August 29, 2012 Leave a comment
July 26, 2012 Leave a comment
The Art of Manliness posted a great article about how desk jockey’s could create simple workouts or life changes to stay in shape at the office. Their ideas include to:
- Make Getting to Your Office a Challenge
- Take the Stairs. While You’re At It, Run Up Them
- Get a Standing Desk
- Maintain Good Posture Throughout the Day
- Do 10 Push-Ups and 10 Squats Every Time You Take a Bathroom/Coffee Break
- Get Up and Walk Outside for 15 Minutes Every 45 Minutes
- Perform 15 Dips When Leaving for and Returning from Lunch
- Perform 30-Second Grok Squats Throughout the Day
But, how feasible are each of these? If you have a long commute or small parking lot it will be hard to make your commute a challenge. Perhaps your office is a single floor, so no stairs. Maybe your job has you seated so much that you forget to maintain good posture. Perhaps you are a bit shy and don’t want to do too many exercises around your coworkers. Maybe it takes 30 minutes to get down your sky scraper to walk outside. Anyways, here are a few additional ideas and ways you can support your efforts to perform these office workouts.
1. My office has no stairs: Try some heel lifts at your desk. It does not take much space or effort, but stand up and lift your heels. Space them out and go slow enough to feel the burn in your calves.
2. My parking lot is small: Pretend you are on a phone call and take a few laps outside around your office building before going inside. Carry a backpack or bag, even if you don’t need to just to add some weight to your workout.
3. My office is too small for push-ups: Try taking a stack of books and lifting them up like you are doing curls.
4. My office is too small for a standing desk: Check out the Ninja Standing Desk. It is portable and can hang over your door or hang on hooks placed in drywall.
6. It rains too much to walk outside: Take laps around the office or get an elliptical trainer for your desk, like the Stamina 55-1610 InMotion E1000 Elliptical Trainer.
7. My job is computer intensive: So your job keeps you at your desk a lot? If you need to call someone in the office, ditch the phone, get up and instead walk to their office. You can use all the breaks you can get.
There are other things you can do too, like make it a point to walk to lunch of they are within walking distance, or join an office walking group. I know around DC there are non-profit groups that organize walking contests between local businesses. Anyways, check out the full article at the artofmanliness.com.
July 24, 2012 Leave a comment
It’s a Saturday morning in 2022, and you’re trying to decide what to wear to the dinner party you’re throwing that evening. All the clothes hanging in your closet are “smart”—that is, they can tell you when you last wore them, what else you wore them with, and where and when they were last cleaned. Some do this with microchips. Others have tiny printed tags that you can scan on your hand-held device.
As you prepare for your guests, you discover that your espresso machine isn’t working and you need another one. So you pull the same hand-held device from your pocket, scan the little square code on the back of the machine, and tell your hand-held, by voice, that this one is broken and you need another one, to rent or buy. An “intentcast” goes out to the marketplace, revealing only what’s required to attract offers. No personal information is revealed, except to vendors with whom you already have a trusted relationship.
Click to read the whole article - Video – The Customer as God: A Vision for the Future of Commerce – WSJ.com.
This is an interesting article touching on the power the consumer now has, and how that will continue to grow into the future. We used to be tied to our local brick and mortar stores and to the prices they set. Now, with the Internet, the consumer goods market has become a global adventure. You can buy a desired item from almost anywhere in the world. With the Internet, we now have smart phones that give us shopping power from anywhere. Having options, especially in mature markets, allows shoppers to choose where they go. Just look at the smart phone market.
A few years ago a cell phone carrier was tied to a particular model, allowing numerous cell phone makers to prosper. The iPhone created such a high demand that every cell carrier wished to carry it. This led to intense competition to innovate new mobile technologies. This brought more options to a single cell phone provider. It has caused prices to drop on smart phones and tablets as the competition has become so intense. Apple is even working on a smaller version of the iPad, and they continue to sell older iPhone models at cheaper prices.
Another market that consumers will be able to dictate, thanks to the Internet and advancing technologies is in training and education. Prices for attending a four year university have skyrocketed over the past few years. Now, with cloud computing, the speed of service, and the mobile platforms to access from anywhere there is a dogfight brewing over providing a cost-effective education online. The University of Phoenix is one such school to offer a cheaper option online. Many traditional colleges, such as the University of Maryland school system have created online programs. A step further is traditional colleges offering free, introductory classes online. Such classes can be found on Apple’s iTunes U, and now also with a new start-up, Coursera. There are also numerous free and cost-effective ways to learn online, such as with Codecademy, a site that teaches you the basics of computer programming. The Internet provides educational options, and this will allow the consumer to choose, which should eventually lead universities to find new ways to restructure and cut costs to meet the changing demand.
There are many ways the Internet has impacted us, giving us the power to choose. Over time the impact will be even greater. Maybe gas prices and rental housing will drop as well. Maybe cable providers will finally offer customized packages. Maybe one day we can immediately get competing offers on AC repairs when internal sensors notify us and contractors that the AC has malfunctioned. Power to the people!
July 24, 2012 Leave a comment
When Internet users rallied to defend their much-loved network from the dual threats of SOPA and PIPA, Washington took notice. The newly formed Internet Defense League and the hot-off-the-presses Declaration of Internet Freedom have gotten participation from several members of Congress, most of whom have already gained a track record as being among the few Congressmen who understand technology issues.
July 23, 2012 Leave a comment
So the verdict is in and the penalties have been handed down to Penn State University and their football team. They will receive $60 million in penalties, a reduction of 25 scholarships to 15 for the next four years, a four year bowl ban, all wins will be wiped out from 1998 through 2011, and other measures to institute and monitor institutional control at the university. There is no ‘Death Penalty’, but this is pretty close, and will no doubt rock the football program and send a message to other universities and football programs alike. All football programs must have better institutional control and put more focus back on education.
How does anyone else feel about these penalties? There is no one penalty that could ever erase what happened to the children. Most of the individuals involved have been removed and will no doubt be prosecuted. Who this penalty hits the hardest is the current, future, and former players who were not involved. Wins are erased from the record books, current and future players will be unable to complete in post season bowl games, and less players will have a chance to receive a scholarship and the chance at a free education. I guess this means Bobby Bowden is now the all-time wins leader again.
As a football fan I am disappointed. How could someone penalize players who were not involved? But stepping back I believe this is a good thing. Athletes are measured by statistics: wins vs. losses, total rushing yards and yards per carry, pass completion %, total passing yards, touchdowns, total receiving yards, points scored vs. points allowed, etc. The only way to levy effective control is to set a measurable penalty that other programs can gauge themselves against. Much like how programs can weigh the penalties placed on SMU (death penalty), and other programs who lost scholarships (FSU, OSU, USC), and decide if what they do is worth it. The penalties at Penn State provide another measure for programs to look at and decide how they want their program to operate in the future.
It all still dwarfs in comparison to what the victims have to deal with for the rest of their lives. But, will Penn State ever recover? How do current players continue? How will this impact other programs? Will NCAA football, and other sports as well, clean its act up, and have better institutional control over more than just the issues at Penn State? Issues like pay for play, drugs, sexual assaults, and academic fraud. Will the “win at all costs” mentality take a back seat to ensuring players are getting a real education?