AFTER READING yet-another e-mail from a friend who bemoans my lack of blogging, I get no respect when I explain I'm microblogging. The lack of respect comes from people who are not impressed with the rise of Twitter, Pownce, Jaiku and the fenced meadows of MySpace and Facebook. Many of my friends grew up before dial-up. Some grew up as teens without colour television. At least a dozen of my regular readers played video games powered by their cassette players. These readers feel a little put off by the banality rampant on Twitter but they often make time to flick through the short takes offered up by a more literate--and private--Jaiku community. It's time to share a secret.
As Conor O'Neill evangelises, micro-anything, properly formatted, produces nubs of information easily actionable. And so it is with Jaiku on your phone. Anyone who tries Jaiku on their mobile phone and then continues doing it, often values the message flow because of Jaiku's very robust closed messaging system and the relative ease of sharing tick-off items with nicely calibrated groups. We are doing this now while planning the day-long Podcamp Ireland, set for Saturday 29 September 2007 in the Kilkenny Ormonde Hotel.
Jaiku gives us a live minuting capability. Organisers connect via Skype and reflect with single sentences on Jaiku, often commenting to previous text messages, since Jaiku allows nested conversations--comments to text messages.
This kind of collaboration disrupts the standard flow of top-down meeting moderation. Attendees basically write the minutes of the meeting via text messages as the meeting unfolds. The secretary simply culls the text comments for a record of the meeting. But there's more.
Jaiku, along with VoiceSage and Magnetic Time (MT's front page talks to you so consider your listeners), produces a spoken record of the event that can be called those who missed the original meeting. This is the technology we're testing and it works. A third level student at Tipperary Institute will demonstrate its capabilities at Podcamp Ireland.
One of the spin-offs of this technology is a subscription system that feeds information directly to mobile phones. If you want this blog in three-minute audio chunks, you set the time you want to receive the call and VoiceSage rings you with an update via a streaming service. If you would rather get the content read to your phone as a download, you indicate that preference and the audio drops onto your phone at an off-peak (no cost) time.
In other corners of the internet, people are toying with Twittergrams or spoken rants about disappointing comercial services. I'm looking at ways to connect collaborators with tools they carry in their pockets and hope that when Mr. Jobs visits europe with his iPhone, he will show its MMS capabilities, both downstream and upstream. It would be a shame to launch a new product in Europe that's a generation behind the refinements already used by connected businesses.
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