Now blogging at diego's weblog. See you over there!

google to separate blogs from the web -- not

Evan posted a comment to my previous entry google to separate blogs from the web, squashing the article from The Guardian with a simple-but-effective: "It's B.S.". He also has a great entry on his weblog titled "Register to fix Orlowski noise problem". LOL. He notes the claim in the article (that also sounded strange to me) that the number of readers of weblogs is "statistically insignificant". I could only make sense of that if they consider the whole population of the Internet as the basis for the measure, so, several million against half a billion or something... anyway, Evan's statements are quite definitive (e.g., "as far as I know, Orlowski is full of crap"), here and on his blog, so I don't think there's much room for doubt. Hopefully the rumour-squashing will move as fast as the rumour itself!

Also in the comments to my entry Don was pointing out that one could use Bayesian filters and some simple rules to figure out "suspected blogs" (Ashcroft would like that phrase I think), which is a good point. However, a filter like that is never going to be 100%, and even if the error is less than 1%, when you're indexing 3 billion pages, that's too much. Google wouldn't be able to cope with the requests from people that have been incorrectly marked, while those that haven't been marked (and should have been) would be riding it out, something that would probably make others in the blogging community a little "unhappy". In the end it would just start an "arms race" of sorts, with bloggers looking for ways to fool the rules... totally unproductive, and neither side would really win. Bloggers would stop using Google. Google would get pissed off customers. Not a good deal for either.

Regardless: given Evan's comments, I think we can put the question to rest. At least until the next rumour :-)

Later (about 6 hours later :-)): Evan's entry in which he squashed the google-not-for-weblogs-rumour, has disappeared! In its place it says "</snip>". The conspiracy theory wheels begin to turn.... but wait, not so fast. If you look at the page source, you get the deal. The entry is still there, just commented, with the following note: "you know, in order to spread more 'Google censors Evhead' suspicions". Heh.

Categories: technology
Posted by diego on May 9, 2003 at 9:45 PM

BROADBAND!!

You know, I had a feeling it would happen like this. Today I was thinking: "I'll probably get the DSL up when I don't really need it that much anymore." By which I meant, when I get the clevercactus weblog sync working, when one of the main reasons to be online for a while disappears, there I would get DSL. (I might write later about my experience with the DSL sales dept if I have time).

So I get the config working, Blogger, Radio, MT, the whole deal, and what do you know, I get a call while I was on a break preparing dinner. From the phone exchange (yeah, the technician actually called me from there, THAT's how much I had been talking to Eircom. I had ordered DSL on April 11). Your DSL is connected, he says. I look at the modem, and see that LED that had been dead for so many days, and it is blinking a healthy green.

I couldn't believe it.

I hung up (after some pleasantries like "you don't know if you're using standard LLC on the line, do you? No, he said. Okay, I said) and sat down to make it work. Screw dinner. The modem settings were all wrong since at the beginning I thought that the problem was there. I needed new settings. I called tech support (0.74 Euro/min, 6 min call). After the usual routine in which you are treated as little more than a monkey pounding on the keyboard (being asked questions like "Is the light on? Is the ethernet cable connected?" and I'm like, "yeah, yeah, I'm telnetting into the modem right now, looking at the status!") I got him to tell me the config they require for their setup (but he gave it to me only after the stern warning "You know, after you change the configuration yourself we can't support you"--I wonder if you never touch the configuration HOW do they give support). Anyway. He gave it to me. Fired it up.

Run!

And so, now I'm connected at 512 Kbps downstream, 128 Kbps upstream. 52 Kbps downloads!!

It feels strange. I last had DSL almost two years ago when I was living in California. What am I suppossed to do with all this bandwidth now? Luckily, Eircom has already planned for that: transfer is limited to 4GB per month, so it's not really, really, full-access, always-on broadband. But it's definitely a step up from the super-expensive 56 Kbps cage I was on before.

Anyway, this will really help for all the stuff I have to do for next week's release of clevercactus.

And I'll just have to learn all over again to stop myself from selecting "disconnect" everytime I finish doing something online... :-)

Categories: technology
Posted by diego on May 9, 2003 at 8:59 PM

google to separate blogs from the web

The Guardian: Google to fix blog noise problem. How could they determine what's a blog and what's not? Looking for an RSS feed is not enough--lots of sites have RSS feeds these days. Looking at how often it's updated is not enough either. They could (if they wanted, probably followed up by massive protests from the blogging community) put everything from www.blogger.com, radio.weblogs.com and livejournal.com, into a different index, but that'd be leaving out a large part of weblogs out there. Hm.

Categories: technology
Posted by diego on May 9, 2003 at 2:42 PM

more metaweblog methods proposed

[via Dave]: Rogers Cadenhead proposes several changes to the MetaWeblog API. But...

I have read the document at least five times now, and I still don't understand. For example, Rogers includes methods that already exist in his proposal such as metaWeblog.newMediaObject or metaWeblog.getCategories. Why propose something that already exists? The metaWeblog.deregisterUser sounds strange: bloggers, especially new bloggers, who would be the main target of any tool that uses the API, will typically have one weblog. So what would be the use-scenario for this function? If there's no use scenario, then why include it? The same happens with the "deleteMultipleFiles" method. How would you delete files if there's no way of listing them? Maybe you'd assume that you can only delete what you have created from the client, but what if you are using the same tool from two different machines? And what's the use-case for this? Strange.

As far as changes to the metaWeblogAPI, I've been thinking about anything that I'd like to see, and a method like MovableType's mt.setPostCategories would be nice. The spec for the method, can be found in MT's Programmatic Interface documentation. If MetaWeblog included the method name as-is, it would be great, similar to what MovableType does in implementing MetaWeblog. Otherwise it could just be called metaWeblog.setPostCategories and maintain the rest of the interface, so that only the method name differs between call to systems.

Categories: technology
Posted by diego on May 9, 2003 at 10:37 AM

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