Archive for April, 2008

Live OpenCoffee hookup between Dublin, Limerick and Waterford

April 29, 2008

Irish coffeeImage by thekatespanos via FlickrMaryrose and Joe report on the plans being made to do a live video hookup between Dublin, Limerick and Waterford OpenCoffee Clubs this Thursday 1st May from 11am. Joe describes OpenCoffee thus –

"There has been a ground swell movement going on. All voluntary with a
great mix of academics, bloggers, entrepreneurs, developers, gadget
freaks and just about anyone interested in technology and networking."

I’ll be tuning in from the Limerick side.

Bytes ‘n pieces

April 24, 2008
Baker Beach

Image via Wikipedia

Conor Wade has moved over to San Francisco to be the eyes and ears of Co. Clare based startup Tourist Republic. I’m very jealous of Conor – what a wonderful opportunity Jan Blanchard has given him, one he’ll make the very best of I know. I’m really looking forward to keeping up with his adventure on his new blog – Bosco is my Hero – and hope he’ll also bring us up to speed at the odd Limerick OpenCoffee during his trips home.

Liam Noonan is thinking of generating some of his own electricity with a wind turbine at his home in Upperchurch, Co. Tipperary. Luckily for those of us thinking of doing likewise he’s documenting the process. Step 1 was to put a wireless weather station in place.

– There’s now a mobile version of Just Routes.

– And if you lose your mobile here’s one way you might be able to get it back.

OpenCoffeeClub BBQ has been set for July 16th – everybody’s welcome! And OpenCoffeeClub Waterford is going to be held at the same time as OpenCoffeeClub Limerick next Thursday 1st of May to facilitate a simulcast between the two venues.

The Lisbon Treaty will be rejected…

April 23, 2008
Updated version of map

Image via Wikipedia

… if the straw poll I took is anything to go by. And I’m not claiming it is, but still – 37 votes, 68% No, 19% Yes, 14% Undecided. And I don’t think too many farmers voted yet 😉

Even more interesting though has been some of the debate the poll generated-

Michael Flanagan: "The fact this has been passed without vote throughout the rest of
Europe has me leaning heavily towards a NO vote out of respect to the democracy of other nations."

Evert Bopp: "The EU government has turned into a "regulate for the sake of
regulating" circus and has to be disbanded at the earliest opportunity. We are expected to vote for a ‘treaty’ that even the politico’s that put it together can’t explain properly."

James Gallagher: "I can’t see this treaty as anything other than a threat on our right to
self-determination. Our constitution gets eroded enough (mainly on
neutrality) without handing over any more power to diminsh it."

Chris Byrne: "I will vote Yes because I don’t trust Irish politicians. I believe that this will make them more accountable on a world stage."

Joe O’Brien: "IBEC are calling for a Yes vote partly because it will strengthen our
hand against the French. That a couple of millionaires feel it will
harm their interests doesn’t cut much ice with me."

On a related Jaiku discussion Will Knott made an interesting point regarding my poll and suggested a more specific and revealing set of questions. So if you’ve already taken the previous poll (please do) it would be great if you could now take this one –

<a href ="; >How will you vote in the Lisbon Treaty (part 2)</a>  <br/> <span style="font-size:9px;"> (<a href ="">&nbsp; polls</a>)</span>

You can learn more about the Treaty of Lisbon on Wikipedia.

The Lisbon Treaty will be rejected…

April 23, 2008

… if my straw poll is anything to go by (and I’m not claming it is). But still, I find it very interesting that after

Havok co-founder coming to 3Dcamp (along with other very interesting people)

April 22, 2008
From left to right: Agents Brown, Smith, and Jones

Image via Wikipedia

Still a month to go and we’re already at the 30-ish registrations mark for 3Dcamp. If you’re curious you can click through to most of the people / companies on the Attendees page and the current list of talks on the Speakers page.

We have people coming who are involved (or interested) in designing educational environments in virtual spaces, building video CVs, eLearning, 3D visualisations for medical devices, 3D modelling, film/animation production, location based services and much much more.

Steve Collins, co-founder of Havok, is also coming. Havok of course is the company behind the amazing physics and animation engine which has been used in films like The Matrix and games like Second Life. And you’ll recall that Intel acquired the company last September. Steve also serves on the Irish chapter of the International Game Developers Association.

Video reviews of the Sunday newspapers

April 21, 2008

Bernie Goldbach takes a look at the Irish Sunday newspapers so you don’t have to. Just keep an eye on his QIK page for more –

The meme obviously has legs with Pat Phelan taking a more, er, cranky approach –

Poll: How are you voting on the Lisbon Treaty?

April 21, 2008

This Irish Business and Employers Confederation (IBEC) is urging a ‘yes’ vote on the Lisbon Treaty. While highly successful businessman Ulick McEvaddy has added his voice to the ‘no’ campaign by joining the Libertas group.

IBEC says the treaty –

  • is vital to ensure growth in the Irish economy at an increasingly challenging time.
  • protects Ireland’s interests and will encourage more foreign investment, thereby helping to create jobs.
  • will help support Irish exporters at a time when they are under pressure due to the weakness of the US dollar.

McEvaddy on the other hand has read the treaty four times and still doesn’t understand it! “We are simply being asked to vote for something here in Europe that nobody understands and that is being handed out as the Lisbon Treaty.”

I’d normally be an automatic ‘Yes’ vote for something like this but all I’ve read so far on the Lisbon Treaty has left me in an utter state of confusion. And all this talk of EU Tax harmonization ‘by the back door’ has me leaning, if anything, on the side of a no vote. How will you be voting?

Disturbing new fashion

April 20, 2008

Just goes to show how rubbish a programme You’re a Star was when I thought all-girl rock band Black Daisy were kind of crap really. But wow, their new single – Distburbing New Fashion – has completely changed my mind [via Limerick Blogger]

3Dcamp is an unconference, should we have a live backchannel?

April 14, 2008

After attending the Social Networking panel at University of Limerick last Friday Grabriela Avram gave me a tour of the venue for the upcoming 3Dcamp. I was very impressed with the facilities at the Engineering Research Building and think it will make a great location.

Engineering Research Building

Below is a photo of the main lecture room which, as you can see, sports two large projection screens and a whiteboard.

3Dcamp main room

An important point to remember about Barcamps is that they follow the unconference format where the content of the sessions is created and managed by the participants (generally day-by-day during the course of the event) rather than by one or more organizers in advance of the event. Dave Winer is generally credited with coining the term and he notes

"The sum of the expertise of the people in the audience is greater than the sum of expertise of the people on stage. [So] first, you take the people who used to be the audience and give them a promotion. They’re now participants. Their job is to participate, not just to listen and at the end to ask questions. Then you ask everyone who was on stage to take a seat in what used to be the audience."

We think this is very sage advice and intend to follow it at 3Dcamp. But we’d like to hear what you think? So please take to time to vote here and/or comment below.

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Bytes ‘n Pieces

April 10, 2008

Will Knott suggests a very interesting twist on the Sat Nav business model – incremental map updates:

“The current map sales model is akin to being forced to buy a 50 year anthology every time you want to hear a single track…. You are not getting the whole map, but a single route. Similar to buying a single track and not the album.”

– Having been involved to a degree in the organizing of Paddy’s Valley I’ll be watching with interest the progress of Web Mission San Francisco. This UK based group will see 20 Web 2.0 companies travel to San Francisco to explore new opportunities for growth with key people in Silicon Valley. ‘Our own’ Web 2.0 maven Paul Walsh will of course be tagging along and is looking to make more contacts in the Valley if you can help. I’m hoping Paul can put together a list of Twitter and Jaiku IDs of those traveling so we can track their activity in real-time.

Liam Noonan has been “Throwing the planets around with a phantom omni haptic device. Amazing tactile experience. Threw earth out of orbit with a hammer throw.” We just have to get a demo of this at 3Dcamp