Category Archives: Uncategorized

The Geek Shall Inherit the Earth

“It’s not the meek that will inherit the earth, it’s the geek.”

AboutJay

Governor Jay Inslee

That was part of the message as Washington Governor Jay Inslee addressed the GeekWire Startup Day gathering on October 25th.  In a talk that started slow — yeah 9:30 in the morning seemed a little early for many in the startup crowd — the Governor showed his understanding and appreciation of the technology industry.

The Governor recalled Washington’s history with airplanes and software and offered that innovation is really the stock in trade for the state.  One of the relatively new industries, gaming, has 70% of total industry revenue in the state.

One key initiative was in making government data more accessible to the public.  He highlighted Socrata a Seattle company focused on democratizing access to public data.

The Governor also has some key technology policy initiatives he will be pursuing:

  • Tax credit for startup companies
  • Research and Development tax credits
  • Increasing focus on colleges and universities spinning off research to private enterprise
  • Creating an index on the efficiency of government regulations
  • Increasing the number of students graduating with STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) degrees

Finally, he challenged the audience with a bigger issue; the cumulative effect of our carbon choices.  We’ve consumed vast stores of carbon fuels in a relatively short period of time.  What technology and innovation can we bring to these challenges to improve our future?

 

Google Analytics Academy

Today I finished some very interesting training through the Google Analytics Academy on the fundamentals of digital analytics.

Google Analytics

It’s a free, self-paced course that has 6 courses with a number of sub-topics in each course.  You can hook up with the course here.  Each topic has a video along with a text handout.  The course starts with a basic discussion of analytics and definitions so everyone is on the same footing.  At the end of each topic there are a few questions to test you on the material you just learned.  In the first few units, the questions at the end hadn’t always been covered in either the video or the written information, but that kept it interesting.

At the end, you take a final assessment exam with a number of multiple choice questions.  Don’t worry, the exam is open book –and open computer for that matter –and you can change answers, if needed until you get 80% right and earn a certificate.

The course gives you great insight into the power and potential of Google Analytics and I thought it was well worth the time.

If you’re interested, though, you better hurry up.  The course will only be available until October 30th.

 

So Long Peanut Man

How do some people touch our lives more than others?

Rick “Peanut Man” Kaminski touched so many in his years with the Mariners.  You can see Rick in action here.

I didn’t know him, but I saw him at countless Mariner games and people loved him.  From the regulars he checked in with game after game to the kids who watched in wide-eyed amazement as he casually tossed a bag of peanuts over a section of fans to land right at the intended target.

You could always tell the visitors to Safeco Field when Rick tossed a bag of peanuts 40 feet and you’d hear someone behind you saying “did you see that.”

And he taught kids to catch.  Every game you’d see him instructing the little 7 or 8 year old to “hold your hands just like this.”  When the peanuts bounced off their hands he’d calmly reclaim the bag, give a little more coaching and make one more throw.

When hands and bag met, and stayed together, you could see the magic sparkle and realize Rick just found another fan.

So long Rick.  You will be sorely missed.

Even the Mustache Can’t Break the Run

Manager Eric Wedge, owner of “The Mustache,” did everything he could to break the bad streak.  He contributed his mustache to the cause, shaving it off after Saturday’s defeat.

But even coming to the game Sunday sans mustache didn’t give the Mariners enough.  True, they get out early to a 2-0 lead in the top of the first thanks to a Miguel Olivo home run, but they can’t do enough with the hitting machine that is the Boston Red Sox.