I Just Moved My Blog to Tumblr from Blogger

Quick-ish post: I just moved my blog over from Blogger to Tumblr and want to test everything to make sure all systems are go.

The main reason for the switch is that it seems Google has completely abandoned Blogger and everything just looks outdated on both desktop and mobile.

I probably would have made the switch sooner had I found instructions easy enough to follow to give me the confidence to tinker with GoDaddy A-record settings and not mess anything up. If you’re in the same boat, I found these to be the easiest to follow.

Hopefully the new look will make me update this page more frequently too.

If you read my stuff over on the Blogger side, please tweet me and let me know if this looks better or what I need to fix.

An Uber for Everything

I saw these tweets (sarcastic, obviously) from Sean Rose and “StartupLJackson”, a few of my favorite accounts I’ve started to follow recently.

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It got me thinking and I was trying to come up with a clever joke to tweet about it this morning, but I think it’s better served here where I have more than 140 characters to play with.

It’s no secret that my generation has become very dependent on our smartphones to make our lives much easier. There is “an app for that” for virtually anything you can think of these days. Pretty soon you’ll be able to press a button on your phone, and someone will take out your garbage, come wash your car, walk your dog, etc.

The interesting thing about all this is that Uber has become synonymous with these little “services” the way Google has become synonymous with search or the smartphone has become synonymous with the iPhone. I’m not sure if that was the intent, but that’s how my mind thinks about it.
I would be interested to hear your thoughts. Tweet me.

UPDATE: Uber says they will now deliver you a Christmas tree. Sean must have known something we didn’t.

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Twitter Prices IPO At $26 Per Share

Good news to those of you that have waited to purchase a piece of one of the hottest tech companies to come along in the last 10 years. Tomorrow morning, Twitter will officially start trading on the NYSE at $26 per share.

As someone who has never believed in investing in any individual stock, I will be purchasing shares under the $TWTR ticker symbol. I joined Twitter in August 2008, and I honestly don’t remember a day between then and now where I didn’t use Twitter in some capacity or another. I can’t say that about any other service.

Twitter has truly become the primary way in which we get our news, follow our favorite sports franchises, laugh along with some of the funniest people tweeting in 140 characters, and stay in touch with the world in a matter of seconds. Depending on who you follow and how you interact with the service, it can be one of the most powerful utilities we have.

Since I joined fairly early, it has been interesting to read about Twitter’s beginnings in Nick Bilton‘s new book, Hatching Twitter. Events like the race to 1,000,000 followers between CNN and Ashton Kutcher immediately come to mind. The company’s four co-founders (@ev@jack, @biz, and the often forgotten about @noah) went through an enormous power struggle before Dick Costolo took over as CEO in 2010. It hasn’t been completely smooth sailing, but the company started to make strong moves which have positioned them for success for years to come.

I really look forward to see what the company will become now that it was to answer to Wall Street. Om Malik wrote a great post about this the other day – I highly suggest taking a few minutes to read it.

I tweeted this early today. Will we look at Twitter 15 years from now and say it has been one of the most successful tech companies of this generation, or will it be another popular start-up that fizzled out and ultimately was overtaken by the latest and greatest?

Only time will tell. I’m excited to be along for the ride.

Tweet me and let me know what you think of this post.

UPDATE: Trading opened at 45.10, up nearly 80% from the initial price set by Goldman Sachs. The cool thing was seeing who rang the Opening Bell. Rather than have the CEO and the co-founders up on the balcony, Twitter chose to have the people who made the platform what it is today.

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Happy Independence Day!

Happy 4th of July, everyone! Thank you to our troops for defending our country and freedom every single day. Looking at the events happening in Egypt and around the world, it’s sometimes easy to take what we have here for granted. Which brings me to the point of this blog post: Today is my first Independence Day as a citizen of the United States. 

Some history: I was born in St. Petersburg, Russia in October 1988. My parents planned to move to the US shortly thereafter, but the United States changed policies in 1988 which closed the temporary processing of visas for Soviet Jews.
       “Soviet Jews applying for refugee status in both in Moscow and in Rome would have to prove in interviews with consular authorities a well-founded fear of persecution.” (cis.org)
This setback forced my parents to start a journey which would eventually lead them to the United States, but not before taking a bit of a detour. We moved to Israel in 1992, and then to Canada in 1996. From ages 7-12, I grew up in three Canadian cities (Montreal, Toronto, and Ottawa); now you know where my love of hockey comes from..
Long story short, in the summer of 2000, my mom got a job offer from a company in Chicago, so we decided to make the move. 
I’ve now lived here more than half of my life. Finished high school and college here. Last year, I finally started the application process and became a naturalized citizen in September. I was able to vote for the first time ever, which was pretty neat. I still have my Israeli and Canadian citizenships, and although I do not plan to ever move back to either country, I do plan on keeping all three citizenships. 

It didn’t even dawn on me until this morning that this is my first 4th of July as a citizen of this country which is celebrating its 237th birthday. I’ve told my friends numerous times over the years that I feel more American than some people who were born in this country, and now I am proud to be part of the crowd for real. Hope everyone reading this enjoys the day off with family, friends, and good food – but remember not everyone gets to enjoy these privileges like we do here in America.

Happy 4th!

Chris Hadfield has Renewed my Interest in Space.

For the last six months, Canadian astronaut Chris Hadfield has been living and working in space on the International Space Station. He and his crew have recaptured the public’s attention and interest in space flight and space exploration with their unbelievable photos and videos. As of the writing of this blog post, Commander Hadfield has amassed some 933,000 twitter followers. His version of David Bowie’s song Space Oddity was the first song to be recorded in space and has almost 8 million views on YouTube. Gizmodo wrote a great blog post yesterday about how he made us care about astronauts again, and it’s true.

I started following Chris Hadfield on twitter sometime around February, and have been absolutely fascinated with some of the photos he has shared. Here are some of my favorites:

Soyuz Spaceship docked to ISS, I believe this is when I started following:

My hometown, Chicago:
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Sunrise over the Great Lakes:
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I’ve been showing this photo to a lot of my friends, the “boot” of Italy:
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Some amazing colors and textures:
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One of the last photos before leaving ISS:
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Has Hadfield’s time in space made you care any more about NASA or SpaceX? Was this all one big public relations plan to get more public funding to the space programs?

The next crew of astronauts, Karen Nyberg and Luca Parmitano have some incredibly big shoes to fill.

I would be interested to know what other people think, so please get in touch with me on twitter.
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