Saturday, July 30, 2005

Rabble at BlogHer Con

I can't say for sure, but Debi might demo Rabble at her session at BlogHer Con on Mobile Blogging. If you are there definitely ask her to let you check it out.

Friday, July 29, 2005

What is this....hmmmm.

11th anniversary

Tomorrow marks 11 years of marriage with the most awesome woman in the world. I knew life would be an interesting journey, and I can't imagine having shared it with anyone better. Here's to my wonderful wife Jessica, a true partner in my life.

Pageant of the Masters

We are going to the Pageant of the Masters tonight. I recall that the first time I heard of it I thought it was a really stupid idea. People getting up on stage and recreating famous works of art. Yawn. In reality it is one of the coolest things you have seen as they show you how they do it and it is amazing how it turns out. It's a definite recommendation if you get to Laguna Beach in the summer.

Rabble at MOMEMO

If you haven't had a chance to check out Rabble yet, we are presenting it at the Los Angeles Momemo on Monday.

The $250 Million Radio Show #26

A little train podcast can be found here. Credits here.

Wednesday, July 27, 2005

Libsyn Feed

I set up my Libsyn account. My Libsyn feed is here. As soon as we can detail what we are doing with them I'll let you know. What I can say, not having been a Libsyn user, that their stats are AMAZING. Being a stat junkie I really dig this stuff and hosting my own stuff and using AWSTATS and other cheesy server stats packages has been less than optimal. I don't plan on moving my podcast feed from my Acmenoise feed anytime soon, but if you haven't listened to my show and want to help me check out the stats in more detail, feel free to subscribe to the feed above or check out the page I set up on Libsyn here.

Tuesday, July 26, 2005

Libsyn and AMP

At AMP we are finalizing a deal with Libsyn to do some cool stuff with our shows and their service. More details soon. Later today I hope to send some links to my feed coming from Libsyn as well.

Monday, July 25, 2005

Sidekick -- PMD

For the last several weeks I have been using a recently purchased Sidekick device. I find it ironic that the developer of the device is a company called Danger as I think this is the device that will ultimately get me in an accident due to my use of Instant Messenger while driving.

At our company we speak a lot about PMD's or Personal Media Devices. To us a PMD could be a Sony Ericsson P910, which is an elegant piece of mobile technology that allows a wide variety of media creation or, on the other end of the spectrum my LG-6000 running Rabble which allows me to create posts and add pictures, etc. Nothing too fancy, but when you think about what most phones can do, its definitely a hint of where we are going.

Over the last two months I have seen more and more people using the Sidekick. One of our night nurses had one. The guy running the Ferris wheel at the fair had one. A couple of friends started popping up with them. What I found most fascinating was that none of the people I saw with this device were what I would call early adopters. These people were mainstream tech users who happened to be typing on this little QWERTY keyboard. I figured I must be missing something.

To be brief, I am extremely fascinated by this device in my short time using it. It comes with a lot of functionality in a small user friendly form factor, and I can see how different features would appeal to different users. I am using it for one thing, AIM. My P910 is great for email, phone calls, reviewing docs, etc. Where it really falls down is IM. I have tried repeatedly to use one of the more popular interop mobile clients but have been really disappointed with the experience. The Sidekick has this nailed. They appear to cache sessions on both sides for those periods when you lose connectivity and then resumes the session with the stored text on either side.

The other features on the device include a phone (how quaint), email capability, a web browser, and a variety of PIM type features like contact management and notes as well as a camera. I would definitely use this for email if I wasn't conditioned to use my P910. The other features seem to work well, but they are not the big use case to me. For different users I could see the appeal of certain combinations of the feature set.

From a hardware perspective it is a great device. The screen easily flips, the keyboard is a good size and the overall device size isn't too bulky although it is by no means a small device. The price point of around $250 keeps it just a hair above what I would call a mainstream consumer device, but it isn't far off like many of the smart phones.

As far as a PMD, I think this device has great potential as it relates to blogging and photo blogging. I can take a quick picture of my son at soccer. Email it to my photo blogging place of choice. Pull up a web browser for blog entry, and post for all to see. Or I could use a client based application like Rabble, although Rabble isn't currently available for this device. The QWERTY keyboard lends itself to quick, yet longer form data entry although we have seen amazing amounts of text entry from standard phone keyboards. The nice combination of features from a hardware perspective would be nicely accented by similar software.

What does it need? My wishlist would be the following:

High Speed Connectivity - 3G network option
Deeper access to applications.
Open platform to other IM or Communication type software like other IM clients or Skype.
A better Camera.
WiFi Connectivity

All in all its a great device and I am sure that the next one is going to continue down the path of an awesome feature set path as more users discover what you can do with it.

iTunes Podcasting support Part Three

Ok, my show, The $250 Million Radio Show, was added to iTunes. I like to think it was coincidence, but it appears that almost all of the shows in our group were added. Power in numbers. Feel free to go and subscribe!

LiveJournal on Rabble

We rolled out support for Live Journal on Rabble over the weekend. If you use Rabble and Live Journal you can send posts from Live Journal to Rabble and back.

Thursday, July 21, 2005

iTunes Podcasting support Part Two

The following is a press release that our podcasting association AMP released today:

Is Apple Thwarting Independent Music Podcasters?

Despite the widespread proliferation of podcasts through Apple’s new iTunes version 4.9, it appears music podcasters that legally distribute independent music are being left behind and effectively locked out of the iTunes podcast directory, which is fast becoming the primary vehicle to find podcasts.

The Association of Music Podcasting (AMP) represents the largest podcasting content group in the world, with forty three members. As of this release, three weeks after the delivery of the latest version of iTunes, thirty four AMP podcast feeds remained unlisted in the iTunes directory. These podcasts were subsequently either listed in the directory that served as the initial basis for the iTunes client ,or were submitted within twenty-four hours of the iTunes release.

It appears Apple has placed procedural obstacles for many older, established podcasts to quickly enter its iTunes directory. Despite that brand new podcast submissions appear to be taking a reasonable amount of processing time (approximately 48 hours), many legacy podcasters have waited weeks to no presence on iTunes.

Moreover, podcasts taken from the original listing are barred from resubmission, with no available option to resolve the issue of podcasts "on hold."

“It’s frustrating,” says Chris MacDonald, owner of IndieFeed Podcasts, founding member and Director of Legal Affairs at AMP. “We’ve been podcasting since mid September of 2004, when this thing really got started. I have thousands and thousands of listeners; yet our fans can’t migrate to iTunes easily. We are losing loyal listeners who aren’t technically savvy or who choose not to run two podcast aggregators at a time. It’s silly to suggest Apple can’t add those feeds to their directory in a reasonable amount of time. It’s also very odd that my non-music feeds, which were provided to Apple at the same time, migrated to the iTunes directory in only two days.”

"Corporations are looking to take advantage of the roadwork that the existing podcasting community has created via an unfettered, open-choice format,” says Derrick Oien, President of AMP. Oien is one of the earliest legal music podcasters, going back to the fall of 2004. His show is among many not yet listed in the iTunes directory. Oien adds, “It appears that Apple is more concerned with molding the community to their immediate commercial needs than with embracing this open community and adhering to an effective long term strategy. We have witnessed the early evolution of podcasting at a break-neck pace, partly because podcasting’s open format rapidly adapts to fit the needs of the community at large, and successful corporations will embrace rather than attempt to control this phenomenon. AMP continues to rapidly amass a large and dedicated collective audience, and we are working with people and organizations that approach podcasting in the spirit in which it was conceived. We look forward to working with them. At some point we expect that the support we receive daily from listeners and artists will get Apple's attention."

Rabble and Influx Insights

We received a mention in Influx Insights today in an article about the decline of Kodak and the rise of services like Flickr and Rabble. Check it out.

Wednesday, July 20, 2005

Gardening Thoughts - Heirloom Tomatoes Part Two

I am on the board of a company called Trusonic. They do really cool things with music and messaging in retail establishments. It's a great company with a bright future in a space ruled by basically two companies, Muzak and DMX.

One of the other guys on the board is Eric, who is the chairman & CEO of Pepperball. They make those nasty rubber bullets that basically mace you if you mess with the police.

At lunch we were talking about business stuff and other things when Eric said that the overcast skies were making it tough for his tomatoes to grow. What followed was a long conversation about the different varieties we are each growing, successes etc.

So far I am really pleased with where mine are. I have had two turn red so far and am looking at a summerful of some really good tomatoes.

Monday, July 18, 2005

During my many travels, I got to hang out with the guys from Nitro Records, which is the label of great bands like The Offspring, Rufio, The Letters Organize and the Aquabats. Great stuff and great guys. Sean, who is the head of A&R also is a contributor to an amazing MP3 blog at If you like great indie music, I would recommend checking it out. Now if we can just get them podcasting...

The $250 Million Radio Show #25

Just pushed out Show #25 here. Credits here.

MySpace Acquired

For over $540 Million. Wow. Check this out. Congrats to them.

Back from the East

Man was the weather bad in Boston and New York. Hot and Muggy. I have a backlog of posts for today and a podcast. It was worth mentioning that we got to hang out with Dan and Mike and Dave Harper on our trip, in addition to all the meetings that were directly related to business. In town for two days and then taking a much needed break to Jackson Hole on Wednesday.

Friday, July 15, 2005

AMP and Odeo

We signed an agreement with Odeo this week to work closely with them and AMP. We are excited by their vision and look forward to doing some really cool things with music podcasting together. More details to follow.

Wednesday, July 13, 2005

Tate Turns 3

So Tate turned 3 yesterday. I am bummed that it coincided with an important trip, but we are going to have a big celebration on Saturday and pretty much through the whole weekend. Wow has time flown by so fast.

Friday, July 08, 2005

4th of July Pictures

Here are the kids on the fourth.

Traveling Yet Again

Boston and NYC next week. Figure it will be a light week for blogging. I have a couple of things I need to post before I leave. I am thinking there is a 50/50 chance that happens.

Thursday, July 07, 2005

Blogger Image Upload

I have never used the Blogger web interface to put pictures on my blog. I have always used Flickr or Picassa. Here is one using the web.

Blogger on Rabble

Last night, after the many trials and tribulations that come with development, we rolled out Blogger integration with Rabble. What does that mean? Well for one, this post, as soon as it hits the Internet will be available for people who subscribe to my channel on Rabble to view. It makes it a really nice way to integrate what I do on the web with what I do on my phone. In addition when I post stuff on Rabble I can set it up to post on one of my Blogger blogs, including the pictures in my camera phone post. While posting from a phone to a website isn't earth shattering and many others have done it, the posts coming back from the web to the phone is to my knowledge certainly unique as is a lot of what Rabble does. If you are a Rabble user reading this and you use Blogger, please check it out. If you use one of the other blogging sites, we expect to make that available to you very soon.

Also if you haven't visited the Rabble website, we have finally rolled out login for existing users. Right now it is only set up for blogging synchronization, but soon you will be able to use it to do a lot of the things you do on Rabble from a PC. Except maybe carry it around in your pocket.

London Bombings

We have two good friends in London, Kerry and Sunil, who live in the Barbicon which is close to the city center/financial district. I have been unable to reach them thus far. I am fairly certain they are alright, but it would be nice to know that for sure. I feel terrible for all the people who are going through what many people I know from NYC went through on 9/11.

Wednesday, July 06, 2005

Rabble Announced by Verizon

We are really excited by the support we have been given by Verizon. The press release announcing Rabble can be found here.

Cool, Southern California, and Information Overload

James Governor from Redmonk mentioned my three uses of the word cool in one paragraph. Upon a second read I think I ended up squeezing 5 in two paragraphs. Ouch.

Ok so two things. First, I am from Southern California. I like to think that isn't all that obvious, but I use the words, dude, cool, and awesome rather generously in conversation. For the record I don't surf, but I do live in a surfer Mecca known as Cardiff by the Sea. I am not sure if it's that or the fact that I have spent a good chunk of my existence in or around various parts of southern California. I also do a really funny thing with the letter "O" when I say it in words. Sort of an elongated emphasis. I don't know why, but I can't seem to stop it.

Second, I find myself in a weird place in terms of my information consumption and regurgitation. I am working on a post about the Sidekick I just bought and the challenges of too much and too many ways of communication. I'll hopefully get that out later today. What I should have said about Where 2.0 is the following:

1. There is a fundamental shift in the development of wireless infrastructure and a growth in the ability of personal devices to capture and both produce and consume content. If you have read my posts or any of the Intercasting Corporation posts this is a consistent theme for me and people in our company.

2. The general release of advanced mapping APIs from the large search engines, and the capabilities that are already present and that will logically follow will create an overlay of location that will become a new and key metatag for information consumption.

3. This open approach towards location and mapping APIs, which is consistent with much of what you see in blogging and RSS platforms is very important in that people aren't leveraging the core platform to box out competition, rather they are allowing small startups, individuals, and even big companies to use the platform and provide context on top of an important layer of abstraction for the development of new services and products.

That, in my mind, is VERY COOL.

Tuesday, July 05, 2005

Live 8

Wow, what a terrible show from a TV perspective. I TIVO'd the show on ABC and I can't tell you how bad the show was. The only thing that really captured my attention was the Pink Floyd reunion, which I would have paid large sums of money to see the whole set.

Friday, July 01, 2005

Where 2.0 - Postscript

Where 2.0 was a really cool conference. I had a number of really cool meetings and I got to see some people I know like Russ (met once before) and Dan. I got to show a number of people Rabble and I got a lot of good response and feedback that I really appreciated. Dan showed me his beta which is very cool.

The big takeaway to me, and I obviously have a bias, was that the big players are taking an awesome approach to exposing their APIs for some cool mapping applications like the image I posted on the previous post. (Be sure to click on the image) Creating value in context is going to be key. Location materials will be broadly available and I think that there are going to be some really cool things happening as the big search guys and the wireless carriers roll out their location based apis. We obviously hope to help push the envelope on some of those things as it relates to what we are focusing on.

Rabble Meets Google Mashup

Rabble Meets Google
Rabble Meets Google,
originally uploaded by brikmaster.
A friend of ours did an overlay of Rabble users with the Google Map API that was released this last week. There are going to be a lot of really cool things that come out of stuff like this.