Posted by sh1mmer on May 11, 2008 in Blogging
Phew… it’s been a long time since I last blogged here.
I’m writing something based on the sure knowledge that the one thing that will never have you blogging is meaning to. The only thing that gets you blogging is actually doing it. After blogging fatigue and just being busy interrupted my blogging habit, good intentions kept me almost blogging for months and months.
Posted by sh1mmer on Aug 5, 2007 in Blogging
I use Netnewswire to read my feeds and it has an interesting feature that lets me see what I spend most time reading. These results are from a period of about a year.
What I find interesting is that the Accessibility categories feature so highly. While I do read a lot of stuff on Accessibility I was surprised it featured so much in the top 10 things I read and by such a large margin.
Some really big blogs are amongst my top reads. Lifehacker, and Treehugger are both great reads. Next are the excellent link blogs from Scoble and Simon Willison. Then a smattering of Apple stuff, some more productivity in the form of 43 folders. The blogs of some of my friends and colleagues feature as well as my Flickr friends photostream.
All in all I’m not upset, but I feel like I could do better at reading some less mainstream content.
blogs, feedreader, feedreading, netnewswire
Posted by sh1mmer on Jun 14, 2007 in Blogging
I’m glad they have written some good posts and competing is not my intention. but it makes me feel like I need to blog like I GTD and do some instant two minute (well five minute) on-the-spot posts. As soon as something turns into a project it gets stuck on the backlog.
Posted by sh1mmer on Jun 3, 2007 in Blogging
Via Simon Willison I saw a blog post by Matt Haughey of MiFi fame. Matt is talking about How Ads Really Work particularly the traits of
The basic premise is that your site usage is split between regular users, and search engine fodder. The regular users look at your site more frequently but are more casual info-grazers. The search engine lot however, are hellbent on missions to find stuff. Context ads are the green grass on the other side. As such Matt suggests that turning ads off to Superfans keep them happy without lowering the bottom line, allowing you to be more aggressively marketing at the search engine traffic.
I love this idea and it coincides with something I was discussing with Marco this week. I love having Marco sitting next to me because he is really great for bouncing ideas off, and helping to inspire me with his enthusiasm for web technology. He was talking about using his Mint installation to power a WordPress statistic plugin along the lines of the Feedburner button I use on the main page of my blog.
I’d like to take the idea of mixing the cookie data from Mint crushes with Matt’s idea and create something which will keep Adsense away from your hardcore user base. It will allow more aggressive and profitable advertising while not upsetting the people who read your site the most.
The only thing that bothers me? I wonder if more aggressive ads will upset uptake of new users. Matt said lack of advertising kept people around. That assumes you can get them to visit more than twice.
adsense, advertising, mint, wordpress, matthewhaughey
Posted by sh1mmer on May 31, 2007 in Blogging
So a fringe benefit of the server being down today was I noticed that my blog hasn’t been updating. I’m not sure exactly why yet, I think it’s something to do with a cron job that is mucking about with the database. I’m going to be back posting the missing items, but not all at once. I’m going to do a few today, and over the next couple of days.
Posted by sh1mmer on Apr 30, 2007 in Accessibility
I was trying to think of what to write for BADD 2007. I’ve been trying really hard to avoid some trite comments from the Accessibility advocate that I am.
Then it occurred to me that my dyslexia is a disability as real as any other. It’s certainly something that gets a few laughs in the office. Lots of people talk about having a
dyslexic moment as if it’s something you can turn on and off. While I don’t really find that bothers me it’s still an interesting idea that it propagates. It’s almost like that offhand comment implies that dyslexia is just about taking a lack of care.
It isn’t entirely far from the truth. Most people don’t realise I am dyslexic, I’m pretty smart, literate, and I read faster than a lot of people I know. I’m also great at Maths. I don’t sound very dyslexic yet do I? However the more tired I am the more noticeable it gets. I think my brain is compensating pretty well most of the time, but tired robs it off enough ‘cycles’ that it has to let slip just so I can function at all.
I can’t actually read long words, or I find it very difficult. When I was in primary school they thought I just was a normal kid doing normal kid reading. In fact I was doing what I’ve always done, I guessed long words from the first and last couple of letter based on context. It turns out I find it really hard to break a word down and then assemble it from it’s pieces. Strange eh?
I think the point I’d like to make is even very capable people (if I can call myself one) may be disabled in some way. Disability is not about how much you are able to do something benchmarked against the rest of humankind, it’s about how much of your potential is being restricted from you. Many, many ‘disabled’ people live full and wonderful lives. What we need to do is make sure people look to remove barriers so that people can reach whatever their potential is, and enjoy their many varied capabilities.
For more info on Blogging Against Disablism Day see the post on Diary of a Goldfish.
badd, badd2007, disability, bloggingagainstdisablismday
Posted by sh1mmer on Apr 9, 2007 in Blogging
CrunchNotes had some interesting thoughts on Tim O’Reilly’s Code of Conduct. While I know I reacted strongly to the abuse of Kathy Sierra I also feel that the angry mob was somewhat a bad thing.
It’s good not to let hate be acceptable, however Hitler started his political career by raising reactionary mobs against perceived threats¹. While I’m not saying Kathy Sierra or Tim O’Reilly are comparable as people to Hitler, this kind of reactionary social self-help is not a panacea.
I really hope that people continue to do what they are currently doing. If people are abusive to the point that they were with Kathy she should call the Police. The blog-o-sphere can be outraged, that kind of behaviour disgusts me. That said sometimes I like the kind of irreverent humour that comes out of places like B3ta and Something Awful.
The difference that I can see? B3ta et al make fun of stereotypes in our society, Kathy Sierra was victimised. The police can tackle victimisation and the blogging community can be outraged, but please, lets not stop mocking our own stereotypes.
¹ I’m not breaking Godwin’s Law because this is actually a debate about how people are influenced and how that can lead to the the suspension of free-thinking and debate.
blogs, kathysierra, meankids, timoreilly, crunchnotes, codeofconduct, b3ta, somethingawful, godwinslaw