Category Archive: tech

  1. Timbuk2 Brand Experience


    I used 4 messenger bags throughout college. 3 of which were bought at thrift stores for less than $2 each. So when I got a real job (a post about that coming soon), I decided to invest in a good messenger. Considering I ride 2 miles to work every day with a $2000 laptop in my bag, I wouldn’t want a cheap strap to break.

    So I checked out the hipster messenger favorites, Chrome and Timbuk2. Chrome didn’t have many options and the ones I’ve seen looked bulky, so I tried out Timbuk2. They let users post product reviews (positive & negative) on the site, which was an awesome way to learn about the bag from people riding with it, not just a flowery description. Loved the custom bag maker. I chose a monochromatic look. 2 panels of lightweight black and 1 panel of reflective restaurant-booth-style vinyl. Like an Orca.

    But the most impressive part of the purchase was the personal touch they put on everything I got from them. This snippet from the confirmation e-mail was so much more entertaining than the usual confirmation receipt:

    We suggest that you actually read it and like it because this is what you are getting and the address below is where we are going to send it. If you must be That Person, we can TRY our best to make changes or cancel your order.  This is only if we have had enough coffee and our warehouse hasn’t… Remember, this is only if your order is NOT IN PRODUCTION. Once your order makes it to our production line, we can’t change it for you and if it’s custom, we can’t take it back. Not because we don’t love you; but because we already have really, really nice custom made Messenger bags from Timbuk2.  It’s part of the uniform.

    It was refreshing to get something with some personality. Made me feel better about spending $200 on a backpack. When I actually got the bag in the mail there was another surprise. It didn’t come in a bloated box like everything from Amazon. It came in a plastic shipping bag with a map on it. Not just any map. It’s a bike route map of San Francisco with all the locations you can buy Timbuk2 bags tagged. They encourage you to cut it out and reuse it for something. But the writing is brilliant. Not your average Starbucks corporate eco-friendly statement.

    Now every time I need a travel bag, I know exactly where I’ll look first. Next time I go to San Francisco, I want to go check out their office. I couldn’t care less about visiting the Jansport factory or the Nike factory. But because of the extra personality Timbuk2 gave me, I am now fascinated with their brand and want to support anything they do.

    This is powerful branding. All about knowing your audience and taking every opportunity to be genuine and personal with them. Timbuk2 has a mission and it’s not to be the biggest messenger bag company on earth. But it is to be the best. And to not destroy the earth in the process.

    I’m a fan. And the bag is awesome, too.

  2. If Sigur Ros Made TextEdit

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    Why isn’t more care taken to improve the design of software interface? I hate Microsoft Word because it is cluttered, ugly and inefficient. I love Pages because it manages to handle the same task without being ugly. But when I just want to write something to remember it and it never needs to enter a print format, I use TextEdit. It’s fast, efficient, and small.

    If TextEdit is Times New Roman, Ommwriter is Helvetica Neue Ultralight.

    Ommwriter is the first software I can remember using that almost made me cry. It’s like playing Flower for PS3. A beautiful experience. I bet Sigur Ros uses this software to write their songs. I almost subconsciously wrote a haiku when I first opened the application.

    I realize I used a lot of hyperbole and metaphors in this post. Just watch the video and download the software to get the full experience for yourself. Mac only for now.

  3. 100% of Teens Want iPods – 0% Want Zunes

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    I am a wholehearted Apple fanboy and Zune hater, but I never expected numbers like this. I thought there were at least a few teens out there who hate Macs and hipsters and fun, and things like that. But 100% iPod!? That’s a pretty incredible market share.

    News doesn’t get much worse than this for the Zunes and Sansas of the world: a whopping 0% of surveyed teens planned on buying their devices, with 100% wanting an iPod in the coming year. [Gizmodo]

    Apple probably won’t be able to totally control the mp3 market much longer, as the iPod reaches a saturation point in the US, but apparently they’re still overwhelmingly in top of mind for teens. Who has a Sansa? Seriously?

    Hit the Giz link for more info and links to the Piper Jaffray survey.

    [Via Gizmodo]

  4. AdBrad

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    I have been blogging on WordPress using traditional blog themes for a couple years now, but figured it was time for a change from the traditional blog look. I’ve decided to go with a minimal layout, like my portfolio site. Thanks to Upstart Blogger for the code to get started with a fresh theme.

    I’ll import my old blog over here and slowly, but surely figure out how to transfer everything to here without too many tweaks. I’ll be testing for a few days, so keep checking back as the site gets progressively less ugly, and more functional.

  5. Now Entering the Shadowlands

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    This could be the nerdiest post to ever reach your eyes. I just recently downloaded an MS-DOS emulator on my Mac so I can run original PC MS-DOS 8-bit games on my computer.  This sort of stemmed from my newfound obsession with pixel-art. I have not been this excited in a long time.  I just downloaded Commander Keen: Goodbye Galaxy!  THE Commander Keen! I’ve been playing at work for about 20 minutes, but I keep closing it down every time someone walks by as to avoid scolding/mockery.

    But I definitely know what I will be doing tonight.

    For those, not as familiar as I with Commander Keen jargon/lore, the opening sequence in the game as you enter the first world says “Commander Keen now enters the Shadowlands.”