Tag Archives: internet

What’s your Google footprint

Last night, after the Drupal Meetup, we were having many interesting conversations at the bar. One started as a question about why I did so much open source activity. There are a lot of answers there, though mostly at this point open source is just in my DNA. If I do something, I open it, because that’s what I now do.

But I posed as a return question for everyone to think about what their Google footprint was. If you search for your name, what comes up? how much of that is you?

“Sean Dague” in google returns: About 652,000 results (0.14 seconds). I am sure 99% of that is me.

Page 1 is (in order): my blog, my twitter account, my linked in profile, my directory entry in android market, a comment I wrote on greenmonk blog, my github, my old (long dead blog), my quora account, my meetup profile, my CPAN account. Some of that is current and used, some of it isn’t so current, but because google ranks the communities important, it bubbles up.

If you start going through pages you’ll see contributions to projects I’ve done, bugs filed, mailing list posts, presentations at conferences, retreads of my listings in twitter and android market on 3rd party sites. A public life on the internet that dates back to about 2001 (there may be earlier stuff, but that’s when I started being consciously active in the open source world).

I can live with that, it’s a reasonable picture of who I am, that future friends, associates, employers can all use and see for background. The amount of content I put out on my blog means that it will remain hit one for my name. It also means that I’m always on the front page of “Dague” in google as well. Having an uncommon name is actually an incredible boon in the 21st century if you want to build a reputation. Something that I hated as a kid, is something I’m very pleased about now.

Much like your credit score, your google footprint isn’t ever completely in your control. But you can be very deliberate about putting out content, in code, comments, emails, blog posts, public social network artifacts, which will shape that footprint to be some representation of you.

Take a minute today an look at your Google footprint, and see what picture the internet gets of you.

I’d love to hear stories, challenges, or completely new ideas in comments, so please post. And just think, that will also add to and shape your Google footprint.

Stop Online Privacy Act

Apparently the only thing that can get bi-partisan agreement right now is destroying the internet. The hearings in the congress were basically stacked with big media executives, with the only vaguely technical person being a lawyer (not an engineer) from Google.

The creators of the internet have signed an open letter about how damaging this could be.

Call your congressman, get this thing stopped. Use some of those extra cell phone minutes, or unlimited long distance, to keep the internet a place where new ideas can incubate, instead of being stomped out by big media companies.

FAQ of the Day

From Dar.fm’s FAQ:

Q: Wait – is it $39.95/year or $40/year?
A: Officially it’s $39.95 because some MBA student showed us a spreadsheet explaining how there are people out there who if they see “$40” will say, “No way – that’s much too expensive!” But if they see $39.95 they’ll round down to $30 and think “Man, that’s barely more than a Starbucks coffee, what a great deal!” and then type their credit card into the system. We think he’s crazy but his Dad put some money into the company so we’re humoring him.

Actually looks like a cool service, and something I’ve pondered writing myself for years. Might need to sign up.

On the quest for Doonesbury

Last night I spent nearly 2 hours in the Doonesbury archive looking for a strip which I remember reading when I was just working at IBM. This morning I figured I’d keep going back through the archive on the off chance that it was earlier than I thought, it was. From August 4th, 1996:

This is one of the easiest ways to explain to people what spiders do on the internet.

Making the internet a better place

When it comes to the Internet there is something we’ve all done that’s bad for us.  You know you’ve done it.  You’ve probably done it when people weren’t watching, when you were all alone.  You know what I’m talking about: reading comments on websites.

You find yourself involved in an article that you may or may not agree with, but you find quite interesting.  Something the author spent some time on, weighed different wording, and tried to create a coherent statement.  They might even have provided helpful links and footnotes to let you learn more, or to back up their thoughts.  You are so enthralled that you keep reading at that level of interest as the article comes to an end.  You want more, so you keep reading.

Wait, what was that, when did the article reference nazis?  What’s this?  Conspiracy of big pharma?  but I thought this article was about nice places to go picnicing?  The author is a free mason?  When the hell did Apple’s new product become relevant to this article?  Oh … no … I’m lost in a see of comments written by crazy people.  Help me I’m getting dumber by the minute!

Well, there is a solution.  There is this very nice addon for Firefox called CommentBlocker.  Install it and now the internet immediately becomes a better place.  Average IQ of your reading experience goes up by at least 20 points, and your overall satisfaction interacting with the web goes way up.  As a bonus your faith in humanity goes up a couple of points as the loud and angry trolls, ones that aren’t willing to put their name on their statements, no longer get to dominate the conversation.  If there is a site where the comments are of high value, or you just need a little crazy in the afternoon to keep you awake, in one click it will return the comments, but for that site only.

Take back the web, don’t feed the trolls, use CommentBlocker.

VMWare’s new stand

Read over at James Governor’s redmonk blog:

Maritz said that other major tech firms were still “consolidating the client/server stack” while VMware wanted to capture a new wave of application development.

“Developers are moving to Django and Rails. Developers like to focus on what’s important to them. Open frameworks are the foundation for new enterprise application development going forward. By and large developers no longer write windows or Linux apps. Rails developers don’t care about the OS – they’re more interested in data models and how to construct the UI. Those are the things developers are focusing on now. The OS will fade into the background and become one of many pieces. We plan to do the best job of supporting these frameworks.”

Or as he said to the analysts:

“Our goal is to become the home of open source and open framework-based development”.

I think this is really what the “post PC” era really means, desktop applications are going to become a niche market, only to be used if the task can’t be done on the web, in the cloud.  Lots of really interesting stuff in that article that you should check out.