Archive for the ‘technology’ Category

Hack your body

Sunday, August 24th, 2008

New funky lighting at the new eircom HQ

Thursday, August 21st, 2008

via eircom is a time lapse vid of the LED lighting in their new HQ which opens in September. Wouldn’t it be nice to do a photowalk of that at night? Better still imagine if they ran a competition inviting people to programme the sequencing of the lights? Keep watching as the lighting changes become more swish:

TechLudd comes to Cork (at last) Thursday 28th August

Thursday, August 21st, 2008

Anton just confirmed that TechLudd is going to be at the Cork Airport International Hotel on Thu evening August 28th.

People from Cork, Waterford, Kerry and Limerick should consider coming along to this. Companies can also demo their products. Come along, g’wan.

Useful Irish Web Tools

Thursday, August 14th, 2008

As well as GMail, Twitter, WordPress, Bloglines and Meebo, the other web tools I use on a daily basis and a few times a day are and Jazzbiscuit’s Image Search. They’re invaluable.

If I’m linking to anything on Twitter or emailing something to not so web savvy people then I’ll use Cathal Garvey’s URl shortening tool. It rocks. The latest version of it too produces a Q Code thingy, you know those new barcode things that some cameras recognize and turn em into urls?

JazzBiscuit Creative Commons Image Search

Online pop culture anarchist JazzBiscuit has an absolutely fantastic image search service that brings back creative commons licenced images. I’ve been using it for months now to tart up my blog posts and add a bit of colour. Nice one Jazzy.

Jazzbiscuit search

Try both out and bookmark them. They rock.

Any others worth mentioning? Irish Web Awards are go

Thursday, August 14th, 2008 Irish Web Awards

Finally got the press release out the door earlier this morning for the Web Awards on October 11th. Nominations open very soon. Like the Blog Awards it’s a two stage affair. Stage 1 will see every nominated (and nominations are free) website get judged using a scorecard. Specific scorecards for each category will then be used in Stage 2 by the judges. An awful lot of work went into making sure that the scorecard was good enough to keep the staunch standardistas and the pragmatists happy and I hope that concentrating on these important areas will help push for better websites in Ireland.

The category list is here and interest in category sponsorship is already strong. Wahey! Not everyone will be happy with the list and will want their own niche included but for year one, we’re content with going with that list. Changes as always will happen the next year. Sponsors cannot be nominated either to ensure transparency. We hope the 11th of October will be a fun night. Leave the tux at home folks, it’s more fun without it.

I’d very much appreciate if people would spread the word about the Awards and encourage their web development friends and colleagues who have become cynical about award ceremonies to have a look at this.

380,000 pensioners’ details were on that missing laptop

Monday, August 11th, 2008

So RTE says that laptop which was actually nicked/lost last year had 380,000 social welfare records on it. Holy shit.

Adrian will no doubt say that the data will never be accessed so it’s nothing to worry about. A granny in Kerry probably has the data, right?

While a junkie indeed might see a laptop valued at 50 quid and sell it on, where it ends up is another thing. Criminals are getting far more sophisticated in these matters as can be seen by the daily phishing attacks on banks, paypal and eBay in Ireland. There are enough gangs of criminals in Ireland into credit card theft and cloning now. Look at the Irish retailer website that got done over. It transpires that the criminals who had the credit card details waited months before trying out siphoning money from the cards.

I think I’d be more concerned with the data on that laptop than the fact that there are eircom modems in use by businesses. Which if cracked into could lead clever criminals to crack other passwords that may eventually lead them into gaining access to point of sales systems. That’s if the POS systems are connected to the same network as wireless modems. And no encryption is used for transmitting credit card details to the verifying server.

I’d be wondering why it took 16 months for this monumental fuck-up to be disclosed. Why are people are only being informed now? Why are banks are only being involved now? Why so long? Why was it not deemed a priority and why is it now an issue if it wasn’t for 16 months?

I’d also wonder how long the Data Protection Commissioner knew of the extent of this information? A few days, weeks, months, a year?

Other views: Brian, Digital Rights Ireland.

I want the 3G iPhone less now

Sunday, August 10th, 2008

Firstly, have you seen yet more bad treatment of potential customers by O2 experience stores? So a few more phones go on sale online early tomorrow and I was considering getting one but maybe not now.

Not now that I upgraded the iPhone I bought last December in Palo Alto and unlocked and got working in Ireland. I added a data package to my existing cheap phone package and was all happy with the phone until the 3G model came out. Today though as I said, I upgraded the firmware to 2.0 using the PWNage tool (btw the Windows version sucks and fails to work) and now I have many of the features that the 3G phone has and I have access to the Appstore on iTunes.

I use my phone mostly for (and in this order) Email, Twitter, texts, the Web and calls. Email hasn’t changed with the firmware but the new version of Twinkle, the Twitter app is free on the Appstore and is fantastic and you can see from this screenshot:

Twinkle on the iPhone

The Nearby feature is better in this version too so you can see those you’re not connected to but are near you and are using Twinkle/Twitter. Lots more people in Cork are now on iPhones and using Twitter.

The new Facebook app for the iPhone is great too. A great little app that makes it even easier to use Facebook than their pretty slick web interface. I also have the WordPress App for the iPhone so I can update loads of my blogs on the phone and even write blog posts offline if I wish.

I already paid for an app too, as recommended by Enda Crowley. It’s the Tuner app and allows you to listen to Internet radio on the iPhone. So finally I can listen to Phantom 105.2 anywhere in the country or the world (via wifi). There are thousands of apps you can download for free or pay for on the App store and all this via a firmware upgrade.

Can’t get a new iPhone? Try and get one of the older ones.

Go Team Ireland – Twitterfone 2 launches, SpoiltChild do Olympics

Friday, August 8th, 2008

Twitterfone V2 is out. Well done Pat Phelan and crew for delivering it just a few months since launch. I really love the video for it too which was put together by the Dial2Do folks who are also partners in Twitterfone. Launch, weigh reaction, iterate, weigh, iterate. Always iterating. A great way to run a service besides working on a project for years and years without releasing anything. (Slight disclaimer: I helped Twitterfone with their press release)

Also buala bos to Spoilt Child who did the design for RTE’s Olympics subsite.

ISPAI – Join our union or else you’re not against stopping child porn

Tuesday, August 5th, 2008

Sensationalist headline from the Tribune this Sunday: Internet providers refuse to fund web sex abuse hotline. So have you stopped beating your wife then? That’s pretty much the same line.

The line from the article is child pornography is online and without Digiweb, Magnet, Hosting 365, Leap et al paying fees to the ISP Association of Ireland who run, child porn is going to run rampant because Hotline won’t be able to keep going. Think of the children!

among the well-known companies which are not members of the Internet Service Providers’ Association of Ireland (ISPAI) – and by extension are not financially supporting its service – are Digiweb, Magnet, Hosting 365, Smart Telecom and

By extension? So by extension Texaco are not in the ISPAI so they too REFUSE to fund the war on child porn?

Isn’t it odd that they can’t support on it’s own but have to buy into the ISP Association if they did decide to voluntarily help in the reporting of child pornography online? Can other companies give financial support to

Why is an industry-run group tasked with logging reports about child pornography online? Well apparently our poor Gardai have enough to be doing, besides, you know, watching out for serious things like Child Pornography:

Paul Durrant, general manager of the ISPAI, told the Sunday Tribune the current approach, whereby members of the public can report suspect internet content to, had been agreed after high-level discussions between the relevant authorities 10 years ago.

“If there is no hotline there, where are the public going to report to? Their local garda station, who have 101 things to do?” he added.

So maybe we let Toyota, Ford and Irish Toll Roads Ltd run an organisation that patrols our roads for people that commit serious crimes there? Same logic right?

Were I Digiweb and Magnet and Hosting 365 I’d be phoning my solicitor over the way they got painted in that article. I also think were the Government to actually try and regulate this they’d get a kicking in the Courts for forcing a company to pay dues to a “voluntary” organisation. We’re not obliged to join a union as individuals, why should a company be strong-armed into joining a business union? If the Government is going to fund then do. Enough of threatening businesses to join a voluntary org, only part of which deals with fighting child porn.

If the Government really gave a damn about wouldn’t they be funding it?

New Nooked and New stuff

Friday, August 1st, 2008


Nooked‘s website has been redone and they’ve launched a load of feed commerce website widgets. Feed commerce is a bit like VRM in that you control your shopping experience more by saying what you want and at what price and the offers come to you.

But Nooked allows you to display shopping widgets on your website, blog and social network profiles, the content of which you decide on and if your friends/visitors buy something, you get a cut. So you can have your own “Editor’s picks”. Be great if Google could offer the same for their not so great or relevant ads on their content network.

Right now they’re looking for UK based people to try this out as that’s where most of their partners are from. Hopefully they’ll expand into other areas and countries. Well done Fergus et al for this.