Archive for the ‘Personal style’ Category

Women and Twitter

Tuesday, January 5th, 2010

@thenextwomen: New Article: Women on Twitter for Business Reasons Why

Made me think about my gaming days… And all the discussions we used to have about women in gaming and getting more women involved in gaming.  We noticed that games with low introduction barriers were the most popular with women and captured the casual gamer market.

Two major ones that stood out to me are Solitaire and Tetris.  (I actually had a 4am discussion about this w Alexey at Burningman this year too.  I was camped at Tetrion – a very loud camp esp once the two 40ft tetris screens were setup.  We were celebrating Tetris’s 25 yr anniversary.  Henk was the initiator of the idea and got Alexey out there in all the dust and noise.)

Alexey believes (if I heard him right – it was kinda loud ;-)) that women like Tetris because you are constantly building/creating/fixing something rather than destroying.  I’d like to say that was true but I think it is something deeper than that.  At Dave and Busters, all the girls play Day of the Dead.  I think it is because the interface is quickly accessible.  Also you are cooperating with your partner.

So adoption…It also wasn’t a time issue – I noticed many women getting lost in those games for hours.

To me it all come around to interfaces… women have less patience with overly complex interfaces.  I found that on average men would spend more time trying to figure out an interface than a woman would.  Women seem to adopt faster when the interface is simple.  We know how to create the necessary social structures/rules so we prefer interfaces that get out of our way and allow us to do so.

I think that is why women love twitter and have adopted faster.

***disclaimer all of this is said in recognition of “Sparkling Generalities.”  There are always exceptions to the rules.  I am just mulling over a pattern I have personally observed.  I am very open to opposing evidence esp scientifically gathered!


happiness is contagious – pass it on! esp to strangers?

Monday, January 4th, 2010 British Medical Journal
Harvard Medical School Office of Public Affairs
Happiness is a collective – not just individual – phenomenon
A Study To Smile About: Happiness Is Contagious

Course what I think is interesting is a neighbor is 34% more likely while a spouse is only 8%.  I think this explains much.
course with these little biological guys…
It can go the other way too with negative emotion.
And again – looks like us gals really are “more sensitive.” I’m betting this is one of those baby raising things again.  Biology does like for us to be more aware of the kiddo’s needs and wants.

so consider that before being a grumpybutt…  Your spouse can handle it better than a neighbor but you do have to sleep with your spouse.


Neural pathways and ruts

Thursday, December 31st, 2009

So there is this story I tell often to explain many of my perspectives on the world.  I realized it wasn’t posted here and I really should post it so that people have some contextualization.

So have you ever had to stop yourself midstory?  Do you find it painful?  Do you feel like you just stumbled?  Maybe even stumbled and fell?  Have you noticed that it is even worse when it is a favorite story or a frequently told story?  Have you noticed the elderly people often have a stuck set of stories?  I mean you know they are old – they most have more stories than that and yet… they keep applying the same ones to the same phrases?

Well your brain is not unlike a network of roadways.  Paths become easier to take the more often you take them.  I mean this is normal – it is called learning.  It is how we survive.  It costs us less energy (literally) to think the same way.  The problem with this is that our brains can get so used to things that it creates ruts – deep grooves.  Those ruts can become difficult even painful to deviate from.  They become so deep that they become tunnels so that we can’t see the other possible paths.

I know that I already have those ruts all over my brain.  And for the most part, I tried to make sure those are worthwhile journeys.  But I purposely try to make myself jump out of them from time to time to keep my brain nimble.

So when you tell a story… look around – anyone bored?  You might be in a rut where you can just barely see over it.  Stop engage that person – jump off the path and see what’s there and have a little conversation.

oh yea – and if you notice me getting in a rut … PLEASE ask me a question to gimme a little push out of it 😉


Happiness and Virtues

Thursday, December 31st, 2009

I believe that working to cultivate these values actually insures that you handle the top 4 levels of Mazlow’ hierarchy.

So what does that say about the role of religion? ponder.  Of course I am a believer that I can have virtues and not be religious.  So I do like the assumption here that these are biologically based in regards to long term selfishness and survival of  people and culture.

“The organization of these virtues and strengths is as follows:

1. Wisdom and Knowledge: creativity, curiosity, open-mindedness, love of learning, perspective, innovation
2. Courage: bravery, persistence, integrity, vitality
3. Humanity: love, kindness, social intelligence
4. Justice: citizenship, fairness, leadership
5. Temperance: forgiveness and mercy, humility, prudence, self control
6. Transcendence: appreciation of beauty and excellence, gratitude, hope, humor, spirituality

The introduction of CSV suggests that these six virtues are considered good by the vast majority of cultures and throughout history and that these traits lead to increased happiness when practiced.”


happiness, the now and narrative circuitry

Wednesday, December 30th, 2009

Ah HA!  Another tool… this one is super simple.  I LIKE IT!

If you find yourself lost in one of your default narratives, you can stop yourself by focusing on physical aspects of the “now” or present situation.  Like if you are washing dishing and you start a negative narrative about an argument you had earlier.  You can stop it by focusing on the feel of the water or the pattern on the dishes.  This is doubly good because you are more likely to hurt yourself since you aren’t paying attention.

I have always been a day dreamer.  I often figure out tough technical problems that way. And I can figure out multiple perceptions of a business concept.  My favorite daydream is all the projects I would do if I won the lottery.

But I have learned I do NOT solve deep seated emotional problems well using this technique.

Instead I often get stuck in a naysayers loop.  Naysayers loop can be very useful for tech projects esp hacking and security.  But those loops are extremely sabotaging for dealing with people on sensitive personal issues.

I think much of this gets back to basic brain programming.  In Vital Lies, Simple Truths by Goleman he talks about perception being created by all the information we are given or that we harvest.  This is also a reoccurring theme in Blink by Malcolm Gladwell.

For someone that does database programming, it really is simple – our filters are created by the data we are given in our lifetime.  Certain experiences can help shake that up a bit.  That is one reason I love to travel.  We can have some influence over this… but really not as much as we would like. As much as you change the algorithm it doesn’t matter if the data is broken.

So I think of it this way… I was given some pretty awesome datasets to learn from when it comes to computers, technology, problem solving, project management, event management etc.  But I was given some ugly data in regards to femininity and sexuality self esteem.  I think most women are and it holds up back esp in regards to being competitive or speaking out.  Bill Bradley once said it is like I am two people.  And once I conquer that insecure aspect I will be ready to rock the world (my phrasing ;-). )

I know that some people may think that addressing this publicly is weakness.  But that means you don’t know me well yet.  Taking it public is step one.  Dealing with the external naysayers is step two.  Getting rid of the internal naysayer (that sounds like my mom) is step three.  The funny thing is taking it public, often takes it out of my head.  Sometimes just the act of writing does…

Now to excise that data and create a new more accurate and positive dataset!!!

Boys – become Men and fix your faulty dataset too! In my limited experience, the guys that I had healthy sexual relationships actually viewed very little porn… I think that says something.  I used to be pro-porn.  Now I am not so sure.  Esp if someone looks like they aren’t enjoying it and it is all about the humiliation.  I say at least try to keep it focused on the nice stuff.  Create a healthier dataset.

Edit: this link also talks about reprogramming… Guess I am not alone in needing reprogramming in this area.  Hey guess what I am not an object…


True – making decisions makes me seriously happy

Tuesday, December 29th, 2009

I think making decisions makes me so happy because I am ENXJ and I do like exercising that J aspect of my personality type!

December 29, 2009
Energized by Your Decisions
Virgo Daily Horoscope

You may feel decisive today and ready to take control of your life. You may feel excited and invigorated by challenges you face and choices you need to make, especially if there is a decision that you had been putting off. You can make the most of today by looking at your past and present and then asking yourself what changes you could make to create a more satisfying life. If you’ve felt troubled or held back by indecision, this may be the perfect time to let go of your hesitation and move forward confidently. You may even find that your energy level increases as you make decisions. Try not to become impetuous when making decisions. You still need to weigh your options before making up your mind.

Making decisions and crafting plans are two activities that can energize you. Making or planning a change opens up your world. As you take actions that are destined to change the course of your life or consider ways to improve your situation, you become fully engaged in the process of creating your life. Crafting your future by choosing between the many options that are open to you can be highly invigorating because it allows you to exercise your power. Making decisions can lift your spirits and rejuvenate you. Feel confident when you make choices today, and you will inspire yourself to create a more fulfilling life.


happiness postponed and fufillment found

Monday, December 28th, 2009

So I had some pretty unhappy things happen recently. I don’t want to go into details but let’s just say it relates to sexual abuse. And it reflected on some of my life long issues.

So it was difficult for me to post on happiness…

But today, I addressed those issues head on with the people that created the environment of secrecy. And did not back down. I demanded respect and while I may not have received from those people. I feel that I finally have earned respect for myself for addressing it.  I could not ask for proper treatment on my behalf but I could ask for it on behalf of others that can’t defend themselves.

It strangely fills me with peace. I decided to do the 30 days of happiness because I was filled with anger.  I was sexually assaulted by someone I knew about 2 and half years ago.   And I couldn’t get past the anger stage…  I knew it was unhealthy but I just couldn’t break out of the pattern.  I feel like I just woke up.

I think it is time to be open on this issue. I talk so often about transparency and openness. The importance of it in government and banking.  And yet here I am… hiding…

In this day and age you need to get over being squeamish about talking to your children about sex and sexuality.  Porn is everywhere and conflicting sex signals are everywhere.  If you have issues, get therapy so that you can be a better parent on this topic.  You must talk to your children about appropriate touching and from a young age.  Not doing so is neglect and the same as not telling your kid about hot stoves and crossing the street.  Not addressing sexuality in general with a teenage is like not talking about drugs.

Create an environment where your children can come and talk to you judgment free. Learn how to talk to children about this issue.  If you aren’t up to it find a someone who is – like a professional or respected family member.

Become educated about how to talk about these topics if they do occur. For example, the first thing out of your mouth should NOT be “tell me exactly what happened.”  Nor should you make a judgments and say things like “That isn’t so bad let me tell you what happened to me. See look you didn’t even get hurt.”  The first thing you should do is let them know they are safe and create a safe environment.  The second thing you should do is protect them.  Talking on taboo topics requires safety – cultivate that with your children.

Sexual predation is an infectious disease.  Look at the infection patterns.  It should be obvious to anyone with a science background.  Get rid of the swampy breeding ground of secrecy and shame.  Time for disinfecting by using openness and transparency.  Whether you are a parent that uses Purell or lets your kid eat dirt.  It’s time to strengthen their sexual immune system against unhealthy contagious behaviors.

I know you may have the urge to make this “a private matter”  just you and the parents.  But you should never tell only the parents.  Statistics show many times parents are the enablers by purposely ignoring the signs if not perpetuating it themselves.  90% of children know their abuser.  Think about that 90%…  This shows a serious societal plague.

True not the parents not knowing may just be benign neglect but it is still bad parenting and they need to correct it.  Also often an external stimulus is needed to end the pattern.  You don’t know who is at fault.  There is a very good chance the parent is the abuser/enabler after all 30% of reported cases are parents.

Again making it a community issue is important.  Discuss with a peer group – it is good practice.  Chances are 1 in 3 of you gals have something to work out anyhow… just like me…

This is something we as a society need to address – publicly and without judgment in regards to the victims.  False reports are extremely rare and typically easy to identify.  Trust me – look at how difficult it is for me a seemingly outspoken woman to come out and talk because I did not feel I would be believed.

I know this is controversial.  And I know several of you may think I’m nuts for being public about it and posting it.  But I hope you can see that those predators have always thrived in the fact that it is rarely reported.  And those predators also hope that you will judge me negatively for it… you see that creates the evil judgmental environment they thrive in.  Predators don’t like openness.  Predators like people being afraid to stand up for themselves and report them.  Don’t help them…

My lack of dealing with this issue properly lead me into destructive relationships. I can’t fix everything that has happened with me. But I can make the world a safer place for the young ones.

Help break the bonds – don’t be silent.  If you find out about sexual abuse, be vocal about it to the entire community.  Let others know there is a predator in their midst.  Allow them to protect themselves.  I don’t mean lynch mobs but I do mean extra supervision.  I do mean other people voicing their opinion about such behavior.  This needs to be discussed.  People need to talk about this and set clear focused boundaries on behavior.

I am looking into the legal aspects of reporting what happened to me as well.  I know I have little of a case but I think a paper trail for anyone else that deals with this person is important.

wow I feel 15 pounds lighter just writing this post…


3rd tier – love and belonging

Friday, December 25th, 2009

Short post today… for Mazlow’s Hierarchy of needs

I have one level covered! and that is love and belonging… I think my family and friends is the main thing that keeps me grounded and sane. I never question that I am loved…

Thank you!


what is happiness? safety perhaps?

Wednesday, December 23rd, 2009


Happiness is a state of mind or feeling characterized by contentment, love, satisfaction, pleasure, or joy.[1] A variety of philosophical, religious, psychological and biological approaches have striven to define happiness and identify its sources.”

But I think what struck me most was had

1. misery.”

and that was it… just misery… i couldn’t help but think of so many others that might fit…

but realized I was getting distracted.  So again went back to the concept of Mazlow’s Hierarchy of Needs…
I realized how much I associate happiness with fulfillment on all those levels.


  1. Physiological – like loving Austin and the house I live in and the food I eat
  2. Safety -mmmm most of my resources here are actually based on the higher levels
  3. Belonging – my varied social networks, my family – very happy here!
  4. Esteem – Being asked to present at an event, wearing an outfit I created/invented
  5. Self Actualization – my work, thinktanks

While writing this post, I realized these happiness posts are becoming experiments in thinking out loud – unlike my normal posts.  For example, this post makes me realize the obvious.  The reason I want a normal job is because the main aspect lacking in my life right now is “Safety.”  Contracting doesn’t cut it for me because right now most of my “Safety” is created on the other levels’ resources.

I think I like this 30 day writing process – vulnerable as it is.


End Negative spirals with a positive stop sign?

Tuesday, December 22nd, 2009

At the Solstice party last night I ran into several NLP people.  It seems to be a reoccurring theme. So I have decided to try some NLP techniques.  Mainly simply because they make sense to me in regards to dealing with negative thought spirals…

One visualization technique that my friend Kai suggested was doing a “swish” on “trigger” issues.  Basically you take a loaded negative image and shrink it away from you – so far away it becomes black and white.  Then you take a loaded positive image and do the same.  Then practice switching between the two – zooming in and out.  Basically getting control over the loaded image.  and then using that tool in other difficult situations…

It seems worth a try – plus it makes sense in regards to neural pathways – you can get into reoccurring patterns of negative thought.  My example is how our brains can get into ruts or well worn story telling trails.  For example, take a story you tell often and try to stop in the middle of it.  I think it is why old people often are labeled a boring storytellers.  They often have  set patterns of stories that are difficult to deviate from.  I say take those stories and try to change them to your audience’s perspective or give them a more positive spin.