Dave Winer, 56, is a visiting scholar at NYU's Arthur L. Carter Journalism Institute and editor of the Scripting News weblog. He pioneered the development of weblogs, syndication (RSS), podcasting, outlining, and web content management software; former contributing editor at Wired Magazine, research fellow at Harvard Law School, entrepreneur, and investor in web media companies. A native New Yorker, he received a Master's in Computer Science from the University of Wisconsin, a Bachelor's in Mathematics from Tulane University and currently lives in New York City.
"The protoblogger." - NY Times.
"The father of modern-day content distribution." - PC World.
"Dave was in a hurry. He had big ideas." -- Harvard.
"Dave Winer is one of the most important figures in the evolution of online media." -- Nieman Journalism Lab.
10 inventors of Internet technologies you may not have heard of. -- Royal Pingdom.
One of BusinessWeek's 25 Most Influential People on the Web.
"Helped popularize blogging, podcasting and RSS." - Time.
"The father of blogging and RSS." - BBC.
"RSS was born in 1997 out of the confluence of Dave Winer's 'Really Simple Syndication' technology, used to push out blog updates, and Netscape's 'Rich Site Summary', which allowed users to create custom Netscape home pages with regularly updated data flows." - Tim O'Reilly.
8/2/11: Who I Am.
My 40 most-recent links, ranked by number of clicks.
FYI: You're soaking in it. :-)
A few weeks ago I posted a note here about how it was taking over 24 hours for Amazon to launch an EC2 instance. Then for a while it seemed to get better. Now it's sucking again.
I had developed a bit of voodoo. Instead of launching one instance, I'd launch two. Usually one of the two would be ready to go within an hour. But today I've launched eight instances, starting first thing this morning, and none of them have gotten to the point where they would return a Windows password. This coming from an AMI that I was able to launch yesterday just fine.
I write these notes because I don't know what else to do. I'm sitting here at zero productivity, waiting and waiting. I love EC2. But this is ridiculous. It's like the parrot in the Monty Python sketch. Beatiful plumage. Pushing up daisies.
Update: The next pair of instances I launched came up right away, as I suspected they might.
First let me say it could well be, probably is, something I did wrong that led to my Twitter/OAuth code to stop working overnight.
I first noticed it a few minutes ago when I posted something to my feed that didn't go through. I checked the database to see what went wrong. It said, "Incorrect signature."
So the first question -- is anyone aware of anything that changed in the Twitter API last night?
Second question -- I'm new to using Twitter's OAuth interface. Is it realiable or flaky or somewhere inbetween?
I don't think it could be a terms-of-service thing because my app is doing exactly the same thing as TwitterFeed, and as far as I know they're still legal. I was using TwitterFeed until a couple of weeks ago, but needed an interface with less latency.
Academic hackathons are the rage, and there's one coming up this weekend at NYU.
Unfortunately, imho of course, the commercial APIs are over-represented and open formats and protocols are not represented at all. RSS will never offer you a job or fund your startup, but -- it might keep the Internet free so we'll still be interested in entrepreneurship for the Class of 2020 and beyond. You always have to keep putting back. And as the Twitter developers will tell you, the waters that surround big battleships and aircraft carriers can be very turbulent. As they say, when an 800-pound gorilla sneezes, you're the one with boogers all over you.
That's why I like platforms without platform vendors. There's no one to change the rules, decide that you've been copying them when they've been copying you. To deprecate the APIs that you've invested your life savings in.
Okay anyway, enough motivation.
The 11 free ideas are:
1. Share Your OPML.
2. Beautiful River.
3. UI for FeedHose.
4. Centralized subscription manager.
5. Hack status.net so we can template it.
6. What if Readability and Instapaper didn't have to scrape?
7. REST interface for DNS.
8. Open source Dropbox clone.
9. Drop-dead simple static hosting.
10. University news.
11. Make Apache an end-user product.
All are explained in more depth in two bits I wrote last fall.
Now, if you're interested in doing one of these projects at this weekend's hackathon at NYU, post a comment here. I live a few blocks away so I can help you, and I will, with any of these projects.
The cool thing about them, is that they all make the Internet better and more useful and more open, and they are open-ended. They aren't done when the weekend is over. Because -- they're useful.