 - discussion videos so these videos I actually made for the sr4 playlist here specifically but I’m probably just going 26:21 - to reuse these same videos across all the playlists that I do make discussion videos for just because the concept will 26:27 - be the same across all of them so I think I’ll be reusing these quite a lot over the history of the channel here but 26:33 - I made those explaining what the differences between playlists that do and don’t have discussion videos are so things that do have discussion videos 26:40 - give more depth but they’re just a little bit longer and less focused than the playlists that have just the lesson 26:46 - videos there because with just the lesson videos you don’t have as much 26:52 - perspective you don’t have as many backgrounds given to kind of help flesh out the content but 26:57 - you do stay very focused and on topic with just the videos from the study itself so that’s kind of the difference 27:02 - there so explaining the difference between those playlists as well then I made content introduction videos 27:08 - for both of the playlists for the Bible basic 6A series as well so both the focused one which I just went over the 27:15 - videos that we had up in the playlist for like the last 30 some odd lessons that we had recorded that were part of 27:21 - the focus series and then for the full one I actually went through the entire outline of the peripathology study on 27:28 - ikthis kind of going uh section by section just giving a brief summary of what the study is about and so that’s so 27:34 - people who come across that video they’re kind of wondering what is contained in the playlist that has these 90 videos on 27:41 - this study well what’s it about well that’s kind of what that video is for and then finally I made a shorter more 27:46 - focused version of the general Ministry introduction video so this one was about 18 minutes long as opposed to the 45 27:52 - minutes of the initial one and so that is to be the new Banner video on the channel 27:57 - now of course prior to making all these recordings I had to draft content and make slides at least for most of them uh 28:02 - you know a couple of them like the content introductions I didn’t really go off slide so much I just did 28:08 - a little bit of organization of an outline and then just did it spur of the moment but most of these have had slides 28:14 - I actually made a new content type called not displayed which kind of as you would assume doesn’t get displayed I 28:19 - actually ignore it in Version Control so none of this will end up on the website but this is just so that I can make 28:25 - these slides uh for me to have them you know the same format as other things I do even if I’m 28:30 - not pushing them up on the website so I kind of had to organize the folders and stuff to make that work properly 28:35 - and of course after recording all the videos I had to do all the post processing for them upload them to YouTube with appropriate thumbnails put 28:41 - them in the appropriate order in the appropriate playlist you get the idea yada yada right all of the organization stuff relating to the videos on YouTube 28:49 - and then I’m gonna ignore this paragraph mostly but I basically actually had a lot of technical problems here because I 28:55 - was actually combining some videos here I did several different takes and then I was kind of sharing a section in the 29:01 - structure videos kind of the section that explains the differences for example between the full Bible basic 6A 29:07 - playlist and the focused one and between the no discussion videos and discussion video playlists I was kind of sharing 29:13 - these main section that describes what the differences are and then adding an intro and an outro for each well when I 29:19 - started trying to concatenate videos I was getting really weird behavior and that’s because the frame rates weren’t matching and so if you’re interested uh 29:26 - you know when you edit videos and stuff usually best to have constant frame rate for your video but the screen recording 29:32 - software I have has variable frame rate so I had to figure out how to convert between the two and uh also the audio 29:37 - channels weren’t working because I recorded one part of a video with a specific byte configuration and a 29:43 - different part of the video with a different mic configuration and it wasn’t letting me just smush them together and so I had to do some conversion there and blah blah blah 29:50 - right so technical stuff I think I figured it all out I understand everything better so I don’t think I’ll get confused again and have to spend as 29:56 - much time researching all this to fix it but uh that did eat up uh you know a good few hours there figuring out how to 30:02 - get all the videos made even though in the past I’ve had no issues uh well now because I was kind of smooshing things 30:07 - together some complexity came up in doing that all right so that was the second uh part 30:13 - of phase one and so that those were both tasks in phase one I got all these videos made I got the bb6a study made so 30:19 - that’s phase one completed now and so I did send an email off to my mentor he’s going to share the ministry on his website so I appreciate that you know 30:26 - gives me some extra exposure but that’s kind of like the initial polishing now that the things that really jumped out 30:32 - at me uh when I was reviewing the initial launch content here kind of a month out seeing if there’s anything I 30:38 - could make better for the initial stuff and I think this is uh the polishing that I wanted to do up front and so I’m 30:43 - happy with how things turned out here and now I’m moving on to phase two stuff so things that we still have left to go 30:49 - over here um this one I’m gonna go over real quick I did some kind of miscellaneous styling 30:54 - bug fixes and improvements I made a CSS tweak to the slides template to make the Highlight 30:59 - background color yellow rather than blue so um you can actually see I’ve been using that in this presentation uh to 31:05 - kind of highlight what text I’m going over at any given point in time I think it looks a lot better I fixed some alignment in the icons that 31:12 - are part of the subject index links and the subject index so just made things more centered on the line it was kind of 31:17 - just didn’t look as good because they were a little bit off center and then I kind of resolved a positioning issue with the table of 31:23 - contents it wasn’t uh kind of properly stuck to the top of the web page but there was a gap of like 10 pixels or 31:29 - something and it looked kind of weird and so I just figured out how to make it stick to the top as well as the bottom 31:34 - so that it is the full height of the screen now close to the end here I also got the 31:40 - new computer this week so the desktop computer that I ordered from kind of a custom builder they put 31:46 - all of the CPU and the RAM and everything in and I just had to boot it up and install Windows on it um well 31:52 - that desktop finally came here and so I spent a good bit of time compiling a big list of applications I used to make sure 31:58 - I installed everything I wanted to on the new computer I’m shifting into using a package manager called chocolatey for 32:03 - anyone who’s interested kind of for as much as possible and this should help maintainability in the future because in the future I can just kind of export a 32:09 - script and then import all of the uh the applications and it will automatically download them for me rather than me 32:16 - having to go download things one by one that’s pretty cool pretty efficient uh happy with how that turned out but it took me a while to research all that 32:23 - so this is like the first time I’ve set up a new computer in like six years or something since I got my tablet middle 32:28 - of college so it’s been a long time now of course this computer is way more powerful than that one is too um but I mean still running Windows so 32:34 - most of the same applications I use I’m going to be using on both and so this entire process I mean I’ve gotten stuck on a few things so there’s 32:41 - some some quirks the differences between Windows 10 and windows 11 that have thrown me a little um you know actually mostly for the 32:47 - worst which is kind of frustrating um there’s some stuff that I haven’t been able to figure out or at least I had to do a bunch of researching to figure out 32:52 - how to do which was kind of annoying um but uh you know I have a few things to do still here so some setup will still 32:58 - carry into the next cycle here but I mostly got things set up and in fact I am making this video as we speak on the 33:04 - new computer so things are mostly working got all the software processing for video editing and stuff and for uh 33:10 - generating stuff with markdown I got python installed so I can run the preprocessor and all of that set up on the new computer now it’s a lot lot more 33:17 - powerful to the tuna it’s probably more than four times it’s probably like six times as much CPU throughput and eight 33:24 - times the ram so I have 64 gigs of RAM on this computer um just I was running into some memory problems and when I’m uh running 33:31 - virtualization and probably the voice recognition as well eventually and everything all at the same time I want 33:36 - to make sure that I don’t get memory locked because as it does slow things down a lot so a very very powerful 33:41 - computer here I’m hoping it will help speed up all the content Generation Um just because you know there’s a lot 33:47 - that goes into some of this and so having a powerful computer should help a lot and I’m pretty psyched about it you know I’m happy with how it turned out 33:52 - for the most part but this was something else that ate up a good bit of my time uh this two-week cycle here 33:58 - all right so finally I’m going to talk about the upcoming work I have kind of as just mentioned I finished all 34:04 - the phase one stuff already we’ve talked about that sufficiently not going to go over that too much more here but that’s good because it means that it’s at least 34:10 - one step out of the three-phase plan that I’ve knocked out here so my main focus in the next coming days 34:16 - here will be the task for phase two now I actually did order this more specifically um so the three tasks there were coding 34:23 - the support for the documentation Pages documenting uh what how the sorry not documentation Pages for the discussion 34:29 - pages documenting the discussion pages and then organizing all of the already existing 34:35 - content for sr4 and I’m actually going to do things in the order I just said there rather than doing like the sr4 stuff first 34:40 - um that’s because if I do the review of the sr4 content I’ve made at the very 34:46 - end of phase two right before I start back up content Creation in that series uh things will be maximally fresh in my 34:52 - head and I can resume much more seamlessly than if I kind of like do it and then spend two or three weeks 34:58 - fiddling around with the coding stuff and then have to come back to it and try to remember where I am so I’m going to 35:03 - kind of do the review of the sr4 material right before I start up production there again that way it’ll be 35:10 - way more seamless for me to kind of pick up and keep going where I left off because I left off probably more than a 35:15 - year ago now and so I just want to make sure I know where I am in the study what the next step I want to talk about is and organize all that effectively so 35:21 - that there’s for people who come back and watch us in the future there won’t be like this big glaring gap between like week or less than 10 and the 11th 35:28 - lesson which is the one I’ll pick up with uh because I hadn’t seen things in a while but I’m going to try to make it as seamless as possible 35:34 - so that’s the plan for the work that I’m going to be doing in the future here all right well this one got a bit long 35:39 - here too but I hope this has been a useful explanation of all the things that I’ve gotten done here through 35:44 - September 25th then I’ll pick up in next couple weeks hopefully having made more 35:50 - progress on the coding side of things here with discussion Pages as well as organizing some of that sr4 content so 35:56 - that I can actually start generating new ministry content again again that’s something that I’m really hoping that I 36:02 - can get done partially so that I can go get involved with local church stuff but also so that I can balance the creation 36:07 - of new content which is again something I have a much easier time kind of getting myself to do 36:13 - with all of the busy work uh tedious tasks that I still have to do here in the initial setup phase and so 36:20 - um with that I will talk to everyone again next time
This cycle was dominated by two primary areas: tech research and setup, and coding support for discussion pages.
On the tech side of things, I did research, bought, and started setting up several different things. A stenomask and voice recognition software to be able to dictate prose at high speeds, a separate wireless lapel mic system to use for content recordings and live presentations, and a portable monitor setup for working on-the-go, so that I can perhaps work in a local public library on the weekends, as sometimes I find that working in a public place can help me focus better.
Aside from all that, the biggest task knocked out this cycle was coding support for discussion pages in the Python preprocessor application for static sites that I’ve been developing over the last few months. This was a large coding effort, taking me many days. But I’m very glad to have it behind me now, so that it will no longer be hanging over my head.
00:00 - Introduction 04:54 - Outline 06:34 - Did lots, lots more computer setup stuff, including things related to the video recording workflow 08:10 - Researched, ordered, and started to set up things related to voice recognition 13:45 - Researched and ordered a better mic setup for making content videos 16:33 - Researched, ordered, and planned out a portable computer setup to work at a local public library on weekends 18:40 - Pondered the multi-website future that is coming 21:44 - Misc. discussions from the ministry community 26:34 - Modified the preprocessor Python application to support discussion pages 32:42 - Upcoming work 35:40 - Outro
Did lots, lots more computer setup stuff, including things related to the video recording workflow
Set up SSH keypair on new computer, added it to GitHub, SourceTree, DigitalOcean
Installed Snagit. Set TV monitor to run at 4K (but upscale text so that text size doesn’t change much). So that Snagit recordings will be at much higher resolution, and hopefully webcam footage will be much clearer/sharper than it has been. Toggle off reduce-to-1080p Snagit setting
Made new GoPro video profiles to shoot in 4K, linear mode, without video stabilization. Hopefully better color balance too.
Set up Python 3 on new computer, built new local virtual environments
Set up properly ignoring .git/, .venv/ folders in project repos on new computer. There’s a specific DropBox command to run
Installed Auto-Editor in the global Python environment via pip
Removed OneDrive-related folders on Windows 11, cleaning up after its sloppy uninstaller. Boo.
Debugged framerate matters (converting variable framerate to constant framerate, and how it impacts editing/video concatenation). Also some audio bugs in concatenating video fragments.
Moved all ~440 GB of videos that were being stored on a backup hard drive onto the new desktop computer, and started backing up with DropBox too. Will try to upload much of the backlog to YouTube in the near-ish future to reclaim the space. It took a while for Dropbox to sync all this, given my relatively slow ~10 Mbps internet upload speed
Set up Cold Turkey on the new computer, and adjusted automated lockout times across both the new computer and the old computer.
Imported phrase express phrase list to match the old computer’s list. Computer access restrictions are now set up completely. Helps me better stay on-task and better maintain a consistent sleep schedule.
Researched, ordered, and started to set up things related to voice recognition
I bought a stenomask, specifically a wireless model called the Privo. This is the microphone I will be using when interacting with my computer via voice recognition.
Once the mic came (and I had tested it out and gotten comfortable using it), I bought voice recognition software called Dragon, downloaded and installed it, and followed a couple excellent tutorial videos to get the initial setup completed (user profiles, etc.)
Spent time playing around with Dragon, and testing out dictation. Right out of the box, I can already dictate quite quickly, with good accuracy.
Verified it will play nice with AutoHotkey. It seems to! Hurray!
Tested out what things are and are not supported in dictation mode alone. Punctuation, new line, and new paragraph all are, which is mainly what I wanted to verify.
Spent a long time figuring out some final aspects of my keyboard layout design (on one of the custom movement layers), now that I have a better feel for how the voice recognition works, and where its functional holes are.
After getting the hang of adding vocabulary entries to Dragon, added some initial entries for making things bold, making things italic, making things both bold and italic, and then some core punctuation (period, comma, question mark, exclamation mark). I’ll be adding more custom stuff over time, to increase the speed at which I can dictate by eliminating ambiguity for the recognition engine.
I still have plenty more punctuation and stuff to figure out, but this was a good start.
Researched and ordered a better mic setup for making content videos
After some research, I also bought a different mic system, both for when I’m recording content videos, and presenting live. It’s called the Rode Wireless Go II.
Dual-channel wireless mic receiver, two transmitters
High quality lapel mic
An accessory that lets you turn the wireless transmitter (that has a built-in omnidirectional microphone) into a hand-held mic. I’ll use this for questions when presenting live.
I’ve been busy so I haven’t set up and tested these things yet, but I will soon.
Researched, ordered, and planned out a portable computer setup to work at a local public library on weekends
Well, first off, I went to my local library, got a library card, and walked around to get myself familiar with it. I also got my devices connected to the wifi there, and so on.
I know from my experiences in college that it is sometimes easier for me to stay on-task when I work in public places, and with that in mind, I set out to be able to bring a multi-monitor setup with me when I go to work in the library (which will probably primarily be on Saturdays and Sundays).
The setup I decided on (to be used in addition to, at the time being, my tablet, Bluetooth mechanical keyboard, wireless trackball, and Bluetooth noise-cancelling headphones):
All this was pretty expensive when taken together, but I have high hopes for this setup. I think it is rather clever, and ought to work very well.
Pondered the multi-website future that is coming
I helped my roommate come up with ideas for his ministry website’s domain name. I sent him a list of suggestions from my past research, and he used one of those. I also helped him register it with a domain name registrar.
This got me thinking a bit about the next steps I will need to take to get my website theme in the state it needs to be in to be shared across multiple websites. Both this one I’m helping my roommate set up, and my own other planned websites (personal, and business-focused). I probably ought to make this theme organization stuff happen sooner rather than later. Some of the things I was thinking about here were related to combining all of the CSS into one file, and then making it SCSS to be able to use variables for accent colors and so on.
Misc. discussions from the ministry community
Several of us in the community had a long discussion about cryptocurrencies, investing, and what our attitudes towards these things ought to be as Christians.
One of the Bible studies on Saturday afternoons turned into a discussion of apologetics approaches. One of the folks in our community has an atheist friend he is trying to send good reading materials to, and the question was how to best do all this. The atheist friend is very much on the scientific/philosophical side of things, a super-logical sort of person. It is my opinion that most apologetics resources end up being too lightweight and airy-fairy to be convincing for very smart people (my friend had initially asked for book suggestions to have his intellectually-inclined friend read), so we talked a bunch about what then, if not actual book suggestions.
After much discussion on the call, I scrounged up a bunch of links for this friend who is involved with this other guy. I went with links regarding the mind body problem, critiques of logical positivism and prevailing oversimplistic views regarding philosophy of science (at least from a strict materialist perspective), and so on. I did a lot of research myself since I found the topics and arguments here interesting.
Modified the preprocessor Python application to support discussion pages
Knocking out this coding got me a good bit of the way towards finishing Phase II in my plan of attack, which I’m happy about.
The first thing I did was take stock of all I needed to do, and then I came up with with a plan of attack – getting the tasks written down in a list and roughly sequencing them.
After that, I powered through it. It was probably a solid 20 hours of coding (lots of debugging during the refactor), so I wasn’t wrong to have been dreading it some. Hopefully, this will be one of the last big functional coding efforts I’ll have to drag myself through, at least for a while. Although this preprocessor app is in need of better error handling, general refactoring to make the codebase cleaner and more organized, documentation… etc. Sigh. Some day.
After validating that everything worked properly with some fake test content, I organized everything for the first discussion video in the SR4 series, and then replaced the test content with that. You can have a look at it here. Note that it also shows up on the related content page, and aggregation page too. The UX is slightly different in each case, according to what I think makes the most sense.
Then I checked over everything and pushed it all live on the site.
Just to get a sense of the scale here, this is the big-bang commit for the website-related changes related to this effort to refactoring to support discussion pages.
I’ve been lazy and haven’t been committing as consistently in the preprocessor repo (among other reasons, just because I know it’s not really ready for public use anyway, so it doesn’t matter too much at the moment), so I can’t presently show the changes there in the same way. But it was a really big changeset spanning across many files.
Write up documentation on the content organization page about discussion pages
Get all videos/audio recordings uploaded to Archive.org for all the relevant recent videos
Shorter ministry intro video
Longer ministry intro video
BB6A first focused video
SR4 video 1 Introduction
SR4 video 2 Adam and Eve
All ministry progress summary videos
Organize all the remaining videos in the SR4 series. This is the other big thing I need to finish before I’ll be done with Phase II in my plan.
Set up the Rode Wireless Go II microphone system, and test it thoroughly
Continue making progress on the voice recognition front
0:00 - hey guys so right now I’m going to be recording the ministry progress summary video here uh through October 9th 2022 0:07 - and so as you may have noticed I have a little bit of a change in location here so it’s kind of funny I actually decided 0:14 - to try recording uh most of the videos here in the bathroom here in the master uh just because I’ve had issues with the 0:20 - lighting in the office that I’ve been working in now I could uh you know use the GoPro in a room that’s better lit by 0:27 - outside light but then I can only record videos when it’s bright outside and you know if I’m at work a lot of the work 0:34 - day then I’d use some stuff in the early evening like working out eating dinner well by the time I’m ready to maybe 0:39 - record videos and evenings already dark outside and you know if I get up in the morning to work sometimes it’s not 0:45 - always completely light and so I like this idea of being kind of independent from outside light and to do that that 0:50 - means that I have to have good inside light now there is a pretty well lit spot in the kitchen in the house but the 0:56 - problem with that is that I do have a roommate and so if I I’m recording a video I you know it kind of means my 1:03 - roommate can’t you know he can’t be moving around the house as much and it kind of interferes with other people’s stuff and you know especially later on 1:10 - maybe if we get another person that’s living in the house that’s not really sustainable and so I kind of need a room where I can 1:16 - close off the door and uh you know have a nice quiet environment for me to record that also has really good 1:22 - lighting because lighting is one of the main drivers here of the video quality and so I spent some time today trying to 1:28 - figure out where I was going to do this and it’s a little bit funny you know you can see the bathtub in the background 1:33 - here but this is actually probably one of the best split spots in the house you know I have two overhead panels of the 1:41 - lights in front of the mirrors here and so I have nice good light in front of me which means that you know I’m not like 1:47 - cast out or anything and you know I have uh the video settings uh dialed quite a 1:53 - bit more in here I spent some time earlier this evening fiddling around just because I haven’t been very happy with the quality of the videos I mean I 1:59 - know it’s not been like a huge deal for me because you know most of the time it’s just me recording the screen anyway but I wanted to increase video quality 2:06 - especially as I start getting into more Production videos and so this was uh kind of the compromise I came up with 2:11 - now if I wanted to spend extra money I could probably get like a diffuse light thing you know people who who do stuff 2:18 - at like photo studios and stuff they’ll have these like oh what’s the right thing I mean it’s kind of like this uh reflective silver 2:25 - material that they’ll use for like uh diffuse lighting for uh photos and 2:31 - videos and that sort of thing would definitely help uh with the uh the lighting in the office and I have been 2:37 - shooting stuff and then I could keep recording the office but you know it costs a lot of money and it’s kind of a hassle and you know I don’t if I don’t 2:44 - need to buy the extra stuff I want to buy the extra stuff you know and it’s not like my bathroom is ugly or anything so you’ll just get to probably see here 2:51 - for the foreseeable future you’ll see the the blackout curtain there in the bathtub and everything and uh nothing so 2:56 - wrong with this really um this is just kind of what I’ve decided on here in the interim because the lighting is much better and 3:03 - hopefully that means that the video is a lot clearer we don’t have any graininess from uh kind of the iso being set too 3:09 - high or a low light you know GoPros do not uh have a very big image sensor and 3:14 - so that’s been one of the reasons why it’s been struggling in the light conditions here but now I have the 3:19 - shutter speed set reasonably low the iso cap out at 400 and I’m in a much better lit room and so I really think that this 3:26 - should help the video quality a lot so I’ll stop rambling about that anyone who’s interested in video stuff maybe can feel my pain a little bit but this 3:32 - is kind of what I’ve decided upon as the better late room in my house and so that’s why I’m here recording a video in 3:37 - the bathroom um all right so with that out of the way we’ll go ahead and get started for uh 3:42 - the stuff for this couple weeks uh progress while grammar uh for the things 3:48 - that I’ve gotten done the last couple weeks um so this ministry progress summary is through October 9th and so 3:53 - that was actually a couple days back um I’ll hop into the summary here oops I actually cut off the recording 3:59 - there um I will hop into the slides now uh rather than pausing the recording 4:06 - um and so I was actually going to record this a bit earlier but I had to Edge my yard I was not very interesting 4:11 - ministry-wise but I hadn’t edged it before since I moved into the house and I finally got an edger and it took me a 4:18 - lot longer than I thought it would and so I was very tired after that and didn’t particularly feel like recording 4:23 - a video and so that’s why this is a a couple days light here um and so we are going to be going stuff 4:29 - through October 9th and you see it’s the 12th so all a little bit behind here so 4:34 - this particular cycle here was dominated by a couple primary areas uh mainly 4:40 - setting up some additional Tech stuff so uh microphones and things like that and 4:45 - uh that will come for future content recording as well as voice recognition stuff we’ll get to that and then as well 4:52 - as me coding support for discussion pages in the preprocessor application so we’ll go through all of this the tech 4:58 - related setup stuff here I had a bunch more stuff that I had to do getting my new computer the new desktop computer I 5:04 - have set up with everything and uh and I’ll kind of go through that real rapid fire and then these are the other Tech 5:10 - things that I set up a steno mask here for voice recognition and the voice 5:15 - recognition software itself some configuration there initially just testing it out getting used to it a bit 5:22 - and then another microphone here so I’m still recording with my wired lapel mic here but I did get a wireless system 5:28 - that I will set up for a kind of better content recording when I’m making these content videos as well as when I’m 5:35 - presenting live I’ll go over that and then kind of a portable computer setup 5:40 - to work when I’m at a local public library on weekends and so part of the idea here is getting out of the house in 5:47 - a public place sometimes help me helps me focus a bit better and so one of the problems with that though is if I’m on 5:53 - my on my puny little tablet screen I don’t have as much screen real estate to work with and so I tried to figure out a 5:59 - way to get around this and my solution was I bought two 24-inch monitors as well as like folding monitor stands and 6:05 - quick release mounts for the monitors and uh I have yet to test this out but I did a lot of research and I’m pretty 6:11 - psyched about how it might work and then we’ll go over the other stuff uh the big primary thing here being 6:17 - modifying the python application on the code side of things so not a terribly interesting a couple set of weeks here 6:24 - for like forward progress content wise uh but we’re still getting everything set up here so that I can kind of play 6:31 - the long game and hopefully increase the throughput quite a bit in a sustainable way in the long term so uh I’m not even 6:38 - sure if I’m going to read through all of this anyone who’s really interested can certainly take a look at this slide here for all of the computer stuff that I had 6:45 - to do I had to set up SSH keys on the new computer this is video configuration stuff video configuration stuff I just 6:52 - mentioned some of the stuff that I’ve done there um you know this is setting up the new video modes I had to set up python on the new computer properly 6:59 - ignore stuff in Dropbox so it’s not syncing like the Version Control files and the virtual environment that 7:05 - contains python packages installing the video editing software on the new computer 7:10 - um uh this frame rate stuff this was kind of interesting uh the screen recording 7:16 - software that I’m using right now actually records in variable frame rate but the automatic editing program that I 7:21 - use is kind of depends on constant frame rate and so I had to figure out how to convert between the two video editing in 7:27 - general typically uses constant frame rate I backed up a bunch of uh The Daily Progress summary videos that I’ve been 7:33 - recording for about a year now um I have a big backlog that I need to upload eventually but I got those on the new 7:38 - computer since I have a much bigger SSD backing up the Dropbox in the cloud as well just that’s a lot more secure in 7:44 - case you know something were to happen to the backup hard drive and then set up the computer filtering stuff to kind of 7:51 - lock myself out late at night so that I will actually go to bed at a reasonable time this is something that I’ve been doing for a few years now just helps me 7:58 - focus better if I kind of control and get my access to the computers that I use that way I can you know work when I 8:05 - want to be working and then be off the computer when I want to be off the computer all right so I’m not going to spend too much time here you know if 8:10 - you’re really interested in the stuff you can go read a bit more and then I did a bunch of stuff related 8:16 - to voice recognition so I actually have a Steno mask and it says that I ordered so I’ll actually open up the link here 8:23 - um this is a company that makes these products for voice recognition now 8:28 - there’s nothing so unique about how the microphone in this works the thing that’s really cool about it is I mean it 8:34 - looks really dorky let me see if I can find a picture of someone using it somewhere um yeah this is what it looks like so 8:40 - you hold it up to your face like this it kind of looks almost like the plague mask from the Black Death in history but 8:46 - it has this foam inside of it that blocks all of the sound that comes into it basically and so you can actually 8:54 - talk into this microphone if you’re in a public place and someone can tell that you’re making noise but it’s very muffled and so it protects your privacy 9:01 - it also just lets you not bother other people so much um if you are using this for voice 9:06 - recognition and that’s like dictating dictating Pros is primarily what I’m going to be using this and so it’s expensive of course but um 9:13 - this is actually Wireless as well so this is the microphone that I got now the reason why it really matters which microphone you use is because the voice 9:20 - recognition algorithms uh kind of depend on becoming accustomed to your voice 9:25 - patterns and if you use a different microphone it sounds different and so I wanted to be training the voice 9:32 - recognition software and AI to be recognizing my voice when I’m talking into this because I’ll be able to use 9:37 - this in all circumstances versus the lapel mic that I’m using right now you 9:43 - know just talking in the privacy of my own home well it sounds a bit different I mean not super different but enough so 9:49 - that it might throw off the accuracy of the software some so that’s why I waited until this mic came then I got the voice 9:55 - recognition software itself another very expensive thing here it’s called Dragon so it’s made by a company called Nuance 10:01 - here the individual like the home license here is less expensive oh actually this 10:07 - is this is the professional version but I wanted to edit the vocabulary and stuff related to that 10:12 - um I would consider myself somewhat of a power user like I’m going to go script uh certain things with their scripting 10:18 - language I think you can use Visual Basic uh the syntax is kind of gross but if I want to be able to send key presses 10:24 - in a specific order or do macros and things like that you have to have the professional version to be able to do that so again maybe not going to read 10:31 - through all of this I did a bunch of initial setup here the short of it is that even right out of the box without a 10:38 - lot of customization on my part it works very well I can already dictate quite quickly with good accuracy I mean it 10:45 - misses a word every uh every once in a while now I am going to be working in coming weeks and months to integrate 10:52 - this with the keyboard layout design that I’ve been working on for years not going to spend a lot of time talking 10:57 - about that because it’s not terribly Ministry related but it’s been a personal hobby project of mine for 11:02 - probably about four or five years now and voice recognition has been something I’ve been meaning to pick up for a long time as well going to be trying to kind 11:09 - of integrate the two in a hybrid approach and I just haven’t seen very many other people try it many people who use voice recognition full-time do it 11:16 - because of carpal tunnel or other RSI repetitive strain injuries so they can’t 11:21 - type so they’re forced to use voice recognition many people who type just don’t use voice recognition because it’s kind of a hassle to set things up even 11:28 - though I think it has lots of advantages and it’s obviously why I’m doing it so a lot of people just haven’t mixed the two so most people that use voice writing 11:34 - only use voice writing most people who type only type and there hasn’t seemed to be a lot of like cross-pollination 11:39 - between the two and so I’m going to try to set up a system that uses both playing to the advantages of both um so I’ll get to that eventually here 11:46 - but this was the first part I can already do a good bit of dedication I’m going to start hopefully dictating out 11:53 - some of like the stuff here where I’m dictating out stuff that I do every day um just to get myself accustomed to 11:59 - using the voice recognition in place of typing because it is much much faster as I say even though the accuracy I’m still 12:05 - working on some stuff to a better increase the usability of this long term you’re removing some of the ambiguity 12:11 - for the voice recognition engine here just by making my own briefs for things like punctuation because if you say the 12:19 - word period period is a valid word in English like the period of a pendulum swing or a period period of time so 12:25 - that’s ambiguous between whether you want those words or the punctuation mark So if I make my own uh text brief for 12:32 - the punctuation mark I say something different that like a nonsense word that signifies period then I won’t have 12:37 - ambiguity anymore um so things like that will help increase the speed in which I can dictate without ambiguity so I have a 12:46 - lot more setup ahead of me here at least to make it work the way that I think will be ideal but I’m getting the hang 12:51 - of it and this is exciting because you know this is part of phase three technically in that plan that I’ve gone 12:56 - over in the last Ministry progress summary but being able to start dictating things at this high speed you 13:03 - know ballpark 200 words per minute rather than my typing speed which is even if I’m touch typing on my custom 13:09 - layout it’s only about 75 which is not that slow there are people who can touch type closer to 100 120 even those are 13:16 - the very exceptional people but 200 is still a lot faster and so being able to do that will just mean that I can get 13:23 - more or things generated on the content side here so that’s the voice recognition this was 13:28 - one piece of technology that I was working on setting up here so the Steno mask getting that mic specific for the 13:34 - voice recognition so that I can start creating the audio profile and the voice recognition software that will recognize 13:40 - my voice coming through this mic specifically and then getting the software set up and familiaromizing 13:46 - myself with all of its features and stuff I ordered a separate microphone this one’s different um so the microphone that I’m using 13:52 - right now is a wired lapel mic that I have plugged into the GoPro I wanted a 13:57 - wireless version um so it’s not such a big deal when I’m just sitting here recording stuff but um I would like to 14:03 - make product reviews and things a separate personal YouTube channel not the ministry stuff so much but being 14:08 - able to have a microphone that doesn’t tether me so much to the camera itself will give me a lot more flexibility when I’m shooting video if I’m outside and 14:15 - you know on a bike or things like that it just give me a lot more power as well as the wireless just being more 14:21 - convenient generally and so I did a bunch of research I found this cool wire this microphone system is made by a 14:28 - company called rode so this is the mic itself you have a receiver and then two 14:33 - transmitters here and then I bought a lapel mic from the same company that plugs into one of the transmitters and 14:39 - then also an adapter thing this is pretty cool this is for once we start having the 14:45 - live Bible studies this is not a terribly interesting picture of it let me see if there’s any pictures down in the reviews 14:51 - um so yeah this is what it looks like I mean it’s got the uh the sibilant and the 14:57 - plosive filter there um it just looks like a kind of a studio mic thing here 15:02 - um but this is handheld wireless and so people can pass this around if they have questions once we do the live 15:08 - presentations we won’t be recording those because it kind of disincentivizes people from talking but we will be doing 15:14 - those live uh like integrated with a zoom call and so having the mic that 15:19 - people can use to ask questions because this is a dual Channel wireless system uh means that I’ll have the lapel mic 15:25 - that I can use for when I am talking you know like through the study content and 15:31 - then if people have questions they can pass around that other mic and that way you know people will ask questions one at a time of course it’s not so much of 15:38 - a conversation as it is uh the question and answer part of that and so that’s the system here for generating content 15:44 - like I am right now as well as the live presentations I have not actually set all this up yet it’s still in the boxes well it came earlier last week but once 15:52 - I get some time I’m going to be be experimenting with all of this there’s no reason why it shouldn’t work on this one actually plugs into 3.5 millimeter 15:58 - rather than USB which is why it can be used on the GoPro but pretty excited about the audio here it’s got very good 16:04 - audio quality and I did my research again kind of expensive so I’m uh spending some funds here hopefully to 16:10 - set up the audio in the video uh much better and more sustainably for the long term here but to do that got you 16:16 - research you do have to spend you do kind of get what you pay for and I have come to that conclusion after reading a lot of reviews and stuff that uh if I 16:24 - want to kind of uh have the highest quality that I can you do kind of need 16:30 - to spend some money to get quality gear for that purpose and so it’s kind of 16:35 - what I was here so that’s another microphone thing and then this is the portable computer setup I’m not going to 16:40 - spend too much time talking about this because it really is basically just like having two 24-inch monitors and uh the 16:48 - catch here is that the setup is completely portable I mean this is like the bad thing that I’m going to transport the monitors in 16:54 - um so it you know you can see like this is the size of a person it is not tiny but this is something that I can just 17:00 - toss in my car and then carry in with me if I go somewhere like working at a coffee shop or the library or something 17:06 - um and so uh the basically the thing that lets all of this work is that there 17:11 - are folding monitor stands and those look like this and so you know they fold flat more or less which means you can 17:18 - just toss them in a backpack and then there are these uh Visa Mount adapters here these are like quick release or 17:25 - there’s like a tab thing at the bottom and you just press the tab and then you can slide the monitors in and out more 17:31 - or less instantly like this and so with this thing coupled I should be able to set up both of the 24 inch monitors in 17:38 - under a couple minutes and so that makes it more or less truly portable and then of course having two 24-inch monitors 17:44 - plus my tablet screen gives me a lot more real estate to work with when I’m on the go and so this is not portable in 17:51 - the sense that people think of like I don’t know MacBook airs as being portable you know this will be very heavy not like terribly heavy but you 17:57 - know certainly more than 10 pounds probably all said and done and uh you know I’ve got to carry my I mean I am 18:03 - kind of a nerdy person and so I have a mechanical keyboard and a trackball that 18:08 - I use and the noise canceling headphones and the holes I already had all that so this was specifically setting up the 18:14 - portable monitor so and also not rambling about the technology I’m guessing most people aren’t super interested in all this but all of these 18:20 - things are with that goal of me being able this is me being able to be more productive work in public places you 18:25 - know switch it up a bit so that I’m not always just sitting at my house when I’m doing work on the ministry stuff and then the microphone stuff this is for 18:32 - voice recognition and this is for Content Generation all of this is very useful uh you know stuff that I’ll be 18:37 - using a lot and so again that’s why even though it costs money I think it will be money well spent in the long term here 18:44 - so uh here’s something a little bit more interesting perhaps on the ministry side I have my roommate come up with ideas 18:50 - for his ministry website’s domain name and so mine is Bible docs right and so 18:56 - it’s kind of a tricky process choosing a name not that we’re super interested in the marketing branding side of things 19:01 - but you want it to be something memorable and something reasonably short so that it’s easy to remember and share and so uh he picked out one of the 19:09 - domain names that I had kind of had on my list you know we talked about how you generate them and things like that but 19:16 - he ended up liking one of the ones that was on the list that I had come up with earlier when I was doing the same process a few months back and I helped 19:22 - him register it with the domain name registrar and in the process of this I got thinking a bit here about the next 19:28 - steps and so I will need to work on some stuff with the website theme to get in a 19:34 - state that is ready for basically being used in more than one place so right now it’s just more or less being used on the 19:40 - ministry website I have an older version of it that’s also being used on my personal blog that has been up you know 19:45 - for a few years now that I haven’t really updated that consistently I did for a while in college but I I have 19:50 - grand plans to make that more active as well as launch a separate kind of like uh business type website that’s a little 19:58 - bit more formal me writing up video content and stuff like that but if I want to use it in these multiple places 20:05 - as well as this ministry site for my friend and maybe help another couple contacts in my Ministry circles also set 20:10 - up Bible study websites well I need to kind of get it in a place that is 20:17 - kind of better set up for uh sharing across multiple people like that and so one of the things I’m going to do for 20:23 - example is try to refactor the CSS to use scss instead so that we can make 20:28 - some of the color styling in the user interface uh basically variables so that 20:34 - people can say hey I want this caller for the text this color for the backgrounds of like the table of 20:39 - contents in the sidebar menu and then you just change it one place rather than having to change it all across the styling file so that’s just one example 20:46 - but there’s a lot more stuff I need to do more or less just to clean it up because most of what I have works but 20:52 - I’ve been building it for several years now and so the code base is is not quite 20:57 - zip ties and duct tape I’ve tried to follow better practices than that but it is not been something that I had taken 21:03 - the time to sit down and clean up a lot and so that’s something that I want to do before I start you know duplicating 21:08 - it everywhere I want to make sure that I’ve kind of polished things better than I have because so far like I said if 21:14 - it’s just me it doesn’t matter if it’s a bit messy because I know my own code but if I’m going to be deploying this kind 21:21 - of more in a production sense across maybe four or five even 10 websites depending on how many people I end up helping eventually it’d be much better 21:27 - for it to be more cleaned up and of course it is a public GitHub repository so other people anyone in the world 21:32 - who’s interested in the theme can of course use it um and so if I if it ever gains a bit more traction I will want it 21:37 - to be a kind of better maintained than it is at the moment and so I just got thinking about all this this is 21:43 - something else uh probably a little bit down the road here but I did spend some time on this after I helped my roommate with the domain name stuff 21:49 - um probably not going to spend too much time talking about this and some of those video is already going to be long but we had several conversations on the 21:56 - ministry group so one of them we were actually talking about cryptocurrencies and crypto investing as well as just 22:02 - investing generally you know our relationship to money as Christians the purpose that we have for using money in 22:07 - this world you know it’s a tool it’s kind of neither good nor evil although the love of money and greed is of course 22:14 - not a good thing for us um but you know crypto specifically has a higher risk than many other assets and 22:20 - we were talking about does that send a good witness for us as Christians you know gambling for example certainly doesn’t send a great witness especially 22:27 - if taken to addictive lengths and so is investing in cryptocurrencies the same as gambling I 22:33 - mean kinda uh depends on which ones you do and how much research you do and certainly we don’t want to be legalistic 22:39 - about it and say you can never do it but you know we just need to be responsible stewards of the resources that God has 22:44 - given us and things like that so we’re talking about that we also had this conversation about kind of like 22:49 - apologetics approaches one of our friends in the community has an atheist friend who he’s trying to kind of send 22:54 - good materials to something that would be worthy of dialogue and the friend he 23:00 - has is uh kind of very inclined towards the scientific and philosophical side of things a very formal very intellectual 23:07 - which is a good thing you know this is certainly not like a bad thing you know wanting to 23:12 - talk about things in a very formal and rigorous way well the problem is is that there are a number of apologetics 23:17 - resources that kind of claim to be along those lines but even as a Christian as someone who already believes things in 23:24 - terms of formulating arguments that I think unbelievers would actually find convincing towards you know for example 23:29 - actually interacting in dialogue with some of the questions they might have and things like that I’ve just always 23:35 - found these resources even the ones that style themselves as being very formal to just kind of be too lightweight and kind 23:41 - of hand wavy is not a very kind term but Airy fairy um you know just kind of not 23:48 - tackling the issues not tackling them head on or really listening and so I just don’t have a lot that I feel 23:54 - comfortable recommending in the sphere and so we’re talking about things uh you know not so much formal 24:00 - apologetics like proving the existence of God because there’s always going to be a component of Faith involved in this 24:05 - uh but more uh formally handling objections towards for example the existence of a spiritual realm uh the 24:13 - Mind Body problem in neuroscience and philosophy of mine here so you know the 24:18 - the issue of Consciousness and how strict materialists have a hard time defending that and philosophy of science 24:25 - in terms of people thinking science can explain everything except it certainly can’t because there are certain things 24:30 - certain questions the science just isn’t capable of answering and then logical positivism as that relates to philosophy 24:37 - of science and uh you know basically a refutation of strict materialism a writ large all of this sort of thing uh you 24:44 - know I don’t know how much of that is followable by most people but it is kind of an important area of apologetic 24:51 - discourse that I just don’t have very good resource suggestions on because I’ve never been Terribly Happy with many 24:57 - of the Christian resources that I’ve written not because I disagree with the people writing these things at least not 25:02 - in large part but just because I don’t think many of the things that I write along these lines have done a 25:08 - particularly good job kind of writing them in a way that will be convincing to their target audiences and so it’s a 25:16 - very difficult thing to be formal kind of all the way through through and through without presupposing all of the 25:21 - things that we believe as Christians and so one of the tricky things about apologetics is to a certain degree you 25:27 - have to be arguing without presupposing some of the things that we commonly take for granted so for example that God 25:32 - exists and that his word is inerrant and that we can build our Doctrine off of that because the people don’t buy the 25:39 - inerrancy of scripture and they don’t believe the Bible is a valid like epistemological base then you have a 25:44 - hard time discussing things with them and so instead you have to talk about the idea of axioms and presuppositions 25:50 - and kind of why people believe what they believe and all of this other stuff just to kind of be able to talk 25:56 - in a way that doesn’t presuppose the thing that you’re arguing for um and so it’s a shift that can be 26:01 - difficult to do especially do well um and this isn’t like a blanket condemnation of all things apologetics 26:07 - out there as if I could just do it so much better it’s a tricky it’s a tricky tricky subject um it’s a tricky thing to handle the 26:14 - point in this was I couldn’t just think of something off the shelf that I was like oh yes this is definitely what my friend should share so we talked about 26:19 - all of this and kind of the best way to go about it and some of the things in there I was actually pretty interested after the conversations I went did some 26:25 - research tried to find some links that might be helpful here from uh you know kind of blogs that I followed or just 26:32 - videos about these topics and stuff that might be a good start so those were discussions we had 26:39 - um you know in as much as people probably haven’t been all that interested in a lot of the stuff I’ve already been rambling about here I 26:44 - really don’t want to talk too too much about the actual coding part of this um so I am going to go show you what the 26:50 - discussion pages are that will probably be more interesting here um so discussion pages are uh uh pages 26:56 - and videos here supporting kind of tangentially related content to the studies uh that I have here and so uh 27:03 - here in the sr4 studies so this is the first lesson here to the sr4 series 27:09 - which is just the introductory video here right and so this has all the content for the introductory video now 27:14 - what the discussion page are is on the content page here if we show the table of contents you’ll see down at the bottom oh we have this other section 27:21 - which is where the discussion page is now by default on the content Pages um we minimize the content in the 27:27 - transcript of the discussion page so that the only stuff that shows up is the summary in the time stamps which is like the the brief version that will I’ll let 27:34 - people get an idea of the topic so the discussion page itself looks like a normal page here so it has its own 27:40 - content and transcripts right it the content is very similar to all of the other pages on the website it’s how it’s 27:45 - organized so this is the discussion page kind of the low level here now content Pages can have one or more discussion 27:51 - pages and uh they they show up again here at the bottom of the content page so if I have a second discussion page it 27:57 - would show up you know second after this one um and then uh they actually show up on 28:03 - the aggregation Pages here as well so note in the sidebar menu here I added uh links here to show and hide discussion 28:10 - pages so right now I only have one but they function just like the content transcript sections you can expand and 28:16 - collapse the discussion Pages for any given content page and by default they’ll start out collapsed on the 28:22 - aggregation pages and this is just the same content that was in the other places as well and um so if you if you 28:28 - show like the content uh and the transcripts then they will show the 28:33 - content in the transcripts within that discussion page section as well and then you can actually search across uh all of 28:39 - the content on this page all at once and again that’s the main purpose of the aggregation Pages as used on this site 28:45 - is primarily for uh so here we are in the discussion page section here right this is the discussion page showing up 28:51 - on this uh website as well uh being able to search and skim through absolutely everything here and then you can uh you 28:58 - know if we hide the content and hide the transcripts you know you can search and skim just through the summaries and the 29:03 - time stamps uh this is the purpose of the aggregation Pages for that searching and the skimming being able to view the 29:09 - study content all together doing those two things which are very helpful for finding information 29:14 - this is how a discussion Pages show up in all these voices now to actually make it so that all of this happens in a more 29:20 - or less automatic automated way so that I just write a page like this and stick 29:26 - it in the folder and then have my python application do absolutely everything else so it copies it onto the content 29:33 - page it copies it onto the aggregation page after it’s already shown up on the content page it sets it so that it 29:38 - displays correctly by default in both of those places and it gets handled if you 29:43 - have more than one of these things and they show up in the right order and all of that stuff I’m not going to bore you with the messy implementation details 29:50 - but long story short took me quite a long time to figure out how to do all of this you know I would say ballpark 20 29:56 - hours of coding lots of debugging in that because this is kind of a bug prone process I had to change the way that I 30:03 - organized some of the information in the file structure on the website so something called page bundles in Hugo 30:10 - started using Branch bundles rather than Leaf bundles probably doesn’t mean very much most people but there’s kind of a 30:17 - lot of debugging in trial and error involved in figuring out how I needed to order everything to make this be the new 30:23 - default Behavior but now that I’ve gotten this set up and the reason why I’m spending so much time on the uh the 30:29 - python application I’ve written up front here is moving forward in the future all I’ll have to do is write new studies in 30:35 - markdown which is kind of what I draft the web pages in and then I will press 30:40 - play on my application and let it spin for 10 or 15 seconds and then boom it will make the slides for me it will 30:46 - organize all of the content on the pages um it will actually also it will also build a subject index so the discussion 30:53 - Pages show up in the subject index as well I know that I added uh something here on Satan so if we go find Satan 31:00 - here in the subject Index this is actually a discussion page here you can see because discussion shows up 31:06 - in the page title here so Satan is already positionally defeated that’s something that we had here so we will go 31:14 - you know click on this and you can see that it actually already shows up on the 31:20 - discussion page and so uh in this way you know discussion pages are fully integrated content on the website 31:26 - um but they won’t get in the way on the content Pages unless you want to see them so not I can’t talk too much I mean this was hundreds of lines of code 31:32 - probably that I had to change and you know just for a sense of scale this isn’t even the python application self 31:38 - this is the GitHub repository for the website I had to change some short codes and stuff but I mean this is the number 31:45 - of files I had to change on just the website and so um I don’t actually have a lot of the stuff in Version Control 31:50 - this is a CSS file I mean this was a what’s this one uh this is like the 31:55 - section navigation stuff um yeah I mean I won’t bore everyone with the details it was pretty gross and it took me quite 32:01 - a long time to get it um I haven’t actually been pushing most of the commits to the preprocessor it’s just not something that is quite ready for 32:08 - public use yet I mean the repo is public it’s just out of date at this point because I’ve been working on this for a 32:13 - few months past what I pushed more recently I think um just keeping it all local here as I continue to polish stuff so can’t show 32:20 - you the actual diff there but it was probably on the magnitude of 15 files and hundreds of lines change so it took 32:25 - me a nice long time here to do all this but I’m kind of hopeful now that I’ve done this that I won’t have to do things 32:31 - like this again for a while uh that I will have knocked out a lot of the uh kind of the grosser coding side of 32:38 - things here because now the preposter application should properly be doing everything you know I shouldn’t have to 32:43 - do more at least that’s what I’m hoping um all right so with that that is all of 32:48 - the stuff that I got done here again maybe not the most interesting cycle uh you know in these two weeks here I done 32:54 - a lot of kind of setup stuff now content will be coming more shortly here 32:59 - hopefully so stuff that I still need to do this is kind of my short-term goals I 33:04 - need to write up documentation now that I’ve got the discussion Pages pushed live on the side I need to write up some 33:09 - documentation on the content organization page kind of explaining what they are and how they work similar to as I’ve done with the content pages 33:15 - and aggregation Pages already I’ve been a bit lazy there’s a lot of like boring 33:21 - busy work that I have to do when I upload the videos and the audio to archive.org I do that so that people can 33:27 - download them for offline use you know so that way you don’t have to have an internet connection to watch the videos because by default YouTube doesn’t let 33:33 - you download videos it’s actually against YouTube’s terms of service so I upload them to this platform so that 33:39 - anyone who does want to download the videos so that they’re not tied without internet connection can do so they don’t 33:44 - have to violate YouTube’s terms of service to do it I just provide the links in the video descriptions but um I have to go like find the files and 33:51 - download them and then upload them to archive.org and make sure the metadata data is correct and it just takes a while and is a bit of annoying busy work 33:57 - and so I have a backlog of videos here that I need to do that for and I should try to keep up with it more consistently I’m actually thinking uh as I catch up 34:04 - here um the other big part of like phase two in the ministry plan here that I 34:09 - went over in the last Ministry progress summary uh so uh the things in phase two were knocking out the discussion page 34:15 - stuff that I mostly just did I have to write the documentation for it and then go through all of the remaining stuff in 34:22 - the sr4 series and completely organize the videos there so post all the stuff on the website I’ll make sure all the 34:28 - links work build out all the descriptions on YouTube get all of that content completely polished and then 34:33 - I’ll keep going after that that will finish off phase two that’s when I’ll start making content videos again in the 34:38 - sr4 series and so hopefully this won’t take me as long as coding the discussion page stuff did you know because it’s not 34:44 - code this time it’s just this is more or less just going to be a lot of busy work I’m going to try to do like maybe one 34:49 - study a day I think I have about 18 17 left something like that um and then I’ve just got to knock it 34:56 - out um and so I’m thinking of doing like all all of this archive.org stuff all at once I’m kind of just like block myself 35:03 - uh you know several hours there and just go do it for all the videos all at the same time that way I won’t have to like keep coming back to it 35:09 - um and then I’ll knock out organizing all the transcripts and the time stamps and all the video descriptions and stuff 35:14 - I may do it like piece by piece um because I have quite a bit to do there but that’s the main other thing 35:20 - that I have to do in phase two and then I’ll be ready to start making new content again and then hopefully this 35:25 - will be more interesting on the content side not so much setup stuff um and then also more on the tech stuff I need to actually test out the wireless 35:32 - microphone that I mentioned that I got for the content recordings as well as continuing to set up more on the voice 35:39 - recognition stuff so that I can start using that more full time here all right well to finish off here uh 35:45 - back on the webcam um I’m just going to say real briefly that I’m glad that I got a good bit of 35:51 - work done here on the discussion Pages as well as starting to get some of the sr4 videos you know I did the one sr4 35:58 - video with the discussion page uh got that kind of fully organized so these 36:03 - are some of the steps in that uh second phase of the ministry rollout plan here and so once I have finished all this 36:10 - like I’ve said before I’ll be able to actually start making more content videos again and that’s something I’m 36:16 - excited about just because it’s something that I you know just am more interested in than some of the busy work 36:22 - here that I’m having to do up front to get the setup done and once I start doing that again I’m going to try to get 36:27 - more involved locally I think I’ve mentioned as well that that’s something else I’m looking forward to so I’m 36:33 - hoping here that uh you know next coming cycle as I move forward on the 36:38 - organization stuff that I’ll only have maybe several more weeks of this before I’ll be done uh with that initial push 36:45 - and then that will let me kind of diversify some of the things I work on and hopefully it’ll mean that uh some of 36:50 - the stuff’s more exciting both for me to do and for people to keep up with here so I hope that uh this summary here has 36:57 - been informative for all the people keeping up with what’s going on in this ministry and with that I will talk to 37:03 - everyone again next time
Unfortunately, I didn’t get through quite as much I had hoped this cycle, in terms of forward progress I think most people will actually care about. I did write up a draft for documentation on discussion pages, but wasn’t able to completely finish since I was waiting to take screenshots until I had a couple more discussion pages fleshed out, but then was blocked from actually doing that (temporarily) for various reasons. I got even more stuff done on the “workflow” side of things – continuing to set up voice recognition, handling Markdown in Microsoft Word, mics and monitors, etc. – still maintaining the hope that eventually all this upfront work will be worth it, and I can kick production into full gear.
0:00 - Introduction 01:34 - Outline 03:32 - This video is coming kinda late… 06:02 - Did various things to experiment with improving video quality 08:20 - Set up additional things with voice recognition 12:17 - Figured out how to be able to use Microsoft Word as my primary content editor while at the same time working with Markdown files 19:24 - Got the wireless Rode Go II mic system set up, for recording content videos 20:33 - Also got the portable dual 24" monitor arrangement set up properly, and tested it 22:06 - Got all the documentation for discussion pages written up 23:29 - Struggling through issues with path length limitations on Microsoft Windows 31:08 - Upcoming work 33:53 - Outro
The last ministry progress summary video was delayed due to actual technical barriers (the video editing workflow I had was having issues that I had to iron out).
This time, it was just perfectionism in the way. I had a certain order I wanted to complete tasks in, but kept not finishing things, which pushed everything else back. I could give various other reasons (like the fact I worked three and a half hours of overtime one of the days this week, for example), but basically, I didn’t prioritize getting this video out on the Sunday or the Monday, and then it just slid.
I’m going to formally declare here that I’m going to try and not let this happen again. I don’t want it to become a pattern, and it has become apparent to me that I need to set that expectation out for myself, otherwise there will always be something else in the way that comes up (things have a funny habit of turning out that way). I’d like to have very good consistency, so that’s what I’m going to try to hold myself to.
So it may not be every other Sunday exactly (the boundaries that control which things I talk about) – it may stretch to the Monday some or even most weeks – but that will be the schedule. No later than Monday.
Did various things to experiment with improving video quality
Primarily dealing with lighting matters. I explained some of this at the beginning of the last ministry progress summary video. Adjusting frame rate, shutter speed, ISO settings, color balance, and so on.
And of course switching to recording somewhere with better light. Hence why I was in the master bath last time I was recording: it is, at the moment, the private place in the house (that is, somewhere I can close a door to record without bothering my roommate and/or company, and so on) with the best inside lighting (contrast relying on outside light from windows).
Today, however, I’m recording in the master bedroom, just with all the curtains thrown open to get good natural lighting from outside. Probably comes off a little less strange than recording in the bathroom.
At some point, I may get a smaller (narrower) standing desk with wheels to use as my recording platform (and put my portable monitor setup on it to be able to see notes and stuff when I am recording), but today I’m just using my tablet alone, resting on a somewhat zip-ties-and-duct-tape platform assembly I cobbled together, fulfilling the same basic purpose as that standing desk with wheels would eventually, should I actually go through with that in the future.
Recording in the master bedroom like this just means I need to record the videos during the day when I can get the good lighting from opening the curtains.
Set up additional things with voice recognition
I added additional custom vocabulary entries for various punctuation characters (open and close quotes and brackets, for example).
I also added/edited a couple custom commands (or shorter forms of commands Dragon already has), like one for adding new lines, and one for instantly deleting the last word (basically, sending Ctrl + Backspace)
I did a lot of research about some voice commands in Dragon
Navigation commands (navigating to before/after words, beginning of document, end of document, end of line, etc.)
Selection commands (current paragraph, last paragraph, next paragraph, specific words, arbitrary strings of words – including sentences or longer, etc.)
Correction commands, and how training via correction helps improve Dragon accuracy
How all of these things can only happen in very specific applications where Dragon can fully track cursor position. Like Microsoft Word, for example. The supported application list is pretty small, and, notably, does not include the programming text editors that I’ve lived in the last few years (like VSCode and IntelliJ).
After subscribing to Microsoft Office 365 Personal to get Microsoft Word (and subsequently enabling the Dragon add-in therein), experimented with all these navigation/selection/correction commands in a detailed fashion. I am quite happy with how the voice commands work, and the eventual speed it should enable, once I practice more.
Figured out how to be able to use Microsoft Word as my primary content editor while at the same time working with Markdown files
Microsoft Word is typically used with, well, Word documents (the .docx file extension). But all of my content is written in Markdown, and that’s not going to change, since it needs to be in Markdown for the static site generator I use to work properly. So, if I want to be able to unleash the full power of Dragon, I will need to work in Microsoft Word (since Dragon basically only “completely works” in Word and a couple other similar programs, like OpenOffice and WordPerfect), and to be able to do that, I need to figure out how to handle Markdown files in Microsoft Word.
I did a lot of research, and found out that there is a third-party paid extension that does the heavy behind-the-scenes lifting to auto-convert from Markdown into Word and vice versa when opening and saving files, so that you can work seamlessly with Markdown files in Word. This is precisely what I want, so I bought it. It is called Writage.
I was delighted to see that it fully supports tables and footnotes. Honestly speaking, so far I’ve found that working with these things in Word is actually easier than in the text editors I was using before.
This Word plugin mostly “just works”… except its parser/auto-converter automatically strips HTML (… but why?), auto-backslash-escapes #’s and <’s and >’s and so on, and does a couple other silly things besides. Because it is completely non-configurable (boo, hiss), I will have to write some additional Python code in my pre-processor app to clean up the messes this plugin makes in my Markdown files every time I save after editing something. After saving a file, it breaks things to the point where I can’t even see the in-progress work on the local Hugo webserver without it erroring out.
This isn’t a showstopper since after I set it up once and get it working it should be more or less automated forevermore in the future, but I didn’t get to writing the Python code to enable that this cycle. After determining it will be possible to get all this ironed out in the future, that was where I stopped this time. I’m not particularly looking forward to it, but if it will be necessary for me to properly mix Dragon voice writing and voice commands with Markdown (which it appears it will be), then it’s just another thing I’ll have to grit my teeth and code support for. Eventually at least. Progress always has a price.
This cycle, I also worked a lot on setting up custom Word styles (for headers and such), hotkeys for navigating the menus and file outline in Word, voice commands for changing between header formatting (like h3, h4, h5, etc.) and normal text styling, and so on.
Specific workflow details, basically. I’ll leave it at just that so that I don’t bore everyone with the techno-babble, but it was a lot.
Got the wireless Rode Go II mic system set up, for recording content videos
Not too much to say here. I can connect the mic receiver to the GoPro to get clear wireless mic input that is in-sync with the video coming from the GroPro.
I’m actually using the wireless mic system right now, as I record this video.
It did take me a good while to figure out how to set everything up and get it all working together nicely.
I also did a good bit of research regarding setting microphone gain properly: the balance between increasing gain to get strong input signal levels without at the same time leaving yourself too little headroom such that things clip if you ever exceed the 0 dB ceiling. Took me a while to wrap my head around things.
Also got the portable dual 24" monitor arrangement set up properly, and tested it
After all the necessary components were finally here, I tested everything out, and made sure it all worked well together. It does, fortunately.
I set up and tore down the dual 24" monitor arrangement a couple times while timing myself to get a sense for the time it takes. It’s between 4 and 5 minutes to get it set up or taken down, looks like. Not too bad, considering the amount of functionality it offers.
I used it in the public library on one of the Saturdays in this cycle. I was pretty happy with how I was able to work in the public environment with little reduced work efficiency given the dual 24" monitors. So it looks like my purchases will fulfill their purpose.
Got all the documentation for discussion pages written up
Not too much to say here either. It sounds simpler than it was, as it took me a good bit of time to figure what I wanted to say to help explain what discussion pages are and how they work.
This first pass in drafting things, I left TODOs for all the screenshots I plan to have, because I was planning to process several more lessons so that I could get through the third lesson in the SR4 series that has two discussion pages. That way I’d be able to have a screenshot with more than one discussion page visible, to show that there can in fact be more than one, with the order of them properly respected according to page weight.
But I ran into some hiccups in getting these additional discussion pages processed and got blocked for a while, which I’ll talk about in a second.
Struggling through issues with path length limitations on Microsoft Windows
This one is another technical issue that I will try to keep short. (Well, at least not terribly long-winded). Basically, when I was trying to build the folders for the new discussion pages, I wasn’t able to name them what I wanted initially because of path length limitations baked into Microsoft Windows. (I use Windows 10 on my tablet, and Windows 11 on my desktop). Windows, by default, only lets you have paths (N.B. – full paths, not just files) of up to 260 characters, and after that, stuff breaks. So if you are in deeply nested folders and they have long names, you may run into this. Particularly with cloud storage folders, at least in my experience.
The first discussion page I had done had a path of C:/Users/steve/Dropbox/projects/bibledocs.org/content/longer-topical-studies/ichthys-sr4-satans-world-system/introduction-to-sr4-satans-world-system/level-of-depth-calling-many-deceived-too-harsh-why-god-allows-satan-control (224 characters here, which is less than 260, so that’s why I had no issues when I did this first one).
But then one of the next discussion pages I was trying to set up I wanted at the path of C:/Users/steve/Dropbox/projects/bibledocs.org/content/longer-topical-studies/ichthys-sr4-satans-world-system/purpose-in-this-dark-world-only-comes-by-faith-which-makes-us-outcasts-here-but-chosen-by-god/against-monasticism-and-the-idea-of-complete-separation-from-the-world (273 characters, which exceeds 260). So I couldn’t name it what I wanted. File Explorer just wouldn’t let me.
There were no helpful error messages, it just silently wouldn’t work, which was frustrating. Fortunately, I have pretty good debugging instincts given that I am a software engineer by profession (= I constantly have to debug stuff in the course of my job), so quickly figured out that I was getting blocked by path length limitations.
Actually resolving this problem once I’d identified it was another matter altogether. It took hours, and many of them at that. There was no simple system setting to toggle on support for longer paths, as the path length limit is heavily integrated into operating system things itself. Not so much for new things, but for backwards compatibility purposes, I would guess. I suppose supporting longer paths natively hasn’t been a priority because many normal people don’t bump into this issue.
I think part of the reason it took me so long here was that I was incredulous that it was as hard as it was to do this thing, this thing that it seems to me ought to be easily possible here in 2022. We aren’t in the dark ages of computers anymore, after all. I kept feeling like I was just searching with the wrong terms or something and missing the real “correct solution”. So I spent more time searching for that “correct solution” (that it turns out doesn’t exist) rather than just immediately going with the things that seemed more hack-ish the second I came across them.
The thing that did eventually work was manually adjusting a registry value to toggle on long path support. Then I was able to cd into directories and rename folders and files on the PowerShell command line, even if the new full paths after renaming would exceed 260 characters (even by a lot).
But I still couldn’t rename stuff in File Explorer (rather than on the command line). I got sucked into another research black hole trying to figure this one out too, wasting time in much the same way as I just described above (that is, thinking there must actually be a proper way to do it, if only I could find it). Like c’mon, if the operating system itself supports longer paths if you set the registry value, why in the world would the operating system’s own file manager not properly support it? Who would design things that way?
Microsoft, apparently. Here we are in 2022, and it is still officially impossible to deal with long paths in Windows natively. File Explorer (Windows’ built-in file manager), even if you set the registry value appropriately to support long paths at the OS level, just straight up doesn’t support it. And apparently there are no plans to make it work in the future either.
So after being defeated there too, I then had to turn myself to the task of finding a replacement Windows file manager that does support longer paths. And of course I didn’t want to be excessively hasty in choosing a new piece of software I’ll be using a lot, so I felt compelled to do research on different file manager options, weighing pros and cons, and making sure whatever I picked supported all the things I needed it too (such as properly integrating with Dropbox’s Smart Sync functionality, for example).
Long story short, I settled on a free one called FreeCommander, and now I can properly name my folders for the discussion pages. Only took like 3 days of research and debugging…
Now that I can properly name the discussion page files and folders what I want (even though the paths are long and they are deeply nested), my top priority is going to be to get through organizing a few more of the early lessons from the SR4 series content, so that I can finally make good screenshots for the documentation about discussion pages (showing multiple discussion pages at the same time), so that I can finally push said documentation up to the live site. This will be priority #1 in the short term.
Then I’ll turn my focus to finishing the full organization for all the rest of the SR4 content that is up thus far. Once I finish that, I’ll be done with Phase II in my plan (explained a couple ministry progress summary videos back), and can therefore finally start uploading new content again, as well as start getting more involved in local church groups. At least that’s the plan.
0:00 - hey guys right now I’m going to be making the ministry progress summary video here uh for events through October 0:06 - 23 2022 so this video is coming out a little bit late I just got really tied up with stuff this week and I’ll go over 0:12 - that in just a little and how I want to keep myself more consistent but uh long story short still kind of in the setup 0:19 - phase of things still making more work or sorry rather making more progress on the workflow and uh continuing to get 0:26 - things set up on the discussion pages so that I can organize more content now we’ll jump right into things here in a 0:32 - second with the outline but you know just going to show my face here on screen I’m pretty happy with the way 0:38 - things are going you know I’m hoping that I only have like a week or two more here I mean I know I kind of said that 0:44 - last time too but uh you know we’ll get into a little bit of that as I go over the things I got done but uh you know 0:50 - you may notice that the recording Locale has changed here I just kind of did decide you know I mean even though the 0:55 - lighting was good in the bathroom um you know right now I am actually in the math master bedroom so I’ve got the 1:01 - windows open and I played with the color balance and stuff on the inside profile here and I think this is like a little 1:09 - bit less strange than recording videos in the bathroom probably and so I actually do have the wireless microphone 1:15 - going too as well it’s why I’m standing a little bit back here um so I have the lapel mic on my collar here and then 1:20 - it’s hooked up to the wireless receiver on the GoPro so some of the video recording stuff starting to stabilize a 1:26 - bit but I certainly won’t bore everyone with the details on that I will go ahead and jump right into the actual content 1:33 - that I got done here in this two-week cycle all right so these are the things here 1:39 - in the outline first I’m going to go over kind of why this video is a bit late and kind of how I want to do better on this in the future uh just keep 1:46 - myself very consistent making these videos every couple weeks to keep the progress going so I’m recording this uh 1:52 - probably like six days late here you know I had intended to actually record it over the weekend but I was really busy and then stuff came up at work this 1:58 - week and so you know I’ll go over that a little bit I’m going to talk about how I continue to kind of change things with 2:04 - the video quality I just mentioned that a little bit here you know recording out in the bedroom with good natural light rather than artificial inside lights 2:12 - here I set up more stuff with voice recognition people may get kind of tired of me continuing to go over this but you 2:19 - know it is kind of a big deal how I want to make things moving forward this one’s big dragon which is the voice 2:25 - recognition software that I use kind of only fully integrates with a few programs and Microsoft Word is one of 2:31 - them and because I write most of my content in markdown I have to figure out how to be able to write my markdown in 2:37 - Microsoft Word so this was something that I was working on for quite a while here I got the wireless microphone 2:43 - system set up I’ll mentioned that a little bit at the beginning of the video as well I also completely tested out the 2:49 - portable dual 24-inch monitor setup I mentioned that in a previous Ministry progress summary but I actually took it 2:56 - to the library set up the full system it takes a little bit to set up and tear down but uh you know lets me be very 3:01 - productive if I do decide to go work out in a public place I got the documentation written up for the 3:07 - discussion Pages this was one of the big outstanding to Do’s I had for this phase I did get blocked on some stuff and that 3:13 - was because of path limitations in Microsoft Windows so I’ll get to that you know maybe kind of explain this in 3:20 - over much detail here but you know I was going to make even more progress organizing things this cycle but ended 3:26 - up getting kind of blocked because of this issue I was having naming things and then finally we’ll go over what the 3:33 - upcoming work that I’d like to get done is so starting out here we’re going to be going over kind of why this video is 3:39 - coming out a little bit late so the last one which I did release on like a Friday that one was late because I was actually 3:45 - having a full technical problems you know I was having issues with the video editing process that I had I worked out 3:51 - some of the Kinks You know I was having video audio sync issues having set up a new video profile on the GoPro which was 3:57 - causing the audio to drift relative to the video and uh you know it was kind of quite a chore to get it all ironed out 4:03 - last time although I think I’m kind of on a better path here so this time it wasn’t so much that I was strictly 4:09 - prevented from making the video earlier as I was a bit of perfectionism here on my part 4:14 - oh I kind of had a certain order I wanted to complete tasks in but kept like not finishing things and then that 4:20 - ended up pushing everything else back so I could give kind of a bunch of reasons you know I had to get my house inspected 4:26 - by the termite inspectors you know to maintain the termite warranty I have other practical stuff like that I also 4:32 - worked uh like three and a half hours overtime one of the days this week because we were really busy deadlines 4:37 - and stuff at work and so the basic gist though is that I just didn’t prioritize getting this video out on the Sunday or 4:43 - the Monday this week uh you know I didn’t push everything else aside to keep that schedule and kind of in the 4:49 - future here I’m going to try not to let this happen again where the video is coming you know quite a bit later in the 4:54 - week because I’m trying to hold myself to this two-week pattern here to maintain that consistency and so I’d 5:00 - like to have that consistency I’d like to maintain that schedule you know both for me to hold myself to it and then 5:05 - also for people who follow these updates so that they can maintain that kind of consistent status 5:12 - on what’s going on in the ministry so moving forward the goal uh may not exactly be every single Sunday that’s 5:19 - where the boundaries for things are you know I’m doing things every other Sunday uh is kind of where I cut off the content boundaries for uh the tasks that 5:26 - I I talk about in these updates but it might roll to the Monday just because sometimes I have to process the video 5:31 - and things like that but either the Sunday or the Monday every two weeks that’s when I’m hoping to have these 5:37 - videos out by so I’m saying that being a little bit hypocritical here um that means that the next video from the time I’m actually recording this is only 5:43 - going to be in about a week I mean I have gotten some stuff done this week too which I will talk about in that video but you know all this to say 5:49 - they’re going to try to actually hold myself a little bit better to that time window of Sunday or Monday rather than 5:55 - letting it slide back later in the week so if I need to I will bump other things on my task schedule to make sure that I 6:02 - maintain a bit better consistency with these videos here so that Preamble aside going to go over 6:07 - just a couple more of the things that I’m trying to do to improve video quality here so uh just going to really 6:13 - go through this quick like I mentioned actually recording in the master bedroom right now uh I had recorded the last 6:19 - video in the bathroom one of the advantages of using like inside artificial light is that I don’t have to 6:24 - only record videos when it’s bright outside but I could do it you know later at night once the sun has gone down but 6:30 - you know even so it’s just kind of odd recording in the bathroom so I thought better of it a little bit just decided 6:35 - you know what uh probably just seems a bit more natural to record in a room you know I’ve got like the bookcase in the background here and things like that and 6:42 - so that’s what I’m going to try to shoot for it just means that I have to record the videos when it’s bright outside basically and so I fiddled around with 6:48 - some GoPro settings still uh you know made sure that I got the profile I’m shooting with the inside light here uh 6:53 - you know with natural light coming in through the windows make sure all of that is working well things like that but basically uh for now gonna probably 7:01 - try recording in this setup here in the master bedroom for the foreseeable future because it’s a room where I can 7:07 - kind of be closed off you know not bother my roommate or anyone else who’s over and things like that now in the 7:12 - future I might kind of get a more formal like portable standing desk something that has wheels because I would want to 7:19 - actually take that out to go if I have people over for Bible studies we have the big projector out in the living room 7:25 - and I’d want to have my presenting set up there as well with the portable monitors the the Dual 24-inch monitors 7:31 - that I’ve mentioned for now I kind of just like zip ties and duct tape put together like a platform assembly and 7:37 - then put the tripod on that so I’ve actually got some like sheaves of printer paper like three of them to to 7:43 - raise it up a little bit and I think it’s going to work okay in the short term but maybe longer term going to try 7:49 - to get a standing desk with wheels there to make it a little bit more of an official presenter platform so I think 7:54 - that’s all I’m going to say about this you know I’m continuing to try to improve the video quality and the audio quality here with the mic as well just 8:01 - to make sure that the quality of the content it’s as good as I can make it you know given my somewhat limited set of skills 8:07 - and knowledge here you know I think I’m getting better but uh you know it’s certainly not something that I have a lot of formal training in so self-taught 8:13 - for the most part but I do think that things are better now than they were at the very beginning for example so kind 8:19 - of keep trying to leverage that make sure that the content ends up as good as I can make it next going to talk a little bit about 8:25 - the things with respect to voice recognition that I got done this time so I did add some custom vocabulary entries 8:31 - more things for punctuation also continuing to practice here to get that speed up and get my comfort with uh 8:38 - dictating sentences rather than typing things out a little bit faster I also added a couple custom commands or 8:45 - shorter forms of commands that Dragon already has so like one for adding new lines uh you know their their command 8:51 - for it is new line but you know again that is ambiguous possibly with things that you would say normal speech so I 8:57 - came up with my own brief for it then another one for deleting the last word um you know their command for it is 9:03 - delete last word that’s just a little bit wordy and so I came up with a single syllable thing that does the same thing 9:09 - you know just deletes the last word so kind of like control backspace now this was important especially towards the 9:15 - future here as I start dictating full time and trying to do a lot of my editing with the dictation software as 9:22 - well is there’s a lot of commands that you can do with Dragons so there’s like commands to navigate around in a 9:28 - document so that’s like between paragraph sentences beginning the file into the file things like that you can 9:33 - select things you know select arbitrary words in the sentence or phrases you know like this word through that word 9:40 - the entire sentence you’re in the next sentence the last sentence the next paragraph the last paragraph the current paragraph all of those sorts of things 9:47 - and then correction commands which is if mu are dictating something a dragon gets it wrong because it for example makes up 9:54 - hominins or something you can actually correct it and then in the future it will remember that so it’s smart machine 9:59 - learning type thing you know it will kind of correct itself over time as you train it and so all of these things very 10:06 - important for you know getting faster with doing things with voice now something that’s important about all of 10:12 - this and this drove a much of the other workflow stuff that I did this cycle is that these things can only happen in 10:18 - very specific applications where Dragon can fully track cursor position so Mike Microsoft Word is an example also like 10:25 - open office and wordperfect and a couple other programs but the supported application list is actually pretty 10:31 - small it’s mostly like word processors the kind of programmer text editors or Ides that I’ve been using like vs code 10:37 - and IntelliJ not on the list and so if I want to be able to navigate by voice 10:43 - commands or select text by voice commands and do the corrections so dragon learns over time I have to be in a program that actually supports drag 10:50 - and tracking cursor position and so Microsoft were definitely the biggest program um kind of like the one that is you know 10:56 - the most feature Rich and well supported um I mean I think it works about equally well in all of them you know Microsoft 11:01 - Word just has a lot of features that might make it more attractive over other options so that’s what I decided to go 11:06 - with and so for that reason I actually needed to get word so far I’ve kind of squeaked by just using the online form 11:13 - of the Microsoft like office thing so Word and Excel you can use them online 11:18 - for free and so I’ve just been doing that because I don’t really edit files that much all right most of my stuff in 11:24 - markdown at Google Docs but you know decided that you know if I need this for Dragon well then I’m gonna have to buy 11:29 - it so I got an Office 365 subscription I got the dragon add-in enabled there and 11:35 - you know tested it out here and then I tested out all of these commands that I was mentioning the navigation commands 11:40 - the selection commands the correction commands all of these things for Dragon uh to kind of unleash the full power of 11:46 - the voice recognition when I am dictating text here so pretty happy with how it turned out actually I definitely 11:51 - need to practice a lot more before I’ll kind of be able to do it more fluidly and and uh and kind of without pausing 11:58 - to think about what things I need to say to make it happen uh you know kind of get that that it’s not muscle memory I 12:04 - guess because you’re talking but the the talking memory uh very equivalent to muscle memory for keyboard shortcuts and 12:10 - stuff but I am pretty happy with how it turns out um I think once I do practice and once I get this speed I think it 12:16 - will work very well so this was the things that I was setting up on the voice recognition front now big problem 12:21 - caused by this is that all of my stuff for static side generators you know the content that I write for my website it’s 12:27 - written in markdown and Microsoft Word but usually does not use markdown it 12:32 - usually use uh you usually edit Word documents in word so uh things with the docx file extension but because all of 12:40 - my content is in markdown um that’s not going to change either because the static site generator so 12:45 - like not just the one I use but almost all of them uh you know use markdown as what you write your content in and so if 12:52 - I want to completely Unleash the Power of dragon with all those types of commands I mentioned the navigation 12:58 - commands the selection commands the correction commands I will need to work in Microsoft Word or one of the other 13:03 - programs uh you know but I picked word and so I need to work in Microsoft Word but I need to figure out how to handle 13:10 - markdown files in Microsoft Word and by handle them I mean like not just opening them up so that they’re plain text but 13:16 - I’d like syntax highlighting or something similar enough to it for the markdown headers and the ability to like 13:22 - open links um you know either control clicking them or things like that and uh so uh you 13:29 - know I basically decided I want to be able to actually use markdown uh edit markdown in a fluid sort of way using 13:36 - Microsoft Word where I have all of this uh Power using the dragon uh voice recognition commands and so I actually 13:43 - did a bunch of research and found this uh add-in for Microsoft Word it’s a third-party paid extension that kind of 13:50 - does the heavy lifting to Auto convert between markdown and word when you’re opening and saving files and so if you 13:55 - have a markdown file you can open it in Microsoft Word and then basically when it’s opening it in word it will like 14:01 - convert it to word behind the scenes so you work at it you work with it like it’s a normal Word file then when you save it it auto converts it back to 14:07 - markdown so pretty neat this is basically exactly what I wanted so I bought it you know it was you know not 14:13 - super cheap it was more than twenty dollars but one time a licensing fee or whatever it’s called writeage so there’s 14:19 - a link here you know I’ll go real briefly open this and so so uh you know 14:24 - it’s this this plugin for Microsoft Word that basically lets you uh do markdown stuff in Microsoft Word uh now of course 14:31 - me being me I did have some issues with it um it actually completely removes HTML 14:37 - which kind of puzzling to me since that was one of markdown’s big selling points was that you can just kind of mix HTML 14:42 - with the text that you write but regardless of this plugin removes it I guess it’s probably just because it was 14:48 - designed kind of for normal people in mind you know uh you know for me I would have been more liable to kind of do 14:55 - things with pandok which is a command line converter for various file types but you know that’s not completely 15:01 - automated I suppose I could set it up with like things that track if you save something and then Auto convert it but 15:06 - this is more seamless it’s just that the parser isn’t very flexible so it strips 15:11 - HTML which is annoying and um kind of Auto backslash escapes number signs that 15:16 - aren’t part of headers so for example I use them for anchor tags when I automatically generate headers with the 15:22 - preprocessor application and then the angle brackets as well automatically escapes those and so basically every 15:28 - time I run something through this plugin to work with something in Microsoft Word and then I save the file it kind of 15:33 - messes up my markdown file now it’s kind of a limited set of ways that it does this it’s not like it it screws 15:38 - everything up it’s just these few things and so I’ve decided that once I set it up and get it working I’ll be able to 15:45 - actually kind of write additional functionality in the preprocessor 15:52 - application that I’ve been writing in Python to after I have been editing these files in Microsoft Word I’ll just 15:57 - have to rerun the preprocessor which I do anyway to build the subject index and I just have to be smart and kind of undo 16:03 - the ways in which this plugin messes up my markdown files now it’s not awful it’s just that because their parser 16:10 - doesn’t have any customization like I can’t tell it hey I don’t want you to do this you know I can’t check some check boxes and say turn off this feature you 16:17 - know basically I would just rather it doesn’t mess with my files that much but it kind of does these things and I guess probably just because because it’s 16:23 - trying to be user friendly and stuff for people who aren’t familiar with markdown whereas for me I’m very familiar with 16:29 - markdown and I’ve used it almost exclusively for the last five years or so it’s just I now I need to do it in 16:34 - word and so I think it’s kind of going the other way and that’s why it’s kind of frustrating for me but you know I think I’ll be able to you know write my 16:41 - application to kind of undo the things that are supposed to be helpful so that it will actually work for my use case 16:46 - and that way I will be able to write markdown files in Microsoft Word where I can use all of the Dragon commands now 16:53 - one other thing to note I was actually pretty delighted that it supports tables and footnotes exactly how you have them 17:00 - in word and so you have wysiwyg tables and footnotes on the bottom of the page and honestly these things actually work 17:05 - better in word than they have been in the text editors that I’ve been using so there are like keyboard shortcuts where 17:10 - you can like tab between cells in tables in things like vs code or the markdown 17:16 - plugin for IntelliJ you know so it’s not like they’re awful in those but uh you know the the what you see is what you 17:22 - get that’s what wysiwyg stands for tables in uh Microsoft Word definitely better you know it’s just a little bit 17:28 - easier to work with I think and so I was happy to see that it just kind of supports it out of the box it uses the 17:34 - GitHub flavored markdown tables and so I’m not like unhappy with this plugin I just wish that there was a bit more 17:39 - customization so that it didn’t break things in my workflow so much but I think it’ll be fixable the one thing 17:45 - that won’t be super fixable is the stripping out of HTML that’s just kind of like tough I will have to refactor to 17:52 - use make my own comment short code in my static site generator to get around that so A few pain points of frustration here 17:58 - but this was something that I spent time on so that moving forward in the future I’ll be able to draft all my content 18:04 - with voice recognition in markdown so you know maybe not very interesting for most people but will be very important 18:11 - in the future as I continue uh chipping away at this voice recognition stuff to try to be faster and faster in how I 18:17 - draft content um you know one other thing I did after I got a word set up initially I did a 18:23 - bunch of a customization type stuff so I set up custom styling for the headers and I kind of reduced the font size so 18:29 - that headers were just color coded rather than being really big so they take up less space on the screen and 18:34 - then keyboard shortcuts for navigating the menus and the the file outline then 18:40 - voice commands for changing between the header formatting so I’ll say something like header three and then that will apply the header 3 styling or normal 18:47 - text and that will change the styling back to normal text things like that so uh voice recognition command specific 18:53 - for how I’m setting things up in Microsoft Word and then you know just a bunch of other workflow details and am I 18:59 - going to try to bore everyone with the technobabble here but there’s like a lot of configuration uh more things like 19:05 - that you know and I I’m not even completely done um you know I I mentioned that I will be able to fix some of the problems that 19:11 - this plugin causes in my markdown files but I didn’t actually do that this time I just kind of like reasoned my way 19:17 - through it figured out it would be possible so that this actually will be a solution to being able to write markdown 19:23 - in Microsoft Word I’ll just have to go do that at some point before I start doing this kind of more full-time so 19:28 - I’ll stop uh rambling there um this also real quick I did get the wireless microphone system set up again 19:34 - I’m actually using it to record this right now um it did take me a while to get 19:39 - everything set up and figure out how it all connects together and the wireless signal and I did also do a good bit of 19:45 - research here uh kind of figuring out how to adjust gain settings properly so kind of the balance between getting 19:52 - strong input signal levels while leaving enough headrooms so that you don’t clip so that you leave enough ceiling here 19:58 - that you don’t exceed the zero decibel threshold where you start getting clipping in your audio so you know I 20:03 - again not uh pretending to be professional here I’m learning as I go although I do think I am gaining enough 20:10 - knowledge in these things that hopefully the content quality will keep improving over time but um so you know it’s worked pretty well 20:16 - I’m happy with the purchase I mean it was expensive enough but the Wireless receivers they work with the GoPro and 20:21 - in fact right now the wireless receiver is plugged into the GoPro which in turn is plugged into the computer so I’m 20:27 - using it as my webcam and the audio is actually coming in through the capture card interface and I even that’s working okay so kind of complicated but happy to 20:34 - get this system set up too um also with the portable 24 inch monitors again you know did mention not 20:40 - the most interesting content week again I promise guys I’ll get there eventually but uh still doing all of this setup 20:46 - stuff here I did get the all of the components for the portable monitor setup here the Dual 24-inch monitors 20:53 - came and finally I tested everything out and made sure it all worked together um it did which I was happy about you 20:58 - know I didn’t have any real hiccups in the process here I had the drivers for the displays installed on my computer a 21:04 - so-called display link lets you hook up these uh kind of displays over USB with 21:09 - like a USB hub that I have so I set up and tore down the setup a couple of times you know it takes me like 21:16 - somewhere between four and five minutes to set it up and take it down and say you know that’s like a reasonable 21:22 - reasonably large amount of time investment so it kind of makes it worth my while if I’m going to be somewhere for like several hours working having 21:29 - all of that extra screen real estate rather than just my puny tablet screen really does help me be more efficient 21:34 - and so I did actually test it out in the real world situation I went to the public library on one of the Saturdays 21:40 - in this cycle and I was actually pretty happy with how well would let me work you know I put my headphones on in that 21:46 - environment and really knocked some stuff out with the two monitors letting me kind of work without taking a big 21:51 - efficiency hit even though you know I didn’t have my full uh you know 4K TV as my monitor display that’s normally what 21:57 - I use at home but you get the idea you know happy to test out the setup and see 22:03 - that it worked more or less how I had designed it and intended for it to so you know more things on the setup here 22:09 - now actually as to uh things kind of making more forward Ministry progress 22:14 - itself I did get the documentation for the discussion Pages written up uh not a 22:20 - lot to say here you know maybe that sounds pretty simple um I actually had kind of a tricky time figuring out what I wanted to say to 22:26 - help explain what discussion pages are and how they work on the site now this first pass I did kind of leave to Do’s 22:32 - uh for adding screenshots for a lot of the things that I’m talking about um so you know screenshots showing how 22:39 - various bits of the discussion page process work on the site that’s because I wanted to be able to show that you can 22:44 - have more than one discussion page and right now the only thing that I think I actually have more than one discussion 22:50 - page is actually the third lesson in the sr4 series and so far I only did the first one and so I decided that I wanted 22:56 - to you know get a couple more lessons processed so the second lesson the third lesson in the discussion pages for all 23:02 - of those so that I’d have this example with multiple discussion Pages for the same content page because that’s something that can happen and you know I 23:08 - just wanted to show it was possible and explain how that worked but in the process of actually trying to get the rest of that content processed I ran 23:14 - into a roadblock that’ll be one of the last things we talk about here for this cycle because this really blocked me for 23:20 - like several days here but that’s kind of what I was doing I was getting the documentation Pages written then I was 23:26 - going to organize several more of the lessons in the sr4 series so that I’d be able to have this example with multiple 23:32 - discussion pages and then when trying to do that got blocked by pathlink limits so this was a configuration issue that I 23:40 - really beat my head against the wall for a while on um I was struggling through issues with path length limitations on Microsoft 23:46 - Windows so I use Windows 10 on my tablet it and then Windows 11 on my desktop at 23:53 - home and it turns out that Windows only lets you have full file Paths of up to 260 characters by default and a file 24:00 - path is like not just it’s not just like the name of the file is this you know 24:06 - like my C drive user Steve Dropbox projects etc etc so the complete length 24:11 - of this cannot exceed 260 characters because if it does it just won’t let you it won’t let you exceed that and so if 24:18 - you if you go above that um I I take it for backwards compatibility reasons some stuff breaks in like the windows kernel apis or 24:24 - whatever and so it just it doesn’t out of the box support it and so I think the 24:29 - reason why this hasn’t been a huge priority to fix is that many people don’t have an issue with this so just as 24:34 - an example for me uh the first discussion page that I had done that actually worked so discussion pages are 24:40 - highly nested because so this is the kind of content organization you can see that I have my website currently set up 24:47 - in my Dropbox folder here so it’s automatically backing up to the cloud um so you know my my user path and then 24:54 - Dropbox projects bibledocs.org this is the website and then within the site 24:59 - directory we go to the content directory then the content type which is longer topical studies then the name of the 25:05 - study which is the sr4 study so if this is sr4 Satan’s World system and then 25:10 - after that the name of the content page in the study so this one was the introduction uh this first this first 25:16 - lesson was the introduction so introduction to sr4 savings world system and then this right here is the name of 25:22 - the discussion page so level of depth is calling many deceive too harsh why God allow Satan control those were the 25:29 - discussion topics that we went over in this video and so this entire path is actually 224 characters long you know I 25:34 - put that into like a character counter on the internet and that’s less than 260 and so that’s why I didn’t have issues here now for this one uh you know same 25:41 - general path you know we’re still in the same same study a different content page this time so this content page is 25:47 - actually a lot longer and so the reason why I was having issues was because I just wanted to make uh the folder 25:52 - structure here just match the titles I find that very intuitive um even though it leads to like long paths 25:59 - um I I don’t see a great way to do that otherwise like I find this the most intuitive 26:04 - um you know it matches the titles and the paths uh you know like why wouldn’t you do that aside from the length limits 26:10 - that we have here so the title of this one uh the lesson was purpose in this 26:15 - dark world only comes by faith which makes us Outcast here but chosen by God right an important spiritual concept for 26:21 - us and then the discussion page here uh is called against monasticism and the 26:27 - idea of complete separation from the world so that’s not a very short file name either right these are the names of 26:32 - the folders that contain the index files that have uh the actual content in them but all said and done all of these paths 26:39 - together come out to be 273 characters which exceeds the 260 that’s the limit on windows by default now it wasn’t like 26:47 - I got a message that hopefully popped up and said hey you can’t rename this file because it exceeds the link limitation it just didn’t work and so for a while I 26:54 - was sitting there scratching my head figuring out you know why isn’t it letting me rename the file I don’t understand and now thankfully I have a 27:00 - lot of experience debugging stuff because I’m a software engineer that’s my full-time job my day job and so I 27:07 - have reasonably good instincts because I have to do this sort of thing a lot at work and so you know I figured out 27:12 - pretty quick oh it must be because of the file length now after I figured that out actually resolving the problem it 27:17 - was not that easy um so it took hours and many hours at that um there wasn’t any simple system 27:23 - setting that I could check that said yes I would like to support longer files thank you very much and it does not just 27:29 - work and so part of the reason why I think this took me so long to iron out was I was just incredulous that this 27:35 - wasn’t easier to do you know like we’re in 2022 now not the dark ages of the internet so uh you know like why can’t 27:41 - we why can’t we just have file names that aren’t really short like or sorry not file name file paths that aren’t 27:47 - really short like this stopped being a technical problem a long time ago is what I’m saying uh you know not when computers were very new and memory was 27:53 - expensive and things like that um you know I kind of see the case for it then but the fact that this is so 27:59 - complicated to set up on like a modern Windows computer is what puzzled me so I kept thinking that like I was just like 28:04 - not looking in the right place I wasn’t using the right Search terms or whatever and then if I just searched a little bit harder I’d find like the actual real way 28:11 - to enable this because I was like sir certainly it can’t be this hard right um and it actually was that hard so the 28:16 - thing that I actually had to do to enable this was I had to go manually edit a registry value to turn this 28:23 - support for long file paths on it the operating system level and so once I’ve done that I could rename files on the 28:29 - Powershell command line to whatever I wanted basically I mean I’m sure there’s an upper limit probably like the thousands of characters or whatever but 28:35 - you know plenty long enough for me you know I was just a little more than 260 probably going to end up being like under 300 most of the time but more than 28:41 - 260 at any rate and so if I could rename stuff on the command line and then it was actually working fine now the 28:47 - problem was I still couldn’t rename stuff in file explorer and so again another black hole of research here 28:53 - going down being like certainly certainly if you can enable it at the operating system level you can have it 28:59 - supported in the file manager right so file explorer is the default file manager on Windows and I figure if they 29:05 - support it in the operating system it wouldn’t make any sense for them not to support in the file manager right but um so I asked you know who would design 29:12 - things that way so that the operating system supports it but the file manager the chips with the operating system 29:17 - doesn’t well micro yourself apparently because here we are in 2022 and you 29:23 - still actually cannot it’s officially impossible for you to deal with long paths in Windows like natively you just 29:29 - can’t do it um so even though the operating system supports it if you go dig into the bowels and you change the 29:34 - registry vowel or sorry the registry value uh file explorer just will not it 29:39 - cannot and they have no plans of making it in the future because there’s stuff that relies on file explorer and uh for 29:46 - backwards compatibility reasons and stuff I mean I was reading some of this it doesn’t even sound like they’re going to support it in the future and so after 29:52 - all of this research I was kind of put out I was disappointed because I’d spent all this time and then I had to go 29:58 - actually research file managers myself because the file explorer can’t do it I have to get a different one because I do 30:04 - want to have the longer paths again because they match the titles of my content and I think that makes sense and 30:09 - so after all of this I had to go research file managers because you know I’m going to be using this a lot and you 30:15 - know I have other requirements too I use Dropbox and so it needs to integrate with with the smart sync functionality that’s a part of Dropbox for example it 30:21 - needs to let me support the longer paths and stuff and so a long story short after all that research I settled on a 30:28 - free option it’s called free Commander I’m pretty happy with it you know I played around with it for a while and got it set up but now after all of this 30:34 - I can properly name my folders for the discussion Pages what I want them to be so you know with the name of the content 30:39 - page and then the name of the discussion page I can have it all match the title so that it’s intuitive but it took me 30:46 - like two or three days you know going through all of this on top of my my job you know I actually sacrificed an entire 30:51 - Sunday to this and it just took me a long time to figure out how to actually get this all to work and I’m still kind 30:56 - of disappointed that it’s so hard to enable this it just seems like it’s something that ought and be that hard given that we live in the modern day but 31:03 - apparently it is and so you know this was something that sucked up a bunch of time and this is one of those reasons why I didn’t make as much progress on 31:10 - the content front as I wanted to all right so that was the cycle you know a lot more on the workflow stuff I did 31:15 - write up the documentation for the discussion Pages you know that did give me close are here and so now that I fixed this issue with the paths the file 31:23 - paths so that I can actually name the folders what I want and I kind of got myself unstuck the next thing after this 31:28 - is going to be organizing those early lessons in the sr4 series so that I can get through the third one that has two 31:35 - discussion pages so that I can finally take the screenshots so that I can finally finish the documentation page so 31:40 - that I can finally publish it to the website so that’s going to be priority number one here in the short term and then after I finished that I’m going to 31:46 - turn my focus to finishing the full Organization for all the rest of the content in the sr4 series and so once I 31:53 - do that I will be done with phase two and the plan that I’ve had kind of for 31:58 - moving forward here in the ministry I explained this back uh I think like two Ministry progress summaries ago so here 32:04 - we are talking about what’s in phase two that was going to be fully coding support for discussion Pages writing the 32:09 - documentation for discussion Pages what I just did and then catching up on all the organization here 32:14 - um after this I will start making new ministry content again you know this is kind of one going to give myself permission to be you know a little bit 32:21 - more proactive about making new content again because I will caught up on some of the old stuff then I’ll mix uh you 32:27 - know catching up on the rest of the peripatology series that’s already up on YouTube with making new stuff so I don’t 32:32 - burn myself out um and then I’m also probably going to start getting a little bit more involved in local stuff you know once I’m kind of 32:39 - making new stuff again on a consistent schedule I didn’t want to go uh you know kind of start getting really involved 32:45 - and really busy until I kind of started making stuff again I got that process set up and uh you know saw what my time 32:52 - commitments were like and things like that but hoping to start making new content as well as getting involved in local stuff maybe even starting up the 32:59 - local Bible study here at the house you know my roommate and I have organized our house for this pretty hyped about it 33:04 - I hope it turns out well again if we can find people who are interested in this but all of this can kind of start once I 33:11 - finally get that content uh once I finally start making content again consistently which is going to happen as 33:16 - soon as I finish the organization here so I why I said I am close you know I am getting ever closer to this as I keep 33:22 - going here but looking forward to hopefully being able to finish that so that I can start making new content 33:28 - again so that all these other things can happen so um now that I finally finished the path issues I’m gonna get the rest of that 33:35 - content organized for the first few things then publish the documentation page and then get all of the other Pages 33:40 - organized too so I have probably like 15 videos or so that I need to do this for I’m going to try to do like one a day or 33:46 - something make sure that I split out the work so that I don’t burn out from it and then after that that’s when I’ll get 33:53 - to the other things all right well uh closing out here um I 33:58 - know again this one maybe not the most interesting ever um but I do hope that anyone who’s 34:04 - interested in following some of the things that goes into uh you know building the the websites and the 34:09 - content and everything uh you know it really is a process that takes some time uh you know again especially for those of us without lots of audio and video 34:16 - experience and so I’m learning a lot as I go here but I am hoping that once I set all of this sort of thing up for the 34:22 - first time once I get the process worked out then moving forward in the future uh things will just kind of happen more 34:27 - naturally I’ll be able to make new content in a much faster pace and kind 34:33 - of turn my focus to content generation rather than some of these configuration matters that have taken my time so far 34:39 - so um thanks for watching this video and I hope this was helpful in explaining uh 34:44 - kind of where I got to up through the 23rd of October and I will pick up in the next video in two weeks time
This cycle I worked some on organizing content pages/videos and discussion pages/videos for the first three lessons in the SR4 series. I also spent some time doing more things to improve my workflow in various ways, all with that hope that these things will set me up for success in the long term.
00:00 - Introduction 01:17 - Outline 02:27 - Optimize my desk/cubicle environment at work for getting ministry things done over my lunch hour 08:42 - Set up audio normalization 10:47 - Ordered additional things to hopefully help improve video recording quality even more moving forward 18:55 - Made some progress organizing things for the first 3 lessons in the SR4 series 21:02 - Upcoming work 23:22 - Outro
Optimize my desk/cubicle environment at work for getting ministry things done over my lunch hour
Got rid of old monitors and the old keyboard and mouse setup for an admin work laptop that I use infrequently (frees up lots more space on my desk at work). Cleaned off desk thoroughly (wiped it down, got rid of dust, etc.).
Assembled the entire portable dual monitor setup, including my own trackball and keyboard. Will just leave everything there for now, but any weekends I plan to work in the library, I’ll pack it up at the end of my last in-person day for the week and bring it home with me.
Set up humidifier at work
Bought and set up a folding wall to block my cubicle off completely when I am on my lunch break (so I don’t get interrupted as much when I am trying to not be on-the-clock)
Worked over my full lunch break a couple days, and am happy with the improvements in productivity from all of this.
Soon, I will also start paying for an unlimited phone data plan so that I can have internet at work too (I am not allowed to connect my personal computer to the secure work network, which makes sense). This will further boost productivity, obviously, since not being able to do this (for fear of running out of the finite data on my current plan) has thus far prevented me from using my phone hotspot to have internet access when I work over lunch… which is a pretty serious disadvantage. I’ll upgrade to unlimited data when I replace my ~5 year old phone in several week’s time.
Set up audio normalization
Set up and started using audio normalization to the EBU R128 standard. Ensures that all my videos will end up at the same final volume, basically.
I am doing this mostly to ensure that none of the videos are too quiet. Since YouTube won’t ever “boost” the volume of the videos you upload, although it might automatically turn down the volume during its processing step if it perceives your videos are far too loud. Apparently.
Ordered additional things to hopefully help improve video recording quality even more moving forward
Basically, switching all the settings and stuff back and forth between using my GoPro hooked up to my computer as a webcam on a tripod and using it in portable form (= battery powered, no cords, saving to SD card = what it was more designed for) is time inefficient. Plugging and unplugging everything and converting it between the two types of recording is a hassle that wouldn’t otherwise need to be there.
Also, even though I’ve been fiddling with it for a good while already, the video quality when using the GoPro as a webcam just doesn’t seem to end up nearly as good as I’d like. Shooting outside with lots of light works great (again, kind of what it was designed for), but it just doesn’t seem to handle inside shooting very well, no matter what I try. It doesn’t have any specific software processing features for dealing with low light.
So I decided to buy a dedicated webcam to keep hooked up to my computer all the time. That way I won’t have to deal with the hassle of setting something up every time I want to record (or at least every time I am switching from having the GoPro in “mobile mode”), and since webcams are kind of designed for inside light conditions and advertised as handling low-light well out-of-the-box due to fancy software correction or whatever, I’m hopeful the video quality will be a lot better.
I also got a teleprompter, which I can start using with transcripts I draft for content, a ring light to get better inside lighting when recording, and another piece of acrylic to use as the base for my standing assembly (I need a second level to put the teleprompter and webcam on (at eye level), as the lower level will have my keyboard and trackball)
I will report back once I have it all set up (right now I just have the webcam and ring light set up).
You can judge the quality improvements for yourself, given that this video right now is being recorded with the new webcam and ring light. I think it looks a lot better, and am happy with the investments.
Made some progress organizing things for the first 3 lessons in the SR4 series
My attention has been split a good bit this cycle (there was a termite inspection I had to set up and deal with, for example) so I have not made as much progress as I would have wanted, but I did subject-tag three discussion pages and a content page in the SR4 series – finishing most of the legwork for organizing the first three lessons in the series.
Because I haven’t completely finalized everything yet for these lessons, nothing has gone live on the site. (And so too with the documentation for discussion pages).
Unfortunately, I am anticipating that I probably won’t make tons of forward ministry progress in the next cycle.
I will have a new phone to set up – I’m anticipating that making sure I have all my apps on the new phone and have everything set up properly and so on will take a good chunk of my time, for a couple days at least.
I also have held off on recording a couple weeks of my daily progress summaries in anticipation of the new recording setup (dedicated webcam + ring light, etc.), so will have many video recordings to catch up on there.
However, my overall “next step” goals haven’t really changed since last time. The plan is still to finish organizing all the content pages/discussion pages in the SR4 series through the third lesson, then finish the documentation for discussion pages, then finish the organization for content pages and discussion pages for the seven or so other lessons in the series, at which point I’ll be done with Phase II in my plan.
This cycle I was mostly stuck working on personal matters that needed to get done. I did mostly get the teleprompter set up though, so hopefully I can start using that effectively in the future. And I also built a spreadsheet to automate some of the stuff I need to do to send updates about these ministry progress summaries, to speed things up more moving forward.
00:00 - Introduction 00:09 - Outline 01:21 - Set up new phone 02:56 - Set up full teleprompter assembly, including software for reversing the computer display that is reflected 07:14 - Created a spreadsheet to automate the creation of update messages for these ministry progress summaries 09:03 - Set up a new framework for daily progress summaries moving forward 10:43 - Upcoming work 13:07 - Outro
My old phone was quite old (~5 years), so this was necessary.
In addition to getting all my apps and data transferred over, I also went into my carrier to get them to swap the SIM, and upgraded my phone plan while I was at it, to be able to use my hotspot over my lunch break at work, as previously discussed. Hopefully I can now get more ministry stuff done during that time slot in my day.
Doing all this, or more precisely, planning and figuring out how to do all of this seamlessly, took a while.
Set up full teleprompter assembly, including software for reversing the computer display that is reflected
The teleprompter, webcam, ring lights, and so on all came, and I spent a good amount of time getting everything set up physically. I am recording through the teleprompter right now (the webcam sits behind it), even though I’m not using it in this video, since this isn’t the type of video where I am planning to use full scripts.
To get the teleprompter to work properly, my tablet’s image needs to be reversed in software, so that when the beam-splitter glass mirror reflects it, the reflected display is shown in the correct orientation. I was rather horrified at the lack of good software options (at least on Windows) to do this for the screen as a whole. Long story short, I finally found one that works (called UltraMon), but it only works if you hook up at least one additional monitor, which kind of stinks, and it’s not free either. But I did get it working properly, so that is at least something.
Created a spreadsheet to automate the creation of update messages for these ministry progress summaries
I suppose it would be considered bad marketing practice to have messages that look mostly the same update to update, but I’m trying to keep things as informative and to-the-point as possible, so I don’t particularly care. These aren’t about looking flashy or impressive, but just to keep interested parties up to date in a practical manner.
The spreadsheet I built will hopefully reduce the amount of time it takes for me to post these ministry progress summaries to all the relevant channels: the TinyLetter mailing list, Facebook, Twitter, the forum, and so on.
In essence, the spreadsheet lets me paste in the links to the webpage and video form of one of these ministry progress summaries and enter the summarized version of the ministry update, and then it builds everything else automatically. Hurray, less busywork.
Set up a new framework for daily progress summaries moving forward
I won’t spend much time on this in this ministry update since it is not particularly ministry related in a direct sense, but I set up a more systematic framework for making the progress summaries I do daily. Hopefully the time I invested here in this cycle will help me keep up with these daily videos better, so that they no longer end up as a bottleneck, as they have from time to time thus far.
I still have the same overarching goals as the last couple times: finishing organizing through lesson 3 in the SR4 series, finishing documenting discussion pages, and then finishing organizing the rest of the videos in the SR4 series that have already been posted.
I have decided to add another goal before all this though: writing a couple bash scripts to much more thoroughly automate the video processing workflow I have. Right now I have to manually (i.e., by copy-pasting pre-made commands I’ve written one-by-one sequentially) run like 4 processing steps before I’m ready to upload any content videos, and this takes more time than it needs to. So I may as well write the scripts to automate this better sooner rather than later, so that I save the most time in the long term.
Like in past cycles, there’s a fair bit of setup stuff still going on. However, I did successfully write a bash script to automate video processing, and I’ve now also decided to formally put some of the video organization stuff I’m having a hard time motivating myself to do on the backburner, and instead turn to drafting some new written ministry content, at least for a time. So stay tuned for that!
00:00 - Intro 01:58 - Some miscellaneous practical matters 07:03 - Some thinking and decisions 11:00 - Some conversations 14:35 - Video processing shell script 17:40 - Upcoming work 21:56 - Outro
I set up daily automated email reminders for things like remembering to take supplements, and so on. I’m trying to stick with a set of good habits better than I have been. This had been on my todo list for a long time, so I’m glad I finally got to it.
I ordered some additional practical items to continue chipping away at my final plan for the house. I got a second low-input lag projector to use a computer monitor when walking on the treadmill (for when I am working on the computer), a 125" screen for it, a second standing desk with caster wheels to stick two 24" monitors on when I am speaking/presenting out in the living room (acting, in essence, like a speaking podium), and then two 24" monitors to actually go on this portable speaking podium when I am presenting.
Once these items arrived, I moved the treadmill assembly from the master bedroom to the office, and assembled and then set up the new projector/screen that came. In doing these things, I had to rearrange most of the furniture in the master and the office (including my main large bookshelf = I had to take all the books off and redistribute things), so this process took quite a while, and in fact I’m still not completely setting everything back to rights.
Some thinking and decisions
After some thought, I’ve decided to only record videos when sitting statically. I had recorded a few daily progress summaries when walking on the treadmill, and I think the motion is just a bit distracting when the webcam is on. This is somewhat a change of plans. I can work on writing up my content when walking on the treadmill, but when actually recording, when there is more opportunity cost (that I hadn’t quite anticipated before), I’ll just sit still.
More importantly, I’ve decided to start posting some new written content since I’ve been procrastinating so hard on finishing all the video stuff. It has bee a massive struggle to motivate myself to knock out all the busywork, and I just think I need to get on with things.
I’m not abandoning all my plans with the video content, but will just try to space things out a bit more so I don’t burnout so hard on the boring stuff. Hopefully this means that by the time of the next ministry progress summary, there will actually be new ministry content!
I had a long discussion with a good friend about how to handle difficult Christian relationships – when a friend or family member doesn’t take theological disagreements well, and ends up being somewhat judgmental, such that any discussion of your different perspectives and the evidence for them in scripture leaves you feeling like you are constantly being attacked, rather than having a proper two-way conversation about the truth.
I chimed in on a WhatsApp conversation about the parable of the talents and the parable of the minas, and applications relating to the themes contained in these parables.
Another good friend and I had several long back-and-forths about the interpretation of Matthew 4:1-4 (Satan tempting Jesus to turn stones into bread), and what His restraint here (operating under kenosis) tells us about restraint in our own lives. (It turned into some other things too, but that was the initial and central topic).
Video processing shell script
After some research and trial and error, I succeeded in writing a Bash script to completely automate the four-step video processing workflow I have. These are the steps:
Convert single-ear audio to dual-ear audio using an ffmpeg command.
Normalize audio to the EBU-128 broadcasting loudness standard using the ffmpeg normalize Python package.
Convert the variable frame rate video coming out of the screen recording software to 30 fps constant framerate (which allows for proper editing). This one is another ffmpeg command.
What the new script does is feed the output of one command into the next step automatically, and then cleans things up by moving the intermediate files into different backup directories after each step. So I can just run the command on the command line, and then come back a few minutes later and upload the final file(s) that remain (the script supports bulk processing files all at the same time too – as many files as are in the directory you run it in). No babysitting necessary.
When I was working on this, I set up a bunch of useful Bash aliases too (been meaning to get around to this for a while), for making cd-ing around easier and faster, among other things.
Together these things reduce some of the time opportunity cost that goes into making videos and wrangling them on the command line, which should help a lot in in terms of long-term throughput sustainability.
Change of plans since last time. All the boring documentation and video organizing stuff is going on the backburner until I have enough distance between me and them that I no longer wince just thinking about them. Or at least not nearly as much.
Instead, I’ll start working on building out some new written content. I know from past experience that I just find this much more interesting, so I think I’ll have an easier time of things doing this, at least for a time. I have plenty of places to start, given all the theological conversations I have had over the last few years (over emails, WhatsApp, the forum, Discord, and in-person conversations that I later wrote up a bit – for example).
I think I’ll hold off on a formal series for a while, and just get going here with whatever catches my eye out of my enormous backlog of possible topics. Setting out to do a series right now would require the very sort of organization that is making me drag my feet to begin with, so that can come in the future once I’ve recovered my tolerance for it some.
This cycle I started producing new written content again. This time, one study was on the office of pastor-teacher and church polity, another was on the actions of Abraham, Sarah, and Hagar in Genesis 16, and the final one was on college decisions and career path.
I probably won’t bother with the webcam intro/outro anymore, and will be trying to keep these summaries shorter and more concise, to make them more useful. I’ve made some decisions about recording organization over the last couple weeks that are leading me to try and basically trim down the process as much as I can (without actually sacrificing core things) to make everything as sustainable as possible. These are a couple of the changes coming out of that.
As promised last cycle, I have now shifted into actually producing new written content, at least for a while here. This time I organized a few drafts from my backlog, and selected several that were closer to completion. Then I edited and polished them, got them organized in the content hierarchy properly, and here we are.
Relaxing over the holidays, to help recover and come back sharper.
I need to figure out how to make the processing steps (subject index, slides generation, etc.) in the Python preprocessor application work properly with studies that don’t have multiple lessons (i.e., lack an additional layer of nesting). There ought not be any aggregation in this case except for discussion pages – it’s like a content page in the other studies, but at the tree level in the content hierarchy that aggregation pages are normally at. A couple of the new Q&A studies from this cycle are this case, and right now it doesn’t work right. Sigh.
More work on new written content. I have several more studies under active work, and plenty more to pull from eventually.