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Learning to travel better
posted on Mar 14 2011

I’ll be traveling more than normal in 2011, therefore I’m doing my darndest to travel better.

“Better” is defined as:
- lighter suitcase
- smaller suitcase
- faster through security
- faster at packing
- faster at repacking
- activity learning and practicing airport security tips/tricks

Sound cheesy? I agree… until one has to get from DFW’s Terminal A to Terminal E in 16 minutes.

To assist in my efforts I’ve been reading up on what others have to say about the ins and outs of business and personal travel.

One of my particular favorites was this blog post, and the following snippets.

I am very minimal when I travel.
I never check luggage. I refuse to check luggage. I look down at people who check luggage. When I get on the plane I have a backpack with my laptop and a carry-on—that’s it.

If you’re going to check luggage…
you basically should just get back in your car, go home and not fly anywhere.

[...]

When you fly: don’t wear sweatpants.
Wearing sweatpants on a plane is like wearing a fanny-pack walking around Paris. It’s pretty much the same thing.

[...]

I was on a plane once that lost all cabin pressure.
We had to make an emergency landing in Buffalo. My nose started bleeding because there was no air-pressure…and then we realized that the only thing worse than crashing and dying was landing in Buffalo.

[...]

One time I sat on a plane next to Britney Spears’ mom.
That was hilarious. We talked about Britney for two and a half hours.






The random ‘awesome offices’ links
posted on Mar 10 2011
  • Google
  • Pixar
  • Facebook





  • The random business links
    posted on Feb 22 2011
  • Gawker’s Gulp Moment: Big Redesign Is Driving People Away
  • Most Bizzare Celebrity Bankruptcies
  • 5 Bailed-Out CEOs Still Living the High Life





  • The random business links
    posted on Feb 15 2011
  • Why Companies Should Insist that Employees Take Naps
  • Startup Culture Lessons From Mad Men
  • 10 seeeeeriously cool workplaces





  • Everything makes sense after a while
    posted on Feb 12 2011

    Wired took a tour of IBM’s Thomas J. Watson Research Center. This image of a blackboard was one particular shot which caught me eye.

    It makes absolutely no sense to you and me, but it could. It’s intimidating until you realize that one day you and I will buy a product or service that relates to the brainstorming shown on this board. This means that, as complicated as this board appears, there’s a way to simplify it.






    The random business links
    posted on Feb 12 2011
  • “Fantastic” beats “efficient”
  • Improving Sales: The Excuse Department Is Closed
  • How to Get Feedback When You’re Rejected





  • The random Quora links
    posted on Jan 31 2011

    Any of you TechCrunch readers are as tired as I am for having to read about Quora every other post. I love Quora, but talking about Quora and talking about content on Quora are two completely different things.

  • Why is Seattle famous for coffee?
  • What was it like working in NYC’s Silicon Alley a decade ago?
  • How can I know if my web startup idea is worth launching?
  • How do you run a great meeting?
  • What to do when your answer is marked as “Not Helpful.”
  • Has anyone on Quora found business partners or partnerships?
  • How do you meet other technical people interested in starting a company?
  • Is freemium a valid model only for apps with a strong network effect?
  • Who are the most active members of Quora?
  • Why is Quora so addictive?





  • Can we make today – the last Friday of every January – International Linchpin Day?
    posted on Jan 28 2011

    The Donald thinks you’re doing a good job. You’re not fired.

    I’ve been slowly working my way through Seth Godin’s Linchpin over the last four weeks. As will all of Seth’s books, it’s worth every penny. (Buy it with that Amazon coupon we all bought on Living Social last week.)

    An excerpt:

    A linchpin is an unassuming piece of hardware, something you can buy for 69 cents at your local hardware store. It’s not glamorous, but it’s essential. It holds the wheel onto the wagon, the thingy onto the widget.

    Every single organization has at least one linchpin; some have dozens or even thousands. The linchpin is the essential element, the person who holds part of the operation together. Without the linchpin the thing falls apart.

    Who’s your linchpin?

    For me (a new guy at a company) a linchpin is anyone that will answer any question I have in a short, simple answer that is both easy to remember and easy to apply.

    Yesterday I asked a colleague to review a document containing a request for a proposal from a potential customer. I wanted his thoughts regarding certain aspects, and to what extent we could meet the potential customer’s needs.

    Later that afternoon I get an email. He’s reviewed the document and has suggested next steps.

    Wait, what?

    This was no two page, bullet-pointed, simpleton document. This was a monster PDF containing crucial bits of information about a long-term agreement.

    My colleague had no problems tackling the monster doc because he’s well-versed in the language of proposal requests, he’s intelligent, and he’s hard working. He’s seen a hundred documents like this and knows exactly how to break it down in order to analyze it in a manner that is both efficient and thorough. He’s a linchpin.

    Linchpins need to be thanked. Why? Because if you don’t thank them, another company will.

    [photo via 30fps - love that man]






    Every little bit matters
    posted on Jan 26 2011

    Kevin McAllister is not happy about his downtime.

    In 2010, Daxko’s uptime was 99.96%. This means that our systems for our users of Daxko Opperations, Daxko Accounting, and Daxko Connect were only offline for 0.04% of the entire year.

    By comparison, Amazon Web Services’ uptime was 99.95%. Amazon… AMAZON. 0.01% is 10 additional minutes of downtime.

    Make no mistake, hundreds of factors go into high availability. However, downtime is just like any other problem or pothole in business… it’s essentially unavoidable. All companies face the same challenges and can plan according to their size and scope.

    Ten minutes is a long time when you’re ordering a book or tracking a package that is set to deliver in time for someone’s birthday.

    Ten minutes is a long time. I can’t sit still for two minutes.

    Daxko was prepared for growth, traffic, and (perhaps most importantly) the unexpected in 2010. At the end of the day the companies who do just a little bit better are the ones who position themselves to be the best. 10 minutes.

    Amazon, y’all. Amazon.






    Seattle’s Best Coffee logo still reminds me of a blood bank
    posted on Dec 3 2010






    What does domination look like? Facebook.
    posted on Nov 22 2010

    Gawker: “One in four web pages viewed by Americans last week was on Facebook”

    I wonder how they factor in (do they factor in) hits from applications? The majority of my time spent on Facebook is on my iPhone.






    Rework
    posted on Nov 2 2010

    Just finished Rework on Monday. Brilliant, and the model (for the most part) of what Generation X & Millennials want their jobs to be like, bosses to act like, and job fulfillment to feel like.

    If you’ve got any recommendations, shoot ‘em.






    Is it just me or does the Editor of Wikileaks look like a grown-up Dennis the Menace?
    posted on Jul 29 2010

    [Click for larger image.]






    The ongoing LeBron saga
    posted on Jul 29 2010

    Ahhhh, Public Relations 101. Start reading at #1, if you haven’t read these already:

    1. Read ESPN’s Spiked Story About LeBron
    2. Maverick Carter Rules The Universe, And Other LeBron James Vegas Story Conspiracy Theories
    3. ESPN’s Statement On The LeBron Story





    Bye-Bye Brands
    posted on Dec 21 2009

    via Yahoo: Brands we lost in 2009






    Good Bye Sound Shop & Waldenbooks
    posted on Nov 12 2009

    Talk about losing a piece of history…

    The Jasper Mall will soon be losing two of its mainstay tenants.

    Sound Shop and Waldenbooks will both be closing their doors in the near future. Both stores have been at Jasper Mall for more than 20 years.

    Jasper Mall manager Marsha Massey said the news was disheartening.

    “I’m obviously disappointed that we are losing these two stores,” she said. “Waldenbooks has been with us since the mall first opened, and Sound Shop has been here almost that long. They are the only two stores of their kind in Jasper, so it will be tough to lose them.”

    I honestly think (unless something has changed in the last few years) that Waldenbooks is Jasper’s only store dedicated solely to books. Am I wrong?






    What Is In A Name?
    posted on Oct 1 2009

    Love this article. The Seattle PI detailed how 12 of Seattle’s most popular coffee shops got their name.

    My favorite is Top Pot, the doughnut/coffee shop which you all hear too much about already:

    My brother Michael and I purchased an old neon sign many years back that originally was located on the corner of Rainier Avenue South and South Genesee streets in South Seattle. The sign sat on top of an old Chinese restaurant called Topspot. We have always had a passion for collecting old signs and fixtures with the intention of incorporating them into various store designs when possible.

    The sign itself was in pretty rough shape but had so much cool character. It was pretty big so we ended up storing the sign for the first few years in our mom’s backyard up in the Wedgwood neighborhood. Eventually the garden and squirrels started to inhabit the sign, and she asked us to take it away.

    We decided at that time we would go and have it restored. We tied the sign into Michael’s pickup truck and as we were driving down Interstate 5, the letter “S” located in the very center of the sign blew off leaving us with “Top Pot.” At the time we were pretty upset but have since gotten over it.






    Googlers
    posted on Sep 22 2009

    Why are so many Googlers leaving the company? One reason…

    Other companies try really hard to hire Googlers, so they offer them lots of money and great titles. Former VP of ad sales Tim Armstrong had a great, comfortable gig at Google. But then Time Warner CEO Jeff Bewkes asked him to become CEO of AOL, and offered up to $50 million in stock options. He had to jump at it.






    The Power Of Nice
    posted on Sep 17 2009

    I love this article.

    State of Alabama economic development representatives often say the friendliness of Alabama’s people is their secret weapon in recruiting international businesses looking to invest in new North American operations. The results of a recent statewide poll suggest that multinational industrialists are not the only ones to have noticed, Auburn University researchers said in a news release.






    Sad
    posted on Jun 18 2009

    The WSJ reports on business in Detroit:

    Borders Inc. was founded 40 miles away, but the only one of the chain’s bookstores here closed this month. And Starbucks Corp., famous for saturating U.S. cities with its storefronts, has only four left in this city of 900,000 after closures last summer.