When you comment on one of my blog posts, if you should ever do so, you’ll note that Echo is now enabled on this site. This video interview by Robert Scoble of Khris Loux the co-founder of JS-Kit will explain what Echo is and how it works.
It might be worth making a comment just to see how it works!
Twitter isn’t new. However I am new to Twitter, having only signed up since my return to Knoxville from Las Vegas, NM, in May. The video that follows gives a good overview of what it is and an explanation of how to begin using it.
How one uses this microblogging tool is left to your imagination. However, here’s an example that has occurred to me.
It seems to me that because there are a number of us who are concerned about any news of my 85 year-old Berlin friend Paul Moor as he recovers from his stroke, I could use a Twitter account to post the latest on his condition and activities. That is a much more sensible way to blog about how he is doing because 140 characters would ordinarily be more than enough to give a succinct report. And the available news at any one time isn’t usually sufficient for a blog post, though of course when it is, that medium, rather than Twitter, could be used. It seems like an ideal platform for this kind of use.
Do any of you know if one can set up a second Twitter account while you are logged into your current account?
Update: I have now created @FriendsofPaule on Twitter by using the Gmail “+” workaround. If you aren’t familiar with that workaround, see these instructions.
I spent 55 minutes of my early Saturday morning watching this video, laughing and sometimes being moved to tears, but overall feeling it was one of the best hours I’ve spent in a long time. Instead of watching some inane TV program, do yourself a favor and spend that hour watching this remarkable teacher.
When I first heard of Professor Wesch I posted this link to his “The Machine is Us/ing Us” and later to this five minute summary of the Information Revolution, either or both of which you might enjoy reviewing (they’re short) before watching the video below.
Thanks to Robert Scoble for tweeting the link to this presentation that follows.
I find it much easier to understand new products if I watch their introductory video. I’ve been doing a lot of that lately, so I thought I’d share a few of the ones that have impressed me. Such things as Dropbox, Evernote, Zotero, and the like make help make the job of assembling and collaborating on ideas a whole lot easier. As I can arrange it, I’ll add other similar videos here. It’s easier than writing lots of words.
Although I’ve been using Google Docs since it first came out, I’ve only recently reviewed this video. Life in the cloud appears to be approaching the realm of possibility for those eager to experience the frontier. The truth is, I’m seeing many reasons why having files available from anywhere, by those with access and when they are edited locally the product is updated globally. As I contemplate forming a small enterprise here, the whole Google apps concept appeals to me 1) because of its cost and 2) because of its universal availability and the control offered.
Check it out. If you have a Gmail account you automatically have a corresponding Google Docs account for the asking.
Jerry Pounds has tagged me to participate in the meme that he wrote about yesterday that he called “A Favorites List.” I received a phone call from him, in which he urged me to answer the same set of questions about myself that he answered, and I agreed. I don’t go looking for these meme-type blog entries as do some of my blogging acquaintances, like Tish who says she enjoys them, but since I don’t get many requests for specific posts here at my blog, I thought I’d comply with Jerry’s request. So hang onto your hat or hold your nose, whichever seems appropriate, because here are my answers.
Four jobs I’ve had in my life
- My first job out of High School was as a soda jerk in 1959 at Gene Duggar’s Dunair Pharmacy near the intersection of Memorial Drive and Indian Creek Drive in Dekalb County, Georgia. The pharmacy had a grill in addition to the soda fountain, so I cooked hamburgers as well as constructing such delights as banana splits and ice cream sodas and, most strenuous of all, hand-packing pints and quarts of ice cream. With the accumulated proceeds of my earnings from that summer, I purchased a desk from the Ivan Allen company in Atlanta that I have to this day, almost 50 years later.
- During my first year in college at Georgia Tech, I decided to enter the Baptist ministry, so I transferred to Mercer University where I encountered my second job. In 1962, I was called to serve a small rural church near Eatonton, GA, called the New Daniels Baptist Church, and a result I was ordained as a Baptist minister at that time. Carole and I married in August of 1962 while I was serving that church.
- After a time in the U. S. Navy and upon leaving the ministry, in 1966 I became a Vocational Rehabilitation Counselor for the State of Georgia which first gave me the chance to work at the Disability Determination Unit for Social Security and ultimately led me to work at the same Mental Health Facility (Georgia Regional Hospital at Atlanta) where I met Jerry and from which I got into consulting, because of my acquaintance with Dr. Aubrey Daniels.
- After the experience of being in on the birth of one consulting firm (Behavioral Systems, Inc.) and the demise of another (Vernine and Associates, Inc.) over the period of about 30 years of consulting, in 2000 I went to work for ClientLogic, a company that contracted with BellSouth to do technical support for their FastAccess Internet Service. This last occupation was one that finally allowed me to use my long-standing passion for computing technology (acquired my first PC in 1982) to help others with their computing issues and in the process to learn more about such technical things.
Four places I’ve lived
- My early life was spent in Stone Mountain and Clarkston, Georgia. These two towns are about 5 miles apart. I began school in Stone Mountain and finished school there, but between the 6th and 10th grades, I attended Clarkston’s schools.
- When I entered Mercer University, Carole and I moved to Macon, GA, and lived in a rickety garage apartment (it swayed when the wind blew) at 1361 Duncan Avenue for the last years of my college career and while I was serving the New Daniels Baptist Church as their pastor.
- While I was in the Navy, Carole and I lived on James Island in the Charleston, SC, area. We lived in a duplex at 451 Riverside Drive when our first son, Jeff, was born there on December 25, 1964.
- While with Behavioral Systems, Inc., and doing a contract with Cannon Mills, Carole and the family and I lived in Kannapolis, NC, just outside Charlotte.
- I’ve lived here in Knoxville, TN, since June of 1979, when I moved here to take a job with Vernine and Associates, Inc.
Four favorite foods
- As a small child I was given the nickname of “pie” by our neighbors the Lawson Jolly family because of my love of chocolate pie and I have been known in my own family for my love affair with Oreo cookies, so I suppose I’d have to confess that chocolate is one of my favorite foods. I’ve enjoyed it in all of its many manifestations at some point in my life. You could probably even say I’ve even built a monument to it along my 40 inch waistline.
- There are very few foods that I won’t eat and don’t enjoy, so almost any answer I give to this question would be truthful. For instance, I love a crisp, cold and juicy apple, and I often eat one of those (a Gala) for breakfast.
- My son Mike and I have lunch together each Friday and we’ve both found that we are very partial to a Japanese restaurant here called Shono’s where I have Fried Rice and Chicken with the zucchini and other steamed vegetables that accompany it.
- And while I like Italian food, old-time Southern cooking (Fried Chicken and a variety of fresh vegetables), Steaks and Seafood, too, I could very easily be happy as a vegetarian, which I have heard derives from a native American word meaning “lousy hunter.” I suspect we’d all be better off if we would be satisfied with mostly vegetables, fruits and nuts and very few meats.
Four places I’d rather be
- I can honestly say this is the hardest question on the list for me to answer because I can’t think of any place I’d rather be than where I am now. I can easily think of times in my life I’d rather be because of the innocence of them and the friends and relatives who were there then. And I can think of some positions I’d rather be in, for instance substantially wealthier, or ages I might like to be, but I am very satisfied with where I am, and I can recall very few times in my life when this was not the case.
- But to try, even if just allowing myself to fantasize about it, to answer this question, I think I would enjoy being on a white sand beach in the Caribbean with the warm breezes blowing and the waves lapping the beach with no one else in sight.
- I made a visit to Berlin to see Paul in 2003, and I had a taste of what was there to see. As is probably true whenever you visit some place far away, I had just enough time there to realize what to try to see on my “next” visit, so I suppose I could say accurately that I’d enjoy being in Berlin again while Paul is still living.
- And although I wouldn’t want to live there, I’ve always loved visiting San Francisco because the city is beautiful and I love the atmosphere of tolerance and acceptance that exists there.
Four movies I can watch over and over
- At the head of this list is “My Fair Lady.” This is perhaps my favorite movie of all time. I love the music, the performances, the story, the humor, and the lesson that it teaches.
- Another favorite of mine is “The Music Man.” Another musical (which is a genre of movie that I enjoy), but this one is a favorite because of the presence of The Buffalo Bills, and the performances of Robert Preston, Shirley Jones, Paul Ford, and Ron Howard.
- A non-musical favorite of mine that doesn’t get very good reviews from the critics is “Memories of Me” and another of Billy Crystal’s movies, “When Harry Met Sally.” Whether either of those are critical favorites, I enjoy them so the critics can just stuff it!
- To round out the four, I’d have to list “The Princess Bride” and “Raising Arizona.” Both of these comedies are a delight every time I watch them.
Four TV shows I like to watch
- Good Eats on the Food Network.
- Criminal Minds on CBS.
- 24 on Fox.
- Almost anything on PBS, but in particular Frontline, Nova, and America’s Test Kitchen.
Four web sites I view Daily
- For me this question is not very relevant, and here’s why. Every time I open my browser (Firefox) it opens two web sites. One is “It’s News to Me” which is of course my own blog and the other is Google Reader where I am subscribed to 70 different web sites’ RSS feeds. So I view the content from at least 70 web sites every day, though I may not visit those web sites each day. One beauty of reading an RSS feed is that you don’t have to go to the web site to see new content. When there is new content at a site, the content will “come to you” in your RSS reader.
- There are three web sites that I find particularly productive for my areas of interest though, so I’ll list them in response to this question. One is Web Worker Daily which on Labor Day celebrated it’s first anniversary. This site is a constant source of information about useful new tools or techniques on the web. Again, because I’m subscribed to the RSS feed for this site, I see any new posts made there when they occur.
- Another of those three that I find particularly well suited to my interests is a site called Windows Tips and Tricks which is a blog run by Vic Laurie that I discovered when I searched the web for the answer to a simple question I had about how to alphabetize the listing of All Programs in Windows XP. Vic describes himself as a retired Chemistry professor who has been using computers since 1956 and as someone who is active on Seniornet. I personally value finding someone nearer my age who is knowledgeable and attentive to what’s happening with computers.
- The final one of the three that I want to focus on is called MakeUseOf.com. This blog is a collaboration between two main authors, Aibek and Kaly, and a couple of other people who contribute articles from time to time. On the About page on the blog, Aibek summarizes the philosophy and approach of the site by saying, “On makeuseof we don?t write about any new web applications that comes around but only about ones that are COOL, FREE and USEFUL.” No matter what your level of technical sophistication, this site will point you to may sites and tools that you’ll find interesting and perhaps useful if you choose to explore them. Subscribing to this RSS feed and checking it out whenever there is new content, which is quite often, is an excellent use of my time.
So at long last we come to the end of my response to the meme that Jerry threw at me. He has one other section where he tags four other people, but since I treat incoming memes the same way I do incoming email chain letters, I’m not going to tag anyone else with this meme. If you are a blogger and feel inclined to join in, be my guest.
Now, Jerry, does that satisfy your curiosity?
Yesterday or the day before, I was tagged by Tish and invited to list 5 goals of mine. I must admit that I am more into pipe dreams and fairy tales than I am into goals. It’s a character flaw I suppose to be a dreamer rather than a planner. When my friend Jerry recently made some very kind remarks about me in which he said,
Perry is one of the smartest guys I know. Why aint he rich? If there was a necessary relationship between intelligence and wealth, Perry would be cruising the Caribbean in his yacht.
… it caused me to realize that the answer to his question “Why aint he rich?” is very much related to my being a dreamer rather than a planner. Assuming what Jerry says is true about my intelligence, which I really think is subject to question, I would guess that while intelligence may be a necessary condition to being wealthy, it isn’t a sufficient one.
But I digress and am obviously avoiding addressing Tish’s question about my 5 goals. So, biting the bullet, here goes.
- The first that comes to mind is the Moses Dunston goal. Moses used to say “Any day above ground is a good day.” I hope to complete this day and begin the next “above ground.”
- Another is to help my friends Paul Moor and Tucker Childers increase their blogs’ visibility and readership.
- Then I’d like to see my youngest grandchild Connor reach his 21st birthday on May 1, 2026. On that day, I’ll be 84 years old, presuming I am still “above ground.”
- One I’m almost sure to achieve is to stay engaged with and enthusiastic about technology as long as I live. I once said I’d almost be willing, if it were possible, to be placed in suspended animation just to see the advances in telephone technology a hundred years from now. I find such things as that fascinating. I hope to keep learning about them as long as I live.
- Lastly, I hope to get the carpet, that I already own thanks to my son Jeff, installed in my house so that I can once again walk barefooted around my house. I moved into this condo in 1984, and in 1987 my two dogs, Rocky and Bruno, joined my family. They were a beloved but destructive part of my household, so once they had gone on to doggy heaven after 14 years with me, my sons and I pulled up the trashed carpeting that was their legacy. My floors have been bare since that time. I think I may be able to achieve this goal in the next few weeks.
This exercise of struggling to think of any goals I have is enlightening. It helps me understand why I have achieved so little of any real significance in my life. I’m not sure I like what it reveals, but dissatisfaction with what I see when I look at myself could become a beginning point for changing things.