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hackoff.com, a blook

hackoff.com, a blook

What is a blook?  Well, wikipedia has the following to  say, 

"A blook is a book serialized on a blog site. Chapters are published one by one as blog posts, and readers can then subscribe to a blook with an RSS feed, tag it, comment on it, etc. Blooks are believed to be pioneered by Tom Evslin in September 2005, with the launch of hackoff.com, a murder mystery set in the dot-com bubble."

Right, so a blook is a book published chapter (or episode) by chapter on a blog. 

Now that we've established what a blook actually is, let's talk about hackoff.com.  I started following this "blook" when it launched and made a decent splash in the blogosphere.  Initially, I was intrigued by the novelty of the idea of a blook, but the story has pulled me in.  Tom Evslin has done a great job of creating three dimensional characters that fit into an enticing story.  Don't get me wrong, this blook will never place Tom in the ranks of Dumas or Thoreau, but it's already better than the last two Tom Clancy books I read (The Teeth of the Tiger and Net Force).

So far the only negative I've found with the blook is that I can't continue on to the next chapter at my own pace.  As of today, I'm caught up through Chapter 2, Episode 2.  Hackoff.com tells me that the next piece will be published tomorrow, and you know what?  I can't wait.

My hat is off to Tom Evslin and his blook, you've earned the right to a badge on sweatyblog!

September 28, 2005 in Web/Tech | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Sweaty in Concert this Friday 9/30 Campbell


It's concert time again!  Drew and I will be playing another show this Friday in Campbell.  Here are the details:

What:  Drew and Scott in Concert
Where: Orchard Valley Coffee
       349 East Campbell Avenue
       Campbell, CA 95008
When:  Friday, September 30th - 7:15 pm
Cost:  FREE...  but we'd encourage you to buy a cup of coffee

*if you got the email about the show earlier, I'm sorry about the screw up.  I listed the "where" as Moonbeans Coffee.  That was the LAST show.  My bad."

Anyway, if you're interested, come on out!  Last time we played there was a great turn out.  In fact, there was standing room only, but this place is much larger so come yourself or bring some friends, get a cup of coffee and stay a while!

If you want a taste of what we sound like check out:


September 27, 2005 in Music | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

(more) LG VX-9800 goodness - VX9800

Engadget pointed to the official LG VX-9800 Verizon Wireless press release today. 

It's got the usual blah blah fluff, but we've got some confirmations of included features.  Here's what caught my eye:

  • With Wireless Sync, customers can get new e-mails, calendar, contact and task information sent to their VX9800s as long as the PC is left on.
    Why does my computer have to be left on?  What does this mean?  Can someone shed some light on this "feature"?
  • CMOS camera sensor instead of CCD
    Bummer, was hoping for the nice VX8000 CCD
  • Business Card Reader
    Novel, but neat
  • Bluetooth(R) technology for certain profiles
    • headset, hands-free, and/or dial-up networking profile(s); pair up to 20 Bluetooth-capable devices; send vCard via Bluetooth
      Verizon is obviously being careful here.  This tells a tale of a phone with no OBEX support.

The list goes on and on.  Word is that the phone is available to Business customers September 26th and to the rest of us peons on October 1st.  I can't wait to get my hands on one of these things...


Verizon has a "Coming Soon" page up on their site for the VX9800.  Check it out.

September 20, 2005 in Wireless | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

LG VX-9800 coming to Verizon!

It seems my wildest dreams are coming true...  Verizon is offering a dual screen flip phone with a full qwerty keyboard.  Helllllllooooooo  LG VX-9800 (thanks Phone Scoop)!   Before I post the pictures I stole from Phone Schoop, let's talk about some of the features.

Full QWERTY keyboard, voice command, text to speech, bluetooth (w/ DUN), EV-DO support, speakerphone, 1.3 megapixel camera (cmos), and (keeping fingers crossed) there's a rumor about wireless sync for use as a PIM!

For years I've wanted a phone that has general calendaring features that would sync wirelessly with  Outlook or Exchange.  I don't need a blackberry and I don't WANT a Treo.  So far Verizon has never had anything to fill this space.  If the rumors are true about this offering, I'll be one happy Verizon user.  Now, for the drool fest.  Thanks again for the pics and info Phone Scoop!




September 14, 2005 in Wireless | Permalink | Comments (4) | TrackBack

Sattelite image rss feeds?

Does anyone know if MSN Virtual Earth or Google Maps publicly announces updated imagery?  You know, besides integrating it into their applications...

I'd love to be able to create my own RSS feed from either/both of these services that would notify me when any of my selected/desired areas have updated imagery.  Perhaps you could create feeds based on city, state, region, county, zip code, area code, etc.


September 14, 2005 in Web/Tech | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

What if: google, blog blacklists?

Who remembers a bit ago when Google blacklisted CNET?  I sure do.  It made quite a stir in the blogosphere for a while.  And why did this happen?  Because CNET was talking naughty about Google CEO Eric Schmidt.  Of course the story smacked with irony since the guilty CNETters actually gathered their dirty Schmidt secrets from...  drumroll please: Google.  Now, no one wants to be talked about negatively, but I read the article and didn't really see what Eric took offense to.  And, come on Eric.  You're CEO of arguably the most widely known brand on the internet.  You'd think this guy would have thicker skin than this. 

Anyway, I could spout on about Eric being a public figure, and thus fair game yadda yadda yadda, but I won't.  I'd like to talk about a possible scenario involving Google blog search and blacklisting.

CNET is a reputable site with a lot of visibility and a pretty solid readership.  It's proven a techie favorite over the years and thus has decent credability.  How is that different from a high profile blogger who also has a solid readership, credability and influence?  Guys that I follow like Scoble, John Battelle, Joel Spolsky, Jason Calacanis, Fred Wilson, Michael Parekh, and Seth Godin all meet the previously stated criteria.  I'd bet that some of these guys have more industry influence than any CNET writer or editor.  With that being said, what's the possibility of Google blacklisting a blogger?  I know it would be political suicide for Google, but think about it.  Let's say sweatyblog.com starts digging up dirt and posting about Larry Page and Sergey Brin, google will know about it.  Heck I want them to know abou it.  I need more readers.  Seriously though, pretend I have thousands of dedicated readers who now start to create a negative buzz about the co-founders of google.  These guys won't be too happy with Sweatyblog now will they?  Of course I still say that people in executive management should have thick skin, but I still think they'd black list me.  And what could I do?  It's not as if they're trying to stifle my right to free speach, they'd just be indexing one less blog.  My web traffic would all but cease and here I'd be left alone, posting to myself in a google-less world.

Perhaps I'm being paranoid, who would want to silence their naysayers?  Exactly.  Everyone would.  Google is in a unique position that allows them to greatly muffle the negative cries of their peers, critics, and competitors.

Everyone knows that Google is the team to beat in web search (regardless of Yahoo says). Be honest, how many of you geeks use the word "google" as a verb?  Google has done an amazing job of filling the search space.  They brought simple and effective information queries to the web browsers and desktops of users across the globe.  The majority of people I know (including my mother) use google for searches first and foremost.  With that kind of influence and the ability to make someone totally disappear from their results, I predict the future will hold more blacklisting from google than we'd like to think.  It's a scary thought, but entirely possible.  You could be the next black listed CNET.

September 14, 2005 in Web/Tech | Permalink | Comments (3) | TrackBack

Google Blog Search... finally

The thing we've all been waiting for has happened!  Sweaty of Sweatyblog has a new post!  And what could bring me out of my month long shell of hiding?  None other than the notorious Google.  While perusing bloglines this morning I saw that Jason Calacanis posted on google blog search and so did John Battelle.

Check the format here:

Initially, it's done what I'd expect it to.  Search blogs.  It's going to take a while for me to form an opinion based on a need for pointed/relevant information.  For now though, I'm happy to have an alternative to Technorati.  As Fred Wilson pointed out, Technorati pretty much sucks.

September 14, 2005 in blogs | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack