Category Archives: discussion

TwitterFollows – Making Friends and Changing the World in 140 Chars

So, there you are on your Twitter Home Page and you notice you have some new followers – so you decide to check em out.  Among the usual spammers, creeps and cretins, which are instantly blocked or reported – there are a few more interesting Follows.  So you click on them to take a look.

Now, first of all of course – your eye is drawn to the more attractive profile pics – and truth is, most of them probably get added and followed whether you share interests or not (that’s human nature ain’t it?)  Then of course there are those that are into the same things you are – and it’s obvious why they followed you.  They will probably get added too.

But then you come to the others – there are likely to be some that you have no idea why they followed you.  You seem to have nothing in common – not necessarily in a bad way – but it makes you ponder nonetheless.  Twitter it seems, is possibly almost unique among Social Networking services – in that, most of your contacts come to you, instead of you having to seek them out.  Even those that you follow first – still are likely to come back and check you out before following – thus experiencing pondering over the reasons for your TwitterFollow.

Chances are that non-obvious TwitterFollows probably just liked the general gist of a tweet you made – or found it humourous, inspiring or in some other way interesting.  It might have been a simple casual throwaway comment, that you neither thought too much about – or even remember.  Yet it still struck a chord with someone and had the power to make them want to be your friend – or at least gaze through a window to your thoughts.

And here, we come to the truly unique thing about Twitter – that seems to be a restriction – but as we all know, is actually it’s greatest power – the 140 chars format.  In Twitter we are forced to constrict our thoughts and comments – sometimes quite profound concepts or important news and information – to the tiniest soundbite (or should that be pressbite? typebite? Whatever..).  This restriction also adds to the immediacy of the dissemination.  Information can be recorded, transmited, received and passed on at breakneck pace.  The Retweet allows information to reach truely massive audiences at the most amazing speed (who ever invented the RT deserves a medal).  You send to all your followers – a number of them send to all their’s – they send to theirs and so on.  If your lucky your tweet gets picked up by a Twitter biggy – with thousands, or hundreds of thousands of followers – and before you know it you have Twitterfame.  People add to, comment on, or argue with your tweet – a buzz is caused and you’re trending!  Press and mainstream media publish articles, features and analysis – and then maybe your famous for real (for at least 15 minutes anyway).  And all of this, from your little off the cuff, 140 char or less remark.  It’s word of mouth – but on a Mega scale! 

The fact is though – that if you hadn’t been forced to restrict your comment in the first place, a lot of the people that liked it – wouldn’t have bothered reading it through.  If it had been an article or even a blogpost – people may not have stuck with it to the end (heresy!).  If it hadn’t been for the effortlessness of hitting the Retweet button – they wouldn’t have passed it on – and their followers wouldn’t have passed it on, and so on.

This digital, viral, Mega-word-of-mouth, really comes into it’s own with important breaking news (everybody say Egypt!).  Autocratic regime’s can no longer supress information – on how they are supressing their people – and people are inspired.  China blocked the word Egypt from websearches today.  – Finger in the dyke Mr. Chairman!

So I say to all you sneering self-superior idiots out there – you know – the ones who say:-    “Twitter is a load of craaaap!  Why would I wanna know that someone is having eggs for breakfast!” –  I say – your out of touch – you don’t know what’s going on!  The people on Twitter do!  You’ll all succumb to the Twitter Tsunami eventually!

If you like this Twitter-people, you know what to do – Work that Retweet button like there’s no tomorrow!

Now discuss below:-

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Erasing David – on More4

A quick post update from my phone. The brilliant documentary “Erasing David,” (referenced in earlier post about Amazon Profiling), is about to be re-shown on TV in the UK. Showing on More4 in their excellent True Stories strand, at 10:00pm – repeated at 1:00am next morning.

In Erasing David the filmmaker attempts to “disappear” and employs the countries top private detectives to track him down using online sources and the digital information on him accessible through cyberspace only.

Are we becoming a surveillance state? Probably a bit strong – but you can’t help being curious about what and how much information is out there on each and every one of us.

Highly recommended! – A Must Watch!

Tiny Problems – Massive Frustrations!

Why is it that when it comes to technology, it’s often trying to perform the simplest little tasks that cause the most frustration?

I’ve just bought a brand new laptop: EasyNote TJ71 and I’m very happy with it. Great spec for the price, looks good, great keyboard and everything seems to work fine. Like most new laptops these days though, it has no built in Bluetooth. Not too much a problem I suppose. I use a Belkin Mini Bluetooth Adapter with my Netbook and find it pretty good, although I do sometimes have probs connecting my BT (Bluetooth) headset to MSN or Yahoo Messenger for voicechatting, although I suspect that’s due to probs with the messenger apps rather than the BT device or adapter.

It is a bit of a puzzle to me though why manufacturers have stopped including inbuilt BT? Anyone out there know why? Surely most of us still use BT devices – especially with the increasing use of mic and cam chatting – the easiest way to chat on your computer is with a BT headset. Personally I use 2 BT devices regularly; the Logitech Cordless MediaBoard PRO
and the Jabra BT125 Bluetooth Headset, and I often have to use these together. So of course I needed to buy a new BT adapter for the new machine. Although I like my Belkin, after a quick look on Amazon (not trying to advertise for them btw, but I do buy a lot from them – they’re easy, well priced and fast with a massive range – so why not), I thought I’d give this adapter a go: Micro Bluetooth USB Dongle EDR Version 2.0 – the price is amazing! This item arrived with no packaging or branding (just came in a tiny plastic bag), no software, instructions, drivers or anything – but I plugged it in, it installed with no bother and seemed to work fine. The only thing that narked me a little was that there wasn’t any option for turning it off – you have to settle for it being constantly on. Sure, you can unplug it but the thing is so tiny, that if you’re out and about, you’re likely to lose it. If I’m using battery power I’d like the option to turn it off when it’s not in use. I’m not that techy myself so I don’t know if BT uses up a lot of power, but on a full spec, full size Windows based laptop, you’re lucky to get 2 hours use, so any way you can save a bit of power is important.

That aside the adapter was working as expected. That is, until I tried to use both my BT keyboard and BT headset together. Try as I might I couldn’t make it work – it had to be one or the other. Solution? …install the Belkin in my Easynote, and the unbranded in my Netbook. Obviously the Easynote is now my main computer, and the Belkin when installed in my Netbook, does have an ‘off’ option and is able to run both BT devices at the same time. I’d only be using my Netbook when out and about – when I obviously wouldn’t have my BT keyboard with me – so, problem solved.

Or so I thought. I am able to use both devices together on my Easynote through the Belkin adapter now, which is the main thing – but for some strange reason the option to turn Bluetooth off has now totally disappeared! Now I suppose this isn’t exactly a major tragedy, but stupid little things like this really bug me!!! It’s one of the most annoying things about computers – when something just doesn’t work exactly the same way as it did before!!! These things annoy me – and I can’t let it go until I sort it out. So for 3 hours I searched on the internet and tried various things but all to no avail.

So here I sit irritated and exasperated at my inability to solve such a piffling little yet annoying problem. But I can’t be the only one who finds these things infuriating? This is just one example of the many little everyday annoyances that our love affair with technology brings. Do these things happen to other people just as much? Am I right in sometimes hating technology? Or is it just that technology – hates me?!!

You’re An Embarrassment!

You know when you come back to something you’ve written ages ago and look at it again and think – “What an embarrassment?!” 

Dunno what I was thinking!!!  Oh well.

I’ve just got a new laptop with the best keyboard I’ve ever used – so I’m liking technology again at the moment.  Maybe I’ll get down to writing something half way decent now.  Lol.  I’m sat here with my flash new laptop, 42″ 1080p plasma on in the background – scanning around my living room and realising I really do love Gadge.  Are we really just conned into buying stuff we don’t need in a fruitless attempt to fill the void in our lives?  Nah, I don’t think so – technology just makes our lives easier and more enjoyable (loving this keyboard!).

Love It Or Hate It!

I’ve just gone onto my Twitter page using my netbook, and into my favourites – to follow up on any tweets I had favouritised from my smartphone while out and about. I found a favourite that contained a link to the following web article: Aldiko: A Sleek & Customizable eBook Reader for Android. This is a short review of a nifty little Android E-Book Reader app, that I hadn’t heard of before.

After reading the review I thought I’d like to give the app a little try. I reached for my phone and was about to go into the Android App Market, when I noticed from my netbook screen that I didn’t even need to – the review poster (or the helpful people at Android and Me), had kindly included a 2D barcode. So of course I scanned it using my trusty HTC Hero and was taken directly to the download.

A bit of a pointless anecdote to relate I know, but I only mention it as just a simple, everyday example of how technology and gadge, have now become so seamlessly integrated into the everyday experience of our lives – that we don’t even give it a second thought any more. Our gadge have become extensions of us – they’re like an extra limb – and almost as useful. I love my little HTC Hero – so much so that I haven’t yet upgraded to it’s beefier big brother, the HTC Desire – mainly because I like the looks of the Hero compared to the generic smart-phone-alike looks, of the Desire. Smartphone’s are the future – Definitely! And losing mine would be like losing an arm or a leg (not really, limbless readers – but you know what I mean).

In just that simple act of discovering something new through one service ie; Twitter, on my phone and saving that info for later – then linking from that info to another site; Android and Me, and then using that little 2D barcode to link and download the app – I was in Gadge-heaven! (that’s what kind of sad git I am, but what can you do eh?)

So yeah, I LOVE gadge and technology! But here’s the thing: Gadge and Technology FUCKING HATE ME! I mean it, almost nothing ever seems to work properly for me (exaggeration, but only a bit)! In fact if I sat down and tried to work out exactly how much pleasure and enjoyment I get from technology, and weigh it up against how much annoyance, frustration and pure rage – I think it would be a pretty close run thing. Dare I say it – it may even be that it’s mostly frustration and bad times? No, surely not – that can’t be it? I daren’t, or at least – can’t bring myself to say it – even though it may actually be the truth.

So there is my dilemma. I have a love, hate relationship with technology – and I suspect I’m by no means alone in that? Except I don’t really hate it at all – I just wish it wasn’t so shit to me! Though I don’t have the time right now, I’m sure I’ll be using this site to give illustrations of my techno-rage in future (not healthy to bottle these things up, is it?)! Anyone out there have similarly conflicted technophile-ism? Comments, and especially examples of your techno-rage/love are more than welcome.

You can comment on this page, or send your more detailed views or stories of gadge love or hate, to me in an email: gadgemeister@gmail.com. The best ones will be published here for all to enjoy.

Cheers,

Gadgemeister.

Initial Test Post

This is an initial test post, in order to test making posts from my smartphone, using the official WordPress Android App.

This blog is brand new, and I am currently working on initial content – also I’m deciding on the general theme and look of the site.

New content will appear soon. In the meantime please see the introductory page. Comments on whether you think this is a site that yourself and others will find interesting, and would like to contribute to, are welcome.