Archive for the 'geek' Category

02
Feb
10

Machine Man Motivation

FitBit & Nike+ SportsBand. Always watching. Always tweeting.

I am cyborg.

More than a few of you have noticed recents tweets from me along the lines of: ran 5.18 mi on 1/31/2010 at 4:43 PM with a pace of 7’40″/mi http://bit.ly/caBEXv . Actually, the tweet didn’t come from me; it was automatically generated from NikePlus.com after plugging in my Nike+ SportsBand to my PC. I authorized Nike’s site to connect to my Twitter account and so now every run gets measured by the SportsBand and the data (distance, time and pace) uploaded to Nike where a beautiful graph and running tweet get generated for your amusement. Why would I do this? Why would I want to share something as mundane/vain as my training log with everyone on Twitter?

It was a good run. For me anyway.

Motivation.

Knowing my run training is transparent and my stats out there for anyone to see is a great motivator during the inevitable times of a run that I want to ease off, catch my breath, relax a little. It’s not that every run I do is a full-on sprint, but I do have a goal in mind every time I put on my running shoes. Sometimes it’s to complete a certain distance, sometimes it’s speed and sometimes I just want to stretch my legs. In any case, the knowledge that you’ll get the results of every run keeps me very goal oriented. You’re watching and that’s motivating.

Along those lines, I’m also fascinated by that black and blue device in the photo – the FitBit. You attach it to yourself (I keep mine on my belt) and it uses a motion sensor to track your every step. During the course of a day it counts the number of steps you’ve taken, the distance you’ve traveled by foot and the approximate amount of calories you’ve burned based on the level of your activity. It connects wirelessly to a base station attached to your computer and uploads the data to FitBit.com. You customize the algorithm in the device by specifying your age, sex, height and weight on the site and the FitBit adjusts accordingly. From all the data, FitBit calculates your daily Activity Score and then compares it to everyone else using the device. I’m sorta competitive, so knowing that raising my activity level will raise my rank turns fitness into a game that I get to play with everyone else using a FitBit (Nike+ offers similar comparisons and motivating challenges on their site based on their gadget). After two weeks of use, I’m scoring right at the 50% level among all FitBit users. Grrr. How annoying! Must be better than the masses!

I'm a slug most of the day

FitBit data after a 5 mile run. Total slug before and after.

OK, that last sentence was perhaps a little too revealing, but really that’s the point in using these things. They motivate me by sharing my performance with you and frankly, by doing that, these gadgets make training fun.

25
Apr
09

Seeking Intern

This picture has nothing to do with the words below.

This picture has nothing to do with the words below.

Summer is fast approaching and  I need an intern to help me do interesting things in new media. The perfect intern candidate is a whip smart college or grad school student who is completely conversant in social media and online entertainment in its many present and emerging forms, must have a car, must live in Los Angeles for the summer, be willing to work for free at least 4 days a week and must receive school credit for their summer internship here. Geek cred is definitely a plus!

If chosen, you’ll be part of ICM’s summer internship program and will be working directly for me and networking with all the other interns from the motion picture, television and music departments in our LA office. It’ll be a rewarding and challenging experience (especially the working for me part). Interested? Submit your resume and I’ll get back to the candidates I want to interview.  Carry on.

11
Mar
09

Austin 09

I'll be there Friday to Monday.

I'll be there Friday to Monday.

I’ll be attending SXSW Interactive March 13th through the 16th. Lots of clients, friends, execs, CEO’s, buyers, entrepreneurs, geeks, dreamers, videogamers and internet cool kids will be there . I hear it’s going to be even busier this year than last year, but I hope to get a better start than 2008 when I got stuck with a “kids room” after I arrived late to my hotel. Still, I had a great time and met a lot of great people.

Hope you can make it. If you see me this weekend, say “hey”. I’ll be the tall guy with the camera.

14
Feb
09

The Deadliest Man Alive

Beware the Dim Mak of Count Dante!

Beware the Dim Mak of Count Dante!

John Keehan (aka “Count Dante”) is one of the most fascinating and mysterious figures to come out of the 20th century martial arts world. He broke the race barrier in Chicago by teaching martial arts to students of any color, organized large fighting tournaments attended by the likes of Bruce Lee and Ed Parker, was a hair-stylist to Playboy Bunnies, claimed he descended from Spanish royalty, dabbled in voodoo, boasted he could kill man with a mere touch, liked to wear a cape and took walks around Lake Michigan with his pet lion. Keehan was also involved in a bloody confrontation with members of a rival dojo that left one of his friends dead. He died at the age of 36.

Count Dante

Would you mess with this man?

The masthead to this blog comes from one of his ubiquitous ads found in the comic books of my youth. Watch this video to learn more about the original Deadliest Man Alive.

Thanks to @xenijardin for bringing the clip to my attention.

16
Dec
08

Why

Movies fired up my imagination as a little kid. I remember loving movies as long as I can remember anything. After a day attending Catholic elementary school, I’d walk to the city library and check out every book on monster and sci-fi films I could get my hands on. In the 4th grade I memorized Vincent Price’s movie credits and talked incessantly to friends about 1920’s German expressionist sci-fi and horror films like Metropolis, Der Golem, The Cabinet of Dr Caligari and Nosferatu. Even then I was a nerd.

Influencing my young psyche were Universal’s classic monster movies with Frankenstein, Dracula, The Mummy and The Wolfman. Through such cinema, fantastical worlds were opened up to a kid living in El Monte, California, a first generation son of immigrant parents from Mexico. Of course, growing up in a traditional Mexican household, I was exposed to the wonderful spectacle of Lucha Libre as well.  Lucha Libre was television’s original mixed martial arts show and I loved it. Burly mas-macho men wearing elaborate masks who fought and flew inside a small ring were awesome to behold. Via a weekly television broadcast, professional wrestlers lived out simple storylines of good versus evil as either rule-abiding tecnicos or no-holds-barred rudos as they fought for supremacy.

El Santo

El Santo

Legendary among the good guys was El Santo. He was a silver-masked wrestler that always fought for the side of good and usually won in spectacular style. His appeal soon grew beyond the wrestling ring and extended into film and television. He starred in 52 movies and during the course of his career took on all sorts of bad guys including spies, zombies, aliens, robots and Frankenstein – sometimes all at once! El Santo was James Bond and Batman rolled into one. I loved El Santo films for they proved that a man with some training, a mask and an outrageous sense of style could make the world safe from evil. Usually with a flying head kick.

Anyway, it’s my fond remembrances of all the adventure and excitement from childhood sci-fi, monster and masked wrestler films that first made me want to be part of the entertainment community. Then Enter the Dragon, Star Wars and Indiana Jones came along and my fate was sealed.

I guess I’m still that little kid who’s transfixed by the inspiration that story-telling provides and the magical places it can take you. I love this business.

04
Dec
08

The 666 meme

the 6th photo from the 6th page is a ghost. eerie.

Got tagged by Rudy Jahchan to participate in this 666 Meme that forces you to post the 6th picture on the 6th page of your Flickr account, then tag six more schmoes to do the same. Evil. But since I know the Elder Ones will return (prematurely) if I don’t comply, here’s my pic. It’s, appropriately enough, from Halloween.

I call forth:

1. Micki Krimmel
2. Tim Shey
3. Brigitte Dale
4. Cali Lewis
5. Halcyon
6. Ryan Block

24
Nov
08

Innovation

The Guild

The Guild

I’m very proud to have played a role in bringing Felicia Day’s webseries, “The Guild” to Microsoft’s online platforms, including Xbox Live, MSN Video and The Zune Marketplace. Thanks to Felicia for mentioning me in her blog post about the deal.

The story is getting a lot of press today, with over 50 outlets covering this. Here are a few:

The Hollywood Reporter

National Public Radio

Wired News

Media Week

New TeeVee

TV Week

Ars Technica

Tube Filter

WOW Insider

The Escapist

Tilzy.TV




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©2008 George H. Ruiz
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