Reading and writing for our peers

The story Jan Dawson tells in The De-Democratization of Online Publishing is familiar to me. Like him, I was thrilled to be part of the birth of personal publishing in the mid-1990s. By 2001 my RSS feedreader was delivering a healthy mix of professional and amateur sources. Through the lens of my RSS reader, stories … Continue reading “Reading and writing for our peers”

Data-driven career discovery

The fulcrum of my talk last week at the Open Education Conference was observable work. I first started thinking about this back in 2002, when I included this Dave Winer excerpt in my review of Radio UserLand: We’ve been using this tool since November, internally at UserLand. We shipped Radio 8 with it. When we … Continue reading “Data-driven career discovery”

Hacking the noosphere

I was in Montreal on Saturday to give a talk at CUSEC 2008, a great conference that’s organized by Canadian software engineering students (and recent grads) who want to congregate, exchange views, and hear from speakers they think will provide useful insight. I gave the morning keynote, and Jeff Atwood spoke in the afternoon. Our … Continue reading “Hacking the noosphere”

Appreciating Common Craft’s “paperworks” sketchcasts

I am an immediate fan of Common Craft’s style of concept videos. Their explanations of how and why to use del.icio.us and Google Docs are crisp and entertaining. They convey the essence of these activities more clearly than any other visual explanations I’ve seen, including many of the screencasts I’ve made. The style is called … Continue reading “Appreciating Common Craft’s “paperworks” sketchcasts”

Chris Gemignani recreates a New York Times infographic in Excel

When I read this story about cancer care in the Sunday New York Times yesterday, I was struck by one particular information graphic which I thought was very nicely done: It turns out that Chris Gemignani was impressed too, and he decided to recreate the image using Excel. Here’s what he came up with: Going … Continue reading “Chris Gemignani recreates a New York Times infographic in Excel”

Beautiful code, expert minds

Last year Greg Wilson wrote to tell me about the collection of essays that he and Andy Oram were compiling into what has now become the book Beautiful Code: Leading Programmers Explain How They Think: The idea is to get a bunch of well-known and not-yet-well-known programmers to select medium-sized pieces of code (100-200 lines) … Continue reading “Beautiful code, expert minds”

A conversation with Timo Hannay about the scientific web

As director of web publishing for Nature Publishing Group, Timo Hannay’s projects include: Connotea, a social bookmarking service for scientists; Nature Network, a social network for scientists; and Nature Precedings, a site where researchers can share and discuss work prior to publication. The social and collaborative aspects of these systems are, of course, inspired by … Continue reading “A conversation with Timo Hannay about the scientific web”

A conversation with Tessa Lau about Project Koala

For this week’s ITConversations show I talked with Tessa Lau about Project Koala, a “a system for recording, automating, and sharing business processes performed in a web browser.” I’ve been interested in that idea for a long time, and mentioned it most recently in this item on pooling citizens’ collective knowledge about the services of … Continue reading “A conversation with Tessa Lau about Project Koala”