Friday, May 18, 2007

Whither the Widget King?

Fun night on Wednesday with colleagues and other new media types at Media Widgetised, hosted by Chinwag and stylishly chaired by Steve Bowbrick (thanks to him for photo), with speakers including friends such as Fergus Burns (my contender for King of Widgets). There's a good and sensible write up here.

I put the expression on my face in the above picture down to me trying to figure out where we are in terms of a sustainable widget economy (which is what Fergus and others were trying to get us to buy into).

Not that it was talked about that much, but I understand the potential for and excitement about the death of the browser (a news reader, media player, and a couple of social network or shopping widgets or 3d environments will be all I need) and can see where as a content owner I can get value out of that (even if I don't own or create the widget).

In the short term I'm not sure how sustainable getting traffic from other web pages with embedded widgets is - we will inevitably have to pay if the traffic is at all valuable to us (look what happened to Photobucket), or at least those in the good positions will need to pay (a la paid search).

Maybe it's all part of the journey towards the browser-free web (for your average user, sure they'll still be a few of us sub-editing wikipedia).

Monday, May 14, 2007

I did go crazy

I've been worrying myself silent, thinking I had to try to do justice with words to an event which rendered me speechless.

I was there - last Thursday at Koko in Camden seeing Prince at a distance I had only dreamed of.

I joked with friends that the last time I saw Prince live, if he had impregnated me that night, our child could have voted in the recent local elections. But that really is besides the point.

He sang and played the most amazing music with the most amazing band is as much as I can bring myself to say apart from rubbish phrases like "shitting brilliant".

Thankfully, a fellow user has written an excellent review on his blog, with setlist, photos and videos. Thank you to Prince for the night, and thank you to musiclikedirt for writing this review. I'll pull out one quote from it, which was exactly how I felt,

"There are legendary singers like Sly Stone, Curtis Mayfield or guitarists like Hendrix, who you wish you’d had a chance to see. Breathtaking entertainers like James Brown, where you give thanks for the privilege of seeing them, even in later years…
And then there is Prince Rogers Nelson. The best bits of every one of your favourite artists all rolled up in 5ft 2 inches of stone cold genius."
There's just one thing I disagree with - this was definitely the highlight of the night for me ...

And I never thought I'd say "I can't wait til I get to the millennium dome" - but I am going to see him again twice at the newly christened O2 centre.

Tuesday, May 01, 2007

Displacement Activities: Handbags, Darfur & Goodreads

If you've been wondering where I am then I've been here all along. Just in a sort of suspended animation of worry.

There are a lot of things I should be doing for my wedding. That's what I'm anxious about. A selection includes:
  • working on suitable songs to suggest for the musicians (jazz pianist + great singer)
  • contacting the venue to make sure that we can have said musicians and evening as planned
  • wine tasting (why am I holding off on this one?) so we can decide which booze to have on the day
  • buying various wedding accoutrements (tiaras, knickers etc. - don't even get me started on borrowed, blue etc.)
  • writing my speech (got as far as "accustomed as I am...")

Instead I have done the following:

  • Bought an outrageously capacious handbag because it made me smile. It looks a bit like an expensive disabled black leather muppet.
  • Worried about Darfur and whether there is anything I personally should do.
  • Spent way too long on listing every book I've ever read and rating it. I even started doing some light reviews this evening. I can't believe I've found another social network that I am willing to surrender yet more of my free time on.
I've decided to leave Darfur to Elton John for starters. This feels like progress.