Archive for April, 2007

Mobile phone project – Phones wanted

Wednesday, April 18th, 2007

I’m hoping to do a project with mobile phones later in the Summer and will need a lot of mobile phones to do it. The criteria is they have to be working. Unlocked would be even better. They need to be able to send texts and make and receive calls. Age doesn’t matter too much.

No, you won’t get them back and no I’m not going to tell you just yet what the project is and to be completely honest, the phone would probably be put to better use if it was given to a third world charity that collects them. (If someone can provide a link to one, I’ll put up here.)

Irish Health system blogs

Wednesday, April 18th, 2007

Found a few interesting blogs on the Irish Health system. First is The Bitter Pill – An insider’s view on the Irish Health Service. Blurb:

I’m a junior doctor working in the Irish Health Service, and I’m absoutely sick and tired of seeing nothing being done to address the various problems running unchecked that have nearly brought the service to its knees. I’ve decided that the only way things will ever change is if people who know what’s really going on inside the ranks and behind the close doors speak out. We need whistleblowers.

Then there’s the blog for the Irish Medical Times. Some good articles there so far and one very sad blog post on drug abuse which just uses quotes from parents:

“I went to my local doctor, I just wanted to know what to do. He just said to me, some kids turn out to be scum.”

“I started crying, I was in the bottom of a big black hole. I said what am I going to do now, I thought I’ll give him money for heroin and that will keep him going. We went off to Dublin to get the heroin.”

Another blog on the Irish health system which seems to be a college project.

18 down so far for PaddysValley Tour

Wednesday, April 18th, 2007

The Irish invasion of Silicon Valley has gained quite a bit of momentum in the past few days and today a press release was sent out about it. 18 have now signed up on the Wiki but if anyone wants to build a form for people to register with, please do. Not everyone wants or knows how to play with a Wiki. There’s now also a tag for this event which naturally is: paddysvalley

Fluffy Links – April 18th 2007

Wednesday, April 18th, 2007

Sure I can mind the kid. Maybe I can get her to do some blogging.

Now Bertie can have €2000 a plate dinners instead of €650 a plate dinners.

Via Timmy Worstallthe McTerrorist.

Mary Mary quite, what the fuck are you up to? Sending a drink lobby group to represent Ireland at the at a World Health Organisation review on alcohol policy.

“The moment you declare a set of ideas to be immune from criticism, satire, derision, or contempt, freedom of thought becomes impossible.â€? – Salman Rushdie.

Via Joel Simplycity is a “community for those who value simple” Simple being the cosmetics/toiletries crowd.

By answering regular polls (such as helping choose future packaging or a model for a poster campaign), registered users become “advisers” and earn points to spend on discounted products in an exclusive online boutique.

Clever idea that.

Shoe fetishists will love this. White chocolate Nike runners.

A Twitter made novel?

Interesting Intel Ad for their latest run at the Ultra Mobile market:

Cheap photo prints 1p for a limited time only

Tuesday, April 17th, 2007

Cheap 1p photos. Terms and conditions. Yadda yadda. 70 prints at most. Offer ends midday Wednesday 18th April 2007. Extended til midday Thursday 19th April.

Google Presentations is a go

Tuesday, April 17th, 2007

Google Presentations has been announced and it seems it will be merged in with the offering from Tonic Systems which Google just bought. How long before the Tonic kids walk?


Tonic Systems is a San Francisco-based company that provides Java presentation automation products and solutions for document management

We won’t see the actual product til this Summer though. Still, another Google product that isn’t really “wow” more “ah yeah, makes sense.”

Are Google losing their innovative power? Should they split?

Tuesday, April 17th, 2007

Despite how the 1000s of amazing and brilliant people they have, Google really have not done anything innovative in years and years. They might tweak their algorithms but they are still an ad company with a search engine. That’s what has made them the megabucks and allowed them to buy into being ad partners with mySpace and AOL and to buy YouTube.

They’ve branched out and bought radio ad companies and are even trying to serve ads to cable customers but frankly have so far made no impact at all. (While this was in draft they announced a deal with radio monopoly Clearchannel.) Blogger/Blogspot is a total piece of shit and is full to the brim with spam (77% of all blogs on Google’s Blogspot service were spam) and yet they do nothing about it. As was pointed out, seems to be quite spam free, possibly because they don’t allow ads.

It seems Google can’t keep the people they bought in through various acquisitions with the blogger people leaving, the dMarc people and most recently the Dodgeball founders left while making a scathing statement about Google as they did.

I’m still a big fan of Google but it seems nowadays they are doing nothing more than adding new coats of paints to their service, more than doing anything fantastic. Big company disease as Robert Scoble points out. Fred Wilson makes a very valid (and sad) point.

Google’s lawyers are going to become their most important asset and when lawyers are more important than engineers to a company, you lose.

Are Google just a one-hit wonder who are still gaining because of the long-tail? Are they already at the nadir of innovation? Video search is still shite unless you tag, as in audio. 10 years later and Google has not nearly tackled this. Maybe their freephone directory service will allow them gather enough voice samples so that they’ll be able to tackle audio. I’m actually a fan of Google but more and more they are looking just like Microsoft and other big tech corporations. I wonder does that scare the shit out of them because what it means is they’ll be out-Googled themselves some day. Perhaps they should split the company into a Search/SearchR&D company and an ad/content creation company.

Update: John Ward in the comments puts it succintly:

Google is built around search working, google’s revenue model is built around search not working.

Fluffy Links – April 17th 2007

Tuesday, April 17th, 2007

The Irish Politics Awards have been announced.

Bjork videos and interviews about her new album Volta.

You can now watch Aljazeera on YouTube. RTE will eventually submit to distributing their content this way. Yes, you will.

Space Invaders doormat. oooh.

Nah, it’s the Pussy Wagon or nothing. 🙂 Sorry Suzy.

This is how easy it is to have YouTube videos taken down.

Patricia McKenna – the Bill O’Reilly of the Irish Green Party.

Watches made from debris from the Titanic.

Here’s a nice techy idea. Fading out no-follows.

Fine Gael or Fine Gowls?

Monday, April 16th, 2007

Just read over on IrishElection that Fine Gael think Internet users won’t vote, lads and ladies, maybe they won’t for you. Lots of non-Internet voters won’t either. Probably the majority.

Online is cheap, but the people who are looking at it aren’t likely to vote on election day.

This is for you lads:

God is in the machine?

Monday, April 16th, 2007

So it seems the megachurches are coming to Second Life and now also comes the idea of selling Jesus via Twitter. Hmmm