Survey: "How do you read this site? Do you read every word, or do you scan? How many of the links do you click on?"
Glenn Fleishman: Google Causes Spontaneous Sour Grape Fermentation. Right on the money. It's time to do a reality check. It's 2001. Where Is My Data?
I saw Thirteen Days last night. Interesting movie, all about power, politics and technology.
Tim O'Reilly: "Like many others, I was surprised, disturbed, and disappointed by Jim Allchin's comments about open source software development.."
A List Apart: "In six months, a year, or two years at most, all websites will be designed with standards that separate style from content. (Or they will be built with Flash 7.) We can watch our skills grow obsolete, or start learning standards-based techniques now." Hmm..
David Siegel: "How would you like to visit the Louvre with images turned off?"
Larry Ellison: "I think Apple can be the greatest provider of digital appliances in this market. I think Apple's biggest competitor is going to be Sony."
Kuro5in: WaSP urges users to upgrade their browsers.
Solution to yesterday's non-technical puzzle. Californians don't screw in lightbulbs, they screw in hot tubs.
Next question. How many Jewish mothers does it take to screw in a lightbulb? (Answer tomorrow.)
Sunday blogging thoughts
An interesting discussion on WriteTheWeb about exporting data from blogging tools. It gave me ideas about the connection between OPML and blogs. Wouldn't it be nice to edit your whole blog, all the way back to the beginning in a single outline? This would work for some blogs. My programming gears are beginning to grind again. It always takes a few days to get back up to speed after an intense schmooze like the P2P conf
People say great things about Grey Matter, now they have over 500 sites, growing at a fast clip. I'd like to try it out but would rather not install the software on one of our servers at this time. Does anyone have an installation where I could create and edit a Grey Matter blog?
Quote from a Grey Matter user: "Things are mighty different around here, though hopefully you won't notice right away. First and foremost, I've stopped using Blogger to maintain my weblogs. I still like Blogger, but the company's recent collapse made me realize I had to be in control of my own content, no matter how easy Blogger had made things. It turns out that there was the perfect solution: Greymatter. CGI scripts on my own server gives me Blogger-like ease, greater flexibility, and complete ownership of my creation. Nothing against Blogger (I'll still use it for other projects), but it was time for me to move on."
I repeat what I have said so many times, user control of data is very important. The only software and services that will grow, as users get smarter, are the ones that offer user control of data. This, imho, is an integrity issue for our industry, something which any responsible and intelligent user can appreciate, and as the creakiness of our financial and technical foundations are appreciated by the users, they will demand it more and more, and this is a Good Thing.
Also the opportunities to work together have never been greater, and with that will come motion. Blogger, while so many love them, including me (can't speak for the rest of my company on this) has not prioritized working with others. But now with Grey Matter there, it may become more interesting.
Conclusion: We may be close to the first killer app for OPML.
The other side
Now for the other side of the Allchin story. Has there been any activity on the other side, trying to promote Linux and open source as a matter of government policy? I asked Josh Allen for some links.
8/28/00: "I am increasingly coming to the conclusion that the Internet and open-source initiatives are the free marketplace way of dealing with the extremely complex software issues we are facing," said Irving Wladawsky-Berger, an I.B.M. executive and a member of the presidential advisory committee.
9/18/00: "PITAC chairmen Raj Reddy and Irving Wladawsky-Berger wrote in a letter sent to President Clinton last week. 'This open-source approach permits new software to be openly shared and allows users to modify, study or augment the software’s functionality,' they wrote."
10/3/00: "Wladawsky-Berger agreed. 'We are seeing governments around the world embracing open standards. We are seeing governments around the world embrace the Internet and embrace more and more standards, and in particular, Linux is becoming more important for many governments outside the U.S., and even the U.S. government is looking at it very seriously.' Wladawsky-Berger is a co-chairman of the President's Advisory Council on Information Technology."
With this background, Allchin's comments don't seem in left field. Surely, IBM is entitled to its opinion, and also is entitled to lobby governments through the press. But understand that IBM has a financial interest in this, as one of Microsoft's largest OEMs. If Linux were to replace Microsoft, they save money on licenses and undermine a major competitor. That Microsoft would have something to say about this is neither surprising or unfair.
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