Sands of Iwo Jima

Posted in Uncategorized on March 10th, 2012 by Dave

As I learn more about World War ll, and particularly about the War in the Pacific, I become more interested in anything tangible from the battles that were fought there. In fact, that whole period is becoming more real to me – although I find it impossible to put myself in the place of the 19 and 20 year olds who a year before being thrust into battle were going to highschool and tending the family hardware store…

So about a week ago, Dick Updaw, my film subject for Captain, showed up at my door and handed me an object wrapped in tissue paper. I opened it and beheld a vial of blackish, gritty sand which Dick informed me was volcanic ash from the beaches of Iwo Jima. Dick brought back a quantity of this sand when he made his journey there to learn more about the life and death of Cpl. Robert F. Hodes. I now have the jar on my desk where I do my video editing for Captain…

Captain visits the grave of an almost unknown soldier…

Posted in Uncategorized on February 15th, 2012 by Dave

Dick Updaw, my film subject for Captain, and I spent an hour this past Sunday at the Holy Sepulchre Cemetery in Rochester, NY where Cpl. Robert Hodes lies buried. I thought it would be moving to film a grave-side visit on a day where not another single visitor was to be seen anywhere in this enormous cemetery.

We decided that images of Dick removing snow from the granite tombstone with his bare hands would symbolize the rescue from oblivion of Cpl. Hodes, who was 19 at the time he died at the battle of Iwo Jima. Mr Updaw got it too; I asked, and had no trouble getting, his participation in the filming of this symbolic event.

Amazon S3 – Cloud Front & WordPress Integration for streaming media files – a bust…

Posted in Uncategorized on January 24th, 2012 by Dave

After many, many hours I am close to being able to stream videos from my website without having to deal with You Tube and it’s 10 minute limit on videos, Vimeo and it’s non-commercial use policy, (except in a somewhat costly upgrade), and all the other similar services with restrictive policies and pricey prices. I happened upon Amazon Web Services; which includes Amazon S3 (s3 stands for simple safe storage), and Amazon Cloud front which distributes files you’ve uploaded for streaming to servers around the world….

…and another 24 hours has gone by and I’ve finally thrown in the towel over this one. After hours of trying to link the streaming functionality offered by Cloud Front with S3, and with no success – and having researched this issue far and wide and  put in way too many hours,  I’ve decided that Vimeo is not looking too bad as a solution to my hosting and streaming needs.

Usually if I persevere long enough I get results. But this battle is a battle against what feels to be beta demons. Maybe I’ll check back in six months or so and give it another hour…or two.