Showing posts from July, 2008

OpenSocial as an alternative to JSR 168

OpenSocial came onto the scene at the end of 2007 but until now I hadn't got around to delving into it and I thought it was about time.

My first observation was that its name is actually a bit of a misnomer. I expected data portability for social data, but in fact this is not what OpenSocial is about, it is instead more akin to "OpenWidget" or "OpenGadget" (as many others have pointed out). This however is not a bad thing, it is just different than what I was expecting.

OpenSocial is the expansion of Google Gadgets across platforms, with the view being that once an OpenSocial Gadget had been developed once and used on one site that it would be able to run on another social networking site and easily access friends lists and other social information on that site due to the common API that OpenSocial mandates. If this all sounds very similar to JSR 168 / 286 and the concept of Portlets then you would not be mistaken (for more on JSR 168 see my earlier post titled &…

Don't change too much at once!

I have recently been working on a large Architectural diagram that a significant number of people have been looking at on a regular basis and have followed through its evolution. I have been doing some large changes to this diagram, but rather than making them all at once I have staggered the changes across a number of versions of the diagram. There are a number of reasons I have done this, including:
People often get overwhelmed if there is too much that has changed. The validity of the diagram as being a trusted reference is undermined if it is significantly changed with each release. People are often much happier if they are taken on the journey.Less noise. Fewer changes reduces the areas for debate and allows them to be rapidly addressed without the confusion of other changes.
Change can be good, but too much at once is often not a good thing. I have been treating the aforementioned diagram like a brand, whereby whilst it is possible to completely overhaul it, if you make small chan…

Barcamp Auckland 2 Synopsis

Yesterday I attended my first barcamp / unconference; Barcamp Auckland 2. Ludwig and his team did a superb job arranging this event. It was well organised and there were lots of great sessions that stimulated lots of thought provoking discussions.

A key aspect of barcamps is participation and it is not about 1 person presenting, but more about having discussions and debates. The agenda is created on the day with people putting topics up on the board they are keen to talk about and facilitate and it just flows from there.

For further information about barcamps / unconferences, check out:
I attended a variety of different sessions which covered topics such as IE8, OpenId, Social Graph API, Privacy, Productivity, Mobile, Predictive Markets, ...

I used Twitter as my journal for the day, and my slightly edited synopsis of each session is:

Tech ProductivityMusic can help to focus but can also distract; familiarity plays…