Outsourcing adventure continues

Okay, a while back I wrote about outsourcing (oDesk = oYes!) (oDesk experience review) and since those posts have done quite a bit more outsourcing. I’ve even ventured out to use eLance more as well.  Hey, all the big companies do it – why can’t the little guys?

What is my take?  Let me tell you…

I have done quite a bit more on oDesk mainly because it was my first.  However, the interface is a bit troublesome at times – just trying to find where I go to do things like respond to applicants, close a job etc. was not intuitive.  In addition to that, the messaging system itself was not working for me for days.

It was right after I submitted a job and started to get applicants.  I tried to message them so I could do an interview via Skype or Google Hangout and the system kept giving me “Send Message Error.”  The applicants continued to roll in as I was unable to communicate – it was very frustrating.

Frustration aside, I have been able to meet some excellent freelancers and am very pleased with the bulk of my oDesk interactions.

I really like eLance too as the interface seems to be a bit easier.  I like the bidding system available to outsourcers as it gives you some info on the average offer – which I find useful in deciding who to hire.  Another cool thing I found was that they have a referral bonus of $10 off your job.  Start an account and you get $10 too! <–have to use that link!

It was in writing this article that I first discovered these two companies have merged!

elance odesk

One bit of advice for anyone outsourcing jobs:  You will get a lot of candidates.  If you’re like me, you will have them jump through some hoops to earn the job.  Return that consideration by notifying the freelancers that you did not select.  It is rude to not give them the respect of a reply for their efforts.

Keep in mind that I write this review as someone hiring freelancers so really have no experience with the platforms from the other side of the equation.  Do you?  What are the differences from the freelancer’s perspective?

by Chris Doelle

Furiosly Good Film

rs_560x415-130930130858-1024.brad-pitt-shia-labeouf-fury.ls.93013Fury starring Brad Pitt was a really good film. It had a couple of things in its favor from the outset – it was a period film (set in World War II) and it was a war film. Explosions, shooting, mud, heroics… what more could a guy want in a film? I was also struck while watching it that Pitt has successfully made that transition from eye-candy to a really good actor. Not surprisingly, it appears he is going to age very well and will get more serious consideration as an actor as he takes on more mature roles.

Speaking of acting… this film was loaded. I was pleased to see Jon Bernthal (Shane – the bad guy, jerk-wad in The Walking Dead) show up as a hard-to-understand cajun bad guy, jerk-wad. I would love to see him in a different role but he sure is good at this one. Shia LaBeouf blew me away… this has to be his best performance. I didn’t really buy him as the savior of the planet in the Transformers films, and haven’t believed him in a role since Holes . (I take that back, his portrayal of Jack Bondurant in Lawless was a seriously good job.)

Michael Peña is a character actor that typically only plays one character regardless of the film, but it works. Logan Lerman played the pivotal role of the green noob, Norman and did an excellent job.

Sure, there were not a lot of surprises in the film (one that sucked pretty badly) but it didn’t matter. This film wasn’t about surprise twists – it was about heroism and gut-wrenching drama. On that front – it succeeded.

RATING 9 out of 10 social media, new media titan, chris doelle, fresh media works, http://www.freshmediaworks.comsocial media, new media titan, chris doelle, fresh media works, http://www.freshmediaworks.comsocial media, new media titan, chris doelle, fresh media works, http://www.freshmediaworks.comsocial media, new media titan, chris doelle, fresh media works, http://www.freshmediaworks.comsocial media, new media titan, chris doelle, fresh media works, http://www.freshmediaworks.comsocial media, new media titan, chris doelle, fresh media works, http://www.freshmediaworks.comsocial media, new media titan, chris doelle, fresh media works, http://www.freshmediaworks.comsocial media, new media titan, chris doelle, fresh media works, http://www.freshmediaworks.comsocial media, new media titan, chris doelle, fresh media works, http://www.freshmediaworks.com

by Chris Doelle

Book Review: Gone Girl

2014 Book Goal: 52 (mostly non-fiction)
2014 Books Read: 61 (90% non-fiction)

Gone Girl bookI read Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn in response to seeing the movie. The film was disturbing and prompted me to see if director, David Fincher was true to the story.  Flynn also wrote the screenplay so I figured she would be true in that translation.

The book is spot-on with what I saw in the film – right down to the exact wording of some of the most innocuous dialogue.  As expected, the book was a more detailed telling of that strange and psychopathic tale.  It was hard to read the book with the images from the movie so fresh, but slog through I did.

Flynn’s demonstration of the psychopathic mind is creepy, yet fascinating.

Don’t read this book for a wholesome, light-hearted romp.  Don’t read this book to brighten your day. It will fail miserably on those fronts.

Read this book if you are comfortable in dark places.  Read this book if your faith in humanity can withstand some serious damaging hits.  Read this book – followed immediately by something uplifting with good people.  It is the only way to cleanse yourself after.

by Chris Doelle

3582 – The Show is Back (at least for one episode)

Yes, the show is back… but no, it will not be a regular thing.  I have just been tweaking some settings on several of my podcast feeds and decided to record a quick one while I was doing my morning walk.

Featuring:

Ain’t No Reason by Brett Dennen
(This song was a bonus track in the 05-06-07 PMC Top 10)

(Time: 11:31)

Right-click for direct MP3 download

Press below to listen now

Subscribe in iTunes

David Fincher Film School

I have to give a shoutout to my friend, Manny for sharing this with me.  It is brilliant!  This analysis of David Fincher’s shooting style will make any serious film buff giddy.  I know it did me.

David Fincher – And the Other Way is Wrong from Tony Zhou on Vimeo.

For sheer directorial craft, there are few people working today who can match David Fincher. And yet he describes his own process as “not what I do, but what I don’t do.” Join me today in answering the question: What does David Fincher not do?

David-Fincher-imageVery cool stuff.  Even if you are not that into the details of directorial decisions, this will make even a novice film fan pay a bit more attention the next time he goes to the cinema.

Not familiar with David Fincher?  Here are just a few of his films (with my ratings here or on IMDB):

Gone Girl (8 stars my blog)
Fight Club (10 stars IMDB)
Se7en (8 stars IMDB)
The Social Network (8 stars my blog)
The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo (7 starts IMDB)
Panic Room (7 stars IMDB)
Zodiac (7 stars IMDB)

As you can see, I am a fan of Fincher.  He is a master at his craft and although I did give a couple of them 7’s, it was more due to the dark nature of the movie than his skill as a director.

Thanks again Manny for sharing the video with me.  Fun stuff!

by Chris Doelle

The Judge = Guilty of Being Excellent

The judgeRobert Downey Jr. played Robert Downey Jr. – a cocky, too smart for his own good jerk.  Robert Duvall played Robert Duvall – a curmudgeonly aging man’s man.  There was nothing really surprising in their performances… but you know what?  It worked.  This is one case where casting was spot on.  I do have to mention that Duvall’s performance was in keeping with his other roles for the most part, but there were one or two scenes when he showed a vulnerability that only a confident actor can pull off.

I also enjoyed Vera Farmiga as the spunky love interest and was surprised with Billy Bob Thornton‘s portrayal of the bad guy lawyer.  The surprise was how different he looks – the acting was typical Billy Bob… good stuff.

I really liked that it was a deeper story than most and although all the clues were pretty much right out front, it didn’t lead you by the nose.  (You know the kind – they flashback to show you the clue they showed you earlier in the film…  that is insulting to the viewer.)

I do have to point out that the cute little village in the film is supposed to be Indiana but it looks much more Northeastern.  I am sure that is just a factor that the location scouts were forced to deal with and I am being entirely too picky in noticing.

I really enjoyed the movie… much more than I expected.

RATING 8 out of 10 social media, new media titan, chris doelle, fresh media works, http://www.freshmediaworks.comsocial media, new media titan, chris doelle, fresh media works, http://www.freshmediaworks.comsocial media, new media titan, chris doelle, fresh media works, http://www.freshmediaworks.comsocial media, new media titan, chris doelle, fresh media works, http://www.freshmediaworks.comsocial media, new media titan, chris doelle, fresh media works, http://www.freshmediaworks.comsocial media, new media titan, chris doelle, fresh media works, http://www.freshmediaworks.comsocial media, new media titan, chris doelle, fresh media works, http://www.freshmediaworks.comsocial media, new media titan, chris doelle, fresh media works, http://www.freshmediaworks.com

by Chris Doelle

Bitcoin followup

bitcoin crypocurrencyOkay, so I dipped my toe in the Bitcoin ocean.  Here is what I did:

I had someone offer to buy the Xbox for Bitcoin but they wanted me to drive to San Antonio.  It’s not really worth driving an hour to trade an old Xbox for something I may never use, so I passed.  I also had several people email me saying, “What is Bitcoin?”

When the post was shared out on Twitter, I got one gentleman responded to the post title “Bitcoin – am I in?” with a tweet that said, “You are Now!” and used a service called ChangeTip (@ChangeTip) to send me $1.00 worth of Bitcoin.  I thanked him and asked when he was available for a chat about Bitcoin.  His response was to send another $3.50 – that was way cool of him.  I am continually inspired by the generosity of people.  Sure, it is only a couple bucks but its moves like his that make me feel better about mankind on the whole.

Due to price fluctuation, my $4.50 worth of Bitcoin is now worth between $4.48 & $4.58 depending on when I look.

I still really want to have a conversation about Bitcoin with someone who is actually using it for something productive – other than a get-rich-quick scheme.

So, I am no officially in.  I am still in the dark, but I am in.

by Chris Doelle

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