My unique holiday tradition: a ‘swag sale’


I have a unique holiday tradition: I hold a yearly Pioneer Press “swag sale” for charity.

“Swag” refers to the books, music, movies, tech gadgets and other products sent to the paper for review. This stuff piles up over the course of the year, and I’m in charge of organizing it, boxing it up and putting it in storage.

Then, just before or just after Thanksgiving, I haul it out, spread it onto long tables, and sell it off to fellow staffers and the occasional outsider.

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Bucket-list item, check: I’m on Macworld


As long as I’ve been a Macintosh user, I’ve been a Macworld reader.

That’s about a quarter century of reading – and I do mean reading.

I would obsessively digest every print issue cover to cover, not once, but two or three times, and then lovingly tuck it into a bookcase for future reference.

Macworld had a hallowed place in my nerdy childhood and early adulthood, alongside kids’ magazines like Boy’s Life and the Argentine Billiken, and science-fiction magazines like Analog and Isaac Asimov’s Science Fiction Magazine.

But I wanted more.

As long as I’ve been a Macworld reader, I’ve wanted to be a Macworld writer.

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Minnov8 has a bit of fun at my expense


Minnov8 writes:

We are huge fans of the tech reporting done by Julio Ojeda-Zapata, so we couldn’t help but chuckle at his characterization of Target’s mascot dog “Bullseye” as an “adorable doggie mascot.” Never missing a chance to poke fun, we ended up with his perspective as our show title, while taking a few liberties with our own characterization of that “adorable” doggie!

Oh, you guys …

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Google Street View chronicles my ‘hood

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The camera-equipped Google cars that take Street View pictures make passes through my neighborhood every few years.

Google’s most-recent foray occurred last summer, and I barely missed the car as it drove in front of my house. My wife alerted me to this fact minutes later, and I tried to catch up with the car for a look-see, but I never found it.

Since then, I’ve checked Google Maps every few weeks to see if the Street View photos had been updated.

This finally happened.

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I show holiday tech on KARE 11 Sunrise

I appeared on KARE-11 Sunrise with Kim Insley this morning to show off a few tech gadgets that make your life a bit easier during the holidays and thereafter.

More info here.

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I’m Julio Ojeda-Zapata, a nerd, boricua and tech writer living in St. Paul, Minn. This is my personal site.
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