Tuesday, June 29, 2004

Do we need a "maximum wage"?

Greed and Good is a new book about the outrageous wealth and inequality. Heard of the trickle down theory? Try this quiz and see if you change your mind. Then buy Sam's book. Then take action. I plan to buy it as soon as I see Sam. Disclaimer. Sam Pizzigati is my former boss who retired to write this book.

Washington Takes The Lead From Kansas City

Ben Forta Visits DC Again
Kansas City held the user group attendance lead (for this tour) for a few weeks, but Washington D.C. took the lead this evening with 100 attendees. About 1/3 of those present had attended my CFUN keynote, so I varied the presentation somewhat (different examples, additional content), answered lots and lots of questions, and listened to all sorts of suggestions and comments. Next stop, Philadelphia.

I was there. The attendance was good as was the FigLeaf pizza. Ben said use your own words and I will. Blackstone is the code name for the new version of ColdFusion expected early 2005. Hightlights:

  • Lots of tools and wizards to make it easier for newbies.
  • Support for XForms to improve management and style.
  • Lots of ways to create Flash forms like Grids and Trees.
  • Binding of form fields. Example, disable field if others are not completed.
  • Printing and reporting including on the fly PDF format as well as FlashPaper.
  • ColdFusion Report generator that looked powerful.
  • Able to bundle into JAR file and run on other J2EE server.
Overall, it was great. A long night with lots promise.

Sunday, June 27, 2004

Market States

John Robb's commented that "Joe Reger is on the right track with his understanding of my work on global guerrillas."

First, Joe has a very good summary to what John has been posting. This is not about Iraq, but a global change to our world.

Second, John's global guerrillas blog and upcoming book should scare the shit out of you.

While Bush's team doesn't get this, I hope a Vietnam vet's team will. Yikes! 

Wednesday, June 23, 2004


This vacation will be with my laptop and BlogJet. So maybe some posts, maybe not. Starting with Father's Day, kids making breakfast and a great day a boogie boarding ahead. Ahhhhh... vacation.

Friday, June 18, 2004

Dave Winer Is Not a Murderer and the Lack of Patience

On Halley's Comments she headlined the problem with blogs at weblogs.com as Blog Murder. I left the following comment (typos corrected), but did not post here until now.

Just listened to Dave's audio file and got an understanding from his side. But change is hard and it looks like without notice it is harder. I'd like to hear from some of the bloggers.

It also looks, without spending a lot of time and trying not to point fingers, that he did his best given it was a free service and his coming move. However, readers of the blogs never got notice and I think that is where the problem is.

Sure there was a solution, but I'll take him at his word.

Since that initial comment I've read a lot of other bloggers and comments. You've probably seen more. Also there now appears to be a reasonable transition plan, but again we'll have to wait and hear from the bloggers. So I now have an observation and I'm not pointing fingers at anyone.

Regular bloggers make several posts every day. This is the best practice of blogging and a proven technique for making a blog popular. This is not to say that all bloggers are slaves to this practice. Additional evidence of the daily nature of blogs is that several bloggers have taken vacations from their blogs. My observation is that the nature of blogs as a media (in the McLuhan sense) puts bloggers into a daily mentality.

Thus the outrage that some bloggers would not be available for a few days. These bloggers that want to continue blogging will be back. Unlike the results of dot.commers who disappeared, the archives of these blogs will be restored. These bloggers could still continue to blog off-line everyday. So the outrage appears to be fueled by the daily need to blog and read blogs.

Can't we as bloggers rise above this daily nature of this media and have a little patience? 

Wednesday, June 16, 2004

ReJoyce Bloomsday

Today is the hundredth anniversary of the day detailed in James Joyce's Ulysses.


Tuesday, June 15, 2004

Lyris Does RSS

Lyris, the great email list manager software, just announce beta for version 8.0. Among several nice features is full support for RSS. This is absolutely great news. But because the content of an email is not microcontent like an RSS feed, I'll hold judgement until I see the product in testing.

Findory Blogory

Not sure which blog lead me to try the Findory Blogory. This is a very interesting alternative RSS aggregator as it personalizes your items based on what you've been reading.

I think it is more of a novelty than useful, until they open it up a bit. For example, can I get a OPML file of the RSS feed that it thinks I'm interested in? Can I upload my OPML file to set its "intelligence"?  Can I send my "preferences" to someone else to try and then have them start over? Can I work with a community of common interested - sorta like a group aggregator? Open it up and you might have something here.

Hello from Picas

Maybe I'm in a tool mode with my new laptop. I was reading about photoblogging on Blogger. Then Halley's Comments mentioned the new photo tool which tipped me to download Hello and Picasa.

Hello is very, very interesting. You upload pictures to your blogger blog. But you do it using your Blogger buddy. Yes, it is an IM application! So not only can you send pictures to your blog, you can also "send" them to your Hello buddies.

This should be interesting when I'm on vacation next week.

Backlinks by Bloglines bookmarklet

Another interesting blog tool This bookmarklet is by Sebatien Paquet:

I've whipped up a Bloglines Citations bookmarklet which should prove even more useful than the Technorati Anywhere bookmarklet. Drag the first link to your link bar, and click it while viewing a page. You'll get all the backlinks Bloglines knows about in no time flat.

Monday, June 14, 2004

John Robb Suggests Furl

"I really like Furl.  It allows me to create a searchable clipping library from articles I find using RSS (which for major media publications is usually just headlines +).  One more item for inclusion in my personal digital dashboard." -John Robb 

James Joyce RSS Feed

June 16th is the hundredth anniversary of Bloomsday which is the day written about in Ulysses. Jason White is feeding the who book, page by page out through an Ulysses RSS feed. Here's you chance to read the classic in an entirely new document format. Any RSS book clubs starting up?

As Shifted Librarian says "Offer good through June 14, 2006.  ;-)"

Sunday, June 13, 2004

Firefly Fancy

Was Tinkerbell inspired by fireflies? If I was a television news producer, I'd get a shot of the fireflies and tell people to turn off their sets and go into their yards. My backyard and all of my neighbors' trees are aglow. Hundreds of glows alight the sky announcing that summer is here! Better than fireworks.

Tuesday, June 08, 2004

Review posted to RealSimpleSyndication.com

Feeds make it easier to learn about what you don't know. While there is a lot of talk about the echo chamber of blogs, I find that the RSS feeds of blogs, major media and other sites keep me informed of topics and from a prespective that broadens my world. Even before RSS feeds I was a big fan of mylinks.com for this reason.

For more than a year I've been learning about this world of feeds and about the blogsphere. I've been promoting RSS to friends and co-workers, so they ask me how to get started. For these people I send them a link to web aggregators like Bloglines or FastBuzz.

These web based services allow users to start without having to install software on their machines. Installing software is too hard, especially in the corporate, locked down Windows world, so a web service is perfect. Getting started on either of these services is easy, but most people prefer the usability of Bloglines. These services are still not as easy as mylinks.com, but still a place to start and a good place to maintain an account.

For more advanced users and for myself, I use FeedDemon. While it is not free, it is worth the shareware fee. I enjoy a well designed piece of software and Nick Bradbury has an elegant design with FeedDemon, so I highly recommend trying the trial version.

FeedDemon is a desktop aggregator that installs on your windows computer. With hundreds of preloaded feeds, it is easy to get started and learn about what you don't know. Like all good desktop aggregators, it intergrates with a web browser, so I'm creating this review while browsing in FeedDemon. Using the built in browser to surf, it makes it very easy to subscribe to new feeds and to seamlessly switch between the RSS and web world. Like all good software, I keep finding new features and uses for getting the most out of my feeds. I've tried over twenty other programs (like browser toolbars) and FeedDemon remains my recommendation. While I use FeedDemon everyday, it has not yet reached Tivo status but with each revision it is getting there.

Having praised two aggregators, I still don't believe we have seen the best. To start, I am extremely concerned about a growing number of desktop RSS programs requiring feed owners to pay for increasing bandwidth. Desktop aggregators allow you to work offline, speed and flexibility. Web aggregators allow you to go on vacation and not miss any feeds. In addition, you can access them from home, work, laptop or your sister's computer. So both have their strengths and weaknesses. I think the best will be a desktop program that pulls in feeds from a web service, allows panel and mixed displays, works as smart as my Tivo and is as easy to get started with as mylinks.com.

Regardless of how you start, feeds will change your use of the internet.

Friday, June 04, 2004

HEMS: Blogging and RSS

I've been blogging using Blogger for more than a year. The new update to Blogger makes many of the improvements that I need except two.

While waiting for Blogger to update, I also tried TypePad.com. I must say that I'm very impressed with TypePad but it does not support RSS 2.0. I'm committed to RSS 2.0 for work I do on Bletter. So I did not move to TypePad, but I found their use of categories to be just what I needed.

Add to this mix that I'm still working on my book and Internet Design. I took a week off from work three years ago to write the book and the software to write it. Writing the software helped me learn more. So I want to continue to write about Internet Design.

And in the meantime, I've mean updating that software called HEMS (HTML Entry Management System). It now supports RSS and will soon support blogging. While my initial plans were to support minimal blogs, I've now decided to support more blogging features so I can write more for my book.

So instead of moving to TypePad, you'll see this blog move to HEMS by the end of the year. This will also probably mean that I'll have to either upgrade my hosting agreement or find a new hosting company.

I'll probably also start a new blog on HEMS or it will just become a category of this blog.

Got My Laptop

Why does anyone get a new computer? My old computer and even the one before that still does most of the stuff I need: email, web browsing, compose javascripts, help with money matters, create web pages, FTP, blog, read email including spam and play some games. So why a laptop? Primarily because it is a laptop. It can be mobile and wireless. I can type this while I'm at the beach. Or at work. Or on the Metro. Or anywhere. And I'll figure out wireless. That is where technology is going and so is culture. Battery going low, more later.