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Posts Tagged ‘Life’

Finished “The Diamond Age”

Posted by Gia Lyons on May 14, 2008

I’ve finally finished Neal Stephenson’s The Diamond Age, and just… wow. I saw in Twitter that George Clooney might be making a mini-series out of this book, which would be spectacular.

The idea that nanotechnology could connect folks in an almost literal collective mind was an appealing theme in this book. Or, more accurately, the idea is about the ability to use human brains as a computing grid for enormous computations.

Now that would be social software. :)


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My Mother’s Day Video

Posted by Gia Lyons on May 12, 2008

My preschooler and I played with my new iMac’s Photo Booth application. She insisted on using the “wrinkly” effect. She was very proud to have snuck in a few potty words during our performance, about a minute in.

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Make an Epic Change for your Mom this Mother’s Day

Posted by Gia Lyons on May 4, 2008

Hoo boy. Twitterland is rockin’ with Stacey Monk’s (@StaceyMonk) guest post on Sam Lawrence’s (@SamLawrence) blog, Go Big Always. Dennis Howlett (@dahowlett) and I don’t know how many others blogged to get the word out as well.

Dennis tweeted me, asking what IBM could do. I’ve been on holiday in New York City these last four days (Mom, I couldn’t find your records on Ellis Island, bummer), but now I’m home, and wondering how on earth to move the dancing elephant to assist Stacy’s Epic Change organization. I know there’s a process somewhere, but I will have to blog internally for help to learn which levers to pull and which buttons to push to get the elephant to dance Stacey’s way.


Stacey is looking for:

Here’s what I’m going to do personally: give donations in my mother’s and mother-in-law’s names for Mother’s Day. They love this kind of stuff, especially since education was practically a religion in their houses. Don’t have a mom? Donate in honor of your favorite teacher of yore on America’s National Teacher Day, Tuesday, May 6.

It would be great if you could participate, even if you just blog and twitter about this worthy cause. Please pass the word, Web 2.0 style.



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My Neal Stephenson Tour

Posted by Gia Lyons on April 28, 2008

I read Cryptonomicon in 2006. That was my introduction to Mr. Stephenson’s brain. I then tried to read Quicksilver, no go. Just finished Snow Crash (loved it), and I’m in the middle of The Diamond Age, at the part where Hackworth has just been arrested by Constable Chang. The whole nanotechnological-Victorian thing reminds me so much of the Wild Wild West TV show (yes, I know it wasn’t set in the Victorian period).

In the book, a woman gets a nanosite tattoo known as the “Jodie.” And the protagonist is a little girl named Nell. This book was published in 1995, a year after the movie Nell, starring Jodie Foster, was released (“T’ee in the wayah!”).

Coinky-dink? Maybe.

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Human studies at Disneyworld

Posted by Gia Lyons on April 9, 2008

Walking around D’world inspired a couple of human studies ideas for me.

First, let me just say that we saw lots of cleavage, both female and male, front and back, in every color, over the past few days. I thought those images would make a remarkable coffee table book – “Earth’s Cleavage” has a nice ring to it, yes?

The other idea was to position myself near the exit of each park and record how the world disciplines their tired and cranky children at the end of the day.

Maybe these ideas have already been had and executed. I haven’t searched for them yet, so if you know about anything, please comment!

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About to start Snow Crash

Posted by Gia Lyons on April 1, 2008

I’m almost finished with The Fourth Bear by Jasper Fforde, one of my favorite authors – he has a shimmer of Terry Pratchett about him, but he’s definitely an original. Read all his stuff so far. If you’re nnew tto Fforde, I recommend the Thursday Next novels first, since the Nursery Crimes series is a spin-off.

Anyway, I’m also a big Stephenson fan – um, except for Quicksilver, which should have been named Visual Valium: A Trek Through Sleep – so I’m looking forward to starting Snow Crash.

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“Mommy, let’s make a crap.”

Posted by Gia Lyons on March 17, 2008

Last night, my daughter asked my husband, Chris, and I to help her “make a crap.” She was holding colored paper (we used to call it construction paper back in my day), her safety scissors, and some purple yarn.

Ah, a craft!

Chris and I had just had a celebratory dram of Jameson’s, so we had a bit of fun…

Chris: “How about we make a family crap?”

Her: “Yeah!… What do I do for the fam’ly crap?”

Me: “Eat more fiber.”

Chris (suppressing giggles): “You can thread this yarn through the holes I made in this paper.”

Her: “Ok!…” (threading yarn for a bit)… “Now, I’m going to cut this.” (picks up her safety scissors)

Chris: “You’re going to cut the crap? Great idea!”

And so it went for about 30 minutes.

We ended up ditching the yarn, and instead built this Kite Store:


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Snowy St. Paddy’s Day in Minnesota, but it’s my anniversary anyway!

Posted by Gia Lyons on March 17, 2008

It’s snowing (whimper) this St. Patrick’s day in my backyard. I vaguely remember what spring looks like, and eagerly await its arrival. Thoroughly sick of looking at snirt.

Anyway, today, I have been married for seven years to my husband, Chris. Yay for us! There are a few of you who actually attended – or almost attended – our wedding on the beach on the East Side of Grand Cayman Island, and enjoyed the sweet air and people of the Cayman Dive Lodge (which looks to be on its way to “fully restored” after Hurricane Ivan all but obliterated it in 2004). Heck, we even met an IBMer on holiday there at the time.

I’d link to the pictures of all of us diving back in 2001 (no, we didn’t get married underwater), but I can’t find them on their site anymore. Here’s what you can see at the Dive Lodge. I remember seeing a spotted eagle ray (TOTALLY thought of the theme to Batman the whole time!), about six thousand spiny lobsters, lots of eels, blue tangs, etc etc etc. You know, the stuff you expect to find in gorgeous Caribbean waters. I, of course, completely missed the hammerhead that everyone else saw.

Stingray_cityI remember getting accosted by a small male stingray at Stingray City. That greedy little bugger was not content to let me simply feed him my handful of squid. NO. He had to beat me up for it first. The ray ladies knew the drill, though. Typical.

I also remember the dog, Lucky, who sat at our feet throughout most of our wedding ceremony. This dog had been run over by cars several times, but could still run and jump and play. Thus, his name. I took his presence as a good omen, and seven years later, I still feel lucky (awww!). We felt honored to include him in our wedding pictures.

So, today, as I watch the latest snowfall cover four months of yuck outside, I will be playing Legend and thinking of the day I got married.

(Hmmm. I see a dive trip in my future…)

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Nickelodean Universe is here, complete with giant pineapple.

Posted by Gia Lyons on March 15, 2008

Today was the grand opening of Nickelodean Universe, or as my preschooler calls it, “inside play park.” It’s at the Mall of America, or as my hubs and I call it, “the BFM.”

I was so proud of my kiddo. She jumped inside the giant pineapple – “Mom, what’s that big sponge?” (we don’t watch The Squared One) – without any adults! She’s a clinger, so we’re thrilled with any of her rare displays of independence.

Another observation: I’ve never seen a bigger Dora head than I did today. And for those of you who know Dora, that’s saying something.

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Public Gia.

Posted by Gia Lyons on March 10, 2008

Enough customers and colleagues have badgered me to start a public blog that I am thoroughly worn out from declining. You win. Here it is.

I’ll be publishing some of my “greatest hits” from my internal blog at IBM, but will probably stray into other topics as my brain wanders. I’ll post them with the timestamp of when they were originally posted, just to confuse you.

I talk about social software, IBM Lotus Connections in particular, to customers in continents ending in “America” for a living. On my internal IBM blog, I talk about the same, but also about shoes, novels by Neal Stephenson, and how froggin’ cold it is in Minnesota. You’ll probably see the same here.

Argue, agree, empathize, humorize, educate, profligate, but please, be gentle. I enjoy hearing new points of view, constructive criticism, long walks on the beach, and pina coladas. In short, I try to keep an open mind as much as possible, and play nice in the sandbox. I expect others to as well.

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