Chief Technology Officer & Photographer | Irvine, CA

When will Local News die already?

At what point will the local news stations in Phoenix (and around the world) finally die off? I mean come on, how much longer do we have to suffer hearing Rick D’Amico rattle off some perverted comment or lame ass attempt at a joke to a co-host or guest. You should hear the what he says OFF the air…it’s no wonder he hasn’t had any scandal’s creep out of the closet.

Did anyone catch the “12 News 12 Seconds of Fame” spot on Super Sunday? Are you KIDDING ME?! I swore Ron Burgandy was going to come jumping out of my TV reporting about a squirrel water skiing.

I’d much rather watch Tyler Hurst spout off on a touchy local subject through a 5 minute video recorded from an iPhone than having to watch Lin Sue Cooney and Mark Curtis spout off some bullshit they are reading off teleprompters while trying to sound engaging and emotionally connected to whatever they are “reporting” on. No, I don’t just want to hear about the crimes in the Avenue’s and dirty dining reports – I can catch all of that on the web before you even report about it – hell, all I have to do is follow Chuck Reynolds on Facebook or Twitter, and I’m pretty well informed. He’s not the only one either…there are tons of aggregators across the world like him that like to spread the news.

Call me selfish, but I want news that’s relevant to ME. I like what Facebook is doing now – they are figuring out what to show me, because based on my usage history, they can tell what I like, what I don’t, and deliver an engaging and RELEVANT stream of content to me. More companies, like News companies, need to get on board. Just because you stand in front of a window looking out to a dead downtown Phoenix (good job copying the Today show) while holding your iPad doesn’t make you more in tune with me.

Irrelevant local news at 5, 6, & 10 is just not going to cut it in 2012. How much longer can it really go on for? My mother, at the young age of 61, gets the majority of her relevant content delivered to her via Facebook, GMail, her iPhone, and her iPad, and you’re going to tell me that the 18-49 year old market isn’t doing the same? Print media has taken a HUGE hit over the last decade because they failed to jump on board, when will local news suffer the same fate?

Or are they just hiding it really well?

Commuting via the Light Rail

So – as of about 4 weeks ago, I started working in downtown Phoenix, which opened up the possibility that I could actually take the light rail to work since there is a stop right outside my office…I’d just have to commute to the end of the line in Mesa since I live near Western New Mexico (Gilberto).

Today, my BFF Courtney and I decided to take the train in to downtown Phoenix this morning – double bonus points since it is a high pollution day, and we are “encouraged” to use mass transit.

Getting to the park & ride wasn’t bad – I just thought it was a lot further east for some reason – for future reference, it’s the Sycamore & Main station and it’s just east of Dobson off of Main…why I thought it was in between Country Club and Mesa Dr is beyond me – good thing I had a smartphone in my pocket with a mapping application that I didn’t use.

We hopped on, got our pick of seats, and started playing trivial pursuit (a game in which I suck at, but I still beat her!).

All in all, the ride wasn’t bad – by the time you hit a few stops in Tempe, the train is PACKED. No real annoying peeps until after Courtney’s stop in “Southern Downtown” when this dude hopped on that smelled as if he hadn’t showered since 1994, and must have been deaf as he was yelling in to the cell phone he borrowed from the girl sitting behind me. Thankfully, it was only 3 stops to my station, so I didn’t have to deal with dude for long.

Going home should be interesting…not sure how we’re going to get 2 seats next to each other. I wonder if punching someone in the face and telling them to move their ass is frowned upon? Probably…guess I’ll just stick with random flatulence to see if I can gas them out.

No…I don’t have a resume…

“Corporate America” bugs the hell out of me.

Today, I get an email titled “Opportunity Knocks” from a local company in town, giving the same old canned message that was spruced up a little to be marginally personalized.  I was told he searched for “php developer phoenix” and he found me (I rank #1 for that search term).  Ok – I read on – and it was basically a soft recruitment letter – pretty standard.

I responded back that I wasn’t looking for full time work, but I’d be open to any contract/freelance work, as I had recently left a company to go back out on my own. He responded shortly after and said, “How about sending me a resume and I’ll set up a few face-to-face meetings with the peeps here?”.

Hmmm…

Well, I don’t have a resume, I haven’t updated my resume in years. Hell, the resume I used to desperately get a job with 944 Magazine was the same resume I had that I made in high school – clearly it worked, but it was old, outdated, and is a constant reminder of “old business”.  If you know me…Craig…this is directed at you haha…you know that I loathe “old business” methodologies – not all, but most.  I still prefer the good old “hand shake and a promise” – something about that just screams “business” to me, but everything else, meh, I can do without.

Apparently I said something to ruffle the feathers, because after my response of “Look at the links in my sig – that’s my resume – I’m pretty confident in the wealth of information you’ll find about me as a person/developer/etc on google”, I was told that I was “being arrogant, cocky and feeling entitled” and that those “are not a qualities we are interested in”.

Whoa…what?

Whoa what? Being arrogant and cocky? I think you completely misunderstood my last email, and now you’re telling me that I’m an “apprentice” because I told you I don’t have a formal “resume” anymore? I’m not an old dude with a pony tail – nor a web developer that wasted years in college and have 9 million microsoft/google/etc certifications – it’s all worthless – real world experience is where it’s at.

Wow – this went downhill pretty quick…and FYI, in the “real world”, a piece of paper listing accomplishments is still just a piece of paper – the proof is in the pudding, and you’ve yet to see any of my work (you’ve seen my blog and probably DateDesigner.com) – neither of which I care to “defend” to you.

The only arrogant person in this conversation is you right now…you probably need to chillax a little. An apology for flying off the handle is appreciated.

It gets better – I just got this response:

Fair enough: I apologize for “flying off the handle”. Let me get back on my broomstick (apparently, I’m a witch?).

We do require a resume. Sorry, I can’t ask other managers and the co-founders of this company to “Look at the links in my sig – that’s my resume”. Seriously, that doesn’t cut it. To dignify and respect their time, they should only have to review a single-source document of your accomplishments (aka a “resume”). Everything they read online *could* be 100% BS (just as a resume could be), but it starts the process down the right road. No one has time to look at countless websites that have some reference to who you might be. Down the road, if we were truly interested, we would dig deeper (verify work history, check references, etc.).

You’re right, never saw any pudding. Also, I wasn’t being arrogant, I was being condescending (which was wrong and I apologize for that, too). Guess I was expecting to somehow be “wowed!” by your claim of being a “jQuery Expert”.

I reached out to you because you appeared to have an acceptable amount of experience in web development. I failed to conclude that you were a master of your craft. Being that you are, you are clearly out of our league as we are really just looking for someone who is pretty darn good at what they do.

Sorry to have bothered you.

And my response:

Again with the “crafty” email response – and a dodge at just apologizing, tucking your tail, and moving on.

I never claimed to be a jQuery expert, I mentioned that my budd had said that. That was meant to be a joke, but clearly that wasn’t conveyed – or understood. I don’t claim to be an expert at anything – I do however know that I’m pretty f***in good at the skills I do possess.

My flip flops, t-shirts, and bedazzled jeans don’t do well in corporate culture – neither do resumes and obviously me – this is why I’m a full time freelancer. I loathe “old school” business methodologies, and can’t stand to be a part of them.

A bit of advice – especially in an ever competitive tech industry, hire people, not resumes. You could have easily brought me in to “meet the peeps” with a bit of information about me – you know, doing your job with recruiting, you gather information and report it back to those that control your strings. But now, you’ll just be on the hunt for another drone – another resume submitter…someone whom which I’ll never be again.

Thank you again for yet another captivating response XXXXX, I’m really looking forward to the next one!

Yes – now I’m just being an ass, but hey, it’s the amusement that I needed today. Back to the grind – see ya on the flip side!

AZ Diamondbacks with the Family

Headed out to Chase Stadium last night with the kiddos, their mom, and her fiance for a night of baseball with the family – yes, family – we have a well adjusted divorced family structure. :-)

Click on the picture or the link below it to view all the pics.

View the full set of AZ Diamondbacks vs. LA Dodgers on Flickr

2010 Lincoln MKZ – Ford Drive – Day 1

Rachel Young at Social Media Group contacted me out of the blue and asked if I would like to drive around a new 2010 Lincoln MKZ for a little while and share my experience with it through blogging/Twitter/Facebook/etc – how could I turn that down, I’m both a HUGE car nerd and a HUGE web nerd (my license plate says so).

Day 1 – Pick up the car

Met the rep at the #tukeedevhouse to pick up the car…fully loaded…in white!  First impression – “its definitely not Grandpa’s Lincoln…”.  Ford has really stepped up the styling on the Lincoln brand with their newest vehicle releases – I’m totally loving the lines of the car!

Get in to the car – and its got Sirius Satellite Radio – that’s a given in most cars today.  I didn’t really have an opportunity to mess with it too much before heading back to work, but the THX sound system & the Sirius satellite radio was crystal clear cruising all the way back to Scottsdale.  Got out of work, and bolted over to the kids school for Dom’s end of the year party – still didn’t have too much time to mess with the gadgets or the car, but I planned on it as soon as the party was over.

Ended up leaving the party and I literally sat in the parking lot of 7 Eleven for 20 minutes or so going through the manual and playing with Microsoft Sync.  I had thought that since it was Microsoft software, it wasn’t going to really support my Blackberry 8900, however, I was wrong!  I paired up my phone within a minute or so and made a call to Lexi (again) to wish her happy birthday – this time, through the phone interface in the car.  Awesome!

My battery was dying on my phone, so I knew I was going to have to head home, plug my phone in to my laptop, and let it take a charge before I could play with it some more, but then that got me thinking.  I figured, ok, there’s got to be more to the Microsoft Sync – it HAS to have a USB port somewhere in the car.  Sitting out front of my parents house (I had to stop by and show them the car – both my parents were jealous), I began looking everywhere, and then I opened up the center console and found the USB port.  I figured there was no way this was going to be as cool as I had imagined…and since I just had 2 strikes against my thoughts about the car and the Sync technology…whooosh…swing and a miss!  My phone started charging, and then I noticed that I had a USB media option – it totally loaded up all the MP3’s I had on my internal SD card and I could access my full library of music.

Streaming MP3’s via USB + charging phone + Bluetooth tech + aggressive styling + smooth ride = BIG GRIN!!!

Later in the evening after stopping by Gangplank to show the boys the car and giving them a ride in it, I discovered how to stream my media from my phone over Bluetooth…holy freakin’ cool!

Tomorrow I’ll touch more on how the car drives and any more gadgets that I find!

Check out the video that Chuck filmed late last night while I paired up the 8900 again & streamed MP3’s over Bluetooth to the sound system…