Josh Mack blogging at the intersection of technology and the liberal arts, and occasionally on; bicycles, politics, Brooklyn, parenting, crafts, and good reading. Currently helping to build a new NYC neighborhood news site - nearsay.com, that celebrates the voices that make our city. Subscribe to the daily newsletter it gives you what you need to know.
On the other hand those choosing to work could always go to a job at the NY Observer which has been bought by a 25 year old real estate heir. For whatever reason the paper wasn't sold to Robert De Niro and his partners, who are NY loving people responsible for reviving Tribeca, media savvy etc. Instead it has been sold to someone, whose “... 25-ness is a huge asset. He is not weighed down by the debris of conventional wisdom.” according to Peter Kaplan, the Editor of the Observer.
I'm interested in why LilaGuides only got 2 million from the Knot but perhaps there is more too it. They are a very interesting property to think about building out better online than off. Hard to break into selling into local markets. Zagat's, which they aspire to be for parents, has a model that is also supported by custom publishing which LilaGuides couldn't really pull off. (via PaidContent.org)
Fred Wilson has a very good post called The Bad Script Trip about recent problems on his site and the increased vulnerability of pages as a person/site embraces services from other sites. This is true of blogs that pull in YouTube Video, reblogs that rely on feeds that in turn rely on photoservices etc. Over the weekend I met an engineer with AMD who works on scalability and 100% uptime issues. This is a very complex and difficult thing to achieve and I doubt that many of the services we are beginning to use on our blogs and sites have it nailed down. Scalability is a very difficult thing to accomplish and I doubt that there are enough CTO's really thinking about this. There are over 150 funded video sharing sites right now - do they all have great tech? I doubt it. Issues even pop-up in surprising places, last week on Six Apart's pronet there was a really interesting thread about 37 signals issues with MT, since many of their issues seem to have been caused by sloppiness, and they are really smart, it makes one wonder.
Offline - Great article in July 31st issue of New Yorker about the Wikipedia.
A photo of my sister jackhammering and trying on yet another costume. Here is a link to an earlier post with a
photo of her in a beesuit. She has a blog about building the house called DogStarHill where you can follow along with her adventures and watch her try on other costumes as she operates heavy machinery and pretends she is a carpenter. Ah life in the country.
I blame my father for giving me what I can only call a "new car virus". I was very happily driving an old Saab 900 into the ground until about two weeks ago when he tried to get me to buy a new one during GM's 72 hour no financing for 5 years sale as we stopped in for a visit. He said. "You need a new car. I worry about your safety (I'm not sure he actually said this part but it makes him look good). I know you are waiting for me to buy you one." Well that got my dander up, I'm old enough to buy my own car dammit, and my car isn't dead yet. So I avoided what would have been a really costly and impromptu expense, but it did start the clock ticking and began a somewhat obsessive hunt for reviews on hatchbacks to replace my beloved and roomy -throw it in the back - car.
What does this have to do with the photo on the right? Not much, other than that I came across this interesting announcement while looking at the NYT auto page. So they are going into the user generated photo gallery business. Wow! In fact I think I may steal some of language to help promote GardenWeb's new photo galleries. Which we've just finished up.
Speaking of old things - I learned the other night that the first interactive television experiments were held in the 1920s. They involved a phone, a TV - and the idea of creating video phones that people would use in drugstores.
Waterfront Media launched everydayhealth.com. This is very interesting, it looks like they have created their first stand alone property, one not based on an personality and book. They've created a stable of health experts and have formed an alliance with a number institutions like the Harvard Medical School. They can cross-promote with their other sites like South Beach and What to Expect.Looks like a real competitor to sites like realage and others.It would be an understatement to say this space is getting really crowded. (via paidcontent.org)
I just went to a dinner at NBC with the iVillage Community Moderators and afterwards we were treated to a visit to the Top Of the Rock. Since I only had my camera-phone with me this photo from someone else on Flickr will have to stand in. It's been a few years since I've gone to the top of a building and looked out at our magnificent city. It really takes my breathe away. One of the nice things about the visit was that all of the CMs were from small towns and I got to show them where things were. Of course they wanted to know where the World Trade Center was and I pointed that out. My last visit to the top of a building was there.