Scripting News for 11/21/2007

Newspapers and url shortening 

Commenting on yesterday’s piece, Hanan Cohen says that newspapers in Israel use TinyUrl to publish web addresses on paper. This is both a good idea and not such a good idea.

First, it’s a good idea because it saves space and in print, space is at a premium.

But they’re leaving money on the table. If they used their own web address they could monitor traffic, see how many clicks each location in the paper generated. Maybe stories on the op-ed page generate more clicks than those on the front page? Maybe stories by Ms. Jones get more clicks than those by Mr. Smith? There’s also a chance to reinforce the brand, and drive more traffic to your site as opposed to And it’s good for the web, because it helps keep us from centralizing too much on one site. Lots of reasons to put up your own url shortener.

So someday you might see urls like this in the NYT…

It’s going to be a busy day here, so probably not too many posts. If you’re in the US, good luck in your travel or prep for the big holiday tomorrow.

Tomorrow is also the day when the OPML 2.0 spec is finalized. If you have any further comments, this is the last minute! As they say, speak now or forever be a troll turkey. 🙂

Otherwise, we’ll have a new official format to deploy starting tomorrow.

Thanks everybody!!!

Party in London on December 7? 

I’ll be in London the evening of December 7, probably fairly jetlagged (my flight from SF gets in at 1PM), but ready to have dinner and fraternize with British readers of this blog. Can anyone help put on a little dinner? I can promote from this side, but admit to knowing little to nothing about London. If you have an idea, please post a comment. 🙂

Building TwitterGram into a really big thing! 

I love TwitterGram. It’s a really cool tool, I use it when I have an idea to communicate and I’m nowhere near a laptop or desktop. I call the special number, 646-716-6000, speak for up to 30 seconds and the system takes care of the rest.

Yesterday I did a gram as I drove across the Bay Bridge and was amazed that I could tap into the wifi signal of a nearby AC Transit bus.

It’s for little ideas that you want to share quickly. All you need is a cell phone. 🙂

I want to keep TwitterGram competitive, to make a business of it. I need a smart young person with lots of energy to manage the product. We’ll need a CEO, if it’s going to turn into a company. We need to lobby Twitter to add a key feature, or figure out how to provide the functionality without Twitter. And we could use a programmer and a site designer too, to get started.

I’m interested in ideas and looking for people to help me build this tool into a product, and maybe a company.

Whit is editing Seesmic Daily 

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