BloggerView #4: Carlos Jorge Andrade

This week BloggerView is with Karlus, or should I say Carlos Jorge Andrade, author (or as he likes to say blogmaster) of the blog “Ramblings about life and tech”. I have to admit, I think he is an amazing IT professional. The first time a met one of the many innovating projects of karlus, I was very impressed, it was "feeds". I kept following his blog, since then. Here are his answers.

1.When did you start blogging? What were the main reasons that take you start blogging?
Carlos Jorge Andrade (CJA): About five years ago, I think it wasn’t called "blogging" at the time and wasn’t that mainstream so I had to put up with some jokes from my friends like "he talks about stuff on a webpage, how lame can that be". Main reasons? Nobody to talk to… no really, the main reason was so I could improve on my English. Then I realized that my Portuguese was even worst so I shifted. 😉

2. What were your reasons to christen your blog as you did?
CJA:
Five years ago I just called it "My diary" because it was mainly a public diary of what I was doing at the time. When the blogging
phenomenon came out I wasn’t bloging so after looking at several software I decided to code my own blog named ‘Ramblings about life and tech’, witch name says it all. It about life and tech, mainly web/internet stuff and personal projects, the ‘ramblings’ part comes from my "bad/corrosive temper/opinions".

3. Do you have any specific goals or objectives you want to achieve with your blog? What are they?
CJA: Mainly to put my ideas, projects and opinions out there, idiotic has they might be. It’s a great networking tool. Oh, and hi5 and Orkut just weren’t cutting it for me so I decided to blog to meet some girls… no luck yet. :->

4. In your opinion, what role could blogs play in the future, for instance at companies or at schools?
CJA: Blogs or something similar (a page with some sort of syndicated content) are a great way to talk about your company initiatives, new projects, new products. Look at Google, Yahoo! and other companies in businesses other than the internet, which put out new services or clarify rumors through those blogs. It’s a new public relations tool. But it’s not the "blogging thing" it’s the "syndication thing" that gets the word out there. It’s just fashionable to call it a blog.

5. What do you think will be the future of blogs over the next couple of years?
CJA: Hard to tell, but I think there will always be "personal diaries" out there where people write about their lives. With the more "professional" ones, only the really good opinionated and insightful blogs will prevail. The rest will evolve to news sites or something like that. As long as all of them have some sort of syndicating the content I don’t care what they will became or be called. As for those who just blog to say, "Hei, I’m still here and this are the news…", they will fade eventually.

6. How many feeds do you have on your news aggregator? What news aggregator do you use? Why?
CJA: 187. I currently use Bloglines although I don’t like its interface. I moved to Bloglines because at work I didn’t had a Mac so I couldn’t use NetNewsWire on the desktop. Besides, NetNewsWire sync feature with Bloglines didn’t work the way I wanted.

7. What do you think about RSS? What role do you think RSS can play  in future, for instance in the relation between government and  citizens?
CJA: Short answer, love it… but if RSS is supposed to be mass adopted the syndication process has to change so "regular people" do take advantage of it. You can’t just go up to someone and tell it to "get an aggregator and subscribe to some feeds". They will just tell you "I need what… to what?” Unless they get the simplified information on a format they already use/know (like email, sms, whatever) it will never happen, and those little orange XML icons aren’t that helpful. I don’t know about our government using RSS but some of our local authorities are using it so the local citizens get information about their cities. But again, most don’t even know what it is and don’t know how to use it. RSS also brought what some call information overload… but that would be another subject.

8. What do you think is the most important thing happening in the Web, now? Why?
CJA: Content giveaway… every new site that pops up today its some kind of mashup between some other two sites. Almost every big player out there is opening his or her content with some kind of web service. It’s a pity that here in Portugal we still live in the dark ages in this matter. We still don’t have the major sites supporting some basic RSS feeds…

9. Beside blogs, do use other social software, like Flickr, Del.icio.us, Diigo, LinkedIn, or any other?
CJA: Flickr (no one beats it for photos), Del.icio.us (to search for some "topics", I get better results from it rather than Google), LinkedIn (I don’t remember the last time I’ve checked it), Technorati (for sniffing around), Plazes and I’ve tried Orkut but nowadays I only go there to say No to some Brazilian who wants to be my friend.

10. I think you are an amazing IT Professional, which is always a step forward (ex: Feeds, LusoCast). At this moment, if money wouldn’t be a problem, what would be your IT dream project?
CJA: Building useful services for thousands of users not worrying if they (the services) don’t make any money… oh wait… I did that professionally for 3 years and I’m now doing it again on my spare time. Now seriously, I have to agree with you on the "amazing" part although I assume only both of us think that way. :->
Dream project? Don’t have one particularly, and that "step ahead" thing isn’t always a good thing, but right now I would very much like to work for some Telco, Startup or ISP developing services for their users, there’s so much that could be done that I as a user still am missing. You know, 2005 was a really eye opener for me concerning job offers… which reminds me, i’m for sale(shameless promotion). 🙂blogsWeb 2.0InterviewbloggerviewBloggerSocial SoftwareRSSITCarlos Jorge Andrade

Pai.pt ???

Nas últimas semanas, temos assistido na televisão portuguesa à passagem de um anúncio da campanha publicitária das Páginas Amarelas, com a actriz Maria João Bastos.

O interessante deste anúncio, é que uma das assinaturas remete para o endereço electrónico das Páginas Amarelas na Internet. Até aqui nada de novo, não fosse o endereço electrónico ter passado do anterior www.paginasamarelas.pt para www.pai.pt.

Será que alguém me consegue explicar como é que a FCCN autorizou o registo do domínio pai.pt?

pai.ptPaginas AmarelasFCCN

LIFT – Life, Ideas, Future. Together.

LIFT06 | Life, Ideas, Futures. Together On next February, 2 and 3, will take place in Géneve, Switzerland a conference called “LIFT – Life, Ideas, Future. Together”, “where the web was born”.

"LIFT is a conference about new technologies and people.

LIFT is about teaming talented observers, explorers, and builders with people whose work depends on understanding current challenges and creative solutions presented by emerging technologies. Attendees will face cutting edge business models, bold predictions, radical thinking — ideas to inject into their own part of the planet.

LIFT has a simple goal: connect people who are passionate about new applications of technology and propel their conversations into the broader world to improve life and work."

So far, nothing new. The good news is that I’m going to be there (unless something happen, like a problem with my sign up). I’m going to be lifted . I think it would be a very interesting conference, where we could have an important discuss about new ideas and new solutions to the future of the web and, most important, to the future of the Information Society.

LIFTInternetBlogs

BloggerView #3: Pedro Custódio

This week BloggerView is with Pedro Custódio, author of 2 blogs, a professionally in english (http://blog.centopeia.com), and a personal journal in Portuguese (http://patriciaepedro.com/pedro/blog/). As he introduce himself in his English blog, Pedro Custódio was born in 1976, lives in SetúbalPortugal, is graduated in Computer Science and is currently working in Lisbon as Web/CMS developer for SAPO. I especially like his answer to the 7th question.

1. When did you start blogging? What were the main reasons that take you start blogging?
Pedro Custódio (PC):
I started blogging some years ago (5/6?), at the time the word wasn’t "blog" but something more like an internet diary, actually I don’t event think there were a word to it!

I still have some of the entries from my first blog (dated from 2001, although I have lost most of them with an hardware failure). 

At the time being I have 2 personal blogs, one professionally oriented (http://blog.centopeia.com) and my personal journal (http://patriciaepedro.com/pedro/blog/), it all started up with just one, but some months ago I had to split them up, since it’s wasn’t reasonable to be using on blog for such different matters as personal and professional life, even the language had to be different, personal in portuguese and professional in english, but even that was a hard decision! 

 The main reason why I’ve started blogging, was to start recording and saving part of my day-to-day experiences with technology and in life itself. I came to realise the incredible amount of things we lose record everyday… I would love to record them all, for future use of course! But until then, I’ve started recording and  collecting tiny posts of my life that basically help others get to know me, my interests, my goals, my drive factors, but mainly to help me keep a record of the things I read, listen and watch…

2. What were your reasons to christen your blog as you did?
PC:
/var/log, is as many people know the place where most unix systems store system messages, sort of what’s going on in the machine, it’s name came from there. The blog at Centopeia is only part of professional project, which includes different projects, the idea came from the animal itself, that has a huge number of legs, so does this project, lots of different projects find their one there, the blog is just one of them! 

 

3. Do you have any specific goals or objectives you want to achieve with your blog? What are they?
PC: I have a rather bad memory, so together with my bookmarks, my blogs help me remember a lot of things! Thats probably my main objective. Other than that, I wouldn’t be entirely truthful if I ignored the promotion side of it, I’ve come to met a lot of people this way and had a lot of feedback on ideas from my blogs also. But even if no one read my blogs I would still write on them, I still do, I just keep some of the posts for myself, especially on the personal one. 


4. In your opinion, what role could blogs play in the future, for instance at companies or at schools?
PC:
Blogs are just in the beginning, they will have most certainly an important role in the future, blogs are just one of kind different tools that have emerged on the net that help consolidate what I synthesize  as the "Collaborative Society". Blogs in particular are an important disruptive development on the Internet and to the freedom of speech in general, as they allow everybody to lay down it’s ideas and gather some attention on matters so diverse as our minds can go.  I guess that more and more in future, blogs, wikis, and the likes will have an important role on peoples life’s, on and off the internet.

5. What do you think will be the future of blogs over the next couple of years?
PC: Blogs will evolve more and more, we can see that already happening today, with the mass distribution of Internet Access, we’ll see more and more blogs not in text, but in rich media, sprouting everywhere. There’s a lot of creative people out there, and not all work for big companies, many of them don’t even work on the fields they love, so blogs will allow them to evolve in other areas, that not they’re own. All of us are creators, some just tend to explore it further. 

Blogs connect people everywhere, the idea of a global network is turning to be more and more real each day that passes. I have people from pretty much everywhere reading my blog, that’s something most of us wouldn’t expect. They’re comments and personal messages, give me a window to their realities. And this global share of knowledge and ideas doesn’t seem to have a precedent in history, so it’s results in the future are unclear to me, although I don’t have any doubts that in the end it will be something mostly good rather than bad.

6. How many feeds do you have on your news aggregator? What news aggregator do you use? Why?
PC:
Tricky question, let me check my Netnewswire (which is the application I’m using on my powerbook to read all feeds I currently subscribe).

Ok, I’ve just surprised my self, I currently subscribe 351 feeds, which explains why I sometimes have trouble reading everything…

And the worst part, is that the number keeps on growing!

7. What do you think about RSS? What role do you think RSS can play in future, for instance in the relation between government and citizens?
PC:
RSS, ATOM, etc, will have a major role in Internet, at first they simply give us the ability to be notified of new information. This simple thing has a rather great advantage when one considers "life" without them: on the past I normally woke up and launched my web browser, making it load a pre-definid list of bookmarks (the sites I normally read, which I would then read while commuting). I still had to check each and every page to see if there was something new, it was a terrible waste of time. Today, it’s thanks to RSS and the likes I get a totally different experience, each day when I woke up, I get to my computer and I have immediate knowledge of the new information available, wether they’re images, posts, podcasts, you name it, they’re already identified, I can use the time I have to read them, instead of searching for them.

In the future, I envision that the today’s model of communication will be outdated, for instance, our current tv news model, if you watch both the lunch edition and the night edition you’re forced to watch some repeated news, even if they’re exactly the same, one day in the future you’d probably watch only the new stories, saving you time and probably resources too, if you’d consider pay per view scenarios.

Governments today, in my opinion have a hard time reaching citizens, we (citizens, mere mortals, etc) normally know what’s going on from what we see on the television or hear on the radio, but imagine if, and it’s already working with some government offices, you’d be able to subscribe to they’re news? They’d get a new, more direct channel to their citizens, and us would have a chance of knowing something on first hand, at the same time as the traditional media would. No man in the middle! To me the most practical would equivalent to when we lubricate an engine, you normally improve it’s performance, if RSS are viewed as the the oil on the internet, I know for experience that if cut down the time between dialogs, they tend to became more like conversations, rather than mere dialogs.

8. What do you think is the most important thing happening in the Web, now? Why?
PC: The most important thing to me it’s the emergence of a trully collaborative society, almost everywhere projects are being made that help people connect, share interests, and help each-other, projects like the tsunami blog (tsunamihelp.blogspot.com), that for the first time in history of a major natural accident the main source of information wasn’t nor belong to a traditional media, but was a mere wiki. 

Tools like wikis, blogs, etc. will help us build a more close society, I strongly believe that the better we know our neighbors the better well coexist together, and all these new tools that are appearing on the web, will forcefully change our habits and those of news sources. All of these technological advances seem to be changing the way our society was traditionally worked. It’s easier to jump in than to ignore, and those who don’t will for sure lose the race. What’s the price of that remains to be seen.

9. Beside blogs, do use other social software, like Flickr, Del.icio.us, Diigo, LinkedIn, or any other?
PC: From those mentioned, I only don’t use Diigo, which I didn’t even knew, but allow me to add some more to your list: Orkut, Meetup, 23people, Plazes, Fotos@Sapo, DailyMotion, Odeo, Frappr, YouTube, VideoGoogle, … the list would go on, and keeps on growing…

10. What do you expect from "Lift – Life, Ideas, Futures. Together.", next February?
PC: I’m actually rather curious about it, I personally know the main organizer, Laurent, which I’ve had the opportunity to meet during one of the best conferences I’ve attended last year, Reboot 7.0 in Copenhagen. Laurent has some important ideas about the future of the web, and he’s trying to make an important happening with LIFT, maybe to open our european eyes to this major culture shift that’s approaching us, faster and faster… 

I’ll probably do some life blogging from there if I can, the conversations planned seem to be great, I’m just sad to see so few portuguese attending.

 

blogs RSSWeb 2.0InterviewbloggerviewBloggerSocial SoftwareLIFTPedro Custódio

WordPress + PHPlist

In the last weeks, I’ve been helping a friend creating an institutional website, using WordPress 2.0.
One of the features he wants to implement is a subscriber form with a newsletter manager. We are not talking about a simple plugin, which allows people to signup to be notified when a new entry is posted to your blog/website. We are talking about a more complex plugin, which would allow people to subscribe to a traditional newsletter.

1. First we tried Mailing List Plugin 3.0 (available at http://gerard.ly.free.fr/index.php?page=wordpress). It’s not perfect, but it works. This plugin allows you to send an email or send a newsletter automatically to the mailing-list when a number of new post are published.  Doesn’t work with WordPress 2.0.

2. Then we tried WP-PHPList plugin (available at http://www.funkypenguin.co.za/wp-phplist), which integrates our WordPress installation with our PHPList public pages. This looked fine, perfect for our needs. I already use PHPlist (http://tincan.co.uk/phplist) with no complains, so it would be perfect WordPress + PHPlist.
After a lot of work, it works, but with a few important cons:

  • The last version of PHPlist is 2.10.2. The plugin only work with PHPlist 2.9.4;
  • It’s very difficult (I think I can say: impossible) to customize subscribe page, with your WordPress theme design;

3. Last but not least, we tried a last solution, integrating WordPress 2.0 with our PHPList, last version, but without any plugin. It’s not simple but after a few tweaks, it works just fine.

As so, my next post one of my next posts, which I expect to publish in the next days (updated at 19h00 – 20/01/2006), will be “How to integrate WordPress 2.0 and PHPlist 2.10.2”.WordPress 2.0Newsletter ManagerPHPlistWordPress pluginsMailing List pluginWP-PHPList

BloggerView #2: Nuno Leitão

This week BloggerView is with another Portuguese blogger, who writes in English. His name is Nuno Leitão, author of the bliki Entropy – Maxwell’s Demon Lives On”, powered by SnipSnap, where he usually talks about technology and other light stuffs. Nuno Leitão is a IT professional, living in Berkshire, England.
I hope you enjoy reading this BloggerView, as much as I did. I have to admit that I was surprise with the fact that he simply doesn’t use a news aggregator, and I totally agree with his answer about the new MacBookPro.

1.When did you start logging? What were the main reasons that take you start blogging?
Nuno Leitão (NL): It was sometime in October 2003. No obvious reason really, I had spent a reasonable amount of time travelling to far away places and decided I would write up about it somewhere – the obvious format was a blog and being someone who likes to try out things I opened an account with Blogger. Eventually I thought it would be a good idea to instead use a Bliki and last year I forged together one using SnipSnap and lots of customisation.

2. What were your reasons to christen your blog as you did?
NL: "Entropy" is a word I use a lot on a day-to-day basis and "Maxwell’s Daemon" is a good way to describe how somehow it never seems to decrease :-). I personally find things such as blog names inconsequential, so I could have called it Baulubabue and still be happy.

3. Do you have any specific goals or objectives you want to achieve with your blog? What are they?
NL: None whatsoever – it is just a way for me to broadcast some of my views of and to the world at large. I think some people take their writings way too seriously (which bores me stiff) – I’m definitely not one of those. If I wanted my views to be taken seriously I would write a book instead. Actually, I think whoever meets me in person would be surprised to find someone who is completely different from what shines through my blog.
More specifically I use Entropy to keep in touch with a select small number of people and for myself to take random notes when I come across an interesting idea – I also use it as a means to exercise some technical skills since I regularly write plugins for SnipSnap.

4. In your opinion, what role could blogs play in the future, for instance at companies or at schools?
NL:
I personally see it as just another means of communicating ideas. I don’t really see a revolution coming at all with blogs, albeit the networking possibilities could be interesting. Companies have so far used blogs as just another form of PR – businesses are relatively opaque in their nature, and I can’t really see that changing much in the future – perhaps small, well integrated businesses can use blogs as an effective way to communicate with their customers (or internally), but larger businesses will find it hard to use them as an open means of communication.

5. What do you think will be the future of blogs over the next couple of years?
NL: As with everything else, they will transform, reshape and disappear as we know them today – perhaps they will turn into more of a "community" model but I’m really not sure. Individualistic publishing is too time consuming and costly for people not to get bored over time – I don’t know of any published statistics in this area, but I’d bet that most blogs appear and disappear rather quickly as people move on to other things. I see a lot more future in "community" models such as Flicker’s (even though blogs and Flicker deal with different means of expression) and Wikipedia’s. It’s a lot more rewarding to extend something which is continuously evolving due to the efforts of many than to selfishly trying to reinvent things on your own – I’m glad to say I have over time contributed to Wikipedia and expect to keep doing so.

6. How many feeds do you have on your news aggregator? What news aggregator do you use? Why?
NL: I don’t use news aggregators – I read web-pages. I only regularly follow a handful of blogs and a mere six news sites: BBC News, Wired, Red Herring, Forbes, The Economist and The Register. I don’t expect this to grow much in the near future either – I go for quality rather than quantity, and I’m only interested in facts (and the occasional rumour from the grapevine) not the opinions of pundits.

7. What do you think about RSS? What role do you think RSS can play in future, for instance in the relation between government and citizens?
NL: RSS is an interesting way to disseminate information, but I would be hard pressed to call it world shattering or a means to reshape the way citizens relate to government institutions. Still, it has its place, and it will be around for some time. Some people have suggested that RSS could be a good technology to offer "opt-in" marketing mechanisms therefore becoming a way to reduce spam – my answer to that is that if spammers wanted you to "opt-in" they would have asked you by now.

8. What do you think is the most important thing happening in the Web, now? Why?
NL: I think Ajax combined with Web Services is genuinely exciting in the sense that it is reshaping what is possible to do with a browser and how people interact with information at large. I’ve always been of the opinion that eventually the World Wide Web would be the primary means of interaction between people in the Internet – we’re just seeing another step in that direction. Besides this, I’m not particularly excited about much going on at the moment – I find Google’s services boring and rehashed (that includes Google Maps, Google Earth, GMail and Google Talk), and the only web based service which I find really interesting and involving is Flickr.
Where I think there is still a lot of scope is in the way people research and buy products over the web, how they invest their money and where they get credit from – I wouldn’t want to guess how this will evolve, but I think a good example of what is to come is Zopa (http://www.zopa.com). The potential of the web is in creating communities which would not be possible by other means – Zopa is exciting because it is highly disruptive and touches the fundamentals of economy (borrowing and lending) in a way which is very much unprecedented in history.

9. Beside blogs, do use other social software, like Flickr, Del.icio.us, Diigo, LinkedIn, or any other?
NL: I use Flickr and LinkedIn heavily. I have a Del.icio.us account but I don’t believe in bookmarks.

10. What do you think about the new MacBookPro using Intel Microprocessors? What do you think will be the most important advantages to the final users?
NL: Besides the fact I’m getting one, I think it’s a beautiful bit of engineering. There is one thing which excites me about Apple and that is that Steve Jobs *really* does put thought into product design – in this he is unique among CEO’s of multi-billion dollar companies. Personally I think we will be seeing a lot more people using Mac’s – not because there will be mass migration from Windows, but instead there will be more and more people who will get Mac’s as their first computers.blogsRSSWeb 2.0InterviewbloggerviewNuno LeitãoBloggerSocial SoftwareAppleMacBookPro