Sunday, July 20, 2014

Happy anniversary to ASA!


It hardly seems possible that we launched Annie Searle & Associates LLC (ASA) five years ago today.  I have posted some pictures from the launch on the Advice From A Risk Detective website.  Here I wanted to reflect briefly on how much I owe to a large network of colleagues across the globe, who have complementary interests in risk in general;  in how technology has impacted ethics, policy and law, particularly in the workplace; in privacy as subject matter in and of itself; and in security, both the physical and the information aspects. 

Our world is changing rapidly, and so is ASA's.  Initially, we thought most of our practice would be consulting work with an occasional bit of public speaking. In the past three years in particular, that's shifted somewhat to make room for writing books and articles; and for teaching graduate students at the University of Washington's Information School. 

Next month, we'll have a couple of announcements to make, not the least of which has to do with opening a wider access point for those who wish to write on risk-related topics for what will be Volume III of Reflections on Risk.  As of last February, we have published 48 research notes through these volumes.  Another 13 have since been published on our website since Volume II.  I consider this more than satisfactory progress toward beginning to influence how experts think about real world risk, and what solutions might be proposed to better handle them.

As I said, more announcements next month!

Saturday, July 19, 2014

Endless summer!

Early morning light
Summer of the Hydrangeas
Every place beckons the eye
Patriotic pots of flowers

As I read a gardening article by Robin Lane Fox this morning in the Financial Times, called "American Pioneers," that looks at the impact of six US women on landscape design and photography in the early 20th century, I felt extraordinarily lucky to live in Seattle.  We have the Olmsted Brothers to thank for the mature large parks that we enjoy.  Many of us are fortunate enough to have our own spot of garden adjacent to our homes.  I've certainly photographed my own often enough.  It is a source of endless delight to my eyes and hands.

2013 dinner in back garden for Leroy and his graduate seminar

2006, after renovation of the back garden

This is the first morning in several weeks where it has not been 80 degrees or more by noon.  I hope to spend some time this afternoon trimming up things out there.  I think there is no greater sense of accomplishment than to work in your garden.

Thursday, July 10, 2014

In memoriam Diana White Adams

2009 birthday, on the deck

2009 birthday:  her son, Perry Adams (rear), Leroy, Hazard Adams, other friends

Always insightful comments on the world and politics

Using her hands to talk, as usual

2009, to the table

Last summer, birthday dinner.  Diana and her oldest son, Charles.
All Diana's birthdays over our 37 year friendship come to mind's what I wrote last September when she died.

"We arrived at the University of Washington in 1977, the same year that Hazard and Diana Adams arrived from the University of California, Irvine.  As colleagues, Hazard and Leroy went on to edit and update several collections of critical theory; and Diana and I became fast friends.   She read more than I ever could, and was deeply knowledgeable on culture, politics, travel, gardening and history. We celebrated our four birthdays with dinners each of those years, including this past July.  She died on September 6th, 2013. 
Her influence and ideas live on in all of us."

I think of Diana regularly, most often when I am using the gifts she gave us; or in my garden, where there are so many additional evidences of our friendship.