- The original iPod, 10 years later: a re-review - Cool that it still works with iTunes. It's worth noting though that it took the iPod quite a while to set the world on fire. At the time, the original was just another MP3 player that got, as I recall, middling reviews.
- Aeolus | Manage Your Cloud Deployments with Ease - @swardley Much of the CloudForms upstream is at Project Aeolus
Monday, October 31, 2011
Friday, October 28, 2011
- http://dartreview.com/dartlog/2011/10/28/hilarious-occupy-wall-street-quotes.html - "A protester comments on the power of greed: “It’s weird protesting on Bay Street. You get there at 9 a.m. and the rich bankers who you want to hurl insults at and change their worldview have been at work for two hours already. And then when it's time to go, they're still there. I guess that's why they call them the one per cent. I mean, who wants to work those kinds of hours? That's the power of greed.” – Jeremy, 38"
- Daring Fireball Linked List: HP to Keep PC Division - "You know what HP should do? They should acquire Netflix. Then a week later back away and say “Never mind.” Then a month later go ahead and buy Netflix. Those two are made for each other."
- Bloggers Selling Links to Marketers? - Megan McArdle - Business - The Atlantic - "Well, I certainly got a wake-up call this morning. You can imagine my shock and horror when I learned (via Google Reader and Twitter) that some bloggers may have actually accepted money to mention companies and commercial products such as our fantastic 50-inch Panasonic Viera plasma television." << Good discussion, amusingly written.
Thursday, October 27, 2011
I confess to having a few good belly laughs yesterday over the minor tempest that was Klout revising its algorithms. For the 99%+ of the population that has no idea what a "Klout" is, it's a site that purports to measure online influence as calculated by a user's activity on twitter, for example.
Klout recently revised its scoring algorithms. And, apparently, various self-styled social media experts saw their scores drop dramatically. Outrage ensued.
One user (no names used in the interest of protecting the terminally self-important) in a reply to Klout's blog announcing the changes:
Very unhappy with this change. My score went from 73 down to 53. 20 point drop. I've been working for months to increase my Klout score. Please fix this.
Really. Seems like a good use of time. This video captures the concept perfectly.
Another social media "guru" (and I use the term sardonically) is now faced with explaining to clients that he might have been, umm, wrong in getting them to put a lot of faith in this proprietary metric:
Not only have I used Klout to measure my score, but I've instructed my social media beginner consulting clients to use it too- as an easy way to market their progress as they begin Tweeting and using Facebook. Thank you for making my job harder- now I have to explain why, with all of their hard work, some their scores went DOWN.
Paraphrasing: "I blindly pimped Klout and now they've screwed me":
Unfortunately, I have been promoting Klout to clients as one of the various metrics to use in measuring the impact of social media campaigns. This change has already caused me to lose clients, and I have to start over using PeerIndex instead. Pity they hit us so hard after we helped make KLOUT influential.
I could go on. The whole comment thread to Klout's blog makes for an amusing read.
It's hard to feel much in the way of sympathy for those affected. It would seem that they've been among the most responsible for promoting Klout, a score based on a proprietary algorithm, as something companies ought to weigh heavily. I'm also suspicious that many of these social media "experts" busily working to increase their Klout have probably been engaging in the sort of reciprocal linking and retweeting behavior that Google fights to keep out of its search rankings.
That was fun.
More seriously, though, was this a good or bad move on the part of Klout? I'm just going to throw a few thoughts out there.
Self-styled social media mavens getting their comeuppance is a feature, not a bug.
If a dramatic one-time change was needed to clear a backlog of gaming behaviors, so be it.
Although Klout published a graph showing how users were affected by this change in the aggregate, they haven't said anything--even at a very high level--about the sorts of behaviors that resulted in large swings. Even Google does this to a degree.
Most to the point though, OK maybe Klout needed to make a one-time change. But their business is predicated on the idea that their score means something. That complaints about this change aren't akin to complaining that your horoscope wasn't specific enough, as Jared Sprool remarked on Twitter. And this, in turn, implies continuity of results modulo ongoing changes needed to address specific types of behavior that Klout perceives as gaming their system.
Whether or not you think that there is any connection between a measure of influence derived from social media metrics and objective business results, that is Klout's mission in life. (Personally, I think the connections are tenuous but so are lots of measures that companies around the world make decisions based on every week from pageviews to clickthrough rates.) And therefore, it is also in Klout's interest to avoid making changes that amount to saying that its measurements last week didn't mean anything.
- Productivity Future Vision - From John Gruber: "This video encapsulates everything wrong with Microsoft. Their coolest products are imaginary futuristic bullshit. Guess what, we’ve all seen Minority Report already. Imagine if they instead spent the effort that went into this movie on making something, you know, real, that you could actually go out and buy and use today."
- Adobe Premiere Pro: What are the best export settings? « Crooked Path Blog - Some good tips. I'm still learning this stuff.
- Saturday Night Live's 'painfully accurate' Steve Jobs sketch - The Week - Unaired sketch. Quite good!
- A VC: OccupyAppStore - "Just because an app was the most popular six months ago, doesn't mean it should be the most popular now. But a leaderboard model is a self reinforcing action. The most popular stay the most popular. The new upstart doesn't stand a chance at unseating the aging category leader."
- The Fifty Greatest Cult Movies of All Time | Nerve.com - Pretty good list.
- The Pot of Gold in Red Hat’s Gluster Acquisition « IT Depends - Good Gluster overview from ESG.
Wednesday, October 26, 2011
- The "GE Flight Simulator" gets some solid improvements | Google Earth Blog
- Steve Jobs: The iPad Almost Had Intel Inside - Techland - TIME.com - "Jobs goes on to criticize Intel in Isaacson's book: "There were two reasons we didn't go with them," says Jobs in the authorized biography. "One was that they are just really slow. They are like a steamship, not very flexible. We're used to going pretty fast. Second is that we just didn't want to teach them everything, which they could go and sell to our competitors.""
- The X Factor Live: It’s Not Idol. And That’s Not a Compliment | Entertainment | TIME.com - "Seriously, it was as if the show was designed on the philosophy, “Like an Oscars production number, but more over-the-top.”"
- Steve Jobs biography: The new book doesn’t explain what made the Apple CEO tick. - Slate Magazine - "There are several admiring Steve Jobs stories in Steve Jobs, Walter Isaacson’s much-anticipated authorized biography, but they’re overshadowed by the many, many more instances in which Jobs comes off as a world-class jerk. Jobs was rude, mean, abusive, and often neglectful to everyone in his life; the people he hated got it bad, but the people he loved sometimes got it worse. Some of this isn’t surprising. Jobs’ arrogance, his monumental self-regard, his irresponsibility, and his unremitting cruelty to those who failed to live up to his expectations have always dogged his image."
Tuesday, October 25, 2011
- IPads Change Economics, and Speed, of Hotel Wi-Fi-On the Road - NYTimes.com - "The iPad represents the “final nail in the coffin” for the idea that all Internet is free, Mr. Garrison said. Amy Cravens, a market analyst with the mobile Internet group of In-Stat, a technology research and consulting company, agreed that tablets “have had a huge influence on bandwidth consumption.”"
- Lead Bullets | TechCrunch - "As I excitedly reviewed the plan with my engineering counterpart, Bill Turpin, he looked at me as though I was a little kid who had much to learn. Bill was a long-time veteran of battling Microsoft from his time at Borland and understood what I was trying to do, but remained unconvinced. He said: “Ben, those silver bullets that you and Mike are looking for are fine and good, but our web server is five times slower. There is no silver bullet that’s going to fix that. No, we are going to have to use a lot of lead bullets.”"
- Brave New Thermostat: How the iPod’s Creator Is Making Home Heating Sexy | Gadget Lab | Wired.com
- NSM: Often the Weakest Link in Business Availability - "Gartner research shows that an average of 80 percent of mission-critical application service downtime is directly caused by people or process failures. The other 20 percent is caused by technology failure, environmental failure or a disaster. The complexity of today's IT infrastructure and applications makes high-availability systems management enormously difficult (see "Making Smart Investments to Reduce Unplanned Downtime," TG-07-4033)."
- (503) http://www.amazon.com/Palm-1048NA-Z22-Handheld/dp/B000BI2180/ref=dp_ob_title_ce - Not sure how many of these still manufactured but (a few) ppl seem to still buy PDAs as if it's 1999
- Microsoft to bump Apple into sync-hole? - ZDNet Asia News - ""Certainly by...2005, possibly by the end of 2003, Linux will pass Mac OS as the No. 2 operating environment," said IDC analyst Dan Kusnetzky."
- The Jobs backlash begins | Real Dan Lyons Web Site - "I’ve always felt that people did Steve a disservice by portraying him as a holy man, some kind of silicon saint leading us into the promised land. It seemed to me that Steve had a deep reservoir of darkness inside him, and that this dark energy was what fueled his genius. WIthout it, he would have been just another Silicon Valley marketing guy in a pair of khakis and an Oxford shirt. His challenge was to harness that dark energy and use it without being consumed or destroyed by it."
A couple of days ago, Matt Hicks sat down with me to talk about some of the cool ways that Red Hat's OpenShift Platform-as-a-Service offering is making seriously heavy-duty use of features like SELinux, cgroups, and AMQP messaging in underlying Red Hat products. It makes you appreciate just how much rocket science goes into running the infrastructure for Platform-as-a-Service. Matt's the Managing Principal Architect for Red Hat who is responsible for much of what goes into keeping OpenShift running. Have a look!
Monday, October 24, 2011
- Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 v. Battlefield 3. | Entertainment | TIME.com - "But it’s not just the scale of it, or who wins Christmas at GameStop. The other part of it is the weirdness of the fact that we are playing games that simulate wars that the U.S. is still fighting, right now, and that real people are dying in. I mean, some of the clips from Modern Warfare 3, and Battlefield 3, look like Wikileaks just leaked them from Iraq. Is that…OK? I remember when wargames were historical only. I remember when it was considered edgy to make a Vietnam game."
- Economics in One Lesson
- VMware CEO Maritz: Get Ready For Consumption-Based Pricing - "We are going to have to move towards more of a consumption-based model. This is where we are going," Maritz said at the event Thursday, as reported by Computerworld UK. "We are trying to keep the licensing stable for as long as we can, but in 10 years from now, things will have changed quite radically."
- (403) http://antispec.com/hq/moleskine - Crowdsourced on-spec design work does feel vaguely icky to me via @cdgrams
- Gartner’s Public Cloud Fallacy and EMC’s Secret Weapon | Blogs | ITBusinessEdge.com - "One position that Gartner appeared to get very wrong, according to the CIOs I’ve spoken with, is to start public cloud deployments with email." << Not sure this is always true but it's absolutely true that email isn't the no-brainer "do it in a public cloud" function it's often presented as.
- lessons of the web: on vmware, cloud and what comes next – James Governor's Monkchips - Seems like a pretty good overview of Raghu's keynote at VMworld Europe.
- Details of United’s 2012 Mileage Plus program released - One Mile at a Time - United's FF program has fairly significant downgrades for mid-level miles next year
Saturday, October 22, 2011
Thursday, October 20, 2011
- GAMBIT: Updates: New MIT Game Research Explores Singapore Culture from the Inside Out
- Bad Pitch Blog - Good stuff!
- Mary Meeker’s 2011 Presentation On Internet Trends [Slides] | TechCrunch - The obligatory annual Mary Meeker Internet trends preso
- HP And Cisco Bury The Hatchet To Accommodate Customers – Everyone Wins? | Forrester Blogs - "So what drove this seeming rapprochement? The coined word “coopetition” lacks the flavor of the German “Realpolitik,” but the essence is the same – both sides profit from accommodating a real demand from customers for Cisco network technology in HP BladeSystem servers.
- Apple's R&D spending hits bottom as percentage of revenue | ZDNet - Don't see much puzzle in AAPL's relatively low R&D % Massive volumes of small # of high margin products
- fcheblog » using systemtap better
- Brendan's blog » Using SystemTap
- There is only one Cloud Icon in the Entire Universe - Scott Hanselman - There is only one cloud icon:
Wednesday, October 12, 2011
I've been making some tweaks to where and how I publish and how I use various social networking and communications services over the past few months. Here's the current status:
I have two primary blogs.
Connections is my "personal" blog. It's personal in the sense that no one else has any control over what I publish here. That said, it's mostly (75%+) devoted to topics that fall generally under the umbrella of "tech." I generally keep the blog going with short link-comments when I'm not pushing out anything longer. In a new development, I expect to be publishing more posts that directly pertain to my activities at Red Hat here.
The Pervasive Datacenter is my CNET Blog Network blog. I typically publish once or twice a month on technology topics, nominally with an emphasis on enterprise IT although I do posts on photography and other consumer tech of interest from time to time. I am especially careful about topics that could be perceived as in any way a conflict of interest because of my day job at Red Hat and therefore mostly avoid getting into individual companies, strategies, and products.
I am active on twitter as @ghaff. As with my blogs, I concentrate on tech topics but no guarantees that I won't get into other topics from time to time.
I mostly view LinkedIn as a sort of professional rolodex. If I've met you and you send me a LinkedIn invite, I'll probably accept though it might help to remind me who you are. I'm most likely to ignore you if you appear to be someone just building up a big network for spammy purposes.
I'm a pretty casual user of Facebook and I limit it to friend friends. That's not to say that some of them aren't professional acquaintances as well. But if you just met me at a conference somewhere and want to friend me, please understand if I ignore you.
I'm not sure where I stand with Google+ at this point. I'm on it, generally like the interface, and some of my friends are active. But I don't feel a great hole in my social media sphere that's calling out for a Google+ to fill. We'll see.
PR pitches, etc:
Lord, do I get a lot of crap sent my way. The redeeming aspect of this is that I periodically get some gem that gives the PR group at Red Hat a chuckle (after any embargo is off of course). If you work for a Red Hat competitor or their agency, you might also want to think twice about offering to pre-brief me on some new announcement.
With that out of the way, I'm interested in a wide variety of tech topics. However, for obvious reasons, I tend to avoid writing about specific companies that closely intersect with my day job whether as competitors or partners. It's also a matter of my bandwidth. I have less time for blogging than when I was an analyst but if I write about one company in a space, it's not really fair to turn down all the inevitable requests that come in from other companies doing something similar.
- No More Servants - Megan McArdle - Business - The Atlantic - Interesting discussion. I think one of the main reasons is that, as a number of commenters note: 1. Past a certain income, people do tend to have personal assistants for a combination of business and personal matters, and 2. For a variety of reasons, people across a wide range of income brackets use lawn services, etc.
- redhat.com | Where's Red Hat This October? - “@RedHatNews: Blog: Where's Red Hat This October? #redhat” << I'll be keynoting DC cloud tour on 19th
- Siri security flaw? - iPhone, iPad, iPod Forums at TiPb.com - “@cchristiansen: Discusses bypassing passcode & Siri implications” <- good question. Could be showstopper f lots of us
- redhat.com | Red Hat to Acquire Gluster - Brian Stevens (Red Hat CTO) blogs on the Gluster acquisition:
- Amazing Reuters Photo of Rebel Firing RPG was Not Photoshopped - RT @petapixel: Amazing Reuters photo of rebel firing RPG was not Photoshopped: