Tag Archives: Minneapolis

Minneapolis Running Wearable Technology

Another 5K

Signed up for and will be running the GloRun in Minneapolis in a couple of weeks. Looks fun!

One Last MinneDemo For The Year In Minneapolis

The vibrant technology community here in Minneapolis has at least one more event left in the waning days of 2012. And to wrap the year, 7 minute demos with no presentations at MinneDemo, a bar camp-esque event focused around demoing new tech. I love the cookouts these guys have, but it’ll probably be too cold and snowing to have dozens of people milling around a keg, so let’s go indoors and watch people demo tech that hopefully works.

A little of what they have in store for us (to quote their site):

As always, MinneDemo features home-grown tech without the BS. The rules are simple: 7 minutes, real working technology, and NO PowerPoint!

Skill Sketch is meant to bring out the artist in everyone by presenting the user with a series of random lines that they then try to turn into art.

FanLand: Talk sports, earn points, list tickets, get sports deals and news

Etail provides a platform which helps mid-high volume online merchants integrate their sales channels (Amazon/EBay/Sears/Websites/more) with their supply chain and inventory.

QuickTracPlus is a cloud based software that enables you to dispatch, manage and track work orders.

DoDrinks is an app that enables thousands of drinks to be digitally sent (and actually consumed), every day. It’s as easy as sending a text, Facebook message, or email. But much tastier. So much tastier.

EnableDoc is a cloud-based care management solution that combines electronic health records, billing, and patient care management for physician groups, promoting collaborative care, while streamlining work flow for physicians and staff.

Rochester Commons is a community focused website that allows the citizens of Rochester to learn more about their community and actively participate in helping Rochester grow and prosper.

My Form is a marketing tool for Facebook Page administrators to ease collecting information from Facebook fans.

The events these guys throw are very well orchestrated and professional (don’t get me wrong, feel free to wear that Hawaiian – but pro quality is what I mean). Anywho – to sign up, see the eventbrite page here.

 

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animinneapolis vs. Dragons vs. Norway

Summer in Minnesota always comes with plenty of fun stuff to do. There are the really big events, such as the Basilica block party. But, not feelin’ the events at the Basilica? Never heard of the acts on the Warped Tour? Like Anime? Cosplay? The nerdiness abounds at animinneapolis. If you’d rather see the real thing in action though, check out the Dragon Festival over at Lake Phalen Park. The Dragon Boat Race is awesome! And if you’re looking for something a bit more traditional, check out the Raspberry festival out in Hopkins. All this stuff is going on all weekend (not the block party, since it is at a church and all)!

And tomorrow, get your culture on with Norway Day out at Minnehaha Falls (laughing water is always fun with or without a bunch of crazy Norwegian food).

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Strange Brew At the Minnesota State Capitol

It seemed like any other trip to the gas station. I walked in and saw the guy behind the counter. He gave me a nod and I gave him a nod back. I found the Dr. Pepper stack, which I noticed was exactly as I left it during my last visit and pulled a pair of twelve packs up. I walked to the counter and a line seemed to have formed. The old lady got her Benson and Hedges 100s, the kid behind her bought a Whatchamacallit (I had no idea they still made those) and then the guy who wanted lottery tickets stepped up to the plate. Up to this point, the same trip I make to the gas station all the time.

“Give me 20 tickets for Mega millions” the customer said in a normal voice, shuffling from foot to foot a little with anticipation of the trillions of dollars he was more than likely about to win.

But the nice attendant who I’ve seen weekly for about 3 years simply responded “Sorry man, but there’s no lottery with the state shut down.”

“Oh, well that sucks. How about 10 of those Monopoly scratchers then?” asked the guy who looked like Rick Moranis, but in Minnesota Vikings shorts and a Budweiser cap.

Our attendant, with an apologetic tone, responded “no lottery tickets at all, man. That is why there’s a sign on top of the tickets that says with the state shut down there’s no lottery.”

Somewhat annoyed, our customer looks back at the line forming behind him and says, “ah come on man, how about I promise not to try and cash ‘em in until the state shut down is over.”

“Sorry man”, the attendant comes back with, “but if I sold you any tickets then we might get our license, or whatever, suspended.”

Now with a look half panic and half anger the customer yells back “Man, this is bullshit, you better sell me those tickets or I’m gonna’ kick y’er ass, man” while shoving the poor attendant back into the 8 foot high stack of cigarette cartons behind him, which then knock over a couple of porn magazines, exposing a few women in ways the kid with the Whatchamacallit would not have been allowed to see. His eyes, I’m pretty sure, turned red.

At this point, the people in line start to break ranks and slowly come toward the angry guy, but are all surprised when a police officer walks in. Seeing the belligerent customer, the other patrons moving towards the guy and the attendant stabilizing himself on the stool they don’t seem to be allowed to sit in (I always wondered why they’d have a stool if they can’t sit in it), the office places his hand on his holster and says “is there a problem here?”

The angry guy just walks out of the gas station (presumably looking for the Gatekeeper?). I also found similar run-ins with people having their July 4th plans shattered because the state parks are shut down and people not being allowed to fish because they can’t get fishing licenses (if there’s a state that you have to fish in, it’s one with 10,000 frickin’ lakes). Then, the night after the guy goes all coo-coo over his lottery ticket coco puffs, I try to pay my car registration and the state’s website is down. I hadn’t thought much about the government shut down as I’ve been on the road most of the time it’s been going on, so to me it was just a minor annoyance. But come on, they can’t pay their hosting bill?!?!

<rant>

Now, I try to be nice to most people and understanding. But, the state politicians have one job to do: keep the state running. They have one job they didn’t do: keep the state running. The lottery makes money, as do a number of other government ventures. The employees are likely going to get paid anyway, maybe even get a little unemployment as well. And the 1% of workers that are likely to be displaced will have a pretty drastic impact on the state. It’s summer. This is when all the road construction happens; none can. Given that it isn’t cheap to build roads or pay people that aren’t working, the shut down is costing more than it’s saving.

They are arguing over a pretty good bit of money. And it’s understandable that they want to stick to their guns. But they had months to figure all this crap out and they didn’t – they put it off until the last minute. They had one job to do: keep the state running. They didn’t do their jobs. If I had a bunch of clients and I didn’t keep their servers running when that was my one job to do then after a few weeks I think they would fire me. The Republican-dominated legislative branch can blame the Democratic governor and he can blame them. But the fact is that none of them are actually doing what they’re getting paid to do and they show no signs of narrowing the gap. Therefore, they are all responsible and should all be held accountable when re-election time comes, if not sooner.

The guy with the lottery tickets should be mad. But not at the gas station attendant. He should take his frustrations to the steps of the state capital building. But don’t try and sign up for a tour of the capitol:

To keep future shut downs from occurring because of silly campaigning and in-fighting (if they actually cared more about the state than their own positions, they’d have settled this before the shut down), governments need to enact legislation that proactively deals with what happens in the case of a shut down. This likely means prorating the cost of the government (and all of the government, not just the courts, police officers and nursing homes) in the event that a new budget is not released in a timely manner. But maybe that just buys people time and they’ll sit through that until the prorated period is over, letting the government shut down eventually anyway.

Maybe instead what we need to do is impeach all of them. That would send a message to future generations of politicians that we’re just not going to stand for letting them get away with letting campaign politics keep them from doing their jobs. I mean, if the government is going to shut down, why not just let it shut all the way down and reboot with some upgraded components. I know when I have a server that has too much to do, if I put a new motherboard, some new memory and a new hard drive in it, it runs way better after it boots back up. I in turn get more done and the state makes more from my taxes than it did before!

I heard a statistic on the radio one time that said that each time you get caught speeding (or some other violation) the police tend to assume that you’ve done that 50 times without getting caught. The budget is a law. And if the politicians who make that law are faltering at one then we have to assume they are faltering at others, just as they would assume the same of us. If I speed then I get penalized. Eventually I loose my license. These are adults who were smart enough to get elected. Now they need to be smart enough to prove why. Or they need to get out of office before they can do any more damage to their constituents.

</rant>

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Minnebar-b-que

Regrettably, I’m on my way to the airport, but if you’re in Minneapolis today and looking for something fun to do, check out Minnebar-b-que down in Maple Grove. There is sure to be plenty of brats, some beer and maybe a tablet PC or 4:

http://anyvite.com/4atmfqaioc

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Minneapolis HackerSpaces

Minneapolis has a HackerSpace located at 3119 E. 26th Street in Minneapolis, MN 55406. Monthly donations are $50, but there are a number of free events that can be found on their twitter page: http://twitter.com/tcmaker

HackFactory of Minneapolis Tour from David Bryan on Vimeo.

Find them on the web at http://www.tcmaker.org.

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Bunny Clogs @ Southern Theater

The Bunny Clogs are coming back to Minneapolis, and now in support of an upcoming album! According to the Southern Theater’s site:

The Bunny Clogs is Shel Silverstein-meets-Prince surreal dance fun. The debut record More! More! More!, led by Honeydogs frontman Adam Levy, is not your run-of-the-mill, strummy, folky kids’ music. Part comedy routine with weird characters, part dance party with all the attendant drum loops, house beats and hip-hop accoutrements, and part subtle message of peace, love and positive gastronomy, Bunny Clogs is music for kids of all ages.

The show is at 11am, the morning of Halloween, early enough for a slightly later than usual nap time (for us at least), so the little peanuts can get dressed up in their costumes and be up a little later than usual (trick or treat) that night!

Articles and Books

Minneapolis Book Festival

There will be a book festival down at the Minneapolis Community & Technical College on Saturday October 11th.  Hope to see you there:

http://www.raintaxi.com/bookfest/

Football

Golden Gophers

The Gophers look like they’re gonna’ have a terrible season.  But, they’re getting a new stadium, which will help with recruiting.  So be patient Minnesota fans!