Found Links: Long Exposure Pics of Fireflies in the Forest…

It’s Fathers Day! How about a little bit of fireworks! Or, rather, mother nature’s fireworks?

I was lurking around when I cam across this photo series from photographer Yume of fire flies flitting around in the forest, blink-blink-blink’ing, during a long exposure period. The result is quite breathtaking!  It’s as if someone happened upon secret fairy gathering deep in the woods one night. The collection was also featured on and has garnered a lot of love since.  Have a look!

This whole series stopped me dead in my tracks! I thoroughly enjoyed it and thought you would too.

Soapbox: The Value of Co-Working Spaces…

Mercury Studio in downtown Durham, NC!
When my wife and I moved into a 500 square foot studio six months ago it didn’t take long before we realized that, as much as we loved the vast reduction in living space, we needed a different space to work in. When the small space that you eat, sleep and play in is also the space that you create and work in, you often can feel the walls closing in. Or, at a bare minimum, you at least feel the need for a change of scenery.

At first we thought we’d seek refuge in our favorite coffee shops or even the library. But we both found that when we went to those places, that focus quickly became an issue. Distractions were abundant and those spaces in general were unpredicable at best. So when public spaces didn’t pan out, we ended up looking at alternatives. It was around then that Mercury Studio here in downtown Durham, NC found us. We saw a Tweet about a local writing workshop being held there, so we signed up an went. We didn’t know it was a co-working space at first and, furthermore, we didn’t know what to expect.

The night of the workshop we walked in and were immediately greeted with smiles and folks eager to give us a tour of the space. There was the café area near the front door that had ample chairs, tables and comfy retro couches and chairs to sit in, a kitchen with a sink and fridge, two bathrooms, a coffee and tea section (with an über fancy burr coffee grinder), lockers for members to put stuff in, a space specifically for artists, individual desk areas for folks who needed their own space and a larger area in the back for folks to have group gatherings (that could also be rented).

Mercury Studio in downtown Durham, NC

Basically, something for everyone.

And that, with the combination of the awesome fellow creatives that are members there, completely sold us on getting a membership. There’s a really wonderful energy at Mercury that makes you feel like creating. It helps you focus. And when you do take a break to talk with other members there, you almost always come away more inspired than when you arrived. All members here are creatives in some way – photographers, web developers, yoga instructors, accountants, freelancers of all kinds, writers, published authors, social media gurus… the list goes on and on.

It more than accomplished what I needed from it as well. I wrote a huge chunk of a novel there (which I have since finished), have launched client websites there, created many-a-blog post, edited video, attended parties, gallery openings, crowd-sourced funding events, live music, movies screenings….

It seems cliché to say that it’s AMAZING, but it really is!

What started as us taking a chance on a place that we had a hunch would help us give more to world, ended up being a lot more. Up until then we had never even thought about co-working spaces. Now, going forward, I can’t imagine living somewhere that didn’t have this as an option.

So if you are on the fence, or are simply seeking a better environment to do what you love, I definitely recommend seeking out a co-working space. They are a popping up everywhere now. If you live near downtown Durham, NC and are looking for a coworking space, come check out Mercury Studio and if your are looking to donate to something exceptional, be sure to check out their indiegogo campaign they started recently.

They are trying to make everything they do, even better!

Interesting Ideas: Pocket Tripod – 360° wallet-sized iPhone stand

Hey all,

I stumbled upon this Kickstarter this morning and had to share it with you. For years I’ve been looking for a versatile stand for my iPhone that wasn’t a pain to carry around in my pocket.

To date, I’d only found stands that would work if I was wearing shorts or pants with cargo pockets.  I always wanted a solution that was less obtrusive and more portable.  I know, I know, it’s probably stupid but – I just hate the feeling of extra crap in my pockets. Hell, I even hate carrying my keys.

This invention by Geometrical Inc. & Rambod Radmard appears to remedy all those issues. About the only thing that I am concerned with, would be the structural integrity of the stand once it’s assembled. After watching the video though, I am willing to give it the benefit of the doubt.

Check it out for yourself and let me know what you think! Did you back it? If not, why?

Tips: Creating a KeyBoard Shortcut for “Private Browsing” mode in Safari…

Window for enabling Private Browsing mode...

For a variety of reasons I often find myself going into “Private Browsing” mode when using Apple’s Safari browser on my Mac. Maybe I am on a public wi-fi connection at a coffee shop, or maybe I am using a friend’s Mac for a quick Google search and want to give it back precisely how I received it – private browsing mode can be a handy way of accomplishing “leave no trace” browsing whenever it is needed.

Regardless of the need though, I really hate the process of enabling it: once in Safari, click the “Safari” menu in the top left menu, click “Private Browsing…”, then click “ok” on the window that pops up shortly afterwards.

Is this really that much of a big deal to do? Of course it’s not. But wouldn’t it be easier if there was a keyboard command/shortcut to toggle private browsing mode on and off without touching your mouse or touchpad?

I think so and, luckily, it’s really easy to set up.

The Steps…

1. Click the Apple Menu in the upper-left corner of your screen.

2. Choose “System Preferences” from the drop down menu.

3. Select the “Keyboard” option under “Hardware”.

4. Click the “Keyboard Shortcuts” toggle at the top of the window.

5. Then click “Application Shortcuts” in the left column.

6. Now you just click the “+” button to add a new shortcut.

7. In the new window that pops up, select “Safari” from the top pulldown menu.

8. In the “Menu Title” field, type “Private Browsing”.

9. In the “Keyboard Shortcut” field, type what ever you want your shortcut to be. For me I chose “Command-Control-P”.

10. Click the “Add” button and you are done!

The Result…

Now when you are in Safari on your Mac and you want to quickly go into “Private Browsing” mode, all you have to do is type your new shortcut and it instantly toggles it on! To turn it off, just type the shortcut again. It’s that simple.

I am absolutely sure this tip can be found elsewhere on the internet (there’s no way this is a “new” idea). But I just wanted to write a quick walk-through on how to set it up for you all.

Hopefully it’s useful to you too! :)

FILM: Alfonso Cuarón’s “Gravity”

I have an intense amount of love for Alfonso Cuarón’s film, “Children of Men“.  The single-shot opening scene alone is so intense, so fully realized, so seemingly real, that it’s hard not to get emotionally involved with the rest of the story. And trust me, you will.  It’s a powerhouse of a film.

Since “Children of Men” (a 2006 film), I’ve been waiting patiently for his next feature film, “Gravity”, and yesterday the first teaser trailer for it dropped. It sure looks like more of the same from him.  Near-futuristic, emotional “what  if?”  themes, over-layed on top of beautifully shot visuals.  I got chills from it. And those last couple of seconds… (gulp!)

Here’s the trailer. And yeah, it’s now officially on my short list…