Removing some cobwebs from my blog

I am trying to remove some cobwebs from my personal blog.

For now I keep using Twitter (@optimiced) but my idea is to start posting at least some of my content here. I am tired of “social” networks and their “algorithms” which shuffle and re-shuffle the things that my friends and acquaintances are posting.

And the next logical step would be to refresh my RSS reader and to start adding to it the RSS feeds of active blogs that I want to keep an eye on.

One step at a time! :-)

Jordan Peterson on sorting your life

Jordan Peterson on sorting your life:

(This is an excerpt taken from Joe Rogan Experience #1070 with Jordan Peterson as guest.)

“The world is full of darkness, let’s say. And each one of us has a little bit of light. And if we release that light…”
“The world is a lesser place, if you do not reveal, from within yourself, what you have to reveal.”

Take six minutes of your time and watch the full video. It’s worth these minutes, and more. (I tweeted about it but Twitter is too volatile, so adding a more solidly built reference to it in my blog.)


Brilliant advice!

If you do this and only this, today will be a good day.

(Found it via @johnhenrymuller‘s Twitter.)

And the TXT is so simple:

“If nothing else, today I am going to ___________.
I am going to do this by ______ then _____ then ______.
If I do this and only this, today will be a good day.

Have a great day! :)”

I will definitely try this technique!

Monsters & Carrots: my little moment of fame

Perhaps not many people know but I am a contributing editor for Smashing Magazine for many years now. It all started a little less than 8 years ago (the summer of 2010, to be precise), when I was approached by Vitaly (the editor-in-chief of Smashing Magazine) who asked me if I’d like to help him create and manage the shiny new Adobe Fireworks section.

Fast-forward to today and what can I say? Adobe Fireworks is no more (although it will always have a place in my heart! and will probably have its icon pinned on my Windows taskbar as long as Windows keeps support for 32bit applications) but I have learned a lot during these years. I helped prepare and publish more than 40 (maybe more than 50 even… I lost count!) articles about Fireworks, about design, prototyping, and more; I worked with great people on my team; I collaborated online (and sometimes met in person) with many fantastic authors; and I learned a lot.

So when Vitaly asked me to say a few words (that were going to be published in the edition #200 of the Smashing Newsletter, I was more than happy to do so. Here’s what I said:

My work for Smashing Magazine started pretty casually as a side job eight years ago, while I was still deeply involved with web design projects and HTML/CSS. Vitaly invited me to become editor of the newly created Adobe Fireworks section in the magazine and since Fireworks was my primary UI design tool, things went really smoothly. Then, over the years, the magazine and the authors I was working with became more and more important to me. Adobe dropped Fireworks development a few years ago, but there were so many other exciting design topics to write about!

Working together with authors, editors, and experts, I learned how to be a better editor, and also a better author. The life change was subtle at the beginning, but by gaining more and more experience, at some point I quietly left the world of HTML/CSS coding. Nowadays, I am a fulltime technical editor in a Danish software company and during the nights I am still working on articles for Smashing Magazine.

Working with words helped me to unlock the creative side in me, and maybe this is one of the reasons why I started to work on a personal project of mine, the Monsters & Carrots series of drawings. My next big challenge will be to create and publish a book (or maybe several books!) full with illustrations from a crazy fantasy world. This is the biggest challenge at the moment — to “steal” some free time and find more life and work balance.

And lo and behold! I also saw one of my Monsters & Carrots illustrations featured in the newsletter! :-)

The Sea Mouse Dragon having tea with Mr Carrot

And I felt a little proud — just a little! :-)

And yes, I want to make a book (more than one, actually) full with my crazy monsters… and carrots. This will need time and effort but I will happily spend both of these for my little side project. Because I want to try and see what will happen.

Life is short. And when you feel you should try to do something, better try. Or just do, try not (to misquote Yoda a bit here).

Or… “Per aspera ad astra,” as old romans would say. :-)