Results tagged “calendar” from kwc blog

Fun local sites for burritos and more

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WalkScore lets you put in an address and it computes a 'walk score' for that address. More importantly, it tells you what all the good stuff you can walk to nearby is, though apparently "Welter's Fun House" at Apt. 165, 750 North Shoreline Blvd, is my nearest bar -- I should see if Welter is willing to live up to his bogus hack listing.

BurritoPhile hosts some of the most important discussion threads on the Web: which burrito joints serve carnitas with the correct balance of crunchy and moist texture. There's a nice bias towards the Bay Area and Mountain View is very well covered.

Zvents: I'm biased because I know an employee, but I went six years living in or around Mountain View without knowing:

  1. There's a Japanese Buddhist Temple in Mountain View
  2. It hosts an Obon Festival every year

I even go to the Safeway across the street from it twice a week or so.

The festival turned up when I search Zvents so d and I checked it out over the weekend, mainly to catch the Bon Odori dancing. I don't recall spam musubi being served at the Obon festivals in Japan, but it brought back great memories nevertheless -- I was surprised that I remembered one of the dances.

Pinot Days

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pinot daysMany of the events are already sold out, but you can still get your $50 ticket for the July 1st Grand Festival at Pinot Days at Fort Mason (alas, I will be busy moving):

Sunday’s Grand Tasting will showcase 170+ producers of pinot noir. This will be San Francisco’s largest single gathering of pinot producers ever. Consumers will be able to sample up to 400 pinots from every important region in California, Oregon, New Zealand and Burgundy.

...This year we will feature three different Focus Tastings, The Best of Anderson Valley, 2004 and 2005 Rosella's and Pisoni Comparison and The Best of Sonoma COast and Russian River Valley. Below are the details of the three Focus Tastings.

Pinot Days

UntiWhen: June 14 4-8pm
Where: Vin, Vino, Wine, 437 S California Ave, Palo Alto, CA

Mick Unti will be driving down from Dry Creek Valley to host a tasting at Vin, Vino, Wine in Palo Alto. I try to stop by Unti on the rare occasion I'm driving 101 past Santa Rosa, so I'm going to try not to pass up the opportunity to taste these wines:

2006 Rose
2005 Barbera
2005 Zinfandel (sneak preview of the best Zin ever from Unti)
2005 Grenache (Mick's favorite Unti wine ever)
2004 Syrah
2004 Petite Sirah

Tesla @ Techshop, May 3

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Tesla will be giving two talks at the Tech Shop in Menlo Park on May 3. The 7pm talk is already full but you can still get tickets for the 5pm talk. There are probably opportunities to see the Tesla without the $10 admission fee, but I went ahead and registered anyway.

Event Details and Tickets

Gaiman at SJSU

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What:Major Author Series - Neil Gaiman
SJSU Center for Literary Arts hosts An Evening with Neil Gaiman. During the course of almost twenty years as a writer, Neil Gaiman has been one of the top writers in modern comics, and is now a best-selling novelist. Gaiman, icon of the comics and 3-time Hugo Award winner, will read from his work, with Q&A and book signing afterward. Sponsored by the Student Union, Inc. of SJSU.
When:Thursday, November 16, 2006 (all day)
Where:Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Library
150 E. San Fernando Street
San Jose, California 95112   United States

FYI: I'm playing with an updated version of WIndows Live Writer -- the map and the event information were inserted using the Eventful and Live.com map plugins. There were some rough edges, but it was still quite easy.

Lemony Snicket tickets at Books Inc

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m passed along these details for an upcoming Lemony Snicket event:

A reading by Lemony Snicket, celebrating the release of The END, the final installment in A Series of Unfortunate Events.

Music by the Gothic Archies, featuring Lemony Snicket

Saturday October 28th 2:00p.m. Capuchino High School Auditorium 1501 Magnolia Ave. San Bruno, CA 94066

More details from Books Inc. Berkeley-ites can go to the Codys Books event on Channing instead.

I'm only up to book five, but I figure that this is, in fact, the The End of Lemony Snicket readings, so I shouldn't pass this up.

John Hodgman at Codys SF

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Tonight, schedule permitting, I shall say Alas for Joy, as John Hodgman will be at Cody's on Stockton Street in SF. Anyone else interested in heading up?

30boxes: it's all coming together

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30boxes.gifLast month, 30boxes added e-mail integration to their online calendar tool. You forward the e-mail to their add [at] 30boxes.com address and whatever is in the subject line is used as the "one box" event information (e.g. "Birthday Party May31 5:30pm tag birthday"). Handy and essential, but not much of a "Wow!" factor for me.

More recently, 30boxes added event mapping support. If you add a location to an event, which they make pretty easy, it will mark it on a Google Map and display the weather forecast. The map nerd in my scores this with a wow factor, even if it isn't as useful as e-mail integration. Between the two it means that you can pull up a calendar event, check the e-mail that started it, look at where the event is, and even find out what the weather will be like when you get there -- pretty much everything that I might want to check prior to an event. You can even get the same mapping support with events from your upcoming.org calendar that have location data.

30boxes has worked with upcoming.org from the start and they keep coming up with more and more features between the two that increase my usage of both. I've signed up for a Google Calendar but 30boxes has held my attention. Google Calendar is a good Google product, but it does things the Google way. In order to support public calendars, Google crawls the entire Web and gathers every calendar it can find. That's great if I quickly want to find the Redskins' football schedule, but the Google way precludes great synergistic integrations like 30boxes and upcoming.org. I'm sure the GCal + GMail integration will be fantastic, but with 30boxes is better targeted at a Web-savvy audience.

30 Boxes: immediate wow

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30boxes.gifAfter hitting refresh all day, I finally managed to get a beta account on 30 boxes, which is a Web calendar with fancy features like:

  • a text box at the top where you can quickly add events like "Tour of California Feb 19-26" or "kwc's Birthday Oct 31 repeat yearly". I've found this box to be much, much faster after a 10 second learning curve.
  • overlay your local weather on top of your calendar.
  • little touches, like giving you a link to check your Gmail in order to retrieve your signup confirmation and getting a user icon from Flickr if you give it your Flickr account name.
  • export to iCal so that you can view it in iCalendar, Sunbird, or other apps
  • subscribe to your upcoming.org profile.
  • share your calendar with friends (anyone else feel like signing up? let me know)
  • uncluttered display: the calendar takes up your whole browser window

I've only been using it 15 minutes and I'm gearing up to switch over from my Yahoo! Calendar. Every other "Web 2.0" calendar site I've tried in the past (at current count, about three) has failed to immediately impress or convince me that it is in anyway better than the good ole' Yahoo klunker. I'm a little hesistant to jump ship so quickly. The last technology that convinced me to leave Yahoo! behind was Gmail, so it's been quite awhile since I've had to deal with the ramifications of having my personal workflow moved from one system to another. It appears that they may be in need of a little more polish before I'm ready to migrate, but given all the little touches in there so far it seems that whoever is in charge of their development will get it polished up nice and shiny.

Yahoo Maps (beta) and Local Events

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The Local Events Browser mashup is a nice demo of the new Yahoo Maps beta. It helped me find out about the "Gross, Gruesome, and Gothic" exhibit (10/1 - 3/12) over at the Cartoon Art Museum (I keep meaning to go there sometime). It is also a good visualization of how lame Peninsula life can be: zoom out a bit and the Peninsula looks like the eye of the hurricane, the perfect nothing calm surrounded by the torrent of SF, Berkeley, Oakland, and even San Jose.

Quick thoughts

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No time, no time, some rapid fire rants and praise:

The good

Zimbra: I just check out their demo of their Web-based e-mail/calendar suite and it has some great stuff that makes me think, "why haven't more companies done that?" If there's an address in an e-mail you can mouse over and it pulls up a Google Map and if you mouse over a date reference ('tomorrow', 'Aug 20') it shows your schedule for that day. It's all about saving that extra step. The rest of the UI is pretty fancy and desktop-like, but I'm no longer sure why desktop-like is a plus.

Microsoft Max: A Microsoft product that I actually had fun with, though I have no idea why I would use it on a regular basis and the UI is confusing in all its modalities. I can't think of any other Microsoft product that I thought of as fun -- most just cause me to break DVDs (others agree). The feature I most enjoyed was the mantle, which arranges your photos in 3D space. (Examples: my nephew, Pinnacles, Red Bull). It looks great and it also lets you view more photos in less space. You can rearrange the clusters that it creates, but the ones it chose seemed intereresting. Side note: are the clusters in the mantle view randomly assigned? Some of their clusters are great, some make little sense, but overall it's a nice new spin on things.

iPod nano: strap one of those to the back of my cellphone and another to the back of my PSP. Slide another into my Elph case and ... oh, now I'm getting greedy.

Lost: is there anyone in the 18-35 demographic not watching this show? Everyone at the wedding was either watching the new episodes or catching up with the DVDs.

The maybe good

PSP + TV: The head of Sony says that soon you'll be able to watch video using the wireless capabilities of the PSP and sync with your DVR. Sounds pretty cool but I won't jump for joy unless I hear "TiVo."

The almost good

Google Desktop ate my CPU: I had to uninstall because the new Google Desktop decided that 99% of my CPU was quite nice to utilize, even when instructed to pause indexing. Rather unfortunate as there were some aspects of the sidebar I liked, even if it was ugly. You can tell that it's paying attention to what you're doing and trying to help and with a couple iterations I could imagine it becoming a great product, but not quite yet.

The probably ugly

Google Reader: davextreme pulled me aside during the wedding reception to let me know that Google had released a feed reader, news that I have been waiting to hear for a long time. Less than 24 hours is not enough to evaluate a feed reader properly -- for now I'll say that it's slick, but who wants to read through your feeds one entry at a time. BoingBoing alone has 20-40 entries a day -- even with keyboard shortcuts that means I have to hit 'j' 20-40 times to read just one site, at which point I want to rent a helper monkey to break up the monotony.

The ugly

iTunes 5.0 (Windows): can't seem to play a song without skipping and the 'streamlined' UI makes me wish for ole' big and bulky.

Flickr + Yahoo: the extra year of service plus two free giveaway accounts were nice presents, but Flickr still goes out for massages all the time and I don't want my Flickr ID linked to my Yahoo! ID.

TiVo: what the hell are they up to? I love my three TiVos, but their current directions have been entirely pro-broadcasters and anti-consumer. It's a very capable platform that they try to do less and less with every day. Why can't I play shows on my PSP? Why can't I share episodes with friends? Why is TiVo Desktop so buggy? Why why why?

I stopped by Kepler's today to visually confirm that the doors are shut, with a note of closing and 'Declaration of Independents.' The store is not emptied out, just closed, but unless this is some clever negotiation tactic it appears that Dealers of Lightning and Phaidon's Louis Kahn book will have been my last purchases there. Having Keplers next to Cafe Borrone was a big incentive for taking the leisurely route home, stopping to read a book over dinner. After finishing my first David Sedaris book while eating dinner at Cafe Borrone, I went over to Keplers, picked up another Sedaris book, and finished the same night while eating even more Borrone food. Good cafe/bookstore pairings are hard to replace: one feeds the other.

Neil Gaiman's journal confirms that his Keplers talk is cancelled, as I imagine all others are as well, but he mentions two other places in the Bay Area he will be speaking (one with Michael Chabon):

Thursday, September 29 7:00 PM PDT
SAN FRANCISCO & BAY AREA
Michael Chabon and Neil Gaiman in Conversation
Book Passage
51 Tamal Vista Blvd.
Corte Madera, CA
415-927-0960

Friday, September 30 7:00 PM PDT
SAN FRANCISCO and BAY AREA
September 30, 7 PM PDT
Cody's
at the First Congregational Church of Berkeley
2345 Channing Way at Dana
Berkeley, CA
510-845-7852
(See http://www.codysbooks.com/ for details of the event)

Tomorrow is Ethernet Day!

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Tomorrow is Ethernet's 30th birthday! Celebrations will be held at PARC, with both Boggs and Metcalfe attending. I'm tempted to bring some wirecutters and cut myself a piece of original ether. CNET already has an
interview.