The unofficial SxSW music show

I'm currently in Austin, Texas attending SxSW interactive. I am not attending the music festival that follows next week, BUT... today I had a very cool cab driver who told me all about it. (He's playing in a band himself!)

There are like 250,000 people attending. And the festival is only on the evenings from 8pm to laaate. Plus, it's only for indie bands.

So what happens with a quarter million people all day long?

Well... the majors would throw parties in giant warehouses and would fly in some of their major artists... Basically the unofficial festival ends up bigger than the official SxSW music. Pretty wild eh?

But it gets better: now some bands think it's even cooler to play unofficial, because it makes it "indier" than the official.

Anyways, kudos to the Austin cab drivers. On average they are the coolest I've ridden with! :P

b2evolution on Gentoo Linux

I like switchers!

There's always a nice feeling to stumbling upon a post about switching from WordPress to b2evolution... ;)

Andreas says:

Finally, today I dumped my WordPress installation and switched to b2evolution. Playing around with b2evolution for the last few days, I am surprised how such a nice blog software could exist without me noticing it earlier.

Unlike WordPress, b2evolution has cleanly written structured code and lots of more features (and you don't get new security issues every week or so). Sure, there aren't as many plugins and themes available yet, but skins and plugins are well structured and easy to learn, so it was no problem at all to get all the features.

Migration was pretty easy...

full post here

Making Money Offline seminar

Making Money Offline seminar

I've been laughing my ass out reading the report about Papa Hari's "Make Money Offline" seminar! [update: the site hari.literaryforums.org is gone]

Just a couple of quotes to give you an idea:

"It was really cool, the way they taught us how to make money, like getting a job or starting a business," spoke a teenager wearing a T-Shirt with the words 'World of Warcraft Rocks!'

An authoritative expert on making money offline said "If you really want to get rich quick, you need to resort to unethical means like stealing, counterfeiting, defrauding the public, evading tax, robbing a bank, kidnapping for ransom or becoming a celebrity."

"Many youngsters in the audience were extremely interested in counterfeiting and forgery, since it was literally about 'making money' but were very disappointed when they learned that it was not legal."

"Who are the Government to tell us what is legal and what is illegal?!" fumed an angry young lady, "They're acting just like Google these days: interfering, always breathing down our necks and telling us how to live our lives..."

This is AWESOME stuff!

What's MISSING in the MacBook Air...

Once again, Steve Jobs gave one of his legendary keynote addresses and once again he announced a lot a nice to breathtaking products and enhancements.

But once again, he left out quite a few details...

And once again, I am going to point them out! Yes, just because I can! :p

Note: don't get me wrong, I love that stuff, I buy it all. I just wish the right stuff released in the right order..

Half baked iPhone enhancements

OK, nice software updates, but:

  • Still no copy & paste! Can you believe that? ... but we have wiggling icons now :-/
  • Still no video capture. The hardware is there... but apparently marketing has decided you cannot use it.
  • Still no podcast update "over the air"... but who cares, as long as the keynote is dubbed "Something in the air".
  • Still no games (not that I personally care... but still)

Basically, this looked more like a $20 software release for the iPod touch (which is good, even if you need to pay) than an iPhone event. My bet is they're holding back some more about the iPhone. As Steve says at the end of the keynote: this is what they announced in the first 2 weeks of 2007. There are still 50 weeks to go! (Hint: the iPhone SDK is to be released at the end of February...)

Movie rentals

That was long anticipated. It's nice to have it, but:

  • Movies start after 30 seconds and you can watch them almost live... right... if you have an exceptional broadband connection and you are downloading a standard def movie... no way is this going to happen for mere mortals ordering HD...
  • Now if an HD movie ends up taking 10 hours to download... and you only have 24 hours to watch it, after you initially realized you only had 3 seconds to watch after 30 seconds... there's gonna be a problem. Let alone if you watch one evening and you get interrupted, you may not be able to watch the end before the next evening... more than 24 hours later. Bummer.
  • Release dates are 1 month after DVD releases. So how long is this after you can get the DVD from NetFlix?
  • OK, so I get the DVD from NetFlix... how do I insert that DVD into my Apple TV? I don't right? I need a separate DVD player... how convenient... Oh wait, I could use a Mac Mini instead of an Apple TV. Cool? No, not cool: how do I get the Apple TV software to install on the Mac Mini? Front Row there has barely been updated in years... |-|

Btw, there's a lot more reasons to get a Mac Mini instead of an Apple TV: it gives you access to media that you can't get through Apple! Let's say Joost for starters...

Then Steve also said they asked users and they told him they didn't want music rentals... Why didn't he ask me? I still wish there was a monthly plan where you get unlimited music at 128 kbps (that you can only listen to as long as you're subscribed). That would still let Apple sell me the high quality 256 kbps versions of the songs I like the most.

MacBook Air

That one really kills the Sony TZ... but again:

  • No Ethernet port!! Hello?? Yes I get the 802.11n pink tinted glasses moment... but what if you're in an hotel room that only has wired internet? It's only 2/3rds of the hotels out there... :crazy:
  • Why does Steve sounds so bored (if not evasive) when mentioning the environmental issues addressed in the making of the MacBook Air? Are those few extra dollars in production cost really bugging him that much?

Anyway... despite all this... I'm pretty excited to get my hands on all this stuff. The Time Capsule + Time Machine is brilliant integration! :)

OK, back to playing with my upgraded iPod Touch... ;)