Posts from February 10, 2004

Friends and enemies

Friends and enemies
: Bill O’Reilly turns on Bush:

Conservative television news anchor Bill O’Reilly said on Tuesday he was now skeptical about the Bush administration and apologized to viewers for supporting prewar claims that Iraq had weapons of mass destruction.

The anchor of his own show on Fox News said he was sorry he gave the U.S. government the benefit of the doubt that former Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein’s weapons program poised an imminent threat, the main reason cited for going to war.

“I was wrong. I am not pleased about it at all and I think all Americans should be concerned about this,” O’Reilly said in an interview with ABC’s “Good Morning America.”

“What do you want me to do, go over and kiss the camera?” asked O’Reilly, who had promised rival ABC last year he would publicly apologize if weapons were not found.

O’Reilly said he was “much more skeptical about the Bush administration now” since former weapons inspector David Kay said he did not think Saddam had any weapons of mass destruction.

While critical of President Bush, O’Reilly said he did not think the president intentionally lied. Rather, O’Reilly blamed CIA Director George Tenet, who was appointed by former President Bill Clinton….

Even George Bush is Bill Clinton’s fault. Wow.

Mobile hacks

Mobile hacks
: Now I’m at an Etech session on mobile hacks. I’ll digest/distill/divulge to the best of my ability.

: Right now, I’m hearing a lot about telecom plan costs and speeds and I’m zoning. I’ll read about the election instead. Politics is now more enlivening. Watching paint turn into lead is more enlivening.

I’m giving up on blogging this session.


: Now at an ETech session on “untethering the social network.”

: Howard Rheingold, Dr. SmartMobs, says the users take over technology and do with it what they please, not what the company providing it pleases.

: Mimi Ito on her research on kids’ use of mobile phones in Japan: Most communication occurs inside an intimate group of two to five friends… As social software, it’s different from the Internet because it’s more personal…. Some say it’s now rude to make a phone call without first sending a text message to make sure it’s ok; it’s the knock on the door….

There’s much use of photo mail. “One common genre is the new-haircut shot.”

: Joi is asking how to make mobile devices more hackable to get more social development. The devices aren’t hack-friendly. The telecom networks certainly aren’t hack-friendly. But open-source, open-standard, hack-creativity as we’ve seen on the Internet will explode development in mobile.

Joi is talking about hacking the power law, too. See the Technorati discussion below; the blogs with five links, in aggregate, have more links than the blogs with hundreds of links. Similarly, in the mobile social sphere, the links and networks and connections are all fewer.

So it’s not about mocking mass media. It’s about expanding communications.

: Howard uses the opportunity to share a “cheap joke” of a scene he witnessed here as one person greeted another with the question: “Are you my friend?! Yes?! No?!”

: Kevin Marks asks what it will mean when videogame boxes are connected to the Internet. Danah said there is a backchannel to the gameplay. Even here… “We’re playing at the same time that we’re engaging.” Orkut is play, too. “You can’t take it seriously.” People game it because they don’t take it seriously.

: A questioner and Mimi Ito see a tension in blogs and in mobile interaction between intimate, personal tone and larger-scale addressing an audience.

: Someone said this was unreadable. Admitted. This one was hard to distill. Or perhaps to digest. Or perhaps I’m just stupid.

The two-way (albeit async) New York Times

The two-way (albeit async) New York Times
: Dan Okrent, public editor of the NY Times, has started putting up online-only responses to some of the many, many emails he gets. They call it a “journal.” It’s not really a forum with open discussion. It’s not really a weblog. But it is another way for readers to at least talk to The Times and get answered — all the better because it’s in public. It’s not fully two-way but it’s a start. [via Anil]

Moving the Mouse by RSS

Moving the Mouse by RSS
: At an ETech session on moving content via RSS on Disney, they say that Dave Winer and Adam Curry suggested the architecture that allows them to give users full-quality, instant-on video on the home pages of ESPN and other sites. If you go to a Disney site and want this video, you’ll end up downloading a tiny ap (Windows only) that is actually an RSS aggregator that takes enclosures of the video material to cache on users’ hard drives.

Nice technology, nice use, nice gestating of big-media technology in nanomedia.

: They’ve shipped more than 500 million videos with this technology.

: Disney is now talking about how they migrated TV production “shift logs” to Movable Type. They didn’t tell anybody it was a “blog.” And the staff called them geniuses. “Hmmm, what else can we steal from the blogosphere,” they said. Next: They use RSS to distribute internal information via NewsGator and Outlook. “They don’t even know it’s not email. It just shows up and they’re happy.”

They’re looking to replace RSS with Atom because it’s more two-directional. (I don’t know what that means. I report; you understand.)

: Conclusion: “RSS and weblog software are very useful to business and it doesn’t have anything to do with anybody’s opinions.”