Options – a book that made me laugh out loud

Because I’ve been traveling a lot lately and have had a longer commute to work, I’ve had much more time to read.  One of the books that I recently finished is “Options: The Secret Life of Steve Jobs, a Parody” by Daniel Lyons.

Not too often is there a book that has actually made me laugh out loud. This book made me laugh out loud.

The book is kind of an out growth of Lyons’ blog –  The Secret Diary of Steve Jobs, which is also a riot to read.

I’d recommend reading the book to anyone who is like me a member of the cult of mac.

What’s the future of the newspaper?

As I’ve mused in the past, I don’t think the paper newspaper translates very well into the online space.  With the news of the New York Times cutting 100 of its newsroom jobs,  I start thinking about who/what will be the future of the industry.  Obviously depending on a paper newspaper and paper ads isn’t enough.

More and more I think the future is a personlized start page, like iGoogle or Netvibes.

What does a newspaper?… It takes a bunch of different disparate sources of information from around the world and aggregates them into one convenient space.

What does a personalized start page do? … It takes a bunch of different disparate sources of information from around the world and aggregates them into one convenient space.

Getting AfPub Online

Yesterday afternoon I had the pleasure of hanging out with my buddy Livingston.  He’s getting his Master’s Degree in Publishing at George Washington University.

As one of his class projects, he had to make a Web site and I offered to help.

His Web site is called AfPub.  He’s really interested in publishing in Africa and wanted his site to be a central source for resources online.

So… in no time at all, we had installed WordPress, picked put a theme, and published some content.

It was great to see his excitement about taking his thoughts and interests and putting them out there for the world to see.  Reminded me of my initial excitement with getting out their online.

So head over to AfPub and tell my friend Livingston hi!

Real Video On-Demand

On Friday, I was walking out the door on my way to work and I realized that I hadn’t seen this week’s episode of LOST yet.  I stopped what I was doing ran over to my computer, bought LOST on Apple iTunes, and waited 15 minutes as it downloaded.  I then put it on my iPhone and went about my merry way.

Seems like things just aren’t where they need to be.

I’d get a season pass to LOST on iTunes but I only use laptops and I’m always running out of space on my hard drives.

I want some type of easy media server type of solution that will hold all of my media but when I sync my laptop and my iPhone I can pull media off of the server and put it on my iPhone.

It’d also be nice if there was a way to buy TV shows on the fly from the iPhone so that while I was walking to the subway it could have been downloading.  It’d also be nice if my phone could pull TV shows off of my media server.  I know with current cellular technology this isn’t possible but it’d be nice.

The Library of Congress Blog is a Finalist in the SXSW Web Awards

So this will be my first year attending the South by Southwest (SXSW) Interactive Festival in Austin, Texas and it’s already promising to be a really special event.

The Library of Congress blog, which I helped get going, is a finalist for the blog category of the SXSW Web Awards.  AWESOME!!!!!

The fun doesn’t stop there.  My friend and renowned designer Samantha Warren is also a finalist in the blog category of the SXSW Web Awards for her blog Bad Ass Ideas.

But wait, there’s more. Ficlets, the collaborative story telling Web app written by my friends Kevin, Jason and Cindy, is a finalist for SXSW Web awards in the CSS and Community categories.

The winners will be announced the evening of Sunday March 9th.  Whomever wins, the first celebratory pitcher of beer will be on me.

2008 and The Componentization of the Web

Last weekend in California there was the 2008 DEMO conference.   The conference serves as a launchpad for new Web startups.  It’s a great opportunity to see what the new thing is going to be.

Over at the GigaOm blog, they boiled down the four biggest themes that came from this year’s DEMO conference. One struck my eye:

Componentization of the web

The web’s full of pieces: static images, YouTube clips, Facebook widgets and Flash plugins. Startups want to let users rework these pieces their own way.

This is exactly what i’ve been saying.  When people find a Web site or piece of content they like, they want to be able to take it with them and do stuff with it.

This theme is also why I joined the widget platform company Clearspring.

So if you create online content, how are you allowing your users to grab a hold of and do stuff with the useful components?

Follow My Widget Adventures at the Clearspring Community Blog

As I mentioned earlier, Wednesday I started at the widget platform company Clearspring Technologies.  As part of my duties as Developer Community Manager, I’m going to be making contributions to Clearspring’s Community Blog.

On Thursday, I made my first post.  Here’s a snippet:

Upon entering our office complex in the morning, I was greeted by our local fire fighters.  Our office was without power because apparently a tree  fell on a nearby power substation.

When you’re a Web-based startup like Clearspring, it’s pretty hard to get any work done when there’s no power.  So what do you do?  You setup a mini-golf course around the cubicles and offices.   It was fun and a great way to get to know some of my co-workers.

There will be many more posts so stop by, drop me a comment, and say hello.

BTW, Here’s a fun sticker I found on our office Red Bull container.