April 22, 2005
I've been going through personal influences so far so Robert Scoble is next on the list. His blog "Scobleizer" was not one of my influences. In fact I hardly read any of his blogs, but I couldn't help but see his newsgroup postings encouraging and cajoling people into blogging. He is tireless. Amazingly tireless. At first I thought it was sort of self promotional when he got a job at Radio Userland and was always making proclamations like "I wish I could convince every MVP to start a weblog". It was kind of hard to ignore him.
But after a while I found out he was actually genuine about this stuff and his comments like "That's OK. But, I gotta tell you, the mainstream press has the weblogging thing all wrong. It's all a fad. Like most things that the press reports, they blow it out of porportion (and they miss the real story). What is the real story? Web sites are finally easy and low-cost enough that everyone can do one, not just the folks who like writing stupid HTML tags." started working on me. Finally a few years later I understand. He was right.
But what is he doing now? Well, he is talking this and evangelizing that. But it is OK. It isn't all just shilling for Microsoft. Last time I met him he walked up to a table where I was talking to some other people and asked us what we were doing and then launched into giving us the details of that Channel 9 thing he is doing. And we all thought "huh?" but were hardly offended. He just can't help himself. He can't keep from talking about things he thinks are great. 5 stars for being inspirational.
April 21, 2005
The Joy of Ito
The Blog: Joi Ito's Web
I'm starting here because Joi's blog is the pinnacle of blogs about blogging. I read it and I just start growling about how self-congratulatory and self-referential it is. It almost appears to me that his blog IS his existence rather than the other way around.
I'm not sure of the characters which make up Joi's last name, but one meaning of Ito in Japanese is thread. Even if it doesn't match the actual character of his family name it seems quite appropriate for his activities on the web. It also appears that sometimes he has a backbone made of thread as shown in this post where he discusses being two sided and compromising in his remarks.
I am mixed in rating it. I'd give it 1 star for the recursive nature of the content, but 5 stars for artistic achievement as Joi has managed to write a life for himself. Technically, there is no doubt that he will try any sort of blogging innovation and creates buzz about them so that also rates a 5. I'll settle on an overall score of 4.
On a related note, his sister Mizuko writes some interesting (and less self-absorbed pieces here.