Archive for December, 2007

Ones we watched in 2007 – How did they do?

Thursday, December 27th, 2007

Right, before I release the Ones to Watch in 2008 post, how did I do in regards to ones to watch in 2007?

Simon McGarr
A certain wee man came into this life and changed everything for him but he is still ploughing on with the Paper Round. Maybe he’ll have more news for us come 2008? His VoteTube project was a great success, getting him a lot of attention.

The Cedar Lounge lads
Quality, not quantity from these boys. Some great thoughtpieces coming up, during and post the election. I certainly thought differently about some political issues after they went through them.

Piaras Kelly
MacGyver. He brought fucking MacGyver to Ireland. Piaras will forever be a legend for that. Winner!

Red Mum
She decloaked for a while and we saw what she does/did. She’s doing a lot of interesting things the past few months too but we can’t tell you, just yet. :) Will she ever move her blog over to her new domain though? C’mon!

Cian O’Flaherty
80k people visited the Irish Election website on the day of the election results. He was brought on to TodayFM and other stations during the count and some media outlets ended up using the IrishElection count centre results since they were more up-to-date than RTE. IrishElection scooped two Blog Awards too. McDowell losing his seat and a recent redesign saw the site add some interesting new features. Possibly some big news about IrishElection.com in the new year too.

Pat Phelan
Roam4Free, MaxRoam, Cubic Phones, finalist at the TechCrunch 40 and way more news to come in 2008. A massive, homegrown, no bullshit success and things are only going to get better for Pat and co.

Bernie Goldbach
Another person who slowed things down a bit when a bundle of joy came into his life. Winner of two blog awards including contribution to the blogging community who then turned the tables and gave it to me which (I’m biased) I thought was one of the nicest gestures ever. This showed his community mettle. Bernie also co-organised a very successful PodCamp in Kilkenny in 2007 and as usual is a early adopter and evangelist for so much in the tech sphere. He camped early on Twitter and Jaiku and brought us all in too and you can be sure he’ll do the same in 2008. I lock horns with Bernie a lot but still respect the guy and advise people to sub to his blog as he’ll spot trends before most others in Ireland or on the web.

Two Richards and Dick
Richard Delevan certainly made an impression and broke a lot of good stories. His current Ireland Caucus project looks good too. The other Richard was mostly quiet on his blog but was working away in the Daily Mail and Dick O’Brien has been seen a lot of late in the Tribune and Sunday Business Post as well as Business and Finance.

The teeny tiny startups that could and will
Mmmm, not so much. A good few steps forward but nothing of serious note just yet. More time needed. Some of the companies for Paddy’s Valley were good and have high potential.

The unknown blogger
Blogorrah came and went, loads and loads of new bloggers came about and brought new opinions and views into the mix and made things better. The biggest unknowns were the knowns with the Irish Times blogging posse arriving and upping things up a level. None have so far broken a major news story or done something that made the whole country react. Getting there though.

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Blog Awards 2008 – Sponsorship details

Thursday, December 27th, 2007

I’ve put a post up over on the Awards website about the Blog Awards sponsorship slots. €300 to sponsor a category this year. Last year’s sponsors pay the same price of €270 if they want to go again. Headline sponsor for the Best Blog post pays a lot more. Top award of night and all that. You can also sponsor the podcast and a few other things and as I mentioned before I’m looking for merchandise for the Goody Bags as well. Remember too that this event is run at cost. All door takings go to charity. No meal or any of that stuff, go to a €200 a plate awards gig for that. :)

Fluffy Links – December 27th 2007

Thursday, December 27th, 2007

So Richard is moving away from SEO? Too many damned cowboys in it now in my opinion.

Check out this photo Joe took. Sacreligious.

Offer still open for the free Business Blogging Course from me. Looks like we got a venue too.

I thought this was cute and hilarious. A baby giving the evil eye. Other people did not. Tough Crowd.

Anyone seen any of these movies and recommend them?

But it’s real cashmere. Feck the price tag.

The new Knight Rider teaser.

Wired’s Top Ten startups to look out for is crap I have to say. Old companies and over-hyped ones. Fon, LinkedIn, BitTorrent? Are ye for real? Then this from the Guardian is stupid too. Twitter? Wow, is it 2007 again? Course the Economist is talking even more crap.

Not sure is this at all clever? Anti-drinkdriving ads inside a game?

This guy got Kevin Costner to come to his blog.

Primus – Winona’s Big Brown Beaver:

If you’re still feeling Christmasy

Wednesday, December 26th, 2007

Massive list of TV Show Christmas specials. ALF, the Smurfs and so so so many more.

Some auditory pleasure.

Hear Dylan Thomas’ recollection of the sounds and smells of a long-ago Christmas in the seaside town of his youth from the Harper Audio release “A Child’s Christmas in Wales.

Christmas indy songs.

They’re on fire

Tuesday, December 25th, 2007

Totally, utterly in love with the Bat For Lashes cover of Bruce Springsteen’s “I’m on fire”:

Here’s the song sung by himself, live:

Happy Christmas

Blogging killed God, the Bible and single sources

Tuesday, December 25th, 2007

I hadn’t meant this post to go out Christmas day but it seems apt now. This is kind of a forked commentary from a blog post on how people mass-manipulate others. I’m in that webified generation that does not trust one source, that reads a story in a newspaper and figures out how this story would be presented without the bias of the paper etc., the generation that doesn’t necessarily fact-check but multi-sources facts. They are not the same thing. Many think they are.

I’m backing my 10,000 amateurs over your €10,000 a day expert
People give out about so many relying on the untrustworthy Wikipedia but I think my peers always seek out multiple sources of information on any and every topic. We’re the folks that don’t exactly trust a blogger that never links when giving opinions and our mistrust is shifting into the rest of the world too. I guess we’re all starting to second guess “experts”. I actually don’t know is mistrust a good word for this but it is a good thing. Is there anything really a 1 or a 0 in this life? Most things seems to be fuzzy. Always more than one side to a story and as we’ve become more cynical we are finding that we’re right. Newspapers damn the Internet for being amateur yet armies of amateurs are better than *most* journalists as they have the time and resources to work as a massive group to check everything out. While people have mentioned that only a tiny percentage do all the lifting on Wikipedia it doesn’t make it any less open since anyone can make a change to an article and point out to the group new facts to make their change stick. All the changes and “unchanges” are also logged and can be viewed too. As well as the IPs.

Citation Needed

And then it goes too far
The trouble is people are now using lack of links as a club to win an argument. I’m getting rather sick of link elitism going on on discussion forums and on blogs, where you are not allowed disagree or enter a comment unless you have sources for every one of your opinions. That’s total information facism and is going a step too far I think. I also see links used to make someone look wrong. “This link shows you are wrong”. Not got time to elaborate WHY, tabloid stuff really with people selectively quoting from a long articles and really it’s trying to win an argument by snowing someone under and expecting them to disprove your argument while you don’t have them expect the same. It’s the Microsoft 100 lawyers killing your case even when you are in the right technique.

Or maybe they make faith stronger
So is the new religion actually a cult of scepticism and is faith in something or someone being eroded? If we always question single sources, doesn’t that mean the Bible and God herself are going to be cynically looked at? Are they dead if they cannot be trusted? But is this not good? We should not pivot anything on one thing, should we? Perhaps but also perhaps if known “experts” actually put themselves out there not as experts but as collators of information and they are open to changing the way they present ALL data when new data comes along(after careful consideration), then really they’re not a single source but a router of information, an open knowledge resource. I think that’s what Wikipedia is. I think people should be like that too, open to amend their knowledge and ideas when presented with new information.

When I think of people that do that, I see some bloggers yes but I also see Rabbis, I don’t see priests though, not the Catholic ones this Irish boy is used to anyway. There are theolgians in the Catholic church sure but they are not accessible to the public and they are not there on a Sunday guiding the community. What we do have is guardians of knowledge, gatekeepers, obfuscators, condemners. Dictators really. Google Knol is that to me. The chosen few by Google are going to be hyped as the experts and you’ll be encouraged to trust them more than Wikipedia even though they and Google are there to make money from your clicks. With that attitude a lot of experts in their fields will be ignored simply because they don’t fit into the Google luvvie brigade. I wonder will Google Knol articles get amended as quickly by the Google priests?

When I started this post a few days ago I really didn’t think it would turn into some religious sermon on a Christmas day. How very odd. So maybe blogging is in fact a rebirth for expertise and for knowledge sharing and is getting us away from a single and sometimes very biased source for something. Happy Christmas!

Bonus link: Zack Exley’s new project.

I want this on my next business card, I want this on posters, I want…

Tuesday, December 25th, 2007

Via XKCD

dignified

Google’s Department of Misinformation

Monday, December 24th, 2007

So you know the way Google announces something, even teeny tiny things and the world (including me) goes woo and aww and all that and many wonder what this means and what great plan this project is part of? I do wonder does Google and the other giant techcos have a misinformation department like the Allied Forces had during World War II where they had fake towns, inflatible tanks and planes and the like? I even wonder do they team up and create a fake project and then Yahoo! would create a fake counter-project just to feck with the heads of us fanboys. It reminds me of the Gary Larson cartoon where a surgeon discovers if he presses one part of a patient’s brain their leg jumps up.

Anyway, Google are asking people to stick up their Christmas photos on a world map of theirs and share em with the world. This got me to think that some Google initiatives are just for fun and nothing to do with business. Back to the Google photo map, so far no photos are up from Ireland. G’wan, stick em up.

Damn, Sabrina is all go

Monday, December 24th, 2007

I already linked to her recently but check out Sabrina Dent’s blog again. She must be on the crack cocaine at the moment with all the blog posts and wonderful graphics for each post. I’m well impressed. I think I’m going to rope her into doing something for me, for free. Cos, you know, I’m cheap.

No it isn’t

Monday, December 24th, 2007