Unsolved mystery – tree robs bank – police mystified

I think we’ve got a case that will be extra tough to solve. It seems some clever criminal masterminded the ultimate bank robbery. With tree branches held on to his shirt and head by duct tape, one James Coldwell robbed a bank recently. Here’s some news of the robbery, as reported by police captain Dick Tracy (Hey! I’m not making this up – hit the link to see).

708a1bank2.jpgVideo surveillance of the Saturday morning robbery showed a thin white man leaving the bank in a shroud of tree branches, all duct-taped to his shirt and head. His short, dark hair and mustache were clearly visible between the leaves.

Tracy said police were tipped off by several anonymous callers after the footage appeared on a nightly news broadcasts.

“I think he was hoping the disguise would camouflage him enough that no one would recognize who he was,” Tracy said.


Checking out the image, I can’t see how he was identified. Maybe there’s hope for a not guilty verdict? Always a chance of reasonable doubt, right? Or maybenot guily by reason of stupidity.

[tags]Stupid crook, Dumb criminals, Tree robs bank[/tags]

Blender render settings tutorial

As so often happens, I find something of interest to me and share it with all three of my readers, even though I know it will be of interest to zero of them. Such is the life of a self-centered geek with an online voice.

Since I’ve been trying to learn new stuff (that’s an industry standard term – it means stuff) on the computer lately, I’ve worked a bit with the open-source 3D modeling tool Blender in my spare time the past few weeks. My artistic skills are roughly equal to my social skills, which means I’m pretty sucky at creating artistic content. Still, I’m having fun learning, even if it is something I’ll never use beyond fun-time play. While tooling around online finding more Blender guides and tutorials, I found this old but still relevant guide to render settings for generating final Blender scenes.

Blender’s built-in rendering options offer many different possibilities for size, effects, and quality. Different settings may drastically affect rendering times. The goal for this analysis is to discover the most efficient methods for achieving the desired image quality with the minimum rendering time. When rendering for animations it is extremely important to achieve the best results is the shortest time possible, since one second of animation represents 30 rendered images.

The author goes on to cover half a dozen different renders and show the visual output as well as the necessary run times to generate a frame. Now the tutorial is from 2004, which means current hardware improvements and probable software improvements have made these times far higher than what they would be if the tests were run on modern hardware. But the relative time is the important point, and the difference between the simplest render setting that gives good results to one of the best render settings that consumes loads of time for improved results is clear. If you have thought about playing around with modeling, I highly recommend Blender, the Blender noob to pro tutorials, the Essential Blender book, the Blender model repository, and any guides you can find (like the one I’ve highlighted here) that can help with render settings and content creation.

[tags]Blender, Tutorial, Tutorials, Render settings, 3D modeling, Open source[/tags]

I’m back! Did you miss me?

I’m guessing no one even noticed I was offline about 90% of the time over the past 8 days. My children and I traveled to my mother’s house while the wife was out of town. Mom doesn’t have an internet connection at her house currently, although I could occasionally but not reliably leech from neighbors wireless networks while there. Aside from over-eating a few times, thereby slowing up my progress on losing (a target of) 60 pounds, it was a very good week. If you care about my wonderful time away from home, continue reading below the pretty ‘more’ link. I assure you it is more tedious and dull than my normal writings – you’d be best served by skipping to the next post…

Continue reading I’m back! Did you miss me?