I’m looking forward to #chstweetup tonight at Bambu in Mt. Pleasant. Christina Lor of Ergonomix PR, who recently relocated to Charleston, is working to launch a new series of Twitter-based networking events here designed to connect a wide variety of professionals and other interested parties. These meetups will be a great complement to what we’re doing with Social Media Club and Lowcountry Bloggers (among other events), especially because this tweetup will bring out folks who might not necessarily be interested in specific social media-like topics. That, and it’s a great opportunity to try a new (to me, anyway) sushi place. :) Hope to see you there!
I wonder how many consecutive days I’d have to go to tweetups before it became a Guinness world record. I’m on day two of a three-day tweetup tour (perhaps I should make T-shirts). Last night Lowcountry bloggers met up at The Glass Onion on Highway 17 in West Ashley. (Check out the Brightkite stream.) The food at this self-described “soulful restaurant” was fantastic and enjoyable. The staff were among the best we’ve had for a meetup and the beer selection was great, too. I’ll definitely be back. Eugene and Heather have photos and recaps.
Tonight, Lowcountry BBQ takes its tour of BBQ joints to JB’s Smokeshack on Johns Island. I really, really enjoy the BBQ “meatups” for obvious reasons. :) Tomorrow night, bloggers and tweeters will be at a Stingrays hockey game (in some incredible seats, if I do say so myself). The ice will be pink for that game to support cancer research — that’ll be a first for me. :)
I definitely enjoy these local events — it’s always fun to hang out with online friends offline, and if you’re local and haven’t been to any of our meetups yet, I really recommend it. We’ve got really cool people in the Charleston Twitter/blogosphere. :)
Tonight a few of the Lowcountry bloggers got together at Coco’s Cafe in Mt. Pleasant for an event set up by Lyn Mettler to kind of introduce the restaurant to the bloggers and generate some buzz. The restaurant was fantastic; I enjoyed the food a great deal (including the salmon — and I’m historically not a seafood guy), and the place was really charming and enjoyable. I highly recommend it.
But you don’t have to take my word for it. You can see it, too. Between Ian and myself, we took many pictures and posted them on Brightkite, a location-based social network. At first glance, Brightkite screams “stalker tool,” and I can see why it’s taken that way — after all, the premise of the site is that you post your exact location (there are privacy tools available so you can determine who can see your most detailed position). However, used in a way that it was used tonight, it also is the ultimate marketing tool.
The beauty of Brightkite is that you can take pictures and write notes and then associate them with a location — effectively, geotagging. Take a look at the Brightkite page for Coco’s. You’ll see several photos of Coco’s there. See, I can tell you all about the ambiance of the restaurant and the food and stuff, but as they say, a picture is indeed worth a thousand words. Plus, since the pictures are associated with the entry for Coco’s in Brightkite, anybody else that checks in there or looks into it even before going there can see what it’s like. The icing on the cake: Since my Brightkite photos and notes are crossposted to Twitter, people who follow me can see the photos as they’re posted, complete with the location information. That’s pretty cool. Additionally, if people elect to post their location updates (called checkins in Brightkite lingo) to Twitter with some level of detail, that’s instant advertising. There are many, many other social aspects to Brightkite that escape the scope of this post, too.
Are you using Brightkite? Add me — maybe we can check in at Coco’s.
I’m dusting off the cobwebs here in my WordPress administration panel…been a few days. These are busy times — and they’ve been largely chronicled on Twitter.
Last night was our regularly scheduled blogger/tweeter meetup at Gene’s Haufbrau just west of the Ashley. Great times as always. Eugene and I kicked some butt in pool, and he did all the work at shuffleboard last night. Was great seeing the lot of the gang out once again. I’m hoping to make that next floating meetup. I think it’s pretty rockin’ that we have TWO monthly meetups now.
The weekend is, as usual, packed — I’m going to a baseball game Sunday for my sportswriting class. Going to watch baseball for class is pretty friggin’ cool. It’ll get me into the swing of things this spring; I’ve caught maybe an inning and a half of baseball so far this year, and need to improve upon that.
Again this year, I will be a Bad Young South Carolinian and will miss Carolina Cup. A friend photoshopped me into last year’s Cup festivities (and set it to Tarzan Boy by Baltimora) but locating that photograph and associated song will be left as an exercise to the reader. I was somewhat hoping to bring a decent video camera of some type and do some sort of video production, but not this time — I’m not sure when I’d get to it, and quite frankly, I could see myself being brutally assaulted by armies of pastel and plaid for some of the inevitable comedic twists that I would capture on tape.
On a closing, musical note — Angels & Devils, Fuel’s fourth album and first without Brett Scallions, has really started to grow on me. I’ve listened to it non-stop all week. Clearly, I’ve lost it.
Perhaps the only thing that could have pulled me away from my sweet-as-all-hell personal street level Doppler radar setup (more gushing on this in a second) would have been a Lowcountry Blogs meetup. It was great to meet up with everyone again — within walking distance, to boot. It was my first time ever going to Little Thai Too on King Street and the food was excellent. Great, great choice. :) It was, as always, a great time (this time devoid of a heartbreaking Charger playoff loss). As usual, our resident award-winning photo blogger Joan is first with photos. (I took the second picture on that page, by the way — and Joan has the most hardcore camera I think I’ve ever tried. I struggled to find the shutter button amongst the lot of ’em! :))
This was a good weekend, overall:
Friday was absolutely nutty with rescuing a web server and other things, so I felt as if the time was right to brush back up with some Linux server administration. To this end, I brought the rack-mount machine formerly known as briscoe (now known as sassything — don’t ask) back online (over a few glasses of Yellow Tail chardonnay). It’s only visible behind my firewall, though, and really, really needs to be hardened up a bit, if only for my own sanity.
Saturday began with ambitions of getting some school work done ahead of time. That didn’t work out too well. I did run up to my parents’ and took care of a few loose ends with my taxes, though. Then, I went to my co-worker buddy Greg’s house for his birthday (which was today). I had some badass ribs up there. Good times.
Today started in the afternoon with a text message about the threat of severe weather for today. I then proceeded to trick out my copy of GRLevel3 with all sorts of sweet stuff and basically watched thunderstorms roll through until the meetup. GRLevel3 is effing awesome. It takes Level III NEXRAD data from the National Weather Service and overlays it over a basemap, does animations, all sorts of stuff. The best part of this program is that one can take pretty much any GIS data you want and import it into the program. I was able to download a GIS shape file with roads in various counties in South Carolina, import those roads…and bam! Instant street-level Doppler, just like that. It’s freaking awesome. It costs $80 (I’m running the trial right now) and considering its power, it seems to be well worth the money. It does a great job monitoring warnings, shows a graphical view of warned areas (and whittles them away as the NWS issues warning updates), points out hail-producing and rotating thunderstorms, and gives you a bajillion different NEXRAD products for analysis. For a weather nerd like myself, this is pretty close to heaven on earth.
Mother Nature obviously wanted to make sure I got a thorough evaluation of the product today, as those storms that marched through were no slouches (though we only got a couple claps of thunder downtown). There were some tornado warnings earlier in the southern tip of SC (Jasper County, etc.), and I was able to pick up where the rotation was occurring on the radar. I highly recommend this for those with an interest in storm tracking (a lot of chasers like this software), because the ability to import GIS data makes this tool about as flexible as an Olympic gymnast.
And so Monday begins…one more wild and crazy week before Spring Break. I’ll make it.
It was so great to see many of the Lowcountry Bloggers today — some of whom I’ve known from the prior meetup, and others I met for the first time today. I always get a real kick out of hanging out with them and melding minds about a wide variety of topics including content management systems, fantasy football (Vera is hardcore!!!), San Diego, and all sorts of other awesome things. It was a big success, I think. This is such a great group because we all come from radically different backgrounds and somehow get along so incredibly well, all brought together with our blogs. This is so unique, and I love all of it, and feel privileged to be a part of it!
Thanks to everyone who helped me celebrate my “blogoversary” — I appreciate it! (Chuck, you’re forgiven for the cupcake. :))
And Miss Meghann, you’re welcome. :)
Off to install a new Vista build, do some assorted homework, laundry, and other mundane details. I may sit outside, too. Unbelievably gorgeous day today!
My afternoon was certainly a grand improvement over my morning. Today, for the first time, I met Brad Kelly, a friend for six years over the Internet(s), and his girlfriend Erika, as they vacation here in Charleston for the remainder of the week. It was a fantastic meetup over a fantastic lunch (Melvin’s BBQ on James Island). The Internet is freaking cool — and a little weird — in that you can know someone left and right having never truly met them. Indeed, he would agree, it was one heck of a good time.