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Saturday, January 15, 2005

Getty Visit Today

We took a visit to the Getty Center today and found that they have quietly raised the parking fee from $5 to $7 per car. I am not quite sure why it bothered me so much, except for the fact that I feel like I am being nickeled and dimed to death with this fee and that, every single day. Parking fees that find no upper limit, fees for printing a child's ticket at LACMA, even though the admission itself is free, fees to use the parklands, the beaches, the bike paths.

While the Getty is a private institution, it is a crown jewel of the city and part of its culture. I am disturbed to think that the foundation that was capable of building such an "Acropolis" on the Westside, seems to want to balance that edifice on the backs of your average Angeleno or tourist. Perhaps the troubles in the management and curation of the museum laid open on the pages of the LA Times in the last few months run deeper than we know. Parking fees should be going down or removed entirely.

Perhaps the new PDA-based audio tour and navigation systems that we saw being tested throughout the museum cost a little more than planned. You would think that a museum that has the ability to spend hundreds of thousands of dollars for PDAs, custom programming, campus-wide wi-fi network and other infrastucture could, at least, keep the parking fees the same. I always thought of the Getty parking charge as a token fee, giving a little back to help pay for the people that keep the Center running. Now it seems that someone has decided that parking is now an income center to be milked like the bookstore and the restaurant.

The Getty Center is a world-class museum and we should be spared from the constant nickel and dime tactics that plague the rest of Los Angeles.

Friday, January 14, 2005

Career-Op: Totaled - January 14, 1005 with MP3 Audio

Career-Op: Totaled
by Douglas E. Welch, ComputorEdge Magazine

Just as a car can be “totaled” after an accident, I am running into more and more computers that should be “totaled”, as well. A piece of Spyware can have infected someone’s machine so badly a complete rebuild is in order and the cost of my time to do that is simply more than the computer is worth. While I can understand this with older systems, running Windows 98 or 2000, I am starting to see this effect even on computers that are only a few years old. Even in our current “disposable society”, I still have major issues with telling my clients to “throw it away and get a new one.” That said, I understand that the clients would be better off spending their money on a new computer, rather than paying for my time to fix their old one.

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Thursday, January 13, 2005

tompeters! leadership training development project management

Excellent set of PowerPoint slides (PowerPoint/PowerPoint Viewer req'd) from Tom Peters on Professional Service Firms. I am generating a lot of ideas for my Career Opportunities column as well as my day-to-day business.

It is always good to have some radical thinking to trigger your thinking and action.

tompeters! leadership training development project management

Tuesday, January 11, 2005

Career-Op: Simplicity...from the archives with MP3 Audio

Career-Op: Simplicity
by Douglas E. Welch, ComputorEdge Magazine

It is easier to buy a computer today than ever before. For your average user, any computer system they buy will have more power and more software than they will ever need. In fact, the biggest problem most users will face is learning how to use all the power they are given without getting hopelessly confused. This is where you and your high-tech experience come into play. With thousands of people buying new computers, or upgrading their existing systems, every day, they need your expertise to help them from going astray.

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AppleInsider | Macworld: Apple introduces iPod shuffle

AppleInsider | Macworld: Apple introduces iPod shuffle

Apple also introduced this tiny, memory-based, iPod player that holds up to 250 songs but lacks a screen. You can play forward and back through the songs or let the iPod randomly shuffle them like a personal radio station.

More from AppleInsider using the link above.

Apple announces $499 Mac Mini | MacMegasite

While this unit might be nice to replace an older, stand-alone unit (like my aging G4/450 Desktop, by the time you add full memory, a SuperDrive and other extras, the price comes in around $1500. Still this is better than anything else in Apple's current product line.

More from MacMegaSite.com...

Apple announces $499 Mac Mini | MacMegasite: "Apple has announced the long rumored 'headless iMac' at today's Macworld Expo keynote. The Mac Mini measures only 6.5' wide and 2' tall with a 1.25 or 1.42 GHz G4 processor. It includes FireWire 400, USB 2.0, Ethernet, VGA, and DVI ports."

Funny sketch from RohDesign.com

I laughed out loud when I saw this sketch from Mike Rohde's Weblog.

Check out this sketch and more by clicking on the picture or link below.

Rohdesign Weblog: Proj: Exhibition Moleskine Sketches (Pages 19-20)

Monday, January 10, 2005

Game: The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker

I am NOT a game player in anyway, beyond a few hands of solitaire or the Myst/Riven combination of years ago, but, over our Ohio holiday we played a lot of Gamecube at our friends house. One amazing game was The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker.

This is an amazing game and we ended up playing it much more than watching television. Every time we were sitting around the living room, someone would pick up the controller to "drive" and the rest of use would sit around and kibbutz from the sidelines.

The best thing was that everyone could participate equally, the kids and hte adults. It is a great mix of logic games and a bit of traditional "fighting." While we don't have a game console, and never have had one, I am interested in getting one so we can continue to play Zelda here at home.

Fun with stereographic photography (kottke.org)

Fun with stereographic photography (kottke.org)

I am always digging on all sorts of photography ideas and stereoscopic photos are just plain neat. I still haven't figured out a real "need" for them, but they are cool all the same.

Learn how to make your own stereoscopic pictures from this post on Kottke.org