While talking with Mike the

While talking with Mike the other day, he came up with a great idea: this summer when both movies are available on DVD, rent Glitter and Crossroads, crank up the video projector and drink every time you see a belly button. Although drinking fuzzy navels would probably be most appropriate, I fear a death-by-alcohol-poisoning after three hours of britney and mariah.

Kay’s mom sent us a

Kay’s mom sent us a Valentine’s Day card, which was nice. While the thought was nice, I was a bit concerned with the copy on the card. It was a flowery, frilly card with that script font you see on wedding invitations, and it read on the front precisely as follows:

Happy Valentine’s Day to my daughter and “son”

Do you see the problem? Why does the word “son” have quotation marks around it? Does it not mean I’m part of the family? Is there a special section of a Hallmark store devoted to parents that might not be completely sure they accept someone into the family? Kay says to take the quotes out insinuates that perhaps a mother’s offspring have married each other. I’m sure there are heated debates down at Hallmark HQ over this, but as a recipient of their fine cards, I can’t get over how a couple punctuation marks change a message entirely. To wit:

I like sauerkraut.

I “like” sauerkraut.

See the difference? I’m probably reading too much into it though. It was a nice gesture and a nice card, and I don’t think Kay’s mom purposely picked it based on any weird implied message.

While cruising through craigslist today,

While cruising through craigslist today, I happened upon this odd post about a designer/programmer needed for contract work on a golfing site. Note that with your application, you should answer four questions. Question one is odd, but probably pertinent, as I suppose it’s still a heated point whether oversize clubs should be allowed in professional play. I don’t know why you’d hire or not hire someone based on their response to that one, but I guess it has something to do with the job.

Questions two through four are way, way out there. Is this even legal? If you loved the canadian skating pair, think the US should bomb the world and that marriage is a sacred institution, do you get the job? What if you thought the russians did better, the US should work on peace, and that gay marriage is a-ok? I don’t even see the point, since the job allows for telecommuting. It’s not like you have to share the office space with someone who’s views don’t jibe with yours, so what’s the point? Does that make someone a better programmer or designer? Does any of that affect the actual work done by an employee?

Joel wrote a great article

Joel wrote a great article on understanding the differences between developers and higher-ups (or customoers/clients). Buried in his comments on the article I added this anecdote:

A related lesson, learned from several client meetings:
I didn’t use “Lorem Ipsum” latin filler text in mockups or prototypes shown to customers until a few meetings went like this:

Me: So, here’s what the proposed home page will look like, and you just simply click on the discussion ar…

Client: What’s that paragraph say about healthcare funding getting slashed?

Me: What? Oh, that. I just copy and pasted the first story on Yahoo News’ medical news page, I thought it’d fit as filler text since this was a medical site. Now about the functionality of the featur…

Client: Well, can we change that? I mean, I don’t want to look at bad news when visitors see the site.

Me: I just put that in for this photoshop mockup, it won’t ever be seen by anyone. Now about the new proposed sub-sectio…

Client: Ok, but if you could change all the mockups, that’d be great, I don’t want to show these around the office with that bad news on there.

I’ve used Lorem Ipsum as filler text from then on.

It’s a bummer the coverage

It’s a bummer the coverage of the olympics continue to be controlled fairly tightly by the media. Like pb mentioned, it’d be really great if athletes had ways of sharing their experiences in real time on the web.

So far, I can only find two people tangentially related to the olympics, and running weblogs chronicling their day. Crabwalk is done by a journalist covering the event, and b-may is Bryan May’s musings on working security at a ice rink. I met Bryan last year at Web2001, where he kept all us speakers happy and everything running smoothly at the conference. He’s a funny guy in person and I always wondered if he’d start writing on the web. His site is absolutely hilarious, and captures his infectious sense of humor well.

It’s frustrating to see the

It’s frustrating to see the funniest comedians on television forced to sit in limbo while their movie that has been done for almost a year sits in the can, and their DVD collection sits awaiting the movie release, which may never happen. Given the mainstream success of things like Tenacious D, I’m surprised Newline and HBO aren’t jumping to release and promote Bob Odenkirk and David Cross’ work.

15,440 words later and

15,440 words later and I’ve finished the first complete draft on my chapter. I heard positive feedback on my earlier drafts so I’m hoping the rewriting won’t be too time-consuming. I’ve also been running about 3 times a week, and am up to about three miles in about 30 minutes. I’ve got to start a new book project tomorrow (I’ll talk more about it later), but so far I would deem my writing/running program to be a success.

It’s funny how once you start concentrating on writing, it becomes easier fairly quickly. It’s almost like writing is a muscle that just needs some flexing once in a while, and as soon as you build it up a bit, it’s easy to produce some fairly substantial things.

I’ve been a big fan

I’ve been a big fan of Philip Greenspun‘s work for as long as I can remember. When he first started Arsdigita, it sounded like the greatest place to work, and I’m sad to see it close up and get sold to Redhat.

I remember the combination of Greenspun’s grandstanding and all the VC money resulted in some fairly crazy, newsworthy things during the boom, but the pages are all gone from the arsdigita site. I did some digging and found that you can still see their ample employee benefits page (with the cautionary “if we run out of money” bit at the end) in the google cache and their once famous recruiting incentive program, thanks to the web archive.