There is no such thing as “First Mover Advantage.” There IS, however, “First Winner Advantage,” and it is often imagined to be the former. — Alan Cooper
Sunrise through the foxtails.
Katee’s Barn, seen from the Tall Barn.
Sunset over the manger-fence behind the Tall Barn.
When you finally think you’ve streamlined the interaction enough, keep streamlining. — Alan Cooper
Fava beans are notoriously hard to shell. Sue and I developed a little assembly line process to make it easier. I slit each pod with my Swiss Army Knife, and she removed the beans from the pods. Working together we filled this basket. Sue made pesto from the beans. Mmmmm.
We call this little trailer “The Molar Home” because it looks like a little tooth. Sometimes guests stay in the Molar. It’s kinda cold, or kinda hot, depending on the weather, it has no water or electricity, but it’s parked up on a little hilltop all by itself in the tall grass where it’s quiet and lovely. You can have an adult beverage at the little yellow cafe table out front and imagine that you are on a hilltop in West Petaluma. Oh, wait…
The San Francisco cable car system, unique in the world, was originally built 130 years ago. As you would expect, it has had considerable maintenance and upgrading since then, but the core of the system, the cars and the drive mechanism, remains almost unchanged from the original.
The cars themselves are works of art, wooden superstructures on cast iron frames. They were all hand-built, so each car is slightly different. In order to keep up with demand, the San Francisco Municipal Railway, or MUNI, built a few new cable cars from scratch, but to their everlasting credit, the cars are virtually indistinguishable from their centenarian brethren. The only way to tell is by the inconspicuous bronze plaque on the cabin wall.
This photo of the seat rail of modern car Number 28 shows how the new construction is every bit as authentic as the old. The bronze rail is a sinuously curved casting with the patina of a thousand riders’ arms; the planks of the seat are smoothly varnished hardwood instead of plastic, and the two are fastened with corrosion-proof bronze screws. But look closely at the slotted heads of all of the screws. Some unknown MUNI craftsman worked long and hard to assure that the slots of every screw are perfectly aligned with every other one. Once you notice this tell-tale pattern, you will find it on almost all of the other fasteners on this wonderful, modern, ancient vehicle.
Don’t get me wrong: prototyping is important, and the easier to do the better. But don’t mistake a ‘shortcut’ with ‘better’. — Steve ‘Doc’ Baty @docbaty
The foggy dawn in the tall grass.
Rusted milk can.
Good morning, Ms Breakfast!
Hey! I’m about the biggest process wonk there is. I’m a big fan of process, an originator of process, but process isn’t results. — Alan Cooper
Mesa Boogie, a Petaluma company, makes the amplifiers used by the most discerning musicians in the world.
Poppies growing out of the soil around the rocks on the top of Haybale Hill.