Tuesday, August 24, 2010
Tuesday, August 17, 2010
I'm trying something new: Original Green TV is starting with three genres of shows: BeachWalks, which are the longest segments (up to 10 minutes) will be walks on South Beach from home to office, office to bank, office to grocery, home to another grocery, etc. The idea is to illustrate how easy a walkable lifestyle is when the physical design supports it, with observations on urbanism and architecture along the way. Original Green Clips are short segments (2 minutes or so) dealing with a single issue. Original Green Views are a series of discussions about Original Green issues. They address hard points in some way or another, and are also short (2 minutes or so.) Are these ridiculous? Too folksy? Too unfocused? Or embarrassing in some other way that I'm not seeing right now? FWIW, they're intended as a tool accessible by the general public, hence the relaxed approach. Should I keep doing them, or take the page down?
Chicago's Greenway Self-Park proclaims itself to be "Chicago's First Earth-Friendly Parking Garage." What's wrong with this picture? Viewed through the Gizmo Green lens, nothing is wrong. But the Original Green lens tells a very different story, and one that highlights the Gizmo Green Conundrum: http://bit.ly/axi9pm
Thursday, August 12, 2010
Amazon is killing the Original Green! Here's what happened: I noticed several days ago that sales had dropped to almost zero, but didn't realize why until I went to the book's listing on Amazon. As you can see, it says Temporarily out of stock in big red letters. But wait! I've got 74 of the books sitting in Amazon's warehouses just waiting to be sold! I noticed the tiny little link that says "2 new" just below and clicked it. It took me to the offer-listing page for the book, which shows two sellers: amazon.com and mouzondesign. But wait! Amazon doesn't sell the book! They've never contacted me about supplying the books directly to them. We have no agreement. We haven't even talked! So they shouldn't be listed as one of the sellers... just mouzondesign, which is me.
So I called Seller Support. They looked at it and said "I'm sorry, we can't do anything about it. That's the Copyright Department." I said "OK, please transfer me to them." They said "Sorry, they don't take phone calls. We don't even know their number. You'll need to email them. But they usually respond within 24 hours." That was nearly 60 hours ago, and I haven't heard a peep out of them.
Now, to add insult to injury, I've just found out that they've discounted the out-of-stock books by 1/3! This leaves no shadow of doubt that nobody will buy the book. Who would buy a $29.95 book from me if they can wait and buy it later from Amazon for $19.77? But Amazon has no plans to sell the book, so far as I can tell, because they've never contacted me. I'm the author and publisher, so I would know. So this means that sales of this book have essentially ended... this book that I've drained my entire credit line to print. Put another way, I've bet the farm on this book, and Amazon is doing things that will ensure I lose the farm!
What can I do? All I know to do is to start blogging and tweeting, and try to raise as much stink as I can in hopes that someone in the Copyright Department might be on Twitter and notice, and do the right thing. If so, then this is to you:
Amazon please talk to me! You wanna sell the book yourself? Fine. Talk to me about it. Give me a call, we'll cut our deal, and I'll get the books on the way. But don't just leave me hanging here like this, with sales cut off and bills to pay! Please talk to me!!!
Wednesday, August 11, 2010
For too long, American has burdened itself with building too large. Build large or build well... for anyone with a budget, that's the clear choice. This post makes a compelling case that building too large precludes building to last, and that's clearly an unsustainable proposition: http://bit.ly/9SjLEU
Tuesday, August 3, 2010
Urban Forestry propagates a myth about trees in the city that can only be called a lie because they really should know better. But their enforcement of this myth impedes one of the most important attributes of sustainable places, which is walkability. This post describes the predicament, which threatens the credibility of urban foresters, and also threatens the ability of urbanists to design excellent streets.