Meeting Mlle A.

panama kaffee

Last Saturday I met the elusive and mysterious Mlle A. at a coffee place* in Hannover.

Once or twice during the conversation there was a cross-reference to something I or Mlle. A. had written or linked to. And for me that’s one of the powerful side-effects of blogging: there’s a regular reader’s familiarity built over time.

* We were assured by an architect that the shop design featured in various architecture magazines a few years ago.

Marketer’s Cheat Sheet for cvs and svn?

At work we use cvs and subversion for version control, light years better than Visual SourceSafe.
I’m trying to extend my active command line knowledge of cvs and svn… Remember I’m a low and humble marketer / content developer / writer.

Regular commands I use:

cvs update
cvs commit -m "message" filename

cvs tag -F "tagname" filename
cvs update -dPr tagname to checkout a tagged version
cvs update -dPA to return to head

I’m using cvs (command) --help to list the various options available.

I’m a visual person, and can remember best when I write things down and see them. How do you keep on top of cvs and svn commands? Can you recommend a cheat sheet?

In search of power plugs

(start of yesterday’s train journey notes, pêle-mêle off the top of my head, unsorted)

Longer weekend ahead…

I’m sitting in a train to Mannheim and have some time to write a longer blog post and reflect on stuff that happened this week.

Somehow this week went by crazily fast and my todo list decreased by one item and increased by 456 items. Inwardly I’ve switched to turbo output mode.

But I did manage to go running twice. Yay. I’m twittering my jogging experiences. Before dissing Twitter, remember at all times that my tweets could be part of a bigger art project.

Is twittering art?

Since Twittervision is being exhibited at the MoMA in NYC, one of my tweets might display!

And incidentally if secondary scientific literature makes a book rise into the
hallowed ranks of literature studies, doesn’t an exhibition at the MoMA have at least the same “it is art” effect?

MacBook and Meetings

I need to improve my presentation skills on the MacBook. Couldn’t get the MacBook to display on the screen and the overhead simultaneously today. Don’t know if it’s linked to last weekend’s Leopard upgrade, but usually it auto-detects the projector. Aargh.

I’m thinking a lot about leadership. And how it differs from management. And how unsettling/unnerving/disorientating/frustrating it is to get different signals depending on the time of day or type of situation or who else is in the meeting. Reminds me of an old John C. Maxwell book I read many years ago how important it is to be people person leader.

(i’m sitting close to the train restaurant = smell of food)

(pause to find Swiss to German plug adapter and hook up power supply)

(just got hit on the arm by a huge white cello case walking by)

Things to do in Hannover:

Go to library (I miss Hannover libraries)
Go jogging on my old routes (che nostalgia!)
I might attend the BarCamp if i find some time

(pause to change trains in Mannheim)

I detect an over-use of cheap over-sweet perfume somewhere in my vicinity. Aaargh. My tip: Never ever save on perfume. Mi da’ veramente fastidio….

At least i found another seat with a power plug. Life is not getting easier with all of the devices and power cables and battery chargers. Half of my back pack is full of tech equipment.

(end of train journey notes)

Unfortunately all of the power plugs were out of order in the train compartment I was sitting in…
Weather is grey and wet. Planning to go see a show on Street Photography at the Sprengel Museum this afternoon.

Lift 08: Fragments of Captured Attention

Here are some of my Lift 08 notes, pêle-mêle:


This year I tried to provide a running commentary on Twitter. Unfortunately the wifi was patchy and a number of valuable text snippets were lost… 😉 I got one Tweet response – all the way from Malawi – that appreciated my effort.

I tuned in to the Lift backchannel on Skype:

Lift Backchannel: Tell your friends - http://www..

The Skype backchannel was an interesting experience with live comments, opinions and background links. BTW, Skype was the most resilient of all Internet apps and managed to stay online throughout.

The format of this year’s Lift was a little different. There was one main track, i.e. we were all blogging and twittering about the same presentations. But I didn’t even notice it until we started discussing differences between ’07 and ’08. I liked the new format. I liked following the flow, without having to decide which session I’d need to move to next.

There was a red flashing light to indicate that the speaker’s time had run out… a neat feature.

At any one time, there were an incredible number of cameras in use. Automatic de-lurking.

I met a lot of new people from diverse backgrounds. And I met lots of ’07 attendees (there must have been a high degree of returnees).

My favorite talks:

Younghee Jung – she presented design ideas from Mumbai, Rio, and Accra regarding their vision of a suitable mobile device for their needs. I hope Nokia hears the request for cheap, sturdy and waterproof mobile phones.

Genevieve Bell – I liked the Australian humor.

Eric Favre – even though I don’t like Nespresso, I respect the perseverance.

Noel Hidalgo – a 5 min talk on traveling around the world in 7 months, sponsored by bloggers.


Kevin Warwick – scary but fascinating. He said “tremendously exciting” several times during the talk.

social politics

Holm Friebe and Phillip Albers – two Germans with a dry sense of humor described their creative way of doing business. For example, they don’t wait the usual 30 to 60 days to pay their bills but pay them up front.

Henriette Weber Andersen – enjoyed this refreshing 5 minute reminder that the marketer’s dream world has changed.

Robin Hunicke – great talk. She managed to link her presentation to other content we had heard. I particularly liked her slides that use small sketches as icons. A good idea. I had met her and Souris in the Lift workshop on Forgetful Interfaces and enjoyed their constructive input.

Finally the last sessions on Foresight inspired me. I can recommend watching the videos of Scott Smith and Bill Cockayne.

The corresponding Lift videos are available at:

Yet Another Community System

At the Lift 08 fondue I sat next to the developer of an open-source community tool called YACS:

YACS, le CMS Open Source 2.0 – Yet Another Community System

It uses PHP, MySQL and Apache. And from what I understood it is being used in a large international organization to build up a knowledge management system without the hassle of a complicated, cumbersome tool.

How to get people within a corporate setting to contribute? Make it bonus relevant.