The other day we had issues due to a large amount of rain but now it’s gotten even worse. We are without power, phone, internet and cell service at the studio so we won’t be able to get anything moving until we are able to turn things on.
According to Nova Scotia Power, we might be lucky to get out power services back this evening around 11 pm but it’s looking like we might not get anything until tomorrow at 11 pm.
Nova Scotia Power will not pick-up the phone so we can tell them about the issues with the lines.
Bell Aliant has run out of battery power for its phone network and cell towers along with everyone else. They are trying to keep things going with generators. Their landlines are down in our area with no ETA for restoration. We’ve tried calling but they don’t want to be told about more service outages.
Cell service is spotty because all the battery backups are running out and gas generators are being used to get the network back up and running.
Right now, we hope to have everything running on Wednesday or perhaps Thursday.
It’s not really bad weather, its just rain so it makes uploading on our wireless system nearly impossible. In fact, it took an amazing 30 minutes and 6 refreshes to get out own website to load because of the weather. To download a 50KB file, it failed twice and on the third try downloaded in around 12 seconds. We had hoped to get more releases flowing today but is not going to happen. the new studio lighting has caused some nasty shadowing to which we are working on fixing.
We are on a waitlist from Eastlink to get the 4G connection to the studio which will be not only more stable but much faster.
Back to school has been a busier time than expected so we have decided to delay more releases until Monday the 9th. We should have everything back to normal tomorrow to get some episodes of produced and then Friday we are planning a scripting day.
The real severe weather is coming this weekend so we open to have things uploaded on Friday before the hurricane hits. When we are in production we don’t need access to the internet so as long as we have power, we should be good to go.
Keep an eye on our YouTube channel for the premiere release of NES Quest which will be live next week!
Although we have taken a few days off from production, that does not mean we aren’t working hard on improving things. Lighting is always an issue when doing anything in the studio and making sure the green screen is properly lit can also be a challenge.
We had been running CFL blubs for a number of years as part of an energy conservation plan but switched over to LED bulbs 2 years ago. The biggest advantage of switching over to the CFL bulbs was the massive savings in energy costs, since we run the studio in our home, saving energy is very important.
Our entire house has around 37 bulbs in it, this is up from the 27 bulbs the house was designed for (added double fixtures) back in 1986. Several years ago, we were running 100w incandescent bulbs in all 27 fixtures. 2700w was our maximum usage if all lights were turned on. That’s a massive amount of electricity, costing at current rates, costing around $2.43 per day in lighting costs (6 hours per day usage).
We switched all the bulbs out for 14w CFLs which dropped our maximum usage to only 378w (saved 2322w). This reduced our maximum daily cost to an amazing $0.34. In order to improve our lighting and make living better, we added a few new fixtures and doubled some of the lights adding 10 more bulbs. This only rose our daily costs to $0.46 but vastly improved our quality of living. Going up 12 cents was not to bad as we had already saved $2 per day over the older bulbs.
Something that is quite costly was upgrading to LED bulbs but they last longer and Efficiency Nova Scotia does offer some rebates to offset the costs. We replaced all of our bulbs in the entire house with an 8w daylight LED from Philips (https://amzn.to/2PQ5U9Y). This lowered our daily usage from 518w maximum to 296w, which in turn lowered our total maximum daily cost to only $0.27.
It should be noted that because of the material and design of the home & studio we are using Daylight colour bulbs but if you want to check our the warmer colour versions, please click here. https://amzn.to/2Lh9iXa
Yesterday we purchased the lights above wish the attached Amazon link. These lights do increase energy consumption (8w to 15w) but they are only being used in the studio. The light output has climbed from 800 lumens to 1500 lumens, which makes a huge difference in the studio and backdrop lighting for the green screen.
We are going to get to test the new lighting setup today and hopefully will be able to finish the production of Super Mario Bros 3 World 8 for publication tomorrow. If we make any decision or improvements, we might postpone release and production until Monday the 9th. We do have a few more things planned.
This past long weekend (including today) has been a very busy time for everyone and this week is even more intense because it’s “Back to School” season.
Saturday our expert in Toys & Play was in attendance at the Cirque du Soleil Crystal event in Halifax, with her Grandmother and younger brother. On Sunday, the dynamic duo of brother and sister spent the entire day at Oaklawn Farm Zoo.
Today here at EMG we are enjoying the last holiday before everyone goes back to school so we have suspended production and decided to delay our upcoming releases until Thursday, September 5th since everyone will officially be back to school/university/daycare by then.
We will be releasing Super Mario Bros 3 – World 8 on the 5th as a special weekend treat, Super Mario 2 (Japanese) – Worlds 1 through 4 on Friday the 6th. We hope to be rolling out NES Quest, next week as well and will be working on upcoming releases for our new project EMG News on a new channel that we are currently working on.
One final note, since it is back to school season, please remember to drive carefully and please slow down in school zones. As a reminder, if the local speed limit is 50kph, the school zone is reduced to 30kph. If the local speed limit is 80kph, the school zone is reduced to 50kph. Always remember that its illegal to pass a school bus when its flashing red lights are on.
In light of the changes that we’ve had to make with regards to our main channel, we have decided to shift some content over to a new channel that will only focus on content that is more “controversial” in nature.
Mixing many different types of content on one channel is not a bad idea, as a good amount of diversity is always good to have. What is a bad idea is putting topics that might not be suitable for all viewers together with normal content like gaming or Anime.
This division will take a lot of effort to grow the video base but we think that will allow us to cover a wider array of subjects. When we are ready to share the new channel publicly will we share its link and will start uploading more videos.
We are also looking at what to do with our educational courses that are under development. We are considering separating Eaton University into another division like EMG News as we want to bring on more professionals to generate as much amazing content as possible.
Originally we were going to bundle everything in 1 place making it easy for everyone to access but realized that someone who wants to watch gaming content might not like educational lessons or political commentary.
Over the next week, while prepping our NES Quest series we will also be looking into more options to get EMG News and Eaton University ready for the planned 2020 launch.
I’ve spent the past few days doing a lot of work, trying to get production values up and learn new software and streamline our production processes. I’ve also taken the time to understand what’s happening around the internet with regards to policies enacted by social media companies, the Canadian government and YouTube.
I want to go over each of these topics to explain what’s going on and what we are going to do about it.
Social Media policy updates – As many of you already know from my previous post on legal issues and getting permission from Facebook to publish content. There have been many more updates and we are “clear” to continue sharing most of our content on Facebook but Twitter has other plans. Twitter has stepped up its suppression of speech leading up to the Canadian election. Just about anything trending on Twitter is being suppressed if it involves political content of any kind.
I was personally suspended twice (24hours each) from Twitter for “Election interference”. I made 2 tweets about the election, telling people that if they want to change they need to go vote and another tweet telling Americans that here in Nova Scotia we need to show ID to vote, so voter ID laws are not that bad. Facebook as yet to let me know about its policies but God only knows what they will do.
Over on YouTube, a lot of other creators have been demonetized completely for news or political content. They have also been de-ranked and their videos are no longer getting shared. Tim Pool has been talking about this frequently and we find it very disturbing. It makes a lot of our planned videos a “financial black hole”.
Investing in production value – Since I’m technically the only person who really does any work, I’m under a lot of pressure to do things right and keep improving everything. I’ve invested a lot of money into this and have poured countless hours into learning how to use all the new software and tools. I’ve also had issues with things just not working due to some of the professional-grade hardware I picked up but have found solutions.
Now that the stress of the first release is gone, its time to take a look back and make some serious refinements to just about everything and you can see how much work was done with regards to the previous Mr. Reality Check into video as compared to the one that was released Tuesday.
I’ve got some new hardware coming and some software utilities to get installed, so keep watching for improvements. On a side note, I’m working on designing an entirely new work area here in the house and a proper production studio in the 1 half of our basement.
Suspension of 3 new series – It’s with great sadness that I have to inform you that I’ve decided to suspend the development of 3 of our political series. Due to some policy changes at YouTube and Twitter, we are going to suspend the Parliamentary Report, State of the Union and People’s Congress until 2020.
Parliamentary Report will not be published even though I’ve already written 17 episodes. It won’t be published due to issues with the already mentioned policies but also because the Canadian Government has issued new social media rules that could see our accounts “banned” or “restricted” even though we already have the approval to publish on their platforms.
The State of the Union may not be affected because it was due for launch in 2020 anyway.
People’s Congress is a major issue do to Hong Kong and threats from the Chinese government. I’ve made the decision to hold off until things calm down so there will be less risk to my family.
Profitability – It’s one thing to make videos that I enjoy, it’s another to make videos that will never make a dime. Due to the demonetization policies of YouTube I’ve decided that we need to focus on content that will allow us to make a profit so we can establish the channel and build a fan base.
We are going to focus on family-friendly content for now and have something in mind to save our News & Political commentary programs.
I guess what I’m saying is that I can’t produce something that I know is not going to make us any money and will not help grow the channel. Once we are fully able to monetize the channel, things should change.
Thanks for reading, Joshua Eaton President ~ Eaton Media Group
Please visit our channel with the link below and make sure to subscribe,
Some major changes have accorded here at EMG over the past 48 hours. Our old (by a few months) workstation setup has been upgraded to use a DCI 4K monitor along with 2 of our pre-existing 1080p monitors.
Once we get all of the custom construction completed for our permanent studio (sometime next year) we will be building out a brand new workstation and upgraded from 1080p videos to full 4K UHD content.
Moving from 1080p to 4K UHD is quite a challenge. not only does it take a lot more processing horsepower but it consumes a vast amount more storage space. During our test, a 1080p video clip of 30 seconds is only 51MB or 5.98GB per hour. That same video clip at 4K UHD eats up 263.5MB or 30.9GB per hour. Keep in mind, this is our RAW uncompressed video and once it gets rendered and compressed the file sizes do get smaller. Storing all that footage requires a massive amount of storage space now to mention the power needed for editing.
After the footage is rendered and compressed, the files shrink in size to around 3GB per hour of 1080p video and 7GB per hour for 4K UHD. We will be uploading all of the compressed and rendered videos and will keep them storage permanently. the RAW video files, we will only be storing for 30 days.
A lot of people already know what 4K is but not everyone, including us, is or was familiar with what DCI 4K is. Here is some data that we pulled from Wikipedia
DCI Digital Cinema System Specification: In 2005, Digital Cinema Initiatives (DCI), a prominent standards organization in the cinema industry, published the Digital Cinema System Specification. This specification establishes standardized 2K and 4K container formats for digital cinema production, with resolutions of 2048 × 1080 and 4096 × 2160 respectively.
Basically, DCI 4K and DCI 2K are just a wider version of normal 4K and 2K. We won’t be making the jump to 8K anytime soon so please don’t ask.
Along with adding a DCI 4K display, we have also added a new green screen that has finally been configured and is working 100%. We had created several videos for our Mario series but today we are going to refilming and re-rendering all of them with our new green screen effects.
Don’t worry, we are working hard to make our release date on Monday!
Public Mobile Inc. is a Canadian self-serve, prepaid mobile brand which is owned by Telus. They are a mobile virtual network operator on the Telus Mobility network.
We made the decision some time ago to use Public Mobile as our main provider for our phone and mobile data services. Public Mobile offers us the price and flexibility to get the services we need without breaking the bank, plus they also offer the best referral system we’ve seen and that includes Lucky Mobile.
$1 per Friend – Your friends get a $10 credit on their first bill but you also get to collect $1 per month per friend as a credit to your bill as long as they are customers of Public Mobile. This is amazing because he allows you to shave your referral code and anyone who wants a cheap phone plan can use your code. From time to time they do offer promos for things. Earlier this year they ran a $25 promo in which not only did your friend get $25 but they also gave it to you as well.
$2 AutoOay – If you’ve got a credit card, sign up for autopay. You get $2 per month discount on your bill and if you’re on a 90day plan like we are, you get $6 off per bill ($2month x3).
$20 Helping Others – If your more technically inclined, this is a very good option as if you spend time in the community help forum, you can get up to $20 a month discounted of your bill. Got a $50 per month plan? Well, now it’s only $30 because you’ve helped people!
$1 Loyalty Pays – On top of everything else, for every month that your Public Mobile customer, after your first year, they will get you an extra $1 off. After year two, they will increase that amount to $2. This amount keeps growing all the way to $5 per month.
If you have the $50 plan, you can lower your plan to $28 per month just by using the AutoPay feature and helping out people in the community. Get some of your friends and or family to make the switch and than plan drops by $1 each, Now your $50 plan is sitting at $20 a month if you had 8 friends and family sign up.
So what is this $50 plan? Well, its the plan that we use on your mainline for EMG and its an amazing value. We are on the 90-day rotation so it’s $150 every 90 days. We get Unlimited calling across Canada, Unlimited International messaging, 6GB data plus 2GB bonus data per month (24GB total)
We did opt for the 3G data plan because it gave us higher amounts of data just it slows down to 3G speeds but still connects to the 4G/LTE network. Data is also pooled so if you use more or less data, its ok because your monthly allotment is pooled. If you need more data, you can buy more and the additional data is rolled over to the next billing cycle if unused.
To get started, your going to need to buy your own Public Mobile SIM card. We have attached some links to help you get started.
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I should note that I’ve had many TomTom devices since 2005 and currently use TomTom Go on my android device. Give TomTom a try by using one of our affiliate links below.
We’ve been prepping to release a number of gaming-related content podcasts but we’ve run into some serious compatibility issues. We use professional use workstation-class hardware and it is capable of gaming but the driver support for gaming is just not where it needs to be. Aside from the driver issue, we also use a special display configuration to maximize productivity that “breaks” many games.
Display Configuration – Most gaming systems use only 1 monitor where is it’s not uncommon for workstations to use 2, 3 or many more monitors. We’ve also seen 16 monitors used for gaming but that required some superpowered hardware and even special add-in cards to handle everything. If you want to check out a sweet system for gaming across 16 monitors, running at an eye-watering 16K resolution, check out the Linus Tech Tips video here:
Driver Issues – Quadro is an amazing graphics card for workstations and has the utility to push our system to its limits. However, Nvidia offers 2 very different driver support paths, that in our experience has a very drastic effect on the performance, compatibility and utility of the system.
Optimal Driver for Enterprise (ODE) Most users select this choice for optimal stability and performance. It also offers ISV certification and long lifecycle support
Quadro New Feature Driver (QNF) Users occasionally select this choice for bug fixes, new features, new VR headset support or new Game Engine support. Support duration is shorter than ODE
Taking all of this into account, the latest ODE driver which we use, had its last update released on June 10th, 2019. We use this driver because it offers the best system stability and support for the workstation hardware/software that we use. It also supports our monitor configuration without any issues. It’s fully capable of gaming and does work very well, pushing out extremely high frame rates but does not support a lot of the dedicated gaming features and even breaks some games.
Now if we look at the QNF driver, that’s a whole nother story. For some reason that we are unaware of, Nvidia just not develope their “New Feature Driver” as often as needed. The last update for the QNF driver was released on November 13th, 2018 with an update to support the new Quadro RTX product line.
Our current card the Nvidia Quadro P5000 runs games on par with the Nvidia GeForce 1080 and only slightly slower than the Nvidia GeForce 1080Ti. It offers 16GB on on-board memory, a huge jump over the 8GB on the 1080 and even a large jump over the 11GB on the 1080Ti.
Having 16GB of onboard memory is great for games like Gears of War 4 that in 4K with 4K textures enabled requires a minimum of 6GB texture memory alone.
We are currently designing a new gaming only system and a new higher-powered desktop workstation so we can lighten the load on our mobile workstation and crank out better content. If you would link to help out, check our Support Us page to find out how.