Archives for February 2006

Baby Snakes

While writing that epic Zappa post a while back, I noticed that I had never watched Baby Snakes. That seemed like an unfortunate oversight, so I ordered up the DVD and watched it this week. This, gentle reader, is a masterpiece of weird. Officially billed as “A Movie About People Who Do Stuff That Is […]

Product Recommendation: 3×5 Blank Index Cards

Somehow, I ran out of index cards at both my house and my office. Life nearly shut down there for a day. The index card has got to be one of the best organizational inventions ever made. I keep a stack next to the phone and another next to my desk. I keep some in […]

Friday Link Love

Dave Pollard: Health, Education, And Learned Helplessness: “Our education systems prepare us for dependence on employment by large corporations and government organizations. Why? Because this is the most ‘manageable’ way to run the system, and conveniently keeps us in our place. If the system were to equip us to be independent entrepreneurs, there would be […]

Notio on Technorati

I haven’t visited the blog search engine Technorati in a dog’s age. They had some serious scaling issues a year or two ago, and it was just useless. I don’t know why I went to visit yesterday, but the results surprised me. First of all, they hired a designer, thank god. Second, it was essentially […]

37signals Launches Campfire

It took me a while to realize it, but the essential business plan of 37signals is taking modern technology tools and specializing them for business. They do this by 1) stripping generalized options and leaving only the core functionality; 2) creating a good UI that’s obvious (low training and support) and fun to use (easy […]

Broken In Two, Yet Still Functioning

This is a telephone pole on Route 120 near East Plainfield, NH. I noticed it Monday on my drive to work – it hasn’t changed all week. You’d think that a sight like this would generate some attention from repairpeople. But apparently it’s okay; just put up a couple of warning cones and I guess […]

Opening, Awakening, Listening, Offering

My friend Ashley posted a nice poem today, inspired by a post (and comments) titled “Free speech, responsible listening” over at my other friend Chris Corrigan’s blog. I met them both at the Giving Conference a couple of years ago, and I’m glad I did.

Crashing in Bolivia

My college buddy Allan Karl has a hair-raising tale of his motorcycle accident in Bolivia, and getting his sorry butt back to the States. In a state somewhere between awake and sleep three hours had passed. The rain, thunder and lightning added dramatic effect to my sprawled body with my left leg in a cardboard […]

GTI Project Fast Phase 3

The final installment of the VW Project Fast marketing campaign has landed: To those who participated in GTI Project Fast, we thank you for your input. Through our research, we learned a great deal about your fast, including what it looks like. If you haven’t already seen it, be sure to visit And […]

Your Song

I sat on the roof and kicked off the moss As we were finishing dinner at Molly’s tonight Elton John’s Your Song came over the Musak. It’s one of the sappiest songs ever written. On the other hand, it’s one of the best love songs ever. I’ve thought about it both ways many times over […]

Corporate Spin, I Mean, PR, Defined

Here are some excerpts from an email Sleepycat Software sent to me this evening. I’m pleased to announce today that Sleepycat Software has been acquired by Oracle. [They showed me the money!] By joining the leading database company in the world, I expect that we will be able to serve our customers and the open […]

This Is What’s Wrong With The Democrats

In a nutshell, right here: Paul Hackett, an Iraq war veteran and popular Democratic candidate in Ohio’s closely watched Senate contest, said yesterday that he was dropping out of the race and leaving politics altogether as a result of pressure from party leaders. Mr. Hackett said Senators Charles E. Schumer of New York and Harry […]

A Curious Mixture of Complacency and Dread

John Hagel is no dummy. So when he summarizes his experience at Davos, you can bet it’s worth reading. More fundamentally, a curious mixture of complacency and dread seemed to pervade the formal and informal discussions at Davos. On the one hand, things are going pretty well in the global economy and the participants kept […]

Life During Wartime

We got computer, we’re tapping phone lines, I know that ain’t allowed The Administration says they can do anything they want. Legal scholars are not so sure. It’s an election year, so expect it to get ugly. It’s not surprising that folks in San Francisco think that these are high crimes and misdemeanors, especially given […]

Rails acts_as_taggable: Plugin vs Gem

There’s some confusion in the Rails community right now about two pieces of code with the same name: acts_as_taggable. Here are the differences as I understand them. Your corrections and clarifications are welcome! For quite some time there has been a Ruby Gem called acts_as_taggable. You can learn more here: You install this by […]

Advertising on Notio

Well, I have to make a decision: Hi Michael, Thank you for your prompt reply. I represent the affiliate program. We promote 16 online gambling brands. I would like to advertise at least one of our gambling brands on your website – either with a text link or banner. We can sort out a […]

GTI Project Fast Phase 2

Round two is even weirder than round one: We are now beginning phase 2 of Project Fast. According to our records, you chose not to participate in phase 1, but we still value your input. To take part in phase 2, please visit: I did participate, but maybe I didn’t give them my email?

Recent Email

We get letters: Subject: Regarding your website ( I would like to advertise at your website. Please get back to me ASAP, I really want to close a deal today. (Name, company, and email withheld, though it does appear to be from an advertising firm.) My response: Sure, anything’s possible. What did you have in […]

No Comments Yet?

Whenever I post at Notio, (using MarsEdit, natch) I visit the website to verify that it’s on the air. For some reason, every time, I say to myself, “No comments yet?” Is that crazy or what? Talk about narcissism. The post has been alive for less than ten seconds and I’m wondering where the comments […]

Interview with Christopher Alexander

Christopher Alexander’s recent work, The Nature of Order, is a 2,000 page, four-volume masterpiece that lays out a holistic view of how space, and especially built space, impacts our humanity. I summarize, as Vice President Dick Cheney once said, Big Time. The Phenomenon of Life: The Nature of Order, Book 1 The Process of Creating […]