Monday, December 31, 2007

Parallel Play for Adults

You've probably heard about the concept of parallel play which is when 2-3 year-old children play side by side with little or no interaction. Well today, I think I have experienced adult parallel play.

My wife and son and I met up with another couple who have 2 young children. As we sat at Nichol's, a local diner, for breakfast, each parent was fully occupied attending to the children: feeding them, containing them, and preventing them from grabbing and spilling the food and drink on the table.

I think we were at breakfast for about an hour and probably got 15 minutes of conversation in among the adults. And 10 of those fifteen minutes were talking about the kids! The other 45 minutes: adult parallel play.

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

We Read Reaches 200 Users

As of today, We Read has 201 users that have added at least one book. There are also 1301 books among those 201 users. The app hasn't exactly gone viral as I had hoped it would, but I'm proud to have accumulated 201 users nonetheless.

Most of the users have arrived organically, but I did experiment with advertising at one point using the Social Media Facebook ad platform. It ended up costing me about $.70 per new user, and I thought that was too much to spend considering the fact that I haven't really made any money from Amazon affiliate commissions yet.

One cool thing is that I seem to have many loyal, repeat users. I see a lot of the same people adding and managing their books from week to week. I also have users from all around the world including Saudi Arabia and Turkey.

Even if the app fails to expand exponentially, I still enjoy maintaining it and reading the positive things that users say like this message from someone named Anthony:
...Ken, it's an excellent app. The most useful I've found yet, well done.

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

The Spinning Lady

My mom sent me this picture of a spinning lady. If you see her spinning clockwise, you are supposedly right-brained (random, intuitive, subjective, etc). If you see her spinning counter clockwise, you are supposedly left-brained (logical, analytical, objective, etc).

Although I know I'm more of a left-brained person, I saw her spinning clockwise at first and I couldn't get her to switch to counter-clockwise no matter how hard I tried.

I called my wife in and she also saw her spinning clockwise. I almost concluded that this thing was a hoax, but then I squinted my eyes, and voila!, she switched to counter clockwise. After a few minutes, my wife also saw her switch.

Being the skeptic that I am, I started concluding that the lady really does switch directions, but that anyone would only see it one way. To prove this, I asked my wife to stare at the image with me and announce when the lady switched directions. The thinking was that we'd both see her switch at the exact same time. We found that at any given point in time, we saw it either the same way or different ways. And the more we stared, the more she kept suddenly switching direction. Therefore, it is true, it really is an interesting optical illusion!

Thursday, December 13, 2007

What's Your Walk Score?

I punched my address into the Walk Score web site, and found out that my neighborhood, which is in Del Rey, CA, isn't too bad, but could be better. My Walk Score was 68 out of 100 which falls into the following range:

50 - 70 = Some Walkable Locations: Some stores and amenities are within walking distance, but many everyday trips still require a bike, public transportation, or car.

This seems like a cool web site to consult before you book a hotel or choose a place to live.

Monday, December 10, 2007

Suite Deal in Vegas

I am in Las Vegas right now for a 2-day Leadership Training Camp that my boss wanted me to attend. I am staying at Bally's.

I was supposed to get a $110/night special rate for people attending the training, but I ended up booking a room directly from Bally's web site for only $59/night. When I arrived at Bally's they told me that they didn't have any rooms left at that rate and gave me a complimentary upgrade to a Grand Suite (check out the virtual tour on their web site), their deluxe guest room. It is probably the nicest hotel room I've ever stayed at in Vegas. It is huge and has a king bed and whirlpool tub. Too bad I have to enjoy it all by myself :(