Hiding amongst the Penguins

At the weekend I watched my older two kids do something fascinating. They played hide-and-seek. They’re nine and eight so they play hide-and-seek all the time. This time, though, they were playing in Club Penguin, a slick, Disney-owned virtual world for kids. Hide-and-seek isn’t a game offered by Club Penguin, though. There are lots of… Continue reading Hiding amongst the Penguins

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Wikipedia’s self-awareness

Wikipedia: The Missing Manual. John Broughton (O’Reilly 2008). John Broughton’s a Wikipedia editor. His new book’s about the hidden machinery of Wikipedia, the tools used by editors and contributors to add, improve and, when necessary, remove Wikipedia content. What emerges is a picture of Wikipedia as a busy, dynamic, pyramid-shaped hierarchy with all the hard… Continue reading Wikipedia’s self-awareness

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Comedy voicemail service prospers

Spinvox, the service that translates your voicemails into text messages, has raised a wheelbarrow-load of money from various top-drawer sources for international expansion. I like Spinvox and the company’s continued success shows that it’s clever to hang out where voice and data meet. Machine translation – especially in noisy environments like mobile – is hard… Continue reading Comedy voicemail service prospers

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Pledging allegiance

I like the pledge of allegiance idea. I know it’s a bit uncool and as a ‘liberal’ I should reject the idea as jingoistic or backward but I think Helena Kennedy and the rest of the snooty elite have got their response to this one wrong. Kennedy on Today was shocking: it was as if… Continue reading Pledging allegiance

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Buy my old records!

I thought it was easy to sell vintage records on eBay. Evidently no one wants a 1985 Run DMC 12″, a White Vinyl Dollar single or a 1982 Grandmaster Flash 12″. What’s going on?

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iPlayer’s economics

iPlayer‘s a huge success. Ashley Highfield says so. The first ‘iPlayer hits’ are emerging (Dr Who, Top Gear). iPlayer audiences are typically 10% of the broadcast numbers, sometimes 500,000 in one day. Within a year we’ll see the first streaming blockbuster – a show whose iPlayer audience exceeds its TV audience. The corporation used to… Continue reading iPlayer’s economics

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