Downstairs at midnight
Friday, Oct 17, 2003
It's 12:02am and I'm downstairs in my townhouse, with my powerbook in my lap, thinking about a lot of things. To share...

Rachel and I went to dance class today and it was a lot of fun. It's a pleasure to be in any dance class Richard teaches, even (especially?) if I already know the dance. It's the only time I can really focus on technique and cure myself of bad habits on the dance floor.

We're working on costumes for the Halloween Gaskell's Masquerade Ball. We're not doing anything fantastically involved, but it should be cool if we can pull it off.

My mom's coming in to town this weekend. It's the first time in a long time that mom's come up just to see me, since I usually come down to LA more often. I'm looking forward to showing her my home. I'm so house-proud. I'm so proud that this is probably the first time I've ever actually used that term.

My dad's business is selling today. It stirs up a lot of emotion. The house is in escrow, and will close in a few weeks. Piece by piece it's coming undone. I know this feeling isn't fair, since we have the important things, the memories, the pictures, the writings, and a whole lot of stuff, but the exchange of things for cash has a dehumanizing effect even in the best of times. I'll get over it, but right now I'm still a little under it.

A handful of people at Google read my weblog, and I know a few did when I was being considered for employment, but I don't know if my coworkers know about my dad's death. It's not something that's come up in conversation, but one of my coworkers is going on vacation for two weeks with her husband and new baby to visit both sets of relatives back east. We were talking about families, and I just wanted to tell her to cherish these times, these visits, because you never know what might happen before you see them next. Playing it in my head, it all sounded so morbid. I didn't say anything.

Susie and I are both looking at getting Priuses ('Priae'?). I have a deposit down on one up here, but there's a 60-90-day wait list. They officially arrive in dealerships today, so I might be able to actually see one this weekend. I'm still looking at other options, like the Outback. I finally got another interim license until the DMV gets me my real one (another story) so I can test-drive.

Tomorrow's Friday Night Waltz. Rachel and I both need new dance shoes. I'd rather not break mine in at Gaskell's, as three hours of dancing in new shoes would kill my feet. I don't know how we'd find time to get shoes for tomorrow night.

I'm thrilled that iTunes for Windows has come out. I'm really interested in hearing the download stats for the Apple Music Store in the coming weeks and months. This is a great move for Apple, though I was surprised to read that Apple expects to do little more than break even on the music store. Instead, the whole thing is a vehicle to sell more iPods, where the real money is.

Work is fantastic, and that's enough said about that for right now.

I can't find my beard trimmer, so my goatee gets longer and longer, held in check only by a small pair of scissors in my bathroom.

The house is almost entirely unpacked, and looking good. I hosted a brunch last weekend and it felt so good to entertain. Bagels, lox, and friends. The perfect Sunday morning.

I have this weird irregular heartbeat thing about once a day. I need to get it looked at, as it's been going on for months. They'll hook me up with a portable EKG for a day or two, where I'll press a button and take notes whenever I feel anything odd. I can't really describe it other than to say my heart feels like it wants to yawn but it can't. I'm looking for a good doctor and I'll make an appointment next week.

Wednesday night Rachel and I went to a corporate night event at SF MOMA. We got to see the Chagall exhibit and a few other collections. Chagall's never blown my socks off, but they had a fascinating display of 19th century photography, a James Turell installation (if you've never seen any James Turell, find out where you can see some and do it. That stuff blows my socks off.), a gallery of the lifestyle of asian prostitutes, as well as a standing collection of mid-20th-century art including Magritte, Jasper Johns, Rothko, and Lichtenstein.

The hors devours were very yummy, but the high point of the evening was the band. They were playing good seductive lounge-y music and had a fantastic female vocalist. "Whatever Lola Wants" and the like. Bass, Guitar, Drums, lead vocals, and an exquisite Theramin player.

Theramins are so cool. I've heard them before, but usually in the context of B-movies. I'd never seen one being played, let alone so expertly played. The man could make the Theramin sound like a pedal-steel guitar, a jaw harp, or a flock of birds. Within I was playing my own 'air theramin' and I know I just have to give one a try. Turns out that at about $350, they're not as expensive as I'd thought. Even cooler, I discovered a MIDI-compatable Theramin player, which seems almost impossible, because everything about the Theramin is analog, and totally nonconducive to traditional composition.

I've been thinking more about ambient displays, looking at possibly hardware for the house, and had the realization that many ambient displays exist as the causal interface between the trajector and the landmark, that is to say, the display doesn't just convey information, its very implementation is in some way tightly related to the resulting reaction triggered by the display. When you think about it this way, any step in a causal chain could be seen as a display, and the 'interesting' displays are those that are either naturally ubiquitous, or otherwise ignorable or conditional. I don't expect this to make sense yet, but hopefully it will soon.

Fury's been getting a lot of google hits today because google thinks a post I wrote two years ago explains why The West Wing wasn't shown as expected Wednesday night. The real answer is that NBC shelved the episode for two weeks so it wouldn't compete with the Baseball playoffs or world series. West Wing will be back on October 29th.

That's it for now. I still need to get down to coding the site, and I have half a mind to do a drastic redesign, beyond the Fury 4.0 designs I was passing around a few months ago. At the very least, there will be a complete rewrite under the hood.

That ought to be some good fodder for comments. I'll talk to y'all tomorrow!

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Hi, I'm Kevin Fox.
I've been blogging at since 1998.
I can be reached at .

I also have a resume.


I'm co-founder in
a fantastic startup fulfilling the promise of the Internet of Things.

The Imp is a computer and wi-fi connection smaller and cheaper than a memory card.

Find out more.

We're also hiring.


I post most frequently on Twitter as @kfury and on Google Plus.


I've led design at Mozilla Labs, designed Gmail 1.0, Google Reader 2.0, FriendFeed, and a few special projects at Facebook.

©2012 Kevin Fox