Archive for February 2012

Flash Browsing Comes to iPad via OnLive App

Flash Browsing Comes to iPad via OnLive App

My first reaction to reading this was, “Cool. This might make me want an iPad.”

But then I remembered I already have a similarly-sized Apple device that runs Windows: My MacBook Pro running Windows 7 on VMware Fusion.

What is missing from the article is a description of how well the iPad’s gestures work with Windows, which has mouse-based and keyboard-based means of input.

At the heart of this, though, is seemingly wicked compression technology. Could this kind of technology enable web-distributed apps that typically require lots of local processing power, like PhotoShop, photo-editing software, CAD, video editing, etc.?

Flickr About to Receive Major Makeover

 

Mockup of Flickr Redesign

This post discusses a retooled interface for flickr.com. I was just thinking about this the other day.

I have never really been all that enthused about Flickr’s interface and the way it displays photographs. Flickr tends to scream “An engineer who takes photographs designed me!” It’s mechanical, it does what it needs to do but it does so without elegance or style.

I’ve looked at some of the photo-sharing features of SmugMug or even Facebook and wished that flickr could do something similar.  I want my pictures to look nice together not just stacked together in some kind of boring linear display.

I have some mid- to high-hopes for the redesign ostensibly slated for release in six days.

 

Shoot Sharper Handheld Photos by Using Marksmanship Techniques

This makes a lot of sense and is a bit of a “No duh” concept. Especially when you consider that both snipers and photographers shoot their subjects.

 

Shoot Sharper Handheld Photos by Using Marksmanship Techniques.

Facebook Is Killing Friendships and Causing Fist Fights

 

Facebook Is Killing Friendships and Causing Fist Fights.

Facebook is doing this. Facebook is causing that.

Completely false.

People using Facebook are killing friendships and causing fist fights.

Facebook is a tool, a piece of technology. If you were to leave it up on a computer with no one logged in and no one at the keyboard, exactly zero relationships would come to an end because of Facebook.

People are always foolish with relationships. We argue for dumb reasons, break up or part ways for dumb reasons. Sometimes we do so destructively and with emotions high.

Can you imagine seeing a headline in a newspaper from 1960 that screams: Letters sent through the mail are destroying relationships!

Right.

People destroy relationships. It’s that simple.

Disruptions: Facebook Users Ask, ‘Where’s Our Cut?’ – NYTimes.com

 

 

Facebook, for example, could pay the people who create content on the site. The company could then make money by matching the content with advertising, as it does now. As an alternative for more private individuals, people could pay to use Facebook if it promised not to sift through their personal information. This way, everyone wins.

via Disruptions: Facebook Users Ask, ‘Where’s Our Cut?’ – NYTimes.com

 

Lots of people have said, “Hey I want a piece of Facebook because without me and 700 million other people, it would be nothing.” I reject this argument because we derive a tremendous amount of value from the site. It’s not a one-sided deal.

This article’s argument seems predicated on cash-envy. It takes the Facebook-is-nothing-without-me argument as a foundation and says, “Hey the fat cat investors in Facebook are making billions and I’m getting nothing. That’s bullshit. I should get something.”

When people say they should get a piece of Facebook somehow because Facebook would be nothing without them, it’s kind of like saying airlines and airports should pay passengers a $50 fee for being a part of their air travel network because without passengers, airports and airlines would be nothing.

The reality is that Facebook delivers a substantial amount of value to its users. It gives people a powerful environment to interact, contribute, learn, decide and act in ways that would be difficult, if not impossible, without Facebook.

I have what I consider to be a vast network of friends on Facebook. Not because I have a thousand friends (I have as my goal to keep around 250 active friends) but because my friends have such vast interests. Yet I also have a lot in common with my friends: common history, beliefs, former companies, prior churches, activities, geographies, etc. I learn far more from my friends on Facebook than I ever would in real life.

This is for one simple reason:

Time.

Facebook concentrates all of the experiences of my friends into a single place that I can consume as I have time. I would never be able to meet with all of them in real time and get the same kinds of information from them and they from me. The convenience of Facebook (and my new favorite network, Pinterest) comes from its suspension of time so that we can all interact at times that are convenient.

Is it better than real life? In some ways yes, but it will never replace my preference to get together with them in what Neal Stephenson calls “meat space.” Cyber space has its benefits but so does meat space.

So, let’s put away the whiny complaints that Facebook is making billions off the backs of its users. Each user can choose to not participate in Facebook and  every Facebook user reveals through their activity that they receive value from their participation in the social network.

One last thing: I would totally pay $50/year to exempt myself from sharing my info with Facebook and ads.

Total Word Count on bimmergeek.com

 

Just for fun, I installed a WordPress plugin to tell me what the total word count is on my blog. I’m kind of astounded.

Early Louis C.K. Standup Comedy From the 1980s and 1990s

Early Louis C.K. Standup Comedy From the 1980s and 1990s.

This is a great series of clips that show the development of Louis CK over the years. The final clip shows a remarkable growth in confidence and command of his material. He’s also a hell of a lot funnier.

What I really like about the series of videos is you can see that Louis CK quit trying to be a “comedian” and decided to be himself. In the early videos, he’s a joke-teller with an okay hit rate. In the final video, he’s Louis CK, a storyteller. His stories flow out of his experiences, his personality and his view of the world. Somewhere along the way, he decided to become harshly honest, as well as insanely, coarsely funny.

Sutil Bashes Hamilton …

Sutil Bashes Hamilton ….

So, let’s see: Sutil is convicted of what I would guess is the UK’s version of a felony offense and calls Hamilton a coward because Hamilton didn’t see it (or didn’t want to get involved).

It seems that there was enough evidence to convict Sutil of the crime without Hamilton’s testimony. So perhaps what Sutil really meant is that Hamilton is a coward for being unwilling to perjure himself. Because if Hamilton saw it and Sutil was guilty, Lewis did him a favor by not testifying.

Sutil made multi-million dollar efforts to settle out of court and has issued a contrite apology, so it’s plain that he is guilty of the crime. I don’t know what Sutil expected of Lewis.

Pinterest Is Not A Virtual Pinboard

pinterest.com

This is an interesting analysis of how Pinterest, brands and users can create new branding opportunities that can be tightly associated with lead generation and actual purchases. The idea is that Pinterest allows a very tight connection between the products a person likes and a purchase opportunity. It also allows people to associate with each other based on a common brand or product affiliation.

I like that the author calls Pinterest an “interest graph” in contrast to Facebook, which is a social graph.

I initially shied away from Pinterest because it seemed so heavily dominated by women who posted frilly girl things. Then my wife mentioned that it was a better version of kaboodle.com and that clicked it for me. Now, I can use Pinterest for non-girlie, non-frilly, sweet things like scotch and shower heads I might want to buy.

Articles like this one are enjoyable to me because they take my awareness of a web site to a different level. It will be interesting to see how far Pinterest takes the info they gather.

VW Considering F1 Entry

VW Considering F1 Entry.

So, if VW enters F1, will their cars have a little flower vase in the cockpit to soothe the minds of the drivers?

snork snork

Beetle Flower