Thursday, December 22, 2005

top 10 web predictions for 2006

Everyone else seems to be writing one of these, so here goes...

1. Web 2.0 will be usurped by Web 3.0. There will be a bloody revolution and we'll revert to the barbarity of Web 1.0 before peace is finally restored and Web 2.5 is installed as a compromise.

2. It will be a record year for Wikipedia, with thousands of bios edited to include involvement in the RFK assassination.

3. The amount of information stored within tag clouds will finally reach critical mass and they will subsequently be phased out in favor of tag maelstroms.

4. Tagging will reach an all-time high, with tags being incorporated in every conceivable way into every possible website... and my mother still won't understand how the hell to use them.

5. AJAX will be replaced with another acronym, sexing up another web development technique that's been around since the early days of Mozilla.

6. Google share prices will continue to rise and I will continue to bug my dad for not listening to me back when they were only trading at <$100. Even long before the IPO, pundits were skeptical, confident that "for Google to stay permanently ahead of other search-engine technologies is almost impossible, since it takes so little—only a bright idea by another set of geeks—to lose the lead..." (unless those geeks get hired by Google first)

7. On June 10, 2006, the last available .com will be bought and squatted.

8. The military-trained and -armed dolphins supposedly set free by hurricane Katrina, but later reported as a myth, kill five off the coast of Maryland. The New York Times sits on this story for a year before releasing it. (OK, this one wasn't about the web, but I couldn't help it)

9. Steve and I will finally hit level 60 in World of Warcraft. By this time, professional Chinese item- and gold-farmers will outnumber normal players 2 to 1. Worked 12 hours a day, 7 days a week, they will still be treated better than Wal-Mart's employees.

10. Zombie dogs will rise from the dead (again) and will be there to cover it all (again), with pictures. It will make the reddit front page and accumulate a record number of points until finally being retired at #1 on the top all-time page.

Don't believe any of this? Trust me, I've got a source... (from the future)

Sunday, December 18, 2005

new addition yields higher productivity

I mentioned earlier that we had some bizarre habits, now we've purchased a novel device that accommodates these habits quite nicely.

This is a big improvement over the precarious stack of books and magazines teetering on a tissue box we had looming over the open toilet bowl.

(yes, that's my powerbook)

Saturday, December 17, 2005

holding the line

“Thank you for holding the line.”

This isn’t a Spartan phalanx, it’s a friggin' customer service line – and you're on hold.

It's a fairly typical scenario: you've been grossly overcharged and want the appropriate rebate. I take the responsibility of doing these sort of mundane-but-necessary tasks so that Steve can spend his time doing more productive things. Meanwhile, a machine is reassuring me that “Personal customer service is our number one priority.”

I know I’m not the first to rant about this sort of thing (and I certainly won’t be the last), but isn’t it a bad sign when a company has to tell its customers that “your call is important to us” when their call clearly isn’t important enough to warrant a human interaction. The most vexing thing about this particular customer service line is that every 4 minutes or so, the recording is interrupted with a *click* one typically associates with a sentient being picking up the phone – it is only a trick. It’s really just another robot (this one is female and with a bit more sass) reminding you that you’re on hold.

Hey, they’ve got high-speed Windows-based hosting…

After fifteen minutes on hold I was promptly disconnected.

To make a long story short, I did finally get through to a human, Richard, but I’m pretty sure he looked nothing like the customer service agent that I was promised.

Monday, December 12, 2005

what day of the week is it?

It’s a more difficult question than you might think.

Having spent the last week back in the “real world,” coming back to the startup lifestyle took some adjusting. Back in this aforementioned world, the week is divided into seven equal units commonly referred to as “days.” They’ve been given names and our society has conferred unique distinctions on each of them – from “hump day” (a major misnomer) to “Friday” (marking the end of the traditional workweek, many regard this day as worthy of much thanks).

Back in this world, the week is broken up into “Must-see TV Thursdays” and “Monday Night Football Mondays.” In the startup bubble, these distinctions quickly fade and days of the week become strikingly less relevant. There are of course exceptions, particularly when this “real world” collides with that of a startup; you find yourself scratching your head at this silly notion of a bank being closed on a Sunday, as if there were a day you could simply unplug your

If it weren’t for these interactions with the outside world, days would (and usually do) simply blur into one another. Your dad shouldn’t be surprised (or concerned) when he wakes you up with a phone call at 1pm on a Tuesday and you can’t recall what day of the week it is:

“What day is it? I dunno, it’s a workday.”

“Yeah, I know Alexis, I’ve been at work for the last six hours.”

“Today’s not Sunday?”

“No, it’s Tuesday.”


“You’re running a business and you don’t know what day of the week it is?”

“It’s a workday, that’s all I need to know.”