Monthly Archives: November 2005

Norpro Egg Rite Egg Timer

B00004ue7501_scmzzzzzzz_i love this thing … the Norpro Egg Rite Egg Timer.

ok … i am a sucker for soft boiled eggs and this thing makes it really easy to make the perrrrrrfect soft boiler. just through this into the water and wham!, it changes color to indicate what stage the egg is at. for $7, you’ll always now get perfect eggs.

thank you to Bree Humphries for getting this for me as a gag gift (that turned out to be a gift i really like and use).

Book: Mozart’s Brain and the Fighter Pilot

Full_image_4Mozart’s Brain and the Fighter Pilot: Unleashing Your Brain’s Potential (Unabridged) by Richard M. Restak

another great Audible find … this book was actually suggested to me by the site. the book helps you understand your brain, how people think, how to have a better memory, and how to exercise your brain. i recommend this audio book (this one might actually be better in paper book format as it is pretty heavy).

pilots should let you sleep

this is my typical flight …

the plane takes off and i fall right asleep. boom! then, a few minutes later … the flight attendant wakes me up … blaring … telling me about some movie i won’t watch

Plane_unitedthen … i struggle to get back asleep … but nooooooo … it will not be … 20 minutes later another interruption … my favorite flight attendant again … she wants to tell me about all the drinks they have on board. wow … coke, diet coke, sprite, apply juice, orange juice … V8 … cranberry-apple … cranberry-grape … OK OK! we get it. yes, we understand that even though you no longer offer free food you gots lots of drinks. we get it. and let me sleep.

… and nooooooo … don’t remind me that alcoholic drinks are $3. doesn’t everyone know this by now? can’t you just carry a big sign so you don’t have to wake me up???

asleep again. at least that cranapple-ape soothed me to sleep. but woah!! heh there, it is the pilot this time conspiring to keep me groggy. he wants everyone on the plane to know that we’re over the Rockies right now. uhhhhhhh … who cares??? and if you look out the window on the left side you can see something cool … like snow or something … but i don’t care because i’m on the right side and i want to sleep …

groggy and mad, i thrust open my laptop and pound on some work for two hours. very productive time. but still sleep-deprived, i close the computer and get some more sleep, until, 20 minutes later … boom! the gate information! blasted gate information. the flight attendant proceeds to wow my fellow passengers and i about gate G8 to Newfoundland, D6 to Dubai, I23 to BFE. uhhhhh … do we really need this? can’t we just take a look at the terminal that is right outside the gate when we land??????

I propose a new airline called Sleep Air.
Motto: “we let you sleep” (ok … I’m not a marketing genius)

Mechanical Turk

you’ve maybe already seen this … Manish Shah from karmaOne forwarding it to me:

Amazon’s Mechanical Turk

it is brilliant. you help the machines do work (in this case, determining what photos best represents a particular storefront and address) and Amazon will pay you a few cents every time your page is viewed.

i spent some time on it and matched 14 photos with address in San Mateo and i’ve made $0.39. given it took me about 20 minutes, that’s about $1.17/hr … much better then the wages in many developing countries. i can potentially see hundreds of people in these countries logging on the MTurk and making money in the future.

thanks Manish for passing this on…

Book: Charlie Wilson’s War

Charlie Wilson’s War by George Crile

Full_image_2this is a great book.   great book. a bunch of people told me about this book … even my friend Mark Goffman consulted on the screenplay for the movie that will star Tom Hanks.

i’m sure the movie will be great … but the book was fantastic.   it is a true story about a lone Congressman (Charlie Wilcon) from Texas and a lone CIA agent that conspired to find the Afghan resistance against the Soviets … and at the same time unwittingly funded the training of some of the most dangerous Islamic terrorists. 

Wilson is a quit a character … a hard drinking (possibly hard drug-using) patriot who knew how to work Washington like no other.

you’ve probably heard a lot about the book.   if you an audio-book fan you can download the 21-hour unabridged version from Audible … i highly recommend it.


Browster and Senopy

Browster_logoCompanies like Browster (see Browster jobs) and Senopy are changing the way we browse and navigate the web through the browser.

some people see the death of the browser as imminent but i think the browser will live for a long time … and these companies show how it is being extended.

Index_14when you navigate using Browster you can see a preview of what following a link will be like by simply putting your mouse over the link. at Senopy, a web site operator can do the same thing with linked advertising. (and thanks Saar Gur from Adteractive for pointing out the link between these two companies to me).

in fact, previewing web pages before actually viewing them (and utilizing more contextual information like help menus) is going to make the web browsing experience increasingly rich. and a lot of things are becoming increasingly easy to do with AJAX. (we’ve been testing a few of these things out at the karmaOne project and it is pretty cool).

20051116My friend and tech genius Alan Peterson recently launched a new site called

Sudokus are puzzles (see image on the left) … kind of like crossword puzzles with numbers. they can be very easy or extremely challenging. Alan build a Sudoku generator from scratch … and he has become a master at solving these puzzles.

i encourage you to check out this new Sudoku craze … but watch out … you might get addicted (I am actually going cold turkey in the month of November after spending too much time on the puzzles in October)….

consevative activists detest Tom DeLay

i spent last week (Oct 31 – Nov 4) in DC meeting with various folks in govt and helping out one of my portfolio companies.

throughout my conversations with many grassroots activists, i was struck by how much they hated Tom DeLay. this was a shock to me as Congressman DeLay is generally seen as being supported by those in the grassroots. And while my activist survey was far from scientific, I found he had extremely little support. most people actually thought he should resign from Congress. i was shocked … this wasn’t coming from the left but was coming from the heart and soul of the conservative right.

and it had little to do with the current ethics violation … it seems that most activists are not as troubled by that as most of the media. the activists blame Mr. DeLay for the spending excesses in Congress … especially the recent highway bill which DeLay was instrumental in passing. This bill has become a national joke with the Bridge to Nowhere. Much has been discussed including a good George Will column.

if you really want to learn about the heart and soul of the conservative movement, spend some time surfing and you’ll get a sense of what people feel … and see a great article about this by Tim Chapman.

Mark Pincus likes to call the activists the “ants.” Well, the ants are definitely rising in the conservative party. it is possible they might get trampled but they seem very determined to take back the “small government” mantle.

six years away …

thanks for all of you who emailed me yesterday about the party on Nov 11, 2011 at 11:11 am on the Golden Gate Bridge. only six years away.

trip down memory lane …
i sent out the original eVite (sent in 2001 — check out: at 3am after laughing so hard. i actually thought eVite had taken down the site but alas, no such luck. there were 2-3 other parody eVites that got formed from this one … including the 12/12/12 eVite.

Here is an article in the SJ Mercury

And here are the Top 6 Reasons I am planning the 2011 Party now:

6. Annoying 98 year old guy who shows up at all my parties will probably be dead.

5. I met this girl at a bar and she said ‘give me a call in 6 years.’ I said, ‘Great. I know just the party to take you.’

4. Planning on making this a regular get together — every hundred years.

3. I really wanted to put an event together for 2010, but I was just feeling too rushed.

2. Party in 1011 cancelled due to Bubonic Plague.

1. Need to get party out of the way and clean up before 3033 party.