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Scripting News, the weblog started in 1997 that bootstrapped the blogging revolution.
Permanent link to archive for Sunday, July 24, 2005. Sunday, July 24, 2005

A picture named bus.jpgThe intro. "The OPML Editor follows in the tradition of simple text-based tools masquerading as a rich development platform. Or is it the other way around? The most powerful applications are also the most powerful development platforms. The various text editors on Unix. Quark XPress on the Macintosh. Notepad on Windows. Inside every text editor is the potential of platform, and every platform must have a simple text editor. It was with this simple premise that I set out in 1988 to make an outliner that was also a programming language and object database. Now, in 2005, all the power of this idea is available in a download that's about the size of a 15 minute podcast. If this works, people with great ideas should arrive shortly. Maybe you're one of them? If so -- I've been waiting for you!" Permanent link to this item in the archive.

A long-standing problem will not be replicated in the OPML Editor. Permanent link to this item in the archive.

Draft of the terms of service for the OPML Editor: "0. Terms of service. Let's keep it simple. I'm providing this software for your evalution only. Decide if it's useful and if you do (I don't claim it is), you assume all risk, and I assume none, same with the company that's providing the service, Scripting News, Inc. Further, the hosting I provide is also only for your evaluation. I could at any time stop doing it, or my backups could fail. Please keep copies of all the data stored on the server. If you use the service for illegal purposes we will turn off your account shortly after we find out. These terms will be rewritten by a lawyer shortly." Permanent link to this item in the archive.

Fascinating comments on a post about syndication from O'Reilly.  Permanent link to this item in the archive.

One of the comments says that the Wikipedia page about RSS is highly political and that's correct. Really an eyesore.  Permanent link to this item in the archive.

You know what would be interesting -- commission Phil Torrone to write a definitive piece about RSS. Put a couple of weeks into it. I trust Phil, and clearly so do the O'Reilly people (he works for them). Play down the differences of the past (but mention them, because they're in the technology, unfortunately). Try to put it all to rest.  Permanent link to this item in the archive.

John Robinson, editor of the Greensboro News-Record, offers guidelines to the paper's bloggers. Ed Cone says it's a must-read, and I think that's right. They're mostly very good, common-sense, the kinds of things every blogger should consider, whether they write on the News-Record site or not. There's one point I object to, the bit about representing the newspaper. I think it should be the other way around, the newspaper represents them. A blog is the unedited voice of an individual. Robinson seems to agree with that, so how can a blogger represent an organization? What does that mean? What's the practical side of that?  Permanent link to this item in the archive.

Morning coffee notes Permanent link to this item in the archive.

As I wander and pause in my travels, I wonder what my next stop will be. I sort of doubt that I'll spend the fall in Florida. I loved staying at the beach this winter and spring, it's been a goal of mine, for my whole adult life to try living at the beach, to get into the flow of the ocean, not just as a visitor, but as an active participant. I also wanted to spend some time near my uncle's home, at the places we used to hang out, as a way of saying goodbye. He picked the best part of Florida to live in, the ocean is great, the lifestyle is still pretty southern (although that's changing really quickly). The pace is slow and easy and the ocean is not the simple thing I always thought it was, but suspected it was not.

So there are two directions I'm looking at. 1. The Rockies. 2. New York City. Couldn't be more different, right?

A picture named skier.jpgDifferent goals, two choices. Let's look at them. First, the Rockies. The idea there would be to do with skiing what I did this winter with the beach. I started skiing when I was very young, around five or six. I didn't like it then, but as I grew up, I grew into it. In my mid-30s I spent a winter skiing, over 40 days, but still based in California. I was in really good shape, so the skiing was wonderful. Now I'm quite a bit older, and not in such great shape, but spending a whole winter skiing would probably get me into some kind of really good shape. It's really hard not to keep the weight down when you're exerting yourself so much all day.

The reason to do it now is that I can do it now. In a few years it might not be possible for me to spend a whole winter skiing. Time goes by very quickly, I've found out. All of a sudden I'm 50. Soon, all of a sudden I'll be 70. You say there are plenty of 70 year old skiers, and you're right. But there are also plenty of people who aren't skiing at 70. That's the fallacy of old age. We all hope we'll be the ones who are left standing and healthy, but then there's my uncle, who died at 58. :-(

The cool thing about skiing all winter is that I could invite people to come skiing with me for brainstorming sessions. There's nothing like spending a day riding up on chair lifts having inspiring conversations, and then having an exhilirating run down the mountain, and then continuing the conversation on the next ride up the mountain or over a soft drink at the lodge.

Anyway, on to choice #2, the Big Apple. Sorry to say it, but every other city in the US is small potatoes compared to the Big One. And it's starting to get an interesting high tech life. Over the last few months I've spoken with half a dozen high tech investors based in NYC, and I don't know what it is, but they seem more outgoing and business-oriented than the west coast venture guys, who somehow seem to act like they're the show, and you're an employee. In all my years on the west coast I never got one of them to invest in one of my ideas. Not once. But they were ideas you could build industries on, because that's actually what happened. We have the benefit of hindsight now.

A picture named nyc.jpgIn NY, I have actually been recruited by investors. Imho, that's the way it should be. Anyway, I have a dream, of a media technology research center located in the media headquarters of the western world. One where tech people meet to try out new ideas, with the support of the investment community, on a pooled basis. The entrepreneur shares ownership in the idea with a group of investors, who then get to bid on starting businesses around the ideas. So you put down micro-bets, $100K to $250K, get a server up and running, and see if the users like it. If they do, fund it up, maybe $2 million, and go to the next level. Why do it in NY? Well, we wouldn't just do it in NY, but it has a great airport, and theater, opera, museums, baseball, and the kind of people who are drawn to a vibrant intellectual life. People come to NY to do more than work, they come to create. And that's what draws me there too. That, and the 2nd Ave Deli.


Last update: Sunday, July 24, 2005 at 9:14 PM Eastern.

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