Scripting News for 7/9/2007

BBC is a river too 

The NY Times is such a hit on iPhones.

Naturally, the BBC, with an incredible array of news feeds, is next up for revival.

http://bbcriver.com/

Great on all mobile devices…

Enjoy!

Scoble & Rubel 

Scoble has TwitterGram, as an art, down to a science.

Rubel gets the big vision. If Apple had created an open platform, I’d be hard at work on it now. If anyone would port Frontier (it’s GPL) to their mobile device, the whole thing would run right now. I’d help of course. (Important: I could also grant a non-GPL license to any platform vendor, to the original code release only.)

Nokia? Microsoft? Sony? Apple? :-)

RSS & OPML for TwitterGrams 

Every registered user now has his or her own RSS 2.0 feed with enclosures. Since that’s the standard for podcast feeds, you’re all podcasters now. Yehi.

For example, here’s my feed. Scoble. Mike Arrington. Nomadicoder.

As with any group of feeds, there must be an OPML file that joins them all.

Applications? RSS and podcasting have had pretty good uptake around the Internet. :-)

PS: There’s been a feed for all TG’s since the beginning.

PPS: Mike Hamilton may have found the compelling reason for Yahoo Pipes to support the Twitter API (and enclosures for RSS 2.0 feeds).

PPPS: On June 26 there were 406 references for TwitterGram on Google. Today there are 407,000.

PPPPS: I did my own LOL Cats. :-)

Cold-brew coffee 

Last week I read an article in the NY Times about cold-brew coffee and decided to try it.

I’m drinking a cup now.

How it works. You buy a special plastic brewing container, it holds about a half gallon of water and one pound of coffee. There’s a hole at the bottom of the container, which takes a plug, and has a place to lay a filter which is about 1/2 inch thick, made of some kind of fiber. You let the whole thing stand for 3 or 12 hours (depending on whose instructions you’re following) and then pull the plug and put the plastic container on top of a carafe designed to fit under it. Let it drip for about 1/2 hour and then put the carafe in the fridge. The next morning it’s cold and ready to make into iced coffee, or to be diluted (it creates a concentrated coffee) and zapped in a microwave.

It’s supposed to create radically better coffee.

As I said, I’m drinking a cup now, and it doesn’t taste any different from hot-brewed coffee. I’ll try some iced coffee later, but I’m not expecting radically greater coffee.

BTW, the Times article reads like a blog post.

Just thought I’d mention that. :-)

How to learn new stuff 

A story worth mentioning.

I was watching a blogtv show with Jeff Pulver talking about the iPhone. He didn’t have one. Not that he can’t afford it, he can, but he objected to the myriad of ways the iPhone is closed to anyone’s innovation but Apple’s, or anyone’s economics but AT&T’s. I share his disgust. Sometimes it seems as if American corporations are in the business of deceiving customers into thinking they’re getting more power and utility, and then snatching it back and leaving us with less (and them with our money). Even though I adore the product, Apple is really pushing the limits on this with the iPhone.

But I digress.

I posted a comment on Twitter that caught a fair amount of attention, and surprisingly, caught Pulver’s attention too, and shortly after that I read on his blog that he had bought an iPhone!

Now that surprised me. People aren’t supposed to listen to what I say. That’s not part of my movie, whose plot is that I spread the truth and no one hears me.

What’s next? An open SDK from Apple?

Reminds me of another story.

In the mid-90s I was considered by some at Apple to be their #1 enemy, more so than Microsoft which was eating their GUI lunch, or the web that was undermining their assumptions about how dumb users are. I think it was because I didn’t know how to present my opinions so they’d go down easy (I’m better at it now) and because they weren’t listening very well (they had bigger problems to solve). Then they fired the CEO and brought in Gil Amelio, a kindly older gent, who really prided himself on listening. I was invited in to meet him, and of course we hit it off (all I wanted was to be listened to). A month or so later I was invited to be part of an Amelio keynote (a poor imitation of a Jobs keynote) and it went off smoothly, and created quite a bit of buzz in the then-nascent blogosphere.

Someone who worked at Apple at the time wondered if hell had frozen over too.

Funny how people can do things you don’t expect them to.

The point? Congrats to Pulver. We ought to get together in a few weeks to compare notes on the iPhone.

Also after a little more than a week I have some concrete conclusions, which I outline briefly in this TwitterGram, but which I will expand on for sure either in a blog post or a podcast.

11 responses to this post.

  1. I find cold brew coffee brings out more of coffee’s character than hot.

    Reply

  2. Hey Dave,

    How about doing a RSS with enclosure version of the “latest Twittergrams” global Twitter page? Then add that page to your OPML list.

    Keep diggin!!

    Harold Gilchrist

    Reply

  3. I remember a British product that was essentially concentrated liquid coffee. It came in a bottle about twice the size, say, of a Lea & Perrins worcestershire bottle. Very dark and the consistency of thick molasses. Anyway, the stuff essentially functioned as instant coffee: Put a spoonful in a cup and add hot water. If I recall, it didn’t taste too bad. No idea how it was made.

    Reply

  4. I’ve posted two Twittergrams so far and intend to post more but how does one become a ‘registered user’ and take advantage of the new RSS feed feature?

    Reply

  5. now if we could get a rss and/or opml feed of JUST our friends twittergrams. Just use the login information provided, make the “friends” call and filter the current OPML down to just those found on the friends result and then return that OPML, or then combine the feeds for them into an RSS.

    DizPodDir

    Reply

  6. how does one become a ‘registered user’ and take advantage of the new RSS feed feature?

    Enter your information on this page…

    http://twittergram.com/phone

    Reply

  7. DizPodDir, this seems like the kind of problem that Yahoo’s Pipes service was designed to do. Finally, a real application for it! :-)

    Reply

  8. Posted by jim mason on July 10, 2007 at 8:23 am

    Dave,
    Porting frontier to mobile device, is possible however its based on chipset (i.e 68k, ppc). it would be better to start from a known mobile device, than cover all chipsets.

    Reply

  9. Jim, I totally agree, in fact, I’d go a step further.

    I don’t even care about covering more than one device.

    I want to develop concepts and working software, and I really don’t care about market share. And I’d be happy to help one vendor build differentiation, in return for their help getting my toolkit booted up on their system, asap.

    The iPhone is very tempting. It’s got everything I want, except you have to be an employee of Apple, or one of their partners (Yahoo, Google, etc) to work on it.

    But behind the scenes I’m making proposals to their partners too (and now not so behind the scenes). I want to get in there and start working. Or, if I can’t I’ll work with someone else’s platform.

    Reply

  10. There is some weird behavior going on with the TG RSS feed with enclosures.

    The behavior is not very consistent either. Seems there are times when the TG RSS feed leaves out today’s twittergrams and other times when they are included

    This behavior had me scratching my head for a while … first, everything seem and looked ok with the feed. Then … I noticed that none of today’s grams appeared in the feed … and then it seemed with the next gram post they all reappeared again. Shortly later, they were gone again.

    Maybe you are tweaking something that is causing the behavior but I thought I let you know what I was seeing.

    Reply

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