I was reading a book last week when I came to an obvious conclusion that changed everything. I am not a machine. So why am I trying to work like one? A paperback copy of “Technopoly” by late critic Neil Postman was in my hand, and my smartphone — screen blank and ready — was on…More
Last week at a local tech event, two friends gushed about a popular app they had fallen for. When I posted later that I had gotten it, other friends were quick to warn me away. It’s not worth my time, they said. Worse — it could hurt. The app is called Secret. Its users post…More
Maybe you’ve heard of the “digital divide.”
It’s a term coined in the ’90s to refer to the mostly socioeconomic gap between people who can access information technologies and those who can’t. The concept gave thinkers and policymakers a grasp on a new problem: For more people to prosper, the digital divide would need to be closed.
I’ve been thinking about digital divides a lot lately, but rarely in this traditional sense. Tech has come a long way in 20 years, and it’s raised all kinds of sticky new issues. It’s made me think: If we take a fresh look at what divides us in our use of tech, we might get a better grip on whether we’re headed somewhere we want to be.
So here goes: I think there are four digital divides that matter. As we consider them, ask yourself: Where am i on these divides? And do they all demand to be resolved, or in some ways, protected?More
The kids speak over each other, all at once: “I want to be the next Silicon Valley!” “I want to be the next Silicon Valley!” “I want to be the next Silicon Valley!”
“What are you doing?” says the voice of another child. “Let’s be ourselves. Let’s be Seattle.”
The kids are siblings Ruthie and Thomas Zug and the three friends who happened to be over when their dad, Bryan Zug, gave them their lines and hit the “record” button. The clip is a teaser for “We Make Seattle,” a community-backed short film that’s out to show the world what we who love this city already know — that Seattle is more than rain and coffee, that it’s stronger than comparisons to that tech hub down south, and that it’s one of the best places in the world for creative people with big ideas to give them root and make them happen.
It’s a story that needs telling, and no one can do it better than we can.
That’s why it’s fitting — perfect, even — that the film is not some institution’s initiative but a Kickstarter project dreamed up by Zug, principal at techie video shop Bootstrapper Studios, and Scott Berkun, a Seattle-based author and speaker who proposed the idea at a roundtable put on by Mayor Mike McGinn’s office last year. (Disclosure: Zug and Berkun are co-organizers of the community-speaker series Ignite Seattle, which I emcee.)More
About five minutes after I had pushed my baby to the park in his stroller, I realized: I just pushed a BABY to the PARK in a STROLLER.
Two months in, nothing’s changed. Being a mom is still crazy.
“It’s a fundamental identity shift, and it hits you hard,” Adriana Gil Miner told me minutes after her 2-year-old toddled up to me at View Ridge Playfield.
No kidding. But technologically, at least, things have been easy. Mom says she’s jealous, and I can’t blame her.
Tech is making parts of early parenthood feel damn near like cheating.
Case in point: A week after Julian was born in late July, the doula who assisted us in labor visited for a much-needed check-in. When we were done, I handed my husband, who had been listening in from behind his iPad, a list of her recommended bottles, books and supplies. “Don’t need it,” he said, turning off the screen. “I already bought them.”More
If you haven’t heard of Quora, it’s a question-and-answer site (get it? Q or A?) that took off a couple years ago and has been collecting an encyclopedia of knowledge so new, speculative or anecdotal that it goes right for the richest and most questionable source: people’s minds.
Take Seattle. Ever since I moved here five years ago I’ve heard mutterings about how people here are supposedly passive-aggressive. Is it true? Not for everyone. Not for me. Everyone experiences cities differently. More important, it seems, is that these mutterings are popular enough to exist at all.
In this Quora thread, Seattleites attempt to explain the stereotype. As is usually the case with Quora, a few provocative, often contradictory points stick out:More
I’ve been writing online for a while now, and when I quote or mention people in stories, I like to link their names to a public site where readers can go to learn more about them when I can. It gives readers a way to see what they’re about, and it gives the people I’m quoting visibility they appreciate.
Today I realized that about as long as I’ve been doing this, I’ve been more or less guessing which of a growing assortment of public pages associated with just one person is the best one to link to for each story — when I miss a chance to ask, that is. I go through a process to make the pick, and it usually depends on the context of the story, but I’ve never stopped to check it.
The answers, I realized, do more than provide a check on my own process (I’m not too far off). They say a little bit about which sites users of two top social media sites trust as their best ambassadors.More