Archive for the ‘technology’ Category

The Blogging Bank – RaboDirect now have a blog

Monday, December 1st, 2008

RaboDirect Blog. Comments are open. Their GM is blogging along with other RaboDirect employees. This is certainly a first for Ireland. Impressive.

piggy bank
Photo owned by IngaMun (cc)

Of course we also have the No Nonsense Blog too. (Currently featuring Roddy Molloy)

And we have the fun Irish Mortgage Brokers blog from Karl Deeter which takes no prisoners and has pictures of KITT and Arnold from Diffrent Strokes.

So in the very conservative world of finance we have banks, mortgage brokers and insurance companies blogging. If they can do it, other industries can too.

George Lee on a Segway at it@Cork conference

Wednesday, November 26th, 2008

Via Gavin. Seriously:

I have a stack of about 60 business cards

Wednesday, November 26th, 2008

Yes the Arts Council conference went well. Exceptionally well. Audio recordings already up. When I grow up I want to organise a conference like that. Very very well planned. Best organised conference I was ever at in Ireland. What I liked the most was the BarCamp style spaces idea. Want to talk about something? Then do. So a structured and unstructured part. Free grub at lunchtime, swimming pools of tea and coffee. AV people in every room recording all the talks and providing mics to the audience. Impressive.

Mark Rothko
Photo owned by libbyrosof (cc)

And the content? Andrew Keen appealed to the luddites and kept talking about monetising everything. I didn’t realise Arts was so vulgar as to stick out your paw and demand money before doing something that’s meant to be a passion and a career. I never noticed the F1 style stickers on the Mona Lisa. He talked in half-truths and rhetoric that appealed to those that wanted to keep us all living in a world where only certain people could give their opinions and tell you what you should like. It was good to see him spar with Charles Leadbetter too because while I think Keen did nothing more than write a gutter journalism styled book, he was the only one that really said “woah there a second folks, let’s face the reality of this.” Nick Carr does this too though oddly not in book form. We need people with contrarian views around what is sometimes snakeloiling.

I made a few empassioned pleas during my workshops and on a panel I was at for the Arts community to get using the web and the latest tools. They need to stop being so inward looking and find new people to work with and show off too. I pointed out that there are dozens of music bloggers in Ireland now and who are doing a fantastic job of promoting music but where are people from the Arts? I pointed out that Darragh is going to various events as a volunteer and promoting them but why is it pretty much Darragh on his own doing this? I think I may have gotten everyone in the room to invite him to all their future events too. Loads of content from Darragh to come.

The future is engaging with people and speaking their language and sharing your work and your talents with them. I also may have been harsh with David McKenna from RTE when I said what they do for the Arts is pointless as only people in the Arts listen to their shows and that audience is dying. RTE are doing nothing for the Arts where the current generation is and that’s online.

Later I asked David McKenna again (poor guy, I wasn’t picking on you!) to give us OUR content back. We’re the taxpayer, give us the raw data back and let us play with it and promote it using our tools on our spaces. A podcast is not enough. Or an RSS feed. Don’t build channels, just let us take it and distribute it. David mentioned licensing issues but as John Kelly and Andrew Taylor pointed out, everything from tomorrow on can be done with a new contract so live versions of whatever songs or performance pieces can be redistributed.

Photo owned by Tom Hemmings (cc)

I’ll have further thoughts on this in the days ahead so this is my first take. Overall a great great day, O learned a lot, people asked me a lot of questions which always makes me happy and now I need to send Online Marketing documentation to all those business card owners.

Update: Don’t forget that you can comment on the official blog too.

Disclosure: I got paid to give workshops at this event. I’d go again just to participate though. Well worth going to.

Three Ireland win National Dialup Tender

Tuesday, November 25th, 2008

This is the 373 page thread of complaints about Three on

This is a cataclysmic failure. eircom would have been better to give the tender to as they have way more experience in rolling out broadband, wireless and satellite. Of the two that were in it, eircom certainly could have offered more. Best of a bad lot for sure. Remember Three outsource everything with BT building the network for them and that network was a piece of shit for months after they first starting selling broadband.

People who use the Three service right now get dialup rates a lot of the time in Dublin, not broadband, so you can be sure those few people who can actually avail of broadband under this scheme will getting nothing close to event he loosest definition of broadband. A giant FAIL by Eamon Ryan and his Department over this.

There is also the huge, monstrous irony that some people will not be allowed to avail of broadband under the National Broadband Scheme in their area because they’d be classed as being in areas where they can already get Three Broadband, yet obviously they can’t.

Festival Linux IPVG Chillán
Photo owned by gonzalemario (cc)


I won a Golden Spider

Friday, November 21st, 2008

Did I also mention eircom bought me booze? Did I also mention I think Eamon Ryan rocks? And Fine Gael? Gimme me 50 quid and I’ll link to you. It’s all Michele Neylon’s fault. He nominated me. Thanks Dude, appreciated.

Update: Me and Philly Mc from Bebo. Bebo rocks, did I mention that?
Me and Philly Mc

Cheers to Bredanistan for taking the pic

Irish iPhone user? Take the survey, win €50

Wednesday, November 19th, 2008

i’m running a survey to find out the habits of iPhone users in Ireland. How you use the phone, what you spend, feedback on the phone etc. If you fill in the survey you’ll be entered into a draw to win a voucher for €50 worth of iTunes vouchers or if you send an iPhone owner to the survey and they fill it in, you’ll be entered into another draw for a €50 voucher.

The Irish iPhone survey is here.

If you have any issues with the server etc. please let me know.

Outremont, 19-Nov-08
Photo owned by kleinman (cc)

210k ex vat to run Enterprise Ireland’s email list and newsletter from 2007 to 2010

Tuesday, November 11th, 2008

Via the eTenders site:

Enterprise Ireland invites expressions of interest from suitably competent firms for the Publication of eBusiness Electronic Newsletter – eBusiness Live and management of eBusiness Discussion Forum 2007-2010 for the web site.



Total final value of the contract(s)
Value:210450Currency:EUR Excluding VAT

This would be Richard’s fav mailing list.

Twitter and as a digital sitting room?

Monday, November 10th, 2008

So you heard about that election thing the other day yeah? Disney won. Happily ever after.

From American Hell:
Twittering the election

I participated in Blogging the election at the Irish General Election with Suzy and Cian where we monitored the Interwebs and used Twitter to fire out results as they came in. Back then (last year) those on twitter listened more than they interacted but for the American Election last week, it was totally different. It ws a massive information stream, it was a source and it was a shared experience.

When CNN unveiled their holograms, Twitter exploded with commentary. Most of it hilarious and referencing Star Wars and Star Trek. People in so many corners of the world, not just Ireland were exchanging banter with each other about it. This is what some of the Irish said:

Twitter and holograms

The banter and back and forth and “retweeting” kept the momentum going. By retweeting, I mean people who were subbed to a few people would do chinese whispers style “pass it on” messages but because it is digital, the core message remained 100% intact. Here was one retweet for example:


Around 2:57 AM I asked:

How many here would be in bed were it not for the interactions about this election on Twitter? *raises hand*

And I got a load of people confirming my suspicions. I would probably have headed back to my hotel or at least have gone earlier if it wasn’t for so many people being there, sharing their experience of their moment:

Feedback from those on Twitter

And it isn’t just for the election either. People who still watch TV are sharing their experiences of it. Most notably people are watching The Apprentice on TV3 and commenting on it live on Twitter. The peer pressure from all the twittering about it got me to start watching it and shouting at the TV in the sitting room and on Twitter. The Times on Twitter and the election.

Of late too there’s been movement away or in-step with live-twittering with Simon McGarr championing live-blogging (using a special webapp) of TV shows such as The Apprentice (again), Questions and Answers and there was a massive crowd live-blogging the election. Cleverly Simon also snapped up where the live-blogging is now happening.

You may have heard of the term “social object” before but what seems to have happened without any influence at all from anywhere else is us Irish that were on Twitter or that blog have now started using technology applications to socialise events that may have been private due to geographic restraints. Tv watching is one of them. I actually think it also has gotten those who now live online to watch a bit more TV too. From a sociological perspective, this is fascinating. From a promotional/marketing/business perspective it is equally so. You have to wonder if one of the futures of successful TV is making TV watching into even more of a shared experience not just with those who are in the room with you but with those you are digitally connected to. People are already having boxset marathon weekends but this is something different and maybe more.

Maybe TV stations should allow people to create “chat rooms” where you can invite your friends or the world into and you can watch various TV programmes together. Actually I think some already do this. Google has previously mentioned search as a shared experience. Facebook is making our lives slightly shared too with the way we stream our lives there.

But with all of this chatter around events, is it like someone giving a running commentary as you kiss them? Should you shut up and just enjoy the moment?

That SEO competition – How are they doing so far?

Sunday, November 9th, 2008

Not going to mention the terms. Not going to link to the Google search for it:

SEO Search term

Here’s what it looks like as of Friday this week. Few weeks to go yet though:

SEO results

Thanks everyone, my iPhone is back

Saturday, November 8th, 2008

Photo owned by JP Puerta (cc)

I may have mentioned previously that due to headbutting a wall at high speed my iPhone no longer worked. The screen was smashed to bits. Gordon decided to organise a whip around for me as a thanks for the Irish Web Awards and many people were too generous and put money into a paypal account for me.

Well this week I got my iPhone repaired by the very helpful people at FM Mobiles (thanks for the tip Cathal) in Camden Street (come back in an hour and it’ll be ready they said!) and so the money donated by Gordon and all the rest of the very nice people ensured that my iPhone is back and working. There was no way in hell that I’d get an iPhone from o2 with those terrible terms and conditions. I had considered one of the legit Italian iPhones but they’re bloody pricey.

It’s pretty sad to admit it but my reliance on the iPhone was staggering. I was constantly connected from waking to sleep with the digital world. Email, Twitter and all the rest. While the iPhone was lying on my desk awaiting repair I was using a Nokia N95 and what a frustrating experience it was to go from an iPhone to that. Too many buttons, way too many, even taking a picture was a pain in the hole. Setting the alarm on it was annoying too.

Apple might be right old fuckers for the price of the iPhone and allowing carriers to lock people into contracts for so long but they know how to make a product that becomes an extension of someone and doesn’t interfere with their natural movements. Hopefully the next iteration of Nokia phones respect that concept. I must go and try one of the new Blackberry’s though. I think they’re the second most hyped phone this year.