Archive for March, 2009

Fluffy Links – Tuesday March 31st 2009

Tuesday, March 31st, 2009

New Irish blog: Never Mind the Logic. Comicy goodness.

The Philips store during Earth Hour in Dublin.

Puddle Ducks have a Facebook prize draw. Last day!

via it@Cork PFH in Cork and Galway are giving free tech training to those made redundant.

Via Jim, new Irish Times blog by Tom Doorley called Megabites. Great name.

Conor O’Neill models Brian Cowen’s willy. Small w.

Cybercom are looking for a designer.

Review of the Revai Electric Car.

TV Presenter wanted.

The web has made kicking ass easier to achieve, and mediocrity harder to sustain. Mediocrity now howls in protest.

Hugh MacLeod.

Takedown of Gordon Brown by Daniel Hannan MEP. Simple but powerful.

Via Jim again, Department Of Eagles – No One Does It Like You

Small Business Can and Will thanks to a new site

Tuesday, March 31st, 2009

I recently got a call from the guys behind the website Small Business Can about how they could go about getting attention for their service that brings experienced business people together with people looking for business advice. The site is launched and live and a full press campaign is happening very soon. Ulster Bank like the positivity so much they’re giving some support and some media outlets too but the service is always going to be independent and non-commercial.

Small Business Can

The whole idea is that the creators of it are putting in their time to give something back to the business community in Ireland. The site isn’t sexy and there are many areas that can be Web 2.0ified but the information on it is very practical. I was impressed with the intent and passion of the people enough that I’ve volunteered my time to help them spread the word. The people behind this are Greg Byrne, Ron Immink and Fionan Murray.

To begin with you figure out at what stage your company is at and you can access resources at each stage then. The stages are Startup, Emerging, Rapid Growth and Next Level. From there you look at the 4 Ms (yes yes it’s very Mnemonicy) in your selected stage which are Marketing and Sales, Management, Money and Motivation. There’s a map or maze! for the resources under there. More articles will be added over time and if you want to contribute any, I believe they’ll be welcome and might be put up after the information is verified.

Naturally the articles will never cover everything so there is a discussion forum on the site too where you can post questions without having to register. It is hoped to get enough people contributing there with questions and answers to build a good body of knowledge and be a place of positive encouragement.

They’ll also be looking to collate case studies, success and well-earned-scars stories for others to look at so keep looking at the site as maybe you know someone or it could be yourself. They’ve also done a few videos with way more to happen. I’ll be getting them to blog, use Facebook, LinkedIn and YouTube and drag them into 2009. 🙂

Some of the founders will be around in Cork on Thursday evening if people want to meet with them and have a chat. For those that have blogs or are on Twitter and Facebook or take part in discussion forums, please consider pointing people to Small Business can.

Oh yes and want to demo your company/product at the Science Gallery? See here.

Tour of the Abbey Theatre

Monday, March 30th, 2009

The Abbey Theatre of late has started to try out social media with YouTube videos and a presence on Facebook. David from the Abbey invited me along on Friday to have a look at their prep for their Comedy of Errors play. This is Shakespeare with a few modern twists.


We walked around backstage and went up some stairs, passing some famous art on the way and went into where all the ropes and counterweights are, high above the side of the stage. From here all the curtains and scenery are controlled. Lots of nautical links with the ropes and all that. I’ve been watching Horatio Hornblower too much so I was really fascinated by this. It really is like a sailing vessel with curtains instead of sails but rigging and mostly unseen crew making sure those on the deck below can, in a way, sail.

An awful amount of work goes on behind the scenes in the Abbey for a single play to be shown. Weeks upon weeks of nonstop work goes into making a play work well each night. Think about the small amount of time, measured in hours, that a play has on that stage compared to the time that goes into getting it to that moment. An army of people squeezed into a small building are constantly and silently beavering away to entertain the public.

IMG_0710 IMG_0711

IMG_0714 IMG_0728

I got to watch the cast rehearse too which was fantastic and the acoustics in the Abbey are really impressive. The play itself is very phyical with the set being quite minimal. Scaffoldings are moved around the stage by the cast and given the size and weight of them, everyone in the cast is going to have strong legs and shoulders by the time the play ends.

IMG_0709 IMG_0726

Because of limited space they also have other rehearsal spaces outside of the Abbey and again due to space their large collection of art can’t be proudly showed off like they want it to be so they loan it out at times.

What was pretty interesting too is how the Abbey fosters new talent and they recently launched two programmes for this. The first of these launched last month and is the Abbey New Playwrights Programme. Over 11 months the Abbey will support 6 emerging playwrights with a series of workshops and talks with international and Abbey writers, directors, actors and designers. The playwrights are not expected to write a play but the Abbey will give them any help they do need. The second initiative takes place on June 15th this year for a week. Six 20 minute plays from female writers under the theme of ‘The Fairer Sex’ have been commissioned and readings of these will happen over the week.

The Comedy of Errors is running until May 1st. Anyone interested in availing of a bloggers tour of the Abbey, leave a comment here. Names will be picked out of a hat etc.

Update: Here’s the trailer for the play

Fluffy Links – Monday March 30th 2009

Monday, March 30th, 2009

Bock gets a reply from Michael Kennedy.

Yer man Gray Wright from Skinful Karaoke Paper is writing some great content of late. Well worth a read.

Some Blind Alleys is a blog featuring emerging writers who live in or are from Ireland. Check it out.

Nice site:

Via Patrick the website of super web dev Noah Stokes.
Another blog by Irish economists. Progressive Economy.

Win a Wacom tablet from Blacknight.

Irish site: People Love Presents.

The Real Alan Partridge is on Twitter. Currently in Australia.

Paranoid about Google yet? Now you are.

Vids picked by Alan:

Womanizer – Sign Language version

Can’t Stop – Violin + Piano Cover – Red Hot Chili Peppers

Mirwais – Disco Science

Sunday, March 29th, 2009

Bank of Ireland Private Banking to lay off “a large chunk” of staff?

Sunday, March 29th, 2009

Ask About Money nuked a thread on their site about Bank of Ireland Private Banking laying off some staff. I’ve heard from another source that they are in fact laying off 20-25% of the staff in that section. Bank of Ireland Private website.

I wonder if and when this gets officially announced?

Fluffy Links – Friday 27th March 2009

Friday, March 27th, 2009

Been very lax with the Linkos De la Fluffeos.

So here we go:

New blog. Jackaheart.

Win two tickets to the Comedy of Errors in the Abbey. I saw them do rehearsals today and got to peer around the set. Looks like it’s going to be great.

You can now buy the Objectified poster. Before the film comes out.

My Little Pony is My My expensive.

Wantsies. 13 Most Beautiful… Songs for Andy Warhol’s Screen Tests

Sigur Ros do the stripped down thingy. Musically.

Pat Kenny, some of his best friends…

Declan Kidney. So say we all.

Want a Digital Media Strategist job?

Cathy from My Munster has cool new business cards:

Via Irish Times business blog, Goodbiz market themselves using a barbershop quartet:

MC Solaar – Nouveau Western

Presentation Zenned, Slided and Camped

Wednesday, March 25th, 2009

The main reason I was in San Francisco was to attend Presentation Reboot run by Garry Reynolds from Presentation Zen and Nancy Duarte from Duarte Design. Gods amongst those that do presentations in Powerpoint or Keynote or I suppose Google Presentation since some use that. It was a day-long course and yes it was very much worthwhile the 12 hour flight over and back. Well I did get to visit Silicon Valley for a day or two on top of this.

Design and Presentation
Photo owned by Serdal (cc)

Duarte Design is in Mountain View (where Google have their HQ) and is on the same street as: Smug Mug, EyeFi, FriendFeed and Evernote. Walking to the place and seeing all those famous companies was pretty inspiring all in itself. I wonder how many people randomly knock on their door and say thanks for the good work. Maybe I should have? It wasn’t just the trainers too that made the day great. I met some very nice people there. I only googled Sally when I got back which is a massive shame as she’s a hugely impressive figure in California politics. I would have loved to have chatted more. Ric from the Powerpoint Team was there and his colleagues too and he mentioned Presentation Camp SF was happening on Saturday so I signed up for that when I got back to the hotel. More on that in a little while.

Presentation Reboot was very practical in nature with Garr and Nancy tag-teaming during the day. We even got pens and paper and glue out for storyboarding sessions. Yes it’s worth the money and worth the time to go. Get their books if you can’t go and sub to their blogs at the very least. Nancy blogged about the workhops herself here.

So later in the week, the day I was heading back to Ireland in fact, I went along to Presentation Camp San Francisco in the Slideshare HQ. The room names were those of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. Rocking. The Slideshare staff were wonderfully helpful. They make such a great product too. A great deal and very diverse set of talks during the day. Ones I liked most were the ones from Cliff Atkinson (Cliff blogged about the day here) and Scott Schwertly from Ethos3. Cliff is another presentation God so it was nice to meet him. I must get him to sign a copy of his book when I bump into him next. Oh did I mention I met Seth Godin the other day for a few seconds? Yeah I did. SF rocks. Rashmi from slideshare presented about Slideshare too. Almost meta!

I missed a few presentations because I had to head to the airport, the most talked about one was from Dave McClure, more a presentation about pitching that on presentations. Great content all the same: “How to Pitch a VC (aka Startup Viagra: How to Give a VC a Hard-On)”

And because I have a signed copy of Presentation Zen and Slideology, I’m going to give away the existing copy of each book I have. They are some of the best books on this subject area and should be eaten and ingested. Want to win them and a medium size Slideshare t-shirt? To do so, simply create a presentation saying why you should win them and put it on Slideshare.

Picturegate or whatever we call it is not about a Facebook Group

Wednesday, March 25th, 2009

See what Twitter is saying about picturegate

Damnit, I thought a snarky comment and the YouTube video would be enough but it’s not. I guess I can’t sleep until I write this down somewhere. What happened last night with RTE apologising and giving in to the bullshit from the Government and the statements from those fucktards in Fianna Fáil show how bad things are.

Last night part of the freedom of the press was murdered in front of our eyes, in prime time hours. We should be crying at that apology. Hope is quickly diminishing in Ireland and more of it went tonight. The country is going to hell in a handcart and now they’re attacking satire in a most brutal way. RTE News has been shut down. RTE cannot report news anymore without having to secondguess themselves and the reaction from Government press officers.

This is not the time for just a Facebook Group. I think this is time to attend clinics and say what we can say to Fianna Fáil before they stop that too. Because they will. Nob Nation was killed and we pay for that, not Eamon Ryan, not Brian Cowen, now our news that we pay for is censored. Did we vote for this? Did those that voted for the Green Party vote for those and of those who said they should go into Government? Did members of Fianna Fáil vote for this?

There is a meme starting on the Internet where Irish people are posting naked pictures of Brian Cowen on their blogs and Facebook profiles. Not enough. Let’s gather together with A1, A2 posters of these and protest outside the offices of the Taoiseach. At every public event we need to track Brian Cowen and his staff and display these posters. Brian Cowen’s office needs to apologise over this. RTE need to apologise to us over this. There needs to be more done though. There should be transparency when it comes to contacts from the Goverment on the direction of a state broadcaster.

On one point I agree with Fianna Fáil. The RTE DG needs to go but not for Fianna Fáil to be happy but to get someone else in instead:

Fianna Fáil TD Michael Kennedy last night called on RTÉ director general Cathal Goan to consider his position. The report “represented a gross insult to the position of An Taoiseach, not to mention a personal affront to the dignity of the man himself”, Mr Kennedy said in a statement

Let’s set a date and start a protest, let’s bring all the world’s press together and have them record caricatures of a naked man from the sticks. Let’s keep the momentum going. Let’s send naked pics of Cowen via MMS to each other and wave our phones, let’s encourage the opposition parties to wave these phones in the Dáil. Have them wear t-shirts under their shirts/blouses. Let’s walk up and down outside RTE news broadcasts. Please please please don’t roll over on this because next time we won’t know what else the news is hiding from us.

Caricature by Alan Cavanagh
Brian Cowen naked

Not even a Fr. Jack style sorry, RTE apologise to Cowen

Tuesday, March 24th, 2009

What the fuck like?