More like an alNOrithm

At some level, most of us interact with discovery algorithms on a daily basis. They take the form of “new music for you” playlists, “Picks for you” movies, or “Recommended”…

The joy of the hidden track

Today marks the 20th anniversary of Blink 182’s Take Off Your Pants and Jacket, an album I don’t remember particularly well beyond the fact it was released as three versions,…

It’s okay to return stuff

Maybe it’s because I’m a cautious shopper, or because I hate having shit I don’t need, or because I’m often curious about some random product category I barely understand, or…

An ode to DVD menus

Contrary to much of the narrative today about file-sharing, the late 1990s and early 2000s were a dream for buying physical media. Sure, college kids loaded up their computers with…

My first mail fraud

I am pretty sure the statute of limitations has expired on this by now (and the companies are long gone), so I’m going to share the story of what was…

The road trip mix tape

The inventor of the audio cassette, Lou Ottens, died this past week. My favorite quote from him captures the revolution that cassettes were, “Everybody could put music in their pocket.” Growing…

The modem problem

Sometimes, I find myself missing the friction of using everyday things. Without it, everything seems to happen magically in the background. With no hiccups in the process, we have no…

Know when to fold ‘em

I’ve been thinking about giving up on things. Not grandiose things. Not Big Ideas or Master Plans (though it’s often okay to quit those, too). Little things. The stupid things….

Ghouls ‘n’ Ghosts

As a kid, I played a lot of Ghouls ‘n’ Ghosts on Genesis and eventually, Super Ghosts ‘n’ Goblins on SNES. For what my brain remembers as an entire summer, I…

Double-sided movie posters

I am always awed by small moments of ingenuity. The little features you notice in something you’ve owned for years, the quirks corrected before you even knew a problem existed….

The neighborhood hawk

Every once in a while, I glance out the window and spot the neighborhood hawk. I don’t know if it lives in the neighborhood, to be honest, but I like…

I put up some holiday lights

A couple years ago, I decided to put some Christmas lights on the outside of the house. Nothing crazy, just some multi-colored big bulb string lights. I don’t remember why,…

Hello world ;)

A few days ago I was out on a bike ride, heading up to Mount Lukens (a peak—the highest point in Los Angeles city limits—named after Theodore Lukens, aka the…