Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Al Gore at TED

Al Gore's talk the last day of TED is worth seeing. Unlike his Inconvenient Truth talk, which was quite slick and professional by the time it became a film, his new presentation is still quite raw. But it also moves forward the story he told in the film in a hard-headed, open-hearted way. To think we could be at the end of a second Gore administration right about now...

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Saturday, April 5, 2008

The wages of blogging

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Chinese Democracy When?

In my TED talk, I went after Axl Rose for not releasing Chinese Democracy. This amusing stunt takes matters into its own hands.

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Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Farewell to print

I love The New York Times. I've read it almost every day of my life since I was in high school. For all its recent flaws -- the weirdo profiles of the major presidential candidates are the most high-profile -- it is still full of the most outstanding reporting. And, on the days that Gail Collins files, it offers up the most penetrating and entertaining opinion.

finalNYT

What's that? It's the last print copy of the Times I'll ever have delivered to my front door. Over the years, I've slowly weaned myself off subscriptions to physical newspapers, but it was hard to say no to the Times. The quality was high, the thump of the paper on the sidewalk was a pleasant sound to hear first thing in the morning, I liked the serendipity of walking through a print section, and I felt obligated to pay for the paper at a time when print subscribers were becoming an endangered species. But, after years of wavering, I'm done. The environmental argument alone should have been enough for me, but the simple fact is that I do more and more of my reading on a screen (the only holdouts: fiction and poetry). And plenty of that reading has been from the Times. What finally made me give in to the inevitable was realizing, one barely-dawn morning last week when I was reading the paper at our kitchen table, that I had already read much (most?) of it online. For all the pleasure of holding and print, the Times on paper is just too late. In 2008, today's paper is yesterday's news.

So now I'm a freeloader, although you could argue that my personal information, sent to the Times in return for a username and password, may have some value. I rarely, if ever, click on an ad on the Times's website. I would gladly pay for the pleasure and convenience of reading the paper online, just as I do for The Wall Street Journal, but I don't have that option. In this era of advertising-is-the-only-business-model, management at the Times Company has decided that I've decided that the value of what it sends to me is zero. I disagree -- and I'm not going to pay a premium for the proprietary and little-used Times Reader to make my point.

I'll miss the paper on paper, and I bet I'll buy it when I'm on vacation, as a treat, an indulgence. But if even people like me -- who adore The New York Times -- can no longer justify a print subscription, how can its print version survive, except as a high-priced, scarce product for an increasingly elite audience?

(This originally appeared on the O'Reilly Radar.)

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"The saddest, stupidest sentence I've ever read"

Nick Carr calls out a whopper by Michael Arrington. It can be a pleasure to witness Carr best an inferior mind, but I have a question: If Carr is so smart -- and he is -- why does he read Arrington?

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Thursday, March 20, 2008

Why screwing up is the smartest thing you can do

I gave a talk on "Why screwing up is the smartest thing you can do" last month at TED and delivered a (not as good) stripped-down version of it a week later at ETech. I've been asked by several Jewels and Binoculars readers to post the presentation as a blog entry. Here it is. I recognize that a flat blog post doesn't capture the experience of a live presentation, but I want to get the material out here. And, as an added benefit, you don't have to look at or listen to me present it!

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Being here first thing in the morning, I feel like the opening act at the beginning of one of those long package shows of rock bands. I feel like Yngvie Malmsteen, a godawful heavy metal guitarist not often celebrated at TED.

Indeed, "Yngvie," as we all know, is Swedish for "opening act."

So here we go…

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I edit Release 2.0, an expensive newsletter, so I hear a lot from readers. Sometimes they’re looking for rules, some secrets to guarantee success. I want to justify their investment in the newsletter, of course, so I tell 'em what I’ve learned.

And what I've learned is that they should screw up.

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While anyone who's spent time with any of the members of Guns N Roses might find them to be screwups, the reason you haven't heard anything new and substantial from them on the radio for 16 years -- 16 years! -- is that they’ve committed the opposite of screwing up: overplanning. Since the mid-'90s, by which time every original member of the band except singer Axl Rose had left for one reason or another, Guns N Roses has been working on a new album called Chinese Democracy.

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Rose and his co-conspirators have been thinking and recording Chinese Democracy for 14 years, gone through at least six producers, 17 band members, and $16 million in recording costs. It's not out yet. They've waited so long, perfecting and planning, planning and perfecting, that the industry Axl Rose once ruled no longer exists. Democracy may arrive in China before Chinese Democracy arrives in record stores.

Oh -- wait -- there really aren't record stores any more, either. Too much planning, too much process, means no art, no product, nothing.

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For a different approach, let's consider the TV series Twin Peaks from the early '90s. To refresh your memory...

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This man, Leland Palmer...

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...possessed by the spirit of a supernatural character named BOB...

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...turned his daughter, Laura Palmer...

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...into this.

But where did BOB, the conceptual lynchpin of the series, come to be? Surely he was there from the beginning.

No. His introduction into the series came as a result of an accident while the cameras were running.

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In a scene late in the Twin Peaks pilot, Laura Palmer's mother experiences a vision while sitting on her living room couch. On the wall behind her, barely in the shot, there is a mirror. In the bottom corner of the mirror, there's the reflection of Frank Silva, a set dresser on the crew, unaware he's in the shot. You or I wouldn't have noticed it unless we were looking for it -- but on the set of a television show, there is someone whose job is to look for just such mistakes.

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After the take, that person alerted director David Lynch to the accident and began to set up a reshoot. Lynch stopped him. He spoke to Frank Silva, the set dresser in the mirror. "Can you act?" Lynch asked. This was Los Angeles, so you know the answer...

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...and the malevolent, mysterious character of BOB, the key to the weird mystery of the series, was born -- from an accident.

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Many popular products, advances, and countless works of art have emerged from accidents. In the Internet world, we have Blogger and Twitter. And those two are just from one guy: Evan Williams.

Things may go better with Coke, but Coke was originally designed to go better with pain. It was intended to be a pain remedy.

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in 1928, Alexander Fleming, researching the flu, noticed that a mold had taken over one of his petri dishes. That mold, he saw, had stopped bacteria in the dish. Voila! Penicillin. Indeed, the very idea of vaccines was discovered by accident, when Edward Jenner noticed that people who worked with cows didn't get smallpox.

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In 1894, John Harvey Kellogg left some cooked wheat to sit while he attended to some pressing matters at his sanitarium. When he returned, the wheat had gone stale. Because he was either cheap or broke -- historians disagree -- he tried to save the wheat by forcing it through rollers, expecting to get long sheets of dough he could use. Instead, he got ... flakes. He toasted them. He served them to his patients. He got very, very rich.

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Post-It notes came to be by accident, too, but the story isn't that interesting, so I'll just mention it and keep going.

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This one's more interesting. Fred Katz introduced the cello to modern jazz. One night in the late 1950s, during a break between sets while he was playing piano with a jazz band, Katz pulled a chair to the front of the stage and played some solo cello. When the rest of the band returned to the small stage, there was no room for Katz to return to his piano. Not sure what to do -- the set was starting, the band was playing -- Katz decided to play the piano lines on his cello. Out of his accident, his real, half-century-long, career began.

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Next time you enjoy some ferocious rock'n'roll encased in feedback, thank these guys. A spray of amplifier feedback at the beginning of The Beatles' 1965 recording of "I Feel Fine," an accident, sounded so unusual -- and so great -- that they kept it on the record. And, since I'm talking about brands favored by aging boomers...

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...Viagra was first thought to be a promising drug for angina. During 1992 clinical trials in a town in Wales, Pfizer researchers discovered that...

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...the drug had a different effect altogether.

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So mistakes can be great things. What do we do about 'em? How do we harness 'em? Well, if you’re the Harvard Business School, the font of management wisdom (and -- disclosure -- a client), you're not quite sure. Sometimes they tell us to be afraid of mistakes...

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...sometimes they tell us we can manage accidents, thus making them not accidents. We might call this the Pee-Wee Herman "I meant to do that" theory of managing mistakes…

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..and, once, squeezed almost as an afterthought -- or, maybe, an accident -- as the very last entry in an issue of the Harvard Business Review, they celebrate it, thanks to a terrific, brief essay by Danny Hillis. I'm not trying to pick on Harvard. You can find similar advice from the other Ivy schools, even Stanford. But this is the conventional business wisdom. You can't be built to last or go from good to great or whatever unless you're careful to avoid mistakes, the thinking goes. Imagine the difference between the reaction if you tell your boss "I'm planning" and the one you get if you say, "I'm making mistakes."

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Established institutions are in the business of supporting the status quo. And mistakes, if nothing else, go against the status quo, the conventional wisdom, the expected. As Esther Dyson used to sign her emails, "Always make new mistakes!" A key part of planning is being open to mistakes.

The unexpected kiss, the unpredictable punch line: they're so much of what makes life worth living. Shouldn't we let the unexpected into our business work as well? It's by screwing up that we learn and discover. We can't predict accidents. But we can take advantage of them.

You never know where a mistake is going to lead. Maybe nowhere, maybe somewhere. But it's definitely nowhere if you don’t at least lean forward and peer down the road after you screw up.

You want the secret of success that my newsletter readers want to know? It's no secret. It's that, chances are, whatever you’re looking for -- that's not what you're going to find.

Thank you.

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Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Well, someone liked my TED talk

Someone just forwarded me Christopher Herot's notes on my TED talk. I'll squeeze the talk into HTML and get it onto this blog by the end of the week.

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Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Better living through food hacking

Over the next week or so, I'll be writing quite a bit about my two weeks late last month and early this month in California, at TED and ETech. (Took me a bit to recover and the renovation at our house is about to deprive us of our only working shower.)

Monday was cooking day here at Jewels and Binoculars and it's Tuesday already, so I'd better get back on track. Let's talk about food hacking, which unites three areas of my interest and incompetence: cooking, technology, and taking things apart. The ETech tutorial on the topic, led by Marc Powell, was a mindblower. Food hacking takes the ideas behind technology hacking -- participation, dispersion, experimentation, and a general distrust of authority and centralized systems -- and brings them into the kitchen. The three-hour-long tutorial, which included dishes with ingredients like liquid nitrogen, was all about joy and testing. And -- lucky for me -- it was all about celebrating screwing up and seeing what happens. Powell went on for a while on why cooking with people was superior to cooking for people. As he put it: "Ever eat a Lunchable? Do you think anyone enjoyed making that?" When I lined up to receive something that had been cooked onstage, I felt, for the first time even, like I was on a communion line.

The second half of the session got weird. We saw randomly generated menus and restaurant menus with plenty of insect dishes. We heard exegeses on pickled crab fat and how to cook fake blood for vegan goths. We learned a little about coffee hacks (see many of Powell's hacks in this wiki). We learned that it's pronounced "feelo" dough, not "feyelo" dough. We heard about placenta kabobs and other gross food experiences.

Hmm, what's for dinner?

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Greatest TED video ever (first of a series)

At least three of this year's TED talks were flat-out amazing: Tod Machover's, Benjamin Zander's, and Jill Bolte Taylor's. The first of them has just been posted:

Jill Bolte Taylor, a Harvard neuroanatomist, eavesdropped on her own stroke. As I wrote the day of her talk, she walked us through what she felt and thought while her brain was going wild, from the borderline-metaphysical ("I can't define where I begin and where I end") to the borderline-hilarious ("I'm a busy woman. I don't have time for a stroke"). Her description of her time in that strange state, caught between two worlds, the rare researcher who has been able to chronicle a brain-changing event from the inside, was astonishing.

And now you can see and hear it, too:



The brain she's holding there is a real one, by the way.

I'll alert you to the other two classics when they're published.

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Second thoughts on Politico

When the political news website Politico launched a year ago, I wrote a borderline-bitchy negative note for paidContent. I'd like to apologize. I still don't know how the site's business is going, but Politico has been a provocative, speedy, insidery, gotta-read-it news source so far during the election cycle. (Good mobile version, too!)

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Goin' to Nantucket

I won't be doing much work travel in the spring. I'm still recovering from The Endless California Trip, which is not the name of a second-tier Beach Boys compilation. But I am thrilled to report that I'll be at the The Nantucket Conference for the first time since 2001. Event programmer and all-around great guy Scott Kirsner has an informative post up about the event, if you're new to it.

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Monday, March 17, 2008

I am old, volume 273

I stopped going to South by Southwest in 1995, because I felt it was getting too big. It's now 13 times larger than it was then.

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Friday, March 14, 2008

I'm not a half-bad headline writer...

...but every now and then I have to step back in awe from another's contribution.

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Monday, March 10, 2008

An embarrassing moment and what I learned from it

For many years, I've joked to friends and family, usually during public radio pledge drives, that someone should invent a device connecting to your radio that, after you've paid up, turns off all those requests for money during NPR pledge drives. You get back to the regular programming you've paid for. I thought that was something I could work into an article or a story someday.

One night last week, I was at a dinner party, listening to someone who was building an innovative radio for the BBC. Also listening was a respected colleague. He said that someone should invent a device connecting to your radio that, after you've paid up, turns off all those requests for money during NPR pledge drives. Independently, he had come up with the same line (for me it was a joke; for him -- a successful entrepreneur -- it was a potential invention). I felt uncomfortable saying something like, "Hey, I thought of that, too," and stepping on his line, so I said nothing.

This reminded me of something that happened when Jane and I bought a hybrid car back in 2002. A neighbor said he'd thought of a hybrid engine years earlier. I laughed about it, but it illuminates a point that's also relevant to the public radio joke/invention line: It doesn't matter so much that you have an idea. What matters is whether you do anything with the idea. Otherwise it's just a line in your notebook doing nothing.

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Thursday, February 28, 2008

@TED: Best of Day 1

Worst press release headline of the day

"PRESS RELEASE: MYSPACE GOES TO KUWAIT"

The lede was out there, too: "Today, MySpace officially announced Operation MySpace, a concert for troops stationed in Kuwait. Performances will include the Pussycat Dolls, Jessica Simpson, Disturbed, Filter, DJ Z-Trip and the comedic genius of Carlos Mencia."

Wait: the Pussycat Dolls and Filter aren't geniuses?

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Monday, February 25, 2008

Heading west

This week it's TED in Monterey, where I'm giving a brief talk (as part of TED-U) on "Why Screwing Up Is the Smartest Thing You Can Do." (good advance coverage of the event)

Next week it's O'Reilly's Emerging Technology Conference in San Diego, where I'll be reprising the TED talk as the opening act of Ignite.

So I expect blogging will be lighter than usual this week and next while I'm on the road. You're welcome.

If, dear readers, you're going to be at either of these events, please let me know.

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Tuesday, February 19, 2008

R.E.M., open source, and staying alive when an industry shifts

Over the weekend, Nat posted "Artistic License 2.0 and ... REM?!" which noted that the veteran rock'n'roll band was releasing its new video under an open license (if not in an open format). It's good to see an old band learn a new trick, and it suggests what those in the music industry might do if they want to have a future in it.

In "A rare post about the music industry that isn't completely depressing," I looked at Jill Sobule's attempt to fund her next record via online contributions. It's a savvy attempt that seems to be succeeding: she's more than two-thirds on her way to meeting her not-so-modest recording budget. A performer like Sobule (and, as we'll see shortly, R.E.M.) comes to alternate ways of funding or promoting new music with baggage -- unlike younger performers, like Yael Naim, who can get lucky thanks to novelty (see "Steve Jobs rules the recording industry. Now what?") These performers are experimenting with new ways to get heard because the old ways weren't working. Prince, to cite one high-profile example, wouldn't have started distributing his records via concert add-ons or newspaper inserts if the old distribution methods were still working for him.

R.E.M. can still be a thrilling band live, but its commercial heyday was long ago -- back when the U.S. president was Ronald Reagan, in fact -- and even diehard fans acknowledge that the trio's recorded work has limped since the band's original drummer, Bill Berry, left 11 years ago. The band's decision to distribute the "Supernatural Superserious" video is, at its heart, an attempt to create buzz for the record. That's something the band has been trying for months, in particular its attempt to hype the relatively rocking nature of the new record, after a number of ballad-heavy snoozefests.

That's not necessarily a bad thing. Commercial desperation can lead to innovation, both in terms of the art itself and the art with which you sell it. Everyone is eulogizing the death of the traditional rock'n'roll business, but the successful old rockers are still successful. Bruce Springsteen is selling out arenas and will move up to stadiums in the summer. Tom Petty's Super Bowl halftime gig -- timed right before his summer tour tickets went on sale -- rejuvenated his record sales. And the hoary hard-rock band Aerosmith has turned to a new installment in a successful videogame franchise to keep up its profile. Even when radio and even video outlets have turned cool to these performers, there's still an audience waiting to hear, see, or play with them. The lack of traditional intermediaries does not mean there's a lack of audience.

Having emerged from the early-'80s Amerindie movement, an assemblage of rock'n'roll bands with a combination of optimism and hardheadedness that mirrored the very best of the open source movement, R.E.M. knows it can't compete with what's at the top of the charts. It's unlikely that fans of the current flavors -- Miley Cyrus, Flo Rida, or T-Pain -- will be moved by R.E.M.'s music. But the band isn't ready to rent its songs to Madison Avenue or diverge from the aesthetic that made them stars. If you can't play on an even field, change the field. Just as open source projects reached critical mass by serving areas the proprietary vendors were ignoring or giving short shrift, the Amerindie bands -- in love with punk's sense of possibility -- provided an alternative to the mainstream. Now, the thinking goes, we can't get people to find out about our new record the usual ways, we have to find new ways. The future, as always, belongs to the clever.

(A slightly different version of this was posted earlier today on the O'Reilly Radar.)

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Monday, February 18, 2008

Greatest. Conference name. Ever.

I had to miss this, because I was at an O'Reilly event the same day, but I love the name of this conference and I hope to go next year.

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Monday, February 11, 2008

Steve Jobs rules the recording industry. Now what?

Last night's Grammy Awards ceremonies were even less relevant than usual, no small achievement. The TV broadcast began with a "performance" by that cutting-edge new artist Frank Sinatra and fell down from there. The only real emotional charge of an evening celebrating the most emotional of media came when we viewers were confronted with the disparity between the preternatural confidence of Amy Winehouse's "Rehab" and the shaky, shell-shocked manner in which Winehouse accepted her award for it. Alpha geeks had a moment to celebrate, too, when one of the winners behind Historical Album of the Year (Woody Guthrie's Live Wire) turned out to be a mathematician.

But, those and few other brief moments notwithstanding, the action in the music industry is elsewhere.

One of those places is Apple's iTunes online music store. For several days last week, the top-selling track on the store was Yael Naim's "New Soul," a song available, at least to U.S. audiences, exclusively via iTunes. The exclusivity isn't a big deal -- the store is powerful enough to offer plenty of high-profile exclusives -- but the reason "New Soul" became a hit is a big deal. "New Soul" was a hit solely because it appeared in Apple's commercial for the MacBook Air. Until the 1980s, record companies looked to radio to break new artists. Until five years ago, the place to launch new performers was music video. For most of this decade, the breakdown of traditional music channels has led to new songs being noticed via video games, television shows, and -- most of all -- commercials. Whoever is programming the music for Apple's television commercials may be, right now, the most powerful talent scout in the record industry.

How did Apple gain all this power? The record companies, desperate, vain, and stupid, handed it over. As Michael Hirschorn wrote in the March Atlantic (I'd link to his terrific essay, but the venerable Atlantic tends to get around to uploading new articles to its website weeks after they appear in print), "Steve Jobs shanghaied and basically destroyed the CD business. The major record labels, in giving Apple's iTunes the right to sell individual songs for 99 cents each, undermind their own business model -- selling bundles of songs gathered together into something called an album for up to $20 a pop -- because they didn't see that people were about to consumer music in an entirely new way. The labels saw iTunes as free money; 'ancillary,' in the legal vernacular. Jobs took their cheap music and used it as a loss leader to sell his expensive iPods, and the traditional music business now lies in tatters." The punch line, of course, is that the record industry is trying to shut out Apple by selling music online elsewhere such as Amazon -- for a mere 89 cents per cut.

I've written before here about clever ways to sell music nowadays. Like the performers I celebrated in that post, record companies have to adopt new ways of packaging and selling if they want to stay in business. Just as twin geniuses Sam Phillips and Ahmet Ertegun reinvented the record industry in the 1950s, we need a new generation of tech-savvy entrepreneurs who accept that recorded music consumed in $20 increments -- except for that created by a small subset of veteran performers with large and reliable fan bases -- is a dead notion for now. Music is everywhere, just as software is everywhere. We've seen an explosion of new models in recent years for selling software -- web-based, software as a service, various levels of open source, and so on -- some of which have been quite successful. Software may be useful, but for the most part it doesn't satisfy the emotional need that music does. It should be easy to sell music, certainly easier than it is to sell software. The music industry has much to learn from the computer software industry about reinvention and staying in touch with the customer. (In future posts, I'll probe what the music biz can learn from the software biz.) If what remains of the music industry doesn't look to successful technology industries for ideas, it'll be as lifeless as the Frank Sinatra half of last night's Grammy "duet."

This post was written for O'Reilly Radar

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Tuesday, February 5, 2008

Blogging about someone who blogs about blogging

In my work, I spend a good amount of time blogging and helping other bloggers. Anyone trying to communicate via a blog could benefits from What makes great blogwriting?, a post on the new and very strong Write To Done blog, by Leo Babauta of Zen Habits blogfame.

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The Industry Standard is back. Why?

The Industry Standard ably chronicled -- and, eventually, mirrored -- the tech boom that began a decade ago and died a few years later. (Disclosure: Despite its occasional excesses, I am honored to have been associated with the magazine.) After years of noticing that thestandard.com was still receiving ample traffic and -- with one brief exception a few years back -- not doing much about it (I wonder if pointcast.com still gets lots of visitors), IDG, which was the Standard's lead investor and picked up the carcass in bankruptcy court, has relaunched the site this week.

The new site is, to these eyes, an unintentional parody of Web 2.0 features. Rather than mere advertising, it has a more high-end sponsorship model (i.e., one pay-for-it-all advertiser), it seeks to create a community (you have to sign in to enjoy the more interesting features), and it combines aggregation and a sliver of original material with a "wisdom of crowds" prediction market. To give you a sense of how well the prediction market is going so far, as I write this every prediction on the site was submitted by thestandard.com's no-doubt bare-bone staff (that's how Web 2.0 works, too). And, of course, to keep costs really low, this time the brand is online-only.

I'm not sure what's being accomplished here, aside from the modest monetization of a dormant but still semipopular URL. It's an attempt to revive a once-very-popular name, synonymous with original content, with as little original content as IDG can get away with. Maybe that will change.

Recently someone I hadn’t been in touch with for more than 20 years found me on Facebook and suggested we "reconnect." But if we really wanted to "reconnect," whatever that means, we might have done so at least once during the previous two decades. That’s how I feel about The Standard coming back: it’s too late, it’s pointless, its time has passed. The new site should rise or fall on the basis of its own achievement, not on those of an entirely different team a boom and a bust ago.

(later posted to Radar)

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Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Jill Sobule rules

It's about music, it's on my work blog: A rare post about the music industry that isn't completely depressing

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Edward Tufte on the iPhone

I've been an enormous fan of the work of Edward Tufte for decades. His notions about density of content are extremely relevant in this age of information overload, and he has just released a video in which he evaluates what works and what doesn't on the device of the moment, the Apple iPhone. Before I give you the link, I should emphasize that the Quicktime file is enormous and may take many minutes to download, but its insights and presentation make it worth the wait. It's here.


Tufte iPhone

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Friday, January 25, 2008

Jimmy Guterman's Jewels and Binoculars: new (and, perhaps, improved) 2008 edition

Hello to both of you who've waited for this humble weblog to return. I'm going to try something different this year. As those closest to me know, structure and I are not close friends. Everything reminds me of something else, which reminds me of something else, which ... well, you get the idea. No structure. If I'm going to stick to blogging for more than a little while this time, I suspect it will be only if I create a structure that encourages me to post here almost every day. And a different topic every day keeps this blogger unbored.

So, here's the structure that I'm going to attempt:

Every Monday, I will post about Cooking. [insert pause for laughter.] Yeah, I know, but hear me out. When I look at the things about myself that I want to improve, cooking keeps coming up at the top of the list. Partly it's because I'm a lousy cook (married to an adventurous, imaginative one) and I want to become a better one. Partly it's because my failure in the kitchen often feels like a metaphor for other failures in my life. Just as last year my cryptic decision to post sentences here from my novel-in-progress helped me focus on writing every day, I'm hoping that chronicling my disasters and occasional successes in the kitchen will keep me focused. The possibility of public embarrassment remains a powerful motivator.

Every Tuesday, I will post something Work-Related. The vast majority of my writing these days is for my work at O'Reilly (and, to a much lesser degree, Harvard). On Tuesdays, I'll post something related to what I actually do for a living.

Every Wednesday, I will post the latest Greatest Song of All Time of the Week. No further explanation necessary.

Every Thursday, I will post something related to the Novel-in-Progress. They may be sentences from the work (currently, but tentatively, titled The Rock Star Next Door), they may be complaints about the process, they may be lessons I've learned.

Every Friday, I will post nothing, probably, because Man was not meant to blog with the weekend coming so soon.

Random Crap can appear any day, as it is, er, random.

I will also tag each post, to make searching by topic easier, and to help anyone coming here who wants to peruse, say, the music posts but none of the cooking posts.

Seeya Monday...

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