Category Archives: Personal

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Clicks are the new currency

In the today’s world clicks are like money. Clicks have value. Clicks = dollars. Clicks = euros. Clicks = whatever currency you can think of. 

How did that happen?

You might have noticed that most of the Internet today is free. Google, Facebook, Yahoo, online newspapers, blogs, you name it. These are free in the sense that you don’t have to give them money in return for their services, but you do end up paying them with your clicks.

When you click on a link these websites have your attention and while their have your attention they can sell you other things via online ads. This means that every time you go on a website you generate value for them. They can sell your attention o people that want to promote their products.

So every time you spend time using an online service/blog/site that uses ads as revenue source you indirectly pay them their salary. Your time and attention is what keeps them alive. With every click, with second you spend on a website you basically give them money to continue what they do.

And because we live in the time of social media, most of the times we don’t stop with a click, we also share what we see. So … not only we give them value by clicking but we bring other people to their website. We basically trick our friends to pay as well.

Our clicks give websites the money to exist.

We have the power to shape the media and the world. Next time you click on link ask yourself if you want to support them. If you want a better world click on better links.

I had the idea for this post for a while now, but it was not fully crystalized. However, after seeing the movie below I finally got it.

I recommend watching Sally Kohn’s TED talk.  You will understand better your own power in today’s online world.

Photo by Philip Taylor

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The weird thing about productivity

This morning I was browsing reddit on my iPad, and because I wanted to feel a bit more productive I was also listening to a podcast about innovation, … or better said I was trying to listen to a podcast. Apparently paying attention to someone else talking while you browse pictures of funny cats is harder than I imagined.

After doing that for a few minutes, I realized that the podcast listening activity is going nowhere. So I was facing a choice, either stop browsing reddit and listen to the podcast, or stop listening and continue browsing. And here comes the weird part, at that moment, intuitively it felt more productive to browse reddit. That made me stop and think: why is that?

Why doing something not productive feels more productive than it is?

Here is my theory. I think that I am wired to think that passive activities are less productive than active activities, and I bet I am not the only one.

Example: so for me listening an informative podcast and doing nothing felt less productive than tapping on my screen and watching cats. I believe it has something to do with the nature of the action. I believe that active activities feel more productive than passive activities simply because it’s simpler to quantify or see the results.

Can this be true? Do you have a better explanation? Also, I wonder how this connection influences our daily life and choices we make. I will take different decisions now that I’m aware of this.

Does this make sense to you? Have you ever noticed this?

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Plane photography in Amsterdam

A few weeks ago I realized that I haven’t used my 70-300 lens in a while, and inspired by the awesome shots I took during my Scotland trip, I decided to dust off my baby and find a new project.

As I was contemplating what could be my next subject I looked up and saw the sky full of airplane trails. Living in Amsterdam, that is quite familiar scene, boring even, but that day it was an inspiration: PLANES!!! Yes, why didn’t I think about that before? I live close enough to Schiphol to get some really cool shots.

So I took my old Canon 450d, my zoom lens and my bike and went to spot where I remembered seeing a plane flying above me one day.

You can see the result below. For a funny story keep on reading.

My first stop was on a bench close by the Amstel Park, on the river Amstel. As I extended my lens to a full 300 zoom, people passing by looked with an immense envy at my black, long, fully extended thing :)). Feeling the stares in my back and seeing that I could not get the angle I wanted, I decide to go a bit farther, at the very end of the Amstel Park, right next to the roundabout. Here I was much closer to the planes but still not the angle I wanted so I decide to go about 500 m farther down the road.

This place was amazing. I was able to see the planes preparing for landing from far away and I had a great view as the planes were coming full speed towards me, flying right above me and then continuing towards Schiphol. So I stated taking pictures like a crazy person. I was following every plane from far away until it disappeared over the trees next to the airport.

And here comes the funny part. Not even 5 minutes into my photoshoot a police car stops 2 meters away from me, one the other side of the road. The policemen get down of the car, they measure me from head to toes, and then they casually light a cigarette, while watching me taking photos.

After they silently agreed I am just a hipster with green skinny jeans, thick black frames and a weird passion for planes, they jumped back in the car and drove into the sunset. They didn’t say a word, just stared at me while I was taking photos. So yeah… for a moment there I was a suspect and a bit worried they would start questioning me.

To be honest I am glad they did that. I am happy to know people tip the police of when they see something suspect, the police comes really fast and they don’t act like assholes.

All in all good story to tell my friends. And pretty cool photos for the first time.

And a map with where I took the photos.

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Trip to Scotland

This summer I had the opportunity to visit Scotland.

To be honest I knew that Scotland was beautiful but I never imagined I would visit it so soon. It this was on my to do list but a bit later, when my hair would turn grayer. However, since my GF had a sinusitis surgery at the beginning of the summer, her doctor recommended that she should not stay in the sun for too long…. So, long story short this summer we decided to go to Scotland because the summers are a bit “milder“ there… as opposed to being for example in Sicily. Man, I’m so happy that happened.

Scotland is amazing. I loved it! The landscape, the history, the long windy roads, the narrow mountain passes, the “driving on the wrong side“. It was all amazing. We spent abut 10 days there and visited most of the country, really almost all of it. All in all I drove over 2000KM.

We’ve been to Edinburgh, Sterling, Apple Cross, Portree, all around Isle of Skye, Stonehaven, Urquhart Castle, Loch Ness, Thurso, and drove across the country along the way.

To get an idea of how beautiful everything is, I recommend taking a look at the pictures below. All were taken with my iPhone 5S, so if you are curious where they were taken just click on it and on Flickr you will see the exact GPS location of each photo.

Pisicile si calculatorul

Va povesteam acum ceva vreme de pisicile mele: Felix si Cosette si pe atunci aveau doar doua saptamani. Intre timp au venit acasa si acum au 16 saptamani.

Cele doua mieunatori sunt foarte dragalase si jucause si nu zgarie cand le mangai, yey :D. Ce-i drept si eu ma abtin cu greu sa nu le smotocesc si sa le enervez prea tare cand ma joc cu ele :D.

Pisicile s-au instalat repede in casa si incet incet eu si Simona pierdem teritoriu in fata lor. Intai au pus stapanire pe brad…

Via Simona

…iar mai nou au decis ca petrec prea mult pe calculator si s-au gandit ca trebuie sa fac o pauza. Drept urmare, cat se poate de natural intai una apoi cealalta s-au asezat pe tastatura laptopului meu.

Mi se pare amuzant ca privirea lui Felix parca spune: “Acum e al meu, cablul inclusiv…”.

Si cam asta fac pufoasele mele.. si ale Simonei. (Vezi Simona am zis ca sunt si ale tale :P)