December 31, 2005

tumbling grief

Trained. That's what it is. Early training in loss that rests just so on the bridge of my nose, my lens on the world. I learned long ago, it's that or nothing.

No different this New Year's Eve. Between Web2.0 and firefox, between Jarvis and Searls, between all the links we weave together, are raw wounds that have nothing to do with technology, nothing to do with business, that have everything to do with love and the slicing pain of loss.

And there's more where that came from, as they say when they want you to know how bad it can get.

Been catching in my throat all week, a prelude to the year ahead, some losses-to-be already in release mode, my alpha grief, three months, six months, waiting for me to come, to test me, and to measure, a plan of loss with milestones marked by a bowed head and soaked, crumpled tissues.

I noticed it two days ago when Jenna climbed in bed with me to talk about 2006; she understands the closing and opening of things in a way I never could. As she spelled out our new year's eve plans complete with yogurt and chocolate soy milk, I snapped back into my father's skin.

I'm him looking at me at six, a little younger than she is now, not much, and at the same time I'm me sitting with him, his paisley pajamas, the smell of so-sick mixed with fresh, pressed cotton sheets; my mother would settle for nothing less, even in his dying.

I am both of us at once; I can't breathe from the sensation of it.

Under the fine blade of a surgeon's knife, I open to what he felt then, tender, destroyed, hopeful, not letting go with his eyes, index finger against my cheek, an elbow propping his weak frame onto familiar feather pillows.

In an instant, I know his unknowing.

I am him knowing the largeness of everything about to be missed, every tick of every clock, every movement forward. Every loose hair wound around the bristles of my little-girl hairbrush, every ribbed collar of every faded t-shirt I would ever wear, every drop of every glass that would shatter and need sweeping, every eyelash brushed away with every tear.


The enormity of what is about to be lost -- that, perhaps, is the death in dying.

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Musick: Laughing Interview

George has been laughing over this video for nearly a month now, so it's about time he posted it. Go have yourself a merry little chuckle...I sent it to Michael OCC because it had his name written all over it.

And if you know WTF they're talking about, that would really wrap up 2005 nicely for my husband. Who's still laughing. A month later.

You Oughta Be In Pixels...

George on pixel smarts -> may our daughter follow in this young man's footsteps.

Holy New Years Eve Around the World, Batman!

Mega thanks to Sheila Lennon for the pointer to radio guy Lou Joseph's running web guide to the galaxy of new year's eve around the world--already underway! Somewhere in this list, Sheila found and put a link up to New Year's Eve 1964 (turning 65). Oh man Oh man Oh man Oh man!!!!! (i think i'm crying.)... Go Japan. Go Darwin. Sheila says:
Where in the world do you want to be tonight? is the beginning of their list of links likely to be worth checking out, beginning at 1000 UTC (5:00 a.m. EST) with Wallis and Futuna in the South Pacific. After a dazzling brain dump about reception options, Lou confesses, "I have never heard anything from Wallis Island."

Go to medianetwork and refresh often!

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Firefox and IE - room for both?

I'm back to using firefox as my default browser, and holy crap is THIS what happens when you have an open API? I mean, is this the open source thing at work--because you should SEE number of little add-on applets or extensions or whatever you want to call these plugin thngs that are available for Firefox. It's changing the way I work. No lie. It makes writing, referencing, reading, all of that 100 times faster and easier. And it's like--uh--free. And the best part for me, because here is where open source software has always sent me running, it takes like zero knowledge to install the things. You just double click them, at least the ones I'm using, and they go sit where they're supposed to sit, waiting for you to use them.
So, it's not like firefox is the web 2.0-ey thing, right, it's like all of these little plugins and addons that come from hell i don't even know where, I just run into someone taking about Gresemonkey on one blog, then about the web comment plugin (do you HAVE this thing? GET this thing--it's like having Technorati on a postage stamp) on another blog, and somewhere I heard about Fire FTP (which I have to say doesn't excite me as much as IE's innate FTP ability does, but it's easy and free), and all kinds of little treats.
I'm like a puppy with a box of multi-flavored milkbones. DAMN!
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AKMA, Margaret & Family, Have a Great Day Off

AKMA and Margaret are taking a day offline for family time. Sounds like a plan. He's left us some breadcrumbs to enjoy while he's off. ENJOY!!!
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December 30, 2005

12 Hours of 2005 Recap

A recap of the year is way, way to big for me. So I thought I might just recap the last 12 hours and call that my kiss off, i mean send off, to 2005.

It's almost new year's eve and I don't even know how that happened because I've been working so fast and furious that I feel like I have to visit the bathroom every 24 minutes.
Some business people would say that talking about such things online is in poor taste. I think they may be right. Maybe I should have said pee. Piss? Urinate? I could go on.

Number 2: I blame that albert fellow, the primary reason for which is that his head never stops, nor do his IMing fingers, nor do his rush of ideas and I'm all: albert, what are you on. And he's all: heh.

It's been fun thinking out of the box these last couple weeks, trying to demonstrate value, which I supposed would be obvious if I could get albert comped on some bio protein bars, since this is all he eats. ever. And so I wrote to genisoy, to let them in on the secret of our geeky super hero, and if they are a smart company, albert becomes their mr. wheaties, they put out a protein bar in the shape of a bubble, and then albert tells me he's sure i've been sent from heaven--to translate, it's like you or me getting an open ticket to Ruth Chris Steakhouse for a year--but even I admit this protein bar thing is a longshot.

You know, some people don't see the potential in things.

Other moments of my odd day have had me deep in thought: (read, playing polly pockets with jenna) and thinking, thinking, thinking while overdosing on this killer chicken soup i made last night which I can't get enough of--remind me to give you the short cut recipe at the end of this post, okay, and if you're going to CESCamp, could you bring a pot for the geekfest unconference taking shape--I've told Mary Lu I'd shove her a bowl through IM because it smelled so good, but we tried it and all it did was make my laptop smell like a bus.

Speaking of CESCamp, Doc thinks it would be fun, Robert's down with it, and others are signing in and on, so if you're going to CES, PLEASE visit the wiki - it's your wiki as they say - and toss your name down as a yes, and be sure to add any special talents, gadgets, or gizmos you might be bringing, your choice for a venu, and/or the suggested occupancy of your rental car.

Want to learn to swallow fire? Uncover the secrets of Doc's pool? Find out the difference between Web2.0 and Jello(R) brand geletin? These are some of the many questions that just might be answered at CESCamp 2006!

I've been writing a lot about business, I know, and some of you are verklempt about that, as you tell me in mail, but i really think I can make a go of this write about business FROM who you are, not just write about business-as-usual-as-usual, so if clients are nervous about that, well then, don't be, or do be, or do bee a do bee. I assure them that everyone who comes here is a trusted friend. (heee.)

Worst comes to worst I start a 40033th blog to further segment the dimensions of myself into categories that the mainstream blogworld appreciates. Or you all tell me fah! and go away. Or is it Bah? Feh? I'm not sure. All my bass are belong to you.

IN other business personal news, we're soft launching a blog for ElimiTaste Gum's Matt Willer, who is a funny smart CEO of an indiegum company in an industry famous for the Juicy Fruit Blog, so I'm pretty sure that we'll be raising the bar over at Matt and ElimiTaste have been friends-of-bloggers for longer than it's been cool, sending free gum and gas money just because. Gonzo is as gonzo does.

Does it seem like I have my head all over the net?

Yes. And on the homefront too.

Jenna said to me today: "Mom, what's wrong with your skulp!?" Meaning my skull. Or scalp. I wasn't sure and I'm still not if she was referring to the far and distant look in my eye, or the head scratching (okay hair pulling) I've become prone to these last several weeks.

What is wrong with my skulp?

In other news, if you're an Atlanta-area blogger and you have a penchant to be on the blogads network, could you email me? I'm setting up an Atlanta mini-network, starting small, and I don't have much ooomph -- only a couple of invites -- but heck if my inbox is inundated with a rush of Atlanta bloggers who display that "Every Day Is An Opening Day" (alternatively, "the city too busy to hate") spirit, we'll do something interesting, start SXSE or something, get sued, throw down some R&B, fusion, and old school funk as a challenge to this alternative rock and whooptiedoo stuff we're sure to be hearing in Austin (appologies to all 8,003 musicians performing at sxsw).

You know. Most anything's possible.

[[Update--I forgot to include 'Jeneane's short-cut, not-thrifty, for people IMing with albert all the time' chicken soup recipe! Okay, ready? This is for a BIG batch in a stock pot. First, you get four cans of chicken broth, cut up carrots, parsnips that you dice kind of like the carrots, and chopped celery, or if you don't work with albert, cut it up yourself. You buy two of those roasted chickens that they have on sale at Target (one of the Targets with food) for like $4.00 each sometimes), and either 1 big package of egg noodles or 2 packages of cheese tortollini. You take it all home. Chop what needs chopping. Put the broth, plus the same amount again of hot water into a stock pot, add the veggies and start it to boiling. I add salt at this point. I like salt. I make no appology. Next, debone all that roasted chicken, and after about a half hour of a slow-rolling boil, throw it in the pot too, except save a couple wings here and a couple of legs there for another whole chicken dinner (that's what your used coolwhip containers are for). Let it simmer for an hour or so, til vegetables are tender. Toward the end, boil your noodles or tortollini in a separate pot, drain, and throw in for the last 10 - 15 minutes. Turn it off, put some in a bowl, and eat it until you are completely sick of it. Don't give any away. Just keep eating it. Freeze what you can't eat.]]

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Stealing My Google AdCents

I've been hearing periphery talk of the latest internet "thuggery" (hat tip jeff jarvis and mayor bloomberg) trend since I saw Om Malik's Wholesale Blog Plagerism...Alert post. (updated info now). I've said here before, that while I hate the crime, I do admire the nimble criminal tactics of spammers because they seem to always land out in front of us. That's why it's kind of amazing that no one though to do this kind of content looting sooner, especially since we all roll it out there for them 24/7 in our feeds.
Wonder what Google's going to do about it, if they really even NEED to do anything about it. I wouldn't expect them to rush out with a massive effort to protect us from having others make cents off our site content, because that's not enough of a business case.
I might expect them to do something because it makes the model around the adsense program worth about--oh--less than nothing.
Even fewer bloggers will bother particpating (I stopped a while back and I'm only $3 away from getting my lucartive $100 payment--THANKS GOOGLE.) But more importantly, the corpo types who thought they were hip putting adword ads on blogs will get wind that "something" is amiss, and that's all it ever takes to send them running. And the truth is, with google's ability to shape-shift into new revenue models, if they decide not to do something, then them's the breaks for all of us.
P.S., I found four sites running my posts with google ads in the last two days. That's why I'm a little miffed.
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December 29, 2005

Supply and Demand and $500/night.

The CES Blog 2006 verifies the rather, uh, hefty hotel room prices for CES-goers who who didn't "plan ahead." Can anyone really plan ahead these days? I can't plan twenty-two seconds ahead. There's the model though: build around the unplanned.
Still OUCH!
Delegates who haven't yet arranged for lodging should expect to spend more than $350 for a hotel room, as a simple search on one of the major travel websites show (Eg: Travelocity or Expedia – I boycott Orbitz because they are inaccurate, consistently showing low rates that upon booking turn out to be sold out).
The 3.5-star Hilton, conveniently located next to the Las Vegas Convention Centre where CES will be headquartered, charges a hefty $499 for a Thursday night stay. The 2-star Howard Johnson outbids them with $534. Most other hotels are simply sold out.
Get thee to the wiki if you have any deals, options, or bathtubs to offer.
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December 28, 2005

CES room shortage - viva las vegas.

Dave points to Doc, who points to Mary's new place, and here's Albert too: All have been having trouble finding rooms in Vegas for CES (warning: loud annoying Flash into) January 4-8.

Vitaliy is working on a WIKI for folks to coordinate around--and in the mean time Albert says GoldStrike is about 20 minutes outside of Vegas and has reasonably priced rooms.

Glad I'm watching from the cheap seats!

UPDATE: Vitaliy has the unofficial CES wiki for hotel info, roommate matches, meetups, side gatherings, etc... Have at it.

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I got to wondering...

Do you have more kids than you do blogs and struggle with finding that oh-so-special quiet time to write (I mean think staight)? Or are you overwhelmed with 20 blog mouths to feed while your realworld kid eats oreos in front of the TV?

I'll go first. In comments.

Hello World

Clustrmaps are cool. Who are you, all of my friends? Hello.

One Question for Microsoft

Now that you hijacked me away from firefox with a single click of the mouse that has me regretting my spasm, how do I unmake IE my default browser?

One Question for David Weinberger

David, we've written ourselves into existence. Now what?

Blogging at 100 Bloggers

Hey, I saw some friends there. So I said me too. And I'll make new ones. That's how it's supposed to work.

December 27, 2005


How can it be that Jenna and I spent TWO DAYS before the holidays came organizing and cleaning out her room, donations for charity and all, only to have to do the exact same thing today? I don't understand. Every time I make a step ahead in teaching her to be diligent about her room, she backslides an acre.
I now blame Polly Pocket. These eensy beensy weensy dolls with their plastique clothing are everywhere I look. Polly's are So Small that you can stick them anywhere--just ask my kid. Today we scoured the house and think we've found all of them that she owns. 23. No child should own 23 polly pockets. And no, she didn't get them all from me. It's what she buys when she earns her own money, and it's what everyone knows she loves.
I have to make it stop.
Really though, the dolls aren't the problem. Have you ever seen a Polly Pocket shoe? Do you know what a polly pocket shoe is? It's smaller than the wing of a lady bug and made out of the same plastique as the clothing, so one can easily slip between your toes and you don't notice it for a month unless you have the highest standards of hygeine. Don't look at me.
Isn't there a toy legislature somewhere telling these manufacturers you can't make doll shoes smaller than the head of a pin? Her Singulair chewables are bigger than these things.
Anyway, we managed to find dozens of Polly clothes, and the 23 dolls, her career clothing (thanks AKMA and Margaret!), and any number of dogs with their own plastique coats, stuffed under her desk, bed, dresser. I am happy to report that the Polly village is now living happily inside of the wooden toybox where the whole lot of them should have been all along.
Next Up: UNDER the bed...
Send help if I don't make it back.
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Albert on Web 2.0

Using Firefox's new on-the-fly blog commenting feature -- where I saw Albert joined the Web 2.0 discussion with some good thoughts.

On a sort of the same topic, every time I make a mistake and open a program that has IE associated with it (i think it was one of my photo preview thingys), it asks me so FAST if I want IE to be my default browser (No I don't but I click too FAST and then it is again even though i thought I uninstalled it), that BOOM, there's IE always opening again. That shit should be illegal. Don't hijack me with a dialog box like that.Anyway, this is what I was meaning about being free from menus. This little Firefox "Add Comment" box stealthly opens when you visit a page and you can see who's commented on it.

How sweet is that?


Lisa Williams remembers her Dad.
“And we’re off! Like a herd of dirty turtles!” is what he used to say when starting out on a car trip. Even if it was a short car trip.

He looks and sounds like a wonderful person, Lisa. I know you miss him.

Lisa Stone on Mommyblogging

Lisa points to a great interview she did with the mommybloggers, as well as a wonderful guest column. It's not always easy blogging-as-a-mom, but I'm sure cat owners feel the same way.

"...Mommybloggers are weaving some of the Web's best stories by and about women -- women who, let's not forget, control 80 percent of household spending. That's right, from the family car to the computer (you geeks, you) to the Legos (sigh) to the Pampers.

"Let's look at another medium as an example: Right now, the top revenue-generating news and entertainment shows on television are by moms for moms. Look at NBC's The Today Show starring Katie Couric: By a mom for moms, and the top-rated morning news show for ten straight years. How about Oprah, a daily conversation by the-mother-of-us-all for moms. There's ABC's The View, which is a coffee klatch of moms, mugs included. Don't forget ABC's Desperate Housewives, the made-up moms (take that any way you like). Hell, ABC's World News Tonight just put an anchormom, Elizabeth Vargas, in Peter Jennings' old chair, for heaven's sake!

"This is great news for mommybloggers because all these famous shows are in a money-making medium (television) where the numbers are dropping. Their problem is that us viewers now use the Internet more than we watch TV or read magazines. Instead of watching other people talk, we're getting our own word out. That used to mean message boards, the best place to hold online conversations. But now that we have our own personal printing presses -- blogs! -- better watch out. And the world is watching. This is why I've often thought that Dooce is more than a brilliant blogger. She's a metaphor for what's happening to the media and the value of what mommybloggers are writing--to advertisers as well as to readers. She's the
Saturday keynote speaker at the SXSW conference. That says a great deal." (Read
the rest
of the interview.

Lisa is right about about the growing clout of the mommyblogger brigade. So, if mommybloggers are cool with being called mommybloggers (i would say i am one sometimes, just like I'm a PR blogger sometimes, a tech blogger sometimes, a poetry blogger sometimes, and whatever else you want to call me save late for pizza), why does it piss so many women and men off?

First, the very subject matter of children can ignite a firestorm among the bloggers--the SAHMs vs. the Working Moms vs. the Childless By Choice, vs. the Queen Mother. Everyone gets into the action and I've seen it escalate until someone takes down their blog or makes another kind of dramatic statement that says, you all suck!

That's why blogher is important, and what Lisa's doing is important. It brings these issues into a forum where people get together in the same room(s) and come to know our many dimensions, to know one another as people first with rich life experiences, including motherhood.

In reality, most moms blogging blog about more than being a mom; but their perspective -- where they blog FROM -- is the heart of a mom.

Plus we almost always have extra Kleenex with us, so we're handy to have around.


No, I Invented Podcasting

Gary Turner's relating early podcasting underground activites, but in his reminiscing, he forgot that he really was one of the first podcasters. Gary, remember in 2002 when we bloggers would call into your work voicemail and you'd broadcast us back on your blog? Helloooo. Sans enclosure tags, but so? This was before Blogger's Audblog too.

And the wayback machine gives us your compilation page from late 2002/early o3 with messages from the following

Jeneane Sessum
Marek J
Marti Roell
Sharo O'Neill
Shelley (Burningbird) Powers
Frank Paynter
Ryan Irelan
Anita Bora - Poor quality
Chris Locke - Losing it
Michael O'Connor Clarke

And since I was the first to leave you a blog message, that means "I invented podcasting."

Yah, we were casting alright.

Wikipedia That.


And a little something because Doc is usually right. Okay always.

Doc encouraged me to get my "To Blog or Not To Blog" white paper out of PDF and into HTML - well, so, i sort of blogged it here.

Now, what should I do with the rest of the site?

Hmmm, have some ideas for adding stuff. You?

Qumana's Sweet Design

Posting this from Qumana, a nicely designed blog writing tool that lets you write in one place and publish to the plethora of blogging tools. One great new-to-me feature is the Tag field under Title and Categories that REMINDS you, and makes it easy, to put your tags in--something I have been forgetting to do as long as David Weinberger's been tagging. Cool!

Am I supposed to put a comma between tagged terms/words? I never know.

Plethora? Qumana? Blogging? Tagging? Yes, golly, it is web 2.0!

Now, when's the "Export From Blog" widget coming? ;-)

Okay, pushing Post Blog now...

Oh, just noticed, they have a blog too.

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December 26, 2005

Free Me from the Desktop Too.

Thanks to Om Malik for giving us a stocking full of goodies tonight, including a link to Zoho Writer, YUMMY! I've used Writely, and I have to say, web-based word processors (antiquated term but smart positioning against MS from Zoho) are more in line with what I was asking for in my plea to be free from menus. Free me from menus, free me from the desktop. These fastcos will get to dynamic language-based features before MicroSoft will. It's a given.

With Zoho Writer joining Writely, easily accessible through Firefox, MicroSoft is losing another important foothold on the desktop--especially considering MS Word hasn't done anything new of note in--oh, a couple of years now?

As a writer, I'm like a kid on summer vacation using these tools with my colleagues on the outside. Inside the enterpise, barriers to change are always higher. For how long though?

Don't miss Om's "Best of GigaOm" [PDF], a free e-book (awesome design) of the most widely read, most commented 0n posts of GigaOm. Read the whole entry and hit the Donation button.


And I can use every minute of it.

Thanks Doc for telling us about the extra second we get this year!

ROI Beauty

thx for the pointer, bro.

Web 2.0 Roundabout

Dion Hinchcliffe has a pretty thorough wrapup of who's saying what about Web 2.0 - and lookie me among the boyz, in good company with Marc and Stowe:
If you take the temperature of the status quo, the inestimable Dave Winer currently has the mike with his Busted, Explained article, but numerous others have chimed in recently including quite famously Richard MacManus, who was then called out by Mike Arrington of TechCrunch, then Joshua Porter went on to explained why he still uses the term, ad infinitum. It was Russell Shaw however that was the one who really stirred the pot to considerable effect, but even he was then answered in kind by his very own Joe McKendrick. Folks like Stowe Boyd have come out about this latest Web 2.0 brouhaha very level headed, as have a number of others who seem to have some perspective including Marc Cantor, Jeneane Sessum, and Frederico Oliveira. Now Shaw has come back swinging and shows no sign of flagging in his attempt to assert that Web 2.0 has no clothes. An attempt almost certain to fail, I might add, though we'll probably make yet another trip around the blogosphere mulberry bush.

If Web 2.0's your bag, check out the post and related posts.

See also the 05 "Best of List" - and of course I'd add BubbleShare. ;-)

Blog Memories 2002

Remember when? We had already lived a lifetime together. Here's to many more.