The Boy Who Shuddered, from the Brothers Grimm – free audio book

My 22 minute reading of the short tale “The Boy Who Shuddered” (aka “The Boy Who Left Home to Learn Fear”), from the famous 1812 book of folk tales transcribed by the Brothers Grimm. My abridged and adapted audio book version is now on Archive.org, under a Creative Commons licence. Feel free to use for animation etc. The downloadable MP3 has none of the slight crackle that the audio in Archive.org’s Flash preview player has.

Reallusion’s buttons

Ok, the lengthy Reallusion 35% discount offer on iClone 5 and CTA is over. So I’m experimenting in taking the Reallusion banner-buttons off the MyClone sidebar. I’m going to try a DAZ button instead, to see if it generates more interest. It seems to be worth a try, since the combination of the free DAZ Studio 4 and the new 3DXchange 5 Pro is now drawing people toward the great wealth of quality DAZ content (in order to convert it for iClone).

Full disclosure on earnings: from Feb to June 2012, I earned a total of $92.69 from having various Reallusion links on this blog. That’s about £50 in English money, by the time the bank has taken its fee for converting a dollar banking cheque.

Last month the MyClone blog had total traffic of about 35,000 visitors, not including those reading via RSS and syndication. Discounting a few non-human bots, that’s probably around 1,000 people a day. The statistics show that just over 13,000 of those people loaded and saw the Reallusion sales buttons during June. So I guess about a third of visitors are not running ad-blockers in their browsers. The rest probably are doing ad-blocking, but they will have still seen the text links I added below the buttons. Only 116 people actually clicked on the buttons/links, even with a hefty 35% discount on offer — and those 116 clicks led to Reallusion making only two sales.

Send Share is safe

Just a “heads up”. It seems that one of the commercial anti-virus softwares has wrongly added the entire Send Share service to its “SCARY ALERT!! DANGEROUS!!!” list. Presumably it assumes any file-sharing site is automatically a hive of scum and villainy. But I can assure readers that all my freebie files, and other links, are safe. If newbies have problems accessing the free stuff, please just add sharesend.com to the Whitelist in your security software.

New WordPress theme at MyClone

I’ve applied a new WordPress theme at MyClone. The old free WordPress.com theme I was using for this blog was withdrawn, so I’ve had to change to a new one…

Not ideal (the background for posts need to be “off-white”, not “glaring white”), but it’ll do for now. If anyone wants to donate, I think $30 unlocks the WordPress CSS and gives me the ability to increase the font size, change colours, and suchlike things to do with reading posts.

500,000 post views for MyClone

Fab! MyClone’s stats are currently at 499,787 post views. So the total should be ticking over the 500,000 mark by noon today. That’s a clear 250,000 post views per year, when spread over the two years (the blog began on 27th Jan 2010). The current daily viewership usually more than tops 1,000 post views per day, which means a further 400,000 post views are likely for 2012. But it would be really nice to top the 1,000,000 mark by Christmas 2012, so please spread the word!

250,000 post views

The myClone blog should tip over the ‘250,000 post views’ mark today. Not bad, for 16 months of existence, if I do say it myself. Averaged out, that’s getting on for 4,000 visitors a week — not counting those who read the posts in other places via the RSS feed. So call it 5,000 a week, then assume that four-fifths are drive-by visits or just glancing at the post — and MyClone probably has a core readership of around 1,000 a week.

Is there a gap in the 3D CG magazine market?

The last three editions (inc. the most current) of 3D World have been distinctly moving in a very “hardcore” direction. Its rival 3D Artist magazine seems to be heading in the same direction. I’m wondering if there’s a gap in the market for a serious project-based magazine in the 3D World style, but one that focusses only on the mid-range software that is sneered at by the elite 3D gurus — DAZ / Poser / iClone / Muvizu / Cararra / SketchUp / Bryce / free game development software etc. Possibly in virtual “download free-and-ad-supported” form? If the publishers of the software could get together and book a guaranteed paid full-page ad in each issue, then there may be someone who could then be paid to take on the publishing of a bi-monthly PDF edition and also someone else who would undertake to drum up further advertising on a commission basis? There’s 3D Hobby of course, which seems like a fledgling attempt at addressing that market — but to me it’s too Poser oriented and doesn’t appear to have the sort of the professional polish, editorial nouse, and frequency that the British publishers can bring to magazines.

Adventure Game Studio goes open source

Link added to the ‘Companion Software’ section of the MyClone sidebar — Adventure Game Studio allows you to create your own point-and-click adventure games. It’s always been free, but it has just gone open-source under a very liberal licence. It’s under active development, and the new version 3.2.1 came out in mid-April 2011 with a completely rewritten audio system.

An alternative dedicated software for making/coding old-school point-and-click multimedia games is Wintermute, also free and it allows you to make royalty-free commercial games with it. It’s now a couple of years since Wintermute had its last update.

Or if your tax rebate has just come in, you could also do a lot with the £600 commercial multimedia development tool Opus Pro from the UK (formerly the excellent Illuminatus software). I think I’d recommend Opus as a commercial option over the stunningly expensive (£1,700) Adobe Director (formerly Macromedia Director), which would take forever to learn if my experience of an earlier version of Macromedia Director is anything to go by. If you need something cheaper with commercial support, then one lucky person is going to currently pick up an earlier version of Opus Pro 4.5 XE used for £30 on Amazon UK — although I’ve no idea if it’ll run under Windows 7 or if the 4.5 licence was ‘one use only’.