the evenings out here - Thoughts, rants and musings about absolutely everything except photography. Or cats.

I’m on Facebook

but I’m not your friend

in General Rants , Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Yes, I’m on Facebook.

No, I don’t usually accept friends requests. And I’ve actually turned off almost all visibilty settings now.

I’m on Facebook because I need to be purely from a professional point of view, as my job includes specifying how our application interfaces with sites and services like Facebook. However this doesn’t mean that I like Facebook. In fact I find it a trivial, trite and ultimately very depressing way of wasting time.

To be brutally frank (and with some exceptions), if I didn’t stay in touch with somebody, it is because I (or they) had no further interest in doing so. If I didn’t have much to do with you 27 million years ago at University, or if we we just casually connected, why would I want to catch up with you now ? I don’t, and probably you don’t, really, either. So let’s just get on with our real world lives and let the past be the past.

Facebook is in any case just a noise generating mess. I mean really, do I look like I care if you’ve just eaten a virtual cake or ploughed an imaginary field (from somebody else’s imagination, at that). Well i’m sorry, but I don’t.

If anybody wants to get in touch with me, then Google will find me here easily enough. If I’m not worth the effort a few lines of email, then don’t bother. But if I am, then I’ll be happy to answer.

The only social networks I actively participate in are Linked In, for what it’s worth, and Flickr. Oh, and the real world. Which includes email.


140 characters in 312 pages!

world’s biggest font ?

in General Rants , Friday, July 24, 2009

Due to necessity I’m back on Twitter. I still don’t like it, but I need to talk about it with some degree of confidence so I’d better get back up to speed on it.

Checking out some shortcuts, I came across this:

Now, it may or may not be any good. And it least it hasn’t got Tim O’Reilly written on the front. But really: 312 pages to talk about a service which lets you send 140 character messages ?  As Sven remarked, it must use a really big font.

(Note: I see the author has anticipated this sort of smartass comment. Well ok, I’ll read it. And if I like it I’ll write a nice review)


Meanwhile, on the ‘B’ Ark

turn down the signal, ramp up the noise

in General Rants , Tuesday, July 21, 2009

I’ve been tasked with “doing something with Twitter” on the project I’m working on just now, which is still under wraps. Well, I’ve “done stuff with Twitter” before, and I’ve been on Twitter. And I found it creepy and really, but really disturbingly superficial.

But anyway, I’m supposed to be being paid to do what I’m told, so I though a quick refresher might help, and I’m reading The Twitter Book by Web 2.0 Cult High Priest Tim O’Reilly (who I also find creepy and superficial) and Sarah Milstein (who she?).

The book design follows a sort of playschool format, with big letters and big pictures on small pages, which I guess is the designer’s wonderfully subtle way of referring to Twitter itself. Whether or not that is a good thing is somewhat open to question.

By page 120 of 240-ish my eyelids feel like steel shutters and my body is invaded by narcolepsy. It is so, so, so dull. It really doesn’t help that it parades the same old Web 2.0 names in cutesy referential ways, or that all of the examples have a very strong gee-whiz San Francisco air about them.

Above all, it is so remarkably self-glorifying, self-referential and vapid. Which, actually, is well matched to the subject, I guess.  “Be interesting to other people”, preach the authors. They could start by taking their own advice to heart.  Well, I’ve got a message to all you Twitterers: the ‘A’ Ark is coming real soon now.


Cult of Mac

Waiting for the Man

, Monday, June 08, 2009

Well I think I’ve reached the height of absurdity. I’m standing on in windy street (Howard, I think) in San Francisco, towards the end of a queue (or “line” as they call it here) stretching at least 1km away from the entrance of the Apple Worldwide Developer conference. At least 75% of the people in line don’t look like they could even walk, or waddle, 1km without collapsing. Or at least stopping for a burger.


And why? Well i suppose, and hope, that it is for the Keynote, 2 hours of vapid marketing to be lapped up by the slack-jawed followers of L Ron Hubb, er, sorry, S P Jobs. Not that it’s his fault none of these geeks has a life. I imagine he can’t stand them. They’re not a pretty sight.

So what I am doing amongst them? Well the idea was that I’d get a crash course in the intricacies of iPhone programming, and maybe steal some good ideas, since I’ve run out of my own.

But so far, I just feel like I’ve landed on the wrong planet


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