Tuesday, March 23, 2021

Sunrise with the Sandhill Cranes

Enjoy one of "earth's greatest migrations" in amuz on your iPhone or Android device.

Get it on Apple Books

600K to 700K cranes spend 6 to 8 weeks along the Platte River near Kearney, Nebraska to fuel up before continuing their journey north.

Explore the world with amuz.



Tuesday, December 22, 2020

Madison: A Place for all Seasons

"The country’s biggest tech migration increase took place in Madison. The city was gaining 1.02 tech workers for each one that left last year, and it’s now gaining 1.77, a 74% jump." - Mckinsey/Linkedin [1]

We're pleased to announce a new way to explore Madison. Ideal for

  1. Recruiting/HR
  2. Economic Development
  3. Education
  4. Tourism: food/drink, lodging and activities
  5. Real Estate [2]
  6. Marketing: visual first, immersive, elegant.
  7. Promotions: swipe/scan current offers.

  1. An interactive iBook with fast QR scans
  2. See and be seen
  3. Favorites
  4. Effigy mounds: panoramas & drone views
  5. Trails
  6. Architecture + podcasts
  7. Escapes
  8. Food
  9. Sleep & Camp
  10. Ski
  11. A major employer: Epic + Judy Faulkner interview

Get it on Apple Books

1.5 billion reasons why we chose Apple books:

  1. > 1 billion iPhones in use. 87% of American teens have an iPhone, 67% of the population. amuz users enjoy Apple Search, photos, panoramas, video and full screen drone experiences.
  2. 350 million active iPads. The amuz book displays beautifully on iPad screens.
  3. Interactive. Explore the book and with a simple QR code scan, quickly enjoy beautiful visuals.
  4. Distribution in 51 countries.
  5. 90M monthly Apple book users
  6. Apple devices now generate about 50% of Google searches (Google supports 90 to 95% of US searches [3]).
  7. Modern, growing interaction points: amuz experiences/media, ibooks and podcasts are quickly discovered on Apple Search [examples].

QR Code link to the iBook

Explore Madison and more in amuz on iPhone and Android.

[1] Where Tech Workers Are Moving: New LinkedIn Data vs. the Narrative. McKinsey: The Future of Work after Covid-19

[2] “The Starlink arbitrage may be the greatest real estate repricing of all time. Details matter, and prices may be propped up by bailouts, so a long-only strategy is probably best.

But conceptually: short NY/SF/LA/etc, long rural areas & well-run cities around the world.” - Balajis.

[3] How Apple and Google Formed One of Tech’s Most Powerful Partnerships

Sunday, December 6, 2020

Fanless Football: 2020

A few scenes from the recent Indiana Wisconsin football game at the barren Camp Randall stadium.

Experience Camp Randall scenes in amuz, the multi-lingual and privacy friendly app for explorers on iPhone and Android.

Wednesday, December 2, 2020

Tap to Wright: Along the Frank Lloyd Wright Trail

The open road.

The iconic travel trailer caught our eye on June 1, the first day 2020 tours were available. California license plates revealed the origin.

Husband and wife architects, the family packed up for a 6 week cross country adventure. "I always wanted to visit Taliesin" - said the father at the wheel, with three children secure in the Jeep's second row. Traveling safely with their pod.

The amuz book - Along the Frank Lloyd Wright Trail - makes it fun and easy to experience the Trail on your devices and plan future, in person journeys. Extra features include nearby FLW homes, and a few fun diversions.

Get it on Apple Books

1.5 billion [1] reasons why we chose Apple books:

  1. Nearly 1 billion iPhones in use. amuz users enjoy FLW Apple Search, photos, panoramas, video and full screen drone experiences.
  2. 350 million active iPads. The amuz book displays beautifully on iPad screens.
  3. Interactive. Explore the book and with a simple QR code scan, quickly enjoy beautiful visuals.
  4. Distribution in 51 countries.
  5. Apple devices now generate about 50% of Google searches (Google supports 90 to 95% of US searches [1]).

QR Code to the iBook

Explore the Trail in amuz on iPhone and Android.

[1] How Apple and Google Formed One of Tech’s Most Powerful Partnerships

Sunday, November 15, 2020

"They were good people"

I've long enjoyed diving into maps. The more detailed, the better.

And, so it was while visiting Walla Walla, Washington recently, I sought a few interesting locations. 7 miles west of Walla Walla, the Whitman Mission national historic site proved a fascinating stop, particularly during a year when monuments were questioned, relocated and in some cases toppled.

The site is pleasant, ideal for a stroll, picnic and an informative conversation with a National Park Service Ranger. The Ranger offered a great deal of background on the Whitman Mission, their relationship with indigenous people and subsequent conflict.

She emphasized that "they were good people" who tried to prepare the nomadic locals for the presence of many more settlers. Unfortunately, this clash of cultures resulted in a massacre.

Learn more:

Brittanica on Marcus Whitman:

In 1836 Whitman founded a mission among the Cayuse Indians at Waiilatpu, 6 miles (10 km) west of present-day Walla Walla. The Spaldings established a mission among the Nez Percé at Lapwai, Idaho, 125 miles (200 km) northeast of Waiilatpu. The men helped the Indians build houses, till their fields, and irrigate their crops. They also taught them how to erect mills for grinding corn and wheat. The wives established mission schools. Progress was slow, however, and the board in 1842 decided to abandon its missions at Waiilatpu and Lapwai and concentrate on those in what is now the area of Spokane, Washington.

October 14, 2019: Thomas Yazwinski

Marcus Whitman statue vandalized on Whitman College campus

September 4, 2020: Associated Press

A local team of art researchers has proposed moving the Marcus Whitman statue from its current spot at the Whitman College campus to Fort Walla Walla Museum where the group says its true context can be shared.

“The statue tells us a lot and it has a rich and fascinating history, but again, that history is not the history of Marcus Whitman, it is not the history of the Walla Walla Valley and its not the history of Whitman College,” said Libby Miller director of Whitman College’s Maxey Museum and art history professor during a Walla Walla city Arts Commission meeting Wednesday

Erwin Thompson (1964 book)
For 11 years, the Whitmans worked among the Cayuse Indians, bringing them the principles of Christianity, teaching them the rudiments of agriculture and letters, and treating their diseases. Then, in a time of troubles when two opposing forces failed to understand each other, the mission effort ended in violence. In the tragic conclusion, the lives of the Whitmans were an example of selflessness, perseverance, and dedication to a cause. Their story is symbolic of the great effort made by Protestant and Catholic missionaries to Christianize and civilize the Indians in the first half of the 19th century. The missions represented one aspect of American expansion into the vast, unknown lands of the Pacific Northwest.

National Park Service Education Programs

Parks As Classrooms - Go to the Parks As Classrooms website at https://www.nps.gov/learn/pac.htm. Access the WebRangers and Junior Rangers programs.

The "Parks As Classrooms" program was developed to provide parks with seed money for new and innovative opportunities for Americans to learn about their national parks.

National Park Service documents: Whitman Mission Timeline // Land history.

Walla Walla County, Washington demographics:

Wednesday, November 4, 2020

Cathedral of Monreale

  • 6400 sq meters of gold, silver, enamels, and marble mosaic tiles.
  • Each panel tells a story from the Bible. There’s Adam and Eve being tempted by the serpent…angels climbing Jacob’s ladder…and Noah building his ark, and filling it with animals.
  • Groundbreaking: 1172 Completed: 1267
  • Official Name: Arab-norman Palermo and the cathedral churches of Cefalù and Monreale.
  • The cathedral combinines Norman, Byzantine, Italian, and Saracen styles.

It was commissioned by William II (1154-89), the Norman ruler of Sicily, who wished to demonstrate the magnificence of his kingdom and outdo the splendid Palatine Chapel built by his grandfather, Roger II. The project employed both Sicilian and Byzantine craftsmen, resulting in a magnificent fusion of eastern and western influences.

It was designed to function as a Bible storybook. For centuries, early Christians debated whether or not images were appropriate in church. To solve this controversy — called the “Iconoclastic Controversy” — a pope called a convention, the Council of Nicaea, in the eighth century. The result? Images are OK if they teach the Christian message.

Legend has it that the idea for this cathedral came to William II in a dream when, during a hunting expedition, he fell asleep under a carob tree. In his slumber, the Virgin Mary appeared to him, indicating where a treasure chest was located—and with this loot he was to build a church in her honor. Legends aside, William’s ambition to leave his mark was the force behind the last—and the greatest—of Sicily’s Arab-Norman cathedrals with Byzantine interiors. Best of all, the cathedral in Monreale never underwent any of the “improvements” that were applied to the cathedral of Palermo, so its original beauty was preserved.

1. We are Palermo

2. Sacred Destinations

3. Rick Steves

4. Britannica

5. Mosaics in the Cathedral of Monreale (1180s)

6. Wonders of Sicily

7. Wikipedia

Thursday, October 29, 2020

Apple Search, Discovery and amuz experiences

Swipe Right. Search. Discover

iPhone and iPad users unlock their devices at least 100 times per day (36 Trillion annually). Device interactions such as app, messaging and camera usage, are an "order of magnitude higher". [1]

Apple's iOS 14 adds a prominent, new search and discovery experience. [2]

amuz - the app for explorers - amplifies curated locations around the world using these new interaction points. A beautiful example - Oregon's Left Coast Estate:

This video illustrates iPhone discovery experiences for Taliesin, Iguazu, Longwood Gardens, Longji Rice Terraces, and Shanghai's PuDong airport.

New experiences = new opportunities. Nearly half of Google’s search traffic now comes from Apple devices. [3]

Explore interesting locations worldwide with amuz on iPhone and Android.


2. Tim Harford and Patrick McGee :

Most significantly, iOS 14 nudged aside Google for certain search functions. Queries made in the search window accessed by swiping right from the iPhone’s home screen — which Apple calls the “Today View” — show an Apple-generated list of search suggestions rather than Google results. These results include “autocomplete”-style suggestions generated by Apple, showing that it is learning from its 1bn users’ most common queries.

3. Apple, Google and a Deal That Controls the Internet by Daisuke Wakabayashi and Jack Nicas