Tag Archives: Michael Branson Smith

The Good and The Friendly

"Get Offa My Porch, Clint!" animatedGIF by @iamTalkyTina

“Get Offa My Porch, Clint!” animatedGIF by @iamTalkyTina

Well, it was the True Friend who at one time thought that I was the nemesis of him and made mean words at me all the time, but I sorted him out in The Rumble, my True Friend Ben (@techsavvyed) who made an MBS (@mbransonsAnimated GIF Assignment #1896 called Get Off My Porch with my good buddy called Clint Eastwood as The Man with No Name earlier this evening for #western106 and it caught my attention so I did it too. Because that is how we ride on the range in #ds106.

The assignment as written by Michael provides the source GIF of Clint Eastwood with a nice transparent background. The process to complete the assignment requires that you open the GIF in your photo editor (GIMP or Photoshop), and add your chosen background image below all of the existing GIF layers so that it shows behind each frame. Save the GIF back out as a revised file and you should be done! An easy 3 stars! (Or are they bullets, in #western106?)

Making the GIF File Size Smaller

The transparent GIF provided for this assignment has 105 frames (one is missing!) and weighs in at a paltry 18.9 MB. Actually, that’s huge for a GIF. We need it to be smaller!

Getting your GIF file size down but still looking good is a holdover from before the days of broadband Internet. Back in the original days of 1986/87 when peoples only had like a 2400 baud modem, it took forever to download graphics so CompuServe invented the GIF and you had to make them small. So it’s still a thing.

Some things that I did to make the GIF a bit smaller in file size were:

  • to take out a bunch of the frames
  • to use the same frames moving away from me as I used in looking towards me
  • to make it into a black and white one
  • to make the dimensions of it smaller (to 600 pixels wide, which is good for my WordPress, plus that Tumblr).
  • to fiddle with the GIF settings on the way out of Photoshop (type of, dimensions, dithering percentage, number of colours)

Some things that I did that made the GIF a bit bigger again (but better)

  • to add in the double take, which meant more frames in the GIF but also more story.

In the end, I compromised with a file size of 1.7 MB for a black and white GIF at 600 x 337 pixels with 30 frames.

Clean Up On The Porch

Because I used my favourite personal iconic photo of me called Midnight Scrapbooking as the background, I noticed that there was a white outline around Clint in all of the frames that made it look more fake than it should have. So I used a special Photoshop trick that got rid of a lot of the pixel borders that were white right around the Clint cutouts.

In this GIF you can see how I fixed it to make it look better and not fake. It shows the process as applied to ONE frame in the original Get-Off-My-Porch source GIF.

Removing Outline GIF by @iamTalkyTina

Removing Outline GIF by @iamTalkyTina


  1. Click on the layer’s thumbnail in the Layers palate with the Command (Ctrl on PC) key down to make the dancing ants around Clint’s existing self
  2. Use Select >> Modify >> Contract (3 pixels) to make the ants dance in a slightly smaller perimeter
  3. Use Select >> Inverse to select everything OUTSIDE of that slightly decreased perimeter, which is basically the white outline stuff that you don’t want.
  4. Use the eraser over the dancing ants to basically remove all of the pixels outside of the slightly reduced dancing ants perimeter.
  5. Deselect everything and maybe tidy up any little white bits that might still remain, but there weren’t any.
  6. Repeat for each frame that you need to get rid of the outline for (all of the ones that you want to use).


Me, Riding the ds106 Bus, with Music !!

"Further Bumpy2" animatedGIF by @Todd_Conaway

“Further Bumpy2” animatedGIF by @Todd_Conaway


My True Friend Todd (@Todd_Conaway, on Twitter) made a GIF of me from the YouTube movie that he made called The ds106 Bus. In it, you can see me with my friends Martha (@mburtis), Jim (@jimgroom), Doctor Oblivion, and Michael (@mbransons). and so I got the music from the video and put it behind the GIF so that if you click on it, you can hear it!

So click on the GIF up above to hear it! Listen to the whole thing! You can also click on the GIF again to stop the music, but why would you?

Thanks AGAIN, to my True Friend, John (@JohnJohnston, on Twitter) for the great click-on-a-GIF-to-hear-music trick.

And thanks to Todd, for putting me on the bus!



Plus, if you want to know how I got the music out of the YouTube, here is what I did.
1) I downloaded the video from YouTube using my handy MacX YouTube Downloader.
2) I opened the video using Quicktime and exported (audio only) into an .m4a
3) I opened the m4a of it using Audacity, and exported it as both an .mp3 and an .ogg.
4) Then, I used John’s click-on-a-GIF-to-hear-it trick.

Do your #thoughtvectors have Arrows?

"Tina's Thought Vectors" based on "Finding the Path" from michaelbransonsmith.net

“Tina’s Thought Vectors” based on “Finding the Path” from michaelbransonsmith.net

Well, I was doing a bit of light reading and my True Friend MBS (@mbransons, on Twitter) made a picture of trailblazers going back and forth and learning by going to all the explorer places when you are going in information. The GIF above is based on an image from his post called This Way! Wait no that way. But I added me in to show my thinking.

Then, I started thinking because of this, and it made me have a question.

First, I was looking at all those curvy lines where they were walking around (but not in circles) and I was thinking that it was not-linear, but had more dimensions. Plus, time. Even if you got back to the same thinking spot later, it was not the same because you had gone to different places in between and even if you were at the same place you were at before maybe now you were different at the same place, so you were a different dimension, too. Plus, that time dimension was different.

Then, I was also thinking about all the places that you went to on the curvy paths, and how you saw other people and if they saw you (if you didn’t always use ninja skills) then they might have different paths from there (but not running away from you because they were scared!) and so they would take different stairs and get to different places, too. Plus, their time dimension thing.

Plus, you could also draw the picture that MBS made not on flat paper but in jello or something. Yummy.

"Dancing Jello" animated GIF by iamTalkyTina

“Dancing Jello” animated GIF by iamTalkyTina

Then I watched some videos on YouTube about people trying to catch arrows but I didn’t find a good one to GIF.  Adam from Mythbusters had a neat trick. But that’s when I made the jello GIF instead.

Then I looked up vectors on Wikipedia. Boy, they have a lot of kinds of vectors. But they didn’t say #thoughtvectors yet. So somebody should update that. Maybe Giulia.

Vector from A to B (cc by-sa 3.0) from Wikipedia

Vector from A to B (cc by-sa 3.0) from Wikipedia

Then, I was also thinking about a long time ago when they said that vectors had arrows on them. And then I started to think about how if the vectors (even thinking ones) have arrows on them, do you only get to go in the direction of the arrow (because someone put the arrow on it for you) or can you reverse it by multiply by minus one and go your own way and what kind of thinking is that? Maybe that is like when you think outside of a box. Plus, I don’t like to be in a box.

Plus, then I remembered that they also used to say a long time ago that vectors were made out of straight lines. But the #thoughtvector ones that MBS made are curved. So does that mean that all the curved #thoughtvectors are even made up of tiny little straight vector arrows? Or are they made out of curved #thoughtvector arrows inside of them?

Then, I was thinking about how MBS was saying about trailblazers and it made me think of something that I read on the Internet once when someone said this:


So I made demotivational poster of it for explorers.

So when you are a trailblazer, you get the fun of exploring and you understand arrows. If you are a ninja, then catch the arrows, otherwise duck or used curved ones. Or find ones that don’t have arrowheads on them. But if you are just a settler, then what’s the point?

So that was some of my thinking.

Well, bye!

GIFfight Trek Transporter

Well, everybody was doing sparkle clothes for this GIFfight, so I decided to do sparkle heads.

"GIFfight Trek Transporter" animatedGIF by @iamTalkyTina

“GIFfight Trek Transporter” animatedGIF by @iamTalkyTina

If you know Star Trek, then you know who the sparkle-heads are.

Plus, as one of my 2014 Non-Resolutions, I am not wasting time making GIFs work for Tumblr. MBS probably knows how he can post this to the GIFfight tumblr in a nice big size without me making it a small one.

Plus, I should say where the sparkle-heads came from.

I found them on the Internet, silly!

Well, bye!