June 2007

So, I’m playing with these SEO tools (jux2 is one) and did a search for alisonchilla. MSN yielded some weird results, including the infamous TuND! In fact, the TuND link that came up was the announcement for the Tuesday Night Dinner just before my adventures in South America. Proof (as if you needed any) that anything that goes up on the internet never really dies …

Speaking of weird results with MSN Live search — where the heck am I? I show up in the results for “Alison Chandler” but only for my Burning Man photos. Odd. It’s like Microsoft isn’t even trying. I mean, I own “alisonchandler.com” for pity’s sake.

AltaVista turned up this gem:
Alison Chandler: 1 x IEWA Women’s Intercontinental Champion (September 25th, 1998 – October 19th, 1998). Watch out! I may finish you with a cobra clutch followed by a leg scissors! GRRRRR!!!

Lightbox for WordPress http://www.4mj.it/lightbox-js-v20-wordpress/

Click on the thumbnail to see the larger image. So slick.
cactus flower

Through BoingBoing I learned of mynameisbill.com, in which Bill Bowles video blogs his travels across the planet. I’m entertained, and so, so jealous. High production quality, amusing host, fascinating tidbits. Go see it.

I’ve also recently discovered the website, Mashable (I’m behind the times, I know). There were three recent fabulous posts you may find helpful. One on travel websites, one on photography resources, and one on blogging tools.

One of the photo websites mentioned at Mashable was Retrievr which tries to find photos that match your sketches. More fun than functional, I got something that was a reasonable resemblance in about 5 minutes.

Doodle man on road with tree, results to the right

Retriever sketch



Close-up of best match. There’s no tree, but the subject, perspective, and color are otherwise there.

Flickr photo match

So there you go… Happy Timewasting!

I’ve considered Molly as a child’s name before. Apparently, it is not only a very white-sounding name (Alison’s in the list too), but it’s also a common name for cats and dogs. Arg.

Photos from the cabin are posted!

AAAAAaaaAAAA!!!I especially like this one of Michael.

There was drinking, fire, board games, lots o food, and the obligatory Saturday Night Charades.

Books: Disgrace J. M. Coetzee (well-written in simple prose — laden with symbolism — disturbing without being overly dramatic — I highly recommend it)

It’s been a long time since the last post here, mostly because I’ve been on business travel for the majority of May. I’ve been to New York, Toronto, and Indianapolis. In between, my mother came to visit on mother’s day. In total, I’ve seen three new babies. Bea Maynard, Zachary Beckman, and Colin Frantz. You know it’s 2007 when your friend sends the first picture of her son to you via her cell phone

on a related note, I added the video plug in to my Facebook profile today and uploaded this short video taken from IE cell phone while I was on a business trip in Toronto .
Elevator Music — who exactly thought this would be a good idea?

Oh, And I didn’t even mention that I was in Houston and Austin somewhere since the last post as well. when I was in Austin, I went to a film festival called Cine de las Americas and sat next to one of the directors of the film I watched, Hector Ulloque Franco. he’s a nice guy with an optimistic view for Bolivia’s future. His film was about the most recent presidential election in Bolivia, and the support the main candidate got from coca growers.

Hartos Evos Aqui Hay: Los Cocaleros de Chapare

Random ridiculous web stuff
I think we’re dead!” Cop caught smoking dope on 911 tape

Will it blend?
Can you turn a toilet flapper into a smoothie?

I’m embarrased to admit this, but for the past few years I’ve been actively tuning out media hype. This means I’ve been actively avoiding reading Harry Potter, didn’t make an effort to watch CNN , and avoided the local news broadcasts at any cost. If I had to hear one more story about how my toothbrush/refrigerator/skin lotion/whatever was going to endanger my health or harm me in some other way, my eyes would have rolled out of my head clear onto the floor. I HAVE been occasionally reading the WashingtonPost, and sometimes BBC news — supplemented, of course, by John Stewart and Stephen Colbert. (Along the same lines, I avoided learning about blogging for some time, simply because it had become suddenly trendy. ) Now that I’m back in the marketing business, I feel it is my duty to stay on top of what’s changing in this world. That, and I have this nagging voice telling me I’m being a bad citizen of the world by tuning out what’s going on around me –even if a lot of it is idiotic or depressing.

Along with the complete crap news about Paris Hilton and Lindsay Lohan and Britney Spears etc. etc. , I’ve been missing some good things. Harry Potter, it turns out , isn’t bad just because it has a fanatical following. OK, I’m probably the only person who has only read two books in the series, so maybe I’m not the best judge, but I found those two to be entertaining.

Anyhow, the point of all this is that now I’m trying to make an effort to stay up to date with the latest trends on the web. I’ve started watching YouTube, read BoingBoing daily, just set up a Facebook profile, am trying out the new Google analytics and am generally paying more attention to what’s going on with Microsoft, Google, Yahoo and things Web 2.0 (though that moniker still irks me — it’s more like a new era, not a version release)

and so, here are the things I’ve found new and interesting since I’ve started paying attention to the world again.

SpeedBit Video Accelerator
Well, duh, who doesn’t one to their YouTube video to download faster?

The interface is slick. They’re making some smart moves. Keep an eye on them. I think they’re going to get even bigger.

The World Is Flat
I bought this book finally. Will let you know how it is.

TED talks – some of the most engaging content on the web

Books: Burn by James Patrick Kelly, My Sister’s Keeper by Jodi Picoult, Nobody’s Fool by Richard Russo, works in progress by Nick I’llcompletelyspellyourlastnamewrong Tax
Magazines: Fast Company, Wired, Science, Rachel Ray Every Day
New to me music: Spoon, Ghostland Observatory, Leroy Justice, Ben Gibbard (live, with the most god-awful audience at the 9:30 club in DC)