Scobleizer Weblog

Daily link Saturday, May 14, 2005

Rafe wants more rules for bloggers.

Heh, does he work for my co-author, Shel Israel? My chapter on rules and guidelines for bloggers is due.

Personally you might not like what I say about rules. They slow you down. And, make you second guess yourself. Or, worse, make you act unnaturally. They also enable some cruddy behavior (For instance, I have observed a few people who seem to say: "hey, if the speed limit is 70, I should do that even if conditions are icy or wet!")

I'm personally glad that my employer says "be smart." That challenges you to think about what the rules should be on each post and puts the accountability in the proper place: on the writer instead of the guy who writes the rules.

We're off to the pool to work on that chapter. Yes, I'm getting inspired by the city that lives by the motto "whatever happens in Las Vegas stays in Las Vegas."

A question: Why do more interesting stories come out of Las Vegas than, say, Kansas City?

Figure that out and you'll figure out how to do a good blog.

6:14:12 PM    comment 

Congrats Pubsub on passing 10,000,000 feeds with 54% of those being considered active.

I remember when I started blogging it was hard to find more than a few hundred feeds.

6:05:57 PM    comment 

Maryam is saying "corrupt me baby." Oh, that's one way to get my attention in Vegas! Heh. Did I mention that I love this city?

Maryam and I got engaged here Jan. 1 2002. It's amazing what's happened in three years.

Both to the city and to us.

One thing about Vegas is that it used to be that only when big shows like CES or Comdex were in town that the streets were crammed. Now they are crammed nearly every day of the year. It's like a five-mile-long college frat party. People walking around with huge margaritas (I have my own, thank you very much! Who said "don't drink and blog?" Heh!)

Let's talk about those drinks. They are designed to start conversations. "Where did you get that?" one guy asked me.

Isn't that good marketing? Isn't that what the iPod did? Isn't that what the PSP does? Isn't that what the new Xbox does? Isn't that why we're spending so much time on Aero? Or why car companies spend so much time on design?

Yup, it's all about getting us to talk.

It's why Steve Wynn is such a genius. I can't stop talking about his new casino.

5:52:01 PM    comment 

Steve Rubel linked to a report that shows that very few people are reading blogs.

Ahh, is the blog hype over? No, now the "anti-blog-hype-backlash" is beginning.

Totally miss the point of the new-more-efficient-word-of-mouth network. Here's how it works. I write something. My two readers find what I wrote interesting. They email it to 40 other people (one guy I know has more than 300 press people on his email list, so this number might be way low). If a good percentage of those 40 people find something interesting they pass it along to their network. And, so on, and so on. Sooner or later we're talking about a lot more than two people.

Not to mention there are a lot of connectors who are searching for keywords at For instance, if you write the word Microsoft on your weblog your blog post that mentions that word will automatically come into a folder that I'm watching.

If your post is interesting enough (not guaranteed, of course) then I'll put it on my link blog or I'll link to it here. Then if my two readers find that interesting you'll get to their networks as well, again.

Now, if I have more than two readers then the whole thing just gets amplified a little bit more.

5:41:46 PM    comment 

Just saw a new site in my referer log (which is in public, by the way, so you can see what sites are linking to me and how much traffic they are sending me): shows popular sites from

5:31:05 PM    comment 

Speaking of mobile stuff, Mike Hall has lots of videos from the mobile and embedded developer's conference that was held earlier this week here in Las Vegas. I should have come up for that one, looks like it was a big deal.

3:36:13 PM    comment 

Darren Rowse is a Gmail user and worries that RSS is exposing his email in a new way.

I'm not sure about this issue, but wanted to link to it so that the experts (you) could chime in.

Maryam's dragging me back out of the hotel room now.

Hey, anyone know of some casinos with free Wifi? Heh.

3:25:14 PM    comment 

Steve Rubel is linking to a blog that says that IBM is going to introduce the largest ever corporate blogging initiative.

Cool. The more, the merrier!

3:20:45 PM    comment 

Akimbo released a new version that spits out RSS and Atom feeds now.

What is Akimbo? It delivers more than 50 categories of digital programs over the Internet directly to your TV.

3:19:23 PM    comment 

Since I took a potshot at Steve Wynn yesterday for having a lame Website, Maryam and I went there today and dropped a few bucks in his casino.

First of all, he has the best signage on the strip. For those of you who haven't been to Vegas yet, the main street that runs through town is named "the strip."

I've been coming to Vegas since the early 80s. It sure has changed. Back then there was nothing but desert land between the airport and Caesar's Palace. All that land today is filled with multi-billion resorts.

We're staying in New York, New York in a nice room that looks down on the giant MGM Hotel.

Back to Wynn's signage. It's a huge vertical monitor with a twist. It has a huge gold bar that moves up and down above the monitor. As it moves it pushes the old video out of the way and brings a new one into view.

Anyway, inside the Wynn casino isn't all that much different from any of the others. Except you can tell he likes cars. There's a Ferrari dealership right inside the front door. They have only been open two weeks and they've already sold 22 cars. Not a bad business!

Overall impression? Very nice! We'll be taking Maryam's mom there tonight. She loves to play slots. Did you know that Steve Wynn is a geek, by the way? He sponsored a lunch at one of our Visual Basic conferences back in the 1990s.

Yeah, gotta brag about Windows. Microsoft's products are everywhere inside the casino. XP runs all the computers inside the pits, for instance.

Maryam and I are having a great time. We're acting like giddy teenagers. Pretended we were Bill and Melinda Gates inside the Ferrari dealership. Heh. Yeah, I can afford the $800,000 F-50 that's on display there. Not.

Anyway, in between having a great time (saw a Cirque show last night) I'm doing a lot of people watching. What am I learning?

We live in a gadget nation.

Digital cameras are everywhere. It's amazing how fast film is getting forgotten.

I have a cautionary tale for Web designers too: you better be developing your sites for cell phones first and desktop computers second.


There are hoardes of people just staring at their mobile devices. I've seen Treos. Blackberries. Scoblephones. Nokias. Etc.

People are changing how they use their mobile devices. Last time I was in Vegas it was rare for someone to be looking at their cell phone's display. Now TONS of people are.

And, guess what, your Web sites SUCK for mobile uses! Yes. They do. Have you looked at your Web site on a mobile phone?

One of the projects I'm going to work on is to demonstrate just how bad your Web sites are (even the ultra-modern "standards-based" blogs mostly suck).

Why do even the standards-based ones suck?

Because many of them put their navigation code on top of their content code. That means that someone with a cell phone has to do 90 seconds of scrolling through all your navigation bar stuff before they can get to the content.

We need to fix that about our Web sites and we need to fix that now.

3:03:24 PM    comment 

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© Copyright 2005
Robert Scoble
My cell phone: 425-205-1921
Are you with the press?
Last updated:
6/1/2005; 8:54:10 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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