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Wednesday, October 5, 2011

iOur iLives....

So yeah, my Twitter/Reader/Facebook exploded after 7pm last night with everyone's reactions to Steve Jobs' death. My wife even teared up a little bit - more so because you're talking about someone passing at 56 after battling cancer for most of the last 7-8 years - but also because as a former photojournalist like me, we both have been avid fans and users of Apple products for over two decades.

I wouldn't be where I am today without Apple's influence - from the Apple II's I remember in our elementary school classes that let us program BASIC - to the all-Mac newsroom I walked into as a freshman in college, with a bunch of Mac Plus stations for writers and editors, running System 6.x with floppy drives - to the house I live in now with four MacBooks/iMacs and about 8 iPods/iPhones of various makes, models, and sizes.

We probably would have gotten to where we are today one way or another - but we wouldn't have gotten there as fast, or with the same refinement - if Apple would have gone under any of the multiple times it was on its deathbed since 1976. There's an obvious influence on all of our ways of life, on how we choose, ingest, and manage our media consumption, that's been incredibly disruptive over the last 40 years, and it's largely due to Jobs' reality distortion shield and force of personality as a product visionary.

To expand upon I point I made elsewhere - I find his comeback to Apple after 1997 far more compelling and influential than the original creation of the Macintosh in the 1980s. Hey, even Microsoft finally figured out GUIs after 10-15 years: the concept wasn't that hard to execute.

It's the aesthetic approach, the attention to detail, the overall package, the user interface - combined with the ability to ENFORCE that philosophy from concept to design to implementation to manufacture - that made all these iMacs, iBooks, iPods, iPhones, and iPads such pleasing, entertaining, almost addictive products.

It was arbitrary and tyrannical at times - but the consistent ability to deliver an experience that eliminated the product itself as an obstacle to what the customer wants to do - that's the true legacy of Steve Jobs.

Probably just thinking in this framework to prep myself for the first day on the new job Monday.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Are you there, muppets? It's me, Heff!

So yeah, I left this blog in the dark after July 1st. At least there aren't too many cobwebs...

Basically, while I was seeking some kind of new job, I thought it was prudent to take this silly blog offline and keep quiet in the cyberworld. I quit paying attention to a lot of distractions - let my roto baseball team plummet into last place and stay there all summer, cut out live and online poker almost entirely except for one trip to Rivers Casino in Pittsburgh on a U2 concert junket, skipped the monthly BBT in Exile tourney in September, and instead worked on the resume, networking, and interview skills while being a househusband and watching BabyGirlHeff.

Well, it finally paid off at the end of September. I haz job.

Fulltime, for just a touch less $$ than I was making for AOLolol, but with a lot of growth opportunities and future development, which is the way I needed to go. Cliff Notes, I'll start off performing functional business analysis with some product management/webmaster responsibilities to come.

The downside is, I'm leaving photojournalism and the communications industry, which is how I've made a buck ever since I was 15. But, no one is going to pay me the kind of salary I need to support this family in 5, 10 years if I continue to do what I've done all my life and stay in a comfort zone. So, it's time to put myself in an uncomfortable spot and learn some new skills and tricks…

In the meantime, I will continue to post occasionally here - mostly a look back at odd unemployment adventures - while I figure out what I'm going to do with this blog - I keep thinking I will eventually move it to a hosting site where I can combine some ongoing web development work and work examples with personal branding, yaddayaddayadda… The content will likely become less cards and more life and other observations… (the wife keeps saying I need to post a daily "AngryAsianMan" rant just for laughs and see how entertaining I can be)

Speaking of cards:

- I finally grinded out the iPad2 bonus on Lock - it only took me almost five months… so we'll see if and when I get it. I spun up the original $250 deposit up over 1K twice - right before the little climber fell off the mountain twice, leaving me with… $250 in the account. I will likely either cash it out to break even - or more likely do a NewInNov thing and play way over my head one day to either go BUSTO or ROBUSTO first. Either way, I'm pretty sure it's time to retire from online poker for actual $$$ unless and until it comes back as a regulated industry in the U.S.

- Hey, so we're getting FTP moneys back? Maybe? No? Does anyone really know? I'd like my roll back, even if the DOJ takes a finder's fee out of it. At least then the wife and I can have fun on some cardroomjunkets.

- Lightning had a heart attack? VeryJosie made bank and is mad at the Borgata? Waffles is waffles? Ok, some things haven't changed that much. Good to know.

Here's to grinding and perseverance.
It's the only way I made it through the last three months.

Sunday, October 2, 2011

No really, I am awake and working now.

Ok, last minute BBT in Exile tourney tonight, since it's the first Sunday of the month and I forgot about it last month... actually, forgot about it until today.

9:30ET on Stars for play money, you know the drill.

Club ID: 415619
Invitation Code: wolverines

At least I can celebrate finding a job now, so all is relatively well. :-)

More details TK in the days ahead.