Facebook Connected

connected-3.png I've turned on Facebook Connect (yes it only took a week after Amber told me about it) with the Disqus commenting system we use here. Now you can post a comment on the blog using your Facebook account for credentials. Despite all the attention Twitter gets in our neck of the digital woods, it seems to me that Facebook is building overwhelming momentum in the social media space. With 150 million plus users the network effect is really starting to kick in. The success of Facebook also puts the lie to the widely accepted truism that Twitter competitor, FriendFeed, isn't growing because it's hard to use. I'd argue that Facebook is just as overwhelming to the new user but it rewards his or her initial struggle immediately and palpably due to the size of its network. Twitter succeeds for the same reason. It's not simplicity, it's simply the number of people who use the service.
Give our new Facebook Connect-powered commenting system a try and let me know what you think.

Twitter Hacked

This morning at around 9am Pacific "under 50" of the most-followed Twitter users lost control of their accounts, including Barack Obama, CNN's Rick Sanchez, Fox News, and me. Both my password and the reset email address were modified. As far as I know the hacker didn't post on my account, but Fox News tweeted "Bill O'Reilly is gay" and Rick Sanchez announced that he was taking the day off because he was on crack. Twitter was quick to remove these spurious posts and block the hacker. But what really happened? I got this explanation from Twitter's John Adams, @netik, via Qik on my iPhone at the Tweetup at the 21st Amendment tonight. According to John, the hacker gained access to Twitters admin tools.
[qt:http://leoville.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/01/200901twitterhack.mov 480 400]

A River of TWiT

twit.pngTWiT started as two podcasts way back when in 2005. Today it's a dozen shows, a live, nearly 24x7 video stream, a 24x7 audio stream, two very active chatrooms, a microblog for listeners, and a forum for contributors. In short, it's a large and growing community of tech enthusiasts built around downloadable and streaming audio and video content. My experience with Twitter, the TWiT Army, the TWiT chatrooms, and the real-time feeds at Friendfeed, plus my extensive conversations with Steve Gillmor and the other participants at Bearhug Camp, have inspired me to attempt one more live feed: a live text stream of links, comments, and notes related to the live programming. The chatrooms offer something similar, but they're more conversation focused. I see this stream more like the live-blogging that occurs during a Steve Jobs keynote, or the tweets surrounding a major news event, like the recent election. Think of it as real-time show notes created by me, our show hosts, and our community. Let's call this stream the "river." This is an experiment, but I think it could be very useful, both informative and entertaining. 176px-XMPP_Logo.svg.pngbear has set up a Jabber server for us at twit.im. That's the engine that would power this river. Now it's time to think about how we'll implement the user interface, both for readers and contributors. I'd like to make it easy enough to use that readers naturally become contributors. Aside from installing a server and buying the domain twit.im, we haven't done anything else. So the following is purely speculative. I'd like to get your comments on it before we begin implementation. Consider the following an RFC. The best interface to this river would, I imagine, be an IM client, but as with any stream there might be other ways to view it, in a Friendfeed room, on a dedicated web site, as a ticker on live.twit.tv, etc. I think these instances can be created by the TWiT community as needed over time. And since the river is just an XMPP stream it should be very simple - the API already exists. I would also like to have a real-time RSS feed of the full-river - that should make it pretty easy to write viewing tools. But initially, any Jabber-compatible IM client, GTalk, Trillian, Pidgin, iChat, or Adium, would work fine. People post to the river by adding river@twit.im to their IM client. They'll also get the river content fed back on that channel. I think we'll encourage the use of hashtags so posts can be categorized: #link, #note, #location, #wisecrack, and the like. We might even want to require that every post be tagged to make it easier to filter the river. Some folks, for instance, might only want links, others might just want wisecracks, and so on. More importantly, we'd also need some commands. FOLLOW/UNFOLLOW/FOLLOWING - so users can control whose posts they see BLOCK/UNBLOCK/BLOCKING - to prevent spamming, by handle and IP address I think TRACK/UNTRACK/TRACKING - to allow you to watch for particular content on the river Are there any other commands we need? Ultimately a search of some kind will be important, but we can get this for free by piping the RSS of the river into a Friend Feed room (as an example). By implementing FOLLOW, BLOCK, and TRACK we can open up the server to anyone who wants to participate, since users will be able to precisely control the content of their feed, just as they currently do with Twitter (only better). riverindinan.jpgI would also like to be able to create special-use instances of the river. For example, at my Macworld keynote, I'd like to be able to create a one-time use backchannel, say macworld@twit.im, that attendees could post to and follow, and that, perhaps, I could put up on screen. At this time we don't have any plans to let users register for twit.im accounts. I don't want to bog the server down with additional duties. It's going to be busy enough as it is. But if you have an existing GTalk or Jabber account you'll be able to use that. What do you think? Have I missed anything? Is there any functionality you'd like to add? Please add your comments below. Thanks!

France Montage

The Animoto treatment on some of my pictures from France.
You can see the whole set on SmugMug and the highlights on Flickr. UPDATE: The ad is gone now - and I remixed it with much better results. Each time you remix you get a different version and I find it's often worth trying it a few times for the best result.

2008 in 40 seconds

2008 was a difficult, contentious, exciting, and ultimately momentous year, but while the affairs of men boil away, life and nature serenely continue on. This beautiful time lapse movie from Erik Sondheim really captures the eternal heartbeat of life. It's worth the trip to Erik's site to see how he did it and watch the full two minute HD version. Good news: he just got a 5D Mark II so next year's video should be even more mind boggling.
Here's to a happy, peaceful, and prosperous 2009 for all of us all over the world.
Page 1 ... 3 4 5 6 7 ... 286 Next 5 Entries »