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Week 746

I’m sitting at my desk by the window, with the morning sun lighting the room, eating a bowl of that kind of much-too-healthy cereal and reflecting upon the past week. On the desk is a plant, grown just from rooting a small clipping, that has since completely filled the old peanut butter jar it began in. It grows in a fractal pattern, and since I don’t know its proper name, I call it the fractal. Since it lives here on my desk, where I tend to leave the things I bring home from work and then retrieve the next morning on my way back, I greet and inspect it at least twice a day. It’s growth pattern has become the image my mind retrieves when I think about how ideas progress—one matures and produces three, which then each produce three more, and so on. One becomes many.

On that note, I’m beginning to understand what it means to be a visual thinker. For most of my life so far, I would not have considered myself one, mostly because I feel pretty comfortable verbalizing my thoughts and do so often. But what I never took notice of is that I tend to verbalize visual explanations for things (i.e. ideas are like plants), which come from the images I’ve already called up in my mind. I think I previously assumed that a visual thinker would only think in images, but I’m realizing that a visual thinker might be verbal and visual—in the way that a book might use illustrations to expand upon or reinforce the ideas put in writing. For me, most of what I might say or write has a visual accompaniment. I’ve only realized this recently, as friends and coworkers have said they don’t have visuals for most thoughts.

Had I written this weeknote yesterday while in the office, or Monday morning, as I normally do, it probably wouldn’t have this preamble. But there’s something about sitting here in the quiet of the morning that reorients me and lets me reflect in this way. So, on to what happened when…

Monday: I regrouped with mobile team (Katie, Nolan, Dave and Mike) to check in on progress. Things are looking good! Then Mark and I headed out to have lunch with Eric for our weekly management meeting.

Tuesday‘s highlight was a video conference I attended with our entire development team (Nolan, Dave, Jim, Steve, George, and Mike). We had a few technical difficulties, but it was a pleasure to actually see everyone at the same “table.” Nolan did a little lesson on regular expression, too, which I was impressed by (see the image of his lesson packet to the left).

Wednesday: The big news on Wednesday was the launch of a project that Katie, Brian, and Jim have been working on for a few months— The team worked with our agency partner, H.T. Klatzky, on this project; everyone did an excellent job making sure that the site was designed and built to a very high standard and was launched without any glitches. Later that afternoon, I published a blog post about the “mad scientist” blogger.

Thursday: I walked over to Open Eye to have coffee with Dave and preview the mobile version of our site that he’s built. Very cool, very exciting to see. I’m looking forward to when we can officially launch it. Another site launch for Katie’s team happened that morning——which was created by Katie, Brian, George and Justin. That afternoon at 2pm, the client services team met for our weekly meeting to check in on projects, see what’s working and what’s not, what’s profitable and what’s not, and talk a little bit about our blog and what kinds of posts make sense to write in the next month or so.

I saw this image on Thursday and I love it. I hope it sticks with me for a long time. It brings
to mind some of the things Russell Davies has been talking about in terms of “world building.”

Friday: So, two weeks ago, I received a “robot watch” in the mail. Within just a few days, it died (I mentioned that last week). Well, I happened to mention it in a tweet to a friend, and someone from S2H, the makers of the watch saw it. I ended up having a nice interaction with Goutham Bhadri at S2H over Twitter (see below), who immediately offered to send me a replacement. I packaged up the defective one and sent it his way today. By next week, I should have the new one. Now, I don’t like the idea of people using Twitter to complain and manipulate consumer product companies into bending over backward to maintain a good reputation, but I don’t think this fits into that category (at least I hope not). All in all, though, I’m pretty impressed by how kind and generous S2H was in this case.

I also blogged about the the unfinished nature of the blog format.

One last thing! I built this a few weeks ago but have neglected to mention it. This is my “sidecar.” It’s an attachment I created that slides right in to the side of my desk, suspended a few feet over the floor. I’ve joined two pieces of half-inch plywood. The top piece has two l=brackets screwed in to the back that I measured to be spaced just right so that they’d slide in to the spaces between the horizontal beams attaching the two legs of my desk to the tabletop. I bought some inexpensive nylon climbing ribbon from the outfitter store next door to create the “belt” that I slip my laptop into. I can keep most of my stuff here, which helps me maintain a very clean desktop.

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