Scobleizer Weblog

Daily link Friday, January 23, 2004

One more post: Mike McBride talks about his experiences with the new Blogger syndication format.

7:20:04 AM    comment 

With that, I've gotta run to work. I'm gonna be down in Silicon Valley this weekend, so won't be back online until Sunday night. Have a good weekend!

7:03:08 AM    comment 

My college friend Nick Paredes: Any Rotisserie baseball players in the Seattle / Snohomish County area (Washington state, USA) looking for a league?

7:01:40 AM    comment 

Dylan Greene: 10 reasons why RSS is not ready for prime time.

Ahh, opportunity for software developers to improve things!

6:59:06 AM    comment 

Jian Shuo Wang, a Microsoft employee who works in Shanghai, says "happy Chinese New Years." Beneath his cool photos of fireworks celebrating such, he has posted some darn interesting stats. He says that 17 billion SMS messages will be sent in China during their spring festival alone. The number was seven billion last year. They charge .1 RMB for one SMS. Translation: big money for China Telecom.

6:54:49 AM    comment 

FrankArr: in a post titled "I've been Scobled" says "my wife thinks I'm mad, and that I shold get a life."

Heh, Maryam tells me that all the time!

6:51:24 AM    comment 

Gus Perez: Testing the C# compiler.

Gus has been on the C# team almost since its inception. One of the more interesting Microsoft posts I've read lately. Great look into the C# team.

18,697 tests? Wow.

6:49:24 AM    comment 

Nick Bradbury, the guy who wrote Allaire's HomeSite and his new TopStyle, points to a bunch of sites of interest to Web developers.

6:47:09 AM    comment 

Azeem Azhar has a long review of open source. That's on my weekend reading list.

6:45:49 AM    comment 

Anand M in ".NET from India" asks "Is Oracle unbreakable?"

I don't know about that, but I always get a laugh everytime I go through Seattle's airport. Oracle has bought a ton of advertising there. They know that many of the world's technologists come to visit us so that's great marketing. Plus it's a little reminder to Microsoft employees that there's a friendly rivalry.

Reminds me of the billboard wars in the 80s and 90s between Oracle and other database companies along HWY 101 in Silicon Valley. Within a few hundred yards you'd see billboards taking shots at each other. I wonder if anyone's posted pictures of those on the Internet anywhere? That's interesting Silicon Valley history that probably will be lost.

6:44:39 AM    comment 

Brian Johnson points us at a new blogger: Christa Carpentiere, who is the new MSDN Content Strategist for the upcoming data access and storage developer center on MSDN. Translation: she's a SQL Server geek.

Oh, and she's a home brewer of beer. A yeasty geeky MSDN type. Hmmm.

6:39:13 AM    comment 

Brendan Tompkins points at Tim Heuer's Sharepoint RSS Feed Reader web part.

6:37:21 AM    comment 

John Bristowe points at PowerToys for Visual Studio.NET.

6:35:42 AM    comment 
6:34:33 AM    comment 

Always-On has an interesting interview with Michael Dell.

Oh, geez. He's a little younger than me and they are already calling him an "old man." This industry is awfully ageist.

6:33:24 AM    comment 

Roland Tanglao was taking notes at the RSS Winterfest.

6:30:52 AM    comment 

You know, Apple really is leading the way with its support of RSS (this time in iTunes).

6:29:07 AM    comment 

Amy Sorokas is getting excited about DevConnections coming to Orlando April 18-21.

6:27:37 AM    comment 

FoxPro fans will want to check out Ken Levy's latest missive on MSDN. He details what'll be in "Europa," the next version of FoxPro. Thanks to Garrett Fitzgerald for that link.

6:26:27 AM    comment 

Scott Mace points to a couple of articles that show that computers may do harm to elementary school students. That's interesting. My son Patrick is in a school that has closed its computer lab because of California's budget crisis (they cut funding to the school, so they no longer can afford computers).

6:24:15 AM    comment 

Glenn Reynolds: Web Video coming of age?

This is a trend I've noticed too. The team I'm a member of has bought several video cameras. You can now get a very nice high-quality digital camcorder for a reasonable price.

6:21:48 AM    comment 
6:19:01 AM    comment 

Randy Charles Morin goes through a Wiki exploration process. He's "WikiWikiWonka."

Bonus link, he also points to Newsgator's new NNTP plugin. Newsgator just gets better and better.

6:16:39 AM    comment 

Over at the Code Project, there's an open source command prompt explorer bar (built in C#/.NET).

I love these things because not only are they useful, but as I try to learn C#, I can get into the source code and see how they programmed it. Very useful for learning purposes.

6:14:32 AM    comment 

Microsoft Monitor: Microsoft's first $10B quarter.

6:12:08 AM    comment 

I can die a happy man now. I met Rory Blyth the other night at the blogger Meetup. I love his attitude toward life: "Lighten up, people - it's OK to stop coding for an hour every once in a while to laugh a little with friends."

6:08:14 AM    comment 

TheServerSide.NET has sure gotten a lot of attention for being a brand new site. I like the TechTalks they've posted -- including one by Scott Guthrie, ASP.NET architect.

6:06:43 AM    comment 

Benjamin Mitchell: "Wow. 4 posts in a single evening - I'm feeling a bit Robert Scoble all of a sudden."

Heh. My problem now is that I'm watching 1200 RSS feeds, and there's just too much good stuff. I can't post it all.

6:04:28 AM    comment 

Esther Dyson has a new weblog. Esther, you really are blowing it by not having an RSS feed. At least I couldn't find it.

6:02:32 AM    comment 

I met with the Windows Media Center folks yesterday. Got a look at the new Portable Windows Media Center (think of an iPod that plays video as well as music). It's an interesting form factor. I gotta admit it is sexy and does make me want to get one.

Michael Gartenberg has a more in-depth look at one.

6:01:25 AM    comment 

Howard Rheingold: Mobile Phones enter 2 megapixel era.

Wow, how come Japan's mobile phone industry is so far ahead of ours?

5:57:25 AM    comment 

I think I'm going to start building a directory of blogs. I need some way to keep track of interesting blogs cause other Microsoft employees keep asking me for blogs on topics like these:

Competitive technology (Websphere, linux etc)
Web services
The industry at large
Vertical specific industries
Analysts, market research

Maybe I should start a Wiki so other people can help build such a list -- it would be useful to everyone, not just Microsoft employees?

5:50:41 AM    comment 

On my to watch list for this weekend: MSDN TV has a show on the new MSBuild, the new build platform that Microsoft's building.

5:47:49 AM    comment 

Jeffrey McManus, developer evangelist over at eBay, says his team is sponsoring the O'Reilly Emerging Technology conference. I just made plans to attend. Should be interesting.

5:46:14 AM    comment 

Serge van den Oever has an interesting blog. What caught my eye was his pointers to Sharepoint info.

5:44:47 AM    comment 

Internet News reports on Microsoft's Martin Taylor's attending the LinuxWorld. He's braver than me, but reports say he wore a flack jacket just in case. :-)

5:41:08 AM    comment interviews Nvidia's CEO Jen-Hsun Huang. Quote: "Longhorn, the next-generation operating system from Microsoft, will elevate the GPU and expose much more of its fundamental processing capabilities."

5:36:06 AM    comment 

Wow, Microsoft Research is running a Social Computing Symposium on March 29 and 30 (up at the Columbia Winery here in Redmond, WA). This one is gonna be harder to get tickets to than the SuperBowl. Supposedly this will be broadcast for free on the Web. I'll let you know more as I learn more from Shelly Farnham, researcher in Microsoft Research who is putting this together.

Hey, Joi, are we gonna have one of those famous "Joi parties" up here at the same time?

The purpose of the symposium is to really stimuilate an active discussion, and potentially inspire collaboration, between people building and deploying social technologies and researchers. We'll have about 20 speakers, will invite a total of about 70 people (including about 20 MSFT people). Below is the list of speakers:

Panel on Social Computing trends & key questions:

Joi Ito: founder of Neoteny (, venture capital firm focused on personal communications and enabling technologies. Blogger and moblogger (mobile) in Japan
Clay Shirky: Writes extensively about the internet & economics. Previously an editor at Ziff Davis, and teaches at NYU Blog:
Steven Johnson: author Interface Culture, Emergence Mind Wide Open
Tim O'Reilly: O'Reilly conferences, books, and web sites on open source, mac, emerging technologies

Panel on E-Democracy & Civic Action:

David Weinberger: author Cluetrain Manifesto, Small Pieces Loosely Joined, NPR Commentator (All Things Considerred)
Bob Putnum: Harvard University professor in public policy, author Bowling Alone
Zack Exley: Organizing director of
Scott Heiferman: Founder

Moderators and short talks:

Linda Stone Our own ex-Microsoft VP/director of the Virtual Worlds Group in MS Research is organizing and will moderate the 2 panels above Elizabeth Churchill: Social Computing Research, group manager FX Palo Alto Lab
Wendy Kellogg: Social Computing Research, group manage IBM TJ Watson Research Center
Danah Boyd: Ph.D student at UC Berkely, known for thesis on Identity and blogs: &
Judith Donath: runs Socialble Media Group at MIT Media Lab, talking about work on online dating
Mizuko Ito: Researcher at USC, known for reseach on mobile phones use in Japan, and impact of Japanese media (yugioh, etc.)
Ward Cunningham: Inventor of the WIKI, pattern languages, now a Microsoft employee!
Tom Erickson: researcher in the Social Computing Group, IBM TJ Watson Research Center, ex-Apple Human Interface Group
Jenny Preece: professor, university of Maryland, Baltimore County (online communities research)
Susan Herring: professor of Information Science, Indiana University, editor of Journal of Computer-Mediated Communication
Warren Sack: assistant professor, Social Technologies Group (SIMS), UC Berkeley
Steve Whittaker: Inforamtion Studies Department, Sheffield University (UI and collaboration systems)
Paul Resnick: Associate professor University of Michigan, School of Information (blogs, socio technical capital, reputation systems)
Shelly Farnham: Researcher Social Computing Group, Microsoft
- Sean Kelly: Research Developer, Wallop, rss Microsoft.
Rael Dornfest (unconfirmed): With O', emerging Media Conference,
Paul Dourish (unconfirmed): Associate professor Interactive and Collaborative Technologies, Dept of Informatics, UC Irvine

5:27:30 AM    comment 

Christopher Coulter just sent me a whole bunch of Tablet PC news:

First, there's a series of Tablet PC events that you can attend to get your hands on a Tablet PC and see why I've been hyping it up so much. I still think that the Tablet PC is going to change the way you use your PC more than any other technology I've seen (either inside or outside of Microsoft) lately.

Second, it looks like IBM might be getting ready to jump into the Tablet PC market. Gizmodo and others have been reporting on prototypes. Here's a selection of places to go and look:

Official LG site (LG is supposedly the original device manufacturer for IBM's tablet).
National Business Review: IBM Tablet PC prototype spotted in Korea.
Pictures on Nottes site
TabletPC Buzz' discussion thread for this rumor.

5:12:50 AM    comment 

ActiveWin has a couple of interesting interviews.

Gary Alt, editorial director, Microsoft Encarta Reference Library.
Eric Gunnerson, program manager: Microsoft Visual C#.NET.

5:01:48 AM    comment 

Like I predicted, the gnashing of teeth about Dean's implosion in Iowa and the part that weblogs may or may not have played in it has started in earnest. Here's a few:

The Register's Andrew Orlowski didn't fail to take another swing at overhyped bloggers.
FindLaw: Does Howard Dean's third-place finish in Iowa rebut the "Internet Election" concept.
John Robb: "What is overlooked is that Weblogs and other forms of social technology may have worked too well for Dean in Iowa. He raised too much money. He had too many out of state supporters that made the trek to Iowa. He was too far ahead in the polls early on. His campaign's leadership was too confident."
Ed Cone: Another Internet bubble popped. Thank God.
Jeff Jarvis: Did blogging hurt Dean?

Anyway, does all this hurt blogging? It looks like that today. But I have friends who've been saying blogging is all hype and just a fad for more than three years now. Yeah, that's why I woke up at 4 a.m. on a Friday morning to write mine.

Update: Glenn Reynolds has a whole bunch of links to a bunch of articles/quotes about Dean.

4:58:20 AM    comment 

As many of you know, I spoke on Wednesday and again yesterday at the RSS Winterfest. I'll be honest. I was skeptical. This was the first time I'd participated in a "virtual conference" so I didn't know what to expect.

Instead of getting me to fly someplace, speakers presented over the phone. We could push slides out to clients over a Web application. There was a host (Alex Williams and Cynthia Carlson watched the IRC channel and asked questions).

But it's clear today that this was a major milestone in event hosting. No, it won't put existing events like TechED or the PDC out of business (I still want to attend major industry events once or twice a year), but I'm looking forward to working with Alex at DecisionCast on other events in the future.

It's just too compelling to have an event where hundreds, or even thousands, can participate with nothing more than a phone and their PC.

From a speaker's standpoint this was awesome. My participation cost Microsoft nothing. Now, compare that to when I speak at the Demo conference next month. I have to take two days off of work. I am paying to fly. Paying to stay at a hotel. Paying for meals. Away from the comfort of my own home. Plus I need to get dressed up.

And from an attendee's perspective, it is pretty compelling too. They didn't need to pay $2000 to get into the event. Or $200 or more for a hotel. Or fly to the event (there were participants all over the world this week). Or fight with 5000 other people for wireless access. Or take two or more days away from the office.

Imagine if Microsoft did a "mini-PDC" this way. You'd pay maybe $150 (yesterday's event was free, so it might not even be that expensive) to cover the costs of hosting the phone system and pay a vendor like DecisionCast to host the day (they did a great job of moderating the sessions and keeping everything moving. For instance, one of their employees was watching the IRC chat room and asked questions that got posted there).

How much more likely would Microsoft (or any company) be to have regular events with its top employees if it hosted events this way? Execs like Gates or Allchin wouldn't need to fire up the corporate jets or leave their families yet again. Developers wouldn't need to take two days away from their desktop computers which would mean that shipping schedules are more likely to not be impacted.

Translation: great job DecisionCast. Looking forward to more of these in the future.

4:41:56 AM    comment 

Good morning! There's another .NET-based RSS News Aggregator named RSSConnect. This one has the advantage of being open source too.

Thanks to MSDN's Duncan Mackenzie for posting that.

4:23:36 AM    comment 

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© Copyright 2005
Robert Scoble
My cell phone: 425-205-1921
Are you with the press?
Last updated:
5/11/2005; 12:45:19 AM.

Robert Scoble works at Microsoft (title: technical evangelist). Everything here, though, is his personal opinion and is not read or approved before it is posted. No warranties or other guarantees will be offered as to the quality of the opinions or anything else offered here.

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