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Craigslist rental scam and community policing

    In largely user-generated communities, it’s always pretty impressive to see how quickly inappropriate behavior gets busted by the user community. In my latest housing search, I ran into one of those “too good to be true” sort of postings, and received the following message from the would-be scammer. Pretty neat to note that the first alert I received was from the posting being flagged for removal by the Craigslist community. Hi , Just a few more info. Equal size-2 bedrooms/2 bathrooms, 1300 sq. ft., washer/dryer in unit, A/C, dishwasher, parking — 1 included in the rent, safe neighbourhood, nice neighbours, very quiet, no… Read More »Craigslist rental scam and community policing

    Back in Business

      To follow up my earlier post about my Apple MacBook cracking, I visited the store and it took “5 to 6 business days” for them to replace the case of my MacBook. But voila, I’m back in business! Apple’s done a fantastic job of cultivating its clean image of virus-free dependability, but I’ve definitely had my fair annoyances this month with their products. Real information is few and far in between, but some old Gartner research suggests a standard 15–20% average failure rate for laptops and this press release from SquareTrade claims they did a study with Sony/HP as the… Read More »Back in Business

      Kindle vs. Used Bookstores for Students

        Amazon’s plan plan to tackle student textbooks has met with plenty of skepticism. Is tackling college students a successful strategy? I did some digging back in my old files to see whether or not the Kindle would have made sense when I was in college not so long ago. I kept fairly good records of how much money I spent each semester in college. Here’s what I spent in one year: Fall Textbooks$378.83 total spent on textbooks, $187.05 recouped (49%)Total cost: $191.78Spring Textbooks$322.64 spent on textbooks, $130.68 recouped (40.5%)Total cost: $191.96 While each semester’s textbooks typically would run $600–800 in… Read More »Kindle vs. Used Bookstores for Students

        My Love-Hate Relationship with Apple

          Not even a year out of the M$ campus, and I’ve adapted to a new life in SF accompanied by the usual mix of geeky accoutrements. Along with the Twitter account and flirtations with new technology, I’ve also managed to acquire an assortment of Apple products including a brand new MacBook (which I’ve affectionately named “AdaBook”) to replace the old faithful IBM ThinkPad T40 and an iPhone. A week into my new iPhone experience, all of my apps spontaneously stop working! Don’t get me wrong, I love the user experience of the iPhone — it’s unbeatable — but multiple hard reboots and logging in… Read More »My Love-Hate Relationship with Apple

          Developing Presence and Power

            I attended an interesting training today put on by the company Skills To Success. The training was titled “Personal Power & Presence” and featured hands-on coaching on minor behavior adjustments each of us can do for more effective interactions. The class featured a predator-partner-prey model. A person can be all three in different interactions, but typically has clear tendencies to lean toward one or the other. It’s pretty easy to infer from the names what each of these is. Predator — powerful and dominant, but at the cost of eroding relationships. Prey — nervous, submissive, likable and often talked over. Partners are in a… Read More »Developing Presence and Power

            Roadtrip on Hwy 101

              2 — Sonoma Coast (13) Originally uploaded by adavark. I’m driving up the California, Oregon and (part of) the Washington coast! Impressively, I am logging on fairly often to post photos. Check them out on my Flickr.

              In Memoriam

                01 31 07 GrantDog 021 Originally uploaded by adavark. Our family dog Grant passed away this weekend. He went peacefully in his sleep. He was a big fifty pound dog and lived to be 14 (like 80 in dog years), but it still hasn’t sunk in that the puppy from when I was in third grade is no longer here with us. Rest in peace.

                Washington Scenic Drive: Cascade Loop

                  The Pacific Northwest has a lot more to it than just rain; it has amazing scenery and plenty of outdoorsy activities. I went on Cascade Loop last weekend on a drive with Sachin across the Cascade Mountains and into Eastern Washington. The scenery was absolutely breathtaking, and a great way to see the rest of Washington. The drive is approximately 440 miles long, and takes a winding route east through the Cascade Foothills, across Stevens Pass, into some little towns towns, along Lake Chelan, and back on the North Cascades Highway — highlighted by Ross Lake and Diablo Lake. It’s worth stopping… Read More »Washington Scenic Drive: Cascade Loop

                  Live Search is Live!

                    In case you haven’t heard, Live Search is now officially live and getting attention. Jeremy Zawodny did a test-drive and Businessweek had a favorable review on the Live Search experience. Ada Chen

                    The End of Cheap Russian Music

             may be reaching the end of its days with a new Russian law in place. Uh oh! I’ve become more and more reluctant to adopt products and services from smaller companies because in all likelihood they will have dramatic changes or not be able to stick around. A few that I love and use regularly are Pandora (music), Meebo (web-based IM), and Wikispaces. To reference my last post about Facebook, Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg told everyone to calm down and breathe. I agree with how it’s not a big deal (but still don’t like it), but what?! React to user… Read More »The End of Cheap Russian Music