The Effort To Do

I have a guitar. I have had it for a long time. I kept it in the guitar case and took it out very rarely. I always wished I would practice it. I told myself I would practice more if I got a guitar stand so that I could just put it on the stand. I got a guitar stand. It is much easier to access now. I do not have to undo all the buckles on the case and open the case just to get the guitar out. Once I got the guitar stand I started actually practicing the guitar. I did very well and was practicing every day for quite a while. Then I stopped. As time past I found myself wishing that I would practice it. I mean, it is right there next to my desk with arms reach. But it has a clasp that holds the guitar in place and keeps it safe, and the it takes time to put the guitar strap around my neck.

Today I picked up my guitar and started strumming it. I wondered why I was practicing my guitar today. I realized that it was because I made the choice to do it an put forth the effort to do so. Granted, the effort was not great, but convincing myself to actually do it took a conscious decision.

I realized that this was analogous to many things in life. No matter what it is that we are wishing we could do or have, the probability that those things are just going to happen by themselves is very low. It takes a conscious decision to motivate our selves to put forth the effort to actually work toward doing or having the things that we want.

Lawrence Lessig on Corporate Campaign Cash

Important message for all Americans. We are the people, we are the ones that can and should lead this nation.

In just 18 minutes, Lessig demonstrates, in crystal clear terms, the devastating effect corporate campaign cash is having on our democracy, and in turn, our lives. Lessig makes obvious that until we as a nation take up this fundamental fight – until we strike at the root of the problem – we will continue to see our democracy crumble.

Source: “Lawrence Lessig’s new TED talk” @ Fix Congress First

HTML Signatures in Gmail

Last month, Google released rich text signatures for their Gmail product.

When I read this I was excited that I may be able to get rid of the plug-in I had been using for this same purpose. While the plugin worked, most of the time, there were times when it did not. I also personally prefer to use built-in features whenever possible.

I checked out the new Rich Text Signature setting. Quickly I found that it allowed you to add images and links, yet still lacked the ability to do HTML editing. Not yet ready to give up I Googled to see if anyone else had found a way to do HTML in the new Rich Text Signature setting. Finding none I set to figuring out my own solution.

As I thought I remembered that this same feature could be found in Google Sites (and perhaps elsewhere). So I logged into one of my Google Sites and sure enough, the editor was almost identical, except that in the Google Sites editor there is an “HTML” button, which is lacking on the Gmail editor.

I had the idea that perhaps I could use the Google Sites editor to get an HTML signature into Gmail. It worked. Here is how I did it.

I created a new page on my Google Site. I clicked on the “HTML” button to “Edit HTML Source”. I pasted in the HTML I had been using with the plugin. I clicked “Update”. Now my signature showed up in the new Google Site page as rich text. I then highlighted the rich text version, copied it, went to my Gmail settings and pasted it into the Rich Text Signature editor. I saved and the click on Compose. Lo, and behold, there it was. Like magic.

I hope this helps you out until Gmail adds that HTML button to the Gmail editor.