Scott Rosenberg wonders what's the big deal with Orkut. Lots of people are wondering, me too. Like Scott, this is the first one I've joined, although I've been invited countless times to join Friendster, LinkedIn, etc etc. Like David Weinberger, I'm not impressed. It's a puzzle, why would Google bother with this? Well, first, it doesn't have to be very useful for Google to try it out. They've launched lots of speculative services that have failed to find users. This one is finding users. So what can they do with it? Easy. It's their identity system. At some point they'll add a web services interface so our comment systems can connect to their back-end to validate users. Now you can go to one place to see all your comments. Then it gets better. Give it your credit card info, and then when you go to an Orkut-enabled e-commerce site, you can have one-click ordering (modulo a certain patent). Think about all the relationships Google has with sites that run their ads. Even I run their ads on one of my sites, and it's a pretty good deal, that one site pays for the bandwidth on all my sites. Anyway, that's a ramble. The net-net -- it's Google's identity system, and if you trust them, it can be yours too.
Michael Watkins: On Not Getting Tenure.
A new validator for RSS. I worked on this app with Andrew Grumet, it's based on the open source feed validator written in Python.
ActiveRenderer 2.0 has lots of new features.
Ted Goranson: Outliner User Interfaces.
For the record, I missed Janet Jackson's breast because I was writing something at halftime yesterday. Women's breasts are great. I think there should be a requirement that all women bare their breasts if they want to when they're on television. It should be a choice thing. I'm pro-choice. It might be more comfortable. It's unbelievable that Michael Powell is having a hissy fit over this. More breasts, not less. That's my opinion.
Dan Gillmor: "A farting horse?"
NY Times: "Did Mr. Kerry, class of 66, and Mr. Bush, class of 68, know each other at Yale?"
David Weinberger: "I am finding Orkut to be all maintenance and no value."
Andrew Grumet: "At BloggerCon this October several people noted an irony in the Dean campaign budget: they were rewarding the Internet, which had helped them raise unprecedented amounts of money in small contributions, by pouring the war chest right back into television."
All the Super Bowl ads on one page.
John Palfrey: "I couldn't figure out why it wasn't an issue ad."
Michael Gartenberg: "Steve Ballmer doing a Dean Scream?"
AP: "Downloading music online from rogue file-sharing networks got 14-year-old Annie Leith sued for thousands of dollars. Now it has landed her a leading spot on a national ad that will debut during the Super Bowl."
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