Ghost in the Machine: My God It’s Full of Stars.
Ursa Major, in almost … unbearable … detail.
I’ve added some ‘later’ comments to articles today and yesterday.
You may want to scroll down and/or turn the page.
The Future of Digital Longform.
“The people who focus on length are the people who could argue semantics forever, and who will never see the web’s great potential. All the space in the world could well free up journalists to write to whatever length wish (however short or long a story deserves); frees up designers to build templates and pages previously unimaginable and richly interactive; frees up directors of photography and visuals to select however many (or few) images a story deserves, frees them up not to have to fight for inches, but to fight for the right photographs. To say this is about “longform” is to undermine this moment in our digital evolution. This is about creativity and blowing up templates and designing for the story, and helping the reader better understand harder to grasp stories. And it is my distinct pleasure to say, that’s what I see happening.” Well-said.
The Fully Intended: RIP Poetry.
Familiar. Teachers would want to analyze poetry to a depth that immolated any and all appreciation and/or enjoyment. Hence my mockery of TS Eliot at the time: “I grow mold, I grow mold … wheeze … I will wear my fungus rolled.”
I had a particular teacher who was intent on ‘Jesus symbolism’, and found it in seemingly every piece of written work known to mankind. I suspect she could have found it in the phone book. In the crumbs of her morning toast. Almost completely turned me off of reading. If the lead character doesn’t martyr themselves, then it can’t be a good novel?
If they’re not teaching you how to do it, or how to appreciate it, but simply to clinically dissect it … what good does that sort of instruction do? A poem is not a pickled frog or an automobile engine. It has soul.
Ghost in the Machine: Ryan - Still Clownshoes.
Kevin needs a segment on NewsHour.
Shift: Episode 020 - Radical Transparency.
Later: One other thing. The concept of leadership. More people are capable of being leaders than most perceive; leaders are common. The greater problem is a dearth of ‘worker bees’; folks happy to work at their respective grindstones. Even worse in today’s ‘personal branding’ environment; noone’s content to be a “B-actor.” How do you lead when everyone’s fighting to be a leader? Do flat heirarchies work when everyone’s at the top?
New Republic: Technology’s Mindfulness Racket.
Scripting.com: Why blogging is an amateur thing.
“We need a word for what we do because it is an important activity. You can’t understand how news works today without understanding the role that bloggers play. So in a sense professional reporters hurt themselves by usurping a term that meant something before they applied it to themselves.” Hear, hear.
Ghost in the Machine: Where It Began, I Can’t Begin to Knowin’.
So, instead of British or Spanish, America may be French. Gives a whole ‘nother perspective on ‘freedom fries’ ...
Fast Co: Oral History - Sex! Drugs! Apps! SXSW Interactive At 20.
Long read; familiar names and faces. Leave for when you have the proper time to stroll through it.
RandomHouse.CA/Hazlitt: What Do We Actually Want Social Media to Do?
“So what do want social media to do? We want it to externalize and enable the good things: the connections with others, the lively public square, the humming pulse of the world. At the same time, we wish it could somehow evade the other side of things: the tracking, the personal branding, the fear of missing out, the pointless evasion.” I picked a bland pullquote; do read the whole thing.
What do I want? Not filters. Not lists. Hallways between niches, with doors that can be slammed shut. More control. Better implementation of subject niches. Too often a casual ‘Like’ becomes the forcible rape of my timeline. Excuse the graphic description, but that’s exactly how it feels. The goal has become to ‘get responses’, and as such, we have another race to self-exposure and that former blog-addictor, sensationalism. Or pee-on-the-fire-hydrant-last ‘personal branding.’ If I like a page for photos, and get descriptions of what your parrot horked up after dinner, I’m out of there. Social media as implemented today encourages blather. Blather has its place; just not as the majority of my timeline. Anyone can be funny. Not everyone is witty.
If you put up a page for a specific subject, please God stay on subject. A waver or two is fine, once in a while. But we came to you for a specific reason. Don’t forget that reason.
Via wood s lot.
Phone meeting, extended. Links as I can.
Daily Kos: Noonan writes the most ironic, un-self-aware column in the history of Western Civ.
You all know how much I ‘love’ Reagan. A must-read.
ChicagoTrib: Harold Ramis dead at 69.
And the Ghostbusters lose a troop. RIP, Dr Spengler.
Later: Kevin’s got the better obit.
Ghost in the Machine: Scorpy, Get Your Drums|Doctor & Danny.
A Farscape TV movie? Cool.
Side note: Do NOT watch Farscape epis serially when you are feverish in the thrall of flu. I made that mistake a couple of years ago; it makes for very technicolor, frightening fever-dreams.
Webdesigner Depot: Nothing left to say? The decline and fall of blog comments.
In this particular case, I’d be more likely to comment if I didn’t have to scroll the gauntlet of ads and share links. It’s a full screenlength from the last word of the article to the comments. I don’t bother. Out of sight, out of mind. Just sayin’.
Youtube/SoLost: The Most Beautiful Books.
Hey, you get to see Craig Jensen, one of our illustrious former ETP’ers [‘Booknotes’]. His work is surpassingly excellent. Great interview, Craig! “Thank goodness human beings make art!”
NewsBlur Blog: Connect NewsBlur to dozens of web services with IFTTT.
Two great tastes, that taste great together.
Shift: Episode 019 - All change.
Euan and Megan bring another good episode to the metacosm. Change makes me think of Zhuangzi, the great Taoist teacher. “You can’t throw a lasso around the boundless.” All is change. Rather than leashing it, be more skilled at herding employees in the direction change is going. Or simply relinquishing control and following employees’ leads. Some would want to codify such procedures; but is codification an anti-change agent in itself? Anyway, check it out.
Re/code: With New Publishing Tools, LinkedIn Makes Everyone a Professional Blogger.
“On Wednesday, the company announced that everyone can now publish personal, long-form content to their LinkedIn profile pages, providing the site’s 277 million-plus users with their own professional blogging platform.” Ugh. Well, maybe the self-referential and deity-worship crowd will stay there, rather than in the more general web-space.
LA Times: Congress in middle of Hollywood copyright clash with Silicon Valley.
“Now, however, Congress has begun an update of the nation’s copyright law — most of which predates not just the Internet, but even widespread use of computers. And as the legislation proceeds along a lengthy path, the Hollywood lobby is struggling not to get outmaneuvered by an emboldened and increasingly sophisticated coalition of Silicon Valley technology firms, digital rights groups and free marketeers.” Keep up to date on this one.
Slow posting. Big projects in-house.
Trying to deliver two CMS backed sites in the next week. Postings will be a bit slower than usual.
The Continuing Saga of Naked Capitalism’s Web-Hosting Solutions.
“But the root of all the problems seems to be WordPress. If Microsoft built a blogging platform, it would be WordPress: feature-bloated, breakage prone, and demanding constant updates.” Try Expression Engine. Or Craft. I suspect, however, a custom build tailored to specific goals would be the better long-term solution than a stock CMS. Using a stock blog/CMS for a really focused purpose is often like hunting antelope with a sawed-off shotgun. You’ll never get close enough to do the job.
I’ve placed the first ‘ad’ on this site since ETP days.
You see it over on the right. I’ll run it until the campaign is fully funded. This is why I’m doing so. Please consider a contribution - or clipping the embed code and putting it on your own weblog or website. I will be contributing when my next client check arrives.
EE 1.x, creaking and groaning.
I’m noticing some rendering issues with the site here. Over 40,000 entries; I’m abusing both PHP and MySQL, I think. I think it’s time to upgrade to the 2.x series, and consider converting some of my databased archives into static HTML.
Just be warned, I may have to slow down posting in order to allow time to reengineer this site.