If you’ve been reading my blog for a while you know the drill, 6 years ago I did a post looking back over my previous year by looking through the photos I took and posted online. My thought being, if I’d posted it online it was important enough to remember – so I restricted it to that as opposed to crawling through personal libraries as well. It was cathartic to say the least, so I’ve done it every year since then. (Feel free to take a stroll through my visual time machine… 2007 & 2008 & 2009 & 2010 & 2011). I find it to be kind of wild looking back at a full year in one shot like this, so here we go for 2012….

The first thing I noticed as I began this is that I posted considerably fewer photos to flickr at the beginning of the year than I had previously. I think I was going through some question about the future of the service – I’ve been a long time user but Yahoo! had all but abandoned it and over the years my friends had slowly dropped off as well. That changed by the end of the year with returned enthusiasm from both my friends and Yahoo! but for a good chunk of 2012 I was trying out lots of other photo sharing / storage options and trying to find something that fit. Disappointingly, I don’t even remember everything I tried and thus whatever I might have posted has drifted away to forgotten land. Which is a bummer, and makes me again realize how important flickr has been for me and why I keep using it.

At the same time, I started shooting a lot of photos on film rather than digital, which when you add in developing and scanning times and my own habits of waiting until I had 10 or so rolls to make a trip the lab, means something that happened in January might not have been documented online with my photos until April. It seems like even some digital stuff I shot didn’t end up on line until months later for some reason. Every year that I’ve done this I’ve searched through my archive using the “posted on” date, but this year “taken on” became much more important. But even that is confusing.

I don’t know where I was on New Years Day but sometime the first week we ended up at DisneyLand. Waiting in lines and riding on rides.

climing in line

California Adventure

Ripley was starting to morph from a baby into a toddler

Rips on the lawn

And I was excited for the first non-TED related Coffee Common event which we were putting on in NYC.

Coffee Common x NYC

Which ended up being a massive success, bigger than we could have hoped

Panorama of the line and packed @coffeecommon

The AirBnB apartment I rented was one of the nastiest places I’ve slept in years

dead roach

Luckily the glamor of hosting the event was a excellent balance

Coffee Common x NYC

NY was fun, but I was excited to get back to LA and spend some time hanging out with Ripley. He was really becoming a little person and spending time with him was getting awesomer by the day.



Though short lived, as by February I was back at the airport


Safecast had “officially” moved into the Tokyo Hackerspace. Which meant that rather than having our boxes of crap stacked up all over the main room, we moved them to a dedicated room and began paying rent.

Safecast HQ

And continued spreading the word

omote sando

Back in LA, Ripley’s day care was just a few blocks from our house which made morning commutes something fantastic

of to daycare

At least, on mornings when we woke up in time for such things

wake up

Then came TED and Coffee Common again, along with all related chaos

Coffee Common @ TED2012


Ripley turned 2 in March, so naturally we got him some educational toys


Looking up

and some vegan cupcakes


And he instantly became a mopey teenager (not really)

Off to the park

And started picking up some new interests


Then I was back to Japan for more Safecast work

Safecast Devices on display at FabCafe

Safecast Car

Safecast Seminar in Roppongi

And I picked up a completely life changing pair of pants


I rushed back to LA and we got some great seats at a secret Tenacious D show


And I continued to be blown away by our little family.


In April I joined my old friends STRIFE in the studio to help out with back up vocals for their upcoming album


Vocal booth with @andrewstrife

Strife Backup Choir

And took Ripley on an Easter Egg hunt


Egg hunt

Which he loved

Super exciting right now. Obvs.

And then Refused got back together

Refused in Pomona

Tara got some fancy new sun glasses


I got a fancy new (old) camera


And my dear friend Xeni got ready for the battle of/for her life

Xeni & Tara

In April some secret plans started to materialize

Looks like there is one of those boxes up near the silver lake farmers market today

And the now important Mothers Day


We hit up some tide pools

Rock Sitters

Over there!

Some field

And Disney again



And I got a ton of film back from the lab


Tara spoke at Farmhouse Conf which ended up launching Represent.la

Rips & Tara @ Farmhouse Conf

I ended the month back in Japan where I apparently got obsessed with taking photos of surfaces

Tokyo texture

June saw the 25th anniversary of Revelation Records and of course I was at the celebration seeing Gorilla Biscuits

Gorilla Biscuits at REV25

No For An Answer

Dan O'Mahony / NFAA @ REV25


Quicksand @ REV25

And many others. It was like a class reunion. At home, we finally gave in and got rid of the Mini and replaced it with a sweet new Prius

Blacked out the logos

One night in June Lucky Cat’s luck ran out. It was crushing.


And when we needed a distractions, I dragged Tara and Ripley to Japan with me this time and we explored Tokyo from a toddler perspective


Riding Ripley


And Safecast had fully moved into our new offices in Shibuya at Loftwork, and there was much rejoicing

Safecast, July 2012, Tokyo

Then I met up with Joi and the posse in Detroit for the first Innovators Guild scouting mission

IGDetroit arrival

Innovators Guild

We visited hacker spaces and urban farms

Mt Elliot Makerspace Panorama #igdetroit

Brother Earth tour

Brother Earth tour

Back in LA, at my own Hacker Space, we celebrated the Mars landing with the 3d printer

3D printed Mars Rover Curiosity

And just that quickly it was August and we were back in Detroit. On the last day of the first trip we met Shaka who offered to show us the real Detroit. Couldn’t miss that.

JG & Shaka

Detroit Aug 2012

We met new people and became friends with people we’d met the first trip, and started thinking about what we really had to offer

Jess & Yousef & Jeff

Jeff & Shaka & Colin

Joe & Christina

Before leaving again we were lucky enough to meet some living legends


Grace Lee Boggs

In September I went to Ireland with Tara and Ripley but managed to not post a single photo on Flickr. I took tons so I’m not sure how that happened, except that Funconf was filled with some heavy Instagram users and it’s possible every photo I took I ended up posting there and never got around to adding them to Flickr as well. Luckily I had copies in my iPhoto so you can still follow along from home.

When we arrived in Dublin we were greeted by some sweet transport.


But turns out DeLorean’s have limited seating, luckily there were party busses on hand.


The busses took us to a train station, where a whole train was reserved for conference attendees


The train took us to Galway, then cars took us to…


A parking lot with helicopters. Yes, this actually happened.


Ripley loves helicopters so this was really too much for him to even digest.


The choppers took us to a windswept island of which 13 of the 16 bed and breakfasts were reserved for us funconf’ers. There’s really no explaining how awesome this was.




Seriously, best event of the year. Maybe decade. Wish you were there!

Back to Detroit in October for the IG event which I also failed to document online outside of instagram it seems. Luckily I had my camera when we toured the now abandoned Packard Plant

Packard Plant - Detroit 2012

Packard Plant - Detroit 2012

Packard Plant - Detroit 2012

Then back to LA to see our good friends Rudy & Casey get hitched. Ripley was the ring sword bearer.


Then we moved, and I threw out the collection of empty coffee bean bags I’d been saving since January. Guess I drink a little bit of coffee.


We spent Halloween at DisneyLand

Disneyland Halloween Party

Disneyland Halloween Party

November started off in a familiar backyard with stories and friends both new and old



Jory Sketching

Then we packed up and flew to London for MozFest


Ripley & Tara / London Nights

Air Mozilla

Family Hackerspace session

And I finally met Catspaw in person


Back in LA I made good on some long time tattoo plans

Jeremy Swan about to get to work

Norm's bench

Note to self

And we got to see an awesome behind the scenes presentation

Yo-Landi & Ninja of Die Antwoord at Meltdown

December started off in Arizona at NewsFoo, where I saw some old friends

Bre + Kio

met some new ones

Brian Fitzpatrick, Dan Sinker, Harper Reed

Had some fantastic conversations



And I finally played Werewolf after successfully avoiding it for 10 years


Then I flew back to LA, grabbed Ripley and booked it to the airport just in time to find out our flight was delayed and we ended up hanging out at the airport for 5 hours

Waiting in the lounge at LAX

But at the last possible second the flight boarded instead of being cancelled, and we were on our way to Vienna to meet up with Tara.

Ripley getting set up in First Class

She had a residency at the MQ so we got to stay there all month. (Interestingly in a full circle kind of way, it was after my own residency in the MQ in 2007 that I decided to start this “year in photos” thing.)


We got to town in time for the last bit of Roboexotica


But with plenty of time to hang out in the city


Ripley catching snowflakes

Vienna streets

We hunted for good coffee

KaffeeKüche - Vienna

POC - Vienna

And Tara was introduced to Punsch.

one of many Christmas villages in Vienna

Which she liked. A lot.

Tara vs Christmas Punsch

Maybe too much.

Tara vs Christmas Punsch

We got a little tree for the apartment and had our own tiny Christmas

Santa just showed up in Wien

I took a day trip to Hamburg for 29c3

29c3 Venue in Hamburg

Where I thought I’d be giving a short talk to a small group of people. Turned out I had an hour headlining slot in this room

So the room at 29c3 where I'm giving the Safecast talk tonight is a little bigger than I'd anticipated

We spent new years in Vienna and then made our way to Paris, but you’ll have to wait till next year for that.

This year I’ve started thinking a lot about what kind of photos I’m taking which has resulted in a lot of self editing which is really obvious when I look back like this. In the earlier posts in this series I was obviously just snapping shots all the time as things happened and now I’m thinking much more about what kind of a photo I want to take, which results in a very different kind of documentation. In a way I kind of miss the old stuff but at the same time I’m happy with the new stuff. I wish there was a way to do both, without mixing them up. I didn’t think about that at all in 2012, which might have been a mistake. Will have to think about it a bit more in 2013…