IRC: #joiito Channel Revival (Or At Least Reunion) [en]

[fr] Le retour du canal IRC #joiito, et quelques pensées sur ce qui différencie Twitter et Facebook (même les groupes) d'un canal IRC comme celui-ci.

So, let me tell you what happened last night. You know I’ve been reading Here Comes Everybody, right? Well, in chapter 9, Clay Shirky tells the story of #joiito — Joi Ito‘s IRC channel, that I was a regular of for years since sometime in 2003 or 2004, until Twitter emptied the channel of most of its life. Reading about it in Clay’s book reminded me what a special thing it was.

Last night, I saw that my old friend Kevin Marks was online on Facebook. Unless I’m very mistaken, Kevin is one of the numerous friends I made on #joiito, and we hadn’t chatted in ages. I wanted to tell him about my Blogging Tribe experiment, see if he was interested. We started joking about the old times (OMG Technorati!), I mentioned my reading Here Comes Everybody, the mention of #joiito, he pointed me to his blog post clarifying Jeannie Cool’s role in the channel (seems Clay had got the story wrong in the first edition of his book), which brought me to another post of Kevin’s on the bots we had running in #joiito, and on an impulse, I went to check out the channel.

Now over the last years, I’ve pretty much always been logged in to #joiito (I run irssi in screen on my server). But I stopped going. Like many others it seems, over the years Twitter became my “replacement” for IRC. I guess we all logged in less and less, and the channel population and conversation dropped below the critical mass it needed to stay truly alive. The community disbanded.

The channel never truly died, of course. There were always some of us sitting in there, and there would be sudden flare-ups of activity. But the old spirit had left the room.

Kevin followed me in, started fiddling with the bots, I found an old abandoned #joiito Facebook group. Created back in 2007, it was clearly an “old-style” Facebook group (they sucked) that was migrated to new style and emptied automatically of its members. There were three members, I invited myself in, invited a bunch of other #joiito old hands, and started pinging people to get them to drop into the channel.

In less than an hour we had a lively conversation going on in #joiito. I stayed on for a few hours, then went to bed. Imagine my surprise when I woke up this morning to discover close to 60 people in the Facebook group, and that the conversation on #joiito had gone on all my night, with “new old channel regulars” joining! It feels just like the old days. Seriously. It makes me very happy, because I think this IRC channel was really something precious, and I was sad it was “no more”. (Quotes because obviously, the channel never disappeared… it just died down.)

I haven’t had an IRC conversation like this in years. I’ve been very active on Twitter (slightly less now), am very active on Facebook, and really love Facebook groups. But an IRC channel like #joiito is something different.

When I asked my old friends what had “replaced” #joiito in their current online ecosystem, the general response seems to be “Twitter”, clearly. But what is missing with Twitter and Facebook (and even Path) that we are so happy to see our channel alive again?

Twitter and Facebook are centred on the network, not on the group. We are loosely joined to each other on Twitter just like we are loosely joined on IRC (I definitely am not “close” to all the channel regulars — more on that too in a bit), but the container is way bigger. On Twitter, our networks sprawl and spread until we end up (some of us) with thousands of followers. This is very different than an enclosed chatroom with less than 100 people in it.

Once we started spending more time on Twitter and Facebook, we stopped being part of the same group. We got lost in our own networks of friends, acquaintances, and contacts.

Facebook groups bring back this “community” aspect. But interaction and conversation in Facebook groups, which are built upon a message-board model, is much slower than in IRC. There is less fluff, less joking, less playing around. It’s not real-time chatting, it’s endless commenting. We’ve touted Twitter and Facebook so much as being “real-time” that we’ve forgotten where the real “real-time” is: in chatting.

IM, Facebook, and Twitter allow people to keep in touch. I’m connected to a large handful of #joiito regulars on Facebook — people I used to exchange with daily during the Golden Days. But on Facebook, we don’t talk. Our relationship is not one of one-to-one chats. Our lives on Facebook our different enough that they don’t bring us closer, but make us drift apart. We are missing our hang-out place.

You’ve seen that play out offline, certainly. You leave a club you were part of or a job. There are many people there whom you appreciate or even love, but you do not stay in touch. Once the common activity or place that brought you together in the first place is gone, there is not enough left to keep you together.

Twitter and Facebook are more lonely places to hang out online than an IRC channel, because nobody shares the same experience as you. We all have a different Twitter, a different Facebook. In an IRC channel, we all have the same lines of text scrolling before our eyes.

Is this just a reunion, or is this the revival of the #joiito IRC channel?

Only time will tell. I personally hope for a revival. I missed you guys.

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Photos Online on Flickr, Facebook, and Google+ With Lightroom [en]

[fr] Comment je fais pour publier mes photos sur Flickr, Facebook et Google+ depuis Lightroom, avec les plugins de Jeffrey Friedl.

I like Lightroom a lot and have been using it for a few years now to manage my photos. I don’t do a lot of processing/retouching, and it fills my needs perfectly:

  • I can organize my photos on my hard drive the way I want (monthly, then “events” if needed)
  • It doesn’t touch the original photos (non-destructive editing)
  • I can retouch, crop, and do the stuff I deem necessary to improve my photos
  • I can batch-rename photos according to pretty much any template I want
  • I can upload photos to Flickr, Facebook, and Google+ directly from Lightroom.

Autour du chalet, lumière

I’ve been using Jeffrey’s Flickr plugin for a while now. The neat thing about Lightroom is that when you “publish” photos somewhere rather than “export” them, Lightroom maintains a relationship between the published photo and the one in your catalog. This means that if six months later you go over it again, crop it differently, or retouch it again, Lightroom can update the photo on Flickr for you.

Of course, you don’t have to: you can make a virtual copy of your photo in Lightroom and work on that one, without impacting the published photo; and you’re also the one who hits the publish button to update the photo on Flickr. It doesn’t happen completely automagically.

The only problem with this is for the person who has included one of the updated Flickr photos in a blog post. Updating changes the photo file name at Flickr, and breaks the insert. Thankfully, there’s a plugin for that.

I love my Flickr account and it contains pretty much all my (published) photos. I can’t deny, however, that a lot of my online social activity happens on Facebook, and that it’s a great environment for photos to circulate. Unfortunately Facebook has really crappy photo library management, so I’ve limited myself to uploading the odd album of photos every now and again. I needed a more sustainable process which didn’t involve exporting photos from Lightroom to my hard drive and uploading them manually.

Autour du chalet, coeur en dentelle

Enter Jeffrey’s Facebook plugin. As Facebook sucks, however, you shouldn’t really use the publish relationship to update photos that you’ve changed since you uploaded them to Facebook. Initially, as all I wanted to do was simplify my export-upload procedure, I used the “export” capability of the plugin. That means that instead of creating a “publish service” I created an “export preset” (File menu) to send photos directly to Facebook. Once sent, they’re sent, and live their lives on their own.

What’s nice is that I can also export photos like that directly to my pages (Tounsi and Quintus will appreciate).

Jeffrey also has a plugin for PicasaWeb, which for all practical matters pretty much means Google+ (Google Plus). Google Plus seems better at handling photo updates, so I set it up as a “publish service”.

I realized that I could use “smart publish collections” to make things simpler. My sets are already defined on Flickr. For example, I have this set of chalet photos, and I just want to reproduce it on Google+ (and Facebook). With a smart album or collection, I can tell Lightroom to “just publish those photos which are in that Flickr set”. Easy! This made me set up Facebook as a publish service too.

Autour du chalet, vue matinale du balcon

I love Jeffrey’s plugins because they are very well-maintained (up-to-date). There is some clunkiness in places because he really pushes beyond the limits of what Lightroom was designed for, but if you’re willing to see the odd error message or use the odd workaround, that should bother you too much. The clunkiness is amply made up for by the extensive documentation you will find both on Jeffrey’s site and in the plugins.

One such workaround is required to create a smart publish collection: because of a Lightroom bug, you have to edit the publish service and add the collection from there. But thankfully Jeffrey is really good at documenting stuff and telling you what to do and how, so you just have to follow the instructions on the screen. Basically you create a smart album or set in the “edit publish service” screen, then once it’s done edit that album to set your “smart” criteria.

Two useful things to know:

Finally, Jeffrey’s plugins are donationware. He spends a lot of time on them, and if you find them useful, you should definitely chip in.

Autour du chalet, crocus sous la neige

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Fiddling With Video: Lightroom, YouTube, and iMovie [en]

[fr] Je m'amuse avec iMovie. Ça donne une vidéo de chats, bien sûr.

In November, I had Thierry Weber come and give my SAWI students a short practical course about YouTube and online video. It gave me a kick in the pants to (1) accept that YouTube has grown up a lot since its early days and is now a nice platform and (2) decide to put more video material out there.

I still have issues with video: either you edit heavily, and it takes hours of work to get a few minutes out of the door, or you share raw, unedited clips and it takes a long time to consume, requiring the viewer’s undivided attention. Also, like audio, there is no way to really speed through video: if it’s an hour long, that’s the time it’ll take you to watch it. You have way less freedom than with text regarding which bits you skip, pay attention to, go back to, or pay little attention to.

I have hours of video shot in India in 2004 that I have not yet done anything with. And that’s just one example.

So, between the kick in the pants, the HD iPhone always at hands, and cats (the primary source of all online content), I’ve been doing more video these last months. Some of them have ended up on my YouTube channel, but not many (can you imagine I actually have the username “steph” on YouTube? yeah.) But most of them are sitting on my hard drive due to logistical difficulties in turning them into something. (Ugly sentence, sorry.)

Today I had made enough progress sorting my photographs that I felt it was time to tackle my videos. Here’s a peek at how I’m doing things.

  • Firstly, I import all videos into Lightroom with my photos, be they from the iPhone or my proper camera.
  • I use Lightroom to organise them in a separate folder than the photos (per month) and topical subfolders if needed. This means that in my 2013/03/ photos folder, in addition to the various photos subfolders I may have (2013/03/Cats at the chalet or 2013/03/Mountains) I will have a folder named 2013/03/videos 03.2013 which might contain 2013/03/videos 03.2013/Cats in chalet garden and a few others, feline-themed or not.
  • If anything needs trashing, I do it in Lightroom, ditto for renaming. Clips can also be trimmed in Lightroom if I haven’t done it before on my iPhone (oh, a note about that: a clip trimmed on the iPhone isn’t recognised for import by Lightroom; it seems that restarting the phone gets rid of the issue.) If I’m going to upload individual clips to YouTube I keyword them “YouTube” and upload them directly to YouTube from the website.
  • For stuff I want to edit: I import the clips I need into iMovie (hopefully I will have collected the clips needed for one project into one single directory in Lightroom, like 2013/01/videos 01.2013/India snippets and keyword them with “iMovie” in Lightroom. This means they exist twice on my hard drive, but I don’t think there is a good way to avoid that (except maybe trash the Lightroom versions, which I’m loathe to do because I like the idea of having all my video stuff organised somewhere, and I like the way Lightroom does it better than iMovie).
  • My video editing skills are extremely limited: today I figured out (without access to iMovie help, which is online!) how to add a title and credits to my little series of clips stuck together end-to-end to create a mini-movie. Head over to YouTube to see my cats explore the big outdoors are the chalet for the first time.

There we go, more cat videos on the internets from my part!

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LinkedIn Appreciation [en]

It’s no secret that I’m not a huge fan of LinkedIn. And recently, I’ve been thinking about why that is the case.

When LinkedIn started out, it was really not much more than a glorified online resumé. Facebook and Twitter and blogs were much more alive, and I pretty much wrote it off (specially when French speakers were discovering it and pronouncing it leenk-euh-deen).

Since then, LinkedIn has evolved tremendously. I’ve spent some time on it recently, and I have to say the user experience has improved tremendously, the news feed is alive, and I really like the new “skill endorsements” (as opposed to “recommendations”, which usually serve to show how good you are at getting others to write nice things about you, rather than properly reflect your professional value).

LinkedIn actually managed to make these skill endorsements fun and pretty addictive. Go to a connection’s profile (here’s mine ;-)) and endorse any skill. You’ll find yourself with a box such as the ones below at the top of the page when you scroll back up.

Screenshot%203/24/13%2016:59

Screenshot%203/24/13%2016:58

I think this works because:

  • You are asked a very simple question: “Does Kevin know about blogging?” — yeah of course he does. Endorse.
  • Don’t know? Just hit the little cross and the problematic case (!) is replaced with a new one which you may be able to answer more easily. You don’t get stuck.
  • There is an element of “intermittent rewards” here: clicking “endorse” is satisfying, and you never know if the next question you’re going to be asked will be easy to deal with or not.
  • The skills and people you are asked to endorse are “random”, so there is little pressure to endorse all the skills of a connection, or any skill — the system gives you plausible deniability (your contact or that specific skill you didn’t endorse can simply not have showed up)
  • You are asked to endorse only a small aspect of a person’s skillset, participating in some kind of crowdsourced recommendation. It’s much less “costly” socially than a proper recommendation (not to mention cognitively lighter by a few factors of ten).

Back to why I’ve shown little interest in LinkedIn so far: I think a lot of it has to do with my status as a freelancer who

  • works a bit on the fringe of big business
  • has a very strong online presence (blog, Twitter, and Facebook, mainly)
  • has very intertwined personal and professional lives.

One of the characteristics of LinkedIn is that it is “100% professional” (quotes because, as I responded to a student yesterday, I don’t believe we are ever 100% professional; we are whole human beings who behave differently in different settings, but it’s only a matter of time until a cat photo finds its way into LinkedIn).

The “professional network” brand is reassuring for those who like to keep business and personal separate, but for those like me who don’t, it’s kind of boring. Facebook is way more fun. People are on Facebook anyway to share their cat photos, and in between a status update and a funny video, there are plenty of opportunities to bring up business. It’s part of our lives, after all.

However, this means that there is a pretty different population on LinkedIn than on Facebook. Who is your audience? Who are the people you are trying to connect to or be noticed by? Go where they are.

And even for me, I have to say it’s nice to have a chance to discover more about the professional lives of those I hang out with on Facebook. But that brings us back to the online resumé, which in itself is a pretty important thing: it means that in the age of LinkedIn, we can all be on the job market without being in job hunting mode. Before, we would polish up our CV when we felt the wind turn. Now, our LinkedIn profile is part of our online identity.

If you want to share what usefulness LinkedIn has had (or has!) for you personally, I’m interested in hearing about it — specially (but not only) if you’re a freelancer.

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Tinkering with Evernote, Tumblr, IFTTT, and Pocket [en]

[fr] Je bidouille avec Pocket, IFTTT, Evernote, et Tumblr.

This is incomplete tinkering. More questions than solutions. Welcome into my ecosystem for dealing with other people’s content.

I’m a fan of the “read later” button, my buckets are overflowing, and I’m fully aware of the aspirational nature of my ever-growing collection of things to read. I do read, though.

When I read things, I publish snippets (my “notes”) to Digital Crumble. I use Evernote to store all kinds of data and content, and am moving towards storing more and more in it. (No I’m not freaked out by the hacking episode, which I think they handled well.)

I used to use Instapaper as my “read later” bucket but have now switched to Pocket, mainly because the latter offers more triggers in IFTTT.

Here’s what I’d like to do:

I love IFTTT, but get frustrated that the triggers and actions associated to the channels I use are sometimes insufficient for my needs. And yes, this is probably often due to limitations placed by the service APIs (I’m still reeling from the loss of Twitter triggers). For example, the ingredients for the Pocket triggers only contain an excerpt of the saved page, and not the full content. Shame!

So, I might go back to just saving my “pages to read later” to Evernote, but it’s not quite as friendly as Pocket for reading and managing them.

2nd Back to Blogging Challenge, day 8. On the team: Nathalie Hamidi (@nathaliehamidi), Evren Kiefer (@evrenk), Claude Vedovini (@cvedovini), Luca Palli (@lpalli), Fleur Marty (@flaoua), Xavier Borderie (@xibe), Rémy Bigot (@remybigot), Jean-François Genoud (@jfgpro), Sally O’Brien (@swissingaround), Marie-Aude Koiransky (@mezgarne), Anne Pastori Zumbach (@anna_zap), Martin Röll (@martinroell), Gabriela Avram (@gabig58), Manuel Schmalstieg (@16kbit), Jan Van Mol (@janvanmol), Gaëtan Fragnière (@gaetanfragniere), Jean-François Jobin (@gieff), Yann Graf (@yanngraf). Hashtag:#back2blog.

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CatBlock Fills Your Internets With Cats [en]

[fr] CatBlock vous montre qu'internet est fait de chats. Miaou!

The other day, Anna told me I should blog about CatBlock for Chrome. Here we go.

You knew the internet was made of cats, right? Well, instead of simply hiding ads like AdBlock, CatBlock reveals all the hidden cats inside them.

Since I’ve been using it, it has greatly helped me get my daily cat fix. Yes, with CatBlock, my work is no longer interrupted by a sudden urge to run off and look at cat pictures on Tumblr or I Can Has Cheezburger. (Or wherever the cute cats are hiding nowadays.)

See it in action:

Blog with CatBlock

Blog with Cat (CatBlock

Une Nuit au Sahara -- catblock

catblock -- rencontre sérieuse

You can even send in photos of your own cats if you like. Did you spot Safran?

And if you’re not that into cats, you can tell CatBlock to display pretty much anything: unicorns, dogs, or even motorbikes.

Go download AdBlock/CatBlock, which started off as an April Fools’ joke. You’ll have to pay a small monthly fee but it’s a great way to support the developer of AdBlock.

Meow!

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Using Google Docs for Small Team and Project Management [en]

[fr] Pour gérer des petites équipes et des projets de modeste envergure, simplement utiliser les documents partagés de Google Docs peut vous sauver la mise et diminuer grandement les communications inutiles. Par exemple, un document texte avec la timeline, les éléments clés du projet, les next actions... Pas besoin de se casser la tête à rentrer ça dans un programme dédié!

I regularly work with small teams of people, particularly when wearing the blog editor or blogger relations consultant hat. I love using Google Docs to keep everyone in the loop. It’s not a very structured way of doing things, but it works well enough.

I usually have one text document which contains an outline of the timeline, project description, decisions to make, and an action list of who does what. It’s shared with everyone and team members ideally update it as we go along.

If there is a larger group of people involved, I might set up a Google Groups discussion list so we can all communicate with each other.

For lists of people (bloggers to invite or accredit, posts to publish/review…) I make a spreadsheet that I share with all people involved, again.

I also use shared folders so we can try to collect all project-related documents in one place.

Using these shared documents avoids dealing with e-mail attachments (urgh!) which are forever out-of-date (“got the latest version?”) and minimizes to-and-fro communication just to know where things are.

However, it remains really important to have phone calls or face-to-face meetings in parallel — shared documents alone aren’t going to make your project run itself!

This post is 1/10 of the #back2blog challenge. Blogged today too — congrats to all:

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Reminders With Future Triggers: Building an Intelligent Calendar [en]

[fr] L'idée que j'ai pitchée au StartupWeekend Lausanne, plus en détail et mieux expliquée: un système de rappels ("rappelle-moi") qui pourrait rappeler des choses comme "la prochaine fois que tu vois Sophie, ramène-lui son pull" -- même si on ne sait pas quand ni où on verra Sophie pour la prochaine fois.

Wouldn’t it be great if you could set a reminder somewhere so that you don’t forget to take your grandmother for a day in the mountains next time she comes to visit — even though you don’t know when that’s going to be?

Or if you had a way to remember to bring back Sophie’s sweater that she forgot at her place, next time you have a meeting in Geneva — but you have no trips planned to the city so far?

How about reminding you to wear woolly socks every time you take the plane, because it gets freezing cold once you’re up there? And your ear plugs, in case your seat neighbour is a heavy snorer?

We usually keep track of this kind of stuff in our heads. Or we have manual GTD-style lists — ever forgot to check them before meeting somebody, only to realize afterwards there was something written under their name?

There are existing systems that provide an inch or two of the solution, but nothing exists at this stage which actually does what I’m thinking of. Let’s go around some of these services, then I’ll share my ideas on how I think this can be done.

ifttt

This is, to be honest, the service that gave me my main inspiration. It has a trigger => action architecture, but so far triggers are limited to social media events. Some exceptions: the weather, for example. Possible task: “send me an SMS if it’s going to be cold tomorrow”.

But that weather example is pretty much an exception: ifttt triggers are present events. E-mail received. Post published. Tweet with #somehashtag found. Calendar event starts.

We would need triggers like “trip to Geneva planned in 24 hours” or “Grandma coming to Lausanne in 2 weeks” or even, if we pushed it further, “on the phone with James” or “checked in with Tania”. (More on the different types of trigger I’m thinking about later.)

My idea could be an extension of ifttt, but it might also be a separate service altogether. I’m not sure at this stage.

ZMS

ZMS has part of the solution: “next time I’m in Geneva station, remind me to get a croissant at the little coffee shop”. But that won’t be much help for remembering to take Sophie’s sweater with me next time I leave my house for Geneva.

Calendar reminders

Reminders are pretty standard in calendars. But you need to set them when you enter an event in your calendar. But the basic idea here is that an event in the future, as recorded by your calendar, triggers a reminder in the present. “One month before any trip to India, remind me to ask people what they want me to bring back.”

Evernote

For some reason I spoke about this idea when I stopped by the Evernote booth at LeWeb. After discussion, it didn’t really seem to be their space, but one thing they do well is capture information from all sorts of different sources and in all shapes and sizes and help you organize it. Text on photos is parsed, everything is tagged and geolocated, and available whether you’re on your phone, your tablet, your own computer or somebody else’s. It has this “central nervous system” touch to it that my reminder service would need.

Also, somebody suggested storing my rules/reminders in Evernote, using tags for triggers. #gotoGeneva, for example. Or #Grandma. But that won’t work, because I’m not going to be actively checking for triggers each time I go somewhere or meet somebody or do something. This is clearly a service which needs to work with push, and not pull. The whole point of it is that it will do the pushing for us.

Dopplr

Based on your calendar of future trips and your connections, Dopplr lets you know if you’re going to bump into people you know when you travel.

TripIt

One thing that TripIt has been doing for a long time and which I think is really cool is that you can forward your flight booking confirmation e-mails to it, and it will automatically parse them and enter the corresponding trip in your itinerary. Some people might find this creepy, but it’s a great way to painlessly transition information from one bucket (inbox) to another (calendar).

Path

Path monitors where you are, and when you change cities, makes a note in your Path. I feel there is more intelligence coming our way from Path, but let’s wait and see. What’s interesting is that as it’s limited to (reasonably) close friends, a service like this can learn a lot about the dynamics with the people you interact with the most. This could come in handy…

Siri

Speech recognition. “Remind me to buy flowers tomorrow.” One step further: “Next time I go to Geneva, remind me to take Sophie’s sweater with me.”

How would this be done?

The service would have two main layers:

  1. gathering data to build an “implicit calendar” of your future activities
  2. rule storage and triggering

I think the second layer is pretty “straightforward”. Store rules in an “if then” format like ifttt does very well, with the extra twist that the triggers will probably look something like “N days/hours/minutes before X”. We can also get fancy about how the rule is input (from code-like to Siri-like) and how the reminder (action) takes shape.

The part that sounds a bit like SF is “how will the system know my Grandma is coming to visit?” What are the sources to generate this intelligent calendar of my future activities? Here’s what I can imagine:

  • your normal calendar (it has attendee and location fields already, that’s a pretty good start)
  • your e-mails: either explicitly (you forward e-mails with relevant parsable information to the engine) or implicitly (the engine monitors your e-mail for things like travel reservations, conversations about future activities that it might recognize — yes, people will find this creepy)
  • geolocation: where you are, where your contacts are
  • and a step further: who you’re on the phone with, who you are exchanging text messages with, parsing content of your chats and text messages (people will find it even more creepy, but aren’t organisations already monitoring this kind of thing, without us benefitting from it?)

If I were doing this thing, I would start tame and simple, by gathering information from the calendar. I would focus on one type of reminder to start with. Here are the types of reminders that I can think of, off the top of my head:

  • meeting somebody
  • going somewhere
  • doing a certain activity
  • combinations: meeting somebody somewhere (e.g. Grandma in Lausanne)

Two obvious ones are the two first ones: I could set rules for when I’ve planned to see somebody, and when I’ve planned to go somewhere. Then, once that is working, widen the trigger set, the rule set, and the scope of the input engine.

When I pitched this idea at Lausanne StartupWeekend, I was surprised by some of the feedback I got: either people misunderstood and assumed it was already possible (“but such-and-such service already does geolocalized alerts! you can do this with Evernote or RememberTheMilk“), or understood but wrote it off as science fiction. This made me realize that this idea isn’t as easy to get across as I assumed it was, but that when people do understand it, they go “oh that would be useful”.

So, this is my attempt at explaining this idea correctly, maybe in more detail. I’d like to thank all the people I’ve talked about this idea with up to now (including ZMS and Evernote with whom I had brief chats) for helping me refine the way I present it. (Somebody in particular said “oh, a kind of intelligent calendar” — but I can’t remember who… sorry.)

Do you have questions or comments? Does this explanation sound clear to you? Would you explain it differently? I’d love to hear back from you if you’ve read this article to the end.

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Non, ce n'est pas un podcast, ça [fr]

A l’occasion de mon workshop dans le cadre de Pollens Pédagogiques, j’ai réalisé qu’il n’était pas inutile de rappeler ce qu’est et n’est pas un podcast.

En effet, dans le “langage courant”, on entend beaucoup le mot “podcast” utilisé pour faire référence “du contenu audio ou vidéo qu’on peut télécharger”.

Un podcast, ce n’est pas ça. Ce n’est pas juste “une vidéo en ligne”.

Un podcast, c’est l’équivalent audio ou vidéo du blog. (Avec le programme blogueurs de Solar Impulse, en passant, j’ai aussi réalisé à quel point il n’est absolument pas clair pour la majorité du public ce qu’est… un blog.)

Alors un blog, c’est… une succession d’articles organisés anti-chronologiquement.

Un blog est généralement disponible en HTML (ce que vous lisez peut-être en ce moment) et en RSS, format de publication que vous ne remarquez pas sauf si vous utilisez un lecteur de news, et qui vous permet de vous abonner au blog.

Un podcast, à la base, c’est un fil (flux) RSS dont le contenu n’est pas du texte, mais de l’audio ou de la vidéo. C’est une évolution de ce qu’on appelait à l’époque “l’audioblogging”. Ce qu’ajoutait le podcast, c’était l’inclusion dans le fil RSS du contenu “riche” (audio/vidéo) et l’automatisation (initialement à l’aide de scripts, puis via iTunes) qui permettait aux épisodes du podcast de se retrouver directement sur l’iPod de l’auditeur (d’où le nom podcasting).

J’ai en passant suivi l’histoire de la naissance du podcasting d’assez près à l’époque: fin 2003, mon ami Kevin Marks étant justement la personne à avoir fait la démonstration d’un script qui copiait automatiquement le contenu audio lié à un fil RSS vers iTunes, et donc vers un iPod. (J’adore quand le web nous permet de revivre l’histoire en direct, pas vous? Voici un extrait vidéo de la démo de Kevin.)

Donc, un podcast, c’est un blog dont le contenu n’est pas des articles composés de texte et de photos, mais d’épisodes audio ou vidéo.

Je me demande, en écrivant ça, si l’abus de langage qui nomme une “vidéo sur internet” un podcast n’est pas simplement le même que celui (bien trop répandu) qui nomme malencontreusement “blog” une publication isolée sur un blog, au lieu de “article” ou “post” ou “billet”. Ça ne viendrait à l’esprit de personne d’appeler “magazine” un article de magazine (on réserve ce nom pour l’ensemble des articles) ou “livre” une page dans un livre, pourtant.

Donc:

  • un livre est composé de pages
  • un magazine est composé d’articles
  • un podcast est composé d’épisodes (de podcast)
  • un blog est composé de billets, d’articles (de blog), de posts

Happy blogging and podcasting!

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La subtilité du placement du @reply dans Twitter [fr]

[en] Remember that when you start your tweet by somebody's Twitter name, those of your followers who do not follow that person will not see the tweet. In some cases, you might want to reshuffle your sentence to make sure the Twitter name is not at the beginning of the tweet.

Allez, un petit article techno-pinailleur comme on les aime.

En 2009, Twitter décide que vous n’avez pas à voir dans votre flux de tweets les messages publics adressés (via @reply) aux gens que vous ne suivez pas.

Traduction: si j’adresse un message comme celui ci-dessous à @andreborschberg, et que vous ne le suivez pas, vous ne verrez pas mon message dans votre flux de tweets.

[blackbirdpie url=”http://twitter.com/stephtara/status/75144715531595776″]

Cela signifie que vous ne voyez pas tous les tweets des gens que vous suivez. Ce n’est qu’en vous rendant sur leur page utilisateur (voici la mienne) que vous pourrez voir l’intégralité de leur activité sur Twitter.

Twitter défend enttre autres ce choix en prétendant que les gens ne désirent pas voir des “conversations partielles”. D’autres, comme moi, aimaient justement beaucoup ces conversations partielles. Mais bref, c’est comme ça, il faut le savoir.

Quelles sont les conséquences?

Si vous êtes en train de vous adresser à une personne, pas trop de souci. Mettez son nom d’utilisateur (“@” inclus) en tête de tweet, et vos followers mutuels le verront. Tant pis pour les autres, c’est ainsi que Twitter veut que soient les choses.

Attention, par contre, si vous n’êtes pas en train d’adresser le tweet à quelqu’un, mais simplement en train d’y mentionner son nom, comme sujet d’une phrase, par exemple.

Si je tweete “@andreborschberg vient d’envoyer son premier tweet” c’est un peu dommage — car je suis en train d’essayer d’annoncer la chose aux gens qui me suivent et qui ne suivent pas encore André. Twitter interprète mon message comme étant adressé à ce dernier.

Comment faire, donc? Je vois deux solutions:

  • peu élégante: mettre un point avant le @ (vous avez sûrement déjà vu ça), ce qui donne “[email protected] vient d’envoyer son premier tweet”
  • élégante: tourner sa phrase autrement, par exemple “vous avez vu, @andreborschberg vient d’envoyer son premier tweet!”

Pensez-y la prochaine fois que vous commencez un tweet par “@…” — désirez-vous cacher ce tweet aux personnes qui ne suivent pas la personne au début de votre message, ou non?

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