May, 2008

  • Steve Clayton

    Thinking Digital: Mark You Calendar



    I just wrote an email to Herb Kim and the team at Codeworks to congratulate them on a fantastic event last week in Newcastle. I sincerely hope it was the first of many Thinking Digital events.

    As I said to Herb in my email, in over 10 years at Microsoft that was one of the most professional and enjoyable events I’ve been involved in. The venue was first class, the speaker line-up probably the best in the UK this year and the whole thing just felt like a family event – everyone was accessible and there was great energy. Sure there were things that could have been better (food/power) but these are just teething issues. The key for me was the range and quality of speakers. Where else would you see

    thanks too to Ian Forrester for recording and posting all of these so quickly. You can also see my talk though the event video will likely be more useful as you’ll get to see the demos which are way more interesting than simply listening to me jabber on.

    When the dates for Thinking Digital are announced next year they’ll go straight in to my diary. I’d recommend you do the same and if you can, try to bag a speaking slot (Hugh, Scoble etc).

  • Steve Clayton

    How Is The Internet Feeling Right Now?



    Another great week draws to a close and I’ve had a fun week. The question of the blog post refers to a website I saw demonstrated by it’s creator yesterday.


    We Feel Fine is a truly amazing project I saw at the Thinking Digital conference yesterday and is the work of Jonathan Harris and Sepandar Kamvar. As I said in an earlier post, when Jonathan took to the stage I wasn’t sure what to expect. I certainly didn’t expect what he delivered which was an incredible talk about stories. 

    We Feel Fine visually depicts how the Internet is feeling right now. I know it sounds wacky but basically the site harvests human feelings from a large number of weblogs. Every few minutes, the system searches the world's newly posted blog entries for occurrences of the phrases "I feel" and "I am feeling". The result is a database of several million human feelings, increasing by 15,000 - 20,000 new feelings per day and they’re shown in a series of stunning interfaces.

    As Jonathan says,


    "We Feel Fine is an artwork authored by everyone – so go have a look at how everyone feels.”


    For the record I feel like the cat who got the cream.

  • Steve Clayton

    Hoping for Havaianas Weekend


    an explosion of colour from Havaianas

  • Steve Clayton

    Are You Building A Product For Robert Scoble?



    I didn’t realise Dare was back blogging but I found him (again) via Om Malik today. He’s written a thoughtful post about the Web 2.0 era and the difference between early adopter enthusiasm and mass market adoption. I live in the early adopter segment as do most of my friends and people I chat with on the web and we’re often caught in our own echo chamber of enthusiasm. I had the chance to listen to Carl Honore this morning and it reminded me how much – Carl is a self confessed geek but you realise that when he talks about the Slow Movement he’s figured out that there is life outside of the blogosphere and Twitter that Scoble and use early adopters live in.

    The part of Dare’s post that really intrigued me is his question to Web 2.0 companies


    "Are we solving a problem that everybody has or are we building a product for Robert Scoble?"


    It’s a good way for a Web 2.0 company to challenge themselves but like or not, Scoble is both a barometer and a guide. I blogged yesterday about the latter of these abilities. At times I find his barometer tips in to hyperbole mode and I suspected much when he said he cried about WorldWide Telescope. I was wrong though.

    At Thinking Digital this week I got to demo WWT and in doing so had to get myself familiar with it. I assumed I could play with it for 30 minutes, get to grips and that would be enough to allow me to demo for around 5 minutes. Again, I was wrong. This thing is simply stunning. I’m no budding astronomer and in fact have never held an interest in the planets, stars etc. However, 2 hours after starting to play with WWT I realised time had flown by (literally) and I was mesmerized. When I tell people, that maybe gets 2 or 3 of them to go take a look. When Scoble tells people it gets maybe 2 or 3 hundred/thousand to take a look.

    The point is that you shouldn’t build a product for Scoble but build a product Scoble will talk (or even cry) about. That’s not a bad strategy for helping you find out if you have the goods to cross the chasm. 

  • Steve Clayton

    4 Questions On Flip Video


    I’ve been busying myself with my new Flip Video courtesy of the Flip guys in the UK and I’m impressed. Dead simple to use, good quality and a durable piece of kit. The Flip guys answered 4 key questions I’ve been getting asked all week:


    1. When is it available in the UK  – 9th June
    2. How much - £100
    3. Is it flash storage – Yes, 2GB built in.
    4. Is it charged over USB – Yes

    I think it’s gonna be a hit. Katie, you need one…now!

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