Tuesday, April 28, 2009

140: The Twitter Conference - #tshirt Contest Winner!

I love simplicity.

This might be why I fell in love with Twitter. The requirement to get to the point in less than 140 characters mandates brevity. With this abbreviated burst of communication, my ADD-esque distraction tendencies, and my naturally snarky sense of dialogue, Twitter is perhaps the most perfect medium for me (@BMW).

It comes, then, as no surprise (to me anyway) that my short, to-the-point entry into the 140 | The Twitter Conference T-shirt contest for free conference admission (and, of course bragging rights), announced in early April. The contest rules simple:
come up with a better phrase for the back of the T-shirt, win a free seat at the conference

Apparently, my entry:


Was exactly the sort of cleverness judges (event speakers as I understand) were looking for.

For me, it was just another day fit into 140 character updates.

My contest submission, in entirety:

Learn more about the event, May 26th & 27th, 2009 at the Computer History Museum in Mountain View, CA.

From the "140" site:
"We’re bringing together the top gurus in the Twitosphere to discuss all things Twitter, from understanding the business value of Twitter to exploring the what makes a great Twitter app."

Simple as that! Now, who's going? Guess I am now!

Monday, April 27, 2009

Ignite Seattle April 29 Schedule Released

Brady, pioneer of the now worldwide Ignite format of talks, sent out the schedule for the next Ignite Seattle. The event takes place Wednesday, 4/29 at downtown's King Cat Theatre. The event is free.

7PM - Doors Open

7:30 PM - Paper Tower Contest Begins - Build the tallest tower you can out
of just 5 sheets of paper and tape (See Details)

8:30 - First Set of Talks
Hillel Cooperman (@hillel) - The Secret Underground World of Lego
Dawn Rutherford (@dawnoftheread) - Public Library Hacking
Roy Leban (@royleban) - Worst Case User Experience: Alzheimer’s
Shelly Farnham (@ShellyShelly) Community Genius: Leveraging Community to
Increase your Creative Powers
Dominic Muren (@dmuren) - Humblefacturing a Sustainable Electronic Future
Ken Beegle (@kbeegle) - Decoding Sticks and Waves
Maya Bisineer (@thinkmaya) - Geek Girl - A life Story
Scott Berkun (Scottberkun.com)- How and Why to Give an Ignite Talk
Scotto Moore (Scotto.org)- Intangible Method

9:45 PM - Second Set of Talks
Secret Guest Speaker from Ignite Portland
Mike Tykka - The Invention of the Wheel
Jen Zug (@jenzug) - The Sanity Hacks of a Stay At Home Mom
Jason Preston (@Jasonp107) - Goobye Tolstoy: How to say anything in 140
characters or less
Chris DiBona (@cdibona) - The Coolness of Telemedicine
Ron Burk - The Psychology of Incompetence
Katherine Hernandez (@ipodtouchgirl) - The Mac Spy
Jamie Gower JamieGower.com) - I Am %0.0002 Cyborg
Beth Goza (@bethgo) - Knitting in Code

RSVP: http://www.facebook.com/event.php?eid=68373213866

Wearable HD: VholdR Launches ContourHD, Avail. Soon

My Seattle-based friends at VholdR have launched their second wearable camcorder, the ContourHD just in time for Summer outdoor sports!

The ContourHD high-definition upgrade to the action-sports wearable camera I featured on KOMO-TV's Northwest Afternoon after CES 2008. The new version sports 720p 30fps or standard-definition 'high action' 60fps (TV, as you know, is 30fps) video, up to 16GB memory MicroSD memory cards for longer recording, and maintains the simple slide-to-start/slide-to-stop ease that made the original popular with the action sports community.

Add to the high definition camera an online community for sharing videos, VholdR has a recipe for success in this troubled economy.

“ContourHD is the perfect camcorder for the weekend warrior in your life who is skiing, boarding, mountain biking, or even riding a motorcycle,” Marc Barros, VholdR’s CEO explaisn. “ContourHD and our Easy Edit software are making HD action video easy to shoot and share online in seconds.”

The ContourHD will be available from REI, Amazon.com, on VholdR.com and action sports retailers nationwide. Suggested price: $299. For a list of locations accepting pre-orders, visit VholdR.com.

I spoke with CEO Marc Barros earlier this morning. He tells me he's excited to get away from his desk now that the new camera has launched. Congratulations Marc and the entire VholdR team on an exciting launch!

CountourHD Features (from VholdR Press Release):

2 Video Settings
High Definition: Fill your screen with vivid, widescreen (16:9) action video. With a full 1280x720 (pixels) window and 30 frames per second, your videos will be just how you remember them, big and awesome!

High Action: Ideal for making the fastest adventure sports appear as smooth as butter. Recording standard definition video at 60 frames per second (twice as many frames as TV quality video) you won’t miss any of the action.

Record over 8 Hours of HD Video
ContourHD can record up to 8 hours of HD quality video or 16 hours of SD quality video to an internal microSD memory card (compatible up to a 16GB memory card). Powered by a removable, rechargeable lithium-ion battery, this robust camera recharges through a USB cable connected directly to your computer.

Wide Angle Lens:
At 135 degrees, the new ContourHD lens strikes the perfect balance in capturing the entire scene without over-distorting the video.

Wearable Anywhere
Patent-pending TRailTM Mounts “slide and lock” ContourHD onto a series of different mounts for your goggle, helmet, handlebar, vehicle, or anywhere else you want to mount it. Wear HD video on more than just your head.

One Button Simplicity
ContourHD’s operation couldn’t be simpler with a single oversized record switch (to be operated even with a pair of gloves on) and click to share software.

Laser Alignment
Two lasers and a 192o rotating lens ensure you line up the shot every time. Turn on the lasers and rotate the front lens until the two laser points are horizontally aligned.

Armored Body
A water-resistant camera for all seasons its light (4 ounces/116 grams) anodized aluminum body withstands dust, dirt, mud, and snow.

Easy Edit Mac and PC Software
Easy Edit™ software (Mac and PC compatible) makes it automatic to import your videos from the camera, clip out the best parts, and share them to VholdR.com.

Friday, April 24, 2009

InnoTech 2009: Live on Newsradio 750 KXL

The 6th Annual InnoTech conference was by many accounts, the best yet. A complete report is coming soon, but for now check out clips of my live radio reports, as heard on Newsradio 750 KXL, from Thursday morning.

Listen to Report 1 (6:40am): Innotech eMarketing Summit Day 1 recap, economic impact of IT spending, green computing, should you blog? (feat. Marshall Kirkpatrick, Rick Turoczy and Josh Bancroft), preview of IT Executive of the Year Awards honoring Trail Blazers CIO Chris Dill.

Listen to Report 2 (8:40am): Should you upgrade to Microsoft Windows 7, preview of Rahaf Harfoush keynote on social media during Obama campaign, Apple iPhone sales results

Check back for more coverage from InnoTech Portland 2009.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Earth Day: Green(er) Gadgets on The Square Live @ 7 w/Stephanie Stricklen (KGW-TV)

KGW.com The Square Logo

Mentioned during the segment:

Watch the video on KGW.com.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

I'm Hosting An Award Show!

Joining the ranks of Ellen DeGeneres, Billy Crystal and Jon Stewart, I'm hosting an awards show! The 6th Annual IT Executives of the Year Awards will take place during InnoTechPDX on April 23rd in Portland.

My objectives for this awards show are are follows:
  1. Entertain: Make one person laugh.
  2. Present the awards.
  3. Keep it moving (nobody likes 4.5 hour shows).
  4. To Not Suck. Much?
The presentation and reception is open to all InnoTech participants. Unfortunately, I can't tell you where, specifically, inside the Oregon Convention Center it's at since I don't even know yet... (I suppose if youfind me, you'll find the awards?)

Who knows, maybe you'll even WIN! :-P

Tech Events for April 22-24, 2009 -- Join Me!

There's a lot going on this week in Portland-- join me if any of the following events strike your fancy, or propose a new one? (Follow me on Twitter for last-minute updates!)

14:00 -- InnoTechPDX (Portland Ballroom 256): To blog or not to blog: Making blogging with Silicon Florist's Rick Turoczy, Marshall Kirkpatrick of ReadWriteWeb and Josh Bancroft (Legion of Tech, others).

15:30 -- InnoTechPDX (Portland Ballroom 256): Just the Tips Please - Implementing a Successful Online Strategy

19:00 -- KGW's The Square: Live at 7 with Stephanie Stricklen -- Newschannel 8 NBC/Portland or watch (w/open mic breaks!) online, 7-7:30pm. (Come down to KGW's Pioneer Courthouse Square studio to watch the show live, check out the gadgets, or just say hi!)

19:00 -- OMSI After Dark: OMSI After Dark! (thanks @addictedtotext for the reminder!)

06:40 -- Live on Newsradio 750 KXL: Weekly look at the week's hot tech topics, this week: Live from InnoTech PDX! (Tune in to Portland's Morning News on 750 AM / Portland or listen live online at KXL.com.)

08:00 -- InnoTechPDX (E145-146): Delivering Business Impact: A Strategic View of the Optimized Desktop and Windows 7

08:40 -- Live on Newsradio 750 KXL: Weekly look at the week's hot tech topics, this week: Live from InnoTech PDX! (Tune in to Portland's Morning News on 750 AM / Portland or listen live online at KXL.com.)

09:00 -- InnoTechPDX (Portland Ballroom 256): How Best-in-Class Companies Make Word of Mouth Marketing Work Successfully

09:00 -- InnoTechPDX (Portland Ballroom 256): How Best-in-Class Companies Make Word of Mouth Marketing Work Successfully

09:30 -- InnoTechPDX(E147): The State of the Mobile Industry with Jason Grigsby

10:00 -- InnoTechPDX(Portland Ballroom 256): Companies and Communities: Participating Without Being Sleazy

10:30 -- InnoTechPDX (E147): Mobile Platform Panel with Raven Zachary (iPhone), Jon Maroney (Handmark), Don Park (Android), Jason Harris (Nokia/Symbian), Jason Mauer (Microsoft)

11:30 -- InnoTechPDX(Portland Ballroom 255): Yes We Did: Strategic Insights and Social Media from the Campaign that Changed History with Rahaf Harfoush, New Media Strategist, Member of Obama's Social Media Team, & Associate Director of the Global Cooperation Initiative at the World Economic Forum

11:30 -- Lunch (tentative) (Widmer Gasthaus, ): Innotech Lunch Meetup/Tweetup at Widmer Gasthaus (details at Upcoming)

13:00 -- InnoTechPDX(Portland Ballroom 256): What is your Social Media Conversion Rate?

13:00 -- InnoTechPDX (E147): Mobility Lighting Talks

14:00 -- InnoTechPDX (Portland Ballroom 256): Social Media Marketing

14:30 -- InnoTechPDX (Inside Exhibit Hall E): InnoTech Happy 45 Minutes

15:30 -- InnoTechPDX (E147): The iPhone Market

15:30 -- InnoTechPDX (Portland Ballroom 256): Hot Seat Panel: Hot Seat Panel-Real World Advice From the Experts

16:30 -- InnoTechPDX (TBD):
6th Annual IT Executives of the Year Awards & Reception

18:00-20:00 -- ($15, Candy Bistro Burger Bar, 904 NW Couch Ave): 2009
SoMe Awards

FRIDAY APRIL 23, 2009:

16:00-18:00 -- (Green Dragon): Beer & Blog Portland

22:00-23:30 -- (StrangeLoveLive.com): Strange Love Live

Mophie Juice Pack Air at Apple Stores NOW!

If you've seen me out-and-about, you've probably noticed the green backpack hugging my iPhone 3G. The Mophie Juice Pack is an add-on battery that gives additional life to iPhone 3G users (an iPod Touch model is also available).

The folks at Mophie put the must-have iPhone 3G battery pack on a diet and the slimmer version: Mophie Juice Pack Air is available starting today at Apple Stores and online.

Here's a quick table I hacked together to show how the two Mophie Juice Packs compare:
Battery: Standby time (up to, hrs)350270
Battery: Talk time (3G)64.5
Battery: Internet use (3G)64.5
Battery: Audio playback2820
Battery: Video playback86
Battery: capacity1800mAh1200mAh
Weight (ounces)3?

More in the press release from Mophie here:
Mophie Announces Worldwide Availability of Juice Pack Air Accessory at Apple Stores and Apple.com

World’s Thinnest ‘Works with iPhone’ External Battery/Protective Case almost doubles iPhone 3G battery life and offers the full protection of a hard-shell case in a low-profile design

Los Angeles, CA – April 21, 2009 – mStation | mophie today announced the immediate availability of Juice Pack Air, currently the world’s thinnest Apple-certified external battery for iPhone 3G. The rechargeable 1200 mAH battery, integrated into an ultra-thin case, is now available worldwide at Apple retail stores and Apple.com for $79.95 in black, white, and purple.

“Since debuting the Juice Pack Air last month, we’ve had an overwhelmingly positive response from around the world” says Ross Howe, sales and product development director for mStation | mophie. “The Juice Pack Air is an intuitive, ergonomic solution that provides added protection and external battery support in a low profile design. We think it’s poised to be one of the most essential iPhone 3G accessories ever introduced to the market.”

Juice Pack Air features an innovative “standby mode” that allows users to control when they want to take advantage of additional battery support versus simply using it as a protective case. The integrated 4 LED charge status indicates how much power is remaining in the external battery. Unique pass-through design allows users to simultaneously charge their Juice Pack Air and sync their iPhone 3G with iTunes via the included USB cable.

Additional battery time provided by Juice Pack Air:

* Standby Time: Up to 270 hours
* Talk Time: Up to 4.5 hours (3G) Up to 9 hours (2G)
* Internet Use: Up to 4.5 hours (3G) Up to 5.4 Hours (Wi-Fi)
* Audio Playback: Up to 20 hour
* Video Playback: Up to 6 hours

For more information on the Juice Pack Air, please visit http://www.mophie.com/products/juice-pack-air

About mStation | mophie
mStation is consistently praised for its ability to create quality products with cool Industrial Design. mStation recently acquired mophie, an iPod accessory company with a wide array of award-winning cases. Their products can be found in Apple Stores and major retailers worldwide.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

DirecTV & Comcast Fined for Calling "Do Not Call" Customers

Comcast and DirecTV are in trouble with the FCC for calling customers after they'd been added to the "Do Not Call List". Umm, I'm no genius, but isn't that the exact POINT of the Do Not Call List?

Apparently the FCC agrees.

PC World has more from the "DOH!" files:
"The illegal calls consisted entirely of prerecorded messages in which consumers were told that "from time to time [DIRECTV] extend[s] exciting offers to our loyal customers like you, but because you are on the DIRECTV Do Not Call List, we are not able to contact you for these exciting offers." The message then told call recipients to "press one" to remove their numbers from the company's Do Not Call list."

What do you think of the "Do Not Call List"... effective? A waste of effort? Are you on the Federal Do Not Call registry?

Monday, April 13, 2009

Logitech Wi Life Foils Florida Robbery

I've been a fan of Logitech consumer electronics since their 1980's-vintage computer mice. Most recently I've purchased and used a variety of Harmony remote controls to simplify and automate our home entertainment center.

Seems I need to add "home security" to the list of Logitech products I rely upon.

The Wi Life system by Logitech was, quite publicly, credited with leading to the arrest of four crooks riffling through two homes in Florida. Jeanne Thomas was watching her home webcam at her workplace in Fort Lauderdale, Florida and called 911 with a play-by-play. She tells CNN:
I'm watching my home on live monitor, and there is a black man in my house, and he is robbing it," she told the dispatcher. The woman on the other end of the call asked Thomas where she was, and Thomas replied, "I'm in Fort Lauderdale, at my work.
I haven't used the system myself, but this sounds like quite the endorsement if you ask me!

The best PR? Happy customers.

(Homeowner Jeanne Thomas was interviewed on The Today Show this morning and mentioned the product by name.)

Thursday, April 9, 2009

E-Book Readers on The Square Live @ 7 w/Stephanie Stricklen (KGW-TV)

KGW.com The Square Logo

Watch the video on KGW.com.

Here are the E-book readers we discussed on Live at 7 on Thursday 10 April 2008:

And for those on Twitter who asked, the iPhone 3G case is a Speck Products "CandyShell" (use "BMW25" for a 25% discount!).

Finally, huge props to TheOneTrueBix for his, as usual, stunning photos. Here's a good one, click on the image for more!

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Twitter fuels G-20 protests & Conficker Update

Tech Expert Topic Notes for 2 April 2009

Social networks are bringing friends, former classmates and even protesters together. Protests at the G-20 Summit in London is being fueled by Twitter... With a look at how these new site are changing how groups are mobilized, K-X-L Tech Expert Brian Westbrook...

Listen to this report, originally broadcast on KXL-AM Thursday 2 April 2009: kxl_techexpert-g20protests&conficker_20090402.mp3 (MP3)

Follow @BMW on Twitter and check his blog at KXL.com.