Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Thoughts On Apple, iPhones, Safari and a bit of Android Envy

I'm suffering a bit from Android Envy, centered around the app Mighty Text. This makes Android phones more compelling to me. And, sadly, there isn't an iPhone version, nor competing product...well, at least not on Windows. Now I get Apple, and understand why they haven't/won't make a Windows version of the product: Apple's drive for their products integration. Perhaps, though, there's a way for Apple to build a tool and expand their market-share of another Apple product: Safari.

My idea: integrate iMessage functionality with Safari. Let me send/receive SMS messages via my iPhone from my Safari browser. That would drive me to use Safari nearly exclusively. Right now, on my work PC, I use (in order from most to least used) Firefox, Chrome, IE, then Safari; on my Mac, Chrome, Firefox then Safari. I tend to only use Safari extensively on my iPhone.

So, here's a way to expand Apple's hold in one market, increase the functionality of a key tool, and help make iPhone's that much more usable. Apple, what says you?

Monday, December 30, 2013

Thoughts on Capitalism

Can capitalism respond to our various global crisises?  Can it respond to global warming, income gaps, etc? Or is it's very nature corrosive? By us all being competitors, does that destroy out ability to collaborate? Or are we able to find that third way, a path where we're all equal, not undercutting and seeking for everyone to benefit? Is there a way for win-win to be globalized, scaled across cultures, countries, et al? 

Thursday, December 12, 2013

The dude vernacular

I've actually had full conversations simply stating "dude" with different inflection and emphasis. Ah, life on the west coast!

Godzilla - Official Teaser Trailer [HD]

Well, another attempt at the Godzilla franchise. This one looks pretty powerful, though.


Thursday, December 05, 2013

Cold Mornings, or Life in the North

At several moments on my drive in were several moments I wished I could photograph. Gorgeous ice formations upon trees, some highlighted by light from the rising sun. Bare branches with frost have this delightful quality, especially with cold sunlight glinting upon it. Hoarfrost, as it's otherwise known.

Since I wasn't able (either due to time, driver safety, or other reason) to grab a shot, I grabbed this one off the interwebs. Bon appetite!


Wednesday, December 04, 2013

Swedish House Mafia - Don't You Worry Child (Khushnuma) - ft. Shweta Subram

Just stumbled upon this piece. I really like the Swedish House Mafia's piece, and this cover of it simply brings chills. I'll be exploring Shweta Subram's work next.


Tuesday, December 03, 2013

Facing challenges

Random observation: people seem to land in one of two camps regarding their responses to recognizing challenges. Either we over-dramatize (see the mountain instead if the molehill), or under-estimate (see a molehill instead of the mountain). Perhaps the later deception is more productive, as you avoid paralysis. However, neither is truly effective. Either one is paralyzed needlessly, or starry-eyed unaware of truly harmful danger. 

Best response: when we've trained ourselves to see challenge, understand our ability to respond, then choose clearly amongst the clear and obvious choices. 

I train my mind continuously, hoping that I'll someday achieve that state. 

Facing Fear

One must face that which brings fear; not with rage, rather, compassion. For such demons only bear the power of deception. Face the fear, deny deceptions, then act upon what's left. 

Saturday, November 30, 2013

GoogleDocs Emails

I'm seeing a flurry of emails from friend's accounts with this subject line and the text below:

"Good day, 

I just created a secured shared document using Google Doc. To access this doc please Click here and for security reasons, you have to log on with your email to view it, its very important"

As I've received at least three with exact same message, I'm confident they're exploits from hacked accounts. They're coming from good friends, but also have dozens of emails in the "to:" line. 

Anyway, I advise everyone to avoid clicking on such. 

Monday, November 25, 2013

Stranger Elements of Thanksgiving

As an antidote for the sentimentality of the next few days, I offer you these images.

Bon appetite!

This is mildly disturbing. A kiss before the slaughter? I guess that's biblical...






I expect this really is Sebastian the Crab from Little Mermaid, but I still love it:






My personal favorite so far:






Though this comes in close second:




And I'll leave you with this artistic joy:



Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Hee Haw

I just met someone who's never, ever, experienced Hee Haw, that iconic country TV show. Now, this isn't someone who was raised in a Soviet gulag, or is under 21. I find such a situation a stunning breech of American culture.

So, without further ado, below you'll find what I feel to represent the core of Hee Haw's je ne sais quoi. So, enjoy your cultural lesson du jour, mes amis.


Friday, November 15, 2013

Some thoughts on platforms and stuff

Had an interesting chat with some Twitter chums about whether I should port my iPhone number to Google Voice. The responses got me thinking about dependence upon one company or platform. Having all one's proverbial eggs in one basket opens up serious risk should a) the company go under, b) reconfigure their offerings or, c) simply decide on a focus change. Any of those scenarios open you up to data loss, productivity gains, and other delights.

Oddly, through my love of things techy, I find myself well diversified. Should, say Google, decide to ax a key component, I can easily shift over to MSFT or Yahoo or Apple or... Puts me on a safe place.

I think I'll stay that way, thank you.

Thursday, October 31, 2013

Halloween Tunes

I'm having a bit of fun today coming up with a playlist of "Halloween" tunes. The caveat: tunes you won't find on your standard set list (i.e.: no Monster Mash or Thriller...nothing against them, but I grow weary of the over-played). So, here's what I've crafted on Spotify for your listening pleasure. Let me know if there's anything I should consider adding.


Friday, October 25, 2013

WordPress vs. Blogger, Porting Between Platforms and Other Fun Thoughts

I've been exploring WordPress over the last few months (see my blog NotJustSeattle.com). I really, really like the platform and have found so many benefits over Blogger. Plus, watching the demise of Google Reader a few months back makes me wonder about the long-term status of this. With Google+ garnering the lion's share of Google attention and public focus, I wonder how long they'll continue to support the platform. Blogger seems like a neglected stepchild.

With all this, I commenced planning out my migration. It's not appearing as clean as I'd hoped, but the research is pretty early on. It seems my URL might be the biggest challenge. Plus, I need to decide if I will just move this to a site hosted by WordPress.com, or pony up for something hosted by BlueHost or GoDaddy (or....).

So, taking a thoughtful and well planned approach on this. It'll be interesting to see where it leads.

Any ideas, hints or tips? Just leave me a comment. I'd be quite happy for advice.

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

The Difference Between Organized and Micromanaging Life

I work hard to make sure all my tasks have been captured, either in my calendar or my to-do list. Everything. Now,  I've had several folks give me a hard time about that, basically accusing me of a lack of creativity, or paranoia. They seem to view this as a sign of being rigid, inflexible and unable to adjust. All those give me a good chuckle. No, the reason I capture everything that needs to get done (in an electronic tool...this is important): it makes me agile. I KNOW everything that needs to be done, thus, it's easy to re-prioritize and address whatever comes up, whether another opportunity, or the need to respond some crisis or another.

It's my way of both honoring my commitments and yet maintaining an ability to respond. Nothing craps on a sense of accomplishment like missing a key deadline in the midst of "responding".

Having my life solidly organized, and in an easy to access tool helps me to live in the moment. I'm not trying to retain all those tasks, their deadlines and who I'm doing them for. And that's freeing. Amen!

Monday, October 21, 2013

A Sci-Fi Geek Confession

One key weakness of mine of late has been time. Time for such things as film watching. Though I watched such gems as The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, I must admit to a key geek failure. One that might strain my geek-cred to a near breaking level. So, here goes: I hadn't watched the J.J. Abrams Star Trek reboot until yesterday. Yep; took me 4 years. FOUR! Sigh...I hang my head in geek shame.

That said, I actually like the film. [Spoiler Alert: (Ok, come on, if you haven't seen it by now, you really shouldn't be put off by plot revelations)I know that will annoy some, and delight others. I liked the way the characters were recrafted. The time-continuum disruption theme was pretty cool. I wondered how they would reconcile the story-line when they killed Spock's mother. Clever. I particularly like the edgier, closer to human Spock.

I admit that the lens-flare business was a bit distracting at times. However, it's hard to extract Heisenberg from this (I was familiar with this before seeing the film. I'm sure awareness impacted my attention.) Didn't negatively impact the film for me, just provided a bit of distraction.

What really caught me, though, was the Leonard Nimoy role. I didn't know. DIDN'T KNOW!!!! Nope, no idea he was in the film. Yes, that would've made me see it sooner. And I'm sure I just missed some obvious marketing message somewhere. But I'm quite disconnected from the mainstream media stream at this point.

I shan't wait so long to watch "Into Darkness".


 

Was iOS 7 Created with Word?

I knew that Word had some solid image editing tools, but no idea they were of this caliber.

Friday, October 18, 2013

Twitter Follower Culls and Other Delights

I keep hitting Twitter's 2k follower limit. Perhaps I need to garner a massive number of followers and achieve uber-Twitter status. At this point, though, I need to sort through my lists and drop a few. Some choices will be easy. No tweets in an extended period of time? Gone! A topic I lost my interest in? Likewise. Just a few of my criteria.

So, I hope nobody takes being unfollowed personally. I find myself trapped by my technology's limits, just like most folks.

Thursday, October 17, 2013

The Untapped Potential Of The Tablet

Last night I read, as I often do, a Kindle book on my Nexus (The Manga Gen, if you care). The app magnified the particular frame I to be read. "Clever", I thought to myself. Yet, as I also do often, I wondered "what else can we do with these?" How can the devices transform the reading experience? Some ideas: animation, links within the document, perhaps an audio track? All kinds of quick, off the cuff possibilities. What would be wrought with a focused, detailed analysis? I know there are myriad opportunities, and think it would be grand to be part of that innovation. Who knows...

Webrings and the History of the Web

My random web thought of the day: remembering the webring. For it's time, a very powerful tool for finding related content. I spent many an hour perusing sites under a variety of topics: fantasy literature, science, science fiction, politics....the possibilities were extensive. Seems they still exist, but connecting to them a lot less critical. Seems few people drift through webrings now. Rather, they move through Google search results. I wonder, though, if webrings provide any SEO benefit? That would be my expectation, at least.

So, the point? Tastes change, behaviors follow, culture modulates and we both find ourselves reacting, as well as leading.

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Rockets and Other Goodies

Just saw this on iO9. Squeee!!!!




Thinkup : Social Media Innovation?

I want to dive a bit deeper into ThinkUp, but like what I've seen so far. Give Mr. Dash a few minutes of your time. Then let me know what you think. I'll be here...


Thoughts on Omidyar & Greenwald's New Journalism Venture

Just read "Why Pierre Omidyar decided to join forces with Glenn Greenwald for a new venture in news" over at Jay Rosen's PressThink. So much of this makes me near giddy. The potential: amazing! Combining key stakeholders within both the online business sector (Pierre Omidyar founded eBay, for you who don't know. And I'd like to think any reader here would know Glenn's work. If not, here's his Wikipedia article. These are the higher profile collaborators. Read the article for a more in-depth list).

Not many details released yet, I expect that these are getting hashed out as we speak. their motivations, though, and the backgrounds of the collaborators are what give me the most excitement. This combination of talent presents an amazing opportunity to deeply innovate this space. Both from a financial side (let's face it, modern news has struggled with finding a sustainable financial model) as well as deeply utilizing elements of the modern web culture, and, lastly, bringing a renewed focus on the core of journalism's power: investigation. Watching the watchers, pushing deep and holding our society's leadership accountable (note: not just government) is critical, but a weakened force right now.

Anyway, these are the thoughts that roll off my keyboard this morning. I look forward to learning more as this gels.


Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Utilizing Social Media

I've seen a large array of "build your business with social media" ideas. All based on the great canard of getting rich quick and easy. They're all lies. 

Business can be grown and developed with social media. Not, however, by hopping from one bright shiny to the next. It's continuous engagement, consistent updating and regular use that makes the long-term win. 

Monday, September 16, 2013

PayPal+Customer Service+PR=Longevity

I posted this on my other blog a few weeks back, then thought it would be more relevant over here. So, without further adieu...

Reading this at Venture Beat just annoyed the crap out of me: GlassUp raised $100K on Indiegogo — but PayPal is refusing to pay up. This isn’t the first time PayPal has dealt with similar issues, even to the point where their president publicly intervened in a resolution. This troubles me regarding PayPal’s future.

 These rules need to significant repair if PayPal wants to remain relevant in this space. StartUps, heck, any business CANNOT operate with random and inconsistent access to funds. I think PayPal’s growth as a purchase transaction processor might be the root of these aggravations. At a brief glance, I see vigorous efforts to protect buyers from fraud. Noble, but hampering these transactions that vary from that model. Policies need to evolve with market changes. Especially market shifts that reflect your company’s goals and objectives.

David Marcus has publicly tried to change this, to better align themselves with the startup community’s needs. However, high profile breakdowns like this run the risk of major damage to the brand. And, I guarantee you that someone out there is getting ready to come in and out innovate PayPal. PayPal has been a disruptive innovator in their field, and have brought a lot of value. However, these gaffs have eroded trust and that goodwill will be hard to earn back. These are ripe fields for competitors to come in and win.

<updated content> PayPal has made a updates to their service plan, and I haven't had the chance to review them yet. I recognize the importance of that so will do so soon.

Friday, September 13, 2013

Typeset and Font Alignment Thing Of Hatred

Am I the only one who hates justified text? I find the cleanliness of the aligned ends to be more than offset by the weird spacing. I'm sure it can be made to work with forethought and focus. That brings back memories of fiddling with typeset, adding up all the characters and spaces, figuring out how to word the thing in order to best utilize the space.

Anyway, just being a little snarky in response to an e-flyer I received today. Perhaps just being a bit too cranky and perfectionist. Maybe I just need another cup of coffee.

Thursday, September 12, 2013

#Facebook Business Page Fun - Anybody Else Dealt With This?

I've come up against a unique problem. One of the other admins for a business page I manage is unable to invite her friends to "like" it. When she clicks on "invite friends", her whole list is grayed out. One of the challenges I'm facing with diagnosing the problem is that we're ~30 miles apart, so I'm relying on voice to communicate the visual issues. I've found a few others with this issue, but no conclusive answer.

My basic research shows that the main culprit for these issues is that they've already been invited (like this page mentions).  However, in this instance, there are people who haven't been invited that are appearing grayed out. These appear to be unrelated issues.

A few additional details: 1) my view is fine. I can invite everyone in my network except those who have been invited. In other words, the way it's supposed to look. 2) We have verified that she is logged in as herself, not as the business page.

I'm leaning towards a few possible answers. Perhaps she inadvertently invited everyone at one point. Hard to imagine, but I guess it's possible. Another is that all her friends have a privacy setting enabled that blocks these invites. Again, statistically unlikely, but, hey, I'm grasping here.

Have any of you seen this? What solution did you find?

Great #Tech Events In #Seattle

I'm a bit sad that I was unable to cram this year's GeekWire Summit into my overdone calendar. That is in no way meant to devalue the event. Using Franklin-Covey parlance, I couldn't move some Quadrant I items to fit this Quadrant II.

Seattle has a great tech community, and many ways for connection within. The next one that I'm aware of is the September Seattle Tech Meetup on September 17. This is one that I should be able to make.

And then there's the Seattle Interactive Conference. This is a grand one, and one that my current budget just can't absorb. However, I hear great things and would recommend attending based on them.



I'm sure I'm missing good ones. Let me know if you have suggestions that I should add. Heck, maybe I'll start a more definitive list.


Wednesday, September 04, 2013

Voicemail Frustrations

Someone just left me a voicemail, but either mumbled or the phone gods attacked and the number they left was indecipherable (no caller id on the thing, either). Pro-tip, folks: state your number 2x. Speak slowly, clearly; there are no points for finishing first.

Hopefully the chap will get tired of waiting and call me back. Sigh...

Monday, September 02, 2013

Always A Killer

Just read another article about how some new device will be a "device x" killer. Over the years, the tech press has lauded PC killers, Office killers, Windows, and the ever present iPhone killers. Seems the underlying premise is that success requires the existing giant to fail. Seems that there's never considered the ability to coexist, to develop a new space. Zero sum games, not adding value or creating something new. 

Friday, July 26, 2013

Annoying Video Ads

The first thing I do when one of those obnoxious, over-loud video ads launches on a website I just opened starts playing is to close the whole page. I have to be pretty committed to reading the article for me to stick around through that, or to try and locate the "off" or "mute" button for the bloody thing. 
So, for those of you promoting advertising on your website, you now have something to consider. Of course, I should look at running Ad-Blocker or something like that and move this nuisance into historical reference. 

Thursday, July 18, 2013

The All Powerful Snooze Button

Laying here listening to my wife's alarm go off, I'm struck by a significant societal shift which took place during my lifetime: the snooze bar. 

I remember a world where these things didn't exist. That your alarm clock rang once a day. Heck, you needed to remember to arm the thing before you went to sleep. I suppose some folks rewound the clock and moved the alarm hand forward a few minutes. But most didn't. Ring, then up; no other methodology existed. 

Now, we tend to gradually awaken. With smartphones and such, you can choose pleasant tones to gently rouse you from slumber. Speaking for myself, my alarm starts earlier, with a more gradual waking process. 

I'm not sure what, if any, deeper effects have been brought about by this. Something to explore. It's hard to imagine that a significant shift in a culture's circadian rhythm won't have some larger impact.  

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

A Story of Epilepsy and the Power Of Love

The Story Collider podcast has become a deeply integrated into my psyche, and my life. I stumbled  upon the series via Radiolab. On my commute today, I listened to Sara Peters and Peter Aguero's story about Sara's epilepsy.  This was very well done: by the end I felt connected to them.

So, I highly recommend you spend a few minutes of your life watching the video below (the podcast was recorded at TedMed 2013, so, thus, you get video). Your life will be the better for it.

(It wouldn't be a bad idea to subscribe to Story Collider, too. Just sayin'.) 


Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Alcohol Consumption And Arousal

A little tidbit to greet the 2nd 20% of your work week.

It explains a great deal, if you think about it.

Found this on Reddit

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Perfection's Obsessive Pursuit Destroys Effectiveness

The obsessive pursuit of perfection can destroy effectiveness. How easy would it be, continuously review, rewrite, redo a project. Keep revolving within this loop until its perfect, or we die. I would expect that giving into this loop, perfection would only be achieved well after the project's usefulness was long past. 

Now, we need to keep mind for quality. Try to make whatever we're creating as effective as possible. Yet, something is better than nothing. 

Deliver the best you can. Fix, with diligence and haste any material mistakes, smile about the non-material. Be proud of your work, and the problems it solves. 

Thursday, July 04, 2013

Red, White, & Blue

I'm wondering why our culture had a specific sequence to "Red, White, & Blue". In the States, the sequence is always R, W, B. Curious, no? Think it's related to a song? In sure there's some cultural touch-stone.

Tuesday, July 02, 2013

A Dream-Laden River

Drifting brain
Mind floats, weightless. 
Flurry of data
Carries thoughts upon 
A dream-laden river. 

Friday, June 28, 2013

First Poem This Summer

Dreams laze across summer sunbeams. 
Flickers of dust briefly present 
Then lost upon life's currents; 
Gentle summer breeze. 

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Following Your Gut

I remember reading an article, years ago, about how one should never trust their gut. They cited the presence of serial killers like Ted Bundy and how smoothly they talked and acted. This made me laugh. Bundy, et al, had no logical reason not to trust them. Even if we had today's tools, we wouldn't find anything terribly remiss in their background. Those people who weren't taken in were following their gut. 

Perhaps there's some confusion about gut following. This isn't just mindlessness; deliberately slowing down and thinking. It's deeper, though, than simply analyzing facts. But it's more than airy fairy mindless trust. 

Learning to listen to that inner guide takes time and deliberate training. Often, that voice gets drowned out by the din of modern life. Much to our detriment. 

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Email Culls & Other Fun

I've been wading thru massive amounts of email for far too long. Time for action! Now, as a geek with several domains, it was easy to create a special email for all my news and newsletters. As I'm going through and porting them all over, I'm seeing how many of these aren't relevant any more. I'm an information junkie. But is really time to draw back. I'm digging thru tons of news searching for stuff I need to attend to. Silly.

Monday, June 17, 2013

Father's Day 2013

Yesterday, my family spent our day celebrating Fatherhood with KEXP. The Eighth Annual Father's Day Kid's Dance Party was heck-of-a-lotta fun. Big plus ones to EMP for hosting, Pagliacci Pizza for providing dough for pizza tossing, and to the Vicious Puppies Crew for bringing their b-boy chops to the event.

VPC was the main draw for us. I love watching talented artists of all disciplines using their passions. My son struggled the rest of the day to control his dance steps (a bit of a problem in the restaurant for lunch...), so inspiration was partaken.

Soon there will be photos uploaded to the KEXP Flickr Stream. Until then, I have a few shots up on my Flickr page.

Here's the most popular VPC video on YouTube. Enjoy!

Sunday, June 16, 2013

Dream Flows

Nighttime moves below my dreams. 
Flowing visions upon clouds. 
Drifting skywards amongst the stars. 
Futures born amidst. 

Father's Day

About fatherhood: 
Hard yet wonderful journey. 
Happy Father's Day! 

Morning Thoughts

Unlit sky. 
Lower, slightly above the ground,
Trod by us. 

Pale, weak, faux-sun
Claws some mystery 
Back from the night. 

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Xbox One : Tech Thoughts

Just read a few of the stories about the Xbox. I'm pretty jazzed at what the 'Soft is up to. I'm wondering about a few things:

1) Will any of these features be part of the current Xbox ecosystem? Or just limited to the new machine? 

2) Will there be changes to the current pricing setup?

There were a few other random thoughts that have fluttered away. I'll update as more floats back. 

Wednesday, May 01, 2013

The Nature Of Work

For years I've pondered the nature of work in our society. The way our sense of self is intrinsically tied, how one of the first things we ask new acquaintances is "what do you?" Work provides us social status, links within our communities and, of course, critical economic resources: survival.

Additionally, I've seen so misery surrounding work. Hatred for their work, disdain for certain crafts and, thus, isolation. Dignity and social acceptance play out in this space. And, let's not forget the pain surrounding job losses.

I'm committed to exploring this deeper, so there will be more soon.

May you all find peace on this journey through the cosmos.

Thursday, April 25, 2013

This Is My Jam : Music Sharing Site

Just discovered this music sharing site, ThisIsMyJam.com. I love discovering new music, and part a key part of that is seeing what my friends are listening to. This seems like a great synergy of those two elements.

I'll have more to say soon. However, if you're currently using the site, or want to go sign up yourself, connect with me. I'd love to see what Your Jams are.

http://www.thisismyjam.com/questionsall


Nearly Ending : A Haiku

This week descending.
Towards the freedom of weekends.
Fleeting respite: ghosts.

A little haiku to bring you towards the weekend.

Enjoy!

Monday, April 22, 2013

The Matthew Keys Firing, Journalism and Social Media

Matthew Keys, the deputy social media editor for Reuters, has been let go (Mr. Keys' description of that event is here). As with all things like this, discerning the truth will take some time. We don't have Reuters side, and most likely won't until the union grievance is resolved.

The details listed on his Tumblr post give me pause, though. It seems Reuters' beefs centered around his Twitter postings surrounding the Boston Marathon bombings. Each item seems to have a logical rebuttal, which always raises my eyebrows. I can sense there are gaps here, but there's not enough detail yet to read between the proverbial lines.

One thing, though, I wonder about is how this affects Twitter's relationship with journalism. It seems that Mr. Keys mostly aggregated information from police scanners, as well as other tweets. This is an endeavor that makes accuracy tough. Yet, I'd argue, there's deep value. Yes, we, as citizens and media consumers, need to recognize the spurious nature of these moments. But the barrage of data helps ensure that the truth comes forth. Yes, it needs to be sorted through. Yes, there will be disinformation and misinformation. Activities like aggregation helps in that sifting process. Plus, it gives us a place to verify the accuracy of past reporting when looking at the next event. Someone with a history of mis/disinformation should, theoretically, immediately be suspect the next round.

Friday, April 19, 2013

Twitter & The Present Of News

I just read a Tweet about "Twitter being the future of journalism". Well, it's really the "now" of journalism. Right now. Perhaps it's a great time for one of my favorite Wil Wheaton quips, "I love living in the future".

Crowdsourcing is one of the greatest pieces of the Internet age. Whether we're talking about open source software, raising funds, or news, the power of the collective amazes me. The downside stems from volume, and the ability of malevolent players to perform mischief. Yet those voices tend towards discovery with amazing speed.

Hard to gauge how all this will evolve. But the journalistic game changed, radically and permanently. I label this whole phenomena "digitized democracy". Voices become equalized.

So, just a few random thoughts which I intend to flesh out further. I hope you have wonderful Fridays.

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Infographic : Facebook, Teens and "Cool"

Some things to meditate on if you market towards the teen crowd.

Or if you're a creepy stalker type.

Either way, read and get learned. Whatever feelings you have towards youth, their feelings reflect the direction culture is migrating towards.

I found this over at Social Media Today.

Harrison Ford on Jimmy Kimmel

I don't watch network TV much anymore, so missed this.

Thank goodness for the YouTube.

Enjoy your mind-growth moment of the day.

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Action vs. Cynicism

There's greater risk from action than from cynical critique. And greater reward. Go and DO great things. Don't simply sit and pick apart those actually doing the hard work of enacting change; driving to make the world better.

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Thoughts on podcasting & NPR

I like to listen to podcasts on my commute. This got me thinking about how many of NPR's weekly shows would lend themselves nicely to the podcast format. The first show I thought of, though, is Fiona Ritchie's Thistle & Shamrock. It's not carried locally and, unless I find a live stream, I'm out of luck.

Providing the whole show via podcast would work nicely. Broadcast the show intact. You can increase your viewership significantly with minimal increased coast. There's great power in allowing timeshifting.

I think it'd be a great win for NPR. You?

Monday, April 15, 2013

The Everlasting Nature Of Bad PR

I noticed this gem trending on Reddit today:Zales Fires Top Earning Saleswoman Because She Needs Surgery. Basics: Zales fires one of their best performing sales staff right after being informed she will need to take a disability leave. However one feels about this, the most crucial piece is that this is from 2009. 4 years later, this is rising on Reddit. You can guarantee that Zales will get hate messaging about this. Reminds me of one of the recurring issues I saw at Starbucks: Starbucks Hates The Military Rumor. This guy kept recycling, often at the most random times. Lesson: be very careful with your PR. Even false accusations will cycle through cyberspace and provide you regular aggravation. True ones will continuously rise up and bite, teeth sharper with each retelling.

Thursday, April 11, 2013

More Thoughts on LinkedIn

I'm expanding on my thoughts from a few weeks back.

LinkedIn functions as an afterthought for so many. Sharing of personal stories happens on Facebook. Well, most internet interaction seems to happen on Facebook. It had games, myriad other apps for consuming time. Yet, if you're like me, you have a career to manage. I value my career, even though I'm trying to find a unique path through my work life. So, I'm trying to nurture my LinkedIn account.

Maybe I should call it "curate". Immaterial, really, the label. What's important is deliberate focus. I seek to expand my influence. Thus, connecting with new people consistently. At least weekly access, though I shoot for more. Sharing relevant articles. And, though seeking to expand my network, not add everyone in the world. Additionally, I want the heavy lifting done before I'm seeking a new job. That's one of the cynical parts to LinkedIn. People don't use the tool extensively until they're job hunting. True or not, there is that perception. I have noticed more users sharing content, though, and with greater regularity. LinkedIn's potential should really expand over the coming year.

These are just a few thoughts on what I'm doing with this interesting tool. I don't think I'm utilizing it to it's full potential, yet I'm doing better than most.  What are you doing with it? Live it? Hate it? Let me know in the comments. 

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

New Blog

Hey everyone,

Point your browser over to my new site: www.NotJustSeattle.com. I'm exploring life in the region, but trying to expand past all the Seattle-centric messaging.

Let me know what you think.


Monday, March 25, 2013

What if money was no object?

Answering this question seems easy, however it's proven a deep challenge for me. Too much of my life has been paralyzed by the "need" to earn money. The roots of this, I'm certain, is fear. My challenge, and perhaps yours, too, is to defeat that fear. Only then are we truly alive.



Thanks to Successify for helping me find this.

Saturday, March 23, 2013

Thought of the day

Often, we get so absorbed in things we can't affect that we neglect those areas we can.

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Marketing

Just my random thought of the day.  There are ways to build demand without creating suckers. Only focusing on maximizing profits from your customers can't be sustained. Once a critical mass has been reached, you will have a growth rate the approaches zero rapidly

Go forth and do great things.

Thursday, March 14, 2013

LinkedIn

I assume all of you readers are using LinkedIn. Do you have any strategy? At this point, my main focus has simply been to connect to >1 person / week, which I've had no problem accomplishing. However, I'm confident that there's much more I could be doing. I'd love to hear what success you have, ideas, etc.

Saturday, March 09, 2013

More Ballen Seminar Thoughts

Just over a week a ago, I attended at social media workshop hosted by Lori Ballen. Covered a great deal of content that I deeply care about, thus there's tons to write about. There's one piece that really struck me, though. Her ability to connect.

One thing that happens regularly for her: people who she's never met treating her like she's their best friend. These are people who have only connected with her via social media. For all the criticism about social media destroying society, clearly these tools still enables us to bond.

Utilized well, people can connect solidly to brands, ideas, individuals. This gives communicators powerful ways to affect our audience. And elicit cynicism. If we're not careful, these tools will end up viewed simply as deceptive marketing tools, building a false sense of connection and, thus, exploitive.

We need to be vigilant, ensuring we strive for genuine connection. Respectful, solution driven, thoughtful, and focused on our customer more than on driving cash-flow. Once your audience becomes jaded, rebuilding that trust is painfully slow and, perhaps, impossible.

Wednesday, March 06, 2013

Organizing

One thing that often happens with me: odd hour wakefulness focused on organizing. Not out of any sense of anxiety, mind you. Rather, my brain comes alive with ideas. I find it amusing.

My current focus when it comes to personal organizing: realistic daily loads. I've been using what I'll call a "day dump". I throw most of my outstanding workload into "today", then shift the un-done into tomorrow. That's quite frustrating. It makes it look like little gets done. And organizing starts to take much longer, especially as time oases. Plus, when you scroll thru a huge task list, it's easy to get overwhelmed.

I'm trying my best to build my task list into something that has a real chance of getting accomplished. Helps keep my main foci on page one, and not scroll around looking for sheet I should do next.

Thursday, February 28, 2013

Time

Just a thought: if you regularly give up planning and review time to deal with "now", you have a future problem. We must make time to compare our progress against our goals. Otherwise, we get lost.

Don't let this slip! And I'll try to do the same.

Social Media Training

Spent all day yesterday learning how to generate leads using social media with Lori Ballen. Lots of good ideas, lots of things I want to implement over various projects. Though we had a real estate focus, the ideas are implementable across a wider array of sectors.

Learned tons, but haven't had the chance to process it all. I'll post more as soon add I make that time.

Friday, February 22, 2013

A Good Way To Engage The Public

Just read Ragan's post about Southwest's engagement via social media. They clearly get social media, how it's about listening. I love seeing stuff like this.

I found their desire to name their PR command center "The Listening Post" particularly telling. Compare it, if you will, with Wal-Mart's choice of "War Room". One implies collaborative, engagement, respectful of it's customers; while the other immediately screams adversarial. Seems clear which will be the best at mollifying the energy of critics.

This attitude works best to build ambassadors for your brand. These fans will be infinitely better at defusing potential crisis then even the best PR pros.

Your fans are a key asset. Invest in them.


My Email Frustration Du Jour

Let's all agree to start using the "To:" line correctly.

Senders:
  •  Put people in the "To" line who have action items, or are otherwise the direct focus of the email. E.g.: "Carl, please take care of this"...blah, blah. Use the "CC:" line for people on the email for informational purposes. 

Readers:
  • Look in the address header to see where you fit in before you read. Then you'll have a solid idea of whether you are being asked for information or action, or whether you're being informed of a status, data, what-have-you.
 If we can all start following email 101, maybe we can de-confuse the world some.

Maybe...

Tuesday, February 05, 2013

Restarts

I've been considering my blog theme for some time. Though I love poetry (and still plan on writing), my interests are much more varied.

My career has progressed over a wide array of industries and functions, all within the basic "general business administration" category. I've worried about shifting my focus, though. I've never been much for "profit hunting". Business, though, impacts so many areas of our society, and we all are impacted by this institution. The variety in my background, from differing sectors (non-profits, Fortune 500, small and mid-sized business) to types (retail, technology, religious, advocacy, distribution, wholesale....) provides me with a remarkable perspective.

All this blends into a particular viewpoint. I take a long-term view. Sustainability is critical (both for individual institutions and society en masse). Project management tools and disciplines are master strokes of intellectual achievement.

Friday, January 11, 2013

Winter's Force

I live for the wind.
Crying, wending through fir boughs.
Dancing gracefully.

Sunday, January 06, 2013

Trolls and Vile Vitriol

https://twitter.com/aesthethica/status/287692133371109377

This troll's comment gave me pause. What's the best response? Public humiliation & shame? Just ignoring them? Gentle correction? Or???

I find it hard to sit silently when I witness cruelty, even as I recognize that response is exactly what the troll seeks. Certainly don't want to reward deviant behavior. However, what's effective?


Saturday, January 05, 2013

Fame At Any Cost? Why?

Our culture promotes fame. I've never understood the why. Why are we compelled to garner as much attention as possible?

Fame is so compelling that we're quite comfortable with infamy. We're comfortable with the horrified gaze, or at least the incredulous one.

My main evidence? The full spate of "reality" tv stars. Whether Honey Boo Boo right now, or what's-his-name Huang American Idle, er Idol a few years back. Both people willing to abandon every shred of dignity for attention. Though annoying on so many levels, it presents for fascinating psychoanalysis. If you're geeky like me, that is.


Random 2:00 AM Post

Came up with a new word.

Gesticfoolcate - those bizarre gestures meant to intimidate but actually make you want to howl w/laughter. I mainly am thinking of those gangster poses.

Yep, the wonderful things that come out if my brain at 2:00 am.

Enjoy!