Posts from February 2005

Podcasting

I finally got around to downloading iPodderX onto my powerbook this weekend and started listening to some podcasts.

My next challenge is figuring out how to create some podcasts.  The Gotham Gal is interested in podcasting too.

But I was underwhelmed by what I found.  It’s most technology talk shows as far as I can tell.

My friend Tom Watson and I emailed about this today and we both are looking for great NPR shows, college radio shows, WFUV and WEHM radio shows, etc.  But they don’t seem to exist in podcast form.  At least I haven’t found them.

What’s worse, it seems that nobody is creating the podcast equivalents of these shows.

Later today, I had the opportunity to talk to Dave Winer about podcasting.

I asked him why there wasn’t any good music in podcast form.

He told me that he’d love to see it, but everyone is scared of getitng sued by the RIAA and that the royalties they’ve proposed are too high to make it work.

Well that really sucks.

I am going to spend some more time on this podcasting stuff, but without music the idea of audio content is really not that compelling to me.

Someone has to figure out the music piece.

RSS Aggregators

In the wake of Ask’s acquisition of Bloglines, I am interested in who has the market share for RSS aggregators. 

Here’s a graph of my readers.  I would love to know if this is typical of others out there.

Blog_market_share
You can click on the graph and enlarge it to read the text in the boxes.

By the way, these stats are from my Feedburner feed.  If you like stats, you should use Feedburner.

MP3 of the Week

I suppose its not a surprise that I like Interpol.

If you look at this Liveplasma map, you’ll see they are surrounded by new and old favorites of mine.

Plus they come out of the NY scene along with the Strokes and a host of other great bands.

Their second record, Antics, is really good which always says something about a band.

My favorite track on it is Narc with its Psychedlic Furs sounds.

And so Narc is my MP3 of the Week

Vertical Search

Regular readers of this blog have been getting subjected to a lot of Tom Evslin links the past couple weeks.  That’s because I have been really impressed with the stuff that Tom is putting up on his blog.

And until now, I have agreed with everything he’s said.

But I disagree with some of his post on vertical search engines in which he essentially says that phrase is an oxymoron.

I agree that its easier to go to Google or Yahoo! or even Microsoft for most of the basis searches I do.  But that’s not true of every search I do.

When I want to do a travel search, I go to Kayak instead of Google.

If I wanted to do a dating search, I’d go to Lycos’ new dating search service instead of Google.

If I was looking for a job, I’d go to Indeed instead of Google.

Why would I use these services?  Because the results are orders of magitude better than what Google produces for the same search term.

Some would say that Google can and will produce these "vertical search services" and I suppose that’s true. 

But then Google will be providing a number of vertical search services in addition to a broad horizontal one.  Maybe that’s their plan.

Regardless of what Google intends to do, I think we are in for verticalization in the search space and I disagree with Tom on this one.

Westerns

B0001gf2ds01lzzzzzzzIt’s been a while since I watched a western movie.

But Josh decided he wanted to watch some so we ordered The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly on Netflix.

It’s my all time favorite western so I figured we start with the best.

He really enjoyed it, so now we are into westerns.

This morning we watched Hang Em High which we also liked although the ending left us hanging.

B000059tfw01lzzzzzzz_1I have to make sure Josh doesn’t think that Clint Eastwood had a monopoly on the western format.

So next up is The Magnificent Seven.

And we’ll probably do some John Wayne after that.

But at some point, we’ll have to go back and finish off Clint’s spaghetti western trilogy.

Dead Zeppelin

Josh is into Led Zeppelin.  That’s cool. 

So we decided to download some of their greatest songs (Rock and Roll, Whole Lotta Love, Black Dog, Heartbreaker, Immigrant Song) from iTunes.

Guess what?

You can’t do that.  There are no Led Zeppelin songs on iTunes.

So I figured I’d check out music.msn.com.  Nope.  Not there.

What about Napster? Not there.

How about Rhapsody?  Not there either.

I guess Led Zeppelin doesn’t believe in online music.

Well I guess I don’t believe in paying for Led Zepplin’s music either.

There are other places to get Led Zepplin’s music online.

Idiots.

Leaning Left

Kurt Andersen wrote one of the most prescient pieces I have seen on the challenges of leaning left. It ran in NY Magazine several weeks ago

In the piece, Kurt argues that liberals have a terrible option; to root for Bush to succeed in Iraq or to root against the possibility that he might succeed. I have personally struggled with this terrible choice for the past three years. And with the end of the election, I am not struggling with it anymore. Bush won a second term and I hope he succeeds in Iraq.  Success to me means a quick establishment of a democratically elected government that can keep the peace and allow the US to get out.  That would be a huge political win for Bush, but it would also be a great outcome for the US and our troops who are in harms way right now.

I’ve been meaning to post on that piece for several weeks but have not gotten around to it.

Then today, I saw Jeff Jarvis’ post railing against the liberal bloggers who have it out for him.

Jeff and I had some fun arguing about issues in the weeks leading up to the election last fall.  We agreed about most everything other than Iraq.  And he voted, very reluctantly, for Kerry.  Here are Jeff’s politcal views:

: I voted for Bill Clinton, eagerly.
: I am dying to vote for Hillary Clinton.
: I vote Democratic in local races in my corner of New Jersey, when they have the guts to run.
: I am pro-choice.
: I opposed the Bush tax cuts.
: I am against school vouchers.
: I am for gay marriage and quit the Presbyterian Church over its bigotry against gays.
: I am for universal health care.
: I fight for free speech in America and elsewhere.
: I wrote a cover story for The Nation.

Guess what?  I’d vote for Jeff if he ran for office.  He’s a left leaning guy. 

The war in Iraq needs to be buried in the past. It’s over as a politcal issue. The left lost that one. There are bigger battles to fight like fiscal responsibility, a sound social security system, a woman’s right to choose, etc.  That’s where my left leaning politics are strongest and its where the majority of the country agrees with the Democrats.

I wrote several weeks ago that the left needs to focus on Social Pragmatism and Fiscal Conservatism. That’s a winning proposition.  Opposition to the war in Iraq is not.

My 50 Favorite Albums (continued)

I have not yet done any "best of" records.  And I have not done any "live albums".  And I haven’t done any soundtracks.

Well its time to do all of that in one fell swoop.

The best rock movie I have ever seen, the best live album I have ever listened to, and the greatest "best of" record I own is one and the same.

B000002kic01_sclzzzzzzz_It’s called The Last Waltz.

I remember when I went to see it for the first time at the Eisenhower Hall movie theater at West Point in 1978, my junior year in high school.

I was blown away.  And I still am every time I listen to the record or watch the DVD.

Neil Young, Neil Diamond, The Staples Singers, Eric Clapton, Bob Dylan, Van Morrison etc, etc.

But its Levon Helm, Robby Roberston, and Rick Danko that make this record so amazing.

I love this record and always will and it joins my Top 50 tonite.