January 30, 2008

Fail: when things *really* go wrong

Add another bit of Internet jargon to the my personal lexicon: fail.

From the Urban Dictionary:

"Fail: either an interjection used when one disapproves of something, or a verb meaning approximately the same thing as the slang form of suck."


Even better, there's a new blog collecting images that catching failing in all its ignominy. Thanks, FAIL blog.

Love it. Funniest thing I saw today, by far.

January 29, 2008

YouBama and the citizen-generated campaign

I'm loving Google Reader these days. I can consume blog posts, podcasts and video much more quickly and easily than ever before -- and that makes me happy.

This past week, I've been able to enjoy sharing and receiving shared items with friends who are also rocking Reader within the interface. I can see the appeal of Google's approach to social networking and bookmarking.

Your email address book is effectively your network. Your shared bookmarks become a living stream of of your online consciousness.

Facebook may aspire to become our primary online destination -- the recent releases of Facebook apps into the Web at large is a major step in that direction -- but Google's communication and productivity apps are beginning to be linked in ways that reveal the wisdom of the crowds in new ways.

All that aside, I discovered YouBama today through my RSS feeds and TechCrunch's post... I'll be watching those feeds too now.

Online video just gained has yet another outlet, one independent from the campaigns, that just received an avalanche of coverage from Tech Crunch's coverage.

YouTube still dwarfs this site, of course, along with the rest of the mainstream media.

Nonetheless, it's noteworthy to see how much control the campaigns have now lost over "the message" -- and how enabled we have all become in sharing our own opinions.

Democracy is going P2P.

January 23, 2008

RIP, Heath

From the New York Times:
In a recent interview with WJW-TV, a Fox affiliate in Cleveland, about “I’m Not There,” in which he was one of several actors playing the music legend Bob Dylan, Mr. Ledger struck a philosophical note. He responded to a question about how having a child had changed his life:
“You’re forced into, kind of, respecting yourself more,” he said. “You learn more about yourself through your child, I guess. I think you also look at death differently. It’s like a Catch-22: I feel good about dying now because I feel like I’m alive in her, you know, but at the same hand, you don’t want to die because you want to be around for the rest of her life.”
I heard Heath Ledger had died through my coworker tonight at the annual meeting, watching the news ripple through the rows as it came in through a Blackberry news alert.

I wondered -- briefly -- why the news felt more meaningful than any of the other multitude of deaths that have occurred already in this new year, here in Boston and further abroad. We've been at war now for seven long years since 2001, during which time I've always known that other human beings are encountering untimely deaths around the globe. Cancers, heart disease, strokes and respiratory diseases are part of the U.S. experience. Malaria, dysentary, drug-resistant TB and other infectious diseases are unpleasant additions worldwide. The 57 million people that died in 2002 primarily passed from a combination of those causes.

So why does his passing touch me? As a devout movie watcher, his performances entered my visual memory in a visceral and lasting way.

I never felt "A Knight's Tale" or "The Order" or "Ned Kelly" were entirely his fault; "Brokeback Mountain" and "Monster's Ball" and even "The Patriot" showed his talent in a variety of meaningful ways. I enjoyed him in "The Brother's Grimm." Ledger's portrayal of the Joker in the new Batman movie, due on IMAX this summer, now takes on the unique resonance of the young actor's last performance, where he appears to fill some large shoes occupied until now by Jack Nicholson. I'm hopeful that the laughing, brilliant maniac portrayed in the trailer.

I hope the movie is a classic. Heath certainly was.

He leaves a two year old daughter and the promise of a brilliant acting career behind.

He'll be missed.

January 3, 2008

New year, old resolutions

I may be slightly behind the curve in posting a list of resolutions, but then I've had other priorities over the past week.

That being said, it was time for some housekeeping. I removed the widgets from my sidebar that were cluttering up the page and weren't adding much value to any casual user.

I've ditched the long blogroll and links to magazines, neither of which represent what reading these days. Instead, I've simply added the feeds of friends, near and far. For those interested, my linkblog and shared delicious bookmarks are still there to be explored.

Other resolutions:

  • Exercise more
  • Volunteer
  • Tell my family and friends that I care about them more often
  • Write daily with passion, precision and pithiness
  • Pursue creative outlets in woodworking, painting, photography and Web design
  • See the dentist, now that I've dealt with the doctor
  • Better prepare my truck for offroad use and learn to get myself out of sticky situations in the backcountry
  • Be a better editor, whatever the medium -- sound, video or text
  • Read more, watch less.
  • Fish smarter and earlier
  • Be greener
  • Become more involved and invested in social media
  • Most of all, love myself and those around me; karma comes around.

I know that if I can persevere through the past year's challenges, 2008 will be a cinch. Here's to the year ahead.