Monday, February 19, 2007

Clickcaster Works: A real sign that broadband and streaming are taking us to the next level

Lately I've been playing with ClickCaster, a site that offers free pod-casting and video-casting facilities. So far I am very impressed. Making and publishing a podcast was amazingly easy. You can hear the results here.

In less than 4 weeks I have had 250 feed views, 44 downloads, and 30 subscribers. That's for just my first two podcasts (statistics are one of the many nice things about Clickcaster).

Unfortunately I caught a really nasty cold about two weeks ago and really lost momentum with my recordings (yep, da cold wad dat bad id blocked my dose and bade my voice sound fuddy). I hope to put out some more podcasts mid-March.

To anyone who was experimenting with the web ten years ago over a 28Kbps modem, the ability to record good quality audio to a web site and instantly stream it is just so, well it almost chokes you up. All the elements have been around for a long time, but now they are coming together, very nicely in the case of ClickCaster.

Saturday, February 17, 2007

Security Issues? Head to scobbs.blogspot.com

Right now I am trying to keep my security insights separate from my technology rants and raves. So if you are looking for security postings they are now at scobbs.blogspot.com. That will allow me to keep stuff like the electric loo separate from more serious issues like threats to data and privacy. After all, some things are more serious than others. I mean, getting sprayed in the face by an electric toilet might seem very threatening at the time, especially when you haven't slept for 24 hours. But it is not likely to usher in the end of the Internet as we know. Is it?

p.s. scobbs.blogspot.com now has several free security and privacy podcasts.

Friday, February 9, 2007

Right Up Front: 01-20-09 and a cool online sign service

I've been getting a lot of compliments lately on my license plate, my fake front license plate, as permitted under Florida law which only requires an official license plate on the rear of your vehicle.

This cell phone photo does not really do it justice as there is a hint of red around the black numbers, all sharply printed on a solid acrylic sign. And all designed by me, using the services of SignsByYou.com. If you scroll down that page you will see a blank plate. Select that and you have a fairly nifty design tool with which to create your own plate. The quality of the results and shipping time are both excellent. A good example of how technology expands personal expression.

(A word of caution: my wife was pulled over in New York state for having a "novelty plate" on the front of her Florida registered vehicle. The novelty plate, purchased in New York City, was in the style of normal New York plates and the letters were: U.S.A. Can't get more patriotic and law-abiding than that, right? Wrong. She avoided a ticket, but only after the first cop called for backup, I kid you not. So I guess you might want to avoid any custom designs that look too much like the real thing. The real kicker for my wife was the fact that the tag on her Florida plate had expired--and the policeman never noticed. Phew!)

Sunday, February 4, 2007

The Geek's Commode: From the land of the electric loo

Normally I avoid blogging something more than once, but what you see on the right is a worthy exception: a high-tech toilet, a john with juice, a head that's wired, a bog with brains, it is an electric loo.

I encountered this in a hotel near Incheon airport in Korea. Maybe it struck me as amazing because I encountered it after being awake for 32 hours (apart from the sort of fake sleep you get in coach class when all the seats are full and even in you get an aisle seat you can't stretch out for fear of food carts crushing your feet).

But amazing it is, and a great example of how technology still has the power to transform a truly (hopefully) everyday aspect of our lives. And I don't just mean because it gives us more buttons to push (although there are twelve on this thing for those who are counting). I mean that this thing is transformational technology because this it does away with the need for toilet paper, which is a huge boon to the environment. Exactly how it does that I will leave to your imagination dear reader. Suffice to say, you don't want to push the buttons unless your butt is in position.