Tuesday, January 31, 2006

Chipmunks, the Matrix and PodCasting

So here I am, 1:43AM, still haven't had dinner yet, but having a blast. I'm listening to this podcast in the background of a Churchill Club event.

The REALLY weird that that happened was that I thought the podcast was a voice synthesized version of the text -- since everyone sounded like a Singing Chipmunk. But then as I listened, I realized it actually just the podcast that's been SUPER accelerated (probably 2x). Perhaps its a bug in the flash player.

Either way, I thought this "bug" is an awesome feature. I love it, because here I am experiencing this panel that I missed in the Valley, an even that I usually go to, and pay money for, and I'm in Toronto listening to it in 2x of real time. It does take more focus to listen to it, esp. since Guy Kawasaki is already a fast speaker. But its awesome to be able to "place shift," "time shift," and "accelerate reality."

The other interesting thing about this is that I would never enjoy watching a movie in 2x real time, but to listen to an audio clip in 2x real time is great (I'm guessing this is 2x real time, I have no idea, but it sounds like it).

I wish there was a tool that would allow me to jog-dial in how fast I want to accelerate the audio. The other thing I'd love to learn about are what are the human limits on how fast you can process audio information. As well, I wonder if it makes sense to lower to tone of the audio so that the people just sound like they are speaking quickly, without sounding like a chipmunk.

Monday, January 30, 2006

BubbleShare Contest

I discovered first hand how painful it is to deal with a hard drive crash AND trying to get a contest going at the same time. Its umm.. not recommended.

But that's a story for another time.

We've been hard at work getting our first contest up and running... this is "part 1 of 2" of our little contest where we'll be giving away a bunch of stuff, including an iPod, Startup.com DVD (a great movie), tshirts, gum, books, and a bunch of other fun stuff.

The best excuse we could find for giving away free stuff was that we found out it was Bubblewrap appreciation day today. So, here's the BubbleShare bubblewrap contest for your viewing/participating pleasure.

A big thank you to our sponsors and friends at: Tucows, Naked Conversations, LockerGnome, Red Flag Deals, and ElimiTaste.

"Part 2 of 2" of the contest will follow... stay tuned. =)

Open House at Linden Labs!

Its been too long since my last blog. My last visit to the Bay Area brought me to Linden Labs, the makers of SecondLife -- who are doing some AMAZING things. Philip (CEO/Linden) and Reuben (Marketing/Liden) are crazy smart people, and I had a chance to speak to them both about what they've been up and and are doing with their virtual world.

I had a great follow up conversation with Philip, whose is not just smart, but is a super nice guy to boot, who gave us some great advice. In return, I'd like to extend a HUGE recommendation to my friends that are looking to try something new to consider working with Linden. If you're brilliant, and for whatever reason are not working with us already (or want to be in the Bay Area) got give them a ping!

Anyhow, for those of you that are looking for a super cool enviorment to work in the Bay Area, or are curious about Linden Labs, they are having a open house. I've attached a invite below -- if you're interested in attending, just RSVP via the email below -- and if you happen to be someone I know, let them know that Albert sent you. =)

Second Life Engineering Open House


On January 30, 2006, the development team of Linden Lab will host a wine bar and presentation about the design, development, and future challenges of Second Life. If you have senior engineering, technical operations, or product development experience, you may want to consider attending. This will be a very interesting and entertaining look at a pretty incredible technology - the simulation, streaming, and distributed computing architecture of a rapidly growing open-ended 3D on line world hosted on over 1,500 servers, used by over 100,000 people, and already generating more than $40M in annual revenues for the people creating goods and services there. Get an early look at the little company that is going to change everyone's world. We'll be providing wine and some light food. Bring your brain. The event is invite-only, if you are interested in attending RSVP to elisabeth@lindenlab.com
(Yes, it saids invite-only, but but feel free to ping Elisabeth, if you're smart and curious, they want to hear from you)

Sunday, January 08, 2006

Heading off to Bay Area, anyone interesting in connecting?

I'll be in the Bay Area/SFO uber-early monday morning. If anyone is interesting in connecting there, or at MacWorld (where I'll be briefly) please let me know. I'll also be meeting Mr. TechCrunch who has turned our "meeting" for me to buy him a beer into a "meetup" (with what looks to be attended by a disproproate number of Canadians).

Drop me a line if you're going to be in the bay area and want to meet up.

Just wrapping up at CES and CESCamp... Request for CESCamp photos

Trying to do CES while trying to host/organize CESCamp certainly can test the human limits as to how much sleep a human can live off of. =)

Thank you all for attending CESCamp it was great meeting you all in person after all those email and electronic exchanges, we had a bigger turn out on our last two days than I had expected... which is great.

I lost my camera while at CES, so if anyone has any photos of CESCamp, please upload your high rez pictures to me via this link here (uploads to bubbleshare admin album, so i can get the high rez in a nice little zip via this hack here.

Monday, January 02, 2006

Trademarking the Commons

This rumor -- or maybe inkling is a better word – that someone has a desire to trademark barcamp is unsettling. Especially to those of us who like to create things and exchange ideas with our peers – even our competitors -- to see what the next person might make of them.

There's a lot of acreage between careful brand building and 'giving away the farm. Of course we need to build smart businesses that support the teams and individuals who make them go. At the same time, we have to contribute meaningful creations that move the whole industry forward. Things like Barcamp and Torcamp and CESCamp don't 'belong' to anyone. That’s why they work. As business owners, we can help organize them, sponsor them, encourage them, support them, attend them -- but trademark them? Yikes, that seems counterproductive to say the least.