A few people asked me where I got this groovy screensaver that runs on my TZ. I can't remember how I found it but it's a free download from the Cool Cats at 9301 for both Windows and OSX.
"nothing more than having a conversation about something you're passionate about with two or more people, while you just happen to be standing up, or not," public speaking coach Richard Greene
I like that...from a great article on Knowledge @Wharton. I also love their piece about talking with the receptionist.
1 year ago today, a blogger called Hugh MacLeod sent me (and 3 others) an innocuous email with this link:
It linked to the image you see above which has become known as Blue Monster* and it has changed my relationship with Microsoft, our customers and partners more than anything in my near 10 years here.
Here's my rough sketch of some of the stuff that has happened over the last year
"So what" you may say....it's just a funky cartoon that has a big monster in it and the word Microsoft. Bound to get attention. The point for me is that it's stirred up way more interesting conversations that pretty much anything I've ever been involved with from Microsoft. Some people love it, some people hate it, some don't understand it or why it's of any interest. However, they all have a view on it.
Blue Monster = conversation. It's that simple. I've used it in several presentations at Microsoft, one where it visibly left a room of around 200 visibly moved. I was very proud that day - with a small cartoon I and few others managed to help a roomful of people realise they work for an amazing company. It kicked off a whole series of internal conversations and helped people talk in a different way I think. It's done the same externally.
It's been a wild ride with the Blue Monster for this last year but I wouldn't change it. I made a great friend in Hugh MacLeod and met hundreds of others inside and outside of Microsoft who share the same passion for this company that I do. At times I thought I was about to get fired and at times I wished I'd never seen that cartoon but it sits on my desk at home and always will.
It changed me if not Microsoft. It defines Hugh's Social Object concept. It defines much of how I think about Microsoft and has been the driving force in my desire to change perceptions that have built up over the years. Microsoft isn't perfect, but we're far from the evil that it's become all to easy to portray. Microsoft is made up of smart, passionate, funny and genuine people. I think Blue Monster has done a pretty good job of helping expose that, amongst other things. One year on I feel very good about that.
Thanks Hugh....thanks to the supporters and Happy Birthday to Blue Monster.
[update] looks like Blue Monster is getting it's own show
* - little known fact that when discussing the cartoon we originally called it the "change the world or go home cartoon" but that took too long to say so one day in Pimlico Hugh christened it "Blue Monster". It stuck.
Thanks to our friends at Mydeo, the Steve Ballmer session here in the UK last week titled The Online Opportunity is now available for viewing.
Lars has blogged about the event and the videos are nicely broken up in to sections. Check out the
Perhaps the best part is
where he deals with some tough questions such as will Visual Studio appear on the Mac or Linux. Well, maybe that one wasn't so tough :) but he is as candid as I've seen him in a while.
Oh in case you don't know who Steve Ballmer is, check out Wired's column on him in their new Geekipedia section.
I've read several posts over the last few weeks about people being disappointed with Vista performance. I've always been one of the type of people who tweaks and tweaks their system for ultimate performance. I'm continually looking to optimise and edit to make things run lightning fast and whilst I appreciate most people (everyone) doesn't want to do this and you shouldn't have to do this, I'd like to pass on some tips to ensure you're getting the best out of your OS.
That's actually it from me - there are lots more tips and tricks at places like http://www.tweakvista.com but these two things should noticeably improve performance.