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The New Reporter


Google video: reporter gets stoned. For real?
Took me some time to land there, but I’ve become a regular visitor now: De Nieuwe Reporter.
A group weblog they call it themselves, but as I even haven’t got a clue how to label my own digital playground – blog, photo blog, weblog, website, web2.0, (mini)portal? – I call website what’s got http before URL.
Like VillaMedia and De Journalist, and hundreds, thousands of websites in The United States and all over the web, dedicated to journalism, they offer non-journalist to have a peek backstage, behind front-page or screen.
Translation in Dutch at @ DutchCowboys

Zune: no future?


Google Video: Walktrough of Zune interface (13 minutes by Engadget)
Do you ever care what I am writing here about Mac or PC, iPod or Zune?
While I harbour yes for an answer, there’s a writing super trio that does make a difference. One Microsoft doesn’t care about at all, not at least because it’s not for sale. Walt Mossberg writes about computers in The Wall Street Journal, David Pogue – mostly in Circuits – in the New York Times, and John C. Dvorak for everybody anywhere, except for Microsoft.
Translation in Dutch at @ DutchCowboys

Ask.Com and the Search Challenge

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I’m afraid this post isn’t of much use for those visitors speaking and reading only English. Together with the Dutch Cowboys Ask.com (I mean Ask.nl 🙂 will be launching the Search Challenge later today.
The Challenge is an interactive search in which Dutch Ask.Com visitors are challenged to solve a number of online enigmas. Grand first prize is a weekend for two in the Place To Be, London, while the winners will also get his own ‘Smart Answer’ on Ask.Com.
With your own ‘Smart Answer’ a search for your name show your own page as first result, holding all information about you and/or your blog.
Other prizes, like MP3 players, and lots of goodies, will raffled between participants.
Search Challenge kick-off was yesterday in the in Living Tomorrow in Amsterdam.
The Ask.com Search Challenge will take one month, starting today on Dutch Cowboys.
Photo Album: Kick Off Search Challenge at Living Tomorrow

Will Young People Read Newspapers?

Jill Abrahamson, managing editor of the New York Times, answering a reader who is worried about the future of the newspaper industry: what is the Times doing th capture young readers?
Question is from Ashley Bishop, Worcester, Massachusetts:
As a senior in college and an aspiring journalist, I am worried about the future of the industry. My peers rarely read the newspaper, or even watch network news. What is The Times doing to capture the younger demographics, and hopefully the future readership of the newspaper?
| Jill Abrahamsons answer on the NYT website |
If asked for a login, sign up for a free NYT account.

The Dutch Diebolds

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The longer, the more I work with computers, the less I trust them. Next Wednesday is election day over here in The Netherlands, so it’s all about voting – and voting computers – in the newspapers over here every day.
Some people, who know a lot about it, come and tell that there’s nothing wrong with our voting computers, and that they’re much more reliable than the red pencils. Even though in a number of cities in Holland the red pencil is the preferred way of voting next week, because of problems with the machines.

Bitten by the Video Bug


Almost an old geezer, finally bitten by the video bug. Two reasons that it took so long: no bandwidth, no affection. Until recently useless to do something with video and Internet, like sucking Haagen Dasz trough a straw. I must admit the lack of affection was due to the fact that I left The Utrecht School for Journalism as a writer. In a paper past, when one could graduate without having done ‘Radio and Television’, as it was called way back in the late seventies.
I visit my old school every once in a while, earned a certificate English writing for the Media there three years ago – but it’s all called multi media, or (mass) communication now. It might even be impossible to leave that school as only a writer now.
My late calling is the result of bandwidth galore these days, a Canon Ixus 800is that is delivering pristine video, and my iMac that screams to me from almost every application that she wants to handle the task I’m performing different, something with multi media. Like any good server, I see my iMac as a ship, so she is a she. I haven’t bought the Ixus, as well as the iMac because of video, but click something and something starts to move.

The Real Origin of Spam


‘Spam’ is a very popular Monty Python sketch, first on television in 1970, 36 years ago. In the sketch, two customers are trying to order a breakfast from a menu that includes the processed meat product in almost every item. In the sketch, a restaurant serves all its food with lots of spam, and the waitress repeats the word several times in describing how much spam is in the items. When she does this, the Vikings (don’t ask what they are doing there) in the corner start a song:
“Spam, spam, spam, spam, spam, spam, spam, spam, lovely spam! Wonderful spam!
As we all know by now, the term spam (in electronic communication) is derived from this sketch. So the big question is: how did the term spam get connected with spam as we know it?
Personally I like this one, out of many answers on the net: the analysis form Brad Templeton: Origin of the term ‘spam’ to mean net abuse.

Running new browsers?

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Already unpacked your premature Xmas present, a new browser? Tell me more, because those who know me, know that I – sadder and wiser through trial and error in the past – will wait for some time, and then wait for some more time to come. In the meantime I read and listen, shudder and enjoy, while a keep riding my old Internetbicycles.
When profanity, grumbling and ululating are beginning to dim, I might give things a try, and will install Firefox 2.0 on my Mac. Coincidence or not, in the same week that Firefox proudly presented number 2.0, Microsoft officially opened number 7.0.
I don’t know if it’s a wise thing to install the New Internet Explorer on the four Dell Optiplexes on the Internet Desk at the newspaper. Most important consideration: the content management system applications – WebStudio and Escenic Content Studio, both written in Java, at the moment sometimes do what they are intended to do. ‘Let sleep what is sleeping’ is the slogan at home, when cats and/or dogs are for a change not tearing down the household. Sssssttt!