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People are Everything

on Fri, 04/06/2012 - 22:41

The people you encounter as you patronize a business almost completely shape your happiness with the encounter.  And I'm of the school that says it starts at the top.

Today I ate breakfast at Giraffe - a restaurant in Terminal 5 of London's Heathrow airport.  I liked this place, and will now change my LHR habit to stop here every time.

Why? The people.

The staff immediately put a smile on my face.  They all had just the right amount, and kind of energy.  Despite the fact that it was 7:30 am, they were all moving quickly, yet without making it feel rushed.

Book Review: Urbis Morpheus

on Tue, 03/27/2012 - 21:25

Urbis MorpheosUrbis Morpheos by Stephen Palmer

Well, this has to be the most unusual book I've read in the last couple of years. For context, I've read 113 books since April 2009 (when I started buying on Kindle, so this is the total Amazon gives me). I probably haven't read more than 5 non-SciFi books (and 1 non-Kindle book) in that time; so I've read a reasonable amount of SciFi, mostly from the authors you'd see as mainstream - Neal Stephenson, Richard Morgan, Charles Stross, Peter Hamilton, Ian Banks, Robert Charles Wilson, etc.

Stephen Palmer is at a Whole Nutha' Level.

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Drupalcon 2012 DJ set

on Mon, 03/26/2012 - 16:12

Well, I found myself with an opportunity to spin tunes at the Denver 2012 Drupalcon conference party. Yes, Acquia (my company) sponsored it. So maybe it's no coincidence that I got the gig.... Nonetheless, I did need to get past the organizing committee (which means my style couldn't suck; but I didn't need to be a big-name guy, either. Lucky thing....)

And, let me just say it: I had a blast.  There were nearly 2,000 people in the party, and that's the most I've ever played in front of.

I played from 7:30pm to 1:15am.  I had only expected (and planned) to play about 3 hours.

Book Review: Fuzzy Nation

on Tue, 02/21/2012 - 15:15

Fuzzy NationFuzzy Nation by John Scalzi
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Summary: Fast read (for me); dashed thru it in 3 hours.

More: Not a bad read; not over-the-top great, though. Essential conclusions on my part:

  • Fairly simple premise, and what happens in the end is almost predictable from the moment every plot twist is introduced.
  • Approachable writing. Very easy to read.
  • Despite essential predictability, there are a pleasant set of events that surprise, and keep you engaged.
  • A nice exploration of what the rules of the game ought to be were we ever to encounter other suspect-sentient species - either here on
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Book Review: "Selection Event" - a Good Book to NOT read

on Fri, 01/20/2012 - 13:16

Selection EventSelection Event by Wayne Wightman

My rating: 1 of 5 stars

If I could give this a zero, I would.

The post-apocalyptic genre is well-travelled. At this point in writing-time, an author needs to do something pretty special to make this topic interesting. This author sadly failed.

Essentially, the author's point ends up "Belief systems are bad; believers in them force people into thinking their way, and if you don't believe that way, the believer's natural reaction will be to kill you. So, the only belief system that works is Libertarianism. You must believe this way, or we will kill you."

Truly a)

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