Red Paint Blog

Long time no see

Hey guys,

I know,  I know. It’s been forever. Sorry. I’m going to try and fix that going forward.

Wow… time flies!

I thought that it had been maybe 2-3 months since I posted here. 

Turns out its practically a full year!

I’m going to try and post on here more often going forward. 

 

In the mean time, happy Star Wars Day (May the Fourth) on Sunday and don’t forget your mom the week after.

Boot-to-Desktop and Start Button Coming to Windows 8

Jay:

Soooo…. Windows 8.1 = Windows 7.

Gotcha.

Originally posted on Tech:

When it comes to Windows sources, Paul Thurrott is about as solid as they get. On his SuperSite for Windows, Thurrott has just confirmed that the next big update to Windows 8 — known as Windows 8.1 or “Blue” — will contain two major features that users have been asking for.

First, the Start button will return to Windows 8’s Desktop mode. Says Thurrott: “When you hover over [the] Start button, the button changes color, with a black background and the accent color used on the flag logo. Yes, it looks exactly like the Start Charm, with similar animations.”

If you’re expecting the resurrected Start button to itself resurrect the tried and true Start menu found in Windows 7 and several Windows versions before it, there have been no indications that the Windows 8 Start button will launch anything but Windows 8’s “Modern” (formerly “Metro”) tiled interface, at which point…

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No IPO hints as Twitter’s Costolo focuses on simplicity and security

Jay:

It actually surprised me that Twitter hasn’t already had an IPO. If FB got BIGMONEY then Twitter should get HUUGGEMONEY. There are people that live on Twitter but only drop into FB once a day.

Originally posted on Gigaom:

Now that it’s been a year since Facebook went public, the next big IPO circus is likely to involve Twitter. CEO Dick Costolo — as expected — didn’t announce concrete plans for such an IPO Wednesday during his appearance at D11, but held forth on a number of interesting topics during his session.

Advertising seems to be booming at Twitter (although Costolo wouldn’t share any numbers) but while Twitter is working more and more with traditional media companies, it doesn’t see the need as of yet to start creating its own news content, Costolo said.

“I see us partnering more with news organizations,” he said. He thinks of Twitter as a tool for news organizations and individuals to distribute content and while it’s messy at times, Costolo doesn’t seem to think that Twitter has a responsibility to verify the content itself; it does, however, want to help news…

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Apple Opening Up iOS: Four Ways It Might Happen

Jay:

Shocking. The most anti-open platform entity in the universe may open their platform.

Originally posted on Tech:

Apple CEO Tim Cook didn’t divulge any secrets during his question and answer session at the D11 conference on Tuesday, but he did reveal one interesting nugget about a change in the company’s thinking.

In response to a question from AllThingsD’s Walt Mossberg about Apple’s tight control over iOS, Cook suggested that Apple may let apps do more on the iPhone and iPad than they’ve been allowed to in the past.

“I think you will see us open up more in the future,” Cook said, “but not to the degree that we put the customer at risk of having a bad experience.”

Cook did note that Apple walks a fine line, and doesn’t want to make customers dig deep into the settings. “The customer pays us to make certain choices on their behalf,” he said. “But will we open up more? Yes.”

So what could Apple, realistically, open up…

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Jay:

This post has NOTHING to do with what this blog is all about, but it gives me the excuse to ask “WHY are they removing one of the original Olympic sports?” Original as in ANCIENT Olympics. If you say the word “Olympics” you mentally picture either a 100 Meter sprint or a wrestling mat. This is just insane, especially since it seems it’s being replaced by Field Hockey.

Originally posted on Jimmy J. Pack Jr.:

Today the International Olympic Committee announced that it was going to be removing wrestling from it’s list of competitive sports for the 2020 Olympics. When you look at the make-up of the IOC, it is not surprising that of all sports wrestling was the event that was dropped. Not because it wasn’t popular, but because the majority of IOC members come from nations that have either never or have no chance of producing a winning wrestling team.

When you read through the tally of nations who have won wrestling events in the Olympics, as well as other international wrestling competitions, the same nations have performed consistently, producing skilled athletes who have focused their time and energy, lost blood, and abused their bodies on a daily basis—most of them since childhood. The former Soviet Union was a powerhouse in the sport for decades, with the USSR’s former republics/nations still leading the…

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Jay:

I’m shocked that it’s taken this long for this to happen.

Originally posted on Gigaom:

Kickstarter has been a huge booster for the iOS device ecosystem, and now it’s joining it. On Thursday, the crowdfunding company announced its first iOS(s AAPL) app, for the iPhone and iPod touch. It’s free and on the App Store now.

On the Kickstarter company blog, the site’s three co-founders said when translating the Kickstarter web site to a smaller screen they decided to highlight three specific aspects of the service: searching for new projects, keeping up to date with the ones you are backing, and tools for project creators.

The app includes some handy mobile features, like push notifications for backers to let you know if Facebook friends have backed any of the same projects as you. For creators, there’s an option to turn on notifications so they can see new pledges in real-time. They also get a project dashboard and the ability to take photos and…

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Jay:

Here’s my thoughts:

I haven’t worn a watch in years because I spend 14 hours a day at a keyboard and the banging drives me nuts. So why would I want to buy something else that I would just end up sticking in my pocket?

I spend good money to wear contacts so I can ditch the glasses. Why would I voluntarily go back to them?

Originally posted on PandoDaily:

800px-Pebble_watch_word_clock_4The battle for the future of computing is no longer a contest between tablets and PCs. Wearable computing is the hot new category, with startups like Pebble introducing “smart” watches while Apple reportedly tests a similar device (which former PandoDaily staffer Greg Kumparak asked for way back in August) in Jony Ive’s dungeon its Cupertino headquarters and Google prepares its own “smart” glasses. Wearable computing in general, and smartwatches in particular, could be, as The Verge’s Chris Ziegler writes, “the Next Big Thing in consumer tech.”

The New York Times’ Nick Bilton, who reported last week that Apple is testing a smartwatch (playfully dubbed the iWatch) with a “curved-glass” display, argues that Apple will launch a smartwatch instead of smart glasses because the wrist isn’t as “scary” as the brow. Bilton compares Apple’s approach to its iterative changes to its trackpads, writing:

Apple will do the…

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My Mantra: “Think loud.”

My career began in earnest during the days of the “dot.com bust”.  Of course, I held numerous jobs before then, including stints in a major lab’s accounting department and at Time Warner, but these were simply means to earning money while in school. I count my actual career as starting after graduating with my MBA and moving to Atlanta the next day.

My first real position was with a small web shop start-up that was managed by a couple of guys who had a rich friend that wanted to get in on this new-fangled “Internet fad”. Looking back, it was amazing how unorganized and amateurish the place was. I got the gig not because of my MBA or because of my fairly impressive school portfolio but instead because I was really good at Power Point. I later learned that this was because their “proposals” were actually printed Power Point presentations with pages of org charts reflecting the navigation of the proposed web site and a last page featuring an itemized list of costs.

Their typical customer was a local artist who had a small business selling hand-painted tiles for people looking for a custom kitchen. That is, until the day that they somehow got an inside track for the website for a globally known manufacturer of watches. I have no idea what contacts they had that gave them this shot, but the watch maker made it clear that if the proposal was solid and they came up with an interesting slant on the site that this little Atlanta web shop would get an honest shot at the project.

The boss brought me into the conference room, explained the situation in less than three minutes, told me to come up with something brilliant and then stood up. Before leaving, he unwittingly gave me the mantra for my career from that point on. He dropped a handful of whiteboard markers on the table, turned and; on the way out the door; smacked the board and said:

 “Think loud.”

Over the next two hours I stood at that board, scribbling whatever crossed my mind. A lot of it was obvious or just crap but I tried to make a direct connection from my brain to my hand. Finally, I came up with half of a great idea. I couldn’t come up with the other half no matter what I tried. However, when I stepped back I noticed something that I had scribbled an hour ago and it was like clicking a seat belt. I swear I heard a “click” somewhere in the room. I had scribbled a note that was the perfect other half and had no idea until I stepped back and looked at the whole board.

I circled both parts in red and then went to grab the boss. He stood in front of this 28 square feet of Neolithic cave paintings as I explained the concept. He then pointed at another scrawl and asked about it. I explained what I had been thinking. He asked me another follow-up question and I realized what he was driving at. One simple change and another “click”. The seat belt now had a third strap, a shoulder strap if you will.

The small fry Atlanta web firm got the project and it served to double the amount of staff from two coders to four. Two years later, long after I had moved on, the company went under. It was a good first job out of college, but the take-away for me was those two words:

“Think loud.”

From that day to this I have always had a whiteboard in my office and a stack of blank 11” x 16” paper in my bag. Whenever I get a new project my first hour or day or week is spent standing at that old reliable friend, trying to make the connection from brain to hand without edit. It’s never failed me. At times, the effect is almost mystical- like I’m standing there wondering what revelation is going to appear on the board next. A famous author once said that he has moments like that at his typewriter, that he’s reading the novel as it appears on the page and thinking “I wonder what will happen next.” I totally understand that sensation.

I’ve looked for software that would let me do this on screen for years with no success. I’m an expert at Visio and I’ve tried a dozen “mind mapping” or other such software packages to no avail. The problem is that you can’t go from brain to hand when a software application is involved because your brain is forced to manipulate the UI of the application, breaking the circuit. So, for now I’ve got a large collection of snapshots taken of cluttered whiteboards and scribbled ledger paper.

Sadly, I don’t even remember the name of the boss at that little web shop, but I’m still grateful for my mantra…

 “Think loud.” 

 

FOLLOW UP:

After I hit “Publish” for this piece, WP displayed the following quote by Isaac Asimov: “Writing, to me, is simply thinking through my fingers.”

Rarely is life so perfect.

A new computer that defies category – Computerworld

A new computer that defies category – Computerworld.

Wow… if this is real and not just vaporware it is going to be incredible.

The device will run Android OS Jelly Bean, have 8GB of memory to support applications, music, video and presentations, and a microSD slot up to 32GB of storage.”

That is more RAM than is on the work-supplied Dell I’m currently typing on.

Under a $100 is amazing.

I’m going to keep a close eye out for this one…

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