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Pete Prodoehl

Hacker of many things

Who are you, and what do you do?

My name is Pete Prodoehl, and people call me raster. I like to make things… sometimes it’s web sites, or music, or photos, or films, or ideas. I helped create Web414, which is a community of people building the new web, and also helped bring BarCampMilwaukee to life, and I pitch in with things like MilwaukeeDevHouse and Bucketworks. I also own a web hosting company, and am the VP of Interactive Media at a marketing company.

What hardware are you using?

On my desk at home is a 20” iMac with a 22” Samsung SyncMaster 2233 attached to it, along with an old(er) Apple keyboard and a Logictech Mouse. I’ve also got a 13” MacBook Pro that I’m using more and more often, an original Eee PC 701 I don’t really use much anymore, and a Mac mini for backup. At work I use a variety of Mac Pros for various tasks like web development, audio, video, and photo editing.

In the world of still cameras I primarily use a Nikon D40, which is probably the smallest/lightest DSLR that Nikon makes. It’s really easy to carry around, and fits in my bag along with the MacBook Pro and doesn’t add much weight. I also use a Nikon D300 and Nikon D3x at work, and those are both great cameras. If you’ve got the money, the D3x is amazing at what it does, and produces 24 megabit images. Lenses include Nikon 18-55mm, Nikon 12-24mm, Nikon 28-70mm f2.8, an old 50mm f1.4 and a few other miscellaneous glassy bits and weird lens adapters.

In the word of video cameras I shoot with a Sony PD-150 DVCAM, which is an older MiniDV camera, but is solidly built and still performs really well. In the HD world I use the Panasonic HVX200, which is a nice camera for HD shooting, but the P2 digital workflow leaves something to be desired. Stepping up to “digital cinema” I’ve been working with the RED ONE Camera, which is as mind-blowing as you may have heard. Shooting at 4k resolution is pretty wild, and it’s nothing like a video camera. RED really did the right thing with how they handle the digital imaging and workflow, much better than the Panasonic P2 method.

My communicator is an iPhone 3G, which I love and hate. I love the user experience, but I hate the fact that it’s not more open. I guess it can make phone calls, but honestly 98% of the time it’s my mobile, handheld, always connected computing/communicating device.

And what software?

I run Mac OS X for most of my desktop/laptop machines. I’m an old-time Mac user, going back to the days of System 6, and before that I was an Apple ][+ user. I love the *nix underpinnings of OS X and spend plenty of time in the terminal. I also use Linux as a server OS, and I really, really try my best to avoid using Windows or any Microsoft products for anything. I tend to like the following apps, and have them running constantly: Firefox, iTerm, Interarchy, Photoshop, Adium, Thunderbird, Logic, Final Cut, jEdit… and the list goes on. (Right now my Applications folder has over 200 items in it.) On the server it’s typically a LAMP stack with Apache, MySQL, PHP & Perl. I still love Perl, and for that you can probably blame the years I spent doing data migration and server maintenance. On the iPhone I’ve got the typical things like Twitterific, Facebook and foursquare, but a few others worth mentioning are: AutoStitch, Best Camera, Memoratus, Reeder and iSSH.

What would be your dream setup?

Since I’ve been suffering from insomnia lately, I don’t get much time to dream, but I suppose the biggest, baddest Mac Pro with the biggest, baddest displays would be nice. Really, who doesn’t want that? Anyone who thinks their current computer is fast enough doesn’t render or compile or transcode anything. Computers are slow! That said, I guess my dream setup would be any Mac that never displays a beachball. Really. That’s it. I want to do all the things I do and never see a beachball. And also edit 4k footage in real time. That’s not too much to ask, is it? I’d also like a storage array that I can continually add to, which not only runs in a nice RAID5 mode, but also silently syncs with servers/storage located off-site. For free. Of course it should be free! Let’s make that happen! (Oh, and a RED EPIC with a nice set of prime lenses to top it all off.)

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