Wow! We Found A Hummingbird Nest

Bodi and I found new friends in Hay Park this year.

Over the course of a few weeks, I photographed a hummingbird and then it’s babies. 

<heart> ❤


# The Hummingbird
IMG 5386  mom
# Babies – Two Beaks Together

IMG 5447 to right

# Babies – Two Beaks Apart

IMG 5427 apart

# It’s Tiny — the hummingbird is on a branch a little left of the nest.
(nest is ~2 inches in diameter ) 

IMG 5538


Mind 2018 — Sit, Circle, Explore (Meditation, Mindfulness, and Career Planning)

My project for 2018 is the development of a workshop that Mashes-Up Meditation, Mindfulness, and Career Planning. The activities are meditation sit, meditation circle, and exploring career planning through sketching. In short “Sit, Circle, Explore.”

My intended audience is University Undergraduate Engineers of the creative type, the kids that take Engineering Science degrees. The first prototype of the workshop was hosted at a liberal arts college which has an exploratory educational style like Engineering Science offerings.

My core reading stack is “Mindfulness in Plain English”, “Way of Council”, and “Designing Your Life”. There are lots of tidbits borrowed from the late Namgyal Rinpoche, Yongey Mingyur Rinpoche, Bonni Ross, Chade-Meng Tan, Stuart Shanker, and more.

The inspiration for this course came from a UBC Engineering Physics student group request for Mental Health offerings (in the fall of 2017). I heard of that request and thought that I could reframe my entrepreneurship workshops towards mindfulness.

Class Package – Q Mind 2018 – eBook (epub and pdf)

I captured the workshop in a blog format, and then archived it into an eBook.

Reading Stack

One More Thing – Next Steps

The first workshop ran for 6 weeks through January and February 2018. The next offering is planned for May and June with UBC Eng Fizz students.

Big Ideas – Steve Blank’s *State of Entrepreneurship* March 2018 ( Co-Founder Mag )

Steve Blank provided a thought provoking “State of Entrepreneurship” a few weeks ago. There is only one Steve Blank » CoFounder Mag

The biggest jolt for me was the sheer number of Unicorns (almost 200) and that they remain mostly “Founder Led”.

we went from zero to close to 200 unicorns …Almost all those unicorns are run by their founders. Big Idea!

it is a lot easier to train a founder how to execute than it is to train an execution person how to innovate.

This makes sense to me, since I’ve experienced that as the pace of innovation accelerates “execution people” struggle. His statement tells me that the pace of innovation has really ramped up in the last few years.

The second jolt was that entrepreneurs continue to “build what they want”.

They don’t really get out, and don’t understand who they are building it for or why they’re building it.

I thought this was only happening in companies I advise.  Good to know that I’m not alone 🙂 😦

The third jolt was that his US Government classes, Innovation Corps (I-Corps), have had more than 15,000 teams. So awesome!

The remainder of the interview is a great summary of the Steve Blank movement over the past ten years. It starts with what Customer Development is and how the “Business Model Canvas” & “Agile Engineering” helped complete the framework. Then moves to note that Continuous Innovation/Disruption is becoming more and more the new normal. Especially through the enormous funds available and the advent of ICOs.

One More Thing — I love the Old Guys complaining section where he notes that “Revenue & Profit” is not top of mind anymore. I too struggle with this change.

Today, entrepreneur skills are aligned to whatever metrics are necessary to increase valuation and fast liquidity.

# More – Fan Boy Memories

I’ve been a fan-boy of Steve Blank for over a decade. I can’t forget someone who gives me their “entire class slideware”. And when I send him my “variant” of the slides, he responds with “Iain, I can’t tell you how cool it was to see these slides.”

Calm Is A Big Word

“We skip over too much when we rely too much on language” — Dr Stuart Shanker

For example here is his definition of Calm.

More — A few years back I was introduced to the “Self Regulation” work of Dr Stuart Shankar. I really like how he explores the complexities of regulating oneself versus controlling oneself. Recently his book came out in paperback.

Thank You -— tip to West Van Schools Sandra-Lynn Shortall @SLShortall

Mentor Reading (Mentor Manifesto Deconstructed)

Question – Where can I find some great reading on Mentoring?

Answer: Way back in 2014 Brad Feld challenged himself to write a blog post on each of the 18 bullet points in The (Techstars) Mentor Manifesto » David G. Cohen (Techstars)

//enjoy \

“Mentor Manifesto Deconstructed”

Timeless Advice For Today’s Activists (Forest, Merton, Hahn)

Timeless advice for today’s activists.

Thomas Merton’s Letter to a Young Activist » Jim and Nancy Forest is an essay discussing a set of letters between Jim Forest and Thomas Merton during the Vietnam War.

you struggle less and less for an idea and more and more for specific people. The range tends to narrow down, but it gets much more real. In the end, it is the reality of personal relationships that saves everything.

That last sentence became for me one of the most important insights that I ever received from Merton: “In the end, it is the reality of personal relationships that saves everything.” I know it by heart and recite it often. It sums up incarnational theology. Words and slogans and theories are not nearly as important as how we see and relate to each other — the relationships we build — and not only with friends but with adversaries. In the context of peace work, it suggests getting to know, as best we can, the people and cultures being targeted by our weapons.

More — Christianity Meets Buddhism

I originally came upon this essay in a Buddhist book, Margaret Wheatley’s “So Far From Home”, and have always been curious about why she quotes a Catholic essay as the basis for her book.

It turns out that Jim Forest, a Catholic, spent a lot of time with Thich Nhat Hanh, a Buddhist. In fact Forest toured Nhat Hahn around the US for a while. Here are 4 essays that discuss his work and time with Thich Nhat Hanh. Super interesting.

Refreshing View of the Working World – Managing Humans by Michael Lopp


I like that chapter 1 is titled “Don’t Be a Prick” «smile»

I’ve enjoyed Michael Lopp’s Rands in Repose blog for many years. Having read his blog I felt that there was no need to buy the book Managing Humans. I was wrong. I needed the book. The book introduced me to many blog posts that I hadn’t read before. Also reading a physical book is “different” than reading online, especially when I’m going to take actions based on it.

If you’re a manager, or mentor, then this is a great resource. Even if you’re not a software development leader, like Lopp, I highly recommend it.

Getting Started with Reading Lopp (aka Rands)

Here are two favourites

  • Stable and Volatiles — If you’ve ever built something then you’ve seen yourself in each role — stable and volatile. The excitement of getting into technical debt and the desire to never be in technical debt again.
  • A Nerd in a Cave — I got ideas from this «laughing»