From time to time people will ask us for our honest opinions on a subject and receive a quick and helpful summary. Other times they'll be treated to a 30-minute diatribe about the pros and cons of the matter and walk away with more questions than answers. The people who ask me for an opinion are usually bombarded with the latter the first few times until I learn what information they're actually looking for when asking a question. Unfortunately this happened again today.
Mathew Ingram penned an interesting piece today where he outlines the growing movement towards a new type of digital news consumption. The gist of the idea is that people rarely want to sit down and read an entire article anymore, instead opting to retrieve pieces of information as the story progresses over time. The event, the background leading up to the event, the aftermath, and any media information that might be related would all be treated as something separate that people would be able to collect and consume in their own way, most likely in some sort of contextualized reader. This is absolutely fascinating.
Sometimes the simplest lessons are the hardest to learn. While listening to the most recent episode of Back to Work, Dan and Merlin were talking at length about expectations. The expectations we have for others, and the expectations that people have for us. Throughout the episode, and intertwined in every podcast, is a lesson much more basic: be honest.
Sometimes I think I really am a jerk. Bill Gates, a man I've long respected, is in India today meeting with people and trying really, really hard to bring affordable health care to the people who need it the most. To keep the rest of the world up to date on his activities, he uses Twitter to spread the word that the world can be a better place if we get up and do something to help the people around us. So when he posted a quick picture of some children to Twitter my eyes processed the Tweet then immediately dropped to the bottom of the message. I wanted to know which client a man like Mr. Gates was using to communicate with us.
Sometimes while searching for information about an area, we will be forced to pay a visit to a website that is maintained by a government entity, such as a municipal, regional, or federal site. These visits are rarely ever enjoyable, and it's often faster to go to a government office and wait in a non-moving line with a numbered ticket stub to talk to somebody than to find the info we need online. Considering how we're a dozen years into the 21st century, this should be disgraceful. Government bodies, after all, have access to far more resources than the typical organization yet their web presence is often a disaster zone.
The canyon stretched on for what seemed like an eternity, and The Traveller has been following the broken earth for just as long. Stretching out to the horizon both ahead and behind the wandering individual, the massive scar that bisected the continent was impassible. Having an insatiable desire to cross this chasm to reach a promised destination, The Traveller set out to find a bridge or the origin of the crack ... a place where it would be possible to cross the impasse and reach the goal.
I've had a number of people ask me over the last few weeks why I wrote my own blogging software rather than customising WordPress or another CMS to accomplish the goals I've set out to do1. Believe it or not, this was done to save time in the long run. I would spend just as much time re-writing WordPress to make it suck less than I would building my own system from the ground up that only sucks because I didn't think about something before embarking on the project.
Sleep is perhaps one of the most important parts of our day, and most certainly the one most neglected. With a full night's sleep we're able to concentrate and do our best work. Without it we find it difficult or impossible to concentrate on the simplest of tasks and we lapse in and out of consciousness ... sometimes with life-altering repercussions. So with the stakes so high, why would anyone not want to get a proper night's rest with seven to eight hours of solid sleep?