Blog posts tagged "history"

+1 for knowing your history

March 30th, 2011

“+1” is a convention that arose on the Apache Software Foundation mailing lists. The ASF still has the best, most functional process for mailing list based collaboration which has ever been evolved of which -1/0/+1 is only the thin wedge. (the whole vocabulary of lazy consensus, commit-then-review, etc is incredibly important when trying to implement a diversity of tactics over email, as we ran into time and time again with Indymedia). Worth exploring their process in depth.

Anyway, Google launched a “+1” product today, and there was some discussion as to where the “+1” convention came from. The first place I ever encountered it was this email from Rob Hartill, on Wed, 15 Mar 1995, as part of one of the early patch voting rounds on Apache 0.7.x (the Apache foundation having formed the previous month to turn NCSA httpd into Apache).

I'll use a vote of 
  -1 have a problem with it
  0 haven't tested it yet (failed to understand it or whatever)
  +1 tried it, liked it, have no problem with it.

Rob might have adapted it from an earlier source, but I’ve never seen it.

I missing blogging.

October 25th, 2009
Like anyone who used to blog with frequency pre-2005, I’d like to post here more often — not just to fill up bits and bytes, but to write again. Remember when blogs were more casual and conversational? Before a post’s purpose was to grab search engine clicks or to promise “99 Answers to Your Problem That We’re Telling You You’re Having”. Yeah. I’d like to get back to that here.Dan Cederholm

This is the idea I’ve been trying to place with again, really starting just this week, rejecting the consensus about how to blog that’s emerged over the last couple years, and holds up Digg-ability and Techcrunch-i-tude as good indicators. Dan, of course, said it better.

It’s probably an indicator of slipping into my dotage, but a new stray link and I’m happily back wandering through those early archives, even my own, having stumbled across a rather odd review of the rather minor Ruled Britannia, circa 2003 earlier this evening.

When I say “FUD” …

October 22nd, 2009

"Flicker upcoming"? WTF? :)

… I mean Flickr/Upcoming/Delicious. In particular, I mean that brief moment of optimism in the Spring of ’06, on the roof of the Iron Cactus, at the Spread the FUD party, when it looked like Yahoo! had a wedge and the will to solve the social search problem, and magically, I might even get to be a part of that. I said in my cover letter (in silly flowery, cover letter speak)

“The next round of innovation will be about building connections. The explosion of voices, information and ideas is currently outpacing our techniques for coping with them. We need to be helping people and communities find new ways to connect, interact, and work together to make sense of this accelerating decentralization. Innovation has been blossoming at the edges of the Net since the beginning, but innovation is also moving back to the connecting nodes, like Yahoo.”

Which is much on my mind when I hear about Marissa demo’ing social search yesterday.

And I’m deeply puzzled (and not a little disappointed) that anyone would care if Bing or Google can search the public status timelines, if it doesn’t come with social context.

Now the question is can Goog shake their historied failure at all things social.

Photo from Jan Brašna

Flickr, Twitter, OAuth: A Secret History

July 1st, 2009

I remember it as a dark and stormy night, that seems unlikely, but I’m sure it was late and chilly and damp.

I remember being tired from a long day in the salt mines; that was during a period when I was always tired after work.

I remember there being whiskey, and knowing @maureen, that seems likely.

I’d just won some internal battles regarding delegated auth, and implemented Google AuthSub for the new Blogger Beta, as well as Amazon auth for a side project. So when I wanted to share photos from Flickr to Twitter, I knew it wasn’t going to be over HTTP Basic Auth.

A few weeks earlier @blaine and @factoryjoe had pulled me a into a project called OpenAuth that they’d been talking about for a couple of months — an alternative to yet another auth standard, and a solution for authenticating sites using OpenID.

So one late, damp night along Laguna St. with whiskey, we did a pattern extraction, identifying the minimal possible set of features to offer compatibility against existing best practice API authorization protocols. And wrote down the half pager that became the very first draft of the OAuth spec.

That spec wasn’t the final draft. That came later, after an open community standardization process allowing experts from the security, web, and usability community to weigh in and iterate on the design. But many of those decisions (and some of the mistakes) from that night made it into the final version.

Yesterday, a little over two years later, we finally shipped Flickr2Twitter.

So it was nice yesterday when people commented on the integration:

“Uses OAuth!” “Doesn’t ask for your Twitter password” “Great use of OAuth”.

And I thought to myself, “It better be, this is what OAuth was invented for — literally”.

Nostalgia

September 30th, 2008

You remember those dark days after the first bust?

You know the ones when all the MBAs left, and the people who loved the Web went on building it — building meaningful, crazy, artistic cool stuff, and the ethos of the social web was born, back before when that meant more then widget crazy/Facebook-tulip-bloom-madness. Yeah, that sure sucked.

Just thinking about it in the light of this week’s market silliness is enough to make me want to go back to SxSW again this year (where the torch was kept alight, like Ireland in the Dark Ages). And I’d sworn off it after this last year, but maybe budgets will be contracting again by then. And those projects that got started out in the darkness, say Flickr, and Upcoming and del.icio.us among others, wasn’t it all much better when the market got back involved and they got serious?

At least thats what reading Fred and Jason on “startup depression” reminded me of.

  • August 8, 2008

    Crowd sourcing a history of Silicon Alley.

    Wondering if I should add my early ’99 recollections of Alley parties, getting backed into a corner by painfully geeky HotJobs nerds (HotJobs used to have real live nerds working for them!) who wanted to convince me that BSD was the one true TCP/IP stack, and escaping to the roof only to find Spring Streeters doing lines of coke over Bryant Park. Something tells me that isn’t what Fred is looking for.

    + 0. (Aside , , )

10 Years

June 1st, 2008

And what a long, strange 10 years it’s been.

#hashbot

February 6th, 2008

Learned a new word tonight from MattB, SimonB, and Yoz.

A hashbot is a robot that hangs out on an IRC channel (hence the #) and provides a conversational interface to a resource.

hashbots are the ancestors of Social Software for Robots, and the idea of Twitter/YubNub as Web CLI.

Mark Kurlansky, The Big Oyster

January 7th, 2008

“If a fish market in the right Manhattan neighborhood today could get hold of “wild native oysters” and market then as such, because this is how New York operates, it would probably be able to charge outstanding prices and have New York Times readers, after the article on wild oysters came out, gladly paying the price. […] And for all that, they would taste like cultivated ones.” – Mark Kurlansky, The Big Oyster

5 years

April 14th, 2007

Andy reminded me that I just missed my 5 year anniversary of publishing this blog. In many ways those first few posts are still my favorites.

Book Pairings

March 21st, 2007

Some books are just better read together (or serially if you don’t do the book rotation thing.) Ecology of Fear and Decoding Gender in Science Fiction is a favorite of mine, two totally different projects that happen to feature the same authors.

Picked up another Mike Davis at the Anarchist Bookfair this weekend, the Late Victorian Holocaust (for $3!!!), and while its still early, I’m finding it to be an interesting foil to Omnivore’s Dilemma, focusing as they do on the beginning and the nadir of the global industrial food system.

Wondering if its something in particular about Mike Davis?

Do you have favorite pairings?

Ottoman Turkish Empire Settlement Payments?

February 12th, 2007

TurboTax, as part of filing a California state tax return, just asked me if I was qualified for Ottoman Turkish Empire Settlement Payments? Umm, what are the odds that anyone who was re-settled from the Ottoman empire is still paying taxes in California? Is there a story here?