Author Archive

Don’t fuck with the Nialler*

Saturday, November 24th, 2007

Jim made me blog this. I cannot say no cos you don’t fuck with the Carroller.

The story is that Nialler gives out about a concert and someone bites back(comment 19 onwards), when maybe they shouldn’t. Nialler’s in our blogger posse afterall. You don’t fuck with the bloggers.*

* Comes from the movie Adventures in Babysitting.

Gang Leader: Don’t fuck with the Lords of Hell.
Chris: Don’t fuck with the babysitter.

JustRoutes featured in Irish Times

Friday, November 23rd, 2007

Well done to Vinny and Dave.*

An Irish mapping website which provides details of public transport links around the country saw a 150 per cent increase in usage as a result of the recent Dublin Bus dispute, writes John Collins . has details of almost all Dublin Bus routes in the city and 3,621 bus stops. It also has details of all mainline rail routes and stations as well as 1,459 Bus Éireann stops. All street names can be viewed in Irish and English, and there is also an interface for French and Polish speakers. The site has been set up by Dave Rooney and Vinny Glennon, who were students at DCU together. A frustrating couple of hours spent by Rooney trying to get to Rathcoole, Co Dublin, on public transport inspired them to create the site. It is designed to allow people to find how to get from any two points in Ireland by public transport.

Dublin Bus or any of the other public transport companies do not have a similar service.

* Disclaimer, I helped them a little with their press release.

Fluffy Links – Friday November 23rd 2007

Friday, November 23rd, 2007

Bock is outdoing me on this online scrap stuff. G’wan!

Talk about Facebook love. Look at this Google leaving letter.

Only noticed this snooty page from the IEDR now.

Seven years ago the Oireachtas gave the Minister certain powers (Note 1) in relation to the .ie namespace. These powers were never exercised by him, and in May 2007 these powers and others were transferred to Comreg (Note 2). Following this transfer, Comreg has now decided to do a health check on .ie registry operations.

I want one of these umbrellas.

Oracle’s social network. They force you to sign up to one of their newsletters before you get in. SPAM.

The Asoh defense.

Many will trade their right to vote for money. The bastards always get in anyway. Might as well sell?

“Once a spiritual totem, spit is now just another informational medium.”

Via JH:

David McSavage on the Late Late for those who hate realplayer, sound is out of synch though
[google 2760077655091304100>

eircom announce their own €100k Web 2.0/tech seed fund

Thursday, November 22nd, 2007

Tonight at the Golden Spiders awards eircom announced that they have created a fund worth approximately €100k annually, which will be used to help develop four web 2.0 style concepts submitted by Irish companies over a six month period.

Details of the fund are that the funding will be released on a staged basis throughout this six month development process, though this will be on a per-case basis, so if you need more time they might give it to you.

There are many categories for which you can submit a proposal:

  • Discovery (domain specific search; indexing, ranking, querying techniques; personalisation, recommendations, information aggregation)
  • Messaging (IM; new / open messaging frameworks; email, alerts)
  • Voice (VoIP telephony; mashups; asynchronous and embedded voice applications)
  • Location (mapping; location-based services; geospacial web, location-based content aggregation)
  • Publishing (blogging and microblogging, syndication; microformats; widgets)
  • Communities (social networks, open standards, mashups, visualisations, aggregators)
  • Content creation (music, video, film & TV, gaming, sport, lifestyle)
  • Advertising (formats, platforms, technologies, networks, targeting, syndication, widgets)
  • Identity (presence, capabilities management; lightweight identity platforms, cross-platform solutions, social identity management)

Walter Higgins from company Sxoop that created Pixenate is probably one of the companies well suited to apply for this fund, on hearing about the fund he said:

I welcome it whole-heartedly I think it shows great initiative by eircom in encouraging irish web innovation and it is definitely something I will look into further.

Cathal Magee from eircom (in the press release) said:

“The aim of the fund is to incubate creative and innovative web application development at the grassroots in Ireland. The establishment of the fund is a clear signal of eircom’s outward approach to innovation. The company must be well positioned to maintain its leadership position as the next wave of web services are introduced.”

Full details are available here: You have til February to send in an application.

Tom Corcoran from the WIT Research and Innovation Centre had this to say:

It looks like a very welcome, interesting and smart move by Eircom. Aside from generating some excellent PR (for Eircom and for the successful companies), an injection of €25K into a small number of start-ups could be of great benefit, especially when its allied to a potential customer of this stature. I like the approach of supporting just four companies rather than spreading the fund thinly. The categories as outlined are ideally suited to quite a number of Irish early-stage businesses and I have to believe that competition will be
intense. For any company in this field, winning Eircom as a reference customer could open many other doors and could also make it easier to attract investment.

Tom did note though that it was unclear from the announcement about who owned the IP but Mark Taylor, head of content for clarified and said that eircom are not looking for any equity in the company or product.

So there you have it folks. 25k for a product you create and will hold on to, the chance to launch it on – one of the busiest sites in Ireland and continued financial support afterwards. I also believe that as well as financial support they’ll happily give other support in terms of marketing and feedback on the technology side too. So what’s holding you back?

Fluffy Links – Thursday November 22nd 2007

Thursday, November 22nd, 2007

Gerry samples some Sublime wine.

Haha. Off The Meat Track with a picture that says it all about magazines.

While it’s a guide on how to blog for the Washington Post, this is a good guide blogging for yourself or for an organisation.

More gripes about Facebook Beacon.

Seth Godin on Eye Tracking.

A wooly balaclava with a beard!

How to advertise on Facebook – A perspective from Ireland

Wednesday, November 21st, 2007

So you want to run ads on Facebook for your business, whatever that business is. Thanks to social ads from Facebook you can target 167,000 people in Ireland that currently use the service in the same way that Google’s ad system allowed you to target ads but even better than Google you can almost be sniper-like on how you target the ads. You can target by age, gender, work status, relationship status, college education and interests, something Google can’t quite do yet. (though when the next iterations of Open Social happen, they will)

In this walkthrough, let’s present were the typical snobby TCD student who can make an almost professional career of sneering at UCD students. So you’ve decided you want to advertise to UCD folks. All you need is a credit card and to spend a minimum of five dollars on your ad campaign.

1. You need to decide what your ad is going to be. For this example the Trinners student is going to advertise jobs in McDonald’s to those in UCD.

2. So first go to

Facebook Advertising Guide

3. Click on the big green button!

Facebook Advertising Guide 1a

4. Choose what website address you want to be clicked. Here it’s the job page on

Facebook Advertising Guide 2

5. From here choose your audience. We picked 18-25 year olds that attend UCD.

Facebook Advertising Guide 3

6. It said there were circa 1380 people from UCD on Facebook:

Facebook Advertising Guide 4

7. Then write your ad and you can also include an image. The McDonald’s logo was chosen.

Facebook Advertising Guide 5

8. You can also see a preview of what the ad will look like:

Facebook Advertising Guide 6

9a. After this you can choose how much is to be spent and what times the ad will be shown. You can also pay per click or by views:

Facebook Advertising Guide 7

Update: Left out this bit:

9b. If you choose pay per views you have the option of also display the ad in the News Feed of people, something which will probably get you a lot more clicks and views since people actively scan and read their News Feed.
Facebook Advertising Guide 7 A

10. Finally, review the campaign and pay up and off you go.

Facebook Advertising Guide 8

Happy annoying people or er doing business.

Remember though that just because you can advertise and target specific people does not mean that you will get a lot of click throughs. You have to work hard on writing good copy and using good images to get the attention of a Facebook public that doesn’t seem to pay too much attention to ads. While I do think general advertising is becoming disintermediated, in the end if the web is truely democratic/equal and everyone knows SEO, everyone blogs and tells the story of the product and gets the cluetrain, it will again come down to branding and marketing professionals to help make your product the most liked product out there. Not everyone out there can work on making global microbrands so I forsee ad agencies and marketing companies training and educating people on how to do it right and of course helping those too busy to do it themselves.

Fluffy Links – Wednesday November 21st 2007

Wednesday, November 21st, 2007

(Welcome new subscribers to

Fantastic. Claire is helping to get an Educate Together school set up in Greystones. Well done Claire.

Sharon points out that the fundymedia folks are picketing the state broadcaster over their censorship of some important issues. When cancer experts are now allowed on air because their pithy analysis of cancer care in Ireland does not please a Minister, then a stand needs to be taken.

An Irish Pharmacist blogs about the HSE and their war on pharmacists and the medical card.

Head of special initiatives at Google thinks Auctomatic is hot.

IrishElection got a makeover. Great design and love the new additions.

Meebo, my fav web based multi-IM client is becoming even more of a social network with this games addon.

PollDaddy also expands. If I owned this Irish-owned service I’d be leveraging the install base to carry out polls across this “network” of polling widgets. “We can poll a million people for you in the next 24 hours” and then send the poll out and give a little cash to the people who host the poll. Facebook make money with the quick polls. PollDaddy should do the same.

Séan is teaching his peers in school how to blog. More of this.

Via Stephen is this YouTube video that looks like it’s from the 60s but two vintage cameras from eBay gave it this look:

Cringe! Chuck Norris political endorsement. Chucks gotten some plastic work done.

Donncha recently asked me how I compile the fluffy links I generally do every day. Mainly I have my blog editing window open in a tab in Firefox. As I see things that interest me and I find interesting, I will update a draft blog post with these links and a little bit of commentary or just open a new tab in Firefox with that link. At the end of the day I can sometimes have up to 60 tabs open. I become more selective too the longer the tab is open. I’m subbed to about 220 news feeds right now and the content from them mixed together is quite eclectic so I think at least one link each day will appeal to the (allegedly 800+) people that are subscribed to this blog. What I’ve noticed in the past while is I’ve been putting stuff that highlights what Irish bloggers are saying or doing at the start of the fluffy links. Something which was not a conscious decision. I’m also noticing too that resultant from this I get emails almost every day asking for a Fluffy Link. Just so you know, I am happy to link to something that you think I’d find interesting. So email away. At one point I was 2 weeks ahead with my fluffy links but not so these days.

Science Week Blogging Winners but the science blog posts continue

Tuesday, November 20th, 2007

Sorry about the lateness in this, apparently people were emailed about it. Was too caught up with other matters to let you know the winners and to blog the past day and a bit.

Congrats to the following who won a Wii for Science Week:

But it looks like if you want to keep writing about this, then go see Sinéad. She’s taken up the mantle and is asking people a new science question (no Wii prize this time though), the question is: What changes would you make to an existing piece of technology?

eircom Broadband week – new ComScore stats

Monday, November 19th, 2007

More during the week about the various events around Broadband Week. One to definitely to note is that they’ll be announcing an Innovation Fund at the end of the week that tech startups might benefit from.

Remember those ComScore stats? They’re back again for September, via eircom.

Top 10 Internet properties visited by Irish users during September 2007:

* Over 2 million people in Ireland logged onto the Internet in September 2007 (48% of the population)
* Top 5 properties visited by Irish users are non Irish sites
* is the number one Irish site visited by Irish users
* Almost 1.2m unique users visited during September.
* Only 3 of the top 10 sites visited by Irish users are Irish sites

1. Google
2. Microsoft
3. Yahoo!
5. eBay
7. Wikipedia
8. Time Warner Network
9. Ryanair
10. Aer Lingus

Top Sporting sites visited by Irish Users


* 65% of Irish visitors to sporting sites are under the age of 35
* 64% of Irish visitors to these sites are male
* RTE Sport is the 3rd most visited sporting site by Irish internet users
* Only two Irish sites in the top 10 – RTE Sport and
* One in three Irish users visited a sporting site

3. RTE Sport
4. World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE)
5. BBC Sport


Top Multimedia Sites visited by Irish Users

* 66% of Irish visitors to multimedia entertainment sites are under the age of 35
* 10% of Irish visitors to these sites are 55 or older
* 43% of Irish users visited a multimedia site during September 2007

2. iTunes
5.AOL Music

Top Gambling Sites Visited by Irish Users

* The number of unique visits to Gambling sites by Irish users has doubled in the past year.
* and are the 2nd and 3rd most popular gambling sites for Irish users
* 30% of Irish Internet users visit Gambling websites once a month

3. Paddy Power
4. 365 Media Group

* is the most visited discussion / chat site by Irish users in September 2007
* Unique visits to discussion / chat sites have increased 16% in the last year
* 1 in 4 Irish users visited a discussion / chat site during September

Fluffy links – Monday November 19th 2007

Monday, November 19th, 2007

Patrick Collison now stars in the Irish curriculum.

Christmas is coming. Check out this sweater. (Via Andrew)

Website managed to buy a football club!

I so want a Chumby. I got my Wii last year and my Elmo. Now it’s this.

Girl Talk! Woo.

Free booze for UK Twitter folks.

Escher’s Hands redone for robots.

Think telecoms in Ireland is bad? How about Regtel for premium number services. Run for the industry by the industry. Read how they redefine what a complaint is and then say the numbers of complaints went down. Scammers.

Mathy shelving goodness.

Another That’s Ireland classic: Fifty Ways to Laugh at Voters the Vidjo