Tag Archives: personal

Hustle in 2013 and CES Plans

I’ve been looking forward to 2013 for quite some time both personally and professionally.  Personally, my kids are a bit older and it’s easier to do things with them.  Now two and four years of age, they are young and eager to take on many challenges except of course, eat broccoli or string beans.  Professionally, the market has been catching up to what we have been talking about and executing on at the agency which has translated with growth.

I’ve sacrificed much of my blog posts for personal time at home with the family which I think has been a very worthy trade off.  I do miss blogging often and getting consistent feedback from all of you so hopefully I’ll be typing more in 2013 and fit blogging back into my schedule.

Next week, I will be at the Consumer Electronics Show for the first few days.  Not sure if you will be there but if so, get in touch and we’ll try to hook up.

Hope 2013 is filled with hustle, excitement and health for you.

Happy new year.

 

The Personal CTO

I think society is trained to equate CTO (Chief Technology Officer) with the formal corporation.  In many corporations, CTO’s are certainly needed and they play a vital role.

In your personal life (outside the office), who is your CTO?   In many cases, the CTO is yourself or a trusted friend.   Choosing technology is almost a self service ritual around research on sites like cnet, gdgt, google, tekzilla, and others to help you make decisions.  The amount of time you have to research your technology challenge determines what sources you use and the quantity of them.

But what if you didn’t want to use self-service to find technology recommendations/answers?  Can you call Ghostbusters, err, a personal CTO to help you make decisions?  As personal technology expenditures rise, I’d imagine that people would invest more time (and money) into the decision making process.

iPad Review: thumbs, screen, interface

iPad I’m probably a few weeks late for this review but thought I’d toss one out into cyberspace anyway.  Let me start out by saying that I absolutely love the vision of Apple and this product has the potential to create a new usage occasion.

To keep it short and brief, here are my thoughts:

Dislikes:  the typing experience.  I think the keyboard on the iPhone is much easier to use then the iPad in terms of spatial portions.  When in portrait mode or even landscape, it just doesn’t feel right when you type.  Not a fan.  Additionally, I think I should have waited until either the 3G version hits the stores or until there is ubiquitous wifi.   The iPad works perfectly in the office (b/c of wifi) but once I take it outside, the functionality becomes limited.

Example:  I have been bringing the iPad onto the train in the morning and evenings during my commute and have been catching up on RSS Feeds.  I haven’t done this in over a year!  While I am excited that I can read the feeds in transit on a great screen, I cannot comment on them nor read anyone else’s comments.  The lack of connectivity gives this iPad more of an iPod Touch feel.

Likes:  ability to take the web with me wherever I want without the hassle of having a laptop.  I’m thinking that if this had a better typing experience, this would be the ideal travel computer for airplanes.  If you do not have a Netbook and are trying to use a full size laptop on airplanes these days, it’s tough because of limited space.  The iPad is a perfect solve for that… but typing again, is a pain.

Overall, I love the experience and the product.  I think the 3G version probably is a better product due to mobility outside of Wifi zones for the person who wants to stay connected.

An Analog 72 Hours

For the past 72 hours, I’ve been forced offline due to the powerful storm that ripped across the Northeast.   For those who are writing this off as just another snow storm, it might have been in your neck of the woods but where my family is located, we were hit with over 30″ of snow, down trees in our yard, and powerlines down on both sides of our street which prohibited us from leaving our home until they were fixed and deemed safe.

It all started on Thursday afternoon when I was in my office in Manhattan and received a call from my wife who said that the power had flickered a few times as the snow was falling.  Thinking that this was typical of what happens by us during any significant storm, I wrote it off.

Without going into too much detail, the storm took our power at around 8:45pm on Thursday evening, right as I was in my office at home working on some documents (unluckily for me, I can’t retrieve them).  Without power doesn’t just mean no computer usage, but also no recharging of electronics.  Big issue.

Over the next 18 hours, we were literally stranded in our own home because we couldn’t leave our development due to down powerlines and trees.  Our village that we live in was called into a State of Emergency and all roads were closed.  Yes, this really happened.

I went on a reconnaissance mission using our SUV and was able to clear out a path to actually leave the area so I onboarded the wife & kid and we headed out to my folks a few towns over (20 mins away) for the past 36 hours and luckily, they had power.

The snow was so deep, that making snow forts was easy and abundant!

A few things that stuck out:

  • We rely so heavily on electronics (computers, iPhones, Blackberrys, Kindles, Nook’s, etc).  At times when there is no connectivity, how are we supposed to recharge?
  • Even if computers are charged up, unless there is cellular or carrier driven wifi, how are we supposed to get online?
  • Facebook became the AM Radio for us.  We realized that we didn’t have an AM radio in the house but while my wife’s Blackberry still had power, she was able to log into Facebook and get updates from friends of ours from around the area.  She had a mini storm-network setup.
  • ConEd had a nice outage location map but their “report a problem” area didn’t work properly

Anyway, it’s nice to be back online with our power restored.

Time to catch up on work while the US  hockey team takes on Team Canada.  Go USA!

Etiquette In An Increasingly Connected World

I think the most devalued word in the past decade was the word, “friend.”

I’m just another geek living in this world so I have no business enforcing my thoughts on Etiquette but since I think I was raised well (I’d like to think) and I’d like my son to be raised well, I’ll publicly share my thoughts.  Note, since I work in New York City and specialize in digital media, my thoughts are skewed towards the early adopter technologies, but over time, the rest of America/world will catch up.

Introductions

With email, text messages, and DM’s, it’s extremely simple to make fast introductions now.  Please do whomever you are introducing a favor and ASK the receiving party whether or not they would like to be introduced.  Just because Person A is friends with Person B (who is friends with Person C), does not mean that Person C will want to meet Person A.   Not only does this save Person C from being in an awkward position, but it makes the introduction much stronger if it should go through.

Meetings (including around a conference room table)

If I said “turn off” your electronics, about zero percent of the readers would actually do that.  So, put them on mute/vibrate and pay attention to the people in the meeting.  My guess is that meetings will go much faster and become more productive if everyone is paying attention instead of typing emails or texting on their iPhone or Nexus One that’s sitting in their laps.  You are guilty of this, admit it (we all are).

Location Based Check-Ins

I had breakfast this past week with some of the investors in the company Foursquare and they mentioned that they have began checking in about 3-5 minutes away from the venue that they are checking into.  Why?  It’s rude to have everyone check in at the table and waste the first few minutes of the meeting telling the world where they are.   The issue with checking in to a venue when you are enroute is that the venue may be closed or have no available seating, and I do not have an answer on how to deal with this.

If you are checking into a restaurant on Foursquare and in the comments section include the name of someone you are meeting (e.g. meeting @dherman76 for lunch), think twice.  What if the person that you are meeting didn’t want this particular lunch publicized for whatever reason?

Getting People’s Attention by Tagging Them in a Picture

If you have a Facebook account, I will wager that this has happened to you.  If you do this, then please stop.   How many times have you been alerted by Fb that you are tagged in a picture and when you go check out the picture, you are not present (and it may not even be a picture)?  This is just annoying.

Are You Really My Friend?

I think the most devalued word in the past decade was “friend.”  My friends are all people I’d grab a bite to eat with on the weekends, invite over for Saturday football, hangout with my wife/child with, and even get a little crazy with.  Inviting anyone/everyone to be your friend on Facebook devalues the word “friend” to many levels.  I turn down probably 10 friend requests for every one friend confirmation and I’m sure I still have not stuck to even my own guidelines.

BECAUSE YOUR KEYBOARD HAS CAPS, DOES NOT MEAN YOU SHOULD USE THEM ALL THE TIME

Just because your shiny Macbook has a “Caps Lock” key, does not mean that you should type emails or tweets in capital letters.  As a reminder (as if you live under a rock), CAPITALIZED words are used for emphasis and in quite a few occasions, they are mean to be “yelling.”  Do yourself a favor and pretend that the “Caps Lock” key does not exist.

I’m not perfect and have broken many of the above etiquette rules.

I had some fun writing this and I’m sure I forgot quite a few.  Please write your comments/thoughts into the comments area.

You can follow me on twitter at @dherman76

Hermanweb Has a Facelift!

I’m pleased to announce that my wife’s blog, Hermanweb.us, has had a facelift which has been in the making for the past few weeks and I think it looks beautiful. We launched the full version early this morning and pages that were missing from the previous site are now back online.

We originally launched Hermanweb when we got engaged to alert our families and friends about what was going on in our lives. Lots of wedding details were added and it became the hub for our special day. We then realized that we had built up a following – and Sherri because a content producer that people were reading everyday. When we ran into family friends in restaurants, temple, and at parties, they knew exactly what was going on in our lives and on special occasions, would bring up questions based on the blog postings that were written. The power of communication is amazing.

HermanWeb

362 posts and over 175 comments later, Hermanweb is thriving. I invite you all to check it out and let Sherri know your thoughts. It’s always evolving with restaurant reviews, movie reviews, vacation information, and such- so each day is different but a major part of the “Herman” lifestyle.

Cristi and DarrenThe designer of the site is our friend Cristian from CandesProjects. Cristian and I go back a few years as we met online as his previous work was unbelievably inspiring so I had hired him to work on a few projects for me. We sponsored Cristi to come to America for the first time last year and spent quite a bit of time with him and he became a great friend to both Sherri and I. Subsequent to all of this, we’ve referred a number of clients to Cristi and he’s got a thriving business. If you ever have any design needs, be sure to reach out. He’s incredible. He’s also the person who designed this blog.

Enjoy

Pick Me Up Love! – Summer Dates for DMB 2008

Summer Tour

Today’s a beautiful day here in New York City – sun is shining and everyone seems to be in high spirits.  The day just got better…. received an email from The Warehouse, the official DMB fanclub with the 2008 Summer tourdates and some more information that’s gone overlooked…

Fans attending DMB shows this summer will be the first to hear the latest material from Dave Matthews Band as the band debuts songs from their forthcoming record!  DMB is currently in the studio with Rob Cavallo (Green Day, My Chemical Romance, Alanis Morrisette) working on the yet-to-be-titled album.  Guitarist and long time friend Tim Reynolds is playing on the album, marking his first recording with DMB since 1998’s Before These Crowded Streets.

I’m excited to see what Rob Cavallo comes up with for this album.  Having produced Green Day, My Chemical Romance, and Alanis Morrisette in the past, it should certainly have an edge.  There is a connection here – as Alanis Morrisette appears in the DMB song, “Spoon” on the album, Before these Crowded Streets.

As for the tour dates, I’ve not decided which show’s I’ll be at just yet, but I can almost garauntee at least one of the Saratoga Springs (June 20) shows (Saturday night probably) and potentially head out to Arizona for some others.

Click here for the full list of dates (quite a few).

Coloring Outside the Lines: Update

I’m getting excited as it’s about 12 days until the launch of my first book, Coloring Outside the Lines.  The details of this book are fairly fuzzy unless you’ve been over to the official site for the book, but wanted to update everyone as to what to expect:

  • Content Sections:  8 (w/6 chapters)
  • Total Pages: 131
  • Beginning of book:  all about entrepreneurship, raising capital, startup ups/downs
  • Ending of book:  trends in digital media
  • Style of book:  paperback
  • Writing style:  relaxed, blog-esque writing (my preferred all around style)

The content/chapter breakdown list is as follows:

  • Preface
  • Introduction
  • Some preliminaries
  • Strategy
  • Raising funds
  • Branding and marketing
  • Trends in the digital age
  • Conclusion

Looking forward to sharing the book with everyone!

Grey Street – DMB – Izod Arena

My day was going fairly well…

Tonight, it just got exponentially better.

On my quest to build a live concert “warehouse” in my home for the Dave Matthews Band, I came across a few songs posted on YouTube from the Izod show, which I went to last month.  Wow.  If you’re a fan of Grey Street, or just want to listen to some amazing music, listen below.

To see how DMB connects with the audience, if you concentrate on the 2:15-2:45 mark of the video, you’ll hear the crowd sing.  Yes, sing.  Sherri, myself and my folks all partook in the festivities.