Archive for January, 2006
I am delighted to tell you that Grace Davis is organizing Woolf Camp down in Santa Cruz over President’s Day Weekend. She is opening up her house to other bloghers (and bloggers to just come together and be. Her original blog post is a good indicator of the wonderful energy she is cultivating.
- Come, evolve with us. Come teach, come learn, come eat a lot of M&Ms, come hang out.
World peace through blogging,
Besides Grace being a great writer and all around cool person, she has doubly blessed me by citing BrainJams as one of her inspirations (along with BarCamp) and dubbed me as one of the “techies who are not afraid to be human”. Ever since I first saw that kind tribute, I have been wanting to hang out with her and get to know her better. Now Kristie and I have our chance and we are really looking forward to it. Might even go down FRI night beforehand and stay somewhere on the beach…
Will be a good chance to work on posting some of my old poetry and perhaps writing some new stuff. But given the wonderful home spun schedule she has proposed, I just might be too busy “Invent(ing) entirely new art forms and genres of bloggity literature or maybe doing something “workshoppy” while “shyly wander(ing) onto (her) flower-filled deck”.
Wow! Once again I am amazed at how people can just come together without a lot of planning and make something cool happen. After reaching out to a few of our former Patrons to help with DC and Berkeley next month, things are feeling really solid.
Not only will be have the right sort of people showing up (including a few Web 2.0 luminaries and a few main stream journalists who really get it), but Lawrence Coburn from Rate It All just stepped up to sponsor the refreshments for BrainJams DC on Monday and to be a supporting sponsor for our Berkeley BrainJams on Feb 25. Shortly after hearing from Lawrence, I got a call from Scott Beale at Laughing Squid who also just signed up as a supporting sponsor for both events. Both have been with us since the beginning and I cant thank them enough.
And now the link love is growing and the word of mouth is spreading…
I am writing another post to go deeper into what we are doing Monday, but in the meantime would like to hear your feedback on this idea: At traditional, academic conferences, researchers submit papers for consideration by the conference. Why not borrow a little from this idea to create a better framework for our conversations at BrainJams? So for Monday’s BrainJams event, I propose that everyone submit a Blog Post for consideration by other participants concerning what you want to talk to people about on Monday. Once you do so, please tag it forBrainJams30Jan2006 (just copy and paste the code below into the bottom of your blog post if you do not know how to tag blog posts yet). Another alternative is to write the blog post and then tag it on Delicious or Furl or wherever you place your social bookmarks. Alterantively, you could tag something that has already been written elsewhere that you would like to discuss or just submit the link to the blog post you want to talk about in the comments to this post.
I have already tagged 2 posts to Delicious I think would make for good conversation and am working on writing an original one – so what do you want to talk about?
Ok, so we all see the silly credit card offers with useless shwag, and quite a few other funny ones that come in the mail, but this one took the cake for me. Just the pure irony I guess, but Kristie didn’t think it was that big of a deal. Why Business 2.0 magazine would offer a useless no-name organizer like this I dont know. Perhaps stretching the readership a bit to a wider, non business savvy audience? Even then, at least get a Palm or PocketPC device.
I expect they will ship me mine and I, likes thousands of other subscribers who have PIM on my phone and in my Palm, will end up throwing it away – a not so great use of landfill space if you ask me. Perhaps if you would just be so kind as to give me the extra dollar back off the subscription price, or perhaps donate the money to a good non-profit lilke Creative Commons, Internet Archive or maybe even that new little startup non-profit BrainJams I keep hearing so much about
Actually, that would be a great way to do promotion like this sustainably – let the subscriber choose a cause to which the magazine can donate, and perhaps even cover in the magazine with regular updates…. hmmmm
Having just begun promotions for the DC event late last week, I was happy to see that we do already have 12 registrations (other than Kristie and I) this morning, including 2 people who already sent in the suggested donation of $10. At least we have made our minimum number of participants already and I expect the word of mouth to start picking up today and through the week as I get back to blogging (and reading blogs) and making some more new friends.
In addition to Kristie and myself, 2 of the brightest Web 2.0 luminaries from DC have registered – Stowe Boyd and Ken Yarmosh. Everyone knows Stowe – he is one of the driving forces behind Corante and Ken is fairly famous for his innovative use of tagging via the blogosphere as a means for convening a new form of online conversation via the Blogoposium1 tag.
I just got off the phone with Greg Narain who is working on his new startup called SyncPeople. You may have heard of him from his Beercasting days. We can directly trace the lineage of BrainJams back to him – because if it was not for his random phone call one day last spring from my registration for a beercasting event in Florida, I never would have went to Gnomedex, which means I never would have met Will Pate, which means I probably never would have gone to BarCamp – where I met the people who inspired me to take action myself. Which in the end, is what I am really trying to get across to people – that anyone can take action using the amazing and free, easy to use Web tools that are available to bring people together and make a difference.
So the excitement builds….
As the ideas behind Web 2.0 get more and more complicated and far reaching in their scope, I am finding it nearly impossible to write about all the great things I am discovering from others and insights I am personally developing. With my time now being taken up by client work, as well as BrainJams, I am in dire need of creating a more specific focus for my professional blog. It is tough for me to do with so many topics of interest receiving so much attention these days. I often find that I have 40+ tabs open at any one time I want to write about, but don’t have the time.
This really hit me as I was reading through Dion Hincliffe’s blog and came across some great posts he has written lately: Five Great Ways to Harness Collective Intelligence, Notes on Making Good Social Software and The Web 2.0 Revolution Spawns Offshoots.
I am not entirely sure what angle I will be taking yet, though with my interest in The Noble Pursuit, People Powered Search and Brainjams that it will involve collaboration, innovation and collective intelligence. To this end, I plan on moving my professional insights, over to Insytes.com and keeping a personal journal site in addition to using BrainJams as a group blogging platform.
Would love to hear some more feedback from those of you who keep separate blogs for such things as well as those of you who keep one blog to rule them all…
So I was just going to set up the Tivo to record something when I ran across this new show on Discovery called “Cash Cab” – the folks who thought this up are brilliant. Shot in New York City, Cash Cab is billed as the only taxi ride that pays you. In short, a trivia/quiz game show format in a cab. They cruise around picking up fares like a normal cab and then the taxi driver becomes a game show host, awarding cash for every right answer – unless you get 3 wrong before you get to your destination, in which case 3 strikes and your out… of the cab too.
Strange that no one I know talked about this one.
This is just the sort of thing I hoped to see happening with the decreasing cost of media creation tools and our further exploration of creative freedom. Now mass media players are taking a grassroots, bottom up approach towards creating informative entertainment (Cash Cab runs on Discovery). The show has a built in audience with all the people looking for them on the streets, all the people who love New York and the reality show fans – just throw in a random bunch of New Yorkers and voila, instant reality tv meets game show mashup success.
It could have just as easily been done online exclusively, but they are running on Discovery! Great job – now whose great idea is next?
Just finished meeting with John Johnson, the manager of the DC Improv, and it looks like we have a venue for our Monday January 30th event! While we may not be able to get WiFi going in there, it is a perfect location, about 1 block from the Farragut North Metro station.
There is room for about 300 people in their comedy club layout, but we are going to cap the registrations at 120 people in order to keep Mr. Dunbar happy. (I realize his limit is closer to 150, so perhaps that can be the Law of 10 Dozens instead
We have a long way to go to pull off this event, but I know we can do because we did it before. I have web pages to put together and we need an event page on the Wiki. We really need some sponsors to step up as well. This will be what I get to do when I get home this weekend (in addition to seeing my friend Chris Magoon race tomorrow, meeting with BrainJams team members to work on the technology plan and spending some time with Kristie after a long week away here in DC.
If you are in Washington, D.C. and want to spend some time sharing ideas, resources and insights with your fellow Washingtonians, this is the place for you. Some basic logistics
- Monday January 30, 2006 from 1030am to 500pm, registration starts at 10am
- Location: DC Improv – 1140 Connecticut Ave, NW Washington, DC 20036
- BrainOff Happy Hour from 500pm to 600pm
- Morning session we will be BrainJamming – knowledge networking which is akin to speed dating concept
- The afternoon will be participant lead discussions on Web 2.0 related topics such as blogging, podcasting, social bookmarks, social networks, AJAX etc…
- The key to the success of the event is everyone contributes, so if you are planning on coming, think about what you want to share with everyone and what you want to learn
Well, it is time for me to go and start heading through rush hour to get to the airport (IAD from downtown DC). Many thanks to my little, little brother, Brian Kellog for making the introduction to John and much gusto thanks to John of the DC Improv. I am really looking forward to working with them to make the next BrainJams event a real winner!
I just wanted to post a brief note about a cool, very new mashup I ran across via the Delicious Popular bookmarks page, Expialidoci.us lets you look at tag clouds from your Delicious account over specific time periods using a sort of time frame selector similar to the one I love in MeasureMap, but much simpler in design.
This is still early, but a good idea – am looking forward to seeing how other people use it and how he evolves the concept. Have some other ideas here, but no time to write about them now…
I was doing some research and chased a little rabbit down a hole to find this article from my early Internet days at Guru Communications / Sobe.com / VCN. Some of it is actually useful to the story today, some funny, but mostly it makes me say duh – strange that many people still don’t get it….
Almost every time you turn on the television or open a newspaper, it seems there is another story about the Information Super-Highway. In 1993 there were 25 articles published on the subject during the entire year. Recently, on February 17, 1995, there were 42 articles published on one day; and that number continues to grow. For the computer novice, which seems to be a large percentage of the population, several questions inevitably arise. What is it? How does it work? Where is it? Who owns it? When will it be available? Why is everyone talking about it?
In short, most of you are probably saying “SO WHAT?”
While the answers to these questions could fill an encyclopedia, every single person on the face of the earth is, or soon will be, affected by this somewhat mysterious development popularly known as the Information Super Highway. Today there are an estimated 35 million people who have access to this new medium of communications. This figure is expected to double by the end of 1995. More immediately, America Online and Compuserve will open up their services so that their four million members will be added to these ranks. When Microsoft debuts its next version of Windows in a few months, the Information Super Highway will be a “mouse click” away from millions of additional consumers with an ease that equals turning on the computer. [same can be said now of Windows Vista and RSS]
This requires an understanding of what these events and technological advancements mean to society and yourself as an individual. It would certainly help if you understood how computers work, but that knowledge is really not necessary. What you do need to know is how the technology can work for you.
The Information Super Highway, now being paved as a network known as the Internet, is not so much about computers, as it is about communications: About removing geographic and cultural boundaries; About eliminating financial barriers to commerce; About developing new opportunities; About being more efficient. More importantly, the Internet is about the people who use it and what they do with it. [still working on that cross boundary stuff after all these years]
Society is about to cross the threshold into the new millennium. As we review our history, we have marked the evolution of mankind with important milestones and technological advancements. The use of fire, stone tools and the wheel. The use of paper, ink, the written word and the Pony Express. The cotton gin, the mass produced automobile and the telephone. Radio, motion pictures and television. The personal computer, the fax machine and now the Internet. The culmination and integration of thousands of years of evolution of mankind is requesting your presence and it is not going to wait for you.
“Transport of the mails, transport of the human voice, transport of flickering pictures-in this century as in others, our highest accomplishments still have the single aim of bringing men together.” — Antoine de Saint-Exuperay, 1939
What is the most important knowledge we have gained from witnessing these milestones in society? The single most important insight is that change is inevitable and necessary in our continuing evolution. We have also learned that resistance to change is also inevitable. Through the efforts of a few brave souls willing to challenge the status quo and bring forth change everyone will benefit – even those who may oppose it. Today, once again, we are witnessing this revolutionary change and it is happening at a staggering pace through numerous technological advancements.
The Internet, however, is delivering more than mere technological advancements. The Internet is creating a political, economic and social revolution on a scale so large that it will change your life regardless of your interest in it. Representing what is known as an “enabling technology,” the recent union of man, telephone and computer enables you to perform old activities in exciting new ways, and entirely new activities in a manner previously discussed only in popular science fiction.
For perspective, imagine being one of the first people to see the Wright brothers fly at Kitty Hawk, North Carolina. Imagine hearing a startled Alexander Graham Bell shouting -Watson, come in here, I need you.” Imagine all of your neighbors and individuals from around the country watching moving pictures of “Uncle Miltie” in a dress. Imagine communicating with a frightened student from China during the recent attempt at revolution; his only link to the outside world was through the Internet. You do not need to imagine these events because we know that they are possible, they have all occurred, and they changed our lives forever……such is the importance of the Internet.
Now, imagine reading the newspaper, communicating with a friend in Europe, virtually traveling to Africa, following an expedition up Mount Everest, or watching portions of a Rolling Stones concert live at your desk. Imagine researching important matters in your life, without having to search the library for countless hours. Imagine buying all of your groceries through your home computer, or buying the latest Compact Disc without shopping the racks, or paying all of your monthly bills without wasting countless hours on tedious errands. These time saving, relief filled devices are all possible, or soon will be, through the Internet.
Does the Internet sound like something that merits a little more of your attention? Unless you live in another dimension or want to be secluded from the world at large, you cannot avoid this important development in the history of humankind. By beginning to gain a greater understanding now, and coming to terms with the many ways the Internet can begin to benefit your life today, you will be prepared for tomorrow. Tomorrow is not a far off distant place of unknown potential and technology. Tomorrow is here today, and it is called the Internet.
For a somewhat funny photo of me in my vest wearing, goatee sporting, Mac SE surfing best, check out the original article (complete with a ‘sand’ tiled background)