Tech Spotlight: Roland VR-5 – Mixer & Recorder for Live Streaming

Looking for something new to drool over? Check out the Roland VR-5, a powerhouse of audio and video technology. Connect your cameras, microphones, and  computer, and you have a single interface for professional quality live A/V streaming.

VR5 AV Mixer and Recorder for Live Streaming
VR-5 AV Mixer and Recorder for Live Streaming (Brochure Cover)

I am personally a fan of Roland Professional Audio and Video Technology and was very impressed to see the VR-5 in action at this years Government Video Expo. As usual, Roland has provided professional quality gear, in a small, durable package. What was once a room full of equipment, operators, and technicians, now is mobile, affordable, and sleek package that can be operated by a single individual with little expertise. A touch screen selects between 3 live video feeds and an additional media screen. I was happy to inquire about the unit with the representative at Roland and get my hands on this cool piece of video / audio gear. At a price tag of just over $5,000, this is quite an amazing piece of hardware.

Steps to conect and broacast audio and video
The VR-5 is Easy as 1234

So as we prepare for the new year, we at Word Wizards would like to put this cool new gadget on your radar. The technician is only as good as the tool, so if you think its time for an upgrade you might want to take a closer look. And don’t forget to send your friends at Word Wizards all of your footage for transcription, captioning, and logging next year!




SEO Tips: A Nightmare Before Google Sitemap Generator

Happy Holidays from your friends at Word Wizards! This late December blog post is dedicated to telling the story of an attempt at installing and setting up the fabled Google Sitemap Generator. For those SEOs out there wondering if it would be beneficial to install this fancy piece of open source Linux wizardry, we at Word Wizards Web Design have a message for you… DON’T BOTHER!

Now that XML sitemaps are the standard practice of most Search Engines, Google kindly offers a utility that can be installed on your system to automatically generate sitemaps that are optimized and ping Google with any new changes to your web site. They say it is easy, and requires no knowledge of advanced system manipulation or coding. “Easy”, as long as you feel comfortable opening a direct Linux Terminal Shell to your server, and using the command line prompt to hack your own site and install a mysterious unsupported piece of software! There is nobody at Google to call for help, and try asking your hosting service provider and their best tech support will scratch their heads and say, “we have to get back to you on that one.”

Luckily, we have our heads on straight in the web design studio. With seasoned programers, Linux users, and code ninjas all huddling over a secret portal to our sites inner workings, surely we could figure the thing out right? Wrong! With all of our extensive resources put to the task, we succeeded in the upload, the installation, but when it came time to set up the utility and begin the magical sitemap generating process, a nightmare of access issues, port securities, and unspecified functional errors plagued our hard working and frustrated SEO team. Thankfully, Google tech support consists of a series of very well optimized documents explaining the same information over and over again; we eventually realized we were on our own.

After weeks of this working nightmare, the effort was all for naught! It is a much simpler process to use an XML sitemap generator provided for free on multiple third party websites and do the uploading manually. If anyone has ever figured this little puzzle out, I am sure you deserve some credit. However, the lack of internet reviews or blog articles explaining the utility known as the Google Sitemap Generator should be the only answer you require.

Do your own sitemap and you will save your time, energy, and holiday cheer.

Bah Humbug!!!