New Year, New Priorities

It’s been almost two years since I signed on to the Media Director role for Girls in Tech Los Angeles. In that time, I’ve been privileged to work with many amazing people and partner organizations. We’ve thrown fantastic events, put together great panels and done a lot of work I’m very proud of.

That’s why I am somewhat sad to announce that I am officially stepping down from my role as Media Director for Girls in Tech LA.  After a lot of careful consideration of my priorities, I’ve come to the conclusion that I am no longer able to give GIT LA the same amount of dedication and focus that I have been.

Going into the New Year, I am very excited about the state of Ranker and the future of the company. I am looking forward to being able to focus even more energy on that, and on being able to increase my involvement in various other projects that I’m passionate about.

Living in LA, and being a part of the vibrant LA tech scene, affords me such a wide variety of events, panels, projects and organizations that I’m passionate about.  I feel very fortunate to have been able to spend so much time working with GIT LA, and very blessed to now be able to move forward pursuing other priorities in the new year.

I know GIT LA will be in great hands going forward under the leadership of Briana Ford, and I am very excited  to continue my involvement with the organization and the wonderful women who are a part of it.  I will remain on the board in an advisory capacity, and continue to be as involved as my schedule permits. I also look forward to continuing to build and grow the many relationships I’ve started through GIT LA, both within the organization and outside of it.

I hope everyone has a fabulous New Year’s Eve, and an amazing year to come. Here’s to a techtastic 2011!

Mashable’s 2011 Web Development Predictions

Today, Mashable published 10 Predictions for Web Development in 2011, and I have to say it all makes sense to me. From the “app-itization of the entire Internet” to growing investment in the cloud, Jolie O’Dell’s predictions seem pretty well reasoned, and mostly based on existing trends that are set to really swell in the coming year. Then again, only time will tell. And right now, I think he’s a little busy making sure Baby New Year’s diaper bag is all set for Friday…

Twitter Trending Topics 2010 vs. 2009: #Trends

Today, Mashable posted  this fascinating chart comparing 2010’s top  Twitter trending topics and the trending topics that were most popular in 2009. Clearly, the zeitgeist has changed at least a little bit, but what’s really interesting is what this says about how Twitter usage has evolved — especially the significant increase in hashtags.

Are users simply getting more savvy about how Twitter works, or do you think the change can be credited to the various interface changes Twitter has made over the past year? Personally, I think it’s a combination of both, with a sprinkling of the fact that as businesses, brands and personalities become more Twitter savvy, they’ve upped their hashtag usage in contests and content as well.

Plus, I have a sneaking suspicion (no hard data, just anecdotal and directional observations) that hashtagging your tweets makes them more valuable for SEO. And I know I’m not the only one who thinks that’s the case.

All told, it looks like 2010 could be termed the year of the hashtag…or, in other words, #Hashtag2010.

 

Happy Holiday Cookies (Literally)

Christopher Niemann’s latest piece in the New York Times filled me with enough warm fuzzies to knit a sweater out of. I hope it reminds you to take a second and revel in all the warm fuzziness of the season, regardless of whether you’re lighting Christmas trees, Kwanzaa candles, a menorah, or nothing at all.

Because, at the end of the day, isn’t warm fuzziness what it’s all about? Not just in terms of the holidays, but in all of our days.

Well…that and sprinkles, of course.

 

The World’s Facebook Relationships Visualized [PIC]

Who doesn’t love a good graphical visualization of data? I know I do! Here’s a great example made by an intern (yes, an intern) at Facebook, showing “what the world looks like, according to the Facebook social graph.”

If Only I Were Flexible Enough To Properly Pat Myself On The Back. . .

Launching a website is, for the most part, a pretty thankless task. It’s stressful, exhausting and, at times, it can feel downright Sisyphean. Especially if you’re building a consumer-facing, user-generated content site that relies heavily on the notoriously finicky tastes of actual, well, users.Even when you’re succeeding, you’re still constantly thinking about how to make it better, easier, or more engaging. That relentless ambition and drive is part of why I love working at a startup. It’s also directly responsible for the fact that I have such big bags under my eyes, it’s amazing I don’t get charged extra fees for them when I fly.

Which is why it’s handy to take even the smallest moments to remind yourself that the massive behemoth you’ve been building brick-by-brick is actually getting used. And not just by all those little numbers that make up your analytics and your ad sales. But, by real, live, humans who really enjoy using it. And, even better, appreciate it.

All of which adds up to the big ol’ dose of kvell I felt when I saw Nerve.com’s list of the Best Internet Lists of 2010, with Ranker’s Douchiest John Mayer Quotes list sitting pretty at number one.  It may not be a Pulitzer, a Nobel or even a webby, but it’s certainly something to celebrate. It’s an awesome accolade from a great site, and it’s certainly an honor worthy of a little Monday afternoon back-patting for the entire Ranker team. After all, we did beat out the list of cute cats in sweaters. . .

2011 Food Trend Predictions: The Tastiest 2011 Trends in Food

It’s that time of year again — the time when people obsess about the next big thing in…well, everything. Of course, few things are more fun to obsess about than food. So, consider this your amuse bouche. And no, I’m not talking about whatever it is your dirty mind just associated with that term. I’m talking about the tasty tidbit that gets your palate primed for the meal to come.

So, without further ado, here are the 11 tasty trends I think you’ll be hearing about ad nauseum in the food world next year, based on my extensive (yes, some would call it obsessive) consumption of food literature, food television and, of course, actual food itself. Better enjoy ‘em now, before Food Network turns these perfectly palatable trends into something Sandra Lee would serve at her next theme party. Or worse, into a new catchphrase for Guy Fieri.

See the list here

Happy Channukah!!

Candles from Tzfat: pricey

Silver menorah from your parents: probably pricier

Lighting the channukah candles on the first menorah you actually own that didn’t come from Hebrew school art class: priceless

Feeling tradition-triggered warm fuzzies: pricelessier