Desktop disaster

Desktop disaster
Originally uploaded by blackbeltjones.

For the last few days, my desktop has been a sad reminder of what’s been happening in South-East Asia.

I run OSX Planet, a small Mac app that shows the globe, with live satellite weather images, and seismic activity – showing stark data around Indonesia – a huddle of high Richter readings, with 9.0 in the middle.

Here is the google page of links for giving assistance.

Heaven is other people

to paraphrase Satre…or their digital detritus, their links and pictures are heaven anyway.

Caterina kindly quoted something I said two years ago now (although it feels longer, now I am far from London, and not making web apps) about “social software”: that it’s software that is better when there are other people ‘there’, inhabiting it.

This is certainly the case with, and although useful as a personal linkdump and lightweight way to spool things to the web; I am really missing the other people there in my inbox.

I’d hoped it would reappear over Christmas, but Santa didn’t get my wishlist. Ah well. Hopefully Joshua had a good break and can find the time soon to fix it.

Heaven is other people, and great social software temporarily without them is purgatory.

Mobile delight

A few quick mobile links to string together (aside: that would be a nice metaservice, “ trails” being able to link together delicious posts into a narrative or a trail in the memex-ian sense)

Like Janne, I’ve finally entered the 3g future with the arrival of my Nokia 6630. I did a smidge of work for Hutchison 3g back before they launched as 3; and back then it was all about getting web or tv ‘multimedia’ into a walled garden for paid download.

No walled gardens in Finland to speak of, so a mobile version of >ahem< Loosemore’s Law has kicked in – I want to do the same basic stuff (send MMS’s to flickr, the odd emergency finding of an address using google) but quicker – and boy is it good.

Perhaps the dawn of 3g that lets you go outside of clunky operator portals will hasten some content innovation – let a thousand mobile flowers bloom outside the walled garden.

Russell Beattie has just written about his Mobdex experiment where: “What I did was import 600+ Public Domain eBooks from Project Gutenberg and I’m dynamically reformatting the plain text to be readable on the web and modern mobiles with WAP2 minibrowsers”.

Perhaps Mobdex is something that the BBC should really consider picking up where Russell has left off, because as Martin Belam notes: “The future of the BBC is mobile, according to ‘the kids'”

One beautiful marriage of an old medium with the dynamics of the new I discovered on BoingBoing, a site where an artist is painting a piece in oils once a day and posting it. Wouldn’t it be wonderful to have that arrive every morning on your phone?

At DesignEngaged, Pete B-W gave an enlightening talk on the potential of Flash on mobile devices, and Remon Tijssen (of Fluid Interactive) showed some of the interactive ‘toys’ that he had developed.

While never a great fan of Flash for the general purpose web, for mobile, where both connectivity and attention can be scarce, it could be a very powerful platform, especially for introduction more delight, flow and seduction into the everyday mobile user experience.

Finally, a lazyphone wish… I could think of nothing better as a mobile delight than to have the Flickr zeitgeist on my 6630, cycling through my friends photos as a screensaver…

6630_leftvar zg_person_scope = 2;var zg_scope_nsid = ‘35034345541@N01’;6630_right

Please excuse the dodgy prototyping!

Press “play”

^ Doug Church on “play”

I’ve been working on the subject of “play”, in its sense of a human universal drive, for the last few months at Nokia.

As part of this, during October, with the assistance of Ludicorp, we were able to gather a diverse, interesting group of ‘players’ together for a discussion on the subject – during which Justin Hall interviewed a number of them, resulting in this short film.

More play this week – I’m heading to the Other Players conference in Copenhagen, where the programme features Richard Bartle and TerraNova’s Nathan Combs amongst others.

If you’re there, I’ll be the guy with the iBook covered in Pete Fowler stickers…