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Dave Cortright
Silicon Valley, CA
Technologist · Designer · Environmentalist · Conservationist · Vegan · Singer
Recent Activity
A friend of mine who is on the board of The Greater Sum recommends Giving Assistant over Amazon Smile. It works with thousands of online stores including eBay, Macys, and Home Depot, and it generates on average about 3% (vs ½% for Amazon Smile). Granted, ½% is better than nothing... Continue reading
Posted 2 days ago at Info Tech for Non-Profits
I am finally getting in the groove of meditation and realizing that the way it is portrayed by them is misleading. Or the more compassionate interpretation: maybe they actually believe their portrayal. Here's how I perceive it. In order to get to inner peace and a higher plane of existence,... Continue reading
Posted Jan 4, 2019 at KPAO by Dave Cortright
I think all of the protagonists in Moving Pictures’ 1982 hit “What About Me” are suffering from learned helplessness and if they would only empower themselves with a healthy sense of agency, they wouldn't need to blame the world around them for their perceived deficiencies. Or maybe it’s just me... Continue reading
Posted Dec 31, 2018 at KPAO by Dave Cortright
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This is the most profound concept about life that I have ever encountered. Your [thinking] mind is an instrument; a tool. It is there to be used for a specific task, and when the task is completed, you lay it down. 80–90% of most people’s thinking is not only repetitive... Continue reading
Posted Dec 30, 2018 at KPAO by Dave Cortright
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WASHINGTON (DC) — Admitting that there is “pretty much a regrettable disaster every day,” the administrators for US Federal buildings today announced that—for efficiency’s sake—they would just leave their flags at half-mast for the next two years. “We initially lowered them in remembrance after the death of former president George... Continue reading
Posted Dec 21, 2018 at KPAO by Dave Cortright
Amazon Smile is a program that allows Amazon shoppers to designate a certain 501(c)(3) non-profit and have ½% of their purchases go to that org. It’s certainly a nice sentiment, but there are a few things wrong with it: People need to remember to go to smile.amazon.com in order for... Continue reading
Posted Dec 19, 2018 at Info Tech for Non-Profits
Many have tried to fix the problem of dirty, unhealthy, and unsustainable cooking fires used by so many people around the world. This article does a good job of summarizing the efforts to date as either too expensive to be sustainable, or too cheap to be reliable. Inyenyeri—a company in... Continue reading
Posted Dec 14, 2018 at Info Tech for Non-Profits
2018 and suddenly the Christmas song “Baby, It’s Cold Outside” is in the crosshairs. And sure, I get it, from a particular viewpoint it can appear sinister (like if Bill Cosby were singing the ‘wolf’ part.) This Quartz article does a good job of going in-depth on on the song,... Continue reading
Posted Dec 14, 2018 at KPAO by Dave Cortright
I remember reading Daniel Quinn’s Ishmael close to 20 years ago. It is a great book and made me understand the origins of the bible and Judeo-Christian religions. The Story of B was an even better book. In his writings, Daniel Quinn talks of The Great Forgetting. To paraphrase, we... Continue reading
Posted Dec 8, 2018 at Darwin’s Razor
Most of the community-based conservation orgs I help out have some sort of alternative livelihood program to help establish businesses that bring money into the community that don't involve exploiting the local environment or wildlife. The most obvious one is by hiring them as staff to help with the project.... Continue reading
Posted Dec 8, 2018 at Info Tech for Non-Profits
In a meeting between the Dalai Lama and a group of American psychologists in 1990, one of the psychologists brought up the concept of negative self-talk. Since there are no words in Tibetan that translate into low self-esteem and self-loathing, it took quite a long time for the psychologists to... Continue reading
Posted Dec 6, 2018 at KPAO by Dave Cortright
So now that I've had some time to think about it, I feel like Darwin’s Razor might not be so optimal. Darwin can mean so many things and to have it just reflect homo sapien evolution and the environment they evolved in during the past couple of million years is... Continue reading
Posted Dec 3, 2018 at Darwin’s Razor
A couple of years ago I wrote a long, detailed post about procurement in general. I want to highlight one tool here, because it definitely can and will save you money. The strangely-named but very useful price tracker site CamelCamelCamel. If there is any particular thing you buy with regularity,... Continue reading
Posted Dec 3, 2018 at Info Tech for Non-Profits
The research findings of Dan Buettner shows that places in the world where people live their lives more closely to how band societies did during the last half of the Pleistocene and early Holocene. The key components of his Blue Zones theory: Moderate, regular physical activity Life purpose Stress reduction... Continue reading
Posted Dec 1, 2018 at Darwin’s Razor
OK, I realize this is a weird post for an IT blog. But I support wildlife conservationists who work in very remote areas. The water they use is from boreholes or wells and the quality of the water is, well, whatever it is. As long as it's not noxious, they... Continue reading
Posted Nov 29, 2018 at Info Tech for Non-Profits
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I sold a CD on Amazon to a Mr. Darrold R Shanks from Elizabeth, Illinois. I happened to take a picture of the booklet and disc just before I packaged it up and sent it (below). After he received it, he requested a return claiming: He called this CD "Pristine,... Continue reading
Posted Nov 21, 2018 at KPAO by Dave Cortright
Emotions clearly have value for survival and reproduction. They are complex and costly, so if they didn't, they would have never made it this far in the process of natural selection. Fear is an obvious one and that is probably our oldest emotion and we share that with many (perhaps... Continue reading
Posted Nov 12, 2018 at Darwin’s Razor
Most of the wildlife conservationists I work with are based internationally, and the majority of them are in Africa. I have previously recommended Scott's Cheap Flights as a way to save some serious money on airfares (especially if you can be flexible with the dates). Just within the last couple... Continue reading
Posted Nov 12, 2018 at Info Tech for Non-Profits
I often forward on emails such as Google Alerts or newsletters. But a problem with this is many senders try to make things easier for you, so they have one-click unsubscribe links, or auto-sign-in links for managing your account. This is great for the primary recipient, but can result in... Continue reading
Posted Nov 9, 2018 at Info Tech for Non-Profits
Darwin's Razor states that since our human bodies and minds evolved over hundreds of thousands of years during which time our ancestors lived as hunter/gatherers in band societies, we will feel most fulfilled living a life that most contains the key components of that lifestyle. Band societies were the norm... Continue reading
Posted Nov 8, 2018 at Darwin’s Razor
I have a theory. I am a user experience designer by trade. But I have also done a good amount of work in the last seven years on self-discovery and how to live a fulfilling life (triggered by the unexpected and far too early deaths of both my parents). Evolution... Continue reading
Posted Nov 7, 2018 at Darwin’s Razor
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Like a lot of non-profits, the ones I support order many things through Amazon. If your have Amazon Prime (and you probably should if you are ordering more than a few items per year) then you should absolutely get the Amazon Prime Rewards credit card. This card gives you 5%... Continue reading
Posted Nov 6, 2018 at Info Tech for Non-Profits
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I just visited my friend Jen who owns a horse ranch in Washington state. She has 15 acres including the main house, horse barn, lower barn, extra auxiliary barn, workshop, tack room, arena, back cottage… you get the idea. She was just using the default wifi router that her ISP... Continue reading
Posted Oct 23, 2018 at Info Tech for Non-Profits
Endless OS makes an inexpensive Linux computer targeted at families and education. If you have an education program where you do computer-based learning, this might be a great opportunity to outfit your classroom with their hardware. Apply for an Endless Computers grant Disclaimer: I have no firsthand knowledge of Endless... Continue reading
Posted Oct 16, 2018 at Info Tech for Non-Profits
Yes, small states have equal power in the Senate, which gives them more power per capita than the larger states. It prevents the larger states from completely ignoring the concerns of the smaller ones and simply outvoting them all the time. This is a feature of the system, not a... Continue reading
Posted Oct 7, 2018 at KPAO by Dave Cortright