shirts are shipped!

And I learned something new: reddit isn't a shipping company.

We sold a bunch of shirts over the last two weeks (no doubt thanks to this ad):
But our shipping department (me) was traveling around doing drankkit duty, so I wasn't able to ship them out until Monday when I got back to SF.

So first thing Monday morning, our shipping department was greeted with a bunch of orders to fill. Jeremy -- either out of pity or stamp affinity -- helped out as the end of the workday neared and we managed to get every one of them in the outbox for Tuesday's morning pickup.

Like the photo of the giant fish, here's the proof of what Jeremy and I conquered this past Monday. Thanks to all of you who bought reddit shirts. If I screwed anything up, I trust I'll be hearing from you soon :)

In the event that you're still reading this, maybe you'll be interested in knowing that the furthest we mailed a reddit shirt this time around was Australia. An interesting coincidence...

back when i had subversion access...

Jeremy recently breezed through the svn commit logs and noticed a few atypical comments:
[1997]: must... stop.. obsessing..
By alexis — 01/15/07 13:51:45

[2069]: updated superbowl trophy to look less like a penis
By alexis — 02/06/07 21:06:33

[2099]: cuz im a dumbass
By alexis — 02/21/07 08:15:25
Oh, those were the good old days, back when I had Subversion access...

review of starbucked: one of the best books i've read this year (and a bonus mp3!)

Finally, a business-themed book that doesn't suck. And for someone who loves coffee (and generally scorns business books) as much as I do, it was a pleasure to read. It's remarkably even-handed -- as though author Taylor Clark cares more about getting across facts than an agenda. How novel!

Oh, it's also quite an easy read and Taylor's wit enhances the whole experience. Don't expect any hackneyed business adages, Starbucked is a sober look at a company that has a significant impact on not just the United States, but the entire world. What starts with a history of the company, continues into a debunking (or verifying) of a number of Starbucks myths. My favorite was the truth behind "fair trade" coffee. Spoiler: It's not actually saving the world as well as you might hope.

Perhaps best of all, Clark reveals a special Starbucks cover of "We Built This City" ("We Built This Starbucks") that I was able to track down online. Brace yourself.

We Built this Starbucks... uploaded by kn0thing

Someone needs to make a techno remix of this.

All in all, it's a well reported analysis of how the mermaid has managed to so quickly turn us into a nation of $4 coffee drinkers -- while still charging us mostly for milk. Oh, Mr. Schultz, you are a sly one...

Speaking of which, I saw this ad yesterday and a real 'wtf' moment. Really, Starbucks, you think this "latte stranger" campaign is going to help? *And no, I didn't get paid to write this, but if you'd like to pay me to review your book, it's going to cost a lot. And a pony.

proof the internet is a very special place: kittywigs.com

As far as I know, Kitty Wigs! has no connection to Bee Dogs (the premier online repository for pictures of dogs in bee costumes). Those two would have some great synergy. Take a closer look at this fine wig:
Pink Passion Kitty Wig
$50.00
Think 50 bucks is a bit steep for a pink cat wig? This product description will change your mind:
Pink is the color of fantasy. Our model, Chicken, looks like her mind is elsewhere when she wears this wig -- somewhere in a land of cotton candy and pinwheels where the air smells like sugar kisses.
Don't you wish your cat lived in a land of cotton candy and pinwheels where the air smells like sugar kisses. I've never smelled a sugar kiss, but I reckon it smells mighty good. At least better than a two week old litter box. But it goes on...
Pink makes your kitty feel elegant, modern and quintessentially feline.
I like the word "quintessentially" as much as the next guy (look, 5 syllables!) but how is a cat-sized pink quintessentially feline? It's not even quintessentially human.

Unless you're her: But that's just redundant.

facebook comes ever closer to myspace-hell as i do the unthinkable -- unfriend someone

I know I'm friends with a couple facebook spammers. It's not that I'm masochistic, they just provide me with a steady source of blogging material. Until now. Well, until after this blog entry.

Lydia Palmer did the unthinkable this morning, she posted this to My Wall: For those of you who don't use facebook (how's that Friendster account treating you?) I should explain that The Wall is a place to exchange thoughtful messages about recent drunkenness, sporting events, and interpretations of Dickensian themes through the lens of the 21st century.

I also use it to show off animated .gifs I make of my friends dancing:
I really should make a YTMND out of this.

But you get the point, there is clearly a distinction between acceptable and unacceptable Wall postings. Lydia, I'm sorry I had to do this, but you've been unfriended (with a bum-wagging Pikachu saying an appropriate farewell). As word spreads across the Internet, you'll not doubt be left friendless by the end of the day. You only have yourself to blame.

Oh, and I'm also putting you on notice.

email spammers getting creative, but still clearly not trying

With such a savvy subject line, this one almost fooled me. Almost.
from: Neil Little (alexis@sailpilot.com)
subject: photon eagerly

abstention seldom frustrating purple
"Photon eagerly"? I get non-spam emails with that subject line all the time. I keep telling Chris he's only confusing me with all that physics mumbo jumbo.

When it comes to the email's content, I think there's a beautiful poetry to it. Let's step back on ponder the meaning of those 4 words and their placement, each thoughtful and meaningful. A closer reading of the text reveals a frustration with the ennui of a materialistic lifestyle. It's quite moving.

But here's the best part, there was an attachment (bottle of beer.jpg)

reddit and startupschwag

Roddy over at Startup Schwag contacted me a little while back about including reddit shirts in their upcoming subscription package. He also mentioned something about a modeling shoot. Little did we know, it'd be Amanda Ferri, the charming lip-syncing girl from the start of Vimeo's Flagpole Sitta video. OMG, Internet celebs wearing reddit shirts!!!

Anyway, a bunch of blue reddit shirts were sent out this month to Startup Schwag subscribers -- including one in Hong Kong who wore the alien out go-kart racing. Fact: reddit shirts are more useful than a red turtle shell.

Rumor has it, my Mr. Chuck stickers (3.4x more effective than Mr. Yuck at keeping your kids away) will be included in next months schwag package! You'd better subscribe now.

city of angels drankkit

Coming shortly after Valleywag kindly published the free beer = traffic chart (hopefully bringing us all one drink closer to the implosion of Web 2.0) we were keeping the beer (and traffic) flowing with an LA meetup. There were no celebrity sightings, but we did get to meet many more redditors and hand out some drankkit pins.

After one jagerbomb too many, I found myself offering to take the above group photo of those who'd soldiered on well past the 9pm "closing" of the open bar and turn it into today's header. Here's the result:
Thanks to all of you who came out and apologies to those of you who didn't make it into the logo. You'd only be a few pixels anyway, if that's any consolation.

Now with more pictures!

google experiments with reddit-style voting

TechCrunch scooped me on this one, but a few redditors emailed to note the similarities to reddit's voting arrows. I've chosen to call it 'reddit-style voting' for no reason other than it sets me up for some sage advice that was given to me early on at reddit. It's a suggestion I'd like to pass onto Google.

Visit GoogleLabs and you'll see that they're toying with an up arrow and a "do not want" button that's similar to our old "rtm-button" (instead of a down arrow, it's the classic square-with-x-in-the-middle). They've also elected to use an arrow designed with a fat shaft and petite head. Frankly, I'm not crazy about the style. Some of the best design advice I've ever gotten was "More head, less shaft." True story.

It was a suggestion based on one of our first demos (if you're curious to see the early iterations of reddit's design, travel back in time). The original arrows I'd designed were similar to what Google is going with at the moment: a lot of shaft. Unlike the "bad muthafucka" with the same name, having too much shaft kinda ruined the arrow effect.

So all in all, I'm curious to see how this helps search. As long as Goog can weed out the bots and evildoers (which shouldn't be too hard), this should do some good things for search results.

Just ease off all that shaft, guys.

reddit loves mister splashy pants, greenpeace does too

Tuesday was a pretty rough morning, so doodling a whale for the logo that morning really cheered me up. Especially because this whale was named Mister Splashy Pants (abbreviated to "Mr." in the logo because I only had < 120px to work with).
This all started when a redditor submitted an online Greenpeace whale naming competition and declared that all of reddit vote for "Mister Splashy Pants." It wasn't a difficult sell. Admittedly, the rest of the names were all very thoughtful and cultured (e.g., "Gana - means 'song' in Hindi" or "Yarrindi - means 'song' in the Wagiman Aboriginal language of Australia"). But how could anyone not vote for "Splashy?"

So it wasn't long before the poll (which currently shows 73% for "Mister Splashy Pants" and the second-place name of "Libertad" at 3%) was, for lack of a better word, pwnd.

But to the credit of Greenpeace, they're rolling with it (although they have extended the deadline). The person running the competition even commented on it.

Like I told him, it was impressive to see them honoring this poll, as wonderfully skewed as it may be. It likely has brought - and will continue to bring - a lot of great attention to the Great Whale Trail Expedition.

I thought I'd celebrate it with the above logo, but little did I know that it'd lead to quite possibly the most unnecessary reddit submission ever. Heh.