Monday, September 06, 2010

where I'm at now

I've started up something new (sporadically) here.

Friday, June 13, 2008

Most bloggers should tweet instead

In the cacophonous jumble of thoughts that bounce through our heads every day, there are a few that stand out. We feel compelled to share these observations and ruminations -- the uncommon moment, for example, where you see a mailman who is walking quickly and smoking a cigar.

I've been using Twitter for about a month now and I've found it's a handy way to bookmark such observations and ruminations when they happen. And I've come to appreciate the beauty of Twitter's brevity constraint: your posts (or tweets) can be no longer than 140 characters.

What's so good about this extreme conciseness? This: it forces you to get to the point. Have you ever taken a random walk down blog street? Granted, there are great blogs out there, but the vast majority are one of two types:

  • Ramblefests: Stream-of-conscious rants that are ferociously uninteresting.
  • Copycats: Multi-paragraph quotations from news sites and other blogs, with maybe a sentence or two of original commentary.
All the bloggers that fit in the above two categories should discover the joy of Twitter -- where there's really only room for original content. And where it's difficult to repeat yourself (unless you accidentally hit the "update" button six times, like I did the other day).

You can stalk me on Twitter here:


Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Remembering Grammy Shaw

Over Memorial Day Weekend, Katy, my dad, and I headed out east to Palouse, WA. My parents both grew up there and that's where I lived, too, as a wee little fellow.

We joined my cousin and my aunt and uncle Deerkop (who live in this beautiful place just outside of Palouse) to remember Grammy Shaw. She passed away three months ago. Her death caught us all by surprise, and the fact that she's gone is really still sinking in. Grammy and I talked almost every night on the phone ... indeed, we talked the night before she died. I'll always remember that final phone call -- she was happy and in good spirits.

I remember thinking over the past few years how it was odd that Grammy didn't really seem to have any hobbies or things she was interested in. But now that she's gone I've realized that she valued what's really important in life: people. To call her a social hub would be an understatement. She had an absolutely amazing ability of bringing people together. She thrived on her family members connecting with each other. We all joked about Grammy's famous "phone pass" -- where you'd be talking on the phone with her and suddenly she'd pass the phone to, say, your aunt standing nearby.

After we visited Grammy's grave on Saturday, my dad and I took a walk down along the railroad tracks that wind along the outskirts of Palouse. He recounted his memories from 50 years ago, when he was a kid playing by those same railroad tracks (not much has changed in Palouse) and causing a considerable amount of mayhem.

It struck me that our father-son walk down memory lane was exactly the sort of thing that would make Grammy happy. It was the perfect way to honor her memory.

Friday, May 23, 2008

Healia Communities

Healia, where I interned last summer, recently launched a health social networking site: Healia Communities. Just like the Healia search engine, which generates high-quality, high-relevance results, Healia Communities uses algorithms to guide users to other users who can best help them.

Healia Communities integrates with the Healia search engine via resources. Essentially, these allow users to "clip and save" results from the search engine to their communities profiles. This integration with health search is a key way that Healia Communities differs from other health social networking sites.

I was involved in several planning discussions on Healia Communities last summer, so it's exciting for me personally to see how far it's come. Also, I wrote the help section for this site. :)

You can give Healia Communities a try here.


Monday, May 19, 2008

Almost done

In less than a month, I'll graduate from the UW MBA program. My schedule this final quarter has been refreshingly open-ended and I've had a chance to catch up with old friends. Many of them have told me it seems like this has gone by really fast.

For them, perhaps. For me, the past 2 years have had so much packed into them that it really hasn't seemed like time's flown by. September 2006 seems like a long time ago indeed.

While my first year (and first quarter of this year) were unbelievably busy, these final two quarters have eased up. I joined classmates on a study tour through South Africa during spring break -- it was an incredible trip. This quarter I've been walking a lot (Gmaps Pedometer is a really handy tool -- it showed me that I walked 7 miles yesterday), reading the news, and just relaxing.

I'll be traveling to Thailand and Cambodia after graduation for 3 weeks and then in mid-July I'll start work with Vitalent.


Wednesday, February 06, 2008

My sister's on the radio today

While I've been undeniably lax as a blogger over the past several months, my sister has been on an incredible blogging spree. Her blog about the 70s has quickly built up an active community of readers. Indeed, she's gotten so popular that she was interviewed about her blog by local radio station KUOW. The interview will air today at 2 PM, and Katy will post a link to the interview after it airs.


Monday, January 21, 2008

The top 10 social networking sites, 2006 - 2007

Although there was explosive growth in social networking over the past year, a few sites actually lost a significant amount of users over the year: AOL Hometown is down 32%. Ouch. I hadn't ever heard of this site (have you?); when I checked it out just now it had a banner ad for another user-losing site: Classmates Online.

MySpace is still on top, but its user base grew only 9% from 2006 to 2007 -- compared with Facebook's 72% growth during the same period.

It's only a matter of time before Facebook seizes the #1 spot. I mean, my mom is on Facebook, as are two of my aunts. They never hopped on the MySpace bandwagon. Indeed, many people I know have deleted their MySpace profiles.

But MySpace remains popular with the young'uns. T-Mobile's Sidekick, which targets the 14 to 22-year-old set, boasts of one-touch MySpace access. I find that humorous. Then again, I programmed in one-touch Facebook access in my phone..


Sunday, January 13, 2008

Saturday, January 12, 2008

Habanero and lime delight

Trader Joe's Habanero & Lime salsa is insanely good. I don't know why I never tried it before. I bought a jar on a whim the other day and spread it on Trader Joe's non-dairy veggie burritos (of which I've consumed a multitude over the years). Good lord! It's got this delicious, unique tanginess going on. I woke up today thinking about it. I'm going to have some on a burrito. For breakfast. Right now.

One thing: it's not spicy enough. (Nothing is every spicy enough for me.) But that's easily remedied by stirring in a little hot sauce.

Trader Joe's is like Apple -- it's one of those brands that inspires rabid customer loyalty. I've always been curious about why this is, and maybe I'll get some answers soon. One of the teams in my brand management class will be studying the Trader Joe's brand this quarter.


Sunday, January 06, 2008

Snow! Or rain?

It sounds like it's raining hard outside my window. There's a hypnotic sound of raindrops echoing up from my apartment building's mini-courtyard area.

But out my window, I see big, fluffy snowflakes drifting towards the ground.