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JQuery Mobile

Published on March 1, 2012 by in Web Development

JQuery Mobile offers the ability to quickly create a mobile version of your website utilizing their framework.

Delicious Designs Mobile Test Bed

 

 
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Social Media Course Reflection

Published on July 28, 2011 by in Social Media

I have recently completed one of my last few courses towards my bachelors degree, the topic of which was Social Media. We detailed many of the most popular tools available including WordPress, Facebook, Twitter, Diigo, and LinkedIn.  The course gave us a week filled with work in each tool, which really allowed us to immerse ourselves in the technology. Hence, this is why this blog was finally created (I say finally because it had been an idea/desire of mine for several years to record my experiences as a father). You can read my review of each in the posts listed on this blog and linked below:

A Sampling of Social Media Tools
FacebookReflections on Facebook Twitter LogoTwitter and the Gen X Dad GenXDad vs LinkedIn DiigoGenXDad and Diigo Google DocsGoogle Docs Presentation

Overall each tool has its use, and for the most part they are just a way to get your ideas out to the masses or to consume ideas from the masses. I think this works two ways, you have to contribute as well as consume to be a real participant in social media. I think the realm of social media is saturated with social leaches, but that is the case in anything. I must admit, until this class I was also a social leach. However, in some cases I don’t think people really contribute value to the community, and I raise the question “should all of this really be out there?”. For me, I would enjoy the feedback in the hopes that I may become a better contributer to the overall community.

So what do we do with all of this these opinions and facts? Where does it all lead? I don’t really know either. Social media is in such an infantile stage I am not sure anyone can make a good judgement as to where this is headed. In 10 years I doubt this will be the same. Right now I think it’s just a pretty cool tool and toy for communicating. If it is used correctly it can be very powerful, if not, it is still very powerful. Kind of sounds like The Force.

 
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Off Brand [Career] – The HR Capitalist

Published on July 28, 2011 by in Career

HR CapitalistI am going to slip off topic briefly to plug a blogger I truly enjoy. I try to keep the focus of this blog to parenting as a generation-X dad, but in my day job I am a senior manager at a small company. I am working on my degree in Human Resource Management from an awesome local university, the University of Richmond, and I truly love and enjoy this profession. It is a challenge everyday, and each challenge is just a little different. This keeps my mind sharp, eyes open, and head on a swivel.

A great read in my inbox everyday is a post from the HR Capitalist. The emails are usually short, and are quick reads, but I find myself thinking about them during the day. It inspires me to think outside of the box; making me a better manager and and keeping me out of the rut of daily thinking. The tools I hone on a daily basis at work also apply to my life as a father. My kids are not the same person every morning, and need to be managed in different ways. Sometimes we have happy, sometimes we have the Pout Pout Fish, or we have just plain old grumpy. My children help me be a better professional and vice versa.

Hi highly suggest subscribing to his feed … I think you will find it very useful too; even if you are not in HR.

 
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Bad Parenting

Published on July 28, 2011 by in Being a Dad

Unfortunately not enough jail terms were passed out for what occurred in this video in my opinion. Counting the number of issues is almost impossible, but I will stick to agreeing with Jeff Gardere, the psychologist being interviewed. The school should have suspended everyone that could be identified in the video. The mother that obviously stood by, and let this continue while she spoke with someone should also serve a jail term along with the mother who obviously wanted this fight to happen. That no one in this video felt strong enough to say this needs to stop, and make an attempt to stop it is disheartening. Could this be a result of reality TV? I tend not to blame that medium for this as I fell everyone is still responsible for their own choices, but does it help the situation? I believe everyone has a responsibility to have common sense, and there was an overwhelming lack of common sense in this group. As a parent, I am disgusted by the actions of all in attendance.

 
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GenXDad and Diigo

Published on July 23, 2011 by in Social Media
Continuing in our course work in social media this semester, we just finished a week long use of the social bookmarking site Diigo. I enjoy the design of the site. It is very clean, simple to navigate, and easy to learn. You run a tool along with the website that integrates with you browser making it very easy to add things to your library. We focused on bookmarks – the same bookmarks you create on your browser toolbar. I believe you can store more things on this website though. 

The site allows you to share a plethora of information through hyper links to other websites. Along with that, adding a description, tags, and comments make it very useful. My only problem is that I have never seen a real use for social bookmarking in my life. I love technology, and I openly embrace new ideas that use technology. Diigo however is more like Twitter on steroids to me. I might find more use for it after I try the iOS App they say they have on their website.

I can see a use for this in education and project use, but a wikki may have more tools to make that task easier. It really would depend on the need. I suggest giving this site a try if your bookmarks are very large. I have come to stop adding bookmarks to my browser tool bar. I just Google everything now.

 
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Laughter at 18 Months

Published on July 23, 2011 by in Being a Dad, Skills
It really does not take much to get an 18-month old child to laugh. Barring of course you have not left them over tired or hungry (voice of experience), this is just a fact. It does however require some sacrifice, and that sacrifice comes in the form of how people perceive you. 

Take tonight for example. On my way home from a long day at work, my wife called to inform me I needed to change my destination from home to a location for a kids birthday party. It was not quite what I had in mind, but, hey, no big deal either. I normally love a birthday party. At this stage in the game, (my children at their present ages) it’s usually an opportunity to catch up with those friends that I have not seen in a month or so. That was not the case though, because I did not know a sole. Which leads to the sacrifice part.

Here I am hanging out with 18-month old son at this birthday party with most kids around the ages of 5-7. There really wasn’t much he could participate in. He just can’t hit the pinata yet, and jumpy house they had running was just too rough. My boy finds a ping pong ball that is not being used, and we proceed to play catch with it. We’re having a blast, but he really enjoys himself when I have to jump in a different direction to get the ball. So, I began making a little more of a game out of it and started jumping a little more wildly than needed; adding funny faces to get that extra little zeal of laughter. He loved every minute of it, and his laughter just touched my soul in a great way.

That’s when I noticed a few people starring. I sacrificed my dignity for that laughter. For a brief moment I was just a little embarrasseded. Then it all passed, and it was worth every second of it. I highly recommend this “high” in parenthood as often as possible. It will make both your lif and your children’s life better. Don’t sweat it … people will only talk about the weird guy for a week or two.

 
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Boot Camp for New Dads

Boot Camp for New Dads is one of the best programs you could take for a new dad. Before my wife and I had our first child, I was “voluntold” for this one day program. It was held at the hospital where we would give birth (<soap box on> and YES I MEANT to say WE give birth – people wondered why dads didn’t take part in childbirth – because they were left out – no I did not feel the pain, but I shared in the responsibility and experience <soap box off>). I was very apprehensive at first as I was not sure what to expect, but I was pleasantly surprised. 

I got to know another dad, before this class started at our birthing seminars, and it helped to have an acquaintance there. The day was pretty much a round table facilitated by an experienced father where we could share our fears, and get them out in the open. We would then discuss them in as much detail as we all could, and try to find solutions together.

The program is one I highly recommend. It really helped me get past my initial fears and concerns. So much to the point that I did a great deal of the daily necessity things with our first child like infant bathing, which as a new dad knows, is a scary event. It made the first six months or so much easier. I was able to communicate with the other fathers in the group and the facilitator via email several times, and this was all before Facebook and other social media outlets became very poplar.

If you are an expecting father, check your area for this program. It’s the best day you will spend in preparation.

 
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Kid Friendly Destination: National Zoo in Washington DC

If you are looking for a great place to take your kids for a full day, the Smithsonian National Zoological Park is a great destination. It provides a wide range of things for the kids to see and do coupled with an amazing experience. I recently visited this location with my children for the third time in the last three years. They are making some changes that should be done around 2013 that will also really enhance your experience.

This is one of the few places in North America that you can see the Giant Panda! You can also catch them on the Panda cams also available through the website.

Smithsonian National Zoo – Tortoise

Smithsonian National Zoo – Baby Giant Ant Eater

 
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GenXDad vs LinkedIn

Recently for a class I was asked to create a LinkedIn profile. This was fairly easy, because I already had one. I do enjoy the experience on this social media website for professional use. It has certainly done well keeping that focus. You can meet a great number of new people in your industry, and at least get introductions to new people.

I think groups are a little awkward on this site, but they are very useful. Keeping yourself in a way locked down with constant email updates is a good idea. Some of the feedback I received was useful; as well as the information. Recommendations are a great way to get you noticed by those that use the site for job hunting/posting.

As more people use this site for finding employees, I think the site will reach its full potential.

 
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Presentation on Google Docs

Published on July 14, 2011 by in Social Media

Here is a copy of my presentation for July 14th, 2011 on Google Docs

Google Docs Presentation

 
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