What
 · Business
 · · Internet

MLB Fan · I was in New York last week, and got to make a call on MLBAM, a re­al­ly good cus­tomer of AWS, where I work. The first three let­ters in MLBAM mean base­bal­l, of which I’m a devo­tee; and al­so a hap­py five-year sub­scrib­ing cus­tomer of MLB.tv. So I was feel­ing sort of multi-level fan­nish. It was super-fun, and I got a cute pic­ture ...
 
Things about re:Invent · The AWS­palooza took me to Ve­gas for four night­s, with thir­ty thou­sand or so oth­er cloud-heads. Here­with notes and spark­ly Ve­gas pic­tures ...
[2 comments]  
Twitter Numbers · I still think Twitter’s in­ter­est­ing; it in­forms me and pleas­es me in ways no oth­er ser­vice comes near. Al­so, it lets me talk to the world, and when you do that, you find your­self ask­ing “is any­one listening?” For­tu­nate­ly, Twit­ter will tell you. The num­bers are big enough that the stats might be of gen­er­al in­ter­est. Of course, So­cial Me­dia Pro­fes­sion­als all have known all this stuff for years, but most of us aren’t those ...
 
Inside Amazon · Gosh, it seems that my employer’s at-work cul­ture is the talk of the In­ter­net. Don’t know if I should share on the top­ic, but I feel the urge and blog­gers with the urge got­ta blog ...
[9 comments]  
Online Photos · I’d like to have my pic­tures on­line, and I’d be will­ing to pay for ser­vice. Here’s what I wan­t; I don’t think any of the Cloud Pho­to ser­vices pro­vide it, but I’d be hap­py to hear I’m wrong. [Up­date: There are lots of promis­ing tools on of­fer­.] ...
[7 comments]  
Internet.org · All sorts of peo­ple are de­nounc­ing In­ter­net.org, but it looks OK to me. Maybe I’m wrong. If some­one con­vinces me that I am, then I’ll up­date this post with an ex­pla­na­tion of why it’s a bad thing, and of course link to the ev­i­dence ...
[9 comments]  
On Hating T-Mobile · If you are a vis­i­tor to the USA, you can ex­pect TMO to be stupid and abu­sive ...
[13 comments]  
T-Mobile Fired Me · I like us­ing the In­ter­net while I vis­it the Unit­ed States, which I do of­ten. T-Mobile used to of­fer a ser­vice that worked well for peo­ple like me; I was a cheer­ful cus­tomer, but now they’ve told me to go away ...
[12 comments]  
I Sold Some Bitcoins · I held the flim­sy scrap of print­out up to the Bit­coin ATM’s scan­ner, tapped its screen, and ten crisp hundred-dollar bills shot in­to the de­liv­ery tray at the bot­tom. Maybe Bit­coin is re­al? ...
[5 comments]  
Ads In Front of Things · They’re bad ...
[10 comments]  
FC7: Users vs Apps · When a per­son signs in­to an ap­p, that’s a trans­ac­tion, and val­ue is ex­changed. Who comes out ahead on the deal? ...
[4 comments]  
On Medium · Last week I wrote Texas Pol­i­tics about the legislative-gamesmanship the­atrics around Wendy Davis’ fil­i­buster. It did OK on the blog, noth­ing spe­cial. Evan Hansen of Medi­um reached out ask­ing if I want­ed to re­pub­lish there. I couldn’t think of a good rea­son to do that, but then I al­so couldn’t think of a good rea­son not to. So here’s a blogger’s-eye view of be­ing a Medi­um au­thor ...
[1 comment]  
The Scalzi/Amazon Trap · I kind of liked The Android’s Dream and Red­shirts by John Scalzi. A cou­ple weeks ago I need­ed some light-ish read­ing so I picked up Old Man’s War, and the jaws closed on my wal­let ...
[6 comments]  
I Bought Some Bitcoins · On Tues­day evening I gave an en­ve­lope full of hundred-dollar bills to a friend­ly long-haired young man I’d nev­er met in an undis­tin­guished coffee-shop in an undis­tin­guished neigh­bor­hood. By the time I got home, the Bit­coins I’d bought were worth no­tice­ably less than I paid ...
[7 comments]  
Card Update Degree of Difficulty · In Hawai’i I left my cred­it card be­hind where we ate lunch on the way to the air­port. Called ’em from the de­par­ture lounge and told ’em to cut it up and throw it out. Called Visa and told ’em to send me a new one. Real­ly pret­ty easy. Then there’s switch­ing over all the pre-authorized pay­ments ...
[4 comments]  
Blog 4 $ · An­drew Sul­li­van, one of the world’s most vis­i­ble blog­ger­s, is go­ing in­die and will try to make a liv­ing at it. I wish him luck, but I think maybe he’s think­ing about it wrong ...
[8 comments]  
Sandman Pricing · Back in Septem­ber I rec­om­mend­ed (al­beit in a sort of snot­ty tone) Sand­man Slim by Richard Kadrey. Short­ly af­ter that, I found out that it’s not just a book, it’s a se­ries. I’ve been read­ing it but I’ve stopped be­cause I think Amazon’s rob­bing me ...
[37 comments]  
On Being the New Boss · There’s been a lot of link­age this week to David Lowery’s Meet The New Boss, Worse Than The Old Boss? Low­ery is a music-biz in­sid­er, and says he’s al­so a geek; and he re­al­ly, re­al­ly hates peo­ple like me. He makes some re­al­ly in­ter­est­ing points; un­for­tu­nate­ly, he comes across as a jerk ...
[12 comments]  
Panties for Sale! · For years, when­ev­er I linked to a book, I in­clud­ed my wife’s Ama­zon As­so­ci­ates code; she’d start­ed in on that first, and it made sense to pool the fam­i­ly re­ward­s. But I’ve start­ed us­ing my own be­cause it’s our fam­i­ly book-buying pool. This has some sur­pris­ing side-effects ...
[6 comments]  
Data Pricing Sanity Maybe? · I’m hear­ing re­fresh­ing out­bursts of san­i­ty re­cent­ly on mobile-data pric­ing (and puz­zling­ly, grum­bling from peo­ple I nor­mal­ly agree with­). Usage-based da­ta pric­ing is in­evitable. Just be­cause the rum­blings are com­ing from phone com­pa­nies doesn’t mean they’re wrong ...
[18 comments]  
Story Pricing · What hap­pened was, this week’s Economist had a rave re­view of some­thing called Dogs at the Perime­ter, by a Madeleine Thien of whom I’d nev­er heard but who turns out to be from Van­cou­ver. And to have cre­at­ed a Dogs at the Perime­ter Tum­blr, which is full of se­vere for­mal beau­ty. So I thought I’d buy it, but the Kin­dle ver­sion was $18.03 and that both­ered me ...
[10 comments]  
Not Piracy · Sites all over the In­ter­net are go­ing dark to show that they ob­ject to leg­is­la­tion cur­rent­ly be­fore the US Con­gress. I’m not Amer­i­can but these words are com­ing at you from a serv­er in LA, so I guess I can weigh in. I’ll lim­it my dis­cus­sion to one word, “Piracy”; what the “P” stands for in SOPA ...
[13 comments]  
Bits as a Service · It is true, if in­con­ve­nien­t, that in­for­ma­tion wants to be free. Which for­tu­nate­ly doesn’t mean we’re done with Art or Jour­nal­ism or the oth­er ser­vices em­bod­ied in bit­s ...
[15 comments]  
Ex Twitter · Back in 2010, I dis­closed that I’d be­come the own­er of some Twit­ter shares. I sold them this week. The sto­ry pro­vides a look in­to the world of pub­lic trad­ing of private-company shares. This is a space that was new to me and I found in­ter­est­ing; maybe you will too ...
[8 comments]  
Reading the Economist · I mean The Economist, which per­sists in re­fer­ring to it­self as a news­pa­per even though it phys­i­cal­ly ap­pears to be a mag­a­zine. Wel­l, it does in­deed de­liv­er news and is print­ed on pa­per. Oop­s, maybe not. The mo­bile app ver­sion is out, and it’s no­tice­ably bet­ter than the one in­volv­ing dead trees ...
[10 comments]  
Who Follows? · Any­one who’s been on Twit­ter for a while and has built a fol­low­ing oc­ca­sion­al­ly won­ders how many of them are re­al peo­ple; be­cause plen­ty aren’t. So I took some mea­sure­ments ...
[2 comments]  
Cheap Laughs · Read­ing the tech news of the day, I was moved to sneer at one sto­ry, and the In­ter­net piled on in a way that gave me a few chances to snick­er, so here they are. [Warn­ing: Adult lan­guage.] ...
 
Millions of Hovels · There’s a re­al­ly in­ter­est­ing piece in the New York times about black-hat SEO, The Dir­ty Lit­tle Se­crets of Search. Nor­mal­ly I’d just tweet a link, but it has this won­der­ful para­graph that to­tal­ly cap­tures the sad part of the In­ter­net, the way I see it. I read it three times in a row, nod­ding all the while ...
[10 comments]  
Paying For Books · Last evening I re­viewed a book by Charles Stross. To­day, I’d like to en­cour­age you to read his es­say The mon­e­ti­za­tion para­dox (or why Google is not my friend). It’s got me think­ing about how we can en­sure that writ­ers still write book­s. And al­so mea­sur­ing: I dis­cov­ered that, since 2003, I’ve writ­ten 1.22 mil­lion words in this space. Yow ...
[18 comments]  
Photos For Sale · What hap­pened was, some­one want­ed to buy a print of one of the pho­tos here, and do­ing that turned out to be fun and have fringe ben­e­fit­s, so now any­one can ...
[4 comments]  
SEO Still Sucks · My eye was caught by Scoble’s re­cent 2010: the year SEO isn’t im­por­tant any­more? I thought most of what he said made sense, but the fact is that they’re still out there and what they’re sell­ing is most­ly bo­gus ...
[4 comments]  
Music and Money · Here are some ques­tion­s: ...
[20 comments]  
Tab Sweep — the Web · I’ll follow-up yesterday’s most­ly po­lit­i­cal tab sweep with one that’s a lit­tle clos­er to home for (I think) most read­er­s: Pieces about the Web and how we do and should live on it and use it ...
[7 comments]  
Kindle Yourself · The pub­li­ca­tion you are cur­rent­ly read­ing is now al­so an Ama­zon.­com prod­uct. This means that for $1.99 a month you can read it on your Kin­dle in black & white ...
[9 comments]  
Cloudy Days · I see the much-ballyhooed Open Cloud Man­i­festo is now on the air. IBM’s Bob Su­tor says some un­sur­pris­ing things in When you choose your cloud­s, don’t make fog­gy choic­es. The stan­dard­iza­tion drums are throb­bing in the po­lit­i­cal un­der­growth; does it mean any­thing? ...
[9 comments]  
The Shape of the Cloud · There’s an in­ter­est­ing ar­gu­ment go­ing on about the business-structure fu­tures of the Big Cloud that ev­ery­one as­sumes is in our fu­ture. Some links in the chain: Hugh Ma­cleod, Tim O’Reilly, Nick Carr, and Tim again. A few points about this seem ob­vi­ous; among oth­er things, Ama­zon Web Ser­vices is re­mind­ing me pow­er­ful­ly of Al­tavis­ta ...
[9 comments]  
Working As Intended · This is a sim­ple sto­ry of an on­line pur­chase that went well de­spite a prob­lem. The fact that this is suf­fi­cient­ly rare to make me want to write about it is sad, but that’s how it is ...
[4 comments]  
Mobility Blues · Th­ese days, I’m gloomi­er and gloomi­er about the prospects for the mo­bile In­ter­net; you know, the one you ac­cess through the sexy giz­mo in your pock­et, not the klunky old general-purpose com­put­er on your desk ...
[32 comments]  
Not an OS · Last Thurs­day I tweet­ed: “I strive to main­tain an open mind when non­tech­ni­cal peo­ple talk about the ‘Internet OS’ or ‘Web OS’. Some­times it's tough.” I got some grum­bles by email and I think the sub­ject is worth more dis­cus­sion. Let me be more speci­fic: Nei­ther the In­ter­net nor the Web is much like an OS. And even if it were, that’d be the wrong way to think about what’s go­ing on right now ...
[24 comments]  
Twitterbucks · I like Twit­ter. I hope it last­s. So I want it to have a busi­ness mod­el. This week, I was in a dis­cus­sion on that sub­ject with re­al­ly smart peo­ple, some even with use­ful ex­pe­ri­ence. After­ward, I had a re­al­ly rad­i­cal idea for a busi­ness mod­el: Ask peo­ple to pay for us­ing it. Read on for dis­cus­sion, and a sur­vey ...
[40 comments]  
Sharecropper Alert · One of the most in­ter­est­ing pieces of the new Google App Engine is the iden­ti­ty piece ...
[17 comments]  
Feeling Sad · I’m feel­ing sad about the M/Y! deal. (Which I ex­pect to sail through—from the Ya­hoo! man­age­men­t/in­vestor point of view, what’s not to like?) You see, Ya­hoo! was the first ac­tu­al re­al suc­cess­ful In­ter­net busi­ness. And Mi­crosoft, well, they’re a bunch of things, but they’re not an In­ter­net com­pa­ny ...
[2 comments]  
2008 Prediction 5: Social Networking · This is the fifth of five pre­dic­tions for 2008, ex­pand­ed from the short form gen­er­at­ed on short no­tice as de­scribed here ...
[1 comment]  
Flat Rate Considered Harmful · Lots of peo­ple, in­clud­ing for ex­am­ple my CEO, say that the hand-held mo­bile is go­ing to be a cru­cial, maybe a dom­i­nan­t, way for peo­ple to ex­pe­ri­ence the Net; par­tic­u­lar­ly on the oth­er side of what we now call the dig­i­tal di­vide. On­ly there’s an eco­nom­ic prob­lem ...
[20 comments]  
Facebook Error · Yes­ter­day I asked if there were a way to up­date my on­line sta­tus in Twit­ter & Face­book & my chat client all at on­ce. Yes­ter­day, there was (on the Mac any­how): MoodBlast. To­day there isn’t; Face­book ap­par­ent­ly shut ’em down. It strikes me as al­ways wrong, as couldn’t-possibly-be-right, to take an ac­tion which de­creas­es the qual­i­ty of the us­er ex­pe­ri­ence with your pro­duc­t. Wel­l, for now, I still have the good old MoodBlast. But I got­ta say, a cou­ple more ex­pe­ri­ences like that and I’m just not gonna care about up­dat­ing Face­book.
[7 comments]  
Subscribing to Music · Like a whole lot of peo­ple who care about mu­sic and the Net, I read the re­cent Times Magazine piece The Mu­sic Man, about how Rick Ru­bin is try­ing to save a big piece of the Music-Biz-That-Was, in part by (gasp!) in­creas­ing prod­uct qual­i­ty. He al­so talks about mov­ing from away from a ship-the-disks mod­el to a subscription-based busi­ness (this starts about halfway down page 5 of the piece). John Gru­ber scoffs at the idea. I think they’re both wrong; but that sub­scrip­tions will be a big deal ...
[15 comments]  
Tab Sweep — The World · Tonight we have the great Au­dio Con­flict of In­ter­est, eBay Pain, Ira­ni­an pol­i­tic­s, Chi­nese macroe­co­nomic­s, new Is­rael/Pales­tine hor­ror, men vs. wom­en, and the big debt prob­lem. Uni­fy­ing themes are for weak­lings; the world’s not like that ...
[4 comments]  
Jerry Yang · Yahoo’s new CEO sure hasn’t been get­ting much re­spec­t, I’m not gonna link to the put-downs but you’ve prob­a­bly seen them. I think most of these peo­ple don’t know Jer­ry. Back in the mid-Nineties, I got to know him pret­ty well when my then-employer Open Text had a Ya­hoo part­ner­ship. I quick­ly be­came con­vinced that even if he hadn’t stum­bled in­to the Ya­hoo di­rec­to­ry rocket-ride (it used to be a di­rec­to­ry, any­one re­mem­ber?) Jer­ry would have had a bril­liant busi­ness ca­reer. He’s smart and a good com­mu­ni­ca­tor and open-minded and re­al­ly un­der­stands the Web bet­ter than any dozen griz­zled se­nior busi­ness type­s. In terms of generic-executive skill­s, prob­a­bly he learned a lot from Semel and his pre­de­ces­sor Tim Koogle. I think a bet against Ya­hoo and Jer­ry might not be very smart right around now.
[1 comment]  
Technorati! · Wow, a whole lot of news by/about/from Tech­no­rati re­cent­ly. [Dis­clo­sure: I have a con­flict of in­ter­est.] First, a com­pa­ny snap­shot. I re­al­ly don’t know what “media company” mean­s, but the traf­fic num­bers are de­cen­t, and my ex­pe­ri­ence match­es with Scoble’s: they’re ahead in live-information search, this month any­how. I have no in­side in­for­ma­tion about the mon­ey. Se­cond, the State of the Bl­o­go­sphere Live Web; the world needs Tech­no­rati to ex­ist if on­ly for these re­port­s; fas­ci­nat­ing, deep, stuff. Fi­nal­ly, Dave’s think­ing about step­ping side­ways. I did ex­act­ly this with two star­tup­s, and it worked on­ce. I have no fear what­so­ev­er that Dave will drop off the radar.
 
Dub, Baby · What hap­pened was, I got a note from my friend Adam “Vudu” (MyS­pace) about his new CD echo :: dub­style. I have a soft spot for dub and liked the sam­ples, so I hit the “Buy” but­ton. The record is good, a huge bar­gain at $12.97, go get it. But the buy­ing ex­pe­ri­ence was out of the or­di­nary ...
[8 comments]  
Smart Music · The Times writes about the mu­sic la­bels toy­ing with the idea of sell­ing prod­ucts with­out poi­son oops I meant DRM. Chris An­der­son takes it fur­ther, ar­gu­ing that the eco­nomics of mu­sic fa­vor per­for­mance over record­ing. (I’m not sure about that, I still think sell­ing record­ings is a good busi­ness). An­drew Or­lows­ki over at the Reg has a lengthy and in­struc­tive in­ter­view with mu­sic man­age­ment maven Kei­th Har­ris cov­er­ing re­lat­ed ter­ri­to­ry. But the fu­ture is al­ready here ...
[7 comments]  
Hold Still! · The an­i­ma­tion in Web dis­play ads is out­ta con­trol, out­ta con­trol, I tell ya! They slith­er and shake and squirm and flash and jit­ter and morph and I’m gonna start bleed­ing from the eye­ball­s. I’ve al­ways es­chewed ad-blockers and Flash-blockers, be­cause ad­ver­tis­ing should be part of the ecosys­tem; but things have gone too far. Ads in mag­a­zines don’t of­fend me in the slight­est, I even en­joy some, have even been in­formed about some­thing I might buy. But on the We­b... my in­stinct tells me that these things not on­ly hurt my brain, they can hard­ly be achiev­ing the in­tend­ed ef­fec­t.
[12 comments]  
Metered Approval · What hap­pened was, as we were get­ting ready to leave the apart­ment in Frank­furt a bunch of com­ments showed up, and when I clicked “Approve” the Net had gone away for some rea­son and we had to leave. At the air­port, I no­ticed they had lots of these hokey Internet-by-the-minute kiosks; I’d nev­er used one. While writ­ing on­go­ing frag­ments re­quires an in­tri­cate web of tech­nol­o­gy and a sol­id ssh con­nec­tion, the com­ment sys­tem is pure browser-based sim­plic­i­ty. The kiosk in­ter­face is slick, it lets you en­ter a URL and doesn’t ask for mon­ey un­til you say ”Go“. So I slapped in a €0.20 coin and start­ed strug­gling with the Ger­man key­board, which makes the “Y” and “/” hard to find. Even­tu­al­ly I reached the ap­proval page and got logged in and saw the com­ments again. I was about ready to hit the but­ton when this thing popped up on the screen, “Your time is run­ning out in 30 ... 29 ... 28 ...”, quite nerve-wracking in fac­t. I dove in­to my pock­et and found an­oth­er double-Euro-dime with sec­onds to spare, giv­ing me time for the ap­proval to com­plete and to use the “logout” but­ton. What a weird feel­ing. I won­der if these things are prof­itable?
[1 comment]  
Grass, Tea, Church, Search · I gath­er there are peo­ple out there—lots of people—whose liveli­hood more or less de­pends on their Google search rank. Here­with some thoughts on why this is scary ...
 
Scam Spam · I don’t know about you, but in re­cent weeks I’ve been hit with high vol­umes of spam pro­mot­ing pen­ny stock­s. They are elab­o­rate­ly craft­ed and go through my spam de­fens­es like a hot knife through but­ter. When I was off the net for 72 hours last week, the vol­ume ac­tu­al­ly filled up the POP in­box at one of my ac­counts and my mail start­ed bounc­ing. By the way, you can find the peo­ple who do it with a search for “Stock Promotion” (G, Y). As a con­se­quence of liv­ing in Van­cou­ver, long a head­quar­ters for penny-stock pro­mot­er­s, I have some per­son­al ex­po­sure to how in­cred­i­bly de­vi­ous, en­er­gized, and un­prin­ci­pled these peo­ple are; it’s like try­ing to root out cock­roach­es in a warm cli­mate. Part of the prob­lem is that there is ap­par­ent­ly an in­ex­haustible sup­ply of suck­ers ready to march smil­ing in­to the jaws of these bottom-feeders. This could be the straw that fi­nal­ly breaks the back of email as we know it, the kind that costs noth­ing to send and some­thing to re­ceive.
 
Magnificent Silliness · In the wake of the pass­ing of Syd Bar­rett, Rober­to Chin­ni­ci point­ed out that you can see a com­pendi­um of Bar­rett video at YouTube, and I spent the best part of an hour watch­ing some. Ah, YouTube, feels like the Nap­ster glo­ry days; be­yond any doubt a life-enhancer. Col­by Cosh has in­no­cent fun search­ing it by date. And, like Nap­ster, it feels doomed. Pump­ing video around the Net isn’t cheap for any­one, and I just don’t see how it gets paid for. For more In­ter­net video neg­a­tiv­i­ty, see Mark Cuban. And speak­ing of mag­nif­i­cent silli­ness.... Sy­d. Bye, Sy­d. He nev­er made it out of the Six­ties and I had a few friends not make it out of the Seven­ties, you can burn the can­dle at both ends and in the mid­dle too, but not for that long. I looked in­to the record col­lec­tion and didn’t find any­thing with Bar­rett on it, so last night I lis­tened to Atom Heart Mother, which is not far of­f. It’s hard to know what to think of PF these days. Their lat­er work is far too much on the ra­dio; sud­den­ly about the time of the ex­e­crable The Wall, the world flipped and they were a symp­tom of ev­ery­thing wrong with Rock; John­ny Rot­ten was picked out of his Lon­don gut­ter wear­ing an “I Hate Pink Floyd” T-shirt. Stil­l, I’m quite sure that the mu­sic will re­main loved by many long af­ter we’re all dead; but I bet most of them will nev­er have heard of Sy­d.
 
Dabble DB, Check It Out · Paul Ke­drosky broke the sto­ry: Vancouver’s own Dab­ble DB has tak­en some in­vest­ment mon­ey and are open for busi­ness. I get pitched by a lot of star­tup­s, and Dab­ble DB is the best I’ve seen in years. It’s Soft­ware as a Ser­vice; an on­line per­son­al database. Mil­lions of of peo­ple in busi­ness­es large and small around the world do this kind of thing via Ex­cel kludges, some­times with some Ac­cess and Out­look in the mix. On­ly Dab­ble doesn’t need any soft­ware on the desk­top and still has a bet­ter us­er in­ter­face than any­thing Mi­crosoft ship­s. In fac­t, one smart per­son told me it didn’t mat­ter that much what Dab­ble did, be­cause its au­thors Avi Bryant and An­drew Cat­ton are such great UI de­sign­ers they could make a ceme­tery sched­uler in­ter­est­ing. But it does mat­ter, be­cause Dab­ble is in that mag­ic cat­e­go­ry where it does some­thing that you re­al­ize you need af­ter you’ve tried it, and there’s noth­ing else that does it. Go check it out; but if you like it, you’ll have to pay (not much) to use it; what a con­cep­t! Dis­clo­sure: Avi and An­drew and I have bought each oth­er lots of lunch­es. I ad­vised them, re­peat­ed­ly, not to take VC mon­ey, ar­gu­ing that there’s a deep dis­con­nect be­tween ven­ture in­vest­ing as it’s cur­rent­ly done, and the re­al­i­ties of Web-based busi­ness­es. Paul Ke­drosky and Ven­tures West are mak­ing a de­ter­mined at­tempt to prove me wrong; I can’t talk about the de­tails but I’m re­al­ly im­pressed at the cre­ativ­i­ty they’ve brought to the table. I couldn’t in good con­science ad­vise the guys to pass on the deal; but I did ask if I could take a piece of it.
 
Stop the Metaphors! · Rich McManus says the Web is a plat­for­m, and re­ports that per Ar­ring­ton, it’s an OS. I think this whole menagerie of metaphors around the Web has nev­er been help­ful and we should just stop dream­ing them up. The Web isn’t a plat­form or a database or an API or an OS a cloud or a click­stream or any oth­er of those things. In fac­t, the Web isn’t even a thing, it’s a mesh of agree­ments with a nice straight­for­ward en­gi­neer­ing rule­book. Play by the rules and you can be part of it and build some­thing great, strug­gle against them and you’ll look lame and you’ll fail. But don’t try to analo­gize it; some­times the world has new things in it and you just have to deal with them as they are.
 
anne 2.0 · I’ve had Anne Zelenka’s Content’s Divorce from Ad­ver­tis­ing open in a brows­er tab for days, think­ing about it and try­ing to find some­thing to ex­pand on or dis­agree with. Noth­ing comes to mind, but I’m still think­ing. Great-looking site, good writ­ing on lots of lots of oth­er im­por­tant stuff too. High­ly rec­om­mend­ed.
 
A Phrase I Hate · I heard this over and over again at ETech, and it sticks in my craw like a sour lump of food gone bad: “User gen­er­at­ed content”. Fe­h. I am not a us­er, I’m a per­son. And you know, I don’t put in all this time and work and ob­ses­sion to be a cog in anyone’s busi­ness mod­el. Just say­ing.
 
On the EFF, Email, and Syndication · Paul Hoffman’s The fu­ture of some email may not use email is a short but closely-argued piece which is fair­ly harsh to both AOL and the EFF, and says smart things about email and syn­di­ca­tion. Worth a read.
 
Frontier Justice · Be­ing ad­min­is­tered, in this case, by Google’s Matt Cutts. I think I ap­prove: I sup­pose there may be some de­cen­t, hon­or­able, in­tel­li­gent peo­ple in the SEO busi­ness, but ev­ery­one al­so knows there are al­so de­spi­ca­ble scum. Talk­ing to Dave Sifry and Rob Scoble to­day at North­ern Voice, I learned about some hor­ri­ble black-hat SEO tech­niques that de­serve the In­stant In­ter­net Death penal­ty. I’ve re­peat­ed­ly heard the Net com­pared to the Wild West, be­fore the law came to town. Un­til Wy­att Earp gets here, there’s gonna be some vig­i­lante jus­tice hap­pen­ing. Whether it’s a good idea or not.
 
Fat Pipe, etc. · I gath­er that David Isen gave a rous­ing talk at the re­cent O’Reilly Emerg­ing Tele­pho­ny Con­fer­ence, which in­volved chant­ing a lit­tle mantra about how net­work providers should be­have: Fat Pipe, Al­ways On, Get Out of the Way! David gen­er­ous­ly cred­its me with in­vent­ing the phrase, which is true, see Fast and Al­ways On, an otherwise-forgotten frag­ment from March 2003. David’s per­for­mance art got no­ticed. I’m not en­tire­ly a fan of David’s po­et­ry, but the Free­dom to Con­nect event that he was pro­mot­ing looks darn in­ter­est­ing.
 
Dell Monitors · Just to prove that I can say nice things about Del­l: Mom vis­it­ed us over Christ­mas, and is think­ing about re­plac­ing the the mouldy old 15" CRT plugged in­to her new Mac mi­ni. So we walked around the lo­cal elec­tron­ics mega­mart and looked at the HP and Sam­sung and LG screen­s, which seemed much of a much­ness. At home, we went over to the Dell Cana­da mon­i­tors page, and wow, they were slaugh­ter­ing the big-box store; way bet­ter specs for no­tice­ably less mon­ey. I’ve seen the Dell screens and they’re good, and de­cent­ly styled too. I told her the old trick of book­mark­ing the page and mon­i­tor­ing the price ev­ery day or two for a few weeks un­til you learn to spot the pat­terns and strike when there’s a deal, and I bet Dell gets her busi­ness. [Up­date: I wrote this last week, then saw Jere­my Zawodny’s an­guished Dell-hell howl; I’ve de­cid­ed not to shriek “Stop!” at Mom be­cause, af­ter al­l, most of the screens aren’t go­ing to ar­rive bro­ken.]
 
On Selling Art · In­creas­ing­ly, the prod­ucts of artists are dig­i­tal; thus sub­ject to essentially-free copy­ing and shar­ing. Artist­s, just like ac­coun­tants and am­bas­sadors, need to get paid. How best to ar­range this? (Pro­voked by a long talk with Co­ry Doc­torow at ApacheCon; my thanks to him, but the fal­la­cies are my own.) ...
 
The Future Search Market · Re­cent­ly, I learned that search providers pay for traf­fic, which makes all sorts of sense in a world where they’re of­fer­ing ap­prox­i­mate­ly equal lev­els of ser­vice. So, where to from here? I can see the op­por­tu­ni­ty to build a near-perfect mar­ket. (Please note for the record that in this piece, I agree with Ni­cholas Carr) ...
 
Search For Sale · In re­sponse to yesterday’s Buy­ing Search Traf­fic, Rus­sell Beat­tie (who works for Ya­hoo) writes: Search is al­ready de­ter­mined by who pays the most for it! Every­where you see a search box with a Google lo­go, be sure that there's a com­peti­tor out there that will pay for the same spot—because search ad­ver­tis­ing is so mon­e­ti­z­able. Google is ev­ery­where be­cause they're pay­ing for it. Wow, I had no idea. Now, this is just one person’s voice, but I’m run­ning it be­cause I think Rus­sell is prob­a­bly in a po­si­tion to know, and is hon­est in my ex­pe­ri­ence. Any­one else want to con­firm or re­fute? [Ah, Om Ma­lik was on the sto­ry back in Septem­ber.]
 
Google Analytics · Here­with a re­port on a fairly-typical week of Google An­a­lyt­ics num­ber­s. I was go­ing to work this in­to the reg­u­lar week­ly statis­tics re­port, but I’m not at all sure I’m go­ing to go on run­ning an­a­lyt­ic­s, so as a sep­a­rate post this will re­main avail­able ei­ther way. [Up­date on screen sizes.] ...
 
Buying Search Traffic · On im­pulse, I just twid­dled the on­go­ing soft­ware on my stag­ing serv­er so that when you do a search in the lit­tle box up at the top, it goes to Ya­hoo not Google. I ran a bunch of search­es, and in terms of re­sult qual­i­ty, there was noth­ing to choose from be­tween them. Ya­hoo seemed a lit­tle fresh­er; on this Sun­day it had Friday’s en­tries pret­ty well in­dexed, while Google was on­ly half there; they’re both OK for Thurs­day. So, at this mo­ment in time, my search box, and a zil­lion oth­ers like it, are point­ing to Google just be­cause that’s the way we set it up, and it’s ac­tu­al re­al work to go chang­ing pro­duc­tion sys­tem­s, and the com­pe­ti­tion so far isn’t sig­nif­i­cant­ly bet­ter. I have no idea what the pro­por­tion of search com­ing through this kind of thing is, as com­pared to the vol­ume go­ing through the search-engine home pages. I bet that if you count the tool­bars on the browser­s, it’s get­ting up there. Via Google’s AdSense For Search, you can al­ready get paid for send­ing search­es to Google. I won’t use it, though, be­cause if I read the terms and con­di­tions cor­rect­ly, you have to in­clude a Google lo­go. Screw that; I like my min­i­mal­ist lit­tle search box, and no­body but me and my em­ploy­er get any brand­ing here. I’m sure Ya­hoo has a com­pet­i­tive of­fer­ing, but I haven’t tracked it down. I’ll tell you one thing for sure though; if the search en­gines re­tain their quality-of-service par­i­ty, pret­ty soon the traf­fic will be dealt out to­tal­ly based on who’s will­ing to pay the most for it. Where can I buy shares in Fire­fox?
 
You’re Being Watched · I just signed up for Google An­a­lyt­ics and in­stalled the code, but on­ly on the home page, which many (most?) reg­u­lar read­ers nev­er see. Among oth­er things, it down­loads a 17K (!) chunk of JavaScrip­t. I’ll re­port back on whether it does any­thing use­ful, and if so, will con­sid­er de­ploy­ing it on more pages. I cur­rent­ly have a pret­ty rich set of Perl scripts that tell me a lot of use­ful stuff, but there’s cer­tain­ly more to know. I don’t think they claim to do any­thing to track the peo­ple who read this via RSS/A­tom, which means that it will be­come less use­ful with time un­til they ad­dress that, which I’m not sure is pos­si­ble. I write this be­cause my more para­noid read­ers (and there’s no doubt about it, they are out to get you) will prob­a­bly ob­ject to hav­ing Google track what they read, so now is the time to start cook­ing up Analytics-blocking GreaseMon­key script­s, or equiv­a­len­t. [OK, it’s work­ing now, I was fooled by the fact that it’s bro­ken in Sa­far­i. So I re­pub­lished the whole site with An­a­lyt­ics turned on, and I’ll pub­lish the pret­ty graphs next Sun­day af­ter it’s had a week to run.]
 
Shopping, Dell vs. Apple · The oth­er day when I was writ­ing about my new Ul­tra 20, I thought I’d vis­it the com­pe­ti­tion and check prices. So I head­ed over to Del­l, which I’ve al­ways thought of as the canon­i­cal ex­am­ple of a great on­line store. When I used to buy their server­s, it was con­ve­nien­t, lin­ear, and fast: start with your form fac­tor and pro­ces­sor, then pick your mem­o­ry, disk, net­work card­s, and click “Buy”. But I haven’t been there in three or four years, and things have changed. First of al­l, I had to choose whether I was a large or small busi­ness or a con­sumer (Huh? I just want to buy a com­put­er, OK?) then picked a reasonable-looking Xeon. The de­faults were about right ex­cept for I want­ed a 250G disk. Nasty sur­prise; the cus­tomiz­er is nowhere near as good as it used to be; awk­ward, con­fus­ing and slow, and you have to page way down to get to ob­vi­ous stuff. And I to­tal­ly failed to con­fig­ure the disk; there are all these op­tions about the num­ber of disks and kinds of con­nects that seemed to be in­ter­re­lat­ed, and when I picked one of the 250G disks, it de­clared my con­fig­u­ra­tion in­valid, and in ten min­utes of fid­dling around I couldn’t make it go. I al­so re­cent­ly vis­it­ed Apple’s on­line store; my 2003 Pow­erBook is pret­ty well out of steam and I’m not switch­ing to a So­laris portable un­til there’s Ubun­tu or equiv­a­lent for it. So I or­dered a new Mac; that took like 4 min­utes elapsed, start to fin­ish. Maybe an Ap­ple Pow­erBook has less op­tions than a Dell desk­top? But not that I care about; I bumped the de­fault mem­o­ry and disk on the Mac, which more than I want­ed to do with the Del­l. I’m shocked; I al­ways thought that Dell’s #1 com­pet­i­tive ad­van­tage was that they were easy and quick to con­fig­ure and buy (Grant­ed, they’re rea­son­ably cheap and well built, but not re­al­ly ahead of the pack on those fronts). Maybe they’re no longer in­ter­est­ed in the high-end con­sumer? Maybe I just had bad luck? If not, this is a big deal. [Up­date: Wow, I got a flur­ry of email say­ing “No, it’s not bad luck” ac­com­pa­nied by fur­ther com­plaints about, well, ev­ery­thing, but most­ly pric­ing and com­plex­i­ty. So I think it’s a re­al news sto­ry.]
 
Blog Pricing · Tris­tan Louis has a nifty write-up on the AOL-Weblogs, Inc. deal. He works back­wards from the deal val­ue (re­ports range be­tween $25M and $40M) and pro-rates the val­ue of the var­i­ous blog prop­er­ties, us­ing re­port­ed Tech­no­rati links as a met­ric. An in­ter­est­ing num­ber that falls out is the val­ue of a sin­gle Tech­no­rati link, which ranges from $565 to $903. Hm­m­m, that would im­ply that the hum­ble blog you are now pe­rus­ing is worth be­tween $2.5M and $4.1M. Which is just sil­ly, and it’s not for sale any­how.
 
Stones · Hey, good on the Stones for post­ing the tracks from A Big­ger Bang. There were some quality-control prob­lems get­ting them to play on my Mac yes­ter­day, but they’re work­ing now. Yeah, I could steal ’em, and some peo­ple will, but the Stones no longer play for a “What can a poor boy do?” de­mo­graph­ic, they play for peo­ple who can buy the songs they like. The last Stones record I bought was what­ev­er Miss You was on, damn I loved that song, that’s a decade or three back. I might pick this one up be­cause I like their In­ter­net Mar­ket­ing Mo­jo, but ya know, there are some decent-or-better tunes here. I par­tic­u­lar­ly like Back Of My Hand, straight blues, and This Place is Emp­ty, a sen­ti­men­tal pi­ano bal­lad with Kei­th on vo­cal­s. Danger­ous Beau­ty is a pret­ty good rock­er. Don’t think I’ll go see the show though, be­cause I don’t want to pol­lute the golden-glow mem­o­ry of singing Hap­py Birth­day for Kei­th Richards a few years back.
 
Podcasting and Patricia · I got a nice email this af­ter­noon from Pa­tri­ci­aBar­ber.­com, let­ting me know that there’s a new con­cert DVD for sale, and invit­ing me to drop by the A/V sec­tion for a sam­pler. So I did, and you might want to al­so, the video’s good and there are some pret­ty nice au­dio tracks there for down­load. I’ve writ­ten about Ms Bar­ber be­fore, I’m a re­al ad­mir­er. So, here’s a gift­ed artist out there in the Long Tail with a mod­er­ate but de­vot­ed fan base, here’s this hot new pod­cast­ing thing run­ning up head­lines ev­ery­where... am I the on­ly one want­ing to con­nect the dot­s? Right now I buy all of Ms Barber’s disks, which I think is less than one a year on av­er­age; so giv­en record-company eco­nomic­s, she’s mak­ing maybe $10/year net from me. Would I sign up for a bi-weekly pod­cast for a cou­ple bucks a mon­th, re­cent live per­for­mances and so on? In a flash! She could dou­ble or triple her tak­ings from this typ­i­cal fan, and the costs of stag­ing the stuff wouldn’t be that much. Yeah, there’d be pira­cy, but a Long Tail per­former like this might even wel­come it, be­cause a cer­tain num­ber of illicit-recording re­cip­i­ents are go­ing to be­come de­vot­ed fans and want to sign up; what I be­lieve they call “marketing”. What am I miss­ing?
 
Exit AdSense · The ads are go­ing. Here­with an ex­pla­na­tion of why, an apol­o­gy to BlogAd­s, and thoughts on ad­ver­tis­ing in gen­er­al ...
 
AdSense For Feeds, Say What? · I was go­ing to in­ves­ti­gate Google’s AdSense For Feeds, be­cause I’m keen­ly in­ter­est­ed in eco­nom­ic mod­els around self-publishing. But take a sec­ond and fol­low that link, there are a cou­ple of se­ri­ous­ly weird things go­ing on. [Up­date: Another tri­umph for the bl­o­go­sphere.] ...
 
Search Optimization (Low-Rent) · In Van­cou­ver, as in most cities, the poles that hold up the traf­fic lights and street­lights and, well, any­thing, are plas­tered with posters ad­ver­tis­ing soon-to-be-famous rock bands and tarot read­ers and, well, any­thing. Search Engine Op­ti­miza­tion, too ...
 
Free No Longer · I vis­it­ed Tech­no­rati on Fri­day and we had a talk about the busi­ness side. Among oth­er things, I ar­gued that they should shut down their free ser­vice. I’m sur­prised that this is con­tro­ver­sial ...
 
SideTrack and eSellerate · At An­tip­ix­el I saw a point­er to a nice-looking lit­tle piece of Mac share­ware called SideTrack so I down­load­ed and tried it and it’s won­der­ful. Any­one run­ning OS X who us­es the mouse a lot, fol­low that point­er and give it a try. Ap­ple will prob­a­bly in­ter­vene, be­cause this gives a stan­dard Mac lap­top in ef­fect a two-button mouse with du­al scroll-wheel, which Ap­ple doesn’t think Mac users should wan­t. So I said “that’s worth $15” and hit the Buy but­ton, and it popped me off to eSeller­ate and boy, is that a slick op­er­a­tion. First of al­l, it no­ticed I was in Cana­da and charged me in C$. Then, when I filled in the for­m, it redi­rect­ed over to a page from my own bank that asked a cou­ple of oth­er ques­tions to make sure I was who I said I was, then gave me a nice print­able re­ceip­t. This is what all the dot-com cra­zies claimed e-shopping would be like, at the height of the bub­ble. They were right... but it took an­oth­er five years to get there.
 
Maria Schneider · She is a mu­si­cian but un­usu­al both in her mu­si­cal and busi­ness ap­proach­es, and I think you might en­joy her ...
 
Syndication By The Numbers · I spent to­day at a con­fer­ence, speak­ing and lis­ten­ing. The best lis­ten­ing was to a guy named Dave Morse, who helps run a big chunk of net­work be­hind a par­tic­u­lar­ly thick fire­wal­l. He’s sav­ing time and mon­ey big-time us­ing syn­di­ca­tion and he can prove it ...
 
Yahoo Update · Not long ago I wrote a re­al­ly cyn­i­cal piece about Yahoo’s Paid Search pro­gram. Wel­l, I got some peo­ple mad at me, and follow-up is in or­der ...
 
Magnatune · I was pok­ing around the iTunes ra­dio sta­tions look­ing for some­thing a lit­tle more stim­u­lat­ing than the usu­al brain goo, and gave “Magnatune Re­nais­sance and Baroque” a try. It’s aw­ful­ly good mu­sic, with the reg­u­lar in­ter­rup­tions by the mu­si­cians plug­ging their record­ings on­ly mild­ly ir­ri­tat­ing. And the in­ter­rup­tions worked, con­vinc­ing me to vis­it Mag­natune on­line, whose mot­to is: We’re a record la­bel. But we’re not evil. It looks like a pret­ty com­pelling idea, and their mu­sic (the Re­nais­sance/Baroque sub­set any­how) is pret­ty sweet. Check it out.
 
Yahoo Paid Search, Translated · Via the in­valu­able John Bat­telle, a point­er to this Search Engine Watch piece on the ad­vent of Paid Search over at Ya­hoo. It con­tains some re­mark­able ex­am­ples of mar­ketinge­se, and I thought it would be help­ful to pro­vide a trans­la­tion ...
 
You Can Get Paid For This · One month ago, I turned on the Google Ads here at on­go­ing. It’s gone pret­ty well; here­with a re­port with some more de­tail, and some ob­ser­va­tions on how the sys­tem is apt to in­flu­ence those who use it ...
 
Vancouver Candid · The re­cent Start­up Can­did piece re­flect­ed the lovably-scruffy ethos of a com­pa­ny just get­ting off the ground. But it’s not al­ways like that, and I have the pic­tures to prove it ...
 
Startup Candid · Pitch­ing in to­day at a hot star­tup; the sce­nario is clas­sic, check the pic­ture: wires draped over the wall­s, O’Reilly books on the ta­bles, Doc Searls in the back room ...
 
Blogs + MLM, Argh · There was this mes­sage on the phone want­ing to talk to me ur­gent­ly; which has been hap­pen­ing a lot since I’ve been job-hunting. It was a fel­low high up in EcoQuest In­ter­na­tion­al, who sell air-fresheners. He had a deal for me: he’s plan­ning a “Dealer Education” tour up here in Canada, and if I could drive peo­ple to some of his ses­sion­s, he’d put me up­stream from them in the MLM food chain. What’s old is new again. Or some­thing.
 
Pricing Craziness · I’m vis­it­ing the Val­ley next week in con­nec­tion with the what-next pro­jec­t, fly­ing on some of the hun­dreds of thou­sands of points I’ve built up on some bankrupt air­line or an­oth­er, but I need­ed to rent a car out of SFO. A bit of In­ter­net shop­ping pro­duced what I thought was a fair­ly mind-boggling re­sult ...
 
Ads Again · I turned on the ads again (from Google AdSense); this puppy’s month­ly bill is start­ing to make it a pricey hob­by. As with my pre­vi­ous ex­pe­ri­ence, they’re no trou­ble in set­ting up and ev­ery­thing seems to Just Work. I’m a bit dis­ap­point­ed that the front page is ap­par­ent­ly served ex­clu­sive­ly with blogging-related ads [Up­date: a day lat­er, the front-page choic­es are much bet­ter], but the se­lec­tion on the oth­er pages is quite in­tel­li­gen­t. If any­thing has bro­ken, do please get in touch. I’ll re­port back in due time on whether a fairly-popular blog can be made at least self-sustaining. [Up­date: it can.] [Up­date: they’re screw­ing up my lay­out.] ...
 
Aussie Cluefulness · We’re tak­ing a va­ca­tion to Aus­tralia in Fe­bru­ary. You can’t just hop on a plane, you have to get a visa. This used to mean, if you were in a big city with a con­sulate, go­ing down there with a pic­ture and spend­ing time wait­ing, or if you were away from such a city, mail­ing them your pass­port. So last night, Lau­ren sug­gest­ed check­ing their on­line pres­ence, and what do you know, it’s ex­cel­len­t. You can get a year’s visa for A$20 by giv­ing them your pass­port num­ber and a few ba­sic vi­tal statis­tic­s, and the whole thing takes maybe five min­utes. Good on ya, Aussies!
 
Ambient Internet Brain Goo · Any­one who isn’t run­ning Apple’s iTunes is miss­ing a chance to im­prove their qual­i­ty of life (or is on Lin­ux). Although I feel an­oth­er flame over iTunes’ egre­gious­ly bro­ken Web ad­dress­ing com­ing on, this post is just an ex­pres­sion of won­der. I had iTunes quite a while be­fore I opened up the “Radio” part of the menu, and here’s all these ra­dio sta­tions broad­cast­ing nice no-charge mu­sic, many of them ad-free and in fact narrative-free. I am to­tal­ly baf­fled by the busi­ness mod­el, set­ting up one of these things must in­volve some non­triv­ial in­vest­men­t. For dur­ing din­ner and when company’s over, I tend to se­lect one of the “ambient” sta­tions and let the sweet-sounding slow-moving au­dio cot­ton can­dy fill in the son­ic gap­s. Go back a few years and sur­vey the prog­nos­ti­ca­tors; I can’t re­mem­ber any­one ev­er hav­ing pre­dict­ed free end­less am­bi­ent brain goo be­ing a plau­si­ble use of the Glob­al In­for­ma­tion Su­per­high­way. There you go. [Up­date: Ki­ran Jon­nala­gad­da writes to tell me that the iTunes ra­dio sta­tions are the same as those you get at shout­cast.­com, so WinAm­putees and pen­guin­istas us­ing XMMS can al­ready get ’em.]
 
RSS, Advertising, Cheating · I re­cent­ly start­ed read­ing the RSS feeds from In­foworld, which con­tain ad­ver­tis­ing, my first ex­pe­ri­ence with this. Some gen­er­al im­pres­sions and a com­plain­t, but I think this may be the fu­ture ...
 
Laptop Fun · Lau­ren needs a new lap­top. She in­her­it­ed my 1998-vintage Toshi­ba Portegé when I switched to MacLand way back last April, and it’s re­al­ly past its best-before date (e.g. it’s now an “oshiba”). The take-away is that the lap­top ven­dors of the world are in a vast con­spir­a­cy to keep you from find­ing out about their prod­uct­s, and once you do find out, to keep you from get­ting one. And she still doesn’t have one ...
 
Sharecropping Redux · One nice thing about be­ing slash­dot­ted, as hap­pened with my re­cent The Web’s the Place, is the qual­i­ty and depth of feed­back you get. Here­with a lit­tle bit more cov­er­age of the is­sues. I made a cou­ple of cor­rec­tions in the orig­i­nal piece, ain’t the Web great? Al­so notes on share­crop­ping, the agri­cul­tur­al va­ri­ety ...
 
The Web’s the Place · I’ve been fol­low­ing some dis­cus­sions about the fu­ture of soft­ware ap­pli­ca­tion­s, and a phrase that came up in my din­ner with Robb Beal has been echo­ing in my mind. What it comes down to is this: if you want to de­vel­op soft­ware, you can build for the Web and/or Unix and/or OSS plat­form­s; or al­ter­na­tive­ly, you can be a share­crop­per. Your choice, but I think it’s an easy one. Espe­cial­ly since the users out there want you to do the right thing. (Up­dat­ed to fix a cou­ple of in­ac­cu­ra­cies. See here for de­tail­s.) ...
 
Pay For Placement · Adam Cur­ry post­ed a note on Mon­day that I found pret­ty sur­pris­ing. In the fu­ture, will you have to pay to get in­to RSS ag­gre­ga­tors? Ouch ...
 
$$$$! · Yes­ter­day I wrote about sign­ing up for Google’s AdSense pro­gram, and start­ed ac­tu­al­ly dis­play­ing some ads on that es­say last night some time af­ter 9 PM. Below is Google’s admirably-clear re­port on my first day in the In­ter­net Ad­ver­tis­ing busi­ness. It’s in­ter­est­ing and, you know, there might be some mon­ey in this ...
 
Google Ads · In­ter­est­ing write-up chez Za­wod­ny about the Google AdSense pro­gram; pret­ty well any­one can sign up and put Google ads on their site, and get paid when some­one clicks on the ad­s. So I signed up, al­though I don’t plan to run ’em for the mo­men­t. Ex­cept on this es­say right here, along with some com­men­tary on the pro­gram (sound­bite: looks pret­ty rea­son­able so far) ...
 
On Apple's Music Store · Business-wise, it seems pret­ty sound. I'll pay 99¢ a pop for tunes if they stay out of my face about how I use them. This has to be seen as good news, and ev­i­dence that Ap­ple is a lit­tle smarter than your av­er­age com­put­er com­pa­ny. Here­with some pros and cons of this (I think) im­por­tant new of­fer­ing. (Up­dat­ed 4/29 with com­ments on pric­ing and Web Ar­chi­tec­ture.) ...
 
How to Pay for a Good Read · Some blog­ger some­where point­ed at an in­ter­view with John Brady Kies­ling, on­line at Salon. Sound­ed in­ter­est­ing - all I knew was that he was a US diplo­mat who had quit over the run-up to the war, and in­deed it was in­ter­est­ing, I rec­om­mend read­ing it, but I hadn't been to Salon re­cent­ly and was al­so in­ter­est­ed in their “payment options”, which maybe point the way to the fu­ture of on­line pub­lish­ing ...
 
Webthoughts in Wartime · I'm sit­ting at home in a daze in­duced by the worst cold of my life - the few op­er­at­ing brain cells most­ly sucked up in aim­less Web me­an­der­ing try­ing to un­der­stand the War and the world bet­ter, but most­ly I'm learn­ing things things about the Web in­stead. To a ghost­ly sound­track of Bagh­dad night sounds (cars and their horns most­ly) from the tee­ny MSNBC Bagh­dad Cam in the screen's cor­ner, I won­der if Ya­hoo is dead, and maybe pub­lish­ing too, and what it is we're mak­ing up here as we go along? ...
 
author · Dad · software · colophon · rights
Random image, linked to its containing fragment

By .

I am an employee
of Amazon.com, but
the opinions expressed here
are my own, and no other party
necessarily agrees with them.

A full disclosure of my
professional interests is
on the author page.