Using calls of civility to mask indecency

Cal called me out on me pointing out the Swearing Festival Celebration of Profanity event with a link to his article on civility in the public political discourse.

But really, does it prove his point? Or does it parrot the use of calls for civility to mask indecency?

I’m going to make a case that it is the latter.

[Ick, Politics. I can’t help myself. I’ll spare you from it with the jump.]Continue reading Using calls of civility to mask indecency

2007-11-02 Party Dress Birthday Celebration

Against my better judgement (health), I woke up from my disco nap and headed down to Etiquette Lounge to celebrate the “party dress birthday” of Halle, Michelle, Liisa who were turning 21 (again) and Peter who was turning 30 (again).

Birthday girls and friends
Birthday girls and friends
Etiquette Lounge
Civic Center, San Francisco, California

Nikon D200, Tokina 16-50mm AT-X PRO f/2.8 DX, SB-800, ultimate light box
1/40sec @ f/2.8, iso 800, 16mm (24mm)

Peter turns 30 again… with friends again.

Peter turns 30 again… with friends again.
Etiquette Lounge
Civic Center, San Francisco, California

Nikon D200, Tokina 16-50mm AT-X PRO f/2.8 DX, SB-800, ultimate light box
1/40sec @ f/2.8, iso 800, 16mm (24mm)

[liberals, dress codes, and photos of peeps after the jump]Continue reading 2007-11-02 Party Dress Birthday Celebration

Thoughts on graphic design: colors

Ironing my clothing is always always a reminder that I have an obsession with the color blue that borders on unhealthy. And not just any blue: really dark navy blue. Good thing dyes are synthetic because all of India would still be under colonial rule to keep up with my need for blue clothing.

Blue and me seem to always be brought together. In evangelical summer camp, I was assigned to the Galatians—if I told you that the other team was the Romans who were red, you can guess what color the Galatians were. My high school colors: Blue and gold. My house colors: Page blue. Heck, even that running joke that is the “south bay uniform” wasn’t my choice: my entire wardrobe of blue oxford button downs are actually hand-me-downs from my brother.

I’ve known this for a while now. That’s why when I made my resume five years ago, I chose… red and yellow. The resume is littered with other little design jokes (like the use of rules instead of white space, or the css “resume” garden markup.)

[Favorite colors in design after the jump.]Continue reading Thoughts on graphic design: colors

Web n point Oh!

Long before Jason Calacanis’s prank, Web 3.0 was supposed to be “the semantic web.” So when I received an invite to this talk, I had to forward it on to Dave, especially in light of this post. The inside joke is, Dave or I have been doing vertical search professionally since 2000. And if there is one thing we’ve learned:

“[The semantic web] may list Brittney Spears ringtones in the description, but the page offers viagra.”
—David Kellogg, “Semantic web, please go away

(The only exception I take with the above is that what isn’t attributable to malice can be attributable to incompetence.)

Dave loved the invite, and then started to nail the world wide history of the once and future web in order to improve the discussion at the Stanford/MIT VLAB panel:

[Web 1.0 through Web 7.0. after the jump.]Continue reading Web n point Oh!

The Dutch

“Please tell me you guys aren’t getting in bed with Google. I actually find myself rooting for annoying-ass Fuckerberg because of this Open Syphilis shit.”
—e-mail from a friend

I’ve had a number of people who know what I do as a day job ask me what I think about Google’s OpenSocial initiative. Maybe it’s because they know I’m so opinionated and they just want to hear me go off.

What’s strange is how few of those actually involved with the project have asked me what I thought (Answer: none of them). They know that I’m not a photographer, or a socialite, or “they guy who does Lunch 2.0” and yet they’ve been strangely silent before, during, and after the announcement. It turned out I only found out about this at all, because of people who know me only as a photographer, socialite (laugh!), and “the guy who does Lunch 2.0.”

Now I won’t go out to state my opinion about OpenSocial beyond the question: You parlayed my friendship for this? I guess you can guess what I think about OpenSocial from that.

Chalk this up to another incessant reminder of why I hate the high school antics of the Valley. Had any of them bothered to ask me about this, here is a tip I could have given them: when you make a list, there are much bigger companies in the Valley than Facebook that are going to be disappointed they weren’t invited to the party.

Slick move, ace!

I alluded to this bitterly in a previous post, but to further highlight the absurdity of the who was and wasn’t invited to the “Open”(laugh!)Social, I was talking to another friend:

“They leaked this well in advance to the ‘largest social network in Holland.’ In Holland??? Can you believe?”

D—: “Haha. I sort of like the Dutch. They sort of sound like Germans but act nicer.”

“The only thing I know about the Dutch is that they’re awfully tall.”

D—: “Maybe it’s to keep their heads above sea level.”

Ahh, trust my friends to put everything in perspective.

(After that conversation he sent me this to cheer me up.)

2007-10-30 CNET’s Ad Freaks Halloween

I was really burned out from partying. But Patrick IM’d me saying that he was in the city for one night only and extrovert that he is, I knew I had to find a party at the last minute, sans costume.

2007-0144 11.jpg
The Holy Cow
SoMa, San Francisco, California

Nikon D200, Tokina 16-50mm AT-X PRO f/2.8 DX, SB-800, ultimate light box
1/50sec @ f/2.8, iso 640, 16mm (24mm)

Andrew Mager was kind enough to invite me to the party sponsored by CNET business.

Mager, broadcasting for Justin.TV
Mager, broadcasting for Justin.TV
The Holy Cow
SoMa, San Francisco, California

Nikon D200, Tokina 16-50mm AT-X PRO f/2.8 DX, SB-800, ultimate light box
1/60sec @ f/2.8, iso 500, 16mm (24mm)

It was a lot of fun even though I only knew ten people in the entire place, a couple people actually tried to use my name to get past the bouncer at the door—and it worked!. Can you believe that? 😀

Rock this party!
Rock this party!
The Holy Cow
SoMa, San Francisco, California

Nikon D200, Tokina 16-50mm AT-X PRO f/2.8 DX, SB-800, ultimate light box
1/50sec @ f/2.8, iso 640, 16mm (24mm)

Also, since this photo got insane viewage as it was uploading, I thought posting it before the jump can’t hurt. I’m putting it really small so you click on it though… 😀

Our favorite bunny
The Holy Cow
SoMa, San Francisco, California

Nikon D200, Tokina 16-50mm AT-X PRO f/2.8 DX, SB-800, ultimate light box
1/60sec @ f/2.8, iso 320, 16mm (24mm)

[the jump]Continue reading 2007-10-30 CNET’s Ad Freaks Halloween

Spontaneous Drinking

They say a great idea comes from seeing a need and satisfying it.

In the Web 2.0 world, most of the ideas come from taking what people have been doing and putting an “Un—” in front of it.

So you have BarCamp an un-conference. Then you have Lunch 2.0, the un-power lunch. Heck you’d think this whole Web 2.0 bubble would be powered by 7 Up, the un-cola, but really it’s something more like Red Bull, which as near as I can figure is the un-un-cola.

In case this turns out big, I’m blogging the newest thing in the Web 2.0 social: Spontaneous Drinking Night in SF (join the Facebook group).

It’s an un-event.

After all, what ever happened to kicking it back for a few beers with friends after work and talking about the latest viral video—in this case, the kissy anus face?

Do the kissy-anus-face
Do the kissy-anus-face
Eddie Rickenbacker’s, SoMa, San Francisco, California

Leica M8, Cosina-Voigtländer NOKTON 35mm F1.2 Aspherical
3 exposures @ 1/30sec, iso 320, 35mm (47mm)

Here’s the idea: Need an excuse to drink mid-week? Someone sends out a Facebook message with the deets: some bar in SF, most likely with a bunch of geeks, and no set agenda other than to have a few beers after work.

Oh yeah, you’re thinking: Damn that client was a moron, but I’m not in the capital of geekdom and alcoholism (San Francisco) where they have yet to have a first official event but somehow managed to get 269 members.

That’s okay, “like an STD in the 70’s,” we’ve spread virally to Silicon Valley and Vienna. And if there isn’t a chapter near you, what’s preventing you from setting one up and telling us about it?

Hope to catch you at the next event.

[The ur-un-event and the Long Tail after the jump.]Continue reading Spontaneous Drinking

Collapsing the female wave-function

The solution to the greatest paradoxes of the twentieth century physics is the realization that the observer cannot be separated from the experimental design.

  • General Relativity? The observer can’t tell the difference between gravity and an accelerating reference frame.
  • Maxwell’s Demon? Even the observer’s computation cannot be separated from the physical system that implements it.
  • Quantum Mechanics? Observation collapses probabilistic wave-functions.

There is a simple irony in the above.

A 21st century paradox, shared among my friends and with constant teasing, is how someone like me could both emphatically claim and successfully test as a heavy introvert.

The solution to this slightly less prestigious paradox is: I carry a camera.

Like quantum mechanics, my data collection device changes the experimental design.

[How a camera collapses the social wave function after the jump]Continue reading Collapsing the female wave-function

Feel Good Trifecta

My sister, Mia, has been feeling a little stressed out this week, so I told her to watch the Bouncy Balls commercial I keep sending her.

She did today and felt compelled to rewatch two other videos I sent her before: “Where the Hell is Matt?” and “Otters Holding Hands”—she confessed to me she watched the last one twice this time—thus inventing the Feel Good Trifecta.

I noticed a number of people (perhaps because the SF rain is now here in earnest) aren’t feeling so good this Friday. Watch these three videos and hopefully you’ll feel a lot better. And if you aren’t one of those people, just save this entry for a rainy day.

[The trifecta after the jump]Continue reading Feel Good Trifecta

Brain error

19th century German neurophysiologists successfully map out the brain after a transcontinental flight

Researching my last article was amusing, but doing so made me realize an error in something I said last month.

I didn’t recognize someone I should have because I was jetlagged and hungry. She was non-plussed with my behavior and threatened to “take me off her Facebook.” Now, if I were Scoble, I’d be just happy to have room to add a different friend. But I’m not, so I value every person I’ve managed convince into accepting a friend request. This led to this apology-cum-excuse:

“I’m sure you know how it is: visions of chocolate after a transcontinental plane ride will take over the entire parietal lobe of your neocortex—temporary prosopagnosia is an unwanted side effect. It’s a survival thing.”

Since you’ve read the last blog entry, you see the obvious error in my excuse. Clearly the fusiform gyrus is located in the temporal lobe, not the parietal. Doh!

Still, since she hasn’t unfriended me yet, I’d have to say, that it amounts to as good an excuse as any: when in doubt, blame the chocolate.

[Chocolate blogging and another nitpick after the jump]Continue reading Brain error