Tuesday, July 31, 2007

8 Random Things About Me

Deb Owen over at 8 hours & a lunch has tagged me to list 8 random things about me. This is the first time I’ve been tagged for anything, but I’m excited and ready for the challenge, so here we go.

First, the rules:

  1. Post these rules before you give your facts.
  2. List 8 random facts about yourself.
  3. At the end of your post, choose (tag) 8 people and list their names (linking to them)
  4. Leave them a comment on their blog letting them know they've been tagged!

Eight random things about me:
  1. I love random! I am good at random. My train of thought may jump the tracks sometimes, but there is almost always a method to my madness.

  2. I love language. I like beautifully written prose, descriptions that transport readers, puns, and plays on words. A professor once marked my paper down for using “maybe,” when “perhaps is so much better.” You know what? Sometimes it is better. And sometimes, it really is maybe.

  3. I am not a chef, however I sometimes make great meals by accident. Last week’s accident was chicken stirfry in a spicy peanut sauce.

  4. I was an engineering major for a year-and-a-half in college. I did the calculus, programming, computer science, more calculus, chemistry, all of it. Then, I graduated with a degree in English. No, not because it was next alphabetically. I enjoyed written communications better. All of this brought me to web project management which I’ve been doing for almost 7 years now.

  5. I understand why my dad once said, “I’m 50 years old and I still don’t know what I want to be when I grow up.” I would like to be a web editor. Admitting it is the first step.

  6. I have a Webkinz, and I try to visit her for at least 5 minutes every day. Sure it may sound silly, but my inner child is delighted.

  7. I like the super heroines and villainesses of DC Comics: Batgirl, Catwoman, Harley Quinn, Supergirl. And why not? They’re strong, sassy, and, well… comical.

  8. On her list, deb owen said, “i have, without a doubt, the most awesome friends and family on the entire planet.” So I reply… you know my friends and family? Neat! ;)

Now, I tag:
  1. Dr. Lisa Tomaszewski of Physician’s Money Digest, a site which is teaching me a lot about my personal finances (even though I’m not a doctor
  2. Papa Ceph, whose loved ones might enjoy 8 random facts about Lil’ Karl
  3. J. de Vrede at J., a faithful reader
  4. Farrell Kramer at .kramer- we want to know more about the man behind the communications company
  5. Steve J, a former colleague also really good at random
  6. Pepita at ThinkingSparks, who has interesting thoughts on business
  7. Lynne Demmer at Everything’s Green who has been a little scarce lately, but hopefully she’s not gone for good
  8. Nicolae Rusan of Foresighter, another quiet one lately

Monday, July 30, 2007

Life Without iPod

I spent most of last week without my iPod in my car after previously taking it in the house and forgetting to replace it. This may not sound horrible, or maybe it does to some of you, but it made me acutely aware of how much I miss when I'm behind the iPod.

My commute is close to one hour each way, so having my music or podcasts with the ability to play what I want, when I want, without commercials is important to me. Without my iPod last week, I was forced (gasp) to listen to the radio. I heard new songs and played along as contestants tried to win exciting prizes like... t-shirts. Congratulations to them. I was also brought up to speed on current events like Britney’s photo shoot fiasco and the breaking news of Lindsay Lohan’s arrest. Just think, I may have gone the entire day, or worse, my whole life without learning of these important news stories if I had been listening to my iPod.

Needless to say, my iPod is back in my car.

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Human Interaction: A thing of the past or future?

Internet café: a place where you will be in the presence of others, with whom you will not communicate, while you use your computer to communicate with people who are not there

This was the definition given by the Blue Man Group at a show last week. Roughly. I wasn't taking notes.

By the way, I highly recommend their show. It was, as the critics say, entertaining, thought-provoking (who knew?), and surprising. But I digress.

In a seemingly odd phenomenon, it's not uncommon to see users engrossed in their computer at a coffee house or book store. One could argue that they are missing out on human interaction. If we think about it though, absent of computers, those patrons likely would not have spoken to their fellow strangers anyhow. In fact, some of them may even be interacting with humans on the other end of those computer lines in book stores across the country.

The Internet has changed human interaction, whether for better or worse is in the hands of each user.

Thursday, July 12, 2007

Digital Magazine Appeals to Senses

Smart magazine publishers realize that they can no longer be solely focused on print issues, they must explore multiple media formats to reach their audience. Obviously People magazine understands this. They have put together a digital magazine filled with fantastic displays of technology (or for you non-technical folks… lots of fun stuff to see, hear, and click). See that dolphin in the background of the cover shot? Go to People Digital Magazine and that dolphin is actually jumping out of the water and diving back in.

In this issue, you can see video of the latest roller coaster to be built at Busch Gardens in Williamsburg, VA. You can watch the Harry Potter cast age through photos and test your knowledge of the stories: choose your answer and a clip from one of the movies will play to show you the right answer. A sizzling barbecue spread gives recipes and playlists for your summer feast. Concert previews, a live penguin camera, dunking American Idol contestants… what more can you ask for?

Movement, sound, and interactivity make this magazine exciting. While People magazine is not among my normal reads, I was hooked on playing with this digital issue. There are some great ideas to take from this.

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Fashion, Phones Send Virtual Hugs

So there's this shirt. You put it on and hug yourself. Sensors in the shirt record the data about your embrace, then send it to your cell phone. From your phone, you open a "Hug Me" application and send a message to someone you want to hug. They accept your message and put on their Hug Shirt. Their hug shirt recreates the sensation of your hug.

I bet it's just as good as the real thing. Has anyone out there actually added this high fashion item to their wardrobe?

At least we're putting our scientific research to good use.