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Ironic Sans

Published: Tue, 05 Sep 2017 10:31:50 -0500

Last Build Date: Thu, 31 Aug 2017 09:59:08 -0500

Copyright: Copyright 2017

The Mystery of Why Uber Gave Me 77 Free Rides (or, How I Accidentally Gamed The System)

Thu, 31 Aug 2017 09:59:08 -0500

For about two and a half years, Uber kept sending me free ride credits. I just went through my receipts and counted 77 free rides in total, averaging one every couple weeks. Then they suddenly stopped. All that time, I...

How Postage Stamps Are Made

Mon, 19 Dec 2016 18:40:07 -0500

I just completed a nice little mini-documentary about the design of US postage stamps. The US Postal Service has four Art Directors who oversee the stamp designs, and I worked with one of them to make this video, Antonio Alcalá...

Sunday Magazine is back. With a twist!

Sat, 25 Jun 2016 14:48:11 -0500

Hey, everyone! Longtime readers (and if this is still popping up in your RSS feed, I'm not sure there's any other kind) will remember that I used to run a side project called, where each week I posted the...

Inventor Portrait: Alan Adler (AeroPress; Aerobie)

Tue, 25 Aug 2015 20:47:43 -0500

It's a new Inventor Portrait! Alan Adler, inventor of the Aerobie Flying Disc and the AeroPress coffee maker, tells the stories behind his famous inventions. I confess I actually completed this a year ago, but hadn't posted it for a...

My Letter From Oliver Sacks

Wed, 08 Jul 2015 13:50:59 -0500

I've just written a longform article for The Morning News about the time I got a letter from Oliver Sacks. But it's about so much more. It's a little bit science, a little bit personal essay, and a tiny bit...

A short documentary about a street puppeteer, his craft, and an unconventional friendship

Thu, 11 Jun 2015 12:43:46 -0500

How has it been so long since I've written anything here? Is anyone still reading me? If so, I have something new to show you. I'm really proud of how my latest short documentary turned out. It's about Ricky Syers,...

Idea: Pop Culture Twitter Lists

Tue, 28 Oct 2014 13:44:02 -0500

It's been five years since Twitter introduced Lists and frankly I never found a use for them. It's not that I don't see the value in curated lists, but I never remembered to look at them, preferring to watch my...

New York City photographed with the Game Boy Camera in 2000

Tue, 06 May 2014 17:25:17 -0500

Back in 2000, I was playing around with a Game Boy Camera, trying to use it to take color photos. (I finally got that to work.) When I first got the camera, I took a walk through midtown taking pictures....

How Captain America Got His Stripes

Wed, 26 Mar 2014 13:35:01 -0500

With a new Captain America movie about to be released, I think it's time I tell the story of when I was 14 year old, and I saved Captain America from appearing on the cover of a Marvel comic without...

House of Cards Season 2 Opening Credits Comparison in Animated GIFs

Fri, 21 Feb 2014 13:28:02 -0500

Are you watching House of Cards Season 2 on Netflix? Did you notice that they changed the opening credits since Season 1? There are still 37 time-lapse shots of Washington DC, and the cuts are in all the same places,...

Idea: A sign at the top of Mt. Everest

Tue, 18 Feb 2014 21:33:29 -0500

[This post is part of an idea dump.] Is anyone heading up Mt. Everest soon? I have an idea. Put a sign at the top for future travelers that says "Thank you Mario! But our princess is on another mountain!"...

Idea: A new automatic setting for cameras

Tue, 18 Feb 2014 16:51:06 -0500

There's a rule of thumb for long lenses and shutter speeds: to handhold a camera without noticeable motion blur, your shutter speed should be no slower than the inverse of your focal length. So for a 50mm lens, you can...

Check out this creative teenage hip-hop artist in Nashville

Tue, 05 Nov 2013 16:42:59 -0500

I don't usually link to other people's stuff on here. But when I stumbled upon this guy's videos on YouTube and saw that they only have a couple thousand views, I thought he needed a larger audience. His name is...

Interview with me on the "Unprofessional" podcast

Wed, 09 Oct 2013 14:36:25 -0500

I'm the guest on this week's episode of Unprofessional, the podcast where Dave Wiskus and Lex Friedman have conversations with people about anything other than their profession. Okay, we talk about my profession a little bit. But we also talk...

I wrote it, you made it: A Spoiler Tag

Tue, 08 Oct 2013 12:01:54 -0500

Well that was fast. On Thursday I proposed a new standard HTML tag for redacting spoilers. It could be customized with an expiration date (for things that don't need to be redacted long term) and had some other features I'd...

Idea: A Spoiler Tag

Thu, 03 Oct 2013 21:03:10 -0500

I think HTML needs a tag. Compliant browsers would automatically redact anything contained within it. For further granularity, you could have support for where XXX might be "Breaking Bad" or "US Open" or "Cheers Final Episode" or...

Idea: Content-Sensitive Transcription Formatting

Tue, 10 Sep 2013 12:01:56 -0500

We all know that WHEN SOMEONE TYPES IN ALL-CAPS it's interpreted as shouting. So why shouldn't it work the other way, too? Now that everyone has devices capable of transcription in their pockets, maybe we can work on making transcription...

HeadBlade Inventor Todd Greene

Mon, 29 Jul 2013 13:55:37 -0500

I started losing my hair way back in college. I went through some years that were not very attractive as I tried to figure out what to do about it. But I never shaved my head. If the HeadBlade had...

Douglas Engelbart (1925-2013)

Wed, 03 Jul 2013 15:36:32 -0500

I'm sad to learn that Douglas Engelbart, father of the computer mouse, passed away today. I spent an afternoon with him and his wife Karen in 2009 photographing him at home and work as part of my inventor portraits project....

Julie Brown and Charlie Brown

Tue, 18 Jun 2013 10:11:14 -0500

Julie Brown (no, not that one or that one) is the latest inventor in my PBS Inventors series. But don't watch this one for the invention, which is a simple little thing. Watch it for the inventor. She's a former...