Thursday, March 31, 2005
MSN Spaces Updates: "A list of Spaces that have updated in the last hour, as reported by Microsoft to weblogs.com." Ping!
Starbucks coffee notes podcast, actually done in the morning, featuring the authors of Micro Persuasion, Hacking Netflix, Orbit Cast and Scripting News. Random stuff, kind of memorable, New York blogging, public relations, gnoing to Gnomedex, OPML.
Five years ago: The Two Way Web White Board.
This morning I listened to a Ron Bloom and Adam Curry podcast where they try to explain what they're doing. "Take a break from reality."
The Internet Society of Puerto Rico appreciates RSS.
Regarding yesterday's test cases, I got quite a few comments about the second scenario, where I propose that I become the author of Cory Doctorow's web-published novel, offer it for sale, and seek distribution.
The uniform response was that since Cory's book is offered under the Creative Commons attribution share-alike license, I am not "permitted" to change the author's name, or charge for the right to a copy. I put the word permitted in quotes, because the responders haven't explained why Cory's work is so-protected and my work, which is offered under a standard copyright, isn't.
In other words, the responders think there is a line. Aha! There are some things one is not allowed to do with another person's work. They said not only is it possible for Cory to opt-out of my creative rip-and-burn act of 21st Century artistry, but it actually requires Cory to opt-in! Well well well.
Does this perhaps ring a bell?
And since I haven't heard from Cory, I still wonder if it's okay with him that I republish his work for money and claim authorship of it, since I know he doesn't believe in opt-in or out. I believe his philosophy is "Tough shit."
Also, I haven't heard from the EFF about the proposal that they let me filter eff.org, replacing links, author's names, correct spelling, and edit their copy to be more agreeable to the entertainment industry.
Wednesday, March 30, 2005
I'm participating in a debate about blogs and the media next Tues in NY.
If I were in charge of the Yahoo 360 bootstrap I'd stop everything and create a page that shows the new stuff in reverse-chronologic order. I want to see what's happening in their community. There doesn't appear to be a way to do that. I can't believe they don't have such a page for internal use. If so, make it public, and not just for members of the community, for everyone.
Welcome to a new Corante weblog with a well-known bunch of blogging lawyers. Denise Howell, Dennis Kennedy, Tom Mighell, Ernie the Attorney, Marty Schwimmer.
Wired: "The debate over file sharing reaches the Supreme Court."
Don Park: "Everyone seems to be copycats these days."
In my discussion with Brad Templeton of the EFF, I asked him to map www.eff.org to one of my servers, and map his original server to backend.eff.org, so I can filter it.
I'd add links to their content, and see if they object. If that isn't a problem, I'll start changing the words, and see if that works for them. Then I'll put my name on their work, I imagine that would be okay too. Why not? I'm just being creative! Then I'll change their positions to be more in tune with the entertainment industry. Somewhere in there, there's got to be a line.
I'm thinking of mirroring Cory Doctorow's Creative Commons-licensed book and crossing out his name and replacing it with mine. Then I think I'll go to a printer and print up a bunch of copies of my book and stand on a corner in Times Square and sell copies. Maybe a book publisher will offer to distribute it for me. I'll be interested in talking with them.
Tuesday, March 29, 2005
I'm in my hotel in Manhattan. Nice view. Stomach grumbling. Hmmm.
Today's Morning Coffee Notes podcast is an interview with my father, Dr Leon Winer, about outlining and other topics.
Movie: Uptown, east side, taxi cab.
Marc Canter reviews Yahoo 360.
Michael Schuermann reviews Yahoo 360.
This is what Scoble sees when he clicks on the link to my 360 weblog. He's not a member. You gotta wonder what's the point of a weblog that's not publicly accessible. Postscript from Michael Schuermann.
Michael Gartenberg sent me a 360 invite. So I have an account now. Here be my blog. And a funky song and a picture of Muddy Waters. My mojo is workin! Post a comment if you can. I opened it up to "everyone."
Today's song: "I got a gypsy woman giviní me advice. I got some red-hot tips I have to keep on ice. I got my mojo workiní but it just wonít work on you. I want to love you so Ďtil I donít know what to do."
John Palfrey: "Not too long from now, this blog should have a first-hand account of the Grokster oral argument from the Supreme Court."
Michael Gartenberg got a 360 invite. If you've written a 360 review based on a look inside, please send a pointer. And I'll certainly let you all know when and if I get an invite.
Jeff Veen got one too. "It reminds me of one of my first trips to the plate in Little League Baseball."
Jason Fried says Yahoo always had the mojo, but mojo is not the size, it's what you do with it. It's not the steak, my man, it's the sizzle. It's not the shape, it's how you shake it. Mojo is not about making the buses run on time. Muddy Waters was not thinking about stock prices when he sang about his mojo workin.
Danny Sullivan: "With the Yahoo 360 social networking site making its semi-public debut, I thought it would be interesting to log back into rival service Orkut, offered by Google, to see what's new. But forget comparing features. What struck me the most was seeing a Google property finally acknowledging RSS as a distribution means."
Review of Yahoo 360 by someone who wasn't invited.
Happy third birthday to Paolo's weblog. He has some interesting comments about the apparent change in mood in the last three years. I don't think it's that we've grown up, we'll have fun again. All the projects he mentions are coming back. I dropped the ball, but I had a good excuse.
BTW, I should mention that I'm on a diet since 3/18 and losing weight. I don't plan to go on a scale until 4/18, but I feel thinner. I find that the fasting feeling is starting to feel good, kind of like the ache of missing a smoke as I was quitting smoking. Getting in shape for some reason is easier in Florida, the beach is such an inspiration, it feels better to be in better shape. I'm going to lose about 30 pounds and then try to maintain. By writing about this publicly I guess I'm making the next-level commitment.
Press release: "Google Inc today announced it has agreed to acquire Urchin Software Corporation, a San Diego, California based web analytics company."
Yahoo 360 has launched, invitation only. I'll let you know if I get one.
Here's Jeremy Zawodny's 360 weblog. He says to let him know if you were expecting an invite and didn't get one. Can't say I was expecting one. Also can't comment on his blog if you didn't get an invite. They should read my piece about two-tier communities and why they're so not-blog-like. This invite-only insiders stuff is gross.
You know it was somewhat cute when Google did the invite-only thing with Gmail, but you could use it to communicate with people who didn't use it. This software is broken for people who aren't 360 users! And Orkut was invite-only too, and it's as dead as can be now.
BTW, Yahoo doesn't have its mojo back. What a crock. Their idea of hip is to copy everyone else, badly. Let the Flickr folks, who really do have mojo, show that the elephant can dance, just a little.
PS: Now the redesign of Yahoo Groups makes sense. They made it look like 360. And the pictures? Well, 360 shows pictures of people and groups. Now, too bad most of the groups don't actually have pictures. Someone should have thought that through. Did they think 360 was going to be such a raging success that it would make all the groups want to add pictures? This is what happens when big corporations plan out grand strategies, checking their assumptions with focus groups (if they check them at all). Flickr on the other hand, proved every one of its ideas with users. We know which approach leads to usable software.
I gave $5000 to the EFF when they started, I think it was in 1990, with the noble goal of protecting freedoms as our technology and culture move online. I think I have supported every cause the EFF has adopted since then, but that's no longer true. I gave this a lot of thought, believe me, and had a long email exchange with Brad Templeton, the chairman of the EFF board of directors, and think they have become as radically polarized as the entertainment industry, and like Hollywood are now working against the interests of those they were meant to serve.
The issue appears to be copyright, and it appears that the EFF believes there should be no copyright. My position is that copyright changes with the development of worldwide networking, and all creative people must have some right to the work they create, or else, truly, the incentive to create will disappear.
When the entertainment industry makes this claim, there's a glaring hole in their position -- they claim to represent the interests of creative people, but they don't. Their economics make the creative people powerless, they no more represent the interests of creative people than the EFF represents the interests of computer users (who are also creative people). Of course there's enough truth to each argument to make it hard to rebut. But in balance it's true. Instead of being aligned with users, the EFF is aligned with the financial interests of the electronics and software industry.
However, if there's any rationality to the justice system in the US, the EFF will prevail in the Grokster case. Why? Because, the act of freely distributing other people's work, without compensation, is something the user is doing, not the software developer. The Grokster defense is good because there are important non-infringing uses of the technology, and without those applications the right to free speech protected by the US Constitution would be violated. That must come first.
But copyright is is a good thing, even if it is applied immorally and stupidly by the entertainment industry. We can't have a rational society without it. The EFF can't claim to represent the interests of users if it doesn't stand behind copyright, in some form, and tell us what that is. Copyright is not sacred, and there are times when it must be relaxed, and it must be possible to disclaim copyright, something the Creative Commons helps with, but if we can't rely on the electronic media to render our thoughts and expressions without altering their meaning in transit, what's the point of having electronic media? As I've said here before, the written word is now largely electronic, as is commerce, health care, aviation, and who can disagree that accuracy and attribution matter in those endeavors?
The problem with the EFF psosition is that in order to remain consistent, they have had to say that copyright doesn't exist -- if a policy or law restricts what a user can do on the Internet then that is a bad policy or law. The courts can't agree with the EFF. I don't agree with the EFF.
Monday, March 28, 2005
Stephen Pierzchala: "The public school system in the Bay area is one of the reasons why I was not too upset to move to Massachusetts."
Jon Udell: "I wasnít even planning to enable RSS subscription to InfoWorld search. It just came for free. When that happens, itís a sign that things are deeply right."
Wired: "MGM Studios v Grokster, pits all the major movie studios and record labels against two operators of file-sharing services."
Liz Smith: "With the whole world writing gossip, where is the place for the professional gossip?"
Private Radio: "I wrote a PHP script that captures the Google News home page every 15 minutes. It then logs all the news sources it finds."
When someone uses the L-word in conversation, chances are 999 out of 1000 that they're using it as a code-word to mean: weak, effeminate, misguided, powerless geek without morals. And it's equally likely that they're talking about you when they say it, although the play book says they should make it a question if it's directed at you at all.
"Are you a liberal?" they might ask. Who could say yes, but if you're honest you say that you have a heart and want your country to not take shortcuts, and you're concerned about the environment, and education, and think the government should stay away from our genitals, or telling our families when it's okay to pull the plug on a loved one, but you realize they've put you on the defensive before you've said anything.
So on Saturday night at dinner, when one of our companions, a man who considers himself a conservative, in the mold of Limbaugh, DeLay or Hannity, a death penalty proponent who feels deeply for the parents of Terri Schiavo, used the L-word in an argument, I said "Wait a minute, that's a code-word that means, weak effeminate, etc." I told him if he's going to talk about that, I'm going to expose him for what he is, an emulator of loutish, idiotic talk show hosts who say they're conservatives, but come on, they're not conservative, they're idiots who got a gig that pays them for being idiotic. The stupider they are the more they make. Competence in their work is incompetence everywhere else!
If Steve Lohr is right and Silicon Valley's brightest days are behind it, it will have been their own fault. Technology isn't stagnant, we're going through a rebirth, the deals being being floated are incredibly rich, for the right people this time, and not in Silicon Valley. Not for the carpetbaggers, not for the imitation impressarios, rather for the technology that's making the difference and the people behind it.
Last week I wrote about insiders and two-tier communities. That's Silicon Valley. The hubris of financiers thinking they could do it by paying nothing for technology, nothing for ideas. Yeah Hollywood is corrupt, and they want to tie up tech to serve their purposes, but they are still turning out product that some people want. Can you say the same for Silicon Valley? Imho, it's become another gray metropolis, the ideas long gone, replaced by corporate strokers and lap dogs.
However, it's still the most welcoming of climates, a temperate haven, warm in winter, cool in summer. The garden you can grow in a SV back yard is one of the most diverse and nourishing anywhere in the nation, that's why Valley real estate is holding its value. Its got great schools, roads, shopping, even culture. What's missing is a heart and a purpose.
1/2/02: "Of course there's nothing wrong with financiers, we need them to get our stock public. But as a group they did something really stinky to the software industry in the last part of the last decade -- they helped promote the myth that programmers work for free. In their folklore we're so selfless that we're willing to write new software and fix bugs, without being paid to do so. Another way of looking at it -- they get to keep all the money and programmers get nothing."
Sunday, March 27, 2005
News.Com: Mark Cuban to finance Grokster defense.
I have an earlier version of the Sony laptop that Walt Mossberg reviews, and it's my primary computer. I left the ThinkPad, which is larger and weighs more, in Florida while I'm traveling. I can do everything on the Sony now. Took some work to get everything set up, but it's great.
The LA Times has the story of the DeLay family's decision to terminate life support for the congressman's father, in 1988.
NewHounds: "It looks like Fox got the morning White House memo: Steer clear of the Terri Schiavo matter."
An important discussion at Cadenhead's about Feedburner, including comments from a company rep.
Of course I don't like the new Yahoo Groups user interface.
Joe Beda, a former Microsoft guy, now works at Google, and blogs about it. I find it hard to believe that being at Google is that good, don't fundamental laws of physics and human nature apply there? Otherwise why would they re-invent perfectly good technology just because it was Not Invented Here. Or why would they take chances with the Web as a free speech environment? On the other hand I've met Joe, even went out to dinner with him in Seattle, and enjoyed his company and thought he was an honest dude and a good catch for the Googlers.
BTW, when Joe went to Google last fall, it sparked a rumor-fest that Google was developing a browser, which people should remember when they think about AutoLink. They could make a really good browser with all the money they have, and obviously they have good designers and engineers (look no further than Google Maps for evidence). A toolbar that behaves badly isn't really the issue, folks. It's what happens when the toolbar turns into a browser...
Saturday, March 26, 2005
Julie Leung: Why high school never ends.
Rogers Cadenhead says FeedBurner users are playing with fire.
PodcasterCon is a "free users conference about podcasting. The focus will be on learning. In effect it is an anti-expo without swag, without product promotion, and a way to keep podcasting fun! Weíre going to make our own Podcaster Conference happen, together."
Wes Felter: "After having the best mailing list Web interface for years, Yahoo Groups has gone and screwed it up."
Washington Post: "Republican congressional leaders find themselves in a moral and political thicket, having advanced the cause as a right-to-life issue -- only to confront polls showing that the public does not see it that way."
Britt Blaser: Why FedEx calls it 2 Day Service.
Keith Jenkins: "We just concluded the National Press Photographers Association's Best of Photojournalism awards, and two of the winners were what most people would refer to as photoblogs."
Ed Cone: "The conservative crack-up is upon us."
Tommy Williams: "On your post about OPML from Tim Jarrett, Jana is talking about the microsoft.com Blog portal. It doesn't have anything to do with MSN Spaces, that's just where she's hosting her blog. The blog portal is an aggregation point for Microsoft employee blogs."
Sending good energy to Don Park who is in his third day of not smoking. As I'm sure Don knows, the first week is the hardest.
Happy birthday to Brent Simmons who turns 37 today.
Six years ago: "RSS is a good start at a syndication format."
Friday, March 25, 2005
BlogNashville is a "three-day set of educational and informational sessions on blogging, May 5-7th, 2005." It's inspired by BloggerCon, and I'm sure it'll be great. Not sure if I can make it, there's talk of me making a quick trip to London for my 50th birthday (just three days before), but I will be there if at all possible.
Adam Howell:: "We can all be our own gurus." Amen.
A cartoon featuring Adam Curry and myself. Aruging, of course.
According to Tim Jarrett, Microsoft is doing something interesting and intuitive with OPML and MSN Spaces. Can't wait to check it out. I'm doing so much with OPML, it's hard to imagine this won't play an important role in the bootstrap.
There's a del.icio.us tag for Frontier.
Corporate Media News: Podcasting Comes of Age.
Reuters: "Clear Channel plans to make some of its live morning shows available for downloading, commonly known as podcasting."
Crooks and Liars: "Stewart brings humor to a humorless situation."
I've mirrored the clip from The Daily Show to help with the bandwidth.
Ground-breaking BBC article on commercialization of podcasting, with extensive quotes from Adam Curry and myself, and not surprisingly, we disagree. Adam says podcasting will kill radio. Nahhh. It'll become radio and vice versa. Airwaves are just another method of distribution. Same with satellites. What will change is who's talking and who's listening. Now the conversation will flow in all directions, with broadcasters listening to people they used to think of as "audience." Blogs changed the architecture of written-word-journalism in the same way. The BBC did miss that I did the early podcasts that were the inspiration for Curry and others, and continue to podcast, so it's not as if I'm on the sidelines, I'm in there, putting my ideas out, and helping inspire others to do the same.
Christopher Baus: "Scoble tries to make a point, and Cory's response is to interrupt him with an eloquent, 'tough shit.'"
Next Friday, a week from today, marks the end of the 8th year of Scripting News, started on April 1, 1997. A month and a day later, I turn 50. Oy!
Thursday, March 24, 2005
Pictures: The day before spring break at the beach in Florida.
Spring break starts tomorrow. If you're headed toward the north-mid coast of Florida, as many are (Daytona is just down the beach), you're headed toward some drop-dead gorgeous weather. Everyone's out on the beach, walking, throwing a frisbee, football or baseball -- swimming, surfing, riding a bike, fishing. Pack a bathing suit, suntan lotion, probably a lightweight rain jacket, because it probably will rain a few times during the week. Leave the sweaters at home, as improbable is must seem, you just won't need them. You're in for a treat. I guess all this is a way of saying how much I already know I'm going to miss this place.
Deborah Branscum: High School and the Blogosphere.
Philippe Martin has released dbSpy for Frontier, a low-level database analysis tool. This is going to be very useful!
I started a directory for Frontier developer tools and tutorials and whatever else comes along.
A new social bookmarking app: de.lirio.us.
BTW, yesterday I bought a fun domain.
Tod Maffin reports that Canada is amending its copyright laws in favor of content-creators.
I sent an email today to Brad Templeton, the chairman of the Electronic Frontier Foundation, asking that he take a look at issues raised by Google's AutoLink feature. As far as I know, the EFF hasn't taken a position on this. To me, there's a difference between a giant corporation having copyrights automatically renewed on work where the author has been dead for fifty years, and a giant corporation changing my writing to suit its corporate purposes. How different is this from Apple interfering with the work of authors of their fan sites, a cause which the EFF has championed. I say not very different at all (in fact there's no due process involved in Google changing my work). I've written to Lessig about this too, several times.
DataBlogging is "the notion that traditional blog entries have extended data fields appended to them to track various things."
Structured Blogging is a similar idea, but not as far along as DataBlogging, and it appears that it does not build on RSS.
John Van Dyk did the Metadata Plug-in for Manila, in Y2K.
News.Com: "Rep John Conyers says bloggers deserve the same legal protections as those accorded to print and broadcast journalists."
Driving on US 1 with the dashboard Buddha.
Great West Wing last night. Maybe the Republians will win the White House? I thought the scene with the president eating ice cream with the Republican candidate was a little dream-like, but I love the way they're doing the election.
Dave Hodson reports on last night's Podcasting meetup in San Fran.
Wes Felter on NY: "How can civilization survive in such inhospitable climates?" That's where I'm headed. I already feel cold. Brrrr.
I think Ed Cone is saying being on TV is like having sex?
Wednesday, March 23, 2005
Welcome to the Blogland Motel!
People tell me I picked a good time to go to NY because the weather is warming up. I guess it's all relative. The 10-day forecast has a high of 53 and a low of 31. There's a snowstorm rolling into town right now. Here, today, the high was 81. Remind me again, why I am I going north?
Big Don would go to a Foo-Camp-alike, if there's a shower and bathroom nearby that won't freak out his wife. I feel the same way. I don't go anywhere where there isn't a good bathroom nearby. But California? Hello. I live in Florida. Otherwise it seems like a fun idea.
The Democratic candidate for vice-president of the US in 2004, John Edwards, is podcasting. Here's the feed.
NY Times: "There are 12 medical doctors, 3 dentists, and 3 nurses in Congress, and most did not publicly invoke their medical experience during the Schiavo debate."
Don Park: "I've been looking at the way people using tags."
Yesterday, late in the afternoon, I wrote a bit about evil, and how unfortunate it is that this word has entered discourse in the blogosphere. I think we can trace it back to the Google goal of not being evil, an idea that's run its course, and should be stricken from their corporate philosophy. Google is no more or less evil than any other company, has no basis to claim a moral superiority, and should openly cancel it.
And if they won't remove the hex, let me offer a new law of the Internet, a corollary to Godwin's Law. "As an online discussion grows longer, the probability of it becoming about evil approaches one." And I'd add, that the length of time is shorter, but the effect on discourse is the same. It stops all rational discussion immediately.
While we're at it, a couple of other observations on the state of discourse.
1. If someone is critical of a group, a company, a gathering, a conference, any kind of association, and you are a member of that group, or were at the gathering, etc, it does not follow that the criticism is personal. If I say Apple is really fucking the bloggers, that doesn't mean if you work there that you are. If I don't know you, how could I possibly make a statement about you? Now you're welcome to take it personally, it seems everyone always will take everything personally, but that doesn't mean it was meant to be personal. No doubt someone here is thinking I'm talking about them right now, but please, believe me, if your name doesn't appear here, it isn't about you.
2. This bit is about Doc Searls. As I've come to know Doc over close to 20 years, I've come to know that he's extremely conflict-averse. But this itself seems to put Doc in conflict, with himself, because he has strong beliefs, and they're basically sound ones, intelligent, intuitively correct, and often courageous. But if he has a chance to make friends with someone, I've seen Doc throw his principles out the window, with passion, as evidenced in his defense of Evan Williams, who is violating every rule of Doc's own manifesto. Disclaimer: My opinion only.
3. This bit is about me, Dave Winer. Now, me, I'm not conflict-averse. I think conflict gives us human beings a chance to explore alternate views of the world. And we've got some serious problems, like global warming and in the US, the declining value of the dollar, and tunnels under the US border with Mexico, just to name three. If we don't listen to some foreign ideas, and consider that they might help us solve some of our problems, we're just going to drift into oblivion.
Last night I had a brief phone talk with Steve Gillmor. I told him I had finally figured out why it's good that there are no ads on Scripting News, and then spaced out on saying why (our conversations are often like this, lots of ideas back and forth, we never quite finish most).
So I thought I would explain here.
First, consider yesterday's edition. Among the top items are three that are clearly anti-Republican. Now if you support the Republicans, no matter how much they abuse your trust (heh, sorry bout that), and I was running ads, you might think that, by reading this blog, you were helping finance someone who you disagree with politically. I wouldn't have much chance of talking to Republicans.
However, because I'm not running ads, and have no reason, other than wanting to influence more people, to seek more readers, you can relax and have fun, maybe mutter to yourself when you see me criticizing the President and the Speaker and Majority Leader, people you admire and respect, people who should of course have their own blogs, btw.
That's not to say that blogs-with-ads are necessarily bad, but ads on Scripting News are not for me. As I said in yesterday's podcast, I'd happily pay money to get some ideas heard more, so for me, it's consistent to run Scripting News ad-free.
Tuesday, March 22, 2005
A new Morning Coffee Notes about ocean swimming, podcasting as art, Terry Shiavo, my software project, and of course, philosophy.
Charleston Post & Courier: Blogging Comes of Age.
Political Wire on recent Republican flip-flops.
Seattle Times: "The federal law that President Bush signed early yesterday in an effort to prolong Terri Schiavo's life appears to contradict a right-to-die law that he signed as Texas governor, prompting cries of hypocrisy from congressional Democrats and some bioethicists."
Florida Today: "Washington's meddling in the Terri Schiavo case only worsens an already great tragedy."
NowPublic: "This photo is smarter than you think."
MarketingProfs on podcasting. I like the way they describe me. "Very popular and highly regarded." Boinnnnnnnng!
An interesting choice for Google News.
Roger Simon: "I have Google Ads on my site and wrote to them the other day to inquire what percentage I was being paid of their revenues. I found out that it is against their policy to disclose this."
BTW, I don't say Google is evil, they say they're not evil. Important distinction. When you reduce a discussion to evil-or-not, you skip all the steps inbetween. When you say someone is evil, there can be no further discourse. It's the intellectual equivalent of the death penalty. I may not like what Google does, but I don't think they're evil. And it pisses me off when people take the shortcut of saying that criticizing a company is the same as saying they're evil. That's pure BS.
Fluox: "Winer is een hippie man."
What the heck is FU-Camp? Looks relaxing.
Sounds like Barry Bonds' career is over, and he knows it. I almost feel sorry for him. But if he came back and bested Babe Ruth's home run record and started challenging Hank Aaron's, it would get too heavy to endure. He's gone.
Today the sky has an other-worldly quality.
John Palfrey: "Jimbo Wales has been appointed a Berkman fellow."
Wales is an inspired choice. Good deal for everyone.
David Gewirtz explains how to build Frontier in Microsoft Visual C 6.0.
The Toronto Globe and Mail supports RSS 2.0.
Rex Hammock says Google takes suggestions for Google News.
News aggregator ==> News aggravator
News aggregator ==> News alligator
Monday, March 21, 2005
Upcoming travel: NYC 3/25 through 4/1 & 4/5-6.
TidBITS isn't a blog, it's an email newsletter, a website, and an RSS feed. It's been published for well over a decade. And with all the blogs and Mac fan sites it's possible that some Mac users don't know about it. Regulars include Adam Engst, Matt Neuburg and Glenn Fleishman. It's not flashy, but it sure is smart. Their report on podcasting was definitive.
What Rex said. Podcasting is both an art and a hype balloon. Emphatically, it is not at this time a business. I believe in the art, passionately, and I hate hype balloons, always have, nothing new. I'm agnostic about the business, and any competent reporter should be too. I think the CBS guy is trying to provoke an open battle over things that aren't in contention. I'm glad not to be in the business that Adam Curry and Ron Bloom are in. Maybe it'll turn out that they can do great things for the art and make money, but until they do, I'm from Missouri.
Re Terry Shiavo, the woman whose brain is dead, Congress and the President should not have gotten involved. They made a mistake.
Tina Brown: "Bloggers are the new Stasi," or the East German secret police during the Cold War. They actually ran this piece in the Washington Post. The reporters have had a free ride all our lives, the only ones watching them were other reporters. Accountability, of which today's reporters have just the tiniest portion of, will improve journalism and politics, and will shake out the lazy ones, the ones who think that visibility is equivalent to totalitarianism. Thanks to Rogers for the link.
Sylvia liked yesterday's column. "Bursting the bubble before it expands again." Yup, doing what we can to keep the world safe for innovation.
Ourmedia: "We'll host your media forever for free."
On the podcasters list, Alex Nesbitt posted a link to an OPML directory that organizes podcasts by genre. Of course, I wanted to see if my new directory browser could handle his outline. It worked.
Wired: "More than a year after 'social networking' became the leading buzzword in internet startup circles, companies in the sector haven't gained the traction early enthusiasts predicted."
In June 2004, Ryan Naraine wrote in InternetNews: "[Amazon] has launched a beta of Plogs, or personalized blogs, to shuttle links of recommended products and relevant shopping information to users."
At the same time, of course, they had filed a patent application for the feature. Thanks to TheoDP for the heads-up and pointers.
Sunday, March 20, 2005
Rebecca MacKinnon: Chinese protest BBS crackdown.
New header graphic. Vegetables at Pike Street Market in Seattle.
NY Times: "IAC/Interactive Corp, the Internet company headed by Barry Diller, is close to an agreement to acquire Ask Jeeves Inc, the nation's fourth-largest search engine company."
Congrats to Flickr who got bought by Yahoo. Except it should have been the other way around.
Interesting that Google News doesn't have this bit yet. By 5:50PM Eastern, almost an hour later, they have a one-line report from Blogcritics. I wonder how long before a non-blog source gets the story. And they would have had it sooner if they deigned to scan Scripting News.
On this day three years ago, we announced a deal to distribute NY Times headlines through Radio UserLand. It was a first step toward the Times support of RSS, which they now have.
My email got more interesting today since Instapundit pointed to my positive male imagery piece.
Blueberry Girl: "White men of the world, you are truely more lost than I thought!"
Kosso: "No one actually *reads* this... do they?"
Rex Hammock: "As those who fly first class between technology conferences take over the podcasting story, the focus will be more about the business of podcasting (and, thus, the inevitable boom and bust) and not on the more important issue: the transformational nature of what happens when everyone who has an internet connection can truly add their literal voice to a worldwide conversation."
Stand in the surf, with your shoes off, wearing jeans that get wet up to the knees. Point the camera down, click to start the movie. Waves in, waves out, in, out, in, out. Click to stop the movie.
Scoble: "Dave, keep after me to stop listening to only the insiders. I appreciate that very much."
Yesterday I registered two new domains, and instead of going through my usual registrar, who charges $35 per year for registration and DNS, I went to GoDaddy, and got it for $9. But apparently, unless you're also hosting with GoDaddy, that does not include DNS.
I've hunted all over the site looking for a way to map domains to an IP address, and while they will "forward" the doman (not what I want) they won't map it. I then called their tech support line, was told the wait would be two minutes, and hung up after fifteen (and the ads, these guys are always pushing stuff at you).
First question -- is there a way to get GoDaddy to map a domain? How?
Second question -- I've got four Windows 2000 servers and one Windows Server 2003. Do they have a domain name server built in? I think they must. Somewhere. Where? How? Arrrgh, I didn't really want to learn how to do this.
Anyway, I've cross-posted here, comments welcome.
PS: The domains are independentpodcasters.com and indiepodcasters.com. Yeah, isn't it a shame that a medium that was supposed to be all-indie-all-the-time will probably need to distinguish between people who sign with MSM and those who do it for love.
Also on Doc's site, Lloyd Davis, like Doc, believes in the insiders.
Okay, let me explain why I don't.
First, I don't have a podcasting product, so when you think of me as a competitor of Evan's that's not correct. I'm working on other stuff, not podcasting tools. I may even be a user of Odeo's product, but right now I'm not inclined to, because they are going over my head to sell me, or that's what they think they're doing. All I've heard about Odeo has been second or third-hand, demos at exclusive insider conferences. Frankly, I'd rather use the open source tools, even if they're not quite as good as Evan's, because I get them without the arrogance and bluster. And hey, they actually exist. I have no direct evidence that Evan's software is anything but vaporware.
I used to go to those insider conferences myself, and I realized that they weren't doing anything other than talking about themselves, while, quite independently, the market was booming. They confused their talk with the boom in the market, created an image of cause-and-effect where there was none. Then when the boom went away it all looked silly. Then it happened again, and more conferences with people dropping hints that they really got the boom, so the boom had something to do with themselves, and they could make you rich if you bought their stock. Then the boom collapsed, but the self-proclamations continued, and again started to look silly.
Nowadays it's gotten to the height of ridiculousness. There isn't even a boom, just a bunch of insiders who think it's cool they're inside. No one has made one cent off podcasting and already the NY Times says there's a business model and tries to give the market to their friends (who haven't shipped anything), and people at TED are ooohing and ahhing, and wondering how they can get in on the IPO. These are the exact same people that got so many to think they were the brains behind the last booms. No wonder they want to do it again. It's really profitable, for some.
This time there's a chance for everyone to see how silly it is because centralized radio is being routed around and the playing field has been leveled in word publishing. So the new business models propose to install a new group of centralizers. Hmmm. Why won't that work? Well, because the economics shifted, and we don't need them anymore. Doc and the rest of the Gillmor Gang came really close to getting this and saying it out loud in the last episode. But when you get into the reality distortion field of one of these insider conferences, well, if you take the drugs you start to believe that the old guys are kaput, and you're one of the new guys! Start shopping for the big house and the fast car. But later, when the drugs wear off, you see that the new media isn't going to be owned by anyone, not you, and not your insider friends.
Anway, I wouldn't be doing my job if I didn't say that all the vendors have to prove themselves in the market, and doing that means understanding the users, and to really understand the users, you have to be one of them. Ross, you don't have to do a podcast, and neither do I, but the people who make products for podcasters do, if they don't will have failed products. That's where it all gets very practical, again, after the drugs wear off.
Saturday, March 19, 2005
LiveJournal now supports RSS 2.0 with enclosures.
David Czarnecki : Podcasting with Blojsom.
I was knee-deep in the surf with my camera as the sun was setting, when a cute wet doggie comes to say hello.
My new directory displayer now handles passages of text, so you can write little documents directly in the directory.
10/24/02: "Baseball is nothing if not history."
WNYC has a really good FAQ on Podcasting.
David Pogue: "What happens to your PC when you die?"
I was sitting at my desk doing some work and this thing appeared outside the window. A big wing with a motor and a guy in it. He looked right at me and waved. I waved back. Had to hunt around for the camera, dashed out on the patio and shot a movie. Life at the beach is different.
CustomizeGoogle enhances "Google search results by adding links to other useful services. It can also remove ads." It's a toolbar for Firefox. At first I thought it was a website I could use instead of google.com. I would be very happy to contribute to such a site. I want better ads in my Google results. Hey it's my computer right? The users come first, right? I'm a user! Woo hooo. Party down.
It's being discussed on ThreadWatch.
Jason Calcanis wrote up Thursday's Odeo demo.
I like the programming on WNYC better than the local station, WJCT. The only problem is the weather in NY is a lot colder than it is here in sunny Florida. So they're happy when the temperature in Central Park is 42 degrees Farenheiht. Brrrr. Here, we're complaining that it's not quite 70 degrees. "It's almost April!" the guy at the pharmacy said. What gives, why's it so cold? Anyway, unfortunately they're playing Car Talk right now. I hate Car Talk. Funny I used to think Click and Clack were funny until I moved to Boston. But that's another stawree.
Sunrise on the Atlantic.
Martin Schwimmer says someone has filed a trademark for "Podcast."
Last week there were two conferences that I didn't go to but followed through the Web. I could have gone to either of them in person, if I had been willing to pay their fees, and been willing to be in the audience or the hallways, at all times. In other words, I would have to accept my place as a second-level person, an outsider, in the presence of insiders.
There are two conflicting emotions around this. First, why aren't I an insider? I feel like I've earned the respect of the people who put on the conferences, and the people who participate. And the second emotion, harder to find with the first one swirling, is wait a minute, why should I accept the premise that there are two levels? When I put on a conference, or throw a party, I work really hard to erase the idea that there are two levels, to make everyone feel welcome and equal. Really. It's hard work, because people are always trying to nominate themselves for insider-ness, and push other people to the outside. I remember well what it was like going to Esther's conferences in the 80s, when the insiders all had someone to eat with, and I was paying thousands of dollars for the priviledge of eating by myself because I didn't know anyone. If I'm putting on the conference, that isn't going to happen
You can see it really clearly in this lecture by Doc Searls to Ross Rader, who said something pretty aggressive about a product for the podcasting community that hasn't yet had Word One to say to the podcasting community, instead has only been selling it to insiders, most of whom have no idea what the issues are in creating, distributing podcasts, and having them be heard. Doc, who understands how bloggers hate to be talked down to by professonal journalists who know bupkis about blogging, now does exactly the same thing to podcasters.
I gave Scoble a really hard time about this earlier this week, after he came back from an insider's conference, all full of their world, forgetting about the larger world that he's part of, that I know he cares about. After that conversation we decided to do everything we can to compete with the force of the insiders. Doc, how about looking at your words from our perspective. Talking to us through you ain't going to cut it. Your friends who want to earn the respect of the podcasters should explain in the medium, in their own voices, in their own words -- produce a podcast and tell us what the fuck they're doing, instead of leaving us guessing. Then you might see the hostility ease, because that's where it comes from.
I've only heard snippets of Mark McGwire's testimony in Congress last week on the use of steroids in baseball. He refused to say if he used steroids, but come on, it's obvious that he used something. He was a big guy when he played at Oakland, but not as big as he was when he was at St Louis. People just don't grow that way after a certain age.
When asked about Jose Canseco's claims, McGwire said "consider the source," as if we all knew that somehow Canseco has less credibility than McGwire does. But if McGwire took the drugs to enhance his performance, to best Roger Maris's home run record, well, at least Caseco came clean. And to us, former Bay Area baseball fans, we'll always remember that McGwire and Canseco were the Bash Brothers. If a man wants to talk that way about his goddam brother, well, I just don't want to know about some things, sorry Mark.
Baseball is worried about losing its heroes, well stop worrying, it's already happened. The record for most home runs in a season is now meaningless, and if Barry Bonds (also a steroids user) keeps hitting home runs there goes Hank Aaron's record.
Without heroes, is there any point to Major League Baseball? After all it's just a sport. In some sense we measure ourselves against our past selves through men like Babe Ruth, Roger Maris, Hank Aaron, and the current crop of pretenders, McGwire, Sosa and Bonds. If we apply the test, even though Ruth was surely flawed, and Maris tragic, we lose.
Friday, March 18, 2005
Surfers in a roiling Atlantic Ocean today.
The Dowbrigade is in Florida, looking for a cheezy motel. "Then we saw it, lying low and white in the moonlight, surrounded by apparently abandoned cars, discarded tires, a disintegrating jungle gym and overgrown weed fields. Next door was Big Al's Gun and Pawn Shop, shut down for the night. Jerked out of our reverie, we swerved to the left of the empty highway and fishtailed into the gravel-packed driveway of the motel."
It's ironic that Danny O'Brian, writing on O'Reilly's website, quotes me saying things I didn't say and don't agree with in order to discredit my position on AutoLink. It's ironic because changing what people say is exactly what the dispute is about.
I got an email from Yahoo's feedback department saying they had removed my primary email address from the penalty box, and sure enough they have. Thanks for the help. Whew.
I'm doing a new site that lists all the sites I manage. It's also a testbed for a new OPML directory browser. Caveat: The link will certainly break.
Dare Obasanjo reports on yesterday's presentation by Odeo.
Rebecca MacK has an article in The Nation about the WebCred conf.
As of today, March 18, I plan to vote for Russ Feingold for President in 2008, and it looks like he might actually be running. I'm sure he has no chance of winning, but every time I've wondered if anyone would stand up against the lunatics that run this country, Feingold has been there. He has real courage and intelligence and he cares.
TheoDP says we don't have to worry about Amazon patenting OpenSearch, because there's plenty of prior art.
A bug report on the Google Toolbar beta. When I uninstalled it, it left a piece of software hanging around. Now when I enter a bad URL into my browser (MSIE6), it takes me to Google just like every other snarky search engine that manages to install some software on my machine. I never gave them permission to do this in the first placfe, so it's adware, but even if I had, it should have reverted when I uninstalled the Toolbar. Is this evil? You be the judge. It sure is annoying.
Podcasting News proposes a way for casters to include metadata about advertisements that go in their RSS feeds, so that when they display a link to your podcast they can also display your ads. They asked me about this a few days ago, and I said it's a good idea, and a good use of RSS. There are too many plans for world domination in the podcast world, frankly I don't think any of them will work. A mini-dotcom boom. The people at Podcasting News are proposing something more modest, more realistic, more cooperative, less about domination and more about working together.
Gary Turner: "Flickr is da bomb."
Bingo Barnes: "Blogs are grassroots journalism at its best."
Jane Peppler: "Let's remember to be mutual."
Julie Leung: "Is blogging a religion?"
Sylvia Paull: "I've seen company after company grow to the point where not only is evil permitted, it's sanctioned. It's like a Jekyll-and-Hyde metamorphosis of the business. It's like a sickness that permeates every large corporation, from WorldCom to Hewlett Packard, which began by two guys who supported a non-evil workplace and turned it into a company where evil vibes are commonplace."
Danah Boyd: "I was actually part of the 5% who applied to etech, only my application was rejected because it wasn't emerging. That's fair. But as an academic, i can only go to conferences that i present at. I wasn't even thinking about SXSW until Tantek approached me to speak on a panel there."
Thursday, March 17, 2005
Phillip Torrone attended the Odeo presentation at Etech.
Audio.weblogs.com now has two BlogAds. Very cool! And it's not chump change either, some real serious money. I hope it's worth it for the advertisers, Podast Expo and FeedDemon. I like the way this feels.
Phil Yanov reports that John Edwards is about to become a podcaster.
SiliconValleyWatcher has a summary of what Odeo is.
Today the Christian Science Monitor ran an editorial that actually said they can learn from bloggers.
Chris Abraham: "I want to be amused, entertained, excited, and scandalized."
The San Jose Mercury News supports RSS 2.0.
Brian Bailey: "It looks like the greatness of Gmail will soon be available to everyone, with or without an invitation!"
It finally dawned on me what OpenSearch does. Basically you tell it about different search engines by showing it how to query something in each, and get back an RSS return. Then when you search for some term, say foo+bar, it performs the search in all the engines you have configured it for. So it's a way to group a bunch of search engines together and command them all to look for the same thing. It is clever. It is something that hasn't been done before, to my knowledge. That's the good news. The bad news is that Amazon is a leading patent abuser. So as good as this idea is, it's bad for all the rest of us, unless they tell us that they're granting us some kind of license to use the idea.
I'm surprised (and pleased) by the amount of positive, non-flamey email I've gotten about my post about developers conferences run by developers for developers. People want to know how such a thing might work. I'm going to give this some thought. I am not volunteering to chair such an event, I already do my part with BloggerCon. One thing's for sure, it must be an unconference, and it must be open to all, and no panels, no speakers, no audience, like BC.
Yesterday I picked up a funny graphic from Jonathon Delacour's site, with a picture of Alfred E Neuman, next to a slogan "White, male and damn proud of it!" I like to laugh at myself, so why not laugh at my gender too. Almost anything with the What Me Worry kid is funny. Let's have a good laugh, then settle down, and do some positive PR for our gender and our race. Sure, lots of terrible people were white and male, but so were a lot of great people, heroes, martyrs. People who cured diseases, and stood up to tyrants. Artists, teachers, comedians, people who served as role models for boys and men, even some sons of feminist women (like me, for example). I know some women are offended by this, I've heard from them, but this isn't about you, it's about us. So I'm going to start running an occasional positive image of white maleness on Scripting News, for no other reason that to help white men, like myself, feel like we have permission to do good things and serve as role models for young men, and for ourselves.
I created a new Flickr set, pictures taken in on 9/18/04 in Seattle at Pike Street Market, with Robert Scoble, after seeing a Mariners game at SafeCo field. I went poking around and found that they can post to Manila weblogs! Wow. So I gave it a try, and it didn't work, the picture didn't show up. The HTML they generated for the picture was wrong. If anyone from Flickr is tuned in, I'll be happy to help debug this.
An Apple store is opening in the neighborhood tomorrow.
Scoble, a rare bird for a BigCo, opines that the WaSP seems more interested in PR than in helping the browser developers do a better job. For what it's worth, that's been my experience as well. They are pushing one agenda on the browser developers, but it's not the agenda of all developers. Me, I want to see a really great text editor inside the browser, I've wanted it for close to a decade now. I think the Web is a two-way medium and a browser that can't create pages as easily as it browses them is just half a browser. The WaSP guys aren't interested, because as designers, their livelihood depends on it being hard for users to create content. Kind of like a book publisher working to keep a format complicated so there will be demand for their book. Yeah, I've actually seen this happen. Talk about the tail wagging the dog.
Still no luck with my user-crisis with Yahoo. Just tried calling their customer support line, 408-349-1572, but they're only open during normal business hours in California. If anyone who works at Yahoo can help, here's the problem, thanks. This of course raises an issue re Yahoo, if you're going to trust them with your blog (starting March 29) what do you do when there's a problem? Who do you send email to? Who answers the phone? Let's hope they charge money for it, so users can act like customers.
Reading the reports from Etech, it reminds me of how Apple developer conferences used to work in the 80s. People from the platform vendor (today that's Microsoft, Yahoo and Google) are up on stage, explaining how they are solving problems independent developers solved years ago. The independent developers are in the audience, grousing about how they're reinventing stuff that already works, blowing them out of the water, and crushing their hopes for the future. Some of the people are even the same! Heh. What we needed then, and still do, is a conference run by developers for developers, where the choices of what's on stage are made based on what's new, and what presents real opportunities for working-together, this year, not five years ago.
Wednesday, March 16, 2005
StumbleUpon is a "network of people and pages."
Tyme White: "There are millions of female bloggers."
I still need help with my disabled accounts at Yahoo Groups. It's really bad. The email address they disabled is the list owner for a few lists.
Version 2.0 of iPodder/Lemon shipped today. Congrats to the team! The software sounds fantastic.
Don Park suggests names for the new outliner.
Scoble has a new take on linking technologies. I haven't read it yet.
Dare Obasanjo, who works on MSN Spaces at Microsoft, was "totally blown away" by Amazon's presentation about OpenSearch.
They're discussing the name of my OPML editor on Danny Ayers' site. Some have suggested that naming the software after the format isn't a great idea. The thing is that in 2005, it's pretty hard to come up with a product name that someone else isn't already using. For example, Steve Kirks suggests that Opie might be a good name. I like it, although his suggestion of using images of Ron Howard as the logo wouldn't work. I'm sure someone owns that likeness. So I loook on Google for opie+software and find lots of hits. Any potential name has to pass that test.
Actually I think Don Park is a while male, a member of a Jewish family that wandered too far east.
According to AP, Yahoo's blogging tool will debut on March 29.
Flickr is amazing. It deserves all the accolades it's been getting. I love two things, one specific, one general. First, I love the way they edit graphics. It's way beyond what I expected. Second, the attention to detail, across-the-board, is wonderful. The user interface constantly delights the user, with things they thought of; and you can use the software with confidence that they are thinking about users every step along the way. Very excellent work.
Crimson: "In a sharp and unexpected rebuke of University President Lawrence H Summers, members of the Faculty of Arts and Sciences voted yesterday that they lack confidence in his leadership."
Bob Wyman, formerly of Microsoft, worries that Microsoft will dominate blogging "sooner than expected." That assumes a lot, personally I don't think Microsoft will dominate blogging. And so far Yahoo and Google have been been more menacing than Microsoft, which generally has been a good citizen, as Bob points out, using the standard formats invented by bloggers, not trying to reinvent things to push others out of the market (as Google has been doing). In fact, so far, Microsoft has been exemplary. Also I think Bob should have said up-front that he used to work at Microsoft.
BTW, Bob theorizes that Groove will become Microsoft's business-blogging platform, but I've heard another theory, that MS bought Groove for the programmers, and it's too close to Sharepoint to survive, and will be taken apart and used as "technology" which means we've seen the last of Groove, and the programmers will be shifted to various dev teams at MS. As the theory goes, there may be one more release of the software, but after that, on to other things like Longhorn.
Once upon a time, a very long time ago, Microsoft expressed an interest in buying a software product from me. One of the people evaluating it said that the software would be broken into bits and distributed among various product groups at MS. I told him that would never happen. He assured me it would. So far I've won that bet.
To those concerned, there are no plans to include sexual and racial designations of those whose work is included in this weblog. But for one day it seemed a worthwhile exercise or demonstration, and so it was.
As Tim Jarrett pointed out, there are so many other dimensions to a person, for example, I could tell his geographic story in a nutshell. Tim hails from the Boston area (Arlington I think) and therefore about now is fed up with cold and snow, and is ready for the trees to bloom and the first flowers of spring. You can expect some irrational exuberance sometime in the next few weeks at Chez Jarrett.
I might guess at his national heritage, but then in the US, that's fairly pointless. Some people with very anglo-sounding names had them changed at Ellis Island, or changed by a racially-conscious father or mother. His parental status might be interesting, whether he's married, divorced, widowed or single. How many siblings does he have, what genders, and was he first born, last, or somewhere inbetween? Does he like dark meat or white? If you tell him he has to ride a roller coaster will he make some kind of excuse, or rush to be in the first car, or something inbetween? What kind of car does he drive? Where did he go to school?
Every human being who's lived for any appreciable time has lots of stories. And if they have a good blog, the probability is (imho) that they also have a good heart, and are trying in some non-self-glorifying way to make the world a better place.
I was kidding when I said women should pull their weight, but I wasn't kidding when I asked them to stop complaining so much.
If you have something to say that's on-topic to Scripting News readers, and I know about it, I will include what you say, whether you're black or Latino, female, gay. I love the idea that technology can help bring us together by being a topic we discuss. But you have to help out by sending an email with a pointer to your piece, or get someone who I subscribe to to point to it. In other words, there's no magic to it, follow Ben Franklin's advice and write something worth remembering, and I will help the world beat a path to your home page. With pleasure.
Chris Nolan calls me "stingy" with the links. Of course, I don't think I am. Chris, here's some feedback on how you could make it easier for people to point to you. (This may prove useful for others.)
1. Make your RSS feed easier to subscribe to. You have the badges for Yahoo, Bloglines and MSN, but I use Radio. You could have put up a badge for Radio, that would be super-convenient, or just put up a white-on-orange XML button. I tried clicking on your Feedburner icon, but that didn't get me the URL, it offered to save it to my hard drive. And Feedburner is really gross, I don't like supporting them. But sheez, if need-be put the URL of your feed on the page itself. (PS: I was able to figure out where the feed is, and have subscribed.)
2. If you call people names and expect them to link to you, well, don't. Didn't your mother teach you that when you were a kid. Don't stare and don't call the other kids names.
3. You didn't even point to me when you called me a name. At least then I would have seen you in my referer log. And I'm like everyone else, I like flow and I like new readers. I have pointed to you Chris, many times. How many times have you pointed to me? You may be surprised that there are people who's sites I helped build by sending readers to them, who have never pointed back to me.
4. If you've written something you want to be read by Scripting News readers, send me an email with a link. That's what I do when I want to be read by the readers of someone else's blog. I'm polite about it, I don't come out and ask for the link, I say something like "Thought you'd find this interesting" or "FYI" and leave it at that. If I don't get the pointer, no big deal. And I try not to do it too often, so it's seen as a welcome source of a link to the person I send it to, rather than some kind of obligation.
5. I don't often point to political blogs, whether they're written by men or women, black or white, although I do subscribe to quite a few. So maybe what you experience as "stingy" is just a difference in focus.
Tuesday, March 15, 2005
In the early days of podcasting, Adam Curry (white male) and I (white male) would talk about how advertising would change when users had choice. We're already living in that age, with TiVO (who just did a deal with Comcast today, bravo) people can decide which ads they want to watch. But there's a story that goes with this. Please read.
Paul Boutin: Newsmashing. White male.
Trudy Schuett, a white female, sides with the judge in the Apple case.
Mary Jo Foley, white female: "The first beta of IE 7.0 isn't expected for a few more months. But information on Microsoft's security, standards and interface plans are trickling out now."
Steve Gillmor, a white male, reports from the Etech conference.
Tony Gentile, a white male, weighs in the Issue Of The Day.
Building on what Tony said, I wish women would pick up some of the load and write about new stuff that interests Scripting News readers. I feel victimized by having to always point to men. We do all the work and they do all the complaining. Women, how about doing your fair share, i.e. half, of the work? What a trip. We're doing most of the work and they've got us feeling guilty. Heh. What else is new?
The question of the hour -- what is Open Search?
Danny Sullivan yet another white male, weighs in on Open Search.
Podfeeder is an "online service for sharing podcast feeds."
Apparently Nostradamus predicted white male blogging.
Keith Jenkins (black male): "Oh boy, I think we found the hot button."
Like Steve Eley (male, race unknown), I'm interested in knowing what the various podcasting companies are planning. If you've seen a demo, or otherwise know what they're doing, please post a comment.
Evan Williams (white male) from Odeo will be presenting on Thursday at 1:45PM Pacific at the O'Reilly Emerging Technology conference in San Diego. We should get reports from bloggers who are there. I was expecting to find out what it was after the TED conference, where they did a similar demo, but as far as I could tell there were no reports from bloggers. It'd be nice to have at least a vague idea of what Odeo sees as the community-building business opportunity in podcasting.
I love Diane Rehm, a white female. Her guest, a male (I'm guessing he's white) compliments one of her listeners, a male (can't tell his race because he sent an email). She says "Of course he's smart, all our listeners are smart!" That's how I can tell she's smart. If she had stupid listeners what would that say about her?
I am a white male. Here are some pictures I uploaded to Flickr to familiarize myself with the service. It was very easy to use.
I'm listening to Jay Rosen on the Diane Rehm show. Jay is a white male, Ms Rehm is a white female. The other two guests are white males. I sent in an email question for Jay. "Aren't the former 'sources' now going direct, and routing around the media? Why put up with an inaccurate filter and soundbites, when you can make your point directly and fully."
Danny Sullivan, WM, on AutoLink, insists on an opt-out.
White male Rafe Colburn explains why interface design is hard.
Tim Jarrett is also a white male. "My photos are too important a part of my site for me to outsource them, and so far I havenít seen enough benefit from the social aspects of the service to outweigh the shortcomings of being dependent on Yet Another Blog Support Service."
Jeff Jarvis is a white male. I appreciate what he says. My whole life I've been told I had it easier because I am a white male, but somehow, it hasn't felt all that easy.
On this day six years ago Netscape unveiled their feed reader, my.netscape.com, and a format named RSS.
BBC report on the "Bloggies" -- congrats to all the winners.
On March 3 I started a Yahoo Group to receive notices of new podcasts posted to audio.weblogs.com. All was good for the first few days, then Yahoo started bouncing the posts, saying they had disabled my mail address, dave at scripting dot com, because I supposedly had an "auto responder" set up. I don't have an auto-responder set up, if you get a response from that mail address, it comes from me personally. Nothing "auto" about it.
However, I assume what they mean is that they don't like the program that was posting mails to the podcast-news list, which was established for exactly that purpose. Okay I'll stop doing it, if you insist, but please can you re-enable my mail address? I use that mail to participate in a bunch of communities on Yahoo Groups. It took me the longest time to connect the mail outage to the problem with this one mail list. Anyway, I have no idea how to contact Yahoo support, or even if they provide support, so this'll have to do for now.
Monday, March 14, 2005
The BBC has migrated to RSS 2.0. Until today they used 0.91.
I'm sure Danny Ayers will not like this, but I'm definitely going to ship the outliner before the end of the month. Two things need to be changed in the application, it needs a new name (more on that in a bit) and it needs an icon. Since the native format of the application is OPML, the icon should be derived from the logo for the format. The icon has to work on both Windows and Macintosh. It should certainly be red. It's possible it could be just the OPML logo itself. And now for the name. As you might imagine I've named a few outliners in my day. The first had the best name. Now this is non-commercial software built on an open source base. So the name, it seems, should be simple and say what the program does. So I decided to name it after the famous format it edits. And this should change the way people view the format, because it's the rarest of XML formats, one that has an editor that reads and writes it, natively. Therefore, ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls, the name of the new outliner is... Click here. Surprised?
Spent the afternoon at the eye doctor. I need surgery, I'm legally blind in my left eye, the right eye is okay. It really sucks, but it's not really news. Got a new prescription. My eyes are dilated now, all blurry. Oh well. Life goes on. My vision will return, in stages. Later today I'll be able to walk on the beach. Later this spring I'll get some of the vision in my left eye back.
Don Park says, among other things, that OPML needs a Wiki.
I made a guest appearance on the Bluggcast yesterday. We had a lovely cross-oceanic conversation. They call it "being assimilated."
Not sure exactly what Butler is, is it just for Firefox? It claims to modify Google, removing ads, adding pointers to their competitors' sites. It seems unfair to use Google to drive traffic to their competitor's sites. I wonder how Google feels about this? I read on Scoble's site that it removes links to his blog, I imagine (since it comes from Mark Pilgrim) that it performs the same service for this blog.
Rogers Cadenhead: "Mark Pilgrim's half-year search for a hobby that doesn't involve electricity appears to have been as fruitless as OJ Simpson's hunt for the 'real killers.'"
Rogers has a screen shot for Butler.
Hey after unplugging things and re-plugging them I was able to get back online. So if you're listening Time-Warner, no need to come out to service this connect. I'll have to remember to call them. Yeah. I'm sure I'll remember that.
BetterBadNews #23 is up and it's hilarious, as usual. "Here's a big cluestick for these morons."
It's probably going to be a light day here, the Internet at the beach house is down. Spent an hour on the phone satisfying the troubleshooter from Time-Warner cable, I knew the problem was on their end because I have two laptops, two routers, yet they had me uninstall and re-install all kinds of stuff. Starbucks is reliable, but expensive. Maybe I'll do some work at Barnes & Noble later, the wifi there is free.
Sunday, March 13, 2005
BBC: Blair attempts to woo back women.
Brian Dear: "There's a distinct rock-star syndrome going on with O'Reilly conferences."
Glenn Fleishman: "I hate attending sessions in which the person acts as though it's a giant inconvenience that they're even there."
Ben Franklin: "If you would not be forgotten, as soon as you are dead and rotten, either write things worthy reading, or do things worth the writing."
Maureen Dowd: "There's an intense debate going on now about why newspapers have so few female columnists."
Steven Levy: "Since anyone can write a Weblog, why is the blogosphere dominated by white males?"
dominate: "To control, govern, or rule by superior authority or power."
BoKu Communications is "in the process of expanding its podcasting system into a network that is enabling thousands of producers to cost-effectively create compelling content to fit the needs and desires of millions of users, with marketers benefiting from the connection."
IOL: "British music companies have won the right to force Internet service providers to disclose the names and addresses of individuals accused of uploading large numbers of songs onto file-sharing networks."
Zawodny: "Maybe it's time to review Google's financials and think like like the monoplist that Microsoft is."
There's an idea floating around the blogosphere for an event called BlogHerCon, something like BloggerCon, except about women and blogging, I guess. The idea seems to have originated with Sylvia Paull, who I've know for over 20 years, and is one of my few trust-with-my-life friends. Love her, as I do, I also note that she has a habit of starting exclusive events for women, and I've always let her know how I feel about this, but over the years I think we've come to see each others' way a bit more. My belief is that no matter how much it hurts, every event must be inclusive. Sylvia has a great line to go with this "I only go to parties that my friends are welcome at" (I've paraphrased).
Anyway, part of the philosophy of BloggerCon is inclusiveness. So Sylvia says men will be welcome at the girls' con, so I guess it passes the test. But will there be male discussion leaders? Will men be allowed to speak without being ridiculed? Will women who say sexist things about men (yes, there are plenty of those) be challenged, or will people who disagree be shouted down? In other words, how "her" is this going to be? And why?
Personally, I'm more interested in a conference whose goal was to raise human self-esteem. It would be an impressive step towards upgrading our species, which, by the way, includes both men and women.
Anyway, I don't know how I feel about this event. I'll watch as it develops and let you know what I see, with some trepidation. Men usually stay silent on these issues, I've written about that before, and nothing really has changed since then. Namaste y'all!
1/1/98: Men Stay Silent.
Saturday, March 12, 2005
Ed Cone quotes Allen Johnson raising an important question. Whatever happened to the courtesy wave? Well that's a Southern thing, people up north don't do it as much. You're driving by and see a group of kids by the side of the road, so you smile and wave, and they smile and wave back. It seems like such a small thing, but it makes you feel so damned good. I wish I understood why. On Thursday I was walking down the beach, a small plane approaches, doing the beach route, it seemed so close I could practically touch it, so I waved and smiled. And the plane dipped its wings! I laughed out loud. Maybe it's just the point-touching thing. Inside each of us we're a point, that's where our soul lives, and when you wave-and-smile you touch the other person's point, and when they wave-and-smile back your point is touched, and that feels good, and, at its most basic level, is what being human is all about.
5/2/97: "I believe that I am a point located, most of the time, about three inches behind my eyes and centered between my ears."
Key line from the California blogger decision, and it explains why bloggers are now getting so much sympathetic coverage from the pros. "Whether he fits the definition of a journalist, reporter, blogger or anything else need not be decided at this juncture for this fundamental reason: there is no license conferred on anyone to violate valid criminal laws." Isn't it funny how the "objective" journalists go positive about the rights of bloggers, and their role as journalists, only when their own livelihood is threatened?
Another report by MSM where the bloggers are now journalists. Their conflict of interest with respect to blogging is so huge, they have absolutely no credibility on the subject.
Onfocus: "I didn't quite understand the appeal of the subscription component of podcasting before, but now I see that if there's a program I always want to catch, podcasting is very handy."
Don Park: "I got invited to another MSN Search Champ get-together in Seattle. Unfortunately, I won't be there this time because I got too many things on my plate." I won't be going either, for a variety of reasons.
Friday, March 11, 2005
Ellen Dana Nagler: Journalists 'R' Us.
AP: "A judge on Friday ordered three independent online reporters to divulge confidential sources in a lawsuit brought by Apple Computer Inc."
Brief editorial: Bad move Apple. The big mistake you're making is the same one Google is, rolling over the core advocates with your corporate machine. You forgot how hard it was to build loyalty in the first place. In Google's case, there were good search engines when you came along. The thing that made Google different is that you treated us decently while the earlier search engines forgot who we were, and were treating us like eyeballs, not people. Apple lost their connect to their most loyal users when they killed the clones, that was the low point, and since then have steadily reconnected, although it's doubtful if they even understand this. Again, it's only because Microsoft was so utterly unable to understand computer users that Apple was able to get back on its feet. Now both Apple and Google are inviting a new generation to perhaps treat the users with some respect, or at least not quite so much disresepct as the current leaders are. Round and round we go, big wheel keep on turnin. Lalala. (PS if you work at Microsoft and think this is your chance, forget it. Your company is totally scared of users.)
Today's song: "Welcome to my blog, I guess you all know why you're here. My name is Davey, and I became aware this year. If you want to follow me, you have to use RSS. And post to your weblog, plug in your iPod, you know where to put the cork!"
Rogers Cadenhead: "Harvard should be dropping the hammer on ApplyYourself, the company whose poor programming revealed admission decisions prematurely, not on these hapless applicants."
Rafe Colburn: "It's hard to imagine any rational person not peeking."
The results from the Blogads reader survey are up.
Mary Jo Foley: "Not only is Microsoft filing patent applications like crazy, but now the company is putting forth a platform for reforming the US patent system."
Boston Globe: "Groove is one of a new breed of accidental defense contractors, companies that changed their business models and marketing strategies to adapt to new realities in the aftermath of the technology bust and the terrorist attacks of Sept 11."
Rex Hammock got the scoop from FEC commish David Mason on upcoming rules about pointing to candidate sites from weblogs.
Joshua Allen: "Shel Israel interviewed me for the book that he and Scoble are writing."
Chris Sells: "if you build yourself a reputation for good things, when occasionally you stray, folks will cut you some slack."
Listening to NPR on my afternoon walk yesterday, they were interviewing the head of a game designer association from their annual convention. They were running a contest to see who could come up with the most clever application of poet Emily Dickinson in a game. In one they had her play the role of Clippy, the awful commentator of your productivity from Microsoft. Anyway, at one point the interviewer expressed surprise that they were doing a game that didn't involve guns and shooting. The guy said that only a small portion of the games that were produced were of that kind. Really, said the interviewer, I guess that's just what the kids talk about? To which the game guy said "And the journalists." That's the code, I said to myself. It's just like blogs. All they talk about are the violent ones. Time to overthrow the bastards. Ooops, caught myself there.
Thursday, March 10, 2005
Podcasting is going mainstream so quickly. Yesterday on NPR I heard an analyst talk about how any of the three major networks, ABC, CBS or NBC could quickly get back in the news game. He said they should embrace new methods of distribution, like podcasting. He said it four times, and didn't bother to define the term. And then Bill Jennings sent a pointer to a travel writer contest where they are happy to take a podcast as a contest submission.
Robert Cox: Why Blogging Sucks.
How to never miss an episode with BitTorrent and RSS.
The Microsoft aggregator is down now, but Richard MacManus has screen shots and some theories about how the competition is shaping up.
AP: "Microsoft said Thursday it was acquiring leading collaboration software company Groove Networks Inc, and naming its founder, Ray Ozzie, as Microsoft's chief technical officer."
Scott Rosenberg: "This strikes me as a pretty big deal."
Lance Knobel: "I've been using Groove extensively for the last eight months for a new venture I'm putting together with three partners. We're scattered across the globe, and I've found the synchronisation, filing system and storage (and hence backup) really wonderful for us. It's fairly cheap and easy to use. I'm a fan."
Douglyss Giuliana is a former Groove user. "The automatic document sync between team members is quite nice."
Rafe Colburn: "It uses more resources than a Java IDE, which is to say, a lot."
Here's the link. Click on News to add feeds.
Try adding Scripting News. (Let's see if it becomes one of the "popular feeds" or if they decide who's popular. Heh.)
Hint: You should have a section for popular blogs.
FYI, it's been 1000 days since I smoked. Yaha.
I do occasionally miss it, but not in a literal sense. I can't stand the smell of cigarette smoke and if I took a drag on a cigarette I'd choke, for sure. What I miss is the high, and the pain. It's when I feel a rush of self-loathing that I wish I could light up. I think we all have moments when we don't like ourselves very much. A smoke is the perfect companion for that feeling.
Anyway, I haven't actually been counting, I have a little script that does the counting for me. And now, having reached this milestone, I think we can stop reporting on the progress. What would be the next one? 2000? 5000? Nah. I'm no longer a smoker. I make it through the occasional craving by taking a deep breath of ocean air. Works much better, I think.
Now while I haven't been counting days, I have been counting pings on weblogs.com. The number is actually pretty astounding. On March 8, for example, the server received almost a half-million pings. The exact number was 477,012.
And spam is starting to show up. Search Engine Optimizers have discovered blogs, specifically blogspot. We're going to have to develop some systems for dealing with this.
In today's Wall Street Journal, Walt Mossberg weighs in on AutoLink.
It seems that Mossberg has been saying the same things to Google that I have. I'm glad to hear, based on his column, that Google is considering a redesign for AutoLink. For what it's worth, if they changed to use only a drop down menu listing all the places they can take the user from the page, instead of marking up the page itself, I would turn from a critic to a supporter. I want the features, I like it when computers do things for me, but its design was too costly for authors and publishers. In a drop-down there would be no confusion about where the new links came from, and which were the new links, they would emanate from a space clearly marked as being Google's, instead of appearing to come from the author of the page.
I think they must have two writing crews on the West Wing, because last night's show was great!
I mean it wasn't quite as good as the really good old ones, but it got me emotional at times, especially at the end. Okay, anyway, if they're listening, it's kind of obvious that Jimmy Smits is going to be the new President, after we're finished with Bartlett. That's good. If you're trying to make us fed up with the lame duck, it's working. More episodes with Josh and Matt, please, and the new crew, and the new writers, and cameramen. Hey even Donna was sharp and not too embarassing this week. And I'm glad you-know-who finally got knocked out.
Last night was classic WW. Keep up the good work.
Wednesday, March 09, 2005
My BitTorrent download of the SXSW music archive has been running about 30 hours. 12.5 percent complete, an estimated 8 days to go.
Chris Lydon returns to the public airways, in Boston on WGBH, and distributed nationally through PRI. "We just want to make the show incredibly zesty and original and fresh," Lydon said.
Lowell Sun: "In hiring well-known public-radio talkmeister Christopher Lydon for $12,500 a month, UMass Lowell says its getting much more than a locally produced radio program."
News-Record: "A forum on blogging for elected representatives, candidates, policy makers and government officials will be held March 19 in Greensboro."
Steve Rubel: "Walt Mossberg weighs in on Google Autolink in tomorrow's paper. Basically his stance is consistent with what he wrote in 2001 on Smart Tags. The big news, however, is that Google sounds like it might be listening."
2WW: Nightline and the Berkman-Thursday group.
BBC: Virgin Radio starts daily podcast.
Chapel Hill bloggers meet tonight at 6PM at a new location.
Google is now putting real ads on audio.weblogs.com. I think the thing that got them to take another look is that I started running ads on the xml-rpc and soapware sites. The ads on all three are just right, imho.
Tuesday, March 08, 2005
Eric Goldman: "I want to find a way for tools like AutoLink to exist."
Philip Greenspun explains what the Harvard Business School applicants did that resulted in their being denied admission. It's a real stretch to call it hacking. And that's an understatement.
Engadget explains how to make your own annotated Google map.
I've been following the hooplah over Niall Kennedy, the Technorati employee who did a derivative work on a World War II poster about keeping secrets secret. I haven't seen the new art, but he did describe it, and sheez, it sounds pretty harmless (and self-referential). Can someone explain why this post evoked such a strong response from management?
Good SF Chronicle piece on Apple and bloggers. "Everybody is a journalist, or nobody is."
Virgin Radio is "the first UK radio station to produce a daily podcast."
Wired News: "For many years SXSW has provided on its website a library of free MP3s of bands participating in the conference. This year, the festival is making it even easier to listen by providing a huge BitTorrent file (2.6 GB) of more than 750 songs." This is excellent for at least three reasons. 1. It's great to get all this music. Not clear what terms it's being offered under, though. Can it be used in podcasts? That's pretty important. 2. It's a non-infringing use of BitTorrent, thus helping assure BT's future. 3. It's something that a lot of people will download so the download rate should be very good. It'll be interesting to see how high it goes. I'm downloading right now. (3 days remaining!)
Jon Udell: "Google Maps isn't just a service, it's a service factory."
Weatherbug: "Suppose you wanted to write an application to control the thermostat in your home or to automatically turn on the lawn sprinkler when certain conditions existed."
Haaretz article, in Hebrew, on RSS.
The Diane Rehm show has an RSS feed. No enclosures, though.
New header graphic. And then another. The picture of the Marine Parkway Bridge was the shortest-lived Scripting News header graphic, lasting just 28 minutes. Anyway, I would do anything to get Sergey off my site. Funny thing, I doubt if it's really going to be that easy. Heh. The new header is an inspiration from the 20th century, President Harry Truman, who said The Buck Stops Here (meaning his desk) and gave em hell, and beat Dewey, despite what the headline said. It's a reminder in this day when the pros are more thin-skinned and defensive than ever, and are keeping us dumber than ever, and saying we work in pajamas, that there are truths beyond those reported on the front page of the daily paper. Like Harry Truman, who may be the patron president of the bloggers, we're doing it for ourselves.
Monday, March 07, 2005
If you haven't seen the Better Bad News show on AutoLink, it's just 12 minutes, it's a classic, funny, and states the case so well. Pass it along, let's make sure everyone sees this.
On today's Diane Rehm Show, former CBS correspondent Tom Fenton, says the networks are no longer in the news gathering business.
News.Com has some kind of weblog with an interesting post about Rob Glaser and Steve Jobs.
Next question: I've seen that del.icio.us has the concept of "related" tags. Is the algorithm for determining what's related described somewhere?
Declan McCullagh: "Apple Computer's attempts to strong-arm Web publishers into divulging their confidential sources illustrates how bloggers, Internet journalists and other online scribes remain second-rate citizens."
I'm interested in knowing what lawyers think of this. Will it be overturned on appeal? Will it be appealed?
John Palfrey: "Some have suggested that the answer for bloggers is to establish a professional association. This seems like a mistake to me -- perhaps even completely the wrong way to go."
Doc Searls: "There is enormous room for improvement in blogging tools."
Pictures: Mets vs Nationals in Spring Training.
Hey the Dowbrigade is coming down for spring training!
According to John Battelle, Google Desktop Search (GDS) in its final non-beta form, will have an API. I'll be interested to hear what other developers think, but to me, right now, it's a big yawner, for a few reasons.
1. GDS isn't that useful, most of my work is stored on the net so I can find it where ever I am, so while I needed desktop search a few years ago, Google's came too late to make a difference.
2. It does a great job of indexing spam, so when I search for stuff, I get all the spam that's been sent to me on the search subject. I was surprised how much there is.
3. It's a resource hog, so it got uninstalled a long time ago.
4. An end-run around Microsoft? Feh. Google is the new Microsoft. I'm interested in end-runs around Google.
Sunday, March 06, 2005
Steve Gillmor: "Sergey, can you hear me?"
I went to see the Mets beat the Washington Nationals in Port St Lucie. It was a beautiful sunny day. I'll have pictures and movies tomorrow.
Technorati is also doing relationships between tags, as delicious is. Who will be the first to provide an API?
BBC: "Derakhshan's road to podcasting began five years ago in Tehran, where he worked for a reformist newspaper."
New header graphic. This is the first time a person has been the header graphic, but it's not the first time a person has appeared in a header graphic. That honor goes to Marc Canter, Jimmi Johnson, Jamis MacNiven and myself in this picture taken at Buck's Woodside in 1999. I've been planning on putting a person in that spot, and the Better Bad News video and Steve Gillmor's piece together made the choice pretty obvious. Brin is the executive in charge of not being evil at Google. Seriously, that's his responsibility. So he's The Man, right now. Google has always been uncomfortable in dialog with their community, but now is the time for a real dialog, not the usual stonewalling. The company is simply too powerful to exist entirely self-contained.
"Evil," says Google CEO Eric Schmidt, "is what Sergey says is evil."
Kevin Schofield, a 17-year Microsoft veteran, takes issue with ex-Softie-now-Googler Mark Lucovsky. Kevin says that Mark over-simplified, that the parts of Microsoft that develop web apps like MSN are just as fast as the new companies, Amazon and Google, and that developing a complex long-lived piece of software like Windows is hard work, especially when the engineers responsible for it take jobs at Google. Heh. A good, classy comeback.
Sebastien Paquet: "There isn't an API method for fetching related tags from del.icio.us yet."
Eric Goldman: "From a legal standpoint, AutoLink looks questionable."
One more time: Happy Trails To You.
Saturday, March 05, 2005
Better Bad News on Google AdLink. They get it.
Quote from this episode. "Better Bad News is a blogcast. That's the same as podcast, but without the misleading brand name."
Rex Hammock: "Apple-free speech means I'm calling it blogcasting instead of podcasting."
It was a gorgeous day here, clear skies high in the 70s, and being a Saturday the beach was full of people (it's relative, it's nothing like a full beach in NY). I didn't wear shoes on my daily walk, and waded in up to my knees, and loved the feeling. I'm better at managing sand than I was when I was a kid at my grandmother's house in Rockaway. Also more tired.
Talking with a friend about prospects for starting a podcasting-related business, when he asked a challenging question. With so many others starting up, why not offer your services to the best of them? People with a real chance of success in the market, as it gets more competitive, as it heats up. Good question. I wondered how would I raise the question, and then I remembered Scripting News. Hmmm.
Question. I have a frame in a page that I'd like to refresh periodically, say every five minutes. All the scripts and content are local, so it's really fast. When I use the meta-refresh element, it works great, but there's an audible click. I'm sure there's no way to disable this, but I thought I should ask. Is there a way to disable it? This is in MSIE 6 on Windows (actually the HTML rendering control baked into an app). Note: This feature is for users, not for me (only). So a solution that says "Go to a Control Panel and..." won't work. I guess this is more of a feature request for MSIE 7 -- some way to disable the refresh click, from HTML.
TechWeb: "EarthLink's upcoming Enhanced Webmail is built using the Laszlo platform, which generates Flash-based applications."
Channel 9: Microsoft-centered podcasts.
John Robinson: "The Houston Chronicle, WRAL-TV, The Oregonian, The News & Observer and USA Today have called me over the past week to talk about blogging. Not for a story but to pick my brain -- what little crumbs are left -- about our experiences online."
NY Times: "At spring training, it's possible to watch the baton of fandom pass among generations."
Last night I wrote about wanting to pay $2000 for a hard disk loaded with all kinds of great music. Gerard Hughes sent a pointer to an offer for a hard disk full of podsafe music (no royalties, license fees) for $1995.
Jeff Sandquist shaved the stache. He wants to know what we think. Here goes. What are you going to remove next? Your nose? Your eyes?
After so much to-do about Google in the last couple of weeks, it seems I should repeat the disclaimer that I own Google stock, purchased just after the IPO. It has almost doubled in value. I plan to hold the stock for the forseeable future, to me it's kind of like owning IPO stock in Microsoft, Xerox or IBM.
Further, I said what I said about Google because I believe it, and for no other reason. In the recent past I have praised Google, when I believed they were doing good stuff.
Scott Shuda, a Republican, says I missed the point of his bit about killing people who comitted their crimes while children, but I don't think so. The point is that killing children is wrong, and it's doubly wrong when the government does it in the name of justice.
Further, there's nothing controversial about one court overturning another court's interpretation of the Constitution. And I don't care about the circumstances of the case, and have written extensively about why I believe that. I could repeat all I've written, or just point you to a couple of the pieces. I hope you read them, not with the idea that you're going to "prove" me wrong, but to try to understand that there are valid points of view, other than your own.
One important factor not mentioned in either of the pieces is that sometimes we kill innocent people in the name of justice. If I were wavering on the death penalty that would sway me. If you're opposed to people killing other people, something I think we agree on, how can you support it when it's done by the state?
PS: Sometimes I think we should put Republicans to death. What if a majority of the voters agree? That's another reason the courts exist, to protect the rights of minorities.
Friday, March 04, 2005
This week's song: Happy Trails to You.
How did I miss this? Sony Music has a 26-CD set of music from the 20th century, list price $329, Barnes and Noble has it for $296. I may buy it, but what I really want is a lot more music, for say $2000 and it comes pre-loaded on a hard disk so I don't have to scan it to get it on my iPod. This is the next thing after podcasting, opening up the archive at the big music warehouses and let us buy wholesale. A music renaissance.
Rex Hammock: "Some dog photo blogging for Friday afternoon."
John Handelaar: "I live in the UK. And in the UK I have legally-enforcible Moral Rights over whatís on my web site."
BBC: "A US judge in an Apple lawsuit hearing says bloggers should not have the same protection as journalists."
Mercury News: Apple 1, bloggers 0.
Future Tense: "In the Superior Court of Santa Clara County, California today, a judge will hear arguments that could help define whether bloggers have the same publishing rights as other journalists."
It's a Spicy Noodles kind of day.
Michael Butler: "The San Francisco Podcasters meetup is tentatively scheduled for March 23 at 7:00PM."
Slate: When Good Search Engines Go Bad.
Tim Bray: "Iím OK with reformatting and aggregating and all sorts of other things, but I donít want downstream software fucking with my words. Or my pictures. Or my links. A lot of us feel this way." Amen.
Chris Ridings proposes an opt-out meta tag for content mods.
This is what opt-in looks like. If I want your ads on my page, I'll let you know. And I'd appreciate if you share the revenue.
More MCN logos from Kosso. Neat-o!
Susan Mernit: "The major brainpower in the room spent a lot of time trudging through the weeds."
Rebecca MacKinnon: "Whether mainstream media will survive, or whether it should survive, or in what form, or how, is irrelevant. I don't care."
You can help Jeff Sandquist decide whether to keep his moustache.
As a former person-with-moustache, here's my opinion. They're a dumb idea. Make a choice -- go all the way --shave or let it grow.
About beards -- the cool thing about having a beard is that you only have to deal with it every two weeks or so, and it's pretty easy, and totally painless, and if you space it out, you just look a little bushy. Shaving is a pain, and if you're lazy like me, you end up walking around needing a shave much of the time. So having a beard, a full one, is a rational choice.
Your wife is going to hate you if you shave the moustache, I remember when my brother shaved his many years ago, everyone, including me, insisted he put it back, immediately. It was so hard to look at him. What are you going to remove next? Your nose? Your eyes? To everyone else the moustache is a crucial feature of your face. Without it you will seem ugly and naked to them.
On the other hand, you're looking really good and healthy. So now might be a good time to lose the moustache. Here's a suggestion. Go away for two weeks to Hawaii or Florida and shave it off and get a nice tan. Then come back. Everyone will be glad to see you, you'll look different, but they won't remember why.
PS: Who knew I had so much to say about moustaches?
PPS: What a funny word! It's like a mouse with a tache.
Thursday, March 03, 2005
At the end of a long productive and satisfying day, I sat down in front of the tube with some Chinese food to catch up on the news. On Paula Zahn they're talking about Martha Stewart. Same with Larry King an hour later. Aaron Brown has been pre-empted for a special about Martha Stewart. Then I read on Halley's Comment that the mainstream media wants our respect for all the in-depth reporting they do. Hey, when they respect their Chinese-food-eating "audience" and give us some interesting and meaty news from around the world, and not some blather about the kind of device Martha is going to have to sleep with, and about how her friends will think she's somehow less of a person because she went to jail. Okay we now resume our regularly scheduled broadcast.
Here's a new mail list you can join to get instant notification of new podcasts as they flow through audio.weblogs.com.
Rex Hammock calls News.Com on the coming "crackdown."
Martha Stewart is in prison, hard to do a Newsweek photo shoot, but that didn't stop Newsweek from putting her on the cover, with a model's body and Marth's head, a Photoshop marvel.
Lukovsky's blog is back up at 5:15PM Eastern.
Mary Jo Foley reports on Lucovsky's move to Google.
News.Com: "Bradley Smith says that the freewheeling days of political blogging and online punditry are over."
Kosso gave me a sneak peek at something very very cool he's working on. It's a Flash-based podcast browser. It's so funny, I was laughing out loud while playing with it. Wowowo!
Blog Ads is doing a reader survey for all the blogs they work with. We're getting ready to do some work with them, so go ahead and fill in the survey, and enter "Scripting News" as the blog name in question #16.
David Weinberger: "Starting in April, NYTimes.com is going to publish thousands of topic pages, each aggregating the content from the 10 million articles in its archive, going back to 1851, including graphics and multimedia resources. Topics that get their own page might include Boston, Terrorism, Cloning, the Cuban Missile Crisis and Condoleezza Rice. News stories will link to these topic pages. And -- the Times must hope -- these pages, with their big fat permanent addresses, may start rising in Google's rankings."
New header graphic.
Business Week article on podcasting.
Tim Langeman: "I imagined a 'link fight' back in November of 2000, but I didn't anticipate that it would be initiated by a major vendor like Google."
I've gotten a lot of email from reporters asking how I know that Mark Lucovsky, Microsoft's distinguished operating system architect, is now working at Google. Well, I have good sources. And you could always read his blog, about life at Google. He says: "Microsoft used to know how to ship software, but the world has changed. The companies that 'know how to ship software' are the ones to watch. They have embraced the network, deeply understand the concept of 'software as a service,' and know how to deliver incredible value to their customers efficiently and quickly."
Gizmodo: "We just wanted them to suck less, not die."
Wednesday, March 02, 2005
Steve Gillmor: "The RSS Bubble is here."
Rob Fahrni did a design for a Morning Coffee Notes logo. Yeah the one I came up with was pretty, er, ahem cough, rushed. If anyone else wants to try this out, please do. Rob's design is great, but "morning" is an important part of it. I want a bright logo, something optimistic and fun. And it wouldn't hurt if it were about traveling, since I seem to do the best work while driving some place. See if you can work the South Carolina sunrise into it? How about the blue sky of Saskatchewan?
Pieter Overbeeke did a nice logo with all the elements. Cooolio!
Haaretz: "Podcasts are infiltrating beyond the Internet realm, into types of media that existed beforehand."
USA Today: "Brenda Spoonemore, NBA senior vice president, says the league is planning podcasts for news."
In 2001, when Smart Tags was the topic, Connie Guglielmo wrote a column for ZDNet, demoing how a Microsoft-filtered Web might read.
Scott Granneman: "When Google changes the links on this web page, Google changes my writing, without any input from me, and for commercial gain that certainly doesn't benefit me, or SecurityFocus."
John, it's okay with me if Adam does the book. I'd happily help him or his ghost writer. I've had lots of offers to do books. I've never had the patience for it. I like instant results, that's the kind of writer I am.
Anonymoses: Charlotte to host Bloggercon.
Welcome to the Nooked RSS Directory. "You can search for corporate RSS feeds by keyword or browse the categories below. If you publish corporate RSS feeds, you can submit them to our directory."
This, as far as I know, is the first cat to appear on Scripting News.
Dr Lorianne DiSabato was one of four callers on the hour-long show we did yesterday on New Hampshire Public Radio.
Business 2.0 wonders why Sequoia Capital invested in a startup founded by the 19-year-old who turned Mozilla into Firefox. Isn't it obvious? Adware. The best place to bake it in is in the browser itself. He who controls the browser gets the money, now that Google has broken the barrier. The ads move from the Web page into the browser, and so does the money. How long before the "content industry" figures this out? All of a sudden the NY Times buyout of About.Com looks like a really bad deal.
On yesterday's radio show, the host, Laura Knoy observed that as blogs are decentralizing, the mainstream media is centralizing -- coalescing into fewer and fewer larger and larger companies. I said it's always that way. Today someone will die, and on the same day, someone else will be born. The ebb and flow. Arteries and veins. Yin and yang. In and out.
Now, while it's easy now to visualize the end of the Web, the great experiment in public access to the text airways, because the geeks at Google have figured out how to put ads everywhere, even inside other people's web pages; we are starting up a new medium, podcasting, that's immune to their devilish trickery! There are no links in podcasts. Heh.
Okay, we don't know for a fact that Google is working on an operating system, but the tea leaves are pretty damned clear. Why else would they have hired Microsoft's operating system architect, Mark Lucovsky? Surely not to write a spreadsheet or word processor.
This is one of those times when we have a story way in advance of other bloggers, and way in advance of the business press. Google is counting on it staying that way. I'm sure Trent Lott, Dan Rather and Eason Jordan did too. And that my friends, is where a kernel of hope resides. Integrity in printing presses was never an issue. You didn't have to worry about the story changing as it left the editorial department and was printed by the presses and distributed on delivery trucks. As we've seen before, electronic publishing is different in every way. And just when you think you have it figured out and you can relax for a bit on the beach and make some new software, the rules change, radically.
Say this with a heavy New Yawk accent: So what else is new?
Tuesday, March 01, 2005
Holy Hanna -- it's podcast #2 for the day, in which I sum up the NHPR show, and briefly talk about my conversation today with Marissa Mayer at Google. It was kind of a no op, we totally don't see eye to eye, they're clearly going to go ahead with the adware feature, and unless a lot of other people make it an issue, there's nothing we can do about it. I have some ideas about creating a safe environment that's not print, one where ideas can make it through from one end to the other without being messed with, I'm exploring those ideas privately with technology vendors who can help. Anyway, the purpose of this brief podcast is to bring a small amount of closure to this discussion. Google owns the Web now, at least until Yahoo and Microsoft fight them for it. Bad day.
Today I was on New Hampshire Public Radio with Laura Knoy and Dan Gillmor, talking about blogs. It was a one hour call-in show and it was a lot of fun. The callers all had interesting stories to tell about their weblogs. It made blogs seem nice and interesting, like New Hampshire. Here's an MP3 of the show for your podcatching pleasure. Note this podcast is also available on the Morning Coffee Notes site and in its RSS 2.0 feed with enclosures.
Major news: Yahoo Has an API. Coool!
Adam Mathes: "A few years ago Meg Hourihan wrote that there are web people, and there are dot-com people."
Can you believe Republicans defend the idea that states should kill children, in the name of justice? If ever there was proof that we need help. And the Republicans talk about values. Feh. Values to kill children.
Cory Doctorow responds to some of the posts about Google's AutoLink feature, calling it a "beloved butler." Something else to consider. In May, Google posted a set of software principles for desktop applications and spyware. It was a curious document, because at the time Google didn't have a desktop app. Six months later, of course, they did, desktop search. Today, Google could allay our concerns by producing similar guidelines for content modification to protect the integrity of the web. Of course such guidelines would make no difference unless Microsoft and Yahoo also agreed to them.
The cowbell guy asks if Google isn't violating Cory's Creative Commons license that prohibits commercial use of his work.
But Fred, what about people who write websites?
Yesterday the new Morning Coffee Notes feed was unveiled. There's more, an OPML version and an HTML rendering. I edit the OPML version, using an outliner of course. The other forms, RSS and HTML, are generated from the OPML. Then, because there's an OPML version of the feed, it can be included in an OPML directory. I love it when things just work, like this.
Lisa Williams tells a story of Best Buy and RSS.
Basic requirements for a place to live: Starbucks, Barnes and Noble, an NPR station within range. Now, living in Florida is geographically strange. I'm programmed to do a time-zone calculation for people I communicate with. I keep wanting to think that people in Boston and NYC are three hours earlier than me, but in fact, they're in the same time zone. I feel like I'm tucked away in a weird corner, it feels sneaky!
I tune out the ad hominems. Try to argue, instead, by complimenting the intelligence and ethics of the person who opposes your viewpoint. Try to understand where they're coming from, and show that you understand. This one change would elevate discourse in the blogging community more than anything else. Matters like AdLink are always subject to judgement. Each of us has a different point of view. That someone sees it differently is a good thing, emphatically, it is not a personality flaw.
© Copyright 1997-2006 Dave Winer.