Yes, I realize I’ve been a little light on the posting ’round these parts lately. (And don’t even talk to me about the state of 39 Essays. That’s turning into the project of a decade, not a year.)
Anyway, part of the reason I’ve been dark is because we’ve been working towards another launch, one that went out the door this morning.
Potentially most interesting in this release is that we’re incorporating expert senior-living advice from some of the top experts in Massachusetts (and eventually around the country). And no, I’m not just rewriting Abuzz.
We had a little over two feet of snow here in Concord during the great Blizzard of 2013. At least it happened at the beginning of the weekend.
Six hours of shoveling yesterday, in which I got almost the entire driveway done. Probably another six hours today to do the end of the driveway (where the plows dump all the snow from the busy street we’re on), the mailbox across the street so the mailman can get to it, my mother-in-law’s car, the path to the oil tank and the path to the front door. Oy.
At least I got a couple of good pictures out of it. Here’s what it looked like when I opened the garage door to get started.
Sadie and Lucy liked going out in the snow. Lucy made sure to enforce the “If I go out and play in the snow, then I get hot chocolate” rules.
With any luck, I’ll be done shoveling by dinnertime tonight, just in time to get ready to go to work tomorrow.
I started a few weeks ago as the VP of Product and Technology at a startup called Compass Aging. And today, we just pushed live the first public beta of the product!
We’re building a tool that will help adult children of aging parents take control of all the challenges and opportunities that come along with that stage of life. The vision is big, and this first public beta represents about 20% of the functionality. (So, yes, things are likely to be pretty dark in these parts over the next few months…)
What’s most interesting in this first version:
– The Care Plan tool. What we’ve done here is to build out the first version of a tool that takes the concerns you have for your loved one and builds a plan customized to those concerns, with additional information and suggestions on how to take control.
– The Care Safe. This might be my favorite piece. We’ve built out the first version of a centralized place where you (and your siblings and other concerned folks) can keep track of everything that’s happening with your parents, including to-dos, notes, important documents, etc. Just keeping everyone on the same page and bought in to the plan is going to be a major win for folks.
– Housing Search. Choosing a senior-living option is one of the most important (and expensive) decisions you’re going to have to make. We want to be best in the world at helping you make that decision.
We’ve started in Newton, Needham and Wellesley. As we figure out what information is most useful for the consumers, we’re going to build this out nationwide. The IA geek in me is very excited about this project.
Check it out and let me know what you think!
p.s., Big visions require great teams. I’m hiring for about a dozen positions right now. Check them out here: Jobs at Compass Aging.
While lost in Walden Woods this afternoon, I discovered a neat feature in the new Maps application in iOS6. If you keep pressing the button in the lower left, it will turn on a view where it will show you your field of vision overlaying the map.
I am obviously quite the woodsman. I made it out of a couple-acre forest with only my wits. And a GPS-enabled phone with a compass built in. And pluck — don’t forget pluck.
Wow, Twitter is (in my humble opinion) committing a massive strategic blunder. If you want a thriving ecosystem, let your partners feel confident and make money.
Today. Literally, today. I’m sitting down and writing the product plan for a suite of new products. They’re knowledge products, but not specifically communications products. Twitter integration was a given. Now it’s unlikely.
Classic mistakes are classic for a reason — they’re highly seductive. Still, it’s sad to see.
The good news: probably a lot longer than we’d expect.
What people don’t appreciate, when they picture Terminator-style automatons striding triumphantly across a mountain of human skulls, is how hard it is to keep your footing on something as unstable as a mountain of human skulls.
I’ve been doing a lot of thinking over the past few months about personal APIs, personal deputies and Freenon’s forkable nuggets of knowledge. Within a few years (maybe sooner), everything will have an API, and most of your personal interactions with the world will be API-mediated. I’m thinking through how Serendeputy fits into this model. Right now, it’s your personal intermediary for news, and your profile is its API. How does this extend beyond this one use case?
Mostly, I want to see what I can do to make sure that this future bends towards open, with individuals controlling their data and their life. (See the previous post on dystopian futures…)
Anyway, this is the type of stuff I’m thinking about. I want this to exist; now it’s just the small matter of implementation, distribution and paying the bills in the meantime 🙂
For my fiction reading this summer, I’ve been focusing mostly on near-future science fiction, especially stories that explore the logical conclusions to current trends. Here are two writers you should be reading:
At this point, I’ve launched a dozen or more sites to the world. (including one for female sports fans yesterday.) It’s old hat at this point, but it’s still always stressful.
I think I’ve come up with my favorite comparison for it:
Launching a site is like driving in the snow. Even if you have your snowtires and a full tank of gas, even if you totally know what you’re doing, random things can happen. You need to be continually monitoring the conditions and you probably have a death grip on the steering wheel. Several hours later, you can probably breathe again.