Our Weekly Coronavirus Report

One thing was clear pretty early on during this Coronavirus crisis: our business, and every other business, was going to look different throughout the crisis and be different after it’s over. The challenge for us was to come up with a way to regularly review the data that would give us clues as to how things were changing. We wanted to be able to react as quickly as possible. Our current automated reports were good for normal times as a business that has had slow-and-steady… Continue reading

4/9/20

Surface Pro Update: My First Real Test and Improving “Lappability”

A few updates on the Surface Pro 7 that I purchased in November as a Chromebook replacement: Downtime While Traveling Earlier in March, when travel was still allowed, my family and I were out of town for a wedding. Friday morning, I woke up to a barrage of downtime alerts on my phone. I grabbed my Surface Pro out of my luggage, booted up, and starting digging in. It was perplexing because our server was up and looked fine, but Detailed Image wasn’t loading. I… Continue reading

3/30/20

Do Something Fun!

Like many families, we’re adapting to life with everyone home every day. My wife and I are both working from home while also caring for our 3 year old whose daycare is closed. It is a challenge for sure. There’s plenty of stress and plenty of questions about how we’re going to find enough time to work and how long this will go on for, and I’m trying to ensure our business and employees come out of this in a good position too. Everyone is… Continue reading

3/23/20

How We’re Navigating the COVID-19 Crisis

There’s no playbook for dealing with the challenges that the past week has brought upon everyone. I think with any crisis, the smart thing to do is to identify your biggest threats and prioritize a plan of attack based upon the most critical thing(s) in front of you. We sat down on Monday to do just that for our business (virtually on Skype, of course). That feels like a comically long time ago as I’m writing this on Friday afternoon. But for the most part… Continue reading

3/20/20

Blocking out a “Movie” Worth of Time Each Day

I recently listened to a fantastic interview on The Tim Ferriss Show with Gary Keller of the real estate firm Keller Williams (KW). One discussion about productivity stood out to me. It was about the idea of carving out one “movie” worth of time every day for your most productive work. The analogy works really well: it’s a 2-3 hour time period where you focus on one thing, turn your phone off, eat and go the bathroom ahead of time, and – in my case… Continue reading

3/3/20

The Privacy Landscape Has Actually Changed

Over the past six months I’ve been working on something new. It’s a software project, and privacy is one of the key selling points. I’m planning on revealing more soon. We should have a beta launch in the middle of the year if all goes well. As I’ve been working on a marketing plan, I’ve been reflecting a lot on privacy and how the landscape has changed in just a few short years. When I did my blog updates in the fall – removing 3rd… Continue reading

2/7/20

Supporting Old Software

Basecamp has this really unique policy for their software called Until the End of the Internet. It reads, in part: The day you become a Basecamp customer you can trust that Basecamp will be around. In the event that the Basecamp product you’re using enters a legacy phase you’ll be free to keep using it as-is indefinitely, assuming you continue to abide by our terms of service and keep your subscription active. Co-Founder David Heinemeier Hansson wrote a post about this policy several years back,… Continue reading

12/23/19

Record Sales + 22″ Snow = (Some) Chaos

Typically, Cyber Monday falls a week earlier than this year, in late November instead of on December 2nd. Typically, the big snowstorms in upstate New York are in January, February, and early March. And typically, we’re never allowed to discount the very popular Rupes Polishers. This year was not typical. All three of those things happened, and it created a level of chaos that we haven’t seen in a while. First, the good: by Rupes allowing their popular-but-pricey polishers to be discounted on Black Friday… Continue reading

12/6/19

Improved Site Search

After completing my site improvements recently, there was one thing that I realized I still wanted to fix. If you searched the site – currently only available on the Archives page – you’d be brought to a Google site search. The reason for this is that in addition to the 816 WordPress posts that I’ve published, I have an additional 296 that were published via Blogger and were migrated from SportsLizard.com over to this site in 2007. It seemed as though the easiest way to… Continue reading

12/2/19

Why I Replaced My Chromebook with the New Entry-Level Surface Pro 7

A few months ago I read an article about how Chromebooks are only guaranteed to receive updates for five years from the release date (not the date of purchase), a fact that I don’t think I was previously aware of. Since Chromebooks are cloud machines that require those updates to be effective and secure, the device is more or less useless (although there are options). I looked up my Toshiba Chromebook 2 and sure enough the updates will cease in June of 2021. My first… Continue reading

11/26/19