thingelstad

Jamie Thingelstad's personal website

Month: October 2007

Minnedemo 3 a Wrap

Does anyone know where the reference to Mo’ started? Like, we got our mo’ in the second half. Our products really selling, we’ve got mo’. Hiring is a breeze because we have mo’! If your not following here mo’ is momentum. After leaving Minnedemo 3 a couple weeks ago, it was clear that the Minneapolis technology community is building mo’.

I’m a bit late in writing about Minnedemo 2. Graeme Thickens did a thorough job in his post. Minnedemo continued it’s template of 15-minute demo’s from a variety of people working on interesting things. Notable this time was the CrashPlan demo from Matthew Dornquast at Code42. I’ve seen CrashPlan several times and have followed it’s progression from the sidelines. The product has really expanded and I think that Code42’s recent additions focused on businesses (using the E word, enterprises) is really smart and smartly built. Fanchatter also had a cool demo, although I’d tweak the product here and there. I don’t think they are going to hit that uber-viral point as is. There were also demos from SOTAcomm, Wonderfile, Pokeware and Adaptive Avenue. I missed much of the last half chatting with people I ran into at Minnedemo.

There were approximately 300 people at Minnedemo and it was great to see so many familiar faces. Having at O’Garas Garage was great to accommodate the size of the crowd, but people need to be a bit more polite to the speakers. Shhhh…

I was surprised to hear an announcement of a Christmas Edition (December 6th! Mark your calendar!) of Minnedemo coming in just a couple of months. Yeah! See you all there!

See Minnedemo 2.

Mazie's Big Girl Bed

Monday was a big day in the Thingelstad household! A few weeks ago we ordered Mazie’s new toddler bed and it finally arrived. After dinner that night we opened everything and put it together. Mazie was very excited to see her new bed come together. She has been talking about it for a long time. When we put her mattress in it at the very end she immediately laid down and closed her eyes.

She went to bed that night in her new bed. We asked her if she wanted to sleep in her crib or her bed, the answer was clear. There was a brief moment right at the end where she got a little scared but it passed. She had no problems going to sleep. Yeah Mazie!

She’s been sleeping in her bed now every night and with every nap. She’s doing a really great job!

Leopard Has Arrived

It’s been a busy night here. This morning Mac OS X 10.5 “Leopard” arrived and I started installing it on all four Macs right away. The upgrade took about an hour on average and the iMac, MacBook Pro and Mac Pro all upgraded flawlessly. The MacBook however didn’t fair so well. The upgrade failed and in the process it toasted the boot partition. I ended up reformatting and reinstalling on it.

Initial impressions of Leopard are “Wow!”. Absolutely loving Spaces! Sharing screens over the network is tremendous. I just got done playing with some of the iChat sharing with a friend and it worked great. I’m pretty pleased so far. To add to it all, I haven’t had any application compatibility issues yet. Pretty impressive.

I’ll put together some more thoughts later. I’m really happy to finally have Leopard though. If your curious about Leopard, check out the guided tour Apple posted.

Tammy Finishes Twin Cities Marathon

This is really a post for Tammy, but she hasn’t been writing much on her site so I decided to write instead.

This past weekend Tammy finished the Twin Cities Marathon! This was her first marathon attempt ever. She now has that 26.2 mile event under her belt. In 2004 she did the TC 10 mile run.

She wasn’t real sure about the marathon. She signed up for it months in advance, as required, and started her training right on track. She did a great job, but started to not enjoy the running once it got over 2 hours. She backed off a bit and took another go at it, but still just found that mentally after 2 hours she was sick of running. She started to really not like running, and rather than hate it entirely decided to remove the pressure of the marathon.

Then, a couple of weeks before the marathon, she decided to just go out and see what she could do. It’s rather crazy when you think about it. Her strategy was to run the first half-marathon, which she could do easily, and then run/walk the last half-marathon. She did as planned and crossed the finish right around 5 hours 40 minutes.

She was really exhausted after (duh!) and took a couple of days to get the soreness out. She currently says another marathon is not in the works. We’ll see. I think there is possibly some glimmer of another marathon there.

Congrats to Tekester! Check out these photos from the marathon.

Moved to Dreamhost and WordPress 2.3

It’s been a couple of busy late nights here for me. I’ve been doing major work with my websites, including this one.

The last two months have been rough for thingelstad.com. There has been a lot of downtime and slow responses. I moved to TextDrive (no link for these guys) a while back and it was just horrible. I don’t feel like using the kind of language I would need to describe how much I was frustrated with TextDrive. Let’s just consider it a bad period.

I was looking for a new provider and a friend recommended Dreamhost. I started looking into it and liked what I saw. They had an amazing promotion for their 10 year anniversary for a year of hosting for $9 ($119 with a $110 discount) so I went for it. I’m absolutely loving Dreamhost. The administrative interface is slick and fast. The directory layout they give you makes sense. You can even SSH in and do command line things when needed. This is a huge saver from time-to-time. On top of all that, Dreamhost buys carbon credits to neutralize their data center. While I’d rather they used real renewable energy, this is a start.

Since I was burning the midnight oil already I decided to make the jump to WordPress 2.3. I was being uncharacteristically cautious due to the big changes with tagging in 2.3 and the potential for plug-in and theme incompatibilities. I decided to just go for it. It wasn’t rough at all. I had to manually add the WordPress tagging system to my theme, but otherwise things went very smooth. I’m now running 2.3 on all sites and it’s humming right along.

If you aren’t using the WordPress Automatic Upgrade Plug-in, you need to. This thing is a huge time saver. I upgraded 4 WordPress sites with it and it was smooth as silk. Huge thumbs up!

Super Cool Avatars

I’m giddy! It’s like Christmas around the Thingelstad house. Why? We have new avatars!

Several weeks ago a friend of mine clued me in on this service at Iconize Me! Iconize Me is the brain-child of Paul Sahner who decided to start creating caricature based avatars for people online. Iconize Me! is a great service, but it’s completely overloaded. They’ve stopped taking pre-orders again. Huge plus, you get vector images back. Can’t wait to make my 10 foot poster!

I think this is brilliant. I’ve always just used a head shot photo but using a real photo is, well, a real photo. A drawing is a little less personal but still gives you that individual identity. Enough of the words, here is my new avatar. (These images are all much bigger than would be typically used.)

jamie.jpg

Of course I didn’t want to be the only one around the house with a cool avatar, so we got them for the whole family!

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Moneyball

180px-moneyballsbn.jpgI just finished reading Moneyball. This book was recommended to me by a friend who really likes baseball and feels that it’s very odd that I don’t like baseball. You see, I love numbers. I love patterns. I love graphs. And according to Moneyball, baseball is all about numbers.

Moneyball was a really enjoyable book, and it succeeded in making me appreciate baseball a lot more and I will definitely enjoy the games even more. However, after reading it the main thing I was left with was how backwards the baseball establishment has been for so long. You mean that statistical analysis may help you determine how a player will perform? Wow. Stunning stuff.

The way Lewis writes this book makes it sound like there is a strict set of two camps. One that plays by look and feel, the other that plays by spreadsheets. I’m sure it’s not that simple, but it makes for a wonderful story and is very well written.

If you like numbers, and have much of any interest in baseball, you should take a read through Moneyball.

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