Google Nexus 6P Review: I was wrong, it is fantastic and you should buy one.

Google Nexus 6P Review: I was wrong, it is fantastic and you should buy one.

After using the Nexus 6P for the past two weeks, I have a slightly different take and that's okay. This is the best Android phone to date. I think it's the best smartphone to date. There are no compromises. If ever a time for you to switch to Android, look no further than the Nexus 6P. It's fantastic.

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Connection

Connection

Made this video yesterday. I seem to be obsessing about two things as of late: Google & Connection so this stems from that. Just thought I'd throw it out there.

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Dear Google, you're so misunderstood

Dear Google, you're so misunderstood

And it's a shame.

I recently watched a fireside chat with Bill Gurley of Benchmark Capital in which he discussed why Google should |be very afraid| of what Amazon has built, calling this dilemma a "funnel reversal."

"Well, what happened is over many years, Amazon has built up this logistics framework and their one click feature and their Prime program to the point where the consumer has zero anxiety about the quality of the product, immense trust about the deliverability, down to a day and a half for most people, less than a day for some items. They trust on price. That doesn't mean they are the absolute lowest price, but people don't think Amazon's trying to get 'em.

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"...Is the new Google Nexus everything you'd hoped for?"

"...Is the new Google Nexus everything you'd hoped for?"

Someone just asked me minutes ago, "So, is the new Nexus everything you'd hoped for?" 

Here was my reply:

No. It's a disappointment to dreamers everywhere. Just as every product release from Apple, Samsung, Motorola, Sony, Microsoft, and every single other tech company since January 9, 2007 — the day Steve so proudly announced the first iPhone. Google should rise above. Over 2 million people around the world apply every year to work there. It is, no doubt, one of the meccas of innovation. Google employs thousands of some of the world's most brilliant, talented, and innovative people that have ever stepped foot on this planet. It's not an exaggeration, either. Yet year-after-year I'm disappointed. Lots of us are. It's because we learn every day what humans are capable of. We hear stories of what our neighbors, friends, and family are able to accomplish. We see them happen. 

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I like timelapse.

I'm slowly but surely getting into timelapse photography. I tried it with my Go Pro Hero 4 and didn't like the quality and feel of the footage, so I'm experimenting with other tech to get the perfect look.

Here's a sample of a project I'm working on!

Enjoy!

Finished up some stonework!

Just designed and built a new fly driveway entrance featuring 2 weeks of stonework, fence building, landscaping, and patience! Of course the stonework was the most tedious job. Happy its finished though and I think it really improves the marketability of the farm.

Fresh Redesign

New life, new website. That's just how it is! Welcome to the new portfolio! Keep an eye out for a post that follows that whole "How Europe Changed Me" thing. It's coming in the next few weeks and it did change me, so check back for my thoughts on that.

In other news — I will be posting a new portfolio photograph each and every day over the next three months. One a day! That's it. Hope you like!

Cheers,

-Bob

PRETENDING TO BE CREATIVE

My sense of boundless adventure and perpetual curiosity was struck early on by cameras, lenses, and pixels. Photography has always been my getaway. Even surrounded by complete and utter chaos — in that moment — my life is zen. As for design, it’s total amateur hour. I like messing around in Photoshop and Illustrator but it's all for fun. I’m glued to the evolution of print, mobile, and web design and I love thinking about how to improve user interaction/user experiences. I love fonts, filters, layers, effects, shapes, shadows, and lines. Really, there’s nothing cooler than getting lost in the tuning and refinement of it all. Perfectionism at its finest, I legitimately spend hours tweaking every slider, every parameter, and every pixel until I have something legit. It's insane how laser-focused and patient I can be when I'm doing things I love. Similarly, I get huge satisfaction from woodworking projects, furniture building and stone masonry. I learn best by doing. Occasionally I create something cool, but usually I'm just out to explore.

WHAT I READ

If I'm not playing beach volleyball in my spare time, I'm probably getting lost online:

(in no particular order)

Reddit

Gizmodo

Gigaom

Mashable

TechCrunch

The Verge

TalkAndroidAndroidauthorityAndroidPolice

Lifehacker

...and the list goes on...I'm effortlessly hipster.

Engadget

Slashgear

TechnoBuffalo

PhoneArena

Xda Developers

Kickstarter

TEDtalks

Cnet

Youtube

Ars Techinca

MotorTrendCar And DriverRoad and Track

It's an addiction, I know. I love hearing about what's new. I CAN'T NOT DO IT.

DREAMERS VS. DOERS

Dreamers vs. doers. I always wonder what the medium ground is here. Where do we find balance? What about those of us who are sort of stuck in the middle? What if we dream of being a doer, but can't seem to set things in action? What if we've already done, but feel we haven't done enough? What's the cut off for something real and relevant? How does a dreamer become a doer? Do all dreamers become doers? And do all doers still have time to dream with all their doing? Some of us are too impatient to "waste" time dreaming and yet some of us "waste" all our time dreaming and never do. Like anything, I suppose it's all about finding the magic point of equilibrium and the right balance: where we maximize action and minimize the passing (waste) of time. But then, what about time? Do we really want to minimize the time we spend on something? Books take more time than blog posts, but I rarely, if ever, find myself lost in a blog post to the point of feeling the narrative (if even worthwhile). Books push me to think more critically and play with my emotions. Emotional stimulation, for me, creates stronger impact at the end of the day. But if it's a blog post about something I'm passionate and truly curious about, that emotional impact can be even stronger if digested more quickly. A bit of a stretch, but you get the idea. Which brings me to impact.

I've learned that 99.8% of people spend their entire day 100% numb to the world around them. We like to imagine this future of robots, self-driving cars, and AI. Guess what? The world is already filled with robots. Creatures who do their jobs, don't think in terms of opportunity costs or maximizing their impact, value, or time in this world. They're happy getting "Job A" done if that means a steady paycheck or the ability to move on to "Job B." They're not motivated by something else. They rarely believe in their ideas. They aren't pushed to think outside the box. They are fine being trapped in a culture of stagnancy if that stagnancy means steadiness. They don't want to surround themselves with visionaries and innovators because that would waste too much time or maybe it's too unrealistic. It would take longer for them to finish "Job A" and have the chance to start "Job B."  I realized this isn't me — at least, not right now. I want job security, but I want to dream. I want to create and learn. I want to have an impact and I have no idea how, why, what, or when to do it. There has to be something more satisfying to gain from life. Sometimes taking a break from "Job A" to dream up "Task F" inspires the real progress later on. I just know that I'm not one of these robots. Who knows, maybe I'm part of another robot army I've yet to discover. Maybe there's a whole set of people I just haven't found yet. People who thrive on progress, innovation, and are driven by technology. But still, when I'm interviewing for a job, I never have the chance or the time to show this side of myself. Fifty thousand applicants applying for one position means we concentrate on only the most efficient or the highest quality. It's a number, a G.P.A., an accolade. What does this mean for all the people in the world who just haven't discovered their best talent, just haven't met the right person yet, aren't adept at marketing, haven't had "their break" or, maybe, can't find a way to broadcast their message effectively? They're fucked.  Some go through life and never think about these questions. Maybe I'm too focused on this stuff.  But how could I not think about it? When you're lucky enough to connect with people who really get you, the weight is lifted and anything is possible. I've felt it more and more lately and this feeling of being understood is powerful. I feel more enabled than ever. And I'd like to imagine that this is how we make progress and how ideas turn into reality. The dreamer vs. doer conflict is everywhere —our jobs, our relationships, ourselves, and yes, even love.

We waste time looking for the perfect lover, instead of creating the perfect love.
— Tom Robbins

I'm hoping I meet more people who think about these things. People who understand that, in the end, it's all about what motivates people. I've read a lot of bios, stalked a lot of profiles, and studied lots of stories and from what I can tell, those who are motivated by the good things in life seem to be infinitely more happy. I won't ever feel accomplished by making a ton of money. Well...wait a sec, I wont go thattttt far. But THAT isn't what drives me. What motivates me is meeting genuine people, having engaging conversations, and discovering how curiosity and passion leads to innovation. These are all just words, though. I better get out there and build something or I'm "wasting my time" looking instead of creating. Dreaming instead of doing. Connect with me and tell me about your failures, your processes, and your stories. I want to hear how you made things happen.

THE HI

Nothing more cliche than starting with a cliche.  I just have no idea what to say, how to say it, and I clearly don’t need to explain myself here (and I’m already getting wordy), but I’m not really a writer. Is that even a cliche? Shit, I forgot the squiggly thing on the word. Wait, it’s a line, not a squiggle — I think.

Hi?

I’m a few months away from really changing up my life. I’m 24, and believe me, it’s exciting.  Exciting refers to the “changing up my life” part, not fact that I’m 24. I’ve always been a planner and a thinker. I’ve lived my life carefully, conservatively, and, dare I say, hesitantly. That sounds depressing, but it’s not. The little bit of pause always allows me just a few extra seconds of thought before I act or react. It’s good and bad. Good because I’m generally aware of most angles of a situation and bad because, on occasion, I just don’t act.

It’s like when you’re standing in line (assuming you leave your house (I really don’t)) and you catch eye contact with the interesting character in front of you. He’s glancing right back and you share a second of eye contact and connection. In fact, he’s sooo interesting that he cares enough to hear what you have to say. I know, this is getting intense, isn’t it?!? After a brief pause in contemplation, in this weird and adrenalynyyy way, you look the opposite direction as if there’s something worth diverting your attention to and then…

Ya just swallow your words.

I hate that feeling. He could’ve changed your life. Maybe by NOT speaking to him, he just did. Had you taken just a little initiative and risk to inquire about him in some way, you’d know for certain. I’m willing to bet that more often than not, we should all be speaking to that stranger in life. The simple “hi” is daunting for even the most outgoing of personalities. I’m somewhere in the middle of the introvert/extrovert spectrum, but screw it, I’m saying hi next time. For real.

The allure of getting to know YOU and hearing what YOU have to say is just too strong to ignore and regret. I have no idea what I can offer you or what you can offer me, but I bet it’s worth something to one of us.

Gah, that’s so deep. Preach.

It’s scary starting this blog and worrying about whether I’ll have enough content — interesting/exciting/worthwhile content. Those worries (and the lack of confidence in my writing and grammar skillz) have prevented me from taking this step sooner. Hey, at the very least, I suppose I could just record occurrences of me saying “hi” to strangers and publish the interactions that follow. I’m such a visionary.  That just might work.

To sum it all up, welcome. Be part of my adventure and don’t take me too seriously. I dont. Strong brows give me this intense look. I’m really just thinking about puppies, nerding out to some tech blog, or maybe the intensity IS justified and I happen to be working up the courage to say “hi” to you.

WHERE I WELCOME YOU

Wow, I’m just surprised you made it this far! Was a real doozy, ay?  Lucky for you, I’ve already anticipated your next thought: Why the blog, Robert? Valid question, my new friend!  I’ve always been passionate about technology and innovation.  I’m emotionally invested in this stuff. I joined several “think tanks” throughout college and was part of countless entrepreneurial efforts along the way. I contributed my expertise and became an absorbent learning sponge with a venture capital firm that analyzed the feasibility and returns of startups, and, as a young chap, I started a business to sell my photography — yet somehow, my message has been lost in translation. Hmm… message? Yeah, I just haven't done enough. Let me explain.

It struck me a few months ago. I have this insatiable itch. It’s a desire to do, to contribute, to learn, to make stuff happen — to make a direct impact. I guess I never allowed my voice to be heard. For the past several years, the mic was muted.  I’ve had this passion all along and, yet, feel like I haven’t taken full advantage of it. It’s here that I will break free and, at the very least, get my thoughts out on paper.  From current events in technology to the state of innovation, I’ll try to keep it fresh. Oh and if that bores you, check out my photography, design projects, and other — often laughable — creative endeavors.  I’m curious to hear your story and to learn from you, so reach out to me. Call me up. Chat me. Add me. Let’s connect. The world is my playground at this point. I want an adventure.