Monthly Archives: July 2009

Delicious as can be

This animated explanation, sans narrative, of how the website formerly known as del.icio.us morphed into delicious.com, its current incarnation, shows the evolution of one UI into another and illustrates some ways to use the newly-evolved interface to a catchy little tune to boot.

The video is worth watching for the entertainment value alone although it is also is somewhat instructive. It seems most entertaining to me when viewed full screen so I recommend you watch it that way by clicking on the icon with the four outward facing arrows in the lower right corner of the video’s window.

Pressing Esc returns you to your normal viewing mode.

I first became acquainted with what is now called Delicious.com when I learned of it during the course of my initial experimentation with Flock. My first bookmark on Delicious was on February 6, 2006, but that was 1214 bookmarked locations ago. So if nothing else, I’m grateful to Flock for getting me together with my good friend Delicious. It has been a rewarding friendship for me.

A follow up on Twitter setup

You may remember that I wondered a couple of days ago whether you were permitted to and if so, how you might go about setting up more than one Twitter account.  The answer, as I read the service agreement, is that it is permitted primarily because it is not expressly prohibited.  My reason for wanting to know that information was so that if it were legal and possible, I wanted to create an account to post updates on my friend Paul Moor’s condition.  I have now done that.  It is called FriendsofPaule and it is open for anyone who chooses to do so to follow. 

I was able to get around the fact that Twitter wants a “different” email address for each Twitter account you create by using Gmail’s flexibility. Gmail permits you to append a suffix, for instance, “+ TwitterPaule” between your email username and the domain name, i.e. Gmail.com, and still Gmail will treat it as if that suffix wasn’t there.  There are many clever uses of that feature, but for yesterday’s obstacle, that did the trick.  So I created the feed for informing Paul’s friends of any “little bits” of news I might have about him as illustrated in the following photo.

Paul's twitter feed

Two of the three of those so-called “tweets” are exactly 140 characters long which is the maximum allowed.  I enjoyed immensely thinking to name myself, the author of that feed, Paul’s amanuensis because that is essentially what role I am performing.  At the moment he can’t access, or possibly even absorb, Twitter, but as his amanuensis, I can convert what he tells me into tweets.  And thus his friends, if they should be challenged to cite on what authority they may have declared something to do with Paule, may simply say a little birdy told them so.

Blogged with the Flock Browser

Integration – Flock

If you search back through this blog or check the categories listing in the sidebar for the word “Flock,” you’ll find lots of references.  That’s because I began beta testing it (almost alpha testing it) several years ago.  There were many things I liked about it back then that are still present in the latest version and may even have undergone improvements that aren’t necessarily visible in the interface. 

I downloaded version 2.5 from the Flock website yesterday, after being reminded by Daryl Houston that it now had a tight integration with Twitter. 

It is ironic that I ceased using Flock because it was moving to integrate services that, at the time, I wasn’t ready to embrace.  I’ll admit that my point of view at the time was that they were essentially trivial and a waste of time.  I’m not yet entirely certain that previous assessment isn’t accurate, but as I have begun to participate in both Facebook and Twitter, I have found each of them has its legitimate and helpful uses, so I decided to give Flock a second look.  Going back to try Flock again is like remarrying your ex-wife; it feels strange at first, but maybe some of the old joy will be augmented by as yet undiscovered new joys. 

I have set Flock as my default browser for this trial which begins today and will, for the most part, run for at least a month.  Like President Obama and his attempt to quit smoking, I may from time to time resort to old habits for expediency or if I’m under unusual stress, but I’ll do my best to achieve what I want to do in Flock first.  We’ll see whether 30 days will be enough to establish a new habit.

My first impressions upon returning to Flock are very positive and pleasant.  I have used this blogging tool before. There is an uploading tool for pictures to whatever service you use, which in my case is Flickr.  And that uploader was always one of my favorite features.  It seems to be just as convenient and reliable as before.  Flock integrates a lot of tools that someone who is active online in posting to or commenting on blogs and forums and the like, can use and will find to be very handy.  One of the early questions about Flock, which is built on the foundation of Firefox, is whether the integration of all these tools is better than customization and choice, meaning just the Firefox browser onto which you can add just those pieces of functionality that you want.  I suppose there are those who are still debating that.  For now, I am back to trying Flock because of the integration it offers.  I am anxious to know how convenient I find those features and whether at the bottom line, I am more productive online because of them. 

If you are interested in experimenting with a new browser (Yes, Virginia, you are permitted have more than one browser on your computer at the same time.  The Geek Gods have authorized it.  In fact, you may have as many as you like, particularly if you are trying them out), then check out Flock and we can compare notes in our comments. 

Blogged with the Flock Browser

Twittering away one’s time

Twitter isn’t new. However I am new to Twitter, having only signed up since my return to Knoxville from Las Vegas, NM, in May. The video that follows gives a good overview of what it is and an explanation of how to begin using it.

How one uses this microblogging tool is left to your imagination. However, here’s an example that has occurred to me.

It seems to me that because there are a number of us who are concerned about any news of my 85 year-old Berlin friend Paul Moor as he recovers from his stroke, I could use a Twitter account to post the latest on his condition and activities. That is a much more sensible way to blog about how he is doing because 140 characters would ordinarily be more than enough to give a succinct report. And the available news at any one time isn’t usually sufficient for a blog post, though of course when it is, that medium, rather than Twitter, could be used. It seems like an ideal platform for this kind of use.

Do any of you know if one can set up a second Twitter account while you are logged into your current account?

Update: I have now created @FriendsofPaule on Twitter by using the Gmail “+” workaround. If you aren’t familiar with that workaround, see these instructions.

Mike Wesch explains the digital world

I spent 55 minutes of my early Saturday morning watching this video, laughing and sometimes being moved to tears, but overall feeling it was one of the best hours I’ve spent in a long time. Instead of watching some inane TV program, do yourself a favor and spend that hour watching this remarkable teacher.

When I first heard of Professor Wesch I posted this link to his “The Machine is Us/ing Us” and later to this five minute summary of the Information Revolution, either or both of which you might enjoy reviewing (they’re short) before watching the video below.

Thanks to Robert Scoble for tweeting the link to this presentation that follows.

Evernote – in more depth

This episode of Robert Scoble’s Fastcompany explains in more detail what Evernote is and what it is capable of doing. It runs about 28 minutes and some of the best stuff is in the second half. If you can spare the time to watch this discussion, thinking of your own situation as I did of mine when I watched it, I believe you’ll see why I am enthusiastic about it. Maybe it will strike you as more organized than you want to be but it catches me at a point in my life when I’m trying to pull some things together and this looks like a great way to do that. You can judge for yourself, but I wanted to make the video available to you and easy for you to watch when you are ready.