A few days before the 2010 calendar year began (pretty much two years ago, today), I made a goal to exercise at least 30 minutes, everyday for a year. Not 4 or 5 days a week. 7 days a week, for 52 straight weeks. With 2012 right around the corner, I’ve decided to do it again this year – and I want you to join me.
One of the bigger announcements Facebook made at their developers’ conference this year was about ‘frictionless sharing’. Now you’ll be able to grant certain applications permission to post stories to your timeline without you having to click ’share on Facebook’ every time. In the case of music applications, like Spotify and Rdio, you’ll be able [...]
Today marks the end of an era for me, and the beginning of something big.
This is my last day at GE. These last five years (seven if you count the internships) have taught me countless lessons about business, technology, leadership, and myself. I joined the company in the Information Management Leadership Program (IMLP). I’m convinced that for [...]
It’s no secret that we’re all getting blasted with more information than any other time in history. The age of digital media brings undeniable benefits, but it’s changing the way we act and how we think. I’ve blogged about information overload and communication segmentation in the past, and I’ve been thinking about more solutions lately…..
There have been three services that I can’t stop talking about lately. GroupMe, Glympse, and Venmo are winning because they are all super simple and have just enough features to solve some of the problems you and I know well. If you haven’t tried them out yet, you’re in for a treat….
GroupMe solves [...]
When Apple announced the latest iteration of the Apple TV recently I was a little underwealmed by pretty much everything except the price. The biggest disappointment was that they didn’t announce the ability for developers to create apps for Apple TV in the same way they do today for the iPhone, iPod, and iPad. A [...]
In September of this year, Mashable proclaimed “Apple’s Tablet Will Eat Kindle’s Lunch“. The article went on to criticise the Kindle device on a number of levels, such as the fact that it’s not in color, and that it doesn’t have fancy multitouch functionality. While I agree the device will soon be left in the [...]
This weekend, Lollapalooza is finally upon us in Chicago.
And for anyone keeping score, this marks the first summer where fans can connect directly with the vast majority of artists, in real-time, using Twitter. Here is a list of all the Lolla acts and their Twitter names (those not on Twitter left blank)…
A-Trak – @atrak
This week I was asked to speak at the Social Media University conference in Milwaukee about “viral video” on the web. I don’t believe there’s a special formula to follow that magically equals viral distribution, but I think there are many things you can do to set yourself up for success.
In the slide deck [...]
The Spreenkler group in Milwaukee is one of the more creative, driven sets of people that I’ve ever met. In this video, Brian Artka gives a little taste of what the crowd is like. Great work Brian.
I saw two videos today that made me think we’re only beginning to see the raw potential that lies in the iPhone. When Apple decided to open the platform up to developers, it was such a brilliant idea! Building a platform and letting others take it and run is a very compelling business model. [...]
Here’s a great video I found that really speaks to the entrepreneurial spirit. I highly recommend it.
Even if you don’t work for yourself, you can think and act like an entrepreneur. How are you changing your company, your community, your world for the better?
Friends and Family,
I’d like to bring to your attention a fantastic charity opportunity that is being organized by two of my close friends, Allen Burt and Ryan Graves. This week (beginning April 27, 2009) marks the beginning of their $5K in 5 Days campaign. The goal is to raise money to buy books for school [...]
Over the weekend, Erica and I visited the Yerkes Obervatory, near Lake Geneva, WI.
Yerkes Observatory, which calls itself “the birthplace of modern astrophysics,”, is an astronomical observatory operated by the University of Chicago in Williams Bay, Wisconsin. It was created in 1897 by George Ellery Hale and financed by Charles T. Yerkes. The observatory represented [...]
File this one away with my series of posts focused on Information Overload…
One major gripe I’ve had with Twitter for some time now (and I know I’m not alone here) is the inability to group the people you follow into certain categories. Let me explain. Currently I’m following (receiving updates from) upwards of 600 people [...]
How’s this for a pop-culture, sign of the times item? A coffee mug with all the people you’re following on Twitter. You can pick one up for $12.95, at sxoop.com.
Panography using 100+ photos.
Click on the image to view it BIG.
Do it at YourFonts.com
“Subject: ‘______’ is now following you on Twitter!”
Are you sick of the Twitter follow back process? You know, the one where you get a dozen emails from Twitter and you have to go into each one to figure out if all these people are worth following? The process is pretty inefficient if you think about [...]
Over the weekend, I joined a few friends at Bucketworks to model T-shirts for Teecycle.org. Teecycle sells used shirts and gives a portion of the proceeds to charity.
Simon and Jake from Valo photography shot the whole thing, and they are extremely talented as you can see below. Well a good model doesn’t hurt of course [...]
In this day in age, those of us that have chosen to dive head first into the social web are bombarded with communication from every angle. Information overload is a very real thing, and I believe the need for software to help us filter and prioritize this information will grow exponentially in the coming years.
Check out the wallpaper I just made on Flickr:
Tonight I’m trying some cross processing techniques that I first saw in a tutorial from Layers Magazine.
“Cross processing (sometimes abbreviated to xpro) is the procedure of deliberately processing photographic film in a chemical solution intended for a different type of film” – Wikipedia
It’s a fairly simple process in Photoshop, achieved with a new curves adjustment [...]
I saw an interesting graphic this morning, depicting the popularity of various social networks all over the world. Some items of interest:
* Myspace still looks to be the world leader with Facebook close behind. I’d expect this gap to grow with the announcement of the Myspace Music platform.
* Google owned “Orkut” is the leader in [...]
After doing my six month stint in Europe, I came home to a mess. I’ve been systematically checking off different areas of my place to get everything de-cluttered and organized.
Some of these before pictures are down-right embarrassing, but I think they really illustrate how far some zip ties and a shelf can go for your [...]
I recently upgraded to the latest version of iTunes and noticed that they’ve implemented a new feature, Genius Playlists. Now I can select a song in my library that I’m in the mood for and iTunes will suggest a whole playlist based on certain qualities of that song. Granted, this is just like Pandora for [...]
That’s a damn good ad.
I like this photo because it abstracts the incredible structures of the Grand Place (Brussels, Belgium) and focuses on the cobble stones below. It’s always good to look at things from a different perspective.
“Pudong (Shanghai) from The Bund”
Well, how often does one travel to China? For most people, not very often. [...]
One of the greatest things about Flickr is the phenomenal photography from the community. Here is a slide show of my favorite photos. These are a great inspiration to a hobbyist like myself.
My camera mysteriously stopped working a few weeks ago. After sending it back to Casio and having them not honor my warranty (I won’t get into it here, but if you want the details, I’ll tell you), I have decided that I’ll probably have to buy a new camera. My hand feels lost without one.
An awesome photo I found tonight on Flickr
weapon of choice, originally uploaded by aperitive.
Time check: 2:41AM … and I just finished a complete overhaul of this site’s design. What do you think?
Mozilla, the same company that brought you the phenomenal Firefox web browser, has just announced their Ubiquity prototype today. It’s a technology that lets you bring aspects of the web together without opening different sites. For example, if you’re typing an email to a friend about dinner plans at a restaurant, you can [...]
Everyday we’re getting slammed with information from every angle, so I’m always looking for better, more efficient ways to make sense of it all. Last week I found myself deleting dozens of email alerts and notifications from Facebook, Twitter, and various banks. While this information is arguably important, I’ve decided that it’s clogging up my [...]
Nike (or whoever does their marketing) has been making inspiring commercials for as long as I can remember. I just found a site that lets you check out many of their new ones (Videos – Nike ).
You know you’re doing something right when people search out your ads instead of fast-forwarding through them…
As some of you may know, ActionsTalk has been evolving. Two months ago, we set out to create a conference in the Milwaukee area that brought together three key pieces of successful tech companies: 1. Tech saavy developers/engineers, 2. business minded entrepreneurs, and 3. venture capital. Ryan Graves and I saw the potential for the [...]
The summer in MKE will now truly be that much sweeter. Check out my new ride… I went with the Specialized “Allez” (French for “Go!”). I’m counting on a lot less of this.
Tornadoes and severe thunderstorms ripped through Milwaukee this weekend…
Do yourself a favor and watch Eclectic 2.0 by Ross Ching. What a great thing to wake up to! And if you’re interested, here’s how he made it. I’m already looking for this equipment…
aside from the obvious health benefits, of course…
Update: I got one!
I laughed out loud.
A photo from last night’s walk in Milwaukee
I did a little stop-action film project with my friend Tad today. I’m mostly behind the camera and only make a short cameo as a stunt double — can you see where? And now, without further ado, I give you the Brady Street Skate vid…
Two new applications I’ve been impressed with are Piclens and Animoto.
Piclens is a plugin for Firefox that lets you view photos on the web in a new, completely immersive way. Once you have it installed, it integrates with all the major photo sharing sites: Flickr, Facebook, Google Images, Smugmug, etc. With [...]
Having just seen the Harlem Globe Trotters on ESPN last week, I can’t stop laughing at this spoof from rejectedjokes.com.
“That’s not etiquette. That’s not the basketball I know.”
If you haven’t yet, check out the new, improved saynoradio.com — Saynoradio is a site I’ve started with some friends, dedicated to the Indie Music scene.
Check out this cool light emitting wallpaper on Inhabitat.com
I found this video today over at the Creative Cooler blog. It’s a clever way to get the message across…
I put this little diddy together today with Animoto (which is an awesome site)
I’ve been back in MKE now for two weeks, and it looked like the weather was turning for the best…Until today
Light painting is brand new to me, but I saw a few examples scattered about the Internet, and decided to try it last night.
Here are a couple of the better pictures:
And here’s how you do it:
1. Camera that can be set to have a long shutter
3. Pitch Black Room
Ok, so if you’ve [...]
The Grizzle makes the trek across the ocean for a weekend in Europe. Hilarity ensues…
Note: This is in reverse chronological order for some reason.
I’ve been traveling, and traveling, and traveling lately…
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You can find almost anything for free on the Internet these days, including education. So if you’re a motivated self learner, and it’s the actual knowledge you’re after (not a paper to hang on your wall), here is a round up of sites to get you started.
* Medical Product Quality System- [...]
This photo we took at the Hofbrauhaus, Munich has now been viewed over 390,000 times now!
Stats for the photo:
Comments on Digg.com…
Comments on Reddit.com…
Tonight I stumbled across the blog we put together when we were backpacking all over Europe two years ago. We hit 15 cities in 30 days… obviously too much, but we got to see a lot. Since then, I’m much more likely to go to only one (and max 2) places on a [...]
The photo above has received more comments and views than any other picture I have ever put on Flickr, so I thought that I should post it here. What do you think? I’m a big fan of night photography like this. I’ll post more of an update soon. I’m in London [...]
Oslo, Norway…where a McDonald’s combo meal will cost you $18 USD and even the airport looks like a ski lodge.
Here they are. These are the best and brightest web sites out there right now. What do they win? Nothing… but maybe they’ll get a few new visitors when this hits the presses. Check them out, and leave comments!
Netvibes has become my homepage of choice as of late. It competes [...]
Here are a few pics from my trip last week to Paris (more, as usual, on Flickr):
Tomorrow is a holiday here, and I’m heading to Manchester, England for the night. Then I have two days of work in Leeds, England on Tuesday and Wednesday. So when I’m not pent up in an office [...]
I know this looks pretty sad… don’t worry though, I’m OK. Malnourished, but OK.
I just added a calendar showing some of my confirmed travel dates. Check out the right side of this page.
No, I’m not talking about the bootleg film… I’m talking about the second half of this week (and actually it’s two nights). That’s right, I’m heading to Paris tomorrow night. It’s a Belgian holiday here on Thursday so I’m taking the opportunity to travel.
I’m pretty bad, in general, about planning my trips in [...]
More posts, more frequently now – I promise. I now have Internet at home, so I have no excuse.
Since I last wrote, a lot has happened here. I moved into a new apartment and out of the hotel. All of my clothes are permanently suitcase-creased, but it was worth the wait. [...]
Don’t you love checking websites daily when they only get updated every other week?? I know I do.
Seriously though, sorry for the delay between posts. I originally wanted to wait until I had good news about my apartment search here in Brussels… and I’ve had two weeks of bad news…UNTIL TODAY! I’m [...]
Here is my initial brain-storm of places I’d like to visit while I’m here for the next 5 and a half months. Obviously, I may have to strike some from the list if time isn’t permitting. What am I forgetting? Let’s talk about it in the comments section.
I’ve been using the Google Translator this morning, and I am extremely impressed. It let’s you plug in statements in English, and it spits back the translation in almost any language you would want. But even more useful is the ability to translate entire websites. For example, today I’m looking for sport leagues/clubs to join [...]
Over the last couple days I’ve been working with a relocation company to find an apartment for my stay in Brussels (I’m still in the tragically located hotel). I think I’m close to securing the the one place that really interested me out of the 8 that I saw. It’s in the Sablon area of [...]
I finally made it to Brussels, Belgium yesterday morning at 8 AM. It seems like a long time coming since I knew I was going to be moving here (look for a future post regarding that whole process – and why it took so long).
The first day was pretty uneventful really. I made [...]
I’ve decided that I want to choose a new name for this blog, so that I can reserve blakesamic.com for something a little more professional. I’m having trouble thinking of a name, so I’m looking for your help! If you can think of something good, just respond with a comment on this post.
This blog will [...]
I just got back from Beijing a few days ago — very cool trip. It all started when we met up with our tour guide Ricky on Saturday morning:
Ricky was a cool guy, and answered most of our questions. He definitely learned as much about the U.S. as we did about Beijing though. [...]
We’re about to hop on a plane tonight and head to Beijing for the weekend. Hopefully I’ll get some awesome pics of The Great Wall, etc.
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Last week we decided to hop in a van and take a trip over to some Chinese markets. Within 2 minutes of hopping out of the van we had 3 or 4 new “best friends” that wanted to show us the best shops. Some of them even had catalogs for us to flip [...]
The playgrounds here have some interesting equipment. This lady for example uses something that resembles the Gazelle in America.
I walked down to “The Bund” tonight and snapped this photo of Pudong from across the Huangpu river
As you may know, the real reason I’m here in Shanghai is for work. I’m here for three weeks of training actually. Our first week of class is over and it went pretty well. Here’s a photo of my awesome team burning the midnight oil before our final project presentation on Friday:
So if you’re one of the 4 readers of this blog, you probably noticed that haven’t posted in a while. These are some excuses:
Internet in my hotel room isn’t free (and I’m too lazy to walk down to the 4th floor where it is free)
We’re in class on computers all day – and I don’t [...]
Coolio resurfaced last night in Shanghai at a club called BonBon. The Grammy award winning rapper that brought us such favorites as “Fantastic Voyage” and “Gangster’s Paradise” captivated a crowd of Shanghainese and expats with such phrases as:
“I’m 44, but this ain’t your daddy’s stomach” (while lifting shirt to show abs)
“If I was your [...]
A couple nights ago a bunch of us went to the Shanghai Ice Bar. This place was a complete novelty (we were the only people there, and I’m sure the locals laugh at it). Basically you get a huge parka, with gloves attached, when you walk in, and everything in the bar is [...]
The weather in Shanghai has been pretty bad for the most part so far. Everyday but one has been overcast and extremely humid. It looks like Saturday should be pretty nice, though, which is good because we’ll be touring the city all day.
You would think that the Circuits classes I took in college would have resulted in a little real world electrical knowledge – but you would be wrong.
The first night here I asked the front desk for a power transformer (to account for the difference between American AC and Chinese AC), and they gave me [...]
I’m in Shanghai, China now, and I will be for the next 3 weeks. Already, the experience has been unbelievable. I’ve done more traveling than most, including a couple trips to Europe — but I’ve never felt so completely foreign (or tall).
(flying over Alaska)
The flight over from Chicago (direct to Shanghai) took about [...]