Pro blogger, media architect, student of environmental and computer sciences, social media guy, ultimate frisbee player. I live in Portland, Maine, write for MNN.com, and work anywhere there's a good project.
It’s no coincidence that when Google’s secretive X lab built an artificial virtual brain harnessing the collective number crunching powers of 16,000 computers, one of the first things it learned to do was recognize YouTube videos of cats. There are a few universal truths in the universe—death, taxes, and the fact that people love videos of animals doing thin […]
My family and I recently escaped the snowy clutches of our home state of Maine for a week of sun and sand in Delray Beach in Florida. We visited my wife’s grandmother and had a wonderful week of doing not all that much. The biggest daily decision we faced most days was should we camp out by the pool or make the four-minute walk to the beach? But as nice as i […]
This video, shot in 1986 at a Moscow grocery store, is a great reminder of how easy we have it here in the United States in terms of food. For all its faults, capitalism does a good job of giving us lots of shopping options at the grocery store.
On the whole, rock climbing is a relatively safe sport. Advances in safety gear have given modern climbers a wide range of options for protecting themselves when they step off the ground and start up the cliff. While there are still plenty of twisted ankles and bruised heels to be found amongst the ranks of climbers, serious injuries and death are the extrem […]
There are few things in life better than sprawling out in a warm spot in the sun with a good old-fashioned book. Call me a holdout on technology or a literary Luddite if you will, but when it comes to consuming the written word, I prefer a book over a phone, tablet or digital reader. I like flipping the pages and the smell of the paper — and the heft of the […]
Back in 2010, I wrote a story about a new startup named Energy in Common that lent money to people in the developing world to buy renewable energy systems like solar panels. It worked just like Kiva by aggregating small loans from people like me into larger loan packages. At the time, I put in $25 to help Edna Mganga, a restaurateur in Tanzania, buy solar pa […]