Photo by Tom Stone
I often find that it’s difficult to be content with what I have in life.
It’s too easy to focus on what you don’t have - a new car, a bigger
house, that shiny new MacBook Pro -
and forget about how much you do have. Modern society doesn’t make
this any easier, particularly in the geek culture where something you
must have comes along every few seconds it seems.
The reality is, I’m fabulously wealthy. I mean, I’m no Warren Buffet,
but compared to the rest of the planet, I have more than enough.
I drive a 10 year old car, but there are millions of people who have no
car at all. Millions who would be happy to have a car, any car.
I have a laptop computer that’s 4 years old, and has seen better days.
But there are millions who don’t have any computer at all, and would be
excited at the thought of having mine.
I’d love to have a bigger house - who wouldn’t? With two young boys, you
can never really have too much room. But there are millions who live in
houses a fraction of our size, many that aren’t what most of use would
even consider houses. There are millions more who are homeless, and
would consider any kind of shelter to be a gift from God.
I struggle with this a lot - trying to be content with what I have.
Perhaps it’s just human nature to always want more. Perhaps it’s a
reality of modern life - we’re being conditioned to not be satisfied
with what we have.
I thought of this again today, as I came across (via
kottke) a collection of photos on
Flickr by photographer Tom
Stone. Tom is known for photographing
the homeless and others “living along the edges of society”. Looking at
his photos of people living on the streets of San Francisco, and reading
the stories that go along with them isn’t easy. They’re pretty stark and
depressing, but it reminds me once again of just how much I have, and
how blessed I am.
It’s a poorly kept secret that I couldn’t design my way out of a box
(take note of the generic template used on this site). Therefore, when I
need to put together a web page I often turn to free html/css templates
as a starting point (or if nothing else, a starting point). Here’s a few
of the sites I’ve discovered with decent html/css templates:
I’ve also got a couple of sites I use for help picking color schemes:
I would be interested in knowing where other people who don’t have the
benefit of working with a designer turn for help and inspiration. Leave
your favorite sites in the comments.
The latest in a long series of things distracting me from other things
that are likely far more important:
Sun: Learn about JRuby -
I look forward to playing with this someday soon.
Yahoo: Ruby Developer Network -
Yeah, I’m a little late on this one. Included just in case you have
spent the recent months in a cave.
Free CSS Templates
- Very nice stuff here.
The Shire of Bend, Oregon - Middle
Earth-ish homes. Very unique, and very cool. Almost makes me want to
leave the midwest for Oregon. Almost.
Weird Al: White and Nerdy
- This song was written about me, and I starred in the video. Ok, not
really. But I could have…
Jack Slocum: Real-world examples of the Yahoo UI Library - This stuff continues to
See them in action here
In response to the previously mentioned buyback of
Galbraith has written an insightful article on the topic of building
companies with sustainable business models. His position (a smart one)
is that venture capital shouldn’t be the default, it should be for the
edge cases - companies with big infrastructure needs that are growing
more rapidly than they can manage.
From the article:
Every venture funded tech company is predicated on the idea of ‘exit’, the point where the company is sold to a bigger one or has an IPO, so that the investors see a return and move on.
When I was an architect, you didn’t set up a practice on your own to ‘exit’, you setup to build a company that made a profit and made products that made the environment a better place along the way - a sustainable enterprise. The whole idea of ‘exit’ in the context of building an architecture firm, or a legal or medical practice is preposterous.
Read the full
I typically avoid joining each new social networking thingy that comes
along, but I’ve joined two lately.
The first was LinkedIn. You can view my
public profile here, feel free
to add me if you’re so inclined. My email address associated with me
there is larrywright at gmail dot com.
The second one was Twitter, which is a new-ish
site from the folks at Odeo (which, as an aside,
was recently bought back from the
investors - way
to go Ev), that lets you keep up with what
your friends are doing at any given moment. You can send and receive
updates via text messages, the web site, and now by instant message.
Pretty cool. View me here, and feel free to add me as a friend if you’re so inclined. Or come to to my home page and look at the left hand side of my page
to see what I’m doing at the moment. As if you care.
On an unrelated note, things have been a little quiet lately, due to
other commitments. Things are quieting down a little now, though. I’ll
have some more technical posts up soon(ish).