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Archive: August 30, 2008

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email addiction + survey

Saturday,  08/30/08  11:02 AM

A few weeks ago I was contacted by Peggy Kuo, an honours student at the University of New South Wales, who is conducting a survey on "Email Addiction in the Workplace" as part of her thesis topic.  She found me because of my 2003 article The Tyranny of EmailPeggy has posted an online survey and asked me if I'd mind linking to it...  not at all, Peggy!  If you have a few minutes and would like to help her, please click through and take the survey.  I just took it myself in about five minutes.

The whole subject of email addiction is pretty interesting...  obviously email is an important communication tool, and many of us rely on it for business; as well, many personal contacts now are made and maintained that way...  when was the last time you wrote a [paper] letter!  If you encounter someone who doesn't have an email address it seems weird, in fact it seems weird when you encounter people who don't check their email at least daily.  Now that we have smartphones, checking email hourly seems pretty normal, and of course we all know "crackberry addicts" who check their email compulsively every minute.  Whether this rises to the level of addiction depends on how easily you can let it go, I guess; I like being informed and check email frequently, but I am able to unplug without too much trauma.

My biggest problem with email isn't that I feel I must check it, it is that I choose to check it as a way to procrastinate.  I have the same problem with reading RSS feeds.  And with posting to my blog :)



Furnace Creek 508 recon update

Saturday,  08/30/08  11:45 AM

The Furnace Creek 508A couple of weeks ago I drove the Furnace Creek 508 route in my car, and wrote a reconnaissance report.  The intended audience was my riding partner Mark Burson and our "crew" for the ride, Mark Elliot and Dan Pizano.  In typical 2008 fashion Google indexed the report, and pretty soon I was getting visitors from everywhere who were interested in the 508, including Chris Kostman, Mr. 508 himself, Chief Adventure Officer and Race Director!

Chris had some nice things to say about the report, and asked if he could host it on the 508 website...  Of course, Chris, you're welcome!  He also pointed out a number of errors and omissions; as a newbie who hasn't even ridden the route on a bike yet, I am barely qualified to give such an overview, while Chris has been running the race for eighteen years.  So today I went back and used Chris' remarks to update the report.  It is still probably "wrong", but at least it is right-er :), and who knows, it might appear on the 508 website soon!



Saturday,  08/30/08  11:37 PM

Well it definitely isn't summer anymore, as today the football season started (!); I watched USC crush Virginia.  Ouch.  I did discover that Smokey (my new guinea pig) likes to watch football.  Or at least, he likes to sit on my chest while I'm watching :)  Otherwise a quiet day off; I didn't even ride.  Got a long one planned for tomorrow though...  have to stay in the groove for the Knoxville Double which is coming up in three weeks, and next weekend I'll be in New York presenting at a conference.

Palin-ed out already?  I'm not...  interesting that a surprise selection like that changes everything, gets people talking.  The reaction I've noted is all over the map, too.  The choice didn't so much change minds as coalesce them.

If you're still trying to learn more, this Time interview is worth a read; it was conducted a couple of weeks ago.  Interesting that in Palin's political career her age has been more of an obstacle than her gender.

Politico has five questions about Palin; good ones, too, including: Is she a creationist?  (LGF tries to answer...)

Hurricane Gustav trackHurricane Gustav is not looking good as the threat to New Orleans increases.  Yikes, here we go again...  I really wonder what the Republicans are going to do, postponing their convention doesn't seem possible on such short notice, but going ahead and having it doesn't seem right either.

Team LiquigasThe Vuelta started today, with a team time trial in Granada.  Surprisingly Liquigas won, over favorites Astana and CSC, and Filippo Pozzato will wear the first golden jersey.  Ah, Granada... reminds me of the Vuelta two years ago when I rode and saw a stage up the Alta de Monachil that finished there.  That really was a perfectly incredible day...

An awesome rant from eco-geek: Why changing your lightbulbs doesn't matter.  "We will never significantly reduce our energy use in this country by asking nicely. If you tell someone 'Save the planet, change your light bulb' you'll be lucky to get a 20% action rate. But if you say 'save $200 per year, change your light bulbs' you're suddenly on the right side of every argument."  This is so true.  There has to be a positive local advantage for people to behave in a way that has global benefit.

local kiosk with flyersRussell Beattie visits the library, encounters a kiosk covered with flyers, and asks When will Local truly be on the web?  "I'm on the computer every day, all day and yet I know almost nothing about what's happening in my local area. Not only is it basically impossible to stumble upon the information, like I can while walking back to my car from the library, but even actively searching for it is normally fruitless."  I totally agree.  Right now there is no good way to find it all, why is that?

I'm having such fun with KillerStartups; today's preposterous startup of the day is, "a communication tool intended to accomplish one thing: get other ballers to the basketball court when you wanna play."  Why it might be killer?  "This is a great idea. Once more cities are added, it could turn from a simple site into an online movement, like Facebook or Twitter."  Riight...



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exact nonsense
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still the first bird
electoral fail
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2020 explained