February 28, 2007
O'Reilly AlphaTech Ventures
February 25, 2007
Sunday morning shot.
Victoria and Nicolas watching something on the MacBook.
Could second-best be better?
I stumbled across what I think is a really good idea this morning. It is a bit like what I've read somewhere about Burger King - in that they build new branches next to McDonald's deliberately because it means that MC has already done the field- and market-research in that area. Not sure if that's true or just an urban legend - but anyway.
Here in Germany, the past few years have seen loads and loads of "casting-shows". You know the kind, 30.000 hopefuls think they can sing and the are eventually reduced to just the best individual popstar or band. More often than not the winner is an absolute flop and everyone moves on to the next casting-show.
But what about the rest? What about the last 20 or so candidates. Surely they weren't that much worse than the winner, maybe they just had a bad day or something. Sometimes one or two will try and go it on their own - but they've never really been successful.
For the first time today I read that someone is actually deliberately making a girl-band out of girls who were just runners-up in the last series of the German "Popstars". This is an interesting tactic, because every candidate has to sign a contract with the production company of the casting-show that prevents them from "going-it-alone" until the contract runs out. This happens to be on the 28th February for the last series.
The German Rapper Bushido has now gathered several of the girls and will be launching his own girl-band in March. In fact his girl-band will be releasing their first single two weeks after the winners - Monrose - release theirs. So - will the "second-best" turn out to be better?
February 22, 2007
Google goes Office
Today, Google will unveil its bundle of applications for the enterprise. The suite will consist of e-mail, word processing, spreadsheet and calendar applications. The annual fee for the hosted service is going to be $50 per user.
It looks as though the site is live already.
There are now 2 versions of Google Apps - the Standard and the Premier Editions. The Premier editions gets you 10 GB of email storage and 99.9% of uptime guarantee. Google are offering a free trial period of the Premier edition until April 30.
The suite also has some mobile functionality.
February 20, 2007
Viacom to roost on Joost
Notice how the Reuters headline reads: "Viacom lands video deal with Joost" and not the other way around. The times certainly are changing.
I'm still not sure whether I belong to the Twitter generation - but today I decided to start twittering a bit more.
February 17, 2007
MacJoost - at last
Today, Joost released the Mac OS X (Intel only) version of their client software to the beta testers.
So of course I immediately downloaded it and took it for a spin. First impression is that it pretty much matches the Windows version I last took a look at and works well - although the "beta" status shows and the application stopped responding a couple of times. It seems to work best in full-screen mode.
The amount of content on Joost is growing too, although at the moment there isn't really anything on there that would make me choose Joost as an alternative to my real TV. Not yet, anway.
February 15, 2007
Coffee shop business
I actually did some work in a coffee shop in Hamburg this morning. No WiFi. Not quite San Francisco, but I'm getting there..slowly...
Customers at the gate?
So, there's a new Open Source alliance in town - the Open Solutions Alliance. The OSA has opened its doors and the list of founding companies is quite impressive. On the other side, some companies have chosen not to join and others haven't joined but are considered "friends".
To be honest I don't really care either way about this. If the vendors think it will work then heck - they're welcome to try.
Back in the "good old days" of Open Source, it was common for customers to be just as much a part of the community as the developers. In fact we were often able to acquire new customers due to the fact that they were in the community and recognized who could provide the support and services around the Open Source projects they wanted to use.
Therefore I find it interesting that customers don't seem to factor into the OSA model. As Matt points out, the customers are key to any business model.
In the end, the customers will choose the Open Source business model, company and "organisation" that fits their needs best. Just the same as they can choose the Open Source project they want to use, the company or individual that provides the support for that project, the training company and so on.
That is the freedom Open Source offers and luckily alliances can't change that.
February 13, 2007
BlackBerry 8800 - mmm....shiny
The application I use the most on my Nokia E50 is the installed Blackberry client. In fact I think I use it more than actually calling anyone. So far I'm really happy with how it allows me to keep in touch via the incoming email to my Indiginox account.
February 06, 2007
Check out the website to see what sort of things you can submit - here from the English blurb.
With the JAX Innovation Award, Software & Support Verlag intends to boost innovative projects, products and ideas to increase their chances to succeed. Thereby we pay special attention to the European market to underline that – apart from the USA – the “old world” represents an important center for technological innovations. Via this initiative, trendsetting European contributions are to be put in the spotlight and rewarded with 20,000 euros. Despite the globalization, they often do not receive the attention and initial aid they deserve.
I was going to write about what sort of European-centric innovations I would like to see submitted - but I reckon I now have to keep my mouth shut. But I'm sure you can guess.
February 05, 2007
Rolling with Amazon
We've been doing some digging in the area of media-centric web applications lately and looking at how services like Amazons S3 or EC2 can be used to offset things like data-storage and scalability. So it's interesting to read this post by Doug Kaye on how he is using S3, EC2 and SQS to build GigaVox Audio Lite.
Apple vs. Apple
The BBC is reporting that Apple Inc has reached a deal with the Beatles' record company Apple Corps. Details of the deal are still scarce but this could be the first step to seeing the Beatles appear on iTunes, iPods and iPhones.
Rumors have been pegging Valentine's Day for a possible release.
Selling off my domains - get them while they're hot
Over the years I seem to have "collected" so many domains that it's become hard convincing my wife the increasing domain costs are worth it. Therefore I've decided to put some of them up for sale. I think there are some good ones in the collection.
geekconsultants.com (ideal for a high-tech consulting company)
need-a-cake.com (bakery anyone?)
flatbooks.com (well, yeah)
opensourcecast.com (for open source podcasting)
opensourceinvestors.com (I mean, who hasn't?)
osmosix.com (our offerings just gently diffuse through your firewall, BigCo)
eanything.de (the only German domain, bought at the height of the e-* rage)
Click on the domain to get to the domain marketplace I'm using.
ASP.NET AJAX talks to PHP
Microsoft recently released ASP.NET AJAX, a framework for rich clients. You may be more familiar with the old name - ATLAS.
One part of that is the Microsoft Ajax Library which is independent of using ASP.NET on the server side. In this video, Steve Marx gives a good explanation for non-Microsoft developers. He shows how to interface to PHP on the server side using the PHP bindings he released on CodePlex. He actually demos the whole thing using Firefox.
ASP.NET AJAX is licensed under the Microsoft Permissive License (MS-PL).
February 03, 2007
Web Monday in Paderborn
Planning for a Web Monday in Paderborn has started.
February 02, 2007
5 years - 1 day
Sometimes I think that's long enough.
February 01, 2007
My youngest son has to wear a heart monitor for a day (just a check) and this just happened. My eldest son looked at the small screen of the monitor and asked:
14:38 - is that good?
Made my day.