Posts from December 2002

Finally: Clay Shirky reports on

Finally
: Clay Shirky reports on his confab-come-experiment in social software. [via der Schockenwellenreiter]

The BMW driving school: Steer

The BMW driving school
: Steer here.

A pot to…: Check out

A pot to…
: Check out the pisser of a pissoir.

My VLOG children: Well, two

My VLOG children
: Well, two snowflakes do not an avalanche make, but it’s a start.

Justin Katz answers my vlogs with a vlog of his own, a neat job with some new tricks to teach this old dog (including taking a clip from my vlog and inserting it into his).

Having said that, Justin sees problems with vlogging — cost, bandwidth, added copyright armor around video. None of that is wrong.

But I still say that for the right content and the right voice (both of which I’m still trying to find and fine-tune), vlogs will be best (and bandwidth will increase and, thanks to the software and equipment I use, costs are already coming down).

Vlogs will snowball soon enough.

: I note also in my town paper that my town — run by tax-and-spend Republicans who act like drunk Democrats (because they are unopposed hereabouts and, as you know, power corrupts and so they spend to prove they are powerful, but I digress) — is debating improving the free access channel it controls on my cable system. They’re talking about taking $300k worth of equipment they already own AND adding $500k more AND hiring someone to run the thing, all to create something expensive (isn’t that the point) that no one will watch (isn’t that also the point?).

Well, folks, for a few cheap webcams and a cheap piece of software and one good high school teacher with some smart students, you can create a great channel that’s also accessible on the Internet anytime you want it.

Why, we could broadcast all those committee meetings where you don’t allow any debate (because you are all-powerful). That is what this revolution can bring.

: The point of this vlogging is that it will seed others’ imaginations. My kids just used my software and cam to record videos for their grandparents. My 6-year-old wrote her own script and read it on the teleprompter and chose her graphics. It is THAT easy. My sister, a Presbyterian minister, looked at this and imagined the videos she could create for new members or fundraising campaigns. Glenn Reynolds has unpacked his. Justin created his own vlog. BoingBoing points to a different kind of vlogging by a Dutch filmmaker (it appears to be off the air right now). And the folks at Macromedia put up video snippets — interviews and commentary — from a recent conference.

My goal was to prove the concept and see where it goes from there.

New VLOG address…: The good

New VLOG address…
: The good news is that Glenn Reynolds linked to my latest VLOG. The bad news is that Glenn Reynolds linked to my latest VLOG and it being video, the bandwidth choked like Trent Lott saying he supports affirmative action.

But I found another place to serve the video (and I’m investigating other sources).

Sony has a neat (if too neat) site called Screenblast that offers 50 megs of free storage and unlimited bandwidth. That is the good news. THe bad news? The site is as difficult to navigate as Trend Lott’s morals.

But here is an address for my video showcase that should work. Go there and click on the MEDIA 2002 link and you will (I hope) get the video to which Glenn so generously links.

I’ve disabled the link to the vlog on my server temporarily; will reactivate it as soon as the server can breath again.

Merry Christmas to me: My

Merry Christmas to me
: My wife and I did not exchange gifts and it’s terribly liberating: I buy a few things for myself. I just put in an order for a Linksys 802.11b signal booster. Corey Doctorow worried about warring networks but in the country, where I live, this just gets me through the whole house without wimpy signals. The true American motto: More power!

Beware: The season of lists

Beware: The season of lists is upon us
: But not all lists are bad (see the post below). Some lists are merely about bad things.

Marc Weisblott lists the year’s 10 worst blogs, including himself in the list, and topping it off with the obligatory poll (no write-ins allowed). I’m still considering my vote as I think my lucky stars I didn’t make the list.

Top Web Design Mistakes of

Top Web Design Mistakes of 2002: No. 11
: Paying the slightest attention to Jakob Nielsen.

: In the comments, Oliver says: “I never get the anti-Nielsen feelings. In my web development efforts, his stuff is more right than others 80% of the time …”

I reply:

Just look at his site: not only ugly but unreadable: no sense of how to use size and emphasis, no sense of the need to have a focal point, no effort to help guide the user/reader/viewer/consumer. His design is the perfect representation of his attitude: arrogance.

Since you asked….