Eurovision for Geeks 2008

Eurovision 2008 logo

Eurovision for Geeks! After an evolving conversation on Twitter, on Sunday 25 May we’re organizing a night at our local “Irish” pub, Kelly’s On King, Newtown, to watch the final of the Eurovision Song Contest 2008. The delayed broadcast starts 7.30pm Sydney time on SBS TV, so we’ll be avoiding spoilers. We’re probably also organising a live Internet link-up with pubs in other cities — because we can. Details to come later, but is “Eurovision for Geeks” an OK name? Geekvision?

More Thoughts on Twitter

Twitter cartoon image by Hugh MacLeod

Weird. I was thinking that today I might write about how I’ve been using Twitter recently, and I’ve just found myself writing in its defence.

Over on the Link mailing list were talking about Microsoft’s new Live Mesh when I noted:

It’s been interesting to watch the vastly different reaction here on Link with the (mostly) very positive reaction amongst the alpha geeks in my circle of friends on Twitter.

There, the reaction is all “When can I get a Mac version?” and “How can I hook this into X technology?” and about exploring the possibilities — what can be achieved. Here on Link, the reaction is often negative, “How can it go wrong?”, “Where do you sue?”.

Both reactions are necessary to provide a balanced response to a new technology. How to we get them to meet?

Systems administrator Craig Sanders was quick to respond, and I must admit I found his response to be almost a stereotype — something I later dubbed “old man syndrome”.

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Twitter versus versus blog posts

I’m starting to think that my “here’s what I’ve found” items should move from Twitter to or maybe even Tumblr [no account there yet, will explore soon] and just be summarised here daily. Then Twitter can be just the day-to-day status stuff — which needn’t be archived here at all, but maybe elsewhere.

Are you OK with that one, Mat F?

There seems to be a surge in “RSS aggregator” products like FriendFeed to create a unified “life stream”. But the more I think about it, the more I think “one stream that contains everything” is wrong. It might be fine for archiving — for your needs. But what about those following you? Dumping everything into a single sewer of undifferentiated crap seems to throw the burden of understanding you onto you audience. And all successful media creation is about what the audience wants — no matter what the scale.

It’s better, I think, to separate out the threads into different streams. People can subscribe to the combination they want. And they can choose to view them in the aggregator of their choice.

Business contacts get your business posts. Family and friends get the status reports about your lunch. A select few choose to view the reports of your illicit camel sex. where they want them, when they want them.

Well, that’s what I think today, anyway. What do you think?

Thoughts on Twitter

High MacLeod cartoon Twitter logo: a stylised bird of some sort

In just two months, Twitter has become one of my core communication tools. Non-Twitter instant messaging and Facebook have all but disappeared from the mix. Here’s why.

Actually, before that… If you don’t use Twitter, or if you’ve taken a look but don’t “get it”, watch this 2.5-minute video Twitter in Plain English from those wacky Canadians Common Craft. Love their style.

OK, back?

Like the character in the video, I was sceptical about Twitter. Why do people need to know every little detail of my life? Who cares? I said as much to Perth’s Twitterati late last year. But then I actually tried using it — and I “got it” immediately.

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