PT Barnum’s Art of Money Getting

Filed under: Editorials | Tags: , |

I am reading PT Barnum’s “Art of Money Getting.” It contains a surprising amount of common sense advice, such as the following on the dangers of keeping up with the Joneses:

In this country, where we believe the majority ought to rule, we ignore that principle in regard to fashion, and let a handful of people, calling themselves the aristocracy, run up a false standard of perfection, and in endeavoring to rise to that standard, we constantly keep ourselves poor; all the time digging away for the sake of outside appearances.”

You can see this in chasing the latest gadget (/cough iPhone /cough) or kids emulating the lifestyle of their favorite celebrity.

Despite the passage of time, the advice still rings true and the patina of age in the examples show that the problems of today are nothing new. It’s the kind of book you would like to give to your own kids, and would wish someone had given you earlier in life.

It is a free ebook on the Kindle but you can also get it in a number of places such as: ART OF MONEY GETTING.

Creative Commons License photo credit: def110

Live theater disaster

Filed under: Videos | Tags: , |

Live theater is hard! Holiday Christmas pageants are hard! This audience is about to get a surprise during Handel’s Messiah. So funny!

Creative Commons License photo credit: kevin dooley

St Louis shows alternatives to tear gas and violence

Filed under: Editorials | Tags: , |

Occupy st louis e1319564719448

The images of police in full riot gear and use of tear gas on Occupy movement protesters make me shake my head. The former is heavy handed while the later is an excessive use of force. This excellent article describing the disbanding of the St. Louis Occupy camp (via tywkiwdbi) shows there are alternatives:

The first thing they did was the one that baffled me the most, at first: they gave the protesters nearly 36 hours notice, as opposed to the 20 to 60 minutes’ notice other cities gave. … Early afternoon on Thursday, they gave the protesters 24 hours’ notice: as of 3pm on Friday, the no structures in the plaza rule was going to be enforced, and as of 10pm, the curfew was going to be enforced. So, unsurprisingly, Occupy St. Louis put out a huge call for as many people as possible to come to the plaza by noon, to be trained in peaceful civil disobedience; local civil liberties lawyers showed up to brief them. Needless to say, the cops did not oblige them by showing up at 3pm. …

So, when no cops showed up anywhere near 3pm, the protesters had their biggest rally to date (as I suspect the cops were thinking, “getting it out of their system”), and then started to drift away. Rally organizers advised people to be back before 10pm, to block the enforcement of curfew. Sure enough, by 10pm, they had 350 people down there. And scant minutes later, people were jazzed up and ready to go, because outlying scouts reported that the police were gathering, en masse, with multiple cars, multiple buses, an ambulance, and a fire truck, only a couple of blocks away!

And sometime around an hour, hour and a half later, the cops just disappeared, dispersed, without ever having gotten within two blocks of the plaza. So the confused protesters declared victory, let most of the troops go home, and fewer than a hundred of them bedded down for the night in their tents. An hour later, somewhere around 150 cops showed up. I’m sure people in those tents tweeted and text messaged and phoned for reinforcements. But between the late hour, and the fact that people were exhausted after having been out there all day, and that it was the third call-up of the day? Nobody showed.

Ah, but the cops did more than just show up after two head-fakes and with sufficient numbers … they did right exactly what the Obama administration told everybody else to do wrong. They didn’t show up in riot gear and helmets, they showed up in shirt sleeves with their faces showing. They not only didn’t show up with SWAT gear, they showed up with no unusual weapons at all, and what weapons they had all securely holstered. They politely woke everybody up. They politely helped everybody who was willing to remove their property from the park to do so. They then asked, out of the 75 to 100 people down there, how many people were volunteering for being-arrested duty? Given 33 hours to think about it, and 10 hours to sweat it over, only 27 volunteered. As the police already knew, those people’s legal advisers had advised them not to even passively resist, so those 27 people lined up to be peacefully arrested, and were escorted away by a handful of cops. The rest were advised to please continue to protest, over there on the sidewalk … and what happened next was the most absolutely brilliant piece of crowd control policing I have heard of in my entire lifetime.

So, “order” restored, camp disbanded. No concussions from baton blows or flash bang grenades. No tear gas in the face of octogenarians. And protesters still get to protest. Neither side escalated to violence.

Via The Infamous Brad – Gods Help Us, St. Louis Did it Right #OWS:

Best App Review Ever!

Filed under: iPhone iPad iOS | Tags: , |

Best app review evah

You know how you download an app that just doesn’t work? It crashes or is missing features?And you would just like to let the developer know just how disappointed you are.

Best Siri Parody

Filed under: Videos | Tags: , |

I know there have been a lot of Siri spoof videos. But, this one takes the cake. Watch out the language is NSFW!

Transitioning to cradle-to-cradle

Filed under: Podcasts | Tags: |


Fascinating presentations at the RSA about the bubble we all live in and the unsustainability of simply throwing away garbage. This was the first I have heard about designing manufacturing not only to recycled but to be built to a continual cradle to cradle system.

Pie in the sky?

Listen to Stef Kranendijk discuss how his carpeting company is currently doing this.

Creative Commons License photo credit:UrbanWoodswalker

Kindle Fire Review

Filed under: Stuff | Tags: , , , , , |

Kindle fire 1

I really wanted to like the 2011 Kindle Fire. It could have been contender! Instead it turns out to be a Palm Treo in world of smartphones. It has the might of Amazon behind in. It’s decent. It works. It is just a couple of years behind the times. Coming in to a mature market with a version one product is never an enviable position.

Here’s the video review of the Kindle Fire with the expanded review below:

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Restoring sort-by-column in OS X Lion’s Finder list view

Filed under: Mac Tips | Tags: |

Apple’s OS X 10.7 Lion can be an amazingly annoying beast. Things that worked one way in prior versions suddenly stop working.

Recently, I had the darnedest time time trying to sort files in list view in the Finder. The descriptions above each column were grayed out, with no way to click on them to change the “sort by” category. I found I could no longer switch between sorting by name, date modified, size or kind.

So I pulled up the View options (Cmd-J or from the pull down menu “View – View Options”).

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Bear McCreary – Kara Remembers

Filed under: Music | |

Bear McCreary accordion version of “Prelude to War” (it’s good! it’s good!) got me searching for his other work. Here’s “Kara Remembers.” Listening to this got me watching the first season of Battlestar Galactica streaming on Netflix.


Creative Commons License photo credit: kevin dooley



Jump with Joey – “Shot in the Dark”

Filed under: Music | |

I love the transition from “Pink Panther” to “Gilligan’s Island.”

Creative Commons License photo credit: notsogoodphotography