Creativity is just connecting things.
— Steve Jobs

Tag Archives: move

Been a Long Time, Been a Long Time

I don’t normally post about my career but kinda feel compelled to. I was laid off last week and it’s weird. I’m shocked because I really thought Digital was a strategic advantage and direction for my company, especially in the Detroit market, where clients just refuse to pay for anything that could be misconstrued as an elaborate production. Digital is theoretically cheaper but that’s only true for so long. Once you get deeper into creative and integration with other platforms, costs typically go up.

Regardless, I’ve been away from the blog for a while now because I’m searching for a new job. My net is cast over the whole U.S. right now and while I prefer Silicon Valley, Chicago and the East Coast, I’m entertaining all offers that could lead to a bright and stable future.

I just spent hours rewriting my resume into the early morning and really think it paints a clear picture of who I am, what I’m interested in producing, and how I think. I hope an employer sees it the same way. 😉

In the meantime, I’ve put my house up for sale . It’s really bizarre to see it listed but I have to. The Detroit market is devastated and frankly, everyone here thinks they’re next to be laid off.

For now, I’m spending time with my family by taking Elise to ballet classes, rocking Miles to sleep and rubbing Melissa’s feet/letting her sleep in/keeping the house neat to help relieve her stress. I so hated to give her the news of my layoff after the year she’s had in the hospital with a high-risk pregnancy and premature delivery.

When Melissa and I decided to move back to Michigan in 2000, we knew it was a risk. There just aren’t as many places to work here as other markets. We’ve had fun in Michigan, met tons of great neighbors, and worked with some fabulous people along the way. But by far, the best thing has been having our kids with our families around to share in that experience.

I will post any updates to the search here. I wish everyone in Michigan and all connected to the auto industry all the best. It’s unnecessarily brutal out there due to circumstances that were really beyond any of our control.

Time to get back to making Miles smile.

iPhone 2.0 Map Feature

I don’t have the 3G model but that didn’t stop Google Maps from being super useful when using their targeting function. If you are in Maps and press the targeting button in the lower left corner, the usual blue circle with inward facing blue tick marks will appear. What’s new (to me at least) is that if you keep driving around, the blue circle will move to reflect your new position. This mode is also shown to be active when the targeting button in the lower left corner stays the bright blue color. Tap that icon once more and the “following mode” turns off. I did notice that I had wi-fi on while I was driving around as well.

I don’t recall this being in the 1.0 Maps app. Maybe I’m wrong. Either way, it’s a pseudo GPS function that is really helpful.


From the newly released iPhone manual it states:

If you have an iPhone 3G, a blue marker indicates your location when GPS is used
to find your location. Otherwise, a circle is used to show your approximate location.
As you move around, iPhone updates your location, adjusting the map so that the
location indicator remains in the center of the screen. If you tap again or drag the
map, iPhone continues to update your location but stops centering it, so the location
information may move off the screen.

I’m not sure if that entire paragraph applies only to the 3G model or both.

iPhone App Wishlist

1. A real spam filter for MobileMail. Unfortunately, Apple’s MobileMail 2.0 description only talks about “support for mass email move and delete.” Maybe the developer of SpamSieve will come out with an iPhone version.


3. A great voice notes app. I’ve even considered trying to create my own version.

4. A remote control for Keynote that uses bluetooth instead of http via MobileSafari.

5. Adium.

6. Pastor.

7. A great movie times lookup. I hate having to use any standard websites because they are just so slow.

8. Cha-Ching quick transaction entry. I’m starting to believe that if I had an instant input method to that app, I’d find it much more useful.

I Bought an iPhone

I know, it’s nutty. I’ve never had a personal cell phone before this. There’s no point in me writing up a review since there are literally hundreds if you search Google News or do virtually any blog.

I went to the Twelve Oaks Apple store in Novi, walked to the back display unit, futzed around with it for about 2 minutes then walked over to the register and bought it. No waiting in line. No camping. All the hype around this device made me think I’d have a poor store experience but it was great.

What I will say about the device is this. I think it’s Insanely Great™ and wouldn’t trade it for anything. I’m anxiously awaiting news of someone finding a way to install 3rd party apps on it. Even a way to just move data back and forth without having to use iTunes.

The Google Maps feature is something I desperately need because I ALWAYS get lost when traveling. I have no sense of direction and am tired of being late or lost whenever I leave the house. The new UI gestures like pinching and flinging really make sense with this app.

I do wish the built-in Mail app was a little more sophisticated by having a built-in spam filter, ability to mass delete messages, and faster navigation between accounts. I don’t like having to climb all the way back to the main menu to jump to another account that has new messages. I think the bottom nav bar could be an easy place to provide these functions since now they’re kinda bare and static except for the “checking for messages” text.

The iPod is really really fun to use as are many of the other things that involve flinging or flipping or throwing. The extra steps it takes to accomplish tasks seems offset due to the fun factor of the UI.

I would also like to see AOL’s IM built in as well as a Keynote Player and a way to connect the device to a projector via the dock/usb cable. Maybe an adapter is in the works. If Leopard had been introduced on time, I bet the Keynote app would have been included as part of the refreshed iWork suite. If Apple can find a way for users to upload or sync Keynote presentations to the iPhone and allow it to power a projector, I’d be really blown away.

Finally, I would love to see Apple publish at least, a developer guide for creating Safari webapps and post it somewhere around here.

Next on the agenda is a case for the iPhone. I will DIE if it gets wrecked. This one looks to be quite durable and even makes the iPhone resemble a Newton.

Watch Your Code

While I was working on a client project today, I wondered what the new NYTimes CSS looked like. I especially was interested in the new font size and face for articles. So, after locating the CSS file I checked out the source.

Two things struck me. One was the meta data added by the author:

NYT CSS file for /css/common/global.css
FileName: global.css
Author: James Duncan
revison date: 2006.04.05
Revised by: James Duncan
Comments: Latest Version

The second was the note at the end:

/* move this crap to section front if needed, what a mess… – James

ul, ol {
padding-left: 0px;
margin-left: 18px;
_margin-left: 22px;


Note to self. You work for the NYTimes and people are interested in how you do things. Next time realize that you’re not still working on and remember to remove personal comments from the CSS file.


Bullitt (Poster) Remake?

Um, I could care less if they remake the movie Bullitt but if a studio decides to move forward with it, anything could be better than the original movie poster. Jesus this thing is the worst subliminal advertising in the world:


Yes, I’m coining that word. I said it first and noone can use it without paying massive sums of money.

I happen to have seen some real photos of the 2-door 07 Jeep Wrangler. Here are my thoughts:

Front grille: Straight from the Gladiator. It also is more of a flattened, rounded corners, rectangular shape. Not like today’s shape.

Front bumper: Similar to the Gladiator minus the built in fog lights. Not that that’s a bad thing since those would probably have been knocked off by a whipping tree branch on the trail. They also looked too Chrysler for me anyways.

The top: Take the current top and do the following mods: It is sliced in 3 pieces creating one piece over each front seat and the third slice goes across the vehicle between the front and rear seats. The top also has a flip-up windshield. The overall shape is very angular like the Rescue concept. The soft top is nothing new: Sunrider but it’s standard. I don’t have one on mine so I can’t comment.

The interior: Again, no way to tell if these things are standard, but: Power windows. Yes there appear to be two up/down switches in the center of the IP, which according to my friend, is much like the Liberty. The general IP is rounder with a smaller glove box. Not a good move in my opinion. It appearrs to be smaller due to what looks like a large speaker grille. Lose the speaker and give me more glove space. It was really small to begin with but now looks only good for my winter gloves. Power door locks. They appear to be integrated with the door handle itself as a switch similar to the power windows style.

The fenders: Front are from the Gladiator, rear barely look different. I wonder how much mud this front set will accumulate when wheeling but whatever. Most people will want to remove them anyway. The side turning signal lights are tiny, round, and look pasted on. I’d rather just cover them with black tape or lightly spray paint them with black to tone them down. They just look weird when everything else is so Wrangular. 😉

I’ll try to do a photoshop mock and drawing of what i saw so it’s easier to visualize.

It’s Official

I got a new job. Yay. I’ve been looking for so long and finally found something that fits. I am the Creative Director at a small company in downtown Ann Arbor. The people are nice and I can’t wait to get thing going around here.

I’m also sitting pretty with a loaded 17 inch PowerBook and a 21 inch monitor to my left. :-)

As for the drive, it’s not terrible right now. The bulk of the traffic is going the other direction and I’m usually able to get above the speed limit for long stretches.

This new job also means that our house is up for sale. We’re not looking to move all the way to A2, just somewhere between. Maybe Plymouth, maybe South Lyon, maybe Northville (although that’s a stretch since we want a newer house).

If you or anyone you know is looking for a really nicely restored home in Fabulous Ferndale, please pass this flyer (7mb) along to them.


The general rule of thumb is that you can only move OS X windows by dragging their titlebar or a bottom bar like in Safari. Other applications like GarageBand allow for window edge dragging because Apple just felt like it.

Well, this Application Enhancer makes all apps equal. It’s called WindowDragon. Simply put, it allows a window’s entire structure to be used as move or resize zone. In other words, WindowDragon makes it possible to move or resize a window by clicking anywhere within that window.

Additionally, WindowDragon allows you to resize a window from any corner, and it allows you to drag all of an application’s windows in tandem.

Tactapad – be the cursor!

This might or might not be real, but either way, it looks really cool. A company just came up with a crazy way of interacting with your Mac. This isn’t a real production product yet but they’re looking for investors to help them move forward. Check out demo movies… they’re cool as hell.