Jason Kottke was in Ireland recently and thought the place was really green. Irish people don’t realise how true it is until they leave home and visit other countries. Even from space our special island appears to be the greenest. The photos in the link above are fantastic though. Sometimes it takes a thirs-party to remind you to appreciate what you have.
Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category
James Enck on his EuroTelco Blog has been giving coverage to the Yahoo! buying Skype rumour that Engadget has also been reporting about. This would make a very interesting purchase and would put Skype on a hell of a lot more desktops than it is already.
However it appears Yahoo! already has a deal with BT to use them as a VOIP carrier for Yahoo! IM voice traffic. What will Yahoo! do? Maybe they can buy off BT by using them as a backbone carrier. They can still move forward with this even with the BT deal. Afterall they bought Flickr even when they had their own photo sharing application created.
Lots of negative comments on the Engadget blog about it. Many don’t want a Yahoo! bastardisation of their smiple Skype interface. Expect this rumour to grow for another while before Yahoo! comments, if the Flickr purchase is anything to go by.
UPDATE: Om Malik gives his views.
Steve Pavlina uses the shareware trials idea as a way of starting a new diet plan or exercise plan. Only do it for 30 days and see how you go and whether you want to keep going. Interesting idea but is it too simple?
Seems the National Parent’s Council kicked up a fuss because of an essay title in the Junior Cert Exam. The school bus tragedy is over, can you not move on? They’ll be calling for the “Wheels on the Bus” to be banned next. The Council should maybe concentrate on matters more important to their kid’s education instead of trying to sustain their moment in the spotlight.
Matt Webb came up with a nice new RSS Aggregator feature. An aggregator that randomly hides a feed and if you notice then it’ll unhide it, if you don’t notice then you didn’t need the feed and it wipes it. Good way of handling information overload.
Washington Post confirms Felt was Deep Throat. So the Washington Post confirms it was Felt. What is inspiring is that they kept the secret all of these years and even as news broke about it they still refused to confirm until they were quite sure that it was ok to do so. That’s integrity. What seems useful to this modern age is whether anonymous sources are still useful and whether news organisations today have the same standards.
The story of Watergate is probably unknown to most people under 30 at this stage but they all seem to know what the big scandals have -gate appended on to them.
And now for the geeky angle on this: I would love to find out how many people bought All the Presidents Men as a direct result of this breaking news story. This leads me on to the idea that Amazon and other online stores should have a Google Zeitgeist style frontpage where people can buy merchandise based on today’s and this week’s main news stories. Of course I don’t think it could be fully automated like Google news in case Amazon sells something insensitive. Would have been funny but PR damaging if Robbie Coltrane’s “The Pope must Die” was for sale when JPII kicked his clogs.
This whole RateMyTD idea went around the irishblogs a while ago and I’m just going to add more thoughts to it now and see will others join the debate. I got on to people in the Oireachtas and they said they had no plans for RSS feeds or XML feeds of speeches or Podcasts or any kind of audio feed. Mentioned stuff about editing and they don’t want to and this is their reason. It might be to do with TDs being able to say what they want in the Dáil and not getting into a libel action. Perhaps if this was stored as audio or video the publisher could get done for libel.
I was reminded of the Live Dáil coverage which they don’t keep archives of. When I asked why TDs emails and phone numbers were not on the website anymore they didn’t seem to know and I was told consult the phone book. This is E-Government!
So, first job for RMTD is to get proper contact info together for TDs. Second is to find a way of taking the speeches and ripping out the fancy decorations and exporting to a raw XML format which can be used in different applications. Third is maybe to channel the TV feed and store it somewhere and extract the audio and allow podcasts. Fourth is to then start building the apps to break up the XML feeds so we can populate a database that can be used to find how many speeches the TDs made, what are their views on whatever subject matter. Fifth would be to mix the audio speeches with the text of them allowing people to search audio feeds for quotes.
That’s transparency, I wonder can it only be achieved by an NGO?
Supreme Court sides with a school about not releasing Inspector’s reports. So the teachers don’t want people looking at Inspector’s reports and yet all the teacher unions want RateMyTeachers stopped. Very cake and eating it.
So they don’t respect the school kids privacy or right to anonymously comment on how teachers do their job and bully kids into not posting on RateMyTeachers (and yes I have proof if anyone would like to challenge this) but when a news org like the Irish Times wants access to their data, they go all the way to the Supreme court to fight it? Shame.
Dave on another form of integration, this one more horizontal than vertical. Using Netflix and Match.com to allow movie lovers to find each other and fall in *insert heartbeat sound* LOVE.
All these integrations remind me of the GoogleZon idea. It’s only time before various sources feed off each other. We have podcasts and feeds in our aggregators, only a few more steps before some local aggregator or web based one becomes more lifestyle centric with movie and music recommendations popping up, with pre-downloaded songs and reviews from friends and associates, a flirt application that seeks out potential mates or new friends by matching your likes with theirs. I just wonder will it be done based on tags, FOAF files or some XML hybrid?