Wednesday, December 09, 2020
After recently divorced Kara moves into her uncle’s home she discovers through a hole in a wall a portal to an alternate and mysterious reality. This is the beginning to T. Kingfisher’s horror novel The Hollow Places, a story that moves at a quick pace but offers too few spine-tingling scares.
Friday, April 24, 2020
Photographers are selling limited edition prints for € 100 each to raise funds for “All United Against Coronavirus,” a French effort to support COVID-19 research and relief.
Wednesday, April 22, 2020
Martin Parr has a fairly new YouTube series in which he has casual conversations with photographers. In the most recent segment Parr sits down with Alec Soth, who discusses his beginnings as a photographer and his most recent work, I Know How Furiously Your Heart Is Beating.
Toward the end of the discussion Soth touches on photo ethics and photographer guilt: “The biggest ethical problems come in, not in the making of the work, but in its distribution … there’s a lot of discussion about the ethics of photography, the ethics of photographing someone on the street. Really taking the picture of someone on the street isn’t a problem, it’s putting it on the internet or selling it in the gallery.”
Tuesday, April 21, 2020
Gallery owner Stephen Bulger gives an 11-part video tour of “A Life in Photographs,” an exhibition of André Kertész (1894-1985) images in Toronto. Each video is fairly short and they are a surprisingly intimate and captivating look at Kertész life and work.
Monday, April 20, 2020
On a more pleasant note, the hospital where my daughter works in Florida plays “Here Comes the Sun” when a Covid patient is extubated and the theme from Rocky when one is discharged. It’s a nice thought.
When I go to the store the melancholia is palpable. People seem sad and the social distancing and social awkwardness is exhausting.
Sunday, April 19, 2020
Friday, April 17, 2020
- How safe is it to eat takeout? Pretty safe, according to the experts. But read the story to set your mind at ease.
- The 50 best contemporary novels over 500 pages. This is a good list based on the large number of books on it that I’ve read and enjoyed.
- Judge rules embedding Instagram photo isn’t copyright violation.. A New York federal judge says Mashable did not violate copyright law when it embedded an Instagram photo from photojournalist Stephanie Sinclair in an article.
- Here’s where two-thirds of the world’s jets are taking a break. This is worth it just for the many photos of idled commercial jets.
- The orbit of a star near our galaxy’s black hole proves Einstein right. “After 27 years of observation, we have finally nailed down the orbit of this star, called S2, precisely enough to spot a strange effect predicted by his general theory of relativity.”
- What will thieves do with their stolen Van Gogh painting? “And while there are occasional circumstances in which a robbery of a specific piece of art is commissioned, it’s more likely that this painting was stolen to be flipped in the black market.”
Thursday, April 09, 2020
Wednesday, April 08, 2020
Tuesday, April 07, 2020
I’ve tried a couple of different times over the years to install Jekyll on Macs, but I can never get it to run. The various online support cures are not effective and, honestly, it’s not worth the effort if I can’t get it to work correctly on install. I’m not confident I won’t run into future problems. But, I’ve had good luck using it on GitHub, so that’s what I’m doing for now.
It has been hard to concentrate on reading books during the COVID-19 crisis. I’m finding I can read more escapist books, so I’m turning to science fiction and mysteries to get by. It’s the reading equivalent of passing on the broccoli and grabbing a bowl of ice cream.
Monday, April 06, 2020
This is the first post of this blog running Jekyll on GitHub. Here we go.
Friday, March 27, 2020
School graduations are upon us and if you, like me, are ordering announcements you realize a few changes need to be made to the wording due to commencement ceremonies being canceled or postponed because of COVID-19.
Thursday, January 30, 2020
If you use Shopify Payments, you may wonder where to find the 1099-K you need for your business taxes. Shopify does not make it easy to find, but with the help of Shopify’s chat support I was able to navigate to the form. I’ve outlined the steps below to find your Shopify 1099-K.
Tuesday, December 24, 2019
Nelson DeMille is back with another thriller, sharing writing duties with his son, Alex DeMille. In The Deserter, Army criminal investigators Scott Brodie and Maggie Taylor are trying to track down elite Delta Force officer Captain Kyle Mercer, who walked way from his post in Afghanistan.
Thursday, December 05, 2019
Friday, October 18, 2019
Thursday, September 26, 2019
Wednesday, September 11, 2019
Tuesday, August 27, 2019
Tuesday, July 30, 2019
What I’ve learned in 20 years of blogging, by Anil Dash: “Most people in tech want to do good, but tech history is poorly understood. As a result, many in tech don’t understand how tech can have negative impacts when they think of themselves as good people.”
Thursday, July 18, 2019
Self-driving cars are way in the future: “Several carmakers and technology companies have concluded that making autonomous vehicles is going to be harder, slower and costlier than they thought.”
Monday, July 01, 2019
Tuesday, June 11, 2019
Daniel Milnor posts a thoughtful essay on “competitive travel.” I don’t agree with everything he says, but this should get you thinking about what motivates you to travel. Related: Travel photos are underrated.
Wednesday, June 05, 2019
Too many people want to travel. Massive crowds are causing environmental degradation, dangerous conditions, and the immiseration and pricing-out of locals.
I continued to wonder what exactly I had done to deserve a woman like Valerie. Nothing, probably. I observe the world as it unfurls, I thought. Proceeding empirically, in good faith, I observe it. I can do no more than observe.
Platform by Michel Houllebecq
Tuesday, June 04, 2019
I’ve put together a development blog using RapidWeaver plus the Stacks, Foundry and Alloy plugins. The development blog is just a test, but the design will be used as the framework for other projects. With RapidWeaver and its plugins it’s pretty easy to quickly create fresh designs. I basically started with a blank slate and built up what I wanted. The test blog is based on Scripting.com and Svbtle.
Thursday, May 30, 2019
Thursday, May 23, 2019
Wednesday, May 22, 2019
Tuesday, May 21, 2019
Unfortunately Amazon no longer provides RSS feeds. This seems to be a new trend and a number of sites, including news organizations, are discontinuing RSS feeds and making it more difficult to track information and get updates across the Internet.
Friday, May 17, 2019
For some reason festivals don’t provide schedules formatted for printing and I usually make my own printable Bonnaroo schedules. This year a couple of other people have done the heavy lifting already, so I’m sharing links here to the ones I’ve found. All of these were originally shared through the Reddit Bonnaroo group.
Thursday, May 16, 2019
“You can’t help but admire Google’s business model. They have close to zero content-creation cost, but are able to turn around and sell the lion’s share of the advertising.”
While Google and Facebook have siphoned ad dollars away from all publishers, local news publishers have been the hardest hit. The tech giants suck up 77% of the digital advertising revenue in local markets, compared to 58% on a national level, according to estimates from Borrell Associates and eMarketer.
Wednesday, May 15, 2019
Tuesday, April 23, 2019
Thursday, April 11, 2019
Monday, March 04, 2019
Sunday, March 03, 2019
Tuesday, February 26, 2019
Tuesday, February 12, 2019
Monday, February 11, 2019
Thursday, February 07, 2019
Wednesday, February 06, 2019
Thursday, December 27, 2018
Monday, December 17, 2018
A roundup of books I read in November. Haruki Murakami’s Killing Commendatore and Stephen Markley’s Ohio were the two best books of the month. In fact, those are the only two books I would definitely recommend. Unless you’re an aspiring diarist, in which case you should read Writing Down the Bones.
Thursday, December 13, 2018
When the Pipirite Sings presents the collected poems of Haitian poet and doctor Jean Métellus, who wrote primarily in French. The collection most notably includes the first English translation of his signature work by the same title.
Tuesday, November 06, 2018
A roundup of brief reviews of books I read in October. Virgil Wander will probably make it to best books of 2018 list.
Tuesday, October 09, 2018
Thursday, October 04, 2018
A roundup of brief reviews of books I read in September. There were a number of good books from the month and it was heavy on sci-fi. Cherry is among the best books I’ve read this year and one to get you thinking. Fans of funny science fiction should start reading the Murderbot Diaries immediately.
Wednesday, September 19, 2018
Wednesday, September 05, 2018
A roundup of brief reviews of books I read in August. Looking back it was a good month. Depending on where your tastes lie, I’d recommend everything but The Butcher’s Boy. But if I had to pick one, it would be The Line Becomes a River, which is a good look at what happens along our southern border and would be enlightening no matter where your politics are on immigration.
Monday, August 27, 2018
Monday, August 13, 2018
Wednesday, August 08, 2018
Monday, August 06, 2018
A roundup of brief reviews of books I read in July. An American Marriage is worthy of the praise it’s received this year and A Terrible Country is an interesting take on live in Putin’s Russia.
Friday, August 03, 2018
A regular roundup of interesting stories to enjoy with your Friday coffee.
Thursday, August 02, 2018
Monday, July 30, 2018
Here is my list of the best new books from the first half of 2018. I’ve listed them in the order I would most recommend them to someone. But if you’re inclined, read them all.
Friday, July 27, 2018
A regular roundup of interesting stories to enjoy with your Friday morning afternoon coffee.
Thursday, July 26, 2018
Andrei Kaplan is coming off of a failed relationship, low on cash and struggling to find an academic job when his brother asks him to do a favor. Kaplan accepts and heads to Russia where he will take care of his ailing grandmother in her Stalin-era, Moscow apartment.
Wednesday, July 18, 2018
Monday, July 16, 2018
The characters of Number One Chinese Restaurant all inhabit a planet orbiting the Beijing Duck House. A fire at the suburban Washington, D.C restaurant upends the equilibrium and tensions between family and coworkers come to the surface.
Friday, July 13, 2018
A regular roundup of interesting stories to enjoy with your Friday morning coffee.
Friday, July 06, 2018
A regular roundup of interesting stories to enjoy with your Friday morning coffee.
Tuesday, July 03, 2018
A round up of brief reviews of books I read in June. David Lynch’s biography Room to Dream and Stephen King’s The Outsider are new to bookstores and worth reading.
Monday, July 02, 2018
The inscrutable auteur David Lynch has delivered a number of memorable films that enthrall and confuse viewers. In Room to Dream we get to peek behind the camera to see what drives the visionary director and artist.
Friday, June 29, 2018
A regular roundup of interesting stories to enjoy with your Friday morning coffee.
Thursday, June 28, 2018
Friday, June 22, 2018
A regular roundup of interesting stories to enjoy with your Friday morning coffee.
Monday, June 04, 2018
Four artists share their techniques for mapmaking as well as samples of their work in The Art of Map Illustration. The book is full of beautiful illustrations by each of the artists, who employ a variety of media including pen, ink, watercolor and digital.
Friday, June 01, 2018
David Itzkoff’s compassionate biography of Robin Williams stands out among the books I read in May. David Sedaris’ wickedly humorous collection of essays is also worth picking up.
A regular roundup of interesting stories from the week to enjoy wit your morning coffee.
Thursday, May 31, 2018
Friday, May 25, 2018
Thursday, May 24, 2018
Jaxie Claxton lives a miserable life in rural Australia, stuck with a savage father he hates. Then one day a violent accident leaves him with no choice but to pack what he can carry and strike out on foot as a fugitive.
Wednesday, May 23, 2018
Saturday, May 19, 2018
David Sedaris has mastered the ability to be dark, charming and funny at the same time. His latest collection of essays, Calypso, revolves around gatherings at his North Carolina beach house, the Sea Section. Sedaris deftly handles a variety of topics including middle age, shopping, gay marriage, language and family tragedy.
Friday, May 18, 2018
A regular roundup of interesting stories from the week to enjoy with your morning coffee.
Thursday, May 17, 2018
An intimate new biography of Robin Williams tells the story of the meteoric rise, frenetic life and the sad final days of the comedian. In Robin, New York Times writer David Itzkoff gives us a look at the creativity that fueled Williams’ seemingly spontaneous and endless comedic riffs. But he also tells of Williams’ substance abuse, repeated infidelities, failed marriages and a manic anxiety over the quality of his performances.
Friday, May 11, 2018
A regular roundup of interesting stories from the week to enjoy with your morning coffee.
Thursday, May 10, 2018
[caption id=”attachment_1778” align=”alignright” width=”200”] Robin Williams in Dead Poets Society.[/caption]
Friday, May 04, 2018
A regular roundup of interesting stories from the week. If you’re in need of a good book, check out my latest very short reviews of books.
Thursday, May 03, 2018
Wednesday, May 02, 2018
In the aftermath of WWII 14-year-old Nathaniel and his sister are left in the care of a mysterious man they nickname The Moth and his possibly criminal cohorts. Warlight follows Nathaniel’s adventures with this eccentric lot and his efforts to discover why his mother seemingly abandoned him.
Tuesday, May 01, 2018
The original, and surreal, Spaceman of Bohemia is highly recommended. The Mars Room and I am, I am, I am area also among my favorites from April.
Monday, April 30, 2018
Rachel Kushner’s new novel The Mars Room is a heartbreaking and unsparing look at a life gone sideways. From a young age Romy Hall became acclimatized to life on the street in San Francisco and seemed like someone who could navigate the fine line between survival and self-destruction. But a bad history with an obsessive strip club visitor leads the young mother to an unfortunate encounter and two life sentences in prison.
Friday, April 27, 2018
Here is a regular roundup of interesting stories from the week.
Monday, April 23, 2018
Friday, April 20, 2018
A weekly compendium of interesting articles. Grind, brew, sip and enjoy.
Wednesday, April 18, 2018
Mary Morris’ latest novel, Gateway to the Moon, combines a coming of age story with historical fiction to explore ideas of identity and how history echoes across time. The remote New Mexico community of Entrada de la Luna is rooted in the history of the Spanish inquisition and converesos, or crypto-Jews, who fled from persecution. But the residents have lost touch with their past and don’t remember why they maintain certain rituals, such as shunning pork and lighting candles on Friday.
Tuesday, April 17, 2018
Monday, April 16, 2018
Friday, April 13, 2018
A selection of stories to enjoy this Friday morning as you roll into the weekend.
Tuesday, April 10, 2018
I joined Kenny Smith on The Best Story I’ve Heard Today podcast to discuss the Vox story “What smartphone photography is doing to our memories.”
Monday, April 09, 2018
Saturday, April 07, 2018
In 1985 Anthony Ray Hinton was arrested and charged with the death of two men in Birmingham, Alabama. Hinton was certain that because of his rock-solid alibi, everything would be cleared up and he would soon be released. But due to an ineffective and unmotivated defense attorney and a criminal justice system indifferent to the plight of a poor, black man, Hinton was wrongly convicted of murder and spent 30 years behind bars.
Friday, April 06, 2018
An assortment of articles to while away the hours this Friday morning.
Tuesday, April 03, 2018
Monday, April 02, 2018
A roundup of very short reviews of books I read in March. The Sun Does Shine is one of the books you must read this year. Everything else I read in March was also solid and worth your attention.
Friday, March 30, 2018
Friday forenoon features for curious coffee connoisseurs.
Thursday, March 29, 2018
The Bonnaroo music festival has released their 2018 food lineup, but the list on their site is hard to browse through without a lot of clicking. I’ve reformatted the list of food vendors below to make it easier to scan. Related: Bonnaroo 2018 lineup spreadsheet.
Tuesday, March 27, 2018
Written in a brutally honest tone, Feast Days recounts the story of Emma, a young woman who moves with her husband from New York to Brazil, where he works as a financial analyst. While protests rattle the country, Emma tries to find where she fits in, immersing herself in the arts scene, lunching with other expat wives and volunteering to help refugees who are fleeing poverty and war.
Thursday, March 22, 2018
Amber Reynolds lies in a hospital bed, unresponsive and seemingly in a coma. But Amber can hear everything that is said around her. She remembers an accident but has trouble unraveling the exact circumstances that put her in the hospital. As she listens to conversations and slowly begins to remember events, Amber becomes suspicious of her husband and others around her.
Tuesday, March 20, 2018
Friday, March 09, 2018
It’s time to settle down with a steaming mug of coffee, some interesting stories and begin putting off getting any meaningful work done today.
Tuesday, March 06, 2018
A roundup of very short reviews of books I recently read. Lincoln in the Bardo and Panorama are worth your attention.
Kim Fu’s novel The Lost Girls of Camp Forevermore (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, digital galley) alternates between the stories of five young women who experienced a traumatic event at camp while girls. Unfortunately it reads as a disparate collection of unrelated stories, with the camp experience being the only thing connecting the women.
Friday, March 02, 2018
I again had the pleasure of joining journalist and Indiana University Media Adviser Kenny Smith on The Best Story I’ve Heard Today podcast. Today we discuss why the craft beer industry is thriving, based on this story from The Atlantic: Craft beer is the strangest, happiest economic story in America.
Some interesting stories to read while you begin the end of your week.
Tuesday, February 27, 2018
Television news pundit Richard MacMurray is in the middle of examining his life in Washington, D.C., when he finds out his estranged sister was aboard Panorama Airlines Flight 503, which crashed in Dallas with no survivors. Her death leaves MacMurray as the only living relative of her young son, Gabriel, and just another of the characters in Panorama touched by the disaster.
Friday, February 23, 2018
Interesting articles to peruse with your morning joe.
I had the pleasure today of joining journalist and Indiana University Media Adviser Kenny Smith to discuss conspiracy theories and how to debunk them on The Best Story I’ve Heard Today podcast. The conversation is centered around the column ”how to test your favorite conspiracy theory” by Bloomberg writer and George Mason University Professor of Economics Tyler Cowen.
Friday, February 16, 2018
For your Friday enjoyment, here is a roundup of interesting reads from the week.
Monday, February 12, 2018
This is a roundup of books I recently finished, but which I did not give a full review.
Friday, February 09, 2018
Here is a roundup of the best reads from the week. These may not be new to the internet or you, but they were of fresh interest to me.
[caption id=”attachment_1002” align=”aligncenter” width=”1500”] Cage the Elephant at 2017 Bonnaroo.[/caption]
Thursday, January 25, 2018
Rarely does a book so quickly grip me in its first pages, but The Which Way Tree has done it with a harrowing story of survivalon the Texas frontier during the Civil War. Bringing to mind the tight narratives of Charles Portis, the novel weaves a story of violence, survival and frontier justice.
Wednesday, January 17, 2018
Dara Horn’s Eternal Life (W.W. Norton & Company, digital galley) is a touching story of faith, loss and family. The story’s heroine, Rachel, made a deal with God in Roman-occupied Jerusalem to trade her death for the life of her first-born son. Now, 2000 years later, Rachel struggles to find continued meaning in her never ending life.
Monday, January 08, 2018
Below is a roundup of books that will get you in the mood for happy hour. The two best, Trappist Beer Travels and Rum Curious, offer a mixture of history and reviews that will leave you feeling smarter about your drink choices.
Thursday, January 04, 2018
Meg Gardiner’s psychological thriller UNSUB moves at a fast pace as the heroine, Detective Caitlin Hendrix, becomes obsessed with the Prophet, a killer who reappears after a 20 year hiatus. Inspired by the Zodiac Killer, UNSUB (Dutton, digital galley) pits Hendrix against a serial killer who enjoys taunting police.
Tuesday, December 12, 2017
In this slow-paced thriller an American couple starting a business in Budapest meet an elderly man hunting the son-in-law he believes murdered his daughter.
Monday, October 23, 2017
During the Great Depression, young Anna Kerrigan regularly accompanies her father on his work as a union courier. But one morning he walks out the door and disappears, leaving Anna and her mother to take care of Anna’s disabled sister.
Saturday, September 30, 2017
When a book’s description mentions time travel I’m usually hooked. And because I thoroughly enjoyed Peter Clines’ 14 and The Fold, I enthusiastically jumped into his latest, Paradox Bound (Crown Publishing, digital galley).
Tuesday, September 19, 2017
Key West charter boat captain Daniel “Mac” MacCormick is made an offer he has every intention of refusing: Sail his boat to Cuba under the guise of a fishing tournament and recover cash and documents hidden during the revolution. But the lure of a $2 million payday is more than he can resist, and he takes the bait.
Thursday, September 14, 2017
Cyril Avery is adopted at birth and raised by eccentric and well-to-do parents who make it clear that he is not a real Avery. Nonetheless he perseveres, practically raising himself in their sprawling Dublin mansion. The ambitious novel The Heart’s Invisible Furies (Hogarth Press, digital galley) follows Avery’s entire life from the 1940s to the present day.
Monday, September 11, 2017
On Sept. 2, 2017, I hiked the Walls of Jericho from the Alabama trial head in Jackson County, Alabama, with my brother in law and my dog. The hike is a strenuous 6 miles round trip and leads to the headwaters of the Paint Rock River. At the end of the hike is a large natural stone amphitheater which usually has at least a small flow of water running through it, feeding a series of waterfalls.
Wednesday, August 30, 2017
[caption id=”attachment_868” align=”aligncenter” width=”660”] Poodle on sofa. August 2017.[/caption]
Thursday, August 17, 2017
After a powerful solar storm destroys electrical devices and causes civilization to crumble, an Amish farming community in Pennsylvania helps by supplying food to a neighboring town. But as things deteriorate, the outside world encroaches on their isolated society.
Monday, August 14, 2017
- Is “buying local” even possible? “Imagine my surprise when I encountered a sign promoting a “local” food product in the bakery aisle of our town’s Safeway.”
- X-Ray views of the New York City subway system.
- Lies our tech overlords told us: A list of the bold promises on which we’re still waiting for Silicon Valley to deliver.
- What one reporter learned by working as a butler at the Plaza Hotel.
Friday, August 11, 2017
While doing field research and trying to unlock a mystery from her childhood, anthropologist June Stefanov makes a startling discovery: For millennia automatons have lived among us, hiding their presence while trying to understand the nature of their own existence. But their time is drawing to an end and Stefanov may be a key, if unlikely, ally in their survival.
Tuesday, August 08, 2017
- Megan McArdle says that from cooking to woodworking, rising levels of skill and effort have become barriers to entry.
- Enable HTTPS for free on you website with Let’s Encrypt.
- Kevin Rose talks with Ryan Holiday about Stoic philosophy.
- An increasingly influential group of thinkers insists that humankind has never had it so good – and only our pessimism is holding us back.
- The proportion of the world’s population living in extreme poverty had fallen below 10% for the first time.
- Global carbon emissions from fossil fuels had failed to rise for the third year running.
- Child mortality is roughly half what it had been as recently as 1990.
- Share and receive photos at the Feature Shoot Print Swap.
Monday, August 07, 2017
In 2013 former soldier Dimitri Bontinck’s 18-year-old son, Joe, fell under the sway of a radical Islamic mosque and traveled to Syria from Belgium to take part in that country’s civil war. Rescued from ISIS (St. Martin’s Press, digital galley) recounts his many harrowing trips into Syria to find and ultimately bring his son home.
Friday, July 28, 2017
- Tumbling battery prices mean that EVs will not just have lower lifetime costs, but will also be cheaper to buy than internal combustion engine cars in most countries by 2025-29.
- Cellphone notifications are a tragedy of the digital commons.
- We now spend 30 minutes a day watching videos on our phones.
- Throughout our planet’s history, massive volcanic eruptions have devastated life. Could one bring an end to human civilization?
Tuesday, July 25, 2017
Michael Connelly introduces a new detective in The Late Show (Little, Brown and Company, digital galley), a fast moving police procedural that is hard to put down. Renée Ballard works the LAPD overnight shift, responding to everything from burglaries to homicides. Because she has to hand off all of her cases at the end of her shift, she rarely gets to see anything through to completion.
Sunday, July 23, 2017
- Zume pizzas are made by robots, and they’re cooked in ovens inside delivery trucks on their way to delivery.
- While dental X-rays account for less than 3 percent of all the radiation that Americans get through medical imaging, every effort should be made to minimize their use.
- Let’s clear up some of the most common myths and misunderstandings about sulfites, wine, and headaches.
- There are two reasons why almost all digital B&W is like drinking rotten pond scum.
Thursday, July 20, 2017
In Karin Tidbeck’s dystopian fantasy Amatka (Knopf Doubleday, digital galley), words have the power to build, heal and destroy. Literally.
Thursday, July 13, 2017
Here is a roundup of reviews for five summer of 2017 releases. All, but for The Windfall, are recommended.
- Nancy Pate reviews six summer thrillers.
- Joe Manning tracks down the identity of the woman in an historic Dorothea Lange photo which is also a Shorpy favorite.
- Why the highball is the ideal whisky cocktail. At least during the summer.
- Tyler Cowen wonders if Dali, Yunnan is the very best place in the world to visit right now.
- Photographers chosen to participate in Feature Shoot’s print swap will each give and receive a print.
Wednesday, July 12, 2017
Apollo 8: The Thrilling Story of the First Mission to the Moon By Jeffrey Kluger ★★★★★
Wednesday, May 10, 2017
Wednesday, April 05, 2017
The official Bonnaroo lineup 2017 was announced January 11. The June 8-11 festival is headlined by U2, Red Hot Chili Peppers, The Weeknd and Chance the Rapper. This list was updated April 5, 2017 to include new additions to the music lineup and to the Comedy Theatre.
Saturday, April 01, 2017
From the first quarter of 2017 I recommend Celine and Other Minds: The Octopus, the Sea, and the Deep Origins of Consciousness.
Thursday, March 30, 2017
I was warned right in the title that Carrie Fisher would share her diary. On that she doesn’t disappoint. But the title kind of promises details about life on the set of the first Star Wars movie. On this The Princess Diarist falls short.
Wednesday, March 29, 2017
Had I known it was going to make that loud of a noise, I would’ve dressed better for those talk shows and definitely would have argued against that insane hair (although the hair was, in its own modest way, a big part of that noise). And I certainly wouldn’t have ever just blithely signed away any and all merchandising rights relating to my image and otherwise.
And on top of whatever else, Mark, Harrison, and I were the only people who were having this experience. So who do you talk to that might understand? Not that that is some sort of tragedy—it just puts you in an underpopulated, empathy-free zone. I mean, obviously I’d never starred in a movie, but this was completely not like starring in your average everyday movie. It might’ve been like being one of the Beatles. Sure, most of it was a fun surprise, but the days where you could really let your guard down were over because now there were cameras everywhere. I had to comport myself with something approaching dignity, at twenty.
Tuesday, March 28, 2017
Friday, March 24, 2017
Thursday, March 23, 2017
- The harbor at San Juan Bay is a hive of activity. There are cruise ships, sailboats, commercial ships, ferries, seaplanes and regular planes all moving about. If you have the opportunity, grab a coffee or cocktail and sit and watch.
- The cruise terminal docks are also a hive of activity of a different kind as vendors pitch services and wares.
- The oldest building in the United States, if not counting Native American structures, is in San Juan. The Cathedral of San Juan Bautista dates from 1521 (pictured above).
- The narrow, European-style streets along with the historic buildings and views of the waterfront make Old San Juan a treasure to walk through. You can turn the corner and run into something like Capilla del Santo Cristo de la Salud (Chapel of Christ the Savior) from 1753.
- Some cities are overrun with pigeons. Old San Juan is overrun with cats and pigeons. At Capilla del Santo Cristo de la Salud you will be offered bird seed for sale, but no cat chow.
- The men’s room in San Felipe de Morro Fortress has a great view of the sea.
- At night the lights on surrounding hills and cruise ships make for a beautiful sight.
Wednesday, February 22, 2017
Chef’s love it when customers are willing to pay to eat their garbage.
Thursday, February 02, 2017
The Dictator’s Handbook by Bruce Bueno de Mesquita and Alastair Smith sheds light on how politicians get and keep power. In a nutshell, the most important thing to a politician is not the welfare of the citizenry, but the welfare of the politician’s winning coalition. Keep the coalition happy by lavishing rewards on them and the politician will stay in power.
Thursday, January 26, 2017
It’s relatively easy to make yogurt at home without any special tools. After getting a brief demonstration from my uncle, I decided to give it a shot. Although my uncle uses an Instant Pot to incubate the yogurt, I had success with a 1 gallon insulated Coleman jug. The insulated jug is definitely the cheapest way to proceed and for now I don’t see a need to buy a special appliance. Homemade yogurt is smoother and less tart than similar, store-bought yogurts. Although you can do so, I did not add any flavoring or sweetener to the yogurt. I got enough sweetness from adding granola and fruit to the yogurt when I eat it.Here is the recipe I used to make yogurt at home.INGREDIENTS
Monday, January 23, 2017
The new header image was shot at the Belle Chevre Cheese Shop and Tasting Room in Elkmont, Alabama. The shop was dog friendly and offered sandwiches, goat cheese and hand made fig ice cream.
Saturday, January 21, 2017
… this year’s lineup resembles that of pop-and-rock-oriented competitors such as Lollapalooza and Coachella. But Bonnaroo’s organizers say they don’t view the festival as tethered to Jerry Garcia guitar solos, and haven’t for many years. ‘We certainly have jam-band roots from the first year, but our goal wasn’t to create a jam-band festival. The goal was always to create a great music festival,’ says Ashley Capps, founder of AC Entertainment, Bonnaroo’s founding promoter.
Thursday, January 12, 2017
In Playing Dead: A Journey Through the World of Death Fraud author Elizabeth Greenwood recounts several stories of individuals attempting, with varying results, to fake their own deaths. As it turns out, it’s a hard thing to do successfully and there are many ways in which such attempts frequently fail.
Saturday, December 31, 2016
This is a complete list of the book I finished in 2016 and my Goodreads rating. I read exactly 100 books this year, which was my goal. All of the 4 and 5 star books are highly recommended.
Wednesday, November 02, 2016
These are the three best books I read in October. They are all recommended.
Friday, October 21, 2016
There’s a wonderful interview in The New York Times with pioneering photographer William Eggleston. He is refreshingly blunt and unendingly confident.
Norwegian Cruise Line has sent out an announcement to booked passengers on it ships telling them to leave fire-prone Galaxy Note 7 cellphones behind.
Thursday, October 20, 2016
The new cover image for the home page is a tour helicopter flying down the coast at Panama City Beach, Florida. August, 2016.
Friday, June 24, 2016
Allowing ride sharing in a city likely reduces the number of DUIs, fatal accidents and arrests for assault. But automobile thefts go up, presumably of cars left at bars overnight by Uber customers.
Wednesday, June 22, 2016
The day before he was due to go home Roger and I decided to have a word with Eric [Clapton]’s doctor about his drinking. We pleaded with him to tell Eric he mustn’t drink, explained the situation, told him how much he habitually drank, and how worried we were. The doctor told Eric it was fine to have the odd drink, but he wasn’t to drink a whole bottle of brandy. Eric saw this as the green light. He mustn’t drink a whole bottle of brandy…so he switched to whisky.
Friday, June 17, 2016
- Crowds at Bonnaroo 2016 were lighter than past years. Some estimates put it close to 50,000, which is significantly less than recent years when nearly 90,000 attended. At $325 a ticket, that’s about $13,000,000 in revenue.
- Traffic into Bonnaroo is usually backed up for hours on I-24 and we have a back way of getting in that lets us bypass that nonsense. This year it didn’t matter as there was no interstate traffic Thursday morning and they had closed our usual entrance. We breezed down to Bushy Branch Road and drove in without a problem.
- Because there were fewer people they moved the festival walls in closer behind the Which stage and didn’t install as many portable toilets, so the festival overall felt about as congested as in past years. The smaller crowds were most notable during the day on the What stage, where the number of people hanging out on the field was less than normal.
- It was really hot this year. August hot. For some reason they want to limit RVs to 10 gallons of gas, which is not enough fuel to run a generator (and air conditioner) for four days. We brought in 17.5 gallons, which gave us a little to spare. We split the fuel up between a couple of vehicles so it wouldn’t be noticed.
- Halsey (image above) put on an energetic show Friday, getting into the crowd. Band of Horses under delivered, in my opinion, and Jason Isbell over delivered. As a side note, while Isbell’s wife Amanda Shires was performing during a Sunday Superjam, Isbell could be seen bouncing their baby on the side of the stage.
- We got into the pit for 8 performances on the What and Which stages. On the What stage I’m no longer going to stand in the crowd behind the pit. It’s just not enjoyable. Better to go back up the hill and put a blanket on the ground. The ability to get up so close for so many acts makes the ticket price a bargain.
- Pearl Jam’s Eddie Vedder stopped a few times during his set to share his thoughts about current events and politics. In this social media age it just sounded like he was reading some annoying Facebook posts. Thanks, Eddie for introducing angry, preachy politics into another aspect of my life.
Thursday, June 16, 2016
Starbucks Corp. [has] $1.2 billion loaded onto Starbucks cards and the Starbucks mobile app as of the first quarter of 2016, according to the data. This money can be used to purchase items including drinks, food and other merchandise.
Wednesday, June 08, 2016
- Although reserved, people in the street were friendly and willing to meet our gaze and return a smile.
- Traditional German food in Huntsville seems just as good as in Bavaria. Perhaps traditional German food travels better than other ethnic dishes. Or maybe Huntsville restaurants do a better than average job of presenting it (Huntsville has a lot of traditional German restaurants due to the large number of German scientists who emigrated there following WWII).
- On the shelf in a grocery store: Mississippi Barbecue Sauce. For those of us from the U.S., Texas would be a more obvious branding choice, or even Tennessee if you wanted something related to the deep south.
- We were made a couple of times to feel a little foolish for asking questions in a store, compared to Alabama where the clerks would have apologized to us. “Do you have this in blue?” Germany: “If we had it in blue it would be on the shelf.” Alabama: “I’m sorry, we only have it in orange.”
- The Munich subway works on the honor system. Although we didn’t experience it, there are regular control events when riders are checked and heavy fines issued for not having a ticket. As an observer it’s nearly impossible to tell how well this works. But Germans seem to be rule followers in general. And Googling indicates illegal ridership is pretty low.
- You are expected you to know how things work or at least to read the signs. In short, they expect you to act like adults. I didn’t see anyone paid to simply stand around telling people which line to get into, as I immediately experienced upon returning to the United States.
Sunday, June 05, 2016
- Salzburg is a surprisingly small city. It has a population of less than 150,000 and is smaller than Huntsville, Alabama, which has a population closer to 190,000.
- It always amazes me in European cities how tourists cluster around just a couple of sites. Mozart’s birthplace, for instance. Yet go just two or three blocks and it feels like you have the place to yourself.
- Mozart takes precedence over The Sound of Music around the city. This surely reflects the former’s global appeal and the later’s appeal primarily to U.S. tourists.
- There are a lot of U.S. tourists. Maybe even primarily U.S. tourists. And not as many British tourists as I expected.
- Everyone speaks English. Even those who profess not to.
- In the U.S. it’s very easy to buy a very bad beer. In Salzburg it may be impossible. But with the growth of craft beers, the United States now produces some very good beer on par with Bavaria. There are now, for instance, nine breweries in and around Huntsville, Alabama, offering a wider variety of styles than is available in Salzburg.
- Salzburg is a very comfortable city to visit and navigate as a US visitor.
- There is a noticeable Italian influence on the city, which makes sense due to proximity, but it surprised me nonetheless.
Thursday, May 19, 2016
I created this piece of pop art circa 1979 for a school assignment. In the 1970s featuring cigarettes in a middle school assignment was completely acceptable.
Wednesday, May 18, 2016
During the Olympics in Atlanta, and following the bombing in Centennial Olympic Park, my wife and I were among spectators made to stand in huge crowds outside of venues while the buildings were swept for explosives. While this exercise may have guaranteed the safety of the facilities it did nothing to protect those of us huddle in large, vulnerable crowds outside.
Friday, May 13, 2016
Warren Dunes State Park on the shore of Lake Michigan. May 8, 2016.
Thursday, April 28, 2016
I installed the RainMachine Mini-8 on my home sprinkler system this morning. It was one of the easiest home improvement/tech projects I’ve ever done.
Friday, January 01, 2016
This is a complete list of the book I finished in 2015 and my Goodreads rating. I read 102 books this year. My goal was 80, but once I was underway I picked up some steam and got to more than 100. All of the 4 and 5 star books are highly recommended.
Friday, February 13, 2015
Street photographer Matt Weber spent three decades documenting life in New York City. He started by pointing his lens out of his cab window and in the years since he walked the streets catching poignant images of the city’s inhabitants.
Saturday, July 19, 2014
My new cover photo is of Independence Day fireworks on the Outer Banks of North Carolina. July 4, 2013.
Thursday, July 17, 2014
Despite containing many excellent films, it is often difficult to find anything to watch on Netflix. The tools available on the site don’t make it easy to discover the many wonderful movies hidden within its catalog.
Tuesday, May 13, 2014
A 24-year-old former wedding photographer is now running Lonely Planet, the world’s largest publisher of travel guides.
Sunday, May 11, 2014
My new cover photo is of the 1975 Wide World of Sports Superteams tug-of-war competition. The Pittsburgh Steelers and the Minnesota Vikings met on Waikiki Beach for the showdown. Keith Jackson and O.J. Simpson hosted the show and are talking in the center of the image. My father took the photo.
Saturday, May 10, 2014
If you use VueScan as your negative scanning software – and you should – you will have seen an option on the Color tab to select a negative vendor, brand and type. It’s almost always easy to figure out the vendor (Fuji, for instance). But the brand and type are not always obvious (something like Super G second generation 400 speed).
Monday, January 20, 2014
There are a number of new blogging platforms that make it easy to publish content stored in a online file service, such as Dropbox, as a blog or web site. For the most part editing is done using Mark Down, so no HTML knowledge is necessary. One of the advantages of this method of publishing is you control all of your content in your account and it is very simple to get a new site up and running. Because the sites use mark down, any files you create for one platform can easily be moved to a new platform for publishing.
Wednesday, May 15, 2013
The cost of a new FujiFilm X100 last year was $1299, but now they’re available for less than $700 on the used market. With the release of the updated X100s a couple of months ago the X100 became yesterday’s technology and used prices dropped accordingly.
Thursday, April 18, 2013
The topic of 35mm film scanners comes up occasionally around the office and in correspondence with Shorpy and Vintagraph readers. The email I receive generally comes from individuals looking for a recommendation of a scanner to archive family photos. Because everyone’s needs and budget are different it’s not easy to make a general recommendation.
Tuesday, April 02, 2013
Where Ochlockonee Bay meets Apalachee Bay in the Florida panhandle sits the secluded Bald Point peninsula, an area of scrub oak, pine trees, marshes and white sand beaches. Most of the peninsula is occupied by Bald Point State Park, with a few beachside homes and rental properties scattered along the shore. We made a Spring Break trip there because dogs are allowed on the non-State Park beaches of Bald Point and Alligator Point.
Thursday, March 14, 2013
Google announced yesterday that it will shut down Reader on July 1. It’s hard to believe it only launched in 2005. It feels like I’ve been dependent on it for much longer. The majority of my browsing begins either directly in Reader or on services supported by Reader. Google created the best RSS reader available and topped all competitors. I will miss it.
Wednesday, June 27, 2012
My wife and I were skiing at Purgatory in 1994 and rode the Durango & Silverton Railroad as a side trip. It’s well worth doing if you’re in that part of the country, particularly during the winter. The views of snow-covered mountains can’t be beat.This image is from a new scan from a 35mm photo taken during the trip. I was worried about how the scans would look, but I’m very happy with the results.
Monday, June 25, 2012
I moved Vintagraph to a new backend over the weekend. It’s a big change for us as it takes us from a blogging platform to one designed specifically for storefronts.
Friday, June 15, 2012
Tuesday, August 23, 2011
I’ve made a few design changes to Madison Pike to give it a cleaner Dave Winer-like “River of News” appearance. The site is a news aggregator for Madison, Alabama and the new design cuts out extraneous design elements and does away with the larger blog-style headlines in favor of headlines nested within the paragraphs. I started with Automatic’s relatively new P2 WordPress theme and made a few modifications, including using Google Web Fonts for the masthead.
Saturday, April 23, 2011
So, am I technically photo bombing her? Magic Kingdom, Florida.
Thursday, April 21, 2011
I traveled to Orlando this past weekend as chaperon with my daughter’s high school choir. I took this photo of a tired man at dusk at the Magic Kingdom. By this point in the day I felt like he looks.
Tuesday, April 12, 2011
Painters on the steeple at First United Methodist Church in Huntsville, Alabama.
Friday, January 14, 2011
On Monday, while it was still snowing in Madison, we decided to walk from our neighborhood down to a nearby shopping center. For part of the walk we were shadowed by another adventurous soul. There were not many people out that day and we saw very few drivers on the road. The snowfall of about 8″ was enough to shut the city down for several days and keep the kids out of school for the entire week.
Tuesday, December 14, 2010
Thursday, November 18, 2010
I ran across this guy trying to climb a palm tree on the University of Florida campus last Saturday. He was actually making a good go of it, but finally had to give up and drop to the ground. It turns out he was trying to retrieve a football and shoe from the branches. His buddy started hurling his remaining shoe to try to dislodge the other two. When we walked by later the tree was empty, so they figured something out.
Thursday, September 30, 2010
Wednesday, September 29, 2010
Monday, September 27, 2010
Friday, September 24, 2010
While things are fresh in my mind, and because I told a few people I would, I have jotted down some notes I took away from WordCamp Birmingham last weekend. I had intended to make one post, but after getting into it I saw it would be more useful if broken up into several posts. First I’d like to congratulate the organizers on a first-rate event and point out the event was worth many times the $40 it cost me to attend.These notes are simply things that were new or important to me and do not begin to cover all of the information offered. I’d recommend watching the SlideShare presentations for more details. Today I’ve including my notes for improving site performance. I’ll follow up with posts on web typography, marketing for bloggers and finally a collection of useful links I jotted down.
Tuesday, August 17, 2010
I think I may have killed my beloved VAIO laptop. Yesterday afternoon I tried adding a external monitor to extend my desktop, but after rebooting neither the laptop monitor nor the external monitor would work. After spending a good part of the day futzing with it, I have come to the conclusion that I somehow damaged the graphics card.
Wednesday, August 11, 2010
The most useful thing I read today:
Monday, July 26, 2010
Thursday, July 22, 2010
Tuesday, June 08, 2010
Thursday, April 22, 2010
Best thing I read today:
Wednesday, February 17, 2010
I got back from 4-day trip to Ohio this week and immediately started work on a hyper-local news blog, Madison Pike. Setting up aggregation of local news sources was easy. I also located a WordPress plugin that lets me easily turn any post into a calendar event. So by pulling in a feed of city hall news items, for example, I can immediately turn their announcement of a commission meeting into a calendar event. Slick. But trying to pull in other local resources it turning out to be more of a challenge.
Thursday, February 04, 2010
I spent a lot of time yesterday and today upgrading the look of the print order forms and shopping carts on Vintagraph and Shorpy. The old design looked clunky and had a very 1999 feel to it. It was basic html and lacked the appeal of most modern web stores.
Tuesday, February 02, 2010
What started out as a novelty from a couple of visitors to Shorpy has grown into a rather large collection of colorized photos. We now have 96 photos in the gallery and a few more in the wings waiting to be posted. It’s interesting that the first few colorized photos that were shared on the site inspired a number of other people to start taking a crack at it. The quality varies, but a number are quite well done. The comments on a few of the photos have also become heated as people attack or defend the practice of altering historic images. The consensus seems to be, “let people have some fun.”
Sunday, January 31, 2010
The NPAA Cost of Doing Business Calculator. Targeted at photographers, but useful for any small business owner.
Monday, August 24, 2009
The interior of the old Post Office in Sprott, Alabama, made famous by Walker Evans. It’s now an antique store.
Friday, August 01, 2008
PollDaddy: Create online surveys and polls.
Friday, July 11, 2008
Tuesday, July 01, 2008
TrueCrypt: Free open-source data encryption software.
Monday, June 30, 2008
Tuesday, June 24, 2008
SafeManuals.com: Find user guides, instruction manual and owner manual for a large assortment of electronics and gadgets.
Monday, June 23, 2008
The 25 Best High-Tech Pranks: Don’t be fooled again.
Thursday, June 19, 2008
Blogopticon: Blogging scatter plot.
Tuesday, June 10, 2008