Sunday, July 31, 2005


I just posted a little video about Itunes and podcasting. It is short and sweet, but I just wanted to test vblogging. Made with just my digital camera, so the quality is not that great.

Double click on black box to play

Playing with OPML

So I checked my news feeds this morning and wouldn't you know we had a little gift from Dave Winer. A mac version of his new software for outlining called OPML. I have been playing with it for a little while and am having fun with learning about this new tool.

Check out my limited site created with this tool:

There seems to be a few bugs and you need to be pretty technical to use it, but if you are a blogger or podcaster, this editor can help you with posting.

Nice work Dave.....

Problems with

I checked my blog today and found a few things missing. Mainly my header picture, nice view of Paris inside the Pompeduo centre, and my gif buttons that link to my 1 - click subscriptions. In addition, all my podcast links were dead.

What gives? All the data I loaded was tested and has been live befor I linked to it? So I go to my ourmedia page and find all the URL's have changed for my media. No big deal right? Wrong. Ourmedia can't just go changing url locations anytime they feel like. Those who use the service to host podcast's and vblogging will spend tireless hours trying to relink all their data. I left a post on the forum to see if there is an explanation.

In any event, I realize that Ourmedia is a) a free service and b) is still in alpha. So I have to be patient because the are offering me free hosting and bandwidth, and it has only been out a few months. I will give them the benefit of the doubt and see what happens in the future, but I guess you have to follow the old cliche: "you get what you pay for".

Tag me silly:

Monday, July 25, 2005

Skype vs Gizmo Project

VoIP technology has been around for awhile now. Big players in the enterprise market make good products, but for the consumer choices have been limited, until now. Vontage and other monthly subscription models don't work for those who own cell phones, because it doesn't make sense to pay for both services. I have been using a free service called Skype for a few months now and it seems to be the most popular VoIP technology today. Gizmo project is on its heals though and I am sure Vontage does not like the free provides to be in the press.

Gizmo has some of the same functionality as Skype, but it adds SIP compliance standards so you can use a call in service, much like a pager and connect to my SIP number from your cell phone or landline. Skype offers callin for a fee in order to have a regular phone number on their service. I like gizmo since it records calls (podcasters pay attention) and it seems to have a better interface.

Outbound calls are measured in Dollars for Gizmo and in Euros for Skype. So if you need to make calls to a land line or cell phone you can purchase blocks of time.

Both services offer flexibility and if you can get your friends and family on Skype or Gizmo then all calls are free over your broadband connection.

Quality can vary, but I did test it with someone in Kiev on a dial up connection. It sounded ok, but broadband is recommended.

I will post a more thorough evaluation as I play with each service.

Tag me: Why you should care

I have been using for a few months to host my podcast and vblog media. They have a great service where you can store your media for free. Using tools like blogger, feedburner and ourmedia to create a blog that is free is why media is scared of bloggers. The cost of entry into the marketplace has just been lowered. You can always make the argument 'bloggers' are amateurs, but there is a lot of good information out there and that gives us the power of choice.

I want to thank JD Lasica, Marc Cantorand Brewster Kahle for making possible. You gentlemen will change the internet and media as we know it.

Thank you

Tag your it:

Thursday, July 21, 2005

New Features in my Blog

I have been playing with the simple template provided by the generous folks at Blogger (read Google). I don't do much coding aside from SQL, so I have been fumbling my way through updating this blog. I want it to be professional yet have enough fun stuff to make it unique.

A short list of items I have been adding:

* One Click Subscriptions - Podcasts
I wanted to make the process as easy as possible to get my podcast. I look at my parents as the litmus test to determine if something is hard to get on my blog (Dad still doesn't know what a blog is).

* One Click Subscriptions - Blog posts
see above

* Flickr stream - my photos
I know it seems amateurish, but if it works for technorati, it works for me.

* Photo for header
I got tired of the plain back ground so I added a photo from my Europe trip. It is streached out so its hard to see what it is, but it is a photo from inside the pompiduo center in Paris - see Eiffel?

* About me section - I wanted a mission statement for this blog.

* Blog Tags from - I wanted for people to see my tags on my blogs for easy reference without going through all the archives. TagCloud looks like a great service.

* Blog roll - Provided by
My favorite RSS reader that is web based (read take it anywhere). Nice little script so anyone can see what I am reading in the blog world. Its a good way to start a network - Its all about Folksonomy baby!!!!!!

Monday, July 18, 2005

New Iclectic Podcast

Show notes:

Some of the items listed in today's show. This show is focused on what has been going on for podcasting in the last few weeks.

* Direct Download here
* opens it doors --built on ruby on rails.
* Itunes - the good,bad and ugly
* CommandN- New Video up
* Why Dave Winer needs a Mac
* Great Blog Planet web 2.0 is here
* Why Podcasting is not dead. Article here
* Geek News centrals take on the marketwatch piece
* doc is podcasting, but it's dead?
* Technorati is it as dead as podcasting? Ask Scoble
* Google maps - Do you really need the link?
* Google map mania blog
* has a new UI - Check it out
* Metro free wifi hotspots
* Brewster Kahle and the internet archive
* our media- do I need to say more. Thanks guys
* Harry Potter is out. Go read.
* we break stuff development blog
* Bloglines and RSS - I like it
* Good post on by Daring Fireball podcasting
* Podcast remix - Podcast review podcast coming soon

Who likes cspan?

I started a blog called confessions of a cspan junky some time ago. I haven't posted much there since it is politically focused and I have been jaded by the process. I have from time to time watched cspan and some of the subcommittee meetings of congress. It is a fascinating process to see representatives and senators get information from sectors of our government. I just watched a hearing on boarder patrol and homeland security which brings to light many issues with a porous border. It is hard to make judgments on what we should do on such a big problem, but it seems to me any problem of that magnitude (any problem in general really) is not a binary process.

I don't have any thoughts on this today, but I am interested in seeing how this world can be managed better to make sure we are secure without infringing rights of humans. A hard task to take on.

In other news, I have a few items for a podcast which should be up tomorrow. Thanks to all who has subscribed to my feed.

Saturday, July 16, 2005

Harry Potter is Good for us?

Last night after a great Thai dinner I went to the Grove in Los Angeles to stroll and window shop for a nice summer evening in California. The Apple store is a major attraction there, so I stopped by to see my ibook that I want to purchase. Across the way is Barnes and Noble, and if you know me, I can never pass up a book store, so I walked across the way to visit all those words.

The Grove is a popular place and the B and N is usually busy, but last night it was a madhouse. I felt like I was at Disneyland or it was Halloween. Many young and old were dressed as witches, hogwards famous characters or my favorite in school girl uniforms. Oh yes, the Harry Potter book is released at midnight. Not a good time to bye a book and get out, but what I found amazing is the energy and excitement people have for this series of books. Books are not cool. When I was growing up Atari ruled over books, but now I am an avid reader and a book junky. It is refreshing to see kids (and adults) get into reading. It is important for us to keep the basic fundamentals of learning pure as technology implants itself into our society.

Reading is fun and I know for most kids it doesn't stack up to Xbox or PS2, but I hope there are more titles like Harry Potter to inspire a generation of literature fans.

Thursday, July 14, 2005

Book Junky or should I say info Junky

RSS has turned my need for information into a habit. I find myself reading less, watching TV less and podcasting less. So I decided I need some separation time away from my RSS reader. Yes Bloglines and I have come to the point where we need "alone time" from each other. I know all the feeds will be there while I'm away but I need to balance my time in doing research for writing projects, reading for pleasure and podcasting.

I enjoy doing many things and I have often labeled myself as "Jack of all trades, master of none," which now I am trying to get closer to ".....master of some," whatever "Master" means.

Today I bought a few books, which I don't really need, since I have many books started that I need to finish, but as a Book Junky, I let myself get caught in Barnes and noble and you can't just browse. So I bought "The Historian" which is getting a lot of buzz and a paperback "Michelangelo's Notebook" which looks like another Da Vinci Code knock off (I am a sucker for loosely based historical thrillers) but readable.

Audiobooks is another addiction I have acquired lately and those who don't think Mr Katz's (CEO of business model doesn't work, trust me, I didn't think it did but was I wrong. Now I am a big Audible fan and wish I had more time in the day to fill my brain with podcasts, news, information, literature and music......Too little time.......

I hope my experiment will work, and I will spend more time flipping the pages of a good book and being a little more analogue.

Tuesday, July 12, 2005

Why Bill Gates is not Brewster Kahle

Brewster Kahle is my new hero. I must admit I don't know much about him aside from the Internet Archive which is an amazing project he is running. But I just listen to his talk presented by IT Conversations on the Internet Archive and I must say, he is an amazing person who is revolutionary in his ideas of the internet and information. You can listen to his talk at the SDForum taped in December of last year here. I know this post sounds like a review, which belongs on my new podcast remix site, but I was inspired by a great man and wanted to share this great talk. I will of course have a full review when I get my podcast remix show up and running.

There are times when the world should listen to great men. Brewster is one of those men who is and will make the world a better place.

Sunday, July 10, 2005

Finally Listed on Itunes

I Finally made it to the Itunes music store podcast listing. It is officially listed under "A Day in the Life / Iclectic Podcast", but you can search for it just by using iclectic or steven or frein. You can also one click here.

Note: You must have Itunes 4.9 installed (Windows or Mac) in order to subscribe using this link.

This is how Apple should Program: Odeo rocks

Ok so I tried Odeo out today and I posted about my initial reaction. I had an issue with the sync software when I downloaded it and sent them a note on it via their built in form. I had a email a few hours later with solutions to my issues and the system they use rocks. I think companies like Microsoft and Apple can learn how to develop applications and work with the users and community to make a kick ass product. I know Odeo is using Ruby on Rails to develop their site and it looks amazing. I love the ROR look.

This is not a full review, but a quick "good on ya" boys and girls. You did good and know how to make the user experience the best it can be. Again check out odeo at

(((tag, your it))):

Saturday, July 09, 2005

Video Blogging - Is it the Future?

Update: This was a test to see how my RSS feed would deal with video in Itunes and Odeo. I saw that Make did a video piece (podcast or vcast or whatever the name will be) last week and it showed up in itunes nicely. I did the same with a test video I uploaded on my ourmedia server. Looks good and I like Itunes integration. One problem: Can't play on my ipod. So where do we go from here? I think a video ipod is what will fill the gap in the future. I know no one wants to watch video on a 3 in screen but there is a place for media to be portable. I would like to see apple embrace this. Like the ipod photo, it would be for everyone. The are half way there.

What else is out there????

Odeo is out

[dave winer] reports odeo is out in the public. My first reaction was to dismiss it since Itunes does everything I need, but as a podcaster I wanted to make sure my podcast was on their listing. Did a quick search, but like Itunes, I was relegated to the non-added podcasts even though I am on all the major listings now.

No problem I will just add myself. Odeo had a simple account creation page and I was up and running in minutes. I was able to add my podcast on the fly and it is available now. What a great experience in adding a podcast to the directory. Automatic, not autocratic and no review process to queue up for. I am happy evan and the team made the UI for podcasters easy. I will have a full review of the product in my podcast remix podcast in the future.

First looks are impressive, but I downloaded the sync manager for Mac osx and it doesn't work. Patient I am says yoda. Beta It is.

We will see what happens once they get all the bugs out, but the first impression is good. Check out odeo here

Thursday, July 07, 2005

What's wrong with Slash Dot?

How come it takes them 3 days to figure out the obvious?

Tuesday, July 05, 2005

We love Dave, but sometimes he is wrong

Dave Winer of Scripting News is the father of so many things we use in the blogging and podcasting world. Everyone knows that he is very opinionated and if you get on his wrong side, you will be posted in his blog for thousands to read. Recently Dave ranted on's DRM solution and how he did not like it. So what does he do? Cancels his subscription and uses a Hack alternative. He buys the CD's and rips them down to mp3 files which I assume takes him forever. He talks about it again here today.

I like Audible and use their service often. I use Mac and Itunes to get my content, so I have never had any issues with the DRM that Dave has had. So why is he wrong?

1. Audible needs to protect the content. Yes we should all be trusted to make sure we don't pirate the owners content, but there is a reason we need to control bad people and the good people that don't pirate data are inconvenienced but it makes society much easier to deal with.

2. Like all companies they fail at service often. Dave needs to realize that customers are important and he should know that. He should have contacted them in ernest and deal with the issues for which Audible could take care of.

3. Stop using windows Dave. The reason why you lost your audible content is that you machines were filled with spyware. If you used a Mac you would not have a problem.

4. You should be able to back up you data and you can back up you audible content. If for some reason you need it back, Audible can help you if you let them.

5. Dave picked this battle because he didn't like the CEO. That just seems lame. How about some objectivity.

DRM is not the best solution for content in a digital age. Companies have a responsibility to protect the copyright of the media and so they need to use technology in order to do this. I know DRM will evolve in time, but I think it is here to stay. As someone who purchases content legally I don't have an issue with it.

So Dave can be right a lot, but here he is just picking on Audible because he doesn't like the CEO.

Friday, July 01, 2005

Wiki Wiki Wiki - Fun Fun Fun

Thanks to the folks at we have a community wiki to hash out all the new features and issues that Itunes 4.9 has brought us. I still reserve final judgment until I use it more and get tips from others. I know there has been a lot of pushback from the podcast alley folks as well as podnova, but I think for a first go at it they did pretty well. Much can be improved, but I hope Apple is open to take comments from those of us who don't have the last name of curry. It would be sad if one podcaster represented us all, no offense Adam.

So far it seems to be successful with over 1 Million downloads ( or subs) within the last 2 days. Server bandwidth burning up........

Until we can see how it will all shake out, here is the link for the already useful wiki. Log in and add your stuff.