Google, Get Your Act Together with Apps Accounts

If you’re not a geek like me, you may have missed Google’s announcement of their new email management tool, Inbox. As soon as I heard about it I signed up for an invite, and eagerly awaited my chance to try it. A way to manage my email that works like Google Now? Sign me up! A few days later, I got the email telling me it was my turn. Hooray! I downloaded the app, chose the account I wanted to use when it opened, and got slapped in the face with this message:

I'm Going to Defense Entrepreneurs Forum 2014

DEF 2014 banner

On Thursday I’m headed to Chicago for this year’s Defense Entrepreneurs Forum. It’s an opportunity for people, military and civilian alike, to come together to present and discuss ideas about how to improve the operations of the nation’s military through innovation. Okay, that sounds like a lot of PR and jargon. Basically, think of DEF as TED for the military. It’s a chance for smart people to share their good ideas about how to make our armed forces work better.

Short Blogging

Gina Trapani posted yesterday about the concept of short-form blogging, in conjunction with Andy Baio’s post on “middling”. Their conclusion (that short, to-the-point blog posts can be better) is one that I came to a while back as well, but I’ve done a poor job implementing it. I still get hung up on the need for blog posts to have lasting meaning, or make an impactful statement, or have measurable value to others.

What I'm Reading

Mall at University of Maryland

It’s been a while since I’ve done one of these, so I figured I’d have another go. 15 Lessons from 15 Years of Blogging Anil Dash, one of my favorite bloggers and all-around brilliant Internet statesman on the practicalities of blogging he’s learned over the years. Taken The insidious, and largely unknown, policy of civil forfeiture allows police departments to strip people of their property without due process. The Truth We Won’t Admit: Drinking Is Healthy

My WordPress/Known Dilemma

I’m a huge WordPress fan. that’s no secret. I’ve been using it since 2007 for pretty much every site (blog or otherwise) that I’ve built. I write plugins and themes for it. I’ve fully invested my personal website and blogging experience in the WordPress ecosystem. That’s why, when I learned about Known a couple of weeks ago, I found myself in a bit of a dilemma. Known seems to embody the same principles and goals as WordPress: federated content, control of what you publish, open source codebase, distributed community, the list goes on.

Elected Officials Should Talk About NFL Problems

Levi's Stadium

Like millions of other Americans, I am a fan of professional football. I’ve bought into the excitement and drama, and I ride the emotional roller coaster of watching every game my team plays. I’ve spent more money than I’d like to admit on being part of the football experience. It’s the only part of fall that doesn’t suck. In the past few years there have been a string of high-profile incidents regarding unethical, immoral, and in some cases illegal, conduct by NFL players.

Manhattan Boatlift

Manhattan Boatlift

On this 13th anniversary of the September 11 terrorist attacks, I’d like to share a story I learned about recently. During the course of that fateful day, boat captains from around New York harbor headed toward Manhattan to help however they could. Seeing the influx of volunteer boats and the number of people trying to get off the island, the Coast Guard organized what became the largest maritime rescue effort in history.

Millennials Bring a New Mentality: Are We Paying Attention?

Coast Guard Commandant with "the millenials"

The August 2014 issue of Proceedings contains an op-ed titled “Millennials Bring a New Mentality: Does it Fit?” written by a CDR Darcie Cunningham, USCG. She makes the argument that the Millennial generation doesn’t respect tradition and authority, is only willing to do the bare minimum required, expects constant praise and promotions on their own schedule, and generally need a course correction to fit inside the military structure. For a point-by-point analysis of her article, I suggest you read LT Matt Hipple’s fantastic post.

Too Soon

Nelson from the Simpsons

We’ve all heard it. Somebody makes a joke that riffs off a recent occurrence, and someone else says “too soon” to cover their offense at the joke and/or shame at laughing. I’m of the opinion that “too soon” isn’t a real thing. Something is either funny right away, or it’s never funny. When a person says a joke is “too soon” what they really mean is, “I’m offended but won’t admit it.

HBO Go: User Experience, You're Doing it Wrong

HBO Go on Android

I recently modified my Comcast subscription to add cable TV - almost entirely so I could get HBO. That of course means I have access to HBO Go, by far the most appealing addition as a result of the change. As soon as I was able, I signed into HBO Go on my phone and started watching The Newsroom (which I highly recommend, by the way). My excitement quickly waned the longer I dealt with HBO Go’s frustrating user experience.