Sometimes you just need to bake your monitor

My trusty Samsung 30 inch 305T monitor has been causing trouble. For the last few months it has intermittently flickered into a mode where most of the display was overlaid with a green hue. It could be resolved by simply unplugging the mini-displayport cable from my laptop and plugging it back in. It happened about […]

Making Prismatic Better (Chrome Extension to Exclude Specific Sources)

I think prismatic is great – its one of the main ways I get my news.  It pulls in news from sources all over the internet based on my interests and does a great job of finding things I enjoy reading. Check out Prismatic if you haven’t tried it yet. However, I’ve found there are […]

Enabling wacky vehicles around the world

I’m a big fan of wacky vehicles. When it comes to donating/lending on microloan service I use this as a way to select who to lend to. I generally loan in the “Transportation” category and I like to support the most interesting vehicles I can find. Here are some of the best vehicles (and […]

Cheap, plentiful data on Tmobile’s $30/month “hidden” data plan

T-mobile reorganized their plans today, and continues to hide the plan that in my opinion is the best value. Its the $30/month 100 minute, unlimited text, 5GB plan that I wrote about a year ago. Its not available in T-mobile stores, only via their website. And if you visit their plans page, its pretty hidden. […]

Techsportation – Urban transportation + Technology

I started, a new site to cover things I find interesting around urban transportation and technology. I’ll post relevant news about carsharing, peer-to-peer carsharing, ride-sharing, carpooling, taxi technology, bike-sharing, scooter-sharing, peer-to-peer parking, smart parking, long-distance ride-sharing and more. It will definitely be biased towards San Francisco (where I live) but it will also include […]

Travel Suggestions

I’ve been fortunate enough to do a lot of traveling. I tend to seek out offbeat and quirky things everywhere I go. I used to keep a few lists in a Google Doc for when friends asked for suggestions on what to do when visiting places I’d been before. I’ve found foursquare lists to be […]

Building a real-time transit information kiosk with Raspberry Pi

I’ve been playing with raspberry pi a lot lately and managed to make a real-time transit display for my kitchen. This shows the real-time arrival predictions for the transit routes near me, a map of the stops, the weather, and recent tweets from my roommates. It was surprisingly easy to set up, so I’ll post […]

How to get kids into Computer Science (take them to Google)

Last summer I taught a class on introduction to programming to high school students through the LEAD Program. This was the inaugural LEAD Computer Science Institute at UC Berkeley. The program aims to get promising minority high school students (rising 10th and 11th graders) interested in computer science through an intense, focussed 3 week program. […]

San Francisco Transportation Startups

San Francisco has lots of new transportation startups. There are many innovative ways to get around the city and/or make some money off of your unused car, bike or parking space. I gave a talk at SFMTA about these. The slides (mostly photos) are available: high res (19 MB) or low res (2 MB) Warning: […]

Transportation Themed Stained Glass

I spent a day wandering around New Haven, CT last month. While on the Yale campus, I noticed that Sheffield-Sterling-Strathcona Hall (SSS) featured transportation-themed stained glass on nearly every window. I snapped some photos – each pane has a different mode of transportation. This would be an ideal building to house a transportation engineering or […]

The Secret to Burrito Etiquette

I haven’t had very much good Mexican food while living in New York. Many New Yorkers do not seem to know proper burrito etiquette. I was quite surprised to find this guide to Burrito Etiquette while enjoying a baked potato at Carlos and Gabby’s in Brooklyn: Burrito Etiquette Bur – Eat – Ooh! I never […]

How to use Google Maps 8-bit tiles in your own project

Its easy to use the tiles from Google’s 8-bit April Fools day map in your own project. Previously, I outlined a relatively simple way to use the transit layer in your own map. You can use the same technique to pull the 8bit map tiles. You can see a live example of this on […]

Comparing Transit Agency Map Styles

As part of an update for the AnyStop Android apps that I helped build, I needed to compile samples of many transit agencies system maps. Its interesting to compare the styles between systems: some are refined and detailed, others are just lines. See how many transit agencies you can name just from these map sections.

How to get the hidden $30/month “Walmart” T-mobile data plan and use Ice Cream Sandwich on a Galaxy Nexus

Update 3/26/13: See my updated post on how to get this plan Update 8/8/12: Simplest option is to buy the starter kit from, buy the Galaxy Nexus from Google for $349 and then activate it online and choose the $30/month unlimited plan. Would you prefer to pay less for your mobile phone but want […]

New domain name

I’ve switched the domain name of my blog from to something shorter: .ee is the top level domain for Estonia. I’ve moved my blog and other contents to so that can be used as a URL shortener. If you’d like to create your own really short URL and you somehow think […]

Communist Propaganda Signs in Central Vietnam

I put together some of my best shots of communist propaganda billboards in central vietnam. I took most of these photos while on a 10 day trip on the Ho Chi Minh trail via motorcycle. I liked one of these well enough that Lisa and I painted a mural of it in our bathroom.