The next 11 days

A bit of travel coming up over the next 11 days:

  • Today I’m flying to NYC to meet a few new members of the Fusion team in person. Tomorrow we have a hack day on the theme of personalization.
  • Friday evening I’m taking the train to Philly for Saturday’s BCNI. I fly back to Portland Saturday evening.
  • Home on Sunday.
  • On Monday, I’m headed to Napa via SF for the VIP workshop. I’m bringing my running shoes.
  • Thursday, I fly to Las Vegas for Loopconf, where I’ll be until Saturday morning.

If our paths intersect, say hello!

On the gear front, I recently picked up a Patagonia Refugio 28L backpack. It passed the test with flying colors on an overnight to SF. One pocket for my laptop, another for clothing, and a third for cables, etc. I can’t underscore how exceedingly awesome it is. Clothing volume-wise, I think it’s going to max out at three night trips unless I pack my reusable undies.

Rdio vs. Spotify

Some many know me as a hardcore Rdio fan. I love the UI, appreciate their story, and have mostly been satisfied with the service.

Last year, Andy Baio wrote two articles comparing Rdio to Spotify. In both instances he concludes Rdio comes out slightly on top — their catalog is just a little bit better.

But, I’ve never been able to get the Blue Scholars or St. Germain on Rdio so I always questioned how the catalogs really compared. Yesterday, after scrapping my first hackathon project at 7:30 pm, I decided to use the Echonest API to answer my question once and for all. Which is better, Rdio or Spotify?

As it turns out, Spotify. By a landslide. Of the 92,343 songs I had time to pull down, 74,703 are available on Spotify and 56,988 are available on Rdio. Furthermore, Spotify had 21,370 songs that weren’t available on Rdio, whereas Rdio only had 3,655 songs that weren’t available on Spotify.

Plus Spotify has the Blue Scholars and St. Germain. Time to make a switch.

Travel plans for this week

Packing for an early flight to NYC tomorrow morning. I’ll be there until Friday, followed by a train ride north to WordCamp Boston. Circuit completes on Monday evening.

I’m not sure I have any clothing suitable for the heat of the East.

#nyc12: Making the Switch to WordPress

Yesterday morning, I gave the last of three CMA NYC sessions I led this week:

Considering making the switch to WordPress? Join Daniel Bachhuber, code wrangler for Automattic’s WordPress.com VIP, to learn how to make open source work for your publication. We’ll discuss whether WordPress is the right fit for you, how to assess other options, and what steps you need to take if you’d like to make the switch.

Most of the people attending had been to at least one of my other sessions, so it was a quicker review of the slides and then more of a general Q&A session. A lot of the questions revolved around the different types of hosting, where you should go for support, etc.

#nyc12: Hacking WordPress in the Newsroom

This morning, I gave the second of three CMA NYC sessions I’m leading this week:

You publish with WordPress, are comfortable with editing theme templates and making basic CSS changes, and you’re ready to take your site to the next level. Join Daniel Bachhuber, code wranger for Automattic’s WordPress.com VIP, to learn what you need to know. We’ll discuss topics like version control, performance and optimization, debugging, and other development best practices. This session will be geared towards the tech-savvy with a practical knowledge of WordPress.

It ended up being a little less ambitious. We started out with (the importance of) setting up a local environment, reviewed what makes a plugin, and introduced a few project ideas. Between a dozen and two dozen students attended; for almost all, the information was completely new.

The most important note on this subject: there are lots of jobs available.

Also, come hit us up with WordPress questions at our Happiness Bar!

Session notes are below the slides.

Continue reading “#nyc12: Hacking WordPress in the Newsroom”

#nyc12: I Want to Learn WordPress

This morning, I gave the first of three CMA NYC sessions I’m leading this week:

So, you’ve heard of WordPress before, possibly used it for your personal portfolio, and want to learn everything there is to know about it. Well, everything we can cover in a hour at least 🙂 Join Daniel Bachhuber, code wrangler for Automattic’s WordPress.com VIP, as we cover the WordPress interface, key concepts like themes, plugins, PHP and MySQL, and how to choose a good web host and design for your site. This session will be geared towards those with limited familiarity who want to learn more.

It was a quick introduction to the WordPress project, key terminology you’d hear, and then a tour through the WordPress admin. The room was packed with maybe 30-40 people which was sweet. Tomorrow is “Hacking WordPress in the Newsroom” and Tuesday is “Making the Switch to WordPress.”

How to Live in New York City

Move here when you’re 18 or 22, maybe even 24. Come from somewhere else-the north, south, west, Xanadu- and come to realize that everyone living in New York is a transplant. Even the ones who grew up on the Upper East Side end up moving into a place downtown, which, as you’ll soon discover, is like moving to a different city.

Discover the cruel and bizarre world of New York City real estate. End up spending an obscene amount of money on something called a broker’s fee, first and last month’s rent and a security deposit. Cry a little bit in the leasing office but remind yourself that you’re so happy to be here.

Picture hearing a man playing the saxophone outside your bedroom window. End up hearing a lot of sirens instead. Figure it’s okay because it’s New York and you’re still so happy to be here.

[…]

Certain moments of living in the city will always stick out to you. Buying plums from a fruit vendor on 34th street and eating three of them on a long walk, the day you spent in bed with your best friend watching Tyra Banks, the amazing rooftop party you attended on a sweltering hot day in July. These memories might seem insignificant but they were all moments when you looked around the city and felt like you were a part of it all.

When you leave the city, you probably won’t come back. Eventually your life in New York will seem so far away and sometimes you’ll even wonder if it really happened. Don’t worry. It did.

Ryan O’Connell — How to Live in New York City (via Michelle)