Tuesday, November 29, 2005

Google Thinks Small - Forbes.com
I think the next tipping point will be focused on wikis. We are close to the point where we will no longer have to pick an 'application' to create, open or change a document, any more than we have to pick a particular type of writing implement to do so in the physical world. What that will allow us to do is convert our entire hard drive -- every document -- and all the content we maintain on central servers -- every message and blog post, into a single 'virtual' wiki, a kind of giant tableau of all our stuff, everything we have created or contributed to, and everything created by others we have filed away or bookmarked or otherwise 'taken as our own'.

Dave Pollard

Saturday, November 26, 2005

Wednesday, November 23, 2005

Tuesday, November 15, 2005

For some reason I find this article intensely annoying and depressing.

Here's why. I'm one the (possible minority) of people on the planet who if I ask what you do, am genuinely interested in what you do.

Not because I'm a cuddly people person, (though, of course, I am), but because I'm intensely curious about the way the world works. Every damned bit of it. I'm curious about the bits of the world you wouldn't dream anyone might be curious about. About the fashionable and unfashionable bits. The grand scale and the minutae.

Recently I was sitting with a bunch of friends discussing whether you'd rather drink with a philosopher or a dentist. The unanimous opinion was philosopher. But for me, I know it was a close call. And now I'm wondering if that was the right decision. You see, I know a small bit about philosophy. But hardly anything about dentistry. What might I be missing?

Exciting ideas are ideas that cross-pollinate from one field to another. If you don't know the field, how do you know what's useful?

That's why if I ask you what you do, I want you to tell me what you do. I can figure out myself far better than you can how that might (or might not) be useful to me in one of the dozens of projects I'm involved in that you don't even know about. You trying to second guess that, is just going to muddy the signal.

Look! This is a world where markets are conversations, and information and attention are the true mediators of commerce. And "sales technique" is just noise getting in the way of real communication. These sound-bite examples given in the article are the conversational equivalent of pop-up ads.

What's really annoying is that it's articles like this, pedaling this kind of nonsense, that are responsible for the crap that gets continuously sprayed out over real conversations : whether online or in real life.

Monday, November 14, 2005

Not exactly the way to get rich.

The following is a summary of your Amazon Mechanical Turk activity for the week ending Nov 12, 2005.

Weekly HIT Activity
- Number of HITs accepted: 6
- Number of HITs returned: 0
- Number of HITs abandoned: 0
- Number of HITs submitted: 6
- Number of HITs approved: 5
- Number of HITs rejected: 0
- Amount earned this week: $0.15

Friday, November 11, 2005

Thursday, November 10, 2005

This is very cool to me : Dan Bricklin is writing something called wikiCalc.

Bricklin invented the spread-sheet, an easy, user programmable tool that has a lot in common with wiki (in philosophy). I wonder what he'll come up with.

Wednesday, November 09, 2005

A P R E S S . C O M : Micro-ISV: From Vision to Reality
Express - Visual Basic

Alright, I admit, I'm tempted. The new Visual Basic plus development environment, free (as in beer) to download today.

Should I take a look? See how hard it'd be to translate SdiDesk into it?

Things to consider, positive and negative :

- It's .Net 2.0 only, so part of MS's forced upgrade strategy.

- The output will probably look good.

- There will probably be good web protocol and XML handling libraries available.

- It's a different language from VBClassic so serious rewriting will be needed. OTOH, although I'm not a fanatic, I'm a pretty sensible OO developer, I haven't used VB that differently from the way I'd write Java, so the changes shouldn't be too much of a shock. (I explicitly declare the types of all my variables, I use Interfaces a lot in the design)

Tuesday, November 01, 2005

RossMayfield on PodTech
What's going on with SdiDesk?

bodnotbod writes :

'Q: I would love to see section editing like they have at Wikipedia. I've just started working on my first ultra long page and am finding it very unweildly. One work-around would be for me to break the page up into smaller pages but for the task I'm doing that would actually not help my productivity. A way to edit a section (defining section as the text between two headlines [at the ==foobar== level, say]) on its own would be of great help.

'Comment: I too love your product and hope you continue to develop it. I'm still using it months after I first discovered it. I am sorry to see that all your 'recent changes' here online seem to be spam-fighting. I hope you are able to do that with a few clicks and are not having to deal with it all by hand.

No, not fighting the spam by hand. That's being done by the wonderful WikiMinion. Still very annoying though. :-(

I haven't given up SdiDesk, though I am having a play with a couple of other things at the moment. And I have a new computer, so I have to get my world from one to the other.

I've started looking seriously at working with XML, and doing this by way of a couple of other small projects using the Python language. This is making me realize how hampered I am by using Visual Basic classic for SdiDesk.

So, I'm back to thinking about some options for migration at the moment. (While coming up with something else I think will be quite cool.) I definitely see a Python port of SdiDesk sometime (which will, of course, work with your existing data) and will be able to grow in new directions.

Subsections (or pages which are actually trees which can contain sections and subsections and subsubsections) are actually part of the next release of SdiDesk which I'm already working on. Still some way to go before this is finished, but should be there in the next VB version.

-- PhilJones

SdiDesk Wiki: FeatureRequests
Who the hell are Wikisphere?

Whatever! They
get $5.25 million dollars in VC