December, 2008

  • Steve Clayton

    Live Mesh: The Killer App for Netbooks



    This weekend I was reading 7 Tools To Make Your WinXP Netbook Shine on GigaOm and commented there that they missed a trick IMHO by not including Live Mesh. Okay so Live Mesh as a service is still in beta but in my experience it’s rock solid and is a (perhaps THE) killer app for Netbooks. Here’s my thinking based on my experience of running a Samsung NC10 for a few weeks

    (note that you can now to peer to peer sync with Mesh that removes the 5gb limit we have on the cloud store – making both of these scenarios possible)


    Scenario 1:
    I’ll use myself as an example which may not be a-typical but should prove the point. I have 4 PC’s I regularly use. 1 Media Centre, 1 desktop machine at home with two monitors in my office, 1 laptop which use on the road and 1 Netbook which is potentially replacing the laptop.

    I have Live Mesh running on all of them which basically means I can grab the Netbook at any time, dash out of the house and know that I’ll always have my data with me as a sync all the folders I need. This includes my music archive from the Media Centre and my key work documents and folders from the desktop machine. Even if I didn’t get everything synced in time or forgot a folder or two, I can remotely access my machines at home through firewalls and across the Internet without any real fiddling.

    In a nutshell, Live Mesh allows my Netbook to be the ultimate companion machine as it’s grab and go with all of my data synched.


    Scenario 2:
    My current laptop may end up being relegated to acting as a backup device to the Netbook in which case I can simply sync the entire machine to the Netbook both to access all of my old data but backup anything new. The downside is this means the old laptop has to be permanently on of course until we get Wake On LAN type functionality in Live Mesh.


    Okay so granted I may not be a typical case but for many people I know who are buying Netbooks they are a second machine that is small, has great battery life and is cheap. For these folks, Live Mesh is perfect.


    Trust me, if you have a Netbook and another PC or Mac somewhere else you use get Live Mesh installed and I think you’ll love the result.

  • Steve Clayton

    Keep Calm And Carry On



    A couple of my pals (David Brain & Jas) have this image as their Twitter avatar and I almost bought a small print of it last weekend. Makes for a very cool rug in red or blue from Pedlars - hand-made exclusively in Uttar Pradesh, India

    £435 a pop…tempting

    For those who don’t know the history, I’m sure Tony Cocks can give us all the details but in brief, the image is from a 1939 poster that was issued by the Ministry of Information at the outbreak of World War II. Love that, Ministry of Information….I may rename my blog to that :)

  • Steve Clayton

    Hands Up Who Remembers This?



    Ah yes…much like the red phone box, the Routemaster London bus, this is a legendary part of the British establishment that adorned any public swimming pool in the country.

    Kindly refrain from petting always raised a laugh whereas all of the other were actually a typical part of any school swimming lesson I attended.

    The temptation to buy one from Pedlars may just be too tough. Would look great in the bathroom of Chez Clayton.

  • Steve Clayton

    Microsoft and BarCamp Liverpool


    Liverpool is holding their first BarCamp this weekend and I’m pleased to say I’ll be there to represent Microsoft. We were kindly invited by Thom and the team to sponsor and we’ve been able to do so with the help of my colleagues in Redmond (thanks Karl and Chris).

    If you’re going, I look forward to meeting you and if you’re not, it’s too late as the event is sold out!

    …oh and maybe I’ll find out where my SuperLamBanana is!

  • Steve Clayton

    BarCamp Liverpool & Microsoft



    As previously mentioned I’m off to BarCamp Liverpool this weekend and this page will act as a landing site for attendees who follow the URL that will be on their beer tokens :) There are a number of useful resources for BarCamp folks i think/hope


    • Get a tonne of Microsoft software for a few quid with BizSpark. Tools, servers, database and our cloud platform. there are some entry criteria but if you want access to literally thousands of pounds of software, this is the program for you. It’s not just software though, there is also support - via MSDN (two support incidents per startup) access to Network Partner and global visibility - via BizSparkDB.


    • Microsoft's open source project hosting web site is CodePlex. Start a new project, join an existing one, or download software created by the community. Basically tonnes of code, ready to share and be shared. Microsoft? yeah….serious.


    • If you’re interested in cloud computing stuff, Windows Azure and Azure Services Platform may be of interest Windows in the cloud, SQL, identity, storage, compute, social networking building blocks. In a nutshell this is what I’d play with if I wanted to build the new Facebook….which I don’t incidentally.



    I’ll keep adding more stuff here but I also wanted to add two things which may be common questions I get this weekend to answer the question or observation about why the hell I’m there. 3 reasons

    1. I love Liverpool
    2. I love Microsoft
    3. I love getting outside of the echo chamber/borg

    please don’t shoot me…. :)

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