Glastonbury Festival 2010

Glastonbury Festival 2010 was amazing!

Not even a rubbish performance from our football team could dampen the heated spirits of 180,000 revellers in a field. And my god was it hot!

With Glastonbury, but not other festivals, the best bits are not the bands, but the sights and sounds you see on your travels. And travel you do with it taking about 45 minutes to cross the site. The Healing Fields and Green Fields have the true spirit of Glastonbury and are a must see visit. The Park is a recently added area which give great views over the whole site and this year apparently saw Radiohead playing! Arcadia, Shangri-La and assorted other ‘weird’ areas must be seen to be believed.

Relive the experience with videos and photos. Listen to the bands on Spotify.

Posted in Personal | Comments Off on Glastonbury Festival 2010

Spotify Comes Into Its Own

Spotify has really come into its own recently and that’s because of its accessibility from elsewhere.

The ability to run Spotify as a background task on the iPhone has finally made it usable on the device. Until then, it restricted doing any other task until music had finished playing. Now with background operation and integration with the iPod controls it finally offers a great experience. Also, with a 16gb phone I can download a ton of tracks for offline listening.

ShareMyPlaylists is a great service that provides user generated content of playlists for Spotify. It provides a massive ecosystem for discovering and listening to music. Their iPhone app also works with the Spotify app.

Spotify has still not broken through into the mainstream yet. It still seems to be a tech audience which gets it. Perhaps the success of the iPhone 4 willl lead to success for Spotify too.

Posted in Web | Comments Off on Spotify Comes Into Its Own

10 Things in Nottingham at Easter

At a loose end in Nottingham this weekend? Don’t be.

Pay @mawawa $1 for a great list of thing to do in NottinghamThis post is experimental paid content. Please pay $1 via Twitpay if useful.

Posted in Personal | Tagged , | Comments Off on 10 Things in Nottingham at Easter

Using Twitpay for Paid Content

TwitpayAt Mediacamp Nottingham 2, Glenn Le Santo was discussing the last ten and next ten years of media. Part of that discussion was inevitably about monetisation and how its difficult to do. When it is attempted there is a backlash and criticism as the Times has recently experienced with its paywall debate. But without monetisation it is difficult for independent content producers to generate income in the age of free.

So, how do we fix this? I would suggest that we start doing it more until it becomes commonplace, second nature, part of the culture. Part of how we use the web. All we need is a mechanism

Twitpay is a such a mechanism. All you need is an Twitter account and a PayPal account. There is then a simple format for making payment on Twitter:

@mawawa twitpay $2 for proposing feasible micropayment structure for indie content producers

And that’s it! At the top of your blog post, ask for payment. At the start of your podcast, ask for payment. At the start of your video, ask for payment. If you don’t ask you won’t receive. If you do ask you will receive.

On this blog, if I publish content that I think is worth charging a fee for I will ask for that fee.

This is all inspired by Mediacamp Nottingham and the problem of monetising content. Does this help? See you in the comments.
Posted in Technology, Twitter, Web | 2 Comments

Mediacamp March Madness

Attended Mediacamp Nottingham 2 and here is the long list of stuff that I took away from the event.

List of the active Twitterer’s although pretty much everyone at the event had a Twitter account. This would not have been the case at last year event. Also read the timeline for #mcn2.

Interesting discussion on last 10 years and next 10 years in media by Glenn Le Santo. News is the least unique of all media. The Times is about to put its content behind a paywall. Reinventing social active. All content is now about interaction. There was a large focus on monetization which I tend to make me switch off. There is rarely talk of how to increase quality of content, targetting content, syndication, editing or a hundred other topics around why content is king. It always comes back to monetization, which I agree is important for content producers but we’re always talking around the subject and not doing anything about it. When was the last time you visited a blog/site/platform that was experimenting with paid content?

Time lapse photography of Nick Walker’s journey to Nottingham. (via @walkerama)

Talk about building community by the Creative Nottingham team was really interesting. Lack of funding for creative industries in the area has meant that people just get on with it. Its a great site that is expanding rapidly and importantly has lots of support from its community. Interesting comment that “Website is least important part of what we do”  as they also use Posterous, Facebook, RSS and Twitter. You need to use their resources more!

@iainsimons gave a very passionate talk about Gamecity. I’ve never made it to any of their events and his talk made me realise what I’ve missed out on. This year I will attend! He also introduced their idea of a Festival API. Great idea. Slightly off the wall but it makes so much sense. I think its that API is such a common term now that it makes sense in uses outside of technology. Can an API refer to a paper process, why not? The examples given where to inform the jacket potato vendor of the process he needs to follow to run his stand. I assume this would include application, payment, compliance with regulations, timetable for the event etc. This same API could then be used be used by any other festival who is also planning to sell jacket potatoes. A bizarre but excellent way to reduce bureaucracy. Is the videogames industry really going to change the way we handle paperwork?

Missed @philcampbell‘s talk about Posterous and didn’t even get chance to see the new streaming studio.

Lovely sandwiches and cake from @hungrypumpkin in the Lace Market

Very intersting talk about social media and the Olympics by Jennifer Jones. The Olympics is finally opening up to social media. Has authorised press and unathourised press centers. The Olympics is the biggest media event in the world bar none. Impact on host cities is massive. London in year 5 of 14 years of Olympic pain. How are the communities affected.

Purposely controversial session “The web site is dead” chaired by Glenn proved that it is and it isn’t. Static web pages are dead by their very nature. Social interaction on pages makes them very much alive. Someone commented that everything in their house is what other people have liked in reviews. Nothing is bought without recommendation. Is this is last gasp of consumerism. Need to communicate with others has returned? We don’t need brands. Better to have all that invested in communications. The logo does not help customer service.

Alexia gave a great intro on personal branding. What are your strengths? Decide what you don’t want and then start going in the opposite direction. People do business with people – do this apply to a website? Attract the things that align to you. Lots to think about.

The event rounded off with a great session from Ben Walker. A very intimate session with a true internet superstar. Listen in then buy online.

Posts from people who wrote stuff quicker than I did:

Posted in Technology, Twitter, Web | 5 Comments

Think Visibility 2010

Quick list of links from Think Visibility in March 2010:

Al Carlton of Coolest Gadgets legend gave a great presentation on Outsourcing and Automation. He mentioned auto switching affiliate links to be relevant to the country being viewed in. This Amazon Affiliate Link Localizer plugin for WordPress looks to do the job nicely for multiple regions. Although its not working on this link: The 4-hour Work Week: Escape the 9-5, Live Anywhere and Join the New Rich.

Live blogging on the day was done by David Towers.

This link building poster was mentioned by Paddy Moogan.

Now to put some of this into practice.

Posted in Technology, Web | 1 Comment

Kiva Progress

Loan repayments are coming in regularly as part of the 0% credit for Kiva in Peru idea. There are still 20 loans outstanding which are all on track to pay back within the next 6 months.

If you’ve not tried Kiva yet, its a great way to donate money to those who need it.

Posted in Causes, Web | Comments Off on Kiva Progress

Twestival 2010

Nottingham Twestival

Nottingham Twestival

Twestival 2010 is on the horizon and once again I will be heading up the organisation of the Nottingham event. The last two events have been great with over £500 raised for worthwhile causes. At this event we’ll be concentrating on requesting corporate sponsorship.

I’ll be looking for a team of keen volunteers to help choose a venue, select entertainment for the night and spread the word!
Follow @nottstwestival on Twitter and join the Facebook group.

Posted in Causes, Twitter, Web | Comments Off on Twestival 2010

Performance Testing Services

Over the past couple of months the following services have been trialled:

  • Google Page Speed – analysis of web page performance and guidance on improvements – runs from within Firebug
  • Yahoo YSlow – analysis of web page performance and guidance on improvements – runs from within Firebug
  • Quixapp – bookmarklet allow easy access to Pingdom
  • WebPageTest – analysis of web page performance which provides alternative download locations and video playback
  • SpriteMe – tool to merge all graphics from a page into a single file to improve page performance
  • Performance Advent Calendar – links to articles on improving web site performance
Posted in Software Testing, Technology, Web | Comments Off on Performance Testing Services

That Was 2009

2009 turned out to be pretty remarkable year that charted a path unexpected 12 months ago.

Being involved with Twestival by arranging the Nottingham Twestival in February was the trigger for much of the rest of the year. The event was a modest success and introduced me to people who would become friends over the coming months. Meeting a great crowd of creative and techies at Nottingham Twestival led me to setting up a regular event, Web 2.0 Surgery. The event was  a great excuse for a meetup and this also coincided with a other events starting up and gaining popularity in Nottingham in 2009.

Our 3 week trip to Peru was an amazing experience which took us to Machu Picchu and everywhere in between. This was also a key reason for using Kiva to issue loans in Peru.

September brought Twestival Local which raised money for The National Autistic Society and there is another event planned for March 2010.

There was a great turn out for the last Web 2.0 Surgery of 2009 and with co-operation with the eBusinessChampions initiative it looks to be even better in 2010.

Happy 2010 to all!

Posted in Personal | Comments Off on That Was 2009