Disqus Comments on WordPress


DisqusSome of you keen observers may have noticed that the look and feel of the comments has changed a bit. After not so much debating I’ve decided to give Disqus a shot at the comments on the site. They have a lot of very cool features such as the option to post a video comment, reply to other people’s comments and vote comments up and down.

Plus, once you start commenting, not only on this blog, but on any blog or site using Disqus, even if you’re not a member now, you can sign up at Disqus and claim all of your comments which are stored in a blog format. It’s basically a great way for people to follow your train of though as you leave your mark around the web.

If you’re interested on using Disqus comments on your WordPress site, you should definitely check out the new and improved plugin. It’s incredibly easy to install and even has full integration with your existing WordPress comments. All of my old comments were automatically imported into the new system.

Please, feel free to give it a try and leave a comment or three. Although I must say I am finicky and while I sort of dig it now, I reserve the right to revert back to WordPress comments at any time.

Has anyone else with a WordPress blog made the switch to Disqus? Would love to hear your thoughts about it.

See-Through Fish Mystery Solved


It never ceases to amaze me how wonderfully fascinating this world we live in is.

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Scientists have never been able to figure out how or why this fish had an invisible head because whenever one was caught it would die and the invisible part would go away. They were finally able to observe one in the wild.

The common name for the fish is “barreleyes.” Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute investigators recently figured out why this species has such an unusual head. Its eyes can actually rotate within its “skull,” so the transparency allows the wary swimmer to keep a literal eye on happenings above it, as well as to the sides and directly in front.

Using video cameras, MBARI researchers Bruce Robison and Kim Reisenbichler revealed the fish’s eye movements. When remotely operated vehicles approached the fish, its eyes glowed a vivid green shade in the bright lights of the ROVs. Usually the fish were just hanging out motionless under the deep waters offshore California’s central coast.

The fish can literally look up through its own head to search for food.

Imagine if humans had the ability to have see through heads, we wouldn’t have phrases like, “heads up” or “hey, watch out for that hammer!” Truly amazing.

Associated Press Considering Putting its Content behind a Paywall


apI guess the only way these antiquated news behemoth’s are going to learn is by actually going out of business.

Here’s a quote from AP’s CEO Tom Curley from a recent BusinessWeek article:

“Can I imagine content going behind a pay wall?” asks Tom Curley, the CEO of the Associated Press. “Absolutely. And, yes, we are in conversations about that.” These conversations with other content players are informal, he admits.

I wrote a response to Walter Isaacson’s Time Magazine cover story’s absurd notion that this is the future of online news outlets.

This is interesting though coming from AP which is purely a wire service. I’m assuming that other than their website and reporters they have no actual production costs.

AP is a slightly different beast though when it comes to paid content. Most of their revenue comes from other news sources buying their content. So, for the AP at least, it may make sense to put their content behind a while. It may actually add more value to what their selling to other outlets.

Even if they put their content behind a wall, there will still be many major news organizations that pay for the content themselves to have the ability to publish on their own sites that it will unlikely be a problem for you to go and find it anyway. Most news agencies don’t have that luxury.

Will the recession be just what the cloud needs to take that next step?


hosting-serversAs we move more and more toward storing virtually all of our personal information in the cloud, we may see a faster acceptance of businesses using the cloud to cut costs and rely solely on subscription based infrastructure.

Marc Andreessen showed up on the Charlie Rose show evangelizing the future of cloud computing.

“So you’ve got a whole generation of start-ups that are basically just a couple of programmers with a couple of laptops, and they upload everything into the Amazon cloud. It’s pay-by-the-drink like utility. So all of a sudden, you have this whole new wave of Internet start-ups getting started for practically no money, right? So there is a level of innovation. Every kid coming out of Harvard, every kid coming out of school now thinks he can be the next Mark Zuckerberg, and with these new technologies like cloud computing, he actually has a shot.”

Think about it, that’s a pretty fantastic ideal. We’ve literally entered a time when virtually anyone with a vision and executable plan can see it to fruition without requiring large amounts of capital to create a sustainable infrastructure. You’re infrastructure is already built, ready and waiting for you to lease on an as needed basis.

But how long will it be before large, well established behemoths of the industry spread their wings and trust their data to the cloud?

While many executives responsible for their companies’ IT operations grok the vision, they still refuse to make the switch. More than 60 percent of the companies surveyed recently by Kelton Research reported they did not use cloud-computing technologies, and most of them have no plans to use them anytime soon.

Chalk up their lingering resistance to a couple of old bugaboos which have been around since the days when “MIS directors,” pressed to decentralize their computer operations, ruled the tech roost: security and fear of loss of control. If past is prologue, those issues will get sorted out over time–the same way that the sundry issues surrounding client-server and Internet-based computing models ultimately got resolved.

Within the next 10 years I predict that not only will cloud computing be commonplace but companies will wonder why they have lived without it in the first place.

Twitter Weekly Updates for 2009-02-22