Scobleizer Weblog

Daily link Monday, June 13, 2005

Mary Jo Foley: Microsoft Looks to Build Up the Windows Community. Discusses new community site, named "The Hive." This will be interesting to watch, should be a good resource for developers.

Is it just me or is there no RSS feed?

I just spent a weekend hanging out with influential community builders at Reboot. When we asked how many used an RSS aggregator more than 80% of their hands went up. It's one reason why Channel 9 has been such a success (every part of Channel 9 is available via RSS).

Update: I hear RSS is coming.

2:49:23 PM    comment 

Michael Jackson not guilty on all counts, news is in. Now we can go on with our lives.

News sites seeing high traffic levels. I'm having a lot of trouble pulling up news sites like CNN and They come up, but are very slow.

I wonder what the hit rates are on these sites.

My son's reply? "I don't care." Heh.

2:14:54 PM    comment 
1:57:34 PM    comment 

Verdict reached in Michael Jackson trial and will be reported at 4:30 p.m. eastern time, MSNBC reports.

Jason Calacanis says to watch TV Squad for more reports.

Heh, I just visited the TV Squad blog and the top headline is: Confidence in TV news dropping.

You only need to see the constant coverage of this trial to understand why.

1:09:03 PM    comment 

My wife should start a blog. She came down to tell me about a blog where you can reveal a deep secret (some of the cards are adult in nature). That gives me a great idea about what to do with all those Channel 9 postcards (we've gotten hundreds of them from people who want a Channel 9 guy).

12:17:57 PM    comment 

Looks like Gnomedex, next week, is gonna be quite a conference. Chris Pirillo just announced that Dean Hachamovitch is keynoting (he's the guy who runs a raft of Longhorn initiatives and is head of the IE team to boot). I wonder if he'll give his keynote on my red couch?

Oh, he's talking my language too -- "how the future of the Web is no longer just 'browse'" and "why 'really simple' is a good idea" and "what Longhorn will deliver to make this easier for end-users, developers, and publishers."

And, I hear, this is far from the only announcement that'll be made at the conference. Dave Winer and Adam Curry have both been hinting at stuff they'll announce, among others, and check out the blogger audience density. Whew.

11:57:52 AM    comment 
11:39:10 AM    comment 

Larry Larsen points out I'm not the only one at Microsoft thinking small this morning. This Fortune article reveals that Microsoft is sending anthropologists into the field to study small businesses.

11:30:42 AM    comment 

If you've seen Microsoft's home of the future you've seen that a lot of our vision of the home of the future surrounds home automation. You know, hooking everything in your house -- lights, heating, TV/audio systems, and more -- into your computer.

Well, if you have a Media Center you can get a trial download of mControl, Embedded Automation's application for home automation.

11:29:16 AM    comment 

Kord Campbell tells me that Zoto is now doing GPS Photoblogging. Interesting, lets you add photos on top of a Google Map. It takes the GPS EXIF data out of images you have (he uses a location stamper tool) then passes the coordinates to a Google map hack. There's a community page here, and he has a how-to page that shows you how to do it.

11:25:14 AM    comment 

Luca Conti just told me about Gataga, a new bookmark search engine that's powered by and other social bookmarking services. It also has RSS feeds for every search. Cool! More from Luca here, albeit in Italian.

11:21:10 AM    comment 

I'm going to the PDC, so just added a PDC flair to my blog.

There's already a PDC05 page over on Technorati. Ahh, isn't tagging cool?

Jeff Sandquist shows us how to tag a PDC post.

Don't forget to enter our blog contest to win a free ticket to the PDC.

11:13:21 AM    comment 

Brand Autopsy talks about Starbucks failure in the Music Media Bar concept it tried.

It's easy to see. Many music consumers are buying MP3 files rather than CDs. My computer can't even play CDs. I'd love to try out new music, though, and put it on a USB key or on a portable media player. Starbucks is selling lots of CDs, though, so I wonder why the "burn your own" CD idea isn't working out?

How about this idea? Starbucks has wifi in each of its cafe's. They charge about $7 per day to use that.

How about Starbucks open up several podcast stations? You can listen to streaming music for free, and if you like that music, you can buy it for $1 a song?

I'd listen when I'm in Starbucks, that's for sure.

Even better? How about a Starbucks branded media device? Pay $100 and get a music playing device loaded with music from Starbucks.

What do you think? What would you do if you worked at Starbucks?

9:25:20 AM    comment 

I'm stuck with some images coming out of the Reboot conference last week: the power of being small.

Lots of people were talking about the shipping power of small teams. Mostly due to Jason Fried's talk.

He's turning out to be one influential developer. Why? Cause he, and two other coworkers, are churning out new features at a torrid pace. Here's an example of his thinking about development teams: don't write a functional spec. Whoa. I love his idea for what to do instead: write a one-page story.

But he wasn't the only one kicking out features. I watched one guy -- sitting in the lobby of our hotel -- with two computers, a Mac and an Intel one. He was running Linux on both and was adding new features every few minutes.

I wish Microsoft would send more of its developers to these small geek-focused conferences so they can see the new competition that evolves in the hallways.

Luckily for us most of the other big companies weren't at Reboot either.

I sense we're at the very beginning of an industrial revolution in the way we all work.

Another pre-cursor? Seth Godin's essay on "Small is the new big."

The thing is these guys are onto something. Even inside big companies it's the small teams that have a huge impact. In Denmark I visited a team of four developers. They each had two screens. They each are kicking out huge numbers of new features. I watched them. They worked collaboratively. We talked about the advantages and disadvantages of sitting together (most Microsoft developers work alone or with a partner in a walled office instead of an open space like these four were doing).

I've seen the magic of small. Jason Fried showed me the way.

I'm looking for small teams inside Microsoft that are changing the world. Chandu Thota (the guy who wrote the map on the right side of my blog) is on one of them. Who else?

9:09:39 AM    comment 

BusinessWeek's Cover Article this week: the Power of Us.

Steve Rubel responds with 10 Commandments for The Era of Participatory Public Relations.

8:29:13 AM    comment 

My wife yells down "I don't agree with you."

Heh, I'm taking it from all sides this morning.

"Why not?"

"Because you're wrong."

8:21:15 AM    comment 

What I wrote last night is getting strong pushback (that's a nice way to say my readers think what I wrote is a heap of excrement). A friend wrote in email that I was a hypocrite for what I wrote. David Weinberger wrote a lengthy reply, including this quote: "I disagree with Scoble's reasoning that takes the moral issue off the table. Instead, I think there needs to be vigorous, practical debate about whether this particular software compromise is acceptable. Reasonable people (like Scoble) may disagree on this question. But it is, for me, a question."

DMad had an interesting point: "Leave it to those to whom the company has given specific responsibility to deal with such issues."

Actually, that plays here as well. I don't have the facts. I don't know all the pressures the decision-maker (or makers) were under. Microsoft is run in a very decentralized way. Should Redmond force its way around here? I used to hate it when NEC's headquarters did that without understanding the local market.

Finally, there are people involved here. My coworkers in China live under a political system that's vastly different than the one I live under. My responsibility is to them first.

What I say and do can have grave consequences on their quality of life (remember, they work under a government that puts people in jail or worse). So, hope you don't mind if I take an unpopular stance and if I let them work out what's best for their market and jobs.

Lastly, I've learned in life that if you take a "moral" stance a lot of times you'll get kept outside the gates where they can't hear you. It's far easier to change the system from within.

8:18:26 AM    comment 

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© Copyright 2005
Robert Scoble
My cell phone: 425-205-1921
Are you with the press?
Last updated:
7/1/2005; 3:37:26 PM.

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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