Archive for October, 2006

Best “Phone a friend” ever

Saturday, October 14th, 2006

I think this is almost sweet.

Metal week on

Saturday, October 14th, 2006

I’ve been playing about with YouTube this weekend and going over old songs and music videos that I loved. Once upon a time I was big into my metal music. I started off lightly with Guns N Roses and moved from there to Ministry to Nine Inch Nails to Sepultura to Nailbomb and Fear Factory and Helmet and of course the traditional ones like Sabbath and so forth.

This was me at Ozzfest about 8-10 years ago wearing my favourite Sepultura t-shirt. (I used to go to a gym back then too.)

Ozzfest was one of the best music fests I’ve been at. I’m glad I got to see Pantera in their prime. Soulfly, Fear Factory, Entombed, Slayer and so many more. Black Sabbath were good too for pensioners. Brilliant atmosphere there but Milton Keynes as a town is a hole.

I’m going to blog about some of my favourite artists over the next week. To kick things off here’s Freedom by Rage Against the Machine live in Mexico City.

Flatley gets his wedding champagne from Bubble Brothers

Friday, October 13th, 2006

Nice coup for the Bubble Brothers. You too can LordOfDance it up and get the champagne from their shop or website. €59 ain’t a bad price at all. You can get pink champers/fizzy stuff too.

You should really register for their Big Wine Event on October 24th too. A tenner in and you get to sample copious amounts of wine. Bring your boss and encourage him or her to order giftpacks for Christmas.
Wine Event Cork

Fluffy links October 12th 2006

Thursday, October 12th, 2006

Via TCAL. Grindhouse. Snakes on a plane without the snakes or a plane! Damn this looks good. The music is great.

North Korean Bodyguard interview. Seems quite stagey.

Eudora to be based on Thunderbird?

Nathan Weinberg talks about the hourglass method of writing blog posts. I like Jakob Nielsen’s idea of starting with a whole summary of the information so those that just want to glance get the key information and can move on. In blogging world where most bloggers aren’t paid per word, getting to the point quickly can get more return visits.

This is fact checking. Well done Suzy.

Pink sparkling wine for EUR12 a pop. Ideal Valentine’s day pressie? Might buy a bottle this weekend and try it. I need to start looking at champagnes for the blog awards.

Speaking of them. Rick wants to know is it going to be a black tie event. Hmmm. Not sure. But you’d look well in one! Jett Loe won’t be alone then!

More questions for politicians.

Sexist labeling.

New Year’s Kiss – Casiotone for the painfully alone

Wednesday, October 11th, 2006

Thanks to Gavin for getting me into this band.

New Year’s Kiss – Casiotone for the painfully alone

woke up with fingers crossed
in a boy’s bed with your pants off
after polite declines of coffee & toast
walked home itching in last night’s clothes

past the Phone Booth & the Beauty Bar
the broken windows of your neighbors’ cars
through the backdoor to a message from Sis
asking who was your New Year’s kiss

took the afternoon to piece it all
plus a half a dozen phone calls
crashed a party with Larissa & Chris
in pursuit of a New Year’s kiss

not the way that you’d imagined it
on a balcony with champagne lips
but in a pantry against the pancake mix
you had your New Year’s kiss

Fluffy links October 11th 2006

Wednesday, October 11th, 2006

Jeff Jarvis on YouTube and Google – Nichecasting

Google does not make us come to it and its ads; Google takes its ads to where we already are.

Jeff rips into 18 Doughty Street too. They made it hard to view. Bad idea.

QLoud. Use tags in iTunes. Nice idea.

IBM Top 5 wired nations. Ireland certainly isn’t one of them.

Vacuum cleaner music. I love this kind of stuff.

Wind-proof umbrella? Christmas is but around the corner. You know what to get.

I love watches. I want this watch.

Thirty years later, Hamilton is now issuing the X-01 a limited edition reinterpretation of the original movie watch for $1195. Only 2001 will be made, cast from Titanium, fit with an automatic movement, sapphire crystal and three sideview registers for Home Time, Dream Time, and GMT.

UI interviews Joan. A pink suit was not mentioned. Good to see a Leinster house blog.

Fluffy links for October 10th 2006

Tuesday, October 10th, 2006

Chips With That. Karlin Lillington’s Monday tech blog — from Newstalk106 FM’s The Right Hook.

Mp3 of Guido Fawkes at the Blogging the Election conference.

Another great headline from Blogorrah.

Getting Things Done Podcast. David Allen and 43Folders. Sweet.

Perfect Pictures from an imperfect world.

Ryanair when they take over Aer Lingus? I notice that Ryanair pilots slam on to the tarmac at the max allowed speed, probably to ensure quick turnaround. Nasty for the people in the plane though!

WCBD: Single Issue Blogs – Anti Monkstown Ring Road blog

Tuesday, October 10th, 2006

Really enjoying the Anti Monkstown Ring Road blog. A single issue but lots of great content. This is what bloggers can do. The latest post tells you which councillors voted for the road, who opposed it and who abstained. All will get archived forever too.

And from a previous post:

Do you remember which councillors promised you they would vote against the road?
Do you still have the paper work that came thro your door?
Do you remember the answers you got on your phone call campaign?
Do you remember the answers you got from your text campaign?
Do you remember the answers you got from your email campaign?

Which councillors were unavailable to you for comment all through your campaign?

The election process is just around the corner.
All the local politicians will be knocking on your door looking for your vote to keep them in a job.

What will be your reply to them when they do that?
What will your vote be?

Sounds like a war cry!

This was the week that was

Tuesday, October 10th, 2006

Some people were wondering why I hardly blogged last week. Here’s my week from hell:

Work, after work, get train to Dublin, meet Cian, have food, get to Jury’s Montrose, change, leg it to RTE studios for Questions and Answers. RTE reminds me of the way hospitals were a few years ago. Crumbling. The building seems old and very worn. Cian points out the reception on the TVs in the main entraceway are shit. We were ushered into a waiting room with not enough seats for everyone and got served tea and coffee. Into the Q&A studio which is tiny. Seats are totally uncomfortable which is fine since I didn’t want to fall asleep. Cian got to make a comment.

Before the show started they picked a question which wasn’t chosen to be asked on air but would be fun enough to warm up the audience and the panelists. Some American kid had asked “Pepsi or Coke”. Liz O’Donnell answers Diet Coke, Richard Bruton says he doesn’t drink any fizzy drinks, Noel Dempsey says he doesn’t think he’s ever drank Pepsi. (We all know some of his party love Coke though), Eileen Gleeson says Diet Anything and Trevor Sargent launches into a rant about fizzy drinks and rotting your teeth yadda yadda. A mexican wave of eyerolling follows.

Afterwards we are invited back to the Green room or whatever it is where we chat with the panelists. Noel Dempsey sees me, shakes my hand, does the niceities and stays at the other side of the room with his mass of people. Four of which are the people that so vigourously defended Bertie during Q&A. Myself and Cian are there til 0130 chatting with various people with the odd RTE staff member reminding people we’re bloggers and we might blog this. Cian asks someone from the Green Party very tough questions. Fascinating to watch. Cian explains to Liz O’Donnell what blogs are and she finally understands what they are but wonders how she could find time to blog. She does mention lots of people have said she should blog. At least there’s talk of blogs. (Later in the week at the Blogging the Election conference we hear that Fiona O’Malley’s people advised her that blogging is a waste of time.)

Get 7am train from Dublin to Cork, can you believe that’s the earliest damned train to Cork? Madness. Go to work. Later,. get called by Prime Time about Smart. They’re looking to interview disgruntled Smart customers. I find a few for them. They ask me to come on to talk too. I mention I’m in Cork and for the first time they say it doesn’t matter, they can book the Cork studio. (Up to this point TV journos have always reacted with a “Ah forget it so, you have to be in Dublin.”) Go into RTE studios, nervous as shit, do the live interview. Miriam O’Callaghan was lovely before we went live. Very calming influence. No I didn’t know what I was going to be asked. Leave RTE, switch on phone. Greeted with texts from people telling me I’m on telly right now. I realised.

Work, finish work and fly to Dublin. Get into Dublin, ring the guy that was meant to come to the Leonard Cohen tribute concert. He hasn’t a clue what I’m on about. Didn’t know it was on tonight. Has other things to do. Great, I’m stuck with a quite expensive spare ticket. Check into hotel, get food, taxi it to the Point. Tout offers me 20 quid for spare ticket. I give him explicit instructions on how he can have intercourse with himself. Point only starts leaving people in around 3 mins before the show is meant to start. Bars are closed, they demand we hurry to our seats, I slow my pace. Get to my seat and Nick Cave launches into a song as everyone is stilling milling in. Concert is quite good, I fall asleep in parts though. At the interval I bump into Noel Dempsey again. I wonder who is stalking who. As the second half begins I see a guy that looks like Frank with a beard. It’s Frank, with a beard and a bird. Gavin Friday was shit. Sorry Frank but himself and that fucking screeching zombie were like they were auditioning for Jazz Club. They fucked up Hallelujah. Overall I loved the show though, when I was awake.

Cohen show ends past midnight. Head back to hotel, friend who lives round the corner texts me to come over for some wine. Get ambushed to fix his laptop! Back to hotel, pack up for quick departure in morning. Hotel is told wake me at 0545. I wake at 0745. Shit. Missed my flight. Ring reception. They tell me wakeup call was for 0845, eh no. They double check and realise the hotel receptionist writes his 5 like an 8. Get 1100 train to Cork since there are no hourly trains yet! Get into work for 1430. Get piss taken out of me. Finsh work, go to dinner with a friend who is back from Boston. Go out after to the ever horrible Instinct bar. Go home and sleep.

Work, finish work, pack for Dublin, find out am nominated for NetVisonary awards, politely decline, train to Dublin, get into Dublin for 2300. Sleep.

Wake early and meet Cian outside hotel and we head to the Digital Hub and meet Suzy and Mick for the “Blogging the Election” event. You know how that went.

Wake early, not hungover, woo! Head to town, go into TodayFM for interview on Sunday Business show. Get 1200 train to Cork. Home and free! Phew. Almost.

So what *can* bloggers do?

Monday, October 9th, 2006

Cian has a blog post as an afterthought to the Blogging the Election event. What can bloggers do? It’s a valid question which probably has no wrong answer.

Me? I’d like to see bloggers follow around a politician for a “normal” working day even before the election gets into fill swing. In fact I’d love to see one done for every party and see how things work from all sides. I think it would be good for a blogger to document the average day of a TD and give so many the perspective that we may not have. John Gormley mentions the time poverty most politicians suffer and it would be nice to have someone follow them around to see this. It ain’t an RTE documentary but I think it could be good blog viewing.

What I think bloggers would be fantastic for is fact checking. One person may not be able to consistently fact-check politicans but an army of bloggers could. It would be nice to use blogs, and much more to run what they said last week, what they’re saying now, what they said four years ago. Or as Guido pointed out at the conference. – what they say to one group about a sensitive subject and what they’ve said about the same subject to a group with an opposite viewpoint. It would be good to see who is pandering and running with the hares and hounds. I think this was the essence of Bernie’s break out topic at the BtE event.

I’d also like to see campaigns for asking politicians some good questions they can’t worm out of and comparing their answers to their fellow party members of even themselves a few days later.

Time poverty or not I’d very much like to see more politicians blogging and especially women and we certainly need to see more Fianna Fail and PDs blogging. Note to the PD advisors, stop telling your bosses that blogging is a waste of time. It is not. Maybe we need to prove how powerful blogging can be for you? Do you require some kind of Guido stunt? Maybe we should make Damien Blake the first Google result for Fianna Fail and the Disillusioned Trendies the first result for Progressive Democrats?

John Gormley also suggests that TDs could have anon blogs where they disclose all the gossip from Leinster House. That’s interesting. Or maybe someone that solicited gossip from there and printed it. But how could you verify this gossip? Actually that’s a very good question we could have asked Mr. Fawkes. On that topic Ethan Zuckerman has one technical suggestion for remaining anonymous while blogging using specialist software.

This would certainly test the libel laws which is a question Media Forum were asking today. Here’s a view on how it works in the States.

Branding would be great too. Would love to see bloggers get invited to politcal events and seeing laptops with designed skins with on them, as well as on the polo shirts worn by the bloggers attending.

So what do you think bloggers can do?

Update: Cian’s view.