Wednesday, December 31, 2014

MiLB teams in Google My Maps

Just thought I'd share a small project I've been working on bit by bit over the past several days. This all started while I was working on a Minor adventure I hope to do this coming summer. You'll notice I capitalized "minor" - that is a clue that it involves Minor League Baseball. The plan is to take in the Carolina League's North division over the course of several consecutive days. The tentative plan is to invite MINI folks along for the ride, so I've been trying to work on some twisty routes between stadiums.

Last weekend I discovered that most of the teams had posted game times for the upcoming season. While working on the schedule it turned out one of the teams is holding a day game, which would leave the evening free. Can't have that, so I started searching and found another MiLB team in the area had an evening game the same day, so I squeezed that into my plans. That did get me to wondering about having a map available of all MiLB teams.

Monday, December 29, 2014

2015 Bible Reading Plan

The Sportsman's Bible HCSB - camo cover
The start of a new year approaching can only mean it is also time for a new Bible reading cycle to start for many people, myself included. I suppose it is good timing since I just finished up my latest reading of the New Testament. As I seem to do, I took a look around the Internet to see if I could find a different spin on Bible reading plans. That Discoverer nature coming through I suppose.

Probably the most promising one I found was from the Downtown Cornerstone Church in Seattle. It is not keyed to specific months, so you can really start it any time. I also liked the fact that it included "rest" periods each month with only 25 days scheduled. The other days could be used for catching up if needed or perhaps some additional study. This particular reading plan was a merger of the M'Cheyne Bible Reading and Navigator Bible Reading plans.

Tuesday, December 09, 2014

Google Glass joins my stable of tech gadgets

After a long wait, including an Indiegogo campaign, I have finally joined the ranks of Explorers who have Google Glass devices. I guess this is appropriate given my Kingdomality personality style is the Discoverer. As you can tell from the pictures, I went with the Tangerine color as it was available. I'm really not sure how much I would wear Glass in say the work environment or other professional settings, so I'm not really too concerned with them being "discrete".

Saturday, November 22, 2014

Adding a little balanced scorecard concept to Todoist

This new Karma layout in Todoist is telling
me something!
Recently Todoist introduced some new changes to their Karma system in their task management application. For those not familiar, Karma is a gamification system that Todoist incorporates in the app. The idea is that completion, or at least management, of todos and use of various functions of the app will increase a user's scores. Over time, as their scores increase, users can reach certain levels of achievement.

Mixed in with the Karma function, Todoist includes a variety of charts and data about tasks that have been completed. Part of the new features Todoist introduced is a method to track streaks where users reach daily and weekly goals for the completion of tasks. Although that feature is not the focus of this post, it is what triggered my latest changes in how I have Todoist configured.

Shortly after the introduction of updated Karma, I was checking out how my streaks were going when I noticed something about the charts showing the number of completed tasks as a horizontal bar chart. If you look at the screenshot I captured when I had this epiphany, you'll notice that my bars are dominated by a single color, blue. For those not familiar, the different colors in the chart correspond to the Project labels that you can setup in Todoist. The color, blue in this case, corresponds to the Standalone category that I had setup the last time I worked on my Todoist configuration.

We have a moon landing!

If you are seeing this blog entry, it means you have successfully landed on the new ToTehMoon web site. You may notice in the footer that it is now powered by Blogger instead of Wordpress. After several years of running my own virtual server on LiquidWeb, I decided to move over to hosting with Google. I used to run several sites on my virtual server and it was great having direct access to the server, the ability to setup and control email accounts on the fly, etc. However, what is not so great is the cost to do so. In the scheme of things, the cost was not really that much, but since I have three kids in high school and was really down to only one site, it was time to rethink that expense.

Thursday, November 06, 2014

My first public IFTTT recipe for Todoist to pay Verizon bill

With Todoist now having a channel on IFTTT, I've been learning how to use IFTTT. As part of their announcement, I've created a couple recipes to forward Gmail messages to Todoist. Here is the one I published to enter the contest they are sponsoring. It just forwards the email letting me know my Verizon bill is ready to Todoist.

IFTTT Recipe: Create Todoist task to pay Verizon bill connects gmail to todoist

Friday, September 05, 2014

New Testament reading plan to close out 2014

This is sort of a cross post from the Graham Friends Church web site, but figured I would post here as well about my Bible reading plan to close out 2014. The plan is to read the New Testament starting today and ending on December 31st. I suppose if I had been a little more on the ball I would have started it on Labor Day. Even with my late start, I had planned to start it by Wednesday, but Amazon uncharacteristically failed to ship my order of a new Bible on time, causing an additional delay.

Thursday, April 10, 2014

A summer of baseball productivity experiment

Since last summer, I've been on a semi-constant search for "noise" generators to help improve my productivity. I think I first came across the concept of background noise being used to help improve concentration, and thus productivity, when I ran across focus@will and Apparently studies have been done to show that the background noise generated in a typical coffee shop can help you stay focused on a task that requires some mental concentration. Meanwhile, focus@will operates on the theory that certain types of music are more suitable for certain types of situations, like trying to focus on a task.

It doesn't stop with coffee shops though. There are all kinds of sound generators out there, not only to aid concentration and focus, but to help people relax, fall asleep, and probably other stuff. My favorites tend to be the sounds of thunderstorms or rain.

Tuesday, April 08, 2014

A Google Glass, Indiegogo update

Just sharing a couple things I've run across as I try to get myself more up to speed on Google Glass while my Indiegogo campaign continues.

Yesterday, the Livestream service announced the availability of streaming live events from Google Glass using their new app. All it will take is a simple command, "OK Glass, Livestream". I think that could be pretty useful for me. I could do things like stream portions of a soccer games so folks could watch what is happening in real time. I know last year during some State Cup matches those who were present had to text updates to those who had to be in other places. I can also see using this for some MINI events possibly just to be able to share the fun we have.

I also ran across a funny parody of Google Glass you can check out below. Hopefully I won't turn out like this!

If you want to help out with my campaign, be sure to hit the Indiegogo site. It has been rather slow since the last update, although great progress has already been made. If you can't help financially, keep spreading the word. It is much appreciated.

Tuesday, April 01, 2014

Crowd funding Google Glass


I got this posted on Facebook and Google+ and Twitter, but figured I better add it here on the blog. I've received an invite to be an "Explorer" in the Google Glass beta program. That's the good news. The bad news is this means I need to come up with the $1,500 needed to purchase the device.

Since Google in their own post about Glass myths says some people have used crowd funding to pay for Glass, I thought I might give it a try. In fact, it was that bit of information that got me to sign up for Google Glass. I thought I might have a few months before getting accepted (if I even got accepted). Instead, it was a few days.

To try to make it happen, I decided to setup a project on Indiegogo. Hopefully enough people will decide to help make this happen as I really would like to take advantage of the opportunity.

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

A rework of Todoist

Since last summer when I wrote about end-of-life'ing MyLifeOrganized, I don't think I ever wrote about my new selection for task management. That ended up being Todoist. Although I generally try to stick to a GTD framework, Todoist is not designed specifically for GTD. That meant I had to do some configuration on my own using the features available in the app to implement GTD, notably Projects and Labels. Fortunately, Todoist is quite active in the development of the app and it has already received a major overhaul since I started using it as well as a slew of small improvements. These helped make the task a bit easier.

During the time I've been using Todoist, I've gone through at least one revision of the Projects setup although I had still been using the initial set of labels that I created. For Projects, I had basically setup those up to correspond to people or other major life "areas". The people were mostly related to work projects, while the other areas corresponded mostly to things like the soccer team I manage, the MINI club, church, and some others. The problem was that didn't leave a lot of room for specific projects, like the 2013 CAFR I am working on for my job. This does tend to be one of the shortcomings of GTD from what I can tell - an explosion of projects to an unwieldy number.

Thursday, February 13, 2014

THMMC New Year of Motoring Run 2014


For the second year in a row, I managed to put together a run on the first Saturday of the year for the Tar Heel MINI Motoring Club. During the first few years of my belonging to the THMMC, the club usually did a run in January called the Stone Mountain Run as that was where they always went. I managed to make it one year.