Joi Ito's conversation with the living web.

May 2003 Archives

Salam Pax employed by the Guardian »

I first heard about Salam Pax on March 11 from John Monasch who sent me an email about him. Since then, he has gathered a great deal of attention from bloggers everywhere as the war approached. He was silent for quite awhile since the bombings. He finally came back, and now he's writing for the Guardian! Wow!Guardian UnlimitedSalam's StoryThe most gripping account of the Iraq conflict came from a web diarist known as the Baghdad Blogger. But no one knew his identity - or even if he existed. Rory McCarthy finally tracked him down, and found a quietly spoken, 29-year-old architect. From next week he will write fortnightly in G2.

Birthday script finally worked »

Happy Birthday Anita! My birthday script finally worked. It was broken until today. Sorry to the people who's birthdays I missed.

Technobot, a python script to manage your Technorati Cosmos »

I wrote a script that gets your technorati cosmos and creates a sidebar file of inbound blogs like the one on my blog and sends you email and jabber chats when there are new inbound links. It's written in python. It's ugly and totally amateur, but Dave Sifry said that making it available now was more "in the spirit of things" than trying to clean it up before I made it available. It's a bit embarrasing, but like with my Emergent Democracy Paper, I hope the releasing it early and getting feedback will be a good learning experience. Anyway, feedback is greatly appreciated and I hope to continue working on it. It is available on the TechnoBot Wiki Page. Please feel free to add feature requests or make comments about the way I am doing this.GPL license of course.

Vonage is cool »

I got my Vonage service going yesterday. Vonage is a serice where you sign up for a phone number in an area code of your choice and they give you a Cisco Analog Telephone Adapter (ATA) which you hook up the Internet and attach to a normal analog phone. The phone basically turns into a normal phone with a phone number in the area code that you chose. You get call waiting, voicemail, etc. It's $82.03 setup and $39.99/month for unlimited calls in the US and Canada. (There are other service plans.) They don't sell the service internationally, but Gen Kanai turned me on to Vonage. He had just moved to Japan and was using it from Japan. Frankly, it makes a lot more sense to people living internationally, I think. Anyway, it's great. I was using it today, the caller ID worked fine, call waiting worked fine and the sound quality is fine. Now the only problem is that if I give people my new 415 area code number, they'll be calling me in the middle of the night thinking I'm in San Francisco.

You have a switch? SSH1? A wep key? Ha! You're not safe. »

When the WiFi network went down at FiRe and Max quickly mapped out the network, grabbed a free IP address and started hunting for the rogue network, it was useful and cool. I hadn't messed around with "security tools" recently so I decided to spend one hour searching for some tools that would work on my Mac.First I downloaded trusty nmap which scans your network for computers, does an OS fingerprint and will often find the name, revealing the owner. It will also do quiet portscans to see what services are running on the machines.Then I found ettercap. (Lastest version doesn't run properly on the OS X, use version 0.6.7.) This is a full-featured packet sniffer with an easy to use interface. It is unique in that instead of doing IP sniffing, it uses ARP hacking and MAC address spoofing to allow you to sniff across switches. It has a variety of "plug-ins" that let you easily capture email, passwords and keyword filtered bits and pieces into files or onto the screen. It lets you insert your own text into connections so you could for instance type a command into someone's telnet session. Of course you can also terminate other people's sessions and connections. Another interesting feature in the recent release is that you can now sniff SSH1 sessions. (Lucky for Dan we installed SSH2 on his computer.)

Stefan Smalla's FiRe notes »

I met blogger Stefan Smalla at FiRe and just when I was feeling guilty for not blogging any of the actual content, I noticed that Stefan did a great job. Thanks!

Technorati bot done »

Got my Technorati bot done this morning. It checks technorati through the xml api every 10 minutes for my cosmos. If there is a new inbound link to my blog, it sends me an email and a jabber chat message with the details. Used technorati.py by Mark Piligrim and jabberpy0.4-0. Now I can make jabber bots. Beware beware. ;-)

Photos to at and from inn in Appenzell »

Just got back and posted photos from the secret retreat in Appenzell here. The artifacts from my camera are still mildly visible. Drat!

See you later Switzerland »

I'm at the Zurich airport now at an Internet kiosk so I can't upload the pictures, but I spent the day yesterday in the mountains of Swizerland hiking, moblogging under the surveillance of the goats and cows with my PowerBook on my back. It was REALLY tiring, but REALLY beautiful. We all stood at the top of the mountain as the sun set and we had a 360 view of the countryside around us. At the apex of the mountain was a very old inn where 20 or so etoy agents, bitflux bloggers, and St. Gallen University students met up...

Spotme »

They have this Spotme device at this conference which has a very cool feature. You can see the names of the other participants who are near you and approximately how many meters they are away from you. You can also exchange business cards with people which get emailed to you.Similar to the Japanese Lovegety but a bit more serious focus. ;-)My Sony DSC-FX77 is getting flakey. It's creating those artifacts you see in the picture...

Secret Meeting in Switzerland »

Zai at etoy is organizing a secret meeting of Swiss subversives and bloggers Saturday night in a mountain retreat. Email me if you are interested in joining. Space is limited.

Dinner with Elliot Noss and Sidney Rittenberg »

I met Elliot Noss, the man behind Tucows. I've been a huge fan of Tucows ever since Thomas Riha showed it to me during an Ars Electronica Jury meeting. I've watched it grow and was always interested in who ran it. Doc Searls met (update: Doc knows him from '98 or so) Elliot at ETcon and told me I should meet him. It was a nice suprise to run into Elliot at FiRe. Elliot's in the domain name game and we talked about ICANN and other stuff. We agreed on just about everything and I was happy to find out that Elliot was just as cool as Tucows. Elliot and his wife had just gotten back from Shanghai and he joined our China/Japan session. We had dinner with Sidney Rittenberg and talked about China. I guess the domain name business takes you all over the world and Elliot seems like the right kind of guy to run a global business.Sidney, is another amazing guy that I enjoyed meeting very much. he has a very interesting bio.excerpt from FiRe bioHe became a leading translator for the works of Mao Zedong, and was the only American citizen accepted into the Chinese Communist Party, until the Cultural Revolution. [...]Sixteen of Sidney's 35 years in China were spent as a prisoner in solitary confinement on charges of being an American spy. He was freed in 1977 and declared a true friend of China. His family became a myth and a legend, giving them easy entrée to China's leaders -- a great advantage for their consulting work. Sidney was a co-host with me on the China/Japan Panel. He was extremely energetic, informed and sharp and knew more about China than anyone I have ever met in my life.The title is not completely accurate. It was a buffet dinner and I had part of my dinner with Elliot and Sidney.

Thanks Max and James! »

Dinner with Max Levchin and James HongJames and Max lookin' hot in their convertibleWhen I showed up at FiRe, I noticed a guy wearing a PayPal T-Shirt and a guy wearing HotorNot T-Shirt. They looked a bit out-of-place in the crowd. I noticed it was Max and James. Max was a co-founder of PayPal and the CTO. James is the founder of HotorNot. I met them at my party in Palo Alto a few months ago. Max left PayPal and is thinking of the next big thing. James still runs HotorNot. During the conference, (ironically during the Future of WiFi panel) the WiFi network flaked out and Max figured out a cool hack to get me back on the network. Somehow another network with the same name as the hotel network got created and the stupid Macintosh API only chose networks by name and would latch me on to the wrong network. Max figured out how to switch the order of the two networks and get me on the right one... Anyway, that was cool. James was zapping through all of the HotorNot postings from San Diego and that was a bit distracting. ;-)Max and James make me feel like an old fart. I guess I better get used to it since that's what I'm quickly becoming. Anyway, I'm happy that they'd hang out with me. They even drove me to the airport, although Max kept getting lost. Max told me he thought I was involved in way too much stuff that was just a waste of time. James and Max also turned me on to Yatta.

Off to St. Gallen »

I'm getting ready to leave San Diego for St. Gallen, Switzerland where I'll be doing a session on Emergent Democracy at the ISC symposium. Blogging from my sidekick now... I'll try to post more pictures when I'm in Switzerland. I'll also be trying out the tri-band sidekick....

Hooked up with Jim Moore at FiRe »

Hooked up with Jim Moore at FiRe. He shares an office at Harvard with Dave Winer. The last time I saw Jim was at the Fortune conference in Aspen last year and it was nice to see him again and catch up. We talked aboout the debate about googlewashing that his Second Superpower paper triggered.Jim, Dave Winer, Doc Searls blog about the current discussion which includes recent comments by the New York Times.We talked about Emergent Democracy and some of the problems with my current paper. He agreed to try to comment/edit it on my Wiki. People have made a lot of great comments on the Wiki and it's getting really interesting, but as far as I know, no one has edited the actual paper directly yet. It will be interesting to see who does it first. It's currently signed, "Mostly by Joichi Ito" but if enough people edit it directly, I will change it to something like "Hosted by Joichi Ito" or something like that.

Supernova 2003 »

Speaking of cool conferences. Kevin Werbach's Supernova 2003 July 8 & 9 should be cool. I'm looking forward to going. Maybe we should do a blogging bof.

Future in Review 2003 »

I'm at the Future in Review conference.

LinkedIn Wiki »

I had a long talk yesterday with Reid Hoffman about LinkedIn giving him my feedback and thoughts about features and changes. Reid's very open to ideas and is working on improving LinkedIn. I suggested we take the discussion to a wiki so that we can keep track of things like feature requests and links to posts about LinkedIn. I've set up a wiki page on my wiki. Please take a look and add your feedback, links, or feature requests.

Thanks for the blogshare gifts »

Thanks to Tristan Louis, WDave, Michelle Legare, Bruce Loebrich, James Cox, charles gagalac, Eric Kiel, Jonathan, Edmundas Miseikis, Elizabeth Lawley and Chalkie for the blogshare gifts!I linked to you where I thought that the gifted blogshare were your own blogs.Note to future gift givers... Linking to people who gift blogshares to me is not an official policy so please do not spam me with gifts just to get links. Writing me a simple note about why you are sending me the gift would be extremely appreciated!

It's the linkable archives »

Doc just blogged about a thought I just had too. If the big print media put their archives online and made them crawlable and linkable, I bet their page rankings would go up. It's really the links between the archives of the blogs that gives blogs so many links. The solution to googlewashing is probably more about getting other forms of journalism published in a more link-friendly way than filtering the blogs.

Our investment process »

Wrote a not-so-organized entry about our investment process...

Journalism and avatars »

Although Anil is very different in person in real life, most bloggers blog in their own voice. At dinner with Markoff and Dvorak, we talked about how many journalists have a different professional persona and are actually much nicer in person than they are online. (Dvorak can be almost as rude in person as he is online. ;-P ) Dvorak deconstructed some of the ways that journalists will write to get a rise from the community and how disarming it is to meet some of the critical journalists in person. In fact, they said that Andrew Orlowski's not such a bad guy in person.I write in my own voice, but I've developed sort of a thick skin from years of being flamed in Japan and in the US so I actually think some of the silly criticism is actually funny and flattering. Bloggers probably take criticisms more personally than journalists who play "the game" through their avatars. It's more painful to be slammed when you are speaking in your own voice.Don't know how relevant this is, but this thought about avatars came to mind after reflecting on dinner with Dvorak and Markoff where we were all laughing about our critics and thinking about how my readers/community were maybe more upset about Orwlowski's silliness than I was. I am very grateful for people defending me and pointing out things that would be politically incorrect to say myself. Having said that, I'm not taking Orlowski's attacks personally since at one level, I think it's a game/joke. If Orlowski's actually serious about what he's writing, then I just feel sorry for him.As they say, "Don't attribute to malice, that which can be explained by stupidity." and "Don't attribute to stupidity, that which can be explained as a joke."

Commons Dinner »

From left to right: Mary holding "Tetris", Brewster holding still shrinkwrapped copy of "Visicalc", Larry, Bettina, me and GlennHad dinner with Brewster and Mary, Larry, Bettina and Glenn at the Foreign Cinema. First time at the Foreign Cinema. Cool place with good food. Nice open feeling, loved the wide selection of oysters. Also, both dinners so far this trip were organized using OpenTable.com which I saw for this first time.Brewster arrived with a box full of very old software. He had just finished testifying about why DMCA was preventing him from breaking copy protection on old software that he wanted to archive. The DMCA affects our lives in lots of ways and we need more people like Brewster to point out the stupidity of such laws trying to prevent legitimate activities for the sake of protecting the position of a few big media companies. What's scary for me is that Japan is trying to put together their own DMCA in a "me too" kind of stupid way. The problem is, we don't have people like Larry and Brewster in Japan and I can only image how much work it's going to be to fight it there.Met Glenn, the Executive Director of the Creative Commons for the first time today. Enjoyed our conversation very much. He was supportive of my position on the guarantee issue with regards to the CC license. (I guess he should be.) He told me that Glocom, where I recently gave a talk on Emergent Democracy, was working on localizing Creative Commons for Japan. That's GREAT! I was worried that the Japanese would end up continuing to with that "Free use label" for webcontent stuff that the Ministry of Culture was doing.Talked about the idea of using the Creative Commons Conservancy in the standardization process where it might act as a repository for assets like domain names. I had talked about this with Robert Kaye and Musicbrainz. I'll write another entry about this idea after I flesh it out a bit more, but I'm pretty excited about it.Talked a lot about how smart Aaron Swartz was.I wish my jet lag would go away so my brain cells didn't start to check out at the end of these dinners. Maybe I should stop drinking when I travel. Hmm...One more thing: We talked about Larry's push to get a bill passed to have a $1 fee to keep a copyright 50 years after publication. This put put A LOT of stuff into the public domain and is very hard to argue against and seems extremely practical... you would think. Well, it's harder than it looks. He needs our help.

Dinner with Markoff and Dvorak »

Had dinner, talked about blogging and had more dinner tonight with John Dvorak of PC Magazine and John Markoff from the New York Times. Markoff and Dvorak are about as different as they come, but are good friends and make a really funny pair to have dinner with.Dvorak said he wanted to start a blog. Both John & John are anti-bloggers, but I agreed that Dvorak would be much more convincing if he was critical after having blogged. We talked about Andrew Orlowski and the attention he has been giving my blog these days. We discussed the importance of lunches and dinners in the journalistic process and discussed Andrew's journalism. One amazing thing about Dvorak is that he can be talking about the food, wine, the owner of the restaurant, Orlowski's writing style and Apple Computer all at the same time. Sometimes I got confused about whether Dvorak was talking about Orlowski's writing or the food. I think Dvorak would make a good blogger.We talked about googlewashing and I agreed to link to Dvorak's site often to help increase his google page ranking. ;-) We talked a lot about the importance of thick skin and a sense of humor.Update: Andrew Orlowski's current web page. I linked to the old one because that's what came up first on Google. Sorry. Noticed that Dvorak was on Andrew's list of "Stuff I like"

Blogging and investing »

So here's an article in spiked-IT criticizing my blogging about Six Apart/MT before investing. Actually, it is criticizing the fact that people aren't criticizing me. I've been giving this some more thought and I am very open to feedback, but I think the criticism is misguided. I am following a very transparent formula. I blog about what excites me and if it is possible for me to invest in it, I do. It would be stupid, but the other strategy would be to not write about anything I'm thinking of investing in. This might be more journalistically pure, but then my blog would not reflect my actual feelings and actions and would be misleading. I would be leaving the best stuff out. If you want to understand my investment focus, just read my blog! If I sound excited about a new company or technology please ASSUME I'm trying to figure out a way to invest in it.This blog is where I am trying to be as sincere as possible and honest about my feelings. I am not trying to mislead anyone. Trying to cover my ass too much is probably just as dishonest as deliberately misleading people.

In the air again... »

Traveling again from today. I'm making a VERY short trip to SF on my way to San Diego to attend Future in Review. Then I'm going to St. Gallen Switzerland to give a talk about Emergent Democracy at the ISC Symposium and will be back in Tokyo on Monday the 26th...My trip to SF is very short so I won't be able to have a party this time. Sorry! Next trip, I'll have another party. I'm meeting a few people, but definitely don't have time this trip to meet all of the people I want to see. Apologies in advance to people who I won't see this trip. (At least to those people who want to see me who I won't be able to see...) FYI, my schedule is completely booked.

Liquid Democracy »

Interesting post on my wiki by Bayle Shanks about Liquid Democracy.

Future of journalism »

Finally got a chance to talk to Dan about his new book and the future of journalism over lunch. We talked about what journalism really was. My thought was that journalism is defined in the constitution and is a part of democracy. Dan's notion is that the Net and blogging is changing the nature of journalism which in turn has a huge impact on society and democracy. This huge impact is one of the missing parts of my/our emergent democracy paper. Dan's going to focus on journalism, but obviously recognizes the connection with democracy.We tried to deconstruct what traditional media was. My thought was that the founding father defined "the press" as individuals and small groups with printing presses to represent the voice of the people and that currently, newspapers are just printing machine owners and paper distributors just like telephone companies are a bunch of telephone poles and pipes. Dan asserted that there was more to it. He explained that the protection from lawsuits is an very real risk to journalists and that media companies protect their journalist from such suits. I can see that. Relates to the discussion about the Creative Commons license.We talked about reputation a lot and about technorati. Nob Seki, follows up the discussion on his blog and discusses the notion of Trusted TrackBacks and the relationship between the interviewer and interviewee.

Talk at Glocom about Emergent Democracy »

I gave a short talk and participated in a discussion about my Emergent Democracy paper at Glocom. Professor Shumpei Kumon, the executive director of Glocom translated my paper into Japanese. I am EXTREMELY grateful for this. He said that the paper would not normally pass his requirements for publication because of the sloppiness in the logic and the attributions, but since he thought the process as well as the topic were relevant and interesting, he agreed to publish the paper in Japanese in their journal in June. I'll be able to post the Japanese translation by Professor Kumon on my blog after that. In parallel, Illume, a scientific journal is publishing another version of the paper (edited and trimmed down) in June as well. So, we'll see what the Japanese think about ED soon.I got a great deal of interesting feedback from the discussion.

Defending Creative Commons »

Karl-Friedrich Lenz and others are dumping the Creative Commons license because they don't like the fact that users of the original licensor guarantees to the licensees. If I understand this correctly, it means that if I snap a photo of something, someone copies it from my site and posts it and get sued, it comes back to bite me.Me sense is that this is the way it should be. Tell me if I'm missing something.

Technorati Jabber Bot »

OK I figured out my next python project. A bot that polls technorati for inbound links to my blog and sends them to me as they come in via IM (Jabber). This is probably going to challenge my programming skills, especially since I know nothing about Jabber... yet. So, if someone is already working on this or has already done this. Stop me now!

Sidebar update - humble style sheet and pulldown archives »

I added a new style sheet and a new style sheet class. On my sidebar, if you click on humble style, it will set your style sheet to a style sheet based on the polite fonts style sheet (big fonts) where I've added a new class called "boastful". This style sheet will render text that I think might seem boastful in a tiny white font so you don't see them. (I couldn't figure out a way to delete them all together in css.) So if you want to stop seeing my boastful disclaimers and generally cut down on boastful comments altogether, change your stylesheet please.Also, I ripped off an idea I saw on Liz's site and made my archives in my sidebar pulldown forms.

Sputniks rock »

I got my Sputnik. It rocks. It rocks in many ways. It rocks because it uses Jabber to talk to the Central Server (The Central Server is a machine on your network that manages the access points. If you don't want to set up your own Central Server, you can use the community server. You log into the Central Server to access the AP you're using. Similar to the web page that pops up when you first log into WiFi networks in Hotel, except this one is yours.). It rocks because the Central Server controls and manages access and security for all of the access points across the network (even WAN). It rocks because Sifry is giving me real time tech support via... Jabber. (It's amazing that Sifry could build Sputnik AND Technorati at the same time. He was giving me tech support for both at the same time...) It rocks because it's secure. It rocks because it lets me do port forwarding, firewalls and peering for only $185. Anyway, I'm supposed to get my second AP and my own Central Server soon. If it all works out, I'm going to buy a bunch of AP's and try setting up my own little network of Sputnik nodes.

Getting ready for phase two of Technorati hacks »

Good entry in Web Dawn about Technorati as a reputation system. Via Marc Canter. So we need to get Sifry to catch permalinks of what people are linking to better and we need a little more metadata in the XML feeds. The addition metadata which would allow me to implement something like a reputation system would be:

Blogaud - I want to listen to my RSS feed on my iPod »

Dan Gillmor came over to my house yesterday and we were going to talk about the book he was writing, "Making the News". He asked me whether I had read the outline... no... Oops. Sorry! We ended up making another appointment and spent the rest of the time geeking out. Anyway, that's not the point I want to make.I felt really guilty, and came up with a great idea. I opened my mac in my car and got it to start reading the outline to me using text to speech. This is the first time I really tried it and it worked well. (Although the woman's voice reading Dan's words was a bit weird.) So then I thought about this some more. What I really want is a text to speech to mp3 converter that took my RSS feed and dumped it into an mp3 file that I could listen to my iPod on the way to work.The other thing I could do is make my blog available in mp3 format. Has someone already done this? Is there a text to mp3 tool somehwere? Is this a stupid idea?

Joi's Birthday Database update »

So I updated my birthday script. It sends me mail when it's someone's birthday and creates a daily birthday roll for my side bar. I've added a field for nicknames and url's. If you already entered your birthday, but would like to add a nickname and/or a url, please fill out the form again. I'll merge the data properly. Also, if you would not like to show up in my birthdayroll, please select "no" for "show up on birthdayroll".

Technorati, Python and I rule... »

I finished my script today. If you look at my sidebar, you will find a list of blogs that Technorati says have linked to me in order of freshness. I wrote it in python using the xml.dom module. Once I got my head around it, it all made sense and was very easy. Thanks again to Dive Into Python. Other than the fact that you should all be very impressed by my programming skill, I think Technorati inbound links is probably the most timely and comprehensive way to see who is linking to you.

Example of usefulness of LinkedIn »

So here's an example of how Linkedin can be useful. Rebecca, the Tokyo bureau chief of CNN had emailed me asking for information on the moblog conference because she was interested in possibly covering it. I had been meaning to get around to introducing her to Adam. Then I received a Linkedin request from Adam asking to be introduced to Rebecca to see if she wanted to cover the conference. I clicked, typed something like "you guys should talk" and... done. It was a very easy way for me to add value and I ended up helping to friends without taking much of my time.I've been getting a steady flow of requests now and about half of them are just tests, but I really do think that Linkedin will help me manage requests for introduction. I get SO many of them via normal email and many fall through the cracks. Intros are such an easy way to help people and add value, but they are really a pain to keep track of. It's usually just a matter of searching through my email to find the email address of the person that needs to be contacted, but often I'm too busy to do that. Linkedin solves that problem. It also forces the introducee to write something focused, rather than, "I wonder if you might be able to introduce me to..."

Adriaan's thoughts on the MetaWeblog API »

Adriaan, who I lunched with awhile ago, is the developer of Kung-Log, which is the client I use to post to MT. He writes about his thoughts on the MetaWeblog API. He is a good example of someone who actually has to use all of the API's to try to allow his users to post to the variety of weblogs. We REALLY should try to keep the API consistant so that people like Adriaan can continue to write tools for blogs. As the blog software folks start their feature race, the trick will be for the API to keep up with everything. I think the API is great because unlike unweildy standards like bluetooth that tries to design in every single possibility from the beginning, the MetaWeblog API has evolved and stayed simple. I guess the question is, can the current process keep up with the increasing diversity and feature race? Any thoughts Dave?Here's Adriaan's suggestion.Adriaan TijsselingWhat is my suggestion? Use the MetaWeblog API, BUT complement it with the MovableType methods, and possibly any new Blogger2 API features.

Python and XML and the agony of defeat »

I learned Python (thanks to Sen) in a week. I wrote a birthday script, a script to scrape blogshares and put the shareholders in my sidebar and even wrote a vcard handler. I was on a roll. Then... Sifry sent me some Technorati stuff to mess with. XML? Cool, should be easy. I was just about to do the Parsing XML section of Dive Into Python anyway. Great! ...notDive Into PythonAs I was saying, actually parsing an XML document is very simple: one line of code. Where you go from there is up to you.So 2 hours later, I have 4 different installations of Python on my PowerBook and one on my FreeBSD machine and I can't get Mark's first example to work>>> xmldoc = minidom.parse('~/diveintopython/common/py/kgp/binary.xml') I've just about given up. The O'Reilly Python & XML is cryptic, I've googled around and tried a bunch of stuff and am totally frustrated. I guess I thought I was becoming a programmer, but I'm just a wimpy little script kiddie. >sigh<

Boastful disclaimers »

I just got this from a good friend of mine via email.This business with saying that you're a shareholder in a company, or might be in the future, can we give that a rest? or can you put it on a page somewhere on its own.It's just annoying and offputting, and after a while it's going to look arrogant and boastful. that's what i think anyway.So I guess I should make a disclaimer page. Didn't realize that the disclaimers could be construed as boasting, but hindsight seems obvious.I'll work on the disclaimer page this weekend. Any good disclaimer pages people recommend I look at would be greatly appreciated. Also, any thoughts on what should be included and how I should link to it would also be helpful.

Weird comic strip in current issue of Net Runner »

Is this guy supposed to be me?The current issue of Net Runner, a magazine published by ZDNet Japan, has story on weblogs. The first page of the section has a comic strip of some fat guy looking at a site that says "Joji Ito's site on how to lose weight and become popular with girls" (rough translation) who goes on to lose weight with a screen that looks like blog entries of the progress. I don't know if they're making fun of me or acknowledging the fact that blogs actually help you lose weight. I assume both.

Typepad in NYT »

Nice article in the New York Times about TypePad. As usual, you need to log into the NYT site. (At least it's back.) As you know, Neoteny, my company, is an investor in Six Apart which is making TypePad. TypePad is a hosted blogging service which is launching real soon now. ;-)

Dinner with Takeshi Niinami, President of Lawson »

Had dinner last night with Takeshi Niinami. We ate at Okame, one of my favorite little Tempura shops in Tsukiji. We met for the first time last year at the New Business Forum Conference that I chaired and agreed to have dinner sometime. It took us 5 months to have dinner. ;-p It was worth it though. Mr. Niinami was interesting and gives me hope that our generation is taking over Japan. ;-)

Salam Pax, our blogger in Baghdad is back! »

Salam Pax from Baghdad is back!via Nick Denton

Mac OS X 10.2.6 fixes problem with NTT DoCoMo FOMA P2401... sort of »

This entry is about the NTT DoCoMo FOMA P2401 and PowerBooks and TOTALLY irrelevant for most people. Sorry.

LinkedIn launches! »

Reid Hoffman, former COO EVP of Paypal, co-investor in Six Apart, good friend and generally smart guy has launched LinkedIn today. He and his team have been working in stealth mode and I've been anxious to use their service after all of the discussions with Reid about it.There have been a bunch of networking sites launching these days like Ryze and Friendster. LinkedIn is more focused on business networking and has a bunch of innovations to make it more useful for connecting when you are trying to network seriously (vs dating sites).Anyway, I have no direct financial interest in LinkedIn, but I may invest if I have the opportunity in the future. Reid is a business associate so this is somewhat a shameless plug for a friend. Having said that, I like it a lot so far.

Flying back to Tokyo »

Sorry about the generally light blogging these last few days. I've been in LA visiting my sister and her family with Mizuka. I'm at the airport now on a kiosk. Maybe I'll work on my birthday script some more on the plane.Anyway, see you tomorrow in Tokyo.

Joi's Birthday Database »

In an attempt to learn python, organize my life and figure out how to mess with Chandler some more, I have decided to make a database of birthdays of my friends. If you consider yourself my friend, please go to the birthday entry form and enter your info. Thanks in advance!

So, where are the WMD Mr. Colin Powell? »

I've been tuned out of the warblogging these days, but I have a question for the warbloggers. Did they find any WMD? Because... if they didn't I've lost a great deal of respect for Colin Powell. It was his passionate argument about how he was convinced beyond doubt that Iraq had WMD that moved me to say I was "more supportive" of the US.

Blogs increase the surface area of organizations »

I'm often criticized for using biological metaphors for organizations, but I think they're very effective sometimes.Seb's Open ResearchBlogs increase the surface area of organizationsJon Udell has got a keen eye for biological metaphors for information systems, and here comes up with a nice one for how weblogs change the shape of organizations:Think of an organization as a single-celled animal. Blogs increase the surface area of the cell, help nutrients flow across its membrane, and promote multicellular cooperation.

Andrew Orlowski questions my objectivity after our investment in Six Apart »

Andrew Orlowski - The RegisterJapanese VC and tech socialite Joi Ito [ Hates reading books - Lunch - Lunch - Segway - Lunch - Lunch - Fawning Parody - World Blogging Forum!]) has spent months hyping the couple who started the Movable Type weblogging software Ben and Mena [buys banjo]Trott. The cute, but strangely synthetic twosome were showered with advanced publicity in the form of flights and lunches and "party games" (the latter is filed under "Humor / Leadership and Entrepreneurship" ), before Ito's company invested in Movable Type last week. Will we be able to trust Ito's ongoing research analysis about his investment? We shall see.Just to clarify the facts and my position...

Emergent Wiki discussion on Emergent Democracy »

The Emergent Democracy page on my wiki is starting to turning into a real wiki discussion. This is the first time I've participated in one. Since I'm the custodian, I guess it's my job to organize it. I just finished editing a bit, but it's still a bit sloppy. Very different style/dynamic than comments or mailing lists, but still very intriguing. Love the feeling of editing some kind of living text...Feedback would be appreciated. Do you think my header fonts are too big?
Whiplash by Joi Ito and Jeff Howe

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