Hi there 馃憢

I’m a software engineer, reformed marketer, and musician.

You might know me from a few current activities:

  • I'm a senior engineer @ The Athletic (acq'd in 2022 by The New York Times).
  • I'm the solo artist behind pillowfights - I write, perform, and produce all of the music.
  • I'm the founder and developer of Craft Beer Gigs, a brewing industry job board.

Below is a full chronological list, but this site is organized into content types for better reading: Features, Essays, Reviews, Random Stuff

How to Move from WordPress to Hugo

Over the past few weeks I鈥檝e migrated every content site I have from WordPress to Hugo, a popular and easy to use static site generator. In this post, I鈥檒l detail why I think WordPress is a bad solution for most people, and how I went about migrating my site in just a couple of hours on a weekend afternoon. Oh, and before we get started, the site I鈥檓 talking about in this post is the one you鈥檙e currently on....

March 3, 2023 路 Updated at: March 6, 2023 路 11 min 路 2313 words

Endel Review: Generative Music as Technology

Endel is a platform that leverages AI and personal data-points to generate soundscapes that impact and enhance mental states.聽Popular use cases include productivity and focus, meditation and relaxation, and sleep. Soundscapes are personalized based on real-time inputs such as location, weather, heart rate, and circadian rhythm.聽I鈥檝e been using it while I work for a few hours a day since January 2020. This post is part review and part exploration of generative music as a technology to augment mental states....

February 23, 2021 路 8 min 路 1566 words

Using Tags for Content Sequencing and Recirculation in WordPress

Often, when I鈥檓 working on content sites, one of my initial product goals is to increase session depth. Broadly, this means decreasing bounce rates and have visitors read more than one article.聽Large publishers often call this content recirculation, but their goals are to take visits and push them into higher-value pages for revenue purposes.聽Since it鈥檚 a blog without any monetization, my goal on this website is to push visitors into other content and hopefully earn an email opt-in....

February 23, 2021 路 4 min 路 716 words

Tips and Tricks: Non-Obvious Things 3 Features

Things 3 is my productivity app of choice. I use it to run every aspect of my personal life and business. This post is a collection of tips and tricks that I鈥檝e picked up over the years that aren鈥檛 immediately apparent for new users.聽Project Activation聽 The sidebar lists active projects 鈥 which means that projects have an active state.聽Moving a project into Someday will toggle this status and remove a project from the sidebar....

February 17, 2021 路 3 min 路 440 words

Why I Shut Down My Paid Newsletter (and What I'm Doing Instead)

I launched a paid newsletter in October 2019, quickly racked up thousands of subscribers, and then took 18 months to run it into the ground.聽This is my cautionary tale, told in four parts.聽Part 1: Conversion Gold It all started, as almost nothing good does, in a hotel room in southern Florida. It was October of 2019, and I had recently left my long-term SEO gig at CBS Interactive (now ViacomCBS)....

February 15, 2021 路 9 min 路 1805 words

What medical studies say about grip strength (and how to increase it)

A few years back, at the recommendation of a friend, I bought some Captains of Crush grip trainers. I remember back in school when some kids had taken these from their dads and stored them in their lockers. In between classes, they鈥檇 pull them out and lay down the gauntlet. It was a social test of strength, not to be taken lightly.聽I started doing some research to figure out a methodical way to increase grip strength....

February 9, 2021 路 6 min 路 1158 words

Launch Ridiculous Products for Digital PR and Links

Launch products optimized for digital PR to get buzz and links to your site. Why it鈥檚 a good idea Successful digital PR campaigns can net thousands of high-quality links and social shares. Brands can gain relevance and topical authority by co-opting meme-like consumer trends or capitalizing on special edition products for holiday celebrations. Many brands work to create content that feels native to social channels 鈥 but few are creating products that feel native to social channels....

February 5, 2021 路 Updated at: February 28, 2023 路 3 min 路 464 words

How to Test Audience Interests with Facebook Ads

Find valuable users quickly through Facebook Ads by using interest-based audience tests. Why it鈥檚 a good idea Facebook has such a wide variety of users that it can be beneficial to point them in the right direction. The goal isn鈥檛 to laser target only a select group of people and 鈥渂est鈥 the algorithm. Instead, we work to gently nudge the algorithm in the right direction and help it find valuable audiences faster....

February 4, 2021 路 Updated at: February 28, 2023 路 5 min 路 933 words

Notes on the Hypebeast Streetwear Impact Report

The following are the notes that I took (and some reflection) on a fascinating report from HYPEBEAST and Strategy& (a division of PwC).聽It鈥檚 an analysis of the streetwear space, which admittedly isn鈥檛 relevant to everyone. Still, I think it has profound utility for understanding how exclusivity and demand act as forces on consumer perception.聽The report is broken up into a few parts:聽 001 Defining Streetwear 002 Measuring Streetwear 003 How Streetwear Talks 004 How Streetwear Sells Interviews and summaries are interspersed between as connective tissue and to recap and underscore the primary findings....

February 2, 2021 路 4 min 路 826 words

How to Leverage Your Data for Marketing and Linkbuilding

Collect and leverage in-house data to improve your product and your marketing. Why it鈥檚 a good idea Most businesses generate some data 鈥 but not all businesses know how to use it to their advantage. By sharing your data sets, you can create highly marketable assets that earn PR, links, and attention. Companies with strong data stories tend to be perceived as more authoritative, trustworthy, and likely to be market leaders....

January 18, 2021 路 Updated at: February 28, 2023 路 4 min 路 818 words