Saturday, August 15, 2009
More info has come in: Bill Shannon is a self-taught conceptual dancer who uses his crutches to perform his incredible choreography around the world. He was born with a double Hip degenerative disease. Bill Shannon is for real, he isn't gliding along on wheelie shoes and he isn't a stunt man.
Thursday, August 13, 2009
Wednesday, August 05, 2009
Monday, August 03, 2009
Kevin Rose: 10 Ways To Increase Your Twitter FollowersKevin Rose: 10 Ways To Increase Your Twitter Followers
by Guest Author on January 25, 2009
This guest post is written by Kevin Rose, the founder of Digg and the cofounder of Revision3 and Pownce. Kevin, who has over 88,000 followers on Twitter (making him the second most followed after President Obama), also “bloggs” at kevinrose.com. He is an investor in Twitter.
4 Principles of Good Design for Websites4 Principles of Good Design for Websites
written by: Andrew Houle / stashed in: Articles / 03.21.09
One of my absolute favorite design books is, Robin Williams Design Workshop. It looks into practical design theories and showcases awesome examples. One of the areas of focus that I’ve taken into all my designs are the four major design principles. They include: contrast, repetition, alignment, and proximity.
This post will discuss those four principles as they relate to web design. By keeping these design theories fresh in your mind, you will be sure to design cleaner, more aesthetically pleasing sites.
Saturday, June 13, 2009
DTS2009 Close, Quicktime Streaming format, (75Mb)
Friday, May 01, 2009
Sound of Music - Antwerp Central StationMore than 200 dancers perform "Do Re Mi", in the Central Station of Antwerp. Dance and music routines take rehearsal - just 2 rehearsals created this spectacular! These 4 fantastic minutes start on the 23 of march 2009, 08:00 AM. It is a promotion stunt for a Belgian television program, where they are looking for someone to play the leading role in the musical of "The Sound of Music".
High Five Escalator
My favourite of the improv everywhere projects - it creates smiles on a bleak morning. I like the way it shows how easy it is to make someone's day happier. The full story with background pictures and interviews is on the iproveverywhere site.
Unexpected Performance - Stansted Airport, London
Stansted Airport, London. 7 hidden cameras. 14 undercover actors. 1 unexpected performance. Some people love it, some just let it all wash over them unmoved. The passengers are as fun to watch as the performance.
The Improvanywhere no pants day got a spectacular boost in 2006 when a Cop arrested participants. A month later a judge dismissed all of the charges. It is not illegal to wear your underwear in public in New York City. The publicity (reported by news agencies around the world while David Letterman made two monologue jokes about it and staged a No Pants Cab Ride as a parody) led to continued spectacular growth. Now this is no longer the "secret" event with a few participants in the know - it's become almost a parade. Fun to watch though!
No Shirts (111 Shirtless Men in Abercombie and Fitch)
In the interests of equity - if we present no pants, then we'd better present no shirts. It's fascinating to see how corporates that promote topless models cope with a situation like this. The best bit is that 2 guys were thrown out while they were actually buying $45 shirts! Isn't this performance art at it's best?
The Freeze Mob
NYC - Frozen Grand Central Station
The inspirational classic freeze mob. Replicated across the World it's a great concept. The video was put together professionally too - top production values. Arguably one of Improveverywhere's greatest projects.
Paris, France - The largest Freeze Mob
This video is the compilation of 20 videopodcasters, who covered the event. Around 3,000 people froze on the Champs Elysee.
Trafalgar Square Freeze
At 3:30pm on a secret cue, almost everyone in the square froze. For 5 minutes the participants held their positions, and then magically everyone unfroze. The participants in Britain take the performance art aspect of the frozen positions in innovative directions.
Free Commercial Bonus Video!
Liverpool St Station, London, UK - The T-Mobile Dance
This doesn't really count as performance art because it was organised as an Ad. But it's still fun! Watch the moment Liverpool Street Station danced to create this special T-Mobile Advert.
Friday, April 24, 2009
At first I was pleased when France and New Zealand had highly restrictive laws. UK - three strikes law? Fantastic - they've always had good software skills so we need to stop their development in its tracks. Less competition for us - that's good. Then Australia and now Belgium got into the act. Australia censors some religious, health and anti-abortion sites. Belgium now censors anti-paedophile sites.
This is now getting totally out of control - every Person and business dependent on the Internet needs to step up and save the Internet from serious closure. I'd like to show you what finally sent me 'over the edge'. OpenDNS is a great tool - I use it on my SOHO network as an additional layer of protection, plus it allows me to stop categories like "Instant Messaging" if homework isn't done (Yes, that affects me and my business but not for long because it is a great motivator). I went to check how the community rated Facebook. It has two tags voted up, and I think they are reasonable - Instant messaging, Social networking. However, just look at the other classification tags that someone has thought should be applied to Facebook.
Let's talk about "Religious" and "Politics" for example. Any regime (Australia, China, Belgium, UK, NZ or France) that now wants to turn off "Religious" content - and that is always a popular one for any Country with global censorship - would also deny access to Facebook - just because someone, somewhere creates content of this type. It is not created by Facebook, and it is not pervasive either. There needs to be a more clear understanding of the separation between platform and content.
Diversion: I personally believe that the cheeky email responses on the site are what did them in. A word to the wise - don't taunt people. I had given a talk about a year before the case where I said this would upset some seriously 'alpha' people who would be perfectly happy to spend as much of other people's money as it took to get even.
The message that gets into the public though is "Downloading is wrong". Some might be, some is very right. The distinction between the content and where the service that transports or indexes it is crucial to the effectiveness of the Internet. I will also concede that there are 'naughty pictures' on the web - I've seen some. Is this adequate justification to bring it all to a halt? Back to Facebook for a minute - I've found friends - many of us have- through Facebook. What are we losing if it can get a silly set of censorship tags? Let's not forget the Amazon disaster where they tried to keep the extremists happy at the expense of their users.
We all have to step up now, individuals and businesses, or we will lose it all, and much faster than I thought.
Saturday, April 18, 2009
Kerry Webb is working at a preparation stage - helping define guidelines and policy for Gov2.0. This work is essential for widespread deployment of Gov2.0 and for use of web2.0 techniques in large organisations. Senior management needs the assurance that 'it's OK' to use the tools and that there are mechanisms to minimise harm or recover from problem situations. His talk covers some of the issues that affect, enhance or impede the adoption of Gov2.0.
Wednesday, March 18, 2009
Wednesday, March 11, 2009
Keep an Inventory
The first step is to exactly know where you have a social media profile and where you do not. Start by checking with Check User Names, which will search dozens of popular social media websites to see if your username is active. Check any you normally use. If any don’t ring any bells, see if it’s yours or if somebody already owns it.
Preserve (Reserve) Your Identity
Mashable Tip: Always keep note of other people using your most common username. Making sure people don’t confuse you for somebody else is important for friends, potential employers and particularly if your business is on the web.Therefore it's important to sign up for the most popular social networks regardless of whether you are going to use them all. This prevents someone else taking your online presence, being mistaken for you and it protects an account that you may want to use later.
This doesn’t mean you should be active on all of these services. Take a long, hard look at all of the services available and your time constraints and choose the ones that pique your interest the most. Keep some focus when choosing platforms. For the rest, place a note on your profile with contact information and links to your favorite social profiles.
Organise, Centralise and Synchronise
Keep track of your email accounts and other feeds. The best tool for me has been netvibes.
One tab has all my email accounts on one page, plus twitter feed and facebook feed. Another tab has various modules plus direct links to all my sites, my client sites and any admin areas. Netvibes starts every time firefox does.
Do not become a Robot, but keep similar tasks together. For example a common action on social media is sending an update that you have updated your blog. Normally, you would have to copy and paste this type of message into Twitter, Facebook, and so on. With services such as Ping.fm and Twitterfeed, this can be done without any work on your end. Find tools that can help you spread you reach without eating up your time.
Atomkeep is a cool tool for updating all of your social media profiles at once - it connects to your Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook, and other accounts and allows you to change bios and profile pictures with one action.
I also use PeopleBrowsr to create a more dynamic dashboard for special events and handling the group concept. It combines multiple sources of information in one place. PeopleBrowsr is an online visual dashboard that combines your Web profiles and connections. For an event like SXSW it has created a centralized dashboard for SXSW and all conversations, parties, and events related to the big festival.
If you’re unfamiliar with PeopleBrowsr, the site functions similar to TweetDeck providing users with a column view of status updates and custom created groups, but it also combines your friends and updates across a myriad of other social sites like Flickr, Facebook, FriendFeed and LinkedIn for an all-in-one Web-based view of your social world.
Sunday, March 08, 2009
The hum sounded like a swarm. I'd noticed the dead and exhausted bees on the driveway, the ants tidying up their surprise feast. I just couldn't see the swarm. I step back to survey the tree. A tree that survived the 2003 Bush fires that destroyed a fire truck on the road 50 yards from here, and burnt out the 2 houses behind it.
And then I realise. The tree is flowering. The hum is the noise of thousands of insects, not just bees, finding food and drink at the end of a parched Summer.
Weeks of drought, the occasional bush fire, and sometimes, just sometimes, days of nectar. Days to enjoy and savour. May you have days of nectar this year.
Sunday, March 01, 2009
The effect of putting aside time to communicate and socialise is counter intuitive. Many years ago, when programmers punched cards, Managers noticed that the programmers would gather around the water cooler at the back of the punch room and chat. There is a quick solution to that sort of wasteful behaviour - the water coolers were removed. The outcome, however, was that productivity dropped. The coolers were put back and productivity went up. So what was happening? The exchange of problem solving, competition, energising and other aspects of social exchange were helping workers achieve breakthroughs, or take diffeent approaches to existing problems. Today, for the solo practitioner or an expert isolated from like-minded individuals, meeting with peers in real life is a challenge.
One approach is Coworking. Coworking is cafe-like community/collaboration space for developers, writers and independents. Basically, start with a shared office and add cafe culture. This ensures there is desk space, backup and so on. (Thanks to @NathanaelB). The Concern I have now is that there are usually fixed costs - like a monthly access fee - that none of us want to take on during a serious downturn. That brings us to the next best thing. Some places have a "Freelancers Friday". The coffee and code is more like an open invitation to drop in. Of course, we'll have to watch just how much coffee we consume.
Yesterday, I held the first Coffee and Code day at Toronto’s Urbana Coffee, at the corner of Bay and St. Joseph Streets. The Coffee and Code plan is a simple one: about one day a week, instead of working at the home office or Microsoft’s Toronto or Mississauga offices, I set myself up in a wifi-equipped cafe somewhere in Toronto. As a result, instead of being tucked away, I’m easy to reach, where you can walk up, join me for a coffee and talk about Microsoft, programming, the industry or just about anything else.
Urbana’s Bay/St. Joseph branch used to be a hair salon, which means that its south half, where the stylists used to work, has plenty of power outlets. Although their wifi requires a password, it’s clearly written on the chalkboard behind the counter. As long as you buy something, they don’t seem to mind people hanging out all day – I was there at 11 a.m. and stayed for a full seven hours.
I love it and I'm now looking for suitable cafes with free wifi.
Thursday, February 26, 2009
His world has come crashing down however. He has apologized in a statement posted on his wife's blog for behaving "like a complete jerk" and has resigned from the boards of two nonprofit corporations for reflecting badly on the organizations. How? Why? In a way - because he wasn't educated enough. Several News organisations and the fun Huffington Post have described the massive fallout from appearing in Wife Swap and insulting the incoming Wife who hailed from Missouri. The reaction has affected his business and his wife's business. It has also affected the perception of potential business partners and friendships. Perhaps he thought noone he knew would be watching. That was probably true on the night, but Youtube, Facebook, Twitter and, of course, email started a flash fire amongst those that knew the couple, then anyone that knew someone that lived in Missouri, and finally spread across the Planet. When I say 'finally' we are talking a matter of a few days.
There are two parts to this - one is understanding the flash fire and what we have unleashed with the technology. @Stilgherrian pointed me to this article by Mark Pesce The Nuclear Option. I won't summarise the article because it is worth a read in whole. It addresses how something like Twitter combined with normal human behaviour transforms communication and creates unintended consequences.
What does that mean for us. One is that noone reading this will ever make the mistake that Fowler did of fouling his own nest. Was it hubris? (who cares what the viewers think of me?). Perhaps in part, but it was also a lack of education, a lack of literacy - technological literacy. The challenge for us all, is that the definition of 'educated' has moved on. Can one be educated today without a knowledge of Science? without an understanding of the technological world we have bequeathed to our children? Those of us who are parents need to be able to engage our children online as well as offline. Those of us that are in business, need to be aware that one mistake can blow up, and need to nurture our brand. Even those of us that take a relaxed view of life, need to keep a little watching brief on what is running in the back channel or we can be in real strife.
As Fowler discovered, ignorance is no protection. In fact, ignorance let it blow out of control. The only response that seems to work effectively is full, clear and immediate communication. Get on YouTube. Explain or apologise. Excuses leaked through 'friends' or spokespeople don't cut it. The world has changed - like it or not.
We will truly have our 15 seconds of fame - but remember as the big celebrities do - the Paparazzi are everywhere... little brother is watching. The future is here.
Wednesday, February 25, 2009
Now we bring you a new list of Internet memes. Advertising copywriter Greg Rutter has compiled everything great about the Internet and put it on one web page. Youshouldhaveseenthis.com is a list of 99 videos and websites that any Internet analyst needs to see — and probably already has. As with any list like this it contains plenty of trivia from our society - and also some inspiration. The 'best Wedding Toast' was one I hadn't seen before - and it is impressive.
Wednesday, February 18, 2009
Tuesday, February 10, 2009
|From Wrapt in Web|
Monday, February 09, 2009
Sunday, February 01, 2009
Read the Full Article ...
Parties and Meetings
Probably the classic party with treadmills - I never get tired of watching this one - OK Go and the "here it goes again" Treadmill Dance:
Of course, all your friends have to bring their treadmills too. If you can get a setup like the Salo office here, then meetings can be held while walking:
Some Cats just seem to love the exercise. It's important to let them decide when they've had enough.
Cats can enjoy walking with you on the treadmill too, so long as it is at an easy pace for them. They seem to feel like they're on patrol, going on a hunt with you.
It's not for all cats of course. This one is not planning to walk anywhere:
And this is an example of exactly how to introduce your cate to the treadmill. It's a first time experience, although the video is obviously slightly longer than normal to catch the process.
And finishing cats with a cute white Persian:
Read the Full Article ...
Setting up a Treadmill
Slow speed operating requires a treadmill that has at least a 2 HP motor (continuous output ) or 2.5 HP peak. The treadmill should have a cushioned platform. I bought one from Rebel Sports with “D” shaped rounded arms. Flat projecting arms are also suitable for a flat desktop. Make sure the cooling fan airflow can still reach your body.
The PC can be mounted on a tilting platform taken from a mobile computer desk (Freedom Furniture used to have an ideal model). This can then be clamped to the treadmill structure. I bought the newest one from Officeworks and the box lid shows the original table. The tilting structure means that part of the platform remains level for the mouse pad, and more importantly, coffee. So how did this master craftsman attach the table? I just took out the table top and clamped it to the side bar. The red objects in the picture are really just the red clamps.
Shameful but true.
Note the dictation headset. Dictation is the perfect application for the walking worker. Skype calls, phone calls can all be done. Just don't start puffing or the other party might hang up on you.
If you are not used to being on your feet, there's another thing you should think about. good walking shoes and foot protection. Heavier walkers might need gel cushioning and arch support.
Inner soles for shoes start with low cost and lightweight pads:
These have little cushioning, but can be washed to keep shoes fresh.
Next are gel shock absorbing pads. They are very effective (provided the dog doesn’t chew through
the gel encapsulation - and yes that is experience talking).
Be aware that they come in major shoe size groups and the outer edge is trimmed by scissors to shoe size. They have the advantage of thinness and can be worn with most business shoes.
Then there is sculpted support like the Scholl Gel foot support with removable arch support. The coloured arch insert can be swapped over three degrees of hardness.
These work with most business shoes but many sports shoes have an inbuilt arch support that interferes with the correct positioning of the Scholl support. If you are having problems then get proper advice on your walking style and correct footwear early. I know the Saturday morning clip showed a woman in heels, but I have to admit to reservations, particularly if walking over most of a day. If you are not used to this - start slowly, maybe in multiple sessions before joining them into longer units of walking.
Next we look at walking with friends.
Wednesday, January 21, 2009
I can see Bart Simpson ordered to write 10,000 times '2009 is going to be a difficult year'. Certainly there are 10,000 plus blog pages that start that way - I've written a couple myself. So how do we stay alive and healthy when we have to work in front of a monitor for years. It doesn't matter whether the stress comes from the next article, or keeping the zombies at bay - Our bodies are designed to be mobile, need to be mobile and clog up like the intertubes on Inauguration Day if we don't keep mobile. So.. how do we do it? Here's the first gadget I built:
A PC workstation on a Treadmill.
Read the Full Article ...
It's really easy to do, and it is fine for emails, twitters and the occasional thought for driving GTD software. The secret is to buy a treadmill that is powerful enough to go really slow - 1 mph (about 1.5 kph). This is a 'natural human strolling pace. People have lost incredible amounts of weight from it (Believe it or not I've lost 22 lbs or about 10 Kilos - I show noone the 'before' picture). If you will read on, I have the Mayo Clinic research references (for those of you unable to accept my clear authority on the matter without confirmation), how I put it together, plus some helpful hints for walking. I also have found some interesting videos on using it for pets to exercise. The secret for cats seems to be to keep it slow.
Improved alertness and productivity at work, the ability to concentrate throughout the entire day, enhanced fitness and weight control without spending hours in the Gym away from work or family – these are all good reasons. Or, as my wife calls it, “bizarre”. It started because of the findings of Dr James Levine
– an obesity and nutrition researcher at the Mayo Clinic.
Activity levels have declined, and he and many other obesity researchers say that decline, more than increases in eating, is to blame for rises in obesity. What has changed is the artificial environment: there is far more opportunity today than in the past to be sedentary. And some people may be genetically predisposed to seize that opportunity. (New Weight-Loss Focus: The Lean and the Restless; By DENISE GRADY, New York Times Online, Published: May 24, 2005).
As you read the following quote, bear in mind that SCRUM Project Management meetings are supposed to be held standing up - serendipity!
"Given an environment that lets people sit for hours and hours a day, they will," he said.For him, the treadmill has eliminated the afternoon slump, when a lot of people feel sleepy and crave candy bars or caffeine. "I've become convinced we really can generate an office environment where people are on the move and are happier," he said.
A solution, then, may be to change the environment, to make moving around easier and sitting still less convenient. At meetings, Dr Levine stands instead of sitting. Talking on the telephone, he paces around. In his office he has a treadmill in place of a desk. He got it last year when he saw the data from the study comparing lean people and obese ones. "My computer is stationed over the treadmill," he said. "I work at 0.7 miles an hour."
"You have a natural tendency to want to move your legs. Zero point seven is the key. You don't get sweaty, you can't jiggle too much. It's about one step a second. It's very comfortable. Most people seem to like it around 0.7."
Dr. Rudolph Leibel, an obesity researcher at Columbia University, called the Science paper "great," and added, "I believe the data; it's done correctly and an interesting set of findings."
The NY Times noted that Nonexercise activity (NEAT) can account for a significant portion of the calories burned in a day, anywhere from 15 percent in a sedentary person to 50 percent in someone who is very
active. Standing takes more energy than sitting, and strolling along at just one mile an hour burns twice the calories of sitting.
So this gadget is all about living through 2009 and perhaps even thriving. I encourage the kids to watch their programs while walking on it, and try to do so myself. I keep a stopwatch by it to measure how much time I use it every day.
Next: Constructing the Treadmill, Walking with Friends