August 8th, 2011 § § permalink
As some of you may know, a co-worker and close friend of mine was killed in a hit-and-run while riding his bicycle in April of this year. This has been a devastating and eye-opening experience for myself and many of those close to me. While he wasn’t wearing a helmet, he did have front and rear lights and was riding fully within the law. This horrific event has brought to my attention the state of bicycle safety in the world today. Working with my employer, Bazaarvoice, and some co-workers and friends, we’ve set out to try and improve the situation.
We wanted to find a way to improve not only the safety of cyclists already on the road, but the general perception of them by motorists. We’ve teamed up with two non-profit organizations and are helping them raise money for their efforts.
Please Be Kind to Cyclists
Please Be Kind to Cyclists is an organization based on Austin, TX whose goal is to spread awareness of bicycle traffic and safety to motorists and cyclists alike – not only in Austin, or Texas, but globally. They work to educate motorists and cyclists, and even have efforts in place to get bicycle awareness built into state drivers education courses – a measure that will no doubt improve conditions. We are hoping to help them expand their campaign to a national level in support of their goal.
BikeTexas is an advocacy group also based in Austin, TX that works to not only educate cyclists young and old, but also to influence legislation for more bicycle friendly transportation options. We hope to help fund their giveaway programs – lights and helmets to children and others who ride bicycles – and their educational programs which include working with school teachers to integrate bicycle safety into existing education.
When you consider the benefits of riding your bike when compared to driving – exercise, efficiency, environment, etc.. – it’s a no-brainer that we should encourage this as a lifestyle choice, and protect those that already do it. We should work to not only educate, but to improve safety for cyclists and pedestrians on local, state, national and global levels.
Please drop by the Safe Lanes site and throw in a donation to help these organizations. Our goal is $50,000, but even $10 helps. Please also share this site with your friends, relatives and co-workers. This issue is a serious one, around 700 cyclists are killed each year in the US in traffic accidents. Let’s help these campaigns to spread knowledge and work to improve roads and transportation for everyone.
June 22nd, 2010 § § permalink
It’s been awhile since I’ve posted and that’s primarily because I’m lazy, but also because a few months ago, I started in a position at Bazaarvoice here in Austin as an Implementation Engineer. Bazaarvoice is a start-up in Austin whose primary product/service is to provide the ratings and reviews software that runs on many popular retailer websites (Best Buy, Walmart, Home Depot, etc.).
In my time here, I’ve quickly come to appreciate the values of the company, as well as the people within it. Observing the way this company is run has given me a new outlook on small and medium business management, and confirmed my hopes that not all companies treat their employees like crap.
For anyone interested, Bazaarvoice is still hiring! You can find job listings here: http://www.bazaarvoice.com/about/jobs.
December 30th, 2009 § § permalink
So last Saturday (the 20th), the display adapter in my HP notebook failed. It’s about three years old, and considering the fact that Brent spilled beer all over it in late 2008, I’m surprised this is the first problem I’ve seen.
I got on HP’s website, and to my delight I discovered that they now have chat support. I was excited, as this meant that I didn’t have to decode someone’s accent while still trying to properly communicate the problem I was experiencing. I told the chat technician of my problem, and a few other cosmetic defects that my warranty also covers, gave him my info, and we were done. A box was on it’s way to my place.
I impatiently watched the tracking on the FedEx site. It showed up a few days later… but at the wrong place. The place I lived in 2007. This is a problem.
So I called the 800 number, and told them of the mishap. They created a new service order, collected my current address, and a new box was on it’s way to my place.
Again, I awaited the “Delivered!” status on the FedEx site. Again, it was shipped to the wrong address. Now putting the wrong address on the order once was excusable. These things happen. Doing it a second time, when I called to correct the issue, was a little ridiculous.
So I looked up and called their corporate office (650-857-1501), and told the operator of my issue. She quickly forwarded me to a support manager, and a new box was on it’s way. This time the box showed up the next day! Less than 24 hours later. They shipped it Priority Overnight, signature required, to my front door.
So the only problem we have now is that with this new order (they apparently have to make a whole new service order to change one detail, which I find weird), the description of the problem has gone from “no display, missing keys, cracked case” to “System no function,” which I don’t think really explains the problem fully.
I guess I’m gonna have to stick little red arrows all over it and include a letter with large type telling the technicians what to fix. I’ve sent this laptop in for repair in the past, and they’ve traditionally been really bad about fixing it. They usually replace something that didn’t need to be replaced, and the broken piece remains broken, forcing me to send it back again.
Wish me luck. I’ll update here on the progress.
September 1st, 2008 § § permalink
Hey guys, I’m finally pushed my new design live. What do you think?
I’m still working on the resume and portfolio. My old design was alright, but I know I can do better (even if I am only a developer).
August 20th, 2007 § § permalink
Wow! I just noticed that there are actually a decent number of ratings for my portfolio entries. 208 for ThaoPhotography, 192 for ThinkMPG, 185 for Freud and Forest. Nice!
Keep letting me know what you think of my work guys. I know, I haven’t updated the portfolio in like a year, but I will. Give me one weekend full of boredom, and it’ll get done.
P.S. I am doing some design tweaks soon, so check back! My MySpace page will change at the same time.