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May 29, 2006

prepare for takeoff!

ok kiddos…

add your friendly neighborhood happyfunboy to the growing list of community bloggers who have booked a seat on…


and no…

blogjet is not some new discount airline for people interested in spending the majority of their time writing at turns helpful & not-so-helpful items for the edification & entertainment of the world at large without any thought of recompense. or in-flight snacks.


blogjet is instead a windows based blogging editor that aims to help streamline the speed and ease with which people maintain their blogs.

prolly much like word 2007 will, when it comes out…

and without taking up 2+ gb of hard drive space.

blogjet offers a 30 day trial, with just a bit of nagging.

i’ll tell you all this much…

if it helps yours truly catch up on his backlog…

blogjet will become a permanent addition to the happyutilitybelt, without a doubt.

and yeah…

look for my thoughts on blogjet to appear in a forthcoming item titled:

happyfunboy’s super awesome guide to why blogjet kicks so much ass (or not)!

|| posted by chris under utility belt || comments (0) || ||

May 27, 2006

i want me world cup!


rss stealth attack?

saw that mothership released a nifty little app for tracking the 2006 world cup.

the app doesn’t cost anything…other than windows genuine validation.

and it automagically fetches updated info about matches, and your favorite team.

now, to be sure, this prolly won’t be near as popular here in the states as elsewhere in the world…

but thought it was worth a mention with the amount of overseas visitors we have here at the funcave.

be sure to check out the options panel by clicking on the wrench icon.

you can set a few helpful settings, including adding an rss feed of your choice.

in fact, clicking on help with rss channel opens a web page of world cup rss feeds microsoft maintains.

seeing all that got me thinking…

your friendly neighborhood happyfunboy wonders if ms has a cunning plan for this little app to serve as the initial rss experience for a lot of new folks all over the world.

|| posted by chris under mothership, utility belt || comments (3) || ||

May 26, 2006

professional etiquette


happyfunboy’s super awesome guide to not being a community nimrod

professional laziness in the it sector existing long before vladville (or its creator, for that matter) was even a twinkle in anyone’s eye.

so folks trying to pin the blame for clueless it nimrods on the vlad because of his contributions like vladville, orlando it pro, and sbs show makes even less sense than blaming it on something like fluoridated water.

if anything, it’s the distinct opinion of your friendly neighborhood happyunboy that mr. mazek is one of the few folks telling it like it really is in the community. these are not direct quotes, but more yours truly channelling the spirit & attitude, to wit:

  • so basically, you are a glorified pencil sharpener.
  • again, why do people pay you?
  • a mailing list is a mailing list is a mailing list
  • starting a user group will suck you dry faster than a vampire with two straws

when your friendly neighborhood happyfunboy first started up a user group, vlad’s guide, still in draft form at the time, was instrumental not just in helping kick off alabamasmb, but also to help plot a strategy for growth.

but the very first bits of advice in his guide, right up front, are not some kind of lollipops and gumdrops, pie in the sky, everything is beautiful, whitewashing job.

oh no…

his first advice consists of the following truths:

  • running a user group is hard work, each and every day.
  • you will see little to nothing in return for your efforts.
  • get comfortable with that…or don’t even start one.

so no…the nimrod factory isn’t located in orlando.

personally, i think of the community like a poker game…

if you want to be dealt in at all, you need to ante up.

now, if you don’t know how to play…

folks will help you get the basics down for a hand or two…

if you don’t act like a jerk, that is.

but after that, it’s gonna be totally up to you. they’re not gonna want to give you advice all night long, or give you their chips for free just so you don’t feel like such a clueless, dead money loser.

and worst of all…

if you wanna watch tv, or yammer on the phone, or do something other than play cards…

go sit over there on the couch and don’t bother the rest of us.

the community works best when folks demonstrate respect for the value of someone else’s time & efforts.

a basic thank you is a very good start…

trust me on that.

but the reality is…

any amount of time someone spends helping someone else for free, is time that person has taken away from their own…

  • job
  • customers
  • loved ones
  • r&r

without expectation of anything in return.

so if you ask for something, at the very least you should have expended some honest effort trying to find the answer yourself.

or, if you have an area of expertise, an offer to reciprocate in kind for that person at a later time is a great way to pay the goodwill forward…

but do something.

demonstrate just a little bit that you’re not a lazy, crumb-munching leech…

that’s all anybody really expects.

|| posted by chris under community, opinion, rant || comments (1) || ||

May 26, 2006

windows mobile vs blackberry: round 2

in round 1, we saw windows mobile establish a strong jab from the very start, taking an early lead over the blackberry.

let’s see if that lead holds up here in round 2.

again…it all starts with fundamentals.

and there is absolutely nothing more fundamental to a mobile device than the interface design.

in this regard, windows mobile continues to dictate the pace and demeanor of this fight.

the today screen was just a foretaste of what was to come.

looking at windows mobile…

it sports features like…

  • start menu
  • programs
  • settings

all of these things carry over as concepts for folks who use a desktop pc running windows…

which normally translates into a much shorter learning curve.

the only weakness with windows mobile in this regard?

the stylus.

at times, the stylus is the only way to navigate, and i feel like i’m constantly having to juggle the stylus when i’d rather just use a keyboard, cursor pad and button.

plus…i hate always thinking i’ll lose the darn stylus.


even with that one shortcoming…

the limitations of the blackberry os & interface are numerous.

starting with…

the thumbwheel.

talk about the most sensitive, jiggery piece of crap anybody ever decided would be a good idea for a navigation device.

i hate it mostly for the number of calls i’ve dropped or reminders i’ve cleared accidentally while taking the blackberry out of its holster on my hip and nudging the scrollwheel.

but the scrollwheel is merely a symptom…

the real issue is the blackberry os, which treats you from the get go like an absolute moron.

using a blackberry always takes me back to my days as a hardcore gamer…

because it reminds me of a rail shooter.

you know, where you are presented with targets to shoot…

but your own movements, by and large, are restricted to a set path.

now, i’m not talking about a super awesome good rail shooter, like the panzer dragoon series or some other masterpiece of graphics & game design.


i’m talking some piece of misleadingly titled bellybutton lint like murakumo: renegade mech pursuit.

if nothing else, the blackberry os makes you feel like you’re using a pda with training wheels.

let me put it a more direct way…

i’m so sick of that freaking thumbwheel…

it makes me long for a stylus!

heck, anything that would allow me to choose which application i want immediately…

rather than having to:

scrolly scroll scroll…scroll scroll…scroll

and then, with my breath held like a professional sniper

click with inhuman precision

to avoid bumping it to an incorrect choice.

certainly a closer round this time, but…

windows mobile edges blackberry in round 2!

|| posted by chris under funlab, mobility, opinion || comments (2) || ||

May 24, 2006

hello…and thanks for all the comments


have seen a big uptick in traffic here at the funcave recently.

as in…

a tripling of the daily number of visitors.

and wanted to say thanks for the recent comments.

thought i’d answer everything here at once, rather than scattershot all over the site. here goes:

thanks again for stopping by…

hope you keep coming back for more!

|| posted by chris under community, shoutout || comments (4) || ||

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