The Importance of Post-College Travel

New York Times, A Year Abroad (or 3) as a Career Move:
Me = pack mule
"It was a few months before she was to graduate from Colgate University in 2002, but Lauren DiCioccio was not ready for the briefcase or the Brooks Brothers look. Armed with a bachelor's degree in art and art history, she did what an increasing number of college graduates are doing: she bought a plane ticket to a country she had never visited, backpacked around the region, got a job in that country and then traveled some more."

"'When I went, I was hesitant because people looked at me and were surprised that I would graduate with a degree from Colgate and take time off to work and backpack around Australia,' said Ms. DiCioccio, who picked grapes and was a short-order cook at a roadhouse in the outback. 'So when I came back and had it on my résumé, I couldn't believe all of the interviews were about my time in Australia.'"
My story is remarkably similar to hers, though my 14-month round-the-world journey wasn't nearly as... intentional.
Taking a Break
I lived with my parents after graduating and worked for ~6 months to save up cash. I spent the majority of the trip (9 months) Down Unda (though in New Zealand not Ozzie), and did some grape-planting (not picking). I also spent a few months doing Vipassana courses in NZ, Australia, Burma and Thailand.

[via Sieburg, who's currently in Indonesia]

It's all about User Experience

Andreas Pfeiffer in ACM:
"As the iPod abundantly shows, user experience (along with a strong brand, and clever marketing) is much more important for the success of a device than technical specifications."
Agreed. I stopped paying attention to these specs about 4 years ago, when I realized that any future computer/camera/iPod/etc. I buy would have more than enough cpu/memory/storage/etc. for my uses. And because I'm an Apple/Canon/Palm loyalist, I already know the User Experience will be fantastic.

[via PhotoMatt]



A Whole Lotta Nothing:
"Apple has made the iPod the most popular music player on earth, but it's clean as a whistle. How could the same people love their super sleek music player and also love the gaudy oversaturated flashing/pulsating monstrosity of their Myspace profile?"

(Crap, just noticed after posting this that Ev linked and quoted the same snippet as me. Great minds think alike?)



This design's been feeling a tad restrictive lately, so like Mr. Sutter I'm starting with the basics and iterating live on the site. The other day at lunch he told me it took ~9 months before it felt right, so don't hold your breath.

Thus far, the top of the CSS file reads:

With inspiration and assistance from:
* Jason Sutter - jason.similarselection.org
* Chris Wetherell - massless.org
* Biz Stone - bizstone.com
* Erik Benson - erikbenson.com
* Doug Bowman - stopdesign.com
* Dominic Sagolla - dom.net
* Pete Hopkins - blog.grogmaster.com
* Textmate - macromates.com
* Camino - caminobrowser.org
* xScope - iconfactory.com/xs_home.asp
* iTunes - apple.com/itunes/
* The Postal Service - subpop.com/bands/postalservice/
* Death Cab for Cutie - deathcabforcutie.com
* Bluetech - bluetechonline.com
* The Gorillaz - gorillaz.com
* DJ Cappel & Smitty - sandboxautomatic.com/abstract/blueeyesbedstuy.html
* Over the Rhine - overtherhine.com
* Saint Etienne - saintetienne.com
* Belle and Sebastian - belleandsebastian.com


Claim Your Deductions!

(this arrived in my email yesterday)

Network for Good emails you around Tax Time to make sure you're claiming your deductions. Very nice of them. I try and keep track of them in Backpack, though.


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Feliz Cumpleaños

Happy Birthday, Ottmar!