Social media is a powerful marketing tool, but it's about engagement & connection. It is only as effective as the effort, as the amount and qualify of work you put in.
Thursday, March 26, 2015
Wednesday, March 25, 2015
Friday, March 20, 2015
Laying upon my couch this lovely sick day, Twitter has been a dear friend (autocorrect changed "sick" to "suck"; might be something there). Yet, there's a tyranny present. I grab my tablet to look up self-publishing options (Kobo vs. Amazon). Then I came back to myself some time later, trying to remember what I was doing. Just one tweet popped up, and my mind was gone.
So, exploring those options, I struggle. Amazon has a larger audience. However, do I want to align myself with them? What are my expectations of a company? I interviewed with Amazon a few years ago, plus I did several projects with them back in the mid-90s. So clearly I find then tolerable. Yet, they are getting gargantuan, which I suggested find concerning.
Writing-wise, at this point I'm planning on assembling a collection of my poetry. It's been requested of me, and it sounds rewarding. Plus, I've been meaning to put side short-stories out, too. So I think this would be an interesting and viable channel. The main limiter of my success is time, and not getting sidetracked by the scatter of modern life. Sick-days challenge me enough without Twitter and it's kin absorbing my attention and creating suck-days.
Wednesday, March 18, 2015
The amount of fitness growth needed is hard to imagine. But, hey, who knows? I think it's doable, just whether I have the gumption to pull it off. Still, I find it inspiring.
Tuesday, March 17, 2015
Though born in Rhode Island, my parents were born in Washington, as were all my grandparents. My father and his mother were born in Seattle. Next: my parents met at UW. And I was supposed to be born in Seattle, but my timetable was a bit off-kilter. The family was in Rhode Island as my father attended the War College. So, I guess if I must be disqualified from "one of us" status, I'll accept the consequences of my father's service with pride.
Deeper: why do I consider this place "home"? Well, the biggest reason was that we always called it home. Flying out to Seattle was always "going home to visit grandma" (sorry grandpa, but it was always "to visit grandma".
Lastly, this is the place we moved when my dad decided to retire from the Navy. And where I've lived the vast majority of my life here. Lastly, there's the simple fact I love it here.
Please note: I'm hardly offended by Mr. Rudd. Actually, I find him quite witty, and the piece is quite clever. It did give me pause to consider, though. Which is worth a heap of oysters, shucked by hand along the Edmonds beach: my happy place.
I highly value the Open Source community and what they bring to the table. Even though I've worked for several large corporations, I really appreciate all that this community brings to the world. It's more than simply free software, but also open standards. To me, it's critical that corporations cannot lock out access to our data. So, utilizing open standards is critical.
With that, though, I look at tools such as Gimp, Open Office, and Scibus and see so much potential. For, say, image editing, wouldn't it prove better to the world that the default image system wasn't Photoshop, or desktop publishing InDesign? Dependence on one company causes me great concern. I really want to start pushing towards the adoption of open standards as the default for most industries. I don't mean to disparage Adobe, Microsoft, or any one else. It should just scare the crap out of us to have only one real player in an industry.
So, going forward, I shall find open alternatives for my work (see the links above to start with). First, today, FireFox for browsing. I know this will also improve my system performance. And will I really notice any of the missing features. Heck, other than drag & drop attachments from Gmail to Windows Explorer, is there anything that is in Chrome but not available in Firefox? I'm not too concerned.
Monday, March 16, 2015
On a somewhat related note, Om Malik recently posted You've Go (No) Mail. He talks about the sense of loss accompanying the ending of his Gigaom email. I've felt these twinges in the past, with the suspending of my Starbucks and Microsoft emails. But those were different at an elemental level. Regardless of my emotional connections to those institutions, I didn't found them. They didn't hold my name, they never represented me at the same level. The closest I could imagine is with this site, and the email associated with it.
carlsetzer.com is mine, it is me. If this were to become part of a larger institution, which subsequently failed, I expect that would hurt at a deeper level than the losses I've felt.
These footprints we leave across the web, and that the web leaves upon us. Intertwining, weaving with all those others, those we love, those we don't, and the masses we're unaware of, the active and neglected, loved and forgotten, all blend into this thing: the internet.
Sunday, March 15, 2015
"Thought not found, neural pathway non-existent and/or corrupt. Rebooting to last known safe condition." One way I look at my migraines.
It's not the pain that's the worst. For me, that would be the "grey fuzzies", the unfocused blurring of my mind. That blends with the ringing/hum that fills my senses. This inability to think is what distresses me the most.
Fortunately, my life only dives into this realm on rare occasions. And this trip is about done. Time to drift of to sleep.
Saturday, March 07, 2015
Friday, March 06, 2015
One of the things that I deeply value is helping people connect with their passions. The thought of someone not being able to participate in a passion out of a simple transportation issue bothers me greatly. Well, sometimes the easiest way to assist with that is simply facilitating presence. If my gift of a few minutes of driving helps connect someone to their passion, then it's a glorious investment in the communities that I love.
A few years ago, my weight crept past 220 lbs. With clothes tight, belts tighter to the point of needing replacement, I felt fear. In my mid-40s, all the diseases associated with obesity stared me coldly in the eye. Even more frightening, I noticed a few people, slightly older than me, with major mobility issues. All that lead to a call to get healthy.
Now I didn't race for the nearest cross-fit course. I just added back some things I love: cycling and walking, also attacking some dietary "low hanging fruit" (limit soda, cut back on sweets, smaller portions) and ten pounds dropped quickly. But each additional drop presents challenges. So I adopted several smartphone tools, the main one now being MyFitnessPal. And I keep looking for better tools.
About 6 months back, I noticed my wife's Fitbit laying unused and asked to try it out. I hated the thing! It displayed, in great detail, my sedentary life. So, I parked the thing. Then, around New Year's, my fallow account got friends connecting to me. Funny, that motivated me to find the Fitbit and relaunch the tool. Now, though, the lack of activity challenges me to grow forward. I've been trying to add more activity to my life, deliberately so. Small steps, small steps; pun completely intended.
Last night I noticed the nutrition tab in MyFitnessPal and was, again, horrified. Too much fat and carbs, too little of myriad key nutrients. For sometime I've thought about building a menu about achieving great nutrition. Well, time to up that. So, a brand new life project. Got ideas, suggestions, etc, let me know.
Wednesday, March 04, 2015
Most of my life I've loathed shoes. Remembering Jeremy Irons' priest in The Mission walking barefoot into the jungle, something about his barefootedness struck me. Immense humility, a comfort with a deliberate choice of poverty, and, most powerful to me, a direct connection to the earth.
Those comprise elements I've tried to interweave throughout my life, with varying success. Yet they reflect my deepest values. Consider the time I spent trying to minister to the needs of Seattle's street people, though my shoes remained on. I tried to adopt a life of focused poverty, to mixed success. The fact it was a choice, on my part, isolated me. I deeply felt myself to be a interloper, though not by any action of unwelcome. But my simple ignorance of their life, of the basics of survival within that world, eventually proved too strong a barrier.
I still deeply believe in voluntary simplicity. The world cannot support all humanity with the West's level of affluence. Backing away from our immense consumption is critical for creating a truly just world. Though I'm not terribly humble, I've at least developed a flair for understatement and a non-confrontational style that sort of passes. And I still avoid shoes as much as possible, though wearing flip-flips instead of baring my feet. So, perhaps, I've captured these pieces. At least, I hope, their essence.