Recommended Evacuation for Lockwood Valley

Monday, September 18th, 2006
The Ventura County Sheriff's Office has issued a recommended evacuation for the Lockwood Valley Rd. between Highway 33 and Frazier Park Road.

An evacuaton Center at Frazier Park Community Center is now open and awaiting the arrival of the American Red Cross. The Community Center is located on Frazier Park Road in the 300 block of Park Drive and Monterey Trail.

Day Wildland Fire
2006-09-18 17:05:00 ET

Source: Incident Information System

Incident Contact: Los Padres Information Center (805) 961-5770

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A 150’ Antenna Tower in Pine Mountain Club?

Sunday, September 17th, 2006
I remember hearing last year that there were plans to build a large radio communications tower in Pine Mountain Club. I don't remember where I heard this number, or if it was even true, but I thought the proposed tower was to be 80' tall. In any case, the antenna tower fell off my radar until I opened this week's Mountain Enterprise to see, on  the front page, that I missed the PMC forum set up to discuss this proposed new tower. According to the newspaper article, the proposed tower is to be 150' tall, plus, I assume, whatever antennas they may place on top. Apparently (and I do not have facts to quote) the proposed tower will be situated at a location next to or at the transfer station.

I wonder what a 150' antenna tower will look like in our beautiful village?  
150' seems like a very tall tower for the intended site. Pine Mountain Club has been unable to hide the RVs in the RV lot and I think they are each probably less than 10 feet tall. I wonder what a tower as tall as 10 or 12 RV's would look like? It might be kind of hard to hide this size of a tower in such a prominent location. I think it would be amusing if they decide to erect a huge palm or pine tree in the forest. I might even cheer for that. According to the article in the paper, however, a stealth tower is not in the proposal. The newspaper says it will be your typical grey metal "lattice" tower.

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Geek Motivation and Productivity

Saturday, September 16th, 2006
DominoPower magazine has a great article on 10 ways to motivate geeks:
Top 10 ways to motivate geeks
1. Geeks are curious. Let them feed their desire to learn things
2. Geeks like to be self-sustaining. Let them figure things out on their own.
3. Geeks are creative even if they don't know it. Give them a chance.
4. Geeks need tools, good ones. Give them more than they need.
5. Private, yet collaborative. Geeks need to be left alone, but not too alone.
6. Free stuff. T-shirts, food, desktop widgets, whatever.
7. Control
8. Geeks need recognition
9. Freedom
10. Compensation.
Works for me!

Read the whole article here.

First day of school

Friday, September 15th, 2006
It's been a busy week. Amy and Wendy recently began an on-campus homeschool science program at The Master's College. It's a 4-year science program, taught by Dr. Englin, a science professor at the college. Dr. Englin has been teaching this course as an outreach to homeschool families for the past 18 years. While our homeschool curriculum covers this material, its a welcome resource to let them review this in a college setting.

I'm thrilled to see them have the opportunity to further develop good study skills in a college setting.
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Very small U.S. FIRST Robotics Kickoff, tomorrow!

Thursday, September 14th, 2006
It looks like this year's robotics competition will be very small. Very, very small... I just received this email from FIRST headquarters:
Greetings Teams:

Two days and counting until Nano Quest is unveiled!   You and your team are about to enter a world where big things happen at the nano level.  Like Alice through the looking glass, get ready to zoom out of the world we know, through a super high-powered atomic microscope to the strange world of individual atoms. Sure it sounds like science fiction, but the future has arrived.
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Teaching Your Kids GTD

Wednesday, September 13th, 2006
My daughter, Wendy, is the guest contributor today, with a post she recently wrote in response to a question in the GTD connect forum.
I think the best way to teach your kids GTD is to model it for them.  They need to see you doing it so that they can ask questions about it.  You could start your child off with mind mapping.  (One of the first processes that I learned)  Introduce this as a way to remember things, and teach this along side making lists.If your child is young you could have them draw pictures to represent things, then gradually substitute that for words.  

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No waste of clock cycles in MindJet’s response

Tuesday, September 12th, 2006
Richard Barber, MindJet's VP of engineering, wrote to me today, in response to yesterday's blog post about moving MindManager to my deproductivity list. I offered to post his response on my blog and he agreed:
Thanks for your post about this CPU issue. It was a pleasure to work with you on the Lotus Notes linking [doclinks] and I hope and trust we can get to a happy ending with this issue as well.

After pondering how best to address this, what I would like to do is to go into this issue in more depth on the MindJet blog ( I very much want to get to the bottom of this and hope that those who have faced this issue will work with us to get us the information we need. I ask you to ask your readers to read my post on the Mindjet blog, see how we suggest attacking this issue, and work with us to fix it. Please note that when I say “work with us,” that includes giving us input not just on the CPU issue but on how we propose going about addressing it.

The bottom line is that now, thanks to you – and thanks to people who have persistently raised this issue in the user groups – we now “get” that this is something we need to take a serious look at.
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MindManager, my latest deproductivity tool

Monday, September 11th, 2006
I've just moved MindManager onto my list of deproductivity tools. I hope it won't stay there long - MindManager is one of my favorite productivity tools for getting things done and I've blogged extensively about how I use MindManager. For the past several months, however, several of my clients and I have been dealing with a problem that has become a big headache: excessive CPU utilization by MindManager. It's not uncommon for me to find that my CPU slows to a crawl. Opening Task Manager reveals that MindManager is hogging my CPU, effectively rendering my system useless. The problem appears to be worse in some maps than others, but it has been challenging to pin down. What I know for certain is that one of my favorite programs is losing its productive advantage. Apparently, I'm not alone...


I wonder how many MindManager users simply accept this?

I've decided to blog about the problem, not as a threat or to divide the MindManager community, but in the hopes that the MindManager community might pool its resources to encourage (and help) MindJet improve the product we use and care about. If this blog has any clout at all, I want to use it to raise awareness inside and out of MindJet about how to help make MindManager, one of my favorite productivity tools, even better.

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Help Michael convince me to buy a Mac

Friday, September 8th, 2006
I see that Michael Sampson's set up an email hotline so that you can send him your best reasons why I should buy a new Mac. He's probably offering a reward or something; I don't know the details.

Send your comments and suggestions to:

I actually almost bought a Mac the other day when Bruce Elgort called me to tell me that Apple announced a new 24" Mac. I misunderstood and thought he was talking about a 24" laptop. Wishful thinking.  I'll continue to wish for an Ultra wide-screen Tablet PC.

Lotus Notes Email Vs. Microsoft Outlook

Friday, September 8th, 2006
Why are people so passionate about their e-mail platform of choice? And, if they had the choice - as opposed to Management/IT choosing for them what would they choose, and why?

I can see it now...  I'm MS Outlook and I'm Lotus Notes...  I'm not trying to start another Mac vs PC type battle, but I am interested to know what people prefer and why.

Rod Boothby's asking three questions about preferences in e-mail tools, specifically, Lotus Notes Email Vs. Microsoft Outlook.
  • Do you use Notes? If so, how do you like (or hate) it?
  • Do you use Outlook? If so, same love/hate question.
  • If you got to choose, what would you have your company use? Notes? Outlook? Web mail?

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Taking Notes - Why don’t people get Notes?

Thursday, September 7th, 2006
Two weeks ago, I blogged about GeekTD and David Allen's opening question: "Why don't people get Lotus Notes?"

Ed Brill of IBM quickly picked up on the discussion and Julian Robichaux joined in with Lotus Notes - Yeah, It Can Do That Too . Over one hundred comments were posted and many email were exchanged behind the scenes.  This week, I shared a recent experience and Ed continued to the discussion by blogging that Eric Mack and Julian Robichaux get the power of word-of-mouth.

Yesterday, I received a call from Bruce Elgort, inviting me to join him, Julian Robichaux and Alan Lepofsky in a discussion about using Lotus Notes productively and why some folks don't get it.

The Taking Notes podcast #31 is 27.6mb and runs 48:08 at 64kps (variable bit rate) and you can download it here.

How to save a Lotus Notes customer

Wednesday, September 6th, 2006
This week, I met with a client that was considering scrapping Lotus Notes in favor of an alternative solution.

I told  them that I thought they should switch away from Notes. I offered to help them make a shopping list of what they would need to purchase to match their current capabilities.

Half way through helping them with the shopping list, someone said, "But our [Lotus Notes system] already does all of that."


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RRAS & VMWARE Expert Needed

Wednesday, September 6th, 2006
I need a few minutes time with someone expert in RRAS & VMWARE. Specifically, I need someone to walk me through Microsoft Routing & Remote Access Services to create a 1:1 NAT rule between a public facing IP and VMWARE virtual adapters.

Use the "contact" button above to reach me. Thanks.

Productivity Equation: C - I + R = P

Sunday, September 3rd, 2006
My colleague, Michael Sampson, recently posted his equation for productivity.

In his essay, he describes a productivity framework for a knowledge or information worker:
1. Having a clear picture of what I want to achieve (clarity).
2. Removing irritations and interruptions that break flow (interruptions).
3. Having a brain that is rested, energized and active (rested).

As an equation then: C - I + R = P

His entire essay is available on-line, here. A worthwhile read!