Pants and Soulcraft

​I was enjoying the audiobook The Year Without Pants so much that I was hoping it would never end. Despite that, when about halfway through Pants, I began trying to decide between two books to listen to next. I was really torn between two.

Seemingly serendipitously, as I finished the last few minutes of Pants, the book I would listen to next was pretty much decided when Pants referred to one of the two books I was thinking about reading next. Shop Class as Soulcraft by Matthew Crawford had been on my reading/listening list for 4 years.

Soulcraft is related to Pants. They are both about the future of work. Pants is about how WordPress succeeds at remote work, and Soulcraft is about how on-site work is important. For a 2013 technology book like Pants to refer to the (ancient by technology book standards) four-year-old and not hugely-popular Soulcraft decided it for me. That tie between Pants and Soulcraft sealed my decision to listen to Soulcraft next.

Switched To Office 365

I finally switched my own site, email, and intranet to Office 365. The Exchange is a little better than my previous version. For instance, it has full task syncing. The integration into my Windows Phone is a little better. Email flagging on the phone is nice.  When my domain approaches its expiration date, I may transfer it to a different registrar and move my site to WordPress.

Activism 201: Achieve Your Goals – Getting the Right Publicity

A friend of mine had been sending around emails of this research he’d done on some potential corruption. It seemed like good work that wasn’t getting its due. I asked him last summer asking how he’d feel if I posted his research on the web.

I put up and customized a $15 a year WordPress site, wrote an About page, forwarded the research emails to it, and cleaned up the formatting on the posts. That was 3 hours. I cleared it with the friend, mentioned it a few times to associates, wrote a few teaser posts, and eventually started tweeting when there was a new post. 3 months in, I designed and printed a few fliers and bought them to a meeting where I knew I could ask some journalists questions about the issue in the site. Continue reading “Activism 201: Achieve Your Goals – Getting the Right Publicity”

Disposable Websites

I’ve managed WordPress website projects that take a whole year to launch with re-design, multiple custom themes, data transformation, data presentation, and (you probably guessed) complicated internal politics. But I do love a website that goes from idea to launched in  few hours. This last one went like this, “You’ve done all this great research over the past year. You’ve emailed it around, but it’s not getting covered in the press. People ought to be able to link to your work on Twitter and in news sites. Can I just post all the email content on a web site?” Boom. 3 hours later, I’ve bought a name, put up 11 posts, added users, gotten approval, and launched a site. The domain and hosting is $17 per year at And it not even ugly!

Quick Set Up of Fledgling Biz IT

I set up a website and email system for a fledgling business last week in about 3 hours. I sent some options with pros/cons and then Skyped the founder. He showed his desktop and clicked through some links. We chose to buy the web domain and hosting from makes it easy to set up email through Goggle Apps. I helped the founder click through the sign up process, and we chose a site template. He went away to write up the content while I set up the site and email.  The next day, I posted the content and Skyped the founder. He showed his desktop, critiqued the site, learned how to post, and signed into his pre-existing Gmail account. We then went through how he is now receiving his company name email into his Gmail , can send from the new company domain address, and tweaked the site. The domain, hosting, and email comes to under $15 a year in one payment. It was refreshing to get something going without complications.

Office 365, Intune, and Dynamics CRM Online

Free software isn’t always cheaper in the end.  I’m dealing with a horrible cluster of open source software on one project; we barely get anything done with all the time we spend trying to figure how the software works. My recent web projects have been in Drupal, WordPress, Joomla, and with Microsoft tools. I’ve even been playing with Tumblr and Squarespace. But (and this is hard to admit) Microsoft’s new “cloud offerings” have me going to trainings and up nights studying. Continue reading “Office 365, Intune, and Dynamics CRM Online”

Moved Blog to WordPress

Moving this (these) blog(s) to WordPress seems to be working out well. Some of this content was on was an MS Spaces blog and some on a Google Blogger blog. I’m working with a bunch of sites that are or use Most of them aren’t blogs but full-on websites that may have a blog as a part of the functionality.