Category: Travel

Moose and bear – the perils of Vermont highways

C85C451D-5899-4D2A-BCA3-F37350C76ADB“BEAR CROSSING - STAY ALERT”  The bright yellow sign shouts its warning to me from the side of Interstate 91. I am in the middle of Vermont. There are few people here. Most of the time I-91 has walls of trees on either side, occasionally broken by amazing mountain views  or scenic views of small towns. 

And so we are warned of bears and... moose!


I have seen the photos of damage caused by moose. You have a 2,000 pound animal on thin, spindley legs. Knock out the legs and the main bulk of the body comes crashing down on you! New Hampshire has regular warnings about the number of people who have died due to moose collisions up in the northern part of the state. 

Bears, though, are new. Not sure what I would do if I saw one.  😬

A Nice Interactive Map of Visited Countries (That Doesn’t Require a Login or Tracking)

Visited countries amcharts oct2016

Recently a friend on a social network posted a map of the countries where he'd traveled. Being someone who loves maps, I had to check it out. Created by the people at Amcharts, presumably to showcase what their Javascript libraries could do, what *I* like about it is something very simple:

Using the map doesn't require me to login or deal with any tracking info.

All that is required is to add the country codes on to the URL. Here's what I mean - this is my list of visited countries (as of August 2016):,BE,BG,CH,CZ,DE,DK,FI,FR,GB,IE,IT,ME,NL,PL,UA,RU,CA,CR,GL,MX,US,AR,BR,CO,DJ,EG,MA,ZA,CN,IN,SG

You can see there all the country codes.

But that's it. I can bookmark that URL. I can copy and paste it. I can modify it.

There's no other login or anything required.

Over the years, I've tried a few other map sites like this one, but often they seem to require you to login to copy the map. Or they had a cryptic URL that basically made it so you had to post it to Facebook using their particular code ... or something like that.

(Now, this site does have sharing buttons out to social media, but I can choose NOT to use them and just share the URL directly.)

Kudos to the Amcharts team for making this available - and making it easy to have a URL you can use and share.

And yes, clearly you can see that I haven't visited a whole lot of the Southern Hemisphere ...

P.S. They also have a "Visited (US) States" map, but mine would be boring as I've been to all 50 states...

Heading to Marrakech for ICANN 55 and Africa DNS Forum 2016

Marrakech flickr sofianeb 6277422540 776pxAt about noon today I'll head out of Keene, NH, towards Boston's Logan airport to start what will be about 23 hours of travel bringing me to Marrakech, Morocco. I land tomorrow (Friday, 4 March) around 4:00pm local time and then after getting settled in that evening will dive directly into the Africa DNS Forum at 8:30am Saturday morning.

It's going to be a crazy week!

I wrote about all the activities I'll be part of in this post:

I will be giving five different presentations during the week, all of which will be live streamed and recorded. Naturally I'll be participating in a good number of other sessions.

These are all part of a larger set of meetings that we at the Internet Society will be engaged in during the week at both ICANN 55 and the Africa DNS Forum. There are some very large "Internet governance" issues that will be at play this week, as my colleague Konstantinos Komaitis wrote about:

Tuesday, March 8th, is also International Women’s Day, and we’ll be publishing content around the excellent work of women in the world of technology.

We have a significant amount of communication being planned around all of these different events, sessions and announcements.

Being part of the Internet Society Communications team, I will be heavily involved in creating a good bit of our content and distributing it out over our social channels. All of that will be visible publicly here: 

and of course on my own personal social network channels.

It’s going to be a busy time.  One question people have asked me is:

Will you get to see anything of Marrakech?

The answer, sadly, is... probably NOT.

As typically happens at events like this, I'm going to land at the airport in Marrakech and be transported by a driver to a "hotel compound" outside of Marrakech. The Palmeraie Conference Center is a big place with multiple hotels and all sorts of restaurants... a golf course, pools, etc.

The sad reality is that I will probably spend my entire week there within the compound in the conference rooms until I leave for my flight home on the afternoon of Thursday, March 10. I understand there is some kind of "gala" social event.. but again it may be in the same compound.

We'll see... some of the photos online seem amazing... hopefully I'll get a chance somewhere in there.

I'm excited about the events that will be happening at the meetings at Marrakech and looking forward to meeting many of the people there.

If you are going to be there in Marrakech for either ICANN 55 or the Africa DNS Forum, please do say hello!

And if you are not, but are interested in what is going on at the events, please see our event pages to find the live streams to participate remotely:

So here I go... on the road to Marrakech....

Image credit: Sofiane BELGHALI on Flickr CC BY NC

Video For All Those Parents Who Travel: "While I Was Away" by Pat Green

For all of those parents like me who travel a good bit, singer Pat Green recently put out this very well-done and quite touching video, "While I Was Away":

I'd honestly never heard of Pat Green before, but a work colleague shared the link on an internal forum. My work takes me away from my wife and kids for about 25% of the time ... so about 80-90 days a year... and it's definitely very hard on all of us. I'm thankful my job doesn't take me away more, as some of the other professions do. But each time I'm away, I do think of all the things they are learning and doing while I'm not there.

Beautiful song...

My Frustration With Privacy Screens For My MacBook Pro

PrivacyscreenI find privacy screens frustrating, yet necessary. As I prepare to head to Buenos Aires for the ICANN 53 meeting I was reminded by a thread on Facebook that I should re-install my privacy screen on my 15" MacBook Pro. It's not that I have anything in particular to hide... it's just that when I'm sitting in chairs surrounded by people on all sides of me I don't particularly want people next to me reading whatever it is I have on my screen.

My frustration is that it seems that the only real provider for a MacBook Pro is 3M (here's a search on Amazon) and the problem is simply this...

It's very hard to take the privacy screen on and off!

For whatever reason... perhaps the limited space on the edge of the screen... perhaps customer frustration with past implementations... 3M makes the privacy screen go all the way to the edge of the display and then has you mount it using a double-sided tape. There are no clips or anything that you slide your screen in to. You tape it on to the MBP screen.

Now... IN THEORY... you are supposed to be able to take the privacy screen on and off multiple times. The tape is supposed to keep working.

In practice, I've found that you can remove the screen and replace it... but only a couple of times.

After that... the tape loses its stickiness and the screen starts falling off.

With a previous laptop, this was fine. I mounted a privacy screen on the laptop and pretty much never took it off. It worked fine.

However, with this laptop, I've been in several situations where I wound up needing to give a presentation to a small group of people without a projector and so I needed to take the privacy screen off so that people could gather around and see the presentation. Additionally, I had a couple of situations at home where I wanted to have multiple people look at my laptop.

The end result is that the privacy screen no longer sticks to the MBP.

Now, 3M did provide a few extra strips of tape when I bought the screen... but I have no clue where I put those strips of tape.

My solution right now is to just apply a couple of pieces of regular clear tape to hold the screen in place. It works... although it doesn't look all that pretty.

What do any other MacBook Pro owners do for privacy screens?

Do you have another vendor of privacy screens you like? Do you just leave the screen always on? Do you keep re-applying the tape? Have you found a way to have clips on the side?

Heading To Singapore for ICANN 52

I'm sitting in Newark airport (EWR) right now in the midst of a 5-hour layover waiting for a United flight that will take me to the other side of the world... quite literally! UA 179 flies directly from Newark to Hong Kong... for 16 hours in the air!

After that I'll have another 4 hours of travel time from Hong Kong down to Singapore... getting me in there about 1:40am Sunday morning, February 8, 2015.

With the funky aspects of timezones, I will be losing "Saturday" almost completely except for the hour or so I will be on the ground in Hong Kong.

Here is what the flight looks like on the Great Circle Mapper, complete with my return trip back through Tokyo:

Great circle singapore icann52

(With the usual non-intuitive notion (to me) that we are flying north over the North Pole to get to the other side of the planet. My brain always thinks I should fly west... but north is actually shorter.)

I'm off to Singapore for the 52nd meeting of the Internet Corporation of Assigned Names and Numbers, better known as "ICANN". ICANN is the nonprofit organization that oversees the world of domain names and the Domain Name System(DNS) and I have a specific interest in how we secure the DNS. I'll be there primarily for a series of activities related to DNSSEC that I describe here:

There are a great number of other activities happening there, too, and one of my colleagues outlined some of the items related to public-policy:

I will of course be monitoring those issues as well. I expect to be doing some writing from Singapore for multiple sites... and probably some video and audio as well.

I've had the privilege of being able to visit Singapore twice before and have been impressed by what a beautiful city it is. I took some photos on my first trip there that I posted to a set on Flickr:

Singapore flickr album

You'll notice how the grove of "supertrees" captured my attention. Here's one of my favorite photos from that set:


The supertree grove is a rather surreal (and unreal) place to visit - definitely worth seeing! I don't know if I'll be able to get there on this trip... my schedule is extremely packed... but we'll see.

It should be a good week.

P.S. And talk about temperature changes... it was -10F (-23C) when I left Keene, NH, this morning and it will be near 88F (30C) during the day in Singapore!

I recorded an audio commentary about this trip:

Flying Around The Globe (Literally)

As someone who enjoys maps, globes and all things related to geography, I found it kind of cool this morning to realize that my travel this weekend to ICANN 49 in Singapore (to be involved with activities related to DNSSEC (DNS Security)) will take me "around the world" in a somewhat literal manner. I will start off flying east from Boston to London and on to Singapore - and then will return flying east to Hong Kong and then to Chicago and back to Boston.

Of course, as the "Great Circle Mapper" site reminded me, my "circle" may not be quite as round as I was thinking it would be because the flights will probably take the northern route shown on this awesome image below: Great Circle Mapper 2

Still, it is rather fun to see that this trip will go in some kind of loop around the world.

I talked about this in one of my "The Dan York Report" podcasts this morning:

I mentioned a "write-on" globe that I use to show where I will be traveling for my kids. While I bought it at the headquarters of Delorme Maps up in Freeport, Maine, the globe itself turns out to be made by Replogle as the "Geographer Globe". You can probably find it in stores that sell globes or on various online sites. Here is one link to buy it on[1], although you may be able to find it at other places for less.

It's been fun to use that globe to give my family a sense of where I am going.

It also serves to remind me of just how long I'm going to be in airborne metal tubes! :-(

[1] In full disclosure, this link to Amazon is an "associate" link. If you were to actually purchase the globe, I would make a tiny amount of money for the referral. If you think that has any influence on my writing about it, you obviously don't know me well. :-)

Walking In Red Square – Reflections Of A Child Of The 1970s

Dan moscow 1I was born in the late 1960's and grew up in the U.S. in the 70's and 80's when the Russians were the enemy. When the Soviet Union was the evil empire bent on the destruction of freedom, democracy and everything we held dear. When calling someone a "Russki" was an insult and when the news media routinely showed images of the Soviet military parades in Red Square. When we were sure that the Kremlin was sending spies into our country to steal all our secrets and would do whatever it could to destroy our lifestyle.

And when the doctrine of "mutually assured destruction" meant that we didn't practice hiding under desks, as our parents might have, because we all knew that if the Soviets launched their missiles, we'd launch ours and the world as we knew it would end. (How many movies were made on this theme in the early 80s?)

Of course, the only "Russians" we really knew of were the evil villians of the James Bond movies and countless spy thrillers... or the state-sponsored "super athletes" that we saw in the Olympic Games and who we understood to be intent on showing how Communism was so much better and would triumph over Capitalism.

In many ways it was a much simpler world-view.

The Russians were the enemy.

Kremlin wallsI thought of all this tonight as I strolled along through Red Square taking photos. Drinking in the magnificent beauty of St. Basil's Cathedral. Taking photos of the walls of the Kremlin. Stopping to look at Lenin's Tomb.

How could I ever have even remotely imagined that I would someday be here?

Moscow... Red Square!


Granted, we were also the generation that watched as glasnost and perestroika took hold in the Soviet Union under the reins of Mikhail Gorbachev. We saw the Berlin Wall fall. We saw the opposition under Boris Yeltsin. We saw the Soviet Union dissolve and simply cease... to... exist. We saw multiple nations and economies emerge.

StbasilWe watched as the story we'd been telling and retelling for so long was shattered into a million shards... to be reborn anew into new stories of new nations... of a new worldview... of new threats... of new powers.

It's been 20 years now since Russia was reborn, and no sooner do you arrive than you immediately understand that this is a vibrant market economy full of energy and full of passion. I've had the privilege of spending the last two days in a room full of technologists and business people, of marketers and politicians ... all focused on how to make the Internet more capable within Russia and the surrounding countries. To make the Internet faster, better, safer, more secure, more powerful... and more open. It's been an outstanding event where I've both learned a great deal and met some truly remarkable people.

Yet still... I am a product of my childhood.

As I went for a morning run looping down through Red Square this morning... and then walked back there tonight... I could not help but be utterly amazed by how our world has changed. How different it is today from those decades ago.

Alas, I will not get to explore more. This was my typical business trip where I took a taxi from the airport to the hotel, spent two days inside a hotel and now will leave in a few hours to go back to the airport to fly home. My morning run and evening walk were the only times I got to see anything beyond the hotel walls.

But I have learned much from this visit - and would welcome the opportunity to return.

Perhaps there was no greater sign of the change in Russia... at least for those of us grew up in the 70's and 80's and can appreciate the exquisite irony... than this, an advertisement for the latest James Bond film, prominently displayed on the sidewalk in Moscow:

Jamesbond moscow

Our world has indeed changed. And this is a good thing.