February 9th, 2007

five things meme

Because Bill Clementson asked me, here are five things you might not know about me.
  1. I grew up on an an organic strawberry/flower/corn/pumpkin farm in a small town (population: 40-ish) in Maine.

    There were also goats.

  2. I was kicked out of college because I played Doom all day & night instead of going to class. Right before I got kicked out, I sent a resume to id software on a whim, and they flew me out to Dallas for an interview. I didn't get hired, but I did get to play a prerelease of Quake and get completely destroyed by Romero in Doom II. Between Quake games, they realized that smoke trails from rocket launchers should fade upwards, not downwards, and recompiled it to do so.
  3. I worked for a small ISP that, through a series of wacky coincidences, hosted the website for The Doobie Brothers in the 90s. As a result, I got to do some cross-country phone support for various Brothers, who all got computers for the project. I also met the drummer, Mike Hossack, in person.
  4. I used to be very involved in the GIMP community. I started the GIMP IRC network that now has several servers and hosts dozens of projects. I ran a website called GIMP News. I did technical editing on a handful of GIMP books (Grokking the GIMP is my favorite). At one point I was under contract to co-author a GIMP book of my own, but I got intimidated by the scope of the project and backed out.
  5. I was in a Christian youth group called Jet Cadets for several years. We would have weekly Sunday meetings in a greenhouse, and sometimes we'd travel around the state in the back of a truck to perform songs at church meetings. We'd go ice fishing in the winter and have cookouts in the summer. Everyone also went to Camp Living Waters for a week or two every year.

I tag Tim, Amity, archon, scromp, and gnarl.

industry magazines

I like the idea of trade magazines. It's interesting to see the perspective of some commercial community that is marketing to itself rather than the public.

For example, I recently signed up for Plate Magazine, a restaurant trade magazine, and it has a number of great recipes. As part of each recipe, though, they include a menu price, and the percentage of that price that goes towards food costs. Not something you see in ordinary food magazines!

The ads in Plate are also pretty amusing. They are geared towards selling food products to restaurant owners (which they call "operators") rather than consumers. "Your customers crave that fresh taste. That's why operators are discovering the taste advantage of Smithfield pork products." Many ads tout products with fresh taste, with the implication that the product is not actually fresh, so you, the savvy operator, won't break your budget.

Many trade magazines are available free for people in the trade. I've signed up for a number of them in my capacity as chief financial decision-maker for Wigflip, Inc., which is involved a surprisingly large number of diverse industries.

Here's my favorite trade magazine title & subtitle so far:

For some reason, computer industry trade magazines are universally boring to me.