Tag Archives: Technology

Had a ball at BarCamp Galway

I went to BarCamp Galway over the weekend.

I arrived a bit late because I drove up from Cork on Saturday morning and then spent around 30 minutes wandering around NUIG looking for the DERI institute before I realised it is off-campus!

I eventually made it at 11 – just in time for coffee and muffins. Just as well, I was starving and needed to satisfy my muffin cravings.

I didn’t make it along to many talks because, although I originally only signed up to give one talk, a mis-communication had me down for two talks and a panel discussion! My first talk was about reducing ITs carbon footprint. I uploaded the slide deck to SlideShare. The second talk was more of a conversation around video blogging so no slides.

I did get to hear Ina‘s great talk on Social Networks and Alastair‘s also excellent talk on Internet Marketing.

I also met loads of interesting people there including Martha Rotter, Microsoft’s replacement for Rob Burke. I’m sure Martha is sick of hearing how great Rob was but, in fairness to Microsoft, it looks like they picked another winner with Martha (and if she allowed people to leave comments on her blog without having to register, I’d tell her that!).

The talks, the wifi, the food all worked perfectly – well done John, Aidan and Conor. Guys, you set the bar high.

The New York Times discovers how free pays!

I was listening to George Hook, Karlin Lillington and Simon McGarr on The Right Hook yesterday discussing newspapers’ online business models.

They referred to the New York Times and how it charged for online access to the work of its columnists and to the newspaper’s archives (what it perceived as premium content).

Overnight the New York Times abandoned this model in favour of free access to all its content.

Mark Evans has looked at the numbers and shows how free could make financial sense:

TimesSelect was an pretty interesting experiment that attracted about 227,000 subscribers and $10-million in annual revenue. But the growth clearly wasn’t there to justify the status quo…

Let’s assume, about 20% of the NYT’s content was behind the walled garden. Now that it’s free, the NYT could added another 2.6 million unique visitors. Let’s assume, the average online NYT reader consumes a healthy 20 pages/month. This would give us 52 million more page views a month.

If you can generate $20/CPM per Web page from these additional page views, that’s $1-million of revenue per month or about $12-million a year

Anyone want to put a bet on how long before the Irish Times changes its model to entirely free? This lifetime? The next lifetime? Not in a million years?

Irish Times subscription page

First iPhone photo editor app?

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Pixenate on the iPhone, originally uploaded by pxn8.

Having recently successfully deployed their Pixenate FaceBook app (a photo editor for Facebook), it looks like Sxoop Technologies are now out to be the first company to deploy a photo editor for the iPhone!

How cool is that? There is a beautiful fit between the iPhone, which people will be using to take pictures, and photo editing software.

Go Walter – woo hoo!

Backup software for Vista?

I want to install a copy of Ubuntu on my laptop.

However, when Vista was installed on it, a single partition was made of the hard drive so if I try to install Ubuntu now, it will overwrite the Vista partition (I assume, anyone knowing better, feel free to jump in!).

I presume that what I need to do is backup my Vista install, partition the drive into one partition for Vista and one for Ubuntu, restore the Vista into its partition and install Ubuntu into its partition.

Can anyone recommend software to allow me to backup my Vista install (including all my installed apps and settings), so that I can restore it again later.

In case it is relevant, I don’t have a floppy drive for the laptop.

Update – since posting this I came across Wubi – an Ubuntu installer which installs Ubuntu into a Windows partition. This could be an easier solution. I’ll try that and see how I get on.

New battery technology imminent?

I was reading a report on Ars Technica today about an emerging battery technology which could totally change how we use batteries today.

The breakthrough comes from using capacitors as batteries. Up until now this has not been feasible because there hasn’t been a strong enough insulator to make this approach compelling. However, EEstor, the company who have made the breakthrough have applied for a patent for a highly insulated capacitor.

In their patent application, it suggests that:

the charge storage is much higher than anything achieved in an academic lab: 52 kilowatt-hours in a 2,000 cubic inch capacitor array. A rough conversion calculation suggests that this is over 10 times the power density of standard lead-acid batteries.

The Ars Technica article goes on to note that:

the Associated Press is reporting that the ZENN Motor Company, which makes compact electric cars, plans to start using the capacitors before the year is out. The company has invested in EEStar in return for production goals being met and so is in a position to know how realistic its claims are

If this has any basis in fact, it could have incredible consequences for the reduction of carbon emissions from transport and from the environment in general with the reduction in the use of the particularly nasty chemicals which currently go to make up batteries.