How do I find my best photo of 2010 on Flickr?
I need an app for that.
I (still) don’t edit my photos according to composition or technical aspects.
I have been uploading snapshots at regular intervals.
Despite a busy schedule.
Still following my motto: Document your life.
Today I talked to @sufranke about an event I am planning at the day job.
Before long I was explaining how I was fascinated by the power of blogs and Twitter and the possibility they offer to bypass the gatekeepers who decide which media content you are supposed to consume. In my case, blogs and Twitter help me circumvent traditional Western euro-centric media with their pre-set opinions on Africa to learn about news in Blantyre.
The story of Nchenga at Chiperoni.ch is hidden in this blog:
Example of the power of blogging: During the last General Elections in Malawi, Alex at the Polytechnic helped to keep us informed by posting regular information and allowing Malawians to comment. In general, blogging has increased the amount of direct infos available on Malawi in the Internet.
Why use the nom de web Nchenga and why is my blog called Chiperoni?
No real reason except that I set up this blog shortly after a visit to Blantyre:
The incredibly influential a. of Handmade 2.0 invited me to a new web app called Pinterest. We have been blogging since January 2003. And it has been an incredible journey…. Thank you a. for the billions of emails, links and ideas. I am truly amazed at the amount of data we have collected.
I am still trying to figure out how to use Facebook as can be seen occasionally in my tweets. I worry that a platform like Facebook could replace the web. That would be the end of HTML pages, simplicity, transparency and diversity.
That’s why it’s important to support and use other platforms and tools. Try out WordPress and Drupal. Learn HTML. Write your own articles. Voice your opinion. Become involved. Think before you click re-tweet, like or comment.
It is my belief that after the fragmentation of the media scene and citizen journalism and the removal of the gatekeepers, we will see consolidation and the rise of new media giants with new gatekeepers.
Alienating all the law-abiding, hard-working immigrants. For political gain.
The more you talk about the need to integrate, the more you emphasize that another person isn’t integrated. And instead of improving integration, it may cause more divide as people are made aware of differences.
Even if you just move from one neighboring country to another, there are loads of unwritten rules and ways to behave and differing politeness levels, that all the natives adhere to and you don’t know anything about.
The readiness to adapt is higher at the beginning.
But how will I learn if there is no contact? No way to interact? If fear increases on both sides? If i experience rejection?
It helps if
i know what i believe in and where i come from.
i am open to get to know others from different backgrounds and cultures.
Beautiful weather. Saturday morning. The most natural thing to do is to keep the window open, listen to the birds singing, and quietly sip some coffee while catching up with Twitter and Flickr and co.
You would think. But not in suburbia.
What is it with suburbia, that whenever there is beautiful weather, my neighbors bring out their noisy lawn mowers?
I live in a quiet, residential area, but this infatuation with noisy lawn mowers is striking. Yesterday. Today at 8:30. Probably lawnmower fanboys trying out their new toys… new lawnmower apps to try out.
Update 23 Sept:
Yesterday I was at home working on my MBA papers. Beautiful day. Sunny. Suburbia responded by bringing out the lawn mower.
Update 8 October 2010:
It’s sunny and warm. And the lawn mowers are mowing. Again.
I stumbled across this Swisscom poster showcasing Leo’s mobile app to sell a smart phone:
I started using Leo’s English – German dictionary regularly long time ago – in the late 90s. I think it must have been about 1997 or 1998 at my first full-time job after uni. The vocabulary wasn’t as extensive as it is today. And at the time many people questioned and challenged its reputation as a reference. But, working in an IT company, we had unlimited access to the Internet. And Leo’s website was accessible from every workplace, whereas hard copy dictionaries were few and bulky.
I remember lively discussions with a secondary school teacher for German and English. Her main point was that there was too little information on usage and folks studying English as a second language would be confused and misled by the simple list views. I felt that this also applied to most hard copy dictionaries. Regarding usage I – in turn- recommended Oxford’s monolingual Advanced Learner’s Dictionary.
From early on, Leo offered access to a forum where dictionary users could ask questions, make suggestions, improve dictionary entries, clarify usage, etc. And they added links to other language resources. Which indirectly helped me to find a job during the dotcom downturn.
Well, here I am walking to the office in Züri on a fine, sunny morning… just 13 years later… and Leo is helping to sell smartphones:
Tried this patisserie on Grand Sablon. The sweets were great but the service was very don’t carish.
There has been an explosion of chocolate shops in the downtown area. So many. One lecturer recommended Marcolini, while another suggested Frederic Bloondeel near the Sainte Catherine church.
Apparently Belgian chocolate contains less sugar than Swiss chocolate and it is softer (i.e more conching is applied).
All the Belgians we asked were in favor of separating Flanders and Wallonia into 2 separate states.
I went for a walk thru Schaerbeek where I stayed when I was a poor student.
The cinema was right across from the hotel. The same cinema where I watched Schindler’s List 16 to 17 years ago. Watched a couple of movies including an Argentinian film called El secreto de sus ojos. It was in Spanish with French and Dutch sub-titles. Excellent film. Category: must see.
I’ve always wondered why so many tourists travel to Bruxelles. I guess it offers good food, interesting architecture, lots of museums and it’s probably less expensive than Paris. By the end of my stay I was nearly persuaded to go back for a long weekend…
Some wild snapshots in the true Chiperoni tradition:
The flight attendant on Saturday’s 18:35 Swiss flight from Brussels to Zurich was very friendly. Thank you. It helps.
mchenga 1.sand; maziko ena onse npamchenga = all other foundations are on sand (see: hymn 362, Nyimbo za Mulungu); expression: walemba pamchenga (lit.: you have written in the sand) = you’ve wasted your time; expression: kugwetserana mu mchenga (lit.: throwing one another on the sand) = reconciliation;
While 2010 is the year where many will find ways to monetize their online blogs, photos and apps (which is ok), don’t forget your personal voice.
Even if you have only 5 readers per day, you have influence.
There are enough echo chambers.
I spend a lot of time reading online. And there is a lot of repetition.
Don’t sell out to the latest SEO and social media marketing gimmicks. It’s a fact: google-bombing your way into Google’s top ten is getting more difficult by the day. Esp. for common terms. Even if you follow all the social media marketing advice out there. There is no silver bullet. Consider plain, old-fashioned offline marketing as well.
Remember why you started blogging and tweeting and have fun.
I know why I am here. I enjoy writing. I like documenting my web world. The tools that I used. The feedback that I get.