I love my wife. She is my best friend, my helper, my everything. Tonight I was watching her as she did some decorating in our living room. Her attention to detail is so excellent in things like that. We have an agreement that I only get to decorate my office. Because my style would be hideous if it was housewife. Anna however has great taste in decor and furniture. I am so happy she is in my life because otherwise I think I would just be a bum living in an apartment in a sad and lonely life. Having her with me though challenges me to excel and want me to provide the best for her. In this case the Proverb iron sharpens iron is instead velvet smooths out rusty stupid iron.
Archive for Project Delta
I have been looking longingly at Saddleback Leather since my friend Scott Mcdaniel suggested them on his site, Babygotmac.com. I am a bit of a bag junkie owning several different laptop bags and carriers and most are not your off the shelf of Best Buy or Target kind of bags. One backpack I have is a Mil-Spec Ranger 3-day ruck bag with inserts for 3L hydration pack, 4 AR magazine pouches, 1 NVG pouch, and GOBS of other pockets and strapping. Now though this bag is perfect for prepping for any upcoming Zombie apocalypse it is a bit of overkill in the board room (I still rock it from time to time though). I then got a sleeker Kenneth Cole Reaction leather briefcase in black that seemed more fit for the corporate settings I work in. Sadly though it didn’t have the volume I need for all my gadgetry. All the while the Saddleback offering was in the back of my mind. Well when I put a bug in Scott’s ear he was gracious enough to let me try out his, in the hopes I might buy his. I think he did it also because he knew I would be smitten. The full grain leather, heirloom quality construction, and just a rugged yet sophisticated look has me completely won over. It definitely wins up to the company’s tag line: “They’ll fight over it when your dead” because right now I can’t picture me having any other bag at all.
Today some news came out of Apple that surprised and shocked the consumer electronics world. Steven P. Jobs was leaving Apple (sort of). Before I knew it the news was everywhere and I couldn’t escape it. My Flipboard was suddenly filled with varying images of Mr. Jobs in his classic black top with jeans as the tech world reeled with predictions of death and destruction. Some tweets obviously went a little crazy with predictions of the end of the world, after all the East coast suffered an earthquake, a hurricane is barreling in, and then Steve Jobs released his latest product: iResign (sorry couldn’t help it on that last one). Of course the other concern that people should have rather than just what will this mean for Apple shares tomorrow morning is the actual health of Mr. Jobs. He did after all say himself that he would step down when he couldn’t carry out his day to day duties. That therefore means that something dramatic must have changed. He has definitely changed the expectation of consumers with his innovation and marketing. I mean just look at something as simple as the iPod. He didn’t invent harddrive based MP3 players, he just made it better. He didn’t invent the trackpad, he just made it magical. All in all his influence can definitely been seen by the sheer fact his Wikipedia page has already gone thru no less than 45 revisions since the news broke. Last time Steve left Apple it floundered and was nearly dead. Steve brought it back. Now I think that Apple will continue its rise as we hear rumors of the iPhone 5. I honestly am not a HUGE Apple fan boy but I do appreciate their quality. Right now though, I just hope that Steve will recover well. I am sure in his back pocket he might have “One more thing…” All the best Steve
Today I got to experience a pretty significant earthquake first hand. I was doing a presentation at Cabin Johns Middle School in Montgomery County, MD on the second floor computer lab. This is a brand new building so I just assumed at first the rumble was just heavy machinery working nearby in the parking lot. The rumble was quite steady but then suddenly grew in intensity. The light fixtures hanging from the ceiling really began to sway. The computers on the desks shifted around on the desks at the greatest point of the shock and then it was over. The teachers in the room with me all just looked at one another and then we started to leave the building in case of an aftershock. Once outside the fear waned as we all just made jokes about the instance and what we were doing. Twitter, Facebook, and text messages was all that anyone could do. The emergency service broadcast was heard playing very loudly from a nearby construction van. The epicenter was in Mineral, Virginia and the affects of the earthquake were felt as far north as New York and Connecticut and as far south as the Carolina’s. There was no major damage to the school building aside from some books falling askew, though DC did sustain varying degrees of damage. I can only imagine that if that was a 5.9 how tremendous and jarring something like the 7.0 magnitude earthquake in Haiti would have been. Thankfully there were no major injuries and no fatalities reported due to the earthquake, though the news talking heads didn’t help. Immediately drumming up fear about the Surry Nuclear Power plant in Virginia and safety precautions taken there. Of course due to all that fervor for good ratings with the news stations 495 was turned into a veritable parking lot.
I am realizing a minor issue I am having with my Project Delta. This is a thirty day challenge to write everyday. I have been writing every day but I often write the posts but then delay publishing. My reasoning is that I want to find the relevant links to the articles or a cool image to go in the featured slider, but its causing somewhat of a backlog. Additionally I am not sure if it is helpful the the whole purpose of Project Delta. Maybe I should just shoot from the hip. Maybe I shouldn’t try so hard because this is just after all a mind exercise more than anything else. Like Matt Cutts said in his TedTalk the thirty days are going to happen one way or another so you might as well get the best out of them. So instead of trying to get a perfect product maybe it should just be the product. Like this post for example is very stream of thought and not really going to be edited beyond spelling and word choice. Hmm…
With the recent news of HP killing off the WebOS the world has seen that innovation doesn’t always mean that you can take on goliath. Apple’s dominance of the tablet market has set the standard for what tablets should look like and perform. What is even crazier is the firesale of HP Touchpads that has caused iPad like frenzy to buy up a product that won’t even have support soon. It reminds me though of the Tucker Torpedo and how such a cool and innovative vehicle still ended before its time. I did appreciate the irony that many tech blogs found in the fray of this final firesale (like the alliteration?) and the comments that some gave for their reasoningbehind jumping on what was effectively a sinking ship. A great majority of folks that jumped on the WebOS were individuals who had not made a decision about a tablet device and took advantage of just a great deal.
Today I got to take part in an outreach with my church which had just over thirty people in attendance. We had a giant inflatable jump house and slide for the kids. We had lots of great food and desserts (cookies by Hamilton Bakery). As I watched the adults mingling and talking and the children running, laughing, and playing I realized how little this happens in my life. Obviously not that I need to throw cookouts more often, but how little I get outside of my house and truly connect with people in a non-business way. It kind of makes me think of that Toyota Venza commercial in my previous post. I may have 1000+ followers across my twitter accounts and several hundred friends on G+ and Facebook, but the small sphere of folks that I actually come to close relationship with is very small. Amongst those even, only a few get to see me in person so the degree of real influence over some drops even more. I realize that gathering around the watering hole is a social norm that has been ingrained since the days of cavemen. Sadly today’s watering hole is a Starbucks and… I don’t drink coffee. Guess I could drink tea.
I do several presentations a month to educators and tech enthusiasts and always have a video in my back pocket to share with them. I talk about how in education when we deliver instruction to students it might be a good idea in the lesson to add a “brain break”. Just a quick funny video can add some humor and show students that teachers can be relevant.
Being on the cusp of the latest viral video is another whole realm of bleeding edge. It is now the fodder of dinner table conversation to pull out your phone and share a funny video… “You HAVEN’T seen the one with the kid and the paper?… you gotta see it!” Several people ask me how I get all my videos etc and I realize that it might seem like all I do is hunt Youtube for the next big thing. The reality is there are sites that do that hunting for me. Both are very aptly named: Todaysbigthing.com and bestofyoutube.com. You are welcome in advance for the loss of productivity you will induce by catching up on a random collection of awesome.
When blades get sharpened parts get cut away, when someone gives advice it might cut too. Realize they’re just trying to sharpen you. – Me
I thought of this earlier today while working with some teachers. I was giving them some feedback about some work they did but in a few individuals eyes I felt like I just killed their puppy. Some others actually outright rejected my advice. It was a meager thing but then I acknowledged that often times I have had people give me life advice and I reacted similarly.
I thought of the analogy of a knife being sharpened, due to my affinity for blades I guess. The sharpening process for any tool is a destructive process. Metal is cut, sanded, ground, or even melted away to help sharpen a knife. There is no such thing as a naturally sharp knife. Even things in nature like a diamond have to be cut to refine the edge to a blade that can cut anything.
When a friend pours advice into your life, you really can be hurt but it might be sharpening you more than you realize.