There is nothing new under the sun…turn, turn, turn

Archive for the category “Empoprises”

Time for the semi-annual reader spike – looking for Ben Franklin?

If you’re looking for my March 2012 post “Benjamin Franklin’s Daylight Saving Time joke is taken seriously,” you can find it here.

And if you’re in Indiana and will be looking for a drink tonight, you’ll have an extra hour to do so. But you’ll lose it in March.

Things I wrote thirty-one years ago are still preserved – for now

I am less than a month from the ten-year anniversary of my blogging career. I haven’t really said anything about it much yet, but a recent Louis Gray post has caused me to start thinking about it.

Gray’s post is entitled “Our Fragile Web of Dead Domains and Lapsing Links.” Anyone who has been blogging for a while has encountered this – and if you haven’t, Gray explains the problem:

[I]t’s not too uncommon for entire sites and bookmarks to vanish from the Web, with only Archive.org and other clever cachers left to tell the tale.

For additional thoughts and some examples, read Gray’s post.

With very few exceptions (this tymshft blog being one of them), all of the blogs that I have created have been on the Blogger platform – originally an independent platform, later hosted by Google. But what happens if, someday, Google goes away? Don’t laugh – it could happen. No one thought Montgomery Ward would disappear, so it’s quite possible that my grandchildren will have never heard of Google.

Well, if Google were to disappear, then my very first blog post, written on Tuesday, October 14, 2003, could be lost forever. Since WordPress is not part of Google – yet – I’m going to employ a little bit of redundancy by reposting my first blog post, in its entirety, right here.

Why did synthetica start with fake bluegrass sounds? Why not? This is the Ontario Empoblog, or the blog for Ontario Emperor, which has nothing and everything to do with Canada, New Mexico, and Texas, but also California, which is a location in California. It exists in cyberspace, which is also synthetic.

The Ontario Empoblog may or may not touch on a variety of subjects, including music, poetry, poker, the supposed familial relationship between Brian Eno and Slim Whitman, the number of licks it takes to get to the center of a Tootsie Pop (1,121 – I checked), various comments about frogs, and the nature of nature.

Imagine the tragedy if this cultural artifact were to disappear forever. Luckily, I’ve preserved it. Unfortunately, I haven’t preserved the significance about comments about frogs.

For the record, my second post (written ten days later, on October 24) was better:

When Patti Smith married Fred Smith, did she take her husband’s last name, or keep her maiden name?

Which brings me to the topic of something else salted away in Google’s servers – something much older.

As I’ve mentioned elsewhere, I was an early participant in Usenet back in the early 1980s. Back then, you’d get onto Usenet by typing such in a terminal that was attached to a minicomputer (in my case, a DEC PDP/11-70). Over a decade later, people would access Usenet via a service called Dejanews. Google eventually bought Dejanews and its data, and merged it all into Google Groups.

On January 3, 2012, I wrote a post in my Empoprise-BI business blog called (empo-tymshft) A little more on Usenet. As you can probably tell from the title, this was a “tymshft” post that was written before the tymshft blog came into existence. That post quoted from something that I wrote back on Noember 14, 1982 – almost thirty-one years ago. I accessed this text from going to the link https://groups.google.com/group/net.records/msg/f726733bb7eea278?dmode=source&output=gplain&noredirect – a Google Groups link to something from the old Dejanews archive that came from archives of Usenet postings. Again, if Google goes away, perhaps my 2012 blog post AND the Google Groups archive of the 1982 Usenet post may go away. So again, I’m going to preserve this important historical artifact here on WordPress:

Newsgroups: net.records
Path: utzoo!decvax!cca!hplabs!hao!menlo70!sytek!zehntel!teklabs!reed!bred@sri-unix
X-Path: utzoo!decvax!cca!hplabs!hao!menlo70!sytek!zehntel!teklabs!reed!bred@sri-unix
From: bred@sri-unix
Date: Thu Nov 18 10:19:00 1982
Subject: Wall of Voodoo album
Posted: Sun Nov 14 23:46:25 1982
Received: Thu Nov 18 10:19:00 1982

Just bought Wall of Voodoo’s latest album “Call of the West”
(I.R.S.) a few weeks ago. The group uses synthesizers, etc.
while still maintaining a western American feel both in music and
lyrics (such as the lyrics in “Lost Weekend”, about a couple who
just lost their life savings in Las Vegas, and “Factory”, about a
factory worker). I’m not sure whether the album’s being played
on many radio stations, having only heard it on Reed College’s
(Portland OR) radio station KRRC. Wall of Voodoo has recorded at
least one other album, “Dark Continent”, but I haven’t listened
to it yet.

Questions: has anyone else heard this album or the previous one?
Opinions? How long has Wall of Voodoo been around?

John Bredehoft (…!teklabs!reed!bred)

P.S. At least one other person likes this album; the KRRC copy
has mysteriously disappeared…

This isn’t the first time that I discussed this particular 1982 post. Several years ago, I gave a presentation in which I talked about the changes between 1982 and 2007. In the space of a quarter century, we went from talking about Wall of Voodoo on Usenet to talking about Wall of Voodoo on MySpace (they had a MySpace page at the time). In fact, I talked about it on my MySpace blog. Today, if you go to https://myspace.com/oemperor/blog/317516134, you can see…well, you can see this.


This is only part of the image. The entire image uses artist pictures to spell out the number “404.”

Cute, MySpace.

P.S. Just in case the story about Google’s acquisition of Dejanews becomes a dead link, here is the meat of the story:

February 12, 2001 11:30 AM PST
Google buys remaining Deja.com business
By Paul Festa
Staff Writer, CNET News

Internet veteran Deja.com sold off the last of its parts to relative newcomer Google, ending a long and troubled run as an advertising-supported also-ran….

Despite closing out the final chapter in a six-year saga, Deja.com executives sounded upbeat about the acquisition.
“We think Google is a great home for this service,” said Richard Gorelick, chief strategy officer. “Our service and their service work very well together.”

Deja.com originated as Dejanews, a site for searching and participating in discussion groups carried on the Internet’s Usenet network. It changed its name to Deja.com when it decided to focus on product reviews by consumers. The company subsequently added information on consumer products, making it a competitor to sites such as mySimon, which is owned by CNET Networks, publisher of News.com.

Yes, CNET and news.com – the people who brought you the com.com that Louis Gray was talking about in his post.

For Technorati


The time shift within tymshft

When I initially coined the phrase “tymshft” several years ago, I intended to discuss how things change – or, more often, do not change – over time.

But there’s a more basic meaning to the phrase – the actual shifting of time, such as that which occurs when Daylight Saving Time begins and ends.

Or that which occurs when two people observe a parade from two different vantage points.

Or when I write blog posts.

You probably haven’t noticed this, but the majority of posts in the tymshft blog appear on weekdays at 7:00 am Pacific time. In a similar manner, the majority of posts in my Empoprise-BI business blog appear on weekdays at 5:00 am Pacific time. And when I write in my Inland Empire, music, or NTN Buzztime blogs, those posts generally appear at certain times of the day also.

Let me provide you with a tip – I’m usually not awake at 4:59 am, putting the final touches on business blog posts. (Although one person thought I was.) And normally at 7:00 am when posts appear in this blog, I’m nowhere near a working computer (if I’m on time, I’m usually on the freeway). Both WordPress (the blog engine for tymshft) and Blogger (the blog engine for the other blogs) offer the ability to schedule posts, which allows me to have posts appear at these preferred times.

Because the web is literally world-wide, the timing of posts has no universal effect. Perhaps my business blog posts appear before the financial markets open on the U.S. east coast, but in Europe the business day is nearing its end. Even the timing of the posts on the NTN Buzztime blog (a blog which is only currently relevant in the United States and Canada) doesn’t make a large amount of difference – while the posts occur at lunchtime on the West Coast, they appear in the middle of the afternoon on the East Coast – a time when many people probably aren’t thinking of gaming.

Last week I finally got around to establishing a Seesmic account (yeah, I know it’s late – I am not trendy). This allows me to schedule tweets, posts in my personal Facebook wall, and posts on my Facebook pages (but sadly, not on my Google+ stream or pages). At this point I don’t know how much I’ll use its scheduling features, but at least they’re there.

Which raises a final question – why do tymshft posts appear at 7:00 am Pacific? Well, there’s a highly scientific reason – because I’m not publishing anything else at that hour.

So now you know about the time shift behind tymshft – and I am free to enjoy the rest of my Saturday morning. Happy Wednesday.

Blogs, social networks, and what this means for tymshft

On Sunday, February 19, I started a blog. You’re reading it right now.

At the same time, I established a Google+ page (https://plus.google.com/b/110538760339914860505/#) for the blog, as well as a Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/#!/pages/Tymshft/390937200923679?sk=wall). My idea at the time was that the Google+ and Facebook pages could be “outliers” for my blog, which would be the center of the tymshft universe (such as it is).

On Monday, February 20, Jesse Stay wrote something (My Official (and Obligatory) “Traditional Blogging is Dead” Post) that presented a different perspective. Excerpts:

As sad as I am to see it, I think blogging really is dying. It’s a really tough way to make a living, and will become even more difficult in the future, in favor of more traditional news sites and people able to share and post personal opinion on social networks such as Google+, Facebook, and Twitter….

Does this mean I’ll kill my blog? Of course not – it just means I have to adapt its focus….

It means my blog is now becoming an extension of the social networks, and not vice versa.

For the record, I saw Stay’s thoughts on Facebook before I saw the blog post in Google Reader. Sign of the…um…times?

As is often true in technology, this represents a swinging of the pendulum. Back in the 1990s, it was important to have a presence on America OnLine. Then, by the time I finally got around to blogging in late 2003, it became more important to have your own presence – your own webpage, your own blog, what have you. Now the pendulum is swinging back in the other direction, and both individuals and corporations are finding that it’s more important to have a Facebook/Twitter/Google+ presence than it is to have your own thing.

When I read Stay’s comments I had not yet formally announced the existence of this blog – actually, I STILL haven’t made a formal announcement – so I’ve been posting cryptic statements saying that this was an interesting time (heh) to read things such as Stay’s article.

As any good Lutheran would, I am now asking myself the question: WHAT DOES THIS MEAN? In this case, it means that I need to pay attention to the Facebook and Google+ “outliers” more. (I’ve established similar pages for some of my other Empoprises blogs, but have neglected them.) After all, the “outliers” may actually be “inliers.”

So, I encourage you to join the tymshft pages on Facebook and Google+.



And, more importantly, PARTICIPATE! Somehow we’ll all figure out how the blog and the Facebook page and the Google+ page can all work together as part of one happy family. Because I read something else last night – something from Kyle Lacy – that reminded me that the whole “comment fragmentation” issue hasn’t gone away.

What is “tymshft”? And what is “empoprises”?

What is “tymshft”? And what is “empoprises”?

I’ll address these questions in reverse order. (As you will see, we’re used to all sorts of time permutations here.)

“Empoprises” is the umbrella name that I (John E. Bredehoft) use for my current series of blogs. The four blogs that were created before this one include the Empoprise-BI business blog at http://empoprise-bi.blogspot.com/, the Empoprise-IE Inland Empire blog at http://empoprise-ie.blogspot.com/, the Empoprise-MU music blog at http://empoprise-mu.blogspot.com/, and the Empoprise-NTN NTN Buzztime blog at http://empoprise-ntn.blogspot.com/. I’ve had blogs before these ones – I’ve actually been blogging since October 2003 – but the Empoprises series of blogs was set up to provide deep dives into various topics. And for the last several years – 2009, 2010, 2011, and now 2012 – I’ve pretty much kept with the same blog set-up.

But I’ve found that there are topics that cross across these various vertical blogs. One of these is time. For example, people talk about new things and assume that they are new. Take the cloud. For some people, it’s a wondrous new thing, this ability to store data in the cloud and access it from anywhere. Some misguided souls probably even think that Steve Jobs invented the cloud. But some of the features of the cloud were present decades ago, in old time-sharing systems. iCloud is a CompuServe that begins with a vowel. (I wrote about this under the empo-tymshft label back in 2009.)

At the same time, there are things that have changed significantly over the years. For example, I remember when a “phone” was something that was attached to the wall, and came from “the phone company.” (I wrote about that in 2009 also, under that same label.)

I’ve been using the “empo-tymshft” label on my Empoprises blogs to discuss these issues since August 2009. And it hasn’t been limited to the business blog.

But after three years of talking about tymshft on these vertical blogs, I’ve finally decided that I’m going to devote an entire blog to the topic. So, welcome to tymshft – the new thing that’s in its fourth year of existence.

As you may have noticed, this blog is slightly different from the previous four. For one, it’s called “tymshft,” not “empoprise-tm” or something like that. In addition, I’m using WordPress rather than Blogger for this particular blog. And there may be more changes in the future.

In conclusion, welcome to tymshft. And enjoy the tym travel.

In the beginning

There is nothing new under the sun.

(Ecclesiastes 1:9)

Turn, turn, turn

(Pete Seeger)

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