26 posts categorized "Administrivia"

Blogging has been a bit light here recently... but that should be changing...

Longtime readers may have noticed that my pace of blogging has decreased of late. Don't worry.. I'm not fading out. I've just been sucked into the vortex of the WordPress MU implementation I'm doing for my new employer, Voxeo. The good news is that there is light at the end of the tunnel... and it's not an oncoming train! Seriously, the implementation has gone very well and soon I'll be able to provide some links to what I've been doing.

I'll also finally be able to get back to doing a bit more writing... my queue right now of posts to right is incredibly huge!

Light blogging ahead as I get ready for what's next...

Life takes very interesting turns. Yesterday afternoon I faxed off my acceptance of an offer from ... (Read the rest over on my Disruptive Telephony blog. :-)

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What should I get for my next laptop? What's the best "social media laptop"? integrated webcam? Apple Macbook with Parallels? or Windows PC?

UPDATE - I gave in and bought a MacBook Pro (with 4 GB of RAM!).  More on that later...

With my impending change in employment, I need to get a new laptop and, given that I'm thinking strongly of going the consulting route, I'm going to pick it up myself right now (versus waiting for an employer).  Obviously I want a laptop that works very well for participating in the world of social media.  An integrated webcam seems to be an absolute must.   People involved with video tell me that Apple Macbooks have the best quality video cameras and, being relatively agnostic toward operating systems, I'm open to Macbooks.  I'd love to get a laptop with a built-in camera that can rotate so that you can face it away from the user and toward the other people in a room, for instance.  But it seems that the current crop of laptops no longer have that - they all seem to have fixed cameras. 

Another "must-have" is the ability to work with a second monitor, but that's usually simple with a laptop.

So I've got a couple of questions for those of you working out there with blogs, podcasts, flickr, etc.:

  • Do you have any specific thoughts on the best laptop for "social media" participation?
  • Any recommendations about specific laptops with integrated cameras?  Know of any that aren't fixed?  (I've looked at the major vendors and they all seem to now be fixed.)
  • Mac versus PC?  Mac users who still have to use Windows apps, have you been happy with Parallels? (Or vmWare Fusion?)

Any suggestions would be appreciated.  Thanks.

My employment status will be changing September 21... (and so I'll be available for employment)

The challenge of now having multiple weblogs... a friend pointed out that when I posted yesterday about my impending change of employment status over on my Disruptive Telephony blog, he missed it because that's one of my blogs he doesn't subscribe to.

So yes, it's true, the great time I've had at my current employer ends on September 21 after I finish a number of transition issues. I'll be in Los Angeles next week at Internet Telephony Conference & Expo doing one final speaking gig (and admittedly networking about what's next) and then I'll be up in Ottawa probably on the 18th and 19th... and then my time is done.

I'm obviously interested in opportunities that might be out there in the social media space... or other interesting areas of disruption.  (My other post talks a bit more about that.)  Please do drop a note if you know of such options.  Thanks!

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Returning to NOT using comment moderation...

I've decided to reverse my earlier decision and turn OFF comment moderation on this blog.  Today I suddenly realized that I shouldn't have been ignoring those TypePad emails and I in fact had 4 unpublished comments in the queue.  Oops.    Sorry about that, folks.  I am going to try returning to using CAPTCHAs... it's working fine on my other blogs so I'm not sure why it wasn't working here.  Anyway, comments are now NOT moderated - please do email me if you experience any problems leaving comments.  And yes, eventually I will get rid of the problem where the preview and CAPTCHA appear in a small middle column - I just need to find the time to move to the native 3-column layout of TypePad and then do my further customizations on top of that.... some day...

Light blogging ahead... offline until Monday, June 25th

Don't expect to see much from me here for the next bit.  In a few minutes I'm shutting down my systems and heading offline on vacation for the next week.  I'll be back online Monday, MayJune 25th, although I'll be travelling to a Mitel conference in Las Vegas for most of that week.

We're not planning to go anywhere extravagent... maybe some day trips around Vermont... some camping... work around the house... all in all just a pleasant way to spend some time before the heat of summer hits.

See you in a week!

Why did I wind up in Burlington, VT? Martyn Davies interviews me for his "Bending The Needle" podcasts

image Ever wonder why I wound up in Burlington, VT, after living in Ottawa, Ontario, for most of 5 years?  Well, maybe you haven't... but that and other items about me are now available in an interview that Martyn Davies has posted as part of his new "Bending the Needle" podcast series.  When Martyn was over here and visited me back in the winter, he recorded this brief interview sitting in my home studio.  He just recorded it on his handy little Zoom H4 portable recorder which worked quite well.  He also took this picture to the right, which remains among my favorite as far as pictures of me go.

Martyn had told me that he was teaming up with Dean Elwood from VoIPuser.org to do a podcast series and this "Bending the Needle" seems to be their work.  The subtitle is "Interviews with the Leading Edge Personalities in the VoIP Space" and so it's an honor to be among the first interviewees he has up there.  I'll subscribe and will be interested to see their other interviews.

Subscribing to this blog via the browser RSS button now works... and an important TypePad/Feedburner lesson for me...

image I have to thank Wayne Smallman for clueing me in to a minor little detail that I'd overlooked back in January when I had first launched this blog.  Wayne, who I have met through a public chat room about Twitter and Skype, IM'd me (on Skype) to let me know that he wasn't able to subscribe to the feed for this blog.

Given that this blog has been in action now for most of 6 months and I hadn't heard this issue at all, I was very surprised.  Feedburner stats do show a good number of subscribers to the RSS feed... but I'm guessing that they (some of you!) must have all grabbed the feed URL from the big orange RSS button or used the "Add to Google" or "Add to Bloglines", because the RSS icon in the browser address bar would definitely not work.

Here's the deal... back when I was looking to split out my writing into multiple blogs last fall, I had another name for this blog and had set up a similarly-named feed in Feedburner.  Wanting to ensure that people got to my Feedburner feed, I went into the TypePad settings and "connected" my TypePad blog to the appropriate Feedburner feed.  Everything was good.  I was getting ready to launch.

But before I launched, I found that "disruptiveconversations.com" was available and since it went nicely with my already existing "disruptivetelephony.com" domain, I decided to rename the blog.  In fact, I changed the underlying TypePad URL... changed all the template names, mapped the domain... and I created a new Feedburner feed with the new name.  All looked good and the various subscribe buttons you see on the right side all worked.    I launched the blog and you all have now been reading it for the past 6 months.

There turned out to be just one minor little detail:

I never went back and updated the TypePad <-> Feedburner connection!

Oops!  Yes, indeed, in the TypePad configuration screens this blog was very happily connected to the old feed at Feedburner.  The problem is - I deleted that feed quite some time ago!

The fix was quite simple: I simply disconnected this blog from the old Feedburner feed and then connected it back to the new Feedburner feed.  Done in just a couple of minutes and I verified that it all works.

I'm just a wee bit embarrassed that I never noticed it and obviously didn't test it.  I'm also a bit surprised that no one ever commented in all this time... are people not using that RSS icon in the browser address bar to subscribe to feeds?

So in any event, thanks to Wayne's query the button should now work fine!  If you tried subscribing in the past and it didn't work, please do try it out now.  And Wayne, if I ever do get over to the UK, I will have to look you up and buy you a drink! :-)

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Switching back to moderating comments - anyone else having problems with TypePad requiring multiple CAPTCHAs and previews?

FYI, effective right now I'm turning OFF the CAPTCHA requirement for posting comments and very unfortunately switching back to requiring comment moderation.  I just tried posting a comment to one of my own posts and found that TypePad kept requiring me to re-enter a CAPTCHA - endlessly.  I did it about 8 times before I just said "enough is enough" and went into the TypePad control panel and switched back to moderation.  I first heard of this issue when a comment was left on an earlier post last week and I've commented successfully since then... but this was the first time I'd seen the issue myself.  I'll file a help request with TypePad to report the issue, but in the meantime thought I would raise the issue here.  (And now comments will get through, but of course won't be published until I approve them tomorrow.)

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Light blogging ahead for the remainder of the week...

It's a school vacation week here in my part of the USA and I'm planning to be offline for the remainder of the week.  Getting outside with my family... going on some day trips, doing some landscaping and otherwise enjoying the beautiful weather we are having right now.  I expect to be back posting here on Monday, April 30th.  See you then.