Lee LeFever and Common Craft Release “Social Networking in Plain English” Video

Ever have people ask you, why you use social networking sites like Facebook, MySpace, or LinkedIn? If so, I have exactly the video for you.

Lee LeFever and company have released their latest video, “Social Networking in Plain English.

My Morning After Apple iPhone Reactions

Here is a rundown of all of my iPhone reactions….

Once inside the Apple Store…

This was so much fun but at the same time slightly spooky. The employees were more pumped then what they’d be at a football game. It was like they’d seen Jesus for the first time. I wanted to know what drugs they were doing in the store room to get that excited.

Inside the store we were doing iPhone cheers. “This side say ‘I.’ That side say ‘Phone.’ (crowd screams) I…Phone…. I….Phone.”

Once you got into the store, they were also like “Congratulations you made it.” It was like I had just run the Marine Corps Marathon. They also were like, “We’re so glad you joined us for this momentous occasion.” It’s like I was having a baby and it was an iPhone.

Thinking back… I think all product launches should be like this. They must have scripted that so much. They probably instructed the employees exactly what to do and say. The thing is… IT WORKED. We were all pumped. People were high fiving eachother. iPhone love was OOZING.

The Setup

I was at first skeptical of the setup process. I was sure something would not end up working and I’d end up on the phone with an AT&T customer service person by the end of the night. BOY WAS I WRONG.

I put the phone in its cradle and within 10 minutes I was making calls. It was just easy. As much as I love my guys at the AT&T store, this is the way phone setup should be.

Now on to the phones features….

Keyboard

This will take a little getting used to. Give it a week of learning how I type or mistype. I’m confident I’ll be typing on this as fast if not faster than I could on my Samsung Blackjack.

The keyboard is contextual. If you’re writing an email address, there will be an “@” button. If you’re in the browser typing in a URL, there will be a “.com” button. This is smart.

iPod

I love finally having a device which does video. (just had the iPod shuffle before) Coverflow is slick. I can see myself using that a lot. It’s easy to scroll through find what you want and you’re on your way.

My only annoyance… if you want to watch a video podcast as video, you have to go to it through the video interface. You can’t go to it through the podcast interface. From the podcast interface, it will play as audio. This seems semi anti-intuitive.

Safari (The Web)

So everyone was nervous about the EDGE speed.  It’s not as bad.  Maybe just because I’ve been using the mobile web for a while, my expectations aren’t that high.

It’s neat how you can see the whole page of a Web site.  If you just want to see one column of the New York Times home page, you just double click on it.  Now you’d think that the column would be off the screen and there would be lots of scrolling.  This is not the case.  It figures out what the size of the column is and will scale it to the size of the iPod screen so you don’t have to scroll to see that column.

One annoyance with a touch screen is that when you click to zoom in, it may think your clicking on a link.  You get taken to another page instead of zoomed in.

Mail

The mail app is cool but… I WISH GMAIL DID IMAP.  If I delete an email on my iPhone, I want it to delete on my mail server too.

So last night, I setup my GMail account to forward to my Yahoo account.  I can still get email at GMail but I’ll answer from Yahoo.  Plus I’ll be able to answer using my iPhone and it will have the PUSH email functionality, like the Blackberry.

Once I did this, all was good and right in the world for mail.

Widgets

The weather and stock tracker widgets are nice.  I can see them being useful.  I hope hope hope *fingers and toes crossed* that they’ll open these up to outside developers soon. I think making iPhone compatible widgets would kick soooo much ass.   I already have ideas for about five I want to make.

SMS

The conversational SMS thing is so slick.  I’m not a text messaging monkey like some people I know but I have gotten into some crazy text message threads before. I like this a lot.

Exterior of the iPhone

It has a button to turn the ringer off.  This is pure genius.  Why doesn’t every phone have this?  I don’t to be the guy who has his iPhone go off in church or at a work meeting.  At work it’d be funny because people would be like, “dang you have an iPhone.”

I haven’t used ringers on my last few phones because it’s been too hard to switch between having it on and off.

There is also a button on the outside which turns the screen off.  It also locks the screen.  When I’m using the iPod functionality, just click the button and you can throw it in your pocket.   Want to check your email, just click the button, run your finger across the screen, and you’re ready to go.

Conclusion 

I’m impressed with the phone so far.  I’m sure I’ll write more later.  This is all for now.

A Report from the Apple iPhone Line

It’s 4:45pm EST on Friday, June 29th, 2007. I’m in line at the Clarendon Apple Store in Arlington, VA. I hopped on some stray wireless and thought i’d report on my status. Things are pretty quiet here.

There are maybe 200-250 people in line. Apple was out before passing out free water and not crappy bottled water. It was the expensive bottled water.

It sprinkled outside for a little bit but the rain just subsided. Luckily for me, I’m seated underneath the Barnes & Noble awning.

There has been a steady stream of reporters and photographers out here doing there thing. These two ladies chic dresses just walked by trying to get people to sign up for a raffle. See now this is smart. You have a bunch of male geeks waiting in line. I’m surprised more aren’t doing this.

Well one hour to go. More later.

It’s Apple iPhone Day!

iPhone Display @ Clarendon, VA Apple Store

In a little over ten hours Apple nerds up and down the east coast will be peeling back the shiny wrapping to unlock all the treasures of the iPhone. Till then, we all wait with baited breath and excitement to see what will happen.

I will be joining the masses at the Clarendon Apple Store in Arlington, VA. If you’re in the area, stop on by and say hello.

37signals Launches OpenID Support In Basecamp; Who’s next?

As someone who has many different projects hosted in a variety of 37signals Basecamp accounts, I was giddy when I heard that they had launched OpenID support.  This makes it easy to manage multiple project sites with your single user id and password.  It is such a glorious thing.

Who’s going to launch OpenID support next?  I think there needs to be a certain momentum for it to stay in people’s hearts and minds.  There is still no word on when Digg will come through on its promise of supporting OpenID.

I’d love to see GMail launch OpenID support.  What service would you love to see implement it?

I Want WCAG 2.0 to be Testable

Yesterday, the web magazine A List Apart posted an article from Gian Sampson-Wild, “Testability Costs Too Much,” where she makes the claim that the requirement of having every success criteria within the W3C’s Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 2.0 be testable is too steep of a requirement.

I completely disagree.  Success criteria that can’t be tested shouldn’t be included in a document that is supposed to give guidance.

I was going to use the metaphor that Jeffrey Zeldman jumped on.  If someone says don’t speed in your car because it will hurt people, thats fine but how do I know what speeding is.  It’s a toothless and unenforceable law.   But if you say that I can’t go above 65 mph or 100 kph, that is a testable and  enforceable law.

I can’t tell a developer to do something unless I know specifically what I’m asking of them.  Just giving some one general advice isn’t going to work.  It is going to be interpreted a variety of ways.  This leads to fragmentation of guidance and  inconsistent implementations which don’t help anyone.

If the principle of testability of the success critieria is inconsistently applied within the document, I think thats a legitimate concern.  Commenting on the latest WCAG 2.0 Working Draft closes on Friday.

Doesn’t taking out testability dilute the guidance that we’re really want and asked for?  Am I missing something?