timandkathy.co.uk

Do motor industry executives dream of electric cars?

Apparently, yes: they do.stm: the relentless obsession with Carbon emissions (while important) has led us into a blind alley of thinking that electric vehicles are somehow “green”. A clue: they’re not, unless the energy used to propel them comes from a renewable resource. Otherwise, all you’re doing is swapping local pollution and emissions for those far away; you know what they say about “out of sight…”. Carbon emissions are only one of the car’s many downsides. Read more...

dConstruct 2008: part one

Last week I made the annual pilgrimage to Brighton for dConstruct - one of the UK’s leading grass-roots Web conferences. Now in its fourth year, the theme of the conference this time was “Designing the social Web”, a topic increasingly of relevance to what we do at IOP Publishing. “Social Software” is merely software that gets better the more people use it; it’s not necessarily about creating the next Facebook or MySpace, and many (though not all) sites could benefit from social features. Read more...

The Web Versioning genie needs to be re-bottled

Today I got embroiled in a debate with Pete and Brian on Twitter about the term Web 2.0 and its increasing meaninglessness. This was only a few days after jumping on an old school friend’s use of the term, citing ReadWriteWeb’s …There is only the Web_is_no_web_30_there_is_no_web_20.php. I recall Phil saying I was “all about the 2.0”. And I still am, in that I think the New Web needs to be about real community if you’re going to profess that your site is a Community Website. Read more...

Twitter Endgame?

As I write this, I’m trying (and failing) to load twitter.com/home. Oh - it just timed out. According to Is Twitter Down? it’s not down, but I can’t get to it. There have been no updates on my timeline for two hours now, which is quite rare for a working day. I just wonder whether Twitter has reached a natural end. You know “it was fun while it lasted” sort of thing. Read more...

UK ISPs in new depths of customer hatred

BT, Virgin and Talktalk broker deal with Phorm.com.html?_r=1&oref=slogin, who intercept internet traffic, set anonymous cookies and deliver targeted ads… There are lots of comments on this Guardian article_might_call_it_resistance_95_say_theyll_opt_out_of_isps_datasharing_deal.html, including this one from martinusher: bq. I had a quick look at this system today on a technical website and it appears that the system effectively routes all your web traffic through a proxy server which records your browsing habits (and, while its about it, obscures your browsing habits from anyone else downstream from it). Read more...

If you build it (right), they will come (on any old platform, even a phone)

I’m rather enamoured of OpenID, the really neat, decentralised way to log in to any OpenID-supporting web site with one username/password. Simultaneously, I’ve had a Vox account since I was invited to try the beta pre-launch. It was moderately interesting as a community-based approach to blogging, but as I already have this blog I never used it for that purpose. At some point (I forget when), Vox became an OpenID provider. Read more...

Mobile GMail, Twitter and why I'm no better than Crackberry addicts

At the company Christmas meeting/lunch/disco in 2006, I had the pleasure of sitting at the same table as one of our directors. During the meal he checked his email on his Blackberry (nicknamed “Crackberry” due to the addictive nature of anywhere, any time email) several times. I seem to remember telling him, in jest, to “put it away”. Fast forward to 2007. Three has the best-value data packages of the UK mobile operators: £2. Read more...

12 days until BarCamp Bristol

Because not everyone has time to read mailing lists or check Upcoming, and one of the rules of BarCamp is that you do blog about BarCamp, here we go. BarCamp Bristol (Bristol’s first) will be taking place on October 12th-13th 2007 at Sift’s offices in Victoria St., Bristol. More information is available at BarCamp, Upcoming and you can sign up, too. What’s all this BarCamp stuff about, anyway? BarCamp is an unconference, which means that there is no distinction between attendees and speakers. Read more...

Skillswap report

On Tuesday I spoke at the February 2007 edition of Bristol Skillswap at The Watershed. I think it was the first time I’d given a public presentation, though I’ve given a few talks at work. There were about 25 people there, which was a sufficiently large number to elicit questions and feedback but not so large as to be intimidating. The subject of my talk was “Microformats: The Semantic Web for the Rest of Us”, and the slides are available online in lovely s5 format (a simple html file plus CSS and Javascript magic). Read more...

One Day In History: not quite Web 2.0?

The History Matters project is encouraging the ordinary citizens of the UK to blog about their everyday lives tomorrow, October 17th 2006. On first inspection, it sounded like a fine idea. I was all ready to kick the dust from my underused blog and start blogging. It’s not quite as simple as that, though. You can’t just blog anywhere; you have to use the History Matters One Day In History site. Read more...
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