Saturday, November 22, 2008

Twitter and Links

Chances are you may have come to this post because someone (me?) twittered the link. (Or you may be someone who stops by regularly via rss or other means, for which I thank you.) At the same time I have fairly recently complained about linking in twitter. Of course a real explanation takes more than 140 characters and's a blog post.

The person, who had followed me so I was checking their twitter feed, and the top tweet asked, "How do you get more followers." My response was provide more content than links (as 90% of the page was links to their blog.)

So are links bad? Of course not. I tweet links all the time, including about my blog posts, and just as this person replied - I do like to know what other people are looking at on the internet. But that comes, of course, with a caveat.

I want to know what people I think are interesting, or I think have some common interests with me, or people I am friends with are looking at on the internet. There is plenty of stuff out on the internet I have no desire to look at.

When I use twitter to find these links I essentially am filtering by who I follow.
And how do I chose who follow? I ask, is the content of that person's tweets interesting, is this someone I know by other channels is interesting or shares a common interest, or is this person a friend.

As you can see by how many I follow, I follow back most people who follow me. I once tried cutting back the list followers to a "manageable amount" and that very day I had great conversation via @ message from someone I had just unfollowed. At that point I decided I'd follow those I think are interesting and would be someone I'd have a conversation with, and trust I'll catch the right things in the mighty flow of the twitter stream.

If you want people to follow you - and that is your stated goal, share who you are so people can known if you are a person they want to follow. That's the real secret, and I've read the same or heard the same from many. So share your links and announce your posts but also share some thoughts and comments in your twitter stream. We'd like to know you.

Goldie's Stories - Episode 12

This week is Thanksgiving in the USA. So this week we have a story of Herschel of Osteropol and a goose dinner...or foot to be specific. Story is based on the book The Adventures of Herschel of Ostropol retold by Eric A Kimmel.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Goldie's Stories - Episode 11

This week we read an unusual story about Reb Shmuel Munkis, involving sorcerers, whisky and a trip to Liozna.

This story comes from the Early Chassidic Personalities series book on Reb Shmuel Munkis, by Rabbi Sholom D. Avtzon

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

All Your Passwords Are Belong To Us

How much do you value your online identity? How often are you asked to share your login and password to a) find out your ranking b) locate your friends c) easily combine all of your feeds into one place.

I would bet that the answer to the first question is - fairly highly and the answer to the second question (if you are using social networking sites much at all) is fairly frequently. If I guessed your answers correctly then we have a problem.

Today twitter is a flurry about twitterank and the possibility that it was a twitter identity phishing site. Posts on mashable and zdnet talk about it in more detail. But calling the users gullible is really just ignoring the problem.

This problem doesn't just exist on twitter, and it doesn't just exist for people who want to rank themselves against others. The problem is that we have information, sometimes a lot of information, on many sites that we want to share with other sites.

As long as access to this information requires providing the login and password to a particular service to access that information people will continue to give out their login and password.

The truth is the services have trained us (beyond our natural tendencies) to give out that information by not implementing API's to allow access to the data in a more secure fashion.

The solution is not to be found by telling thousands of people to guard their password - that will not work. Rather the services need to implement APIs that allow the sharing of the information (and the revocation of the sharing of that information) that are as easy to use and as widely used as the "give me your login and password" solution that exists today.

Sure some features can be provided by third party tools - but (ahem, twitter are you listening) security actually needs to be implemented on a site by site basis.

There are some people who never share a login and psssword, but there are also people who still refuse to run AJAX. For the vast majority of the public there are at least some services that are critical enough to them to use that they need to share information between sites. It's time for web 2.0 to get to the next stage where there is a way to securely share that information.

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Goldie's Stories - Episode 10

This week we read a story about Herschel of Osteropol a common character in the folklore of Eastern European Jews. His stories always have a bit of wit and cleverness. This telling of the story is based on the one found in the book The Adventures of Herschel of Ostropol retold by Eric A Kimmel

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Goldie's Stories - Episode 9

This week's story is a modern day story that takes place in Tel Aviv and is taken from Tuvia Bolton's Torah Online weekly mailing.

(Reference for the video: tefillin)