I write... occasionally

Here's a collection of 642 pieces of nonsense that I've felt the need to journal about over the past 22.41 years.

2010 Was Good

So a couple weeks ago I put together a timeline of my 2010 with plans of writing a year end blog... so now that you've forgotten about everyone else's 2010 retrospectives, here's 1 more.

Every time I write these I start out thinking, "man, I didn't really do a whole lot last year," but after looking back through photos, blogs, and tweets... I'm quite happy with last year. I traveled a lot, saw a lot, became a bit healthier, and progressed professionally. All awesome things.

So 2010 in a nutshell...

At the start of the year, I began doing some contract work at Dipity, a San Francisco based timeline tool startup. After about 5 months of contracting, I decided I really liked working with the folks at Dipity so I left Red 5

Snow Leads to Geo Detectives of THE FUTURE

And now for a story about Josh and I geolocating a random YouTube video - and how I'm amazed by how easy it was.

So, this all starts with a conversation with my dad over the recent snowfall we've been having... He tells me about this Toro Power Shovel thing, which sorta looks like a vacuum sized, cheap snowblower. My dad said that he was super skeptical of this power shovel, but he tried it out and wound up being thoroughly impressed.

Soon after, I passed this info onto my buddy, Josh. He's gotten around 3 feet of snowfall this winter, so he was immediately interested. We discussed how dumb the power shovel looks but started reading reviews and looking for videos of it in action (such as this one: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kkJ8L…

Ireland 2010

So I guess I should blog about Kari and I's amazing 5 year anniversary trip to Ireland...

Starting off with travel... the flights weren't that bad at all. I mean, they were 6-7 hours, but having my ipad and an exit row seat made everything much nicer. If you're ever going on a flight this long, try to get an exit row seat (but beware - exit row window seats do not recline all the way). Another quick international travel trip: bring a 3G iPad, buy prepaid 3G SIM cards wherever you go. This kept us connected without roaming and saved us a countless number of times with google maps, etc.

Day 1 - Kari's birthday
We landed in Dublin around 8:30am, caught a bus to Dublin city centre, found our hotel, checked in, and went to explore …

Lollapalooza 2010

Soooo, Lollapalooza is starting to make some really nice changes.

First of all, the space. They expanded the fest grounds across Columbus (adding 4 city blocks of space) and moved some of the small stages over there. It definitely, definitely opened things up and made the entire weekend much more comfortable. Everyone was gushing over the new grounds.

Secondly the water. They made a big effort this year to conserve bottles - so there was no more $3 smart water or wedging your water bottle into the crappy fountains. You could buy a little cardboard water bottle thing (or bring your own bottle) and get it filled for free at all these Event Water stations. We loved it.

And most importantly, the shows..

  • Devo - The dudes a…

Thoughts and Suggestions for Working at Home

So a couple months ago I took a job that allowed me to work from home, and I wanted to share my experience so far.

There are plenty of great articles and blogs out there like Goodbye To The Office, Your Office Chair is Killing You, Top 10 Home Office Hacks, Jeff Atwood on Working Remotely, and many, many others. Just google working remotely or telecommuting tips and you'll see what I mean.

So after doing a bit of reading and making a few small changes in both my work flow and my home office, here are my suggestions...
  1. Make your home office shine
    or better yet - make your home office make you shine. Having a comfortable and versatile work environment is huge. Not only are you working at home, but you're also living at home... …

Dipity Doo Dah!

So a lot of you have probably heard by now - I started a new job last week. I've actually been contracting for this company part-time since the beginning of the year, but last week marks the start of me going full-time for a San Francisco based startup called Dipity.

This whole process sorta started last November when Harper introduced me to a dude named Derek Dukes - the CEO of Dipity. After a bit of conversation, he had me talk to some of his team, they gave me a couple programming tests, and actually offered me a full-time position. Getting that offer was super exciting, but I wasn't quite ready to jump into the startup world. So, I opted to stick around at Red Five and do some part-time contracting for Dipity. This Spring …

Big Omaha

A couple months back, I started seeing things pop up in my Twitter stream about a little conference called Big Omaha. Some tech dudes and entrepreneurs that I follow were speaking, the content seemed interesting, and with Omaha being so close to home, I really had no reason to not attend. Plus, we rarely get baller tech guys speaking in these "fly over" states.

So after talking to Nick a bit, we ordered our tickets. I'm so freakin glad we did.

I haven't really ever been to any startup/entrepreneur conferences before, so the content just blew me away. So inspirational, so motivational. I'm pretty sure Nick would agree.

It's hard to really pick all my favorite speakers, but the ones that REALLY blew me away were Scott Harrison of …

Leaving Red Five

So, two and a half years ago I left my cushy corporate job to join a small marketing/web development company called Red Five Interactive. I made that move primarily because corporate politics bothered me... but I also wanted something with a little more freedom that would encourage me to learn new things. Red Five was exactly that.

See, when I started at Red Five, I was an anti-mac guy; I hated the Apple fanboys. I had also never seen a line of Ruby code... and Linux sys admin was definitely not one of my strong points. Red Five, on the other hand, was an all Mac shop... that built Ruby on Rails apps... and would force me to become proficient in linux/unix sys admin.

If that doesn't give you an idea of how in over my head I …

Introducing Garth Brooks

So, most of you have probably heard by now that we adopted a new dog, but I still haven't given him a proper introduction to the internets. So here it goes.

Kari and I weren't really looking to adopt a dog quite yet, but the situation sorta just fell into our (well, my) hands. See, Kari's mom is friends with a woman named Amy, who's a foster parent for a rescue league. So, one time while Kari was in Cedar Rapids, she and her mom decided to visit Amy for some "puppy therapy." ...sounds like a great idea, right?

Shortly after Kari's visit, I got a call saying that she met "the sweetest dog" who "just needs a home" and that she "put in an adoption request." Gah! Was she seriously trying to adopt a dog that I hadn't even met? Oh, …

Gee One to Nexus One

So, my buddy Harper is hooked up with all sorts of the right people. Sometimes it makes me a bit jealous, but a lot of the time I get to benefit from his hookups as well. This is a story of another one of those times.

Last spring, Harper got hooked up with some G1 dev phones - you know, the very first Android phone. He basically had so many that he didn't know what to do with, so he hooked me up with one... He was sort of like the Google Phone Santa Claus.

Fast forward to this February, Harper wound up with a few of the hot new Google phones. Having so few, he couldn't really be as generous with these, so he had a little programming contest with this group of tech dudes we chat with... and this is no lowbrow list of dudes; this …

IE6, The End is Near

About half of my readers are techie enough to share in this enthusiasm. If you're not in that group, just know that something awful is coming to an end. ...Like the end of of a war. The people - the big people, are killing all support of something horrendous. IE6.

Check out this wonderful email that I (and probably a lot of us) got.

Important Notice: Google Apps browser support

Dear Google Apps admin,​

In order to continue to improve our products and deliver more sophisticated features and performance, we are harnessing some of the latest improvements in web browser technology. This includes faster JavaScript processing and new standards like HTML5. As a result, over the course of 2010, we will be phasing out support for …

I am awesome at sleeping

So last night I dreamt about going somewhere with Kari, who (in my dream) routed our trip on my phone using Google Navigation.

So in my sleep, I got my phone out, somehow unlocked it with my magical Android unlock pattern, and was looking at maps. The only thing I really remember is that the brightness of my phone woke Kari up, she wondered wtf was going on, and I couldn't explain it to her. I could not for the life of me figure out the words for google maps, gps, navigation, directions, etc... The only thing I could come up with was "the nightstand alarm map thing."

I got pissed about my lack of sleep communication skills... but apparently there was more to the story. Here's an email from Kari this morning:

so last nite i wake …

From Sea to Shining Sea

2009 was the first year that I visited both the east and west coasts... And actually, I also touched the northern border and was only 30 miles from the southern border. I know I'm a geo dork, but I think that's pretty rad... and while we're on the subject, I'll just go ahead keep gauging the success of last year based on travel... so here we go.

We started and ended the year in Iowa City. Visited Arizona, Harper's Ferry, NYC and New Jersey, and Long Beach and LA.

Made several stops in...
Minnesota for Bock Fest and my first Boundary Waters trip.
The Cedar Rapids Area for Lindsey and Stevee's Birthday, Wall Paneling, Mother's Day, Flooring, Kayaking, Cornell Homecoming, Cigars, Thanksgiving, and Christmas.
Chicago for Joyce's …

Where Did December Go?

Holy Month...

I've been meaning to blog so freakin hard but have just been swamped beyond swamped.

The main thing that I wanted to write about was my trip to Long Beach for Pragmatic Studio's iPhone development course... but now that's a month past and a lot of other stuff's been going on.... I'll try to keep this semi-short.

So Red Five (my employer) is starting to work on a little iPhone app for a client of ours... and since neither of our engineers really knew iPhone dev, let alone objective-C, we decided it'd be a good idea to get schooled. So the first week of December, Todd and I flew out to Long Beach to do just that. It was awesome.

Long Beach is kind of a weird place, but definitely showed us a good time. There was …

Ninja, The Million Dollar Bionic Legged Dog

I don't even really know how to start this... But as I'm sure you all have heard, our dog Ninja died this morning at just over 5 years old.

He'd been battling what we think was Addison's disease for the past couple weeks. Addison's disease is a disorder in which his adrenal glands don't produce enough steroid hormones. This basically sent his electrolytes out of wack, causing him to lose his appetite, become very weak, etc. It all came on super fast the monday before last. He was lethargic, unresponsive, and as what I can only describe as doggy-emo. So we took him into the vet, they hooked him up to some IVs, gave him a couple shots and he bounced back to his regular self - literally overnight. We then began weaning him off of …

New York City Speed

My dad has been living on the northeastern shore of New Jersey for a while now. He's actually just a short ferry ride from New York City. And uh - I'd never been to New York nor New Jersey, so I figured - it'd be a great time to check out the city at a cheaper rate.

So Kari and I flew into NYC last Saturday and took a cab from the airport to dad's friends' place. As soon as we left the airport, I started to realize how giant NYC is - it's ridiculous. I mean, I'm a huge fan of Chicago and think of it is a huge city… but the difference between Chicago and New York seemed like the difference between Des Moines and Chicago. The size and amount of life amazed me. I really didn't expect it to seem so much bigger than Chicago, but it …

Conked My Head!

So, everyone is asking about it, I've told the story 1,000 times.. might as well get it down in a blog.

It all started Saturday when we somehow forgot to eat more than 2 slices of pizza, walked all over Chicago, then partied. All of that combined... turned out to be a really solid recipe for low-blood sugar, which is no stranger to me and my family. My dad is hypoglycemic, and I'm pretty sure this has been passed down to my sister and I.

I've passed out a few other times due to low blood sugar. The last time was my freshman year in college. We were doing these crazy exercises in my morning acting class. I put my arms above my head, and passed right out. Luckily that time though, there was a mirrored wall behind me. I …

Not Having TV

So a little over 10 years ago I left my parents house for college.

And since then, I haven't had TV. I mean, I've had TVs, but I haven't had channels; I've never even hooked the coax up to the wall.

Usually when I tell people this, their first reaction is something along the lines of, "what!? omg, wtf do you do all night!?" Which I find hilarious. I just can't imagine coming home from work and flipping on a TV. I also find it pretty hilarious when we have TV-head guests over and they have no idea what to do.

So what do I do instead? I guess the short answer is that I just let my A.D.D. decide. I try to stay social, work on 1000 random projects (at once), and listen to music non-stop.

I'm pretty proud of not having …

New Homepage

So for the past 8 years, the focus of this website has been on my blog.

Come to think of it, it seems like everyone's personal site basically follows that same model. We've all focused on our "blogs," however, after a few months/years, everyone seems to get bored with blogging. Don't get me wrong, I still like to blog - it's just something I don't do often...

So I started thinking about my web presence and where most of my online "footprint" lies these days. The answer is microblogging, photos, and geolocation. These are the things that my homepage should be reflecting.

So here it is... it's not the prettiest thing in the world, because as it turns out - I'm a horrible designer. But it's functional and seems to represent the …

Boundary Waters 2009

Well, you may have noticed that I've been completely off the grid for a few days. At least, you must've noticed that your internet was slightly less clogged with my nonsense. That's because I've been camping, canoeing, and hiking the boundary waters with Josh, Chris, Will, Scott, and Cal.

No phone service, no internet, no toilets, no running water, no electricity - just straight wilderness. In fact the area we were in doesn't allow motorboats or even wheels on land. Add in a few of our own rules like "no watches" and paddling miles a day - you start to question whether or not you're really on a "vacation."

So last Wednesday we started our adventure by driving to Voyageur Outfitters in Cook County, MN. Josh's sister and her …