About Me

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I recently graduated with an MBA and an M.S. Information Systems from Boston University, concentrating in Marketing and Business Analytics. I also live on a boat and have a Boston Terrier named Maracas.

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Facebook, and everything out there.

By now, you probably all know that I'm a big data geek.  I like to look at numbers, analyze behavior, and try to derive insights from data.  Recently, I made a discovery that made my jaw drop. Literally.  For reals.  I discovered my Facebook data.

If you go to WolframAlpha and type "facebook data" you can get immediate access to everything you have done on Facebook in recent history.  It's really fascinating! Let me share some of my more interesting facts.

First of all, I learned something about myself.  I learned I was born on a Tuesday.  I also learned that I'm about 31.5 years old.

Then I learned some interesting things about my friends, like how big is the age range and how much they lie.  I'm on to you Ana Wandolo Mountain-Dew Ferrer!!! Also not her real name!!! And Derrick, why that date? You could have lied about your age, but why that date specifically? Is it because you want to commemorate the opening of the Trans-Andean Tunnel?

Then I learned a little more about myself and my behavior.  It seems like I don't like to use Facebook for iPhone as much as I like the real thing.  I only check Facebook on my iPhone about 25% of the time, and mostly it's at 4 PM on Wednesday's.  I wonder why? Maybe it's because it's hump-day and the work ADD has kicked in.

 It looks like most of my friends are from the USA, followed by Mexico, and that I have friends in 22 countries and 115 cities.  And by the looks of the map, I'm pretty much covered on half of the world.  I even have a friend who lives in Hawaii! Aloha!

Now, this was my favorite piece of data.  This is how my network is arranged.  There are three main clusters: Green is my direct MBA friends, Yellow is my indirect MBA friends or MBA friends from another class, and Red is my network of friends before going back to school.  And that big circle in the middle is my wife (r/awww)!  She's Special! There are a few outliers who are people I have met at some point and have become dear friends, but are not connected to the rest of my networks.  I wish they could meet the rest of my friends...

Lastly, I learned about the marital status of my network.  I mostly hang out with married people.  I guess it makes sense.  Anyway, I have more male single friends than female single friends.  Maybe they should meet!

Anyway, it's really worth it to go in and analyze your data.  I'm sure you'll learn something new and interesting.  And if you think that this post was a waste of time, well maybe this will cheer you up: Battlestar Galactica is now on Amazon Prime... for Free!!! And if you still think I robbed you of some free time, here's my favorite picture of Maracas.

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Gamification! or... Engagement Platforms!

Today, I was given the opportunity to be a guest speaker for an MBA level class.  I chose to talk about gamification and the real opportunities that exist by leveraging gaming mechanics to make otherwise mundane tasks fun.

Something that was neat about this class was the fact that the topic was initially regarded with skepticism.  Gamification always is.  That's why it's probably better to call it an "Engagement Platform."

In any case, I was half expecting this, so I decided to run an experiment.  The experiment consisted of placing small challenges in some of the slides.  These challenges would lead to some level of engagement with social media platforms.  Even if my presentation was terrible, the audience would be somewhat excited to deliver on my challenges and I would generate new leads.

In a way, I was hoping that this would happen because then I could make a really great point on how gamification principles apply to even the greatest skeptics.  Lo and behold, people were surprisingly engaged in my presentation but also by my challenges.  I had a great response from the audience.

I gave a presentation to a room with 20+ students, and came out with six new followers on tweeter, three new contacts on LinkedIn, and 12 new visitors to my website.  This was a great conclusion to my presentation because I just talked about a concept that fascinates me and I was able to drive a behavioral change where people volunteered certain information that they would not normally volunteer.

Gamification is real, but it is not easy to apply.  You really need to understand what you want to get out of gamifying something, what motivates your audience, and how you are going to keep them engaged.

Here are my slides.  Please contact me with any questions as I am really passionate about the subject and I would love to get any feedback, opinions, leads, etc.  I would also love to ENGAGE with other people who feel strongly about the subject.  Get it.  Engage?!

Anyway, here is a picture of Maracas playing hard to get.

Monday, July 23, 2012

Horrible Death by Powerpoint

It is truly incredible that even though we are surrounded by so much technology, we still have so many issues communicating.  Not that technology would make us better at communicating but at least it should have helped.  Instead, people think that they need to give presentations while writing everything they are saying on a powerpoint slide and then adding stock photography (with watermarks) to the slide.  Kill me now!

My current job requires me to communicate very technical stuff to non-technical people.  While training  on the subject I have had to go though so many powerpoint presentations that have more that a hundred slides in some cases.  This training has had me thinking on ways to present information so that anyone can understand it.

There's a theory in design that says you should design for children and the elderly.  If you can accomplish this, you have just designed for almost everyone in between.  I'd like to think that this approach can also be applied to designing presentations.  Especially when you are talking about very technical stuff that could potentially be very boring.

When doing some research into the best ways to give presentations, I ran into the famous 10/20/30 rule that has been evangelized by Guy Kawasaki.  It essentially says that no powerpoint presentation should have more than 10 slides, last more than 20 minutes, and contain font smaller than 30 points.   While this rule should normally be used in the venture capital world, I like the idea of using it for everything.

Since presentations are there to help you visually present an idea, then nobody should have a problem sticking to the 10/20/30 rule. In a way, I would like to propose that no presentation should transmit an idea by itself.  Presentations require a presenter.  Presenters should be able to communicate without a presentation.  Presentations should only be there for support.  

OK, so now you want to make a presentation.  Well, there are many tools you can use to make such presentations.  The most popular one is PowerPoint.  It is also the most deadly since everyone over uses it.  The next most popular is Keynote, which makes beautiful presentations if you have the right eye for design.  Next in the arsenal is Prezi.  While beautiful it can also be a train wreck.  Please use carefully and not so often.  A less known tool is SlideRocket.  This one is cloud enabled and can show a live twitter feed.  Lastly, there is Knovio.  I am quickly becoming a fan of this one because it requires you to record yourself.  If you bore yourself to tears, then you know you need to keep working at it!

Giving presentations can be daunting.  But if you have to give them, first work on your communication skills.  Once you master this, you can work on your stage performance.  This can really make or break a presentation and the only way to master this is by trial and error.  I suggest taking some Improv Comedy classes to really get good at it.

Well, off you go.  Make presentations, communicate ideas, and entertain.  But please, oh please, don't write paragraph upon paragraph of text on a slide.  Stick to words or non-sentences.  And remember, it's not the presentation that sucks.  It's you.

Thursday, July 12, 2012

New Blog

Hello Friends,

This post has been deleted.

Here is a picture of Maracas:

Friday, May 11, 2012

Xcode Tutorial and Other Research

Hello Friends,

As requested, here is my latest version of the Xcode Tutorial for Business Students.  It exists to give people an idea of the power of Xcode and to make you comfortable with the software.  It is also intended for non-techie people.  I would very much appreciate any feedback that you can provide so that I can start writing the Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) portion of the document.  Also, I would like to thank Prof. Wyner for helping me out with this document and for letting me do this crazy project.

Xcode 4.2 for Business Students 

I also wanted to share a lot of the research I made regarding gamification and how it can be used in many settings to extract value from users and also to change behavior.  Very interesting stuff:

Sunday, April 1, 2012

My thoughts on Reddit and Innovation

Reddit[i] is a community where registered users, known as redditors, submit content in the form of text or links that connect to images, videos, news, etc.  This content can be up-voted or down-voted by other redditors and the best voted content will float to the top of the page.  Within the content, redittors can also comment and these are down-voted or up-voted as well.  If your content or comments get up-voted you get “karma” which is used to tell other users how active you are.  There are also subreddits that are communities created around specific areas of interest.

The name reddit is rumored to come from the fact that the readers are also the editors. The alternate theory is that it is a play on words “I read it on reddit.”[ii] Redditors are mainly nerds.  They can be history, computer, science, or just plain nerd-nerds.  This provides for very interesting interaction that eventually may lead to innovation.  While this is not specifically an innovation community, much innovation has come from it and much more will come out of it in the future due to the interest of the people, the community feeling, and the ranking system.
At first, it is very difficult for new members to participate as they have little karma and credibility.  These users are down-voted with almost anything they post.  The way they can get initiated is by up or down-voting others to get karma.  The rules for participation are few: users may never post personal information and they may not spam.

Reddit is a flat governance, open participation[iii] type of collaboration.  Anyone can solicit and offer ideas, and no single participant has the authority to decide what is or isn’t a valid innovation.  Users may ask anything, and replies will be policed by the community in the form of up-voting. Innovation occurs when you get people from very different backgrounds to discuss a point.  Take for example the idea for the movie Rome Sweet Rome[iv] that came from a thread where historians, veterans, and other nerds were discussing the possibility of bringing down the entire Roman Empire during the reign of Augustus.  Users argued that this may be possible with the help of a modern U.S. marine infantry battalion[v], and is now an idea for a movie.  Another innovation that came out of Reddit is the University of Reddit[vi] where users with a particular set of skills teach other redditors.  One example of such classes is the Game Concept Art[vii] class. Other innovations have been the wide introduction of Memes[viii], Generosity Campaigns[ix], the many game improvements on Minecraft[x], and the inception of the “Restoring Truthiness[xi]” campaign by Stephen Colbert.

This community fosters innovation because it allows anyone to interact, it’s free, and it has millions of registered users from all over the world.  Users volunteer their time in order to validate facts, contribute, and curate the content.  There are large numbers of solutions and much variability, but the users themselves up-vote the best solutions to the top of the page.  The biggest challenge is that users may vote for the best solution while not the most profitable. Everyone benefits from this community because of the knowledge that is exchanged and the people that redditors meet from all over the world and all walks of life.  This has been so important, that redditors now hold meet-ups[xii] and secret santa[xiii] exchanges to meet their fellow contributors all over the world. 

As of now, there is nothing that I would change about this community.  People are happy and they work for free just to feel part of a community.  Ideas may be crazy sometimes, but that doesn’t mean that they are bad.  I would totally see Rome Sweet Rome even if time travel doesn’t currently exist. But, maybe the redditors already have a plan for that!

[i] “Reddit: The Front Page of the Internet” <http://www.reddit.com>
[ii] "Frequently Asked Questions." Reddit.com: Help. Web. 01 Apr. 2012. <http://www.reddit.com/help/faq>
[iii] Pisano, Gary P., and Roberto Verganti. "Which Kind of Collaboration Is Right for You?" Harvard Business Review (2008). Print.
[iv] Zakarin, Jordan. "'Rome Sweet Rome': Reddit Thread Gets A Movie Deal." The Huffington Post. TheHuffingtonPost.com, 14 Oct. 2011. Web. 01 Apr. 2012. <http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/10/14/rome-sweet-rome-reddit-thread-movie_n_1010758.html>.
[v] "Could I Destroy the Entire Roman Empire during the Reign of Augustus If I Traveled Back in Time with a Modern U.S. Marine Infantry Battalion or MEU?" Reddit. Web. <http://www.reddit.com/r/AskReddit/comments/k067x/could_i_destroy_the_entire_roman_empire_during/c2giwm4>.
[vi] "University of Reddit." University of Reddit. Web. 01 Apr. 2012. <http://universityofreddit.com/>.
[vii] "Game Concept Art." University of Reddit. Web. 01 Apr. 2012. <http://www.reddit.com/r/gameconceptart/comments/cyyjq/referencesandresources/>.
[viii] "Internet Meme." Wikipedia. Wikimedia Foundation, 25 Mar. 2012. Web. 01 Apr. 2012. <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Internet_meme>.
[ix] Alcorn, Angela. "5 Cool Things You Should Know About Reddit." Cool Websites, Software and Internet Tips. Makeuseof, 17 Mar. 2011. Web. 01 Apr. 2012. <http://www.makeuseof.com/tag/5-cool-reddit/>.
[x] "Minecraft." Reddit. Web. 01 Apr. 2012. <http://www.reddit.com/r/minecraft>.
[xi] "Rally to Restore Sanity And/or Fear." Wikipedia. Wikimedia Foundation. Web. 01 Apr. 2012. <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rally_to_Restore_Sanity_and/or_Fear>.
[xii] "Global Reddit Meetup Date." Reddit. Web. <http://blog.reddit.com/2011/06/global-reddit-meetup-day-will-be-this.html>.
[xiii] "Secret Santa 2011." The World's Biggest Gift Exchange Platform. Web. 01 Apr. 2012. <http://redditgifts.com/exchanges/secret-santa-2011/>.

Monday, March 26, 2012

Google Play

Mondays are my worst day.  I know I sound like Garfield, but they are.  I have to be in school from 8 AM to 9 PM.  My day is composed of school, work, meetings, extra curricular activities, more meetings, and a three-hour class to finish the day.  So when I go home, I just want to relax. Well, I was trying to relax, minding my own business when BAAM! There it was.  Something new on Google.  But what?!  What is "Play"?

I was really intrigued, but was careful not to click on it.  This one click could mean so many things during a time where I just want to relax.  It could get me going down the rabbit hole, or get me all worked up.  I'm not sure what reaction it will cause, but I know that it will not be relaxing.  So, at this point, I'm clearly all worked up, so I go ahead and click on it.  Oh man! Did I just make a poor decision!!! Well, there goes my peaceful evening.

Google Play is almost a direct hit on a company that I admire very much: Amazon.  For the longest time, I thought Amazon had the best strategy for sustainability.  While Google owns search, mail, and Calendars, Amazon had the store, the cloud, and prime.  While Apple had consumer electronics, Amazon was creating their own and distributing Apple's.  While Facebook had the social network and all of our personal information, Amazon had our purchasing habits, credit cards, and our hearts.  Well, maybe not our hearts, but they are a company you can trust and is well diversified.  They are able to compete in most of the fronts.

So, now comes mean ol' Google trying to anger everyone.  First with Android to compete with Apple.  Then with Plus to compete with Facebook.  And now with Play to compete with Amazon!? Well, this just plain stinks.  First of all, it got me worked up and writing this stupid blog post.  Second of all, I'm afraid it will be a half-hearted attempt like Plus, and that their reason for doing this is only to learn more about us and not give us a good product.  Lastly, it is challenging Amazon, a company that I truly like and respect.

Anyway, I am sure that this is their first day in a new school and they don't want to hear people complain about them.  I just hope that they're here for a little while and move on.

I really don't know what to expect and not sure how this fits their overall strategy.  I can understand why Google may want to get into the driverless car industry, but not why they would open up a digital store.  Unless, of course, that they want to plague all of our media with advertising.  And if that's the case, well they just plain suck! I guess we will have to see how this pans out.  For now, I hope Amazon wins.  And Google: please don't cancel any of my accounts.  I offer a picture of Maracas as tribute!

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

The Art of Procrastination

Procrastination is usually seen as a negative thing.  People associate it with wasting time and not really generating any value.  I would like to make an argument that procrastination is an art and that we all become very creative when we are trying to avoid doing actual work.  This actually takes a lot of energy and  practice.  TV is playing the same thing, people on facebook are still trying to be witty, and the interwebs are just full of cats. So when I need to avoid doing homework, I start looking for things that need fixing.  

I currently need to find a job, am taking five classes, need to prepare a speech, have 2 informational interviews, and need to prepare for a business competition.  I am extremely busy, so I decided that it was more important to create a base for our dry-eraser and markers.  In front of me was a cork board and to my left I had plenty of supplies, including resume paper, thumb tacks, a ruler, scissors, and a mechanical pencil.  My engineering mind starting working. 
(think hamster spinning really fast)

Base Drawing - Rev C
Base after cutting
I went through a couple of prototypes before I settled on a design.  I would combine some structural engineering with origami.  By bending the paper, I would give it enough structure to actually support the weight of one (1) eraser and two (2) dry-erase markers.  As you can see from the picture, this was the design I settled on.  You can actually see the dimensions in case you want to replicate the process.  However, if you want to REALLY procrastinate, I suggest that you come up with a unique design of your own!

Once I finished drawing the outline, I started cutting and bending.  As you can see from the picture, it is not a terribly difficult project.  That is the true beauty of this design.   

One of the most difficult challenges I faced was anchoring the base to the cork board.  However, the thumbtacks were very useful and provided an added level of support.  As you can see, I placed four (4) thumbtacks on the base support, and two (2) clear ones on the top support to prevent the base from bending and collapsing.

After finishing the base, I tested it and it was a success.  My friends didn't realize it was paper until I pointed that fact out.  Now, my design sits proudly in our office doing a very good job of supporting our eraser and markers.  I am a proud man!

Once again, I have proved that procrastination can actually be a good thing.  I am super busy today, but instead decided to share my design with you folks.  

If you actually design a base for yourself, with the same materials, please send me a message and show me.  Maybe, one day, we can make a website for people to waste time and learn.  Oh wait, that already exists. It's called reddit

Thursday, March 15, 2012

iPhone Apps for Business Students - Day 7

Day 7 – frustration
1:15 am
Here is the first chapter of the tutorial that I am making.  It is very simple and will show you how great it is to work with the Storyboard function of Xcode.  The app is very, very simple.  It's really there to get you comfortable with using Xcode, especially if this is your first time programming anything.  Also, here is the actual file in case you want to see a working app.  Have fun with it and let me know what you think of the tutorial!

As far as my actual programming:

Man, I was thinking that this was going to be easy.  I have been watching the Stanford classes on iTunes and have been getting my hands dirty with Xcode but I am starting to hit a lot of walls.  This is hard stuff.  Anyway, I finished programming a calculator and am starting to understand how to store values.  This will be critical when I start asking users to add information into the app and the database.  Also, I have been trying to get the authentication process going, but for some reason my mind is crashing.  It’s like I am getting the blue screen of death as soon as I start reading the code that retrieves information from AWS.
Anyway, I’m sure the beer doesn’t help, even when it’s a Racer 5.

Here's a picture of Maracas that I am hoping will turn into a meme.

Sunday, March 4, 2012

iPhone Apps for Business Students - Day 6

Day 6 – on the phone
12:11 pm
I was able to register as a developer through my school.  This has allowed me to test the app on an actual phone, so it’s pretty cool to see something I made on my iPhone. Also, I managed to make the app talk back and forth with AWS.  I’m getting very comfortable with Xcode and am diving deeper into the programming.  This coming week, I will be playing with some of the logic and actual user interface.  Also, I will be trying to make the logging of appliances and electronics actually work.
I have realized that learning how to code for the iPhone is pretty cool and easy at first, but the deeper you dig, the WAY more difficult it gets.  I have been a little frustrated lately.  I guess that if it was easy, anyone could do it.  But, shouldn't anyone be able to program?  We would live in a world full of amazing things or a world full of crappy apps.  I guess that's why they keep programming hard.  As it is, there is already a bunch of crap.
Anyway, people seem to like Maracas, so here she is poking out of a port hole:

Thursday, March 1, 2012

iPhone Apps for Business Students - Day 5

Day 5 – AWS Breakthrough!
11:23 am
I couldn’t fall asleep because I knew I was so close to getting my app to talk with AWS.  I decided to start a demo app from scratch and have its sole purpose be to talk with AWS.  I looked at the “HighScores” demo again and scrutinized every bit (no pun intended.) In any case, I was finally able to get it to register with AWS.  I don’t know if I did this right, but I couldn’t create the domain through the app, so I just went in through the Firefox plugin and created the domain.  VOILA! It works! Oh well, now I really have to go do some other school stuff.
Here is Maracas during a snow storm

Saturday, February 25, 2012

iPhone Apps for Business Students - Day 4

Day 4 – AWS
5:04 pm
I am pretty excited with all of the progress that I have made!
This morning I finished coding the calculator so that the slider would work and the user would not be able to input numbers in the calculator.  The was this was done was by connecting the slider to the actual “action” and replacing the text fields with labels.  That’s it.  
Eventually, I started playing with the AWS SDK.  I ran a demo app that they included called “HighScores.”  This application allows a user to input a player’s name and their score.  Then, the app logs into the SimpleDB of AWS and downloads the info.  This is something that I’m interested in because I would like to register a user, and also log their scores and energy usage.  My only problem was that I wasn’t able to see the tables after inputing the info.  After some research I came across a plug-in for Firefox that allows me to connect directly to AWS and query my tables.  Here is the link for the plug-in: http://code.google.com/p/sdbtool/
After getting that to work I was very excited to actually program my app so that you can register your name, email, and password.  I decided that the best way to do this would be to work backwards from the “HighScores” app.  NOT AS EASY AS IT SOUNDS! I have had many issues and have had to work out many bugs.  The nice thing is that I am learning a bunch.  I finally got it to work (10 minutes ago, that’s why I’m writing this) but I am not able to register anything on AWS.  I will keep working on this next week.  For now I have to work on other school stuff.
Here is a picture of Maracas on a boat.

iPhone Apps for Business Students - Day 3

Day 3 – Xcode 4.2
3:38 pm
I finished eight of the use cases last week and it all seems pretty straight forward. Last week I started comparing GameSalad to Xcode 3.6 and it seemed like GameSalad would be easier and Xcode would be hard. However, after doing some research and watching a bunch of tutorials on YouTube, I have decided to splurge and by Mac OS X Lion because Xcode 4.2 is free with this OS. The reason I did that was because Xcode 4.2 has something called “storyboard” which makes programming relatively easy. So no more GameSalad for me, thank you!
I started programming some simple things like adding buttons and making the views switch. It really is pretty easy stuff. I am going to start creating an outline for my app and will start playing with inputing text and storing it. I have also talked to some people about AWS vs other services.
Lastly, I found this great website that explains everything very well: http://learntoprogramc.wordpress.com
Stay tuned for more segments of my journal! For now, here is a picture of Maracas:
Maracas and her Life Vest

iPhone Apps for Business Students - Day 2

Day 2 – Some More Research
3:40 pm
I have started creating the use cases for the app. These seem to be pretty straight forward. In fact, the whole interactions seems to be pretty straight forward. I now believe that the difficult components are going to be the games and the manufacturing of the device that will read the electricity consumption. However, I did some research and I’m pretty sure that the device will be easy to make.
Also, I started comparing GameSalad to Xcode. It seems like GameSalad is very easy to use, because it is not very complex and has a drag-and-drop interface. This has obvious limitations, so I may use it to just prove out some games before I start coding the real games. Xcode 3.6 is going to be a difficult task to learn, but I am deeply interested in learning. I have found many websites that seem helpful and I have logged them into my delicious account.

Sunday, February 19, 2012

iPhone Apps for Business Students - Day 1

Day 1 - The Beginning

3:24 pm
As I start my research on how to develop iPhone apps, all sorts of thoughts come to my mind. I really want to do so much for this app that I need to start structuring all of my ideas. So far today, I have created the template for a Relational Database using Access 2007, downloaded the Stanford iPhone app class videos, and started downloading a bunch of tools and SDK’s, such as:

Also, I started writing some of the use cases that I think will occur during the user experience. In any case, I have started playing with Xcode. Let us venture...

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Alternative Housing: Boats!

Life on a boat is fantastic! You get to live next to the ocean (literally)and are rocked to sleep every night. There is a great community in the marina and Charlestown is a great town. Even if you live on a small sailboat, the marina has showers, bathrooms, a mailroom, washers, dryers, grills, and even a coveredpool for the winter months. The following is a satellite picture of the marina, and the map shows the distance (only three miles) from the marina to the Boston University Graduate School of Management.

There are several ways of getting to BU from the marina. On a nice day you can walk or take a bike, and on other days you can ride the subway. The closest “T” station is North Station on the Green Line. During the summer, life on a boat is a breeze. You come home to friendly people, and the smell of a sizzling grill. During the fall, the excitement winds down a little, but the Boston Bruins start the season and are just 10 minutes away. Here is a picture of me holding a faux Stanley Cup with the marina and the TD Garden behind me.
During the fall, the summer boats pack up and leave, and only the live-aboards stick around. There are approximately 100 of us that live on boats yearlong. The fall is beautiful in Charlestown. The leaves start changing colors, the days are shorter, and the breeze that you get from the ocean is always refreshing. Also, the sunsets are amazing as you can see from this picture.As the winter approaches, people start winterizing their boats. This includes shrink-wrapping it, adding antifreeze, and tying your boat well so you can brave the Nor’easter storms. The shrink-wrap is placed over the boat for several reasons. For starters, it keeps the snow off the surface of the boats. It also creates additional space on the top deck. And lastly, it creates a sort of Green House effect where the sun shines in during the day and the heat is trapped inside the shrink-wrap so your boat is nice and warm for the evening.
The winter isn’t so bad. Contrary to what people think, it is actually warmer than the mainland. The friendly staff at the marina keeps the snow and ice off the docks and your neighbors will invite you for a winter warmer. This picture shows what the marina looks like during the winter. All of the boats look like tents from the shrink-wrapping. As spring approaches, people like me tend to get overly eager and remove the shrink-wrap way too soon. I usually set up the grill on the top deck and start grilling during the first weeks of March. Finally, the warm months return and life is beautiful once again. It is definitely an interesting life, and one worth having and talking about. There are many housing alternatives in Boston, but few so interesting. The MBA Experience is so much fun, and I never thought I could make it even more interesting until I jumped on the opportunity of living on a boat.