Blogs can be blogs

I had a bit of a realisation today regarding my blog. Recently as you might have guessed with my little flirtation with Tumblr, I’ve been having a few issues with my blog and it’s direction. I’ve been considering a lot of what I want from it, what I “should” be doing with it. I guess I’ve kind of been obsessing with finding a place in the big wide world of blogging. So many times I’ve read about having a niche, a specialism if you will, that in order to be a “success” you need to be a bit of an elitist. I’ve always struggled with that concept, I’ve never been able to carve out a niche, or develop my blog into something that can be considered a “success”. Today I think I finally realised why that is. It’s not me.

This morning in my RSS reader I came across this post from Khoi Vinh of Subtraction.com fame. He has this reputation for design, for his blog design, for speaking about design for knowing about design. I added Subtraction to my RSS because of that, but what’s kept it there is his writing. It’s not always about design, heck today’s post was about baseball. I know nothing about baseball. But I still enjoyed it. Which is when it hit me. I need to stop trying to be “someone” and be me.

People like me for who I am in reality, so why with my blog am I trying to be someone and not just being me. It’s not what you write about, it’s how you write it. So, instead of trying to give my blog a niche, trying to make it “something” I’m just going to let it reflect me. It’s going to be a natural reflection of the person who owns it. As long as I am able to write well, and in an interesting way that I enjoy, then that’s all that matters. I hope that you guys who read, will like my blog and me for just being natural. I hope my writing will grow because of it, but this is my hobby, and if I’m enjoying then that will reflect in what I write. That is, after all, the most important reason to be doing it.

Flaming PowerBook! ›

I’ll let him do the talking, but this guy’s PowerBook burst into flames as he slept.

My Mac burst into flames under my bed while I was asleep. Awoke to the sound of “FFFffffff,” which I thought was something tearing. I heard it again. And again. Then I smelled something acrid and wrong.

Happy ending though.

.asia ›

Domain names ending in .asia are now beginning to become available. Companies and governments are now able to register the domains they need, with auctions where more than one company wants the domain. They’ll go on sale to the general public in February 2008.

.asia is the second regional domain to go live, with .eu being the first. I’ve not seen many .eu domain names since they came available in 2006, so it’ll be interesting to see how many .asia ones we se.

BT FON

More info on BT new partnership with FON.

FON users, or “Foneros” as they like to be called, share their bandwidth with other people, either by using a special wireless router provided by Fon or by installing special software on other brands of router.

This is a great idea, I looked into the coverage around where I live and there are only a few people signed up, but if you look in the inner cities already there are several hotspots appearing. Certainly something I would look into doing if I were a BT broadband customer.

It’s an Apple world

On my blog at least. For a while now I’ve been keeping an eye on my blog and the platform it’s readers are using. I posted a screen grab on Flickr a few weeks ago showing 98% of my readers were on a Mac. Today it finally tipped. My blog hit 100% of readers using a Mac. I know it won’t last as I know of people who read using Windows XP and Ubuntu, but I wanted to bring it to your attention and add it to the archives of Electric Weekend.

My blog stats for the users OS

Internet Maps ›

Chris Harrison has made some maps of the internet. Each one denotes number of connections, not number of users. It’s interesting how dominant the Northern Hemisphere is, I understand why, but I had no idea it would be that intense. The maps make some particularly good images, the second one is my favourite.

Kwik-Fit sued over staff listening to the radio ›

I can’t quite believe I’ve just read this.

A car repair firm has been taken to court accused of infringing musical copyright because its employees listen to radios at work.

It seems now we are not allowed to listen to the radio at work. I don’t quite understand the case here. Surely the radio station, which is broadcast publicly under license, has paid for the rights to play the music?

Nils contemplates the effects of technology on the speed in which we do things. Having been forced to use an ageing iBook, it’s making him aware of how newer and quicker makes you stop and think less.

I may miss out on quite a bit of information this way, but I sure do enjoy what I’m getting. I tell you, this vintage slo-fi is pretty cool.

I kinda know what he means. My iBook is showing it’s age, but for just relaxing and reading with, it does just the job.

as a newcomer to spectator nerdery, I have to say, it astonishes me how excited I am

The perfect sum up of tonight’s Layer Tennis match.

Pocket Sketches ›

These were first published in February, but I’ve just come across them thanks to this morning’s Subtraction article. I really like how Khoi has managed to capture the essence of the character in just a few lines. Very inspirational and making me want to get back into my sketching. Maybe I found a use for that pocket Moleskine I bought a couple of weeks ago!

iCal syncronisation

As many of you will know I have had two Mac’s for just over a year now. In that year there has been one thing that I have struggled with, keeping the two of them in sync. Throughout the year I’ve developed a few little methods of keeping them at a manageable state of syncronisation particularly with files. But there have been two apps that have constantly eluded me in my quest. Keeping Address Book and iCal in sync has proved very tricky. There are few methods of keeping Address Book in sync, but over the year there have been a few options for keeping iCal in sync.

Spanning Sync

I first linked to Spanning Sync in March, and was a user of the product in the beta stages. It worked well after a few initial hiccoughs and I had my iCal’s running in sync and the ability to look at them on gCal (which was an added bonus). So what was the problem? When it launched it was just too expensive for me. I along with many others felt it priced itself out of the market.

Not having used it in a while, I can’t comment on how it works with prolonged use, but I do know it was running well for me and as I understand it, still does work well for many others.

gSync

I ran into the second product gSync only a few days after Spanning Sync left beta. gSync was a little more reasonably priced and whilst it too sync’d with Google Calendar it had the advantage of not using a third party server to complete the task. It worked well, but I had a few ups and downs with the product and whilst in the end it started to work, it didn’t quite seem to be doing it for me. Again the Google Calendar thing was nice, but really I just wanted to have the two iCal’s sync’d. Which is where my next solution comes into play.

BusySync

Since I linked to BusySync a few days ago I’ve been trying the beta out. Unlike the other two products, which I also used during beta periods, BusySync hasn’t slipped up once. I haven’t had any issues with duplications at all, everything is just working.

So what’s the difference? The main difference and one which doesn’t bother me in anyway, is that BusySync doesn’t have any dealings with Google or other third party people. It talks between multiple Mac’s over your LAN to allow you to publish and subscribe to calendars, keeping them in perfect sync. Using built in OS X technologies (Sync Services and Bonjour) amendments to calendars are published and in less than a minute appear sync’d with subscribed calendars on other Macs. Calendars appear on subscribed Macs as if they were created there and you can define what kind of privileges subscribers can have. I have my iBook subscribed to all my calendars on my iMac and have allowed my iBook read/write privileges so I can make changes to my calendars and have them appear changed on my iMac as well.

The added bonus is that even though BusySync works over your LAN you can still make changes to calendars when you are out and about. As soon as BusySync detects your home network and shared calendars it publishes the changes to subscribed Mac’s and you are all sync’d up.

Overall it seems like a simple and elegant solution to something many people would like to have. Yes dotMac provides iCal syncronisation, but for me it’s overkill for what I need (and expensive). Ultimately, if you need to keep your iCal in sync across a couple of Mac’s in your home or small business then I would suggest BusySync is the perfect solution.

Signal – The Ultimate Media Player Remote ›

When iPod touch was first announced my first thought was will it work as a remote for AirTunes? Well now it can. Signal is a small application that you can install on your Mac (or PC) that gives you a web interface for controlling iTunes. This means you can set your iTunes library to play on the speakers in the lounge and then use Safari on you iPhone or iTouch to change tracks, playlists and albums in an interface that is almost identical to that of the built in iPod. (via)