Archive for September, 2011

Baby Haircut 2

Thursday, September 29th, 2011

Dyson needed to get his hair cut again. Now that he’s a little older, he moves around a lot more than he did the first time so it’s quite a bit more challenging.

When we were all done, I gave him a baby beard with the leftover hair.

Revenue Vs. Ads, Take 2

Monday, September 26th, 2011

Google was kind enough to offer me another free $100 in Google AdWords ads so I figured I’d give it another shot.

But this time, instead of spreading it out over a week and a half like I did last time, I decided to blow it all in three days on targeted ads for Mach Dice and Castle Tiles.

The results? The ads did not seem to have an appreciable effect. They may have resulted in a sale or two, but certainly not nearly enough to justify spending $100 in ads.

I think the main reason for that is that my apps are pretty niche apps and the odds of my ads hitting the type of person that would be interested in my apps is pretty low. On the other hand, the ads themselves seemed to be pretty effective. For $100, I got 836,276 impressions and 1,423 clicks.

Practicing Words with the Baby

Thursday, September 22nd, 2011
Dyson’s reached the age where he’s starting to say words. He seems to get certain concepts pretty well but for now, he can only say two syllable words.

It’s fascinating to see the limits of his little baby brain and then to see him pushing on those limits. The most incredible thing about the whole thing is just how quickly things change.

Safari West

Wednesday, September 14th, 2011

Through a coincidental series of events, I got invited to an all day safari tour with my former department at work. It was loads of fun hanging out with them again and I got to see all sorts of cool animals.

In addition to the Masai giraffe, flamingos, and the colorful African ducks, I got to see the world’s smallest antelopes (duikers are smaller than my house cats!), some of the most dangerous buffaloes in the world (the Cape buffalo), a very happy turtle, and the angriest looking bird I have ever seen.

If you happen to live in the Bay Area, go check out Safari West!


Saturday, September 10th, 2011

Writer Merlin Mann, of 43 Folders fame, gave an interesting talk at work the other day. It was all about priorities and he had two main points:

  • priorities are observed, not manufactured
  • priorities are a product of care and sacrifice

His first point is that something doesn’t become a priority just because you say it’s one. If something is a priority in your life, you’ll know it. How will you know? Because you both care about it and you make sacrifices for it.

Applying this to my own life, I can see how much of a priority Dyson has become since he was born. I make sacrifices for him (hanging out with friends, playing video games, iPhone development time, but mostly sleeeeeep) and I do it because I love him and I want to be there for him as he grows up.

So what are the priorities in your life? What do you care about and what do you sacrifice?

Lost In Translation

Thursday, September 8th, 2011

I recently hosted a friend of the family visiting from Japan and she sent me a lovely thank you email, including this segment:


Now, I can speak Japanese, but I’m not that great at reading it, so I gave it a whirl with Google Translate and it came out like this:

Tony and Tracy’s baby and, like the angel of death at younger you kindly, if, even when every day, and enjoy your happiness.

I think something was lost in translation.

Women in Film

Sunday, September 4th, 2011

Have you heard of the Bechdel Test? It started out as a tongue-in-cheek litmus test to see how many movies have:

  1. at least two women
  2. who talk to each other
  3. about something other than a man

It shouldn’t be taken too seriously as a feminist credential because you can pass it very superficially or fail even with a very strong female lead. But it is telling that so many mainstream movies fail this low bar. I think it’s because the vast majority of movies are made by men. And men tend to write about other men and the worlds they know, with the occasional woman for dressing.

Of course, there’s nothing wrong with people telling stories that they’re familiar with. People should tell stories that are meaningful to them. But don’t you ever long to see something different?

Well, if you’re like me and want to support something like that, then check out this short film project my friend Emma is going to make.

It’s an awesome short film Western (with real horses and everything!) that will be unlike anything you’ve ever seen before but she needs your help to make it happen. Even a small contribution means a lot. But if you’re looking for an investment, for a $100, you’ll get a set of signed limited edition prints that are going to be worth a lot when Emma makes it big. Just sayin’…

The Mystery of the Missing Duplos

Friday, September 2nd, 2011

The duplos get a much needed washing.

Over the past several days, it seemed like there were always fewer and fewer Duplo blocks around. I figured that Dyson was hiding them somewhere, I just couldn’t figure out where.

This morning, I discovered where he was putting them. In the diaper pail.