Blog posts tagged "personal"

Happy Leap Day – Laughing Meme

February 29th, 2008

Historically there were a few days between the end of one year, and the beginning of the next that people took to be days out of the normal flow, a chance to do the things you didn’t have time to do, or weren’t allowed to do the rest of the year. This is the origin of Carnival, and Mardi Gras and related ceremonies. (this is according to Bakhtin, I’m not wearing my calendar geek hat when I say this, so be warned)

We no longer have the wonderful concept of a few days each year out of time, but once, every four years we do get a leap day. Don’t waste it. – Happy Leap Day – 2004/02/29

I totally wasted it today. We had been planning a dystopian leap year party. I wrangled databases instead.


February 20th, 2008

Renewed First registered 1998-2-24. Last time I renewed it was for 5 years. Time passes.


January 30th, 2008

the view from farrah's blanket farrah_and_ben IMG_0943 road to beach IMG_1026 IMG_1101 ben_coconut kellan,ben,val and farrah IMG_0966

Going to Sayulita, got tips?

January 15th, 2008

Got ambushed by the calendar again. At some point “way far away in the future” became “like tomorrow”.

Which is how I find myself caught a bit by surprise by the fact that I’m getting on a plane this weekend with Jazz to go meet some friends in Sayulita, MX having done nothing remotely resembling research or planning.

This will be my first real visit to Mexico, so any tips you have for me on Mexico, or Sayulita would be great!

update: everybody is telling me to take lots of books to Sayulita, and my brain is going blank this week. Suggestions on books to take to the beach?

Los Angeles

January 9th, 2008

Jasmine and I headed to Los Angeles for the new year. And we had an amazing time. This is hard for me. As a native of Northern California I was raised to despise Los Angeles. (and really I’m more a Central/Southern California, but culturally we identified as NorCal.) Studies on environmentalism and conservation just reinforced the point.

Part of the deal for us going to LA was that I’d do a chunk of the driving as Jasmine’s wrist is sprained. This was problematic as I don’t drive, and didn’t have a license. So on Dec. 24th we spent some time driving, and on Dec. 26th I proved that CA will give a driver’s license to just about anyone. And Dec. 28th we drove the 350 miles to LA. And so ends a 15 year boycott of car culture.

The weather was great, we saw amazing art, we ate great food, we caught a good show, and saw good friends. We took a bunch of photos, I’ve got a small sampling of them, and Jasmine has a more complete set.

We drove down to Watts Tower.

The Smart House, Venice, CA

Shepard Fairey might be over saturated, but he is also at the top of his game. The execution on his new work, Imperfect Union, is flawless, and gorgeous. Also sold out. Literally. Every piece was sold. We tried to beg/borrow/steal anything with War by the Numbers on it. Without success.

The Murakami show was overwhelming. On paper doesn’t it look that large, but the live experience is different. Interesting to see his work all together, you realize how weak the painting is, and how amazing his sculpture is. The security presence was so intense, I almost felt like I was in a performance piece, the © in the show’s name being acted out as authoritarian dystopic future. Which is to say, we were only able to sneak a handful of photos. Or a plot to make you buy the catalog. (which we did)

We met up with Jasmine’s people from NYC at the Varla NYE party. The Dickies were the headliners, but the Airliner is a great funky dive bar, with 3 stages, which they kept busy that night, including our favorite act of the night, Vegas based “Objex”, the only one we got photos of.

More then any other year I can remember “Happy New Year!” congratulations seemed to roll in every hour on the hour all day long. This diversified geography thing is starting to look unscalable.

Flickr: A Place of Our Own

December 10th, 2007

You might have seen the post on the Flickr blog announcing Places, or maybe the Good Reverend’s write up, but if you haven’t:

Places is a new Flickr feature that mines our corpus of geotagged photos, identifies characteristic features on a per location basis, and then goes back into the data looking for “iconic” beautiful photos. (btw try reloading that /places page, the feature places are random. As to a certain degree are the photos on the individual Places pages themselves)

It also is where a good chunk of my creative energy went for the last few months which is why the blog has been so quiet. And its a hell of a lot of fun, not to mention a privilege and pleasure to deep dive into our database and be reminded just how much fabulous photography there is on Flickr, and maybe just barely fumble around the edges of surfacing the diverse communities shared vision. Eyes of the world indeed.

A Place for GeoRSS feeds

Dan roped me in on Places months ago. We had geoFeeds working for semi-arbitrary places, and we needed a page to hang them off of. That page looked a lot like search result. You never saw it because the Flickr project management process (a blog post of its own) left that particular prototype a bloody, heaving wreck. Don’t worry, the current version is much much much better. (of course you also never saw Dan’s brilliant prototype of the current version, which was too cool to release on an unsuspecting public) And voila, many months later, the feeds are there. (though I’d still like to bring back that SRP view to allow rich searching within a location)

Increased Surface Area

We brought a bunch of different design goals to Places, but one of my obsessions that I think we nailed was the idea of “increasing the surface area” of Flickr. (also known as providing new ways to level up in the Game of Flickr[tm]). Only a few people, and a limited range of styles will ever be featured on the Flickr Explore pages. Which is fine, most people don’t care. But Places provides another way to recognize the contributions of Flickr members, by hilighting their geotagging and their photography skills. I’m looking forward to adding a couple more similar features to Places, recognizing other Flickr Games one can level up in, and other contributions back to the commons you can make.

Mo’ Betta

A bunch of stuff didn’t make our initial launch. Some of that has come in since then. More will be coming. I’m particularly excited about using adding some new data sources to improve the page. (e.g. the Groups right now a bit weak, and we don’t have reliable neighborhoods in cities, both of which are in process of being fixed)

Thats kH8dLOubBZRvX_YZ to You

Turns out there are a lot of San Franciscos in the world, and we personally struggle to keep track of which one is which. So we’ve been experimenting with giving them unique place_ids. If you look really close you’ll start to see these popping up around flickr, in photos.getInfo,, and as microformats on the Places pages. Its all very experimental, this unique identifiers thing, but we think it might work.

Arm Chair Travel

And because I love you, I’m going to let you in a on a secret. Have a great trip.

Just beyond the door

20lb of tomatoes

August 23rd, 2007

20lb of tomatoes, originally uploaded by kellan.


August 20th, 2007

tornado, originally uploaded by curlyjazz.

Jasmine stopped over for the evening in Lincoln, NE. And sat out a tornado in the local Indian restaurant.

Old Receipts

July 29th, 2007

Upon cleaning out a filing cabinet prior to moving

  • Receipt for that “cute place we stayed with the view of Duomo”, Albergo, S. GIOVANNI, di Umberto Zanobetti, via Cerretani, 2 – 50123 FIRENZE, 18/07/01, numero 451

  • Receipt for medical care rendered for one Yasmina Trabelsi, Centro Medico Pardo, E.I.R.Ltda. Av. De La Cultura 710, CUSCO. 26 de 07 del 2005. 1,104.09 PEN.

  • Receipt for consulta medic en Hotel, Fernando Minauro Zecenarro, Medico Cirujano, Av. Huayruropata, CUSCO. 22 de 07 del 2005.


July 15th, 2007

Brunch. Its a fuzzy concept at best.

The kind of fuzzy that comes from sitting on the grass in the sun, drinking champagne from tea cups because the juice for mimosas ran out hours ago, along with the plastic cups. Talking Nabokov, and Firefly, and Linux and sex and reading atrocious poetry in funny accents accompanied to the sounds clacking of light sabers, and unpracticed somersaults.

Brunch ends naturally when the lassitude of afternoon is pricked into waking by evening’s cool approach, other deadlines — mid-afternoon, the last scrap of food gone, in time to get my Sunday chores done — should be treated with suspicion and discarded.

(update: does photographic evidence undermine the platonic and universal nature of the experience?)

Our photos from Paris are up

June 25th, 2007

Or rather they’ve been up for weeks, but I’ve given up on the idea that I’ll upload them, and am just pointing at Jasmine’s version. 429 photos in the set. (also as a slideshow)

Romance is blooming in Paris

Leaving on a jet plane

May 13th, 2007

T-minus 5 until jumping on BART to SFO to CGD. I’ll be around and online this week from XTech (assuming Edd has the wifi figured out). The following week I’ll be totally offline enjoying a week in/around Paris with Jasmine. Having spent so much time doing “exotic” travel I’m intrigued to see what hanging-out-in-major-Western-city-as-form-of-travel will be like.

p.s. If I haven’t gotten your Paris suggestions feel free to leave them in the comments!

See y’all in a couple of weeks.

5 years

April 14th, 2007

Andy reminded me that I just missed my 5 year anniversary of publishing this blog. In many ways those first few posts are still my favorites.

Web 2.0 Expo

April 12th, 2007

Expo Cal is up and running an instance of iCalico, the social conference calendaring app (fancy way of saying tries to answer the, “um, what should I go see?” question), Rabble and I wrote.

In other Web2Expo news, my talk for Ignite Sunday night got accepted. Ack! Um, so I’ll be speaking (for at least 6 minutes) Sunday night on “casual privacy”.

Going to Paris

February 15th, 2007

Blaine and my talk on “Social Software for Robots” got accepted to XTech 2007. See you in Paris.

it’s not you, it’s me

February 15th, 2007

Pipes has all the ingredients of something that should really set me off. Pipes, filters, mashups, RSS, Atom, RDF (singing) these are a few of my favorite things! So, what gives? I’m genuinely worried that I’m sick, depressed, losing it, or otherwise replaced by a pod alien. Possibly all the above. … So, it’s not you, it’s me.” – Les – Thoughts on Pipes on the Web

Yeah, exactly that.


January 17th, 2007

DC Metro AD

First it was disorienting, then it was weird, then I got fond of them, and now that they’re down (at least along my morning commute) I’ve grown wistful. Palm was very much my graduate education in engineering (such as it is), and though its barely a shadow of its former self (a shadow darkened by missed potential) it was fun to see my old work and new work together.

Happy New Year!

January 10th, 2007

(ed: written on Jan. 1, so some days are a bit off)

Happy New Year’s. Blogs on a new server (ed: that was optimistic of me, wasn’t it?), running on a new platform (just WordPress, nothing exotic), and I’m thinking about New Year’s resolutions.


I don’t usually make New Year’s resolutions, but I joined a gym yesterday, and they had a gimmick where if you told them your New Year’s resolutions you got nearly 90% off. Thinking about what you tell a gym your New Year’s resolution is so that they can plaster the stair way with them (“Peace on Earth, Good Will Towards Men”, “Look better naked”?) got me thinking what my resolutions actually are for this year.

no 30

  • Joined the gym as I’ll be turning 30 this year, and I’d like to be at my “healthy weight” (210) when I do. Given that I haven’t been that weight since high school (while I was living in Australia, playing basketball everyday, and fasting), and that I wrestled in the 190+ weight class in junior high, and that I’m as heavy now as when I left Palm (full-time work is bad for my health) it will be something of a challenge.

  • Going to learn to drive. Again seems like learning to drive by 30 is a good goal, and its gating other projects.

  • The rise of professional blogging has really changed the medium, and I think Laughing Meme got pushed by the current into becoming more of a topical blog on web technology (and not a very good one), and less a personal blog. More personal blogging in 2007, or just less blogging.

  • One personal, secret resolution. More on that later if it works out.

Maybe I don’t make resolutions because they sound trite, and you want to say something about getting back involved in political work, or ending hunger, that kind of thing, all of which are too complicated, tangled, and personal to fit such a pat format.

Happy New Year’s all! (ed: now much belated)

Photo by Northerngreenpixie