Saturday, May 31, 2008

Spreadsheets are sexy?

The Google IO conference got plenty of press coverage, as this CNet video proves... It was actually a fun interview, but what was i doing with my hands? Is it better to lock them behind my back or let them fly around uncontrollably in front of me? ;)

In another video, a local reporter with independent station KRON4 in CA used some special effects (ok, just some editing) to avoid my flying monkey arms... See that video clip on the KRON4 site - Tech Report with Gabriel Slate (what a cool name).

The two things I liked about this conference: First, it really did feel a bit like a day at Google (with a little bit more junk food than normal), and second, the focus seemed to stay with educating developers rather than getting across a corporate message.

me? biased? probably... but trying not to be.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Lots to learn at Google IO conference

If you're looking for one of your web developers, you can probably find them in San Francisco at Google IO... a conference for developers to learn more about Google development tools and web services. Reported in varying levels of detail, and focused on many vertical topics, by plenty of bloggers... so no reason for me to give detail... but the energy here is very high and the sheer number of cool tools to learn and use could keep me busy for a decade.

I realize now that adding FriendConnect to my blog last week was a good exercise in learning more about the Social tools being made available to web sites and to people who trust their friends more than they trust other sources. If you want to start somewhere - start there... It's those two boxes on the top right of my blog - where you can see who has "joined"... think about how useful it might be, when you're using the web or web-accessible services/information, to be able to ask "what do my friends use? Who do they trust? what do they think? Expect to see this in more places than my insignificant blog so you can get that advantage of friendly advice and guidance for any web page, business listings, etc... and be able to combine the power of your relationships with your activities on the web. Have Fun.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Heaven on Earth for some of us

There's a special place, near Princeton, NJ, which my Dad and Mom discovered (as far as I'm concerned, it didn't exist until they discovered it). They would go there together constantly, as it was close to home for them - in fact, it was 'home' for them (if, like my Dad, you listen to Roger Waters and believe that "everybody got somewhere they call home").

There's art amongst the trees and ponds and open fields. There's vision and beauty and mystery. There's love and friendship and childhood dreams. It's practically an imaginary place you'd visit in your dreams - but it's all right there for you to touch and experience with people - which is probably the part that makes it so special. It sheds the one most regrettable part of a great or mysterious dream - the inability really share the experience with anyone.... At this place, called "Grounds For Sculpture", you can share it.

That's what my parents did. They shared this place with each other and they shared it with us ("the kids")... My Dad always told me about this place and gave me that "Jonathan... in your wildest dreams..." pitch (which I just loved), but, regrettably, I never got to experience it with him... so I guess that part will always make this place seem just a bit dream-like for me.

On the day these photos were taken - which, by the way, don't do justice to the place like my Dad's photos did - we happily and permanently made this a place to share with my Dad. We dedicated a bench to him - at his favorite spot, overlooking the sailboat in the pond, in the foreground of the painter's scene. His best friends and family helped make this happen - and now, we all have a new place to sit... a new home...
Thanks, Mom.