Joi Ito's conversation with the living web.

October 2005 Archives

Diseases of the Rich »

Posted by thomas crampton My minor hand operation this week highlighted to me how journalism/blogging are literally manual labor. Also, my ability to tell many people about this injury reminds me of how repetitive strain injury/carpal tunnel syndrome only became something of broad public concern when the chattering classes (ie: white collar workers, including journalists) were hit due to their typing on computer keyboards. Throughout the industrial revolution, however, the same problem had afflicted manual laborers who could not bring their problem to a wider audience. (Lately there seem to be fewer complaints about it here at the International Herald...

CPSR's 2005 Membership Meeting and Norbert Wiener Award Reception for Douglas Engelbart »

I'm in Palo Alto now for the Computer Professionals for Social Responsibility (CPSR) board meeting. We are having a membership meeting as well as a award reception for Doug Engelbart this weekend. If you're in the area and are CPSR member please join us. If you're not a member, join now!CSPR2005 CPSR Annual Meeting & Norbert Wiener Award Reception Saturday, October 29 All Saints Episcopal Church 555 Waverley Street (between University and Hamilton) Palo Alto, CA, USA Membership Meeting 11:00 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. and 2:00 p.m.- 5:30 p.m. The Meeting is an opportunity for members to meet with the...

The Year of the Rooster and my gaming habit »

I guess there's something about online games and the Year of the Rooster. I just remembered that the first post of this blog is a link to an article that Howard Rheingold wrote about my addiction to Multi-User Dungeons (MUD) back in 1993 in Wired Magazine. (The post is dated the publish date of the magazine article, not the date the post was written. This post dates back to before my blog when I organized various links on my web site.) Groundhog Day! It's 2005 and I'm doing the same thing. Eek. I remember that trying to get onto the...

My new Nokia 8800 »

Yesterday Marko brought me a Nokia 8800. I wrote about this phone when it came out. It has special meaning for me because the sounds were designed by my friend Ryuichi Sakamoto. I'm also proud to have introduced Marko and Nokia to Ryuichi. I had read the reviews, but after playing with the phone I'm extremely excited by how cool it is. The design is beautiful and the attention to detail is stunning. Everything from the black box with the steel clasp that it comes in to the pulsating blue light at the base of the charging dock to the...

20 million served »

Kevin Marks20 million served Technorati passed 20 million blogs today. The 20 millionth was Les CE2/CM2 Anquetil, a blog from an elementary school in Reims, France, in the heart of Champagne country. They started the blog to celebrate running 2 miles in a Relay Marathon.That's a lot of blogs. I wouldn't say "20 million can't be wrong" (because history tells us otherwise) but blogging is clearly more of a trend now than a "fad"....

#joiito space on Second Life »

Thanks to Philip and Beth, I've purchased a plot of land in Second Life next to the MAKE plot (secondlife://Crescent/13/99) for #joiito members to hang out. (Nice neighborhood.) Feel free to drop by and mess around. You can join the #joiito group by searching for #joiito or "joi" in groups. The land is also listed. The SL URL for the plot is: secondlife://Crescent/29/86...

Collaborative Newspaper Column - Wiki-style? »

Posted by Thomas Crampton Tech editor of the International Herald Tribune seems open to publishing a column of blog-generated ideas. I need topics of interest our newspaper's readers (wealthy global audience of frequent travelers with diverse interests in politics, economic and culture). Conversations on this blog that might work have included my postings on Global Sociology of Online Shopping or Joi's post on ideas for new inflight software. Input welcome on: Layout - should it be in blog-style or reworked into a newspaper format. I tend to prefer reworking it, but my editor liked the idea of experimenting with a...

Gender in the World of Warcraft »

A large percentage of World of Warcraft players appear to be men, but there are quite few people who play female characters. The gender issue has always been interesting to me, but an episode a few nights ago was a special highlight. Jason started a new character and decided to pick a female character. I asked him why and he said that considering the number of hours he would be sitting there looking at his character, that maybe it would be more fun to have a female character. Jason, Sean and I grouped up and went on a quest. I...

U.S. soldiers videotaped desecrating Taliban corpses »

MetaFilterU.S. soldiers videotaped desecrating Taliban corpses. U.S. soldiers videotaped desecrating Taliban corpses. The bodies were positioned to face Mecca and burned -- an act of desecration that violates Islamic burial rites and the Geneva Conventions. A U.S. PsyOps specialist broadcast an inflammatory message to the nearby town in order to incite an attack. "Attention, Taliban, you are all cowardly dogs. You allowed your fighters to be laid down facing west and burned. You are too scared to come down and retrieve their bodies. This just proves you are the lady boys we always believed you to be." The video aired...

Microsoft launches open source licenses »

At EuroOSCON, Microsoft announced new software licenses including some variations that may meet the Open Source Initiative (OSI) Open Source Definition. This is great news. Most of the OSI board members are at EuroOSCON (unfortunately, I'm in LA and missed EuroOSCON) and I hope they have some good meetings with the Microsoft folks. I look forward to seeing their licenses submitted to OSI license-discuss so that OSI and the community can give them feedback on the licenses. See Tim O'Reilly and Danese Cooper's blog posts for more information....

Sociology of Online Shoppers Worldwide »

Posted by Thomas Crampton Got an early exclusive look at a fascinating survey by ACNielsen about online shopping worldwide. The study of 21,000 web users in 38 countries, to be made public later today, found that online shopping habits vary radically by country. The US is way behind Europe in the amount of online shopping (ranking 11 worldwide), perhaps because mall shopping is so much easier than shopping in a European city. This encourages Europeans to shop online. What people purchase online is very different country-by-country. In South Korea one third of online shoppers purchase nutritional/cosmetic goods, while the global...

Speaking at USC tomorrow »

I'll be speaking at USC tomorrow. Can you tell we're in LA? Speaker: Joi Ito Time: Wednesday, October 19, 6-8pm Location: USC's Robert Zemeckis Center for Digital Arts (RZC), Room 201 Zemeckis Media Lab (ZML) 3131 South Figueroa Blvd./2nd Floor UPDATE: The image above wasn't created by the folks at USC. It was discovered on hard disk. Does anyone know the source? We want to give proper attribution for this (cough) artwork. UPDATE 2: Gene is the creator of the mashup. UPDATE 3: The talk will be streaming in a few minutes. You need Windows Media Player 9. Here is...

United flight map software »

I was grounded for 2 weeks for passport renewal and another week with a sprained foot, but I'm back on the road again. I seem to notice new things when they're not in front of my all of the time. One thing I noticed this trip is how stupid the flight map software on the plane seems to be getting. Before, it was pretty simple and had all of the important information. Time to destination, time at destination, etc. Now (at least on United) they've added a stupid trivia quiz among other things. It takes longer for it to page...

Mainstream Media Journos Tackle Blogging »

Posted by Thomas Crampton Interesting venture launching in a few weeks by a group of Mainstream Media journalists in a blog. It is called Pajama's Media and has contributors from a number of mainstream outlets. I think a cooperative blog is a good model - www.boingboing.net style - and would like to explore those possibilities myself. Seems to me the key is finding the right mix of people and then letting them loose. My company - the International Herald Tribune and The New York Times - is not moving into the blog sphere as quickly as I would advocate. That...

Dave Sifry's updated blog stats »

Dave has new numbers about the state of blogs based on Technorati data. He has his presentation from Web 2.0 online as well as a lengthy blog post. Interesting stuff. Take a look....

Yahoo's Political Prisoner? »

Posted by Thomas Crampton Three questions regarding the Committee to Protect Journalists today naming online journalist Shi Tao as a winner of the International Press Freedom Award. His 10-year sentence to a Chinese prison came partly due to a disclosure about him by Yahoo!. 1- Do employees of Yahoo! feel responsible for/comfortable with this man going to prison? (Will they, for example, send care packages or join a letter-writing campaign petitioning the government of China for his release?) 2- How do users of Yahoo! feel about the company's privacy policies? (Or privacy policies of other Internet companies, for that matter.)...

AKMA on Nani, DRM an sharing music »

AKMA just blogged something that triggered the following thoughts... When I visited AKMA in Chicago we talked about music. I met up with my old DJ friend, Jeff Pazen after seeing AKMA. The mission was, how do we talk about music and share our musical tastes. Jeff is a godlike figure in my DJ past and I really wanted to sync up with him on what he was into and remember some of the great tracks we used to listen to together "back in the day." I also wanted AKMA to understand what music was like back when I hung...

Used tape »

I remember someone telling me a story about the delivery of the first copy of MS DOS to Japan. (I don't know if this story is true, but it's a good story.) The shipment contained a copy of DOS on paper tape and a blank roll of tape. They taxed just the blank one because the one with DOS on it was "used". So... Does this make Amazon.com a "used comment salesman" and Six Apart a seller of "new comment space"? I'm of course mostly joking, but I think this represents two completely different views on the "media" business. You...

Shining remix »

Shining remix. Excellent. ;-) via Nick UPDATE: NYT article about this video from Matt in the comments....

DHS and AOL »

I've seen a number of posts about AOL giving access to information about its customers to the Department of Homeland Security. The posts seem to be citing an article from October 3 by Martin McKinney in "The Financial Reporter (U.K.)". The quote refers to a Department of Commerce report. I can't find the original Martin McKinney post or the DoC report. Does anyone have the original sources? Also, is AOL giving the DHS any MORE information than other consumer Internet companies in the US of that size? It seems to me that we should ASSUME that everyone is giving "unfettered...

Defending Freedom of Speech in India »

Good post on Global Voices describing how Gaurav Sabnis made comments about an educational institution and receives threats to sue him for 30 billion rupees (45 rupees to a USD). Gaurav leave IBM but sticks behind his words and fights for his freedom of speech. This is an important issue where, as the GV post points out, the USP of the country is its open democracy. It reminds me a bit of my sms.ac incident... via Suresh...

Veni and his movie »

Veni, a fellow ICANN board member and a good friend asked me to post a plug for The Optimist - The Story of the Rescue of the Bulgarian Jews from the Holocaust. I had to ponder what the context of my posting such a link would be, but then I read Larry's post and realized that I should blog about Veni and Bulgaria to provide context. In addition to being on the ICANN board, he is the founder of the Bulgarian Internet Society, is on the board of THE Internet Society (ISOC) and is on the board of Computer Professionals...

Narrowcasting Magazines to Hidden Markets (Divorcees and Gay Parents) »

Posted by Thomas Crampton Inevitable with the narrow-casting of magazines that Germany now has a magazine about divorce. Reminds me of the launch of a magazine in the US for gay parents. (Apologies for this being a Times Select link.) These magazines, Rosenkrieg along with And Baby magazine, show how publishers often miss obvious socioeconomic groups due to prejudices or oversight. Both gay parents and divorcing couples are willing to pay large sums of money for information relating to their situation and there are many advertisers keen to hit those demographics. For years, however, no magazines addressed those issues. Be...

Influence of Blogs on the Marketplace of Ideas »

Posted By Thomas Crampton Blogs have lowered the barriers to entry into the marketplace for ideas: With what implications? It formerly took powerful ideas (Marxism, Buddhism, Democracy) or those backed by capital (ie: printed in publications) to galvanize large audiences. Now anyone, of any age, anywhere with Internet access and time can put their ideas into the marketplace. The result is that not only do Blogs/Internet open the way to easily transmit mediocre ideas (such as this posting!), but they also open the way for a new style of collaborative thinking. (Will we start seeing idea mergers and hostile idea...

Students study Japanese because they like anime »

Mimi @ ChanponAnime and Learning Japanese Culture In her master's thesis submitted to the East Asian Studies Center at USC, Annie Manion argues that among college students in the US, anime has become one of the most important drivers of interest in Japan and Japanese language study. Drawing from surveys and interviews of students taking Japanese language classes and anime club members, Manion suggests that "there is a good deal of overlap" between young people studying Japanese and those involved with the anime fan community. Over half of Japanese language students cited "understanding Japanese anime, music, etc." as one reason...

Blogging style »

Apologies again for my semi-hiatus from blogging. I've reached level 40 (I now have a robo-chicken mount) on World of Warcraft and have completed (ahem) 80% of my research. One of the things I've been thinking about while not blogging is... blogging. A number of people have asked me to help new bloggers by giving them advice. In retrospect, I was giving people very specific advice based on my personal style. I thought I'd share some of the tips. 1 - You're probably stupid - Well, maybe not stupid, but at least ignorant. Often you are the last one to...

Web x.0 »

As the Web 2.0 bandwagon gets bigger and faster, more and more people seem to be blogging about it. I am increasingly confronted by people who ask me what it is. Just like I don't like "blogging" and "blogosphere", I don't like the word. However, I think it's going to end up sticking. I don't like it because it coincides with another bubbly swell in consumer Internet (the "web") and it sounds like "buzz 2.0". I think all of the cool things that are going on right now shouldn't be swept into some name that sounds like a new software...

Times Select: Fee or Free? »

Posted by Thomas Crampton As an employee of The New York Times Company, I probably should not raise this issue - but hey! - journalists are instinctive troublemakers. What views on the decision by www.nytimes.com and www.iht.com to implement the Times Select paid subscriptions system for the highest profile columnists. I fear we are giving room for new columnists to arise out of the Blogoshere to rival our own marquee names. I have not thought enough about it, but I wonder if the opposite tactic might not be best. We give away the high profile columnists and charge for specific...

Ballmer in Munich: Google, Linux & the future of corporations »

Posted by Thomas Crampton Just returned to Paris from Munich where I went to write a story on the progress of Open Source implementation by the city government: Microsoft Chief Dines in a Linux City The project has been troubled but is still on track. Attended a small dinner hosted by Dr. Hubert Burda of Hubert Burda Media that was attended by the CEOs of BMW, Adidas and other major German companies. Steve Ballmer, the guest of honor, spoke briefly about Open Source and Google. Ballmer clearly views Google as enemy number 1. He said something like Google had better...

Ig Nobel Prizes streaming NOW »

The Ig Nobel Prizes, the Nobel Prize of all things funny are streaming live now. via Steve Crandall...

Creative Commons 2005 Fundraising Campaign »

Creative Commons (CC) has traditionally been supported by a small number of foundations which have very generously allowed CC to get started and grow into an international movement. (Thanks!) CC is now entering its second phase where it must begin to be supported by the public itself. This is an important step and is also required by the tax authorities in the US for CC to retain its nonprofit status. Larry has written something about the fund raising as well as an update on CC over on the CC site. Please take a look at it and send your donation...

The "war" in World of Warcraft »

Today I went on my first World of Warcraft (WoW) raid. WoW has two "sides" Horde and Alliance. The Alliance are the usual "good guys", humans, elves, dwarves and gnomes. The Horde are undead, tauren, trolls and orcs. The designers have created stories for the Horde side that tell of the suffering and struggle of each of the Horde races and makes each one justified and lovable. One of the many parallel layers of the game involves the war between Alliance and Horde. In addition to the normal experience gained from killing monsters and completing quests, there is a whole...

Blogging vs Journalism »

Posting by Thomas Crampton Time for some reflection after more than a month of blogging here courtesy of Joi. For my part, I have found Blogs are different from journalism because: Involvement: In blogging you engage and try to spark conversations, not lecture. You succeed by getting feedback, not by writing something conclusive. A successful posting is a work in progress. Timing: Not so important as I thought it would be. When I blog about a news article that I wrote three days earlier, the conversation takes off as if it were new. In that way, Blogs are more like...

Jimmy Wales joins us on the Socialtext board »

Jimmy Wales, founder of Wikipedia joins us on the Socialtext board. More info at Socialtext....

iTunes mess »

I had set Mizuka up with iTunes music store on a Mac Mini with an external drive. At some point, she had filled up most of the external drive with stuff and she alleges that iTunes told her it was going to start moving stuff to another drive. Then certain songs stopped playing. I sort of ignored her mumbling until I asked her to run disk doctor on the drive. The utility told us that her disk was irreparably broken. The songs are broken on her iPod too. (The bad songs skip.) Apple says back up, or when you disk...

Horde run today »

My apologies for all of the gaming posts recently, but I wanted to let any World of Warcraft players know that we are starting a new all-Orc guild on Khadgar. We plan to run every Saturday evening US time, Sunday morning Japan time. Each run will start approximately at 6PM Eastern, 3PM Pacific, 7AM Japan time. We'll start today. I'm just setting up the guild now. The guild will be called "We Orc" and is the Horde affiliate of "We Know". We'll play only once a week and anyone who misses a run can try to catch up to the...

Warcraft video »

Video of some people who like Warcraft. Funny. (At least to me.) Watch it to the end. via Jason...
Whiplash by Joi Ito and Jeff Howe

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