The twelve-month review

· Music

Levi Asher tagged me with a meme, according to which I am to list the first sentence of the first post of each month for the past year. I’m game:
* January: “The talented Lisa Williams has launched Placeblogger” (Local blogging gets a site)
* February: “Grab your preferred username at Useless Account before someone else does!” (Signing up for the sake of signing up)
* March: “This story (Open Call From the Patent Office) suggest that a breath of fresh air may be entering the patent-review process” (Open sourcing the patent process)
* April: “What knowledge would be lost to the company if I were to leave tomorrow? What do I know that I have done a thousand times that I think everyone already knows?” (Pattern Mining)
* May: “Hmm, those options have an excluded middle.” (Answering danah’s twitter questions)
* June: “Over on the Well, in the public Inkwell topic, I’m interviewing my pal Nick Meriwether about his new book, All Graceful Instruments: The Contexts of the Grateful Dead, a scholarly work looking at the Dead phenomenon from a variety of perspectives.” (I’m interviewing Nicholas Meriwether)
* July: “If you missed Every Breath You Take: Identity, Attention, Privacy, and Reputation last March at South By here’s your chance to hear me, Ted Nadeau, Kaliya Hamlin, Mary Hodder, and George Kelly take on these topics, very early one Sunday morning after an untimely daylight savings change and, for many people, a night of carousing and drinking free drinks sponsored by startups and web behemoths.” (Podcast of my sxsw panel is now live)
* August: “Three jobs I have held: vendor at Yankee stadium, freelance legal summarizer, assistant sexton” (Three things about me you may not have known)
* September: “23. Write lots of numbered lists.” (35 ways to draw more readers to your blog – a series)
* October: “Since I started at Yahoo my workaday routine involves riding a shuttle from Oakland to Sunnyvale with a big laptop computer crammed on my lap so I can work, browse the net, or as I’ve been doing lately, blog.” (Can I blog from my iPhone?)
* November: “I’m feeling a bit under the weather, fighting off some kind of bug.” (Stumbling out of the gate)
* December: “Get salad greens and heirloom tomatoes at the farmer’s market at Splash Pad park” (Things to done)
I’ll pass this meme contagion along by infecting So-called Bill, Cecil, Leisa, Woody, and Christina.

Ambient info edu revolution

· Events, Information Architecture, Social Design, User Experience

Michael Wesch, who created the virally popular internet video called Web 2.0: The Machine is Us/ing Us (its success drew on a sort of meta-application of the very concepts it discussed), was the keynote speaker at IDEA 2007 last week. As part of his keynote, he previewed two videos he has now released to the web.
The first, Information R/evolution, examines the challenges we all face in this age of information glut and shortening attention spans:

The second, made collaboratively by one of his classes (Wesch is a professor of anthropology at Kansas State University, where he is launching a Digital Ethnography working group to “examine the impacts of digital technology on human interaction”), looks carefully at how we are teaching today and how out of sync it has become with the lives of contemporary students:

In some ways, for me, the highlight of the conference was Wesch’s story about how he frightened himself one night in the communal sleeping quarters in New Guineau when he thought his own arm, which had fallen asleep, was a snake lying across his body. This story became the kernel of Wesch’s reputation with the people he was studying and living among, and helped him realize that telling stories is a big part of how we gain identities and fit ourselves (and others) into society.

RE: Join my network on LinkedIn

· long story short, Social Design, The Power of Many, User Experience

'LinkedIn: Invitations Received' screen snap
This is a quandary for me. I try to keep my LinkedIn network literally to people I know and have worked with or with whose work I am familiar. From what I can see, you seem like an excellent person to know, I’m flattered that you enjoy my posts on that list, and I appreciate your providing that context since so many invitations I get have robogreetings on them.
I couldn’t bring myself to click the “I don’t know Jack…” button, but since I take LinkedIn literally (I want to be able to recommend people from my own direct experience) I also don’t feel right accepting your invitation.
I hope you understand.

In the year 2000

· Music

2000.jpgFriends and cow-orkers alike have heard me make the now clichéd quip about being disappointed not to have a jetpack yet, living as we do in the year 2000. Jetpack has in fact become a sort of shorthand for some awesome feature that probably won’t get included in a final design.
I still remember some of the sci-fi and futurist inspired visions of where we’d be in the year 2000. Remember George Jetson’s complaint? (“These three-day work weeks are killing me!”). So this article projecting life in the year 2,000 AD from a July 22, 1961 issue of Weekend Magazine mixes the sublime with the absurd, and a handful of things that aren’t entirely off the mark.
Some excerpts:
> looks as if everything will be so easy that people will probably die from sheer boredom.
> You will be whisked around in monorail vehicles at 200 miles an hour and you will think nothing of taking a fortnight’s holiday in outer space.
> You’ll have a home control room – an electronics centre, where messages will be recorded when you’re away from home. This will play back when you return, and also give you up-to-the minute world news, and transcribe your latest mail.
> You’ll have wall-to-wall global TV, an indoor swimming pool, TV-telephones and room-to-room TV. Press a button and you can change the décor of a room.
> The status symbol of the year 2000 will be the home computer help, which will help mother tend the children, cook the meals and issue reminders of appointments.
(But apparently gender relations will revert to the postwar norm.)
> At work, Dad will operate on a 24 hour week. The office will be air-conditioned with stimulating scents and extra oxygen – to give a physical and psychological lift.
> Mail and newspapers will be reproduced instantly anywhere in the world by facsimile.
> There will be machines doing the work of clerks, shorthand writers and translators. Machines will “talk” to each other.
(Using XML, no doubt.)
> It will be the age of press-button transportation. Rocket belts will increase a man’s stride to 30 feet, and bus-type helicopters will travel along crowded air skyways. There will be moving plastic-covered pavements, individual hoppicopters, and 200 m.p.h. monorail trains operating in all large cities.
Rocketbelts? Where’s my jetpack?
> Our children will learn from TV, recorders and teaching machines. They will get pills to make them learn faster.
…and to palliate their ADD. (via Reddit)