Bullshit calling, it’s for you.

sage-manager-fired
A frame from this video.

The building manager of my apartment was recently fired after a viral video surfaced of him allegedly physically pushing a tenant out of his office. I found it interesting in the same way one does when watching any other train wreck in slow motion. Afterwards, an article was posted on The Record (Waterloo’s local paper) where an IN8 spokesperson, Darryl Firsten, stated:

“This is our 11th building in Waterloo and 10 out of 10 have been done on time, right down to the last blade of grass,” Firsten said.

I live in Sage 3 Waterloo, which is an IN8 development. I can confirm that, when I moved in on May 1st, 2015, it was so unfinished that we didn’t even have blades of grass. Work was being done for weeks after we moved in, including things like laying down sod, putting up fencing, putting furniture in the lobby, insulating pipes in the underground garage, adding locks to the outside doors, actually having a door in some places (rather than just a portal).

We were very lucky that the units themselves were ready. Many tenants of Sage 2 are not so lucky.

Ever consider biking to work?

Last month, I bought an e-bike. It’s an Emmo Alien. I got it used on Kijiji for $600. Where I live, it doesn’t require insurance or a license to ride. It costs me nothing to charge since my rent includes utilities.

Emmo Alien E-bike
Emmo Alien E-bike. Mine’s black, though.

Like pretty much everyone in Canada, I’ve had at least one bike at any point in my life. I never once considered riding it to work. My mental picture of a person that biked to work was a sun-glassed, angry man in really tight spandex. I couldn’t imagine biking all the way to work, sweating the whole way there, angry at other drivers for cutting them off or not knowing the rules. It’s just not for me. It felt like riding a bike to work meant you had to join some sort of environmental cult.

The truth is, while I care very much about the environment, I’m a cheapskate. And I’m lazy. Riding an e-bike is free. And I don’t just mean free as in beer. It feels free, as in freedom. I haven’t used my car in so long, a tire went flat from sitting. The insurance on my car (never mind gas or repairs) per year pays for more than two e-bikes per year. I could actually buy a second one, put it into a dumpster, light it on fire, and I would still be ahead.

And, do you know what? Riding an e-bike is fun! It’s liberating. My girlfriend finds it empowering. She’s never gotten the hang of riding a regular bike, but she’s learned how to ride the e-bike. We do groceries (it has hooks to put the bags as well as two storage compartments), we go for picnics, we go out and get fresh air, we get some sun.

Sure, a cyclist looks ridiculous, but when a driver in a big pickup truck zooms past in a testosterone-filled money-burning pissing contest, who looks more ridiculous?

I’m a bit late in posting this, but June is Bike Month in Waterloo Region. The thing is, it doesn’t have to be just June or just Waterloo Region. Have you ever tried biking to work? Do it tomorrow and let me know what you think.

If you’re interested in some data, it takes about 7 hours to charge from completely empty to completely full. A full charge lasts me about 2 and a half hours of continuous use, or about 50-70km, depending on whether or not it’s just me or with a passenger. My trip to work (including to McDonalds for breakfast) is 7.5km, each way. I do this trip Monday to Friday, rain or shine.

The single largest trip I've made on the ebike so far.
The single largest trip I’ve made on the ebike so far. With a passenger. Had half charge left when I got home.

 

DodgeBots Launches!

I’m very happy to announce that the wait is now over and DodgeBots has officially launched :)

You can play now, for free, compete in tournaments, or pay-to-play and win actual cash and prizes at https://willpwn4food.com.

This is a huge milestone for me professionally as I’m now able to say “Yes, I’ve been part of a team that has released a game for sale to the public.” It’s also a huge win for me personally: a game developer is something I’ve always wanted to become and now I’m officially here.

I Met The Woz!

This past week, I met Steve Wozniak at the Communitech breakfast event in Kitchener. He was there to speak about his past at Apple as well as a new company he’s a part of called Fusion-io. The CTO of Fusion-io was on-hand as well to describe the company from a technical perspective. I really think the things they’re doing there will take the industry in the right direction. I’ve been a fan of SSD / Flash memory technology for years and they’re basically re-writing the book on it.

Me and The Woz :)
Me and The Woz :)

Put simply, they are offering Flash memory storage directly through a high-bandwidth PCIe card vs. using hard disks or trying to force SSDs through standard SATA controllers (which each have their own controllers, and those have controllers as well, and so on). By simplifying the process they are able to achieve incredible results.

If you’re in need of high-speed data access, take a look at some of Fusion-io‘s services. You won’t be disappointed.

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DemoCampGuelph – Meet Other Internet Startups

Internet Startups and Web 2.0 In Guelph

If you’re in the Guelph area and you’re looking for new and interesting internet startups, come to the 6th DemoCamp in Guelph on July 9th. It’ll be at The Albion Hotel (49 Norfolk St.) and I’ll be there presenting and promoting Jack of All Links, which is the social search engine I launched earlier this year. You can read more about Jack of All Links in a blog post made early last May.

What is DemoCampGuelph?

The origin of DemoCampGuelph is from the event known as BarCamp, which is a collaborative workshop / presentation / networking event where developers and businessmen/women share their latest endeavor whether it be a startup or tool or prototype. There’s only one major rule: No powerpoint!

From the website:

What could I demo?
The real question is, what would other people find interesting? A web app or cool piece of software you wrote, a neat prototype or project you were part of, even some obscure tool or weird hack you’ve found that others would find useful, astounding or entertaining. Commercial, open source, homebrew hack, whatever… if you can show it off in five minutes, and think it’ll generate questions, conversation or feedback, come out and demo it!”

A similar event takes place in Waterloo, as well. Check it out!