Christian Ross

A small request to my fellow developers

Developers, I appreciate what you do. Many of you work tirelessly planning, learning and coding for the betterment of all things web related. I assume that many of you do it out of passion and possibly just as a hobby to fill hours while not punching the clock. I am impressed your knowledge of JavaScript, PHP, MySQL and even the many frameworks that surround each. I love the fact that almost all of the widgets, gadgets, navigation menus, drop-down lists, data-sets and more are usually open source. If Budweiser was into marketing nerds, you would be a Real Man of Genius.

I have but one request. Its small, but it is big to me. I’ve noticed for a long and apparently I’m not the only one. (more…)

Home again

After a whirlwind tour in six days of west Texas and eastern New Mexico, we are finally home. We had a great time visiting with those we got to see even if time was short in most cases. We also missed out on seeing several and hope that our paths will cross soon.

Tomorrow will begin a mad dash over the next couple of days to get caught up for lost time with projects and client work. Though I have only missed about three normal work days it feels like much more.

I hope to also mix in some 2009 goal setting/planning, cleaning of the house, ridding ourselves of some non-needed items through Craigslist/ebay/Goodwill, and fighting the crowds a time or two more to spend some of the very appreciated gifts we were blessed with.

The new year will surely bring challenges with a slower economy but we plan to press on and find new and exciting ways to accommodate our lifestyle that we have become accustomed too. Or, we’ll adjust.

I start the new year with hopes of good health for all those in my life, opportunities to be presented to make a difference in others’ lives, a renewed passion and desire to provide quality work/service to current or potential clients, a hope for business growth and possible expansion, and a daily reminder to be thankful for the most important things in life.

From a monetary standpoint, I pledge to have less debt at the end of the year than I do at the beginning. More than likely, there will still be red on my balance sheet but I plan to watch that number shrink each day.

I’d like to write more in 2009. Maybe here, maybe elsewhere. It would be nice to get to a point where I don’t feel bad for taking the time to write. Sometimes I don’t write because I feel there are more important things I should be doing. If that means getting paid for writing to alleviate some of those feelings then I should look into how one goes about that.

In 2009, I think I will attempt to read more. Smart people read. I will have to be judicious with my time so I don’t end up feeling like I should be doing other things, but it couldn’t hurt for me to pick up a book every once in a while. I might even read something that I could put to use one day.

I plan on getting ideas out of my head this year and into action. Whether it means building a bookshelf for my office, a self-sustaining website, a compost pile for fertilizing my non-existent garden or even putting up a studio office to free up space in our house; my mind needs space for new ideas so the old ones need to be accomplished or demolished.

2009 should be a good year. We’ve been promised change by those soon to be in charge and though I may not agree with their decisions on – what to or how to – change, I believe some change will take place. If not from them, maybe a little closer to home.

I hope you see opportunity in the new year. Your opportunity could be anything from strengthening your ability for service to seeing your own bank account grow. Whatever will benefit you so that you can benefit others, I hope for your cup to overflow.

Happy New Year to you and thank you for being a part of me.

Bringing (clear) sight to the world

I wear contacts daily and glasses in the evening when my eyes wear out for the day. I can see without them but I wouldn’t say it would be the safest for me to operate a vehicle or similar machinery sans lenses.

For some reason, as a kid (and as an adult, I suppose) one of the things that seemed to always choke me up a little was when I saw a young person whose glasses got broken or were “mended” somehow. Not exactly sure why, but I assume it had to do something with knowing how much glasses cost and the fact that I didn’t grow up in the most affluent of areas.

Seeing clearly is one of the things we take completely for granted and one of the reasons I stretch the life of my contacts far longer than the doctor/box recommend. I am fortunate enough to be in the position to afford to see things as they are but know worldwide there are many who cannot claim the same. Which is why the following article caught my attention this afternoon: (more…)

20 signs you don’t want that web project

Nice list from Jeffrey Zeldman. Dealt with a few of them before but #2 is far and away the funniest thing on the list:

Client shows you around the factory, introducing you to all his employees. Then, behind closed doors, tells you: “If you do a bad job with this website, I’m going to have to let these people go.”

Comical, but sad in the fact that some feel like this is a business model that works. The “if you build it, they will come” mentality in business is a scary slope to be on, IMO. Just because you pay me to build you a pretty website, it doesn’t guarantee that your numbers will go up. It takes commitment, work, monitoring, tweaking and constant re-evaluation.

Note: Sometimes I finish writing something and realize the old saying – when you point your finger, there’s three pointing back at you – can sting pretty bad.

Free shares of bankruptcy!

NOTE: Sorry for the length, it’s a Sunday evening rant.

Initially my thought this year was to purchase everyone on my Christmas list the same thing this year. Not because it would make my life super-easy but mainly because I feel that no matter what position you are in financially, it’s a good read and something I know we have benefited from going through. Ultimately though, I decided against it. It is a sensitive subject to approach and it would be far too easy to have somebody think I was calling them out.

One of the things that we have been striving for since taking the class is to live differently than how we use to live (much less how 70% or more of America lives). Accruing debt. Sadly, I could have used the lessons long before I entered college and we surely would be much farther ahead at this point in time.

Either way, one of the things both the book and the class talk about is being a slave to the mindset of “we’ll always have a car payment.” While not easy, we are working towards training ourselves to think differently than this approach.