General - Distributed Environments

Disclosure and diffusion – synchronization and syndication

David Bigwood on his blog stats: Making your content available in more places makes metrics hard. Before Bloglines, Google Reader, Facebook Blog Network, Planet Catalog, and all the rest I could get a feel for the number of readers. Didn’t matter too much to me, this is done for my own benefit as well as … Continue reading Disclosure and diffusion – synchronization and syndication

Workflow is an intermediate consumer

I have been using the following contrast in presentations for a while. This is to make a distinction between library services – or any other service for that matter – in a pre-network age, and such services now. Then: people were prepared to build their workflows around library services. Now: the library must be prepared … Continue reading Workflow is an intermediate consumer

QOTD: mobile

I am writing a short piece on mobile communications at the moment and have been interested to see that the whole world is writing about the impact of mobile. The Economist has a very nice special section with articles on a range of topics (see the display panel on the right of this opening section … Continue reading QOTD: mobile

Google and OAI-PMH

There is an interesting note on the Google Webmaster Central Blog: When we originally launched Sitemaps, we included support for the Open Archives Initiative Protocol for Metadata Harvesting (OAI-PMH) 2.0 protocol, an interoperability framework based on metadata harvesting. In the meantime, however, we’ve found that the information we gain from our support of OAI-PMH is … Continue reading Google and OAI-PMH

Live Mesh – as if you needed another post about it

Microsoft has announced its Live Mesh initiative: you must have heard the rumble? Another network word to join grid, graph, and web. We will have to see how it rolls out, but it is a reminder of how much is at play as Google, Microsoft and a few others race to build out our network … Continue reading Live Mesh – as if you needed another post about it

The big switch

I have just finished Nicholas Carr’s The Big Switch. Here is a sample: The complexity and inefficiency of the client-server model have fed on themselves over the last quarter century. As companies continue to add more applications, they have to expand their data centers, install new machines, reprogram old ones, and hire ever larger numbers … Continue reading The big switch


I recently installed the Operator extension in my browser. Operator leverages microformats and other semantic data that are already available on many web pages to provide new ways to interact with web services. [Operator :: Firefox Add-ons] Interesting to see it in action on the JISC National eBooks Observatory page above. It recognizes address and … Continue reading Microformats


Raymond Yee is the originator of the useful triple “gather, create, share“, and is known for his work on the Scholar’s Box. He lectures at the UC Berkeley School of Information. I have just got a copy of his book: Yee, Raymond. Pro Web 2.0 Mashups: Remixing Data and Web Services. Berkeley, CA: Apress, 2008. … Continue reading Mashups

The two ways of Web 2.0

I find Web 2.0 increasingly confusing as a label; no surprise there. This is not just because of its essential vagueness, but because I think it tends to be used in a couple of very different ways. Where this happens there is bound to be some confusion. Schematically, I will use the labels ‘diffusion’ and … Continue reading The two ways of Web 2.0

Let me be open with you …

‘open’ is a word that usually needs to be qualified to be of any use in our conversations. Simply standing on its own it is not clear what it means. Unless qualified the word is like ‘home made’, ‘new’ or ‘natural’, a widely applied promotional label with little informational value. The storm in a teacup … Continue reading Let me be open with you …