Sunday, October 09, 2005

Blog moved


I have moved my blog. The new address

Monday, September 19, 2005

Improved lessigian powerpoint style

I found an excellent presentation by Dick Hardt from Sxip Identity entitled "Identity 2.0". It follows the lessigian powerpoint style but is even quicker (almost every word has a a slide), uses more images, animation (mainly character based) and has white background instead of black. When he says something negative, he flashes the word on black background, which is a nice trick to emphasize a point.

I wonder how he is able to sync his speech with his presentation with that speed. He must have some word lists somewhere or he has just memorized the presentation very well. Great performance.

Tuesday, September 06, 2005

Securing RSS feeds

Reactivity, Inc. has announced that they have technology to make RSS feeds inside an enteprise secure enough to be used for confidential business information transactions. So far RSS has been hyped only as a news/blog reading protocol, but increasingly RSS is gaining interest in the enterprise. Implementing security in the framework will help RSS to be integrated in the inner communication infrastructure of an organization.

Reactivity solution is properietary and most likely expensive. I bet an open-source alternative will appear soon.

We have made RSS secure in our open-source Dicole platform for internal communication between creative groups of people, but this is not an independant solution for the RSS problem, because the implementation is highly tool spesific. Anyway, our solution is one of the first to enable blogs to be used securely inside an enterprise.

I expect an open-source or otherwise free version for secure lower level RSS work to appear very soon. People at Feedburner, make it happen?

Monday, September 05, 2005

Last major paradigm shift in the computer industry

A post by The NOSE, History of the Computer Industry in One Slide has a very good illustration of the transition from vertical to horizontal in computer industry. This is something that is happening now in businesses affected by new technology. They move from managing the whole supply chain to focus on their core competence and orchestrate the rest in a networked fashion.

CNN vs Education vs Businesses

My friend Alan Levine is on the run, a good article about comparing the excellent description of the CNN news gathering method with the way of education. Regarding learning objects, we are still in the stone age compared to what CNN is doing with their own "learning objects" already today.

Of course CNN operates in a business environment with larger budgets than what education institutions could ever dream about, but in the other hand, these tools are already available. You may create a cheap (in finnish I could say "karvalakki") version of the same thing with Open Source components. Throw in some additional programming and support services and your organization will benefit from the surrounding digital spectrum.

Alan's comparison is reality for many traditional businesses as well. Limited budget or lack of ROI lingo are not available excuses for companies that still operate in even less digitalized world than what educational organizations do. There is a lot for all of us to learn from the CNN model.

Imagine your CEO to edit and feed some live information from a conference he is attending back to the "lab" for packaging and distribution to digital workspaces for all people in the organization to play with. Imagine a salesman communicating new customer requirements in real-time and getting the customized product ready for shipping the next day because he did and the infrastructure supported such a reactive business process.

Before thinking about buying expertise and content from the outside, an organization should look at their own way of creating value out of the information flow they already possess. If flow of knowledge and information is improved, operational sensitivity and efficiency will be much better in the big picture.

Saturday, September 03, 2005

New Orleans the Achilles Heel of US economy

An interesting article by STRATFOR points to a bigger picture that the mass media doesn't. The devastation of New Orleans and its effect on global economy is not only an issue about oil, but more about the whole agriculture of the Mississippi region. The region had built the US economy in the first place and it's the place where all the rivers - and therefore - all goods flow. Without people operating a port in the mouth of the Mississippi river and absence of a system to support those people, the result will be a disturbing impact not only on the US economy, but on the global economy as well.

Ancient stick-juggling art

I'm known for having an interest in learning stuff that only a few number of people can do or even know of. One of them is juggling flowersticks. When I play in public, it's common that people come to me curiously and ask what is that kung-fu stuff you're doing. They have never seen something like that before.

I recommend flowersticks as a hobby to anyone. It's easy to learn, helps you concentrate and throw some incredible tricks. It's simply just cool.

Juggling sticks is an ancient performance art. According to some sources, it even dates back to the ancient Egypt and China. Two handsticks are used to manipulate a third stick that has been balanced with weights in the ends. The flowersticks name and the counterpart, devilsticks are names given by later marketers of this juggling art.

The hobby is quite hippy and geeky, so it suites me very well. I can carry them with me on the beach, park or any other place where I might have some free time to entertain myself. I also use my flowersticks when I'm working, mainly to have a break from the computer to think about some intriguing problems. Playing the sticks while I think helps me to concentrate. Some people smoke cigarettes, I play with my sticks.

In the past I've created my own flowersticks but now I finally ordered a quality one from the Lunastix company. My pefectly balanced Equinox Lunastix comes with an Easton Aluminium core and silicone coating. The endings have cups that improve playability and the shorter length results in faster professional play. The fiberglass handsticks are also covered with silicone and have rubber endings to protect it and give a more balanced feel. The product in quality package came to me here in Finland quickly from Salt Lake City, USA, where the company is located.

Quick testing reveals it's the best pair of sticks I've ever played with. I have tried commercially available sticks from local juggling stores, stuff sold on the streets and a number of my own experiments in crafting one myself. I've created about seven different sticks and this one clearly exceeds my favourite one in both playability and quality.

Here is a video of me having a test-run on my balcony in DivX format.