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by Stephen Downes
July 30, 2007

What Are You, Who Are You, And How Do You Know?
I'm attending the privacy, security and trust conference taking place here in Moncton. I've written a couple of summaries, the first of the keynote this morning by Jonathon Cave from RAND Europe, and the second on the panel discussion, Security Issues and and Business Opportunities. Stephen Downes, Half an Hour July 30, 2007 [Link] [Tags: , , ] [Comment]

The 5-4-3 Double Play, or The Art of Conference Blogging
Interestingly, I used to score baseball games when I was younger (I played Strat-o-matic baseball too). Now that my team (the Montral Expos) has vanished into nothingness, I have no reason to follow baseball any more. But I still do some conference blogging. So I found this article, describing some tips and tricks, to be of interest. But it occurred to me that strong writing skills are also vital. That's the difference between a summary that's easy to read, and a summary that's just a bunch of disconnected points. Ethan Zuckerman, My Heart's In Accra July 30, 2007 [Link] [Tags: ] [Comment]

Why Does The RIAA Hate Webcasters?
The answer is: webcasters don't play very much RIAA music. "The situation really is a win-win for the RIAA (in the short-term). It either kills off those webcasters who don't contribute to the homogenization of music, or it forces them to pay large sums even if they only play non-RIAA music." Now take this sort of story, and apply the logic back to the debate about restrictive licensing clauses in free content. This is why you need such clauses - because the commercial agencies will use any tactic they can - such as the current campaign against webcasters - to prevent the proliferation of (competing) free content. Mike Masnick, Techdirt July 30, 2007 [Link] [Tags: none] [Comment]

7 Ways Croquet Is Better Than Second Life
Good post that argues that Croquet - the open source 3D multi-user environment - is better than Second Life. The most significant is scalability - each Second Life server can only handle 15-25 people (which is really quite astonishing). But Croquet isn't perfect - the author also points to some of the flaws, in cluding a code-base that isn't bug-free. Jeff VanDrimmelen, July 30, 2007 [Link] [Tags: ] [Comment]

Jerry Seinfeld's Productivity Secret
I did this in university, to get myself to attend classes. I'd put a big X on the calendar for each class I attended. In the fourth year, when attendance really became important, I managed to get myself to attend two thirds of my classes. I guess that's why I'm not Jerry Seinfeld. On the other hand, this is true: "Daily action builds habits. It gives you practice and will make you an expert in a short time." That's the secret to OLDaily. And I guess, in my own way, I have my series of Xs on the wall for OLDaily, tool. Brad Isaac, LifeHacker July 30, 2007 [Link] [Tags: none] [Comment]

Facebook Bankruptcy
We are seeing the pushback from people who joined Facebook without anticipating what happens when all their friends can send stuff to them all the time. The problem isn't Facebook so much as all those apps that prompt users to 'send this to ten of your friends' (one - the sticky notes - was so aggressive it pre-selected ten friends and prompted me to invite them before I had even finished installing it on my own account). This will backfire. But before it does, it's giving us all some really good object lessons on how to build the real (that is, the open and distributed) social network that will eventually replace Facebook. One think I'll make sure to install: the app that gives me the option to delete the contacts who sent me an invite. That'll cool things down in a hurry. Related: Mike Seyfang denounces (accurately) Facebook as a closed environment. And Steve O'Hear discusses Facebook's spam machine. Peter Cashmore wfrites about companies banning Facebook. And Dan Gillmor pleads to readers, "Don't write me on Facebook any more." Jason Calacanis, The Jason Calacanis Weblog July 30, 2007 [Link] [Tags: , , , ] [Comment]

If You Ain't a Feed, I Don't Read
This post captures the tension between wanting to use new communications tools - things like RSS, for example - which are really so much more advanced, and wanting to read people who have interesting ideas, but who have, for some reason, not caught on to these tools. Marc Prensky, for example, hasn't blogged anything for more than a year. Meanwhile, Jay Cross is discontinuing his email newsletter. "My email blasts," he writes, "are historically opened by 39% of those who receive them." If you want to read Jay Cross, you need to subscribe to his RSS feed. Dean Shareski, Ideas and thoughts from an EdTech July 30, 2007 [Link] [Tags: , , , ] [Comment]


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Copyright 2007 Stephen Downes

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