Creativity Hacks

As the title of the site suggests, I’m something of a hacker. Not in the “evil computer genius” sense, but in the sense of being a guy who likes to cobble together solutions. The “creativity” part stems from the fact that many of these “solutions” I explore have to do with the creative arts. I write software tools for my writing, assemble mechanical parts for film making, build devices to assist with animation, etc.

I’ve been doing all of this for years decades, but I’m only just now getting around to collecting those projects (and blog posts about them) under a common roof. And that “roof” is right here. This page. For whatever it’s worth.

  • Reduce your tool clutter to crank out the words
    Plain text editorAs I have mentioned elsewhere, I'm not a fan of doing the heavy lifting on any long-form writing project in a word processor. (You can read postings here and here to get the skinny on why.) But I recognize that for some, the prospect of learning a new tool is daunting. After all, writers do tend to be creatures of habit. So for those who have swallowed just a little bit of my Koolaid, but not enough to actually abandon your word processors, I offer you some simple steps that you can take to minimize the most invasive impacts your current tools might be having on your productivity.
  • Creativity Hack: Studio Light Mast
    Parts imageProblem: Adding video production equipment to my office has created too much clutter. Solution: 3D printed parts to mount a mast on the wall This past fall, the last of my teenage daughters moved away to university. Oh, how the time flies. I remember when she was just a little girl--- Waitaminit! ::record scratch:: That means I have space for a dedicated office again! Bye, kiddo. Don't take any wooden checks. Write when you get married.
  • PressureDiver: a sensor to plumb the depths of saxophone air tightness
    This happy little explorer is the business end of PressureDiver: a simple barometric pressure sensor designed to report changes in air pressure from inside a sealed container. In this case, we'll be exploring a saxophone.
  • NordicTray: an integrated keyboard table for the NordicTrack treadmill
    In an effort to improve my writing workflow, I want to add an unobtrusive keyboard and mouse to this treadmill so that I can move quickly from my desk to the treadmill with minimal distraction or interruption to my writing.
  • Exopod: The flat-pack display stand for books
    As an author, I frequently go to book fairs, signings, and other sales events, and I've never been able to find a decent display stand for showcasing my books. Most of the commercial versions I've seen are either too big, too clumsy, or too complicated. What I want is something that is strong enough to hold up a large book or several smaller ones, packs flat so that I can fill my boxes with books rather than hardware, and is easy to assemble. Plus, it wouldn't hurt if they brought a bit of style to my display table.