Eric Grunau

Eric Grunau

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Girl meets boy. Girl becomes engaged to boy. The world is overtaken by a deadly virus.This is not how I thought my love story would go. But here we are, holed up in our apartment with our dog, our health, and a looming wedding date.I met my future husband in the housing section of Craigslist in San Francisco seven years ago. I was 22 and looking for any bedroom, a dilapidated studio, a dining room with a curtain... whatever would have me.An apartment with a friend (the friend who will be marrying us!) had fallen through at the last minute. Jerrod, my fiancé, was 25 and hurriedly leaving New York City for a job in the Bay Area. I’d made the same move three years earlier, but for school. In a competitive rental market, neither of us could find a bedroom that wasn’t snatched up instantly. In desperation, he responded to my generic ad for a roommate. His was the only email I replied to.Hi!So I went into the housing wanted section of craigslist to post a frantic housing request and I saw your ad. I am also looking for move-in by 8/1. This is a long shot. I thought I would email you to see if you would be interested in urgently finding a two bedroom?Something about those words: This is a long shot. The rest of the email is mine to keep, hidden safely from view like a hermit crab tucked in its shell. But it moved me. He linked to his Facebook and LinkedIn profiles so I could be sure he was who he claimed to be. I liked the look of him with his short, dark hair. His near smile. The email made me laugh. None of the others had.The next night we met for pizza and beer at a place that no longer exists. I was still wearing one of the only blazers I owned for work — grey, soft, cheap — a caricature of a functional adult with a temp job and only impending student loan debt. He ran late because of the train and texted me politely, racing into the restaurant on his skinny legs, dressed almost entirely in black, save for a well worn band T-shirt that lives on in our closet today.We were both escaping doomed relationships, his infinitely more complicated than mine. But when you’re looking for a roommate, all that really matters is that their at-home values match yours and they have good-enough credit. He checked those boxes. He was originally from Ohio, and his voice went down an octave when he said it, like mine does when I say I’m from Long Island.It wasn’t love at first sight. It’s more that I felt relieved. He gave me the familiar feeling of coming home after a long time gone. I figured I was just missing New York. We spent a lot of time together over the next week while we searched for our eventual apartment in the Outer Sunset. Instagram tagged the location as The Edge of the Western World. My bedroom was the “bonus room,” with no fewer than three doors on three of the four walls; his was the street-noisy master bedroom.Things happen. Your roommate is cuter than you’d expected. Your roommate likes the things you like. Your roommate buys you a Transformer for Christmas because you’ve always wanted one. (Megatron has a special place on one of our bookshelves.)I don’t think either of us believed we could evolve into something more than an attraction, a too-close friendship, simply because ... we were an accident. But what couple isn’t? Some meet in high school. Others meet in college. Maybe you meet at work. At the bookstore. At a concert. At a bar. On an app. Through friends. At a destination wedding. Whatever it is, that plot point we call fate (if we’re romantics) or coincidence (if we’re skeptics), I think something inside me always knew Jerrod was someone I wanted to keep — in any capacity. We decided to be together, an official first date about six months into living together. He dressed up. I had carnitas.We moved from our two-bedroom at the beach to a one-bedroom on a high hill in San Francisco. After a few years, we moved back to New York together. We adopted our dog, also from the internet (though not from Craigslist). Like other couples, we weathered things, like painful dental procedures (mine), back-to-back flus, family deaths and estrangements, student loans (mine), a money pit of a car (his). Jerrod became a fixture in my life as ordinary-extraordinary as a smoke alarm, and as present. For all our days and nights spent together, I was still myself: a product of an especially difficult divorce, unsettled by comfort. But so was Jerrod.When he proposed after dinner on our sixth anniversary, in a hotel suite with a view, an antique ring in a bright box, I didn’t cry; I yelled like my team had won the game. My chest felt electric.When he proposed after dinner on our sixth anniversary, in a hotel suite with a view, an antique ring in a bright box, I didn’t cry; I yelled like my team had won the game. My chest felt electric. It seems an odd thing to point out, but you have to understand: I always imagined I would cry, hands to my face, all ugly, wonderful sweetness, like a movie. Right? But my favorite movie is ”Moonstruck,” and when Nic Cage proposes to Cher at the breakfast table, she doesn’t cry either. And now I understand.Love is the best thing we do. It takes on so many shapes throughout the course of our lives. But for most of us, it takes a long time to build a life worth living, and that’s what I was most focused on all those years. Every single person I spoke to after we got engaged assumed I knew it was coming — that night, on our anniversary. But I didn’t. I knew it was coming at all; we’d talked about it in specific terms, not abstract ones. We didn’t have (don’t have!) much money, but we’re fortunate. We have each other, our dog, some savings, our mutual joys. This is a long shot is what I thought about the whole thing, because let’s be honest: Getting married is expensive in general, and especially if you live where we live and you don’t go to City Hall.Less than two months later, Covid-19 arrived and New York was declared a state of emergency. My mother (who lives in New York City as well) set to work making mask after mask for us, and for everyone she knows. Jerrod started working from home — indefinitely. Our dog was thrilled to have us here, perpetually, competing with him for space on the couch. We crept closer to the date we’d set aside for a summer wedding shower ... and quietly canceled it. Our tasting was canceled. The only thing we booked, before the pandemic was a known threat, was our venue. I envisioned our 2021 winter wedding as a big cocktail party in a bookstore, with my original Craigslist roommate Jessie flying in from California to marry us in a book-backed nook with tealights.As we slogged into summer, blessed with only headaches and body aches anyone could call fatigue and anxiety — and not necessarily the virus — I bought a few small, hopeful things: a cake topper, a ring box, and some signs for the party. But I felt it disappearing before me. I couldn’t see a future state with a large group in an enclosed space, even as people told me: January? It’ll all be fine by then. When you get married, you probably want to be able to hug your friends and family without holding your breath.We’re not planning to have children. (The pandemic didn’t change that ... though it wouldn’t be unreasonable to think it helped cement it.) We’re not saving for a house. We’re two people with two incomes, who’ve been able to get through this pandemic largely unscathed. In New York City, no less! The wedding, the party of it, is the one flashy dream I’d had for us as a couple. Because we were roommates first, we never moved in together in the traditional sense. There were milestones that slipped by unseen simply because they weren’t obvious. But not everyone gets to have a wedding, and even fewer get the wedding of their dreams. There are losses far greater, hardships that cut far deeper, than postponing or cancelling a party.So we decided that, whatever happens, we’ll get married on our date this winter. The party can wait. Everything else can wait. The one miracle I see when I look into the mostly terrifying, gloom-and-doom future we’ve all been saddled with is this: we’re getting married to each other. We can have our second start. The wedding is not the marriage. I miss everyone, I do, but if I had to captain a boat with only room for one other person, it would be Jerrod (so long as he agrees to bring the dog). All of life is a long shot, and I don’t want to miss any of it.This article first appeared on HuffPost PersonalMore from HuffPost UK Personal I’ve Started Dating Someone While In Self-Isolation. Here’s How It's Going I’m Agoraphobic. This Is How I’m Coping With Lockdown Ending I Can’t Believe I’m Saying This, But I Missed My Commute
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Palantir recorded a loss of $580 million in 2019, TechCrunch and The New York Times both reported Friday. Palantir had total revenues of roughly $742 million last year, a 25% jump from 2018, according to the reports — one of the first glimpses at the secretive data company's financials. The documents reportedly showed that Palantir is increasingly reliant on government contracts, making around half of its revenue from government work, despite recent efforts to grow its business with private companies. Palantir, which has raised more than $3 billion, confidentially filed for a public stock listing last month, and private investors have valued the company at $20 billion. Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories. Documents leaked Friday offered one of the first looks into the financials of secretive data company Palantir. According to recent draft copies of Palantir's S-1 statement obtained by TechCrunch and The New York Times, the company had net losses of nearly $580 million in 2019, roughly the same as the year prior. Palantir brought in $742.5 million in revenue last year, an approximately 25% jump from 2018, and had expenses of slightly more than $1 billion, roughly a 2% increase, The New York Times reported. Palantir did not respond to a request for comment on this story. Palantir was founded in 2003, but has reportedly not yet managed to turn a profit, even as the company prepares to go public following a wave of unprofitable tech companies that had unsuccessful IPOs last year. The company filed its paperwork for a public listing with the SEC last month, but the paperwork is still confidential, and not yet available to the public. The company is expected to go public through a direct listing, in which the company does not raise any capital, rather than through a traditional initial public stock offering. Palantir has raised more than $3 billion total, according to data from PitchBook, and private investors have valued it at around $20 billion. TechCrunch reported that the company has had a slightly better start to 2020, with $481 million in revenue for the first six months of the year, a 49% jump from the same period last year, while operating expenses dropped to 107% of total revenue compared with 157% for the first half of 2019, though the number is still high for a company of Palantir's age. Despite its efforts to land more private sector business, Palantir's share of revenue from government contracts jumped from 45% in 2019 to 53.5% during the first half of 2020, according to TechCrunch, suggesting that the company is becoming increasingly reliant on its work with the government. Even though Palantir spent 61% of revenue on sales and marketing in 2019 in hopes of acquiring new business, according to TechCrunch, The New York Times reported that around one-third of its revenue came from just three customers, which the company listed as a potential liability moving forward. Palantir has also frequently come under fire from civil rights groups and data privacy proponents who have criticized its government work. The company's technology has been used by immigration officials to conduct controversial raids on immigrants and its data collection contracts with health agencies have sparked concerns among lawmakers about whether it's being used for other purposes.Join the conversation about this story » NOW WATCH: How waste is dealt with on the world's largest cruise ship
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Photo by Becca Farsace / The Verge Google is adding a number of new features to its Pixel Buds today — and also addressing the cutout / disconnect issues that some early buyers have experienced. The latest firmware update should decrease “instances of cut-outs during calls” and have “better auto-recovery when one or both earbuds lose connection.” A new transcribe mode is designed to translate long speeches directly into your ears, which is ideal for if you’re listening to a lecture or speech where a single person is speaking in a language you don’t understand. The Pixel Buds have always supported a translation feature, but this transcribe mode is designed for one-way translation instead of conversations back and forth, and it’s a more discrete way to translate using the... Continue reading…
Natalie Barbu, a social-media influencer and YouTube creator with 282,000 subscribers, shared how much money she earns from a video with 100,000 views. Many YouTube creators earn money through YouTube's Partner Program, which allows them to monetize their channels with video ads placed by Google. Barbu told Business Insider that on average, a video with 100,000 views will earn her between $500 to $1,000, and that depends on factors like how many ads she includes in a video, viewer demographic, and overall watch time.  She broke down her tips for maximizing the amount of money a YouTube creator could earn from a single video.  Subscribe to Business Insider's influencer newsletter: Influencer Dashboard. This is the latest installment of Business Insider's YouTube money logs, where creators break down how much they earn. How much money a YouTube creator will earn from a video with 100,000 views varies, but there are some key factors that can help boost the video's ad revenue.  Many YouTube creators earn money through YouTube's Partner Program, which allows them to monetize their channels with video ads placed by Google. Creators with at least 1,000 subscribers and 4,000 watch hours in the past year are eligible to apply and start monetizing their channels through ads, subscriptions, and channel memberships. These ads will make a certain amount of money depending on factors like a video's watch time, length, and viewer demographic. Natalie Barbu, a social-media influencer and YouTube creator with 282,000 subscribers, posts weekly videos to YouTube about her day-to-day life experiences. On average, Barbu's videos earn between $200 and $500, she told Business Insider in February.  YouTube pays Barbu through direct deposit once a month. After she receives the money, she will save a portion for taxes and she has a separate bank account where she keeps her tax money. In 2019, she earned around $46,000 from the ads that play in her YouTube videos. She kept a consistent upload schedule the entire year, and she would post videos either twice a week, or sometimes three times a week, depending on her schedule. Barbu has more than 20 videos with over 100,000 views uploaded to her YouTube channel. She told Business Insider that her college-move-in vlog, featuring her helping her younger sister move to school, earned her $600 in three weeks. On average, she said a video with around 100,000 views will earn her between $500 and $1,000, depending on how many ads she includes in the video. For example, a similar video in views from a few years ago earned her only around $100 because she included only one ad. Barbu broke down what factors she pays attention to for maximizing the amount of money she earns from a single video and her tips for success.  How Barbu got started on YouTube  Barbu started her YouTube channel about eight years ago, while she was in high school. She'd post videos talking about fashion and beauty as an after-school hobby, long before she knew she could be earning any money from the platform, she said. Barbu graduated with an engineering degree from NC State University and said while she was attending college, she began to take her channel more seriously. She would post one video to her channel a week about her college life experiences and what it was like to be a girl studying engineering, she said.  After college, she landed a 9-to-5 job and kept up with her YouTube channel at the same time. After a year of working for a company and on her personal brand, Barbu decided to pursue YouTube full time, since she was earning more money from her digital business than her traditional job, she said.  Today, Barbu films vlog-style content for her channel, sharing her day-to-day life with her followers. In terms of overall income, Barbu she said she earns the most from brand sponsorships, through promoting products on her YouTube channel and Instagram page, and, below that, from Google-placed ads (AdSense). How to maximize your revenue  Advertisers will pay more for an informative, business-related video than a vlog-style video, Barbu said. The rate will also depend on seasonality, with lower advertising budgets at the start of the year, and higher ones toward the end. In an interview with Business Insider, YouTube creator Shelby Church said she has earned between $2,000 and $5,000 from a video with 1 million views on YouTube. She said two important factors to look at when maximizing how much you'll earn are the length of a video (which will allow you to add more ads) and the overall watch time.  Barbu said in her experience, she's maximized the revenue she earns from Google AdSense by lengthening her videos to 10 minutes long, which as a result, allows her to include more ads. She said on average, she'll include about four ads on a single video that's over 10 minutes long: one preroll ad at the start of the video, two in the video, and one post-roll ad (the ad after the video is finished).  "I make all of my videos over 10 minutes long because I feel like if not, it's a wasted opportunity," she said. "My average viewer retention is around four or five minutes. I'll always try to place an ad before then around the three-minute mark because I want most people to watch that second ad."  The key, she said, is to place an ad before your viewers will typically "drop off" or click off from your video. Creators have access to the stats and metrics of their channels through YouTube's creator studio and dashboard.  "I've noticed that if I have too long of an intro, where I am talking for way too long about one specific thing, people will drop off more because people have short attention spans," she said. "In vlogs, people want to see you doing things, they don't want to watch you talk for five minutes about the same thing." This article was originally published on September 10 and has been updated to reflect changes in Barbu's influencer business. Watch Barbu walk us through how she makes money on YouTube: CRASH COURSE: An influencer explains how YouTube ads work, her advice for making more money, and how much she earnsSEE ALSO: CRASH COURSE: An influencer explains how YouTube ads work, her advice for making more money, and how much she earns Join the conversation about this story » NOW WATCH: We tested a machine that brews beer at the push of a button
You probably know Katherine Ryan best for her rip-roaring stand-up gigs, or her appearances on panel shows like 8 Out Of 10 Cats, Mock The Week and QI – but her latest project sees her embarking on something a little different. The comedian is set to star in new Netflix sitcom The Duchess, which she has also written and executive produced. After the first trailer for the series dropped this week, fans have been getting excited about its arrival on the streaming service next month, so here’s everything we can tell you about it...First off, what is The Duchess actually about?Katherine’s debut scripted series follows what Netflix describes as the “powerful and problematic choices of a fashionably disruptive single mom living in London”.Her daughter, Olive, is her greatest love, and she goes about seeking a sperm donor when she decides she wants a second child. However, when things don’t work out as she’d planned, she debates a second child with her greatest enemy, Olive’s dad, with whom she strikes a £10,000 deal.Can two wrongs make another right?Katherine plays a “heightened version” of herselfKatherine has spoken previously of bringing up her daughter as a single parent in London, and her character in The Duchess draws upon her experiences. Speaking to the Radio Times earlier this year, she said: “The Duchess is super authentic I think to my personality, to my stage persona, because it’s a disruptive mum who’s a bad person but a good mum.“She’s fashionable, she loves being a mother, she’s not sad about it — it’s me, yes.“The rest is fiction, but it is a heightened version of me, and I’m really lucky because they’re just letting me go and write the real thing that I would have wanted to.”Who else stars in it?As you already know, Katherine takes the lead in The Duchess, and while you might think it’s her first acting role, she has actually made prior appearances in sitcoms Campus and Episodes.Peaky Blinders star Rory Keenan plays her ex, Shep, who is a former member of a boyband, while their daughter Olive is played by child actor Kate Byrne.The Duchess also stars comedian Michelle De Swarte as Katherine’s friend Bev, Australian comic Steen Raskopoulos as Katherine’s boyfriend Evan and Smack The Pony’s Doon Mackichan as her ex’s new partner.How many episodes are there?The series is made up of six episodes, each 25 minutes long.When does The Duchess debut?All six episodes will begin streaming on Netflix from Friday 11 September. Watch The Duchess trailer...MORE ENTERTAINMENT: Pitch Perfect's Barden Bellas Reunite With New Beyoncé Cover For A Good Cause Carole Baskin Responds To Tiger King Season 2 Rumours As She Dismisses I'm A Celeb Claims Former Game Of Thrones Star Charles Dance Admits He Would Sign Petition To Re-Write Divisive Finale
Google might be about to disrupt the business card — and it’s starting with a trial in India. In a new blog post, the company announced it’s rolling out its ‘people cards’ across the country. It’s like a business card that will appear on top of Search when someone looks up your name. Google first began trialing the feature about six months ago, and it seems it’s finally ready to make it more widely available. Up until now, you could only find detailed information about celebs and well-known public figures on Search, but the latest change will make it possible for… This story continues at The Next WebOr just read more coverage about: Google
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In a new editorial, the Duke of Sussex calls on social media platforms, policy makers and advertisers to do more to combat online hate and misinformation.
Yes, you read it right. The Aviar R67 is a Tesla Model S underneath. However, Russian EV maker Aviar has fitted it with the body style of Ford’s iconic first-gen Mustang fastback. Or, you can think of it as a Mustang EV that goes faster than Tesla’s Model S sedan, but you get the drift. All we know is the … Continue reading
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