Current thoughts

A few weeks back I tried to kick start this blog of mine to offer something more than photography. 

But every time I sat down in front of the keyboard I went to some dark and negative place that ended up in some rant about Republicans in Congress. Or some rant about white nationalists. At the end of those posts, I ended up saving them to Tumblr drafts and then just inevitably deleted it. 

The past couple of days, I made a some changes to the tech system in our house, our network, backup systems, a new cloud provider and some new gear. But with the tragedy in Houston, all of that seemed so utterly unimportant. So I deleted that post as well. 

One thing that I’ve learned since I started meditating in earnest since the start of the year, is the notion of responding instead of reacting. It’s a huge challenge for me but I’m making progress and that feels pretty good. 

So, I’m not writing about gear today. I’m not worrying about the scandals in Washington to reduce our civil liberties or those that are making a mockery of our democracy. 

Instead, I’m talking a few breaths and making a donation to a few non-profits that are helping the situation in Houston. 

That’s all I got for today. 

“Catastrophically bad judgment”

There is a very good reason we don’t mix politics with business. Namely, people in the workplace should not face any form of discrimination for their own personal politics and preferences. 

For example, a personal opinion about Obamacare shouldn’t have any bearing on someone’s employment. 

A few weeks ago, it was revealed that Reed Hastings (Netflix CEO and Facebook board member), characterized fellow Facebook board members Peter Thiel as having horrible judgment because of his Trump endorsement.

“I see our board being about great judgment, particularly in unlikely disaster where we have to pick new leaders,” Hastings wrote in an email dated August 14 obtained by the Times. “I’m so mystified by your endorsement of Trump for our President, that for me it moves from ‘different judgment’ to ‘bad judgment.’ Some diversity in views is healthy, but catastrophically bad judgment (in my view) is not what anyone wants in a fellow board member.”

I have heard some folks describe Hastings line as inappropriate — or even illegal. 

I have been reflecting on this and I am honestly struggling with that line of thinking. I think Hastings isn’t merely concerned about diverse political opinions but something much more important. 

Consider this weekend’s events in in Charlottesville. White nationalist and neo-Nazis marching with torches and screaming horrific racists chants that ultimately led to the killing of an innocent life by a member of this group. 

The President did not condemn the neo-Nazi’s over the weekend. He was silent on calling out this hateful organization. And yet today he has the audacity to call out & attack the Merck CEO for his decision to leave the President’s federal panel because of the Presidents own failure to call out terrorism and hate by name. 

So now back to the Hastings/Thiel issue. When someone so devoutly supports someone like Trump, what does that say about a person’s judgment? Is this an inappropriate mixing of politics with business or is this something much more profound about ethics, morals, civil rights and how & where you stand? 

And even Thiel seems to be living with some regret

My favorite way to get around

If you asked me a few years ago, what is my favorite way to get around a city or a town, I probably would have said by foot if I have the time or Uber if I need to get somewhere in a hurry. 

These days the answer is quite different. 

I got a Boosted Board a few months back. It’s an electric skateboard that goes 20mph. It’s a little heavy so carrying it around is a thing. And it can be a little scary if you haven’t ridden a skateboard. But I grew up skating so adjusting to the Boosted Board just fine. The Boosted is a lot of fun and I use it several days a week around Boston. 

We just received two Copenhagen Wheel and bikes at our house. I have had an early bike in my office (disclosure: we are investors) but this was the first time family and friends could try it out as well. 

My wife rode one for the first time today, her response at the end of the 5 mile trip to grab lunch: “Now that is some crazy shit”, as she said with a big smile on her face. She absolutely loved it. 

These bikes go up to 25 miles an hour and you feel completely in control the whole time. The whole experience is smooth and natural. It’s just like riding a bike! You can cover a lot of miles without breaking a sweat. And it’s a total blast. 

If you are looking for a fun way to get around your city without breaking a sweat or paying for a gas guzzling Uber/taxi, I highly suggest giving these products a look. 

The two things I’d love to see in a future version of Lightroom for iOS

I’ve been a loyal Adobe Lightroom user on the desktop for many years now. All of my photos are stored in Lightroom (and then backed up on a local NAS and to Crashplan). 

I have become an iPad Pro user when I’m on the go, instead of relying on MacOS. 

Lightroom for iOS has come a long way. It’s fast and has so many incredible features. In fact, the mobile version of Lightroom is more enjoyable than the cluttered desktop version. 

But it’s missing two features. One is little, the other is a biggie. 

Adobe should add preset sync across their mobile and desktop products. It’s a little odd they don’t do that at this point and it’s such low hanging fruit. 

The big one is that they should do photo backup and sync. Full photo back up like iCloud Photos or Google Photos with intelligent device storage and file streaming on demand. Right now the workflow for photographers that use Lightroom with iCloud Photos or Google Photos is just too awkward.

Apple is charging $9/mo for 2TB. I’m guessing Adobe’s customers would pay even more.