Thursday, August 31, 2006

BOBs 2006

Deutsche Welle Best of the Blogs

We need you to head over to the suggestion form and give us the lowdown on all the blogs that glue your eyes to the screen and the podcasts that make you keep your headphones on. You can choose from the following categories:

Best Weblog, Best Corporate Blog, Best Podcast, the Blogwurst Award, Best Weblog /(Insert contest language here) and the Reporters Without Borders Award. In addition to the overall world's Best Weblog, another award will be given to the Best Weblog in each of the BOBs' 10 official languages making for 15 different prizes.

Who gets to play along?

The Deutsche Welle's Best of the Blogs awards are open to any blog, podcast or videocast in Arabic, Chinese, Dutch, English, French, German, Persian, Portuguese, Russian or Spanish and meet the criteria. Read through the Road Map to find out more of the competition's details.

The people making the decisions

First and foremost, the BOBs are about the Weblogs (and 'casts) you submit, a blog you that is never entered into the contest can never win -- so get to work. When the submission window closes on Sept. 3, the BOBs jury of bloggers, podcasters, journalists and media experts will begin their work.

If your not impressed with the jury members' biographies, then keep an eye on the BOBs Blog, where they will have a chance to stun you with their insight and analysis. And please also check out the sponsors and media partners who are helping make the third annual Best of the Blogs possible.

This is a very clever way for Deutsche Welle to discover which blogs their viewers are reading. If you want to nominate Presto Vivace Blog for best Enlish language corporate blog, you can do so here.

This might not be such a great idea

Plan for Enhanced Federal IDs Could Open Door to a Biometrics Boom

In the coming months, a wave of government initiatives could start making such high-tech methods of identification commonplace -- beginning with the replacement this fall of federal employee IDs. Similar cards are planned for transportation workers, first responders and visitors to the United States.

If someone steals your identity you can persuade the Social Security Administration to give you a new number. What do you do if someone steals your fingerprint?

A Computer Game for Real-Life Crises

Disaster Simulator's Maker Gives It to Municipal Emergency Departments

Just over a year ago, Joe Barlow, a paramedic in Illinois, spent a week testing a computer game called Incident Commander, a training simulator that gives players a lead role in managing crisis situations such as terrorist attacks and natural disasters.

Days later, he used his virtual experience in a real-life situation: the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. He was put in charge of an 800-bed hospital in Baton Rouge, La., and found that many of the decisions he made there stemmed from what he learned by playing the game.

The Justice Department put up the money for development so that municipalities could use it for free.

Wednesday, August 30, 2006

So how can corporations participate in social media?

BL Ochman

- Sponsor existing content that relates to your product or service. Sports-related companies would be smart to sponsor this MySpace page content
- Run contests employing social media. Marketing should be fun!
- Use a MySpace page to create a forum for community interaction on a real issue

Transitioning to Agility

Agile Project Leadership Network – September meeting

WHEN: Thursday, Sept 7th at 7:00 PM
(registration 6-6:30)

WHERE: Courtyard by Marriott - Tyson's Corner
1960-A Chain Bridge Road
Mclean, VA 22102

DINNER: $25.00 cash at door (admission and dinner)

TOPIC: Transitioning to Agility


Sanjiv Augustine
Cliff Berg
Bob Payne
Thad Scheer

RSVP: via email to Kristin.Schaad[@]ccpace[.]com
(put APLN RSVP as the Subject)

DIRECTIONS: Please go to


In September APLN will host a highly interactive panel. Hear the in the trenches experiences of agilists, who have been there bringing Scrum, XP, Lean, TDD and other agile process and practices into new, unfamiliar and occasionally hostile environments. Bring our panelists your hardest questions and problems.


Sanjiv Augustine is the author of "Managing Agile Projects". Sanjiv moderates the Agile Project management forum on Yahoo and is Managing Director of Lean-Agile Consulting at CC Pace.

Cliff Berg is the author of "High Assurance Design" and "Advanced Java 2 Development For Enterprise Applications". Chris co-founded Digital Focus. Cliff's latest venture is Assured By Design.

Bob Payne is co-founder of the Washington DC eXtreme Programming User Group. A long Time agile coach and mentor, Bob is creator of the Agile Toolkit Podcasts and is CEO and Founder of Electroglide.

Thad Scheer is CEO of Sphere of Influence, where he brings an agile approach to Service Oriented Architecture. Manager, coach, architect & developer, Thad has been a speaker at countless conferences and user groups and was major part of the backbone of WOAD (Washington Object-Oriented Architecture and Design).

Friday, August 25, 2006

Ernesto heads for the Gulf Coast

Jeff Masters

The latest 12Z (8am EDT) model runs are in, and they portray a conflicting picture of what may happen. Three of the four major global models--UKMET, GFS, and NOGAPS--dissipate or severely weaken the storm by Monday. The Canadian model, which has been the most aggressive in making Ernesto a hurricane in the Gulf of Mexico, now keeps the system a weak tropical storm all the way to landfall in the Florida Panhandle on Tuesday. The European Center model has a similar forecast. Oddly, the large upper-level trough of low pressure over the central Caribbean is forecast by these models to move west away from Ernesto, and an upper level high pressure system to build on top of the storm. This situation should act to lower the shear and aid in intensification, and that it what the official NHC forecast is calling for. It is unusual for the models to forecast a favorable shear environment, yet dissipate a storm, and serves to show the limitations of these models in making hurricane intensity forecasts. I have very little confidence in any of the Ernesto intensity forecasts--including the official NHC forecast of a hurricane in the Gulf of Mexico on Tuesday. High wind shear could still destroy this storm on Sunday. Ernesto should slowly intensify through Saturday, but beyond that, I have no idea. It's best to prepare for the worst, and hope for the best. All portions the U.S. coast from the Florida Keys to Brownsville, Texas are at risk from this storm.

Tropical Depression 05 regional imagery, 2006.08.25 at 1145Z. Centerpoint Latitude: 13:43:20N Longitude: 65:00:59W.

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Sgt. Starr

Virtual recruiter.

This concept could be applied to many other things, not just recruitment.

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

Defining astroturf

Not as easy as you think is it? D-Ring PR is leading a good discussion about it.

Wise OWLs of criminal justice

Law enforcement agencies explore semantics

Experts say the use of semantic technology is growing among consultants and application developers. The World Wide Web Consortium’s adoption of two semantic standards — the Resource Description Framework (RDF) and Web Ontology Language (OWL) — has further spurred the use of the technology in the past two years. Although the intelligence community is probably the most advanced in using such tools, experts note that deployment in other sectors is still sporadic.

Paul Wormeli, executive director of the Integrated Justice Information Systems Institute, a nonprofit organization that prompts the technology industry to develop new standards and practices in the public safety sector, said several companies are beginning to deploy semantic technology, but it is still new to state and local law enforcement agencies.

He said law enforcement officials are still struggling with implementing Extensible Markup Language-based messaging standards such as the Global Justice XML Data Model, and 200 similar projects are probably under way.

“But the future thrust is toward implementing a service-oriented architecture and the ontologies that will need to be implemented in such a service-oriented approach to [exchange] information,” he wrote in an e-mail message. SOA “will benefit considerably from the application of semantic concepts.”

Monday, August 21, 2006

USPTO 11th Annual Independent Inventors Conference

The United States Patent and Trademark Office
invites you to the

11th Annual Independent Inventors Conference

September 8-9, 2006 at 8 a.m.

USPTO Headquarters
600 Dulany Street. Alexandria, VA

Join top officials from the United States Patent and Trademark Office and successful inventors and entrepreneurs to learn effective strategies to help protect and market your BIG IDEA!:


• Stephen M. Pinkos, Deputy Under Secretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property
• John Doll, Commissioner for Patents
• Lynne Beresford, Commissioner for Trademarks
• Gregory Hart, a finalist in the History Channel's recent Modern Marvels Invent Now Competition
• Louis Forman, CEO of Eventys and executive producer of the upcoming PBS series Everyday Edison's

Register today, seating is limited!

Registration Fee: $50 per person for both days (includes all sessions and presentations, refreshments, lunch and a networking reception on Friday evening).

First time attendees are invited to participate in a pre-conference seminar on September 7, 2006 from 5-7 p.m.

To register for the conference, please visit or call the National Inventors Hall of Fame at 330.849.6903

For more information, please call the Inventors Assistance Program at 571.272.8850.

Specialty news release service

Aerospace & Defence News Distribution

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

Is Jim Crow hiding in your closet?

So how many more public figures are going to have their Earl Butz moment before everyone figures out it is not funny anymore and never was?

George Allen, during a campaign appearance, pointed to his opponent’s tracker and said, “Welcome to America Macaca.” The tracker, S.R. Sidarth, is an American citizen of Indian descent. Now why would Allen assume that Sidarth was not American? There really isn’t any nice answer for that. Which explains why Allen’s damage control is just making matters worse.

The way to prevent this sort of thing is to quit whining about political correctness and toss Jim Crow out of your closet.

Not funny Rob Corddry

From his routine on the George Allen race blooper

I don’t know what macaca means, but it sure sounds racist. In Virginia I’m not sure whether that helps you or hurts you.

Hint Corddry, in 1985, when you were in diapers, we elected Doug Wilder Lt. Governor of Virginia. In 1989 we elected him Governor. Get back to us when and if a comedian with dark skin gets a gig on The Daily Show.

In investing as so many other things

watch what they do, not what they say.

Email lists

It is important to manage them intelligently.

Monday, August 14, 2006

IASA Meeting - Profiling the Agile Architect

Thursday August 17th, 6-8 pm

FGM 4th Floor

12021 Sunset Hills Road Suite 400, Reston, VA 20190

From Dulles Toll Road (267) take exit to Reston Parkway, turn right
after ramp, take first left at Sunset Hills Road, take second left
into parking lot, park on right side.

Topic: "Profiling the Agile Architect"


At first glance, agile methodologies seem to de-emphasize the role of the software architect. One of the principles of the agile manifesto states that "the best architectures, requirements, and designs emerge from self-organizing teams." Nevertheless, in my work leading and coaching agile teams, I have observed that having an effective architect on the project is essential to the overall success of the project and of the system being built. In this talk I describe a profile of the ideal architect on an agile software development team. I discuss this person's day-to-day activities, and explain how an individual with good architectural skills integrates themselves with a team that is evolving the design incrementally and striving for "the simplest thing that could possibly work."


Jeff Nielsen is Chief Scientist at Digital Focus, where he trains and mentors teams and individuals in the use of agile methodologies. Jeff has over 19 years of commercial software development experience, and has architected a number of mission-critical and enterprise-level systems. Since spearheading the first large-scale XP project at Digital Focus, he has spent much of the past six years coaching agile teams for clients including America Online, Fannie Mae, Sallie Mae, and FHLB.

Call for Speakers, AIIM 2007

APRIL 17-19, 2007

Interested in Sharing Your Expertise?

The AIIM International Conference Team is looking for qualified speakers to deliver presentations at the AIIM 2007 Conference. If you are an end-user, an industry expert, a consultant or analyst on an industry topic, a solution provider willing to present with a client, or any combination of the above, we are interested in reviewing your submission.

The AIIM Conference & Exposition is the largest global IT event connecting users, channels, and suppliers of enterprise content management solutions. The 2007 Conference will feature several tracks as follows:

• ECM Essentials
• Search and Retrieval
• Information Sharing
• Hot Topics
• ECM in the Enterprise-Architecture, Infrastructure & Applications
• ECM in the Core Infrastructure
• Risk Management: How to prevent content from becoming a liability
• Management Best Practices

All submissions must be received electronically via our on-line form located at For your submission to be considered, it MUST be received by September 8, 2006.

Advice to vendors, encourage your customer to apply.

Ever wonder what happened to all the old Soviet bureaucrats?

They work for the RIAA.

Thursday, August 10, 2006

New to me advertising blog

Banner Advertising

Copy Editors

Worth every penny of their pay.

International business

Why Linguists Are Needed In Marketing

How one venture capitalist looks at business models

A Venture Captalist points to Union Square Venture’s post on data defensibility:

We do not expect IT enabled services businesses to have strong patent positions that would prevent anyone from entering a market. Instead, we look for defensibility in data.

We would argue that the network effect that makes it difficult to compete with Craigslist or eBay is based on a proprietary data asset. People go to these sites because they have lots of listings. This is a data asset. But it is not their only data asset. The systems for controlling reputation and spam at eBay and Craigslist are also built on a valuable data asset. As these systems accumulate data over time, they increase the value of the service and make it more difficult for newer services to deliver an equivalent experience.

Wednesday, August 09, 2006


What is vibrocoring?

A vibracore device uses a vibration source to sink a sample barrel into unconsolidated, water-saturated sediments. The vibrations cause disturbance in the sediment that is in contact with the sample barrel to facilitate penetration. The disturbance is minimal and sedimentary structures are preserved in the sample.

I stumbled across this and thought it was interesting.

Tuesday, August 08, 2006

Is there light at the end of the IPv4 tunnel?

Susan Menke, Defense Systems:

As DOD sees it, IPv6 will enable:

* Vast IP address space: 3.4 times 10 to the thirty-eighth power, or trillions of addresses per ­war-fighter
* Ubiquitous, scalable networking
* Globally routed addresses
* 128-bit headers with 64 bits for a network identification and 64 bits for a host ID
* Quality-of-service assurance across networks
* Easier multicasting to ad hoc groupings of personnel
* End-to-end security instead of dependence on protection at either end.

As I understand that Europe is way ahead of us in IPv6 implementation.

Sunday, August 06, 2006


NSA risking electrical overload

The demand for electricity to operate its expanding intelligence systems has left the high-tech eavesdropping agency on the verge of exceeding its power supply, the lifeblood of its sprawling 350-acre Fort Meade headquarters, according to current and former intelligence officials.

Thursday, August 03, 2006

My hearty congratulations to the plasma TV PR pro who placed this story

Women 'prefer tech to diamonds'

DIAMONDS are no longer a girl's best friend, according to a new US study that found three of four women would prefer a new plasma TV to a diamond necklace.

The survey, commissioned by US cable television's Oxygen Network, which is owned and operated by women, found the technology gender gap has virtually closed with the majority of women snapping up new technology and using it easily.

Gentleman, don’t bet on this.

Wednesday, August 02, 2006

How hot is it in Washington, DC?

From the The Washington Post