Tag Archives: Arts

Closed for Business

Originally uploaded by Loose Wire.

I’m amazed by how many restaurants, cafes and bars scare away business by not allowing patrons to use their power outlets.
In Hong Kong, the manager at Dan Ryans in Pacific Place said they were worried that people recharging phones or running laptops off their outlets would damage the circuitry or, somewhat less plausibly, interfere with the train set that runs above the tables and bar.
In coffee club in Singapore, I noticed the above: tape over all the power outlets.
Sorry, but this kind of thing is lame, especially when the place is empty. If they’re scared folk are just going to buy one drink and lounge all day, so be it, but I don’t see many people doing that, to be honest. Better would be an approach that said, here, use our power, just don’t do it when we’ve got a restaurant full and people waiting. Instead, I found myself sitting in an empty cafe save a woman complaining to a man about how hard it was for a beautiful woman to grow old.

Tags for Sale to Fund a Wedding

Lame gimmick or wave of the future? Entrepreneur Launches Web’s First Tag Directory to Raise Money for His Wedding:

 A Canadian entrepreneur wants to raise funds for his wedding by listing websites on his del.icio.us account for $20 per listing. Patrick Ryan, 37, and his fiancée have been dating for 5 years; he hopes that TagDirectory.net will attract advertisers. Advertisers will be able to list their website under as many categories (tags) as they want.

Ryan hopes to raise $250,000 from the site. So far he’s raised, er, $280, according to the ticker at the top of the directory itself. His initiative has already raised hackles among the del.icio.us community who have questioned, among other things, the size of his wedding.  Turns out he’s hoping to marry in Cuba. That would explain the cost.

It seems a tad lame for several reasons. First off, I don’t really see how the idea would work. Why would anyone visit a paid directory of tags? How do you drive traffic to a site that doesn’t differentiate itself from any other website, except that some advertisers have paid to be there? Secondly, the social web is not about grabbing bucks, especially for a wedding (tsunami/hurricane/earthquake victims, maybe. A quarter of a grand would buy a few cold-weather tents, something I’m sure taggers would be interested in stumping up for. But a wedding?

But then again, tagging is a great technology and it would be churlish to abuse someone for trying to make money from it. But we shouldn’t ignore the fact that all those tags are out there because the folk behind these services, and those who tag websites to support them, did it all, initially at least, for free. I wish Patrick Ryan a happy wedding.

Keeping Friends As Avatars


I like this approach to trying to turn buddy lists, address books etc into more dynamic, personal representations: Social Fabric ~ Thesis 2005 (via Infosthetics)

The Social Fabric is a representation of your social world, displayed as a single visual array on your mobile phone. It does not replace your address book or calendar but keeps you subtly informed about which relationships are prospering, which you have neglected, and the overall state of your social fabric.