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A trade journal of a still-emerging field, written by Adam Tinworth.

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Bloggin'

Antony Mayfield picked up Steph’s post – and my follow-up –  about bringing back the blog – and keeping it short. But he laments his struggles in keeping things concise:

Although, I am not off to a very good start. This post is already expanding to a medium-size post…

Short, sharp blogging (in my experience, at least) is built on two principles:

  1. Connect the thought “that’s interesting” with the action of writing the blog post as closely as you can. Don’t leave tabs mouldering in your browser, don’t leave draft posts in your drafts folder. Get it done, and get out. 
  2. Be very clear what the point you want to make is, make it and quit. Over a while, the various pots will built into a narrative of the issue you’re exploring – and you can bring that narrative to a peak, if not a climax, by writing that longer post. But save that until the point where the creative damn is going to burst, by letting some pressure out over time with those short posts. 
Short form blogging is a matter of time disciple and focus – but it’s rewarding, useful to the reader, and really refreshing in an age when too many “problogs” read like serialised instruction manuals…

Oh, Sandy...

It’s been a busy night for the many journalists covering the impact of Hurricane Sandy on New York City, not least in separating the wheat from the chaff:

For reference:

Big news from Cupertino:

Apple announced on Monday a major reorganisation of the top leadership of the company that leaves SVP of iOS Software Scott Forstall out of the picture. Forstall will be leaving Apple next year.

iOS6 Maps claims its first casualty. And with Jony Ive now in charge of human interface, I think we can look forwards to a future with much less skeuomorphism in it…

Recently hired SVP of Retail Operations John Browett will also depart the company

Everyone who ever set foot in Dixons will be deeply, deeply unsurprised by this. Apple’s most bizarre hire in years is rectified. 

Knight Mozilla is running a free, two hour basic HTML course for journalists:

Are you a journalist who is interested in getting an introduction to tags, html, and all that extra text you see if you “view source” on an article in your content management system? Do you want to learn the fundamentals to websites in a fun, supportive environment?

Great idea. Invaluable skills. Go. :-)

[hat-tip: Joanna Geary]

Steph:

For the next ten days, starting tomorrow (Tuesday), I’m going to write a post a day. I’ll keep it short: blogging used to be quick and dirty, and somewhere between the arrival of Facebook and Twitter, posts have started growing into long essays that take hours to write.

Great idea. I’m getting increasingly uncomfortable with handing over content to Twitter and Facebook just because it’s short. This is a space I own and control. I need to nurture it more… and so I’m joining in. 

TEDxBrighton CupcakesFriday, as anyone who follows me on Twitter will be aware, was TEDxBrighton. It’s my second TEDx event (the first was TEDxTuttle a few years back), and the only one I’ve been involved in organising – although just as a storyteller (which in this case, essentailly means blogger). And I had a blast. After a few technical hitches with the sound in the opening minutes, it ran very smoothly indeed. Feedback from friends who were there was largely positive – most thought the speakers were a mixed bag, but there didn’t seem to be universal agreement about who were the good ones and who were the bad ones, which was a good sign of diversity amongst both the audience and the speakers…

I, sad to say, got virtually no time to network, as I was busy either liveblogging, or editing photos or video to add to the liveblog. You can find all the liveblogging over on the TEDxBrighton site. My thoughts about the contents of the talks are percolating, and I’ll post more about the day in a little while.

In the meantime, I’d just like to highlight these:

TEDxBrighton cupcakesThe format of a TEDx event is rigorously – and I mean rigorously – controlled by the TED organisation. Fair enough. It’s their brand, they’re sharing it, and they’re entitled – sensible, even – to protect it. But the area outside the main event is where the organisers can really cutomise it. Natalie Lloyd did a fine job of bringing in lots of Brighton organisations and bodies into the main mingling space outside the Corn Exchange, to give the event a pretty multi-generational feel:

TEDxBrighton-foyer.jpg

But the only part of these I had actually time to experience were the wonderful cupcakes baked – in a 13 hour baking marathon – by this cake-baking lady:

Emma Jane, baker of Brighton cupcakesEmma Jane was also one of the few people I didn’t already know I got the chance to chat with. I was obviously delighted to discover as well as being a cupcaking creation fiend (and they were a great source of sugar for a energy-sapped liveblogger…) she’s also an avid blogger at Cakes and Catwalks. She’s even blogged about the experience of the day – which was something of a mixed bag for her, sadly:

I love TED and really enjoyed the talks again this year, I also met some really lovely people and very much appreciated the ‘thank you’ I received in person from many of the delegates and team – also the tweets that people sent me and seeing photos appearing of my cakes across social platforms was very rewarding. But I had to request that delegates were told a)- that there were cakes and b)- where to find the cakes. I guess I kind of assumed that having asked me to bake 350 cupcakes (which were branded for TEDx), that people would be encouraged to enjoy them.

Which brings us back to the brand control aspect of TEDx events. What you can and can’t say about sponsors (and indeed, the various behind-the-scenes folks) is pretty limited. It’s a tricky balance – but I think Natalie did a pretty fine job in her first outing organising an event like this.

Thankfully all 360 cupcakes were consumed in the end. Here’s Flora Koska, speaker at the event, choosing one of them:

emma-jane-serving-cupcakes.jpg

An open letter to Superman:

Firstly, let’s talk money. I assume you are being paid at The Daily Planet? You are? Well being a blogger is slightly different. As a blogger, you are expected to eat your “raised profile” sleep under “increased traffic” and wear “more followers”.

She has a point – I doubt even Supes can build a profitable blog at super speed. Perhaps he’ll have to do it the Pete Cashmore way, and run it from his parents’ basement in Smallville…