December 15, 2007

They're so fond of doing Mashups for fun...

...that they forget it's not always LEGAL or RIGHT.

Taking someone's work and including it in something you think is funny without asking them is something I've done. I admit it. I'm not sure where, but I'm sure, on this blog, I've done it. Probably in the thrill of a creative streak, combining this with that -- after all it's on the Internet, isn't it?

The thing is, if someone said, "Hey that's mine, take it down or give me credit (or whatever they decide to tell me to do)," well then I do it. I don't blow them off because it's convenient and I'm getting a lot of hits off of their work.

Why do you think Kat Herding and Jeremy Outerbridge are no more? We PAID for the stock images, and we still took them down when the photographer emailed us that he was pissed at how they were being used. Could have fought it, sure. Especially since they were paid for and used without breaking the terms and conditions as we saw them. But the artist wanted them down, so down they came. Bye bye.

I'm with Lane Hartwell on this dumb bubble video that included her photo without attribution or permission. She's a professional photographer - like a professional musician - who makes her money off what she shoots through her lens.

It reminds me of the rich kids who pay to play cover tunes in venues that don't even bother to pay ASCAP dues -- the kids can afford to do that because mommy and daddy are paying for college. They get chicks and get to feel like a real musician for their twenty minutes of fame. Then they graduate and become insurance salesmen or Web 2.0 entrepreneurs.

But these same clubs get used to having free music, and the standard is lowered for everyone. The people who get hurt are the REAL artists, who can't afford to play for free, because they do what they do as their LIVING not as something that's a kick to do at a weekend get together.

It's the same with Lane. She can't give away her work - it's how she makes a living.

I blog for free. Yes. And I make my money from writing. Ergo, you wouldn't see me letting a company use a brochure I'm doing for one company in something another company is doing -- let alone for FREE -- just because they think it might add a little something to their project. HELL no.

Brian Solis does a good job introducing us to the lady behind the lens, who Techcrunch's comment brigade of testicularly-challenged web 2.Zeros would prefer to mindlessly savage, rather than use their brains for five seconds and think beyond this one incident. And what the hell is Mike doing talking trash on Matthew's post about Shelley, who provides a careful analysis on her blog? (Though I don't agree with Matthew, who takes umbrage with Lane's decision to issue a legal take-down, I think he handled Mike's ad hominems well.)



December 14, 2007

upper west side

why is my car running while I am making pizza?

George was like: you left the doors open on the van.
I was like: no I didn't i made sure they were shut (because one kind of likes to re-open itself and if you don't watch it all the way, you don't know but it might have opened itself).
And he said he closed them but I still don't know how they opened.
I think i did it accidentally on the "KEY" that comes with this van, which is more like a flash drive looking device, without a shaft like keys have, but more like a usb looking thing.

you can open the doors using the remote, and I probably pressed it while making a snack for jenna's backpack in the kitchen.

So I'm pressing all these little buttons on the key to see can I actually open doors from afar--no idea really what the one that shows a circular motion does, or the one next to it, but I decide that I could have easily double-pressed the door-open button.

The next time I look out the window I see that the van is RUNNING. As in it's started and running and nobody's around it. omgzbbq what?

And I'm like the car is RUNNING George.

So we stared out the window for a minute and then I went and got in to see how this could be happening--this keyless startup trick it was doing. It turns out that the circular-motion button on the Key-Flash-Drive-Looking-Not-a-Key-At-All actually starts the car remotely. Like while you're in the house brushing your teeth or making stew.

Did I mention that dual DVD players mean kids can watch different shows on the two different screens that fold down? And the driver can watch too on the dashboard as long as you're parked. But when you are on the move, the Grand Car-Van is smart enough to make you turn off That's So Raven on the front dash.


December 13, 2007

you know you always look like crap...

...when you volunteer at your child's school and one of the moms you know there says, "Wow, you clean up nice!" (jokingly but not really), you remember a little too late that you should use a mirror sometimes.

Yes I do frequent carpool in ponytail-sweatpant-total-lard-butt-wearing fashion on most days. So what's your point?

Today was different though. I think that driving the computer mobile (it has a 20 gig hard drive for crying out loud) is a transforming experience.

Behind that leather wheel and that ultradashboard, I am no longer an in-debt, barely-project-completing, crockpot-managing, venture-"value"-(yes it's the model)-van driving woman. I am Commander of the Grand Car-Van. Chief of Work and Play. Director of Satellite Transmissions for the State of Georgia and local Curves.

The difference is subtle, I know, but worth noting.

Carpool Door

...that's what I call the automatic door on the right side. no reason to use extra syllables (au-to-ma-tic) to describe something so efficient.

Had fun tuning into Sirus channel 53, Soultown, after I dropped Jenna off. This satellite radio thing is off.the.hook. I'm wondering if I can retain the feeling of this experience after its over by getting satellite radio and riding a bike.

as if.

Anyway, we are still enjoying the van, and after it's gone I'm pretty sure I won't have anything to blog about.

I wrote long ago that bloggers are worthy of sponsorships like Olympic athletes - like my electric bill is sponsored by ToysRUs, and my health insurance is sponsored by GE, and of course my transportation could be sponsored by Dodge, and so on. That would mean that for a year you wouldn't have to worry about your expenses, because you'd be wearing the team logos of Kleenex and Johnson&Johnson and so on, like a race car driver, except instead of racing you are actually blogging.

k so that's not exactly happening, but still. This week I'm pretending it is.


December 12, 2007

Well that doesn't seem fair

i am so not kidding

like it really does ALL of these things.

Named by Matchstick as one of Atlanta's 50 Most Influential Women

Today, the 2008 Dodge Grand Caravan, Tomorrow Fast Company*!

The valet guys from Eagle Parking showed up with the shiny new dark blue Caravan (which Jenna continues to pronounce Car-Van) -- essentially a minivan on steroids -- at about 2:30. I wish someone would have tipped me off about the picture taking as I MIGHT have showered or at least worn a less ratty t-shirt, as if I own any.

The valet team was very courteous and somewhat knowledgeable. They showed us where all the bells and whistles were in the van, which BTW are enough to make any child silent for a day-long (at least) road trip. I was glad I caught the guys before they left the driveway, because I noticed I couldn't get any actual SOUND through the Satellite TV, the Satellite radio, the DVD, the CD, or regular FM radio. Disney Channel and Cartoon Network played on the THREE screens (counting the driver's), but the speakers weren't working.

Really no point in having a TV on wheels if you have no sound.

They spent about 40 minutes trying to figure out why the heck there was no sound, including a call back to the marketing company running the program. They called me personally -- I have to say they were respectful and open to my ideas on how to fix the situation. My best idea was something like: I want the sound to work.

One of the guys got the idea to do a ctrl+alt+del on the whole van. He disconnected then reconnected the battery. I used to have to do that to my Dell, but my Dell didn't have any wheels or airbags. That's one reason I went back to Mac. But I digress. But what do you know, it worked--we had sound!

We whooped and hollered because by now I'm punch-drunk with the excitement of this not-my-new-car and Jenna is home from school and drewling over the lean-back seats, the table and swivel chairs, the satellite TV and radio, the wireless headphones, the remote, and on and on and on.

So child feedback so far is that the car would be perfect if it had a shower, a refrigerator, a dance floor, and a hot tub.

Adult drivers (one mom, one dad) so far weigh in with differing favorites. Mom-friend-#1 loved the front windshield, which gives the illusion or reality of being able to see in surround vision--like, no blind spots. I like the driveway cam that shows you what you're about to run over in the stealth-green-night-vision-commando video display on the dash. And how roomy it is. And how quiet it is to drive. And that it came with a full tank of gas and my chevyventurevaluevan was on E.

One friend's dad gave it a spin with us - he was surprised by the pickup -- it's got power -- and liked the navigation features. He was transfixed on the GPS POIs - points of interest -- whereby the GPS lady tells you how to get to all the cool places you've already been to but it's nice to know she's with you anyway. That's the feature for people with abandonment issues. I think it's standard in the U.S.

The kids asked if they could have a sleepover in the garage before we have to give the car back. I thought that might not be a good idea, but did offer to drive everyone to basketball practice tomorrow.

*sorry. scoble reference. heh.


Jenna's gonna faint (Or, Like Scoble With an iPhone)

So, the seemingly-spam comment left by Erica last week was the real deal. The one about the car. The new van. The Blogger test drive program for the dodge grand caravan 2008, to be precise, which I get to drive for free for a week. I feel like Shakespierce at the Miss Tattoo Universe Contest. I'm telling you.

Yours truly was selected as one of 50 Influential Women of Atlanta (hitherto referred to as IWAT, mofos) -- essentially bloggers with kids -- to test drive this with THESE features for a week.

The Eagle Parking guys just called and they're on the way over with it.

Since I talked to Matchstick, the folks handling getting bloggers on board, Jenna has been all I Hope We Win the Car! After which I have to explain to her we are not winning a car. We still have our abused chevy venture value van with crank windows. We are ONLY driving this new computer on wheels (they call it a livingroom on wheels) for a week. At which point she is all Mom That IS Winning!

I'm all like, They're Here!!

(more soon)


youtube seating


December 11, 2007

can someone please tell me for the love of pete...

how you UNFRIEND someone in facebook when you're sick of getting 8 million updates from their comings and goings?

thank you.



my comment:

I used to be a fan of the idea of a mechanism for saving the best of the web - for making our work accessible after bloggers have died, to be sure the good stuff lived on. A sort of museum might be nice, but that’s not what Dave is talking about. Museums don’t feature me because I say I’m important. There is a process to becoming worth preserving. It’s more than technology and dollars.

Maybe we SHOULD have to lose one another here.

Maybe it will keep us human.

Maybe if we keep one another alive here, we’ll soon be twittering along for a year before we realize someone’s dead.

Maybe we can get rid of grieving altogether, get back to work, keep posting away, as long as we know that our dead friends’ site has been preserved in plastic, encased in gold. That’d be super!
Maybe it’s up to the family. Maybe they want to decide I was an asshole they want to rip down my site. Maybe they should have that choice.

Dave wants to be on vinyl: The best of Dave Winer, collector’s edition, double CD - as if no dave will ever come again. Dave will come again. And again. We are a blip, no matter how many quotes, how many links. There is something honest in others keeping our history. (Or letting it go).

Let the business model of dead blogger books write itself–it doesn’t need help from the top.
Our work belongs to our estates, doesn’t it? Dave wants to plunk down a hundred grand to be sure he’s always here, calling people names, calling for posses. Super. The rest of us — the ones who can’t afford the super deluxe gold coffin edition of blogging — we win the prize: We get to disappear.

The guy with the most money and best algorithm wins. It has been ever thus. Old boss new boss. And so it goes.

Comment by Jeneane Sessum — December 11

For Anita

Photo: February 10, 1998.

The words are there, pixels turned friends, it's what we've always done here. This web of stories is beginning to outlive its early weavers.

The compounded loss - there are no words for this.

Loss is multiplied by the number of people we've fallen in love with here.

Where do we put their words; freezing them -- that is what books are for. So what do we do with voices written across time and space, now quieted - reverse chronology, archives as punctuation, their stories from now on written backward in time.

Hushed to rest, I ache for their voices, wonder how to traverse the land of the living and dying Web in real-time.

How do I grieve the absence of a voice: silence where her words should be, his wit not linked to, the missing objection I've learned to anticipate.

Where do I put the missing piece of someone else's day that has so long been a piece of my own day? Where do my friends go, the ones I've come to know from the inside out? How do I say goodbye to you when I have never brushed your skin, no scent, no surface?

No one knows you better than I do,
And I have never known you at all.

That remains the paradox of the web.

That is what makes the sadness of losing you so much more.


Peace, Anita

It doesn't seem possible. As Shelley has said, Anita was such a presence in the web we knitted at the beginnings of blogging, it is hard to believe she is gone. I am so sorry - thoughts are with her husband and family.

Thank you, Anita, for showing us how it's done.


December 09, 2007

back to basics

A friend gave us a crock pot she wasn't using not too long ago. Now I'm getting into the habit of throwing a bunch of stuff in it in the morning and NOT having to cook dinner because it cooks itself.

This crockpot thing rocks. The only problem is that I find most of what I make in it tastes the same. I usually make a roast, and throw in the obligatory potatoes-carrots-and-onions, along with some bullion, maybe a little onion soup mix, spices, some diced tomatoes, a little cooking sherry. Whatever's around. But no matter how I vary the ingredients, it basically always tastes like pot roast.

Variation tonight: when i took out the meat i put Bone Sucking Sauce on it. Yes actual name. SO I turned it into barbeque beef. GO ME! It was reallly good in a meaty sort of way.

In the old days I had a crock pot and even when I made sauce or chili, it tasted like pot roast. That's why I didn't have a crock pot for a long time. Or pot roast.

THAT IS TO SAY if you have any recipes for Fast Easy Crockpot Dinners that DO NOT taste like pot roast (because I've got that recipe DOWN), please point me to them.

k thanks.

wind sucking sucking wind

Scobleizer Scobleizer mkrigsman's post is at the top of TechMeme saying I don't have a clue about Enterprise Software. Nick Carr says mkrigsman doesn't have one.
Scobleizer Scobleizer florianseroussi wants a Twitter party in Paris this week. Oh, THAT is a given! All week long! Heheh.
Scobleizer Scobleizer I'm going to miss Marc Orchant's smiling face. My thoughts to Sue and family. What a shocker, sucked the air right out of me.


Such sad news on Marc Orchant's passing. Thinking of Marc and his family this evening.