My program, a theory I tested that worked better than I’d hoped (be careful what you hope for), depends on the simple user-friendly, beautifully integrated technology of the macBook, circa 2011, to put kids’ stop-motion animation together. This technology allows eight year-olds to take hundreds of frames from the SD card of a digital camera and quickly select and input them into a program that automatically puts them into a folder on a laptop computer. This easily located folder, which can be customized to use any frame as an icon, can then be opened and selected frames dragged into the simple to use program where the frames are edited to make the finished animation. In another program the kids make a soundtrack, and drag it into the animation with ease. It’s simple and direct and kids are happy to teach other kids the programs.
It’s true, as my father said, that I’d complain if I was hung with a new rope. Keep that in mind.
I listened to a friend’s good advice about buying a new state of the art macBook pro and stop struggling to do all these workarounds on multiple devices– emailing an image from the iPad to include as I create my pitch on the one computer I’ve updated to the latest operating system, play it back on the new iPad. I need to make various marketing materials to get the program up and running as a business. It made sense to get the new computer, put everything I need on its solid state hard-drive and not be hampered by technological challenges on top of the challenges already stacked up for me to overcome. I bought the new macBook three weeks ago.
The Devil, of course, loves the details– calls them home, his playground, an aphrodisiac. The details drive Old Scratch into a frenzy of creativity.
Apple, like all large corporations, is in business to make the largest possible profit. This is the way of the world, the first rule of the Free Market. In addition to constantly introducing new products people will have to buy, they tirelessly upgrade their ingenious programs, reconfigure the operating system, redesign their most popular programs and apps. Sometimes they even eliminate them altogether. iPhoto, for example, the program that allowed kids to bring frames in that could be instantly found in a folder– gone. There is likely a way to do something similar, without a doubt, in the program that replaced it, closely resembling the iOS system they use on iPhones and iPads, but it must be figured out. Similarly, the program where the kids edit the frames, and which has always had a pull-down menu within each frame to make crucial adjustments, Apple designers have eliminated this convenient feature altogether. Of course, there has to be a way to do it, it’s just not easy to find. Especially if you get frustrated when you can’t find it mentioned in the help menu.
So, because I can’t solve these vexing problems at the moment, and it is too hot to struggle with them now, I downloaded a great-looking program called iBook Author. This program allows one to make interactive e-books, something I have long wanted to do. They can only be used on Apple devices, of course, but it would be a start. I was excited to try it and try it I did. I created the first two chapters of a book, with an embedded movie, and wanted to preview it, see how it looks as an e-book.
Happily there is a button that says Preview right at the top. I clicked it. I was invited to select a destination from a greyed out list that contained one destination. That destination, which I could not select, reads: This computer (iBooks for Mac) (Newer version of iBooks needed).
The neighbors were treated to a Tourretic outburst that must surely have been unwelcome at that hour, or any hour. I opened iBooks on the brand new computer I bought three weeks ago and was able to download several e-Books. I flipped through them, everything worked fine. There was no option to download a newer version of iBooks. I searched. All will be revealed, I decided, when I speak to an expert at Apple Care who will guide me through intuitive steps involving holding down the Option key while pressing the smart trackpad with three fingers, for exactly two seconds, and then quickly powering the computer on and off, with an easy switch to the Apple key. I eventually decided to stop struggling with the willful new computer, shut it down and go to sleep.
Sleep took its time.