I need to write something, but I don't know what... c'mon, think!
We got the Prius yesterday. It's pretty sweet. I don't know why anyone wouldn't get one if they're looking for cars in the same price range. That's the funny thing about all the comparisons I've seen about hybrids. They all say that you only save a little bit over the life of the car, but they're comparing the hybrid against much cheaper cars. I would never get a Corolla, but I would consider a Camry. The Prius and the Camry are priced about the same, but the Prius gets much better mileage. So what am I saving? Lots. I would get a BMW, but they're about ten grand more than a Prius... so I'm saving even more. I think it all depends on your perspective.
I've been trying to use My Web 2.0 today to find a site for a t-shirt screen printer that I found a while back. I can not find it to save my life. Totally frustrating. I'm certain I saved it to My Web, but no matter what I do or search on... nothing. Hold on... let me check del.icio.us...
Ah there it is. It sure would be nice if there was a way to search all of my saved social bookmarks in one place.
It's official. I am now a Reverend, Minister, Pastor, what have you... My buddy Mike Holzer needed someone to officiate his wedding and for some reason chose me. I am honored to do it. But I had to get legal. I did what millions of others have done and became a Minister of the Universal Life Church. But to cover my bases, I also became a Minister in the Church of the Subgenius. You never know what might happen. One has to be prepared.
I am now making myself available for weddings, funerals, baptisms, brises, counseling, exorcisms, bell ringing, rites of passage, and bulletin writing.
I'm not a geek. I feel that I'm more of a fringe geek. I'm on the first or second ring out from the geeky, chewy center. Sure Star Wars shaped my outlook on life, but I think that I was even more affected by Close Encounters and Raiders of the Lost Ark. I hated Star Trek and Lost in Space. That weird 60's aesthetic freaked me out. I'm not a programmer, but I want to learn. I'm not a "Maker" but I appreciate the mindset and have dabbled here and there on some gizmos and gee gaws. I do dabble with a Theremin, but that's more band geek. I have an extensive CD and record library, but that's more music geek.
My wife thinks that I'm all geek. She rolls her eyes when I come home with another Nutshell book or something on game console hacking. Or when Make magazine comes in the mail. "Geek" is all she's thinking... I guess it's not easy for some to differentiate the subtleties of geek culture.
Now comes a new publication from the makers of Make. "Craft" "a new magazine devoted to crafts!" This is right up Jane's alley... because whether she knows it or not, she's a craft geek. She's an expert stitcher and costume maker, and now she's all about the knitting. She goes on about a particular knitting process or stitch. She explains why and how certain buttons go with certain yarn. Or she'll discuss with me the intricacies of deciding how many "skeins" she'll need for a sweater she's making... Then I try to counter with some hooey about web standards, tagging, or social bookmarking... It's what we do.
Thanks to O'Reilly we both can get our geek on. I'm guessing that that's exactly what they were thinking-- "there are all kinds of geeks! Why limit ourselves?" Soon they'll put out a magazine for NASCAR nerds.
So far Ruby has been pretty fun to learn. I'm only doing basic things but I can see why people like it. It's very clean. I'm going to take it slow, but I hope to have something to show soon. It is hard not to go down the PHP road though because there's so much documentation and it seems easier to get information and feedback about what you are trying to do. But I'll stick with what I'm doing.
I don't have the energy to come up with a decent title for this post, so search engines be damned...
I've been catching up with some podcasts this week. This morning I finally took a listen to Michael Arrington's (from TechCrunch) TalkCrunch. I heard their first installment about calendaring. Really cool stuff. The podcast does so much to put humanity behind these sweet, new products that are being developed. It's important to keep that in mind. I got such a better sense of what zvents and 30boxes are doing and trying to do. I came away with a deep respect for these guys. Michael and Nic as well. Above all the web is about people. Most Web 2.0 applications are designed to provide people with a voice, or control, or a place to feel involved, or comfortable. Getting to know the people behind these products in a comfortable and casual way is something that Michael is doing with his podcast.
Since calendars are very near and dear to my heart, I was happy to hear some good discussion on the subject. zvents has a great grasp on monetization which I'm so happy to hear, and 30boxes understand its audience and is well positioned to take off in the next 6 months. This also makes me happy :)
I also enjoyed the discussion on how all of these guys realize that they can't get caught up in the hype. They recognize the importance of the core early adopters and influencers, but they understand that there is a huge audience of folks that need simple applications and are very new to the social web. Again, happy to hear that, with these guys. We can not design for ourselves. We have to solve real problems. So check out TalkCrunch if any of this junk interests you. Michael is a tremendous filter; pay attention.
I've been encouraged lately to start to learn to program. Leonard and Andy from Upcoming.org suggested that I jump into Ruby on Rails. I've considered this before, but I'm now convinced that it's something I need to do to better express myself. A working demo or prototype is the only way to get people's attention these days. No one reads documentation or can understand wireframes or even rendered designs unless they have something to play with. I'll keep you posted on this new chapter.
Ouch! My work laptop hard drive crashed this morning. The endless loop of start up. No safe mode, no command line, dust. Nothing could be salvaged. So now I have a brand new hard drive. And a clean slate. All my apps were reinstalled, and there is a backup... but it's really tempting to just start over. Totally fresh. My drive was filled up with nearly 5 years of Yahoo! Shopping work. Wireframes (some of the first at Yahoo), PRDs, MRDs, presentations, mocks, images, screen shots, project plans, white papers, roadmaps, and a ton of other crap. Oh and email. I saved just about every email ever sent to me and every email I ever sent. Now all of it is gone and I have to decide if I really want it back. I don't think so.
I think I'm going to just grab the last couple of weeks of work and then some archive work for My Lists and the Shoposphere. The rest of it can just... poof!
On another note... I've been playing with Ning the last couple of days. I cloned a Wish List app and then customized it to search Yahoo! Shopping and Yahoo! Plus some of the language. I needed help though. I have a basic understanding of PHP, but not enough to some basic things. Thanks to Mike for helping out. I created The Thinglist and Favorite Things. Essentially they are easy list tools that allow you to say what you want or like, tag it and share with others. Pretty simple. But it's good to think about other ways lists can be generated. I can think of a dozen things I'd do to improve what's there. So maybe Mike and I will team up for some added functionality. Please give them a try. Sign up and add stuff to the lists.
I'm David Beach and this is my blog. I'm a Product Manager, Information Architect, and founder of 12seconds.tv. I work for eBay Mobile. I'm also surviving lung cancer. This site is about my life online and some other junk... enjoy ;)