Tuesday, April 27, 2004
All in the family at work
This week, I'm finishing up around 30 customized office nameplates for our group at work which incorporate a creative portrait photo or illustration along with a favorite quote. Shown here are Amy's and mine. Yes, we have the same title and room number because, in case you haven't been following along here, I am doing her job of managing her team of eight web developers and designers while she is out on maternity leave.
My tenure has worked out very well so everyone says, and it's been great working on the major redesign of the AARP.org site and collaborating with the MIT Media Lab. Amy returns May 19th, but predictably, I am burrowed into several projects and will continue to stay on as a consultant for another six months to a year. I'll be moved to an office somewhere else in the building as our group is out of space.
We're refining our daycare plans right now since we're both going to be commuting to AARP's D.C. headquarters on weekdays. Baby Cianna has made several visits to the office, and last time she tried her mommy's chair for size. Naturally, the drippingly cute photo I took made it into the company newsletter. Click on the thumbnail at right to view a large version. Seeing our baby girl in the context of where we work causes me to ruminate about what the world of 2053 will be like when she becomes a member of AARP.
Monday, April 26, 2004
18 months of phone cam photos
With the help of a special query to the hiptop Nation database, I was able to back up over 18 months of moblog posts and phone cam photos to my local hard drive by simply loading everything into a single Netscape window and saving the page. I haven't gone back and read all the text yet, but here are some stats and facts on the images:
- Date range: 10/14/02 - 4/25/04
- 557 moblog posts
- 1715 low-resolution JPEG images totaling 21 megabytes
- Currently loads on hiptop Nation as 28 archive pages
- Used two different Danger Hiptop/Sidekick devices and three camera modules
- Posted from the cities of Baltimore, Washington, D.C., New York City, Chicago, Boston, Portland, Austin and more
- Transmitted posts from commuter trains, airplanes, ferry boats, subways, taxis, a moving sidewalk and the gondola of a helium balloon
- 58 photos showing myself (more than I thought)
- 53 photos showing my wife
- 106 photos showing my baby daughter
- 24 photos showing my dog
With all the photos on my local hard drive, I was able to dump them into my iView image catalog utility to create a big thumbnail sheet. You can see the 1200 x 5500 pixel, 1.2 mb image in a pop-up window by clicking on the image above.
Rendered this way, my reaction was that 1715 images didn't look like a lot. Later this year, I'd like to pump another back up of these images into a photomosaic program to generate some Rob Silvers-style artwork.
I think I can sustain a decent rate of 3-4 photo-illustrated moblog posts a week for a long time, and though I'm really interested in the Treo 600 series, I'll likely switch to the next version of the Danger Hiptop when it is released.
I'm going to spend some quality time in the coming days reflecting on this tapestry of moblog posts and images. It was the best 18 months of my life.
Sunday, April 25, 2004
Cianna meets the Mayor
Baby Cianna met Baltimore's Mayor Martin O'Malley today at the Hopkins Spring Fair. The Mayor's celtic rock band, O'Malley's March, was winding down the three-day festival this afternoon on the stage in front of Shriver Hall. Cianna had just come out of a nap and wasn't as flirty as usual, but mamma and her sisters picked up the slack in admiring the Mayor's biceps. This is baby's first celebrity meeting since her third trimester encounter with a Blue Man in Chicago.
Sunday, April 18, 2004
A slice of springtime light from our morning brunch at Helen's Garden Restaurant.
Sunday, April 11, 2004
Brown is beautiful
Dainah confidently rules the composition of this photograph we made this weekend at our first photo session. Once again, my camera and I are humbled.
Thursday, April 08, 2004
I just had to post this DAMN cute image of our four-month-old daughter Cianna taken after my photo session with Jessica.
A month ago at the beach, my mother-in-law Kathy made the signature blue denim hat photo of Cianna, which I made into little gift cards and refrigerator magnets. Click on the thumbnail to view larger.
Light on Jessica
Two Saturdays ago, Amy, Cianna and I met up with our friend Jessica at the Octagon Building to photograph her in a 40s-style dress. It was an overcast day and all of my images were bathed in a pleasant white wash of light. But late in the afternoon, magic hour, the hour before sunset that produces an intense golden light, released a few minutes of rays to produce the dramatic image in this post. There's also a glamorous glow radiating from Jessica herself.
Tuesday, April 06, 2004
Today is going to be a day of public speaking for me with a panel discussion at AARP National Headquarters (where I work) in the morning, and guest lecture tonight at the University of Baltimore. I'll break from the normal train trudge and drive down to DC and back.
In the morning, I'm participating in an Older Wiser Wired panel discussion on the Politics of User Centered Design. I join a distingushed roster of panelists for 90 minutes starting at 10am to talk about ways to simplify office politics while keeping the user's needs and preferences front and center to deliver the best possible web designs. I'll draw from last year's odyssey on Wall Street where I jumpstarted the user-centered design process at a Fortune 10, as well as a series of prior engagements at an e-services firm, a couple dot-coms, and a variety of clients.
Later in the afternoon, I'll cruise back to Baltimore to speak on the topic of blogging to Amy Pointer's MFA Electronic Publishing class at the University of Baltimore. I'll informally present on the experiences of maintaining this blog for three years, moblogging to hiptop Nation, and my recent visits to the MIT Media Lab's Physical Language Workshop, where I'm testing out Treehouse Studio, an online art creation and collaboration platform.
All this outreach, along with Lunch 'n Learn sessions I've been doing at work, have got me hankering to teach in the classroom again. But between work, family, and personal photography projects, I'm not sure how the necessary extra time will appear.