March 31, 2010
March 23, 2010
SARASOTA, Fla. — Okay, so I've only been to one spring training baseball game in my entire life and am hardly an expert. But I wish the regular season was more like the game I attended.
For one thing, the full Major League Baseball season should be played in rinky-dink ballparks like Ed Smith Stadium, capacity 7,500.1 It was jam-packed, which made for a fun atmosphere. Plus, it means most everyone has a good seat. My new criteria for good seats is having dirt get in your eyes when they rake the infield between innings.
I also came away impressed with the stadium staff. At every turn, ushers were thanking me for coming and asking if they'd see me at the next game. Do they do that at regular season games? (If so, not the games I've attended.)
1There are a handful of teams that regularly sell out their giant stadiums — I suppose they're exempted.
March 10, 2010
Back in my day, textbooks said "No one knows why the dinosaurs died off." It was a mystery. Maybe it was massive volcanic eruptions at the Deccan Traps in India. Or a rash of disease. Or a solar event that covered earth in complete darkness.
Now we know for sure. "It's official," writes Thomas H. Maugh II of the Los Angeles Times.
A few years ago, Marnie & I spent a couple days in Mérida, the capital of the Mexican state of Yucatán and the approximate epicenter of the Chicxulub Crater. Would I have done anything differently on the trip if I had known for certain that we were standing at ground zero of dinosaur extinction?
March 08, 2010
As everyone on Facebook knows, the site doesn't allow for different gradations of connections. Either a guy is your "friend" or he isn't.
Does this mean that people growing up in the Facebook age will perceive the word “friend” differently? Nick Bilton of the New York Times raised this question, wondering if young people consider a friend to mean anyone they've met even just once.
Bilton raises another question about the word "like." When a friend posts compelling content to Facebook, users click "like" to indicate an interest. This means we clicking "like" on well-written stories and photos about the developments in Haiti, even though we aren't fond of widespread devastation.
March 04, 2010
March 01, 2010
A location-based social media service called Foursquare has won media acclaim as the "Twitter of 2010," by which people presumably mean a mobile channel that breaks into the mainstream.1
Anyone with a Blackberry, Android or iPhone can join for free, and Foursquare has been the subject of glowing features on CNN, the New York Times and the Washington Post. Last week, Foursquare was even featured in a TV ad for the cable network Bravo.
Despite the attention, Foursquare is nowhere near the mainstream yet and relies thus far on its early-adopter membership.2
- Keep your Foursquare community to a close-knit set of friends. Don't open it up to the lower standards for "friendship" you likely have for Facebook and Twitter.
- Don't link your private Foursquare account with your public Twitter account. Unfortunately, this is a common mistake and the subject of PleaseRobMe.com and a funny YouTube video pointing out that it's a security hazard to broadcast your whereabouts.3