Welcome to the bloggy home of Noah Brier. I'm the co-founder of Percolate and general internet tinkerer. This site is about media, culture, technology, and randomness. It's been around since 2004 (I'm pretty sure). Feel free to get in touch. Get in touch.

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Quiet

Things have been, and will probably continue to be, a bit quiet around here for awhile. Here’s a quick rundown of what I’ve been up to (with some links and commentary thrown in for good measure.

I’ve been:

  • Moving (to Brooklyn)
  • Planning a wedding (in May)
  • Traveling (a lot)
  • Reading Game Change: Obama and the Clintons, McCain and Palin, and the Race of a Lifetime
  • Giving presentations (including one on innovation, with a focus on marketing agencies, that I just posted on SlideShare)
  • Reading about the iPad. Come on, who hasn’t? Favorite comments so far: come from (1) Stephen Colbert and, slightly more seriously, (2) Cory Doctorow who argues that the closed nature of the device holds us users in contempt. It’s interesting to me because he’s an interesting dude, but also because I had read it slightly differently. To me, the move to iPad/iPhone is further down the road of technology we can’t break. For those of us that grew up with videogames, this is a perfect evolution. In those games we never read manuals, we just picked up the games and figured it out, because the worst thing that could happen is you died and started over again. With the iPhone/iPad it’s becoming impossible to break your technology (without dropping it of course), which could also mean that people are less intimidated by innovations and more likely to dig deeper/learn more. Not saying I know the answer to what the future will look like, just offering a different read.
  • [On this topic, what would happen if Firefox or Google wanted to release a browser for the iPad. Could Apple prevent them? Couldn’t they be taken to court and lose on the same anti-trust grounds as Microsoft a decade ago? Anyone know the answer to this?]
  • Thinking about The New Rules of War thanks to a very good Foreign Policy article by John Arquilla (who also wrote Cyberwar is Coming in 1993 [download link at the bottom], which I highly recommend).
  • Thinking a lot about serendipity. I’m really fascinated by the role of serendipity in the 21st century. Terry Heaton, one of my favorite media thinkers, linked to a Jeff Jarvis post about the topic: “What is serendipity? It’s not a story from left field. It’s not, I think, ‘the opposite of what you normally consumed.’ There’s a reason we find value in the supposedly serendipitous. When I started Entertainment Weekly, I said that our features had to satisfy a curiosity you didn’t know you had — but you end up having it. When we read a paper and find a good story that we couldn’t have predicted we’d have liked, we think that is serendipity. But there’s some reason we like it, that we find it relevant to us. Maybe that relevance is the unknown but now fed curiosity, maybe it’s enjoyment of good writing or a certain kind of tale, maybe the gift of some interesting fact we want to share and gain social equity for, maybe it’s a challenge to our ideas, maybe an answer to a question that has bugged us. In the end, it has value to us; it’s relevant.”
  • Other stuff that I can’t think about right now.

Anyway, apologies in advance for the slowdown. Will at least try to do some catch-ups once-in-a-while.

April 2, 2010

Comments

  • Dan Dickinson says:

    “On this topic, what would happen if Firefox or Google wanted to release a browser for the iPad. Could Apple prevent them? Couldn’t they be taken to court and lose on the same anti-trust grounds as Microsoft a decade ago? Anyone know the answer to this?”

    Apple iPhone Developer Agreement, section 3.3.2:

    “An Application may not itself install or launch other executable code by any means, including without limitation through the use of a plug-in architecture, calling other frameworks, other APIs or otherwise. No interpreted code may be downloaded or used in an Application except for code that is interpreted and run by Apple’s Documented APIs and built- in interpreter(s).”

    Unless Firefox or Chrome want to be rebuilt using Apple’s provide Webkit, they can’t interpret Javascript, which sort of handicaps a third-party browser.

    That said – I’m surprised someone hasn’t built a better browser on top of the webkit core. Bookmark management is pretty poor, there’s no private/incognito mode, multiple windows mode kind of sucks…there’s room for innovation, just no one’s really grabbed the market yet.

  • reverenddave says:

    can i borrow game change when youre done with it? i really want to read it

  • andy says:

    love the innovation presentation mate. nice work!

  • candice says:

    Having just gotten married like, a week and a half ago, the fact that the planning hasn’t eaten all of your time completely and you are still posting is impressive. Nice work, and congrats!

  • Noah Brier says:

    Looks like Slate agrees with Dan: http://www.slate.com/id/2250083/?from=rss

  • Zemblanity, the Opposite of Serendipity | Noah Brier dot Com says:

    […] awhile now I’ve been fascinated with the idea of serendipity. I was actually going to write a book […]

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