Favorite podcast themes

In no particular order, here are five of my favorite podcasts with great themes or segment intro music.

2017 in review: Books

I didn’t get as much reading done this year compared to last year. But here are the books I finished this year, in chronological order1:


  1. These are Amazon Affiliate links. If you complete a purchase after following the link, I receive a small commission, which I’ll probably use to buy more books.

2017 in review: Travel

I had the opportunity to travel almost every month of 2017. I stayed home during January and August.

Here is a list of all of the places I went (first-time visits are bold):

Bodie Island 100x

About two weeks ago I started a 100-day project.

During an episode of Track Changes, design instructors Michael Beirurt and Jessica Helfand discussed an assignment they give: “Just pick something and do it over and over again for 100 days.”

One of the goals is to build a habit of doing something. Beirut quotes Chuck Close: “Inspiration is for amateurs. The rest of us just show up and get to work.”

For my 100-day project, I’m taking a photo of the Bodie Island lighthouse. (It’s pronounced like “body.”)

In addition to “showing up,” I expect this will help me develop my creative muscles. In order to take 100 photos of the same object I’m going to have to think about different ways of shooting without it becoming repetitive.

There are a few rules for this project:

  1. One photo per day toward the project. I might take shots with different exposure settings, but I’ll do my best to keep the camera and framing steady. I can take other photos, but they don’t count towards the project. That means I can’t “bank” photos.

  2. The light station must be in the photo. It doesn’t have to be subject, but it needs to be identifiable.

  3. When I leave town, the 100-day counter is paused. When I return, the counter resumes. I’ll end up with 100 photos of the station, but it may take more than 100 days.

That’s about it. I’ve deliberately not included uploading as part of the schedule. I’ve managed to upload most of the photos on the same day, but sometimes I’m busy and need to wait a day or two to process and upload.

Which brings me to processing. I am making adjustments in Lightroom before uploading. The changes are usually slight modifications to exposure, contrast, color balance, and/or cropping. It’s not an explicit rule, but I don’t expect to use any Instagram-like filters or do other heavily stylized post-processing.

I’ve managed to keep things interesting (at least to me) for 13 days, we’ll see if I can keep it up for 87 more.

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A reading from “The Martian”

“Every human being has a basic instict: to help each other out. If a hiker gets lost in the mountains, people will coordinate a search. If a train crashes, people will line up to give blood. If an earthquake levels a city, people all over the world will send emergency supplies. This is so fundamentally human that it’s found in every culture without exception. Yes, there are assholes who just don’t care, but they’re massively outnumbered by the people who do.”