Ichabod is itchy

July 1, 2006

Scoble on blogging

Filed under: blogging — by ichabodisitchy @ 1:18 pm

There is an interesting (if brief) Wired interview with Robert Scoble (formerly of Microsoft and Scobleizer blog), who has temporarily ‘given up’ blogging to join the new media and podcasting specialist, Podtech.net.

Much of what Scoble says is quite predictable–“a lot of people don’t yet recognize the power of this medium… Blogs are 10,000 times more efficient than things were in the ’80s… If you’re in business and you don’t understand how that word of mouth works, you won’t be able to take full advantage of it…” But it’s still quite interesting.

One of the things he says is that he used to read 1,400 – 1,500 RSS feeds a day!!! How on earth does one find the time to do that? I can’t believe anyone can process that much information every day. I struggle to keep up with a couple of dozen feeds a day! He does admit that it was a full-time job to manage that many feeds every day, and that these days he’s down to ~100– but then goes on to say he wants to start reading more again.

I do enjoy blogging, and reading other people’s blogs– but I fear that if I tried to read more than a couple of dozen blogs every day I would start missing out on rest of my life…

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June 6, 2006

A light at the end of the tunnel

Filed under: blogging — by ichabodisitchy @ 7:05 pm

Hurrah! Lewis has managed to fix my laptop so I am, once again, connected to the world. Main computer still down but I'm far too selfish to worry about the rest of the family being surf-deprived– I'm alright Jack!

I can't believe it's only been 5 days with no internet connection– seems like forever. And it's made me realise just how much I depend on it, and how much I enjoy the time I spend each evening reading and commenting on everyone's blogs. I've also got much more sympathy for Harry (my 10 year old stepson) than before– when we have people round for supper and they stay beyond Harry's bedtime, he has to come in every 10 minutes to say he can't get to sleep (and, more importantly, check that we're not doing anything too fun without him!) That's just how I've been feeling– I spent the first hour back online rushing from blog to blog to make sure that I hadn't missed anything *too* fun. 

In the dark

Filed under: blogging — by ichabodisitchy @ 11:28 am

This is just a quick post– some of you may have been wondering where I have been for the past few days… Lewis says blame the DHCP. I’m not sure what that means. Essentially, we have been without an internet connection since last Thursday. And it really has felt like being in the dark ages.
Lewis has managed to get it up again on one of our laptops, but tells me it may be but a brief window of connectivity as we have to figure out the problem for all the computers, and he can’t promise that this one will stay connected.

So don’t despair– hopefully we’ll be up and running again this evening and I can come out of the dark.

May 17, 2006

A little more conversation

Filed under: blogging,conference,social media — by ichabodisitchy @ 7:44 pm

Just back from the blogs and social media forum. A copy of the programme is available from the conference wiki along with a list of key speakers– and a bunch of photos have already been put up on flickr
The conference was aimed at 'business' people– why do we, as companies, need to be aware of social media tools like blogs, wikis, podcasting and rss, and how can we use them to our advantage?

The resounding message of the day was that we should embrace blogging as a means of engaging an audience in conversation. Indeed, conversation was a word that was used over and over again by all the key speakers. That and empowerment— power to the people. Blogging gives users a voice and we cannot rely on the one-way system of information flow that has hitherto dominated our interactions, as businesses, with customers.

I must confess that I was a little disappointed. It's true that many of us at the meeting hadn't seriously engaged with blogs before. For example, while I do subscribe to a number of rss feeds and regularly read blogs, my experience in producing content on blogs or wikis is 'lukewarm' shall we say. So maybe the speakers felt they had to pitch their talks to a novice audience. I suppose I was expecting a little more depth. I mean, even I know that a blog is a way of entering into conversation.
The discussion was also somewhat one-sided. All the speakers are active bloggers (or involved in other social media projects) and, like you find with many of these new technology groups, they are all very pro-blogging. I felt there was a lot of advocating going on. It reminded me of being back in the lab (during my PhD days) where Graham, an avid LaTeX user, preached and preached and preached some more on how LaTeX would change our lives. I'm not saying it  didn't work– we all wrote up our PhDs in LaTeX and took up preaching duty when Graham left for pastures new. But you expect to have both sides of an argument. To be fair, the speakers did make the point that blogging isn't for everyone and that whatever we do, we shouldn't force people into it. 

Perhaps I'm being a little unfair– there were a lot of interesting bits to the talks. I particularly enjoyed listening to JP Rangaswami (a.k.a. confused of calcutta), who put his finger on some everyday frustrations that really resonated with me–the evil and unproductive nature of a Bcc button, the pointlessness of sending spreadsheets to people who only ever look at their blackberry and the time wasted on constantly shifting your attention to things as they float in and out of your field of vision. 

I will try and put up more posts in the next few days about some of the other interesting bits too. In the meantime, I leave you with the response provided by Jaap Favier of Forrester Research on the main advantage of blogs:

"no-one will have to be lonely anymore"

May 14, 2006

Hello world!

Filed under: blogging — by ichabodisitchy @ 9:02 pm

I'm off to a conference on blogs and social media tomorrow, at the London Hilton Metropole hotel and it seems like a good time to start a blog and see what all the fuss is about. I've been toying with the idea for a while now, but have been somewhat daunted by all the many interesting blogs already out there. I don't yet have a clear idea of what I'll be posting about, but am hoping that it will be an organic process and I will learn as I go along.

Watch this space! 

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