Geekspin Blog

The Cape Town Stormhoek Geek dinner, another first in South Africa, was a ton of fun!

Thanks to Graham and the crew from Stormhoek, and to Dave for getting it going.

I particularly made sure to gobble up some prize winning Pinotage!

Herewith my very amateur wine review of the 2 wines I had:

I started of with the Pinot Grigio and found it pleasantly bubbly and quite fruity, not too dry, but not sweet. I think it will make a great accompaniment to seafood or a wine to pop open on a lazy summers afternoon with friends.

The Pinotage was fabulous, I have had some pretty awful pinotages that often sport a very unpleasant burnt and overly smokey taste (I hope that comes across right) , thankfully this is a very civilized taste, it felt rounded and smooth and was a very pleasant experience as a whole. I’ll be looking out for this one in the shops!

Thanks again guys!

Advertisements

Hello universe

If I write this, does it really matter? In one hundred years I will be long forgotten, no one will know my name. My life is only a spec in the history of time. Not only that, I am one of billions of specs on this planet. Do I really matter? Do I have a purpose – or am I just waisting my time? *

But wait..

I blog, therefore I am.

We blog.

But who are we?

We are all different but our blogs are all similar in structure, we don’t judge on page design or layout or spelling or vocabulary but we relish in the inspiration of others.

We write about what we love generally for no reward – we share our passions with those willing to lend an ear.

We write so others can listen – and hear our voices drowned out by the constraints of traditional media – take for example our friends at United We Blog! who are carrying the flame for a Democratic Nepal.

Sometimes its a plea for attention, literally a fight for life.

Sometimes we share our joys and good news like the new baby on the way or the photos taking in Rome last vacation.

Our writings are informal and engaging- we love to discuss open-ended topics and comment on the inspired or misguided writings of others,

We are always there available via comments, and email, and boy, do we love to chat!

You can get to know us by our writings, get the meat via the long post or share a short brainwave via a short post.

We Blog-roll our friends and nurture those relationships with the recognition of a link.

We promote exciting brands like certain wines and a coffee shop in Sea-point.

We take our virtual friendships and make them real by attending Geek Dinners!

Some of us are techies in the industry and we make fun of the latest tech news or wallow in the prospects of WWJD or “What Would Jobs Do”?

Some of us are fashion trendies with the iPod as our bible and the latest mp3 our hymn, others are housewives posting about the latest under 9 soccer score.

Some of us , like Jason Calacanis and Om Malik, have or will be making millions from our hobby-slash-jobs.

We are one in a million, 50 million to be exact.

Our time is now, this is the time for the revolution. Are you getting heard?

So back to my question, do I really matter?

Well you are reading my blog, aren’t you?

*Quoted from and inspired by the book: I Blog,therefore I am by “The book of blogs”

There certainly seems to be a lot of excitement around the “Dave Winer River of news”, what he is done is actually pretty interesting, sure this is just a rehash of an RSS feed but it IS a very easy to use way of reading news, its lightweight and quick loading.

The most common anti-arguments are: (followed by my short followups)

1) Its been done before? Sure, but Dave has a way to strip things down to the bare minimum and its a case of simplicity through minimalism. River puts newest categories first which is surprisingly not a common feature and well its Dave Winer and he’s buzz worthy and gives things weird names, so there!

2) Why not just use RSS? Its a pain to research and install the software for your mobile.

3) Why not just read news on your PC? Well from a South African perspective, most people don’t have on not too mention don’t have Internet access, but a phone with a Wap-type browser and a 3G/GPRS connection is commonplace and convenient for most and the sub 80 Kb pages means 12 plus headlines at R2.00 a MB

Some other interesting things coming out of the river is the legality of republishing another’s feed is illegal or not? The argument is that if you provide full public feeds that it shouldn’t be a problem. Others argue that you are removing valuable advertising revenue for those sites.

Thoughts?

UPDATE: In case you dont understand what a River of News is, its basically a simple technique to display a conventional RSS feed in a cellphone friendly, zero setup format. Example: http://nytimesriver.com/

FAUX PAS: Hmm I just realised that the older generation wap browsers wont be able to deal with pages exceeding +- 30 KB, but those with Blackberry’s, 6 and N series Nokias and other higher level phones won’t have a problem. What is the solution? Maybe some paging?

Every night a strange thing happens all over the world, people get home after work, slip into a an alternate persona and go off to do their own thing, things like heading over to their multistory mansions for a bit of DIY or gardening, dancing with people they have never met before, talking to people they may or may not have ever met before, engage in a bit of shopping or selling, visit a local “adult” club or fly a chopper they designed themselves to some corner of the world they have never been in. The most amazing thing? They never have to leave the comfort of their armchair at home.

This is the wonder of Second life, one of a number of virtual worlds where you can choose to be who you want to be and do what you want to do with no social restrictions. Indeed it has many traits of a real world, there are mountains, oceans, trees, houses and a real economy. Folks often have “second” careers with fairly lucrative careers in creating virtual assets such as clothing, jewellery, buildings etc.

We are talking real money here, converted to virtual dollars. In the case of Second Life this site forecasts a expenditure of between $50 million to $100 million Linden (the name of the currency) this year. At the time of writing this the Second Life site reports $424,913 US spent in the last 24 hours between the quarter of a million active users.

Are we reaching a new internet frontier, is this the first step to a Gibson-esque future?

Still not convinced? What if I told you that Amazon’s Jeff Bezos has a substantial investment in Linden and that Amazon have been exploring a Second Life presence?

Other notable happenings are the recent setup of Podshow Island where you can go and visit the apartment of your favorite show and interact with the podcasters on a different level, also host to interesting events like virtual weddings. Dawn & Drew have setup a virtual farm and there fans have bought up the land all around it, Cali Lewis from Geekbrief TV also has a lot of great interaction with her audience in the second life.

The opportunity’s are literally endless!

Keep an eye on this space, and give it a try – a basic account is free – but beware the time monster!


Technorati Tags: Second Life

Who has ever said that speedtests have to be boring and ugly?

Bring some style to your life with this blinged out speedtest from Speedtest.net

Speedtest screengrab

Technorati Tags: ,

I am currently very interested in the virtual world phenomenon and I’m looking at it from a business angle at the moment, if anyone is currently living in one of those such as secondlife and/or making money in one of these micro economies please tell me about it, any other feedback welcome as well!

May be doing a talk on it at the upcoming SA Stormhoek Geek Dinner.

There is an interesting review of the IS 1024 kbps DSL over fibre solution (as opposed to satelite) over on Netlife.

I quote:

Pros:

1) Uncapped & Unshapped
2) Reliable
3) Great service desk
4) Far cheaper than Diginet based solutions

Cons:

1) Cost, its far from affordable for end users
2) IS retains ownership of the router.
3) Telkom is still in the loop for the last mile
4) Only 1mbit

In conclusion; this is what a DSL experience should be like, at a 10th of the price.