Showing posts with label Memory. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Memory. Show all posts

October 18, 2018

Memory Comes In 3's

So it seems like the human mind can fundamentally only remember things in threes.

Whether it's a joke about serving 3 meals: Frozen, Microwave, and Take-out. 

Or Even washing your hair: Wash, Rinse, Repeat. 

How about what to do when there is an:

Active Shooter: Run, Hide, Fight

Fire: Stop, Drop, Roll

Earthquake: Drop, Cover, Hold On

G-d forbid there should be 4 or more steps to do something, and mankind would be beyond his/her mental limitations and at a virtual standstill. 

So read, remember, and use this appropriately--that's the 3 things to do now with this post. ;-)

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)
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January 25, 2018

Messed Up By Norton Clean

So I got this message on my computer that it's time to run Norton Clean.

Oy, what a mistake. 

This tool is not ready for prime time. 

It's supposed to optimize memory and clean up duplicate and residual files.

But in my experience, it swept up more good files than junk files. 

And I ended up having to pull my files back from the trash and manually restore them to their file structure. 

What a pain in the you know what!

Artificial intelligence--not way the I see this utility/tool. 

If you don't pay attention, you can lose a lot of important information. 

Yes, it gives you a chance to review the files, but then what do you really need this cleaning tool to begin with. 

Maybe you have a different experience, I can only speak for myself. 

But a little human intelligence goes a long way to sift through the wheat from the chaff--that's what your files really need anyway. ;-)

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)
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April 11, 2016

A Beautiful Crane

I took this photo in Lake Needwood yesterday. 

A most beautiful crane.

Such a long neck, skinny legs, smooth feathers, and a yellow beak.

When it took flight, it was so amazing. 

It's wingspan was huge. 

And it soared and glided through the trees and into the sky. 

I wish I could have caught it all on video. 

So free, elegant, and graceful.  

There was something almost heavenly about it. 

Imprinted it on my memory--loved it. ;-)

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)
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April 30, 2015

Morning Entertainment DC

So this morning there was an interesting banjo player in downtown DC.

He was playing and this little dog in the shopping cart behind him was jumping around dancing. 

Sometimes I wonder as I get older:

- Will I remember all these scenes from my day-to-day life?

- Will they seem real or more like a surreal fantasy?

- Will I feel that I stopped "to smell the roses" or simply hurried on by doing all my things?

In each person a soul--but do we see the spirit or just the bodily facade--somebody homeless trying to get by, a simple distraction, street entertainment, fleeting fears of mental illness or other dangers, just an annoyance maybe, or a handout for someone in need. 

Ever wonder who are you and why are you deserving (or not) to have the fancy suit, tie, shoes, and bag, nice haricut, and are going to a cushy job and fat paycheck, while someone else is standing on the corner playing the banjo?  ;-)

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal) 
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March 20, 2015

Death To PowerPoint

Ok, we've all heard of "Death by PowerPoint" (well, I'm advocating death to PowerPoint).

It's the unfortunate occurrence that happens when a speaker presents a wad too many slides (OMG, some people seem to go on and on forever--get them off that podium)!

Or when they present too much information, too little information, or just don't know what or how to present at all. 

Their (slide) presentations leave the audience basically wanting to just kill themselves, if not the inconsiderate S.O.B. speaker.

But aside from lousy speakers, you have a crappy presentation mechanism, which is PowerPoint slides.

Hello out there, tell the truth...

Can any of you remember much of a darn thing that anyone has ever conveyed to you by PowerPoint?

Think of webinars, conferences, and meetings galore with slide after slide of 2-dimensional boredom.

Is your head hurting you yet or are you just glad you can't remember any of it--natural selection of memory saves you the pain...why thank you.

Then consider what someone has told you in great thoughtfulness, confidence, or with genuine passion, caring and sincerity.

- Perhaps, the wisdom of a parent or teacher who took you aside to tell you a life's lesson.

- Or a Rabbi or Priest who shared with you something spiritual and uplifting to guide you on your path.

- How about someone in the office who was passionate about an idea or project and who motivated you as well.

Most of the communication between people that really means something never makes it to a PowerPoint slide.

Imagine for a moment, if something meaningful was conveyed to you by slide presentation--you would think, how ridiculous it is to use PowerPoint for that?

- I love you--will you marry me?

- We're having a baby, how wonderful. 

- Just got that promotion, yes!

- So and so is sick or just passed away, how terrible. 

PowerPoint just doesn't happen here in real life--thank G-d!

And no matter how much organizations such as TED would like to make a (show)business out of presentations using PowerPoint...(ah, nope).

Real communication happens when one person talks from the heart to another person who receives it in their heart. 

The greatest orators in history...never used a slide presentation.

Other presentation products like Prezi tried to take slides to the next level with a storytelling format using a virtual canvas, but that didn't pan out to well either...see many Prezis lately (and without getting dizzy)?

PowerPoint slides, and the like, are for distraction...now I don't have to pay that much attention to the rambling, numbnut speaker anymore.

The bottom line...we don't listen with our eyes!

Rather, we hear words of wisdom and see when someone is genuine, sincere and worth listening to.

The rest is PowerPoint... ;-)

(Source Photo: here with attribution to Chris Pirillo)
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September 11, 2014

9/11 Remembrance

"Never Forget Project" - 13 years after the tragic events of 9/11.

2,977 American flags at local university in Washington, D.C. 

Question: With all the weighty terror threats aroud the world, including the latest and largest from ISIS--is never forgetting the same as doing everything possible to make sure it doesn't happen again?  

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)
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April 22, 2014

Riding The T-Rex

Rebecca got me on another mini-adventure today.

The T-Rex scooter had only 3 wheels, but packed quite a punch. 

We navigated Las Olas and the Fort Lauderdale Beach pretty good in this thing. 

So low to the ground, my hand could touch it, and no windshield so everything sort of just flies right through. 

It was only an hour, but as we in this touristy-way waved at the passerbys and speed around town next to the other hulking vehicles, weaving and beeping on this crazy horn, it was a fun time and a good memory. ;-)

(Source Photo: Dannielle Blumenthal)
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December 22, 2013

Favorite Hypnotist Act


This is my favorite comedy hypnosis show with Marc Savard.

He suggests under hypnosis to this big guy that whenever he hears the Mexican Jumping Beans music, the guy will become active and his shoes will go 100 mph dancing an Irish Jig. 

And sure enough, this guy dances away...and he does it well. 

The music stops and the guy settles down. 

Marc Savard scolds him that he is interrupting the show with his wild dancing.  

The big guy is embarrassed, says "really sorry," and that "it won't happen again."

But it does! 

Savard threatens to have the troublemakers escorted out by security.

The big guy says "don't do that."

Savard says, I'm watching you.

Each time the music comes on and the big guy can't control himself and starts dancing, and when the music stops and he realizes what he's doing, he is visibly exasperated with himself.

It's also funny, when Savard goes "you wouldn't go to the Blue Man Group (another competing act in Vegas) and do that Sh*t!"

I am a skeptic when it comes to hypnosis, but overall, this act gets an A+. ;-)
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December 1, 2013

Skiing The Rainbow



After the rain stopped finally, we got to go jet skiing off the Ft. Lauderdale beach.

The waves were insane though...

The instructor tells us, "Oh be careful, because the waves can turn the jet ski over--especially when you're coming in and out--and it weights 900 pounds!"

Trying to get on this thing with the sand shifting under my feet and the waves making this thing flip up like a bucking bronco--let's just say that I had more than a few second thoughts. 

But for my daughter's sake, we went forward--BTW Rebecca, you were very brave and I thank you for making me do these things and come out of my comfort zone.

It was a scary, but amazing time, and a spectacular rainbow came out for the event (in fact, it was a double rainbow, which I had never even heard of).

Being a bunch of city kids, this was an awesome sight for us.

Thanks to my wife for taking the short video of our journey today, and thank you to G-d for bringing me to this moment.  

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)
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October 14, 2013

Picture Frames For The Computer Geek In U

Found these 2 interesting pictures frames.

They seem the perfect gift for that computer geek in your life.

The one on the left looks like a memory or circuit board in the computer.

While the one on the right is made from a recycled keyboard. 

I like that they are both made from recycled material and of course, the computer theme. 

While not exactly the computer geek, I think they are very cool, indeed. ;-)

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)
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May 18, 2013

Remembering Every Moment


I saw a frightening movie a while back about a girl that had been drugged and brutally raped. 

In the movie, the girl is eerily warned, "You won't remember, but you will never forget!"

That line leaves an indelible mark--that something can be so horrific, so scaring that you can't recall it, and can't forget it. 

Now there is a new device coming to market that helps you recall everything.

Memoto is a 5 megapixel tiny camera (36 x 36 millimeters) with an embedded GPS that is worn around the neck, like a necklace. 

When clipped on, it starts taking the phones and when put down or in a pocket it shuts off. 

The Memoto takes 2 photos a minutes (1 every 30 seconds or nearly 3,000 a day if worn all the time).

The photos are stored in an accessible cloud app that uses GPS to sort the photos on a timeline with a date and location stamp.

Photos are private by default, but can be shared using traditional social media, such as to Facebook or Twitter. 

The battery lasts about 2 days and is rechargeable by connecting to your computer at which time the photos are uploaded to Memoto's servers. 

Wear, photograph, recharge/upload and repeat. 

Privacy issues abound with a device like this--imagine wearing this into the bathroom, locker room, bedroom, or even a private corporate meeting--lots of embarrassing and compromising no-no's here!

At the same time, imagine all the precious or memorable moments in life that you can capture and enjoy--it's the realization of the photographic memory you've never had, but always wanted. 

Also think of that rapist or other criminal approaching you--getting photographed, caught, and punished--so that the victim really does remember, and can forget with a new peace of mind. ;-)
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May 5, 2013

Action Video Extravaganza

This is an awesome action video--5 minutes and totally worth it.

It feels like being inside a single player shooting game. 

I first saw this video on Facebook posted by a colleague as a interesting advertisement for Go Pro wearable helmet cameras, often used for capturing extreme sports activities. 


Now we are going from helmet cams to Google glasses. 


With the new Google Glass coming out this year for $1,500--that mimics most smartphone functions including taking pictures and videos just by a simple verbal command such as "Okay Glass, record a video" or "Okay Glass, take a picture,"-- things are going to get a lot dicier. 


While this type of James Bond action doesn't happen everyday for most of us, if we can capture every day events like these --it will be both awesome from a recall, sharing, entertainment, study and scientific perspectives and scary from a privacy one. 


If Google Glass really works as it's envisioned, it is going to revolutionize how we interact with the world and each other--get ready augmented reality, here we come. ;-)

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April 9, 2013

Savor Every Moment


This is an awesome slow motion video from Gizmodo.

It is taken with a Phantom Flex4k camera at 1000 frames per second and high resolution 4096 x 2160.

This camera can capture "explosions, crashes, and other split-second events" in amazing detail and costs over $100,000, but in a sense it is a small price to pay for what the value of what you can get from it. 

When I watched this video of the firefighters going into action, I felt as if I was really there experiencing the true heat of the fire, the thick smell of the smoke, the fear of what lay in the dark and burning building, and the human determination for everyone working together to put it out and save lives. 

This made me think about how in rushing around all the time to do everything that others expect of us and that we expect of ourselves that we often aren't fully in touch with the moment. 

It's more like we are just trying to get through it while everything is passing us by, and we are in a disconnected fugue state.

I imagine that at the end of life, we look back at the many moments that we don't fully remember, experienced in just a cold and hurried manner, and that we never got to really feel or savor

If only we had been in the moment, maybe we would have listened to others better, been more empathetic, less judging and critical, and said and done the right things more often. 

Being in the moment would enable us to more fully experience it, remember it, learn from it, grow with it, be together in it--and really be alive (and not a bunch of Walking Dead zombies half the time)!

This video is an eye-opener and wake up call to slow down, experience, and feel life, rather than have it just pass us so quickly and shallowly by. ;-)


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November 25, 2012

Helicopter Ride Over Miami Beach


We went on a awesome excursion today...a helicopter ride over Miami Beach. 

We got picked up and taken to the air strip in Pembroke Pines. 

Then, in a $450,000 helicopter traveling at 115 miles per hour, we got the ride of our lives.

With the sky clear blue, the sun shining bright, and the air cool and refreshing--what a great experience!

I put this in my memory bucket along with the jet skiing we did last year. 

I thank G-d for the amazing opportunities and to experience this with my family.

Probably the funniest thing was when our pilot Jason asked "do you want to have a nice ride or a crazy time?"

I didn't know we had to choose...especially after signing the waiver. ;-)

(Source Video: Andy Blumenthal)


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August 23, 2009

E-memory and Meat Memory

As we move towards a “paperless society” and migrate our data to the computer and the Internet, we can find personal profiles, resumes, photos, videos, emails, documents, presentations, news items, scanned copies of diplomas and awards, contact lists, and even financial, tax, and property records.

People have so much information on the web (and their hard drive) these days that they fear one of two things happening:

  1. Their hard drive will crash and they will lose all their valuable information.
  2. Someone will steal their data and their identity (identity theft)

For each of these, people are taking various precautions to protect themselves such as backing up their data and regularly and carefully checking financial and credit reports.

Despite some risks of putting “too much information” out there, the ease of putting it there, and the convenience of having it there—readily available—is driving us to make the Internet our personal storage device.

One man is taking this to an extreme. According to Wired Magazine (September 2009), Gordon Bell is chronicling his life—warts and all—online. He is documenting his online memory project—MyLifeBits—in a book, called Total Recall.

“Since 2001, Bell has been compulsively scanning, capturing and logging each and every bit of personal data he generates in his daily life. The trove includes Web Sites he’s visited (22,173), photos taken (56,282), docs written and read (18,883), phone conversations had (2,000), photos snapped by SenseCam hanging around his neck (66,000), songs listened to (7,139) and videos taken by (2,164). To collect all this information, he uses a staggering assortment of hardware: desktop scanner, digicam, heart rate monitor, voice recorder, GPS logger, pedometer, Smartphone, e-reader.”

Mr. Bell’s thesis is that “by using e-memory as a surrogate for meat-based memory, we free our minds to engage in more creativity, learning, and innovation.”

Honestly, with all the time that Bell spends capturing and storing his memories, I don’t know how he has any time left over for anything creative or otherwise.

Some may say that Gordon Bell has sort of an obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD)—you think? Others that he is some sort of genius that is teaching the world to be free and open to remembering—everything!

Personally, I don’t think that I want to remember “everything”. I can dimly remember some embarrassing moments in elementary school and high school that I most sure as heck want to forget. And then there are some nasty people that would be better off buried in the sands of time. Also, some painful times of challenge and loss—that while may be considered growth experiences—are not something that I really want on the tip of my memory or in a file folder on my hard drive or a record in a database.

It’s good to remember. It’s also sometimes good to forget. In my opinion, what we put online should be things that we want or need to remember or access down the road. I for one like to go online every now and then and do some data cleanup (and in fact there are now some programs that will do this automatically). What I thought was worthwhile, meaningful, or important 6 months or a year ago, may not evoke the same feelings today. Sometimes, like with purchases I made way back when, I think to myself, what was I thinking when I did that? And I quickly hit the delete key (wishing I could do the same with those dumb impulse purchases!). Most of the time, I am not sorry that I did delete something old and I am actually happy it is gone. Occasionally, when I delete something by accident, then I start to pull my hair out and run for the backup—hoping that it really worked and the files are still there.

In the end, managing the hard drive takes more work then managing one’s memories, which we have little conscious control over. Between the e-memory and the meat memory, perhaps we can have more of what we need and want to remember and can let go and delete the old and undesired one—and let bygones be bygones.
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April 6, 2008

Total Recall and Enterprise Architecture

Enterprise architecture plays an important role in corporate knowledge management. EA captures, analyzes, catalogues, and serves up information to end-users. In many cases, where more general KM endeavors fail, User-centric EA succeeds because it is a focused effort, with a clear value proposition for making information useful and usable.

Now, KM is being taken to whole new level. And rather than capturing information with clearly defined users and uses, the aim is total recall.

ComputerWorld, 6 April 2008, reports on an initiative for “storing every life memory in a surrogate [computer] brain.”

“Gordon Bello, a longtime veteran of the IT industry and now principle researcher at Microsoft’s Corp.’s research arm, is developing a way for everyone to remember those special moments. Actually, Bell himself wants to remember—well, everything...he wants the ability to pull up any picture, phone call, e-mail, or conversation any time he wants”

“The nine-year project, called MyLifeBits, has Bell supplementing his own memory by collecting as much information as he can about his life. He’s trying to store a lifetime on his laptop.”

“The effort is about not forgetting, not deleting, and holding onto all the bit of your life. In essence, it’s about immortality.”

What about privacy of your personal information?

It “isn’t about plastering a Myspace or Facebook page with information…[It’s] immensely personal...you will leave a personal legacy—a record of your life [on a personal computer].

And Bell is not discerning, he stores painful memories as he does happy ones; this “would actually let people see who he was as a person.”

Certainly people have strived for eternal life from the time of the first man and woman—Adam and Eve eating of the forbidden apple in their quest for immortality—and since with the search for the “fountain of youth” and other elixirs to prolong life. Similarly, people have sought to live eternal by leaving a legacy—whether great men or nefarious one—from rulers and inventors to conquerors and hate mongers. The desire to influence and be remembered everlasting is as potent as the most parch thirst of man.

Bell has gone to extremes collecting and storing his memories—good and bad—from “every webpage he has ever visited and television shows he has watched…video’s of lectures he’d given, CDs, correspondence and an avalanche of photos…he has also recorded phone conversations, images and audio from conference sessions, and with his e-mail and instant messages.”

In fact, Bell wears a SenseCam around his neck, a digital camera that automatically takes a photo every 30 seconds or whenever someone approaches.

“Bell figures that he could store everything about his life, from start to finish, using a terabyte of storage.”

“In 20 years, digitizing our memories will be standard procedure according to Bell. ‘Its my supplemental memory and brain’. It’s one of my most valuable possessions. It look at this thing and think, ‘My whole life is there.’”

So is that what a human life comes down to—a terabyte of stored information?

While maybe a noble effort at capturing memory, this seems to miss the mark at what a human being is really about. A person is much more than that which can be captured by a photo or sound bite of the external circumstances and events that take place around us. The essence of a person is about the deep challenges that go on inside us. The daily struggles and choices we make through our inner conscience—to chose right from wrong and to sacrifice for our creator, our loved ones, our nation, and our beliefs. Yes, you can see the resulting actions, but you don’t see the internal struggles of heart, mind, and soul.

Also, while capturing every 30 seconds of a person’s life may be sacred to the person whose life is being stored, who else really cares? The high-lights of a person’s life are a lesson for others, the minutia of their day are personal for their growth and reckoning.

From a User-centric EA perspective, I believe we should focus KM initiatives for both organizations and individuals from being a wholesale data dump to being truly meaningful endeavors that have a clarity or purpose and a dignity of the human beings being recorded.


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