FaceTime Tip: I rarely use the Phone app on my iPhone, but I found a great use for the Favorites feature. When adding a phone number or email address as a Favorite, you can select FaceTime. I’ve added anyone I know with FaceTime (who I’d actually talk to) to Favorites, so now I have one place to see all my FaceTime contacts and start a call with one tap.
I am not normally a huge fan of dubstep, but after seeing Big Gigantic live this summer I really like them. Something about having a live sax player is just awesome. I made this mashup as part of a bigger mix I made about a month ago, and a lot of people liked it, so I thought I’d share it separately. Enjoy!
While I was in NYC a few weeks ago Nick Pinkston and I made a random pit stop to pick up his backpack, and I ended up meeting Sasha Laundy at Codecademy. I was so excited to learn about this awesome new initiative she’s working on there called After School Programming.
If you’re a teacher or know any teachers who might be interested in this (even if you don’t know how to code yourself), please check it out! It provides an opportunity to students that I think should be core to the education system.
From the Codecademy After School Programming site:
By learning basic programming, kids can have a say in how software shapes their world.
This really resonates with something I remember from Paulo Blikstien mentioned in his presentation about FabLab@School at Open Hardware Summit. He said it would be great if their initiative to improve science and technology education could get more children interested in becoming engineers, but at the bare minimum the students will grow up with a basic knowledge about how things work.
THESE KINDS OF PROJECTS NEEEEEEEEED TO HAPPEN! These programs might not be for all students, but they at least give them the opportunity to know the amazing possibilities that are out there when you know how to build things, whether software, physical products, or the overlap between the two. Thank you so much to the people making these education initiatives happen.
I wish there had been something like this when I was a kid!
When I was in Austin at SXSW I met some guys from WP Engine, which is a WordPress-only hosting company that is optimized for speed and security. I had a pretty cheap shared host at the time, but a few months after SXSW I decided to give them a try for one of my sites since they claimed to be really fast. I was blown away by the speed increase of my site (which seems to be a pretty strong signal for Google ranking).
Everyone else Some people I know who have switched have had a similar reaction.
If you host a WordPress site, I highly recommend you check them out. If you use this link, they are giving away 2 months free. Yes, these are affiliate links, but I’m only promoting this site because I legitimately like this company a lot. I could tell they were good guys who really knew their stuff after talking to them for a few minutes in Austin, and they’ve proven it to me with a really solid product.
Here’s a mix I put together of some beats I made with some Jay-Z and Notorious B.I.G. a capellas over them. Please give feedback in the SoundCloud comments!
I’ve been working on learning Ableton Live for mixing songs, loops, and a capellas on the fly. In the past, I’ve mainly done non-linear stuff in Logic Pro. Here’s a mix I made the other day. Please comment on SoundCloud and let me know what you think!
Marketing via “Freedistribution” -
Yesterday my friend Ryan and I were driving through a neighborhood and saw a box on the side of the road that said “FREE” on it. Inside, we found about 20 basketballs with varying amounts of air, and we decided we should take them all.
It was a Sunday afternoon, and we had just got done with an awesome Sunday drive, but wanted to find another random activity to do outside for the rest of the afternoon.
Then I had an idea - let’s drive around the city looking for kids playing pickup basketball and give them free basketballs. I grabbed my 12V air compressor to inflate the balls en route, and Ryan had the great idea that I should write the URL of my free sample site on every ball in Sharpie, since they are freebies after all.
It only took us about an hour to get rid of all the basketballs. There were a few methods for this, including walking up to kids playing basketball saying “Want free basketballs?” and driving by courts and chucking them over the fence while yelling “Free basketballs!”
I just thought I’d share this story since it was a fun activity for the afternoon, it helped some people get rid of junk they put on the side of the road, and it might have helped some kids get free basketballs. I was surprised how excited the children were about the freebies. I call it “freedistribution” because we were redistributing junk people didn’t want disguised as freebies. Maybe I’ll do this more often.