Category Archives: Customer Service

Why I Donate Blood

Folks who know me know I give blood, and do it as often as I’m allowed to. (That’s every 56 days, which means six or seven times a year.)

One morning the staff double-checked my stats and told me where my unit of blood was going: Straight to the hospital, where it would be used for a baby’s surgery. How can that not melt your heart?

What is your Favorite Cause?

When GeekWire selected me as their Geek of the Week, they asked about my favorite cause. That was an easy choice: “Blood donation. You donate a pint of blood and around an hour of your time, and you give a gift that’s priceless.

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Fighting Back Against Package Theft and Porch Pirates

I got a surprise when my latest shipment arrived from Amazon. Though their app has been providing delivery notifications for a long time, this one startled me.

Photo Finish

Screen shot of the Amazon app showing a package in front of the doorstep where it was just delivered.
Photo of a package at the moment of delivery

Not only did the app tell me when the package was delivered, but it included a picture of it in the place where it landed.

The photo was crude. You wouldn’t be able to identify either the package or the doorstep in a lineup. However, I recognized the location where it was delivered.

The photo was so bad that I wondered how it was taken. A typical police body cam would have done a better job, even while clipped onto an officer being dragged by a car. Still, it met the need.

did take the opportunity they provided to “Tell us what you think about this photo. I responded:

It’s a really poor quality picture, but still useful. Of course a better photo would be more useful if I didn’t find the package waiting for me.

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The Genius Behind Small Business Saturday

Small Business Saturday is held annually on the Saturday after Thanksgiving. Looking at that another way, it’s sandwiched between Black Friday, Cyber Monday, and Giving Tuesday.

Small Business Saturday Rocks

I heard people talking about Small Business Saturday days before Black Friday kicked-off. That’s pretty impressive, considering that it was launched less than a decade ago.

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How I Repeatedly Broke My WordPress Web Site

In the beginning, I was a support tech at a vertical market startup. The developer asked me to try to find issues with the software, and I found some – including one major bug. He dubbed me Bug Buster, and the nickname stuck.

Before WordPress

It was only logical that my first site was called BugBuster’s Best. It was a very simple site, and I prided myself on hand-coding it using Notepad. The next incarnation was Steve Case’s Place. Since it was still a simple, hand-coded site, it was easy to migrate to the stevecase.org domain when I acquired it. I completely gutted it soon after that, because my original content had been pretty random.

Twitter’s 140-character limit was far too little for some topics, so I decided it was time to compliment my microblogging with a full-on blog. The hosting company where my site lived offered WordPress as a free blogging platform, so the obvious choice was to start with that.

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No, I Don’t Like What I See

When I moved my mouse to logon to Windows 10 I was startled. It wasn’t the new background photo on the lock screen that got my attention, though it was more colorful than usual.

Microsoft displays various nature photos on the Windows 10 lock screen, like the two tropical birds that were displayed this morning. However, that’s not what caught my attention this time.

This is so wrong

The disconcerting part was the text at the top left of the screen that said “Discover Adobe Photoshop Elements 15“. Near the center of the screen another blurb said “Save now on Adobe Photoshop Elements 15“. Assuming Adobe didn’t hack Windows 10, Microsoft was complicit in this commercial advertisement.

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How Augmented Reality and Artificial Intelligence Change Everything

I started to really appreciate futurists Robert Scoble and Shel Israel through their 2013 book Age of Context: Mobile, Sensors, Data and the Future of Privacy . It focused on emerging interactive technologies, and shared some companies to watch. Wearable computing, one of the key focus areas of that book, plays a huge part in their new one.

IN THE BEGINNING, there were mainframes

The book’s introduction starts with an overview of three transformations that followed the mainframes:

  1. From mainframes to interacting with desktop computers using a keyboard
  2. The graphical user interface (GUI), and specifically the mouse
  3. Touch interfaces, including mobile devices

The Fourth Transformation? That would be “Spatial Computing.”

The Fourth Transformation didn’t initially seem especially interested in discussing the actual technology. The focus was more on how retailers and marketers had better get with the program of augmented reality /virtual reality / mixed reality technologies. “If you are part of a big brand, you need to know about this now so you can understand how your customer relationships are about to change and so you begin to adjust course.”

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